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Illinois Governor uses social media to bolster transparency efforts

Alex123
OhMyGov!
June 30, 2011
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Illinois Governor Pat Quinn recently announced that he will launch official Twitter and Flickr pages, another sign that state governments are embracing social media platforms as a way to reach out to citizens.

"Social media including Twitter and Flickr are the latest tools we have added to share news and information with the people of Illinois." Governor Quinn said in a statement released Wednesday. "We are continuing our work to make state government as open and accessible as possible, sharing updates and photos to further engage Illinois residents on the issues that impact them."

This is the latest effort by Quinn, who in recent years has made social media a key part of his plan to make Illinois government more accessible and transparent. No small task in a state where the last two Governors have been convicted on federal corruption charges.

The 2009 launch of Sunshine.Illinois.gov allowed users to view state employee salaries, state contracts, and campaign finance disclosures. These are elements of transparency that good government watchdog groups have been trying to make the norm for decades, but in a state as synonymous with backroom dealing and patronage as Illinois is this is a major step forward.

Additionally, Quinn has overseen the launch of Apps for Metro Chicago Illinois, an application development competition. The competition will encourage entrants to develop mobile apps using over 200 public data sets that will "create innovative solutions to public policy issues and applications that can improve the lives of people everywhere."

Using social media as a means of open government transparency? Hey, if it can happen in The Land of Blago it can probably happen anywhere.

 



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