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About Mary Fitzgerald

Mary Fitzgerald is Editor-in-Chief of openDemocracy. Before joining oD she worked for Avaaz, the global campaigning organisation, and is a former Senior Editor of Prospect Magazine. Her writing has appeared in the Guardian, Observer, New Statesman and others. Follow her on Twitter: @maryftz

Articles by Mary Fitzgerald

This week’s front page editor


Francesc Badia i Dalmases is Editor and Director of democraciaAbierta.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Beyond the Brexit pantomime

Forget the political melodrama. What matters most are the deep weaknesses in our democracy that Brexit has exposed – and which extend across Europe.

George Osborne’s Evening Standard launches delayed ‘money-can’t-buy’ campaign – with more controversial partners

Private healthcare firm and a French conglomerate with a record of lawsuits against media join Uber, Google and others in lucrative sponsorship deal.

Six ways Ireland’s abortion referendum could be hacked this week

Anti-abortion money, Facebook ads and boots-on-the-ground volunteers have piled in from across the world to try and swing Friday’s historic vote. Will they succeed?

Can Ireland escape the influence of dark online advertising on its abortion referendum?

Google and Facebook will ban all foreign adverts targeting the vote, but we should be wary of patting Silicon Valley too hard on the back. 

Trump’s folly with Iran means Europe must show what it stands for

A collapse of the Iran nuclear agreement could spark catastrophic, global conflict. Time for Europeans to close the gap between words and action.

If Brexit was hacked, shouldn't we know exactly who paid?

Yes, the Leave campaign probably cheated. And yes, Remain played unfair advantages. But where did the Brexit dark money actually come from? And how is it still shaping our democracy?

From Obama to Cambridge Analytica: how did we get here? (Podcast)

Where did the controversial 'influence campaigns' come from? Two Obama volunteers look back at the revolution they started in 2008 – and how a grassroots effort in Virginia – people before party – could be key to vanquishing Trump.

Why is Theresa May protecting the DUP's dirty little (Brexit) secret?

Today, the UK government is trying to sneak through a law which will bury the DUP's huge Brexit donation in another layer of secrecy.

Miért indítjuk útjára az openMedia kezdeményezést?

A „fake news”-jelenségnél sokkal nyugtalanítóbb a nagy hirdetők sajtószabadságra gyakorolt hatása. Mi így küzdünk ez ellen. (English, French, ItalianSpanishDutchGermanSerbianRussian.)

Waarom wij openMedia lanceren

Vergeet fake news. Groot geld vormt nog een veel groter gevaar voor de persvrijheid – door middel van advertorials, en door het kopen van stilte. Dit is wat wij eraan gaan doen. (EnglishFrench, ItalianSpanish, HungarianGermanSerbianRussian.)

¿Por qué lanzamos openMedia?

Olvídense de las noticias falsas. El gran capital está distorsionando la libertad de prensa de manera mucho más inquietante: a través de los anuncios publicitarios y mediante la compra de silencios. Esto es lo que nosotros vamos a hacer al respecto. (FrenchHungarianItalian, EnglishDutchGermanSerbianRussian.)

Perché stiamo lanciando openMedia

Dimenticatevi ‘notizie false’. I grossi capitali stanno distorcendo la libertà di stampa in modo molto più sinistro – con gli ‘advertorial’, e comprando il silenzio. Ecco quello che faremo al riguardo. 

(FrenchHungarian, English, SpanishDutchGermanSerbianRussian.)

Warum wir openMedia ins Leben gerufen haben

Vergisst Fake News. Big Money – das große Geld – beschneidet Pressefreiheit weit mehr: durch Advertorials und durch gekauftes Schweigen. Wir haben vor, dagegen vorzugehen. (FrenchHungarianItalianSpanishDutch, EnglishSerbianRussian.)

Neden openMedia (açıkMedya) Yayınına Başlıyoruz

Yalan haberleri unutun! Büyük paralar, basın özgürlüğünü reklamlar ve satın alınmış sessizlik vasıtasıyla çok daha fazla tahrip ediyor. Bu konuda ne yapacağımız ile ilgili detaylar aşağıda.

