Protester Progress; Brigade adds voter verification badges; and more.
Yesterday was the anniversary of Michael Brown’s death in Ferguson, Missouri. In an op-ed for The Guardian, activist and organizer DeRay McKesson recalls the importance of Twitter and Instagram to the Movement for Black Lives:
If not for Twitter and Instagram, Missouri officials would have convinced you, one year ago, that we simply did not exist. Or that we were the aggressors, rather than the victims. That we, and not they, were the violent ones.
But social media was our weapon against erasure. It is how many of us first became aware of the protests and how we learned where to go, or what to do when teargassed, or who to trust. We were able to both counter the narrative being spun by officials while connecting with each other in unprecedented ways. Many of us became friends digitally, first. And then we, the protestors, met in person.
After a day of protests, an 18-year-old man named Tyrone Harris was shot by police in Ferguson and is now in critical condition, Lisa Brown and Tim Bryant report for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. An activist and protestor named Tony Rice, who filmed the aftermath of the shooting, was arrested shortly after for refusing to move back, Jon Swaine reports for The Guardian.
Data scientist Samuel Sinyangwe built this “Protester Progress” timeline of events and milestones in the Movement for Black Lives since Michael Brown’s death last year.
Brigade has released a new version of their app that includes voter verification badges. As Alex Howard observes on Twitter, “Voter verification is something politicians care about; keep an eye on this.”
Natasha Singer articulates for the New York Times what rubs her (and many others) the wrong way about the “sharing” economy. “Ditto the peer economy, the people economy and the collaborative economy.”
Meanwhile, in California, Sarah Jeong reports for Motherboard that Uber’s defense for an employment lawsuit is that they actually empower their contractors.
“I describe this office as the smallest state agency that actually does anything and leave the rest to people’s imagination,” Robert Freeman, the executive director of the New York Committee on Open Government, says in an interview with ProPublica (transcript and audio).
Here is a browser extension that replaces “political correctness” with “treating people with respect.”
Civic Hall co-founder Micah Sifry is one of many thanked by Tom Steinberg in his last post at mySociety.