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Speaker Pelosi Applauds Committee on House Administration Action on Web Rules

October 2, 2008

Speaker Pelosi released the following statement on the Committee on House Administration's adoption of new web regulations that will permit posting of official content outside the domain:

The rule revisions adopted by the Committee on House Administration today are a significant step forward toward bringing House rules into the multimedia age and allowing for Members to effectively communicate with their constituents online.

I commend Chairman Brady for his leadership and for the committee's bipartisan efforts to modernize the antiquated franking regulations to address the realities of communications in the internet age. I also thank citizen initiatives such as the Open House Project for their thoughtful recommendations and continued efforts to encourage Members to engage their constituents through internet technologies.

In the 110th Congress, the House has made significant progress to increase transparency through technology — from webcasting more committee hearings to posting lobbying disclosure forms online. Openness, transparency, and accountability are the hallmarks of the New Direction Congress. We will continue our efforts to be a web 2.0 House in the 111th Congress.

From Chairman Brady:

October 2, 2008 (Washington, DC): House Administration Chairman Robert A. Brady announced that the Committee has approved revisions to rules governing the use of web video on Member websites. The rule revisions largely parallel changes introduced by the Senate and create an environment in which Member offices have expanded options for posting video content on their official websites.

“I am happy to report that the Committee has approved revisions to the rules governing the use of web video on Member websites. The new rules reflect a greater recognition of the need to provide flexible solutions to the opportunities and challenges presented by new and emerging technologies. I applaud Speaker Pelosi for being a leader in implementing these new technologies and for establishing that as a priority.”

The new rules allow Members to place web content on sites outside of the domain, ending a longstanding restriction that had grown more difficult to comply with as new communications and outreach technologies emerged.

“Over the past several years, we have witnessed an incredible pace of technological innovation and development,” said Brady. “Today, we have taken an important step in ensuring that we can utilize these and future innovations to the benefit of our constituents.”

The new web video rule language:

In addition to their official ( Web site, a Member may maintain another Web site(s), channel(s) or otherwise post material on third-party Web sites.

The official content of any material posted by the Member on any Web site must be in compliance with Federal law and House Rules and Regulations applicable to official communications and germane to the conduct of the Member’s official and representational duties.

When a link to a Web site outside the Member’s official cite is imbedded on the Member’s official site, the Member’s site must include an exit notice advising the visitor when they are leaving the House. This exit notice must also include a disclaimer that neither the Member nor the House is responsible for the content of the linked site(s).

Chairman is authorized to make technical and conforming changes to facilitate inclusion into the Committees and Member handbooks.