What is Govement 2.0?

This week we came across the big politics. A huge area has been covered but I would like to explore the Government 2.0. So what is government 2.0? This term is obviously derived from the term Web 2.0, which refers to how social network has reconstructed our use of the internet.  Let’s start with a short video clip I found on youtube that has explained Government 2.0 precisely.

The term Government 2.0 means every citizen can participate and also contribute to the decision made by government.  Here’s another video I find it very interesting.

The example of government as a vending machine is very accurate. We pay our $ (tax) to the machine (government), and it provides us the goods (police, education, hospital, etc.) Also, another things that he points out is ‘collective action has to mean more than collective complaint. We cannot just shake the vending machine, but rather we should contribute to the government.

In addition, thanks to web2.0, we can basically obtain any information we want from the internet.  The 24 hour news cycle and the use of social media around the whole world have made ‘true moves faster than lies, and propaganda becomes flammable’.  (Mason 2011) This just reminds me the fact that US government try to minimize the number of Iraqi death during the war. Interestingly, it is the local citizens tell the truth, otherwise, probably the truth will be buried by the US government.

Thus, it becomes vital for government to be more accessible for the citizens, as lies are more fragile than the past.  Lessig (2009) suggests the naked transparency is one of the solutions, in which data should be transparent for citizens, especially government data. By this, the power balance does not just lie on the government; rather the citizens also hold certain degree of power as they are constantly monitoring the government.  Yes, there will be definitely huge consequences like the power shifting or the rich can take advantages on the disclosed policies. But still, I believe unless it is regarded as national security, at least it is fair disclose the information to the citizens.

Moreover, I find the idea of the power of leaderless organization is interesting. The power of leadless organization is no doubt a force to recognize with. But this article actually convinces me that a certain degree of hierarchy is actually essential for running a country given the examples raised in the article, a wrong use of the power can lead to a disaster. So a leadership is crucial, but just not to the extreme like North Korea, where a dictator rules the country.

Brafman, Ori and Beckstrom, Rod A. (2010) ‘The Power Of Leaderless Organizations: Craigslist, Wikipedia And Al Qaeda All Demonstrate How Absence Of Structure Has Become An Asset’, National Journal <http://www.nationaljournal.com/njonline/the-power-of-leaderless-organizations-20100911> (accessed on 18 April 2011)

Lessig, Lawrence (2010) ‘Against Transparency: The perils of openness in government.’<http://www.tnr.com/article/books-and-arts/against-transparency?page=0,0> (accessed on 18 April 2011)

Mason, Paul (2011) ‘Twenty reasons why it’s kicking off everywhere’, Idle Scrawls BBC, <http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/newsnight/paulmason/2011/02/twenty_reasons_why_its_kicking.html> (accessed on 18 April 2011)

O’Reilly, Tim (2009) ‘Do it Ourselves: Tim O’Reilly on Gov2.0’, <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8S149IVHhmc> (accessed on 18 April 2011)