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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Wikipedia Founder Will Create “Open-Source” Government

Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales seems to be landing in the thick of it with an unusual role – advising the authorities on new technologies to create an “open-source” government.

Jimmy Wales has been offered a job in the British civil service. He will become an advisor to the government within the frames of a move to use the web and other modern technologies in their work.

It is unclear whether we can now expect to see Jimmy Wales showing up in government departments to dish out Malcolm Tucker style grillings. However, the netizens can at least hope that he will flag strings of inaccuracies and suspected plagiarism in oncoming whitepapers. Considering the fact that the controversial NHS Bill is on its way, the members of the House of Lords will undoubtedly be looking for any cut and paste jobs or Wikipedia citations working their way into the final cut.

Meanwhile, it isn’t actually clear what Jimmy Wales will exactly be doing. The local media has pointed to his advisory role, which is expected to go some way to placating the Wikipedia head after Wales was mistaken for Julian Assange by the customs officers back in 2011. The information is that his unpaid role will focus on a democratic crowd-sourcing push by the government to open up policy-making to the great unwashed of the United Kingdom. This initiative is regarded as laudable, and from a Coalition cost-cutting point of view, suggested crowd sourcing policies will be lighter on the country’s wallet than actually having to pay pension-demanding government employees to come up with ideas. Meanwhile, the government of the United Kingdom has also opened up commons debates, providing the public with the opportunity to start e-petitions. 

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