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First POST: Messaging

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, April 30 2014

Messaging

  • Department of self-delusion: Less than 40% of America internet users have changed their passwords in response to the Heartbleed bug, Pew Research Center's Lee Rainie and Maeve Duggan report. Seven in ten think their internet accounts are generally secure, with 23% saying they think that means their accounts are "very secure."

  • A new Gallup poll finds that political messaging via mobile phone is still an under-developed arena. Less than 1/4 of Americans have received a "take action" request on their phone; just under 1 in 10 have received an instant notification about a rally or protest; and only 4% say they have made a monetary contribution to a candidate or interest group via their smartphone or tablet.

  • Jed Alpert, the founder and CEO of Mobile Commons, a major provider of mobile political messaging tech, told First POST that the poll certainly tracks with his experience, noting that "the Obama campaign was a huge exception" and "501 c4 type orgs are much more sophisticated" in their use of mobile.

  • Politico's Tony Romm previews how some big Silicon Valley companies are rolling out the red carpet for this weekend's annual bacchanal of self-adulation known as the White House Correspondents' Dinner. Perks include a half-day master class in a Georgetown loft for participants to "learn the latest beauty tips and get a blowout or manicure," courtesy of YouTube.

  • Tech for Hillary is a thing. On Facebook.

  • MTV has just launched LookDifferent.org, a multiyear, multitiered campaign to help young people better recognize and respond to bias, including online efforts to battle snap judgments about others based on their looks and an "Implicit Bias Quiz" that helps users discover their own automatic associations.

  • Derek Khanna has a hair-raising story of how the US Postal Service blocked digital mail startup Outbox's efforts to have forwarded legally to them, and in doing so killed a company that might have saved the postal service millions if not billions of dollars. According to Khanna's report, the Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe told Outbox's founders, “‘You mentioned making the service better for our customers; but the American citizens aren’t our customers—about 400 junk mailers are our customers.  Your service hurts our ability to serve those customers.”’

  • The Justice Department is still investigating WikiLeaks, notes Mike Masnick, despite reports late last year that the agency was going to drop the effort.

  • Boston is creating a new government post: Chief Digital Officer.

  • Egyptian democracy activists are mourning the death of 31-year-old blogger Bassem Sabry.

  • The Onion is launching Clickhole.com, taking aim at Buzzfeed and Upworthy, inspired by this saying from the Dalai Lama: "A life spend in service to others has no purpose without a strong social media presence that raises brand awareness."

News Briefs

RSS Feed tuesday >

First POST: Company

The global "Snowden effect" is huge; how many consumer-facing online services fail the user privacy test; the Dems' 2016 digital to-do list; and much, much more. GO

monday >

First POST: Mood Slime

The Sony email leak reveals the MPAA's campaign against Google; how Uber is lobbying in local markets; mapping the #MillionsMarchNYC; and much, much more. GO

friday >

First POST: Cloudy

What the Internet is not; new analysis of public opinion on net neutrality; how cloud backup apparently foiled a police coverup; and much, much more. GO

thursday >

First POST: Records

Is the future of citizen journalism vigilantism?; one tech mogul's vocal support for CIA torture; a cri de couer from the founder of the Pirate Bay; and much, much more. GO

Web Index Sees Impact of Net Neutrality, Surveillance and Copyright Laws

Denmark, Finland, Norway, the United Kingdom and Sweden have come out on top of the Web Index, a ranking of the Web Foundation measuring the economic, social and political benefit that countries gain from the web. The United States is at number six. For the authors of the report accompanying the index, the results reflect how inequality has an impact on access to the web. "Nordic policy-makers have been quick to adopt and promote the free Internet - and open access to information - as a 21st century public good," the report states. " Others, as this year's findings show, need to move fast to catch up." The report attributes the Scandinavian countries' advantage to the countries' broader efforts to invest in public goods and establish a welfare and acting against " excess concentrations of wealth and power." With the lower inequality in those countries than in others, "the skills, means and freedoms to benefit from new technologies are widespread, which helps to explain why Scandinavian countries score highly on the political, social and economic impact of the Web GO

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