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First POST: Wartime

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, September 24 2014

Wartime

  • A website claiming that it was about to leak nude photos of actress Emma Watson in retaliation for a powerful feminist speech she gave last week at the United Nations now turns out to have been a marketing stunt by a PR firm, reports Brian Koerber for Mashable. Worse yet, the firm, Rantic Marketing, claims its real purpose was to push for the censorship and shutdown of free-for-all site 4chan.

  • Watson's HeForShe gender solidarity campaign now has more than 100,000 backers worldwide.

  • Josh Stearns, the director of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation's journalism sustainability program, is calling out media organizations for not telling readers how much data about them they may be collecting and how that data is being used. Amen to that. He goes further, insisting that journalists should advocate for reader privacy:

    Journalism has long claimed to serve the public interest. In the digital age, part of that service should be standing up for its users and pushing the ad industry strike a better balance between privacy and tracking. We don’t have to abandon advertising but as journalists and news organizations we should be forceful advocates for better advertising systems that give people more control over how their data is used.

  • The war between Airbnb and New York City's affordable housing activists gets a full-blown treatment by Jessica Pressler in New York magazine.

  • Rehashing the "clicktivism" debate: How Change.org and 38 Degrees have brought e-campaigning to the United Kingdom, by Emma Howard in the Guardian.

  • The Smart Chicago Collaborative has published an in-depth guide to its home-grown method for civic tech engagement, centered on how to build a Civic User Testing Group.

  • David Karpf offers some celebratory thoughts for the White House's We the People e-petition site on its 3rd birthday.

  • Following in Google's footsteps, Facebook is on the verge of ending its relationship with ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council, Joe Garofoli reports for the San Francisco Chronicle.

  • The shoe that didn't drop? The United States has embarked on a massive new bombing campaign in Syria, and my inbox isn't filling up with missives from either the left or the right. (Exception: Credo Action, which is calling for Congress to hold a vote on the war.) How about yours?