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

From the Tea Party to Progressives, Outside Groups Look Online to Train New Candidates

BY Miranda Neubauer | Friday, April 20 2012

Pedro Lopez, 19, is running for an Arizona school board. Photo: Pedro for Cartwright

As city and state legislatures become battlegrounds where the political right and left do combat over education reform, labor organizing and social issues, outside groups from both sides are looking online for recruits to fill their ranks of local elected officials.

Read More

Things the DCCC Wants: "Targeting Interns"

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, February 15 2012

From a new job posting by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee comes the latest sign that data analysis is becoming a more and more basic skill with each passing day:

"The DCCC Targeting Team is seeking an intern to will assist with creating, revising, and implementing targeted voter contact plans. Duties will include data entry, data analysis, research, daily task tracking, using voter file data, and assisting with other projects."

Read More

Did Newt Gingrich Lose Florida for Want of a Better API?

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, February 2 2012

Slate's Sasha Issenberg has a great story outlining one narrative about Newt Gingrich's loss in Florida: He inspired a group of tech-savvy volunteers, but gave them no way to plug in to the campaign. Read More

The Data Wars Go Local

BY Nick Judd | Monday, December 19 2011

Minnesotans United for All Families, a state-level group fighting for same-sex marriage rights, just put out a job posting for a "data manager." The responsibilities are a little more robust than what you'd find at a campaign just trying to cut turf for volunteers. They indicate a desire to use data to identify like-minded supporters, then connect them to one another and to voters — a kind of social-network-aware organizing approach that's been on the rise this year. Read More

The Political Right is Looking to Reclaim Data Superiority

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, November 9 2011

On Monday, the Guardian's Ed Pilkington hinted at the creation of a new database — either a "voter file" or "a database connecting millions of Americans" — to support the political causes and campaigns backed ... Read More

How Campaigns Use of Facebook Data Might Change the 2012 Election

BY Nick Judd | Monday, October 10 2011

More than in any other race to date, Americans may experience the 2012 presidential election through precisely targeted phone calls, visits, tweets and Facebook posts — messages not from the candidates themselves, ... Read More

From Political Clout to Political Klout: Social Media Data Shaping Up to be Big in 2012

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, September 22 2011

Writing Monday for GigaOm, Derrick Harris speculates about the importance of data for Obama 2012: Those large follower counts are why social media data could be such a game-changer for Obama 2012; their sheer scale is ... Read More

Reading Your Inbox for Political Dollars

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, June 7 2011

You know how Rapportive can serve up social data keyed off your Gmail inbox? Meet Inbox Influence. It does the same thing, basically, but with details on the political money tied to the people and organizations in your ... Read More

Trend Watch: Cops and Communities Talk Traffic Data

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, May 24 2011

Governing Magazine's Heather Kerrigan reports that cities across the U.S. are finding a useful policing edge in overlaying crime data and traffic safety data. (In broad strokes, crime and traffic incidents tend to happen ... Read More

Meet the ex-Democrat Developer Now Seeking to Sell Tools to the GOP

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, May 18 2011

Steven Adler had to wait five years before he could get back into the political software industry. He did things like this in the meantime. Say you're the co-founder of a company that quickly becomes part of the core ... Read More

News Briefs

RSS Feed today >

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

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.

GO

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.

GO

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.

GO

More