Sunday, 28 December 2014

Crown Prosecution Service offers clear guidance for prosecutors on 'revenge pornography'

Crown Prosecution Service offers clear guidance for prosecutors on 'revenge pornography':

"Section 1 of the Malicious Communications Act 1988 deals with the sending of electronic communications which are indecent, grossly offensive, threatening or false, provided there is an intention to cause distress or anxiety to the recipient.

Section 127 of the Communications Act 2003 makes it an offence to send or cause to be sent through a 'public electronic communications network' a message that is 'grossly offensive' or of an 'indecent, obscene or menacing character'.

Where there is more than one incident, or the incident forms part of a course of conduct directed towards an individual, a charge of harassment should be considered.

Where the images may have been taken when the victim was under 18, prosecutors will consider offences under the Protection of Children Act 1978.

In the most serious cases, where intimate images are used to coerce victims into further sexual activity, other offences under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 will be considered." 'via Blog this'

Monday, 22 December 2014

Whether Or Not Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood Is In Hollywood's Pocket, He Sure Doesn't Understand Free Speech Or The Internet

Whether Or Not Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood Is In Hollywood's Pocket, He Sure Doesn't Understand Free Speech Or The Internet | Techdirt: "the idea that accurately reporting on leaked documents showing that the MPAA was funding the investigation and writing the key documents of a state Attorney General is not actionable in any way shape or form. And it's doubly ridiculous given that in this very same conference, Hood himself made a variety of speculative statements claiming that Google was the one who went through the emails and "spun" the story to the press.

But is it really any surprise that an Attorney General who is relying on a massively funded MPAA investigation to try to stifle free speech online is now implicitly threatening those who report on it with defamation lawsuits? So not only is he trying to censor the internet, he's trying to intimidate reporters into shutting up as well. Free speech be damned." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Cracking intercepts: the war on terror and difficulties with Human Rights

Cracking intercepts: the war on terror and difficulties with Human Rights | UK Human Rights Blog: "The Tribunal ruled that the current regime, both in relation to Prism and Upstream and to s.8(4), when conducted in accordance with the requirements both written into the legislation, the code and Parliamentary supervision, was both lawful and human rights compliant.

"Technology in the surveillance field appears to be advancing at break-neck speed. This has given rise to submissions that the UK legislation has failed to keep abreast of the consequences of these advances, and is ill fitted to do so; and that in any event Parliament has failed to provide safeguards adequate to meet these developments. All this inevitably creates considerable tension between the competing interests, and the ‘Snowden revelations’ in particular have led to the impression voiced in some quarters that the law in some way permits the Intelligence Services carte blanche to do what they will. We are satisfied that this is not the case.

We can be satisfied that, as addressed and disclosed in this judgment, in this sensitive field of national security, in relation to the areas addressed in this case, the law gives individuals an adequate indication as to the circumstances in which and the conditions upon which the Intelligence Services are entitled to resort to interception, or to make use of intercept. [paras 158 – 159]" 'via Blog this'

Monday, 17 November 2014

Statement by Commissioner Vestager on Google

European Commission - PRESS RELEASES - Press release - Statement by Commissioner Vestager on Google antitrust investigations at the European Parliament (ECON committee meeting): ""Our current investigations involving Google are among the most discussed in the media. The sheer amount of data controlled by Google gives rise to a series of societal challenges.  Privacy is one of the most pressing concerns. Media pluralism is another. Not all of these challenges are primarily economic in nature and not all of them are competition related. So many of the Google related concerns voiced in the public debate cannot be addressed in our investigations into the company’s alleged anti-competitive practices. We will have to limit ourselves to what we identify as competition problems. " 'via Blog this'

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Crown Prosecution Service offers clear guidance for prosecutors on ‘revenge pornography’ - CPS News Brief

Crown Prosecution Service offers clear guidance for prosecutors on ‘revenge pornography’ - CPS News Brief: "Section 1 of the Malicious Communications Act 1988 deals with the sending of electronic communications which are indecent, grossly offensive, threatening or false, provided there is an intention to cause distress or anxiety to the recipient.
Section 127 of the Communications Act 2003 makes it an offence to send or cause to be sent through a ‘public electronic communications network’ a message that is ‘grossly offensive’ or of an ‘indecent, obscene or menacing character’." 'via Blog this'

Friday, 15 August 2014

German constitutional judge expresses concerns about the “right to be forgotten”

German constitutional judge expresses concerns about the “right to be forgotten” decision | Internet Policy Review: "German judge concludes, that there are gaps in EU data protection legislation, especially when it comes to acknowledge and put into law the differences between public law and private law actors. The proposed EU data protection regulation which is still on the agenda of the EU bodies might be the right place to find better and more targeted provisions for the different spheres, Masing hopes. But so far the proposals did not go far enough in that direction." 'via Blog this'

