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In the loop

In the Loop is our monthly newsletter, sharing our own news as well as some of the stories we've tweeted in the last month.

Tactical Tech news and events

Tactical Tech releases, events, and press

Releases (2)

  • Personal data: political persuasion


    What happens when the techniques of the marketing industry become the tools that influence our democracy?

    After 18 months of research, the Data and Politics team are excited to announce their two part release that looks at the industry built around data-driven campaigning.

    An in depth guide ‘How it Works’ presents thirteen of the key methods that political campaigns use to target and influence voters, and the accompanying visual gallery ‘What’s for Sale?’ identifies over 300 companies that offer their services to political parties.

    This research sheds light on the global business built around using data for political influence so that voters, policy makers, political partners and technology companies can develop informed opinions and decisions about the relationship between personal data and politics in the future.

    An entire sector is built around the acquisition and use of personal data for political campaigns. In order to understand what this means for our democracies, now and in the future, we first need to understand who is part of this industry and what tools they are using.

    How it works

    From Geo-targeting in Guyana to A/B Testing in the UK; from Third Party Tracking in Colombia to Campaign Apps in India; there are dozens of methods being used to sway citizens’ political views by leveraging the data they give away. Read the digital PDF of the guide How it Works.

    What’s for sale?

    We found over 300 companies around the world who use data to give political parties insights into who voters are, what they want to hear and how to persuade them. Upon doing a deep dive into their websites, we found a range of companies, consultancies, agencies and marketing firms, from local start-ups to global strategists, targeting parties that span the political spectrum. You can watch it here:


  • Open call for partners


    Tactical Tech is looking for partners to collaborate with us on two of our most wide-reaching and effective educational projects: The Data Detox Kit and The Glass Room Community Edition. Application deadline: Friday 19 April 2019.

Events (1)

Stuff we're reading

Stories we've found interesting in the past month

Activism (4)

  • Google employees uncover ongoing work on censored china search

    Google employees have carried out their own investigation into the company’s plan to launch a China censored search engine. (The Intercept)


  • As massive outage plagues facebook, telegram welcomes millions of new users

    Earlier in March, Facebook had its longest outage in the company’s history. Slowly but surely, it appears that Facebook is getting its “family of apps” back online. Meanwhile Pavel Durov, the eccentric founder of Telegram, posted a message to his account celebrating the flood of new users. (Gizmodo)


  • Defending the web for all: how global champions are fighting to #keepiton

    On 30th anniversary of the World Wide Web, Access Now remembers the #KeepItOn campaign as a way to stop deliberate network disruptions all around the world. (Access Now)

  • Are robots competing for your job?

    Probably, but don’t count yourself out. (The New Yorker)

Provocation (4)

  • Your social media photos are helping to build the surveillance state

    NBC’s Olivia Solon explains how companies like IBM are making their face recognition data more diverse—by quietly scraping images from sites like Flickr. (Slate If Then Podcast)


  • Roger mcnamee - why is it legal to collect data on kids, let alone sell it?

    The early Facebook advisor and outspoken critic believes that antitrust is the only way to curb the power of companies like Google, Amazon, and Facebook. (Fast Company)


  • Algorithmic bias: how algorithms can limit economic opportunity for communities of color

    Autor Haleema Bharoocha, a young person of color who relies heavily on technology, worries about the ways inequality is becoming automated, normalized and worsened through computerized decision-making systems. (Common Dreams)

  • Facial recognition's 'dirty little secret': millions of online photos scraped without consent

    People’s faces are being used without their permission, in order to power technology that could eventually be used to surveil them, legal experts say. (NBC News)

Illumination (4)

  • Cambridge analytica a year on: 'a lesson in institutional failure'

    One year after she broke the scandal, Carole Cadwalladr talks to whistleblower Christopher Wylie about the fallout for big tech, and the fight to hold the culprits to account. (The Guardian)


  • We analyzed 16,625 papers to figure out where ai is headed next

    This Technology Review study of 25 years of artificial-intelligence research suggests the era of deep learning may come to an end. (Technology Review)


  • Bellingcat new film: truth in a post-truth world

    Director Hans Pool follows the revolutionary rise of the “citizen investigative journalist” collective known as Bellingcat, a group of online researchers dedicated to exposing the truth of impenetrable news stories from around the world.

  • Download 10,000+ books in arabic, all completely free, digitized and put online

    Arabic Collections Online "aims to digitize, preserve, and provide free open access to a wide variety of Arabic language books in subjects such as literature, philosophy, law, religion, and more." (Open Culture)