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Transparency

At the Scene of the Federal Communications Commission as the Agency Passes Net Neutrality Rules

WASHINGTON, May 16, 2014 – In a Federal Commissions Commission meeting tinged with protest, the agency voted Thursday to begin a process to re-established certain network neutrality rules after they had been struck down by a federal appeals court in January. On a 3-2 vote, the agency’s three Democrats kicked off a proceeding seeking public input on how to find a solution protecting and promote the open flow of information on the internet that will pass legal scrutiny. Chairman Tom Wheeler retained the support of Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel and Commissioner Mignon Clyburn – even though Rosenworcel said she only “concurred” with the proposal. [...] Keep Reading

‘On the Internet, No One Knows You’re a Child’: The Short Life of Aaron Swartz, at Sundance

PARK CITY, Utah, January 23, 2014 - On the internet, no one knows you're a child. That, at least, was the message I took from watching the film about the life of Aaron Swartz. The film, "The Internet's Own Boy," premiered this week here at the Sundance Film Festival, during which it received a sustained standing ovation. The documentary is a biography of, and tribute to, the all-too-short life of Swartz, who died a year ago this month, at age 26. Swartz had been under intense pressure from the federal prosecutors in Massachusetts. Criminal charges filed against him, if proven, could have imprisoned him for 35 years. Those charges stemmed from Swartz's having downloaded millions of articles from JSTOR, a digital library of academic journals, onto a computer at the campus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. While it is unclear what Swartz intended to do with the articles, it seems implausible that he would have republished them in an act of copyright infringement. [...] Keep Reading

Tech Industry and Non-Profit Groups Criticize National Security Agency’s Encryption-Cracking

WASHINGTON, September 6, 2013 – In the wake of reports in The New York Times, ProPublica, and The Guardian that the National Security Agency had embarked on a system of cracking widespread industry-used encryption protocols, at least one industry group and non-profit organization highlighted the need for the nation to “redraw its boundaries around surveillance.” According to a statement… Keep Reading

Video from February’s Broadband Breakfast Club on Data Caps

WASHINGTON, Thursday, February 21st, 2013 – The broadband policy news and events service BroadbandBreakfast.com held its February 2013 Broadband Breakfast Club event “Data Caps, the Spectrum Crunch and the Wireless Home” this past Tuesday, February 19th, 2013 at Clyde’s of Gallery Place. Speakers included: Keynote: Ruth Milkman, Chief, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, Federal Communications Commission Panel: Roger Entner, Founder, Recon Analytics Nick Feamster, Associate Professor in… Keep Reading

A Major League Baseball Player and the Evolution of the Internet, Media, and the Twitter-verse

February 18, 2013 – When pitcher C.J. Nitkowski first started blogging in 1997, even he could never have predicted how fast the medium would grow. By his own accord, Nitkowski “fell into being the first active player on the web.” In 1997, the Houston Astros website, astros.com, asked Nitkowski to write a semi-annual newsletter chronicling… Keep Reading

Cable and Telecom Providers Warm to Broadband Measurement, Speak at Broadband Breakfast Club

WASHINGTON, Thursday, September 20th, 2012 – The internet policy news and events service BroadbandBreakfast.com held its September 2012 Broadband Breakfast Club event “Measuring Broadband Performance: What Have We Learned in Four Years?” on Tuesday, September 18th, 2012 at Clyde’s of Gallery Place, 707 7th St. NW, Washington, DC 20001 from 8 am – 10 am. You can see highlights… Keep Reading

The Future of Privacy in a Social Media and Networking World

WASHINGTON Thursday April 19, 2012 – First search, then social media, and now privacy concerns?  The digital world has transformed the way consumers access content; one can search an article they are interested in, subscribe to Google Reader, follow a friend’s recommendation from Twitter or read an article a co worker read via the Washington… Keep Reading

Wireless Consumer Usage Notification Guidelines Agreed to by Industry and Consumer Groups

WASHINGTON Monday October 17, 2011 – FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, CTIA The Wireless Association’s President and CEO Steve Largent and Consumers Union’s Policy Counsel Parul Desai  held a press conference at Brookings Institute yesterday morning to announce new “Wireless Consumer Usage Notification Guidelines.” Building upon their Consumer Empowerment Agenda, the FCC has been working with… Keep Reading

FCC/Transparency/Wireless

FCC Offers Online Tool to Search Licenses

WASHINGTON, September 14, 2010 – The Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday unveiled a tool allowing anyone to view licenses overseen by the agency. A quick tour of www.fcc.gov/licenseview, shows that there are about 3 million total managed licenses, of which about 2 million are active. Keep Reading

FCC Seeks Input on How to Treat Specialized Services, Mobile Broadband

WASHINGTON, September 1, 2010 - Sometimes, no matter what you do, things are complicated and you can’t please every one all the time. Welcome to the world of Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski who said Wednesday that his agency is seeking more public input on issues related to specialized services and mobile broadband. While he didn’t specifically refer to the recent controversial policy pact made by Google and Verizon regarding managed services and wireless issues, he was presumably reacting to it. Keep Reading

Public Interest Groups Bemoan Reported Google, Verizon Secret Network Neutrality Pact

WASHINGTON, August 5, 2010 - It has been reported that Google and Verizon are working on a secret pact about network neutrality. The New York Times says this pact will give Google products preferential treatment on the Verizon network. However both firms are claiming this is untrue. Public interest organizations however bemoan the entire concept of a secret pact. Keep Reading

