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WeGov

At the 2012 IGF in Baku, the Azeri Government's Disdain for Freedom Was on Full Display

BY Nighat Dad | Tuesday, November 20 2012

IGF session. (Credit: Internet Society/Flickr)

The 2012 Internet Governance Forum (IGF) was held in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan — a country that makes all the Top 10 lists of human rights violators, Internet censors and political freedom repressers. At this year's conference, their disdain for freedom of expression was all too apparent. Read More

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Egyptian Belly Dancer's Salacious Video Mocking Muslim Brotherhood Goes Viral

BY Mahmoud Salem | Monday, November 19 2012

Sama El Masry (publicity shot)

Last week Sama El Masry, a famous Egyptian belly dancer, uploaded a home-made video to YouTube; it shows her in a skin tight outfit, swinging her hips seductively to a song rife with anti-Muslim Brotherhood political innuendo. The sexy little number set the Egyptian social media and political worlds ablaze — but not only because it mocked the prudish Islamists with the double whammy of gyrating hips and lyrics that were a blatant political satire that pulled no punches. In a bizarre twist that could only happen in post-revolutionary Egypt, the dancer was also famous for claiming to be the ex-wife of a Salafi member of parliament. Read More

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Free Phone App Teaches Afghan Women to Read

BY Lisa Goldman | Thursday, November 15 2012

The Ministry of Education in Afghanistan is rolling out a free phone app that it hopes will raise the literacy level amongst women, reports Wired.co.uk. Currently, only 15 percent of Afghan women can read and write. Read More

Israel Announces Military Operation Against Gaza -- on Twitter (UPDATED)

BY Lisa Goldman | Wednesday, November 14 2012

In what is possibly a social media precedent, the Israeli army spokesperson's office (@idfspokesperson) today announced a military action against Gaza — on Twitter. Using a multi-pronged strategy, the army spokesperson's office launched a full social media assault via YouTube, Flickr, Facebook and Twitter, with the latter in English, Hebrew, Arabic, French and Spanish. No word yet on the tumblr blog, though. Read More

Priced at $20, the High Functioning Aakash 2 Tablet Could Change the World

BY Lisa Goldman | Tuesday, November 13 2012

Two weeks after we published a brief noting the Indian government's rollout of a project to distribute very cheap Android tablets to millions of students, Quartz Magazine has published a fascinating feature article about the background and significance of this new addition to tech hardware. Read More

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U.A.E. Passes New Law Prescribing Mandatory Jail Time for Online Dissidents

BY Lisa Goldman | Tuesday, November 13 2012

The United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) is cracking down on dissent with a new law that stipulates jail time for anyone who criticizes the government online, reports the Global Arab Network. Read More

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Montreal Hackathon Aims to Combat Government Corruption

BY Elisabeth Fraser | Monday, November 12 2012

Hackons la Corruption (credit: QuebecOuvert)

Canada's first anti-corruption hackathon was held this past weekend in Montreal, which has been rocked by nearly two years of corruption scandals involving construction kickbacks, organized crime and prominent politicians. Read More

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Armenia's Capital City Launches Interactive Municipal Website

BY Onnik Krikorian | Friday, November 9 2012

Screenshot from iYerevan.am

Yerevan, the capital city of Armenia, just launched a website with interactive features that allow citizens to report issues online and communicate directly with the municipality. Funded by the UNDP, the site is meant to increase government transparency. But with Internet penetration relatively low in Armenia, is the project more hype than help? Read More

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European Officials at Internet Governance Forum in Baku Report their Laptops Hacked

BY Lisa Goldman | Friday, November 9 2012

Azerbaijan's hosting of the 7th annual Internet Governance Forum (IGF) has turned into something of a fiasco, with EU officials reporting their laptops hacked and an official from another European organization visiting during the forum for the purpose of lambasting the government for restricting freedom of speech and human rights. Read More

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EU Initiative Will Map Cyber Repression Around the World

BY Lisa Goldman | Thursday, November 8 2012

The EU is about to launch "a global monitoring system that will help chart digital repression by mapping the Internet’s "cyber geography" in near real time," reports Slate. Read More