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Grassroots vs Grassrootsy: How to Parse Technology's Role in Politics

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, July 18 2011

For a whole bunch of reasons, we should be on guard against claims that money given online, as well as tallies of small donations versus large donors, or other newer metrics of public participation like Twitter retweets ... Read More

A Tweet Experiment for All Involved: My First Hand Account of the White House Twitter Town Hall & Tweetup

BY Becky Kazansky | Thursday, July 7 2011

President Barack Obama and Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey during a Twitter-hosted, town hall-style event Wednesday. Photo: Becky Kazansky / techPresident Yesterday I was at the White House to participate in the first ... Read More

Celebrities, Unions, Members of Congress All #AskObama

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, July 6 2011

Representatives John Boehner, who is the House speaker, Darrell Issa, Patrick McHenry, Bill Johnson, Adam Kinzinger and others in the House and Senate are using the #askObama hashtag to pepper President Barack Obama with ... Read More

How to Make Obama #AnswertheQuestion at the White House Twitter @Townhall

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, July 5 2011

Here's what to watch for during the "First Ever Twitter @Townhall at the White House," whose theme is supposed to be jobs and the economy: Will Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey manage to ask Obama more than 8 questions over the ... Read More

Meet Your Obama Town Hall Tweet 'Curators'

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, July 5 2011

In a blog post on the official Twitter blog, the company explained that questions during the live town hall-style event it's hosting with President Barack Obama will be selected algorithmically and by a team of curators ... Read More

On Twitter and the White House

BY Nick Judd | Friday, July 1 2011

Writing for the Atlantic, techPresident escapee former associate editor Nancy Scola elegantly raises a hard-to-navigate question — What should people think of the head of a growing American corporation hosting a ... Read More

Former Dean Webmaster Mele: Not Too Late For National Dem to Primary Obama

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, July 1 2011

This past Wednesday afternoon, during a panel discussion on social media and the 2012 elections at The Century Foundation in New York City, Nicco Mele, a lecturer at Harvard University who was Howard Dean's webmaster and ... Read More

In Latest Foray Online, President Obama Will Take Questions From Twitter [UPDATED]

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, June 30 2011

Source: askobama.twitter.com On July 6, the President of the United States will answer questions about jobs and the economy selected from those submitted via a Twitter hashtag, the White House announced on Twitter. On a ... Read More

White Boards and Goolsbee vs. Obama and Babies

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, June 29 2011

The White House, too, sweats pageviews, Macon Phillips revealed yesterday. At a Brookings event event on Tuesday, Phillips, the White House new media director, fielded a question about engaging more than 10 percent of ... Read More

Sometimes, Google AdWords Finds the Right Audience. Sometimes, It Doesn't.

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, June 23 2011

Below is the GMail inbox of Todd Herman, the former chief digital strategist of the Republican National Committee. If you can't see too well, there's an Obama for America ad being served against his copy of that ... Read More

News Briefs

RSS Feed 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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friday >

In Google Hangout, NYC Mayor de Blasio Talks Tech and Outer Borough Potential

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio followed the lead of President Obama and New York City Council member Ben Kallos Friday by participating in a Google Hangout to help mark his first 100 days in office, in which the conversation focused on expanding access to technology opportunities through education and ensuring that the needs of the so-called "outer boroughs" aren't overlooked. GO

thursday >

In Pakistan, A Hypocritical Gov't Ignores Calls To End YouTube Ban

YouTube has been blocked in Pakistan by executive order since September 2012, after the “blasphemous” video Innocence of Muslims started riots in the Middle East. Since then, civil society organizations and Internet rights advocacy groups like Bolo Bhi and Bytes for All have been working to lift the ban. Last August the return of YouTube seemed imminent—the then-new IT Minister Anusha Rehman spoke optimistically and her party, which had won the majority a few months before, was said to be “seriously contemplating” ending the ban. And yet since then, Rehman and her party, the conservative Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N), have done everything in their power to maintain the status quo.

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The #NotABugSplat Campaign Aims to Give Drone Operators Pause Before They Strike

In the #NotABugSplat campaign that launched this week, a group of American, French and Pakistani artists sought to raise awareness of the effects of drone strikes by placing a field-sized image of a young girl, orphaned when a drone strike killed her family, in a heavily targeted region of Pakistan’s Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Province. Its giant size is visible to those who operate drone strikes as well as in satellite imagery. GO

Boston and Cambridge Move Towards More Open Data

The Boston City Council is now considering an ordinance which would require Boston city agencies and departments to make government data available online using open standards. Boston City Councilor At Large Michelle Wu, who introduced the legislation Wednesday, officially announced her proposal Monday, the same day Boston Mayor Martin Walsh issued an executive order establishing an open data policy under which all city departments are directed to publish appropriate data sets under established accessibility, API and format standards. GO

YouTube Still Blocked In Turkey, Even After Courts Rule It Violates Human Rights, Infringes on Free Speech

Reuters reports that even after a Turkish court ruled to lift the ban on YouTube, Turkey's telecommunications companies continue to block the video sharing site.

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wednesday >

Everything You Need to Know About Social Media and India's General Election

The biggest democratic election in the world to date is taking place in India from April 7 to May 14, and, for the first time in India, the results might hinge on who runs a better social media campaign. The Mumbai research firm Iris Knowledge Foundation has said that Facebook will “wield a tremendous influence” but Indian politicians are not limiting their attentions to India's most popular social media platform. In addition to virtual campaigning are initiatives to inform, educate and encourage Indians to participate in their democracy.

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