Platforms for Open Information/Government

David Eaves has posted a great talk which covers in generality the point I was circling around in specificity in my post this summer on government email systems: the “access to information” community, both within and outside government, is still partying like it’s 1993.

I’ve got an open FOI request right now for a bunch of data, and the information access officer is scratching her chin and wondering “hm, how are we going to deliver that to you”. The problem being their process is optimized around delivering documents, in PDF, via e-mail. (An improvement over the original system–documents, on paper, via the post–but still basically the original process from 1993.)

Eaves tell his audience of information access folks that the big win for them, over the next generation, is in systems. In advocating for and getting systems in government that can include information access metadata from top to bottom, so that it is possible for vast swathes of documents and data to be “open by default”.

Have a listen, it’s 20 minutes very well spent.