Two new Web sites you should bookmark right now
Go add them to your bookmarks right now. That’s OK, I’ll wait.
Why am I directing you to do this? First, let’s take Whitehouse.gov. In a past life, I covered Congress and the White House. Take it from me, the old Whitehouse.gov site was largely useless. It did include transcripts of briefings and that was occasionally helpful, but generally it was hard to get much done there.
Although Obama and his team have been criticized for overusing their email privileges, they still clearly understand more thoroughly than any modern leader ever has how to take advantage of technology. Obama used such tools as email distribution, Facebook and MySpace to build his brand and market himself right into the Oval Office. Under such leadership, Whitehouse.gov could be a real tool for democracy, a place for people to go and learn what is going on and also participate in what is supposed to be government of the people, by the people and for the people.That’s exactly how the White House itself is positioning the site: Whitehouse.gov is going to be a place for communication, transparency and participation. Let that be so.
It’s clear that we’re all getting a little ga-ga over Obama’s potential. I don’t want to get too crazy enthusiastic about what can happen with Whitehouse.gov, but I do think it will be a vast improvement over any of its predecessors and worth checking out. And what’s incredible: they have it up and running perfectly on the day after Obama was inaugurated. If I were Obama, I would be recovering from my night out right now. Not him – he’s swearing in staff, giving speeches, meeting with his generals. It’s inspiring and so incredibly exhausting. I’m exhausted just from going out last night to watch his inauguration.
On to Oscar.com: the real reason I’m recommending this site is because I’m a freakin’ Oscar nut. In years past, I have made an effort to see every major Oscar-nominated movie, which means I have seen some obscure movies in my day, like Vera Drake and Shadow of the Vampire. Nominations come out tomorrow. Go to Oscar.com, where the streaming video in a flash window is very impressive, to learn all about this year’s honored films. The Oscars air on ABC on Sunday, Feb. 22. I’m already polishing my Manolos.