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White House Open Sources "IT Dashboard" Code

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, April 4 2011

Whether or not there will be real funds behind the Obama administration's open government projects in the next federal budget is still an open question, but one project, at least, seems as if it will live on either way. ... Read More

A Look at Your Nuclear Neighborhood

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, March 30 2011

Greenpeace's Nuclear Power Plant Locator Map showing reactors near Boston, MA. Greenpeace has rolled out an improved version of its Nuclear Plant Locator Map; punch in your address, and out pops a listing of the ... Read More

Opening Dili

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, March 16 2011

East Timor gets a transparency portal. Read More

Democrats Hiring for Redistricting Desk

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, March 16 2011

One area where political data chops developed over the last few years will likely be shortly be called into greater service: redistricting. The DNC's tech department is in the market for a data-savvy person for its ... Read More

DIY Radiation Mapping

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, March 16 2011

Getting passed around today, unsurprisingly, is the National Radiation Map, "depicting environmental radiation levels across the USA, updated in real time every minute." They're looking for people to set up ... Read More

What Your Email Domain Says About You

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, March 14 2011

.node_read_more { visibility: hidden; display: none; } div.taxterms { display: none; } Gmail users lean more liberal than their Hotmail counterparts, Yahoo-era tend not to have a passport, and other findings from the ... Read More

Free the Data, Says Thaler

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, March 14 2011

.node_read_more { visibility: hidden; display: none; } div.taxterms { display: none; } In a piece in this Sunday's New York Times, Richard Thaler, co-author with Cass Sunstein of the 2008 book "Nudge," groups ... Read More

Selling the Census

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, December 21 2010

The U.S. Census Bureau today released the top-level results of the 2010 U.S. Census, including data on apportionment — which translates from bureaucratese as ... Read More

Meet ForeignAssistance.gov

BY Nancy Scola | Friday, December 17 2010

The new ForeignAssistance.gov Read More

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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tuesday >

Weekly Readings: What the Govt Wants to Know

A roundup of interesting reads and stories from around the web. GO

Russia to Treat Bloggers Like Mass Media Because "the F*cking Journalists Won't Stop Writing"

The worldwide debate over who is and who isn't a journalist has raged since digital media made it much easier for citizen journalists and other “amateurs” to compete with the big guys. In the United States, journalists are entitled to certain protections under the law, such as the right to confidential sources. As such, many argue that blogging should qualify as journalism because independent writers deserve the same legal protections as corporate employees. In Russia, however, earning a place equal to mass media means additional regulations and obligations, which some say will lead to the repression of free speech.

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Politics for People: Demanding Transparent and Ethical Lobbying in the EU

Today the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) launched a campaign called Politics for People that asks candidates for the European Parliament to pledge to stand up to secretive industry lobbyists and to advocate for transparency. The Politics for People website connects voters with information about their MEP candidates and encourages them to reach out on Facebook, Twitter or by email to ask them to sign the pledge.

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monday >

Security Agencies Given Full Access to Telecom Data Even Though "All Lebanese Can Not Be Suspects"

In late March, Lebanese government ministers granted security agencies unrestricted access to telecommunications data in spite of some ministers objections that it violates privacy rights. Global Voices reports that the policy violates Lebanon's existing surveillance and privacy law, Law 140, but has gotten little coverage from the country's mainstream media.

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