2011: We’ve Moved!

Follow Adriel Hampton and friends in 2011 at the new self-hosted WordPress blog, adrielhampton.com

The latest:

Eight Advanced Act.ly Tactics for Twitter Activism

Review: Bob Fine’s ‘The Big Book of Social Media’

Happy New Year!

“Inbound marketing” is one of the buzziest of the social media catchphrases, but that’s because it works.
I’ve been doing a lot of Web 2.0 and social media for government speaking of late, and all of the leads have come either from social media connections or contacts directly through my web outposts, from inquiries on my blog to messages on Twitter. These leads have taken me to new states and countries in the past year, and, in April, I’ll be putting a two-day workshop in Southeast Asia because I quickly responded to a conference organizer with a proposal after she found me through search engines and followed me on Twitter.
If you’re just getting started with social media marketing of your products or services, don’t get discouraged. I’d been actively blogging on Gov 2.0 for more than a year before the leads started coming in. Persistence matters.
In 2011, I’m going to be focusing on a small number of high-impact workshop and speaking engagements, events in California, and social media trainings and implementation for government and activism. It’s great to see the groundwork of many late nights of writing bearing fruit.

Twitter has long been a place where fictional characters – from Darth Vader to strange turns on comic book heroes to the characters from the space opera Firefly – have found life. Now, in a move to warm a tourism board’s heart, some of the most iconic features of San Francisco are also animated on the micro-blogging service.

Authored by a person or persons unknown, about two dozen SF buildings, structures, landscape features – even the fog – tweet away to each other and other Twitter users concerned with traffic, weather and other Bay Area happenings. These tweeting icons are cheeky in style, and several are quite active, while others have faded away, as Twitter users are wont to do.

From “Karl the Fog” to “TransAmericaBdg,” you can check out their latest antics on my new Twitter list.

There are people who do Gov 2.0 work who do not believe in calling “Government 2.0” a movement. In the non-movement sense, Gov 2.0 is practically defined as anything that someone wants to call “Gov 2.0” – often an emerging technology looking to capitalize on the movement.

There’s something to capitalize on because Government 2.0 is a movement, albeit a very loose one with many banners. The broad movement, though, boils down to a core commitment to democracy and a more collaborative and transparent government. There are a also a number of tools associated with the Gov 2.0 movement, from wikis to crowdsourcing platforms, social media and structured “open” data.

The ability of totalitarian societies to use these same toolkits – just as they have used rigged elections – to advance unjust and dishonest agendas is also very real. As an activists – and that is what I am – I was dismayed over the past several weeks to see the Transportation Security Administration use its well-developed social media channels to dismiss dissent with its new policies. Tools that build trust can also be used to betray it.

Gov 2.0 thrives on trust and openness. It is not a marketing program to burnish agency images, or an umbrella for vendors to sell new technologies.

Which brings me to Wikileaks. I come here because it the Wikileaks discussion has come to the Gov 2.0/”Open Gov” community.

Wikileaks is not open government, it is an independent press entity playing an important role in securing a free society, including some of the aims of open government activists.

From the birth of the U.S. to Watergate to the Pentagon Papers to Kaczynski’s Manifesto to the Iraq War and the outing of Valerie Plame, the press has played a central role – at times succeeding and at others failing – in ensuring the flow of information that society builds and thrives on. Wikileaks is an evolution of the role of the press, but one with extensive precedent.

I want you to think about some of the slogans and mottos of our newspapers:

Frederick Douglass’ North Star Newspaper (1838): “Right is of no sex, truth is of no color. God is the father of us all and all we are brethren.”

Zambia Daily Mail, Japan Times, Cambodia Daily: “All the News Without Fear or Favor.”

New Mexico State Tribune: “Give Light and the People Will Find Their Way”

The Aspen Daily News: “If You Don’t Want it Printed, Don’t Let It Happen”

Chattanooga Times Free Press: “To Give The News Impartially, Without Fear or Favor”

Colebrook News and Sentinel: “Independent But Not Neutral”

Daily Truth (New Orleans): “The Truth is Always Fair”

The Globe: “The World is Governed Too Much”

United States’ Telegraph: “Power Is Always Stealing From The Many To The Few”

I am interested in hearing and debating your thoughts on Wikileaks, and seeing the reading you’ve done to form your opinion. Here are a couple of links that I find important:

“No evidence that Wikileaks releases have hurt anyone”

“U.S. State Department tells employees not to read Wikileaks”













It’s widely acknowledged by emergency preparedness officials that text alerts are an important part of their arsenal. As Twitter gains increasing adoption among both engaged citizens and government agencies, there is a simple outreach mechanism for ensuring that alerts are received broadly: SMS signups for Twitter alerts from official emergency accounts.
While warning claxons, radio alerts and other systems that don’t rely on cellular networks are the backbone of civic emergency programs, all cities that use Twitter in their preparedness toolkit should be actively encouraging the public to sign up for alerts via text on their cell phones. For example, in San Francisco, to receive SMS alerts by cell from the Department of Emergency Management, Twitter users simply need to text “follow SF_Emergency” to 40404. This official account sends out very few tweets (just 12 in the month of October), but when it does update, it’s important information such as road closure updates, details on emergency preparedness drills or details on gas leaks and other emergencies. 
To find out about your local emergency alerts, you can check out the resources on GovLive, and to sign up for Twitter SMS alerts in the U.S. text “follow” and the account name without the @ symbol to 40404.

I am involved with the Gov 2.0 movement because I believe it will bring important change to calcified and inefficient governmental structures. CityCampSF, an unconference held yesterday in San Francisco, will be a success if real actions stem from the event discussions and connections. I got two action items from the event that I intend to follow up on:

Fighting Blight with Civic Apps
In a great small group discussion with officials from the Department of Public Works and the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Services, I learned more about how the City addresses graffiti tagging. I want to help educate folks how to use Open311 and apps like CitySourced and SeeClickFix to photograph, geotag and report graffiti tags, and to create more efficient structures for empowering volunteers to paint over tags on private property. I learned about current and planned graffiti tagging abatement efforts from DPW’s Greg Crump, and Greg and I plan to create a wiki to document current processes and work on technical and process reforms. I’m also hoping to get on the agenda of the Graffiti Advisory Board next month to talk about civic apps and innovations in graffiti tagging prevention and abatement, with the goal of convening a train-the-trainers session with neighborhood leaders on how to better fight blight in their communities using new technologies.

Mapping and Promoting Civic Treasures
In a session on social media for civic engagement, I learned about theartaround.us, a project by Laurenellen McCann that aims to be a Yelp for art, and Green Map, a global effort to map cultural resources, as I presented on using location-based services to promote public art and open space. There was a lot of synergy around the topic, as we discussed mapping civic resources from temporary art installations from groups like Black Rock City (the Burning Man producers) to community gardens. I hope to use the CityCampSF platform to start soliciting and creating civic maps and to collect and promote those that already exist.
Keep up with ongoing CityCampSF projects by subscribing to the blog. Thanks!


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