This makes sense on some level: Obama's mantra was change, and transparency and more open communications are critical harbingers of change.
Web 2.0 itself is synonymous with change, not just because it's a new iteration of the static Web, but because Ajax, CSS, Web APIs and other advances allowed Web developers to create sites that users could respond to in meaningful ways. Interactivity was born.
It's actually a pretty simple issue. People who work at the White House have security clearances of varying degrees, and because they work at the White House, what they say carries more weight than if they worked anywhere else -- even in the House or Senate. Rightly or wrongly, they are seen as representing the Administration.
We've all seen how a casual comment from a corporate executive can cause a ruckus and all kinds of bad PR for a company; imagine what that would do for government policy. How would North Korea react if someone in the White House tweeted, "we'll have a surprise waiting for Kim Jung-il."
Apparently, the Administration's stance on Twitter is more nuanced than originally reported. Regardless, give it credit for trying to do the right thing in this case -- which is to figure out how to use new communications tools to improve transparency and bring government closer to the governed without creating a crisis of truly international proportions.
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