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Internet Governance and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Part 7: Articles 20-21

Internet Governance, like all governance, needs to be founded on guiding principles from which all policymaking is derived. There are no more fundamental principles to guide policymaking than the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). This article, Part 7 of a series, looks at Articles 20 and 21 and explores how principles in the UDHR and lessons learned over the last half-century help define the rights and duties of one's engagement in the digital spaces of the Internet ecosystem. more

Internet Governance Outlook 2021: Digital Cacaphony in a Splintering Cyberspace

In 2020, the pandemic accelerated digitalization around the globe. Homeoffice, Online Shopping, Zoom Conferences became part of the daily life for billions of people. But if somebody would have expected that the Covid-19-Desaster is a wake-up call for the world to be more united, work hand in hand, and pool resources reducing risks of a borderless threat, this "somebody" was wrong. 2020 was dominated by "My country first." more

Reshaping Cyberspace: Beyond the Emerging Online Mercenaries and the Aftermath of SolarWinds

Ahmed Mansoor is an internationally recognized human rights defender based in the Middle East and recipient of the Martin Ennals Award (sometimes referred to as a "Nobel Prize for human rights"), On August 10 and 11, 2016, Mansoor received an SMS text messages on his iPhone promising "new secrets" about detainees tortured if he clicked on an included link. Instead of clicking, Mansoor sent the messages to the Canadian Citizen Lab researchers. more

DNS Oblivion

Technical development often comes in short, intense bursts, where a relatively stable technology becomes the subject of intense revision and evolution. The DNS is a classic example here. For many years this name resolution protocol just quietly toiled away. The protocol wasn't all that secure, and it wasn't totally reliable, but it worked well enough for the purposes we put it to. more

Internet Governance and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Part 6: Articles 18-19

Internet Governance, like all governance, needs guiding principles from which policy making, and acceptable behavior, are derived. Identifying the fundamental principles to guide Internet ecosystem policy making around digital citizenship, and around the integrity of digital practices and behavior, can and should start with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, (UDHR). more

Another ICANN Meeting Concluded With No Action on DNS Abuse or Privacy/Proxy Policy

The ICANN 69 meeting has come to a close, with no progress on DNS abuse or implementation of the Privacy/Proxy Services Accreditation policy (PPSAI). While ICANN is uniquely positioned to do so, it refuses to do anything proactive about DNS abuse, with its executives overtly attempting to limit its role to data collection. Moreover, its refusal to implement community-driven initiatives such as the PPSAI points to a growing trend where ICANN is backing away from its public interest responsibilities, to the detriment of the Internet and its users. more

The Good Old Days in the Cryptography Wars

The 20th century was the golden age of surveillance. High-speed communication went either by telegraph and telephone, which needed a license from the government, or by radio, which anyone can listen to. Codes were manual or electromechanical and were breakable, e.g., the Zimmermann telegram and Bletchley Park. (The UK government spent far more effort inventing a cover story for the source of the telegram than on the break itself, to avoid telling the world how thoroughly they were spying on everyone.) more

The Whois Wars Go On

There is a lot of discussion about the Expedited Policy Development Process (EPDP) Phase 2 report on evaluating a System for Standardized Access/Disclosure (SSAD) to non-public gTLD registration data after the decisions taken by the GNSO Council on September 24th. Notably, the Business Constituency (BC) and the Intellectual Property Constituency (IPC) have voted against the adoption of the Final Report of the EPDP team. more

The EPDP Passed an Important Milestone… Now What?

This isn't the blog post I had hoped to write. When I signed up to participate in ICANN's Expedited Policy Development Process for gTLD Registration Data, I knew we had a lot of work ahead of us, but I was cautiously optimistic that we would, eventually, reach a successful outcome. Today, I find myself looking at things differently. After hundreds of hours and countless meetings and emails, Phase 2 of the EPDP's work has wrapped up with the delivery of our final report to the GNSO Council. more

2020's New Internet Success – Rejoinder

The posting with a similar name seems a bit contrived by anonymous in some strange attempt to enhance its significance. Many others, including myself, have been discussing this subject for some time. Indeed, a concerted lobbying effort and anti-competitive efforts by legacy TCP/IP internet stakeholders have been really ramped up over the past year to mischaracterize what is occurring. more

