Today in OpenGov: Open data and rape reports, new political ad site, White House OMB releases open gov plan


AD ON: Libby Watson wrote about the new and improved Political TV Ad Archive website, which enables public citizens to match ads they see on a TV with information about where those ads are running. [READ MORE]

UNREPORTED: Emily Shaw used FBI data to show how police departments are following up on reports of rape, and shared that data to make it easier for others to use as well.  [READ MORE]

IDEAS, PLEASE! We’ve opened up TCamp’s 2016 “Submit a Session” page and are now accepting suggestions! This is your chance to propose sessions that you either want to lead or see others take on. Soon, we’ll open up the schedule so folks can vote on ideas they want to see the most. If your session (or one that you’ve voted on) is one of the top vote-getters, it will be guaranteed a slot at TCamp. But hurry: Proposing sessions is only open for a limited time. Registration is open for TransparencyCamp in Cleveland on October 14-15. Please submit a session, spread the word and come! [REGISTER]


  • Transparency continues to be a hot issue on the presidential campaign trail. NBC News looked at the candidates and then made a case for why transparency is the best approach for both the Republican and Democratic tickets. [NBC News]
  • The Center for Public Integrity also looked at the campaigns and transparency. [PublicI]
  • Donald Trump Jr. said that releasing tax returns would lead to the public asking questions about them. []
  • Despite recent gestures, the Washington Post reported that Donald Trump is the least transparent major party nominee in modern times. [Washington Post]
  • Democrats in the Senate are trying to move a bill that would mandate the disclosure of major party presidential nominee’s tax returns. [Washington Post]
  • Debate moderators may source questions on Facebook, but they don’t have to do so. [The Hill]


  • Today is the deadline for federal agencies to publish new open government plans. Some did, like the National Science Foundation. Others, not yet. Notably, the White House Office of Management and Budget published its first open government plan since 2010. We’ll have more to say on it and other agencies tomorrow. There’s context for what to expect from these plans on our blog.
  • Separately, the White House released an annual report on the work of its “nudge” unit. It’s great to get a look at the success stories, but we’d like to see a comprehensive breakdown of everywhere the government is applying behavioral science to public policy, and the outcomes. []
  • U.S. chief data scientist DJ Patil answered questions on open data, data science, his career and more on Quora again. Unfortunately, archived Quora Sessions don’t appear to show unanswered questions, which makes it a flaw tool for open government forums. [Quora]
  • It’s unclear whether President Obama will view pardoning Edward Snowden as a beneficial corrective to his legacy on whistleblowers. [The Atlantic]
  • It’s great to see the Office of the Inspector General at the U.S. Treasury evaluate the agency’s FOIA record, in this case, the IRS’ compliance with the law. [Washington Examiner]


  • It’s important that everyone – President Obama, Congress, media and the public – speak up to affirm and protect our right to record police interactions in public. []


  • The European Parliament quietly postponed lobbying reform. [Euroactiv]
  • Federal prosecutors in Brazil filed corruption charges against former President Luiz Inácio “Lula” da Silva. [New York Times]
  • While more African governments are enacting open data policies, many still aren’t willing to share information requested or demanded under access to information laws to improve accountability and combat corruption. Sound familiar? [QZ]



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