Sunday, January 28, 2007

How other transit systems interact with commuters

Thanks to Adam over at Universal Hub who told me about this.

The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Houston has started a blog called WRITE ON METRO to inform commuters of what is going on.

The Houston Press found out that the job pays $76,622. The job duties include
– Plans, prepares and disseminates information regarding the organization through blog-based communication network.

– Manages the research and development of content for publication of product, services and public information.

– Writes, edits, proofreads, and copyedits material being presented to the public via the blog-based communication network.

– Works in conjunction with IT to develop and maintain standards for the blog-based communication network.
Maybe the T would consider something similar?

In Chicago the head of the Chicago Transit Authority actually has a blog to communicate with commuters. She has been taking a lot of heat because of major problems with the CTA but she doesn't hide from them and is very candid. Could we expect to see something similar from the T? Not very likely since they can't even answer e-mail to Team Charlie.

Now much has been written about the T's new website and while it has bugs to be worked out they have made an effort to embrace the so called Web 2.0. Compare what the T has done to what the City of San Francisco unveiled Saturday for a new transit website. The Bay Area is perhaps the most wired metro area in America and the new MUNI website looks like something designed in 1995.


76,000 for a blogger? Sheese I'm living in the wrong city

2 comments:

adamg said...

Oh my God, that SF site is so awful I think I have to go stare at the sun for a couple of minutes to wipe it from my brain.

Anonymous said...

The design of the SF Muni web site is a bit primitive, but the simplicity gives your faster responses on the site. Complexity usually means that a web site is slower to load and refresh. Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS) principle should be observed when designing high traffic web sites. I bet that they won't have the choking fit that the new MBTA site had. Launching it on the weekend probably helped them to avoid problems it also.