A question for our readers. What do you think Liberal Democrat Voice is for?

Liberal Democrat Voice has existed for more than eleven years now but, a bit like the axe of my grandfather, it has seen quite a bit of renewal. The editorial team has changed, the style and content have evolved. As an editorial team, we are scattered across the country, with a range of experience within the Party – organisers, councillors, campaigners, bureaucrats.

And, occasionally, it is good to ask oneself, what draws people to the website, what does it do well, or badly, what is missing or how might it be more effective. So, here’s your chance to let us know what you think.

What do I think, you might wonder?

Well, I see Liberal Democrat Voice as a conduit for the Party to communicate. We’ve established ourselves as a means for senior Party figures to tell us about their campaigns, for Committee members to outline what they’re up to, for important Party management issues to be aired, on diversity, on member engagement, on protecting members and volunteers from abuse.

We’re also a place to debate ideas, suggest strategies for fighting and winning elections and exchange tactics and techniques, to grumble about things that aren’t so good.

And, perhaps, we offer a means to send a message to the Party’s leadership. In the past, we’ve polled our readers – at least those who are Party members – to find out what you’re thinking, and covered key internal contests.

That isn’t a complete list, simply the first things which come to mind. But you’re the readers, and without you, all of the work of the editorial team would be in vain, so I’d like to hear from you. Remember, be respectful – I don’t want to have to exclude your comment unless left with no choice. But otherwise, let’s try and avoid moderation – this is about content for a change…

I await your thoughts with interest…

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48 Comments

  • Ruth Bright 22nd Jan '18 - 3:16pm

    Mark I suppose LDV is there to affectionately but critically work out what, three decades after the merger, the Liberal Democrats are for!

  • Lorenzo Cherin 22nd Jan '18 - 3:50pm

    Mark
    Your comments, well meant but very ambiguous, and confuses me…
    “Remember, be respectful, I don’t want to have to exclude your comment unless left with no choice.But otherwise let’s try and avoid moderation. This is about content for a change.”

    I was so troubled by recent attitudes on here , particularly from the editors, that I considered leaving this site completely and for a while, not being in any way active online or elsewhere in the party.

    I glanced at the site a couple of times, to see what was going on.

    I was a reader of it for a very long time before a contributor to it.

    I wanted to avoid the cut and thrust I saw too much elsewhere but only very little here.

    I was a contributor to the site for a very very long time before becoming very troubled by the tone .

    It was not that of the contributors . The worst comments are best dealt with by interaction and repost that shows them up at worst, defeats their argument at best.

    The tone was the sort of thing you say here in a nice way, said often in a manner that can be regarded as patronising way at times.

    When editors constantly admonish or “remind ” the tone changes more than when contributors argue too much. Because politics in a liberal party is freedom loving at best, flexible at worst or best, or it is not really worth engaging in.

    My advice to the editors, the contributors, the members, of this site , the party and beyond, visit other party sites.

    Labourlist is an embarassing joke because it is a free for all, the editors do not seem to care and do not bother. This is not a good thing and on this site the editors are dilligent.

    But in a party that is draconian and extreme now more than ever, Labour have a site that is libertarian in policy and practical effect. They swear and mock. They criticise and argue. I have never liked it but it is bad because it reveals the tendencies of that divided and bitter party.

    This party is not like that. Nor is this site. This site is decent and robust.

    That is what this site is for. It is justly regarded because of that. It is a public space for likeminded political enthusiasts, often in agreement or disagreement.

    I have always liked this site , it’s editors are dedicated, the contributors including me, also dedicated.

    It is for debate. Debate must be freer. Or it is good for very little.

  • I wish the site would contain a bit more analysis of the goings on within the party e.g. comment pieces about how the likes of Vince, Willie Rennie, Kirsty Williams etc are doing without being afraid to be critical where needed. Sometimes the site lacks a voice to challenge the party’s performance (or lack of), which was especially noticeable during the Farron years. It sometimes seems like a Lib Dem cheerleader not a site for critiquing those at the top, or LD policies.

