Gov 2.0 and a Mayor’s Race — What is a candidate to do?

I am a candidate for Mayor of Seattle with a strong interest in Gov 2.0 concepts.

What would you tell a candidate to read? What are successes and failures of Gov. 2.0?
What should a city do if it wanted to be a leader on this issue? What benefits would one see by doing that?

Would love to hear your thoughts and comments.

As some more background, we used the social networking site to build our campaign website for a successful parks levy in Seattle in 2008. (Which won a national “Pollie Award” for a local campaign website.) We have also started a social networking site for the non-profit I run.

I was so struck by the opportunities at my non-profits social networking site for collaboration between government and citizens. Government employees were starting to show up to solicit input from citizens, share information, or even promote city sponsored events. So I started searching around to learn more, and chanced upon GovLoop some months before deciding to run. So, I hope you might be able to provide information to someone who has gone from community advocate and Web 2.0 fan, to candidate for office who is interested in the relevance of Gov 2.0.

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Michael McGinn

You know, after I posted this blog, I realized I may be creating issues for people with government jobs, or even crossing the lines of this site. Of course, I wish to do neither.

I just edited the post to make it clear that I am seeking only information, not support for a candidacy. Just as I might seek information about any issue from informed members of the public.


Here’s some good resources:
List of Gov 2.0 Must Reads –
Some good case studies –

Personally, I think gov’t leaders should use Gov 2.0 to

1) Provide more human public relations – I want to get to know you (theoretical you as a senior gov’t leader), read you on Twitter, get an idea of public life, see your YouTube videos to understand why you are doing the things you do. I want a chance to comment back and to have a dialogue. I want you to be transparent about your actions.

2) Use citizen knowledge – tap into the citizen knowledge. Ask us what we care about. Have us tell you what potholes need to be fixed. How we should reform the budget, etc.

3) Provide better services – Have govt employees connect internally to do their job better. Instead of forcing me to go to a townhall, let me watch it live online and comment and vote on the agenda.

I think the key with Gov 2.0 is to try new things and experiment. Be quick and nimble and adjust.

Walter Neary

As an elected official down Interstate 5 from you, I thankfully have no Hatch Act problems. My short answer would be, use every vehicle you can to communicate, communicate and communicate. I think we’re all still trying to figure out which social media tools will shake out as most useful. A blog seems like a good foundation. If it helps at all, I’ve set up a feed of other elected officials who blog, and I get ideas from seeing what some of them do:

CJ Lambert

Good pt walter, although is there a risk of being seen as too ‘pop-y’ and overcommunicating? Do you think the actual candidate has to do it (eg twitter) or can a PR officer ghost twitter,,?