It doesn’t take more than even a quick look at recovery.gov to see that there really isn’t much activity on the site. They may have missed their opportunity to garner a productive community. They are missing the social aspect and it looks like a very basic run-of-the-mill information distribution Web 1.0 site.
Despite their Q&A on how you can participate
“Q: I want to help. What can I do?
A: Over the course of the spring, increasing amounts of information will become available on Recovery.gov that will show where the money is going. We are counting on you to peruse that information and tell us what you find. Please share your stories, your ideas, and your comments. They will then be sent to the Board for their review. “
There is no way to contribute other than filling out a form on your story. I couldn’t find any user stories to read so I’m assuming there are none. Also, there is no way to comment on anything (that I could find) and much of the information actually points to other sites which negates the collection of social feedback in one place.
If this was really intended to be a social site then it significantly misses the mark. The social functionality is missing and their is little seed content or participation. As a result, not surprisingly, there is no community. I hope this isn’t indicative of government jumping headlong into the social computing movement without doing it right.
According to compete.com, recovery.gov had 1.7+ million visits in February of this year and was already down 55% in March. They wasted a 1.7M+ significant chance to have an impact and build community. They may never get that chance again.
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