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Policymakers Divided On NSA Spying Revelations As Popular Outcry Continues

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Monday, June 10 2013

A rare bipartisan coalition of advocacy groups and political leaders has emerged to decry National Security Agency mass surveillance activities exposed last week by The Guardian and The Washington Post, but as of Monday, policymakers in Washington D.C. appeared to be deeply divided on exactly what action to take in light of the revelations. Read More

Kimberly Bryant Wants Black Girls Code To Be 'Girl Scouts of Technology'

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Thursday, June 6 2013

Kimberly Bryant. Photo: Esty Stein / Personal Democracy Media

Computer-related jobs are being created at such a rapid clip in the United States that its workforce can't keep up, so one woman is using that opportunity to create change in a community that she says is suffering from a disparity in education and income. Read More

San Francisco District Attorney Wants to Turn Prosecution From "Art" to Data "Science"

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Tuesday, June 4 2013

San Francisco's District Attorney George Gascón wants to use statistical analysis to be smart on crime.

If justice is blind, it won't stay that way in San Francisco for long. Right now, all city district attorney George Gascón knows about the defendants his office prosecutes is that each of his prosecutors handles, on average, 185 felony cases and 700 misdemeanor cases per year. He wants to know far more, and says his office is now building a database to profile defendants by attributes such as age, ethnicity, gender, education, work history, mental health and substance abuse issues. The system will also track "stabilizing forces" in their lives, such as whether they have housing. This information will help prosecutors decide how to handle their cases, he says. "We're trying to move this process away from being an art to being a science," Gascón said in an interview. Read More

High Tech Volunteering Blooms With National Day of Civic Hacking

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Friday, May 31 2013

It's almost upon us: The National Day of Civic Hacking -- well the national weekend of civic hacking really. It's a series of co-ordinated events across the country that asks civilians to get together to create useful ... Read More

Barry Diller and Steve Chen Join FWD.us, Group Places Ad On Rush Limbaugh Show

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Friday, May 31 2013

There's been a lot of skepticism about the Silicon Valley advocacy group FWD.us, and its lobbying methodologies, but that hasn't put off media mogul Barry Diller and YouTube Co-Founder Steve Chen. The group's Founder and ... Read More

How A Trio Of Feminists Persuaded Facebook To Unfriend Rape "Humor" Groups

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Thursday, May 30 2013

Beyond a joke: Facebook recently admitted that its flagging system is flawed

A global campaign to alert advertisers moved Facebook to take action against groups flagged as promoters of "gender-based hate" after several years of repeated attempts to persuade the company to change the way it evaluates requests for take-downs. Read More

OpenOakland Invites Citizens To Create An 'Ask Jeeves' for City Services

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Tuesday, May 28 2013

A group of civic hackers in Oakland is calling on the city's residents to come help it launch a variation of an "Ask Jeeves," kind of search engine for city services this Saturday as part of the National Day of Civic ... Read More

Organizing for Action Says It Can’t Move Climate Change Legislation In Congress

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Friday, May 24 2013

Beleaguered on one side by pressure to take a stand on the controversial Keystone XL pipeline and hoping, on the other, to hang on to the activist energy of the president's progressive base, Organizing for Action leadership and partners aren't holding out much hope for the power of grassroots organizing to motivate action in Congress. Read More

Anthony Weiner Launches NYC Mayoral Campaign Online With An Image of Pittsburgh

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Thursday, May 23 2013

Former Congressman Anthony Weiner waxed lyrical about New York City in a YouTube video as he launched his bid to be the city's next mayor on Wednesday, but he did it against a backdrop that turned out to be the skyline ... Read More

Honda Campaign Rolls Out Endorsements From Asian American Stars

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Tuesday, May 21 2013

Rep. Mike Honda (D-Calif.) rolled out several additional endorsements from Asian American leaders and celebrities Tuesday, with one of them vouching for his high-tech bona fides. Read More

News Briefs

RSS Feed today >

First POST: Scary Monsters

Facebook opens up about its experiments on tweaking voting behavior; breaking news in the FCC net neutrality battle; getting hard data on civic tech's impact on political efficacy; and much, much more. GO

thursday >

First POST: System-Gaming

Why techies interested in political reform are facing challenges; the latest data on Democratic voter contacts in 2014; Hungary's anti-Internet tax demonstrations are getting huge; and much, much more. GO

wednesday >

First POST: Gimme Shelter

The link between intimate partner violence and surveillance tech; the operational security set-up that connected Laura Poitras, Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden; how Senate Dems are counting on tech to hold their majority; and much, much more. GO

tuesday >

First POST: Tribes

Edward Snowden on the Internet's impact on political polarization; trying to discern Hillary Clinton's position on NSA reform; why Microsoft is bullish on civic tech; and much, much more GO

monday >

First POST: Inventions

How voter data-sharing among GOP heavyweights is still lagging; why Facebook's News Feed scares news publishers; Google's ties to the State Department; and much, much more. GO

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