Government IT lobbyists play key role in blocking federal technology innovation

Photo: Architect of the Capitol
Photo: Architect of the Capitol

Government Technology’s Jason Shueh finally brings to light the core impetus surrounding backlash against 18F efforts to fix federal government technology development and procurement practices.

From Shueh’s reporting, “IT Showdown: Tech Giants Face Off Against 18F“:

At a House subcommittee hearing on June 10, lobbyists from the IT Alliance for Public Sector (ITAPS) and the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) alleged that 18F is hindering profits by acting as both a procurement policymaker and as a tech competitor inside the General Services Administration (GSA). The two groups assert a conflict of interest, and in testimony, have submitted a list of grievances and recommendations intended to curtail 18F’s authority.

Rightfully so, many are frustrated with the impact vendor lobbying efforts could have on the future of a critical program actually making a difference in changing federal technology operations. Of note are the Hacker News comments discussing this story.

Since the failure of a proper launch for HealthCare.gov, negative sentiments against big government IT vendors have become more prominent. It’s interesting to see this group starting to be associated with other old line industries that, rather than changing with the times, have resorted to lobbying against a small program like 18F to remain relevant.

Full story: IT Showdown: Tech Giants Face Off Against 18F

About Luke Fretwell

Luke Fretwell is the founder of GovFresh. He is also co-founder and CEO of ProudCity. Connect with him on Twitter and LinkedIn or email at luke@govfresh.com.

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