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First POST: Firsts

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, March 24 2015

Political reporters use Yik Yak to pep up stories about Ted Cruz's campaign announcement; The New York Times, Buzzfeed and National Geographic may agree to let Facebook host their news on its servers; Google fiber users to soon get targeted television ads; and much, much more. Read More

First POST: Tracking

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, October 17 2014

Questions about whether Whisper is secretly tracking its users' secrets; the FBI's continued push against the new wave of encrypted phones; community service, high-tech-mogul-style; and much, much more. Read More

First POST: Battle Lines

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, January 15 2014

Previewing President Obama's Friday speech on NSA reform; dealing with the defeat of the FCC's "open internet" rule"; tracking the winners of the Knight News Challenge health round and the New Media Ventures innovation fund; and much, much more. Read More

First POST: Agility

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, October 25 2013

How two Democratic tech gurus would fix HealthCare.gov; how the NSA scandal is threatening US-Europe relations; how a Syrian Kurd living in exile built a mobile tool that alerts subscribers in Syria when a government-fired Scud missile is headed their way; and much, much more. Read More

Digital Pros to Meet at the Democratic National Convention

BY Sarah Lai Stirland and Nick Judd | Tuesday, September 4 2012

Exclusively for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers: Online communications pros at the Democratic National Convention this week might see Obama for America Digital Director Teddy Goff or chief digital strategist Joe Rospars, but everyone kind of already knows what they're up to: Trying to re-elect President Barack Obama by heading up one of the most closely watched digital operations in history. Goff and Rospars are among dozens of digital Democrats who will be in Charlotte this week as Obama accepts his party's nomination for reelection. For Personal Democracy Plus subscribers, here's the start to a far longer list of people in Charlotte now who are worth meeting. Read More

San Francisco, Organizational Hub for a New Class of National Politicos

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Thursday, March 8 2012

From left to right: Chris Kelly, Christine Pelosi and Fred Davis at Rally's Super Tuesday party. Photo: Rally.

What was unusual about an evening Super Tuesday gathering in San Francisco was that many of the people there aren't working in a startup aimed at making some commercial aspect of life easier, faster and more fun. Instead, they are part of a generation of people with both political and tech savvy, using the web to fundamentally alter politics in general and specific campaigns in particular. For these people, the promise of a networked world and a new, networked politics — where people connecting outside the by-all-accounts-flawed and scandal-fraught party apparatus are starting to make an impact — is coming into focus. And rather than using their knowledge of the technology world to start the next Facebook, they're building a cadre of Silicon Valley companies that work in public affairs — not just non-profits, government, and civic life, but politics and campaigns. Read More