Greens throw off Luddite image

In the second in our series on political parties using technology in their general election campaigns, IDGNet talks to the Green Party.

In the second in our series on political parties using technology in their general election campaigns, IDGNet talks to the Green Party.

The Greens may have a reputation for being anti-technology but it's unfounded says Lynne Serpe, a member of the national campaign committee who has worked on Green campaigns overseas.

"It's just not true. We view technology as a way of solving problems as much as anything." Serpe says working from home is a great example of a way to avoid the problems of traffic congestion.

"We've got a lot of young people voting for us and a lot of young people working for us and they're comfortable with technology."

The Greens have jumped at the chance to use technology to better help them in the next election - including making use of the electronic version of the electoral roll that all political parties can receive.

"We take privacy very seriously so we have everyone who has access to it sign a privacy agreement, then every time they log on they have to re-affirm that."

The electoral roll gives the parties the ability to segment the electorates and so focus their energies more efficiently.

"We're obviously not going to win the most number of seats in parliament. We're a small party and we're aiming at about 10 to 15% so we have to be selective in what we do."

By targeting their efforts in the right place, Serpe hopes to swing key electorates by as much as 4000 votes.

"That might be all it takes." Choosing the right electorate and the right message is vitally important in that case.

Serpe says the party has a huge grass roots following and the best way to stay in contact with such a diverse and dispersed group is electronically.

"It's easier to get them involved and keep them involved that way."

The Greens have come under fire for their"letter to the editor" button on their new website, but Serpe says it's not a vehicle for spam as editors regularly call for letters to the editor.

"We strongly suggest people only send their letter to one editor at a time as it has more impact that way. Really it's just a way of getting people involved."

Greenies can send letters to a number of the country's leading mainstream newspapers, radio stations and television channels from the site.

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