Just the Facts, Ma’am

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The Los Angeles Fire Department’s blog, produced by the LAFD PR team (as reported by Steve Rubel), has prompted an LA blogger to call on the Los Angeles Police Department and the Sheriff’s Department to follow suit.

In an open letter on his blog, Sean Bonner of Blogging.LA writes:

Search for “LAFD” on this site and see the countless other posts praising them for their openess and communication. Do you see how fantastic the LAFD is? Do you see how much people love them because of this? A very little bit of openness goes a very, very long way. Why can’t the LAPD and LASD do something like this? Have a blog where there is someone who will talk and answer questions. Follow a few local blogs and discuss issues when they come up.

The post has gotten support from other local bloggers, not to mention LA Voice, which has published an alternative newspaper in LA (my hometown) for years.

Can law enforcement agencies engage in the same kind of transparency the private sector is finding so beneficial? A quick search failed to turn up a single blog by a police department. That doesn’t mean none have one; just that I couldn’t find them using some basic search terms on two search engines. It does suggest, however, that there aren’t many, which isn’t surprising for organizations that like to play their cards close to the vest. It’ll be interesting to see if the call for LAPD and LASD blogs start to change that.

Shel Holtz is principal of Holtz Communication + Technology which focuses on helping organizations apply online communication capabilities to their strategic organizational communications.

As a professional communicator, Shel also writes the blog a shel of my former self.

Just the Facts, Ma’am
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