30 Mar 2018

Website offers Austrians a chance to get politically active

The first 100 days of the ÖVP-FPÖ government has led liberal activists to create a website advising Austrians how to make politicians listen to their concerns.

Julia Sahlender
Julia Sahlender Der Standard, Austria
Source: Der Standard
Website offers Austrians a chance to get politically active - NewsMavens
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Why this story matters:

Sharing political views today is as easy as posting a tweet or clicking "like" on Facebook, but such actions rarely lead to long-lasting social change. 

The online platform "aufstehn" has released a short guide titled "Misch dich ein!" (Get Involved) that shows people how to vent their political displeasure besides writing an angry post on social media.

According to Maria Mayrhofer, managing director of "aufstehn," cutbacks in social and integration programs, Nazi scandals and attacks on the media during the first 100 days of the new Austrian government were crucial factors in starting this website.

The ÖVP-FPÖ coalition may have taken Austria on a right-wing path, but by doing so they have sparked an unprecedented wave of civic engagement, judging by the short guide's success.

politics,protests,illiberalism

Details from the story:

  • Aufstehn.at is a website that urges Austrian citizens to "take a stand for progressive politics, social and economic fairness, and ecological responsibility."
  • The platform has organized or participated in campaigns opposing online hate speech towards female journalists and the Muslim "New Year's Baby," among others.
  • Another website, fragdenstaat.at, helps citizens send requests to different government agencies. The requests are legally valid and enforceable and can be made privately and anonymously.
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