President 2.0 Meets White House 1.0
Although the President won 2008 with the latest and greatest tech, it looks like the White House has considerable limitations when it comes to what type of innovative techniques can and can’t be done within its walls.
If the Obama campaign represented a sleek, new iPhone kind of future, the first day of the Obama administration looked more like the rotary-dial past.
Two years after launching the most technologically savvy presidential campaign in history, Obama officials ran smack into the constraints of the federal bureaucracy yesterday, encountering a jumble of disconnected phone lines, old computer software, and security regulations forbidding outside e-mail accounts.
What does that mean in 21st-century terms? No Facebook to communicate with supporters. No outside e-mail log-ins. No instant messaging. Hard adjustments for a staff that helped sweep Obama to power through, among other things, relentless online social networking.
â€œIt is kind of like going from an Xbox to an Atari,â€ Obama spokesman Bill Burton said of his new digs.
But let me ask this…why can’t Obama fix this? After all, he came in promising change, and one of the things he constantly talked about was making everything streamlined and 2.0ish.
And if the guy was able to keep his Blackberry, this seems like a similar hurdle.
Still, it’s discouraging to think that simple communication is being stymied because the laws haven’t caught up to the reality.