Better Broadband Better Lives

Monthly archive

June 2011

New America Foundation and Creative Commons Hold Copyright Talk

WASHINGTON, June 30, 2011 – The New America Foundation's Open Technology Initiative along with Creative Commons co-sponsored an event Wednesday evening to discuss the challenges of copyright laws in a digital age. Catherine Casserly, CEO of Creative Commons, delivered the keynote speech in which she presented the mission of Creative Commons, its growth beyond early adopters into the mainstream and the organization’s new book, The Power of Open. Creative Commons is a non-profit company that provides authors, creators and innovators with a set of tools within the boundaries of copyright law to allow for their work to be easily distributed, edited, remixed and built upon. Keep Reading

Expert Opinion: The New Market Frontier in Technology

Last year, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) recognized the role of technology in strengthening this country’s economy by investing 7.2 million in funding into technology and broadband adoption initiatives through the Broadband Technology Opportunity Program (BTOP). Through this funding the United States can build technology infrastructures and bring low-income residents online for the first time. However, technology in and of itself is not what is important. What is important is how people, families and communities use that technology to improve their lives. What will drive adoption and sustainability? Why will someone come online for the first time? What did we learn as an industry and society in bringing the first 100M on line that can help us in bringing the last 100M online? What is the real cost benefit analysis on people having access to information that directly impacts the way they manage their health, educate their children or plan for their financial future. I challenge all of us not to look at the cost of building these networks – but rather the cost of not building it. Keep Reading

Cybersecurity

Federalist Society Explores Legal Issues Surrounding Cyber Conflict

WASHINGTON, June 30, 2011 – The Federalist Society convened Tuesday to discuss the complex and interconnected legal and policy issues of cyber security in relation to the law of armed conflict, privacy and legislative action. Morning and afternoon panels comprised of national security and economic security experts presented to the legal society the difficulties of applying the law of armed conflict towards cyber threats. The new threat conditions introduced by cyber intrusions and attacks do not fit the old paradigm of doing warfare. Panelists agreed, however, that the new rules should not be determined before major cyber conflicts have taken place. Keep Reading

Economic Policy Institute Debates AT&T T-Mobile Merger

WASHINGTON June 29, 2011-The Economic Policy Institute gathered leading industry experts for a panel on Tuesday to debate the impending merger between AT&T and T-Mobile. At the end of March, AT&T announced plans to purchase T-Mobile from Deutsche Telekom for $39 billion. The merger has garnered a great deal of controversy because it would create the nation’s largest mobile provider. Keep Reading

Cybersecurity/Privacy

Center for American Progress Panelists Explore FTC’s Role in Child Privacy Protection

WASHINGTON, June 28, 2011 – A Center for American Progress panel assembled Monday explored the challenges presented by emerging Internet technology privacy issues with respect to Federal Trade Commission enforcement, child safety and free speech rights. Julie Brill, FTC Commissioner, addressed private sector and government solutions for protecting consumer data privacy in her keynote speech to a packed house of policy analysts, advocacy groups and government officials at the Center’s Washington, D.C. headquarters. Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact

When It Comes to Telecommuting, Companies Save, But the U.S. Lags

WASHINGTON, June 28, 2011- The Telework Research Network released its report on the state of telecommuting Monday, showing that individuals who work from home are more productive than those who report to an office everyday, but that the United States has a lower percentage of workers who telecommute than its international counterparts. In the United States, many consider telecommuting a perk rather than a standard business practice, as it is in most of the rest of the world. In Canada nearly four percent of the population teleworks or workshifts regularly. In the United Kingdom, it is even higher at a little over five percent of the population. Keep Reading

Neville Keynotes June Broadband Breakfast Club Mapping Discussion

WASHINGTON, June 23, 2011 - National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) Program Director, Anne Neville, offered the keynote address Tuesday morning at the Broadband Breakfast Club's June event, " The National Broadband Map: Policy, Consumer and Economic Development Implications." Neville, who oversees the development of the National Broadband Map, kicked off the event with an overview of the program, including how the NTIA obtained data, how the data have been used, and the future of the mapping efforts. The National Broadband Map: Policy, Consumer and Economic Development Implications from BroadbandBreakfast.com. Keep Reading

Mobile Broadband/Wireless

Pricing Info for Tiered Verizon Data Plans Leaked

WASHINGTON June 23, 2011- The Android Central blog leaked Wednesday what it claims are internal Verizon Wireless documents that show details of tiered data pricing for wireless plans to be released in July. Verizon Wireless stated last year that it would have to eventually transition away from unlimited data to a tiered system. Keep Reading

