Joseph Marks

Staff Correspondent Joseph Marks covers government technology issues, social media, Gov 2.0 and global Internet freedom for Nextgov. He previously reported on federal litigation and legal policy for Law360 and on local, state and regional issues for two Midwestern newspapers. He also interned for Congressional Quarterly’s Homeland Security section and the Associated Press’s Jerusalem Bureau. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s in international affairs from Georgetown.
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White House Pushes Weaker Version of Spending Transparency Bill

January 28, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The White House would like to roll back some transparency requirements in House-passed legislation that would standardize how the government records and publishes spending information, according to documents obtained by Federal News Radio. The proposed changes to the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act include removing a requirement that agencies publish...

Government Web Satisfaction Drops After Launch

January 28, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Public satisfaction with government websites fell across the board in the last quarter when the troubled launch of, the Obama administration’s online health insurance marketplace, put government website performance front and center, according to a report released on Tuesday. Satisfaction with government websites fell two points in the quarter...

A More Social State of the Union

January 27, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The White House digital team is adding a social layer on top of President Obama’s State of the Union address again this year. As it did last year, the administration will stream an enhanced version of the State of the Union address on its website and on Facebook and Google+...

Proposed Law Would Give U.S. Chief Technology Officer Oversight of Major IT Projects

January 27, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Two members of Congress are floating legislation that would give the U.S. government’s chief technology officer the power to review and in some cases take charge of major information technology projects throughout the government. The Reforming Federal Procurement of Information Technology, or RFP-IT, Act would put the power of legislation...

DEA Plans a Suite of Investigative Apps

January 27, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Drug Enforcement Administration plans to work with a top digital defense and intelligence contractor to develop mobile applications that it may use to assist in its investigations, contracting documents show. DEA posted a notice about the proposed contract with Blackbird Technologies for “a suite of mobile device applications” on...

HHS Bought More Cloud Storage in the Days Before Launched

January 27, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The agency in charge of bought an emergency cache of computing power from Verizon’s cloud division just days before the online insurance marketplace’s troubled launch on Oct. 1, 2013, contracting documents show. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services bought an additional $8.8 million in cloud computing power on...

Obamacare Enrollment Tops 3 Million

January 24, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow More than 3 million people have now enrolled in new health insurance plans offered through Obamacare, either using the federal site or state marketplaces, the Health and Human Services Department said on Friday. That’s still far short of the Obama administration’s goal of 7 million new enrollees by the...

Warren Buffett Uses Open Government Data

January 23, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The White House’s Deputy Chief Technology Officer Nick Sinai profiled a handful of small and large Web and mobile startups that were built off open government data during a presentation on Thursday hosted by the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. One of the most interesting parts of Sinai’s presentation at...

EPA Wants to Use Twitter to Track Stomach Flu

January 23, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Environmental Protection Agency plans to mine Twitter data to identify when and where Americans are suffering from stomach flu, solicitation documents show. The initiative follows efforts by other agencies, including the Food and Drug Administration, to mine Twitter and other social media for intelligence related to their programs. It...

The FDA Is Accepting Online Nominations for Its Mulitiple Advisory Panels

January 22, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Food and Drug Administration launched a new Web tool on Wednesday that allows people to submit nominations for the agency’s numerous advisory panels without resorting to email or paper mail. In addition to reducing the amount of paper in the nomination process, the new system will also allow the...

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