Leaking Peace

Modern warfare is not just violence, but also peacebuilding initiatives. One of the problems with releasing 90,000+ documents, as WikiLeaks did, and not reporting on the contents of those documents, as the media didn’t, is that the story of the war becomes skewed. Meaning that anyone trying to make sense of a war that has raged … Continue reading

Notes on Wikileaks

I recently met Julian Assange. My conversation with him helped to shine a light on for Wikileaks’ internal processes, just as Raffi Khatchadourian’s brilliant piece in the New Yorker and Julian’s TED talk also helped to do. Julian’s point, which I agree with, is often that newspapers are failing because of bad journalism. How many … Continue reading

Volunteerism For Solidarity Or Social Capital

Clay Shirky opens the evening on stage, explaining that Ushahidi is a system that shows a community what it already knows. What’s interesting about the volunteer effort that developed around in response to the recent earthquake in Haiti is that it soon became something entirely different. A few nights ago, I had the pleasure of … Continue reading

Eastern Europe’s New Communist Threats

My grandfather is the picture of a  90 year old soviet man. Injured by shrapnel from a grenade in the great patriotic war, yet he still jogs a few miles every morning. He lived through World War 2, the new economic policy, Stalin, the fall of the wall, and all the rest. I had the … Continue reading

Chavez’s Twitter Army: 200 deep

“Twitter is terrorism,” Chavez loudly proclaimed in one of his famous radio addresses to the nation, as a bold response to Secretary Clinton’s recent Internet Freedom speech. A few weeks later, and he is now a rising star on the very same platform, known as @chavezcandanga, ie Chavez the devil or Chavez the strong-willed/fearless depending … Continue reading

Marginalized by Unicode

Communities that are most marginalized continue to be so online. People who do not have access often speak languages that are not in Unicode and live in places that have never before been mapped, often not even photographed. Some of these things can be considered excessive compared to actual needs. The question, however, is access. … Continue reading

Future of mobiles for change

On Wednesday I sent out a tweet asking “What can Nokia do to support & empower people around the world.” I was at an event put on by Nokia, Abundancy Partners and Lovely Day, to discuss ICT for good. To give the event some additional structure, some of us reinterpreted the question. Nokia is one … Continue reading

P2P doesn’t include the police

I’m on a train from the Hague to Amsterdam. Earlier today I described the place like going to Disney land, but for human rights, having never been before. The meetings went well and the city is beautiful, but it’s the train ride that got interesting. Being on the phone, I didn’t notice getting onto the … Continue reading

Transparency trumps objectivity

Visualizations can help hold governments accountable. How much aid was promised? How much sent? How much actually received? And can what happens in Haiti change the conversation. Transparency trumps objectivity.

Haiti’s need for community-led reconstruction

The outpouring of support in response to the devastating earthquake has been astounding, with over $58 million being raised by Hollywood alone through the “Hope for Haiti Now” telethon organized by George Clooney. The European Union’s 27 nations are contributing $575 million. U.S. charities have raised $470 million for disaster. The U.S. is providing the … Continue reading