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First POST: Concealed Carry

BY Miranda Neubauer | Tuesday, January 15 2013

Have gun? Word won't travel

  • Gun control legislation set to pass in New York state "would allow gun permit license holders to petition to not include their names on a public list if they believe the exposure is a danger, according to a legislative source briefed on the draft bill," YNN reported. "A statewide database of pistol permits from counties would not be subject to the Freedom of Information Law."

    The New York Times' Bill Keller notes how ill-equipped our current understanding of privacy is when it is under attack from all sides: Public information becoming more functionally "public" as well as the increasingly encroaching eyes of a government that has eroded the beachhead of judicial review when it comes to monitoring electronic communications:

    When it comes to privacy, we are all hypocrites. We howl when a newspaper publishes public records about personal behavior. At the same time, we are acquiescing in a much more sweeping erosion of our privacy — government surveillance, corporate data-mining, political microtargeting, hacker invasions — with no comparable outpouring of protest. As a society we have no coherent view of what information is worth defending and how to defend it.

Around the web

International

  • An Iranian satellite channel broadcasting illegally into the country from Dubai appears to have been blacked out without explanation, and its website is also down.

  • The Economist suggests that Google is being hypocritical for putting pressure on North Korea while holding back in China, and also looked at how the controversy over a a Chinese newspaper played out online.

  • A U.S. supported disaster monitoring and response system for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations was recently completed: "The system provides streams of data on hazards such as earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, typhoons, forest fires, and other natural disasters from all over ASEAN, combining them into one interface for disaster monitoring and decision making. AHA Centre operators can immediately see the big picture, which improves response times and leads to more efficient use of relief resources," a press release from the U.S. mission notes.

  • A Swedish authority is seeking to make online defamation punishable by law.

  • A British court sentenced two hackers to 100 hours of community service for stealing unreleased music from Sony's servers.

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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friday >

In Google Hangout, NYC Mayor de Blasio Talks Tech and Outer Borough Potential

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio followed the lead of President Obama and New York City Council member Ben Kallos Friday by participating in a Google Hangout to help mark his first 100 days in office, in which the conversation focused on expanding access to technology opportunities through education and ensuring that the needs of the so-called "outer boroughs" aren't overlooked. GO

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