Government hunts for Webmaster General

The UK government has begun a search to find what will be known as a Webmaster General – a role created to cement plans for government services to be online by 2005.

The successful applicant for the £60,000-a-year post will be based at the Cabinet Office, and official duties will be to “stimulate and police the government’s use of the web and new media to provide services and information to the public”.

However, the recruitment has fuelled fears that the government is creating an increasingly tangled web of e-ministers.

Ian McCartney, minister of state at the Cabinet Office and an e-government minister, was appointed to be responsible for putting the government online.

Patricia Hewitt, small business minister, looks after e-commerce and is an e-minister, while civil servant Alex Allan, who reports directly to the Prime Minister and Hewitt, was appointed e-envoy last year.

The Webmaster will report to Allan and manage the content of the government’s UKonline portal, a single electronic gateway into public services.

He or she will also advise ministers and public sector organisations on the use of web technologies.

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