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First POST: Rumblings

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, May 30 2014

Edward Snowden and the NSA duke it out; Google pushed for improvements in the USA Freedom Act; tech moguls come out as backers of Lawrence Lessig's SuperPAC; and much, much more Read More

The Rise of the Count(er) Culture: Notes on Transparency Camp 2012

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, April 30 2012

Transparency Camp 2012: Session Wall (Photo: Micah L. Sifry)

This year at Transparency Camp, not only did newly installed White House Chief Technology Office Todd Park give one of his trademark effusive speeches on the power of open data, it was easy to spot people from a variety of agencies including the Treasury Department, the FCC, EPA, NASA, the World Bank, the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board, and Congress. Second, the people attending now spread far beyond the Beltway. About forty international transparency activists were on hand, some coming for their second year in a row. And lots of local governments and issue advocacy groups were represented, a sign that the idea of using tech and data to make government work better is spreading beyond the proverbial early adopter crowd. Read More

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Beyond @Congressedits, Capitol Hill Looks for Entry to Wikipedia

As he recently told techPresident, the creator of Congressedits did not aim to make Members of Congress look bad, but said he hoped that they would recognize the importance of Wikipedia as a public space and engage more with its community. "If staffers and politicians identified as Wikipedians, that would be super. You could imagine politicians' home pages with a list of their recent edits, that they would be proud of the things that they are doing." On Capitol Hill, there is in fact interest in making that vision a reality, starting off with an initial conversation that could create a framework for more Wikipedians in Congress. GO

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In the Philippines, Citizens Go Undercover With Bantay to Monitor Public Offices

The Philippines, a country of almost 100 million, is considered among the most corrupt country in Southeast Asia, despite a boost in Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index in the past few years (from 134th in 2010 to 94th in 2013 out of 175.) Corruption involves all levels of government, but benefits also from a mindset of tolerance, says Happy Feraren, the co-founder of Bantay.ph, an anti-corruption educational initiative that teaches citizens how to monitor the quality of government services, sometimes by going undercover. GO

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