Articles by date

21 February 2019

The authoritarian assault on Internet freedom is on the move in Russia and India: Editorial Board (Washington Post)

For every step forward in the digital revolution comes a step back. Just last week, two retreats came in Russia and India. The potential value of the Internet, and its very freedom, is again shadowed by forces of authoritarianism and state control.

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At Harvard Law, Zittrain and Zuckerberg discuss encryption, 'information fiduciaries' and targeted advertisements (Harvard Law)

Should Facebook be considered an “information fiduciary” when it comes to the privacy of its clients? How should we weigh the pros and cons of encryption schemes which might bolster privacy and data security at the risk of shutting out law enforcement? And why shouldn’t Facebook tell users how much advertising revenue their respective data generates on a daily basis? Those were some of the questions Facebook Co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg discussed with Jonathan Zittrain ’95, HLS’s George Bemis Professor of International Law, in a conversation among students at Harvard Law School on Feb. 11.

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20 February 2019

.DEV Early Access Period Commences With General Availability on 28 Feb

The Early Access Period for Google’s .dev new gTLD, the first chance for the public to register .dev domain names, commenced on 19 February and runs through until 28 February. Early Access periods are where anyone can register available .dev domains for an extra fee, which decreases each day during the period leading up to General Availability when a standard registration fee commences.

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ICANN, Verisign, SIDN and Others Warn of Global Domain Name Hijacking Campaign

A number of domain name organisations including ICANN, Verisign and SIDN have warned of domain hijacking threats. SIDN, the .nl ccTLD registry, has advised they “have been working with NCSC-NL to investigate if .nl domain names were compromised in a recently unveiled global campaign to hijack domain names, allegedly for state-related purposes. While no .nl domain names appear to have been compromised, we will be further extending our DNS monitoring facilities to more proactively detect signs of such campaigns in the .nl zone in the future and we reiterate the importance of following best practices for secure domain name registration.”

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Child abuse images being traded via secure apps (BBC News)

Images of child sexual abuse and stolen credit card numbers are being openly traded on encrypted apps, a BBC investigation has found.

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19 February 2019

New Zealand to target online giants with digital tax (Reuters)

New Zealand said on Monday that it plans to update its laws so it can tax revenue earned by multinational digital firms such as Google, Facebook and Amazon, extending a global effort to bring global tech giants into the tax net.

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Facebook 'intentionally and knowingly' violated U.K. privacy and competition rules, British lawmakers say (Washington Post)

British lawmakers on Sunday accused Facebook of having “intentionally and knowingly violated both data privacy and anti-competition laws” in the country, and they called for investigations into the social media giant’s business practices.

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18 February 2019

It’s almost impossible to function without the big five tech giants (The Observer)

‘Quitting smoking is easy,” said Mark Twain. “I’ve done it hundreds of times.” Much the same goes for smartphones. As increasing numbers of people begin to realise that they have a smartphone habit they begin to wonder if they should do something about the addiction. A few (a very few, in my experience) make the attempt, switching their phones off after work, say, and not rebooting them until the following morning. But almost invariably the dash for freedom fails and the chastened fugitive returns to the connected world.

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The U.S. government and Facebook are negotiating a record, multibillion-dollar fine for the company's privacy lapses (Washington Post)

The Federal Trade Commission and Facebook are negotiating over a multi-billion dollar fine that would settle the agency’s investigation into the social media giant’s privacy practices, according to two people familiar with the probe.

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India Proposes Chinese-Style Internet Censorship (New York Times)

India’s government has proposed giving itself vast new powers to suppress internet content, igniting a heated battle with global technology giants and prompting comparisons to censorship in China.

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15 February 2019

Google, Facebook Forced to Pay Creators Under New EU Rules (Bloomberg)

Online platforms will be required to compensate publishers and creators for the content that appears on their websites, under new European Union copyright rules that could shrink access to online media in Europe.

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14 February 2019

EU clinches copyright overhaul deal, tech giants in focus (Reuters)

The European Union is set to rewrite its two-decades-old copyright rules which will force Alphabet Inc's Google and Facebook Inc to share revenue with the creative industries and remove copyright-protected content on YouTube or Instagram.

