Nate Anderson

NSA reform panel: Foreigners actually have privacy rights, too!

Location:
The White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC, 20500, United States
Recommendation:
2

The Report and Recommendations of The President’s Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies is absolutely stuffed with references to the privacy considerations owed to non-US citizens.

How “cell tower dumps” caught the High Country Bandits—and why it matters

Location:
Denver, CO, United States
Recommendation:
2

How does one find a single cell phone user without knowing the cell phone number or the subscriber's name? Indeed, without knowing anything but the time and location? If you're the FBI, you ask a judge to approve a full "cell tower dump," in which wireless operators will turn over the records of every cell phone that registered with a particular tower at a particular time.

Why a one-room West Virginia library runs a $20,000 Cisco router

Location:
Marmet, WV, United States
Recommendation:
2

Marmet, West Virginia is a town of 1,500 people living in a thin ribbon along the banks of the Kanawha River just below Charleston. The town's public library is only open Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. It's housed in a small building the size of a trailer, which the state of West Virginia describes as an "extremely small facility with only one Internet connection." Which is why it's such a surprise to learn the Marmet Public Library runs this connection through a $15,000 to $20,000 Cisco 3945 router intended for "mid-size to large deployments," according to Cisco.

Sen Coons admits: SOPA "really did pose some risk to the Internet"

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

Backers of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and its Senate companion, the Protect IP Act (PIPA), have been railing against the bill's critics ever since the legislation plunged to a fiery death earlier this year.

Supreme Court declines to hear $675,000 file-swapping case

Location:
Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS), One First Street, NE, Washington, DC, United States
Recommendation:
2

The Supreme Court this morning declined to hear the appeal of admitted file-swapper Joel Tenenbaum, who recently asked the court to consider the proper process for slashing his $675,000 damage award.

"A bizarre operation": Why West Virginia stuck $22,600 routers in tiny libraries

Location:
Charleston, WV, United States
Recommendation:
3

West Virginia's Charleston Gazette has been hopping mad this week as one of its reporters learned that the state has been sticking 1,064 high-end $22,600 routers into “little public institutions as small as rural libraries with just one computer terminal.”

Schools can't stop wondering what students are up to on Facebook

Recommendation:
1

It's graduation season, which means that students, teachers, and administrators alike are all thinking about one thing: Facebook. Schools around the globe have a fascination with -- indeed, sometimes a fixation on -- the social networking site and what their students are getting up to online.

FBI, stumped by pimp's Android pattern lock, serves warrant on Google

Location:
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), 935 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW J. Edgar Hoover Building, Washington, DC, 20535-0001, United States
Recommendation:
1

The FBI can't get into a pimp's Android phone -- so it wants Google to hand over the keys.

Copyright wars heat up: US wins extradition of college kid from England

Location:
Sheffield Hallam University, Howard St, Sheffield, S1 1WB, United Kingdom
Recommendation:
2

A 23-year old student from Sheffield Hallam University in the north of England is bound for America. That wouldn't be unusual -- except that Richard O'Dwyer won't go voluntarily.

Spain asks: If Google search results make your business look bad, can you sue?

Location:
Tarragona, Spain
Recommendation:
1

Are lawsuits an aberration, or the future of Europe's Internet experience in the wake of its new "right to be forgotten" proposals?

Czech, Slovak governments backing away from ACTA, too

Location:
Bratislava, Slovenia
Recommendation:
2

The European protests against the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) have now reached the highest levels of the Czech government. Prime Minister Petr Nečas has ...

EFF ready to sue if "innocent customers" can't get Megaupload data back

Location:
Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), 454 Shotwell Street, San Francisco, CA, 94110-1914, United States
Recommendation:
1

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) officially asked all parties involved in the Megaupload criminal case to refrain from deleting any data stored on servers once leased by the file-hosting service—and it suggested it was willing to sue over the matter.

Beyond ACTA: next secret copyright agreement negotiated this week -- in Hollywood

Location:
Hollywood, CA, United States
Recommendation:
2

Negotiators meet in Hollywood to discuss a new, totally secret intellectual property chapter for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a regional trade agreement.

New tactic in mass file-sharing lawsuit: just insult the EFF

Location:
Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), 454 Shotwell Street, San Francisco, CA, 94110-1914, United States
Recommendation:
1

An old legal aphorism says, "If the facts are on your side, pound on the facts. If the law is on your side, pound on the law. If neither is on your side, pound on the table." After reading the latest salvo in the P2P porn copyright wars, it's clear that some poor table has been abused horrifically. The craziness comes from the most recent filing in a Hard Drive Productions case against nearly 1,500 "Doe" defendants accused of sharing one of the company's films online.

How can the US seize a "Hong Kong site" like Megaupload?

Recommendation:
3

The Megaupload takedown, and the arrest of its key employees, might seem to vindicate late 1990s worries about the Internet and jurisdiction. Does putting a site on the 'Net, though it might be hosted anywhere in the world, subject you simultaneously to the laws of every country on earth? Why would Megaupload, based in Hong Kong, be subject to US copyright laws and to the Digital Millenium Copyright Act?

