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The DISCLOSE Act: New Media, Old Politics, and the Fight for Public Data

In Linked Data, Technology, Transparency on July 7, 2010 at 9:02 am

Source: Beth Kanter on flickr

 

Read my entire post on The Scholarly Kitchen. An excerpt:  

While the notion that information wants to be free has driven many movements around government-financed data and research, it pays to remember that covert political maneuvering and paying for influence are as old as civilization. And some of these forces don’t want information to be free.  

When some of the most well-funded corporations and interest groups also have a commercial stake in supporting transparency, you have all the ingredients for a real battle.  

Advances in networked data technologies in the new media and research sectors have made new kinds of relational analysis possible. Tim Berners-Lee’s 2009 TED Talk centers on the creation of the web of linked data—a shadow layer that will underlie the web of content, the principal vehicle of global information exchange with which we are all familiar today.  

Networked data is intrinsic to the semantic web and to data visualization, which propose alternate ways to  describe, associate meaning with, and reveal relationships between data entities. Early examples, built from publicly available government data, can be found on project pages from Open PSI (in the UK) and Sunlight Labs (in the US).  

The power of analysis that can be derived from the semantic Web and visualizations of linked data relies entirely upon the accuracy and scope of the data itself—which is where the DISCLOSE Act (Democracy Is Strengthened by Casting Light On Spending in Elections) comes in.  

Read more.

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