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Calling It Out

WHO IS UP for another referendum? I’m guessing that the vast majority of those who read this will most certainly relish another campaign. The confidence, inclusivity and optimism that were the hallmarks of the 2014 Independence Referendum provided a positive and lasting legacy. Despite the deep disappointment of the result, the referendum gave impetus to a belief that change was still possible and that the old political loyalties in Scotland had been torn asunder.

It was a campaign noted for its grassroots involvement. A broad church. A rainbow alliance of different political, cultural and ethnic backgrounds. A kaleidoscopic movement that was noted for its enthusiasm and progressive ambitions. A modern movement that was adept at taking to social media and utilising it to maximum effect. This was a campaign that recognised the inate hostility of main stream media and circumvented this through a profusion of alternative pro Indy news sites and social media bloggers. And instead of melting away on a no vote, many are still going strong four years later, still beating the drum, still flying the flag.

Social media and especially Twitter, became the focus for the dissemination of ideas and information. But there were downsides. There were, on occasions, intemperate exchanges between those who supported a Yes vote and those who were convinced it was a bad idea. In response to these sometimes ill tempered discourses, it is understandable that people restricted themselves to feeds where their own views were supported. An echo chamber developed, where debate became increasingly insular. It led to some Yes campaigners affirming their messages and beliefs to the already converted, receiving endless validations and affirmations from fellow independenistas in return. It created false impressions of a campaign on course to win. Of course none of this is surprising. Who wants to put up with insults and abuse? But, it does rather mean that persuasion and negotiation withered on the vine and a philosophical and political stalemate developed.

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The best Scottish Glossy on the planet ! An absolute belter of an issue with all the best crack going on in Scotland today.