Pirate party launches democracy software 2.0

Pirate party launches democracy software 2.0

"We want the 2.0-politics, we want to organize it as a social network," said the party’s political director, johannes ponader, in berlin. The decision-making processes with the help of this internet platform are a solution to balance the difference between direct democracy and representative democracy with delegates, said deputy federal chairman markus barenhoff at a presentation in berlin.

The long-term goal is a "permanent members’ meeting" for the formation of opinion within the party on the internet. Only elections would not be possible. In the long term, the aim is to create new types of solution systems that can cope with the complexity of issues such as the financial crisis or climate change.

There are currently around 10,000 members registered with the system. Liquidfeedback is actively used by around three to five percent of the party’s 30,000 members, said klaus peukert, who is responsible for the operation of liquidfeedback on the party’s national executive board. This is higher than in other organizations. Currently, there are about ten new initiatives from members every day via liquidfeedback. With the introduction of liquidfeedback 2.0 the pirate party hopes for an increased use of the platform, but does not set itself any targets for it. He expects "that the importance of the system will be strengthened more and more," ponader said, referring to remaining concerns within the party against a comprehensive use of the software.

At its first national party conference in may 2010 in bingen am rhein, the pirate party decided to introduce liquidfeedback nationwide. The open-source software developed by the public software group is used for internal party opinion-forming and voting. Each member can also delegate his or her vote on a particular topic to a person he or she trusts.

On the new functions of liquidfeedback 2.0 include an improved interface and notification of votes, for example. Delegations should expire if a member does not use the platform regularly for a longer period of time – after a maximum of half a year. And members will be able to use the platform at different party levels in the future – from the federal government to local associations.

There is still a heated debate among the pirates as to whether the platform should continue to be run anonymously as before or only with clear names. There is a conflict here between the two values of comprehensible democracy and data protection, ponader said.