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Task force on social media launched
The Power of Information Task Force will improve the way the Government shares information, so ordinary people can develop online services that benefit their community.
It will also help Government respond to the rising standards of modern communications practice.
The Task Force will be chaired by Richard Allen, formerly MP for Sheffield Hallam and now Head of Government Affairs for UK and Ireland at Cisco Systems. Its membership will include leading internet practitioners, the civil service and wider public service. Launching the Task Force, the government minister Tom Watson pointed out the benefits it could bring:
"Every day, hundreds and thousands of people come together online to solve problems and exchange ideas on public policy issues - whether raising kids, tackling debt or seeking health advice. The success of sites such as Netmums, moneysavingexpert and fixmystreet, has proved the power of information. We need to listen and learn from the experts so we can satisfy people's desire for faster, better public services. I want to move quickly. With advice from the Task Force, we will get on with improving services for our citizens to match the pace of change."
The Government's interim progress report, published yesterday, focuses on exploring ways Government can use online forums to advise citizens, as well as the feasibility of making Government-owned data, such as maps, more accessible for people to 'mash up' with other public data, to encourage citizens to engage on issues they care about.
The Power of Information Task Force will take this work forward and will work with departments to implement the findings.