Sunday, 27 July 2014

WILMap: United Kingdom - Center for Internet and Societ-

WILMap: United Kingdom | Center for Internet and Society: "Regulations 2013/3028, Defamation (Operators of Websites)
[These regulations are supplementary to section 5 of the Defamation Act 2013 (see below). Among others, they specify the characteristics of a valid notice of infringement, as well as require the website operators wishing to rely on the section 5 defence to respond to such a notice (by eg. removing the content complained of or by contacting its poster) within 48 hours (see Schedule 1 of the Regulations). That said, reg. 5 provides that the courts have the discretion to extend this period.]" 'via Blog this'

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

UK Emergency Surveillance Law Criticized For Being Overly Broad, Draconian

UK Emergency Surveillance Law Criticized For Being Overly Broad, Vague And Draconian | TechCrunch: "“The obvious practical significance of this is it certainly clarifies beyond any doubt that companies like Microsoft, that operate Skype, or Google and Twitter or Facebook and all these other big companies, that are not UK companies, don’t have servers in the UK for actually storing data, but obviously have office in the UK, are obliged to comply with a RIPA [Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act] notice,” he said. “I don’t know, as a matter of course whether Google and Facebook were already complying or not.

“Now obviously the question is if a company doesn’t have a presence in the UK… what are they going to do about it? And in the same way that if we get a notice.. obliging us to hand over documents to let’s say the Chinese or frankly any foreign country we tell them to get stuffed. Because we’re not subject to their laws. So extraterritoriality is, in theory, a very nice thing to have but it’s of little power if you don’t have the policemen who can go and enforce it.”" 'via Blog this'

Monday, 14 July 2014

Oxbridge and Russell Group graduates dominate latest City trainee intake

Legal Cheek » Oxbridge and Russell Group graduates dominate latest trainee intake of top law firms:

"Out of 1,049 trainees taken on by 24 leading UK law firms in 2013, 219 (21%) were Oxbridge graduates and 613 were Russell Group graduates (58%). Just 156 (15%) of the trainees came from other UK universities, with the remaining 61 (6%) from foreign universities. The survey was targeted at top 30 UK law firms by revenue."

Six of top 30 firms (half of magic circle) refused to take part: Clifford Chance, Slaughter and May, Freshfields, DLA Piper, Holman Fenwick Willan and Simmons & Simmons. 'via Blog this'

A snoopers' charter by the backdoor: One day until Drip is forced through

A snoopers' charter by the backdoor: One day until Drip is forced through: "As the explanatory notes for the legislation - released very quietly on Friday night – make clear, overseas telecommunications companies did not believe they were necessarily under Ripa's jurisdiction.

"Regarding the amendments to Ripa, in view of the suggestion by overseas telecommunications service providers that the extra-territorial effect of Ripa is unclear, it is considered necessary to amend the legislation to put the issue beyond doubt," it reads.

"This includes clarifying the definition of a 'telecommunications service' to ensure the full range of telecommunications services available to customers in the United Kingdom are included in the definition."" 'via Blog this'

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Academic publishers draft and release their own Open Access licences

Academic publishers draft and release their own Open Access licences | TechnoLlama:

"In my opinion, all of the STM licences fail the Open Definition as they are non-commercial. Even the one that allows commercial uses (STM COM/NONCOM SL) does so by leaving a number of reserved commercial uses that are not included in the licence, which means that it ends up being an incredibly diluted version of the CC non-commercial licences, and does not appear to fall within the wide boundaries of the OD.

 Even using my much broader definition, the STM licences are very suspect from an openness perspective. On first reading, they appear to be open, but looking at the details they contain a couple of eye-watering clauses that for me make it incredibly narrow, and very difficult to comply with." 'via Blog this'

Does #DRIP Bill violate the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights?

EU Law Analysis: Does the UK’s new data retention bill violate the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights?:

"But even if all such safeguards are indeed provided for, I have argued previously that the broader interpretation of the Court’s judgment is correct: no mass surveillance is possible. If that is correct, then the provision in the draft Bill to permit a requirement to collect ‘all’ data is inherently suspect, and it would certainly be a breach of EU law to require telecom providers to retain all traffic data within the scope of the e-privacy Directive without some form of further targeting.

In conclusion, much of the UK’s draft Bill would, if adopted, fall within the scope of EU law, and therefore the Charter of Rights. It is possible, depending on the future statutory instrument, that the rules, when applied, will comply with the data retention safeguards demanded by the CJEU.

But the government’s intention, as manifested by the Bill, to reinstitute mass surveillance of telecoms traffic data is a clear breach of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights." 'via Blog this'

Extraterritoriality in S.5 Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill

Cyberleagle: Dissecting the emergency Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill:

"DRIP states explicitly that a warrant, a capability maintenance notice and a communications data acquisition notice may each relate to conduct outside the UK.

 It then provides that the duties to comply with such warrants and notices apply whether or not the person is within the United Kingdom. In the case of interception warrants knowing failure to comply with the duty can give rise to criminal liability under RIPA S11(7).

