Nicholas Jones - Blog and Archive Website

Campaigning on the internet during the 2010 general election did not achieve the breakthrough which the political parties were hoping for but communication via the web ‘came of age’ for both the public and the news media.  Speakers at a London conference agreed that voting intentions were influenced by the rise in social networking and the emergence of Twitter as a significant source of information for journalists.

Coalition government has not put an end to political spin but so far the Conservative-Liberal Democrat administration has been refreshingly free of an over-arching concentration on media presentation.  David Cameron and Nick Clegg have been as resolute as Tony Blair and Gordon Brown in their determination to command the news agenda while not allowing their urge to manipulate the media to become an obsession. 

Just as the 2010 general election was a game changer for the political parties of Britain – paving the way for the first peacetime coalition government since the 1930s – so it was for the news media.  But not quite in the way the pundits had been predicted.

Come the next British general election leading broadcasters say they will do their best to ensure that the political parties impose fewer restrictions on the format for any future televised debates between the party leaders.

There is always plenty to talk about when journalists get together with politicians and the annual House of Commons reception for the Journalists' Charity was no exception given that it was the first chance to swap gossip about the outcome of the general election and life under a new coalition government.