Executive Office of the President

Create a Single USA.gov Website, Consolidating Resources and Information

I suggest you streamline the federal government's hundreds of websites to save costs and better serve the public. That in 2010 our federal government still operates upwards of five hundred independent websites places our nation’s public-sector Internet savvy somewhere in the late 1990s. The cacophony of websites wastes untold amounts of money, since every agency must not only employ new media directors to handle day-to-day operations – which is sensible – but also must hire developers, designers, etc., often by contract, to create and update websites that, truth be told, often do not look professional nor emerge user-friendly. (Instead, they tend to scream “inefficient” and “red tape.”) We could learn a lot from the UK “Directgov” model, where, as “public services [are] all in one place.” This will save money. And, more important for the American public, it will open the doors to an incredibly more intuitive, navigable federal government, thus increasing knowledge of federal programs, benefits, resources, agencies, and departments. We owe nothing less to the citizens we serve. Though I think this consolidation is ultimately inevitable – if not this year, then in twenty or thirty – why not begin now and save millions of dollars of generating – with developers and software and resources and time – visually and substantively inconsistent and incompatible websites? This is, in short, one of the best steps we could take not only for our budget, but also for transparency, which is as much about the release of information as it is about the organization of that information.

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Idea No. 13791