DRIP then goes to great lengths to devise ways of serving warrants and notices within the UK on non-UK entities.  For communications data acquisition notices this can even include oral notification.  Whether this elaboration is simply a question of practicality or perhaps reflects a deeper concern that serving government warrants and notices outside the UK might be regarded as executive acts violating the territorial sovereignty of another State is a matter for speculation. " 'via Blog this'

Dissecting the emergency Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill

Cyberleagle: Dissecting the emergency Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill:

"DRIP, now with its accompanying provisional draft regulations which appeared on the Home Office website yesterday afternoon, has to square a circle.  Ideally it should make a plausible attempt to address the 15 or so fundamental rights grounds on which the ECJ held that the Data Retention Directive was invalid.  But at the same time DRIP has to deliver on Theresa May’s 10 July statement to the House of Commons that it maintains the status quo until 31 December 2016, when the sunset clause kicks in.

 In reality DRIP cannot square the circle. Indeed the newly published Impact Assessment recognises that the legislation does not overcome all the ECJ stumbling blocks, claiming only to address the ECJ judgment “where possible” and “to the extent practicable”.  It also acknowledges the “Risk of being perceived as ignoring the ECJ judgment”." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Too Much Private ISP Censorship is Bad

UK Government Agrees - Too Much Internet Content Regulation is Bad - ISPreview UK: "Over the past few months the news has been full of over-blocking and filtering errors, which has resulted in masses of perfectly legal and often child-friendly websites being caught up in such censorship systems. At one point or another websites from WordPress to Facebook, Imgur and even those setup to help victims of self-harm and sexual abuse have found themselves at the wrong end of a block.

 In that sense it’s good to see the Government this week acknowledge that “content regulation of the internet could give rise to unintended consequences such as stifling the free flow of ideas and expression that lies at the heart of the development of the internet” and reaffirm their commitment to working alongside ISPs, as opposed to forcing through new legislation." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, 5 June 2014

ECJ: Public Relations Consultants Association Ltd (PRCA) v The Newspaper Licensing Agency Limited and Others (NLA)

This decision has the effect that everyday users of the internet will not infringe copyright through browsing websites. Consequently, the internet will not be brought to its knees (at least in a legal sense) as some commentators feared and from the point of view of the reasonable expectations of internet users, this is a sensible decision. Importantly, it should be noted that this decision applies only to browsing.  It does not legitimise printing out or downloading the content of websites without the permission of copyright owners. Nor does it affect the recent CJEU decision in Svensson on linking.

UK remote gambling point of consumption regime – a solution looking for its Gibraltar problem?

Ramparts: "It is established European law that Member States cannot restrict cross-border services within the European Union unless objectively justified for public policy reasons, and even then any restrictions must be proportionate to those objectives. The UK Government claims that the new legislation is necessary to improve the protection of UK customers and the UK regulator claims it is necessary that they directly regulate any UK facing operators. However, little evidence of consumer detriment or regulatory risk has been adduced under the current UK regime. In addition, lack of consideration of suitable enforcement measures heightens concerns about the risks inherent in the proposed POC Regime.
[Update September 2013]:It is interesting to note that the UK Government is strongly opposed to the proposed Financial Transactions Tax (FTT) -  (see e.g. "Blow to the FTT vindicates Treasury"). The UK may have difficulty on the one hand advocating going it alone for a POCT for online gaming but then claiming it may bring a legal challenge for any financial services tax brought in by other Member States if they are not agreed at EU level. EU tax law makes no such distinction between the two sectors and there is a real danger that with a POCT the UK is opening up the imposition of extra-territorial taxes by other European countries against the hugely important UK e-commerce and financial services businesses (and potentially undermining its position in any political or legal challenge against FTT).
A recent legal opinion from the Legal Service of the European Council stated that as currently specified the FTT, "exceeds Member States' jurisdiction for taxation under the norms of international customary law", is incompatible with EU law as it "infringes upon the taxing competences of non-participating Member States" and is “discriminatory and likely to lead to distortion”." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Towards a Web 3.0? The impact of the Google Spain judgment on social networks and Wikipedia

EU Law Analysis: Towards a Web 3.0? The impact of the Google Spain judgment on social networks and Wikipedia: "Is there good reason for Mark Zuckerberg's own knickers to be in a twist, following the Google Spain judgment? The CJEU does suggest that the territorial scope of the Directive is relatively broad, and as such is more likely to apply to social networks and other well-known Internet services than might otherwise have been thought. But it is not yet certain whether and when the Directive does apply to entities whose situation differs from Google’s. Equally the judgment confirms that the material scope of the Directive is broad, and it seems clear enough that its personal scope is broad too.

