Rogue archivist Carl Malamud sez,
One of the big issues we face in trying to make legal documents available to citizens at no charge is a feeling in Washington that "ordinary" people just aren't smart enough to read things like public safety codes. They think charging $850 for a 30-page elevator safety spec or $500 for a water hygiene document is OK because the audience is highly limited.
To counter the "dumb American" theory we hear in Washington, we spent some time out in the field producing a video featuring our local elected officials, the fire marshal, the building inspector, automotive experts, and then went to Code for America to talk to the fellows, Jennifer Pahlka, and Tim O'Reilly, and to MAKE headquarters to talk to Dale Dougherty. The result is a 20-minute video called "Show Me the Manual." I hope you enjoy it!
I write books. My latest is a YA science fiction novel called Homeland (it's the sequel to Little Brother). More books: Rapture of the Nerds (a novel, with Charlie Stross); With a Little Help (short stories); and The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow (novella and nonfic). I speak all over the place and I tweet and tumble, too.