Sky News’ Stand Up Be Counted: How It Works

There is a group of people in this country who are invisible. They have little ability to influence politics, their voices are rarely heard in the news, and their opinions are largely ignored.

:: Click here to visit the Stand Up Be Counted site

This may sound like the predicament of a small to reach minority, but it has been the reality for more than half of young people in the UK.

Many 18 to 24 year olds don’t vote. At the last election, only 44% of that age group voted. That means more than half not influencing who gets into power.

It means politicians can comfortably ignore a whole demographic, confident in the knowledge that they have no influence at the ballot box.

It means disengaging from the process which governs everyone’s lives.

From today, Sky News is doing something different, to create a change. We are launching Stand Up Be Counted – to help give young people a voice.

Our new site will let people in this age group upload a short clip of them talking on camera about something they are passionate about.

This could range from prejudice in the criminal justice system, to the effect of the rise in tuition fees, and calls for cycling helmets to be made mandatory.

The Stand Up site is already a showcase for creative, absorbing and sometimes entertaining debate from 16-25 year olds in their bedroom, back garden or high street, talking about the things that matter to them.

You can share it too, on mobile devices on WhatsApp and Kik, and on all devices on Twitter, Facebook and email.

The process is simple. You can register via the upload button at the top of your screen. You’ll need a profile picture and a short biography up to 50 words.

After that, you’re a few clicks away from being able to upload your video or content. Short videos – ideally around 60 seconds – blogs and photos are all welcome on one condition – they have to come from the heart.

And it’s safe to speak openly, and powerfully.

This is a place for robust debate, with zero tolerance for abuse, so that you can make your point freely, knowing that as well as starting conversations with your peers, you also have access to Sky News’ audience, and crucially, those in power who have found it all too easy to ignore the views of young people.

One click on the site takes you straight to the page where you can register to vote – an act that, were every young person to do it – would drastically transform the political and decision-making landscape in this country.

This is changing Sky News, too. The voices we are hearing are informing our coverage and changing our perspective.

It’s easy to think that because they don’t vote, young people are disinterested.

Venting frustration on Facebook at “corruption” (one of the words young people we asked most associate with politics) is not enough.

Now is the time to speak. And, crucially, speak where the nation is listening.

:: Stand Up website:

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31 August 2014 | 11:35 pm – Source:

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