 However, the judgment is unlikely to lead to a ‘Web 3.0’ as regards Internet services besides search engines, because there are basic differences in the substantive data protection law of the EU as it applies to the bodies offering such services. These differences concern in particular: the very nature of user-generated content (arguably changing who is the ‘data controller’); the existence of privacy or editing policies; the public figure exception; the possible application of different, additional grounds for processing personal data; and the Google Spain judgment itself – since it provides for an alternative, more effective means of blocking access to the personal data concerned." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Cisco Systems & Messagenet SpA v EC, Paragraph 81

CURIA - Documents: 11 December 2013: Case T‑79/12

"In contrast to the applicant’s unsubstantiated assertions, the Commission put forward in the contested decision specific items of information indicating the existence of such a multi-homing phenomenon. The Commission did not only refer to such coexistence between WLM and Skype before the concentration. The report cited in footnote 52 of the contested decision mentions several other examples of multi‑homing involving Skype and alternative providers such as Yahoo!, AIM and Gmail. In addition, recital 93 of the contested decision, whose content the applicants do not contest, refers to the recent arrival of competitors such as Facebook, Viber, Fring and Tango, which tends to show that network effects do not, in any event, impede market access." 'via Blog this'

EU General Court dismisses complaints about Microsoft's takeover of Skype

EU court dismisses complaints about sanctioning of Microsoft's takeover of Skype: "In its ruling the General Court said that the Commission was right to consider that there is a faster growing market for smartphones and tablets than there is for PCs and that the WLM had a "weak presence" on those non-PC platforms. It said the merged entity "faces strong competition" in the consumer video communications market as a whole from companies such as Apple and Google.
The General Court also upheld the Commission's view that Facebook would also be an "effective competitor" to Microsoft post its takeover of Skype. It also said that there are no "technical or economic constraints" preventing users of Skype or WLM from switching to other services should Microsoft decide to start charging for those services or stop innovating on communication services." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Advisory Group Boost for ODR

Advisory Group Boost for ODR: "Those of us who thought that ODR was in danger of being overlooked in the course of the remorseless moves to strip expenditure in the justice system, whatever the true cost, can take some comfort from the latest move by the Civil Justice Council. It has at last showed a real interest in ODR.

The CJC is an advisory non-departmental public body of the Ministry of Justice and is responsible for overseeing and co-ordinating the modernisation of the civil justice system. The CJC has set up a new advisory group, chaired by... Richard Susskind, to explore the role that ODR can play in resolving civil disputes." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

CJEU brings untargeted “just in case” data retention to its end - Peter Schaar

CJEU brings untargeted “just in case” data retention to its end | EAID: "The judgment of the CJEU dramatically changes the legal landscape: all of a sudden Germany is the only EU Member State with national legal rules that meet the European requirements, simply because the German rules do not allow for “just in case” data retention (Vorratsdatenspeicherung).

 Hopefully, the EU institutions will draw the right conclusions from the message of the Court. The judgment points the way for other measures that would also lead to massive, suspicionless data retention “just in case”: the planned European Passenger Name Records (PNR)- and Entry-Exit Registers should be scrapped, as should the introduction of suspicionless mass data retention, envisaged in the German Grand Coalition Agreement." 'via Blog this'

European court allows website blocking | TechnoLlama

European court allows website blocking | TechnoLlama: "I have to admit that while I dislike greatly blocking orders, and I maintain that they are a complete waste of time and money, the decision reached by the CJEU in Telekabel is logical, and that it still leaves intact the balancing act that was reached in Sabam and Promusicae. It is particularly encouraging that the court restated that users must not suffer unduly, and that they should not have access to legitimate content curtailed.

 Incidentally, it is quite telling that the CJEU admits as part of the facts of the case the seemingly innocent fact that the website subject to the initial order stopped its operation in 2011, which serves to stress the practical futility of blocking injunctions.

The copyright industry may continue winning pyrrhic battles, but the war has been lost. The solution is not an injunction, it is a revamp of business models." 'via Blog this'

"A total map of everyday life" data retention decision: The good, the bad and the ugly

Matron: "A total map of everyday life" - Today’s data retention decision: The good, the bad and the ugly: "Commissioner Malmstroem, who currently still oversees that part of the Commission responsible for the Data Retention Directive, has already issued her own version of history. In an FAQ document released today, she specifically claims that:

 “National legislation needs to be amended only with regard to aspects that become contrary to EU law after a judgment by the European Court of Justice. Furthermore, a finding of invalidity of the Directive does not cancel the ability for Member States under the e-Privacy Directive (2002/58/EC) to oblige retention of data.”**

 Put that in your pipe and smoke it, pesky privacy nerds!

So, onwards and upwards it is! No rest for the wicked and all that. At least the upcoming European Parliament elections and Commission rotation will hopefully give all of us a bit of a much-needed breather. " 'via Blog this'

CJEU prohibits mass surveillance

EU Law Analysis: The data retention judgment: The CJEU prohibits mass surveillance: "First and foremost, the data retention Directive is entirely invalid. The Court did not in any way rule that it could continue in force. So the immediate consequence is that we return to the status quo before 2005. This means that Member States have an option, not an obligation, to retain data pursuant to the e-privacy Directive (see further Chris Jones’ post on the background to the data retention Directive). However, Member States’ exercise of this option will still be subject to the requirements set out in this judgment, since their actions will fall within the scope of the Charter, given that the e-privacy Directive regulates the issue of interference with telecommunications" 'via Blog this'

Friday, 28 March 2014

ICT for Development: Thoughts Towards a History and its Future Role

ICT4D: Thoughts Towards a History of ICT4D - and its Future Role | Oxford Internet Institute - Webcasts: "The presentation will use the history and development of ICT4D - and its relationships with both development policy and the ICT sector - as a framework to critique ICT4D approaches and consider the relevance of ICTs and ICT4D to the post-2015 development agenda.