Tech and Content Industry Still at Loggerheads Over Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Deal

WASHINGTON, July 13, 2010 – Major U.S. technology companies are worrying over an international trade agreement currently under negotiations because they see it as putting them on shaky legal ground. At the third Intellectual Property Breakfast Club held by BroadbandBreakfast.com, panelists argued over the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement and its potential impact on the technology industry. Keep Reading

Experts Debate Lack of Transparency in Federal Spectrum Policy

WASHINGTON, June 7, 2010 – Experts gathered last week to discuss problems surrounding transparency in federal spectrum policy and the challenges in addressing the issue. A recurring point of contention was the question of how to raise governmental consciousness of the price of spectrum, so as to prevent overuse by the government at the expense of the private sector. Keep Reading

From the Department of Bogus Statistics: Measuring the Impact of Piracy and Fair Use

SAN FRANCISCO, April 29, 2010 - Measuring the impact of the U.S. legal doctrine of "fair use," which enables online activities such as search, limited copying, sharing, ripping, mixing and burning might seem impossible, but not to the trade group the Computer & Communications Industry Association. The group released a study saying it has measured the “Economic Contribution of Industries Relying on Fair Use.” Keep Reading

Let Consumers See Clearwire’s Network: They’ve Got a Map For That

By now, the omnipresent television commercials have drummed Verizon’s 3G message into all our heads: big red map good, splotchy blue map bad. But nascent national WiMAX provider Clearwire has taken the “maps” battle to a whole new level, in a way that potential wireless users might find more useful than anything offered by Verizon or AT&T: How about coverage maps that use real network data to show actual expected performance on a block-by-block level? Keep Reading

Connecting America, Chapter 4: ‘Broadband Competition and Innovation Policy’

Twenty-five years ago, the World Wide Web did not exist. Very few Americans had even seen a mobile phone, and broadband networks were available only to a few businesses and research institutions. Today, innovations such as broadband and others like it drive the creation of a wide variety of products and services. The competitive forces that sparked these breakthroughs need to be nurtured so that the United States can continue to reap the benefits of its unrivaled culture of innovation. Keep Reading

National Broadband Plan: A Look at Chapter 4 and FCC Recommendations

WASHINGTON, April 1, 2010 - Section Four of the plan focuses on broadband competition and innovation policy. It’s one of the most far-reaching sections in the entire 360-page document. This second article summarizing Chapter 4 looks at the FCC’s overall recommendations to enhance the nation’s broadband ecosystem. Keep Reading

Connecting America, Chapter 3: ‘Current State of the Ecosystem’

To see how broadband is transforming American life, walk down a busy street or pay a visit to any school, business or airport. Parents on business trips use their smartphones to check e-mail or watch short videos of their children playing soccer, hundreds, if not thousands, of miles away. Americans work together in real time on complex documents from different desks in the same office, and workers in different offices around the world collaborate via videoconferencing technology. Sales and field maintenance personnel use mobile devices to access inventory information in their businesses, place orders and update records, increasing efficiency and productivity. Students draw on the richness of the Internet to research historical events or watch simulations of challenging math problems. People are using broadband in ways they could not imagine even a few years ago. Keep Reading

‘National Purposes’ Aspect of National Broadband Plan Aims For Bold Actions Without Much Spending

WASHINGTON, March 15, 2010 - Blair Levin, head of the Federal Communications Commission’s national broadband plan and the “national purposes” team at the agency previewed key points from the upcoming national broadband plan. The object of the plan, they said, is not just to expand broadband networks, but to enable the creation of applications and innovations built upon that network. The six primary objective areas presented were healthcare, education, energy, civic engagement, economic expansion, and public safety. Keep Reading

Chicago Sets its Sights on Ultra-Modern Web Site With Enhanced E-Government

CHICAGO, March 12, 2010 - When the City of Chicago has tried its hand at computerized technology of recent, it hasn't exactly been a hit with citizens. Those fancy electronic signs on public transit platforms? They tell you everything except the time the next trains will arrive, a la London’s Underground. Those year-old parking meter kiosks that take credit cards? Convenient, perhaps—though they also ushered in an era of quadrupled parking fees. So when city officials unveiled Chicago’s official new website Friday, they took great pains to emphasize that www.cityofchicago.org would make life simpler for residents, businesses and visitors alike. Keep Reading

Experts Review Reform and Standards at the FCC

WASHINGTON, March 8, 2010 - Panelists from the Federal Communications Commission, Capitol Hill, public interest groups and the private sector addressed issues of FCC reform and regulatory responsibility at “An FCC for the Internet Age: Reform and Standard-Setting, a half-day conference sponsored by Public Knowledge, Silicon Flatirons and the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. Keep Reading

Broadband Data Collection and Validation Must Be Rethought, Experts Say at Breakfast Club

WASHINGTON, February 10, 2010 – The head of the Federal Communications Commission’s internal “think tank” said Tuesday that the agency was taking a fresh look at all aspects of its broadband data-collection processes: collection, validation and analysis, and dissemination. Speaking to a roomful of panelists and telecom officials who attended Tuesday’s Broadband Breakfast Club in spite of the snow, Office of Strategic Planning Chief Paul de Sa said that the agency was sensitive to the need to balance proprietary information with the desire for transparency in its data-collection processes. In a keynote on the topic of “Setting the Table for the National Broadband Plan: Collecting and Using Broadband Data,” de Sa began by asking questions that frame the work of the agency on broadband data. Keep Reading

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