The Chief Digital Officer

New York City recently appointed Rachel Sterne as their Chief Digital Officer (CDO), tasked with helping the City improve how it communicates with residents using modern communication mediums and social media

An interesting appointment for sure, traditionally the social media banner has been trumpeted by the CMO and the marketing department, sometimes well, and sometimes exceedingly poorly as anybody who has been on Twitter for longer than a few years can attest to.  But does the appointment signify a shift in thinking about the way we approach and utilize social media? traditionally they have been seen as lucrative avenues for marketing, utilizing crowdsourcing and word of mouth to promote from within the target audiences trusted influencers.  More recently a public relations and customer service avenue has been tackled with the likes of Twitter and Facebook providing users an avenue to comment and receive feedback from the organizations they do business with, but with the social setting of such scrutiny the willingness of corporations to go down this path has been slow and riddled with troubles if not done properly with the right people at the helm.

Utilizing social media for effective communication back to the masses is one of the next hurdles for social media to tackle, finally turning the technology into a truly duplexed conversation and not just a broadcast platform for the masses

Rachels appointment has raised some concerns, around her credentials, the position itself and what exactly it hopes to achieve, but I for one am interested to see the outcome of her tenure and what achievements and changes lie ahead for New York City, and their new CDO