Articles by date
27 November 2006
Internet Governance Forum Report 2: Why The Need for IG by Assoc Prof Ang Peng Hwa (Singapore Internet Research Centre)
A/P Ang Peng Hwa is surprised at those who continue to say that (i) the internet is working fine, (ii) that therefore it needs no governance and (iii) that the phrase "internet governance" should not exist. On the first point, he raises the point that many governments feel uneasy that the internet to any one particular country could be cut off by a decision of the US government. Second, that "governance" is not "government" and the differences between them. And third, the US dominance of the internet may not be such a good thing. Point 2, raised by Lynn St Amour President, ISOC, who says in part that the discussion needs to go back to the "national level, local level, participation in the forms that are available to you, that are important to you as an individual" while Ang Peng Hwa who says in part "Taking away the Forum and moving such meetings to the national and local levels would only reduce the quality of the discussion when was is needed is higher, not lower quality." And third, Vint Cerf who Ang Peng Hwa says "there cannot be competition at the root zone, that ICANN is a "natural monopoly" not in the strict economic sense but because of the requirements of the system -- there can only be one root." Further, "Cerf, however, misses a major point -- in the good old USA as well as significant portions of the civilised world, there is only on way to handle monopolies -- regulate them. This is precisely the issue of internet governance. If ICANN is indeed an inevitable monopoly, then it inevitably invites regulation. Anything less would not be transparent or fair."
The Dark Side of Second Life (Business Week)
Software that lets residents copy others' possessions is the latest reminder that this virtual world may need tougher law enforcement
Podcast Downloading (Pew Internet & American Life Project)
Some 12% of internet users say they have downloaded a podcast so they can listen to it or view it at a later time. However, few internet users are downloading podcasts with great frequency; just 1% report downloading a podcast on a typical day.
26 November 2006
Belgian newspapers, Google in copyright stoush (Sydney Morning Herald)
Lawyers for Belgium's French-speaking newspapers and Google clashed in court today during a hearing into a copyright case against the US giant.
ITU Conference signals enhanced international cooperation in ICT: Plenipotentiary Conference endorses expanded mandate for ITU (International Telecommunication Union news release)
The 17th ITU Plenipotentiary Conference wound up Friday evening by setting out a road map for the Union to chart its future course as the pre-eminent world body for telecommunications and state-of-the-art information and communication technologies (ICT). It endorsed ITU's essential role in Bridging the Digital Divide and ensuring the continued expansion of global communication networks. The Conference renewed focus on implementing the outcomes of the WSIS. Over 2000 participants from 164 countries, including more than one hundred ministers attended the Plenipotentiary Conference, the supreme organ of ITU which meets every four years, and lent their support to the future work of the Union. The conference focused on a number of key issues: ITU's role in Implementing the outcomes and action lines of WSIS; Enhanced cooperation among the membership on international public policy issues related to the internet, such as internationalized domain names, to build bridges within the internet community and in the intergovernmental process.
The biggest increase in spam over the past two years has been in e-mails that offer recipients shares in obscure technology companies based in the United States.
ICANN is launching a public comments period on the Preliminary Task Force Report on Whois Services. This report forms part of the GNSO policy development process (PDP) on Whois which seeks to build consensus on policy issues in the generic top level domain (gTLD) space. The public comment period will last from 24th November, 2006 to 15 January, 2007.
We all have the power to shape the networked world, argues regular BBC commentator Bill Thompson. Over the last 20 years the global economy has been shaped and reshaped by computers and the growing reach of the internet as a public communications network.
25 November 2006
How engineers tamed the internet's Tower of Babel (The Guardian)
At the IGF last month, a bespectacled Swede made a small, barely noticed announcement that nevertheless represented a pivotal moment in the history of the internet. "Regarding the technical implementation for the world wide web, we are done," Patrik Fältström told the Internet Governance Forum. By "we are done", he meant that following a decade of hard work by a global consortium of engineers and linguists, they had finally decided on a document that will enable all the world's languages to be fully represented on the internet. People will be able to type in addresses in their own language, search in their own language and move around the internet in their own language.
The price of humans who'll spam blogs is falling to zero (The Guardian)
This article finds evidence that spammers are paying people in developinig countries to complete captcha boxes on websites, enabling spammers to bypass a security device to avoid spam - will they stop at nothing? Obviously not, as spammers think it's nothing personal. You have to understand: it's just business.
