If you clicked here to learn how local government websites can engage you, there is something I need to ask you to do first:
Please vote for me so I can speak about the subject in April 2013 at the National Conference for Media Reform.
Here is a snapshot of my proposed session:
President Barack Obama, on his first day in office, signed a memorandum to all federal agencies and ordered them to be transparent, participatory, and collaborative with their constituents. The past three years have witnessed unprecedented Internet actions from the White House on their blog and across social media. And yet local governments have a long way to go. Whether due to trickling funds or dried-up resources, municipal websites in general share little data and hardly enable participation to and from the taxpayers and voters they serve.
The irony is people are accustomed to visiting websites and engaging online. We buy and sell products, transfer money, meet prospective dates, review movies, and share our locations. Despite social acceptance of these behaviors on retail and peer-review sites, there is a general anachronism with local government.
If I receive a sufficient number of votes from the at-large internet community, I will highlight case studies of municipal websites that are a hit with their residents. I will share best practices for other local governments to learn from and emulate themselves.
But I can only talk at the NCMR if I receive a lot of votes.
If you believe in media reform and public policy, cast a vote for me. Conference organizers have the final say which sessions are part of the program and which are not — but vote count is a significant factor in their final decision.
Please vote here before October 26.
Then, come back, subscribe to my blog, and you can anticipate receiving posts in the near future about municipal website reform.