Spreading spyware; behavioral science in the White House; $25 mil to OpenGov; and more.
This morning The Intercept published The Drone Papers, a collection of stories about the Obama administration’s drone assassination program, written by Jeremy Scahill, Cora Currier, Ryan Devereaux, and others based on a new collection of secret documents provided by a whistleblower.
In other Obama administration news, Danny Vinik reports for Politico on the White House’s Social and Behavioral Science Team, which has been applying behavioral science to policy making and just released their first annual report.
A new report from Citizen Lab, a research lab at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs, details the expanded use of the spyware for governments, FinFisher—the same FinFisher that was breached in 2014. In spite of that, Citizen Lab has found 32 countries are using the spyware in at least one government office.
In Sudan, the government surveillance of websites has led many to download the encrypted messaging app WhatApp in order to share news items and voice dissent, Khalid Albaih reports for The Guardian.
Former Time magazine managing editor Richard Stengel is now at the State Department and pushing for more soft power to be deployed on social media, Alex Howard reports for the Huffington Post.
Cable news channels edited out Bernie Sanders criticisms of the media when they aired his supportive comments about Hillary Clinton’s email disaster, Lee Fang points out in The Intercept.
Josh Stearns interviews Justin Auciello, the founder of the Jersey Shore Hurricane News, an outlet run almost entirely on social media and on citizen tips and contributions.
Connor Barwin, all-pro linebacker and citizen activists, reports for the Philadelphia Citizen on how Philly’s civic health stacks up against New Orleans, home of the Saints (the team they beat this Sunday), touching on the issue of gentrification. This is a recurring feature! Look out next week for the face-off with the New York Giants. (h/t Erin Simpson)
OpenGov announced an additional $25 million in financing today, Sarah Buhr reports for TechCrunch. The company, which tracks government spending, also announced that Marc Andreessen has joined the board.