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Swanson, Monica


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Trouw - Netherlands | 27/08/2009

Populists control the Internet

If populist opinion plays such a strong role in political debate it's largely because of the Internet, writes communications expert Monica Swanson in the daily Trouw. The voices of the vast majority, however, are not heard at all, Swanson comments: "Granted, in the Netherlands there is still no majority willing in an emergency to eliminate an entire population group. Nevertheless it is to be feared that the upstanding, calm majority is no longer heard in the debate (on Islam and migrants). The Internet is an easily accessible mass media and as time goes on everyone has learned how to access it. But it's important to understand that while everyone can access it, that doesn't mean that everyone does. ... That makes it the territory of cave dwellers with far-fetched views. ... Information no longer plays a key role in today's media structure. All that counts is who has the loudest voice, and the populists know that full well."

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