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25 February 2008
Hollywood and the internet: Coming soon - The internet could be a boon for Hollywood—but only if it can conquer its fears (The Economist)
To see what the future of film distribution might look like, go to a website called ZML.com. It offers 1,700 films for download to personal computers, iPods or other hand-held devices, or to burn to DVD. It is inviting and easy to use, with detailed descriptions of each movie, editors' picks, customer reviews and screen stills. And the prices are reasonable: "Atonement", for instance, costs $2.99.
Pakistan has blocked access to the popular YouTube website because of content deemed offensive to Islam. Its telecommunications authority ordered internet service providers to block the site until further notice.
The deployment of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) in a large number of application areas is promising. This paper introduces the main characteristics of RFID technologies and focuses on the information security and privacy aspects of RFID in the short term. It will be complemented by an overview of RFID applications and an analysis of economic aspects of RFID carried out by the OECD Working Party on the Information Economy (WPIE). Later on, and based on both sets of work, a common set of policy principles related to RFID will be developed.
24 February 2008
Day two of Domain Pulse 2008 last Friday focused on online security issues giving the techies amongst us details of security issues, and the more policy-orientated amongst us something to chew on in a few other presentations. Kieren McCarthy, these days of ICANN, also gave some insights into the drawn out sex.com drama with more twists and turns than the average soap opera has in a year! And Randy Bush outlined the problems with IPv6. Among other presentations.
Japan's space agency has launched an experimental communications satellite designed to enable super high-speed data transmission in remote areas of Japan and elsewhere in Asia.
Microsoft Speaks Out on Yahoo (Forbes)
Jerry Yang, Chief Executive of Yahoo!, has made good use of e-mail and video to give his colleagues pep talks about why he isn't ready to team up with Microsoft. Now it seems Microsoft executives are taking a cue and doing the same. Friday afternoon, Kevin Johnson, president of Microsoft's Platforms & Services division--the group that would be most intimately affected by the proposed merger--sent this note to Microsoft employees.
NZ privacy review finds technology outpacing the law (ComputerWorld)
Our world is very different from that of 1993, when the Privacy Act first came into force, says the Law Commission in a lengthy report that forms the first stage of a "Review of the Law of Privacy".
Technology has outpaced legal system's ability to regulate its use in issues of privacy and fair use rights, says Australian High Court judge. Australian High Court Judge Justice Kirby says computer code is more potent than the law--and that legislators are powerless to do anything about it.
A successful Microsoft bid for Yahoo! would create an internet company with a three-quarters share in web mail and instant messaging - figures that rivals are expected to use in an attempt to derail any merger between the two companies.
23 February 2008
China has called on domestic Web sites to sign a voluntary pact governing online video and audio content, saying they should exercise self-censorship to ensure a "healthy and orderly" cyberspace.
ICANN staff has produced a briefing note on the New Delhi meeting of 10-15 February 2008. This meeting was ICANN's 31st meeting and was hosted by ICANN and the Indian Government and officially opened by Shri Jainder Singh, Secretary, Department of Information Technology, the Government of India.
UK filesharing law 'unworkable' (The Guardian)
Any move by the government to introduce legislation that forces the UK's broadband providers to police the internet by clamping down on illegal sharing of copyrighted music and movies would be technologically unworkable and create a legal minefield, experts have warned.
UK government targets illegal downloading (The Guardian)
The UK government is to consult on legislation to punish internet service providers if they fail to take action against the illegal downloading of music, films and TV programmes.
Around 350 attendees including TechNewsReview came from Russia in the east to Ireland in the west, as well as a few people from elsewhere around the globe, to attend Domain Pulse 2008 in Vienna on February 21 and 22. Day one's focus was internet governance. The future of the DNS was one of the key issues addressed by Michael Nelson of Georgetown University in Washington DC, with domain names becoming less important, but their numbers still increasing, as online access by a myriad of devices skyrockets connect - everything from the television, refrigerator, washing machine, pets, sprinkler systems and cars.
DotAsia Organisation, the registry operator of the ".Asia" Internet domain, is happy to announce the successful launch of its Landrush period. A total of 266,663 applications were received by the registry within the first 24 hours, demonstrating great interest from around the world to stake claims in the most prestigious cyber real estate in Asia. Including Pre-Sunrise, Sunrise, Pioneer programs and the first day of Landrush, the total number of domain applications to date is 298,861.
22 February 2008
The ordering of the deletion of a domain name by a United States federal judge in California is quite a significant development in recent days. The judge has ordered the domain name wikileaks.org to "be disabled at the behest of a group of Swiss bankers who filed a lawsuit alleging that confidential information appeared on Wikileaks.org," according to CNet.
Microsoft to Share More Technical Secrets (New York Times)
Seeking to satisfy European antitrust officials, Microsoft said Thursday that it would open up and share many more of its technical secrets with the rest of the software industry and competitors.
Stifling Online Speech (New York Times)
Wikileaks claims to have posted more than a million corporate and government documents that, it says, expose wrongdoing. It has posted, among other things, a 2003 operations manual from the Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, military prison. Julius Baer Bank and Trust, a Cayman Islands branch of a Swiss bank, sued Wikileaks charging that it had illegally posted documents stolen by a former employee. The site said the documents "allegedly reveal secret Julius Baer trust structures" for money laundering, tax evasion and other misdeeds.
Setting the controls to Max (The Guardian)
What do the Max Gogarty story, the Wikileaks outrage, Lord Falconer's genuinely demented plan to retrospectively censor the entire internet, and the UK government's continued demands that ISPs disconnect and blacklist filesharers without legal process all have in common? The internet of course, but more. The demand that the internet be controlled.
European privacy advocates to issue report in April (International Herald Tribune)
Search engine powers like Google, Yahoo and Microsoft will have to wait until April to find out what changes they must make to comply with European Union privacy laws.
"Intellectual property" is a silly euphemism (The Guardian)
"Intellectual property" is one of those ideologically loaded terms that can cause an argument just by being uttered. The term wasn't in widespread use until the 1960s, when it was adopted by the World Intellectual Property Organization, a trade body that later attained exalted status as a UN agency.
Microsoft has announced that it will open up the technology of some of its leading software to make it easier to operate with rivals' products.
MySpace seeks joint ventures for iTunes rival (The Guardian)
MySpace, part of Rupert Murdoch's News Corp empire, is trying to tie up deals with a number of record labels to produce its own digital music service to compete with Apple's iTunes.
Record traffic for UK news websites (The Guardian)
The US presidential elections and a bumper celebrity news month, with the death of Heath Ledger and Britney Spears' ongoing problems, produced record traffic for the UK's newspaper websites during January.
Facebook sees first dip in UK users (The Guardian)
Facebook has suffered its first fall in UK users, with a 5% drop between December and January, according to new figures. However, Facebook still had 8.5 million unique users in January and remains the most popular social networking website in the UK, according to Nielsen Online, the internet research company behind the results. And Facebook's nearest rival, MySpace, also saw a 5% drop in UK traffic between December and January, according to Nielsen Online.