Internet/Broadband

Coverage of how Internet service is deployed, used and regulated.

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Is US Broadband Working? The Administration Is Working On It

Location:
Benton Foundation, 1560 Sherman Ave, Evanston, IL, 60201, United States
Recommendation:
3

Although the Federal Communications Commission’s network neutrality order is still the headliner-grabber, this week we review the Administration’s most recent announcements which include: 1) the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s latest -- and last -- update of the National Broadband Map; 2) reaching the President’s high-speed wireless goal; 3) creation of the Broadband Opportunity Council; 4) ongoing support of community broadband; 5) grants for rural telecommunications infrastructure; and 6) second phase FirstNet funding.

FCC Chairman Wheeler on the Choices in the Network Neutrality Debate

Location:
Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, 43210, United States
Recommendation:
2

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler returned to Ohio State University – this time focusing his remarks on the FCC’s recent network neutrality order. He said the order “rests on a basic choice -- whether those who build the networks should make the rules by themselves or whether there should be a basic set of rules and a referee on the field to throw the flag if they are violated.”

Internet infrastructure is vulnerable to attacks that can cause prolonged outages

Location:
USA, United States
Recommendation:
1

When vandals sliced a fiber-optic cable in the Arizona desert in February, they did more than time-warp thousands of people back to an era before computers, credit cards or even phones. They exposed a glaring vulnerability in the nation's Internet infrastructure: no backup systems in many places.

Innovation in the 3.5 GHz Band: Creating a New Citizens Broadband Radio Service

Location:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th Street SW, Washington, DC, 20554, United States
Recommendation:
2

Five years ago, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration issued a report identifying possible spectrum bands for reallocation for commercial uses. In the report, it identified the 3550-3650 MHz band as a potential opportunity for future commercial use.

Someone hijacked the Google of China to attack anti-censorship tools

Location:
Beijing, China
Recommendation:
2

An unknown party hijacked widely used tools developed by Baidu, the largest search engine in China, in an apparent attempt to target online software used to get around Chinese censorship.

Why did Instagram censor this photo of a fully clothed woman on her period?

Location:
Facebook (new HQ), 1601 Willow Road, Menlo Park, CA, United States
Recommendation:
1

On March 25, Kaur received a message from Instagram that a photo of a woman lying in bed -- fully clothed, with a blood stain on the sheets -- had been removed for violating the site’s “community guidelines.”

Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board

Apr 8 2015 - 10:00am - 12:00pm
Location:
Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB), 2100 K. St NW, Washington, DC, 20036, United States

The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board will conduct a public meeting to discuss and vote on the work plan for its review of Executive Order 12333—United States intelligence activities.

AT&T’s plan to watch your Web browsing -- and what you can do about it

Location:
AT&T, 208 South Akard St, Dallas, TX, 75202, United States
Recommendation:
2

If you have AT&T’s gigabit Internet service and wonder why it seems so affordable, here's the reason -- AT&T is boosting profits by rerouting all your Web browsing to an in-house traffic scanning platform, analyzing your Internet habits, then using the results to deliver personalized ads to the websites you visit, e-mail to your inbox, and junk mail to your front door.

British users can sue Google in UK over “secret tracking”

Location:
UK Court of Appeals, London, United Kingdom
Recommendation:
2

The United Kingdom's Court of Appeal has confirmed an earlier landmark High Court decision that a group of British consumers using Apple's Safari browser to access Google's services can sue the US company in the UK.

Bill Seeks to Bring High-Speed Internet to Maine's Rural Farmers, Small Businesses

Location:
Maine State Capitol Building, State St, Augusta, ME, 04330, United States
Recommendation:
1

Farmers in rural parts of Maine who struggle to maintain their businesses and ship their goods out to customers while dealing with slow, spotty or at times nonexistent Internet service are rallying behind a bill moving through the Legislature.

AT&T opposes municipal broadband bill

Location:
Tennessee State Capitol, 600 Charlotte Avenue, Nashville, TN, 37243, United States
Recommendation:
2

For many rural Tennesseans, the bills that would allow municipal broadband providers to expand services is a step toward faster Internet. For the telecommunications industry, it is unwanted competition.

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Is U.S. Broadband Working? The Administration Is Working On It

Back in January we reported on a series of speeches by President Barack Obama in the run up to the State of the Union address. In those speeches, the President indicated that the Internet would play a central role in his 2015 policies. This week, the Administration offered an update on its progress since January and outlined the next steps in “promoting investment and rewarding competition.” Although the Federal Communications Commission’s network neutrality order is still the headliner-grabber, this week we review the Administration’s most recent announcements.

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Today's Quote 03.27.2015

Location:
AT&T, 208 South Akard St, Dallas, TX, 75202, United States
Recommendation:
1

“The world is going to be broadband -- wireless and fixed -- and that is where we want to be.”
-- AT&T’s Chief Strategy Officer John Stankey

Behind the FTC’s Unsurprising Decision Not to Sue Google

Location:
Google, 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway, Mountain View, CA, 94043, United States
Recommendation:
2

The release of an internal Federal Trade Commission staff recommendation memo regarding its investigation of Google has led some to question the agency’s decision not to file a lawsuit against the company for allegedly violating antitrust laws. In the eyes of some Google competitors, the memo provides ammunition to the European Commission to bring its own legal action against Google. That thinking is misguided and misconstrues the FTC’s decision-making process.

Mobile Alters Landscape Where Google Operates

Location:
Google, 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway, Mountain View, CA, 94043, United States
Recommendation:
1

When federal antitrust regulators probed the search-engine business three years ago, they found that Google’s domination of the field was even greater than they had thought. Since then, however, the mobile revolution has drastically altered the search landscape in ways both good and bad for Google.

