Talk today in the Commons about MPs’ communication to their constituents. The BBC reports: ‘MPs could get an extra £10,000 a year to help them keep in touch with constituents in a planned shake-up of the commons allowances system. Commons leader Jack Straw said a change to the expenses policy was needed as MPs now received 300 letters a week.’
The article goes on to quote Straw: ‘We do have to keep up with the times. There is a demand, not for a report with glossy photographs of a sitting MP but actually describing in some detail what I have been doing.’ Hang on… cheap one-to-many communication? describing your constituency work in detail? Did somebody say ‘blog’?
As I was discussing with a fellow pro the other day… the tools are now available at negligible cost. Give every MP a WordPress-based blog (cost: free), based on the recently released WordPress MU v1.0, on some external hosting space (cost: maybe as little as £150 per year). Get someone who knows what they’re doing to set it up. Lots of RSS and email alerting. And plenty of change from your 10-grand-a-head.