Articles by date
03 October 2006
The Changing Face of Privacy Protection in the European Union and the United States by FRED H. CATE (Indiana University School of Law/Indiana Law Review) (Social Science Research Network/Indiana Law Review)
This Article examines the expanding conflict and emerging compromises between the European Union and the United States over data protection. After describing each of the legal regimes and the principles that undergird them, the article concludes by addressing the conflict between those principles, current political efforts to minimize that conflict, and the inadequacies of both systems in the context of the Internet.
Principles of Internet Privacy by FRED H. CATE (Indiana University School of Law/Connecticut Law Review) (Social Science Research Network/Connecticut Law Review)
This article identifies principles that should undergird the government's efforts to protect privacy and craft privacy norms, and then contrast the application of those principles in particular settings identified by Professor Paul Schwartz in his article Internet Privacy and the State.
A New Wave of Web Addresses (Business Week)
Business Week reports on the DotMobi launch with 88,000 domains registered in the first two days (75,000 registrations reported elsewhere). Business Week asks who is registering these domains. Sarah Deutsch, General Counsel of VERizon, is quoted again saying big-name companies are being forced to register dotMobi domains or risk brand damage. Sarah says "Anytime one of these top-level domains is introduced, we are forced to register these domains proactively because if you don't do that, you are going to find your trademark infringed. It might be linked with pornography or phishing or fraud. Companies are forced to come in and protect their crown jewels." Sarah goes on to say that dotMobi names don't offer the domain owners anything they can't do with their existing domains. Meanwhile dotMobi CEO Neil Edwards obviously disagrees although in the article he doesn't seem to give any convincing arguments.
Internet Law - The Initial Interest Confusion Theory: The Beginning of Liability for Search Engine Companies (Internet Business Law Services)
One of the leading U.S. cases on the issue of liability for the use of trademarked terms is Brookfield Communications, Inc. v. West Coast Entertainment (Brookfield). The case concluded with a remarkable decision that marked the beginning of a new liability era for those using trademarked words in their advertisements. Brookfield held that the defendant company was liable to the plaintiff company, under the Trademark Infringement and Unfair Competition Laws of the U.S. Lanham Act for the defendant's use of plaintiff's trademarked term in defendant's Meta tags in Defendant's websites, even if no actual damage existed. This case introduced the Initial Interest Confusion liability theory that is still applicable in the U.S. Courts. Of the legal issues in the case, the Court considered whether there was an infringement of trademark claim; second, whether there was an unfair competition claim. These two issues were solved after intellectual property considerations in part that that related to the use of trademarked terms in domain names. Third, and most important for us in this discussion, the Court considered whether West Coast Entertainment Company (defendant) was liable for the use of the trademarked term "movieBuff" in the Meta tags in its website "westcoastvideo.com" or any other website different than "movieBuff.com." The Court decision was in the affirmative. The Court held that due to the Initial Interest Confusion theory, West Coast Entertainment Company was liable to Brookfield for the use of its trademarked term in the Meta tags of defendant's websites other than "movieBueff.com."
Milton Mueller writes on the Internet Governance website, linked from this CircleID article (but inaccessible at the time of writing) of the new MoU between ICANN and the DoC, that the new agreement "is a cosmetic response to the comments received by NTIA during its Notice of Inquiry in July 2006" with the object seeming "to be to strengthen the public's perception that ICANN is relatively independent". Milton writes that the relationship is "fundamentally unchanged" and notes that "In one important respect, the JPA has actually increased direct US intervention".
IPv6 Internals by Iljitsch van Beijnum (Cisco - The Internet Protocol Journal)
This article discusses some of the protocol details you should be aware of when planning a transition from IPv4 to IPv6. Although it is not intended as a complete step-by-step guide, this article explains the differences between IPv4 and IPv6 as they relate to actually operating a network. Vendor-and operating system specific details can be found in the book from which this text was adapted, and further information is available in the references.
The new three year agreement between ICANN and DoC is reported by many news outlets, with emphasis being given to the more hands off approach by the US government and the US government pledging to cede control of the net to private sector hands at an unspecified future point.
