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More lack of interest

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About the author

A freelance writer and editor based in London, J Clive Matthews is Managing Editor of openDemocracy's EU and deliberative democracy blog, dLiberation.

In the real world he has co-authored two books and edited numerous others (ranging in subject-matter from movies to modern Russian politics), been acting editor on a glossy history and travel magazine, editorial consultant for a big name women's magazine, a freelance news editor for AOL UK, worked in both the House of Commons and the European Commission, and contributed to publications as diverse as Starburst and the Times Literary Supplement.

Best known as Nosemonkey online, he has been blogging about British and European politics daily for several years both at his own blog and sites like The Sharpener, General Election 2005 (now defunct), AgoraVox, France 24 and the Washington Post / Newsweek's Postglobal, as well as about movies for the BBC, and has been shortlisted for blog awards by the likes of the Guardian, Deutsche Welle International and the Weblog Awards, amongst others.

So, you're a multinational political party made up of 33 national parties from every member state of the EU. To gear up for the 2009 European Parliamentary elections, which will for the first time be fought by (some) parties EU-wide, rather than merely nationally, you reckon "why not get the people involved and ask them what we should campaign about?"

And so the Party of European Socialists launches a major new online consultation, designed to get up a proper debate about their policies and the future of the EU, following the reform treaty's expansion of the European Parliament's powers. "Hurrah! That's just the sort of initiative we need to give the public ways to get involved in EU decision-making!", we all cry.

Only trouble? Two days in, the five introductory posts have received a grand total of 73 views. People simply aren't interested in the EU.


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