Posts by Micah L. Sifry

Meanwhile, Back in Tunisia, They're Drafting a Constitution on PiratePad

March 9, 2011

Micah L. Sifry

Well, not exactly. But we keep seeing hints and signs that the revolutionary spirit of Tunisia is heavily influenced by open source culture, or what BoingBoing might call "happy mutant" thinking. To wit, on March 4th, Tunisia's new Minister of Youth and Sports Slim Amamou, who is better known as an activist blogger who has been deeply involved in the democracy movement there, tweeted: "Modifions collaborativement la constitution.

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A New Must-Read: Robert Manne's "The Cypherpunk Revolutionary Julian Assange"

March 6, 2011

Micah L. Sifry

It will take you a half hour to read Robert Manne's new essay on Julian Assange, but trust me, if you are one of those people who have been transfixed by the epic and world-shaking trajectory of WikiLeaks, the time will be well spent. The 15,000 word article was written for The Monthly, an Australian public affairs magazine that Manne is the chairman of, and it's behind a paywall there. It has also been posted in full on Cryptome.

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The New Age of Transparency: A Scorecard of Sorts

March 2, 2011

Micah L. Sifry

It seems as though digital information is leaking out, or sort of leaking out, all over the place, rearranging and upsetting little ecosystems of power in all kinds of strange and unpredictable ways. In some cases, the information is wide open, like the HBGary emails. In others, it's partially open, like the State Department cables, which are being selectively leaked and perused by various gatekeepers. And in the case of the emails from reporters and media bookers that Kurt Bardella, Rep.

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The 2012 File on Newt Gingrich: How's He Doing Online?

March 1, 2011

Micah L. Sifry

With ABC News reporting that former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is about to become the first Republican to formally throw his hat into the 2012 presidential sweepstakes by creating a "presidential exploratory committee," we here at techPresident thought it might not hurt to pull together some baseline information about his online presence.

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Quote of the Day: Blind Carbon and Other Online Misadventures

March 1, 2011

Micah L. Sifry

Am I bcc’ing him on every e-mail I send out? Of course not.



— Kurt Bardella, spokesperson for Rep. Darrell Issa's Oversight and Government Reform Committee, yesterday, on being asked about whether he was covertly sharing his email correspondence with reporters with The New York Times' Mark Liebovich. Bardella resigned today after questions first raised by Politico mushroomed.

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Two Years Later: Recovery.gov Still Sucks At Public Engagement

February 28, 2011

Micah L. Sifry

Two years ago, Barack Obama promised the public that he was going to run government in a more transparent and interactive way.

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#WeAreWI and #USuncut Saturday: Will the Left Show Some Muscle? [UPDATED]

February 25, 2011

Micah L. Sifry

American progressives are betting that tomorrow will be a red letter day for grassroots activism. In a matter of days and almost entirely without national attention or leadership by the traditional players, but with a lot of social media organizing, people are planning to rally in all fifty state capitols and about fifteen major cities to show their solidarity with the striking workers of Wisconsin. All the email networks are lit up, and MoveOn is planning to somehow stream live video from all the rallies onto one mass LiveStream page on MoveOn.org.

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After Egypt: The "Democratic Republic of Facebook" Struggles to Grow Up [UPDATED]

February 25, 2011

Micah L. Sifry

A few days ago, Dr. Rasha Abdulla, an expert on the role of the Internet in Egypt who teaches at the American University in Cairo (and who I'm pleased will be speaking at Personal Democracy Forum this June in New York), told me about a strange experience she had with her Facebook page during the height of the uprising against the Mubarak regime. A video of a defenseless Egyptian man being gunned down by police in Alexandria on January 28th, which she and others had tried to share on their Facebook pages, was mysteriously taken down without explanation during the heat of the protests.

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PdF 2009 Video--danah boyd's "The Not-So-Hidden Politics of Class Online"

July 17, 2009

Micah L. Sifry

In case you missed it, or want to share it with friends and colleagues, here's digital ethnographer danah boyd's talk about race, class, and the disturbing signs of "digital white flight" among Americans online. She takes a close look at how young people seem to be self-segregating between Facebook and MySpace, and challenges to audience to look hard at how online social networks may be reproducing or intensifying social divisions in America.

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Organizing for America, Obama's Sleeping Beast, Starts to Awaken

July 15, 2009

Micah L. Sifry

It looks like Organizing for America, President Obama's de facto field organization based at the DNC, is ramping up its efforts to demonstrate support for health care reform. Last week I took a look at OFA's online directory of upcoming health care canvassing efforts, and found 561 events.

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