2007 01 30
TTC Chair Adam Giambrone Thanks Toronto Bloggers
On January 15, 2007 the Toronto blogs, Reading Toronto, BlogTO, Spacing, and Torontoist sent a letter to TTC Chair Adam Giambrone. That letter summarized our readers' ideas on how to improve the TTC's website. We included a list of those ideas in spreadsheet form but a great web version can be found here.

Giambrone responded to our input yesterday. Here is his reply to the Toronto bloggers:
Thanks again for your help in soliciting and compiling the submissions on the blogs concerning the TTC website redesign.

I presented the results to the TTC e-systems committee last week. To the credit of TTC staff, many of the suggestions had already been anticipated in the original RFP. However, some were not, and thanks in part to the consultation, it became clear during the discussion that the project should be reconsidered. The bloggers' suggestions were very helpful in this determination.

The committee recommended withdrawing, re-writing and re-issuing the RFP to reflect what I think is a more ambitious and exciting project. This decision might add a little extra time--maybe a few months--but we think it will result in a better website, so it's worth doing.

I'll keep you posted on developments. In the meantime, of course, I am still very happy to receive comments and suggestions.

Thanks again for all your help,

Adam Giambrone
Toronto City Councillor
Ward 18 Davenport
Chair, Toronto Transit Commission (TTC)

Congratulations and thanks to the many people who took the time to get involved. Participatory democracies do work!

The story does not end there. Some very talented and energetic people from the blogging world decided to take the challenge to the next level. This Sunday at the Gladstone Hotel on Queen Street West, Toronto Transit Camp '07, "Bettering the Better Way" lifts off (register here). In the words of organizer, Mark Kuznicki:

I have been working like a mad man to get this going with my fellow community tricksters: Jay Goldman, David Crow, Bryce Johnson, Eli Singer, Julia Breckenreid, Rannie Turingan, Joey DeVilla, Misha Glouberman, Patrick Dinnen, Madhava Enros, Mark Surman, Michael Glenn, Amber MacArthur. Special mention to the TorCamp Skype chat swarm for being the collective sounding board and reality check.

Read about the history and origins of the event. I found myself in the middle of a storm of multi-threaded, massively parallel organization and collaboration in the past week (you read right, it took 1 week to pull together from our first planning meeting last Sunday at the Gladstone to being open for registration with all the major pieces in place) and now I have a moment to reflect back on what it means.

Reflecting now on TransitCamp’s origins and how quickly and powerfully things came together, even I am shocked at how the social media and online collaborative tools have made this possible. This is truly a new paradigm of collaborative peer production. Something new, fundamentally important and very powerful. This is Wikinomics meets city-building. BarCamp meets the real world.

[email this story] Posted by R Ouellette on 01/30
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