This paper starts with the observation that liberal and discursive perspectives have been dominant in academic analyses of the role of technology in the future of democracy. The perspective of democracy as a participatory practice is largely ignored by academic investigations of electronic democracy. This paper argues that new technologies increasingly enable citizens to organize their own forms of public value production in a Do It Yourself (DIY) State: governance without government. The DIY State should not be seen as utopia. Although the DIY State may reflect the hippy ideal of a supportive community, it could also take the form of a ‘jungle’ where only the fittest survive. A further understanding of this form of democracy, of the way it is affected by new technologies, and of the remaining role for government, is needed to inform public debate and practices.
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