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Announcing PDF 2013 Theme "Think Bigger" + New Speakers!

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, February 12 2013

Every year we choose a theme for Personal Democracy Forum, our annual conference on how technology is changing politics, government and civic life. This year, for our tenth annual gathering, the theme is going to be "Think Bigger." We've chosen it in part to honor our late friend Aaron Swartz, who used that phrase it in an email he wrote me, where he asked, "Why not harness the power of the Internet to work on the larger-scale problems?" Why not, indeed.

Thinking bigger can also mean imagining how we can use the explosive growth in data and computing power, as well as the rapid spread of connection technologies into billions of hands, to approach problems in better ways. Bigger data and more powerful technologies can also mean bigger threats to freedom and bigger misunderstandings too--we're hardly of the view that just because it's technology that must mean it's changing things for the better. But as with every PDF conference, we're aiming to focus on the people, ideas and projects that are really making a positive difference in how the world works and people live.

To that end, we are also pleased to announce the following keynote speakers, joining our first group of exciting presenters:

Over the coming weeks, we'll continue fleshing out the rest of the PDF 2013 program. Watch this space for further announcements.

Register now.

HOW TO SUGGEST A SPEAKER OR PANEL: If you have an idea for a speaker or a suggestion for a panel, please email us at info@personaldemocracy.com with PDF 2013 in the subject line. Use "Think Bigger" as your guide, and feel free to look at past conference programs for inspiration. We can't guarantee that every proposal will make it into this year's program, but we promise to respond to all your suggestions.

News Briefs

RSS Feed thursday >

First POST: Mugs

No surprise here, but email list open rates are down; the real reason campaigns want to send you a free bumper sticker; Hillary Clinton wasn't alone in dodging inquiries from the House Oversight Committee about private email accounts; organizing opt-outs from high-stakes testing on Facebook; and much, much more. GO

wednesday >

First POST: Edges

Let the White House know what you think about the new homepage; why Democrats need a competitive primary to maintain their edge in political tech; California Highway Patrol reminded to not talk about how they track political protesters on social media; and much, much more. GO

tuesday >

First POST: Anomalies

Rallying uncommitted voters under a centrist umbrella; a defense of aggregation for a positive-sum Internet; UK says no to ban on killer robots; and much, much more. GO

monday >

First POST: In It To Win It

Hillary Clinton's updated Twitter bio; lots of election data-porn, if you're into that kind of thing; the debate over digital keys and backdoors; protests by hologram; and much, much more. GO

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