It is a spontaneous and personal initiative endorsed by local politicians and administrators to promote the use of respectful and non-hostile language in political debate, focusing on content and ideas oriented towards the common good. It rejects the idea of the Internet as a free zone where everything is permitted, and seeks to raise users’ awareness of the need for responsible behaviour.
It offers practical guidance on the tones and styles to be adopted during discussion and debate with opponents, whether online or offline.
Virtual is real
I know that communication is an integral part of my political activity, directed to the common good. Therefore, I always take responsibility for my communication, both online and offline. I do not consider the Internet to be a free zone where everything is allowed, and I do not use it in that way.
You are what you communicate
I am defined by what I communicate. I always ensure that everything communicated by me or on my behalf is respectable, and I act respectably in my political life.
Words shape the way I think
I am intellectually honest. I define my ideas and intentions as best I can. I do not exploit the immediacy of the media to spread seductive but offensive or unfounded messages. I respect the intelligence of my audience.
Listen before you speak
I give full consideration to the opinions of others even when I do not share them. I do not interrupt others. I do not twist their words to gain advantage. I prefer dialogue and reasoned argument to monologue.
Words are bridges
I believe in the force of my ideas and the power of my words. Whether speaking to political opponents or voters, I use my arguments and passion to convince, never to destroy.
Words have consequences
I believe that public debate, even if heated, should give everyone an opportunity for growth. As a public figure I realise that everything I say affects many people. I think of the consequences before making any statement.
Share with care
My personal credibility is affected by what I share online. I do not create, disseminate or promote news, information or data that I know to be false, manipulated or misleading. Nor do I permit anyone communicating on my behalf to do so. I remind my supporters of their responsibilities.
Ideas can be discussed.
People must be respected
People must be respected. I fight for my own views and challenge those I think are wrong, but I do so always and only based on content. I respect people I engage with and their personal space. I do not belittle them or attribute words to them that they never said.
An insult is not an argument
Machiavelli wrote that men offend either from fear or from hatred. I know that insults are humiliating for the insulted and the insulter: that is why I neither insult nor respond to insults, and I commit myself to improving my country by starting to improve the level of public debate.
Silence says something too
I do not speak merely to occupy space or deprive my opponents of space. When I speak, I use words and phrases that are relevant and have weight and meaning. When I am silent, even my silence has weight and meaning.
For an electoral challenge to be won thanks
to the power of proposals
and not the violence
After the first launch of the initiative in December 2017, the Manifesto has been signed by 5 Ministers and 200 Members of Parliament of the Legislature XVIII. In addition, an official letter of support written by the President Gentiloni has been added.
In March 2019 took place a new launch of the initiative in preparation for the electoral campaign of the European elections.