But the weather wasn't really the problem. The problem was information. Seattle was hit with a situation that required systems of communication and information distribution that it did not have. The city's dying newspapers couldn't keep up and City Hall's various departments were too busy trying to dig out from underneath the snow and ice to turn to their antiquated systems of information distribution. They couldn't connect information to the neighborhoods and streets where it was needed.In emergencies, government agencies need to distribute information quickly. Very, very quickly. Radio stations are still king here and we're lucky around here to have more than a few that can still get out information quickly because they're run by people rather than computers.
But, the web is just as important. And, if you don't have the turn on-a-dime-ability with your current government website, it will hurt you.
OMIGOSH.... so right-on. People talk about open and transparent government, but don't realize that that smart use of technology is THE KEY to making that happen. I'm always asking of community builders "are you putting that online somewhere?"
Some Googling along this subject: Open Source Government and DIY cities.
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