Open-Sourcing the Oval Office

A campaign blog.
Nov. 16 2007 4:53 PM

Open-Sourcing the Oval Office

Barack Obama just won the anonymous blog commenter vote. Inhis tech plan ( PDF )released Wednesday, Obama pledged to give Americans "an opportunity to reviewand comment on the White House website for five days before signing anynon-emergency legislation." I can hardly wait for the comment war betweenObamaIsHott245 and BarackSux666.

The initiative is a small piece of a progressive Obama planthat open-Internetadvocates love . He wants to build digital literacy, outsource governmentproblems to expert citizens (open-source style), and beef up the nation’sbroadband infrastructure to compete globally. The White House message board,though, seems to be one of the most innovative pieces. It’s unclear whetherPresident Obama would ever sit down and read these things, but an Obamaspokesman told me it would emphasize that Americans have a digital seat aroundthe legislative table. I doubt Obama's reasoning behind vetoing legislation would be, "The Internet told me to."

Advertisement

Obama’s spokesman didn’t have details, though, about how theWhite House would moderate these posts. Imagine if an elementary school kid issurfing the Web to do research on the executive branch. He heads over toWhiteHouse.gov to do some research and sees a message inviting him to, "TellPresident Obama what you think of the immigration legislation on his desk!" Godonly knows what he’ll see when he clicks on the link.

TODAY IN SLATE

Foreigners

The World’s Politest Protesters

The Occupy Central demonstrators are courteous. That’s actually what makes them so dangerous.

The Religious Right Is Not Happy With Republicans  

The XX Factor
Oct. 1 2014 4:58 PM The Religious Right Is Not Happy With Republicans  

The Feds Have Declared War on Encryption—and the New Privacy Measures From Apple and Google

The One Fact About Ebola That Should Calm You

It spreads slowly.

These “Dark” Lego Masterpieces Are Delightful and Evocative

Crime

Operation Backbone

How White Boy Rick, a legendary Detroit cocaine dealer, helped the FBI uncover brazen police corruption.

Politics

Talking White

Black people’s disdain for “proper English” and academic achievement is a myth.

Activists Are Trying to Save an Iranian Woman Sentenced to Death for Killing Her Alleged Rapist

Piper Kerman on Why She Dressed Like a Hitchcock Heroine for Her Prison Sentencing

  News & Politics
Politics
Oct. 1 2014 7:26 PM Talking White Black people’s disdain for “proper English” and academic achievement is a myth.
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 1 2014 2:16 PM Wall Street Tackles Chat Services, Shies Away From Diversity Issues 
  Life
Outward
Oct. 1 2014 6:02 PM Facebook Relaxes Its “Real Name” Policy; Drag Queens Celebrate
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 1 2014 5:11 PM Celebrity Feminist Identification Has Reached Peak Meaninglessness
  Slate Plus
Behind the Scenes
Oct. 1 2014 3:24 PM Revelry (and Business) at Mohonk Photos and highlights from Slate’s annual retreat.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 1 2014 9:39 PM Tom Cruise Dies Over and Over Again in This Edge of Tomorrow Supercut
  Technology
Future Tense
Oct. 1 2014 6:59 PM EU’s Next Digital Commissioner Thinks Keeping Nude Celeb Photos in the Cloud Is “Stupid”
  Health & Science
Science
Oct. 1 2014 4:03 PM Does the Earth Really Have a “Hum”? Yes, but probably not the one you’re thinking.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 1 2014 5:19 PM Bunt-a-Palooza! How bad was the Kansas City Royals’ bunt-all-the-time strategy in the American League wild-card game?