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First POST: Collections

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, January 13 2014

The collection of phone meta-data would not have stopped any terrorist attacks since 9-11, says a New America Foundation study; Christie's aides are hardly the only political hacks using personal email to avoid public records laws; Matthew Burton explains how the CFPB's experience can help other govies make better web products; and much, much more. Read More

After the London Riots, a Tech-Savvy Study to Understand the Unrest

BY Miranda Neubauer | Monday, December 5 2011

A study recently conducted by the Guardian and the London School of Economics takes an American post-riot practice — collaboration between a newspaper and a more academic institution to pick apart the reasons for ... Read More

On The British Government's Study of Banning Criminal Suspects From Social Media

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, August 11 2011

The British government believes it may be able to prevent the kind of destruction that happened to the Croydon building pictured above during recent riots by banning suspected criminals from social media. Photo: Peter G. ... Read More

Tottenham Rioters, BlackBerry Messaging, and the Rise of the 'Flash Mob' As Something Scary

BY Nick Judd | Monday, August 8 2011

In the aftermath of this weekend's riots in London, in which 170 people have been reportedly arrested, some folks are focusing on the role instantaneous communication played in the making of a scene of mayhem. From The ... Read More

In U.S., Smartphones Are Helping Minorities Leapfrog Over the Digital Divide

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, July 11 2011

There's more evidence of smartphone usage in the United States enabling a kind of "leapfrog effect" over the digital divide. According to a new report by the Pew Research Center's Internet & American LIfe Project, 44 ... Read More

An iPad or 50 Amid a Sea of BlackBerrys

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, May 31 2011

iPads, iPhones, and other non-Blackberry personal tech devices are gaining traction in official Washington, reports the Washington Post's Michael S. Rosenwald -- though your call on whether the fact that 50 iPads or ... Read More

Obama and His iPad: I Do Not Think "Tether" Means What You Think It Means

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, March 30 2011

Here's a funny little mix-up that happened when normal human speech got translated to technologist talk. The tech press is running with a report that not only did President Barack Obama talk at a Univision townhall ... Read More

The Mideast BlackBerry Crackdown

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, August 2 2010

The concept of one world, one Internet takes another hit with the news that the United Arab Emirates and Saudia Arabia will block BlackBerry services because they can't monitor the traffic: Read More

Photo Essay: "My thumbs are too clumsy to type in things on the phone," says President Obama

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, November 16 2009

Yesterday, at a townhall meeting with Chinese students in Shaghai, President Obama had much praise for the Internet and its role in democracy, politics and society. Unfortunately, he prefaced his remarks with this ... Read More

News Briefs

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NYC Open Data Advocates Focus on Quality And Value Over Quantity

The New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications plans to publish more than double the amount of datasets this year than it published to the portal last year, new Commissioner Anne Roest wrote last week in an annual report mandated by the city's open data law, with 135 datasets scheduled to be released this year, and almost 100 more to come in 2015. But as preparations are underway for City Council open data oversight hearings in the fall, what matters more to advocates than the absolute number of the datasets is their quality. GO

Civic Tech and Engagement: Announcing a New Series on What Makes it "Thick"

Announcing a new series of feature articles that we will be publishing over the next several months, thanks to the support of the Rita Allen Foundation. Our focus is on digitally-enabled civic engagement, and in particular, how and under what conditions "thick" digital civic engagement occurs. What we're after is answers to this question: When does a tech tool or platform enable actual people to make ongoing and significant contributions to each other, to a place or cause, at a scale that produces demonstrable change? GO

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