2020's New Internet Success

Chinese technology policy is now more effective even than their naval posture in the South China Sea, and both are playing out in full sunshine. This success is not about the hardware pillar of Chinese tech policy, though: its focus is the structural approach China and, increasingly, other stakeholders are taking to global Internet Governance... Late in the Year of the Pig just gone, China's offer of a New Internet Protocol was chewed over in senior-level advisory groups of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU)... more

IGF-USA Teaser. Laura DeNardis: The Internet in Everything

Dr. Laura DeNardis, Professor and Interim Dean of the School of Communication at American University and a Faculty Director of the Internet Governance Lab, is a featured panelist at this week's IGF-USA conference. In advance of the event, I would like to draw attention to her sixth book: The Internet in Everything. Freedom and Security in a World with no Off Switch. This treatise is one of those "should/must-reads" that come along from time-to-time as it focuses on a critical issue that is overlooked by either design or neglect: how digital infrastructure determines policy. more

Freedom of Expression Part 3: Child Pornography, Manga, Anime, Obscene Publication

At the 44th Session of the Human Rights Council, we heard how 1 billion children in 2019 who were subjected to various forms of violence and the need for more action to protect children according to the Special Rapporteur. The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child released Guidelines on the implementation of the international treaty that bans child pornography, proposing to expand its interpretation to include bans on drawings and stories that sexually depict minors. more

Meta 2020: Talking Internet on the Internet

As with other meetings and conferences, the IGF-USA decided to move our annual event to a virtual format held on 22-23 July. We will discuss important matters of the Internet, using the Internet from our secure Internet access points. This format allows us to continue critical dialogue safe from viruses, murder hornets and whatever else is thrown at us this year. more

ETSI Launches Industry Specification Group: Europe for Privacy-Preserving Pandemic Protection

Nothing can describe the situation the world is living today more accurately than the current aspect of the Dolores Park in the town of San Francisco (USA). These days the green grass shows an abnormal aspect. A series of white circles span all the ground around. It is not the effect of an extra-terrestrial visit, it is just the consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic: the circles mark the safety areas where families can enjoy the park, socially-distanced, under the Sun. more

News Briefs

A New Privacy-Focused DNS Protocol Released Called Oblivious

U.S. Military Is Buying Location Data of People Around the World Through Ordinary Apps

Trump Admin Ramping Up Attacks on GDPR – Says It Helps Cybercrime, Threatens Public Health

Zoom Faces Class-Action Lawsuit, Accused of Overstating Its Privacy Standards

Israel's Entire Voter Registry Exposed, the Massive Data Leak Involves 6.5 Million Voters

Coronavirus Exposes China's Deep Surveillance State

EFF: For ISPs to Retain Power to Censor the Internet, DNS Needs to Remain Leaky

China's App Allows "Superuser" Access to Entire Data of Over 100 Million Android-Based Phones

The U.S. House Judiciary Committee Is Investigating Google's Plans to Implement DNS Over HTTPS

51 CEOs Call on US Congress for Urgent Nationwide Data Privacy Law Overriding State-Level Laws

Google Showing Signs of Increased Concerns Over Rising Data Privacy Scrutiny

New Zealand’s Domain Name Commission Wins Appeal in Lawsuit Against US DomainTools

EU Court of Justice Ruling Could Result in Cutting Off Data Flows to US

Majority of Popular Mobile-Only VPNs Are Run by Chinese Nationals or Located in China

Microsoft Sees Serious Appetite for Revised Privacy Laws in US, Says It's Time to Match EU's GDPR

NGOs, Academics Warn Against EU’s Deep Packet Inspection Problem, at Least 186 ISPs Breaking Rules

US Federal Trade Commission Says It Lacks Resources to Go After Privacy Violations Effectively

No GDPR Action Against Any Big Tech Firms Since Law Imposed Last Year, Doubts Escalate Over Enforcer

Canada Says Facebook Has Refused to Address Serious Privacy Deficiencies Concerning Its Local Laws

Government Officials, Academia, and Advocacy Groups Say Time for US to Get Its Own GDPR

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Participants – Random Selection