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23 January 2019

CentralNic’s Ben Crawford’s 2018 Highlight Was KeyDrive Merger, While nTLDs Offer Great Opportunities

Today’s Q&A sees CentralNic’s CEO Ben Crawford open up on 2018 and look ahead to 2019. Crawford’s major highlight and challenge, all rolled into one, was the merger of CentralNic and KeyDrive and re-listing on the London Stock Exchange. GDPR was a “familiar challenge” that exacerbated ‘tensions in the multi-stakeholder governance model’. Looking ahead Crawford sees more mergers and less “old-fashioned role delineations” with private equity groups becoming more involved.

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UK Retailer Asos Seeks Ownership of “Collusion” In Domain Names

British clothing giant ASOS is seeking ownership of the word “collusion” in domain names according to a cease and desist letter sent to an EFF client. According to a post on the EFF blog, their client’s “domain doesn’t have anything to do with clothing—it’s about contemporary U.S. political debates. It is about as far from trademark infringement as possible.” Tuesday EFF sent a response letter demanding ASOS withdraw its baseless threat.

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WhatsApp restricts message-sharing to fight fake news (BBC News)

WhatsApp is limiting all its members to forwarding any single message up to five times in an effort to tackle the spread of false information on the platform.

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UK charity reports rise in takedowns of child abuse imagery (The Guardian)

A charity tasked with removing child abuse imagery from the internet has warned of a “horrifying” increase in the amount of material it has had to take down over the past year.

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Google Is Fined $57 Million Under Europe's Data Privacy Law (New York Times)

After European policymakers adopted a sweeping data privacy law last year, the big question was how regulators would use their newfound authority against the most powerful technology companies.

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EU's antitrust cop lays groundwork for more tech scrutiny (Associated Press)

Silicon Valley’s notorious nemesis, Margrethe Vestager, plans to end her term as the European Union’s antitrust enforcer this year with a bang, laying out a long-term plan to intensify scrutiny of the world’s big tech companies.

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Did Australia Poke a Hole in Your Phone's Security? (New York Times)

A new law in Australia gives law enforcement authorities the power to compel tech-industry giants like Apple to create tools that would circumvent the encryption built into their products.

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21 January 2019

Online advertising: Trends, benefits and risks for consumers (OECD)

Online advertising is now the dominant form of advertising in many OECD countries, and offers businesses the ability to reach consumers in ways that could only have been imagined previously. Online advertising has the potential to benefit consumers through more relevant and timely advertising, and by funding a host of “free” online services.

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Are '10-Year Challenge' Photos a Boon to Facebook's Facial Recognition Technology? (New York Times)

The #10YearChallenge was all fun and memes until last week, when a tweet moved thousands of people to worry: Are we unknowingly helping giant corporations to improve their algorithms for biometric identification and age progression?

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Facebook Algorithms and Personal Data (Pew Research Centre)

About half of Facebook users say they are not comfortable when they see how the platform categorizes them, and 27% maintain the site's classifications do not accurately represent them

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Cyber-Jackpot: 773M Credentials Dumped on the Dark Web (ThreatPost)

A database of breached emails totaling 773 million unique addresses has turned up on a popular underground hacking forum, giving cybercriminals one of the largest jackpots ever seen when it comes to account-compromise efforts.

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Battle lines forming ahead of a looming US privacy law fight (Associated Press)

Consumer advocates and the data-hungry technology industry are drawing early battle lines in advance of an expected fight this year over what kind of federal privacy law the U.S. should have.

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18 January 2019

George Pongas on Neustar’s 2018’s Highs and Lows, Why New gTLDs Offer Great Opportunities and Importance of Domains

Today we have George Pongas, Neustar’s Vice President, Product Management – Registry Services, who looks at 2018 and the year ahead in the latest Domain Pulse Q&A. George discusses the lows of 2018, which for him was the loss of the contract to run the .au (Australia) registry, but then, every cloud (often) has a silver lining, and Neustar picked up the registry contract to run the .in (India) registry which has huge growth opportunities. George also discusses the metrics of judging the success of a new gTLD, and the opportunities they offer, and how domain names are still relevant.

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17 January 2019

YouTube bans dangerous or harmful pranks (BBC News)

YouTube clips that depict dangerous or emotionally distressing “pranks” have been banned from the platform.

