My dreams for 2010 (speaking formally)

ABC Unleased asked me think about what I want for 2010, in the context of my writing about the Internet and suchlike. My comments didn’t get a run in their piece My dreams for 2010 today, so here they are for you now, Gentle Readers.

From the government, I’d like more openness and the active inclusion of citizens in decision-making from the beginning. We’re not just an audience to be sold a policy cooked up with noisy lobby groups and the big end of town. The Government 2.0 Taskforce recommended a declaration of open government and, amongst other things, making all public sector information free and freely reusable by default, easily discoverable, and published in machine-readable formats to open standards. Let’s start seeing some of that — and not stuff at the edges like the public toilet database but big slabs of core government information.

From media magnates, less whinging about new competitors “stealing” your audience — we’re not your property! — and a lot more about making yourselves relevant to our new needs. We’ve got so many ways of informing and entertaining ourselves now, so do take that on board. Also, sourcing a comment to a random person on Twitter is not journalism. Find out who and where they are and give a bit of background.

And from the Twitterverse, quite a bit less self-congratulation and a quite a lot more practical work. Turning your avatar green or red or black changes nothing. “But I’m raising awareness” it not a valid explanation, either, because chances are your friends already agree with you. Open communication with someone well outside your normal circle and make a difference. Please.

The ABC piece is worth reading too, with contributions from editor Jonathan Green, Sophie Cunningham from Meanjin, comedian John Safran, opposition leader Tony Abbott, refugee and human rights activist Pamela Curr, futurist Mark Pesce, researcher and author Chris Berg, Julian Morrow of The Chaser fame, Robert Manne, Catherine Deveny, human rights lawyer Julian Burnside, artist Gerard Oosterman, scientist Julian Cribb, journalist and former writer for The Chaser Gregor Stronach, and Keysar Trad from the Islamic Friendship Association of Australia.

I haven’t had a chance to think about what I want personally. I was working on some urgent, stressful documents right up until close of business on New Year’s Eve, and went to bed early, exhausted. Maybe today’s beautiful showery day in Sydney, or tomorrow’s thunderstorms, will provide that inspiration.

Australia 2020: recent articles

Here’s what other people have written about the Australia 2020 Summit recently:

  1. Science communicator Professor Julian Cribb says “Your Ruddiness, the problem with your summit… is that it is already thinking too small, although it professes to think big.” Hear hear! We must solve the problems facing humanity as a whole, he said. “This isn’t a joke. For the last eight years the world has eaten more food that [sic] it has produced, and the gap is widening as demand rises and production stagnates. Meanwhile Australian governments, Coalition and Labor, have done their level best to ensure a future food crisis by winding back agricultural science in this country and agricultural aid overseas.”
  2. In The Australian, Mike Steketee asks us to Forget ideology, just focus on ideas. “A start to considering ideas on their merit would be not to pigeonhole them according to who puts them forward.”
  3. In An ambit claim for the Ruddfest 2020, Valerie Yule says that a fair Australia can also be prosperous. “Australia Fair would still be able to Advance,” she says. “‘Fair’ means fairness in opportunities, fairness in rewards, and fair dealing.”

For completeness, in my last post I mentioned the Media Watch report, and the Centre for Policy development’s ideas for what happens next. What else have you seen?