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GCN : December 2013
EDITOR'S DESK BY PAUL MCCLOSKEY HOW TO REACH THE STAFF You can reach staff members of 1105 Government Information Group. A list of staff members can be found online at www.gcn.com. Go to Contact GCN and click on GCN Editors, Writers, Staff and Beats. Staff members of the 1105 Govern- ment Information Group can also be reached by e-mail, phone, fax or mail. E-MAIL: To e-mail staff members, please use the naming convention of rst initial followed by their last name @1105govinfo.com. So John Smith would be firstname.lastname@example.org. PHONE OR FAX: The switchboard is open weekdays 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Eastern time. After 5:30 p.m. you will be directed to individual extensions. VIENNA OFFICE: (703) 876-5100; Fax (703) 876-5059. 8609 Westwood Center Drive, Suite 500, Vienna, VA 22182-2215. CORPORATE OFFICE: (weekdays, 8:30 a.m. -- 5:30 p.m. PT) Telephone 818-814-5200; Fax 818-734-1522 9201 Oakdale Avenue, Suite 101, Chatsworth, CA 91311 EDITORIAL INQUIRIES: Go to gcn.com/pressroom REPRINTS: For all editorial and advertising reprints of 100 copies or more,and digital (Web-based) reprints, contact PARS International, Phone (212) 221-9195, E-mail: 1105reprints@ parsintl.com/QuickQuote.asp EDITORIAL STAFF EDITOR-IN-CHIEF PAUL McCLOSKEY EXECUTIVE EDITOR SUSAN MILLER EDITOR AT LARGE KEVIN McCANEY EDITORS/WRITERS MANAGING EDITOR ONLINE HEATHER KULDELL SENIOR EDITOR RUTRELL YASIN GCN LAB DIRECTOR JOHN BREEDEN II SENIOR WRITER WILLIAM JACKSON CONTRIBUTING WRITERS MICHAEL DACONTA, KATHLEEN HICKEY, PATRICK MARSHALL, SHAWN MCCARTHY EDITORIAL/ONLINE PRODUCTION CREATIVE DIRECTOR JEFF LANGKAU ASSISTANT DRAGUTIN CVIJANOVIC ART DIRECTOR SENIOR WEB BISWARUP DESIGNERS BHATTACHARJEE MARTIN PEACE PRESIDENT JAMES CAUSEY CHIEF CONTENT ANNE A. ARMSTRONG OFFICER CHIEF REVENUE WENDY LaDUKE OFFICER CHIEF MARKETING CARMEL McDONAGH OFFICER PRESIDENT & CHIEF NEAL VITALE EXECUTIVE OFFICER SENIOR VICE RICHARD VITALE PRESIDENT & CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER EXECUTIVE MICHAEL J. VALENTI VICE PRESIDENT VICE PRESIDENT, CHRISTOPHER M. COATES FINANCE & ADMINISTRATION VICE PRESIDENT, ERIK A. LINDGREN INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY & APPLICATION DEVELOPMENT VICE PRESIDENT, DAVID F. MYERS EVENT OPERATIONS CHAIRMAN OF JEFFREY S. KLEIN THE BOARD www.gcn.com Volume 32 Issue 12 The year that's coming to an end has been a roller-coaster for the government IT commu- nity, from the Boston bombings through the National Security Agency's domestic surveillance, the government shutdown and the bumpy roll-out of Health- Care.gov. For better and worse, the role of technology --- and govern- ment's management of it --- has been center-stage in these incidents, sometimes reflect- ing well on government, and sometimes not. In the Boston case, federal, state and local security agents swarmed the crime scene and using video analytics, heat sens- ing and other advanced tech- nologies, rapidly put together a forensic data trail leading to the suspects. In this case, technol- ogy was a big winner, part of the heroic narrative of catching the suspects. In the ongoing domestic spying case, on the other hand, technology itself seems to be implicated, as if NSA's high-end surveillance tools are too pow- erful to be cleared by a warrant court or otherwise regulated. Time after time, the technology has been called a Pandora's Box that would resist oversight. In the unfolding story of HealthCare.gov, the Obama administration's managers are taking the blame for the misfire, but part of the critical response has been a storyline that goes something like, "this technol- ogy is just too complex to be managed by technocrats." These cases have all erupted during the course of a year in which the overall reputation of government and its managers is down. But despite the bad marks given government as a whole, there are signs that the public's attitude toward the work of the government IT community is actually in positive territory. In an October report, Fore- See, Inc., which does customer response analytics, scored the public's overall satisfaction with e-government at 75 out of a 100, "higher than comparable private sector e-business web- sites." The results were based on 270,000 survey responses across 105 federal government websites. And despite the clamor over HealthCare.gov, health care-oriented e-government sites posted higher satisfac- tion scores against comparable commercial health care sites, Foresee said. While these numbers are only indicators, they seem re- flect a more realistic picture of public attitudes toward digital government, if not government in general. For both citizens and profes- sionals alike, the winning sto- ryline seems straightforward: develop an electronic service or product that is simple to ac- quire, easy to use and share and delivers tangible speed, cost or convenience benefit. That way, while government may rise and fall in the satisfac- tion ratings, government IT will stay in demand. • IN A TOUGH YEAR FOR GOVERNMENT, TECH EARNS HIGH MARKS 4 GCN DECEMBER 2013 • GCN.COM GCN (ISSN 0738-4300) is published monthly by 1105 Media, Inc., 9201 Oakdale Avenue, Ste. 101, Chatsworth, CA 91311. Periodicals postage paid at Chatsworth, CA 91311-9998, and at additional mailing of ces. Complimentary subscriptions are sent to qualifying subscribers. Annual subscription rates payable in U.S. funds for non-quali ed subscribers are: U.S. $125.00, International $165.00. Subscription inquiries, back issue requests, and address changes: Mail to: GCN, P.O. Box 2166, Skokie, IL 60076-7866, call (866) 293-3194, outside U.S. (847) 763-9560; fax (847) 763-9564 or email GCNmag@1105service.com. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to GCN, P.O. Box 2166, Skokie, IL 60076-7866. Canada Publications Mail Agree- ment No: 40612608. Return Undeliverable Canadian Addresses to Circulation Dept. or XPO Returns: P.O. Box 201, Richmond Hill, ON L4B 4R5, Canada. GCN SoMe: REACH US ON SOCIAL MEDIA gcn.com/twitter gcn.com/linkedin gcn.com/facebook gcn.com/googleplus LET'S CONNECT! GCN uses Twitter, Linked In, Facebook and Google Plus to keep you informed of new case studies, product information and expert opinion on the performance of technology in the public sector. To reach us, please connect with us at the links above.