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Your Country, Your Call – are there good ideas hidden in the hundreds of submissions made already?

Over three days last week, I wrote about this years ideas generating campaign, Your Country, Your Call. And yes, I have been somewhat critical of how the campaign is organised and how it promotes itself. The 3 posts are available here:

I haven’t been the only critic, but still and all, the campaign has taken hold, and at the time of writing this, there are over 1900 suggestions submitted to the website. Personally, I’ve reviewed most of the summary text of the submissions made. Unfortunately though, I don’t believe there is yet the “truly transformational” idea that the organisers are looking for.

However, despite some of the pure drivel that is in there, I do think that there are a number of ideas, or themes of ideas that if combined together, could provide what could make a difference to the country.

Any of you on Twitter may have been following the #YCYC hash-tag where loads of people are picking out some of the more outrageous suggestions submitted to the website – and there are some doozies.

It’s also becoming more obvious, particularly in recent days that some people are just having fun with the site and submitting what they know are ridiculous suggestions for the fun of it.

Fair enough – just like the gaming of BenDunne.com when he provided free advertising – if you’re going to open up a website to unmoderated submissions, you’re always likely to get that kind of activity. According to whomever is behind the Your Country, Your Call twitter account, they’ve only deleted 5 submissions in the first week because they contravened their terms and conditions – despite the fact that there’s a difference of approximately 250 between the latest submission ID and the actual number of submissions available on the website.

In fairness though, I guess it’s quite hard to try to weed out the plainly ridiculous suggestions as you’d be unlikely to tell if someone was being unfortunately genuine, or if someone was having a laugh.

What I’d love to see though, even from the many skeptics out there, is for everyone to review the existing suggestions submitted again to see if the bones of a single great comprehensive idea could be compiled from the many smaller and incomplete ones – build the “truly transformational” idea from the thinking (sometimes incomplete and off the wall) that’s been done already.

Personally, I have seen three distinct threads of ideas submitted that align to some ideas I’ve been mulling over myself recently. I’m currently drafting together the bones of those ideas, with the stuff I’ve been working on myself. While any individual ideas might not win the prize outright, it’s possible that a combination of multiple peoples thinking would have a better chance (assuming we’re not stepping on the toes of the incumbents).

It’d be great to see others do this kind of data mining within their own spheres of expertise, just in case there’s a bunch of smaller ideas worth bundling together into that “truly transformational” one.

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