Software // Information Management
Commentary
5/15/2009
04:43 PM
K.C. Jones
K.C. Jones
Commentary
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The President E-Mailed Me This Week And You Could Be Next

I got an e-mail from the President this week and, frankly, I think that's pretty cool.

I got an e-mail from the President this week and, frankly, I think that's pretty cool.Say what you want about President Barack Obama's policies, but he deserves credit for his use of technology.

Obama sent his first e-mail to regular citizens this week. The message touts the President's plan for healthcare reform, provides information on his recent activities regarding healthcare, states how much money he thinks he can save American families, outlines his goal of seeing the House of Representatives pass a bill by July 31, and tells readers where the bill stands.

It invites recipients to weigh in and sign up their friends for the President's e-mail updates. Obama said in the message that he plans use e-mail to communicate directly with those who have signed up for notifications from the White House. The e-mail -- delivered on White House "letterhead," complete with the Presidential Seal, and a White House phone number -- promises to keep recipients informed and contains a link for more information.

Obama is also the first sitting president to launch White House pages on social networking sites, going on MySpace, Facebook, and Twitter at the beginning of the month to provide updates on the virus that causes swine flu and other issues.

Of course, the messages serve the President and further his agenda, but the technology he used to deliver them serves citizens who want to stay informed and participate in democracy. It's more evidence that Obama is keeping his campaign promise to use technology to increase government transparency, accessibility, and accountability.

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