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Weekly Wire: the Global Forum

Kalliope Kokolis's picture

These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.

The Geography of Twitter: Mapping the Global Heartbeat

"My colleague Kalev Leetaru recently co-authored this comprehensive study on the various sources and accuracies of geographic information on Twitter. This is the first detailed study of its kind. The detailed analysis, which runs some 50-pages long, has important implications vis-a-vis the use of social media in emergency management and humanitarian response. Should you not have the time to analyze the comprehensive study, this blog post highlights the most important and relevant findings.

Kalev et al. analyzed 1.5 billion tweets (collected from the Twitter Decahose via GNIP) between October 23 and November 30th, 2012. This came to 14.3 billion words posted by 35% of all active users at the time. Note that 2.9% of the world’s population are active Twitter users and that 87% of all tweets ever posted since the launch of Twitter in 2006 were posted in the past 24 months alone. On average, Kalev and company found that the lowest number of tweets posted per hour is one million; the highest is 2 million. In addition, almost 50% of all tweets are posted by 5% of users. (Click on images to enlarge)."  READ MORE

Idea Lab
7 Ways Newsrooms Can Boost Citizen Reporting

"In my previous post, I argued that established, traditional newsrooms tend to be most comfortable accepting citizen reporting or user-generated content during a large-scale, widespread emergency event. In these circumstances, newsrooms often accept photo and video submissions from the public, or even seek them out on Instagram, Vine or Twitter. Professional journalists or editors may curate tweets or blog posts to summarize the experience of citizens. They may also make a public request for input from those affected, or to clarify incoming information.

This input is incredibly valuable during a crisis. Citizen reports provide context and nuance, as well as a broader and more inclusive range of voices than mainstream commentators and information sources. In some cases, citizen reporters can emphasize issues that public officials have downplayed or overlooked."  READ MORE

Tech Week Europe
David Miliband Says Technology Makes Governments More Open

"Former British foreign secretary David Miliband has said he believes increased adoption of technology in society will encourage governments to become more open.

Speaking at the FT Telefonica Millennials Summit in London earlier this week, Miliband said that technology was both of benefit and a threat to governments, but the "balance was positive."

Technology was breaking down the divide between the public and private spheres, encouraging politicians to act as they are always under scrutiny, said Miliband."  READ MORE

All Africa
Nigeria: 'The Citizen's Book On Governance' Launched in Lagos

"The Citizen's Book on Governance, a concise practical guide on Nigeria's democracy and system of governance has been launched in Lagos.

The author of the book, Adekunle Osibogun, a solicitor and advocate in the law firm of Banwo & Ighodalo, said, ‘The book's objective is to enlighten Nigerians on and about the roles of their democratic institutions, their fundamental rights and civic duties, within the democratic system of government'." READ MORE

The Guardian
EU's new laws will oblige extractive industries to disclose payments

"The European parliament has overwhelmingly voted in favour of legislation compelling oil, gas and mining companies to publish payments they make to governments and release information on their earnings in each country.

The new accounting and transparency directives bring the EU into line with disclosure rules adopted under the Dodd-Frank act in the US last year, boosting efforts to shine a spotlight on the extractive industries ahead of the G8 summit in Northern Ireland. Next week's meeting, which will be chaired by David Cameron, will focus on the three Ts – tax, trade and transparency."  READ MORE

Best ICT4D
10 Tips for Successful ICT4D Interventions: An Interview with ICT4D Pioneer Ken Banks

"Ken Banks, founder of and FrontlineSMS, devotes himself to the application of mobile technology for positive social and environmental change in the developing world. He has worked at the intersection of technology, anthropology, conservation and development for the past twenty years and, during that time, has lived and worked across the African continent. He is a Pop!Tech Fellow, a Tech Awards Laureate, an Ashoka Fellow and a National Geographic Emerging Explorer. His latest project, Means of Exchange, is looking at how everyday technologies can be used to democratize opportunities for economic self-sufficiency, rebuild local community and promote a return to local resource use."  READ MORE
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Photo credit: Flickr user fdecomite

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