Risks

Self-censorship in the USA; the new hub for civic tech; and more.


  • Brave new world: A government survey of 41,000 U.S. households finds that privacy concerns have stopped nearly half from doing basic things online like posting to social networks, Andrea Peterson reports for the Washington Post.

  • Starting today, relatively non-wealthy investors can risk anywhere from $2,000 to $100,000 of their own money in start-ups using online platforms to crowdfund themselves, Stacy Cowley reports for the New York Times.

  • Tech and politics: Writing for Civicist, contributing editor An Xiao Mina takes an in-depth look at how the presidential candidates are using social media to reach voters for whom English is not their first language. She writes, “this may be the first presidential campaign to see a candidate post on social media not just in Spanish but Arabic, Hindi, and Vietnamese.”

  • This is civic tech: Liberty Living-Lab’s Audrey Jarre makes the case for Paris as a new hub for civic tech. (Guys, about your website…)

  • Life in Facebookistan: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is meeting Wednesday with a group of conservative media figures in an effort to address the roiling controversy over the company’s curation of news. Among the attendees, reports Brian Stelter for CNN: Glenn Beck, former Bush White House spokeswoman Dana Perino, Arthur Brooks of AEI, commentator SE Cupp, and Zac Moffatt of Targeted Victory. Oh, to be a fly on that wall.

  • Data & Society founder danah boyd points out that no media system can be neutral, and that it the “veneer of objectivity provided by Facebook’s interface” (now punctured), that is driving attention to the problem. She notes, “I have tremendous respect for Mark Zuckerberg, but I think his stance that Facebook will be neutral as long as he’s in charge is a dangerous statement.”

  • What sharing economy? Austin techie Joshua Baer dissects the reasons why Uber and Lyft lost their fight over regulation there, despite massively outspending their opposition.