Surfing the Broad...
Follow
Find
114.5K views | +2 today
Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream
Everything about Broadband Policy, Network Infrastructure, Voice, Video and Data Services, Devices and Applications for Managing our Planet
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

The Domestic and Foreign Copyright Policies for Promoting the Creative Economy | Disruptive Competition Project

The Domestic and Foreign Copyright Policies for Promoting the Creative Economy | Disruptive Competition Project | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Earlier this summer, I gave a talk in Seoul, Korea regarding how the United States actually has two copyright policies: one domestic and one foreign. These policies differ both in terms of how they are formulated, and what they say. Although these two policies have started converging, they still aren’t the same.


The talk occurred at a conference on “The Creative Economy and Intellectual Property” hosted by the Korean Institute for Intellectual Property and the Korean Intellectual Property Office. The conference reflected South Korean President Park’s initiative to promote a “creative economy” in Korea, which I suppose is an effort to distinguish Korea from the perceived “imitative economies” of other Asian countries such as China. At the conference, strong intellectual property protection was portrayed by the hosting organizations as critical to encouraging the development of a creative economy.


I was asked to talk about the U.S. government policy for promoting a creative economy. I explained that the U.S. actually has distinct domestic and foreign copyright policies, and explored how they have differed, both in terms of process (how they are formulated) and substance. My conclusion was that the domestic copyright policy promoted a creative economy in the United States, while the foreign copyright policy did not do so abroad.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Mega's encrypted service to fill secure email void | GigaOM Tech News

Mega's encrypted service to fill secure email void | GigaOM Tech News | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

It’s been a difficult week for fans of privacy. Email service Lavabit abruptly shut down last Thursday and Silent Circle’s Silent Mail client followed suit just a day later, leaving the world of secure email drastically thinned out. Luckily, embattled tech star and privacy crusader Kim Dotcom will fill the vacuum with a “cutting edge” secure email client.


It just might take a while before it gets here.


Encrypted email has long been in the works for Mega as part of a boosted privacy suite that includes messaging and file transfers. Both Dotcom and Mega CEO Vikram Kumar have been talking up their commitment to email in the wake of Lavabit and Silent Circle’s respective shutdowns, including a blog post in which Kumar called the companies’ decision “the honorable act of privacy seppuku.”


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Technology Industry Extends a Hand to Struggling Print Media | NYTimes.com

Technology Industry Extends a Hand to Struggling Print Media | NYTimes.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

From classifieds to display ads to subscriptions, the digital age has broken the financial pillars of print journalism, leaving the industry struggling to stand on its own.


But more frequently — and with a boom last week, when Jeffrey P. Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com, bought The Washington Post — the tycoons who have led the digital revolution are giving traditional print outlets a hand.


Call it a sense of obligation. Or responsibility. Or maybe there is even a twinge of guilt. Helping print journalism adapt to a changed era is becoming a cause du jour among the technology elite.


Google, which has been criticized for profiting from news content created by others, began financing journalism fellowships for eight people this year. The founder of Craigslist, the free listing service that helped ruin newspapers’ classified advertising, helped finance a book on ethics for journalists.


A co-founder of Facebook, the social network many young people rely on for news, recently bought New Republic magazine, and the founder of eBay, another classified ad killer, started an online news service in Hawaii. Steven P. Jobs, the former Apple chief executive, went out of his way to advise newspapers how to adapt their products for the tablet era.


“So ironic,” Les Hinton, a former publisher of The Wall Street Journal, wrote in a Twitter post last week about Mr. Bezos, that The Washington Post “should be consumed by a pioneer of the industry that almost destroyed it.”


Technology industry leaders, who “deal in fact and code,” are supporting the press because they value it, said Merrill Brown, director of the School of Communication and Media at Montclair State University and the former editor in chief of MSNBC.com.


“They’re concerned about where the country is going and share a commonly held point of view that what we do is important for democracy,” said Mr. Brown, who is also a partner at the venture capital firm DFJ Frontier.


This union of the press and digital patrons is sometimes awkward. For starters, tech moguls seem to do their best to stay as far away as possible from the news media’s prying questions. Mr. Jobs was famously prickly around the press, while Mr. Bezos has shunned all interviews about his purchase of The Washington Post except for one — with The Washington Post.


