Category: Internet Neutrality


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In Memoriam of Aaron Swartz and his dream to make the world a better place

Swartz smiling

11/8/1986 – 01/11/2013

 

Aaron is dead.

Wanderers in this crazy world,

We have lost a mentor , a wise elder. 

Hackers for right, we are one down,

we  have lost one of our own.

Nurturers, carers, listeners,

feeders, parents all,

we have lost a child.

Let us all weep.

~Sir Tim Berners-Lee, January 11th 2013

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Former U.S. National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden. © Vincent Kessler
NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden has voiced his opposition to the Investigatory Powers Bill, which was unveiled Wednesday by the British government, saying ministers are “taking notes on how to defend the indefensible.”

His remarks come as Home Secretary Theresa May has admitted that UK spy agencies MI5, MI6 and GCHQ secretly collected communications data for decades to protect “national security.”

Snowden, who sought asylum in Russia after leaking top-secret documents about American and British mass surveillance techniques, posted a series of tweets condemning the new bill.

He said the powers given to security agencies in the bill amounted to access to “the activity log of your life.”

May announced on Wednesday that internet companies would be required to store a record of every website accessed by users for a year. The new bill also targets encrypted messaging services, such as WhatsApp and iMessenger, which allow users to evade hackers and data collection.

It’s not about something to hide, it’s about something to lose.

Snowden expressed his opposition to the bill, which was created in the wake of his revelations.

 

 

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Anonymous plot bonfire night Million Mask March

Protesters hold up their Guy Fawkes masks on the Liberty Bridge during a demonstration by supporters of the Anonymous movement as part of the global "Million Mask March" protests, in Budapest, November 5, 2014. © Bernadett Szabo
 
Activist collective Anonymous have released details of the 2015 Million Mask March, which will see coordinated demonstrations in cities across the globe protesting against corruption, human rights abuses and censorship.

Following in the footsteps of previous marches, the worldwide demonstration will take place on November 5, coinciding with bonfire night in the UK.

This year’s message is “building a better future through collective action,” a statement from the group released on Monday reads.

The London march in 2014 attracted over 1,000 participants who marched through the city center wearing distinctive Guy Fawkes masks, which have become the unofficial emblem of the movement.

Fawkes, part of a band of persecuted English Catholics, was captured and executed by the British state after attempting to blow up the Houses of Parliament in 1605. His image was popularized by the 2005 film adaptation of the Alan Moore graphic novel V for Vendetta.

 

 

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At least 100 people have been arrested in Brussels, where hundreds more protested against TTIP, an impending free trade deal between the US and the EU, as the next round of TTIP talks approaches.

Roads were paralyzed in the Belgian capital as a force of more than 600 activists descended on EU headquarters, blocking traffic and the venue of the EU leaders summit in protest against the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

People carried signs and chanted slogans such as “Stop TTIP, stop austerity” and “Sorry for the inconvenience. We’re trying to save the world,” at the march in Brussels on Thursday. “TTIP is death” another sign read. One group of protesters displayed a balloon ‘Trojan Horse’ as an allegory for the deal.

 

 

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Frank Koch
The TPP is “NAFTA on steroids” and will do even greater damage to the economy and sovereignty of the United States. By Joe Wolverton, II, J.D.
thenewamerican.com

 

 

 

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Fight for the Future

Last week, WikiLeaks released the final text of the TPP’s intellectual property rights chapter and it is absolutely terrifying.

These are just a few of its most dangerous pieces:

  • Compel ISPs to take down websites without any sort of court order, just like SOPA. (Appendix Section I)

  • Extend the US’s copyright regime to require copyrights stand for life plus 70 years, preventing anyone from using works that belong in the public domain. (Article QQ.G.6)

  • Criminalize whistleblowing by extending trade secrets laws without any mandatory exemptions for whistleblowers or investigative journalists. (QQ.H.8)

  • End anonymity online by forcing every domain name to be associated with a real name and address. (Article QQ.C.12)

  • Make it illegal to unlock, modify, or generally tinker with a device you own. (Article QQ.G.10)

  • Export the US’s broken copyright policies to the rest of the world without expanding any of the free speech protections, like fair use. (Article QQ.G.17)

The worst part is that this is just one of the TPP’s 30 chapters.

The final text confirms our worst fears — click here to take action demanding Congress vote NO on the TPP.

For years, governments have held critics of the massive Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement in a perfect catch 22. Officials brushed off public outcry and concern by claiming that the dissenters didn’t have all the facts.

This was by design—the 12 country trade deal was negotiated entirely behind closed doors by industry lobbyists and government appointees, and even now the text of the agreement is still classified.

But late last week, WikiLeaks released the final text of the Intellectual Property chapter, meaning those excuses won’t work anymore.

