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Weekly Global Readings: Transparency

BY Lisa Goldman and Antonella Napolitano | Wednesday, January 30 2013

Does Open Data make development more accountable? Transparency International tries to answer the question, using Colombia as a case study.

The Nieman Journalism Lab reports on a new phone app that helps verify events reported on social media.

Bulgaria held its Big Brother Awards this week. The anti-awards went to the 10 companies, institutions and individuals who have done the most to invade personal privacy.

On Chinese social media, the expression "got invited to tea" is a euphemism used by dissidents indicating they have been called in for questioning by the police.

When security forces failed to arrive after thugs broke into and shot up a Cairo luxury hotel near Tahrir Square this week, hotel staff sent out an SOS via Twitter.

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News Briefs

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Beyond @Congressedits, Capitol Hill Looks for Entry to Wikipedia

As he recently told techPresident, the creator of Congressedits did not aim to make Members of Congress look bad, but said he hoped that they would recognize the importance of Wikipedia as a public space and engage more with its community. "If staffers and politicians identified as Wikipedians, that would be super. You could imagine politicians' home pages with a list of their recent edits, that they would be proud of the things that they are doing." On Capitol Hill, there is in fact interest in making that vision a reality, starting off with an initial conversation that could create a framework for more Wikipedians in Congress. GO

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In the Philippines, Citizens Go Undercover With Bantay to Monitor Public Offices

The Philippines, a country of almost 100 million, is considered among the most corrupt country in Southeast Asia, despite a boost in Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index in the past few years (from 134th in 2010 to 94th in 2013 out of 175.) Corruption involves all levels of government, but benefits also from a mindset of tolerance, says Happy Feraren, the co-founder of Bantay.ph, an anti-corruption educational initiative that teaches citizens how to monitor the quality of government services, sometimes by going undercover. GO

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