Wednesday 5th Feb, 12:00 pm
The rise of the blogosphere in the last decade has lead to a proliferation of digital voices on politicised scientific issues such as climate change. However, this does not mean that the ‘ordinary’ person, as compared to mainstream media representatives or scientific experts, has more engagement or influence in such issues than before the emergence of Web 2.0 technologies. The followers of issues-based and increasingly politicised blogs have tended to follow the elites – educated, mostly male bloggers with a background in journalism or writing.
My research is finding that the dominant voices in the blogosphere conversations appear to be deniers of anthropogenic climate change with strong links to vested media and commercial interests. These links to vested interests make it harder for ordinary people to participate with expert scientists in the digital debate about climate change science. Despite this, there are opportunities for climate scientists to participate more actively in the blogosphere by being prepared to provide quick clear information about the latest climate science. Ordinary people can also participate more effectively in the blogosphere to increase their impact and voice by developing interest groups of concern and by networking and linking with influential groups, including mainstream media.