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Steve O'Keeffe

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Posted: 11/27/2012 - 9 comment(s) [ Comment ] - 0 trackback(s) [ Trackback ]

 sCIOal Circle

Fed IT's checking out of out-of-town conferences. Print magazines are no longer in vogue. So, what's in? Social media. Now, it's impossible to see what magazines CIOs read – and you can't access conference attendee lists. But, social media's transparent. So, MeriTalk took a peek over CIOs' shoulders to examine their social media manners. Here's the first annual Fed sCIOal Circle study. No it's not a typo. Watch the movie or read the book. The circle shows, who's in on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter – and who's listening to whom...

Coleman and Holgate Have It

The study looked at 31 Federal CIOs – including two deputies. Based on the point scoring system, Casey Coleman and Rick Holgate own first place. Linda Cureton and Steven VanRoekel tie for the second spot.


Playing Defense

Hardly surprisingly, DoD and Intelligence aren't digging social media. Al Tarasuik and LTG Susan Lawrence are both Web 1.0s – no social media accounts.

Platform Priority

Facebook's mostly a closed book – only seven Fed CIOs like the platform. LinkedIn's the hot spot – more than 80 percent have a profile. Twitter's hit and miss – less than half sit on the branch, and, if you take out the top three chirpers, all CIOs have generated 396 tweets combined in the last six months. That’s 14 tweets per CIO – or 2.34 each per month.

Twitter Truths

Okay, CIOs aren't the most prolific song birds, but Twitter is the most transparent social platform – and provides us with a bird's eye view. So, who are the popular kids in the aviary? Though he's only generated 51 peeps in the last six months, Steven VanRoekel is at the front of the flock with 5,082 followers. However, he only follows 251 other tweeters – so it's difficult to get his attention. Other popular folks – Linda Cureton and Casey Coleman with 4,710 and 4,908 followers, respectively.

F2F Insight

Now, consider the Twitter F2F ratio – number of followers divided by number of people you follow. It gives you a sense for whether the CIO is approachable online – the lower the ratio, the more approachable.

Back to the study, Casey has a much lower F2F ratio than Steven VanRoekel. Casey follows 2,959 tweeters – giving her a F2F ratio of 1.66. Steven follows 251 tweeters – F2F ratio, 20.25. Hats off to Shawn Kingsberry of the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board. Shawn is the most approachable CIO – F2F ratio, 0.37. In second place, Brook Colangelo, CIO at the White House, with a F2F ratio of 0.44.

Top of the Tree?

And, yes, I'm anticipating your next question. Who do the CIOs follow – who's the pied piper? We looked for trends and confluence. The simple answer is one another. Steven VanRoekel, Casey Coleman, and Richard Spires are all top accounts. Then it's Rick Holgate, Roger Baker, and Linda Cureton. If you're interested in more specifics, take a look in each CIO's Twitter nest for yourself.

Early Bird and the Worm

So, what's the takeaway? Social media's a bust in Federal IT? Absolutely not. Was GSA smart to sidestep Vivek's FedSpace– yep. As the traditional lines of communication curl up, online's absolutely the way ahead. Is social media a way to get to Uncle Sam's top IT decision makers – mostly no, though there are some exceptions. It'll be interesting to watch next year's sCIOal Circle to see what changes hatch...


PS. And speaking of social media and transparency - seems Alex Howard at O'Reilly suspects the fourth estate is a fifth column. Big ups for Camille Tuutti - yes it's a real study. A lot of great feedback from Fed CIOs based on the FCW article. AOL Government took it seriously too. WELP to you too Alex - yes, I had to look up what WELP meant.

Opt in today to keep stirring IT up.

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