Civil Service Principals for Online Participation – Be Responsive.

After the suspension of a civil servant for blogging Cabinet Office Minister Tom Watson has finally got some guidelines up to help civil servants join the online conversation. They are based on the civil service code and a big conversation which was encouraged by Tom on his blog and evolved into Richard Allan’s task force on the Power of Information. I like the simplicity and clarity. For me the advance is number 3 “Be Responsive”. Encourage constructive criticism is good but is also going to exercise some civil service structures and perhaps liberate others:

1 Be credible: Be accurate, fair, thorough and transparent.

2 Be consistent: Encourage constructive criticism and deliberation. Be cordial, honest and professional at all times.

3 Be responsive When you gain insight, share it where appropriate.

4 Be integrated: Wherever possible, align online participation with other offline communications.

5 Be a civil servant: Remember that you are an ambassador for your organisation. Wherever possible, disclose your position as a representative of your department or agency.
Other feedback from bits of the web:Brilliant in their simplicity.

It is good.

To be applauded.

Woo Hoo!.

This is a big step indeed.

Some sense of security for those already blogging.

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