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13 February 2019

DomainTools Continues To Systematically Violate .NZ’s ToU Harvesting WHOIS Data, Despite Preliminary Injunction

In a reply brief filed in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals last week, New Zealand’s Domain Name Commission has accused DomainTools of continuing to harvest the personal data of .nz domain name registrants from WHOIS Records and offering this data to anyone with a credit card, thereby systematically violating the DNC’s terms of use. The reply notes how DomainTools has continually abused the ToU, despite repeated correspondence from the DNC advising them so and a preliminary injunction advising them to stop. DomainTools is now appealing the preliminary injunction.

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12 February 2019

Russia considers 'unplugging' from internet (BBC News)

Russia is considering whether to disconnect from the global internet briefly, as part of a test of its cyber-defences.

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Regulation needed to save Australian journalism from Facebook and Google, watchdog says (The Guardian)

The production of news and journalism cannot be left entirely to market forces, and regulation is needed to curb the power of Facebook and Google, the competition regulator says.

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Long untouchable, web giants now know what it feels like to be hunted (The Observer)

The key question to ask when a shocking tragedy comes to light is this: does it signify a scandal or a crisis? Scandals happen all the time in societies. They generate a lot of heat, outrage and public angst. But, eventually, the media caravan moves on and nothing much changes.

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11 February 2019

Escrow.com Has Bumper 2018 With 57% Growth As They Continue To Build The World's Best Escrow Service

Today we have another instalment in our Q&A series, this time with Escrow.com. Escrow.com had a bumper year in 2018, with a 57% increase in domain transactions, but this was slightly tempered by the scammers and fraudsters online, while the “the regulatory environment is growing more complicated and challenging every day.” Looking forward, Escrow.com is aiming to “build the best online escrow service in the world. One of the greatest opportunities Escrow.com has is to get better and more efficient at what it already does well.” They also see dot-com remaining “king” of the TLDs and “domain names are as relevant now as they have ever been.”

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10 February 2019

Tokyo 2020: Medals to be made from recycled waste (BBC News)

All the medals at the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo will be made from recycled electronic waste, say organisers.

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IEEE's 5G and Beyond Roadmap Provides Details About the New Communication Network (IEEE)

Many are predicting that 5G will be this year’s hot technology. But people are still unclear about what the new communication network is and how it will benefit them. This article should help clear up some confusion.

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08 February 2019

Instagram bans 'graphic' self-harm images after Molly Russell's death (The Guardian)

Instagram has announced that it will ban all graphic self-harm images as part of a series of changes made in response to the death of British teenager Molly Russell.

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Facebook Wants You to Have Privacy, Just Not From Facebook (Bloomberg)

Facebook Inc., which turned 15 on Feb. 4, spent the past year peppering you with apologias and promises about protecting your personal data from others. The company wants you to know that it doesn’t sell your data to advertisers, per se, and that you can limit data sharing with some other apps. It’s going to keep paying for pop-up kiosks and subway ads to reinforce that the thickets of data growing in its garden now are (imagine!) under your control. But Facebook still isn’t being transparent about the ways it collects information on you, and it’s quietly stepping up efforts to grab lots more.

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Facebook ordered by Germany to gather and mix less data (BBC News)

Germany's competition regulator has told Facebook to substantially restrict how it collects and combines data about its users unless they give it explicit consent.

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07 February 2019

PIR's New CEO Jon Nevett Discusses .ORG, GDPR Challenges, New gTLDs and How It All Applies To NGOs

In December 2018 the Public Interest Registry appointed Jon Nevett as their President and CEO. Today he’s taking part in the Domain Pulse Q&A series. Jon discusses how the GDPR was the biggest thing to hit the domain name industry in 2018, saying it “emerged in 2018 as a highlight, a challenge and an opportunity for the domain industry.” It had a particular impact on .org registrants with many smaller .orgs having fewer staff and resources to deal with the changes, so PIR became an information source to help them comply.

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Domain Pulse Conference in Bern Only Days Away

Domain Pulse, the annual domain name conference of the German-speaking world, is only days away. It will be held in the beautiful Swiss capital of Bern on Monday 18 and Tuesday 19 February.

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06 February 2019

Michele Neylon Talks .IE, GDPR, European Commission’s .EU Failure, New gTLD Thoughts And More

In today’s Domain Pulse Q&A we talk to Blacknight Solutions’ Michele Neylon who discusses how the simplification of .ie policies was a 2018 highlight, while “a big negative has been how the European Commission has been dealing, or rather refusing to deal with, the implications of Brexit on .eu.” But he says “GDPR and its implementation has probably been the biggest single issue for 2018.” GDPR has been painful, but Michele says, “but overall it’s very positive”.

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