During the Scottish Independence Referendum in 2014, the furnishing of accurate information from one side of the debate was very good. From the other side, it was practically non-existent.
The YES campaign were up-beat and positive. They produced a document (over 650 pages long) crammed with useful information concerning the future of an Independent Scotland.
The NO campaign took an altogether different approach. They used a continual barrage of spin, misinformation, half-truths and fearful claims of impending doom if Scotland voted to end the Union. This campaign was christened 'Project Fear' and, although somewhat underhand and unimaginative, it ultimately won the day for the NO campaign.
We now face another referendum, this time to decide if our membership in the EU will continue or not. With the voting day very close, the campaigning has been deplorable on both sides with little or no accurate information presented. It would appear that BOTH sides have adopted 'Project Fear'.
Two Scottish MEP's (Alyn Smith MEP and Ian Hudghton MEP) have collaborated to produce 'The wee bleu book' (notice the clever use of 'EU' in the word bleu.)
This follows the traditions of the 'wee blue book' published during the indi ref and the 'wee black book' published after Scotland voted NO.
This handy little booklet explains a lot about how Europe actually works and describes many of the benefits that membership brings.
There is an understandable bias towards remaining in Europe - the MEP's are SNP members and advocate we remain in the EU. However, the information should be useful for those on both sides of the debate and so far, is the only accurate data to come forward.
The entire document can be read via the 'flip book' featured below. It works on every browser and mobile device - except for Internet Explorer which seems to have problems with the text quality and it refuses to properly open in full screen mode.
If you experience problems with IE, you might consider downloading and installing an alternative browser (Firefox would be a good choice - you can get it here: www.mozilla.org/firefox-download).
This link will open the flip book in a new window which can be maximised, improving the visual quality in IE: The Wee Bleu Book - Full Screen
You can view/save the original .pdf file here: The Wee Bleu Book pdf
On a desktop machine, there is a menu bar along the top that shows the current page. On the bar, there are four menu buttons. The first activates a search tool (which finds info from the publication), the second toggles a set of navigation thumbnails below the pages, the third activates an additional menu bar along the bottom and the fourth toggles the full-screen mode (which makes the text nice and clear).
On a desktop system, the mouse-wheel can be used to advance or retard the pages, as can clicking on the navigation bars. Double-clicking on the page area will zoom in or out of the page.
On a mobile device, the interface is different, but easy to figure out. The pages still turn, and are responsive to taps and swipes. The full screen version will adjust to single-page mode and is easy to read if you turn your device to the portrait orientation.