How Periscope is already helping politicians kill the press conference

Location:
Capitol Hill, NE and 1st Street, NE, Washington, DC, United States
Recommendation:
1

You can already watch politicians give earnest, impassioned and long-winded speeches on C-SPAN any time of day or night. But now, that messaging is coming to you -- on social media.

When uncontrolled political powers want regulatory reform

Location:
American Enterprise Institute (AEI), 1150 Seventeenth Street, Washington, DC, 20036, United States
Recommendation:
1

What happens when political powers go out of their way to influence what is supposed to be an independent regulatory process?

New UN investigator to probe digital spying

Location:
UN Human Rights Council, First Avenue at 46th Street, New York, NY, 10017, United States
Recommendation:
3

The United Nations top human rights body agreed to appoint a special investigator to probe digital spying and violations of online privacy. Brazil and Germany spearheaded the resolution, which voiced deep concern over electronic surveillance and the interception of digital communications, as well as data collection by governments and private companies.

European Commission Considers New Telecom Rules to Level the Playing Field

Location:
European Commission, Brussels, Belgium
Recommendation:
2

The European Union is weighing an overhaul of its telecommunications rules that could give incumbent operators like Deutsche Telekom AG an edge over upstart challengers like Iliad SA of France and messaging service WhatsApp.

Rep Butterfield wants Congress to take lead on Web rules

Location:
Capitol Building, E Capitol St NE & 1st St NE, Washington, DC, United States
Recommendation:
1

Unlike most Democrats, Rep GK Butterfield (D-NC), Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, wants a legislative fix on network neutrality. Rep Butterfield said the Federal Communications Commission's rule-making process has been "politically driven" by special interests and Congress needs to get involved.

How to end a fight over who should regulate Internet providers

Location:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th Street SW, Washington, DC, 20554, United States
Recommendation:
1

Federal officials are discussing an end to the Federal Trade Commission's legal prohibition on regulating Internet providers and telecommunications companies -- a move that could give Washington wider authority to police perceived abuses and consumer harms in an increasingly important part of the economy. If the idea moves forward, it could mean that both the FTC and the Federal Communications Commission would have the power to go after misbehaving carriers.

The Future of Tech and Democracy, and How Privacy Pros Can Help

Location:
UC Hastings College of Law, 200 McAllister St., San Francisco, CA, 94102, United States
Recommendation:
1

“The Future of Technology & Democracy,” a conference where technologists -- some from Google, Facebook and Twitter -- gathered to educate and inform representatives of the Federal Elections Commission and the Federal Communications Commission. The all-day event touched upon new personalized targeting models in campaign advertising and fundraising, the potential for blockchain technology to facilitate real-time contribution transparency and the reinvention of a public square that has long left behind the confines of traditional media for the social platforms of online service providers.

Will Net Neutrality bust the FCC’s budget?

Location:
House Committee on Appropriations, 45 Independence Ave SW 2359 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC, 20515, United States
Recommendation:
2

At a House Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee hearing, members heard another round of testimony from the dueling duo of network neutrality: Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler and FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai. It was the fourth hearing in seven days during which Republicans have put the FCC’s order to reclassify Internet service as a utility under intense questioning.

Sen Thune plots network neutrality budget amendment

Location:
US Capitol, East Capitol Street, NE and 1st Street, NE, DC, 20515, United States
Recommendation:
1

Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John Thune (R-SD) is planning to introduce a nonbinding amendment on network neutrality.

Unnecessary Collateral Damage From FCC Title II Internet Regulation

Location:
Precursor, 7925 Jones Branch Drive, McLean, VA, 22102, United States
Recommendation:
1

The collateral damage is beginning to pile up from the Federal Communications Commission’s February decision to trigger Title II telephone utility regulation of the Internet.

Obama’s Digital Double Down: Will His Pivot Away From Old Media Pay Off?

Location:
The White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC, 20500, United States
Recommendation:
1

Obama’s going where the people he’s trying to reach hang out.

New York Police to Use Social Media to Connect With Residents

Location:
New York Police Department, 1 Police Plaza Path, New York, NY, 10038, United States
Recommendation:
1

The New York Police Department is planning to use that online visibility to draw ground-level information on crimes and conditions, a potential boost to a department seeking to align its “broken windows” crime-fighting objectives with local communities’ needs.

Mandatory data retention passes Australian parliament

Location:
Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra, ACT, Australia
Recommendation:
2

The Australian government relied on the votes of the Labor opposition to pass legislation that will force telecommunications companies to retain customer data for two years for warrantless access by law enforcement.

How Techno-Populism Is Undermining Innovation

Apr 1 2015 - 9:00am - 10:30am
Location:
Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), 1101 K Street, NW, Suite 610A, Washington, DC, 20005, United States

A new report from ITIF argues that an us vs. them populism has taken over technological debates in recent years and has had a deleterious effect on policymaking.

Statement of Chairwoman Edith Ramirez, and Commissioners Julie Brill and Maureen Ohlhausen regarding the Google Investigation

Location:
Federal Trade Commission (FTC), 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC, 20580, United States
Recommendation:
2

The Federal Trade Commission conducted an exhaustive investigation of Google’s internet search practices during 2011 and 2012. Based on a comprehensive review of the voluminous record and extensive internal analysis, of which the inadvertently disclosed memo is only a fraction, all five Commissioners (three Democrats and two Republicans) agreed that there was no legal basis for action with respect to the main focus of the investigation – search.

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