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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

President Obama open to open government community

As you do:
"(M)embers of the openness community today met with President Obama to discuss a range of transparency issues."
Well it wasn't that routine or unremarkable:
"The Oval Office meeting — during which the president was given an award for his work thus far in encouraging agencies to release information to the public — was the first time that longtime open government advocates in Washington recalled a sitting president meeting with them to discuss government transparency."
More about the meeting here.

Those who attended were Lucy A. Dalglish Executive Director Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press: Gary Bass, executive director of OMB Watch; Tom Blanton, executive director of The National Security Archive at George Washington University; Danielle Brian, executive director of the Project on Government Oversight; and Patrice McDermott, director of

Dalglish, Blanton and McDemott were generous in slotting me in for a chat during my visit to Washington last month.

Who knows-if we had an identifiable openness community, prime ministers and premiers might also be interested in an occasional exchange of views?


  1. Matey Killer11:16 am

    It's not only an openness community we need. We lack an identifiable community on most things relating to information. Privacy is the other obvious omission. I was involved in planning a forum recently and wanted a speaker on privacy. Aside from the Privacy Commissioners, the only speakers are lawyers and academics and no one stands out as an advocate (as, eg, Julian Burnside is for refugee issues). I found the Australian Privacy Foundation, whom I'd never heard of before. Do you know anything about them?

  2. Those involved in the Australian Privacy Foundation
    are held in high regard, and a strong record as advocates. I'm sure they can help with someone to address your forum. Use the contact numbers below. Give me a yell if you have difficulties. And yes Australia's civil society is pretty underdone.