Rethinking Accountability in Cyberspace: A New Perspective on ICANN by KEES DE VEY MESTDAGH and RUDOLF W. RIJGERSBERG (University of Groningen) (Social Science Research Network)
Abstract: One of the most persistent debates regarding Internet governance concerns ICANN's accountability deficit. This paper identifies the habitual application of a State frame of reference by which scholars and politicians address accountability issues regarding the domain name system as the source of this debate. Re-examination of the assumptions underlying two exemplary solutions, direct elections and intergovernmental supervision, shows that the State frame of reference informing this debate ultimately breaks down. The availability of alternative services renders the call for a State-based model by which to judge and design ICANN's accountability provisions superfluous. The latter part of the paper shows that a market model is more appropriate to assess ICANN's accountability mechanisms and its role amongst other domain name services providers. In addition, a market frame of reference enables us to understand ICANN's hybrid organisational structure better.
11 May 2006
ICANN Chooses Privacy for Whois (Electronic Privacy Information Center)
ICANN has voted to adopt a policy protecting the privacy of domain holders' personal information.
us: Measuring the Child-Porn Trade (Wall Street Journal)
Unlike, say, the soft-drink or airline industries, the child-pornography industry doesn't report its annual sales to the Securities and Exchange Commission. Yet in a press release ahead of a recent House of Representatives hearing aimed at curbing the industry, Texas Republican Joe Barton said, "Child pornography is apparently a multibillion ... my staff analysis says $20 billion-a-year business. Twenty billion dollars."
Some interesting facts about domain names such as that of of the 676 possible two-letter sequences - they're all taken. And then even allowing for digits, giving 1296 combinations, again every single variation is taken. Als, there are 253,000 non-IDN domains that are 32 characters or longer, including 538 that are 63 characters long.
cn/us: Yahoo ! employees get chance to see Chinese detainee videos outside company’s headquarters (Reporters sans frontières)
A Reporters Without Borders team stationed itself with a video player outside Yahoo !'s California headquarters on 7 April and stopped employees as they left the building, offering to show them videos filmed in China of people criticising Yahoo !'s cooperation with the Chinese police. Reporters Without Borders wants Yahoo ! to stop cooperating with the Chinese authorities in the arrests of activists and journalists.
China warns on 'unhealthy' websites (The Guardian)
Chinese websites are being urged to suppress material that could harm state interests or damage social morality.
cn: Google Defends China Policy (Wired)
Google CEO Eric Schmidt defended the search engine's cooperation with Chinese censorship Wednesday, as he announced the creation of a Beijing research center and unveiled a Chinese-language brand name.
sg: Will Singapore's ban on political blogs work? (Singapore Internet Research Centre blog)
According to Asst Prof Cherian George at the School of Communication and Information, NTU one of the big questions to be answered in the upcoming Singapore General Elections is the role of new media technologies in the elections. As TV, radio and other print media is highly regulated here, observers were interested in seeing the role of blogs in these elections. However, these hopes were dashed when Singapore banned political discussions on blogs and podcasts during the election period.
Families across Australia may be able to sign up to a ban on pornography and violent content with their internet service providers by the end of this year. A three-month trial of the filter service is to begin in Tasmania by July after an extensive lobbying campaign by Governmentbackbenchers for internet screening.
Germans lead the charge to register .eu domain names (The Guardian)
Since Friday, any of the European Union's 450 million citizens can register a new .eu domain name. Though the Brussels-based European Registry of Internet Domain Names (EURid) did not expect to be trampled in the stampede, it received 350,000 pre-registration applications and a further 560,000 on the first day - making .eu bigger than many small country domains, though still behind the 4.8m permutations of .uk, or the 10m .com domains.
In less than a week from the general launch .eu has approximately 1.5 million domain names registered. This is in addition to all the applications made during the Sunrise phase which still await validation before they are activated.
au: Govt opposes adult internet domain (The Age)
The federal government has written to the international internet domain name body to protest against moves by a United States company to establish the adult content domain .xxx.
08 May 2006
The number of broadband subscriptions throughout the OECD continued to increase during 2005 from 136 million in June 2005 to 158 million by December 2005. Broadband penetration growth in the OECD held steady at 15% in the second half of the year reaching 13.6 subscribers per 100 inhabitants in December.
Online networking site MySpace is to address concerns over child safety through adverts warning about the dangers of sexual predators on the web.
More than 1.3 million .eu domains have been registered according to Eurid, the non-profit agency that oversees the new net name.
Cheap thrills on the move (The Guardian)
Podnography - erotic audio, video and pictures for MP3 players - is the hottest podcast genre
An 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel has unanimously struck down part of a federal law prohibiting the offering or advertising of material presented as child pornography, saying the provisions were too broad and vague.
Thousands lose out to touts in sale of .eu web addresses (The Guardian)
Internet touts have used a legal loophole to buy thousands of Europe's new internet addresses, thwarting attempts to crack down on cybersquatters and unscrupulous traders.