Today is the first day of Sunshine Week, with over 500 papers printing articles and editorials about the need for more open government in the last 24 hours alone.
Please, spread the news in the blogosphere — make this the year that Sunshine Week becomes a rallying cry for bloggers who are looking to open up government.
As AP CEO Tom Curley writes in a Q & A about Sunshine Week, this year is different than the last two years:
“The Sunshine Week momentum (in 2005 and 2006) forced elected officials to choose between public service or self service. We saw some very powerful officials become openly defiant of efforts to do the public’s business in public. In a strange way they inspired a new generation of investigative reporters and stiffened the resolve of editors. Persistent reporters at local, state and federal levels helped save billions of dollars and even lives by what they were able to uncover last year.
Q. What role can citizen journalists and participatory networks play in advancing the dialogue about the people’s right to know?
A. The citizen community has produced some of the most exciting counters to cover-ups. The growth in public involvement and sophistication in information gathering and distributing are among the most positive signs in connecting the people to their elected or appointed representatives.”