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First POST: Unimaginable

BY Micah L. Sifry | Thursday, October 2 2014

How social media has changed Hong Kong's democracy movement; what the "sharing economy" isn't; Facebook's apology to LGBTQ users; and much, much more. Read More

Uber Drivers Organize Themselves in Seattle, Other Drivers Look to Do Same

BY Sam Roudman | Tuesday, May 27 2014

Seattle. Credit: Bala Sivakumar, Flickr.

About 9 months ago, Daniel Ajema, a 33-year-old law student moonlighting as a driver for Uber, ran into a fellow driver in a gas station parking lot. The man had just been fired for getting poor ratings from passengers. But as a private contractor, like every other driver for the app based transportation network, he had no recourse to the company. What could he do? Two Sundays ago, a couple hundred Uber drivers provided an answer, by forming a labor group with the help of the local Teamsters union, called the App-Based Drivers Association. The group won’t have the full powers of a union, for instance leadership can’t vote to make its entire membership strike. But with about a third of Seattle drivers signed on, the group hopes to use its leverage to advocate for greater transparency and responsiveness from the $12 billion company. Read More

WeGov

Sharing Cities: The Next Global Trend?

BY Jessica McKenzie | Tuesday, November 12 2013

They always told us to share when we were kids, but can we as adults? (Flickr/platinumblondelife)

More and more people are starting to believe in the power of sharing and in its ability to enact social change. At the end of September, the nonprofit news and activism site Shareable launched the Sharing Cities Network to support innovators and activists working to make cities around the world more sharing. In October, they hosted a two week long Map Jam in cities around the world, in which local members of the Sharing Cities Network mapped sharing resources. They set a goal of mapping 25 cities with 25 local teams, but in the end more than 55 different city teams participated.

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New York Attorney General Demands Airbnb Info

BY Sam Roudman | Monday, October 7 2013

Airbnb is happy to help its users rent spare rooms to strangers, but less happy to share their information with New York's attorney general. The New York Daily News reported today that Eric Schneiderman issued the company a subpoena demanding data on its New York renters, who might be in violation of a 2011 law intended to tamp down on illegal hotels. In response, Airbnb issued a statement saying the following: "We always want to work with governments to make the Airbnb community stronger, but at this point, this demand is unreasonably broad and we will fight it with everything we’ve got." Read More

Facebook Posts About Puppies, Upworthy is Coming for You

BY Nick Judd | Monday, May 7 2012

MoveOn.org board president Eli Pariser's new social-content startup, Upworthy, had a bit of a milestone recently: It generated over 270,000 views for this Obama for America campaign video, a response to an attack ad from the Koch family-backed Americans for Prosperity, largely just by changing the headline. Read More

EnemyGraph, the App that Lets You Share the Names You Love to Hate

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, April 4 2012

The creators of EnemyGraph, a Facebook app that asks you to indicate your enemies rather than your friends, are back in the laboratory. The application lets users indicate people or ideas they hate — either friends or celebrities — and select an archenemy to tell the world who or what they hate most of all. It was created by University of Texas at Dallas Emerging Media and Communication student Bradley Griffith, the emerging media program director, Dean Terry, and Harrison Massey, also a student in the program. "I feel like our intuition about people wanting to express dislike about a variety of things in an aggregated fashion and in a social context has been confirmed," Dean Terry, the director of the emerging media program at UT-Dalls, wrote to me in an email earlier this week. "The next step is to think about how to facilitate alliances around things people are upset about." Read More