  • David Evershed 22nd Jan '18 - 4:26pm

    To debate the trade offs between economic liberalism and social liberalism.

  • It should be about reality. When things are good say that, when things are bad, or even worse as they are now, say that. Do not be bland, do not turn a small success into great glorious seeming headlines, highlight why and where we are bad, heaven knows there are plenty of examples each Thursday. With reality comes the real truth and that is something we should not be afraid to face. We may then find the right way out of the mire.

  • Tony Dawson 22nd Jan '18 - 5:52pm

    To provide an almost constant reminder of the clear need for a comprehensive Liberal Democrat website.

    (not when you are editing Mark!)

  • @Lorenzo Cherin
    I would agree that you probably got the rough end of the stick that day. Sometimes your unusual grammatical style can lead to misunderstanding. Even moderators have bad days. Stick with us.
    @Mark. It does seem sometimes that we air our dirty laundry in public on these pages but I suspect that is because the Members site is so poor. It would be nice if a comment could be made public, members only, or both. Difficult, I know.

  • Steve Trevethan 22nd Jan '18 - 6:52pm

    Might LDV offer valuable distance learning opportunities?
    The better informed we are as individuals and as a party, the better our thinking and actions.
    Might this also help the promotion of our politics?

  • I think the format of the site could do with a bit of a remake. It feels a bit too much like someones blog.

  • OnceALibDem 22nd Jan '18 - 7:17pm

    I’m not sure if you want the views of ‘ex-ers’ (and it would be legitimate to exclude them IMO) but I’ll offer my 2-5p worth if you do.

  • I guess the point is to facilitate discussion around current political issues. In the main it has done this very well in the years I’ve followed it. I think it should also be the critical friend of the Party in general.

    The strap line of by and for Lib Dem supporters is also key. Too often, and I think back particularly to the two major referendums (referenda?) of late, debate has been hijacked by the infamous cybernats and the kippers.

  • Good question. I’m just one person, but for me the site serves a number of functions, and I’m sure it serves those and more to others.

    I like to read about specific campaigns or reports about what our elected representatives are up to. I like that we have the opportunity to give our views on those campaigns, and discuss them with others who find them of interest.

    Updates on polls, or by-elections, and the big elections, are also of interest. These reviews should be constructive, and while I don’t believe in denying bad results, I see no merit in wallowing in excessive negativity. We might struggle for accurate and widespread media coverage of our policy ideas, but if I want to read about how we’re a disaster, there are several newspapers that already provide that service.

    I assume that articles aimed at drumming up interest in the conferences, or support for canvassing, or certain schemes is valuable, but I don’t have the evidence to prove it.

    I like Steve’s suggestion of distance learning. How many of us really do understand the background to all of our policies? If we knew more about the background to formulating a policy, we’d be able to promote/defend it much better when required. The policy that springs to mind is the one of the legalisation/regulation of cannabis. My professional background means I already knew quite a lot on the subject and so it made sense to me. I had/have questions about how to make sure the policy works as well as possible, but the central ideology is sound. However, it was apparent that a lot of other members struggled with the policy being about risk reduction of something we know to be dangerous, and I noticed a few of our electoral candidates struggling to communicate the basics with confidence. Links to the background studies, or even just some FAQ would inform and reassure a great many of those who aren’t so sure.

    The same could apply to less controversial, but equally important health and environment topics. These are the sort of things that appeal to many who find much of politics dreary. But beyond that, I’m sure there are plenty of supporters and potential voters who aren’t entirely sure what it is about x, y or z that is so bad, or why our proposals of a, b and c are better. These may appear obvious to active long-term members, but it’s not always easy for the rest of us to keep up.

  • I am a floating voter who has voted LD in the past but not recently. I read about 25% of the content, usually about policy matters of national interest. I ignore the rest.

