The Growth of Corruption Reporting Websites

#Internet

Tue, Mar 13th, 2012 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

There is a growing trend of websites where whistle-blowers can anonymously report on crime committed by government figures. We're not talking about Wikileaks, but more aimed towards the daily corruption that average citizens are faced when dealing with public sector workers.

From the article in The New York Times by Namas Bhojani:

The cost of claiming a legitimate income tax refund in Hyderabad, India? 10,000 rupees.

A track in Bangalore, India, has automated the testing for driver's licenses, to avoid bribes.

The going rate to get a child who has already passed the entrance requirements into high school in Nairobi, Kenya? 20,000 shillings.

The expense of obtaining a driver's license after having passed the test in Karachi, Pakistan? 3,000 rupees.

Such is the price of what Swati Ramanathan calls "retail corruption," the sort of nickel-and-dime bribery, as opposed to large-scale graft, that infects everyday life in so many parts of the world.

Ms. Ramanathan and her husband, Ramesh, along with Sridar Iyengar, set out to change all that in August 2010 when they started ipaidabribe.com, a site that collects anonymous reports of bribes paid, bribes requested but not paid and requests that were expected but not forthcoming.

About 80 percent of the more than 400,000 reports to the site tell stories like the ones above of officials and bureaucrats seeking illicit payments to provide routine services or process paperwork and forms.

  599

 

You may also be interested in:

Pigeon transfers data faster than South Africa's Telkom
Emergent: Real-Time Rumour Tracker
Why Banning Social Media Often Backfires
You Can Buy a Gun on Facebook in 15 Minutes
Net Neutrality: 7 Worse Case Scenarios