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First POST: Company

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, December 16 2014


  • According to a new international survey on Internet security and trust, about 700 million people have taken steps to increase their online privacy since hearing of Edward Snowden's revelations about NSA and GCHQ surveillance, analyst Bruce Schneier reports.

  • Of 29 major consumer-facing web companies--including social networks, fitness tracking, dating, payment, messaging, mapping and music apps, only ten responded directly to a series of questions form BuzzFeed's Charlie Warzel about how their privacy policies governed employee access to their users' data. (Most of their so-called privacy policies, which really must be referred to as "data usage" policies, are silent on the issue.) In fairness, the companies were only given 36 hours to comment.

  • Microsoft has been joined in its fight against US Justice Department's demand that hand over emails on its servers in Dublin by some heavy-hitters from tech, business and media, including Apple, Amazon, Cisco, eBay, Verizon, the US Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers, ABC, CNN, Fox News and the Guardian, Dominic Rushe reports. Talk about strange bedfellows!

  • In the Nation, Mike Konczal and Bryce Covert offer a radical suggestion for dealing with Uber, which they argue isn't a "sharing economy" company at all but just a low-wage management operation where the workers provide most of the capital: turn it into a worker-owned cooperative.

  • OpenCorporates has launched its "Map the Banks" project, seeking to crowdsource insight into the global banking system. If you have data-scraping skills in Python or Ruby, check it out.

  • It's a shame that The Racket died stillborn--according to this inside account by Mat Honan in Wired, its editorial team had some inspired ideas for scrambling the staid world of political journalism, including artificially inflating TNR editor Franklin Foer's Twitter follower account and creating "Apartment 538, a Facebook community of people who look like Nate Silver," so they could poll them.

  • Reporting back from RootsCamp 2014, the annual progressive unconference for political organizers, Blue State Digital's Matthew McGregor offers this Storify of "The Dems' 2016 Digital To-Do List."