    I will support or criticize the opinion or policy being expressed according to its merits and usually I speak as Joe Public or an average voter. Sometimes I get the impression that an article is a vanity piece, presented in the usually correct expectation that only sycophantic, caring appreciation and admiration will be expressed by the punters.

    So sometimes my comments receive genuine responses and at other times I am an unwelcome intruder. I am a democrat and wish to encourage good opposition. The Lib Dems turn off voters in two major ways. I participate when I can to argue these points on these pages. My aim is to make Lib Dems understand their negative characteristics as perceived by voters. (If you don’t agree, explain the poor results.)

    I thank my hosts here for this opportunity. I thank the moderators for their patience and tolerance and I value the continued existence of this site.

    As a footnote, sometimes my comments are resented but they sometimes stimulate debate on a particular subject, bringing others in who may have felt anxious about expressing an alternative view. Being completely ignored or insulted can be intimidating.

  • Richard Underhill 22nd Jan '18 - 9:45pm

    It would be good to have more coverage of international events. At the moment the Free Democrats are reluctant to be in coalition in Germany and have challenged the SPD (Observer sub-editor, not SDP) to negotiate again with the CDU-CSU.

  • If LDV is intended to be a ‘conduit’ for the part to communicate to its members, or to people who might be members, then it probably fails in the sense that it doesn’t always deliver a clean, coherent message that encourages its members and is attractive to outsiders.

    If, on the other hand, it were to be regarded as a conduit for the members and the public to express their interests and concerns to the Party (which is perhaps the more democratic idea) then it is unsuccessful in other ways, both in terms of audience (do people in the higher ranks of the Party actually read it?) and due to the fact that it’s too easy for a very small group to take control of the discourse. I think that the kind of discussion I see here has become steadily less representative of the Party as a whole over the last seven years, though some of that is doubtless due to overall disenchantment.

    For it to be an effective conduit either way, it has to be more representative of both the membership and the leadership, while at the same time finding ways to address and reflect some of the feelings of the broader public.

  • Reading some of the posts above I wonder whether a weekly thread on a current policy would be good. I.e. Take a policy from the most recent manifesto (or one agreed at conference) and then have a breakdown of it by a subject matter expert. I suspect this would need more than the usual word limit but it would allow an in depth look at the workings of policies. This would be especially good for the non-flagship ones…

  • @Steve Way

    I think that is an excellent idea.

    As someone who has voted Liberal Democrat in the past (not at the last 2 elections) I know that there used to be so much that I identified with LD’s with.
    Brexit has made me feel like we are now poles apart and it is hard for me to reconcile, however, there is so much more to politics than Brexit and voting in a General Election is a huge responsibility that I know we should not really judge everything on one issue.

    I for one would love to see a weekly debate on a different policy area, I think it would help people to reconnect and to see just where we share values and bring together idea’s and common goals.

  • I was drawn to the Liberals in the early 1960s. I moved abroad many years ago but kept in touch (father and brother were Lib Dem councillors) I used to subscribe to Lib Dem News so LDV is now my way if keeping in touch.
    Many of those with businesses and jobs abroad cannot return to the UK without suffering great financial hardship.

  • It’s a good site, more civilised than most and people can exchange opinions without it turning into fisticuffs. Personally, I think the moderation works best when it stops lots of insult flinging and trolling.

  • Neil Sandison 23rd Jan '18 - 11:04am

    Agree with Steve Way looking at the most read column you could be mistaken in thinking we were a single issue party .regular slots on policy and how it is developing would be helpful particularly on key issues like the NHS/Social Care,Affordable Housing ,Education,The Environment,Local Government .We need a string policies to play and not one bow on a fiddle .

  • The quality of articles and comments are of a much higher standard compared with other sites.
    This is what draws me to LDV.

  • Nick Collins 23rd Jan '18 - 12:04pm

    I wonder how many LibDem members are aware of LDV and what proportion regularly visit it? How do you advertise yourselves?

