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First POST: Transparency Matters

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, April 1 2015

A return to pre-Watergate days?; Jeb Bush has already, apparently, forgotten about "transparency matters"; ghostwriting for government agencies; X-Lab going independent; and much, much more. Read More

First POST: Increasing

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, October 3 2014

Debating the merits of FireChat for Hong Kong's protests; how Occupy Central could win; how the DCCC's email fundraising tactics have gone crazy; and much, much more. Read More

The Dangers of Off-Grid Social Networking in Hong Kong and Beyond

BY Sascha Meinrath | Thursday, October 2 2014

FireChat doesn't need the Internet but it is most certainly not risk-free (Melies The Bunny/flickr)

Sascha Meinrath, who has been dubbed the "community Internet pioneer," provides a list of reasons why off-grid tools like FireChat need to be used with a dose of caution. Read More

X-Lab Prepares for Tech Policy Battles in the Far Future, Three Years Off

BY Sam Roudman | Tuesday, May 13 2014

Sascha Meinrath, thinking about the future, presumably. Source: Peretz Pertansky, Wikimedia Commons

For the past seven years Sascha Meinrath and his team at the New America Foundation have made the Open Technology Institute a force for promoting a more open, accessible internet. He has informed internet policy, and built innovative tools, like the Commotion mesh network. He has also found that much of the work of being a tech policy guru comes in reacting to crises–from Snowden’s leaks to the potential death of net neutrality. “Bad things happen and then we leap into action and do the best we can,” he says. “Then all of the sudden everyone is like ‘Oh my god. This is so horrendously bad.’ And then we’re trying to fix what’s clearly broken.” To set the tech policy agenda rather than react to it, Meinrath is starting up a new program under the New America foundation called X-Lab. Read More

First POST: Adjustments

BY Micah L. Sifry | Thursday, May 1 2014

The RNC may be having trouble with its tech renaissance; how Facebook is "throttling" the organic reach of nonprofits and political causes; the demise of Twitter as a platform for useful conversation; and much, much more. Read More

First POST: Reverberations

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, October 7 2013

Exclusively for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers: The NSA vs the Tor Project; was Healthcare.gov just overwhelmed by unexpected demand; China's "maker" movement; the Supreme Court still "doesn't get" email; and much, much more. Read More

First POST: Smorgasbord

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, September 23 2013

Exclusively for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers: New details on how the NSA's public review panel is being managed by the people its supposed to oversee; Ecuador wants to reimagine itself as a peer-to-peer network; Kate Losse accuses Dave Eggers of appropriating her Facebook memoir; a nifty new Twitter search tool from the Knight Lab at Northwestern; and much, much more. Read More

"Internet in a Suitcase:" Not Really in a Suitcase, But Really On Its Way

BY Miranda Neubauer | Thursday, March 21 2013

The so-called "Internet in a suitcase" project reached another milestone Wednesday as the New America Foundation's Open Technology Institute announced the public developer release of the free open source wireless networking platform Commotion Beta. Read More

Ben Scott, State Department's Former Innovation Advisor, Joins New America Foundation

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Monday, July 23 2012

Ben Scott, one of Hillary Clinton's former innovation advisors at the State Department, has joined the New America Foundation. Scott will be based in Berlin, where he is currently a visiting fellow at the German think ... Read More

#PDF12: The Radical Power of the Internet Public

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, June 13 2012

Chris Soghoian at Personal Democracy Forum 2012. Photo: Esty Stein / PDM

Tuesday morning at PDF12, there were five quick keynote talks in a row that could serve as a 50-minute primer on the radical power of the Internet public to change the world, why it's so important to nurture that public, where some of the threats to the Internet are coming from, and how people are routing around them to build a future "intranet" that might well stand free from governmental and corporate control. They were, in order, from Chris Soghoian, Dave Parry, Peter Fein, Sascha Meinrath and Deanna Zandt. You can watch them in order below. Read More