Government Web 2.0: Overcoming Your Roadblocks . Number One Reason someone will tell you NO: They don’t understand Web 2.0 or what you’re trying to do. Where are the roadblocks? IT Legal Privacy Public Affairs Records Management Upper Management. Roadblocks for Web 2.0 .
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By Mark Stencel
CQ Weekly, February 14, 2009
Some roadblocks are substantial… The “terms of service” on commercial sites that ordinary users might click right past are often at odds with what federal agencies can legally accept. Procurement laws possibly limit how the government may use free online tools, while other rules constrain how officials may collect feedback and track online behavior.
Technological and managerial concerns include fears that giving federal workers less fettered Web access will create security vulnerabilities and sap the bureaucracy’s limited network bandwidth. And perception problems abound, from posting government information on sites that display advertising to worries that employees will waste time “friending” college roommates and old flames.
“… on Jan. 20, the White House Web site rebooted with a prominent blog. At the same time, the new staff chafed at strict online security rules and struggled with outdated computers and software. “It is kind of like going from an Xbox to an Atari,” spokesman Bill Burton told The Washington Post.”
IdeaFactory – launched in April 2007 to empower TSA’s workforce to improve security and business operations.
“The IdeaFactory is a Web-based tool designed to enable innovation and organizational collaboration within the agency. This should be accomplished through user submission of ideas that can result in the creation of national programs or initiatives, changes in the Standard Operation Procedures, or local practices. The IdeaFactory is a special forum for the submission of ideason improving TSA; it is not an open-forum for complaints.”
No Use for Submission of Claims - The IdeaFactory may not be used for the submission of any claim, demand,
Demonstrate to employees that management is participating on the tool and using information.
Convince the skeptics and cover your bases (legal, IT security, etc.)
“This is a moderated blog, and TSA retains the discretion to determine which comments it will post and which it will not. We expect all contributors to be respectful. We will not post comments that contain personal attacks of any kind; refer to Federal Civil Service employees by name; contain offensive terms that target specific ethnic or racial groups, or vulgar language. We will not post comments that are spam, are clearly off topic or that promote services or products.TSA does not endorse, support or otherwise promote any private or commercial entity or the information, products or services contained on those Web sites that may be reached through links on our Web site.”
In September 2008, TSA launched another blog to enhance communications with and among federal, state and local transportation and security agencies who use federal grant money to secure U.S. surface transportation systems (mass transit, rail, ports, etc.)
IT - find the right IT people who understand Web 2.0. They worked IT security issues and built the tool.
Legal - asked them to write the comment policy, ask them to review posts as needed, and then ask them to blog.
Privacy – use tool that doesn’t require people to register on our site
Public Affairs – show value of blogging (kill media stories, correct myths will all the facts.)
Records Management – met to explain the blog and craft a policy that reflects how blogging works.
Educate and bring your roadblocks along to your point of view.
Be friendly, not confrontational. But don’t give up.
Find bloggers around you and show that your employees, stakeholders and the public are already blogging and your agency is not currently part of the conversation. (“work at TSA” on Google).