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Can a New GOP Tech Marketplace Outpace Democrats?

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, April 4 2013

There's a new entrant into the milieu of Republican firms hoping to modernize the party. Earlier this week, former National Republican Senatorial Committee Digital Director Alex Skatell and former Republican Governors Association Executive Director Phil Musser pulled the lid off their new company, MGA Holdings, a three-headed digital hydra that houses a creative agency, a niche media property, and a software development firm. Among Skatell's plans is one to build a new front-end for Republican voter data management. The GOP promises that it will compel its vendors to offer an API that third parties can use to build applications for campaigns that want to make the most of their voter data, Obama-style — and Skatell says he'll be one of the first into that market. Read More

How Campaigns Use of Facebook Data Might Change the 2012 Election

BY Nick Judd | Monday, October 10 2011

More than in any other race to date, Americans may experience the 2012 presidential election through precisely targeted phone calls, visits, tweets and Facebook posts — messages not from the candidates themselves, ... Read More

Meet the ex-Democrat Developer Now Seeking to Sell Tools to the GOP

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, May 18 2011

Steven Adler had to wait five years before he could get back into the political software industry. He did things like this in the meantime. Say you're the co-founder of a company that quickly becomes part of the core ... Read More

NationBuilder Says, 'The Voter File Was Meant to be Free'

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, May 17 2011

NationBuilder and a nonpartisan data firm, Political FORCE, announced a partnership yesterday that promises nationwide voter file access to any of their client campaigns that wants it, with far fewer barriers to entry ... Read More

Training the left's next generation in campaign data

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, December 16 2009

Not sure whether we have David Plouffe and his obsessive attention to numbers to thank for this, or if it has more to do with the rising tide of interest in government data, but the progressive field training program New ... Read More

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In Mexico, A Wiki Makes Corporate Secrets Public

Earlier this year the Latin American NGO Poder launched Quién Es Quién Wiki (Who's Who Wiki), a corporate transparency project more than two years in the making. The hope is that the platform will be the foundation for a citizen-led movement demanding transparency and accountability from businesses in Mexico. Data from Quién Es Quién Wiki is already helping community activists mobilize against foreign companies preparing to mine the mountains of the Sierra Norte de Puebla.

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NY Study Shows How Freedom of Information Can Inform Open Data

On New York State's open data portal, the New York Department of Environmental Conservation has around 40 data resources of varying sizes, such as maps of lakes and ponds and rivers, bird conservation areas and hiking trails. But those datasets do not include several data resources that are most sought after by many New York businesses, a new study from advocacy group Reinvent Albany has found. Welcome to a little-discussed corner of so-called "open government"--while agencies often pay lip service to the cause, the data they actually release is sometimes nowhere close to what is most wanted. GO

Responding to Ferguson, Activists Organize #NMOS14 Vigils Across America In Just 4 Days

This evening peaceful crowds will gather at more than 90 locations around the country to honor the victims of police brutality, most recently the unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown, who was shot and killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, on Saturday. A moment of silence will begin at 20 minutes past 7 p.m. (EST). The vigils are being organized almost entirely online by the writer and activist Feminista Jones (@FeministaJones), with help from others from around the country who have volunteered to coordinate a vigil in their communities. Organizing such a large event in only a few days is a challenge, but in addition to ironing out basic logistics, the National Moment of Silence (#NMOS14) organizers have had to deal with co-optation, misrepresentation, and Google Docs and Facebook pages that are, apparently, buckling under traffic.

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