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White House Review of Big Data Should Include Transparency, Oversight

In January, President Obama tasked the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology with reviewing the government’s use of big data and its impacts on privacy. John Podesta, a counselor to the President, described the aims of the review in a White House blog post.

Groups Call for an Open Internet

Forty-one groups joined Free Press in a letter to Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler supporting net neutrality. The FCC must reclassify broadband access services as telecommunications services to ensure no government or corporate authority can hamper the public’s ability to access and publish information freely.

A Movement to Improve Global Financial Transparency

The Sunlight Foundation, Global Integrity, and Electoral Integrity Project have teamed up to launch the Money, Politics and Transparency Project. The project aims to create a network of stakeholders dedicated to improving accountability and combatting corruption through political finance transparency.

Push Against Secrecy in the Pentagon’s Budget

More than half a trillion dollars of government spending is drafted and voted on by the Senate Armed Services Committee, almost entirely in secret. Forty-nine organizations including joined the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) in its call for Congress to shine a greater light on the National Defense Authorization Act.

FOIA Under Scrutiny for Sunshine Week

Sunshine Week officially began on Monday, but and many of our partners began the celebration early, paying particular attention to the Freedom of Information Act.

Partners Call for CIA Accountability on Senate Intelligence Spying

OTG joined the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) and 32 other organizations to call for the administration to expedite the declassification of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on the Central Intelligence Agency’s interrogation methods and to hold the CIA accountable for any obstruction of Congressional oversight.

CREW Leads Call For Restored Funding to Office of Technology Assessment

Sixteen groups dedicated to openness and accountability joined the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) and to ask the House and Senate Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittees to restore funding to the Office of Technology Assessment. The debates over surveillance and telecommunications policy make the need for Congress to have access to technological expertise more crucial than ever.

Reporters Committee Hosts Panel on President’s Surveillance Review Group

The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press hosted a panel on the President’s Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies’ report. The panel featured experts in the journalism, legal, and technological fields. The discussion can be viewed in full here.

Good Jobs First Reports on Job Subsidies

In “Show Us the Subsidized Jobs,” Good Jobs First ranks the states for the quality and depth of states’ economic development subsidies disclosure. According to the research center, all but four states post at least some information online about which companies receive funds. The report is Good Jobs First’s third examination of subsidy transparency since 2007, and rates the states on how well they disclose company-specific award amounts, job-creation figures, and more.

Partners React to President Obama’s Speech on NSA Reforms

President Obama broadly outlined reforms to the National Security Agency’s surveillance programs at a January 17th speech at the Department of Justice. highlighted the need for increased transparency around the legal authorization and breadth of the programs in our statement. Here’s link round-up of how our partners responded to the speech:

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Celebrate our 10th anniversary with us on May 8th, 2014! More information available here

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