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The American Angle on David Cameron's Social Media Censorship Moment

BY Nick Judd | Monday, August 22 2011

The "special relationship" between the United States and United Kingdom apparently went unscathed earlier this month when British Prime Minister David Cameron attacked one of the U.S. State Department's pet causes, ... Read More

In the UK, Online Petitions Are Gaining Steam

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, August 16 2011

A new online petition initiative in the United Kingdom is so popular that its website crashed on its first day in operation — so popular, in fact, that it has some people worried that too much democracy might be a ... 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

A Call to Curtail London Rioting Focuses on 'Encrypted' Mobile Messaging Service

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, August 9 2011

A member of British Parliament representing ground zero for the riots now rocking that country on Tuesday called for the maker of the BlackBerry mobile phone to suspend its popular BlackBerry Messaging Service tonight. ... Read More

British MPs Take a Close Look at Government IT 'Oligopoly' of Major Vendors

BY Nick Judd | Friday, July 29 2011

Writing for The Guardian, Michael Cross digs in to a report on British government IT that finds the folks across the pond are over-reliant on large contractors for their IT needs: The central charge is that governments ... Read More

Of #Splat and Alleged Skulduggery

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, July 19 2011

Other folks are providing wall-to-wall coverage of all things News Corp., from Rupert Murdoch's testimony today before British Parliament to the unease-causing closeness there seems to have been between British ... Read More

After Hacking Attack, Fox News Twitter Account Falsely Claims Obama 'Assassinated'

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, July 5 2011

The Fox News Twitter account @foxnewspolitics was hacked over the weekend, and Fox News has said the hackers were behind a series of tweets sent on Monday that falsely said President Barack Obama had been assassinated. ... Read More

The Europe Roundup: The Danger of Transparency

BY Antonella Napolitano | Wednesday, June 29 2011

Slovakia | The danger of transparency A couple of weeks ago the winners of the Open Data Challenge were announced at the First Digital Agenda Assembly in Brussels. Best in the application category was ZNasichDani.sk ... Read More

Opening Parliament, Too, to the iPad

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, January 4 2011

Photo credit: UK Parliament Read More

In the Future, Will 'Big Brother' Watch You, Or Will Your Neighbors?

BY Nick Judd | Monday, November 15 2010

A recent report to British Parliament found an increasing trend towards crowdsourced surveillance — in which monitoring of cameras in public spaces is left to the crowd crowd. Photo: Zigazou / Flickr The city of ... Read More

News Briefs

RSS Feed tuesday >

Ruck.us Reboots As a Candidate Digital Toolkit That's a Bit Too Like Democracy.com

Ruck.us launched with big ambitions and star appeal, hoping to crack the code on how to get millions of people to pool their political passions through their platform. When that ambition stalled, its founder Nathan Daschle--son of the former Senator--decided to pivot to offering political candidates an easy-to-use free web platform for organizing and fundraising. Now the new Ruck.us is out from stealth mode, entering a field already being served by competitors like NationBuilder, Salsa Labs and Democracy.com. And strangely enough, Ruck.us seems to want its early users to ask Democracy.com for help. GO

Armenian Legislators: You Can Be As Anonymous on the 'Net As You Like—Until You Can't

A proposed bill in Armenia would make it illegal for media outlets to include defamatory remarks by anonymous or fake sources, and require sites to remove libelous comments within 12 hours unless they identify the author.

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monday >

The Good Wife Looks for the Next Snowden and Outwits the NSA

Even as the real Edward Snowden faces questions over his motives in Russia, another side of his legacy played out for the over nine million viewers of last night's The Good Wife, which concluded its season long storyline exploring NSA surveillance. In the episode titled All Tapped Out, one young NSA worker's legal concerns lead him to becoming a whistle-blower, setting off a chain of events that allows the main character, lawyer Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies), and her husband, Illinois Governor Peter Florrick (Chris Noth), to turn the tables on the NSA using its own methods. GO

The Expanding Reach of China's Crowdsourced Environmental Monitoring Site, Danger Maps

Last week billionaire businessman Jack Ma, founder of the e-commerce company Alibaba, appealed to his “500 million-strong army” of consumers to help monitor water quality in China. Inexpensive testing kits sold through his company can be used to measure pH, phosphates, ammonia, and heavy metal levels, and then the data can be uploaded via smartphone to the environmental monitoring site Danger Maps. Although the initiative will push the Chinese authorities' tolerance for civic engagement and activism, Ethan Zuckerman has high hopes for “monitorial citizenship” in China.

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The 13 Worst Bits of Russia's Current and Maybe Future Internet Legislation

It appears that Russia is on the brink of passing still more repressive Internet regulations. A new telecommunications bill that would require popular blogs—those with 3,000 or more visits a day—to join a government registry and conform to government-mandated standards is expected to pass this week. What follows is a list of the worst bits of both proposed and existing Russian Internet law. Let us know in the comments or on Twitter if we missed anything.

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Transparency and Public Shaming: Pakistan Tackles Tax Evasion

In Pakistan, where only one in 200 citizens files their income tax return, authorities published a directory of taxpayers' details for the first time. Officials explained the decision as an attempt to shame defaulters into paying up.

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wednesday >

Facebook Seeks Approval as Financial Service in Ireland. Is the Developing World Next?

On April 13 the Financial Times reported that Facebook is only weeks away from being approved as a financial service in Ireland. Is this foray into e-money motivated by Facebook's desire to conquer the developing world before other corporate Internet giants do? Maybe.

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The Rise and Fall of Iran's “Blogestan”

The robust community of Iranian bloggers—sometimes nicknamed “Blogestan”—has shrunk since its heyday between 2002 – 2010. “Whither Blogestan,” a recent report from the University of Pennsylvania's Iran Media Program sought to find out how and why. The researchers performed a web crawling analysis of Blogestan, survey 165 Persian blog users, and conducted 20 interviews with influential bloggers in the Persian community. They found multiple causes of the decline in blogging, including increased social media use and interference from authorities.

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