    When I was an active member I was unaware of this site. I did not come across it until after I left the Party in 2011. I now spend more time looking at LDV, and occasionally commenting , than i would have been able to, even if I’d been aware of it, when I was an activist.

    Is that part of the problem with a site like this? Are many of those who are fully committed to campaigning too busy to spend time here? Are the views of “armchair philosophers”, disaffected members and former members therefore over-represented among the comments?

  • Sue Sutherland 23rd Jan '18 - 1:14pm

    I think Steve Way’s suggestion is good and would like to see that happen. For me, LDV is a way of keeping in touch with what other members are thinking and doing because I can’t go to many meetings etc due to ill health. It’s also good to see comments from people outside the party who are genuinely interested rather than trying to relentlessly demoralise. So I’m an armchair member but have been very involved in the past. I think it’s important not to dismiss those like me because we are slightly detached and sometimes have more time and inclination to see how the party is coming across because we aren’t caught up in council meetings, delivering leaflets, knocking on doors etc. So it would be great to think that the elite of the party looks at LDV every now and again especially when they have written an article posted on here. This would be a way of keeping in touch with sympathetic people who are outside the well known Westminster bubble. However, the impression I get is that we are being told rather than consulted.
    PS Lorenzo glad to see you again! I think PJ is right. You have a way of using language which is different from the rest of us and I think was misunderstood, but we are Liberals and even though our deeply held beliefs may result in other Liberals saying things that stab us in the heart, we must carry on the debate hoping to persuade them of the justice of our cause. So I would plead for a light hand in moderation on this site.

  • Agree with Sue, nice to see Lorenzo back and yes a very light hand on the tiller please. The tiller hand should remember free speech is a Liberal principle.

  • Phil Beesley 23rd Jan '18 - 1:46pm

    Mark V asked what LDV does well.

    LDV provides a space where we can read public debate between social liberal democrats and centrists and economic liberals, inside and outside the Liberal Democrats. Ordinary people, maybe. Sometimes the debate becomes a bit rough — and that is how it should be. The trick is to balance the threads so that they are not so rough to discourage new contributors.

    When LDV does a better job of presenting official Lib Dem policy or working of the party than the party’s web site, it is a signal that things could and should be done better elsewhere.

    LDV as a motivational (beyond the concept of liberalism) site or campaigning tool? Probably not. Or maybe LDV motivates by connecting different liberals, whatever.

    LDV needs to rethink how it reports council election results. Very few council by-election results reflect (or are affected by) national polling figures. Core Lib Dem voters turn out more if there is an up in the polls.

    When LDV reports on council by-elections, it should be about how to win — with a pointer to election campaigners.

  • Matt (Bristol) 23rd Jan '18 - 2:08pm

    I’d like to see more dialogue pieces, where a topic is kicked around between several voices. This would also enable some sadly necessary positive discrimination to enable more women’s voices on here, which are largely drowned out in the comments below the line.

    A lot of the opinion on this site consists of isolated cranks (and I include myself, in the past) trying to pin their agenda on the party as a whole, which makes for an incoherent hopping about from hobby horse to hobby horse.

    I’d also like to see some exchange of views between local parties about the party’s chances / methods in specific local areas, but people may feel that’s more of an ALDC role?

  • Nick Collins 23rd Jan '18 - 2:08pm

    Sue Sutherland, Please do not think that the reference in my comment to occupants of armchairs was in any way meant to disparage, or “dismiss”, people like you; if i gave that impression i apologise. if it helps, just ignore my last sentence (I include myself, by the way, in the last of my trio of groups whose views may perhaps be over-represented).

    The point I wanted to make was that pressure of other activities may be causing the views not just of those whom you call “the elite of the party” but also of the “poor b*** infantry” to be under-represented among the views of their “critical friends” and not so friendly critics.

