FedSpace running in alpha mode

The FedSpace social network for federal employees and contractors has launched and is registering participants while still in alpha mode.

FedSpace, the official social network for federal employees and contractors, is running as a pilot program with 180 users as it prepares for a broader launch, according to a General Services Administration executive.

“We are doing an alpha launch right now,” said Gwynne Kostin, co-director of GSA’s Center for New Media and Citizen Engagement, at the Adobe Government Assembly Nov. 3. “We are kicking the tires.”

FedSpace, which was announced in April, is a secure intranet and collaboration workspace for federal employees and contractors sponsored by the federal government. It will help people collaborate via Web 2.0 tools, such as shared workspaces, wikis and blogs. More tools are being added as development proceeds.


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“We are hoping and expecting that FedSpace will help with interagency community building and problem solving,” Kostin said. “It offers a suite of collaborative tools.”

Federal employees and other eligible people can register and log into the FedSpace site using their Defense Department Common Access Card, their Homeland Security Presidential Directive 12 identification, or their user ID and password for the Office of Management and Budget's MAX portal.

People can use FedSpace to integrate IT management data to help with collaboration in overseeing IT projects, according to an Oct. 19 white paper from the Center for American Progress think tank. Authorized contractors, program managers, technical staff, and end users should be able to upload program milestones and other OMB-required data to FedSpace, wrote Will Thomas and Pratap Chatterjee in the paper.

GSA officials say FedSpace was inspired by other federal intranets and social networks, including NASA’s Spacebook and the State Department’s Diplopedia.

It's also been compared to GovLoop, a social network launched in May 2008 by volunteer Steve Ressler, then a federal employee. Federal contractor GovDelivery acquired GovLoop in September 2009 and retained Ressler as president. The network currently has 35,000 government and private-sector members.

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