Cambridge Analytica and the future of social media

By Tess Woolfenden. In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the issue of social media regulation - or lack thereof - has been raised in mainstream public debate in the US and, to a lesser extent, here in the UK. The scandal – in which personal data from Facebook was harvested to create targeted … Continue reading Cambridge Analytica and the future of social media

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With great power comes great regulation

By Areeq Chowdhury. The Cambridge Analytica debacle appears to be the straw that will break the camel’s back. The idea of data being unwittingly taken from users for the purpose of targeted advertising is nothing new, but the idea that it’s been done to contribute to the victory of Donald Trump, or perhaps Brexit, has … Continue reading With great power comes great regulation

Intersectional Suffrage: A focus on the women that didn’t get the vote in 1918

By Tess Woolfenden. This year marks 100 years since Parliament passed the Representation of the People Act – the act that extended the vote to women in Britain for the first time in history. While this marked an historic and important shift towards electoral equality in Britain, many women continued to be denied the vote … Continue reading Intersectional Suffrage: A focus on the women that didn’t get the vote in 1918

Did Russia hack the referendum?

By Ben Pearson. On January 22nd, WebRoots Democracy hosted a public seminar to explore claims about Russian interference in the EU referendum. To assess the evidence and shed some light on how interference could have taken place, we were joined by Sky’s technology correspondent Alexander J Martin and UCL’s Dr Gianluca Stringhini. Areeq Chowdhury opened … Continue reading Did Russia hack the referendum?

The fate of digital democracy is linked to the fate of online voting

By Areeq Chowdhury. What if we could get rid of politicians and simply vote on everything ourselves? Why limit ourselves to referenda on independence movements, and not have referenda on all issues affecting our lives? These are the questions which spur much of the civic tech innovation we see in the UK and across the … Continue reading The fate of digital democracy is linked to the fate of online voting

What happened in 2017?

By Areeq Chowdhury. 2017 has been a memorable year for our work advancing the digital democracy agenda in the UK. Starting work on WebRoots Democracy full-time has been incredibly challenging but incredibly worthwhile. The amount of progress made compared to previous years has increased sevenfold, literally as well as figuratively. We published seven policy documents … Continue reading What happened in 2017?

Blockchain and its applications for democracy

By Areeq Chowdhury. In the first of our series of topical seminars, WebRoots Democracy explored blockchain and its applications for democracy. This took place at Newspeak House, a London-based institution for political technologists. Speaking to our audience were Dr David Galindo (Senior Lecturer in Computer Security, University of Birmingham); Dr Sarah Meiklejohn (Reader in Computer … Continue reading Blockchain and its applications for democracy

My time interning at WebRoots Democracy

By Rachel Fielden. There is a scene in the famous TV show Gilmore Girls in which one of the main characters, Rory Gilmore, cries on the bathroom floor to her friends about the impending doom she feels about finishing university. “It’s like I am standing on this cliff looking out into this huge foggy abyss”. … Continue reading My time interning at WebRoots Democracy

La Repartija to Democracia Digital: The Story of Digital Democracy in Peru

By Frank Kibble. The discussion about digital democracy often focuses on how technology can transform the way people are engaged with politics here in Britain or in other strongly developed countries. We forget that for us, democracy is thoroughly entrenched in society from voter to parliamentarian. In other parts of the world where democracy is … Continue reading La Repartija to Democracia Digital: The Story of Digital Democracy in Peru

Venezuela: A rigged election uncovered thanks to electronic voting

By Areeq Chowdhury. It’s not often that you hear applause for e-voting for strengthening the trust and security in elections, but in Venezuela this week we have seen precisely that. In what is widely regarded as a controversial set of elections to vote in a new legislative body called the National Constituent Assembly which has … Continue reading Venezuela: A rigged election uncovered thanks to electronic voting