Rip, Mix, Vote


What does government transparency have to do with remix culture? Everything, argues Jerry Brito in a paper for the Mercatus Center:

If government information was made public online and in standard open formats, the online masses could be leveraged to help ensure the transparency and accountability that is the reason for making information public in the first place.

When the government makes data available in a structured format, it opens the doors to innovative and enlightening remixes of information known as mashups. Mashups, in turn, are tools that can potentially be used by journalists, bloggers, and citizens…to better scrutinize government's activities. When government does not make data available online, or makes it available but not in a structured format, third parties take it upon themselves to fill the void by implementing ingenious "hacks" to free the data.

You can download the full paper here. To read about some of those third parties striving valiantly to free the data, go here.