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Montag, 19. März 2012

Is Open Gov about Snow Shoveling?

A colleague of mine recommended to me a TED-speech by Jennifer Pahlka entitled "Coding a better government". I was very keen in seeing the news from the US about new methods of OpenGov. But in the end I was a little bit disappointed when I got to see it.

What was the reason for my disappointment?

Jennifer P. describes some showcases for collaborative action. She stated that there is a difference between politics and government (I agree) and no difference between government and societal collaborative action ( I disagree). Politics is just a small layer on an ocean full of government and should be called bureaucracy (I totally disagree; politics is the energy which drives processes in government and bureaucracy). But what surprised me most is that she has chosen snow shoveling, the rescue of possums and giving water hydrants names as examples for using Open Gov tools. I have no problem in understanding her arguments that we the people are the government and that collaborative action is a certain kind of government.

But from my point of view there is a "slight" difference between snow shoveling and using Open Gov tools for issue setting and political decision making. In that perspective she formulated no idea about using the net for participation in the legislative process. It´s a pitty.