A global tidal wave of disruption is coming, driven by social media, open data and mobile
A new Federal Computer Week feature on Gov 2.0 trends is full of solid reporting by Alice Lipowicz but hamstrung by a badly chosen headline about a “Gov 2.0 boom being over” and a lede that posits that the “go-go days of ‘Gov 2.0’ social media and mobile applications likely are over.”
As evidenced by his new post on Govloop on “the long boom of Gov 2.0,” Gadi Ben-Yehuda, a smart analyst of the use of social media in government at IBM’s Center for Business in Government, also found some issues with the framing. Ben-Yehuda looks at the growth of the mobile web, stand-alone apps, data warehouses, internal social media, and cultural changes for examples. I’d point to the role of social media in politics and government and the continued explosion of mobile applications and rapid adoption of smartphones around the globe as evidence for why the “go-go” may not have “gone gone” quite yet.
To the publication’s credit, a Federal Computer Week editor changed the title of the piece to “Now the real work begins,” albeit without a note about the change. While the citizens and public servants who have been striving in town halls, government agencies, universities and server rooms for years to open up government data, change policies and culture, and build civic applications or startups might take exception to that characterization of their efforts over the years, the change is a huge improvement
The timing of that characterization was particularly off, given that we all just saw the week that the Web changed Washington. When I look back at open government and Gov 2.0 in 2011, there’s good reason to believe that the trends I documented there (with the assistance of the Govloop community) will extend further into 2012, both for good and ill.
The reason I accepted Tim O’Reilly’s offer to cover Gov 2.0 is because I see it as a far bigger trend than open data or social media alone. Open government and Gov 2.0 are about much more than open data — just read the chapter subjects in “Open Government.” Or look at the issues that flow around the hashtag, like identity, privacy, security, procurement, culture, cloud computing, civic engagement, participatory democracy, corruption, civic entrepreneurship or transparency, many of which readers can find covered in the hundreds of posts here or on Radar.
If we accept the premise that Gov 2.0 is a potent combination of open government technology, mobile, open data, social media, collective intelligence and connectivity, borne upon the platform of the Internet, the lessons of the past year suggest that a tidal wave of change is still building world wide, not that “the boom is over.” There is indeed a lot of “real work” ahead, but it’s built upon the foundation that civil society has constructed over decades. If you want a deep look at what that work might look like, read citizen archivist Carl Malamud’s interview with Slashdot on opening government data.
Earlier today, however, a mechanical engineer named Claudio Ibarra commented on a Google+ thread that he thought that the animated GIF was a “waste.”
You could spend a long day listing all of the organizations or individuals who are putting government data online, from Carl Malamud to open government activists in Brazil, Africa or Canada.
Putting a dollar value on clean water, stable markets, the quality of schooling or access to the judiciary is no easy task. Each of these elements of society, however, are to some extent related to and enabled by open government. If we think about how the fundamental democratic principles established centuries ago extend today purely […]
In an age where setting up a livestream to the Web and the rest of the networked world is as easy as holding up a smartphone and making a few taps, the United States Supreme Court appears more uniformly opposed to adding cameras in the courtroom than ever.
On January 10th, 2013, the OpenGov Hub officially launched in Washington, DC. The OpenGov Hub has similarities to incubators and accelerators, in terms of physically housing different organizations in one location, but focuses on scaling open government and building community, as opposed to scaling a startup and building a business. Samantha Power, special assistant to […]
The 2012-2013 influenza season has been a bad one, with flu reaching epidemic levels in the United States.
The Open Government Partnership (OGP) has released statistics on its first 16 months since its historic launch in New York City, collected together in the infographic embedded below. This week, Open government leaders are meeting in Chile to discuss the formal addition of Argentina to the partnership and the national plans that Latin American countries […]
The post-industrial future of journalism is already here. It’s just not evenly distributed yet. The same trends changing journalism and society have the potential to create significant social change throughout the African continent, as states moves from conditions of information scarcity to abundance. That reality was clear on my recent trip to Africa, where I […]
Social media was a bigger part of the election season of 2012 than ever before, from the enormous volume of Facebook updates and tweets to memes during the Presidential debates to public awareness of what the campaigns were doing there in popular culture. Facebook may even have booted President Obama’s vote tally.
Pollwatch, a mobile application that enabled crowdsourced poll monitoring, has launched a final version at pollwatch.us, just in time for Election Day 2012. The initial iteration of the app was conceived, developed and demonstrated at the hackathon at the 2012 Personal Democracy Forum in New York City.