The occupant of the physical White House has changed — and of the digital one. Here’s a look at how whitehouse.gov has been revamped since the Biden administration took over.
Pronouns: The contact form on the website has sections for a person’s first and last name, email address, phone number and an optional category to include pronouns. Options include “she/her,” “he/him,” “they/them,” “other” and “prefer not to share.”
Climate: The second item on the site’s Priorities page, after COVID-19, is climate. “President Biden will take swift action to tackle the climate emergency,” the site says. “The Biden administration will ensure we meet the demands of science, while empowering American workers and businesses to lead a clean energy revolution.”
President Joe Biden is bringing with him a large climate team and has installed climate policy experts in the State, Treasury and Transportation departments.
The Trump administration in 2017 removed the site’s translation before promising that it would be back soon, but the Spanish-language version was unavailable a year later, The Associated Press reported.
An early set of coronavirus guidelines was translated into Spanish on the White House website in March — three days after the English version and only after pressure from Latino groups, NBC News reported.
The 1776 Commission: Biden’s digital takeover also led to the removal of a webpage for a report from President Donald Trump’s 1776 Commission, which historians said distorted the history of slavery in the United States, was misleading and was hastily produced. The page that had hosted a PDF of the report now reads “Not Found” but was cataloged by the National Archives. Biden had said he would cancel the commission.
A call for coders: Hidden in the new site’s technical back end is a message for the tech savvy: “If you’re reading this, we need your help building back better,” a line in the site’s source code reads, as noted by Reuters reporter Raphael Satter. The message includes a link to apply to the U.S. Digital Service, a group of technologists that works to modernize government services.
Accessibility: Whitehouse.gov now includes a variety of accessibility components, such as high-contrast and large text modes, according to Matt Hodges, an engineering director on the Biden team. An accessibility statement on the site reads, “This commitment to accessibility for all begins with this site and our efforts to ensure all functionality and all content is accessible to all Americans.”
This article originally appeared in The New York Times.
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