New Strategies and Techniques

Who are the open government dialog participants?

The idea of the open government dialog is great, but who are we having a dialog with? Using the “town meeting” analogy, there are no anonymous participants. When you say something in such a meeting you usually are known or state your name. Perhaps the same should apply here – the participating citizens should identify themselves. Part of a dialog is trust, how can I trust an anonymous voice? How many voices are really citizens? Who is bias?

 

In the profile for a citizen they should also have the opportunity to identify their positions and any other group they belong to. Lobbyists and similar activists should identify themselves clearly.

 

This is probably just due to the speed with which the site was initiated – but it seems odd that you can see that someone voted for something but not how they voted. You can see comments, but not the subject of the comment. You also can’t see all the voters for an idea. You should also be able to change your mind.

 

There may be some circumstances where a person would have the right to place an anonymous idea or comment – but this would seem to be the exception.

 

Transparency should apply to citizens as well as the government. Even if it is not required I would suggest that people not hide their identities unless they need to.

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Idea No. 3181