Toronto Facebook Group Defeats Motorist Legislation

Today Canadian officials dropped motorist legislation that would “have barred motorists 19 and younger from driving with more than one teenage friend” after more than 150,000 members joined a protest group according to the Associated Press. None of the activities resulted in a public protest but the Facebook group was sufficient for helping turn down the bill.

The bill included a number of fairly harsh restrictions on younger drivers including “automatic license suspensions for young drivers caught speeding and a zero blood-alcohol limit for all motorists age 21 and under.” Gilles Bisson, a member of the opposition party, said “People across this province thought this was an unreasonable proposition, and the government backed down.” He added that the Facebook protestors should be proud.

In under a week there have been numerous examples of Facebook organized political initiatives. What’s impressive is that no matter where they are politicians are listening to their constituents on Facebook. This has led a few nations to actually ban Facebook but thanks to proxy sites, most users have been able to bypass any firewalls preventing them from accessing the site.

While it was always known that the internet could be used to help connect and organize individuals, I can’t think of a greater platform for more effectively organizing and mobilizing people. I’m confident that we’ll continue to see many cases of similar efforts around the globe.

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