Friday, November 07, 2008

Transparent Change

Although there were many factors that affected the recent election, to me a big part was the use of new media. Barak Obama seemed to have an instinctive understanding of how the Internet was used and played it like a fiddle. John McCain, as perhaps befitting members of his generation, seemed to discount the role of new media and preferred tried and true political strategies. I think when he talked about his computer ignorance, I think he was reassuring his base that he wasn't caught up in any of that Interwebtubbie nonsense.

I'm not saying he's perfect in every way, but to me, Obama seemed to "get" the increasingly important role the Internet -- and social networking -- is going to play in our 21st Century world. And it wasn't just for the campaign, either. Today a new website appeared --

It's the website for the Obama transition. There are news updates, a blog to subscribe to, and a ton of information. We can watch the transition team take shape, and monitor the entire process. And there's a social media aspect as well. You can share a story about what the campaign meant for you. And you can share your vision about the changes you'd like to see.

You can also dig into the details of Obama's agenda on a variety of topics. If nothing else, Obama seems to has kept his promise of government transparency. (We'll know more once all of those stories/visions the nation shares are made public.)

Personally, I'm very excited about the Technology agenda. For the most part, it's in line with the changes many of us on this side of the digital divide have been clamoring for. I am concerned about one thing, though.

Protect American Intellectual Property Abroad: The Motion Picture Association of America estimates that in 2005, more than nine of every 10 DVDs sold in China were illegal copies. The U.S. Trade Representative said 80 percent of all counterfeit products seized at U.S. borders still come from China. Barack Obama and Joe Biden will work to ensure intellectual property is protected in foreign markets, and promote greater cooperation on international standards that allow our technologies to compete everywhere.
Relying on the MPAA (and the RIAA) for guidance on copyright issues usually, ends badly for all concerned -- including the industries these organizations are trying to protect. Looks like it's time to share my own vision with the new administration...

- Ralph

Day 140 of the WJMA Web Watch.

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