China a Concern as Senate Judiciary Reviews IP Law Enforcement Efforts

WASHINGTON, June 23, 2011 – Federal law enforcement agencies testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday regarding the current state of federal intellectual property rights enforcement and the challenges to enforcing IP laws due to a complex relationship with China. Witnesses from federal law enforcement agencies reported that the increasing complexity of prosecuting IP crimes due to their international and transnational nature has made cooperation and collaboration with foreign law enforcement agencies a high priority. Keep Reading

Patent Legislation Passes House Judiciary Committee

WASHINGTON June 23, 2011 - After several unsuccessful attempts in previous Congresses, the House Judiciary Committee passed the America Invents Act late Tuesday by a vote of 32-3, moving the first significant overhaul of the U.S. patent system in more than 60 years one step closer to becoming law. The Senate passed a similar piece of legislation, the Patent Reform Act, in early March with a vote of 95-5. The House bill has gained the support of many companies including 3M, Apple, Dell, Facebook, General Electric, Google, and Johnson & Johnson. Keep Reading

Expert Opinion: New Domain Names are Coming, and Present Opportunities and Risks

On June 20, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) formally approved the program it has developed for creation of new generic top-level domains (gTLDs). The new gTLD program will expand the domain name system beyond the current 22 generic top-level domain names such as .com, .net, and .org, to potentially include just about .anything and .everything to the “right of the dot” as top-level domains. The new gTLDs will likely include generic and geographic TLDs such as .bike and .paris, as well as .brand registries that correspond to trademarks and company names such as .deloitte. Keep Reading

Congress/Cybersecurity/Senate

Senate Subcommittee Evaluates Administration’s Cybersecurity Legislation Proposals

WASHINGTON, June 22, 2011 – The Senate Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism evaluated the Obama administration’s cyber security legislation proposal with respect to its own proposed cyber security proposals during a hearing Tuesday. Subcommittee members discussed with executive branch representatives the elements of the administration’s proposals to improve cyber security and individual privacy. Among the topics of the hearing were national data breach standards, the voluntary information sharing proposal and the recommendations for increased criminal penalties against cyber crime committed against critical infrastructure and racketeering. Keep Reading

ICANN Approves New Top Level Domains

WASHINGTON June 20, 2011 - The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) approved a plan on Monday to expand Internet domain names from the familiar .com and .net include customized suffixes like .google or .movies. In a 13-2 vote the ICANN board of directors approved the plan after three years of discussions. The new naming system will allow companies to create their own generic name endings such as .car or .music. Currently there are 22 name endings; .com, .net, and .org are the most popular. Keep Reading

ID InSight Says NTIA Mapping Data Is Highly Accurate

WASHINGTON June 20, 2011 - The market research firm ID InSight released an analysis of the data collected by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration for the national broadband map, which shows a high level of accuracy in data collection. “Through our initial analysis of the map, we are seeing very high degrees of accuracy - sometimes exceeding 99 percent when comparing the NTIA map to what we see with Broadband Scout,” said Adam Elliot President of ID InSight. Keep Reading

Uncategorized

BroadbandBreakfast.com Hosts Broadband Breakfast Club Event ‘The National Broadband Map: Policy, Consumer and Economic Development Implications’ Tuesday, June 21st 2011, Washington, DC

WASHINGTON, Monday, June 20th, 2011 – The internet and intellectual property policy news and events service BroadbandBreakfast.com will hold its June 2011 Broadband Breakfast Club event, “The National Broadband Map: How to Policy, Consumer and Economic Development Implications” on Tuesday, June 21st, 2011 at Clyde’s of Gallery Place, 707 7th St. NW, Washington, DC 20001… Keep Reading

Syria Utilizes “Kill Switch” as Internet Freedom Debate Heats Up

WASHINGTON, June 17, 2011 - In the past year, there has been an extensive push for universal access to Internet, seen as the ultimate democratizing tool enabling two-way communication between governors and the governed. But the reality of a ‘digital divide’ leaves the majority of the world’s population without access to the technological infrastructure to support its use. And those who do have access are sometimes more vulnerable to restriction on political basis, as seen in the recent uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa. Keep Reading

Foreign Policy Research Institute Holds Cybersecurity Talk

WASHINGTON, June 17, 2011 –,The Philadelphia-based Foreign Policy Research Institute presented expertise on the emerging threat in cyberspace Thursday to journalists, private sector industry leaders, government officials and strategists in Washington. Lawrence Husick, Senior Fellow at Foreign Policy Research Institute’s (FPRI) Center on Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism, offered his expertise on leveraging technology as a defining characteristic of the modern terrorist. His presentation centered on the rapidly evolving nature of cyber attacks, and the lack of a comprehensive private sector cybersecurity initiative. Keep Reading

