THE CLINTON-GORE ADMINISTRATION: LEADERSHIP FOR THE NEW MILLENNIUM -- A
RECORD OF DIGITAL PROGRESS AND PROSPERITY
January 16, 2001
Chief of Staff John Podesta released today a report outlining the
Clinton-Gore Administration?s record of digital progress and prosperity and
preparing the United States for the Information Age of the 21st century.
Over the last eight years, the Administration has harnessed the power of
the Internet to expand access to education, training, medical and health
information; empower our citizens and reinvent government; and spur growth,
raise productivity, limit inflation and create jobs.
The Third Annual Report of the U.S. Government Working Group on Electronic
Commerce, ?Leadership for the New Millennium: Delivering on Digital
Progress and Prosperity,? details the Administration?s accomplishments in
promoting electronic commerce, using the Internet to address our most
urgent social challenges, and establishing a strategy and vision for the
A LEGACY OF DIGITAL ACHIEVEMENT
Since 1993, the Clinton-Gore Administration has helped guide and accelerate
one of the most fundamental transformations in our country?s history.
Information and communication technologies have altered the way we play,
work and do business.
? The number of unique Internet addresses has ballooned from 1.3 million
in 1993 to more than 93 million today and the number of Internet users has
increased by roughly 423 million.
? At every income level, but especially at middle income levels,
Americans are connecting at far higher rates from their homes than even two
years ago. Today, more than two-thirds of all households earning more than
$50,000 have Internet connections.
? The number of personal computers installed in classrooms tripled from
1992 to 1999, with the number of educational users of the Internet
projected to exceed 110 million by the year 2003.
? The Clinton-Gore Administration has vastly expanded access to higher
quality medical information online. A recent survey found that about half
of Americans online who use the Internet to search for medical information
believe the Internet has improved they way they take care of themselves.
? When the Clinton-Gore Administration began, there was no appreciable
business activity online. While estimates vary, some suggest that
business-to-consumer e-commerce could total $61 billion in 2000, and
business-to-business e-commerce could total about $184 billion.
? The expanded use of information technologies has produced profound
changes in the overall economy. Despite a modest 8.3 percent share of the
economy, IT industries have contributed 30 percent of U.S. economic growth
since 1995 and accounted for half or more of the recent acceleration in
U.S. productivity growth while generating hundreds of thousands of new
CREATING DIGITAL EQUALITY
The Clinton-Gore Administration has helped widen the circle of digital
opportunity. Among other steps, the Administration has:
? Created the e-rate program, which is benefiting more than 90 percent
of America?s public schools and providing Internet access for 30 million
children in more than one million classrooms and 47,000 schools and
? Proposed tripling funding for Community Technology Centers in its FY
2001 budget to $100 million to create up to 1,000 new centers. These
centers will help to close the digital divide by providing computers and
Information Age tools to children and adults unable to afford them at home.
? Helped disabled persons get access to the Internet by supporting the
World Wide Web Consortium?s Web Accessibility Initiative; creating an
interagency task force to explore enhancing Medicare and Medicaid to help
pay for assistive technologies; creating state-based loan programs for the
purchase of assistive technology; and awarding $9 million to AmeriCorps to
put 1,200 volunteers into schools and communities to teach students with
disabilities and others Internet skills.
BUILDING AN E-SOCIETY
The Administration has helped deliver on the potential of the Internet to
improve our quality of life. Among other steps, the Administration has:
? Moved rapidly to deploy state-of-the-art technology to bring primary
care and specialty medicine to remote communities. Currently, there are
almost 40 telemedicine programs and partnerships within the Indian Health
Service alone that are delivering care to isolated communities.
? Put online, accurate, up-to-date, quality health care information from
the world's largest medical library, the National Library of Medicine at
the National Institutes of Health. The MedlinePlus service provides access
to extensive information about specific diseases and conditions, and has
links to consumer health information, dictionaries, lists of hospitals and
physicians, health information in Spanish and other languages, and clinical
? Awarded $18.7 million to link hospitals, schools, doctors, educators,
patients and students in rural America with medical research institutions,
universities, libraries, doctors, educators, and professors; and deployed
Mobil Internet Vans to provide IT training in rural communities.
The Clinton-Gore Administration has used digital technologies to make
government more accountable, efficient and responsive to its citizens than
ever before. Among other steps, the Administration has:
? Launched the first-ever website that provides the public with easy,
one-stop access to all Federal government online information and services.
The customer-focused FirstGov permits users to search 27 million Federal
agency web pages instantaneously by subject or by keyword.
? Directed agencies, under the Government Paperwork Elimination Act
(GPEA), in May to plan for electronic filing by October 2003 and to use
electronic signatures for the full range of government activities and
services, considering risks, costs, and benefits.
? The Administration also has put hundreds of services online, including
those that allow citizens to pay their taxes, consolidate student loans,
receive estimates of social security benefits, compare Medicare health
plans, and reserve a campsite.
ENHANCING CONSUMER CONFIDENCE
The Clinton-Gore Administration has worked to protect consumers and other
users of the Internet. Among other steps, the Administration has:
? Enhanced consumer protection by successfully challenging industry to
establish codes of conduct, encouraging consumer education, and
aggressively fighting misleading and deceptive practices online.
? The number of commercial websites that post privacy policies has
jumped from 2 percent in 1998 to 62 percent this year.
? The FTC issued rules to implement the Children?s Online Privacy
Protection Act in April 2000. The Administration actively supported
enactment of this Act, which requires sites aimed at children to get
verifiable parental consent before they gather and use personal information
received from children under 13.
? The United States and the European Commission completed the safe
harbor privacy accord, which helps to ensure that trans-Atlantic data flows
will not be interrupted. This landmark accord is enhancing privacy
protection for U.S. consumers and assuring effective privacy protection for
European citizens whose data is transferred to the United States
CREATING A GLOBAL SEAMLESS MARKETPLACE
The Clinton-Gore Administration has worked to create a seamless global
marketplace that will allow e-commerce and the Internet to reach their full
? President Clinton signed into law the Electronic Signatures in Global
and National Commerce Act (E-SIGN) on June 30, 2000. E-SIGN promotes
electronic commerce by ensuring explicitly the legal validity of electronic
records, signatures, and transactions.
? This year the Administration continued to build on the successful May
1998 WTO electronic commerce declaration to formally extend the existing
moratorium on customs duties on electronic transmissions and continue the
WTO work program regarding the application of all trade disciplines to
? The Administration has encouraged worldwide support for the WIPO
Copyright Treaty and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty through
trade negotiations, speeches, and participation in conferences. As of
November 2000, 21 and 19 countries respectively, had ratified the two
treaties, representing all geographical regions of the world.
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