- WEB STARTUPS
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Editor’s note: Below is a recap of the "The Power of Information to Transform Government" session at the Personal Democracy Forum in NYC
Jonathan Adelstein, (FCC Commissioner)
Affordable high-speed broadband – importance is that all other issues are impacted by the availability of broadband. We can reduce costs of healthcare, e-learning/education.
We STILL do not have an inter-operable broadband public safety network. Smart electrical grids to overcome our vulnerabilities.
A cry for real broadband access.
Steven Clift (E-democracy.org)
Points out the many different governments efforts on eDeomcracy – Korea has an eDemocracy portal. We need an Democracy.gov – the State Government says there is one, but we can not promote it in the states.
In Estonia, todayIdecide.com website – proposals are sent forward to the Ministers and now it is being shared amoungst other countries. They are so transparent that they now publish their salaries, allow for personal access to your own information.
Everything will be online – which is where we need to be. Why doesn’t government allow for the transparency? Why doesn’t GOVERNMENT allow us to convene within their democracy?
No investment in eDemocracy at present – those in power will not open themselves up by enlightened ????. Need an executive order, to make this happen.
We are #1 in making noise and making money – most of democracy is local geographically, but the discourse in the cyber world is national. Need candidates need to make their commitments BEFORE they get elected. And, after they get elected – they should have six months to accomplish their executive orders.
Need to update Open Meeting Laws – need to make it mandatory – with agenda, minutes, etcetera. Should be the moment it is done. All meetings should be digitally recorded – need to have this publicly available.
Need to invest in eDemocracy tools in government. eNotification – (google Alerts) timely access to information when released. Public meetings ONLINE – allow people to submit testimony online. Should be within the official meetings.
Paperwork Reduction Act – why not let Federal organizations connect/survey online?
Need to do more with open democracy online – need to put data out there online. Sunlight Foundation.
Connect interventionists – dowire.org/us or dowire.org/uk – eDemocracy projects.
Gotta quit pushing that Delete button on Democracy.
Sheila Campbell (USA.gov)
USA.gov – portal for US government – mobile portal as well
Launched in 2000 – allows for people to get their questions answered.
Looking to personalize government information for individual citizens. Allows information to be channeled to them.
Has close to 24K government websites (not sure) – legacy that the government has to offer.
For example: http://www.defenselink.mil/specials/cats
But most are like PR sites…boring.
Most people want:
- Get a passport
- Apply for a business loan
- Find affordable housing
- Reduce energy costs
- Get a government job
Desire to look/work like Southwest Airlines – like IRS.gov
www.tsa.gov/blog – they opened the feedback, listened, described what the feedback was – and now checkpoint/airport security has been discussed and presented to the conversation. Very successful. And the TSA Blog Team is on twitter – http://twitter.com/tsablogteam
Other efforts: Doing widgets (population clock on Yahoo!), Webcontent.gov – sharing best practices amoungst the various organizations. Have a training academy – good SEO and good metrics.
- Help people complete common tasks efficiently
- Engage citizens in a dialogue to improve customer service
- Get rid of ROT – redundant, outdated and trivial information
- Deliver the same answer via multiple channels
- Ensure access to underserved populations
Can the next Administration deliver on:
- Web needs to be viewed as a strategic asset
- Leaders will engage and trust the public
- Focus on communications — not just technology project – it is the channel, not the tech.
- Funding tied to performance
- Reduce, reuse, recycle
Today at the Personal Democracy Forum in NYC, Huffington Post found Jonah Peretti ran through a presentation about how to make anything "go viral". I was able to capture the video on tape for ya’all and it’s embedded below. Jonah was actually outside of my visible range so just imagine him standing to the right. On stage you can watch Jason Calacanis play with his Blackberry during the presentation.
The video is 10 minutes long and the first 5 minutes are about how many awesome things Jonah has been a part of is so you might want to skip that part.