  • Catherine Jane Crosland 23rd Jan '18 - 2:35pm

    Lorenzo, it is so good to see you back 🙂 You give so much to this site, with your wisdom and kindness. Your comments are always an example of how friendly debate should be conducted – always respectful and good humoured, even when expressing strong disagreement.
    I also agree strongly with David Raw about the importance of remembering that freedom of speech is a liberal principle.

  • Lorenzo Cherin 23rd Jan '18 - 4:01pm

    PJ, Sue, David, Catherine Jane et al !

    Comments like these mean a lot to me. It is with heartfelt and real thanks to you I say this.

    Those who feel and think a lot, often have to try to wear different hats , one is rather emotional, often not so much a hat, more a heart on sleeve, that is worn naturally by some of us, sometimes. Ironic that it was a thread complaining , and perhaps rightly, about the attitudes of men at times, it was and is because I am a man who is both masculine and yet in touch with my feminine side, and who is very able to relate to that which is emotional, that I object to stereotypes , and thus defensiveness sets in all round.

    The other hat worn, better suited to the head , indeed, is the intellectual. This site encourages it, not as some pretentious pseuodo attempt at posing in the Lib Dem version of the Left Bank, rather, in searching, as Ruth Bright says here, trying to find out what this third force in our politics is about.

    The combination of these makes for a balance I attempt, but do not always succeed in. Plus, as with those here, particularly Sue Sutherland and David Raw, also our friend Matt, and the excellent David Warren, those who have shared personal stories on here , are vulnerable. Caron did so in a very interesting and revealing piece on here in my first glance at the site in a while. I think it better to be vulnerable , personal, and , avoiding the Uriah Heep extremes of it, humble too.

    We are driven by self belief if we do have and , must remember, share beliefs in common.

    But remember too, something Sir Peter Ustinov said, “We are united by our doubts, divided by our convictions.”

    As a member of the Ustinov Prejudice Awareness Forum, I am aware of our prejudices here only being in favour of good feeling and constructive thinking, and never against others, unless of a ghastly sort.

    We must be respected because we are all each of us giving of ourselves voluntarily in goodspirited, debate ,and yes, high spirits too, without a drink in my case as a teatotaller !

  • Wearing a hat is less messy than wearing your heart on your sleeve young man.

  • Lorenzo Cherin 23rd Jan '18 - 5:35pm

    David

    Yes, but in learning this as we do young or older, we know to that making a mess of things is how we learn to live !

  • “I see Liberal Democrat Voice as a conduit for the Party to communicate.”

    That’s always been my sense of it too – top down communication. Sue Sutherland puts it rather well, “the impression I get is that we are being told rather than consulted.”

    And that reflects a wider issue for the party. Its principled commitment to bottom-up democratic working is, in practice, often missing in action. For what it’s worth, my own interpretation is that this goes back to the traumatic days of the late SDP/Liberal Alliance era when the differences between David Steel and David Owen leading its two halves were utterly disabling. I suspect that those who conducted the formal merger negotiations to create the Lib Dems unconsciously established a culture of strong central control with an organisation to suit to ensure future unity above all else. There may be other interpretations (anyone?) but I can’t think of any.

    Whatever the precise reasons the party culture and organisation are as they are, the outcome has certainly been a remarkably low level of dissent with few if any of the epic political battles that periodically engulf the Tories and Labour. And that’s cost us dear for it has squeezed most of the politics out of the party leaving it with a carefully formal but sterile approach with a cloth ear for public sentiment – and often even for its own members’ views.

    For example, back in the 1970s the question with respect to the EU really was IN or OUT. But once we were IN, it should have become what sort of EU do we, as Liberals, want. Yet that very necessary change of tack was somehow too difficult to make with the party routinely acting as an uncritical cheerleader for the eurocrats’ drive towards greater centralisation. Those who remembered that Liberals traditionally stand for devolution and hence wanted reform were ignored; many even left as the party simply doesn’t have the institutional arrangements or habits to enable it to respond flexibly nor to tap into dissenters’ skills and insights. So, it drove on towards a more centralised EU – until Brexit.