Google cut off Megaupload's ad money voluntarily back in 2007

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

The federal government's 72-page indictment of file hosting site Megaupload is stuffed with odd bits of information. Take page 34, for instance, which features a single paragraph about Google's AdSense program.

Why the feds smashed Megaupload

Location:
Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC, 20530-0001, United States
Recommendation:
2

Going after Megaupload, one of the most popular sites in the world, might seem a strange choice. For years, the site has claimed to take down unauthorized content when notified by rightsholders.

Hollywood fights Internet protests with... TV ad, billboard, radio spot

Recommendation:
2

Creative America is fighting back. The group, which represents NBC Universal, Viacom, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros, Disney, and others in the TV and movie business, launched a new TV commercial today supporting SOPA and PIPA.

Post-SOPA: the path forward for addressing piracy

Location:
Capitol Building, East Capitol Street, NE and 1st Street, NE, Washington, DC, 20002, United States
Recommendation:
3

Can we do anything meaningful about piracy without resorting to new private rights of action or to DNS blocking and search engine blackouts? We can. Though we certainly don't speak for anyone beyond ourselves, we believe that legislation drafted along the general lines sketched below could work—and could generate (some) agreement on an emotional issue.

How the US pressured Spain to adopt unpopular Web blocking law

Location:
Madrid, Spain
Recommendation:
3

In a February 2008 cable, the US Embassy in Madrid stated, “We propose to tell the new government that Spain will appear on the Watch List if it does not do three things by ...

US judge orders hundreds of sites "de-indexed" from Google, Facebook

Location:
Las Vegas, NV, United States
Recommendation:
2

After a series of one-sided hearings, luxury goods maker Chanel has won recent court orders against hundreds of websites trafficking in counterfeit luxury goods.

Sweet sanity: 75% of Americans say infringement fines should be under $100

Location:
Columbia University, Broadway and 116th Street, New York, NY, United States
Recommendation:
2

New survey data out on American attitudes toward copyright infringement shows that current statutory damage awards of up to $150,000 are supported by almost no one.

House Holds One-Sided Hearing on Piracy Bill

Location:
House Judiciary Committee, Independence Avenue and South Capitol Street Rayburn House Office Building -- 2141, Washington, DC, United States
Recommendation:
2

The House Judiciary Committee held an important hearing on the Stop Online Piracy Act with a hugely stacked deck of witnesses -- Google's lawyer was the only one of the six to object to the bill in a meaningful way. And it wasn't hard to see why. This wasn't a hearing designed to elicit complex thoughts about complex issues of free speech, censorship, and online piracy; despite the objections of the ACLU, dozens of foreign civil rights groups, tech giants like Google and eBay, the Consumer Electronics Association, China scholar Rebecca MacKinnon, hundreds of law professors and lawyers, the hearing was designed to shove the legislation forward and to brand companies who object as siding with "the pirates."

Remember the "borderless" Internet? It's officially dead

Location:
Capitol Building, East Capitol Street, NE and 1st Street, NE, Washington, DC, 20002, United States
Recommendation:
2

From the perspective of the recently introduced Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), which would set up US website blacklisting, require search engine censorship, and divide the Internet into "domestic" and "foreign" sites, the sorts of Internet arguments being made in the late 1990s don't sound like something from a foreign country so much as something from a foreign planet.

Library of Congress asks: how should we let you break DRM?

Location:
Library of Congress, 101 Independence Ave, SE, Washington, DC, 20540, United States
Recommendation:
3

For the fifth time since the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was passed in 1998, the Library of Congress is preparing to grant limited rights to crack digital rights management (DRM) locks on digital content. Not that it matters much; despite an increased willingness at the Library to grant such permission, the actual tools most people need to bypass DRM remain forbidden.

Congress, wary of Amazon's Silk browser, demands answers on privacy

Location:
House Commerce Committee, 45 Independence Ave SW 2123 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC, 20515, United States
Recommendation:
2

Congress is trying to wrap its collective head around Amazon's new Silk Web browser.

Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement slouches toward signing on Saturday

Location:
Recommendation:
2

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) will finally be signed Saturday, October 1, in Japan.

Judge to Google: sniffing even open WiFi networks may be wiretapping

Location:
US District Court for the Northern District of California, 450 Golden Gate Ave, San Francisco, CA, 94102, United States
Recommendation:
3

When a homeowner runs an open, unencrypted wireless network and Google sniffs the packets from that network, has wiretapping taken place? Or did the openness of the network remove the user's reasonable expectation of privacy?

Half of US twenty-somethings have no landline

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

The shift away from landlines continues, as 24.9 percent of all American adults now live in homes with wireless-only voice connections. Among younger adults aged 25 to 29, the numbers are twice as high; more than half have only a cell phone.

1Gbps fiber for $70 -- in America? Yup.

Location:
Sebastopol, CA, United States
Recommendation:
1

California Internet service provider Sonic.net is rolling out 1Gbps, fiber-to-the-home service… for $69.99 a month.