Usability and Design

Commit to best practices

The main issue with government sites is that many of them are being run by people whose idea of the Web stopped growing around 2002. There are Web basics--testing with real users, formative user research, and advanced metrics and analytics programs--that everyone in the commercial sector is doing. The government needs to get with the program or risk total irrelevance. Another hint: ease off on Twitter and Facebook. You ...more »

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92 votes
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Social Media

Do Not Replicate Social Media

Do not waste money trying to cfreate immitations of social media, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, or others. Instead, use closed groups using existing social networks. Government should focus on developing government-specific systems.

Submitted by (@terrencehill)

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63 votes
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Social Media

Develop Social Media as a Customer Service Channel

Social Media has tremendous potential as a customer service channel and is being used effectively in the private sector. Greater attention should be paid to using social media to help the public find information they need. One model for this would be to empower and encourage all government employees to help point the public to government websites/ resources/ services as these issues are raised on the social media platforms ...more »

Submitted by (@andrewpwilson)

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39 votes
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Policies and Principles

Make Conversations Actionable

Government sites that allow feedback, comments, or connect to social media, need to have a clear plan for following up and addressing that feedback to effect change within the organization. Citizens take time to say what they need the government to do, and often it gets lost or not acted upon. This is about the ongoing conversation and listening to the public that government owes to its citizens.

Submitted by (@jeanneholm)

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19 votes
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Social Media

Engagement Personnel Needed

Government Agencies should not restrict their social media efforts to only their own social media channel/sites. They should each have a person or a team of people who search for their topic(s) on other social media channels/sites, blogs, newscasts, etc. They may find incorrect or incomplete information or misconceptions. They may find that they have something to contribute to the discussion, something the others had ...more »

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12 votes
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Social Media

Collaborate with Universities on Social Media Research

Many institutions conduct research on areas that touch on social media. Collaborating with universities, through grants, internships or Master's/ PH.D. projects could quickly help elevate the status of social media AND help address some of the questions around impact and ROI. Examples of specfic areas include the role of social media to support behavior change (i.e. stop smoking); network analysis (to see how information ...more »

Submitted by (@andrewpwilson)

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11 votes
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Beyond Websites (Mobile, Broadband...)

Create smooth cross-channel designs and analytics

Make it easy for users to access information regardless of which channel they use (web, chat, email, phone, smart phone apps, social media, etc.), and provide analytics that work across channels, keep track of what a user has already done, and find customized/personalized ways of providing excellence in customer service and presenting information.

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10 votes
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Content in other languages

Develop cross-disciplinary multilingual/cultural best practices

Creating a multilingual communication strategy is complex and requires knowledge from many different fields, including linguistics, sociolinguistics, anthropology, ethnographics, demography, technology, communications, marketing, PR, customer service, user experience, graphic design, social media, public policy, business strategy (yes even for government agencies), etc. The government should leverage knowledge from various ...more »

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4 votes
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Policies and Principles

For collaboration, think structure, standards & procedures

This recommendation is about the dialog, not necessarily the data. In online government-citizen collaboration, think forums and not social networks. Replicating traditional or off-line engagement processes in a web environment should be a priority in structuring online interaction between government and citizens. Standards used in conventional citizen participation procedures, including attribution and validation, should ...more »

Submitted by (@dbev00)

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4 votes
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Policies and Principles

Basic training on intellectual property and web do's and don'ts

Citizens and Government could benefit from some basic training about intellectual property (IP);i.e., copyrights, trademarks, patents, trade secrets. What policies and laws define them; what distinguishes them from each other; what';s the duration of protection; when could more than one type of protection apply ; what does and doesn't apply to government produced vs. government commissioned stuff; the effect on government ...more »

Submitted by

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4 votes
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Beyond Websites (Mobile, Broadband...)

Use the network

Large websites have a very difficult time changing with the times. They trap valuable content deep within them and by their hierarchical nature over time bury the content no matter how well a site is organized. I think you need to separate the content from the publishing. Social media shows us the first baby steps of how to do this. Content needs to be topical and timely and most of all in the places that people visit ...more »

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2 votes
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