It will draw, inter alia, on recent work for the World Bank, to assess ICTs in post-conflict reconstruction; for the International Institute for Sustainable Development, to address the relationship between ICTs and sustainability; and for UNCTAD and the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development, to consider the implications of emerging ICT trends for developmental outcomes." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, 27 March 2014

YouTube in talks with Ankara to lift the ban: report

YouTube in talks with Ankara to lift the ban: report - RIGHTS: "The parliament had passed Feb. 6 a much-debated Internet bill, amid concerns raised by the European Union as well as local NGOs and opposition parties. “The regulation that has been approved by the General Assembly is giving unseen authorities to the TİB,” the Turkish Journalists Association criticized the Law Nr. 5651, which TİB based its decision on in today's YouTube blocking.

Even before the fresh leaks, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had given the signal that the Twitter ban could be extended to YouTube and Facebook. The ban on Twitter was halted by an administrative court ruling on March 26 and TİB has to unblock Twitter in 30 days, according to Turkish laws." 'via Blog this'

Web-blocking and copyright protection: the European court sets the limits

Web-blocking and copyright protection: the European court sets the limits « radiobruxelleslibera: "Court of Justice of the European Union has finally determined the limits under which national courts can require ISPs (Internet access providers) to block access to websites in order to prevent or impede copyright infringements. The decision of the Court (Judgment in Case C‑314/12 UPC Telekabel Wien GmbH v Constantin Film Verleih GmbH and Wega Filmproduktionsgesellschaft mbHis of February 27, 2014) is not surprising, because the relevant European directives allow implicitly such kind of national interventions in order to repress piracy. However, today’s decision is very important because for the first time the European court has set forth some mandatory principles that national courts must comply with when ordering ISPs to block access to websites for copyright protection purposes." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Why the U.S. Government Isn't Really Relinquishing its Power over Internet Governance

Michael Geist - Why the U.S. Government Isn't Really Relinquishing its Power over Internet Governance: "
Not only is the U.S. able to assert jurisdiction over ICANN, but it has also asserted jurisdiction over all dot-com, dot-net, and dot-org domain names. In 2012, a U.S. court ordered the seizure of a dot-com domain that was registered in Canada with no U.S. connection other than the location of the domain name registry. This effectively means the U.S. retains jurisdiction over half of all domain name registrations worldwide regardless of where they are registered or who manages the system.

The U.S. might transition away from the current model (though the initial 2015 date seems ambitious), but much of its jurisdictional power will remain largely unchanged. The latest announcement has the potential to fulfill a promise made nearly two decades ago, but skeptics can be forgiven for suspecting that power over Internet governance will remain firmly rooted in the U.S. no matter how the issue is resolved." 'via Blog this'

Friday, 21 March 2014

Q&A with cybersecurity and privacy expert Ian Brown

Q&A with cybersecurity and privacy expert Ian Brown | Comment is free | "How far can societies shape the development of computing and communications technologies, so that they serve the public good as well as private interests? How can technologists translate values such as privacy into hardware designs, software code and system architectures? Should - and can - governments intervene effectively to ensure this happens? And who decides what those values should be?

These were some of the questions discussed this week at the Oxford London lecture, in association with the Guardian. Dr Ian Brown"

See comments below the article for several excellent security analyses by Ian: 'via Blog this'

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Net Neutrality: Dangerous Loopholes Remain After Key Vote by Lead EU Parliament Committee

Net Neutrality: Dangerous Loopholes Remain After Key Vote by Lead EU Parliament Committee | La Quadrature du Net: "The “Industry” (ITRE) committee has just adopted its report on the Telecom Regulation and Net Neutrality. Despite improvements – especially in comparison with Neelie Kroes' proposal –, the committee and its rapporteur, Pilar del Castillo Vera, bowed to the pressure of the telecom lobby, and major loopholes remain in the text. If the Internet as we know it is to be protected from the rent-seeking behaviour of big corporations who dominate the digital economy, these loopholes must be closed during the European Parliament vote in plenary session on 3 April." 'via Blog this'

Google, Viacom settle landmark 2007 YouTube lawsuit

Google, Viacom settle landmark YouTube lawsuit | Reuters: "Tuesday's settlement was announced 11 months after U.S. District Judge Louis Stanton in Manhattan rejected Viacom's damages claims over YouTube's alleged posting of clips from "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart," "South Park," "SpongeBob SquarePants" and other programs that viewers had uploaded.