We’re planning to go all out against the TPP, but the first step is to make sure Congress knows just how many people oppose the TPP.

Click here to take action demanding Congress vote NO on the TPP.

Taking action today is just the beginning, because if all we do is send emails and make phone calls, Congress is not going to reject the TPP. Too many giant industries are seriously invested in making sure Congress ratifies the TPP.

If we’re going to win, we need to go big. Which is exactly what we’re going to do.

So take action right now. Contact your Congresspeople now and tell them to vote against the TPP. Then get ready to do more because we’re going to unleash some of our strongest campaigns ever.

Already we have plans to work with hundreds of different groups as a massive coalition to fight the TPP, coordinate gigantic on-the-ground protests in key cities across the country, and produce compelling content to spread the word to as many different audiences as possible just what is at stake in the TPP.

To do all that, we need your help — if you can, pledge to chip in $5 every month between now and when the TPP fight ends so that we can run our biggest, boldest, and best campaign yet.

Thanks for all you do,
Charlie

P.S. Want to read the text of the chapter for yourself? Check it out on WikiLeaks here, or read their overview of it here. It’s long and complicated, so maybe you’ll see something that we didn’t. If you do, send us an email.

David Noyes

*KILL THE TPP!!!*

Excellent!:
— Noam Chomsky has joined the chorus decrying the TPP, which has very little to do with free trade and is really about limiting regulation, helping corporate interests and imposing fiercer standards of intellectual property (to, again, largely benefit corporate interests).

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The Obama administration’s Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal is an “assault,” on working people intended to further corporate “domination,” according to author…
huffingtonpost.com
Elizabeth Mueller

Let me give you an example of what TPP could allow:

You are an independent journalist or blogger. You need content. Suddenly, all the pictures, videos, memes and articles become “private property.” You want to cite the video, where the now former NRC chairman turns whistleblower and says he’s adamantly anti-nuclear, after witnessing the damage at Fukushima. You can’t. A major news outlet owns the press conference video footage. You place a stupid cat meme on your page, withou

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Elizabeth Mueller's photo.

https://i2.wp.com/www.zengardner.com/wp-content/uploads/tpp.jpg

 

Frank Koch

A chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership released by WikiLeaks reveals potential violations of applicable U.S. environmental standards.

A chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership released by WikiLeaks reveals potential violations of applicable U.S. environmental standards. By Joe Wolverton, II, J.D.
thenewamerican.com
Jennifer Hibberd
Ed Schultz led the coverage over the dangers of TPP. Finally, Congress and the media begin to realize the importance of stopping this bill. Larry Cohen joins.
msnbc.com

‪#‎AceSecurityNews‬ says latest information and opinions from RT on the release of the “TTPP Uncovered: WikiLeaks releases draft of highly-secretive multi-national trade deal” documents together with download at this link PDF
Published time: November 13, 2013 17:36
Edited time: November 15, 2013 09:36

Get short URL

#AceSecurityNews says latest information from RT on the release of the “TTPP Uncovered: WikiLeaks releases draft of highly-secretive multi-national trade…
acenewsservices.com

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Published on
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Groups Issue Warning: Pro-Corporate TPP Could Kill the Internet

“What we’re talking about here is global Internet censorship.”

Digital rights groups warn that TPP “will criminalize our online activities, censor the Web, and cost everyday users money.” (Photo: Getty)

The “disastrous” pro-corporate trade deal finalized Monday could kill the Internet as we know it, campaigners are warning, as they vow to keep up the fight against the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement between the U.S. and 11 Pacific Rim nations.

“Internet users around the world should be very concerned about this ultra-secret pact,” said OpenMedia’s digital rights specialist Meghan Sali. “What we’re talking about here is global Internet censorship. It will criminalize our online activities, censor the Web, and cost everyday users money. This deal would never pass with the whole world watching—that’s why they’ve negotiated it in total secrecy.”

“The TPP will criminalize our online activities, censor the Web, and cost everyday users money. This deal would never pass with the whole world watching—that’s why they’ve negotiated it in total secrecy.” —Meghan Sali, Open Media

TPP opponents have claimed that under the agreement, “Internet Service Providers could be required to ‘police’ user activity (i.e. police YOU), take down Internet content, and cut people off from Internet access for common user-generated content.”

Among the deal’s provisions are rules that could criminalize file-sharing, whistleblowing, and breaking digital locks, even for legitimate purposes. Of course, because the contents of the pact have been negotiated largely in secret, the exact implications of the TPP on user rights is yet to be seen.

