Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

Jesse Brown: Government strangely closed about open source

By Jesse Brown, CBC technology columnist.

Picture 21.png

Earlier this month Canadian techies were excited to learn that our federal government was taking a serious look at open source software.

Public Works and Government Services Canada put out a public Request For Information on the topic. Some questioned their approach- Russell McOrmand said that the department was acting “as if they they were out to buy a truck”. He argued that open source software ”is a human resource issue as much as it is a product."

But most saw it as a step in the right direction. Why should the government pay huge licence fees to Microsoft for buggy, closed, proprietary tools, when Canadians themselves have helped build better (and free) mousetraps?

I thought it was a good move too, and was excited to finally do a positive story about our government’s approach to tech. For once we’d be leading the pack, not lagging miserably behind! But I may have gotten excited too soon...

I pinged Jeff Braybrook for an interview. Braybrook is Canada’s Deputy Chief Technology Officer for the Treasury Board Secretariat- he’s spoken at Third Tuesday and a bunch of other cool conferences, and has been publicly enthusiastic about open source. He seemed excited to talk to me, but needed to steer me through the proper government media wranglers for clearance.

It’s a headache, but such is life when dealing with government. I figured the interview would take a few days longer than usual to set-up, but I wasn’t really worried about not getting it - this was a positive piece, after all!

A full week after I put in my interview request, word came back from the Treasury Board’s media relations dude: no interview with Jeff, no explanation why not.

It seems we may still be a few steps away from open government…

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

This discussion is now Open. Submit your Comment.

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

Post a Comment

Disclaimer:

Note: By submitting your comments you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that due to the volume of e-mails we receive, not all comments will be published, and those that are published will not be edited. But all will be carefully read, considered and appreciated.

Note: Due to volume there will be a delay before your comment is processed. Your comment will go through even if you leave this page immediately afterwards.

Privacy Policy | Submissions Policy

Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

World »

Mohamed Fahmy trial damages Egypt's reputation globally, but do its leaders care? video
When the guilty verdict was read out, a few gasps echoed across the cavernous military courtroom inside Cairo's Tora prison. Mohamed Fahmy's wife, Marwa Omara, began to sob. No longer could she contain the disappointment and anger caused by this 608-day-long ordeal.
News Corp. could face U.K. charges over phone hacking
British prosecutors say they are considering corporate charges against media baron Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. over the phone hacking fiasco at the now-defunct News of the World tabloid.
Dominica digs out from Tropical Storm Erika, with at least 20 dead
Rescue crews jumped off boats and trudged through mud, rocks and uprooted trees Saturday to reach communities cut off by a tropical storm that killed at least 20 people and left nearly 50 missing in the eastern Caribbean island of Dominica.
more »

Canada »

Doctor-assisted suicide survey 'designed to manufacture fear'
​A group pushing for a new federal law to govern doctor-assisted suicide is ripping into a federal survey gathering input on the controversial issue, saying its questions are designed to "manufacture fear."
Fierce B.C. storm knocks out power and causes havoc
Record-high winds whipped B.C.'s Lower Mainland, seriously injuring at least one person Saturday, sending trees crashing into homes and cars, and knocking out power to hundreds of thousands.
Justin Trudeau vows to repeal '2-tiered' citizenship law
Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau says if elected his government would repeal the Conservative government's "two-tiered" citizenship law and that he would do more to help free imprisoned Egyptian-Canadian journalist Mohamed Fahmy.
more »

Politics »

2 men conflict over donation made to Conservatives
A Brampton, Ont., man, who said he was shocked to see his political donation end up with the Conservatives and not the Liberals, was fully aware his money was going to the Tories, the volunteer who brokered the payment told CBC News in a statement.
Doctor-assisted suicide survey 'designed to manufacture fear'
​A group pushing for a new federal law to govern doctor-assisted suicide is ripping into a federal survey gathering input on the controversial issue, saying its questions are designed to "manufacture fear."
Mayor criticized for comparing Harper's use of private security to dictators' militias
The mayor of Oakville, Ont., has been under a barrage of online criticism for writing a tweet suggesting Stephen Harper's use of private security is like those that protected fascist dictators. He apologized after critics accused of him maligning Canadian veterans.
more »

Health »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Arts & Entertainment»

The Weeknd's stardom helped by go-to Canuck songwriter Stephan Moccio
From start to finish, The Weeknd's hulking smash album Beauty Behind the Madness features the handiwork of Canadian songwriter Stephan Moccio.
Video game movies roundup: Borderlands, Assassin's Creed, Hitman Agent 47
Poor reception of Adam Sandler's Pixels hasn't stopped gaming and film studios from trying to create the next cross-platform blockbuster. Here's a roundup of video game movie news from the past week.
Video Shania Twain Turns 50 video
Shania Twain talks about turning 50, an age which coincides with new confidence and a new album and tour.
more »

Technology & Science »

Ashley Madison's members by the numbers video audio
Data analysts are reporting some interesting findings from the Ashley Madison data dump. For example, almost none of the female members ever used the site, and Canada had the highest percentage by population of accounts.
Calgary air quality: When is the smoke going to clear? video audio
The air quality in Calgary is at six — or moderate risk — on Friday evening. We take a look at the question many are asking: "When is the smoke going to clear?"
Rare nautilus with hairy shell photographed in South Pacific
An animal so rare that only two people are thought to have ever seen it until now has been photographed and briefly captured in the South Pacific.
more »

Money »

News Corp. could face U.K. charges over phone hacking
British prosecutors say they are considering corporate charges against media baron Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. over the phone hacking fiasco at the now-defunct News of the World tabloid.
China's great fall, loonie's swan dive & some mushy math on taxes: BUSINESS WEEK WRAP video
From fears that China's stock bubble is overinflated, to some new numbers meant to show how overtaxed Canadians are, it was a busy week in the business news. Good thing the CBC's Jacqueline Hansen is here to walk you through the week that was in her video recap.
Ottawa posts $5B surplus for April-to-June period
The federal government has taken in $5 billion more than it spent since April, the Department of Finance revealed Friday.
more »

Consumer Life »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Sports »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Mare Dibaba wins Ethiopia's 1st women's marathon at track worlds
Mare Dibaba won the first women's marathon title for Ethiopia at the IAAF world track and field championships Sunday, holding off Helah Kiprop of Kenya in a sprint to the finish in Beijing.
Canada's track team continues to roll at Beijing worlds video
Canadian athletes proved themselves once again Saturday in Beijing’s Birds Nest Stadium at the world track and field championships, snatching three more medals, taking the tally to a record seven.
Recap Stampeders move atop CFL standings with rout of Blue Bombers video
Bo Levi Mitchell passed for 314 yards and two touchdowns as the visiting Calgary Stampeders extended their winning streak to four games with a dominating 36-8 victory over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Saturday.
more »

Diversions »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
more »