Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Why I keep saying on the blog I have created that you don't have a website

Dear Mr Vaz,

Why I keep saying on the blog I have created that you don't have a website

First, this is untrue. I have in fact referenced your Labour template site on the blog and followed the appearance of with excitement. I have not added a permanent link to this 'site' on the blog, for which I apologise and have amended.

However I will maintain that you are currently without your own website. Your website is a Labour templated, Labour fed site. It's not yours and it's not the sort of site I wanted you to have. In my introduction to the blog (under the title) one of the central points was that I wanted you to interact with your constituents. Your 'site' does not allow conversations between you and your constituents or between constituents themselves.

In the first post I made to the blog, over a year ago, I said that you didn't even have a bad website. Well now you do, congratulations. It's not good enough.

Helpfully there are lots of people ready and waiting who want MPs to blog and are offering bargain basement prices on packages to set you up. Visit the Political Weblog Project. You've already got a small but guaranteed audience of about 20 people a day who read this blog, including the odd commenter. This will increase no end if you plug yourself in to the wider blogging community.

That's on the UK stage. What's more important is the local arena. Currently visiting this blog are people from all over the country and often even the world but most are from Leicester itself. I can not see that your 'site' provides a useful resource. While it is good to have information about surgeries and your contact details online the template provided to you does not make for a very accessible or attractive look. These sort of things do put people off. The impersonal news items, random links (International Monetary Fund anyone?) and out of context 'Parliamentary news' are of limited use.

How do your adventures, questions and links help the people of Leicester East? What are you doing and why are you doing it? And, crucially, what do we think about it?

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