Memo to Obama Transition Team: Take Politics 2.0 into the Whitehouse

The blogosphere is buzzing with speculation and suggestions for President-elect Barack Obama’s transition team to take its netroots into the White House.  Many who see social media as increasing democracy and participation in public affairs are afraid that the Obama victory will be the ironic end to political opennes his campaign helped build.

Joe Flood, writing for e-politics, gives an apt description of the regulations restricting government 2.0 taking place.  He lists the following challenges for social media’s place in the White House:

  1. Limited use of cookies
  2. Bans on PHP
  3. Bans on certain operating systems.
  4. Firewalls

Thank you, Joe for laying out the legal and cultural challenges laying ahead for the Obama administration.

Brian Solis, writing for Techcrunch, makes the argument for an Obama administration to carry on social media practices in the White House and supplies some suggestions for making this a success.  Brian calls this the “two way street” where “people shouldn’t only have a voice during an election time; listening and responding should be an ongoing practice and process of any office.”

Some suggestions Brian provides:

  1. Presidential address on YouTube
  2. Creating a social network, Change.gov
  3. Complimenting weekly radio addresses on BlogTalkRadio

I recommend reading the full post to see all of Brian’s suggestions.

In short, the Obama presidency provides an amazing opportunity to make politics 2.0 a priority in governing, not just campaigning.  The Obama campaign set up a wonderful promise of giving people access to his campaign, message and inspiring the netroots to take action on his behalf.  If that does not continue, there will be a tremendous backlash against the Obama team – and a return to political disillusionment for many – if Obama defaults on his promise of change.  In short, the culture of openness and transparency must continue in the White House.  This change governing cultured enabled by the social web is the new one of Obama’s greatest promises.

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