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No Need for Speed

  • By
  • Charles Kenny,
  • New America Foundation
May 17, 2011 |

Expanding broadband access is international development's latest cause célèbre, and it's easy enough to see why. The incredibly rapid spread of cell phones has enabled residents of the developing world to text crop prices to market and arrange bank credit; the Arab Spring has been fueled, filmed, and mobilized using Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. It's a tempting story line: If basic communications technologies like mobile phones are good, and narrowband Internet has even more uses, surely broadband Internet is the secret to unlocking global progress.

China’s 'Networked Authoritarianism'

  • By
  • Rebecca MacKinnon,
  • New America Foundation
April 25, 2011 |

To mark the twentieth anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, a German arts organization launched a website called the "Berlin Twitter Wall." Anyone anywhere on the Internet could use Twitter to post a comment into one of the speech bubbles. Within a few days of its launch, the website was overrun by messages in Chinese. Instead of talking about the end of the Cold War and the fall of communism in Europe, Chinese Twitter users accessed the site to protest their own government's Internet censorship.

In Memoriam, Chris Hondros

  • By
  • Christina Larson,
  • New America Foundation
April 20, 2011 |

Earlier today, April 20, photojournalist Chris Hondros was killed on assignment in Misrata, Libya. He was 41 and recently engaged to be married.

Tim Hetherington: Talented Photographer, True Gentleman

  • By
  • Peter Bergen,
  • New America Foundation
April 21, 2011 |

The first words that were used to describe Tim by almost anybody who knew him were "humble" and "modest."

Yet, Tim was a guy who had great talents. He took highly artistic photos and had released a photography book "Infidel," which consists of his portraits of American soldiers fighting in the Afghan War.

He was also someone who would go out in the field and take the grittiest pictures of combat.

The Mind of Muammar

  • By
  • Christina Larson,
  • New America Foundation
April 6, 2011 |

Since Libyan leader Muammar al-Qaddafi's Green Book was published in three installments -- in 1975, 1976, and 1978 -- every Libyan child has had to study it in school; but many, perhaps most, Libyans make fun of it in secret. Western analysts have tried to tease out the book's logic on governance, searching for clues to the intellectual influences on Libya's eccentric strongman, but this is perhaps an overly optimistic endeavor.

More Than A Broadband Map

March 23, 2011

For Immediate Release - March 23: Today the Open Technology Initiative at the New America Foundation unveiled new visualization tools for the Measurement Lab - an open and transparent research tool that provides unparalleled data on real-world broadband speeds. M-Lab is developed in partnership with Planetlab, Google, and academic researchers to provide actual broadband speed data and other network diagnostic information.

Bollywood and Behavior Change

March 23, 2011
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Last week, YouthSave members from CGAP, Margaret Miller and Tanaya Kilara organized a panel event at the World Bank called “Entertainment as a Catalyst for Social Change in India,” which focused on how to integrate social messaging into mainstream Indian entertainment, namely film and television, towards achieving behavior change.

The Plight of the Chinese Newspaper Reporter

  • By
  • Christina Larson,
  • New America Foundation
March 23, 2011 |

"There is a saying that Chinese people are afraid of officials, and officials are afraid of foreign reporters," my friend Yang, a wily reporter for one of Beijing's city newspapers, told me as we were driving to dinner one evening. That was last spring, well before the government's recent efforts to intimidate foreign reporters attempting to cover calls for a "jasmine revolution," but it has been true a long time.

The Internet: For Better or for Worse

  • By
  • Steve Coll,
  • New America Foundation
March 18, 2011 |

Last June, Khaled Said, a twenty-eight-year-old Alexandrian, suffered a vicious public beating at the hands of Egyptian police. Several witnesses documented the assault with cell phone cameras. Said apparently died from his wounds, but the police claimed he had choked to death on illegal drugs. Outraged Egyptians posted contrary evidence on Facebook pages and on YouTube.

For Middle East Democracy, Send in the Geeks

  • By
  • Tom Glaisyer,
  • New America Foundation
  • and Shawn Powers, Georgia State University
March 3, 2011 |

When the Berlin Wall fell, the western response was swift and obvious: send in the free-market economists. Soviet Communism was a system structured for failure that had left a group of governments and citizens in need of political and cultural tools, as well as knowledge of markets and the institutions they require to function.

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