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U.S. Lawmaker to Push for Net Neutrality Legislation

A senior U.S. lawmaker plans to introduce a bill in January that would bar Internet providers like AT&T Inc from blocking Web content, setting up a renewed battle over so-called network neutrality. Sen. Byron Dorgan, a North Dakota Democrat, believes a law is essential to prevent telephone and cable companies from discriminating against Internet content, even though regulators have taken actions to enforce free Web principles, a top Dorgan aide said on Thursday according to Reuters. more»

Major ISPs to Roll Out P4P Over the Next Two Months

Some of the largest ISPs in US, including phone and cable companies, plan on updating their networks over the next two months with a new technology that promises to accelerate P2P distribution. According to reports, recent trials have demonstrated 59% increase in download delivery speeds on average -- and up to 150% for the fastest class of users. more»

Government Net censorship Plan Facing Backlash in Australia

As opposition grows against the Government's controversial plan to censor the internet, the head of one of Australia's largest ISPs has labeled the Communications Minister the worst we've had in the past 15 years. Despite significant opposition from internet providers, consumers, engineers, network administrators and online rights activists, the Government is pressing ahead with its election promise of protecting people from unwanted material, this week calling for expressions of interests from ISPs keen to participate in live trials of the proposed internet filtering system. Michael Malone, head of iiNet, Australia's largest ISP, said he would sign up to be involved in the "ridiculous" trials, just to show how impractical it is. more»

Consumers Worldwide Getting Better Deals on Broadband Access, Says New Study

According to a report released today by market research company Point Topic, consumers worldwide are getting better deals on broadband. Out of the three main broadband technologies, DSL, Cable, and Fiber, DSL has seen the largest worldwide fall in average price for a subscription which dropped from $66.75 in first quarter of this year to $53.32 in third quarter. That is a 20% drop in the first 3 quarters of the year. In comparison average subscription prices for cable are down just over 12% and for different versions of fiber (often called FTTx) down by 6.5%. more»

FCC Approves White Space for Broadband in Unanimous Vote

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) today approved, in a 5-0 unanimous vote, the plan to open up unused, unlicensed portions of TV white space spectrum for wireless applications and devices. However, to prevent interference, FCC has also placed some "rigorous certification process" which device offered by a technology company for use on the white spaces will have to go through. more»

UK ISP Terminating Customer Accounts with Open WiFi

Ernesto of Torrent Freak writes: Open wireless networks have served as a successful defense strategy for several alleged filesharers, as it is often impossible for content owners to prove that the person they accuse has actually distributed the files they claim they did. Unfortunately, for the customers of the UK ISP Karoo, running open WiFi might also get them disconnected -- even if it's unintentional. ...Not all ISPs are happy with customers who have open WiFi, however, and some even threaten to disconnect those who do. more»

Read Obama and McCain Campaign Responses to Key Wireless, Broadband Issues

RCR Wireless has posted responses received from presidential campaigns of Barack Obama and John McCain to questions covering a wide range of policy issues confronting the wireless industry, telecom, broadband and high-tech sectors in general. Questions asked by Jeffrey Silva, RCR Wireless' Washington Bureau Chief, included: What are the biggest telecom and technology issues the next president of the United States will face? While the wireless industry is more competitive than other telecom sectors, consolidation in recent years has reduced the number of service providers. What steps would Obama/McCain administration take to prevent antitrust abuses and protect consumers? more»

One Million UK Broadband Users Reach Unlimited Limits

New research indicates that one million UK consumers have either exceeded or nearly exceeding their broadband usage limits, according to the consumer group uSwitch. "Eighteen months after the unlimited broadband debacle first hit the headlines and around nine out of ten broadband users (86%) still don't understand the limit on their service," says the report. ""New research from uSwitch.com reveals that 6.2 million broadband customers wrongly believe they have an unlimited broadband service and a further 7.5 million do not know what their limit is -- a total of 13.7 million confused customers." more»

