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WeGov

As Prop, Cudgel or Sensor, Digital Maps Have a Future in Global Activism

BY Lisa Goldman | Wednesday, January 16 2013

Screenshot from sahelresponse.org

Over the past five years, mapping has become an indispensable part of our daily lives, whether it is used for commercial purposes or crisis management. While some development workers and community organizers feel it is overhyped as a tool for certain types of crisis management, crisis workers and aid agencies find it indispensable. Read More

WeGov

Slovenian Pirates Might Be Tested Sooner Than Expected

BY Antonella Napolitano | Wednesday, January 16 2013

Photo of Slovenian Pirates from the Pirate Times

The Pirate Party of Slovenia (Piratska stranka Slovenije) started, as in most countries, as a movement focused on digital issues and it has been around for three years now. But countrywide protests against austerity and political corruption — and, possibly, upcoming elections — might force them to test their strength sooner than planned. Read More

WeGov

Weekly Global Readings: Repression

BY Lisa Goldman | Wednesday, January 9 2013

From today, techPresident will publish a weekly global mashup of stories about the intersection of technology, democracy and civil society. Read More

WeGov

Israeli Transparency NGO Shows Voters How to Cast Informed Ballots

BY Lisa Goldman | Thursday, January 3 2013

Screengrab from Open Knesset website

As Israelis prepare to cast their ballots in national elections on January 22, the country's only transparency NGO has launched a campaign to encourage voters to educate themselves by consulting their Open Knesset website, where they can find previously unavailable information about how their legislators are doing their jobs and whether they are representing their constituents as they would wish to be represented. Read More

WeGov

What Technology Can and Cannot Do In the Fight Against Corruption

BY David Eaves | Thursday, January 3 2013

There are a slew of newly organized and emergent efforts to tackle various forms of corruption, particularly by using new technology, from the global — such as the Open Government Partnership, the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative and Transparency International — to the very local — such as ipaidabribe and its various clones. These efforts have also benefited from a number of traditional players, like state and independent regulators, apparently becoming more aggressive in enforcing laws. There's a lot to celebrate. But there are a few words of caution I would like to add to the conversation. Read More

WeGov

In Egypt, the Government Issues Official Announcements on Facebook

BY Lisa Goldman | Monday, December 17 2012

Cairo protester's sign says "no to the constitution" (credit: Hossam El Hamalawy)

Last week the Egyptian government announced draconian tax increases and subsidy reductions that caused a huge wave of protest. Within hours, the president revoked the announcement — in the middle of the night, on Facebook. Read More

WeGov

Thawing Relations Between Transparency Activists and Government in Russia Yield Results

BY David Eaves | Monday, December 17 2012

The Russian transparency environment is not without both opportunities and innovations. Legally, there are requirements for government transparency encoded in Russian law — they are however infrequently adhered to. But this does give advocates some legal ground to stand on. And politically, there is opportunity as well. The government is talking more and more about fighting corruption, creating room for both advocates and government officials to talk about how transparency could play a role in addressing this issue. Read More

WeGov

Internet Freedom Dominates Debate at International Telecommunications Union Conference in Dubai

BY Julia Wetherell | Friday, December 14 2012

Dr Hamadoun I. Touré, Secretary-General, ITU, speaking at the closing ceremony at WCIT 2012 (credit: ITU/Flickr)

As we reported Monday, the ITU was negotiating revisions to its 1988 international communications treaty this week in Dubai. Now controversial measures added to the treaty on the governance of the Internet have thwarted a consensus. Read More

WeGov

Women Programmers Fight Sexual Harassment at India’s First All-Female Hackathon

BY Julia Wetherell | Thursday, December 13 2012

Bangalore was the scene of the first all-female hackathon in India this week. The event brought developers together to collaborate on humanitarian projects that could improve the lives of women across the country. Read More

WeGov

Despite Some Glitches, Ghana's New Biometric Voting System Widely Viewed as a Success

BY Gabriela Barnuevo | Thursday, December 13 2012

Biometric voting machine at a Ghanaian polling station (credit: Gabriela Barnuevo)

Technology dominated Ghana's recent presidential elections, with candidates using popular social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook to spread their messages. But it was the introduction of a biometric voter identification system that captured the most attention. Read More