Sunday, December 07, 2008

Change from Obama -- using the Internet for transparent, two-way communication during the transistion

We've discussed Obama's use of the Internet, and the difficulty of gathering meaningful input from many users.

You may recall the Bush energy policy controversy. In his second week in office, George W. Bush created the National Energy Policy Development Group (NEPDG), charged with developing a national energy policy.

NEPDG meetings were secret, and the administration refused to share information about them with Congress. This led to the General Accounting Office, the investigative arm of Congress, filing a lawsuit against the administration. The suit was dismissed.

The Obama Transition Team will hear from many groups over the next several weeks, and, in sharp contrast to Bush's policy, they will use the Internet to open those meetings. They have established a Web site for two-way communication with the public, where one can track Transition Team meetings, read documents presented at those meetings, and offer comments. You can read more and see a short video in this press release.

Do you have an interest in any of the meeting topics at "seat at the table?" Have you posted any comments? Do you feel such feedback will be meaningful, or is this sugar coating for one-way communication?