Analysis of President '96
In his essay, "The Political Computer: Hypertext, Democracy, and Habermas,"
Charles Ess addresses the
"belief that hypertext technologies, especially
as those technologies include computer communication
networks, may lead
a democratization of society (Ess 246)." This idea
is held by many theorists
George Landow and Mark Poster, who see in electronic systems such
the World Wide Web the potential
for citizens to play a greater role
But how might one define this new type of
Does the fact that people have quicker and more comprehensive
signal an expansion of the democratic process? Or must
participation by citizens be the essential
in such an expansion?
President '96, is a political campaign
designed by Crossover
Technologies, in conjunction with
the Markle Foundation,
which provides a revealing
glance at the potential
function of cyberdemocracy.
This site enacts an imaginary race for the presidency which draws on
current personalities and issues. A look
at the list of Republican,
and Independent candidates reveals characters who have real-life
to President Clinton, Bob Dole, Ross Perot and Anne Richards, to name a few.
The issues that
are deigned important in the President '96 simulation
have contemporary relevance: candidates and
players state their positions
on topics like abortion and school vouchers. Though simply a game for
junkies, President '96 raises quite a few questions about
to computer technology.