Congress/Privacy/Senate

Franken Introduces Geolocation Privacy Bill

WASHINGTON June 16, 2011- Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology and the Law, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN), along with Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), introduced a bill Wednesday that would make rules more stringent for collecting geolocation data on mobile device users. The Location Privacy Protection Act of 2011 would require companies to obtain users' expressed consent to collect location data and to notify users when they share location data with third parties. Keep Reading

House Subcommittee Debates Cyber Theft Measure

WASHINGTON, June 16, 2011 – Just days after Senate email accounts were hacked, the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade held a hearing Wednesday to discuss a draft bill that would require companies to minimize the amount of data collected from consumers and notify them within two days of a data breach. Subcommittee members met with witnesses to clarify the ambiguous language of a discussion draft of Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Mary Bono Mack’s (R-CA) Secure and Fortify (SAFE) Data Act. The measure addresses the increasing threat of data theft, in the wake of high-profile cyber attacks on Sony, Epsilon, Lockheed-Martin and other U.S. companies. Keep Reading

June IP Breakfast Club Debates Performance Right

WASHINGTON June 16, 2011- Broadband Breakfast gathered leading experts Tuesday to discuss a performance right for broadcasting at the June installment of the Intellectual Property Breakfast Club. Under current copyright regulations, when a song is played on terrestrial radio the writer of the song gets paid fee called a broadcast royalty. The singers and musicians that perform the song, however, get no such payment. Performance royalties are paid to singers from web-based radio stations along with cable companies that offer music channels.

Broadband IP Breakfast: A Performance Right for Broadcasting: Will Radio Begin to Pay?

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Expert Opinion: Broadband Adventures in Wunderland: The (Expensive) Myth of Competition

The National Broadband Plan won’t do jack until more folks in Wunderland acknowledge and aggressively address one stark truth – broadband competition is mostly a myth, expensively maintained through lobbyists, think tanks and easily-influenced politicians. Until we get meaningful competition, a significant part - though mercifully not all - of Wunderland’s policies will result in dabbling around the edges rather than a meaningful advancement of broadband in the U.S. Case in point: the misguided attempt by some of Wisconsin’s state legislators to prevent their state universities from using federal stimulus money to advance broadband is purely about AT&T clawing to maintain its near monopolistic hold over broadband there. In this and other states' legislatures we see cable and telco duopolies roadblocking federal and local efforts to get communities the broadband they want and need. Keep Reading

TechFreedom Panel Criticizes Search Engine Bias Claims

WASHINGTON, June 15, 2011 – TechFreedom, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank, assembled a panel of law professors gathered at the Capitol on Tuesday to discuss search engine bias and recent antitrust cases involving Google. The recently-established conservative policy group moved the event to the Capitol building to make it more accessible for Senate staffers and private businessmen to attend. Keep Reading

One Economy ‘Application for Good’ Winners Announced

WASHINGTON June 14, 2011- The One Economy Corporation, in conjunction with AT&T, announced the winners of the "Applications for Good" contest on Tuesday. “Technology is important, but today’s event shows that what really matters is how people, families and communities use technology to make their lives better,” said Kelley Dunne, President and CEO of One Economy. “We must constantly challenge ourselves to seek creative ways to meet people where they are in delivering resources that can truly transform communities.” Keep Reading

State Department Funds Shadow Internet Networks to Protect Free Speech Rights

WASHINGTON, June 13, 2011 – The U.S. State Department has acknowledged funding the establishment of independent "shadow" internet and cell-phone networks in countries with oppressive regimes, according to a Sunday New York Times article. The effort is part of a broader "liberation technology movement" critical in the recent popular uprisings in Iran, Egypt, Libya and Syria - the more recent events are commonly referred to as the "Arab Spring." The liberation technology refers to the use of information technology to expand political, social, and economic freedom. Keep Reading

Patent Reform Coalition Calls for the End of Fee Diversion

WASHINGTON June 13, 2011 - The Coalition for 21st Century Patent Reform, the Coalition for Patent Fairness, the Innovation Alliance along with a group of universities sent a joint letter to Congress Monday recommending that any patent reform legislation end the diversion of user fees from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). In early March, the Senate passed the Patent Reform Act of 2011. The America Invents Act, a House companion to the Senate bill, is currently up for debate in the lower house. The bills would update many of the operations of the USPTO. Keep Reading

BroadbandBreakfast.com to Hold Intellectual Property Breakfast Club on Music Performance Rights for Radio Broadcasting tomorrow, Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

WASHINGTON, Monday, June 13th, 2011 – The internet and intellectual property policy news and events service BroadbandBreakfast.com will hold its June 2011 Intellectual Property Breakfast Club event, “A Performance Right for Broadcasting: Will Radio Begin to Pay?” on Tuesday, June 14th, 2011 from 8 am – 10 am at Clyde’s of Gallery Place, 707 7th… Keep Reading

