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Google is Seeking Political Trendspotters

BY Nick Judd | Monday, October 10 2011

Google is asking users to get in on using Google Trends to get an idea of what people are searching for around political campaigns: From an early look at the state of the GOP Presidential race in Iowa to looking at what ... Read More

We Still Don't Know How to Vote

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, November 2 2010

Google Trends, a compilation of what we're all mining the Internet for from the privacy of our own homes or offices or mobile phones, reveals this election day an important truth: Americans very often don't know who ... Read More

"Threats" Climbs Google's Hot Topics

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, March 25 2010

Google Trends ever-changing list of "hot topics" that people are searching for online has been a particularly fascinating, if not altogether scientific, peek into what's on Americans minds. Read More

Americans are Taking an Interest in Health Care (Updated)

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, March 23 2010

Google Searches for Health Care from March 15th through March 20th Read More

Navigating the World Live Web: An Exploratory Talk on The Way We Look to Us All

BY Micah L. Sifry | Sunday, December 6 2009

Who are we? What are we thinking about or responding to or passionate about or interested in? On October 21, 2009, I gave a talk to NPR Weekend Edition and Digital staff, during their staff retreat. The topic was ... Read More

R.I.P. Ted Kennedy

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, August 26 2009

The political world is buzzing today with condolences and reminiscences of Senator Edward Kennedy, and we here at PdF add our respects. Read More

Birthers of a Nation: How the Obama "Birth Certificate" Issue is Playing Online

BY Micah L. Sifry | Sunday, August 2 2009

The news that American southerners are the most likely to question whether President Obama is actually a native-born citizen got a lot of attention last Friday, when a Research2000 survey on that question was released by ... Read More

Daily Digest: Fired Up, Ready to Govern

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, November 5 2008

As that great American president Josiah Bartlet so often said, "What's next?" Last night was a beginning, not an end: there are appointments to be made, policy to be crafted, organizing to done, opposition to ... 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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