POLITICIANS are exploring the potential of the internet as a means of communicating to that group of mainly young people who live in the world of Twitter and Facebook.
They should take to each other very well.
Both live in volatile geeky, transient worlds in which a lot of noise is made about very little.
I tapped ‘Iceland’ and ‘Volcano’ into my search engine (yes, I know some of you have already glazed over – what’s he on about? Search engine?) and opened a Pandora’s Box.
Suddenly the entire world started scrolling down in front of my eyes.
Messages posted on Twitter rolled in every couple of seconds.
Several Twitterers were busily exploring the comedy potential of Icelandic bankers, frozen-food supermarkets and erupting volcanoes.
News flashes every minute or so explained how and when air traffic was being disrupted.
These were interspersed with dozens of messages coming out of airports all over northern Europe, mostly on the lines of don’t stop up, I might be late.
“Cool, check out these pictures of the volcano!” One Picasa fan burbled.
Picasa is a picture-sharing site.
“If Iceland can’t keep its volcanoes under control it shouldn’t be allowed to have one,” commented some wag from Nevada.
“Volcano in Iceland, earthquake in China – the earth is in pain and no-one is listening,” added a tree-hugger from Swansea.
A pleasant pedant from New South Wales said the volcano name should be pronounced E-chaf-a- la-kitch.
It was an extraordinary glimpse into a rolling, living, sparkly world in which everyone can communicate instantly with everyone else.
Unless, of course, you don’t have the internet.