Journalist, Commentator and Technology Critic
Joined on September 9, 2004 – United Kingdom
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New media pioneer Bill Thompson has been working in, on and around the Internet since 1984.
He currently writes for Internet Magazine, has a weekly column on the BBC WebWise site, and contributes to other publications both on and off-line, including The Guardian, The Register and The New Statesman. His inappropriately-titled 'billblog' appears weekly on BBC News Online in the technology news section.
Bill appears weekly on 'Go Digital' on the BBC World Service, fortnightly on The Big Toe Radio Show on BBC7 and occasionally on other BBC radio and television programmes.
He is a visiting lecturer at City University where he teaches Online Journalism in the Journalism Department, an external editor for openDemocracy.net and a friend of the Work Foundation's iSociety programme.
A former programmer, he was a senior manager for training company The Instruction Set before moving to PIPEX, Britain's first commercial Internet Service Provider, in 1993. At PIPEX he set up the training division before becoming the company's Internet ambassador.
In 1995 he established Guardian Newspapers' New Media Lab and was head of new media during 1996, before leaving to pursue a freelance career. He was technology correspondent for BBC Radio 5's 'The Big Byte' (1996-9) and Campaigns Editor for Internet Magazine (2001-2).
In the 1980's he was chair of the Community Computing Network, a non-profit organisation aiming to extend the use of information and communication technologies within the voluntary and public sector. He was a member of the IBM-funded Social Inclusion in the Network Society (INSINC) working group.
He was an advisor to the Labour Party on its Internet policy and helped to write 'Communicating Britain's Future' in 1995. He was technical director of Nexus, the virtual think tank, and hosted policy debates for the Prime Minister's Office, the Arts Marketing Association and the Times Higher Education Supplement.
Bill has developed Websites and worked on Internet strategies for Comic Relief, Anne Campbell MP, the Regional Arts Boards of England, and ArtsProfessional magazine among others. He has written three books for children: Your Own Website (1999), Your Own Chat Room (2000) and Homework Busters (2000). In 2000 he wrote a pamphlet on 'e-mutualism' for the Co-operative Party.