Friday, June 20, 2008

No cameras, no big deal

House Rep. John Culberson (R, Tx) has been Twittering from the House floor in the name of transparency. It's pretty interesting, but this post really caught my eye:

"@maslowbeer We (Rs) had TV cameras in the Rules Comm hearing room - Pelosi took all the cameras out - I will start Qikking these meetings"

Qik is a service that allows you to stream video from your mobile phone in real time. It's been used extensively by tech industry folks such as Robert Scoble. But seeing it mentioned in this context is arresting because it highlights the ability for someone with a pocket-sized device to easily replace much larger chunks of infrastructure such as larger cameras plus multiperson camera crews.

I don't take a position on whether transparency is a good thing in this particular case. As a general principle, I think transparency is a good thing, but in practice it may make people reluctant to do the sort of sausage-grinding necessary to generate compromises. My sense is that the House will need to establish firm protocol to deal with acceptable mobile device use, and soon.

Twitter / johnculberson: @maslowbeer We (Rs) had TV ...

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