Ofcom legalises the use of FM transmitters which allow iPods and other MP3 players to play through car radios.
Users who have experimented with downloading a podcast continues to grow but few remain hooked, research suggests.
Copyright is fundamentally socialist - it is radical and redistributive, subversive even. How else would you describe a form of property that anyone can create out of nothing? Copyright's democratising effect is seen most clearly in the music business. Anyone who can speak, sing, rap or hum and operate a simple sound recorder can create a copyright song. Imagination is the only limit.
24 November 2006
While the welfare of the planet may not top their agenda, the vast majority of businesses are still shooting themselves in the foot when it comes to energy savings. Eighty percent of businesses have never conducted an energy audit and only 29 percent of businesses are investing in energy-efficient PCs, according to research from Intel.
Confounding the skeptics, Google shares soar (International Herald Tribune/New York Times)
Over the years, many have felt that Google stock was overvalued and that it would inevitably suffer the fate of Yahoo. This week, Google shares closed above US$500 for the first time.
ICANN Opens Consultation on Latin America and the Caribbean Regional At Large Organisation Organising Instruments (ICANN)
As provided in the ICANN Bylaws, Article XI, Section 2, part 4, an advisory process has been created to allow the interests of individual Internet users to be represented in the ICANN community.
Initial reports on the process to register .eu domain names (Internet Business Law Services)
More than two million .eu domain names have been registered in nine months, showing the great success of this European electronic identity. To regulate registrations, regulation (EC) N° 733/2002 of 22 April 2002 on the implementation of the .eu Top Level Domain has been adopted by the European Parliament and the Council (the "Regulation"), providing that holders of prior rights recognised or established would benefit from an exclusive period of time (from December 7, 2005 until April 6, 2006), the sunrise period, to register their domain names. To register during the sunrise period, applicants needed to prove a prior right entitling them to claim the corresponding domain name.
uk: Nominet wins EGM votes by a whisker (The Register)
UK registry Nominet has won two crucial votes at its extraordinary general meeting this morning - but only just. In what the company's CEO Lesley Cowley called "a bit of a test", the request that the company be allowed to expand its business beyond running the .uk registry passed by just 0.97 per cent - a margin that may have come down to literally one or two of Nominet's 3,000 members voting.
za: Regulations to Manage Domain Name Disputes (AllAfrica.com)
The Department of Communications has published regulations to deal with disputes regarding the .za domain name, in the Government Gazette.
China's Online Porn King Sentenced to Life in Prison (E-Commerce Times)
Chen Hui, the creator of China's largest pornographic Web site, was sentenced to life imprisonment Wednesday. Chen, 28, and his accomplices started the Qingseliuyuetian (pornographic summer) Web site in 2004 and opened three more porn Web sites, attracting more than 600,000 users.
23 November 2006
Google shares going gangbusters (Sydney Morning Herald)
Google's share price surpassed $US500 for the first time, marking another milestone for the internet search leader.
In addition to plenty of turkey, a record amount of spam will be served up this holiday season. Mass e-mailers traditionally bump up their activity as the year winds down. But this year, the amount of junk messages could be unprecedented, companies that make spam-busting tools say.
Internationalizing the Internet by Geoff Huston (Circle ID)
One topic does not appear to have a compellingly obvious localization solution in the multi-lingual world, and that is the Domain Name System. The subtle difference here is that the DNS is the glue that binds all users' language symbols together, and performing localized adaptations to suit local language use needs is not enough. What we need is a means to allow all of these language symbols to be used within the same system, or "internationalization".
Internet Governance Debate Poses Unique Global Challenges (Center for Democracy and Technology Policy Post)
To that end, it may be useful to discuss whether the goals and milestones established nearly a decade ago for ICANN on its path to full autonomy remain adequate in the face of a drastically different global environment. Certainly the goals of fostering stability, competition, representation and private, bottom-up coordination remain as relevant today as they were eight years ago, but in light of recent developments it is important for the Internet community to at least ask whether reaching all of those milestones (something ICANN has yet to accomplish) would be sufficient cause to cut the tether between ICANN and the US Government.
As Google's share price neared US$500 Thursday [and subsequently passed it], analysts were unfazed by the fact that the search king's market capitalization is greater than its three biggest Internet rivals combined and about double that of media companies Walt Disney and Time Warner.