Most government websites are very similar; a bit of history, a tour of the government buildings, reports of the various committees and a resume of the personnel and that's about it.
Throughout his campaign, Obama spoke of change.
Barack Obama made effective use of the Internet during his campaign. It is therefore only fitting that one of the first changes that has been made is the White House's new website, which they claim will serve as a place for the President and his administration to connect with the rest of the nation and the world.
WhiteHouse.gov and the rest of the Administration's online programs say they intend to put citizens first. They have set out three priorities:
Communication -- The site claims that Americans are eager for information about the state of the economy, national security and a host of other issues. The site promises to feature timely and in-depth content meant to keep everyone up-to-date and educated. Americans can check out the briefing room, keep tabs on the blog (RSS feed) and take a moment to sign up for e-mail updates from the President and his administration so they can be sure to know about major announcements and decisions.
Transparency -- President Obama is committed to making his administration the most open and transparent in history, and WhiteHouse.gov is designed play a major role in delivering on that promise. The President's executive orders and proclamations will be published for everyone to review. They say that the site will provide a window for all Americans into the business of the government. Americans can also use the site to learn about some of the senior leadership in the new administration and about the President’s policy priorities.
Participation -- President Obama started his career as a community organizer on the South Side of Chicago, where he saw firsthand what people can do when they come together for a common cause. Citizen participation will be a priority for the Administration, and the Internet will play an important role in that. One significant addition to WhiteHouse.gov reflects a campaign promise from the President to publish all non-emergency legislation to the website for five days, and allow the public to review and comment before the President signs it.
Only time will tell if all the hype that has surrounded the new President is lived up to. For the sake of America and the world I hope it is. I don't think he intends to be 'misunderestimated' like his predecessor.