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First POST: Hypernetworked

BY Miranda Neubauer | Tuesday, March 6 2012


  • In Forbes, Tom Watson writes about how Rush Limbaugh's current uncomfortable situation is thanks in part to a new awakening among networked, tech-savvy, motivated women advancing the causes of women's health and and women's right to control their bodies:

    The campaign was almost instantaneous, coordinated by no individual or organization, and entirely free of cost. Prominent feminist organizers told Forbes that it was social media’s terrible swift sword, led once again by Twitter and Facebook-savvy women, that dealt Limbaugh the worst humiliation of his controversial career, and in many ways, revealed the most potent “non-organized” organization to take the field on the social commons in the age of Occupy Wall Street and Anonymous....“What we’re seeing right now is a continuation of the networked response to the right-wing war on women’s health that began with the Komen reaction a few weeks ago,” said [Allison Fine]. “It is across generations and extra-organizational with individual women using a variety of social media channels to connect with other women and create their own protests.”

    On his show yesterday, Rush Limbaugh did not seem to be too worried about the advertiser boycott, saying: "They decided they don't want you or your business. That's their business decision. This show is about you, not advertisers."

  • Politico's Josh Gerstein takes a critical look at the Obama administration's transparency record. Worth remembering: Recent academic work on technology and "open government" seeks to create some daylight between the concept of transparency — opening a window into the workings and decision-making processes of government — and the principles of "open government" currently being pursued by the White House. The Obama administration has come under fire more than once on transparency this year around its handling of Freedom of Information Act requests, some of which, per the Associated Press, were screened by political appointees of the administration.

  • Eighty-one scholarly journal publishers have expressed their strong opposition to a bill that would require the results of federally supported research be made public within six months of publication. For more on this, read Nancy Scola's recent piece in the American Prospect about the politics of open access to science.

  • Notable

  • According to CSPAN, a speech by Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on the First Amendment at Wesleyan University is closed to TV cameras.

  • Senator Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York, has requested that the FTC investigate processes used by Apple and Google mobile applications to access private information on smartphones without their owners consent. This request comes after a number of recent scandals where both iPhone and Android apps were found to access or have the capability of accessing photos, contacts, and other information on smartphones. Schumer is a frequent caller of investigations.

  • The founder of the Internet Archive is on a mission to create a physical repository of every book to ensure their continued existence in the event of a digital disaster or new digital formats.

  • The Associated Press is partnering with Google to map Super Tuesday results today. Meanwhile, Twitter has tracked the Road to Super Tuesday in tweets.

  • The Gingrich campaign has asked a judge in Chicago to dismiss a copyright infringement lawsuit over the campaign's use of the song Eye of the Tiger.

  • Former White House aide Reggie Love is the focus of a new Obama campaign web video targeting African-Americans. Also recently featured: singer Janelle Monae.

  • The benefit performance of "8" that was streamed on Youtube raised $ 2 million and was watched by at least 200,000 users.

  • The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, has organized a QR code based scavenger hunt game in which "participants will be challenged to locate other participants who have key assets that are represented by the QR codes." According to the agency, the game intends "to simulate how the public can help find essential resources during national emergencies — a very real concern for the military when responding to humanitarian crises or disasters such as the Haiti earthquake of 2010," and seeks "to explore the role the Internet and social networking plays in the timely communication, wide area team-building and urgent mobilization required to solve broad scope, time-critical problems."

  • According to a new Pew Study, many organizations are still struggling to embrace a web-centric state of mind and figuring out how to take advantage of online targeted advertising options.

  • International

  • The French government has passed a law to digitize and sell French books from before 2001 that are no longer for sale in print or online.

  • Hackers affiliated with Anonymous reportedly hacked into the website of the Hungarian Constitutional Court and rewrote the country's recently oft-criticized new constitution, to state among other things that IT workers can retire at 32 and get pensions equal to 150 percent of their salaries, and are exempted from paying tax. Another new section said that Anonymous and other grass-roots IT groups should fight internal or external threats against the country.

  • As was first reported by many German news sources, the German government is proposing a licensing scheme for the use of excerpts from journalistic articles on commercial sites, such as Google. The plan was part of the coalition agreement drafted three years ago. Many German commentators are criticizing the proposal for being vague and unclear with regard to how digital innovators would profit.

  • At the opening of the CeBIT technology show in Hanover, Germany, Eric Schmidt said he believed that the Internet would eventually break down censorship. Microsoft plans to exhibit its vision of a digital city at the show.

  • A Facebook page that opposes Scottish independence from the U.K. so far has over 6,000 supporters. The Scottish National Party — leaning in part on new, Internet-centric tech tools for organizing — won parliamentary elections last year with Scottish independence at the heart of its platform.

  • An Istanbul-based start-up is working on launching a Muslim social network.

  • Syrian bloggers and online activists analyzed purported footage of Syrian rebels using foreign currency and noted that supposed Israeli bank notes were Filipino currency, while some Israeli coins and other bills had been out of circulation for many years.

With Raphael Majma