Personal Democracy Plus Our premium content network. LEARN MORE You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

First POST: USAID's Exploding Cigar

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, April 7 2014

Why ZunZeneo, the "Cuban Twitter" funded by USAID, was such a bad idea; some hard questions about the Comcast-TimeWarner merger; tech's "man problem"; and much, much more. Read More

Internet Privacy: Are Lawmakers Thinking About It All Wrong?

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Wednesday, September 4 2013

How do we get back to the world where nobody knows if you're a dog? Photo: Flickr/Jesse757

Is it time to move past "Do Not Track" as the solution to pervasive online invasions of privacy? Sarah Lai Stirland takes a walk along the digital frontier where privacy activists and data entrepreneurs are diligently carving out some radical new approaches to the problem. Read More

DailyKos.com, Democratic Left's Online Hub, Had a Banner Year in 2012

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, November 14 2012

Daily Kos traffic, 2007-2012

DailyKos.com, the Grand Central Station of the online Democratic left, had a record-breaking year, the site's founder Markos Moulitsas announced last Friday. For the last thirty days before Election Day, the site garnered more than 4 million unique visitors, according to its Quantcast stats. That's up from 1.8 million uniques for the month of January, or 2.3 million that it garnered during the height of the Occupy Wall Street movement in October 2011. Here's why. Read More

California Proposal Would Require More Disclosure for Paid Political Blogging

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Thursday, September 27 2012

Do Not Feed The Sock Puppets. Photo: Magnus Digity/Flickr

Exclusively for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers: The chairwoman of California's Fair Political Practices Commission has proposed a rule that would require political campaigns to disclose payments to bloggers or people embarking on paid social media forays on their behalf. She says she won't push to advance the proposal until after the November elections — but the mere thought of revisiting disclosure, discussed in the Federal Election Commission's last major Internet rulemaking in 2005 and 2006, has bloggers incensed. Read More

WeGov

In Search of a New American Vision at Netroots Nation and Right Online

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, June 20 2011

The Right knows what it wants, but its base needs to learn how to better use technology. The Left knows how to use tech, but its base needs to figure out what it wants. Both can't help but be reactive to each other. And ... Read More

Changes at Change.org: A Media Hub for Social Action

BY Micah L. Sifry | Saturday, October 11 2008

Is it possible to build a successful web portal and community hub around issues and activism? So far, no one has succeeded in this quest, though there a lot of people trying and one could argue that sites as diverse as ... Read More

Daily Digest: You Never Forget Your First (2 Million)

BY Joshua Sherman | Friday, August 15 2008

Obama reaches 2 million donors, BarelyPolitical barely keeps my attention, McCain's tech policy review, techPresident is honored with a nomination, Obama and McCain's YouTube channels Read More

McCain Launches New Blog, Links to Kos

BY Ari Melber | Friday, June 6 2008

Why is the McCain Campaign reaching out to Daily Kos? Read More

Pro-Clinton Writers Go "On Strike" at DailyKos

BY Micah L. Sifry | Saturday, March 15 2008

It looks like the heightening divisions with the Democratic party over the Obama-Clinton contest are causing an open split in the online progressive city known as DailyKos. Read More

Daily Digest: To Endorse Or Not To Endorse

BY Joshua Levy | Monday, February 25 2008

Judging the efficacy of a Google bomb campaign against John McCain; three liberal blogs ask readers if they should endorse a candidate before the nominee emerges; another piece about why Twitter matters; illustrating the ... Read More

News Briefs

RSS Feed thursday >

Civic Hackers Call on de Blasio to Fill Technology Vacancies

New York City technology advocates on Wednesday called on the de Blasio administration to fill vacancies in top technology policy positions, expressing some frustration at the lack of a leadership team to implement a cohesive technology strategy for the city. GO

China's Porn Purge Has Only Just Begun, And Already Sina Is Stripped of Publication License

It seems that China is taking spring cleaning pretty seriously. On April 13 they launched their most recent online purge, “Cleaning the Web 2014,” which will run until November. The goal is to rid China's Internet of pornographic text, pictures, video, and ads in order to “create a healthy cyberspace.” More than 100 websites and thousands of social media accounts have already been closed, after less than a month. Today the official Xinhua news agency reported that the authorities have stripped the Internet giant Sina (of Sina Weibo, the popular microblogging site) of its online publication license. This crackdown on porn comes on the heels of a crackdown on “rumors.” Clearly, this spring cleaning isn't about pornography, it's about censorship and control.

GO

wednesday >

Another Co-Opted Hashtag: #MustSeeIran

The Twitter hashtag #MustSeeIran was created to showcase Iran's architecture, landscapes, and would-be tourist destinations. It was then co-opted by activists to bring attention to human rights abuses and infringements. Now Twitter is home to two starkly different portraits of a country. GO

What Has the EU Ever Done For Us?: Countering Euroskepticism with Viral Videos and Monty Python

Ahead of the May 25 European Elections, the most intense campaigning may not be by the candidates or the political parties. Instead, some of the most passionate campaigns are more grassroots efforts focused on for a start stirring up the interest of the European electorate. GO

At NETmundial Brazil: Is "Multistakeholderism" Good for the Internet?

Today and tomorrow Brazil is hosting NETmundial, a global multi-stakeholder meeting on the future of Internet governance. GO

Brazilian President Signs Internet Bill of Rights Into Law at NetMundial

Earlier today Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff sanctioned Marco Civil, also called the Internet bill of rights, during the global Internet governance event, NetMundial, in Brazil.

GO

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.

GO

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.

GO

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.

GO

More