Being Boring

Dave says:

Another example of boringness is in the way that local issues are reported on. For example, more people read about council issues in their local paper than in the leaflets sent out by the council itself. That’s because the council leaflet is probably more boring than the paper’s coverage. That said, more people moan about their bin collections, or pot holes in their street, in the pub with their mates than read about them in the local paper. Again, chatting in the pub is more fun.

So for government at all levels to get their messages across, and to engage better with people, they need to ensure they aren’t boring the people they want to talk to.

This chimes with some of the stuff I was on about here. But I don’t think it’s beyond the wit of local government to talk in ways that attract rather than bore; in lots of ways I think that Lewisham Life manages to avoid the charge of boringness.

But I think that there is more that our council could do to draw in the interested audience. As Sue, Andrew, and John (amongst others) are proving having information on what our local representatives think and do is seen as valuable.

I’m pleased that John’s making progress (inch by inch) in engaging officers, but why is it that he’s created the i-calender and I’m doing the RSS feed? How is it that Nigel’s blog isn’t a template for all council departments and that Brockley Central is the place to debate what’s going on in that bit of the borough?


About Andrew Brown

I live in Lewisham, South East London, and spent 9 years as a Labour councillor in the borough between 1997 and 2006.
This entry was posted in Civic Society, Lewisham. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Being Boring

  1. I guess, though, that if Lewisham Council were to provide something along the lines of Brockley Central they could run the risk of it being dubbed propaganda, as happened with Ken and The Londoner newspaper (and does happen, with increasing justification, with Greenwich’s Greenwich Time).

    Haven’t seen Love Perry Vale before, it’s terrific, isn’t it? That’s given me an idea… (again).

    But at least Lewisham is lucky enough to have councillors who “get it”, or who are allowed to get it, on the basic communication stuff – *coughcough* unlike Greenwich *coughcoughcough* at least that’s providing a starting place for people.

  2. Andrew Brown says:

    I’m sure you’re right about BC if run by the council, but it’s the imagination that’s being shown; the recognition that our community is more than the sum of the services we receive and the celebration of debate that I think the council ought to think about.

    I think the model that John and others are trying with the Love Perry Vale has more possibilities too. I like the fact that anyone can sign up and take part, the mixture of social network and blogging platform is very interesting.

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