Government no show on Government 2.0 Taskforce

Update: Since this post first appeared Ann Steward has now posted on the taskforce blog.

A commendable part of the setup of the Government 2.0 Taskforce was a blog which in the nearly two months since its creation has become the primary means of communication between the taskforce and the general public.

Now, let’s take a look at this in more detail. There are fifteen members of the taskforce and how many of those have communicated with the general public on the blog? Looking through all the published blog posts it looks like 8 of the 15 members have blogged. That’s just over half. Not great but not terrible.

But, it gets worse. What if you split the members of the taskforce into those that work for the federal government and those that are “ordinary” citizens? (Note: Seb Chan works for the Powerhouse Museum which is part of the NSW, not federal government)

Then you discover that 7 of the 9 “ordinary” citizens, about 78% have blogged. That’s pretty good. Congratulations to Seb Chan, Nicholas Gruen, Brian Fitzgerald, Lisa Harvey, Pip Marlow, Alan Noble and Martin Stewart-Weeks for contributing and expressing their thoughts and ideas and engaging in conversation with the very people that the taskforce is ultimately designed to help.

But then… Only 1 of 6 federal government employees who are members of the taskforce have blogged. That’s appalling! Congratulations to Mia Garlick, who is the Assistant Secretary for the Digital Economy branch at the Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, for being the sole federal government contributor who has managed to blog.

This is all rather sad and pathetic. This looks like Citizen 2.0 and Government 1.0. Wake up federal government people on the taskforce: Ann Steward, Glen Archer, Adrian Cunningham, Peter Harper and Martin Hoffman. Start communicating, now. You owe it to the taskforce, you owe it to the citizens and you owe it to yourself.

What possible explanation could there be for this? Well, the government people must be really busy managing their large departments while the other taskforce members have lots of spare time to write while they lunch on their corporate expense accounts. Clearly not.

Alan Noble, director of engineering Google Australia is clearly a busy man, running Google’s sizeable research and development team in Australia & NZ. Even he found time to write despite being hospitalised only weeks earlier in a serious accident. If Mr Noble found the time to communicate in those circumstances so can the federal government employees on the taskforce.

So, get to it Ann Steward, Glen Archer, Adrian Cunningham, Peter Harper and Martin Hoffman. Time to fire up that web browser and write a blog post or two or three.

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