Saying goodbye to the presidential Blackberry?

There was an article in the NYT today that made me think about privacy and transparency in government: it seems as if President-elect Obama has to give up his email and Blackberry habits asap.  The NYT reports:

“The president’s e-mail can be subpoenaed by Congress and courts and may be subject to public records laws, so if a president doesn’t want his e-mail public, he shouldn’t e-mail, experts said. And there may be security issues about carrying around trackable cell phones.”

At the same time, he puts up his technology agenda and asks for a more transparent and connected government. Now, he wouldn’t even understand or know how the technology could help him to be connected and what the potential benefits are for society, for example in terms of community building, social support functionalities. Shouldn’t there be a new law to adjust the existing rules?

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About Ines Mergel

I am Full Professor of Public Administration at the Department of Politics and Public Administration at University of Konstanz, Germany. Previously, I served as Assistant and then Associate Professor (with tenure) at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University, NY. In my research, I focus on informal social networks in the public sector and the adoption and diffusion of digital service innovations in government organizations. I teach classes on social media management, digital government, public management, and social network analysis.

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