Why Fake News is a Like a Big Mac

August 18, 2017

We are now well into what many have called the “fake news” crisis, a now overused term. As has been pointed out before, fake news is nothing new. Misinformation, slander and propaganda are beloved tools of those who seek to gain or retain political power and social control. While it is nothing new, I also […]

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Fever with a Purpose in the Time of Trump

December 21, 2016

When my children were young, I looked to many sources of wisdom for guidance. Some of my favorites came from Rudolf Steiner, philosopher king of the Waldorf tradition where children only use wooden toys and screens are forbidden. I appreciated Steiner’s focus on a holistic world, deeply grounded in nature and the turning of the […]

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When Women Fill the White House

July 31, 2016

“I can say with confidence there has never been a man or a woman more qualified than Hillary Clinton to serve as president of the United States of America.” — President Barack Obama With those words, President Barack Obama endorsed the first woman ever to be nominated by a major party to run for President […]

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How Many Cows for an Educated Girl?

April 23, 2016

“The pen [education] is a good thing. It’s good when you learn how to read and how to write and how to use the pen in your life. . . . If you have a small mind, you can just remain in the village with your family and live an empty life. But if you […]

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Combatting Corruption in Ukraine: Investigative Reporting from Slidstvo.info

April 23, 2016

For Ukraine to continue receiving the international support it will need to rebuild its economy and resist pressure from Russia, it must quickly get a handle on internal corruption. The $17.5 billion package from the IMF requires stringent oversight and anti-corruption measures. This is easier said than done in a country that until recently was controlled […]

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A Reminder from Eleanor and FDR

September 26, 2014

I was starkly reminded while listening to a panel at Brookings yesterday about the future of the Internet, that the most critical global negotiations of our time – a free and open Internet, climate change – share a common theme. In both of these cases, global cooperation creates a clear and obvious greater good for […]

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Navigating the Grey Area – Curation, Storytelling and Wisdom in the Age of Data

January 17, 2013

One of the great frustrations of networked culture is how hard it is to find exactly what you are looking for in the scads of useless information that fills the web.  I always have the lingering sense that there is a vacation, a flight, a pair of pants or an article out there that I […]

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The Mobile Alliance for Global Good

September 28, 2012

I have been a little quiet on this blog as of late.  And for good reason!  I have been totally heads-down on a new project, the Mobile Alliance for Global Good, the brainchild of Larry Irving, telco guru and all-around great guy.  Larry brought me on board to develop the strategy and business plan for […]

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Big Data Meets Small Data

July 10, 2012

I recently attended a day full of Big Data conversations at UC Berkeley. We heard from investors and startups, academics and technology professionals.  These people are thinking hard about the promises of Big Data.  I left with one overriding thought.  Big Data must remain deeply connected to the relatively small but very powerful element of […]

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The Promise of the Personal Cloud

May 17, 2012

The term “personal cloud” is only about a year old and has a wildly disparate set of meanings.  For some, services such as Facebook, Dropbox, and SugarSynch are personal clouds.  For others the gold standard is iCloud, which stores data and media and manages your apps from all your devices – as long as they […]

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Smart Disclosure: Innovation in Personal Data

April 24, 2012

It is no secret that the fitful economic recovery that continues to plague us could really use some spurs to innovation.   But good ideas seem to fall by the wayside as Washington remains in an intractable political deadlock.  Into this mess comes a simple idea with big potential – Smart Disclosure.  Spearheaded by Cass Sunstein, […]

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Monetizing Privacy

March 20, 2012

One of the first empirical studies about what we are willing to pay for privacy was released last week.  The study was conducted in Germany by the European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA) and included 443 subjects in both the field and a laboratory setting.  The study focused only on monetary transactions — not […]

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Has the Web Turned Into a Popularity Contest?

February 13, 2012

The Internet and the WWW are in their relative infancy.  20 years is just not a lot of time for anything to reach maturity.   I think it is safe to say that the web has grown from a wild, unfettered space full of creative and yet fairly unkempt growth to a place dominated by apps […]

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Navigating Information Online: Islands or Tribes?

January 10, 2012

In a few short decades, too much information has become a fact of life.  We are all drowning in it.  How we sift, filter and navigate the massive sea of information has emerged as a profound personal, political and cultural issue. This past year, Eli Pariser, in his book The Filter Bubble, picked up on […]

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Online Censorship: Controlled by the Fuzzy Line

December 1, 2011

Online censorship in repressive countries is a complex and often dangerous cat and mouse game, played in the context of a new digital co-dependence.  Most countries, even repressive ones, depend increasingly on the Internet as an engine of economic growth and have a vested interest in building a thriving online space. At the same time, […]

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#OWS and the Paradox of Empowered Networks

November 10, 2011

The leaderless, amorphous Occupy movement is the latest embodiment of the bottom-up, decentralized ideals of open source.   Any yet the path from open source to #OWS is a little more circuitous than it might appear.  Tracing the story offers some interesting insights on the way forward. Open source, also called commons-based peer production (CMPP) is […]

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Real Names in the Networked Global Community

September 9, 2011

At the recent Edinburgh International TV Festival, Andy Carvin of NPR tweeted a question to Eric Schmidt — “How does Google justify its real names only policy on Google+ when it could put some people at grave risk?”  Carvin was referring to places like Libya and Syria where the government routinely uses the Internet as […]

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Social Media and the Poverty of Ideas: New Forms for New Ideas

August 25, 2011

The saying that “everything that is old is new again” has particular resonance as we stand in the midst of historic political gridlock and renewed economic shocks.   It feels like we are re-entering a pre-Enlightenment land of superstition and orthodoxy, a land where we have no appetite for civil dialogue and debate.  This is the […]

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Social Media and Meritocracy: The Myth Reborn

July 10, 2011

The roots of the modern meritocratic dream were planted in the 1950s by a British civil servant named  Michael Young.  His novel The Rise of the Meritocracy (1958) painted a picture of far-distant 2034, where society would be guided by near-perfect IQ tests to sort the more intelligent and gifted into positions of social power.  […]

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Facebook Users More Trusting and Politically Engaged

June 19, 2011

The new Pew study out this week, Social networking sites and our lives, paints a very rosy picture of social networking (SNS).  SNS is associated with more trust, larger networks, more political engagement and greater social support.  Key findings from the study include: ♦  Facebook is the clear winner in the world of SNS.  59% […]

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