by Ivo Vegter
Bos: Before I talk about how the web DOES influence Dutch politics, it’s important to see why the web CAN influence Dutch politics. Although the country is very small, it is very, very crowded. More than 460p/km2. One of the highest population densities of all Western countries.
The average Dutchie, based on no research at all, is tall, blond, and very attractive. When he’s not cycling, he drives an estate. Average salary of $46k. The average American is shorter, fatter, not as good looking, drives an SUV, but to make it fair, he earns more: $47k.
The profile is not THAT different. There’s another reason the average Dutchie is a really interesting test case for SxSW. He lives in one of the most internet-connected countries in the world. Global number one in broadband. 3G nationwide, really cheap. Internet is the #1 media consumption, more than TV, at 32h/week. Social networks are huge. About 3 million on Twitter (out of 16.5 million population). Facebook is 4 million. But that pales compared to our own “big yellow monster”, as Facebook once called it: Hyves, 9 million users. Internet is used by a representative cross-section of the population, in terms of income, education, and so on.
Imagine, given these figures, what the opportunities are for politicians to reach this huge online community.Read More