However, Electronic Frontier Foundation’s (EFF) Maira Sutton wrote on Monday, “We have no reason to believe that the TPP has improved much at all from the last leaked version released in August, and we won’t know until the U.S. Trade Representative releases the text. So as long as it contains a retroactive 20-year copyright term extension, bans on circumventing DRM, massively disproportionate punishments for copyright infringement, and rules that criminalize investigative journalists and whistleblowers, we have to do everything we can to stop this agreement from getting signed, ratified, and put into force.”

Furthermore, “The fact that close to 800 million Internet users’ rights to free expression, privacy, and access to knowledge online hinged upon the outcome of squabbles over trade rules on cars and milk is precisely why digital policy consideration[s] do not belong in trade agreements,” Sutton added, referring to the auto and dairy tariff provisions that reportedly held up the talks.

“The fact that close to 800 million Internet users’ rights to free expression, privacy, and access to knowledge online hinged upon the outcome of squabbles over trade rules on cars and milk is precisely why digital policy consideration[s] do not belong in trade agreements.”  —Maira Sutton, EFF

With a major protest against the TPP and other secret trade deals planned for November in Washington, D.C., EFF is crowdsourcing slogans related to how the TPP threatens digital rights and freedoms around the world.

“Successive leaks of the TPP have demonstrated that unless you are a big business sector, the [U.S. Trade Representative, or USTR] simply doesn’t care what you have to say,” wrote EFF’s Jeremy Malcolm.

“Enough’s enough,” reads the group’s call-to-action. “The time for whitepapers and presentations is past. The USTR has failed us, so now it’s time for the public to rise up and take their message about the TPP’s threats to user rights to Congress, which has the ultimate authority to approve or reject the deal for the United States.”

 

 

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The United Nations has disgraced itself immeasurably over the past month or so.

In case you missed the following stories, I suggest catching up now:

The UN’s “Sustainable Development Agenda” is Basically a Giant Corporatist Fraud

Not a Joke – Saudi Arabia Chosen to Head UN Human Rights Panel

Fresh off the scene from those two epic embarrassments, the UN now wants to tell governments of the world how to censor the internet. I wish I was kidding.

From the Washington Post:

On Thursday, the organization’s Broadband Commission for Digital Development released a damning “world-wide wake-up call” on what it calls “cyber VAWG,” or violence against women and girls. The report concludes that online harassment is “a problem of pandemic proportion” — which, nbd, we’ve all heard before.

But the United Nations then goes on to propose radical, proactive policy changes for both governments and social networks, effectively projecting a whole new vision for how the Internet could work.

Under U.S. law — the law that, not coincidentally, governs most of the world’s largest online platforms — intermediaries such as Twitter and Facebook generally can’t be held responsible for what people do on them. But the United Nations proposes both that social networks proactively police every profile and post, and that government agencies only “license” those who agree to do so.

People are being harassed online, and the solution is to censor everything and license speech? Remarkable.

 

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Fight for the Future

 

 

Evan from FFTF

info@list.fightforthefuture.org

 

We gave every member of U.S. Congress a “grade” based on how they’ve voted on laws that affect your privacy and freedom. Click here to see how yours scored! You might be surprised.

 

So many politicians blatantly push for policies that harm all of us, just because the special interests that fund their campaigns want them to.

Because of this, Congress tries to hide — taking vague positions, pushing for watered down legislation, or remaining silent at critical moments.

This week, they’re expected to renew debate on CISA, the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act, a bill that would give corporations sweeping legal immunity when they share your data with the government.

Now more than ever, it’s so important that we don’t let our lawmakers hide in the shadows.

Click here to find out where your members of Congress stand on government spying and abuse!

This scoreboard is a tool we can use to hold politicians accountable and demand they stand up for our basic human and Constitutional rights.

Surveillance will define our future. Let’s make sure the future isn’t terrible.

Click here to see how your representatives measure up, and tell them to oppose CISA!

For the Internet,

~Evan at Fight for the Future

P.S. As much as we’ve talked about how bad CISA is for expanding mass surveillance, there’s another side to the law that just made it even worse. Late last week, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island introduced an amendment to expand the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, the law that has been used time and again to persecute digital activists, including our friend Aaron Swartz. That’s despicable, and needs to be quashed immediately — so take action now to help kill CISA.


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The big cable companies are back — and this time they’re going through the courts to try to kill the Net Neutrality rules we won earlier this year. Activists are filing a “People’s Brief” in a few days to make sure that the court understands just how important Net Neutrality is: Click here to read the brief, and add your name below to sign on.

URGENT: SIGN THE PEOPLE’S BRIEF

A third-party consultant will help us manage data collected from this campaign.

Spread the word.

Click here to add your name to the Net Neutrality People’s Brief — the single best thing you can do to make sure Net Neutrality is here to stay.

These lawsuits are by far the biggest threat to Net Neutrality. Armed to the teeth with lawyers, the odds will be stacked in Comcast’s favor if we stand idly by — even though the new Net Neutrality rules were built on the strongest legal grounds possible.