Stanton concluded that YouTube didn't have to constantly scour its website for infringing videos, so long as it removed such videos after receiving demands from copyright owners.

Viacom had been appealing that decision to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York, and oral argument had been scheduled for March 24." 'via Blog this'

Monday, 17 March 2014

John Henry Clippinger: Facebook Is Betting Against its Users

John Henry Clippinger: Facebook Is Betting Against its Users: The basics of Facebook:

"It is the business model, stupid. The more we know about you and the less you, our customer/client, knows about us, the more money we make. We "short" our customer because we are betting that they aren't savvy enough to protect their own interests; the client, the user, is not so much a customer, as a "mark." Goldman says they have "sophisticated" customers who know the risks. Yeah, state pension fund employees and fund manages that get paid a fraction of their salaries with a fraction of their analytic resources, data, and street smarts.

The same asymmetry of information exists in the social media space. According to a Pew poll, 23% of Facebook users don't even know about privacy settings -- period." 'via Blog this'

Telegeography Submarine Cable Map 2014

Submarine Cable Map 2014: "Submarine Cable Map 2014" 'via Blog this'

NTIA Announces Intent to Transition Key Internet Domain Name Functions

NTIA Announces Intent to Transition Key Internet Domain Name Functions | NTIA: "NTIA currently contracts with ICANN to carry out the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) functions and has a Cooperative Agreement with Verisign under which it performs related root zone management functions.  Transitioning NTIA out of its role marks the final phase of the privatization of the DNS as outlined by the U.S. Government in 1997."

Note none of this is scheduled to happen before 2015 so the IANA contract continues until then. 'via Blog this'

Sunday, 16 March 2014

First Porn, Now Extremism: The UK Looks to Expand Web Censorship

First Porn, Now Extremism: The UK Looks to Expand Web Censorship | Motherboard: "The UK is broadening its arsenal of online tools to censor pretty much anything it doesn’t like beyond the now broadly deployed, controversial, frequently-mocked ISP filters. The latest step isn’t targeted against porn—the usual quarry in the British government’s digital firing line—but extremism. And this time they’re not working with internet providers, but with Google.

The Financial Times reports that the tech giant has given UK security officials special permission to flag videos on YouTube. The “super flagger” status allows authorities to select content for the company to screen immediately. They don’t have to pick out videos one-by-one, either, but can flag whole swathes of material in one go." 'via Blog this'

Friday, 14 March 2014

Enemies of the Internet 2014: entities at the heart of censorship and surveillance

Enemies of the Internet 2014: entities at the heart of censorship and surveillance | Enemies of the Internet: "The mass surveillance methods employed in these three countries, many of them exposed by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, are all the more intolerable because they will be used and indeed are already being used by authoritarians countries such as Iran, China, Turkmenistan, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain to justify their own violations of freedom of information. How will so-called democratic countries will able to press for the protection of journalists if they adopt the very practices they are criticizing authoritarian regimes for?" 'via Blog this'

Monday, 3 March 2014

Shaping the digital environment – ensuring our rights on the Internet

Shaping the digital environment – ensuring our rights on the Internet: "Austria will organise within the framework of the Austrian chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe a Conference entitled “Shaping the Digital Environment – Ensuring our Rights on the Internet”.

The Conference will take place on 13 and 14 March 2014.

It will build upon a multi-stakeholder approach, and discuss challenges and best practices in the light of recent developments in the field of Internet governance. Participants will take stock of the progress made on the Council of Europe's Internet Governance Strategy, thereby also identifying possible ways forward beyond 2015. They will address inter alia:

  1. privacy and self-determination on the internet
  2. public interest content on the Internet
  3. business and human rights – industry responses to user rights
The Conference will be held at the level of representatives and experts from governments, international organisations, industry and civil society. It will be opened with a High-Level Panel. The Conference will be webcast.." 'via Blog this'

Saturday, 1 March 2014

EU Data Retention Directive: Fighting Back against mass surveillance

EU Law Analysis: The EU’s Data Retention Directive: Fighting Back against mass surveillance in the EU’s Court of Justice: "Advocate-General’s opinion from last December on the validity of the EU’s data retention Directive (Directive 2006/24; Cases C-291/12 Digital Rights and C-594/12 Seitlinger). These cases, referred from the Irish and Austrian courts, present the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) with its best chance yet to deliver an iconic judgment relating to the EU’s Charter of Fundamental Rights. The Test-Achats judgment (Case C-236/09) of 2011, concerning the invalidity of EU rules permitting insurance discrimination between men and women, just didn’t amount to such a judgment." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Packed IAB Plenary Debates Pervasive Monitoring Attacks: Internet Society

Packed IAB Plenary Debates Pervasive Monitoring Attacks | Internet Society: "“Surveillance is not a new phenomenon,” Carpenter said. “Don’t have the impression that this is just the NSA or just the US government.”

