If you listen to the tweetosphere and blogoshpere you’d be forgiven for thinking that Web 1 is as dead, buried and cremated as Mister Rabbit’s workchoices! In the next five minutes I want to impress on you that Web 1.0 “the noun” is far from dead and buried, and Web 2.0 “the verb” is distinct and different. In local Government, I believe 80% of our effort is in Web 1.0 activities and 20% is web 2.0. By all means use Web 2.0, but Web 1.0 is where the action is.
My talk is not about semantics, splitting hairs of definition. I see a danger that the basis of provision of information by local government is under threat. We all work for a legal authority. That word is authority. Our business is largely in providing authoritative information. There is not much too blog or tweet about – democracy has created the acts of parliament and Council enacts them. Web 1.0 is providing information as an authority. Acts of Parliament are not up for discussion at the delivery end. Try using your social networking skills or community engagement while being asked to blow into an RBT! Conversely, when you do want to engage your community the Web 2.0 universe is wonderful. But stand your ground and don’t let anyone tell you Web 2.0 replaces Web 1.0 – you need both the noun and the verb, to paraphrase the insightful Jonathan Zittrain Image source http://www.eventmanagerblog.com/event-management/social-media-events
Some of you may recall my lightning talk last year – I stretched a five second concept to a five minute presentation. It involved changing the name of your website to an “online customer service centre”. Has anyone done that – it is a really Web 1.0 thing to do. I’m lucky enough to have the authority to make the change – some of you may not be able to. And if you haven’t changed the name of your site, ask yourself exactly why you have a website if it is not to provide online customer service.
I got on my soapbox late last year suggesting you rename your website to anonline customer service centre. To me it is such an obvious, simple and significant change. Do you know what the biggest challenge is – not your external customers, but your staff. Until they see the website as your customer information centre they’ll continue to shoot from hip and give whatever answer they think is right. It’s gotta be on the web. Your staff have to stop looking at handwritten scribbles stuck to their walls and direct themselves and your customers to the website. That’s still Web 1.0 – the author, the point of authority.
20/08/10 To stress the importance of Web 1.0 I did a small experiment. I set up a gmail account and an POP3 account in fictitious names and sent two requests to all NSW councils. The first question simply asked for the email address of the mayor. The second question asked what was the best number and time to call about lodging a simple development application The aim was to determine how well Councils responded to general enquiries via the web email. Of interest was that two Councils did not have an email address listed on the website, and three had forms, including one that would drive any customer mad if they were asked the same questions when telephoning or if they had to provide the same detail if writing a letter. My advice is that email should always be provided as an entry point, regardless of your form, and your telephone number shoud be plastered over the site as well. But how did your Council fare? Source http://bernardoh.files.wordpress.com/2007/06/carol-beer-computer-says-no.jpg
20/08/10 This shows why Web 1.0 matters . And I think the scorecard is at least a B+. The good news is that most Councils turn around email enquiries from the web, and most are done within a day. The bad news is that if the enquiry is not answered within a day, it is not likely to be answered. 28 out 152 and 29 out of 147 (just under 20%) did not reply at all. I don’t think for phone calls or letters that would be a good statistic. As a takeaway, Web 1.0 matters as much as the counter and phone and letters. Answering emails generated from your website is core business – standard Web 1.0 stuff. Good job everyone…. If asked/needed Raw Q1 2/3/2010 Period /Count 1 109 |2 6 |3 6 |4 0 |5 1| >5 2|no reply 28 Raw Q2 20/4/2010 Period /Count 1 88 | 2 17| 3 6 | 4 0 | 5 0 | >5 7| no reply 29
I’m told no presentation is complete without at least one gratuitous zombie slide. I don’t think web 1.0 is dead and I don’t think there will be a Web 1.0 zombie apocalypse I think our focus should ensuring that what you can get at the counter, should be available on the website and your staff use this as their resource. http://www.treehugger.com/files/2009/08/humans-survive-zombie-attack-scientists.php
What I do think is that Web 1.0 is still the foundation of online customer service and none of us can afford to lose our focus on that. Web 2.0 is great for engagement, and we need to explore all avenues to improve our accessibility to our customers. In summary, rename your website to an online Customer Service Centre by all means play with Web 2.0, but Web 1.0 is the foundation of why you have a website. Thank you.
Web 2.0 is not the big new shiny web
Web 2.0 is not the “big new shiny” Web A lightning talk By Andy Carnahan Manager, Information Services Wingecarribee Shire Council