Government & Policy

11 April 2019

Britain Proposes Broad New Powers to Regulate Internet Content New York Times

Britain proposed sweeping new government powers to regulate the internet to combat the spread of violent and extremist content, false information and harmful material aimed at children. The proposal, announced on Monday, would be one of the world’s most aggressive actions to rein in the most corrosive online content.

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Net Neutrality Vote Passes House, Fulfilling Promise by Democrats New York Times

The House passed legislation on Wednesday that would guarantee broadband internet users equal access to online content, in a crucial step toward bringing back so-called net neutrality regulations overturned at the start of the Trump administration.

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05 April 2019

Force tech giants to share data rather than break them up: academics Reuters

EU antitrust regulators should consider forcing tech giants such as Google and Amazon to share their data with rivals rather than break them up, three academics enlisted by the European Commission said on Thursday.

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Social media bosses could be liable for harmful content, leaked UK plan reveals The Guardian

Social media executives could be held personally liable for harmful content distributed on their platforms, leaked plans for a long-awaited government crackdown obtained by the Guardian reveal.

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Online harms UK white paper: could regulation kill innovation? The Guardian

It’s rare to describe a government white paper as “trendy”, but among the small community of people who think deeply about how to rein in the the power of big tech, that’s exactly how these proposals will be seen.

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Australia Passes Law to Punish Social Media Companies for Violent Posts New York Times

Australia passed sweeping legislation Thursday that threatens huge fines for social media companies and jail for their executives if they fail to rapidly remove “abhorrent violent material” from their platforms.

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04 April 2019

Australian laws targeting terror videos on Facebook and YouTube are 'rushed' and 'knee-jerk', say lawyers and tech industry ABC News

Australia's proposed new social media laws have been heavily criticised by lawyers and the start-up industry, as well as by technology giants Facebook, Google and Twitter, who say they were not meaningfully consulted.

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31 March 2019

Mark Zuckerberg: The Internet needs new rules. Let's start in these four areas. by Mark Zuckerberg Washington Post

Technology is a major part of our lives, and companies such as Facebook have immense responsibilities. Every day, we make decisions about what speech is harmful, what constitutes political advertising, and how to prevent sophisticated cyberattacks. These are important for keeping our community safe. But if we were starting from scratch, we wouldn’t ask companies to make these judgments alone.

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28 March 2019

What do major copyright changes mean for internet freedom? The Guardian

The European parliament approved the largest, and most contentious, overhaul of copyright legislation in two decades on Monday. When the directive comes into effect, it will be the biggest change to internet regulation since GDPR.

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27 March 2019

Europe Adopts Tough New Online Copyright Rules Over Tech Industry Protests New York Times

Media companies whose business models have been upended by the internet have long complained about Google and other online platforms profiting from their content without compensating them adequately.

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22 March 2019

Google Fined $1.7 Billion by E.U. for Unfair Advertising Rules New York Times

European authorities on Wednesday fined Google 1.5 billion euros for antitrust violations in the online advertising market, continuing its efforts to rein in the world’s biggest technology companies.

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19 March 2019

Tech giants will have to be regulated in future: EU's Timmermans Reuters

The European Union and authorities around the world will have to regulate big technology and social media companies at some stage to protect citizens, the deputy head of the European Commission said on Monday.

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14 March 2019

Tim Berners-Lee on 30 years of the world wide web: 'We can get the web we want' The Guardian

Thirty years ago, Tim Berners-Lee, then a fellow at the physics research laboratory Cern on the French-Swiss border, sent his boss a document labelled Information Management: A Proposal. The memo suggested a system with which physicists at the centre could share “general information about accelerators and experiments”.

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UK Chancellor to make fresh attempt to curb power of tech giants The Guardian

A fresh bid to curb the market power of US tech giants will be signalled by Philip Hammond on Wednesday when he welcomes the findings of an independent review calling for government action to ensure companies including Google, Facebook and Apple face stiffer competition.

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12 March 2019

Tim Berners-Lee: 'Stop web's downward plunge to dysfunctional future' BBC News

Global action is required to tackle the web's "downward plunge to a dysfunctional future", its inventor Sir Tim Berners-Lee has told the BBC.

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Russians protest against online 'iron curtain' controls as Vladimir Putin considers tougher internet restrictions ABC News

Russian internet users and the media have warned of a new online "iron curtain" brought about by tough new controls critics say will stifle dissent.

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10 March 2019

Elizabeth Warren Proposes Breaking Up Tech Giants Like Amazon and Facebook New York Times

Senator Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts Democrat who is bidding to be the policy pacesetter in the Democratic presidential primary, championed another expansive idea on Friday evening in front of a crowd of thousands in Queens: a regulatory plan aimed at breaking up some of America’s largest tech companies, including Amazon, Google, Apple and Facebook.

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UK House of Lords report calls for digital super-regulator The Observer

The House of Lords has called for the creation of a digital super-regulator to oversee the different bodies charged with safeguarding the internet and replace the “clearly failing” system of self-regulation by big technology companies.

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07 March 2019

EU states set to scrap digital tax plan, to work for global reform Reuters

European Union finance ministers are set to ditch a plan to introduce an EU-wide digital tax next week but agree to work on a global reform of the taxation of internet companies, an EU document shows.

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05 March 2019

EU must learn from Brexit and reform, says Emmanuel Macron The Guardian

Emmanuel Macron has called for a new European agency to fight against international cyber-attacks and the manipulation of election campaigns, as well as a ban on foreign powers funding European parties, as he set out plans to overhaul the EU in response to Britain’s vote to leave.

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04 March 2019

French tax on internet giants could yield €500 million per year: Le Maire Reuters

A three percent tax on the French revenue of large internet companies could yield 500 million euros (568.5 million pounds) per year, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Sunday.

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25 February 2019

How the US-China Tech Wars Will Impact the Developing World The Diplomat

In a recent speech, former U.S. Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson raised the specter of an “economic iron curtain,” as trade differences between the United States and China may force countries to choose a side, especially for the adoption of technology. Technology is a key underlying issue as the two countries fight for dominance in new economic frontiers such as artificial intelligence, self-driving cars and big data. It is in this sector where the biggest fault lines in the U.S.-China bilateral relationship are starting to appear.

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21 February 2019

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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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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