Google Wants the Other Important Vote to Also Take Place on the Election Day

The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) last Friday filed an emergency petition with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in order to stop the November 4th vote from taking place which may result in favorably supporting the use of "white space" spectrum. Today, Google's Washington Telecom and Media Counsel, Richard Whitt, urges all citizens to get involved in Free the Airwaves initiative; emphasizing that "it can happen only if the FCC moves forward with rules that make the best possible use of this spectrum." Whitt further explains the situation in a post on Google's Official Blog... more»

Vint Cerf Short Listed as Obama's Chief Technology Officer, Say Washington Insiders

The proposed Technology Plan of U.S presidential candidate Senator Barack Obama includes a section titled "Bring Government into the 21st Century" which aims at using technology to reform U.S. government and enhancing the exchange of information between the federal government and citizens while ensuring the security of the nation's networks... om Lowry of BusinessWeek reports: "Among the candidates who would be considered for the job, say Washington insiders, are Vint Cerf, Google's (GOOG) "chief internet evangelist," who is often cited as one of the fathers of the Internet; Microsoft (MSFT) chief executive officer Steve Ballmer; Amazon (AMZN) CEO Jeffrey Bezos; and Ed Felten, a prominent professor of computer science and public affairs at Princeton University" more»

Universities Spending $80K to Over $100K Per Year on Policing P2P Activities

As a result of the new P2P filesharing mandates signed into U.S. law this past summer, the country's 4400 colleges and universities are required to address issues of illegal P2P filesharing -- particularly music and movies. For instance, colleges and universities are "required to consider the use of technology-based deterrents" in developing plans to counter illegal P2P activity, such as traffic monitoring and bandwidth shaping. A new study by the Campus Computing Project reports the results of a summer 2008 survey aimed at addressing the campus costs of compliance with the new P2P filesharing mandates. more»

EFF Challenges Telecom Immunity Law in Court

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) Thursday challenged the constitutionality of a law aimed at granting retroactive immunity to telecommunications companies that participated in President Bush's illegal domestic wiretapping program. In a brief filed in the U.S. District Court in San Francisco, EFF argues that the flawed FISA Amendments Act (FAA) violates the federal government's separation of powers as established in the Constitution and robs innocent telecom customers of their rights without due process of law. Signed into law earlier this year, the FAA allows for the dismissal of the lawsuits over the telecoms' participation in the warrantless surveillance program if the government secretly certifies to the court that either the surveillance did not occur, was legal, or was authorized by the president. Attorney General Michael Mukasey filed that classified certification with the court last month. more»

New DPI Technology Allows ISPs to Inspect Every File, Image, and Movie Transmitted by Users

MSNBC reports that an Australian company, Brilliant Digital Entertainment Ltd., is marketing a new controversial deep packet inspection technology called CopyRouter in the U.S. cable of allowing ISPs to check every file passing through their network. More specifically, this technology can check "every image, every movie, every document attached to an email or found in a Web search," to see if it matches a list of illegal images from a law enforcement agency. more»

My Name is Vint Cerf, I'm a Scientist and I am Voting for Barack Obama

Vint Cerf, Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist who is also credited as the co-founder of the Internet, has endorsed U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama in a YouTube video submitted to AVoteForScience channel. In the video, Cerf discusses the importance of Net Neutrality (NN) and the fact that Obama is the candidate that supports NN. The following excerpt is a portion of what Cerf says in the video... more»

No Way Out of Australian ISP Filters

Australians will be unable to opt-out of the government's pending Internet content filtering scheme, and will only have the option to be placed on a weaker blacklist. Under the government's $125.8 million Plan for Cyber-Safety, users can switch between two blacklists which block content inappropriate for children, and a separate list which blocks illegal material. "Illegal is illegal and if there is infrastructure in place to block it, then it will be required to be blocked -- end of story." more»

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