Government of Canada: The Web 2.0 Genie Is Finally Out of the Bottle
The Web 2.0 Interest Group mentioned in the above post is holding its first meeting next Monday, June 9 at the headquarters of Library and Archives Canada and interest is said to very high.
Government can appear to be slow when it comes to the IT cutting edge: IT departments are often wary of anything that is "open source" and are known as "Microsoft shops"; the open and collaborative (therefore uncontrollable) nature of wikis, blogs and other Web 2.0 applications may not make them attractive to higher ups worried about security, privacy and embarrassing info leaks; and who has the time?
Well, it looks like there are many librarians and others in government service who have been waiting for this moment or who have decided to just "do it!" and forge ahead.
A contribution today on the FLC/CBF listserv (Federal libraries community/Collectivité des bibliothèques) pointed to examples of implementation of social networking on government Web sites:
- Canada embarks on major Web 2.0 initiative (May 28, 2008): "A comprehensive system for online collaboration and social networking projects by government departments is in the works. The project involves systems that can provide social networking capabilities for around 250,000 people and will cover 58 government departments. Key technology for this initiative is being provided by Waterloo, Ont.-based OpenText..."
- Treasury Board to share wiki success secrets with deputy ministers (June 3, 2008): "Treasury Board Secretariat is getting ready to share some of its early experiments with Web 2.0 technologies with deputy ministers across Canada who may build on them in their own communities..."
And a sign that the Web 2.0 genie is definitely out of the bottle in Canadian government circles: Infonex is organizing a conference on Government Web 2.0 and Social Media in Ottawa on June 17 and 18, 2008.