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First POST: Corruption, Shmorruption!

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, April 2 2014

The Supreme Court upends the rest of the campaign finance system; Mozilla's embattled CEO makes his case; peer-to-peer mobile bluetooth messaging service FireChat takes off in Taiwan; and much, much more. Read More

NYC Mayoral Candidates Outline Post-Bloomberg Tech Agendas

BY Miranda Neubauer | Thursday, August 15 2013

Screenshot of WABC debate

Four leading candidates for New York City, who already are using technology to reach out to voters, recently outlined their technology policy priorities in interview sessions hosted by the New York Tech Meetup* at ThoughtWorks headquarters in late July, emphasizing the importance of education, accessibility, transparency, infrastructure, partnerships with the technology community and affordability. The videos of these sessions were posted late Monday; Meetup executive director Jessica Lawrence said that the interviews are continuing and more videos will be posted soon. Read More

Teddy Goff and Joe Rospars On How Obama's Campaign Is Trying to Get Back to the "We"

BY Nick Judd | Friday, February 17 2012

Getting back to the "we" of Barack Obama's 2008 campaign — the now-legendary level of energy and individual commitment from grassroots volunteers that Obama was able to harness en route to an improbable victory in the Democratic primary and then in the general election for the presidency of the United States — is in many ways the "central challenge" of his 2012 re-election effort, Obama for America Digital Director Teddy Goff said Friday.Speaking with Obama's chief digital strategist, Joe Rospars, and techPresident publisher Andrew Rasiej at a Social Media Week event in a conference room at Thomson-Reuters with a panoramic view of New York City, Goff described the myriad ways Obama's re-election effort is looking to harness digital tools to connect with voters, whether they be supporters from 2008 or newcomers to politics.

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Happening Now: #140conf

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, June 15 2011

At the 92nd Street Y here in New York City, 140 Characters Conference is getting into gear. A conference about the real-time web's impact on business and society, this year it will feature a few names that might be ... Read More

Firefighters Downloading Building Blueprints on the Way to a Fire: You Heard It Here First

BY Micah L. Sifry | Thursday, January 27 2011

When President Obama sought, during Tuesday's State of the Union Address, to dramatize the power and value of building out America's high-speed broadband infrastructure, he offered a compelling illustration: "It’s ... Read More

Rasiej Wins eDemocracy 2008 Award in Paris

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, October 17 2008

Here's a big Friday afternoon trans-Atlantic cheer for my partner Andrew Rasiej, founder of Personal Democracy Forum and co-founder and publisher of this blog. He just won an "eDemocracy 2008" award from the World ... Read More

PdF2008: Edwards, Lessig, Zittrain, Pesce Keynotes Are Up on Pdf.Blip.tv

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, July 2 2008

The first videos of plenary sessions from "Personal Democracy Forum 2008: Rebooting the System" are now available on our Blip.tv channel at pdf.blip.tv. Now playing: Elizabeth (and John) Edwards, Lawrence Lessig, ... Read More

PdF 2008: Elizabeth (and John) Edwards Drop in on the Conference via Skype Video

BY Micah L. Sifry | Thursday, June 26 2008

Here's the clip of Andrew Rasiej interviewing Elizabeth Edwards at home via Skype video Monday at PdF2008, when John Edwards happens to drop in. They discuss the impact of the Internet on politics 2008. Edwards says it's ... Read More

New Internet-Powered Contender to Enter the Race?

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, June 11 2008

OMG, it looks like my partner and techPresident/PdF co-founder Andrew Rasiej has broken his promise to me to never run for office again! He keeps saying, what if a candidate got into the race and promised to only run ... Read More

Daily Digest: Online Money Chase in Hyperdrive

BY Micah L. Sifry | Thursday, February 7 2008

Emailing Democratic superdelegates; divining why Silicon Valley voting for Clinton; youth registration and voting keeps rising; rating the best political data visualizations; Obama and Clinton keep raising huge amounts ... Read More

News Briefs

RSS Feed 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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friday >

In Google Hangout, NYC Mayor de Blasio Talks Tech and Outer Borough Potential

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio followed the lead of President Obama and New York City Council member Ben Kallos Friday by participating in a Google Hangout to help mark his first 100 days in office, in which the conversation focused on expanding access to technology opportunities through education and ensuring that the needs of the so-called "outer boroughs" aren't overlooked. GO

thursday >

In Pakistan, A Hypocritical Gov't Ignores Calls To End YouTube Ban

YouTube has been blocked in Pakistan by executive order since September 2012, after the “blasphemous” video Innocence of Muslims started riots in the Middle East. Since then, civil society organizations and Internet rights advocacy groups like Bolo Bhi and Bytes for All have been working to lift the ban. Last August the return of YouTube seemed imminent—the then-new IT Minister Anusha Rehman spoke optimistically and her party, which had won the majority a few months before, was said to be “seriously contemplating” ending the ban. And yet since then, Rehman and her party, the conservative Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N), have done everything in their power to maintain the status quo.

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The #NotABugSplat Campaign Aims to Give Drone Operators Pause Before They Strike

In the #NotABugSplat campaign that launched this week, a group of American, French and Pakistani artists sought to raise awareness of the effects of drone strikes by placing a field-sized image of a young girl, orphaned when a drone strike killed her family, in a heavily targeted region of Pakistan’s Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Province. Its giant size is visible to those who operate drone strikes as well as in satellite imagery. GO

Boston and Cambridge Move Towards More Open Data

The Boston City Council is now considering an ordinance which would require Boston city agencies and departments to make government data available online using open standards. Boston City Councilor At Large Michelle Wu, who introduced the legislation Wednesday, officially announced her proposal Monday, the same day Boston Mayor Martin Walsh issued an executive order establishing an open data policy under which all city departments are directed to publish appropriate data sets under established accessibility, API and format standards. GO

YouTube Still Blocked In Turkey, Even After Courts Rule It Violates Human Rights, Infringes on Free Speech

Reuters reports that even after a Turkish court ruled to lift the ban on YouTube, Turkey's telecommunications companies continue to block the video sharing site.

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