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FirstGov Announcement Continues

GSA #9702

June 27, 2000
Contact: Eleni Martin (202) 501-1231 eleni.martin@gsa.gov

Washington, DC - FirstGov, announced by President Clinton on June 24, will serve as every citizen's window to the federal government by providing a single point of entry to one of the most useful collections of web pages available electronically. The critical platform for FirstGov will be built at no cost to taxpayers through a newly formed Foundation, created by Internet entrepreneur Eric Brewer.

Brewer's Foundation will build a database containing copies of the full-page text of all government web pages--possibly as many as 100 million pages--that can be searched using the scalable search-engine technology that Brewer co-invented and upon which he co-founded Inktomi. This technology allows Inktomi to search half a billion documents in less than one-quarter of a second. The Foundation will use this technology and will have the ability to handle millions of searches a day. A typical search will provide a list of results that will direct the user to the government web site where the actual page resides. The work of the Foundation will also include development of a user-friendly portal.

In addition to creating the database and portal, FirstGov will create the FirstGov brand. This brand will be available for use by commercial and non-commercial organizations that agree to abide by a set of "FirstGov Brand" conditions. The FirstGov Board of Directors will manage adherence to these conditions.

Attached is a draft of the FirstGov brand conditions. The draft will be posted in the Commerce Business Daily to enable interested parties to comment and maximize the effectiveness of the concept.

The FirstGov Board of Directors provides direction to the FirstGov project. The Board consists of 8 members of the President's Management Council (PMC) and three members of the federal Chief Information Officers (CIO) Council.

The PMC Members are: Dave Barram, General Services Administration; Mort Downey, Department of Transportation; Bill Halter, Social Security Administration; Sally Katzen, Office of Management and Budget; Bill Lynn, Department of Defense; Robert Mallett, Department of Commerce; Mike McCabe, Environmental Protection Agency; Morley Winograd, National Partnership for Reinventing Government.

The CIO Council Members are: Roger Baker, Department of Commerce, Chair of Security & Privacy Committee; George Molaski, Department of Transportation, Chair of eGovernment Committee; Bill Piatt, General Services Administration, Chair of Interoperability & Emerging Technology Committee.

FirstGov Brand Conditions

FirstGov Certified Partners (FGCP's) will be allowed to post the FirstGov Certification on their web sites providing they comply with the FirstGov� brand conditions. The following is the draft set of FirstGov� brand conditions:

INTEGRITY: FGCP's must use the government information "as is", protecting the integrity and authenticity of the source information.

FREE ACCESS: FGCP's must strive to provide uninterrupted, free access to the public for government web pages.

PRIVACY PROTECTION: FGCP's must not track individual visitor's movements to or through the government information.

NO ADVERTISING: FGCP's must not include any active banner advertising on the screens where a FirstGov page is displayed. Only institutional ads are permitted, such as a static logo with or without a description such as "Supported in part by XYZ Corporation."

POSITIONING: Wherever the FirstGov government information is placed on the certified organization's website, the information on the site must not be positioned or otherwise associated on the screen with other content that is pornographic or sexually-explicit, child-threatening, or contrary to U.S. Government laws, such as civil rights, gender discrimination, age discrimination, and privacy.

ATTRIBUTION: FGCP's must clearly and conspicuously attribute the information to the U.S. Government.

ACCESSIBILITY COMPLIANT: The section of the web site containing FirstGov information must comply with all requirements of the federal Rehabilitation Act (Section 508), which ensures effective access to federal information on the Internet by persons with disabilities.