Gongol.com Archives: February 2013
Brian Gongol


February 22, 2013

Computers and the Internet Will Papal Tweets stop with Benedict's retirement?
Outgoing Pope Benedict XVI was the first to use Twitter. Since we don't know who his successor will be, we can't really say whether the account will remain active, languish in obscurity and disuse, or be shut down entirely. Accounts belonging to an office, rather than an individual, are a problem encountered not just on Twitter, but on sites like Facebook and entire websites, like that of the White House. One would think we could start deliberately building sites like that of Congress and the White House for perpetuity -- WhiteHouse.gov/44/ could go to President Obama's section, in perpetuity, and /43 could have gone to George W. Bush, and /42 could have gone to Clinton, and so forth. But instead, each new administration blows up the site belonging to the old one, and we have to look to the National Archives to try to preserve the past sites. That's just stupid computing. Congress should be done the same way: Every member of the House of Representatives should get a site under House.gov/113/ (for the current Congress), which could be the default site for now, and eventually give way to /114 and /115 and so forth into the future. But instead, if you try to go to the site of a past Senator, like, say, Ted Kennedy, it's just...gone. Again, that's stupid computing.

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