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WeGov

New Data.Gov.Ph Site Lowers Barriers to Gov't Data in Philippines

BY Jessica McKenzie | Thursday, January 16 2014

Screenshot of Data.gov.ph

A presidential spokesperson launched the new Open Data Philippines site on Thursday. This is a big step in the direction of transparency for the Philippines, which was chided in a Sunlight Foundation report last October for erecting unnecessary barriers to public data.

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WeGov

Australia Cleans Up Data.Gov.Au, Loses More Than Half of Its 1,200 Datasets

BY Jessica McKenzie | Thursday, November 14 2013

Every dataset deserves a good clean up (Flickr/Chiot's Run)

Since Australia switched their open data website to an open source platform in July, the number of datasets has dropped from 1200 to 500. Did they get lost in the move? No, it just turns out that many of them were pure junk, links to webpages that no longer existed or led to irrelevant pages.

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New Tool Takes You Into the Treasury's Bank Account

BY Sam Roudman | Friday, July 12 2013

A new tool, Treasury IO, is designed to make working with data about federal spending much easier to understand. Read More

San Francisco Pilots Restaurant Inspections in Yelp Reviews

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, January 17 2013

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee is expected to announce today that his city's restaurant inspection data will begin to appear on Yelp, the business listings service. Also included in the announcement, expected at the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Washington, D.C., is that Yelp, in conjunction with city technologists in San Francisco and New York, NY, have created what they hope will become a de-facto standard for restaurant inspection data. Called Local Inspector Value-Entry Specification, or LIVES, the hope is that this specification will make restaurant inspection information easy for developers to handle and, as a result, more ubiquitous on the web. Read More

Is 'Government Data' a Growth Industry?

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, April 11 2011

In light of the recent debate over federal funding for Data.gov and other sites, Drew Conway parses CrunchBase for the overlap between firms working in "government" and "data." He finds a drop off in ... Read More

Open Data at the Golden Gate, But Transparency? Maybe Not Yet

BY Nick Judd | Friday, November 19 2010

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom signs open data legislation into law. Photo: Courtesy Gavin Newsom / twitpic San Francisco, Ca., made the news last week when its board of supervisors passed an open-data law, one-upping ... Read More

In the Future, Will 'Big Brother' Watch You, Or Will Your Neighbors?

BY Nick Judd | Monday, November 15 2010

A recent report to British Parliament found an increasing trend towards crowdsourced surveillance — in which monitoring of cameras in public spaces is left to the crowd crowd. Photo: Zigazou / Flickr The city of ... Read More

When Privacy and the Well-Being of Children Are Apparently At Odds

BY Nick Judd | Monday, November 15 2010

A story that appeared on the cover of a recent edition of the New York Times asserted that 20th-century notions of how the federal government should handle citizens' private tax information are keeping valuable ... Read More

Meet POIA: "Public Means Online" Becomes a Bill

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, March 16 2010

If you were at PdF '09 in New York City, you heard the idea floated that "public means online." In other words, if the law or regulation requires some document or other resource to be "public," you ... Read More

WaPo: We're Losing the Brand Wars to Transparency

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, March 15 2010

The Washington Post's ombudsperson Andrew Alexander has an apology to make. He's super sorry that the Post doesn't do a better job exposing its readers to government data: 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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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