UNDER THE PRESIDENTIAL Records Act, those in the service of President Obama have no social networking at work, no instant messaging, no IRC, no logging into office email accounts at home. Most of these restrictions are in place to ensure the Executive Branch leaves a trail of accountability that can be harvested at known archival points. It also means there are other places that could provide colour and context of the Obama Era. The First Lady's menu selections and her diary will be revealing. More than that, the digital camera files and diaries of Sasha and Malia Obama would be a joyous find for anyone eager to document the most significant first family in a half century.
Barack Obama won his fight for a bulge on his belt and now has a Sectera Edge (above left), a General Dynamics PDA that provides secure communications for America's e-mailing Presiudent. Those BarackBerry records will be archived. In Ireland, Ministers have Blackberries and those records should be hoovered under Freedom of Information requests. Except in Ireland, nothing prevents ministers from setting up alternative e-mail channels that are free of scrutiny. Nor do those ministers have to avoid places like LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook.
Sarah Baxter -- "Obama gets BarackBerry" on the front page of The Sunday Times, 25 January 2009.