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First POST: Tipping Points

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, April 16 2014

Tipping Points

  • Former NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg is spending $50 million to build a grassroots network of women, and mothers in particular, called "Everytown for Gun Safety" that will focus on expanding background checks for gun buyers.

  • Notes New York Times reporter Jeremy Peters, "[Bloomberg's] financial commitment to reducing gun violence could grow. When asked how much he was willing to spend, he tossed out the $50 million figure out as if he were describing the tip he left on a restaurant check. 'I put $50 million this year, last year into coal, $53 million into oceans,' he said with a shrug, describing his clean energy and sustainable fishing initiatives. 'Certainly a number like that, $50 million. Let’s see what happens.'”

  • Remember when Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg insisted that it only made sense to have one identity online? "Having two identities for yourself is an example of lack of integrity," he told Facebook Effect author David Kirkpatrick. Now he tells the New York Times' Farhad Manjoo that "there are some sets of experiences that are just better with other identities," adding, "There are different forms of identity you can use to forma relationship. You can use your real identify, or you can use phone numbers for something like WhatsApp, and pseudonyms for something like Instagram."

  • In less than a week, Medicare's big data release on the billing practices of more than 800,000 doctors has been downloaded more than 100,000 times, reports Alex Howard for TechRepublic as part of a round-up on some recent big events in US data transparency.

  • Abhi Nemani, who recently stepped down from co-running Code for America, takes to Medium to argue for more app diversity in the civic tech ecosystem.

  • Julia Angwin points out the big lesson of the Heartbleed bug: it's time to get serious about Internet security. Also, have you updated your passwords?

  • Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky blogs at the Huffington Post about the $21 million his company "is legally prohibited from helping collect and remit" in New York.

  • The Electronic Frontier Foundation's Rainey Reitman is asking web developers for volunteer help building a "free software backend for contacting Congress." The core work is done, but they're looking for volunteers who will help customize the tool for each of Congress' 535 members.

  • I'm coming to this late, but this essay by Zephyr Teachout, former Howard Dean campaign internet director and Fordham Law School professor, on what Chief Justice John Roberts gets wrong about the meaning of corruption and a quid pro quo in American jurisprudence, is a must-read.

  • New feature from our WeGov section: Weekly Readings, a round-up of what our editors Antonella Napolitano and Rebecca Chao are reading on the international scene.

News Briefs

RSS Feed tuesday >

With Vision of Internet Magna Carta, Web We Want Campaign Aims To Go Beyond Protest Mode

On Saturday, Tim Berners-Lee reiterated his call for an Internet Magna Carta to ensure the independence and openness of the World Wide Web and protection of user privacy. His remarks were part of the opening of the Web We Want Festival at the Southbank Centre in London, which the Web We Want campaign envisioned as only the start of a year long international process underlying his call to formulate concrete visions for the open web of the future, going beyond protests and the usual advocacy groups. GO

First POST: Lifestyles

Google's CEO on "work-life balance"; how CloudFlare just doubled the size of the encrypted web; Dems like Twitter; Reps like Pinterest; and much, much more. GO

monday >

First POST: Showdown

How demonstrators in Hong Kong are using mobile tech to route around government control; will the news penetrate mainland China?; dueling spin from Dems and Reps on which party's tech efforts will matter more in November; and much, much more. GO

friday >

Pirate MEP Crowdsources Internet Policy Questions For Designated EU Commissioners

While the Pirate Party within Germany was facing internal disputes over the last week, the German Pirate Party member in the European Parliament, Julia Reda, is seeking to make the European Commission appointment process more transparent by crowdsourcing questions for the designated Commissioner for Digital Economy & Society and the designated Vice President for the Digital Single Market. GO

First POST: Dogfood

What ethical social networking might look like; can the iPhone promise more privacy?; how Obama did on transparency; and much, much more. GO

thursday >

First POST: Sucks

How the FCC can't communicate; tech is getting more political; Facebook might see a lawsuit for its mood manipulation experiment; and much, much more. GO

wednesday >

First POST: Wartime

A bizarre online marketing effort targets actress Emma Watson; why the news media needs to defend the privacy of its online readers; Chicago's playbook for civic user testing; and much, much more. GO

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