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First POST: Hashing it Out

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, May 27 2014

How the #YesAllWomen hashtag erupted in response to the Santa Barbara killings; the Internet's broken business model; why tech companies are (mostly) losing in Congress; and much, much more. Read More

First POST: Slippery Slopes

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, April 1 2014

Why the CIA is fighting so hard to keep that Senate report on torture secret; OkCupid tells visitors using Firefox to use a different browser; why decentralized mesh networks should matter to dissident political movements; and much, much more. Read More

Coworker.org Updates Digital Labor Organizing

BY Sam Roudman | Tuesday, November 26 2013

Coworker.org is improving workplace organizing online

With labor union membership numbers on the decline, organizers are developing innovative new tools to help workers network and rally on behalf of better pay and working conditions. Read More

How "Big Data" And Behavioral Science Powered Progressive Groups in 2012

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Saturday, November 10 2012

An October canvas in Richmond, ViA. Photo: Flickr/AFL-CIO

Exclusively for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers: The Obama campaign wasn't the only center of data-driven, technology-enabled field work on the left. Groups like MoveOn and the AFL-CIO's super PAC, Worker's Voice, also used the Internet to leverage their understanding of behavioral psychology and user-generated content into a massively scaled persuasion and get-out-the-vote effort. Read More

With "RePurpose," AFL-CIO Invites Supporters to Join in Playing Politics

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Tuesday, September 18 2012

Political organizing may soon start looking like a frequent flyer redemption program.

Workers' Voice, the Super PAC of the AFL-CIO, pulled the wraps off of its high-tech organizing model on Tuesday, which it has named rePurpose. The idea is to use points to better reward campaign volunteers — but rather than those points earning t-shirts or buttons, organizers say, they go towards a stake in how the PAC actually spends its resources.

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Workers' Voice Asks the Crowd for Campaigns to Care About

BY Miranda Neubauer | Monday, June 18 2012

Workers' Voice, the super PAC of the AFL-CIO, is close to finishing its "platform to encourage volunteer action," and expects to launch it next month, Eddie Vale, communications director for Workers' Voice, writes in an e-mail. Using that platform, supporters will be earn the right to direct some of the organization's spending by participating in Workers' Voice field and online program and completing certain actions. To complement that effort, similar to a survey that MoveOn recently sent to its supporters, it has sent a message to its supporters asking them which election races are important to them. Read More

Grassroots Politics Makes Wisconsin's Recall Elections Local, and Personal

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Friday, May 18 2012

Photo: Overpass Light Brigade

It's true that both Scott Walker and his opponent, Democrat Tom Barrett, will be a ubiquitous presence not just in emails sent around the country but also on television ads and radio spots inside Wisconsin. As their June 5 recall election gets closer, though, operatives supporting both Walker and Barrett say this election will be a far more visceral experience for voters: Campaigns over the past few years have become better and better at leaning on supporters to fire up their friends on Facebook and use the Internet to organize themselves to go door to door. The recall will be another opportunity to see how much traditional campaigns at all levels have come to rely on the grassroots — and what that means for voters caught in the crossfire of a highly charged election fueled by millions in political spending. Read More

AFL-CIO Hopes To Reassert Unions' Relevance With New Web Site Launch

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Thursday, March 1 2012

America's largest federation of unions pulled the wraps off of a year-long effort to revamp its online presence Thursday in an effort to broaden the movement's appeal. Read More

The Technology Firsts in Ohio's Issue 2 Campaign

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, November 9 2011

Yesterday's Ohio elections culminated an unprecedented online-driven issue campaign in which both sides honed online tools and tactics that in some cases they were using for the first time. The labor-backed We Are Ohio ... Read More

In a Year of Local Labor Battles Nationwide, A Major Union Doubles Down Online

BY Nick Judd | Friday, July 15 2011

Union protesters rally against Ohio Senate Bill 5 in March. Union staffers nationwide say their members have moved increasingly online throughout this year's fights over state budgets and collective bargaining rights. ... Read More

News Briefs

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In China, Local Governments Play Whac-a-Mole With Taxi Apps

It seems these days that car-hailing apps exist only to give cities grief. In New York, car sharing start-ups like Lyft ignore labor, safety insurance laws and in China, the situation is no different except in one regard: taxi hailing apps in China are proliferating at a faster rate than in the U.S. In China, however, the taxi system is very much in its infancy and local Chinese governments are struggling to control the proliferation of new apps that flout the law. GO

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The Uncertain Future of India's Plan to Biometrically Identify Everyone

Since its launch in 2010, people in India have raised a number of questions and concerns about the Aadhaar card —formally known as Unique Identification (UID)— citing its effects on privacy rights, potential security flaws, and failures in functionality. GO

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