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Those Who Remember History…

Tom Wheeler, the new Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, gave a speech today at Ohio State University. It was a good speech on his regulatory philosophy. But that's not so interesting. There's nothing out of the ordinary about a government official giving a speech. The unusual development was that the Chairman also released an ebook, called Net Effects. Even more unusual, it's not a bland ghostwritten policy whitepaper; it's a deeply researched work of history. more»

Don't Let Patent Wars Widen Digital Divide

For generations, large pockets of Africa were isolated from things many of us take for granted: access to medical treatment and advances that can make the difference between a healthy, productive life or debilitating illness -- or even an early death. These problems still persist, but over the last two decades technology has helped break through and enable medical professionals to reach the poorest and most remote populations and offer some hope. more»

Learning to Love the WTO: How Trade Policy Can Save Open Internet - and Bridge the Digital Divide

From the dawn of the mainstream commercial Internet in the late 1990s until quite recently, the world trade and Internet communities have been almost entirely disconnected from one another. This isn't surprising, given that trade policy historically follows technological developments with a considerable 'lag.' As the senior-most 'permanent representative' on the ground in Geneva from the for-profit tech sector, a big part of my job is to try and translate the Internet for the Diplomatic Corps across many different policy subjects. more»

The Framing of "IP Transition" Fails to Come to Terms With Real Impact of the Internet

I keep seeing so many articles about the Internet and related policy issues that it's hard to know how to respond. The term "IP Transition" may be a good starting point since the term is an attempt to treat the Internet as a smooth transition rather accepting the idea that we are in the midst of a disruptive change. It seems that the FCC's approach is to simply substitute IP for old protocols and to preserve policies tied to the accidental properties of a copper infrastructure. This shows a failure to come to terms with the new reality. more»

LAC, the DNS, and the Importance of Comunidad

The 1st Latin American & Caribbean DNS Forum was held on 15 November 2013, before the start of the ICANN Buenos Aires meeting. Coordinated by many of the region's leading technological development and capacity building organizations, the day long event explored the opportunities and challenges for Latin America brought on by changes in the Internet landscape, including the introduction of new gTLDs such as .LAT, .NGO and others. more»

An Internet Governance Update

A lot of people (including me) are pretty upset at revelations of the breadth and scale of NSA spying on the Internet, which has created a great deal of ill will toward the US government? Will this be a turning point in Internet Governance? No, smoke will continue to be blown and nothing will happen. Governments are not monolithic. What people call Internet governance is mostly at the DNS application level, and perhaps the IP address allocation. more»

Canadian Government Quietly Pursuing New ISP Code of Conduct

If approved, the code would technically be voluntary for Canadian ISPs, but the active involvement of government officials suggests that most large providers would feel pressured to participate. The move toward an ISP code of conduct would likely form part of a two-pronged strategy to combat malicious software that can lead to cybercrime, identity theft, and other harms. First, the long-delayed anti-spam legislation features new disclosure requirements for the installation of software along with tough penalties for non-compliance. more»

VDSL Cabinet Consideration for FttN Roll Outs

Australia will be an interesting test market for VDSL. With a new government and the broadband infrastructure company NBN Co basically in agreement, it is most likely that VDSL will be used to bring for example fast broadband to multi-dwelling units (MDUs). It was mainly for political reasons that the previous government stopped NBN Co deploying the VDSL technology in MDUs for this purpose. Whether or not any more VDSL will be deployed beyond that will largely depend on the NBN Co review of its current plan.  more»

NJ Content Liability Law Ruled Inconsistent with Sec. 230 (just like in Washington and Tennesse)

Back in a time before most members of Congress or prosecutors knew that there was an Internet, there was Prodigy. Prodigy, as part of its service, ran family-friendly chat rooms that it moderated in an effort to keep kids protected from unfortunate content. In a different Prodigy chat room, some unknown third party said something apparently bad about an investment firm Stratton-Oakmont. Stratton-Oakmont didn't like that very much, and sued. more»

Renesys Chronicles Today's Internet Blackout in the Sudan (Now Restored)

The team over at Renesys has once again provided a great analysis of an Internet outage in a country, this time in Sudan. In the article simply titled "Internet Blackout in Sudan", Doug Madory writes: A few hours ago, we observed a total Internet blackout in Sudan and, as we publish this blog, the Internet remains largely unavailable. By count of impacted networks, it is the largest national blackout since Egypt disconnected itself in January 2011..." more»

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