[@OKau] Move from the mailing list to the new OK Forum?

Steve Bennett stevage at gmail.com
Mon May 25 23:43:08 UTC 2015

Lots of great comments, I'll try to respond succinctly.

1) I don't think there is, or should be, "one" community. "The public"
would probably prefer a Facebook group. I'd prefer not to be on it. I'm
very happy working with a group of specialists, and I'll leave public
outreach to someone else.

2) Re: international engagement, we have a huge amount to gain by tapping
into international initiatives. Open Spending being one, and there are two
local government data standardisation projects I can't wait to look at.
It's less about talking, and more about learning and listening.


On Mon, May 25, 2015 at 8:19 AM, Rosie Williams <budgetaus at hotmail.com>

> Hi all,
> I thought I'd contribute to this thread with my observations about
> strategies and audiences for open data in Australia.
> There seems in my mind, to be two different pushes on within the OKAu
> community. One is to build international networks and the other is to build
> more local connections and engagement. Perhaps both these directions need
> to be catered for in different ways or in different places.
> Personally, I'm behind improving understanding and engagement with open
> data within Australia. What I mean by this is educating the general
> population (people from all walks of life who may not be technically
> savvy). I don't see much point in telling people in another country about
> open knowledge in Australia when the vast proportion of Australians don't
> know about open knowledge/data in Australia.
> This list and in my opinion the OKAu site is not general public friendly.
> Right now the 'open data community' in Australia consists of developers and
> other experts (many of whom work for government ie very clever, middle
> class people). I see people out in the community asking for improved or new
> data but there's no specific place for them to channel their requests
> (other than my initial efforts at the InfoAus wiki).
> Most events run by the open data community seem to be aimed almost
> exclusively at the professional class and often focus on the needs of
> developers or other experts. There is little comprehension of the role of
> the general public in shaping where open data goes in this country. I do
> see there is potential for a better way for our current list to discuss
> topics provided by different functionality however I also see that
> discussion has only really sparked up here in recent weeks and if it was
> moved now we might lose the sense of community emerging here.
> I have enjoyed the discussion lately on this list. I'm always watching to
> see new contributors and find out who is actually here since I have no idea
> unless someone posts something. However I also see a another level of
> engagement that needs to occur not so much with international experts but
> with regular folk who don't speak in jargon but who do often know the
> information they want. There needs to be a forum non technical people can
> ask for the data they want. I aim to do a fair bit of engaging with a wide
> audience through various channels over coming weeks as I move toward public
> requirements gathering and crowdfunding.
> Ultimately I think this list is more of a stage in the process of creating
> forums that will hopefully lead to larger scale engagement in open
> knowledge (both internationally & locally) however IMHO I don't think now
> is the time to end the engagement that has sprung up here and I also think
> that focusing on international conversation is not the full picture of
> where open knowledge needs to go in Australia.
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