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This week’s editor

Alex Sakalis, Editor

Alex Sakalis is associate editor of openDemocracy and co-edits the Can Europe Make It? page.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Cuando lo que se negocia es nuestra privacidad: la Ministerial de la OMC en Buenos Aires

Si los países del hemisferio Sur quieren prepararse para librar guerras de datos, deberían empezar a pensar en cómo reducir el control de las grandes compañías tecnológicas. English

Trading away our Privacy; the WTO Ministerial in Buenos Aires

If countries from the Global South want to prepare for data wars, they should start thinking about how to reduce the overwhelming control of Big Tech. Español

#Tech4Worse: The problem with digital labour initiatives for the Middle East

Contrary to their marketing, digital labor schemes don’t work in spite of predicaments like the occupation or the refugee crisis - they work because of them. 

Who’s to blame? The internet on the defendant's bench

Seeking to unravel what is behind a change in public sentiment towards the internet, this series begins with intersecting dimensions in what is lazily often presented as ‘The Internet’s problem’.

In defence of Damien Green

How could a defender of human rights on so many occasions turn so quickly into being an inquisitor?

From Fake to Fact – and then?

Do all of us need to move outside our ‘comfort zones’ and self-imposed ‘echo chambers’, both  to come up with better diagnoses of the populist challenge, and to define constructive political action collectively ?  

Beyond fact-checking: the media, populism and post-truth politics

Why do people want to believe what they do? They want meaningful lives. Why do it this way? A report-back from the Strasbourg World Forum for Democracy 2017.

How communication technology became a tool of repression: the case of the UAE

With the help of international ‘cyber security dealers’, the internet has been transformed into a central component of authoritarian control.

Facts will not save (the youth) from Fake. Citizenship will

How can we reconquer the capital city, symbolically – both in real and virtual terms – to capture the imagination of youth, to reorient it towards creativity, imagination and engagement?

Italian free radio: giving a voice to the people

“We have about 15,000 supporters who give a fixed share each year. And that is something special. We are not just a radio, we are a community.”

Nothing new about fake news

Media diversity must mean more than more of the same. The media sphere needs to be a public space where debates occur among and between many different groups and classes.

Wikimedia 2030: a fair wind for free knowledge

As of October 2, this year, there is a Strategic Direction formulated for the Wikimedia Movement.

Syria, the uprising and the media scene

The Syrian revolutionary process is a more thoroughly documented uprising than has ever been seen before in history, notably thanks to these democratic media.

New media must throw old ideas overboard

“Crucially, new models must consider the challenges of not just what is covered, but by whom and through what processes.”

The sweet spot: where media, citizens and government intersect

The ability of the media to frame the discussion and get the community talking, so that people can both be educated and motivated to act – beats creepy social media listening tools any day.

Whither journalism?

“An unintended consequence of objectivity is a distancing so great that some communities are left feeling unseen or misunderstood. This attitude, not new technologies, is the root of journalism’s disappearing audience.”

Could populism be a side effect of the Personalized Algorithm?

And can we work together so that one day we can use filter bubbles against themselves?

Breaking ideological gridlock from the bottom up

The key to advancing policies is to build diverse political support at grassroots level, leveraging that support against policymakers who put party loyalty before the needs of their constituents.

Saudi women between online resistance and new physical realities

What role did collective action, and social media play in Saudi Arabia’s decision to lift its ban on women driving?

Can a feminist tech collective help end the silence around LGBTQ+ domestic abuse?

The Supernova Project is a new online platform that aims to provide crucial information and support to those in queer relationships.

Dark Money Deep Data

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

The national conversation: free, open and broad debate

In the UK, do we see political polarisation facilitated by politically partisan websites and social media, or the disintegration of a governing consensus?

Spain: shall we talk?

"We need to opt for dialogue, respect and understanding. We are many, we are diverse, we are respectful, and above all we want a better country and not one infinitely worse." Español

On the eve of the German elections, Alternative für Deutschland prevails on Twitter

Populist parties have a higher capacity to exploit digital arenas to boost and propagate their slogans and influence the political agenda. This should not be underestimated by mainstream political forces.

US cross-border data deal could open surveillance floodgates

Internet users should assess whether their domestic system would adequately prevent their government from abusing the arrangement, and whether local law enforcement can be held accountable.

The end of anonymity? Trump and the tyranny of the majority

Worldwide, there is an administration-sanctioned attack on anonymity, online and off.

The importance of Europeans sticking together to achieve a progressive Europe

Thoughts arising from Brexit for the DiEM25 September event in the Bozar in Brussels on the ‘Real State of the European Union’. (speech)

The ongoing march of the EU’s security-industrial complex

The reinforcement of pervasive, high-tech security measures has long been the primary consideration for EU security strategists, egged on by private interests. Time for a new direction before it is too late. New report 

Letter from a recovering Team Syntegrity 2017 participant

"In this exercise, we were forced to sit side by side and face to face and discuss diverse issues reasonably, coherently, and cohesively. It was smart and it was intimate."

eBook: El ecosistema de la democracia abierta

«El ecosistema de la democracia abierta» es una publicación que hemos coeditado con apps4citizens en Barcelona, en el marco de nuestra sección sobre Experimentación PolíticaEnglish

Internet equality is about to get Trumped – let’s build a wall to defend it

The principle that the internet should be as fast as possible for all its users means small voices with big ideas can transform society. Let's keep it that way.

Team Syntegrity, a comprehensive method of hope

Collaborating, competing, contradicting, negotiating, accommodating and compromising, all took place to different degrees in one symbiotic process. Our first participant report-back.

Old questions, new answers

Rethinking representation involves expanding the deliberative community and redefining not only who can decide on public issues, but how decisions are made. Español Português

Viejas preguntas, nuevas respuestas

Repensar la representación implica ampliar la comunidad de deliberación y redefinir no sólo quiénes pueden decidir en temas públicos que les afectan, sino cómo se toman las decisiones. English Português

Where we come from

“The real problem is a lack of appreciation of history by the general public and their willingness to accept myth as history.”

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