  • Phil Beesley 23rd Jan '18 - 8:01pm

    “I see Liberal Democrat Voice as a conduit for the Party to communicate.”

    “That’s always been my sense of it too – top down communication. Sue Sutherland puts it rather well, “the impression I get is that we are being told rather than consulted.””

    That’s always been my sense of it too – top down communication.

  • OnceALibDem 23rd Jan '18 - 8:03pm

    “Well, I see Liberal Democrat Voice as a conduit for the Party to communicate. We’ve established ourselves as a means for senior Party figures to tell us about their campaigns, for Committee members to outline what they’re up to, for important Party management issues to be aired, on diversity, on member engagement, on protecting members and volunteers from abuse.”

    This only happens to a limited degree. It is some time since a senior party figure told anyone about their campaigns (mainly because they don’t seem to exist!). Party management issues are not really aired as they are often posted in comprehensively locked down postings that brook no discussion – often with no rationale to justify that.
    EG this on Cyril Smith – https://www.libdemvoice.org/cyril-smith-an-apology-is-the-very-least-we-owe-the-victims-55521.html
    Or this (rather ironically given the title!) https://www.libdemvoice.org/your-chance-to-have-a-say-on-draft-disciplinary-reform-proposals-55852.html

    Members surveys were a regular thing in the past but are pretty defunct now (the last was over a year ago) so I’m not sure how much anything on here communicates views to the party leadership.

    And this was never a place to discuss tactics strategy and techniques. That should never be in an open place. So really your reasons set out aren’t really the evident in practice.

    More insidiously – and one reason that contributed to me leaving the party – is the way it mutes issues the party needs to address. Deliberately or not the way it does that is by constantly framing issues and discussions in a pro-leaderhship way. Eg several times on polling/election results pieces have been written about how things are better than might be expected. That then frames the whole discussion that follows.

    Why this became a reason why I left the party was that LDV is run by intelligent and committed people. However they seemed more focussed on telling people why there weren’t problems than taking the first step to deal with them – which is acknowledge them. To an extent I can see why tribal loyalties kept that going through the coalition years – but it continued afterwards any by mid 2016 I didn’t get the feeling this was a party that had a clue what its problems were and how to deal with them (you still don’t – but Brexit is masking that a bit).

  • OnceALibDem 23rd Jan '18 - 8:03pm

    All that said this is actually a pretty well run and civil place to debate politics. I’ve not really found one that is more welcoming. Of course things can be criticised – but people really want to look at other forums which are way way worse than here!

    As to what to do next. I’d suggest shut it down and start again. The big discussions don’t – and shouldn’t really – need to be in public. A lot of the discussions about the party don’t need input from people like me. And whilst I’m not a huge supporter I would like the party to succeed again – at least as the radical movement it once was. Other commentators on here are even less benign.

    Invest the time on robust and secure medium where internal discussions can take place (which BTW isn’t Facebook – when I left the party I wasn’t removed from a single private facebook group except when I asked to be taken off. ). That hasn’t existed since Cix and largely the top of the party don’t want there to be such a forum as it would cut across their “do what the centre says” mentality. Invest the time, knowledge, experience and commitment you all have on creating that sort of forum and that would be a postive way forward.

  • Eddie Sammon 23rd Jan '18 - 8:41pm

    I think the site should be for members, supporters and people with an interest in liberal politics. We don’t want trolls commenting but I wouldn’t want the site to be for members only.

    When it comes to the content: I think it gets it right, as it gets it right on who is welcome to comment. News and discussions about Lib Dem politics.

    Lots of things have been tried to get more women commenting and I don’t know what success they have had but the irregular commenter only articles used to be quite good. Perhaps we could have women only comment articles. I’m not sure if many women would want it but it might create a safe space and a place to amplify the female liberal / Lib Dem voice.

