Sunday, December 19, 2004

I Should Hesitate to Complain, But....

Several Delaware papers have run items this weekend about what's described as a "new" e-government service from the State of Delaware. The Sunday News Journal Article, State info can come in e-mails, is fairly typical. The Department of Technology and Information (DTI) now offers e-mail listservs of state information.

This is a great idea, but it's not a new idea and certainly not unique to Delaware. What bugs me a little is that several state agencies, including mine, have been offering this sort of service for years, but we are not mentioned in the story and are not listed as options on the web site set up by DTI.

In State Planning, we've worked through DTI to take full advantage of e-mail listservs to offer updates about land use planning issues, and to help create the community of GIS professionals that is the Delaware Geographic Data Committee.

One might say that the difference here is that a press release went out about this "new" service. That seems likely, though I have not been able to find it on-line on the state's portal, on the Governor's web site or on the web site of State Representative Bob Valihura, who is quoted in the News Journal story. I am fairly certain that I also sent out a press release, but it was a year or so back, and I haven't archived those on my site.

I am hesitant to complain because any increase in public access to government information is good. Any increase in public awareness of public access to that information is also good. I do wish that the news coverage could have included all of these services, though. I also wish that the site set up by the GIC and DTI included all of the services that the DTI listserv system offers. That part worries me; who isn't talking to who?

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