February 13, 2007

UK Ministers about to launch social media review

Yes_minister_1 Having covered what some in the gaming industry believe to be lack of interest in new media in the Scottish Parliament, I was reminded of a story I spotted this weekend about political colleagues in Westminster setting up a two-month review of how they can use new technology to better communicate with their constituents (Ministers wake to potential of people power on the net)

So taken aback with the power of the blogosphere and online communities such as MySociety, the Cabinet Office, no less, is setting up a varied group of individuals to see how they can harness this better, and pay attention to what the blogosphere notices and suggests. Good news is that MySociety's Tom Steinberg is on the team. It's not just that those who write blogs carry influence, but that a whole host of technology is allowing people to be more productive, talk about what they like and don't like and, thus, root out uncompetitive or just not very good products and services - including those run by Government agencies.

If ever Local Authorities are looking for a lead in helping educators and learners get the most out of social media this is it. If they don't start empowering their own constituents in the same way as East Lothian has, for example, by offering stable online communities which anyone there can become a part of, then they will pay the price further down the line as a new power base develops. More importantly, they've got to be reading and listening to what their constituents are saying and be taking that seriously.

Politicians, with their relatively small life-cycle, might get this quicker, but the civil servants clearly have no choice but to catch up.
(Image credit)


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About Ewan

Ewan McIntosh is the founder of NoTosh, the no-nonsense company that makes accessible the creative process required to innovate: to find meaningful problems and solve them.

Ewan wrote How To Come Up With Great Ideas and Actually Make Them Happen, a manual that does what is says for education leaders, innovators and people who want to be both.

What does Ewan do?

Module Masterclass

School leaders and innovators struggle to make the most of educators' and students' potential. My team at NoTosh cut the time and cost of making significant change in physical spaces, digital and curricular innovation programmes. We work long term to help make that change last, even as educators come and go.

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