I’ve learned the news today that the Liberal Party of Canada will host the first modern political convention that doesn’t accredit bloggers. Our friend Dr. Roy received a letter from the party rejecting his request for accreditation. I’ve shared it with his permission below,
Date: December 16, 2011 10:14:10 AM EST
Subject: Re: Convention
Thank you for your interest in attending the Ottawa 2012 – Liberal Biennial Convention.
Media Accreditation is open to recognized news organizations. Freelance and social media representatives must be sponsored by a recognized news organization. They will be asked to attach a letter of assignment to their electronic Media Accreditation Form. We will be posting an electronic Media Accreditation Form to our site closer to the Convention date.
As well, we are encouraging everyone to attend the Convention as a delegate or an observer, and hope you will join us in that capacity.
To learn more about how to become a delegate or an observer, please visit our Convention website: http://convention.liberal.ca.
I don’t think this is the right thing to do. I was invited by the Liberal Party in 2006 to blog about their leadership convention and I had a blast doing it. The Blogging Tories produced a lot of video and blogs regarding the convention.
The Liberal Party is rebuilding. It needs to engage with new media and those that have influence on the various platforms with respect to Canadian politics.
I suspect that the Liberal decision is related to delegate fees; Liberal bloggers will likely pay the delegate fee anyway. Other bloggers are faced with paying an >$1000 observer fee.
I took to twitter this morning to express disappointment with the Liberal Party decision.
UPDATE: Success? The Liberal Party looks to have reversed its decision regarding bloggers and will may now allow them to register for media credentials. However, do they mean that bloggers and freelancers need not be sponsored by a mainstream media news outlet? I will try to register as media for this convention and report back the results.
@liberal_party: Bloggers welcome at #LPC convention! through media accred or observer status. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org