My friend, Stilgherrian, has posted a scathing analysis of the final report of the 2020 Summit. He’s particularly disappointed with the Summit’s failure to address and take advantage of the power of the Internet to build connections between disparate communities and between the government and its constituency.
I couldn’t agree more.
My views on the ongoing failure of government at all levels in Australia to really engage online are public and published here. That said, the 2020 Summit was a real opportunity for the Rudd government to take positive steps in the way it connects people with service providers, policy-linked activity and each other. But, yet again, it looks like failure on a grand and blinkered scale.
I am deeply disappointed, but really not at all surprised. Once again the no idea, safe option has been taken without a gutsy leap forward.
Australian politicians and policy-makers really have no idea about how to use the Internet. Largely, they are stuck in 1995 and interested only in broadcast messages and policy brochureware.
They are certainly nowhere near what the Kiwis and Brits (amongst a lot of other online constituent-linked activity, No 10 has a Twitter account and uses it to talk with people!) are doing and light years from where someone like Texas Republican Representative, John Culberson is, using Twitter, podcasting, blogging and more to, as he says, put “We the People in every room in Washington”.
That’s not to say that things couldn’t be different here. They could. I personally know a significant number of smart people, working on the ground in Federal Government departments who get the power of the Internet and could facilitate powerful communication and connection efforts between their organisations and their constituencies if only they were allowed to…