Government & Policy

22 September 2011

The Google Problem Isn't Antitrust: Think privacy, not monopoly Wall Street Journal

Google's critics get a chance to vent today, using the invective of antitrust. A hearing of the Senate antitrust subcommittee is also something of a swan song for its retiring chairman, the estimable Herb Kohl.

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21 September 2011

Google Tells US Senate It Plays Fair New York Times

In written testimony to a Senate antitrust panel where he will testify Wednesday afternoon, Eric Schmidt, Google's chairman, describes the search giant as a company facing fierce competition on many fronts, a relentless innovator in a dynamic industry and a creation of the open Internet so consumers can easily switch to competing services.

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German Pirate Party: Who Are the Pirates from Berlin? Der Spiegel

They are handy with computers and are interested in issues relating to the Internet. Is that all? Many Berliners have been scratching their heads about the true identity of Germany's youngest political party. But the answer is simple: They're the new Greens.

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Google Rivals Are Readying An Antitrust Assault in D.C. Wall Street Journal

Three Internet companies -- Nextag Inc., Yelp Inc. and Expedia Inc. -- are gearing up to attack Google Inc. on Capitol Hill, claiming the company is taking new profits for itself by unfairly punishing them on its search engine.

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20 September 2011

Google's Eric Schmidt to challenge monopoly claims in US Senate The Guardian

The Google executive chairman, Eric Schmidt, will appear before a US Senate committee on Wednesday to argue that the internet giant is not abusing its position as the world's most popular search engine.

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Scrutinising Google's Reign New York Times

Google's slogan may be don't be evil, but a growing chorus of antitrust regulators in the United States and Europe want to know if the company has lived up to that creed.

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19 September 2011

Klaus Wowereit Wins Third Term as Berlin Mayor; Pirate Party Makes Gains Der Spiegel

Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit has won a third term in Sunday's elections in the city-state. The victory represents a boost for his center-left Social Democrats. The Pirate Party, which advocates Internet freedoms, has won seats in a German state parliament for the first time after getting around 9 percent of the vote.

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16 September 2011

EU probing if Google dominates Internet search Reuters

EU regulators are still undecided whether Google dominates in Internet search and if it has abused rivals in breach of competition rules, the EU's antitrust chief said on Friday.

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15 September 2011

Australian govt seeks input on cyber whitepaper ZDNet

For the next two months, Australians will have the chance to contribute to the government's Cyber White Paper in a bid to determine the issues in cyberspace that confuse and concern the country's citizenry.

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UK Cultural Secretary urges web firms to join anti-piracy drive BBC News

UK Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt has delivered a hard-hitting speech, calling on net firms, advertisers and credit card companies to cut ties with websites that link to unlawful content.

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Google rivals start their engines as anti-trust regulators clamp down, even in Australia The Australian

Slowly but surely global anti-trust regulators are clamping down on Google. South Korea is the latest to join the trend, with raids on the company's head office in Seoul.

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Cyber cooperation added to US-Aust trade Sydney Morning Herald

US and Australian officials have decided to include cooperation on cybersecurity as part of their defence treaty, marking the first time the Obama administration has formally carved out that kind of partnership with a country outside NATO.

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13 September 2011

Australian Internet Industry Association hit by loss of Telstra, Google The Australian

Microsoft, Google and Telstra have quietly withdrawn financial support from Australia's leaderless peak internet industry body the Internet Industry Association. All three have confirmed they will not renew their financial memberships with the association.

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12 September 2011

California Lawmakers Give Amazon Tax Reprieve New York Times

California lawmakers overwhelmingly approved a compromise bill Friday night giving a one-year reprieve from having to collect a sales tax from its customers in the state.

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Australian communications watchdog ACMA orders telcos to improve customer service

The communications authority has told telecommunications providers to lift their game over call plans and when dealing with customer complaints.

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09 September 2011

US Senator Introduces Online Security Bill New York Times

Senator Richard Blumenthal, Democrat of Connecticut, introduced a new bill Thursday that aims to protect citizens' personal information from online data breaches. The bill would also punish companies that are careless with customers' information.

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08 September 2011

Google is national broadband conspirator: Australian opposition ZDNet

Shadow Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has labelled companies such as Google and Yahoo, as well as network vendors, as "conspirators against the taxpayer" for praising the $35.9 billion National Broadband Network project.

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07 September 2011

Copyright law puts brakes on NZ's internet traffic New Zealand Herald

The volume of internet traffic coming into New Zealand has dropped sharply since new anti-piracy rules came into force, says an industry insider.

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Korean trustbusters raid Google offices CNET

The Korean Fair Trade Commission, that country's antitrust agency, raided Google's offices in Seoul today, CNET has learned.

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06 September 2011

China to foster internet infrastructure FutureGov Asia Pacific

The Chinese government said it is planning to boost the development of internet sector in four areas in its drive to transform economic growth and optimise industrial infrastructure.

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EBay accuses retailers of anti-competitive behaviour The Age

The online retailer eBay has claimed in its latest submission to the Productivity Commission's inquiry into the retail industry that well known bricks and mortar stores have placed pressure on distributors and sellers to stop selling some items online that are also in their shops.

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04 September 2011

European Commission screens media law implementation EurActiv

The European Commission has sent letters to eight EU member states asking for information on their implementation of the Audiovisual Media Services Directive, legislation that was put in place to ensure that a 'level-playing field' exists between traditional TV-based and online broadcasters.

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02 September 2011

Undersea telecommunications cables key to US security in Australia The Australian

The American embassy in Canberra has warned Washington that damage to undersea communications cables landing in Australia, and the Australian communications network generally, would pose an immediate security risk to the US.

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Telstra to reap $6bn windfall if Coalition scraps National Broadband Network The Australian

Telstra stands to make a $6 billion gain if the Coalition wins power in 2013 and dumps the National Broadband Network, according to a high-level report that creates a new dilemma for the opposition over its plans to scrap Labor's flagship project.

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31 August 2011

Behind Google’s $500 Million Settlement With U.S. New York Times

The Justice Department's settlement of a criminal investigation of Google for allowing Canadian pharmacies to advertise drugs for distribution in the United States reflected an effort by prosecutors to extend the reach of federal drug laws. This may present future challenges to Internet search companies over their advertisements.

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