It’s ridiculous that months after winning Net Neutrality, we still have to fight to defend the new rules. But we knew this was coming. Now, if we don’t take action, we’ll lose it to the cable industry’s army of lawyers.

That’s why we’re organizing tens of thousands of people to weigh in together as part of the People’s Brief, and why we need you to add your name right now.

Click here to add your name to the Net Neutrality People’s Brief and remind the judges who look at this that the public has spoken loud and clear.

Normally in cases like these, it’s only corporations and wonky nonprofits that submit briefs. But given how we won Net Neutrality, with millions of people weighing in to the FCC to support the Open Internet, we wanted to make sure everyone can take part, directly.

Even now that the battle has arrived in its final stages, we can use the Internet to save the Internet. We think that’s a pretty cool thing, and we hope you’ll join in.

Take action to protect Net Neutrality — join the People’s Brief now.

Share this page!

Without Net Neutrality, the big cable companies would control the Internet, and make it harder for us to access information that doesn’t align with what’s best for the companies’ bottom lines or that disagrees with their political leanings. If Net Neutrality weren’t the norm, we might even have been blocked from engaging in the online activism that helped secure the Net Neutrality rules that we’re now working to defend!

Help us share this action with as many people as possible!

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Fight for the Future

April 24, 2014

Goodbye, Net Neutrality; Hello, Net Discrimination

Posted by
obama-net-wu.jpgIn 2007, at a public forum at Coe College, in Iowa, Presidential candidate Barack Obama was asked about net neutrality. Specifically, “Would you make it a priority in your first year of office to reinstate net neutrality as the law of the land? And would you pledge to only appoint F.C.C. commissioners that support open Internet principles like net neutrality?”“The answer is yes,” Obama replied. “I am a strong supporter of net neutrality.” Explaining, he said, “What you’ve been seeing is some lobbying that says that the servers and the various portals through which you’re getting information over the Internet should be able to be gatekeepers and to charge different rates to different Web sites…. And that I think destroys one of the best things about the Internet—which is that there is this incredible equality there.”

If reports in the Wall Street Journal are correct, Obama’s chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Thomas Wheeler, has proposed a new rule that is an explicit and blatant violation of this promise. In fact, it permits and encourages exactly what Obama warned against: broadband carriers acting as gatekeepers and charging Web sites a payola payment to reach customers through a “fast lane.”

 

Read More Here

 

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Federal regulators are expected to release draft net neutrality rules in mid-May as part of an ongoing effort to craft rules for Internet traffic that might actually hold up in court.

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler said Wednesday that the agency would consider draft “Open Internet,” or net neutrality, rules at an agency meeting May 15. As we reported in February, Wheeler will propose basically the same rules that the agency had tried before, but justify them under a different part of the law.

Consumer groups have complained about that plan because they’re worried that Wheeler’s rules may not hold up in court either. A federal appeals court rejected two previous versions of net neutrality rules after finding fault in the FCC’s legal reasoning. During the latest smackdown, however, the court suggested that the FCC had some authority to impose net neutrality rules under a section of the law that gives the agency the ability to regulate the deployment of broadband lines.

Internet activists would prefer that the FCC just re-regulate Internet lines under old rules designed for telephone networks, which they say would give the agency clear authority to police Internet lines. Wheeler has rejected that approach for now. Phone and cable companies, including Comcast, AT&T and Verizon, have vociferously fought that idea over the past few years.

 

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April 25, 2014

 

Wake Up, Internet — Time to Save Yourself

Posted: 04/24/2014 3:26 pm EDT Updated: 04/24/2014 3:59 pm EDT
VIDEO GAMES
What if you had only three weeks before the Internet you know and love was about to disappear?

Would you spend your time binging on listicles or the final season of Breaking Bad? Or would you do something about it?

Would you email all your friends with the news? Blast your social media networks? Demand that Congress and the president keep this amazing invention from going away?

If the Internet had only three weeks left, would you take to the streets and raise hell?

I bet you would.

And here’s your chance to prove it: Because three weeks from today the Internet as we know it may not disappear, but it could be a lot closer to the precipice.

On May 15, the Federal Communications Commission will propose a new set of rules that are supposed to stop big phone and cable companies from blocking websites or discriminating against apps and services they don’t like. Only as written the rules would do pretty much the opposite.

According to numerous sources, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s proposal would allow Internet service providers like Verizon or Time Warner Cable to charge extra fees to content companies like Google and Netflix for preferential treatment, guaranteeing their content reaches end-users ahead of those that don’t pay.

In other words: Goodbye, open Internet. Hello, payola Schminternet.

 

Read More Here

 

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