Government & Policy

23 September 2018

Internet regulator considered for UK BBC News

The UK government is considering "all options", including a regulator, as part of new legislation governing the internet.

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18 September 2018

Access Now calls on 22 major tech companies to account for their human rights practices Access Now

Every day, we entrust more of our personal information to tech companies — whether it’s our internet service provider, mobile phone network, email client, social media platforms, or app maker. We depend on these companies for the services we need to work, learn, and play. And in turn, they carry an important responsibility to make sure their business practices respect our human rights.

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Ofcom to push for regulation of social networks The Guardian

Tech companies such as Facebook and Google could be regulated in the same way as the mobile phone and broadband industry, the head of media regulator Ofcom was expected to say on Tuesday.

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A Woman's Place Is in the Digital Revolution Project Syndicate

Women’s access to the Internet and mobile phones is about 85% of the level for men, on average, and a total of 1.7 billion women in low- and middle-income countries are unconnected. Closing these gaps would enable women to seize opportunities in the industries that are shaping our collective future, benefiting all.

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16 September 2018

Wanted in the digital monopoly age - powers to curb the hold of online giants The Observer

One of the paradoxical things about digital technology is that while in theory it fosters competition, in practice it leads to winner-takes-all outcomes. The reasons for this are complex – they include zero marginal costs, powerful network effects, power-law distributions and technological lock-in – and need not detain us here. But we are all too familiar with the winners: Google in search; Apple’s IoS and Google’s Android in mobile operating systems; Facebook in social networking; YouTube in video; Microsoft in office software; Amazon in online retailing.

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More and more governments now benchmark broadband status in their national plans, says new global report International Telecommunication Union

A new report issued today by the Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development shows that a growing number of governments now benchmark the status of broadband in their national broadband plans. This year, the report shows for the first time that at least 15 countries now have strategies in place for promoting the safe use of Artificial Intelligence.

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13 September 2018

The E.U. just voted to advance digital copyright rules that would force Google, Facebook and others to pay up Washington Post

The European Parliament approved changes to digital copyright rules Wednesday designed to protect the content of publishers and artists on the Web, advancing a contentious battle between tech companies and creative industries over the future of free expression and intellectual property online.

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12 September 2018

RSF to launch groundbreaking global Information and Democracy Commission, 70 years after the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Reporters Without Borders

Seventy years after the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Paris, the Paris-based international NGO Reporters Without Borders (RSF) announces the formation of a panel of 25 prominent figures with the aim of drafting an International Declaration on Information and Democracy.

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05 September 2018

'Five Eyes' Nations Quietly Demand Government Access to Encrypted Data New York Times

The Trump administration and its closest intelligence partners have quietly warned technology firms that they will demand “lawful access” to all encrypted emails, text messages and voice communications, threatening to compel compliance if the private companies refuse to voluntarily provide the information to the governments.

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04 September 2018

Facebook definition of terrorism helps states mute dissent: U.N. expert Reuters

A U.N. human rights expert urged Facebook on Monday to narrow its “sweeping” definition of terrorism to stop governments arbitrarily blocking legitimate opposition groups and dissenting voices.

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Big tech's double trouble: political heat from Trump and the left may signal reckoning ahead The Guardian

Trump and Russia may have dominated the political discourse all summer, but last week the attention turned again to America’s internet technology giants. They had enjoyed a few months out of the spotlight following grueling congressional hearings in Washington late last year, after evidence emerged of Russia’s use of social media fake accounts to try to influence voters in the 2016 US presidential election.

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29 August 2018

Google VP of news: don't blame us for all the media's problems ABC News

The vice-president of news at the technology giant, Mr Gingras emphasised his employer's interest in supporting a healthy media environment in a briefing with journalists on Tuesday.

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28 August 2018

US Tech Industry Pursues a Federal Privacy Law, on Its Own Terms New York Times

Technology companies have taken plenty of hits on privacy this year. In May, Europe began enforcing a sweeping new law that lets people request their online data and restricts how businesses obtain and handle the information.

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24 August 2018

Insight: Europe's new data law upends global online advertising Reuters

Europe’s new data privacy law has put a small army of tech firms that track people online in jeopardy and is strengthening the hand of giants such as Google and Facebook in the $200 billion global digital advertising industry.

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23 August 2018

Can Facebook, or Anybody, Solve the Internet's Misinformation Problem? New York Times

In theory, Facebook’s announcement on Tuesday that it had discovered and shut down a wide-ranging Iranian misinformation campaign should make you feel better.

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Google Tried to Change China. China May End Up Changing Google. New York Times

Ever since its founding 20 years ago in a Silicon Valley garage, Google has proudly and often ostentatiously held itself up as the architect of a new model for corporate virtue.

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Can tech giants work together against their common enemies? New Zealand Herald

Facebook, Twitter and Google routinely squabble for users, engineers and advertising money. Yet it makes sense for these tech giants to work together on security threats, elections meddling and other common ills.

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Thursday briefing: 'Tax Facebook to pay for BBC' The Guardian

Jeremy Corbyn would tax the likes of Facebook, Google and Netflix to subsidise the BBC licence fee. “A few tech giants and unaccountable billionaires control huge swathes of our public space and debate,” the Labour leader is expected to tell the Edinburgh TV festival today.

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21 August 2018

Europe to punish sites for not removing 'illegal content' within one hour Marketing Land

In March of this year, the European Commission created guidelines and recommendations for the removal of “illegal content” (primarily terrorist propaganda) from websites within Europe. At the time, the rules were voluntary; now the EC is going to impose fines if publishers and tech companies fail to comply.

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20 August 2018

Tech giants warn Australian govt bill opens customers up to cyber attack The Guardian

The peak body representing tech giants Facebook, Google, Twitter and Amazon has blasted a Coalition bill that would force them to assist law enforcement agencies in decrypting private communications.

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14 August 2018

Alex Jones and the Bigger Questions of Internet Governance CATO Institute

Last week Facebook, Google, and Apple removed videos and podcasts by the prominent conspiracy theorist Alex Jones from their platforms (Twitter did not). Their actions may have prompted increased downloads of Jones’ Infowars app. Many people are debating these actions, and rightly so. But I want to look at the governance issues related to the Alex Jones imbroglio.

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Australia plans law for tech firms to hand over encrypted private data Reuters

Australia on Tuesday proposed a new law requiring technology firms such as Alphabet Inc’s Google, Facebook and Apple to give police access to private encrypted data linked to suspected illegal activities.

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03 August 2018

India Considers Sweeping GDPR-Style Curbs for Online Data Bloomberg

A draft of a sweeping data privacy bill has been submitted to India’s government that, if enacted, will restrict the transfer and storage of information on more than 1 billion people by global technology corporations from Facebook Inc. to Google.

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02 August 2018

The moment when Facebook's removal of alleged Russian disinformation became a free-speech issue Washington Post

Left-leaning political activists accused Facebook of suppressing free speech when the social media giant removed an event listing this week that it said was part of a new disinformation campaign with ties to Russia.

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28 July 2018

Time to break up Google and Facebook, says New York attorney general Washington Post

New York attorney general candidate Zephyr Teachout promised Wednesday to “explore breaking up” Facebook and Google if she is elected, using state and federal antitrust laws.

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