The Social Security Administration asks for feedback on its Agency Strategy Plan, the Department of Defense supports plain language, the Department of Agriculture heads for the cloud, and federal agencies get kudos for their social media endeavors, all in this week’s chilly edition of the Gov2.0 Roundup.
—Every citizen has a vested interest in the Social Security Administration. Shouldn’t we have a say in how its run? We do! SSA is seeking your ideas and votes on its Agency Strategy Plan. They’re asking for your input on how the agency should approach the next 5-10 years. To help you provide useful suggestions, they have included some background information they gathered as part of this process. I’m excited to see that former employees are posting and I hope SSA is encouraging their employees to submit ideas along with the general public.
—CCJO, UJTL, JEL, BMEWS, MAVNI. What do all these Department of Defense acronyms have in common? Soon, you will be seeing less of them. Federal Computer Week reports, “Defense Department Executive Secretary Michael Bruhn is tired of playing the acronym game and wants to limit the use of short-form titles in the department immediately.” The guidance applies not just to narrative documents but also to slide presentations (those infamous PowerPoints). If written correspondence has acronyms, a glossary of terms should be included. “Many acronyms have multiple meanings and are not always well-known outside a particular organization,” wrote Bruhn in a Nov. 30 memo. “Although using acronyms in written material is intended to make writing clearer, their misuse or abuse does the exact opposite.” Cheers to the Department of Defense for supporting plain language!
—Following on the heels of last week’s announcement by the General Services Administration that it was moving its e-mail systems to the cloud, this week the United States Department of Agriculture announced that it will be consolidating its current 21 messaging systems into one via the Microsoft Business Productivity Online Suite – Federal cloud collaboration tool. The new tool, which will serve 120,000 users, will host the agency’s e-mail, online conference, and instant messaging service. USDA officials say that the move to the cloud will begin in early 2011, and believe that the cloud-based infrastructure will help the agency meet goals related to cost savings and collaboration.
—When it comes to social media, which federal agencies are tops? This week, Federal Computer Week released a “snapshot in time” showcasing the most popular federal social media profiles. Based on the numbers, the White House unsurprisingly sweeps all categories—including YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter—but other federal agencies are enjoying online success. For example, NASA gets nods for its richness of content across channels, while the Coast Guard’s YouTube channel is highlighted for its 9 million plus views, which included both documentary-style videos as well as on-the-scene video of the Coast Guard rescue efforts of the USAirways plane that “landed” in the Hudson River. Check out the list to see who got the top spots!
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