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Survey: Few Americans Willing to Pay for Privacy (Center for Data Innovation)

Only one in four Americans want online services such as Facebook and Google to collect less of their data if it means they would have to start paying a monthly subscription fee, according to a new survey from the Center for Data Innovation.

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'ICANN's Naïve and Unprofessional GDPR Approach' A 2018 Lowlight Says's CEO, But Celebrating Triple .AT Anniversaries A Highlight

"ICANN's naïve and unprofessional approach to" the EU's GDPR was one of 2018's lowlights says Richard Wein, CEO of Austria's ccTLD registry in today's Domain Pulse Q&A with leading industry figures, looking at the year in review and year ahead. GDPR planning dominated many European ccTLDs in the first half of 2018 to the detriment of other work, but while Wein has come concerns about the GDPR, he wonders if it is a "sledgehammer to crack a nut". Overall he thinks it's a positive and now he's happy about how the team at responded to the European Union's consumer data protection regulation.

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ThreatList: $1.7M is the Average Cost of a Cyber-Attack (ThreatPost)

The average cost estimate for cleaning up a cyberattack comes in at around $1.1 million, according to a recent survey. But this is actually a rosy view: For those organizations that actually calculate (versus estimate) the real cost of an attack, that number increases significantly to $1.67 million.

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15 January 2019

The progressive evolution of innovation policy towards societal challenges (OECD)

For many years, policymakers have developed innovation models and policy instruments to target investments in science and technology in order to maximise their economic impacts. More recently, the focus of innovation policy has broadened significantly not only to include innovation for economic growth, but also to address the formidable twin challenges of environmental sustainability and sustainable development. This expanded scope means that policymakers increasingly need to use multiple policy framings to achieve the diverse outcomes many governments are now demanding from their investments in innovation.

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An Egg, Just a Regular Egg, Is Instagram's Most-Liked Post Ever (New York Times)

There’s nothing special about the egg. Seems like a fine enough egg. But more than 35 million people have liked it, dethroning Kylie Jenner’s birth-announcement post.

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14 January 2019

The Year in Review and the Year Ahead From, A Domain Investor Registrar's Perspective

The latest in the Domain Pulse series of Q&As looking at the year in review and the year ahead comes from a domain investor’s registrar perspective. Today Marc McCutcheon from, part of the rapidly growing CentralNIC group, discusses how CentralNIC’s merger with Key-Systems brought a lot of hard work and some incredible opportunities, GDPR is a good thing, registrars offering below-cost .com domain names is unsustainable, there are too many new gTLDs for investors to make money and domain names will continue to be relevant for the foreseeable future.

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13 January 2019

DENIC 2018 Successes Include Becoming Designated Escrow Agent and ID4me, But Decline in Domain Registrations and Increased Government Regulation Loom as 2019 Challenges

DENIC is the manager of Europe’s largest ccTLD (.de) and 2018 saw a few successes and a few challenges. Here in the latest in Domain Pulse’s Q&A series of 2018 in review, looking forward to 2019 and looking at some of the challenges of the domain name industry, DENIC tell us about their successes including becoming the only European Designated Escrow Agent for ICANN-accredited registrars and developing their domain name-based digital identity ID4me. But there were challenges including a decline in domains under management and the threat of increasing government regulation. And then there’s the challenge of the EU's GDPR.

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Older people more likely to share fake news on Facebook, study finds (The Guardian)

Older people are almost four times more likely to have shared fake news on Facebook than the younger generation, according to research published in the journal Science.

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Universal internet access unlikely until at least 2050, experts say (The Guardian)

Parts of the world will be excluded from the internet for decades to come without major efforts to boost education, online literacy and broadband infrastructure, experts have warned.

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The internet, but not as we know it: life online in China, Cuba, India and Russia (The Guardian)

More than half of the world's population is now online, but that does not mean we all see the same thing. From being filtered by the government to being delivered by post, the internet can vary enormously depending on where you live.

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Twitter Users in China Face Detention and Threats in New Beijing Crackdown (New York Times)

One man spent 15 days in a detention center. The police threatened another’s family. A third was chained to a chair for eight hours of interrogation.

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