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ICYMI: Eric Holder Says He's Open To Revisiting Computer Fraud and Abuse Act

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Thursday, March 7 2013

Attorney General Eric Holder on Wednesday told the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee that he's be willing to revisit a landmark computer crime law to figure out whether it's being abused by prosecutors. The statement is noteworthy because the Department of Justice has been pushing to make the law even stricter rather than acceding to rolling it back. Read More

WeGov

Watch Australian Dept of Justice Explain its Social Media Policy in Three Minutes

BY Lisa Goldman | Wednesday, October 24 2012

Screenshot from Department of Justice video.

The Department of Justice for Victoria, Australia, created a 3-minute video that explains cogently, in simple terms that do not patronize, what social media is and the steps an employee of the department must take in order to use it responsibly. Read More

Here's the Future of Open Government, Courtesy of ... The Environmental Protection Agency?

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Monday, March 26 2012

Image: Shutterstock

Several members of Congress got a tantalizing glimpse of one possible model of the future of open government recently, and it didn't come from the Justice Department, the agency at the federal level that is primarily in charge of ensuring agencies' compliance with Freedom of Information Act. Instead, the model came from the Environmental Protection Agency. Read More

Crowdfunding Dissent

BY Nick Judd | Monday, May 23 2011

Security researcher Christopher Soghoian says he raised $500 for legal fees in 20 minutes. He was raising the money to sue the federal Department of Justice for access to 600 pages of documents about Internet and mobile ... Read More

FOIA.gov Joins the Federal Family

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, March 14 2011

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Justice Dept. responds to Obama's open gov call with reworked FOIA reports

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, December 9 2009

Here, perhaps, is some of that hoped for trickle-down effect we mentioned below. Read More

Filling Out the New Media Ranks Beyond the White House

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, May 28 2009

The Plum Line's Greg Sargent reports that Tracy Russo, former John Edwards campaign blog outreach coordinator, is headed over to the Department of Justice to serve as the DOJ's director of new media. 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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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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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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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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