The first of these IETF debates, held in 1996, dealt with a movement by many governments to restrict the use and sale of strong cryptography, which is a foundational technology for e-commerce. The result of this debate was RFC 1984, signed by both the IAB and the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG), which encouraged policies that allow ready access to strong cryptographic technology for all Internet users.

In 1999, the IETF had a similar debate about Internet wiretapping. The result of that debate was RFC 2804, also signed by both the IAB and the IESG, which stated that the IETF would not consider wiretapping as a requirement for creating or maintaining IETF standards.

Carpenter said the underlying principal of these two previous IETF debates is that “IETF technology should be able to make the Internet secure, including the ability to provide privacy, but it should be neutral with respect to varying cultural views of legality and privacy.”" 'via Blog this'

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

French court orders Google to display fine for privacy breach

French court orders Google to display fine for privacy breach | Reuters: "CNIL has objected to Google's method of combining data collected on individual users across services such as YouTube, Gmail and social network Google+. The move towards broad storage was introduced by Google in March 2012 and combined 60 privacy policies into one, giving users no means to opt out.

The web giant appealed the CNIL's fine last month as well as the order to post a notice of the sanction on its homepage for 48 hours. Google specifically asked the Conseil d'Etat, France's top administrative court, to suspend that order while it re-examines the case." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Hacktivists targeted by British spies

Hacktivists targeted by British spies » EDRi: The European Digital Rights organisation is a useful source of anti-censorship and regulatory news:

"According to documents released by Snowden on NSA activities, a secret
British division of GCHQ named Joint Threat Research Intelligence Group
(JTRIG), meant to mount cyber attacks on Britain’s enemies, was
targeting the hacktivists of Anonymous and LulzSec.

The documents reveal that JTRIG launched a “denial of service” (DDOS)
attack (dubbed Rolling Thinder) and other techniques to cut the
communications of 80 percent of the users of Anonymous internet chat
rooms. This is the first known such attack performed by a European
government." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

High Court Grants Judgement for libel defamation on Facebook

High Court Grants Judgement for libel defamation on Facebook: "Despite Ms Smith having a closed Facebook account and therefore not being visible to all account holders, the fact that her sister had reposted the comments on her wall and taking in to account the very concerning content, the High Court has granted Ms Walder a procedural judgment for libel in her favour following Ms. Smith’s failure to following the procedure of the High Court, namely replying to the claim form and particulars of claim in good time.

The damages for the libel are likely to be substantial and a High Court hearing has been set, in the Queen’s Bench Division, for the 11th February 2014 pertaining to the level of damages and costs that Ms Smith will be ordered to pay Ms. Walder for the libel.

As Ms Walder’s lawyers, we have, along with requesting the Court award Ms Walder damages and aggravated damages for libel defamation, also requested an injunction be granted against Ms Smith to prevent her from libelling Ms Walder in the future. " 'via Blog this'

Lords Hansard text for 16 Jan 2014

Lords Hansard text for 16 Jan 2014 (pt 0002)Viscount Colville of Culross:

"Governments also want ICANN to come into the ITU, opening the possibility that Governments who do not like whole categories of websites could try to cut them off from the internet by banning them from the directory. I, for one, do not think that this offers a guarantee of free speech.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee said that the running of the internet should be left to its users rather than to a UN agency representing the world’s Governments, which would only interfere further with its openness.

 For some years now there have been attempts to set up independent multi-stakeholder control of these crucial internet bodies. That approach would allow internet companies and citizens to be equal partners with national Governments, so that one group does not abuse another. It would enshrine transparency and open up discussion to ensure that national Governments do not dominate the running of the internet. That issue will be central to the agenda of the internet governance conference to be held in April in Brazil, to which the UK will be sending a sizeable delegation." 'via Blog this'

Lords Hansard 16 Jan 2014: On the 25th anniversary of the WWW

Lords Hansard text for 16 Jan 2014 (pt 0002): "Baroness O’Neill of Bengarve (CB):

My Lords, I thank my noble friend Lady Lane-Fox for introducing what must be a central topic for all of us. She also asked the right question: what sort of world wide web do we want? There are also the questions of what sort of web we can have and have now.

We are probably living in the twilight of the cyber-romantics who think that zero regulation of everything online is the way we should head. We obviously are not in that situation. The effective and enriching use of the web is life-transforming but depends on the right sort of legislation and regulation in the right places." 'via Blog this'

The 20-year-old Microsoft memo that came true

COLUMN-The 20-year-old Microsoft memo that came true | Reuters: "Every tech know-it-all was harping on the mayhem Moore's law would unleash, but Myhrvold's essay made the coming revolution palpable. He wrote: 

"It is extraordinarily difficult for people to really grasp the power of exponential growth. No experience in our everyday life prepares us for it. The numbers become so astronomically large so quickly...that it is easy to either dismiss them outright, or mentally glaze over and become numb to their meaning. It is incredibly easy to fool oneself into thinking that you do understand it, but usually this just means that you've mentally done a linear extrapolation from the recent past. This works for a little while, but then rapidly becomes out of date." 'via Blog this'