Senate Committee Passes Public Safety Spectrum Bill

WASHINGTON, June 9, 2011 – The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation passed a deficit reducing measure Wednesday to reallocate the D-Block spectrum to public safety and gain federal funding to realize a nationwide, interoperable public safety broadband network. The measure, known as the Strengthening Public-safety and Enhancing Communications Through Reform, Utilization, and Modernization (SPECTRUM) Act of 2011, is seen by proponents as a way to both reduce the federal deficit and honor first responders who lost their lives due to communications network failures during the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Keep Reading

Commerce Dept. Recommends Public-Private Partnership on Cybersecurity

WASHINGTON, June 9, 2011 - The Department of Commerce released its Cybersecurity, Innovation and the Internet Economy green paper on Wednesday, advising cooperation between the government and private sector to implement ways to address cybersecurity issues. The Internet Policy Taskforce, a department-wide group created in April 2010, wrote the green paper with the goal of addressing the pressing issues surrounding cyber security. Keep Reading

Expert Opinion: Why the FCC should deny the AT&T / T-Mobile Merger

In order for the Federal Communications Commission to approve the mega-merger between AT&T and T-Mobile, AT&T has to make a showing that the merger is in the public interest. Despite AT&T’s declaration that this merger is the most pro-consumer, pro-innovation and pro-investment solution to America’s wireless problems, a mega-merger like this can only hurt the broadband market, both for innovators and consumers alike. Keep Reading

Leahy Introduces Data Security Bill

WASHINGTON June 8, 2011 - Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, re-introduced a bill Tuesday that would establish a national standard for the notification to consumers by corporations when data breaches occur. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) cosponsored the Personal Data Privacy and Security Act, a reiteration of bills by the same name that have failed in each of the three previous Congresses. Keep Reading

FCC/People

FCC Announces Shakeups in Division Posts

WASHINGTON, June 8, 2011 –The Federal Communications Commission announced a flurry of new hiring in some of the agency's top spots this week with new blood due to take over three of the Commission's upper-level posts. Tuesday Rick Kaplan as the new Chief of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau. On Monday, Robert Naylor was announced as the new Chief Information Officer, and Marius Schwartz as the new Chief Economist in the Office of Strategic Planning & Policy Analysis (OSP). The recent lineup change by the FCC was announced in three separate press releases in less than 24 hours. Keep Reading

Expert Opinion: Broadband or Bust?: Pike Place Market Meets the Information Superhighway

The goal of connecting consumers with businesses has remained unchanged for thousands of years. But the manner in which that connection with customers is made evolves with technology, time and culture. Broadband-based e-Commerce is just the latest variation. To understand the challenges that businesses face in developing a more technologically savvy business and the benefits to those that are further along in the process, we surveyed 77 vendors in Seattle’s Pike Place Market, a historic tourist spot and favorite local attraction that attracts 10 million visitors annually. Keep Reading

Innovation/States

California State Assembly Passes Online Sales Tax Bill

WASHINGTON June 7, 2011- The California State Assembly passed a bill last week that would require online retailers such as Amazon to collect state sales taxes on all goods the site sells within the state. The bill is similar to those that a number of other states and the U.S. Congress are currently debating. Keep Reading

U.N. Special Rapporteur: Internet Censorship Violation of Basic Human Rights

WASHINGTON, June 6, 2011 – The UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression, Frank La Rue, presented his report on freedom of expression and the Internet to the Human Rights Council in Geneva on Friday, concluding that Internet access is a basic human right. In what was hailed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation as a ‘landmark report,’ La Rue’s report also declared that disconnecting individuals from the Internet goes against international law. Keep Reading

Bono Mack: Sony Data Breach Is Cybersecurity ‘Ground Zero’

WASHINGTON, June 3, 2011 – The House Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade met on Thursday to learn the lessons from recent large-scale customer data breaches at Sony and Epsilon. The hearing examined the risks of the unprecedented data breaches, which Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-CA), Chair of the subcommittee, called a ‘ground zero’ for cyber attacks. Other members of the subcommittee also assessed current investigation efforts by those companies, and gathered input and support to craft new data breach legislation. Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact

ITIF Panel Debates Government Intervention in Broadband Networks

WASHINGTON, June 2, 2011 - The Information Technology & Innovation Foundation assembled a panel Wednesday to debate the merits and minuses of government support of broadband networks. The Oxford-style debate, "Governments Should Neither Subsidize nor Operate Broadband Networks to Compete with Commercial Ones," included four panelists. Rob Atkinson, President of ITIF and Jeff Eisenach, Managing Director and Principal of Navigant Economics argued against government intervention; Jim Baller, President of Baller Herbst Law Group, and Chris Mitchell, Director of Telecommunications at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance argued in favor. Keep Reading

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