A NEW social network is being launched in Scotland today to nurture the explosion in political engagement sparked by the independence campaign.

CommonSocial, which launches at noon, is a unique media model, mixing news and original content with social networking, all generated from the same platform. Its creators say they have taken the best parts of social networking and geared them towards organisation and action.

The idea is to provide a place where people and groups can connect with others who have the talent, knowledge and the drive they need to make things happen.

The aim is to serve and nurture the huge increase in political and social participation in Scotland since the independence campaign and work with the current momentum that has built up since the EU referendum.

Like CommonSpace, its sister-site news service, CommonSocial is completely free from advertising and sign-up costs and can be used by anyone as a networking and news resource. Its creators believe it is accessible, sophisticated and has the needs of users at its heart.

Nearly two years in development, the new network has been made possible through support given to campaign group Common Weal.

Tiffany Kane, operations manager of Common Weal, said: “The wealth of knowledge in Scotland today still amazes me, but I see frustration in people at times – what do they do with all this knowledge? How do they put it into action? We need a space to come together to tackle the immense challenges we face in our social, political and economic future.”

CommonSpace editor Angela Haggerty added: “The point of CommonSocial is that it has been funded and built by the grassroots, for the grassroots, so it has people at its heart, not monetisation. This is a tool to empower people to be more involved in their communities, politics and the things they really care about.

“It’s great to see concepts like this emerging in Scotland, particularly in a digital media landscape hungry for ideas.”

Individuals and organisations can create their own profiles and groups, called Spaces. They can use their Space to start debates, campaigns, represent their local group, set up private meetings and network with people of a like-mind who share the same goals.

The calendar function allows people and groups to create events and clearly view other events they might be interested in based on their interests, while the Wiki pages are a tool to share knowledge and information in a way that’s relevant to their space. From petitions and letters to a library of relevant documents, members also can help others document and shape the information that is suitable to their project. New features will be added to the network in the future.

Register via the CommonSpace news site (https://www.commonspace.scot/. Sign up there to enjoy free access to both the news site and CommonSocial.