January 18, 2010 at 3:25 pm #89636
I appreciate that I can change "My Page" to any number of themes, but I would caution against us turning into MySpace.
I think it would help with identity, consistency in design and user identification if we were limited to choosing a "My Page" theme that went with our department.
GovLoop could provide a design template, with a background, set of colors, instructions on where to place emblems, etc. (very similar to http://www.army.mil/create). GovLoop could knock out some of the biggies (DOT, DOJ, DOE, DOD, EPA, TSA, a few others), and then invite others to add their agencies by following a couple of easy steps to create custom backgrounds.
Theme colors would be assigned to major departments (one for DOD, DOT, etc), perhaps only replacing the green of GovLoop with each department. If the color assignments get too tricky (trying to avoid the college graduation color debacle), then we could just stick with a very limited number of colors and allow the emblems to speak for our affiliation. GovLoop could develop a couple of display standards (for example, the background image always has to show the department emblem up top, then the sub department, etc.--again taking cues from the Army's branding package).
I bring it up because I think it would be great to know, at a glance, if a person is with DOD, DOJ, etc., without having to hunt through personal info. GovLoop could also move toward applying similar skins on avatars to let people know where users are coming from--GS, contractor, military...whatever.
It might seem divisive, but I think it would do wonders to unify us, actually. People could begin to connect and seek out others when they notice emblems or colors. I'm with the Department of Defense's only military communication school, the Defense Information School; I think it would be very beneficial if people could see that more readily and know they can ask me questions.
All of it to build more interaction and stuff. Just sayin'.
P.S. and when I say "GovLoop should...", I'm willing to take that on, if people think it might be a good idea.
January 20, 2010 at 3:09 pm #89655
Good thought Josh but I disagree - I actually like that people aren't categorized here by agency, contractor, etc. It forces us to look at each person as an individual, usually (but not always) acting and speaking on behalf of himself, not as a member or representative of their agency. I worry about the chilling effect it might have on the discussion if I was no longer Steve, but rather, Steve from Booz Allen. Sure, many people know that I work there and I don't attempt to hide it, but at least when someone sees a post or a blog from me and they don't know me, there's no preconceived notions that come along with it. They're more likely to take my content at face value, and can then follow up by clicking my profile to find out more about ME, rather than just see that I'm a contractor and have their thoughts framed by that, vice my content.
Rather than themes, what about simply creating badges (a la Intellipedia) or a spot for tags where people self-identify and organize themselves according to interests, hobbies, agencies, etc.? Imagine a space on everyone's user page where there's a tag cloud and you could tag yourself with things like DOJ, DOT, DINFOS, DoD, etc. and each one of those is a link that you can click and see who else tagged themselves that as well. What do you think of that?
January 20, 2010 at 10:05 pm #89653
Hello Steve, I'm Jeremy Long, a dockets manager with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. I do a lot of work in the Federal Document Management System (FDMS), which is owned and run by Booz/Allen/Hamilton and previously owned and run by Lockheed/Martin. I don't know, you might be somewhat familiar with FDMS. I've taken many FDMS training courses at Booz/Allen/Hamilton's Crystal City branch in Arlington, Virginia. In regards to the tagging that you mentioned there at the end, I think that is a smart idea. I wonder if a tag can be made for DHHS, FDA, NIH, CDC, DEA, etc.
January 21, 2010 at 12:11 am #89651
You raise a secondary angle, Steve, and that is whether you'd have a Govloop profile if you didn't work at Booz Allen.
Say you cease working there next week. Do you keep your Govloop profile as active as you have it today? If so, how does your tagging schema change?
January 21, 2010 at 2:14 pm #89649
Steve, I have to agree with you. I personally don't want to be "known" as an official representative of CDC - my job doesn't define my activity on GovLoop. I just happen to work for CDC, a government agency.
I like the badge and tag cloud ideas. I would also like to upload my own badge designs to represent me, (in a business capacity).
Joshua, I do agree that this should not turn into a MySpace. I would include the same type of info that I would share with those on LinkedIn; however, my discussions are not as formal.
January 21, 2010 at 2:25 pm #89647
Good question Ari - if I didn't work in the government arena, I probably wouldn't have started a GovLoop profile. Why would I? If I was working for a record company or a sports team, Government 2.0 wouldn't even have been on the top of my mind. Now, if you're asking if I didn't work at Booz Allen, but say, at the FDA or another government agency, yeah, I think I'd still be on here, probably more so, because I wouldn't have access to the resources like I have at Booz and I'd be trying to identify for.
Let's say I leave Booz Allen next week, my tags would probably still include Booz Allen (alumni), my new employer, etc. Depending on what my new employer did, that's what would determine how active I was here. Going to another contractor? Probably stays the same. Going to government? Probably increases. Going to another industry? Probably not nearly as active.
January 21, 2010 at 2:29 pm #89644
Thanks Jeremy - I'm not familiar with the FDMS, but I'm also not directly involved with a lot of what we do in the Health market so that's not really a good indicator. I've only had a few meetings with our FDA folks and those were up in Rockville, I believe. As for tags, I'm envisioning that tags would look something similar to what we have internally here at Booz - free form tagging that are then links (see attached screenshot for an example).
January 21, 2010 at 6:49 pm #89642
Hi Steve, Jeremy again, I didn't know that the FDA folks that you had meetings with were in Rockville, that's where I work!
January 22, 2010 at 4:51 am #89640
The Intellipedia badge idea would be cool. People could definitely choose to opt-in if they wanted.
And I didn't think about how it might freak people out, or how people might be seen as an "official" source. We'd need a little disclaimer on GovLoop or something, saying that people are just people, with their own opinions, not necessarily endorsing...blah blah blah.
January 22, 2010 at 8:40 pm #89638
I'm going to say that I'm in for the idea too. Sounds very cool!
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