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ProPublica's Reporting Network Spot-Checks First Wave of Stimulus Construction

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, August 19 2009

ProPublica's Reporting Network is the non-profit news group's nascent attempt to tap into the eyes and ears of interested amateurs. Or at least interested reporters not on ProPublica's payroll. Read More

Your Assignment: Spot Check Stimulus Spending

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, July 21 2009

As of July 10th, more than $64 billion in stimulus spending has rolled out of the federal treasury, and construction projects are taking place across the country. At least we think they are. Read More

Clearing the Cache: Palin's Facebook Pals Soar

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, July 6 2009

U.S. bloggers like WhiteHouse.gov. A lot more than a year ago, Morningside Analytics shows (with pretty pictures, too). Read More

Toward Bigger and Bolder Collaborative Disclosure

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, April 20 2009

CJR's Clint Hendler profiles what ProPublica has been up to regarding amassing and posting the White House ethics and financial disclosure forms that the executive would rather dribble out upon request. From the White ... Read More

Requested Once, Read Forever: ProPublica Shortcuts White House's Disclosure Plan

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, April 9 2009

The White House recently took a sizable step in the direction of openness by putting up a handy online form through which anyone can request the financial and ethics disclosure forms for White House officials. Type in ... Read More

Clearing the Cache: What If President Obama Twittered?

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, March 17 2009

Politico asks "Are Politicians Spamming YouTube?" Um, Is the Pope Catholic? Federal Computer Week is on Vivek Kundra watch duty. So is InformationWeek, but befitting their name, their information is weak... Read More

Three Modest Proposals for Online Journalism's Future

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, March 16 2009

If you follow me on Twitter, you probably noticed that I spent my lunch hour at the Open Society Institute today for a talk on "The Future of News" by Paul Steiger, the longtime managing editor of the Wall Street ... Read More

Transparency and Public Shaming: Pakistan Tackles Tax Evasion

In Pakistan, where only one in 200 citizens files their income tax return, authorities published a directory of taxpayers' details for the first time. Officials explained the decision as an attempt to shame defaulters into paying up.

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wednesday >

Facebook Seeks Approval as Financial Service in Ireland. Is the Developing World Next?

On April 13 the Financial Times reported that Facebook is only weeks away from being approved as a financial service in Ireland. Is this foray into e-money motivated by Facebook's desire to conquer the developing world before other corporate Internet giants do? Maybe.

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The Rise and Fall of Iran's “Blogestan”

The robust community of Iranian bloggers—sometimes nicknamed “Blogestan”—has shrunk since its heyday between 2002 – 2010. “Whither Blogestan,” a recent report from the University of Pennsylvania's Iran Media Program sought to find out how and why. The researchers performed a web crawling analysis of Blogestan, survey 165 Persian blog users, and conducted 20 interviews with influential bloggers in the Persian community. They found multiple causes of the decline in blogging, including increased social media use and interference from authorities.

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tuesday >

Weekly Readings: What the Govt Wants to Know

A roundup of interesting reads and stories from around the web. GO

Russia to Treat Bloggers Like Mass Media Because "the F*cking Journalists Won't Stop Writing"

The worldwide debate over who is and who isn't a journalist has raged since digital media made it much easier for citizen journalists and other “amateurs” to compete with the big guys. In the United States, journalists are entitled to certain protections under the law, such as the right to confidential sources. As such, many argue that blogging should qualify as journalism because independent writers deserve the same legal protections as corporate employees. In Russia, however, earning a place equal to mass media means additional regulations and obligations, which some say will lead to the repression of free speech.

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Politics for People: Demanding Transparent and Ethical Lobbying in the EU

Today the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) launched a campaign called Politics for People that asks candidates for the European Parliament to pledge to stand up to secretive industry lobbyists and to advocate for transparency. The Politics for People website connects voters with information about their MEP candidates and encourages them to reach out on Facebook, Twitter or by email to ask them to sign the pledge.

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monday >

Security Agencies Given Full Access to Telecom Data Even Though "All Lebanese Can Not Be Suspects"

In late March, Lebanese government ministers granted security agencies unrestricted access to telecommunications data in spite of some ministers objections that it violates privacy rights. Global Voices reports that the policy violates Lebanon's existing surveillance and privacy law, Law 140, but has gotten little coverage from the country's mainstream media.

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