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Tim Berners-Lee: We need to re-decentralize the Web

Tim Berners-Lee: We need to re-decentralize the Web | Ars Technica: "The kind of balkanized Web he spoke about, as typified by Brazil's home-soil servers argument or Iran's emerging intranet, is partially being driven by revelations of NSA and GCHQ mass surveillance. The distrust that it has brewed, from a political level right down to the threat of self-censorship among ordinary citizens, threatens an open Web and is, said Berners-Lee, a greater threat than censorship. Knowing the NSA may be breaking commercial encryption services could result in the emergence of more networks like China's Great Firewall, to "protect" citizens. This is why we need a bit of anti-establishment pushback, alluded to by Berners-Lee" 'via Blog this'

Friday, 31 January 2014

How standards work

draft-iab-filtering-considerations-06: "The Internet is structured to be an open communications medium. This
openness is one of the key underpinnings of Internet innovation, but
it can also allow communications that may be viewed as undesirable by
certain parties. Thus, as the Internet has grown, so have mechanisms
to limit the extent and impact of abusive or objectionable
communications. Recently, there has been an increasing emphasis on
"blocking" and "filtering," the active prevention of such
communications. This document examines several technical approaches
to Internet blocking and filtering in terms of their alignment with
the overall Internet architecture." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Blocking BitTorrent search sites 'ineffective': Pirate Bay ban lifted for Dutch ISPs

Blocking BitTorrent search sites 'ineffective': Pirate Bay ban lifted for Dutch ISPs • The Register: ""The service providers' subscribers in any case mainly use proxies or resort to other torrent sites," the appeals court said. "The blockade is therefore ineffective."

Anti-piracy group BREIN, which applied for the Pirate Bay banning order back in 2012, yesterday criticized the appeals court – and claimed Dutch internet traffic to the Pirate Bay was down despite the overall increase in torrenting of copyrighted videos and music.

BREIN director Tim Kuik said his group, which is left with Ziggo and XS4All's 400,000 euro legal bill, is considering filing an appeal to the Dutch Supreme Court." 'via Blog this'

SCL Event Report: Foundations of IT Law – Module 2: Internet Law

SCL Event Report: Foundations of IT Law – Module 2: Internet Law: "Chris Marsden explained that much of his presentation was heavily based on a chapter in his recent book, the Oxford Bibliography of Internet Law (OUP, 2012) and would focus mainly on the liability of intermediaries rather than individuals.

In analysing the position under the E-Commerce Directive 2000, Chris noted the dangers for internet service providers (ISPs) of having actual knowledge of content, and the desirability for them of acting as 'mere ciphers'.  Should ISPs engage in any 'active' filtering, they lose the protection afforded to them by Article 14, so a position of 'masterly inactivity' (except when instructed otherwise by law enforcement agencies) is the safest default position" 'via Blog this'

Sunday, 19 January 2014

What Does Network Neutrality Look Like Today?

Net neutrality in Europe: What Does Network Neutrality Look Like Today? Haro...: What Does Network Neutrality Look Like Today? | Public Knowledge : "This doesn’t make the FCC entirely helpless. But it does mean that ...

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Dutch govt presents policy vision on internet ecosystem

Dutch govt presents policy vision on internet ecosystem - Telecompaper:
"Dutch government wants a stronger foundation to net neutrality rules, with these also extended to other 'gatekeepers', such as businesses that filer or aggregate information, like search engines, operating systems and app ecosystems... the rise of OTT and on-demand services may require regulation of the audiovisual sector to be relaxed. The Dutch government said it's ready to take the lead on this in EU discussions.
In addition, issues such as integrity, continuity and privacy are increasingly the domain of 'new' players, and not just market incumbents, and these new players should face the same responsibilities, both towards public authorities and end-users." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Cyberleagle: Internet legal developments to look out for in 2014 part 2

Cyberleagle: Internet legal developments to look out for in 2014:
"8. PRISM, TEMPORA, Snowden. Watch out for the legal challenges launched by various public interest groups following the Snowden revelations. These include two applications (by Liberty and Privacy International) to the Investigatory Powers Tribunal and a case taken (by Big Brother Watch, the Open Rights Group, English PEN and Dr Constanze Kurz) direct to the European Court of Human Rights.
9. The saga of the Digital Economy Act 2010. The May 2013 Online Infringement of Copyright Roundtable minutes state that letters are not contemplated to start going out until ‘the latter half of 2015’." 'via Blog this'

Cyberleagle: Internet legal developments to look out for in 2014

Cyberleagle: Internet legal developments to look out for in 2014: "Blocking orders.  Constantin Films v UPC is pending in the CJEU. This is a case on copyright blocking orders. The Advocate General issued his Opinion on 26 November 2013. In the continuing absence of an English version, here are the Court’s Press Release and my summary of the Opinion. A judgment during 2014 is likely." 'via Blog this'