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Facebook's a Cloudy Crystal Ball

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, November 3 2010

So, as the dust settles, a question emerges: how good a predictor of electoral success is a candidate's tally of Facebook admirers? A pretty good one, suggests Facebook's DC-based political operation in a hint at some ... Read More

Photo of the Day

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, November 3 2010

Facebook as Virtual Polling Place

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, November 2 2010

As midnight strikes on the east coast, one final check-in on Facebook's "I Vote" button reveals that the tally has topped 11.7 million. Read More

More Facebook Users Have Already "I Voted" Today Than in '08

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, November 2 2010

As of a few moments ago, more than 6.2 million people had clicked on Facebook's "I Voted" button for election day 2010. Read More

A Rainbow of Poll Closing Times

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, November 2 2010

Image credit: DavidNYC/The Swing State Project Read More

WaPo Buys the #Election

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, November 2 2010

First off, did you know that people can buy trending topics on Twitter? Right, yes, me too. Read More

DNC Drops Millions on Online Mobilization Ads

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, November 1 2010

The Democratic National Committee says that it's put a healthy $2.5 million on online ads in the homestretch, reports Ben Smith: A DNC spokeswoman, Lynda Tran, says the committee has launched a giant, last-minute online ... Read More

Transparency and Public Shaming: Pakistan Tackles Tax Evasion

In Pakistan, where only one in 200 citizens files their income tax return, authorities published a directory of taxpayers' details for the first time. Officials explained the decision as an attempt to shame defaulters into paying up.

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wednesday >

Facebook Seeks Approval as Financial Service in Ireland. Is the Developing World Next?

On April 13 the Financial Times reported that Facebook is only weeks away from being approved as a financial service in Ireland. Is this foray into e-money motivated by Facebook's desire to conquer the developing world before other corporate Internet giants do? Maybe.

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The Rise and Fall of Iran's “Blogestan”

The robust community of Iranian bloggers—sometimes nicknamed “Blogestan”—has shrunk since its heyday between 2002 – 2010. “Whither Blogestan,” a recent report from the University of Pennsylvania's Iran Media Program sought to find out how and why. The researchers performed a web crawling analysis of Blogestan, survey 165 Persian blog users, and conducted 20 interviews with influential bloggers in the Persian community. They found multiple causes of the decline in blogging, including increased social media use and interference from authorities.

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tuesday >

Weekly Readings: What the Govt Wants to Know

A roundup of interesting reads and stories from around the web. GO

Russia to Treat Bloggers Like Mass Media Because "the F*cking Journalists Won't Stop Writing"

The worldwide debate over who is and who isn't a journalist has raged since digital media made it much easier for citizen journalists and other “amateurs” to compete with the big guys. In the United States, journalists are entitled to certain protections under the law, such as the right to confidential sources. As such, many argue that blogging should qualify as journalism because independent writers deserve the same legal protections as corporate employees. In Russia, however, earning a place equal to mass media means additional regulations and obligations, which some say will lead to the repression of free speech.

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Politics for People: Demanding Transparent and Ethical Lobbying in the EU

Today the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) launched a campaign called Politics for People that asks candidates for the European Parliament to pledge to stand up to secretive industry lobbyists and to advocate for transparency. The Politics for People website connects voters with information about their MEP candidates and encourages them to reach out on Facebook, Twitter or by email to ask them to sign the pledge.

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monday >

Security Agencies Given Full Access to Telecom Data Even Though "All Lebanese Can Not Be Suspects"

In late March, Lebanese government ministers granted security agencies unrestricted access to telecommunications data in spite of some ministers objections that it violates privacy rights. Global Voices reports that the policy violates Lebanon's existing surveillance and privacy law, Law 140, but has gotten little coverage from the country's mainstream media.

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