  • Jonathan Hunt 23rd Jan '18 - 11:25pm

    I was on the editorial boards of both Liberal News and Liberal Democrat News. We sought then to provide a publication that was informative, entertaining and provided uncensored platforms for a range of opinions.

    The current online format has the great advantage of allowing fairly instant debate on ideas and opinions, rather than waiting for letters to appear the following week. So unsurprisingly, opinion pieces and discussion fill the majority of space.

    As a journalist on national newspapers, I normally took the side of the editor, especially when he (sadly no women editors) was under attack from someone who believed he knew best.

    Different editors took different views on news items. My belief was that they should be reported straight, containing no views but quotes for and against if required. As CP Scott famously said: “Opinions are free but facts are sacred.”

    That rule isn’t always, or often, followed on this publication. We should have a news column running down one side, with straight reporting, and not a general opinion piece. News should be edited so that comment is edited out. Several items a week should draw the ire of party media men and spin-doctors.

    Otherwise it is not doing its job.

  • Sue Sutherland 24th Jan '18 - 12:35am

    Nick Collins – no offence taken!

  • Diane Reddell 24th Jan '18 - 10:54am

    I think Lib Dem Voice is a tool for blogging on issues and for promoting discussion. For further development you could set up an Lib Dem Voice Alexa Skill as another channel to get voice news

  • Diane Reddell 24th Jan '18 - 11:02am

    Also maybe at a couple of fringe events work with training and Your Liberal Britain to encourage blog writing on LD Voice, perhaps using an html template to help with publishing workload.

  • Once a Lib Dem – as author of the piece about Cyril Smith I would have preferred comments to have been allowed.

  • I’d like to see more from some of our elected representatives, or former ones. Some real opinion pieces allowing room for proper discussion. Peter Black and John Pugh have always seemed very good at that both on this site and outside it – I’m sure others are too, but those two sprung to mind. I do feel that with some pieces from our elected members, its basically the same as reading one of our leaflets.

    In terms of what I think Lib Dem Voice is, or should be, for (as well as the general news type postings), is a place for ideas and discussion, not just for members, but for anyone liberally minded and anyone who isn’t who may find something interesting. We have party emails and many, many facebook pages for internal party communication, so I completely disagree with those wanting to make this site even more internal.

    This is a public site, the most public Lib Dem site really, so in an ideal world it would be something a lot of more people outside of the party engaged with in a positive way.

  • Ruth Bright 24th Jan '18 - 8:57pm

    It is good to see here a lament about the lack of women newspaper editors. One wonders how the lamenter thinks it is helpful to the progress of women for him to use terms like “genderisters” (LDV Feb 21 2016)

  • I’m not sure if the software allows it, but many sites use tags to allow users to filter articles according to their interests.

    I think we should have some straight news type articles, but I like the ones where people offer their point of view, and a bit of editorial can give those less directly involved in politics a friendly ‘in’ to otherwise dry subjects.

    Sometimes it’s just handy as a notice-board, and there may be scope for links to pertinent online newspaper articles, especially ones with substantial input from one of our members. The integrated twitter feed down the side serves this to a point, but as we often complain the papers don’t like to give us stories, anything that can help those stories get a wider audience can only encourage them to do more.

  • It’s a fair while since I was a party member so maybe my views don’t hold much weight but currently 1 out of 4 posts I’ve tried to make on the Swinson/President’s club thing have got past the censor.

    About 5 years ago (when I was more active) I’d say all of them would have got through, which suggests the moderation policy has changed considerably since that time.

    To answer the question, it seems the purpose of the site is to give the illusion of discussion without actually allowing views to be seriously challenged.

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    Stand as a Liberal Democrat :)
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    Jettens pro-Remain intervention in the Commons followed other D66 Brexit initiatives. At our Autumn Conference we adopted a motion, striving to enable second generation Dutch...
  • User AvatarDavid Franks 17th Oct - 2:47pm
    thank you, we have been asking for party press releases for ages. please do keep them coming. we can dump the ones we do not...