Зашто покрећемо пројекат ”отворениМедији” (openMedia)

Заборавите лажне вести. Огроман новац нарушава слободу медија на далеко више узнемирујући начин - кроз рекламне текстове и куповину тишине. Ево шта ћемо тим поводом да урадимо. 

(FrenchHungarianItalianSpanishDutchGerman, EnglishRussian.)

Почему мы запускаем проект openMedia

Забудьте о фейковых новостях. Намного опаснее то, как денежные тузы влияют на свободу прессы — они платят журналистам за молчание или маскируют рекламу под обычную статью. Ниже мы расскажем, как мы собираемся с этим бороться. (FrenchHungarianItalianSpanishDutchGermanSerbian, English.)

Pourquoi nous lançons openMedia

Tirez une croix sur la fausse information. En éditant des publireportages ou en achetant le silence, les gros capitaux pervertissent la liberté de la presse de façon préoccupante. Voici comment nous allons agir.(EnglishHungarianItalianSpanishDutchGermanSerbianRussian.)

Brexit, Ireland, and the revenge of history

Either Theresa May’s government falls, or Britain crashes out of the EU with no trade deal. May’s squalid deal with Northern Irish hardliners allows no alternative.

Why we're launching openMedia

Forget fake news. Money can distort media far more disturbingly – through advertorials, and through buying silence. Here’s what we’re doing about it.


Do you know where the Brexit dark money came from? Tell us anonymously

Someone out there knows something about the DUP's mystery £435,000 Brexit spending spree. It's vital for democracy that we all find out.

Dark Money Deep Data

Democracy dies in darkness. Podcast of a debate organised by Byline. (45 minutes).

Brexit dark money revelations trigger MP's question on 'foreign interference'

openDemocracy's investigations into Leave donor Arron Banks and the DUP make global headlines, prompting calls for transparency. 

Who bankrolled Brexit?

The United Kingdom has transparency laws which should give citizens a full and immediate answer to this question. And yet, we still don’t have one.

Lure of Greatness, the video

Caroline Lucas MP, Zadie Smith, John Cleese, Kate Raworth, Aditya Chakrabortty, Peter Oborne, Quentin Skinner, Niki Seth Smith and Ralph Pritchard enjoy Anthony Barnett's new book.

We've forced a change in the law on 'dark money'. But we still need to do more

This is why our campaigning journalism is important.

Time to reimagine Europe

Over 17 million Britons voted to leave. The EU must hear this cry to deepen democracy, before it further awakens Europe's far right.

How free is our press?

Britain’s ‘feral’ press has been mysteriously silent on a sex story involving Culture Secretary John Whittingdale, the man who decides what rules govern them and the BBC. I wonder why?

Is capitalism destroying feminism? An interview with Dawn Foster

Many assume that women, at the top, will act in the best interests of their gender. Nobody asks if people like Margaret Thatcher and Theresa May wouldn’t instead act in the interests of their class.

We’ve moved forward since 9/11

'A lot more people are aware that the decisions made by policymakers, the positions taken by the media in the wake of 9/11 in the United States, were mistakes.'

Media responsibility in the age of terror

Professor Katrin Nyman-Metcalf, and journalists Rita Chinyoka and Nadezhda Azhgikhina discuss feeding terror, hate speech, and the responsibilities of mainstream media, at the World Forum for Democracy.

Playing with people’s emotions

'Every time the western media decides what to air, and who to call a terrorist, they generate a lot of debate in our country.' A leading Pakistani digital rights activist on the politics of counter-terror and surveillance.

After Paris, be careful what you ask for: an interview with Thomas Drake

NSA whistleblower Drake wanted to defend the US constitution. So they prosecuted him under the Espionage Act.

We could have stopped the Paris attacks

William Binney and Kirk Wiebe worked at the NSA for decades, before blowing the whistle on mass surveillance. They say they invented a surveillance system that could have given citizens more freedom and security….

Freedom and control in the surveillance age (Part 1)

What (if any) is the 'right level' of surveillance? openDemocracy's editors introduce a new partnership with the World Forum for Democracy.

Nine questions for the Telegraph and HSBC

A month after explosive allegations about advertisers' influence over the UK Telegraph's editorial decisions, the paper has still failed to answer serious questions.

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