chapter  9
16 Pages

Networks of social media and civic engagement and participation

ByBridgette Wessels

This chapter outlines the ways that political culture has addressed the forms of involvement, in order to identify new aspects of civic communication, engagement and participation. It critically discusses whether mainstream politics needs to change in order to engage more meaningfully with people's values and concerns. In response to claims that there are deficits in mainstream politics, the chapter also discusses how social media developments can be used to foster affect in creating engagement on the one hand, whilst, on the other hand, producing emerging new forms of connective organisations in the rise of contentious politics. In assessing the role of social media and the ways people are finding to engage and participate in civic life and lived political culture, it is important to consider the current state of politics. The chapter shows that there is a deficit in politics and political process, meaning that formal political processes and activities are not meeting the demand side of their purpose.