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PODCAST: What Makes an Internet-Ready Issue?

BY Nick Judd | Friday, January 18 2013

Today, open Internet advocates are celebrating "Internet Freedom Day," the anniversary of widespread online protest against the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP Act that rattled Congress enough to kill both bills. One year later, what does the nascent politically active web mean for members of Congress? For activists? And for individuals? In the first of what we hope to turn into a regular series of podcasts, editorial director Micah Sifry and I hash through how we think about these issues at techPresident. The full conversation is available for subscribers, but here's a quick overview of what we discussed: Read More

A TechPresident Podcast: On Internet Freedom Day, Politics and the SOPA/PIPA Fight

BY Nick Judd | Friday, January 18 2013

Exclusively for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers: One year after the death of SOPA and PIPA fight, what does the nascent politically active web mean for members of Congress? For activists? And for individuals? In the first of what we hope to turn into a regular series of podcasts, editorial director Micah Sifry and I hash through how we think about these issues at techPresident. We sat down to record this for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers. Read More

The Three Different Meanings of "Internet Activism"

BY Nick Judd | Friday, January 4 2013

In an article for its upcoming print edition, Economist discovers the politics of the Internet. In an extended primer appearing in its Jan. 5 print edition, the venerable magazine explores the world of Internet freedom activists — people who love the Internet as it is and view the fight to preserve freedom of information as political trench warfare across multiple theaters: before state regulators, in corporate boardrooms, in Congress, in the court of public opinion, and in the design of the hardware and programming of the software that keeps the Internet running.

The piece is worth a read, but the Economist has trouble sussing out two or three different forces at play when it comes to "Internet activism."

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New Rules for Online Politics Could Be On the Horizon

BY Nick Judd | Friday, September 23 2011

As Facebook, Google and Twitter look to get deeper into the political advertising business, the Federal Election Commission may alter the way it regulates how campaigns use those companies' advertising services. The FEC ... Read More

Reagan Son Selling Email Done Right

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, August 2 2010

Eldest Reagan son Michael is selling @Reagan.com email addresses to deny liberal technology companies the business: 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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