Technology’s helping hand has mostly been extended to newspapers and magazines. And some tech-focused companies, like Yahoo, have long been involved in the news business, hiring their own reporters and editors, setting themselves up as direct competitors to traditional news outlets.


Click headline to rad more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

The NSA Is Commandeering the Internet | The Atlantic

The NSA Is Commandeering the Internet | The Atlantic | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

It turns out that the NSA's domestic and world-wide surveillance apparatus is even more extensive than we thought. Bluntly: The government has commandeered the Internet. Most of the largest Internet companies provide information to the NSA, betraying their users. Some, as we've learned, fight and lose. Others cooperate, either out of patriotism or because they believe it's easier that way.


I have one message to the executives of those companies: fight.


Do you remember those old spy movies, when the higher ups in government decide that the mission is more important than the spy's life? It's going to be the same way with you. You might think that your friendly relationship with the government means that they're going to protect you, but they won't. The NSA doesn't care about you or your customers, and will burn you the moment it's convenient to do so.


We're already starting to see that. Google, Yahoo, Microsoft and others are pleading with the government to allow them to explain details of what information they provided in response to National Security Letters and other government demands. They've lost the trust of their customers, and explaining what they do -- and don't do -- is how to get it back. The government has refused; they don't care.


It will be the same with you. There are lots more high-tech companies who have cooperated with the government. Most of those company names are somewhere in the thousands of documents that Edward Snowden took with him, and sooner or later they'll be released to the public. The NSA probably told you that your cooperation would forever remain secret, but they're sloppy. They'll put your company name on presentations delivered to thousands of people: government employees, contractors, probably even foreign nationals. If Snowden doesn't have a copy, the next whistleblower will.


This is why you have to fight. When it becomes public that the NSA has been hoovering up all of your users' communications and personal files, what's going to save you in the eyes of those users is whether or not you fought. Fighting will cost you money in the short term, but capitulating will cost you more in the long term.


Already companies are taking their data and communications out of the US.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

How the Internet Can Save Journalism | Ackerman & Ayres Blog | Huff Post

How the Internet Can Save Journalism | Ackerman & Ayres Blog | Huff Post | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The sale of the Washington Post to Jeff Bezos is just the most recent episode in the decline and fall of professional journalism. By selling out to a mega-billionaire without any newspaper experience, the Graham family has put a priceless national asset at the mercy of a single outsider. Perhaps Jeff Bezos will use his new plaything responsibly; perhaps not; if not, one of the few remaining sources of serious journalism will be lost.


The crisis in the English-speaking world will turn into a catastrophe in smaller language zones. The English-speaking market is so large that advertisers will pay a lot to gain access to the tens of millions of readers who regularly click onto the New York Times or the Guardian. But the Portuguese-reading public is far too small to support serious journalism on the internet. What happens to Portuguese democracy when nobody is willing to pay for old-fashioned newspapers?


The blogosphere can't be expected to take up the slack. First-class reporting on national and international affairs isn't for amateurs. It requires lots of training and lots of contacts and lots of expenses. It also requires reporters with the well-honed capacity to write for a broad audience -- something that eludes the overwhelming majority of academic specialists and think-tank policy wonks. And it requires editors who recognize the need to maintain their organization's long-term credibility when presenting the hot-button news of the day. The modern newspaper created the right incentives, but without a comparable business model for the new technology, blogging will degenerate into a postmodern nightmare -- with millions spouting off without any concern for the facts.

We can't afford to wait for the invisible hand to come up with a new way to provide economic support for serious journalism. To be sure, the financial press has proved moderately successful in persuading readers to pay for online access; and mainstream media are now trying to emulate this success. But if tens of millions of readers don't succumb to the charms of PayPal -- and quickly -- now is the time for some creative thinking.

For starters, it would be a mistake to rely on a BBC-style solution. It is one thing for government to serve as a major source of news; quite another to give it a virtual monopoly on reporting. This could mean the death of critical fact-based inquiry when a demagogic government takes power -- this risk is especially great in small language zones, where outside media can't take up the slack.


Enter the Internet news voucher. Under our proposal, each news article on the web will end by asking readers whether it contributed to their political understanding. If so, they can click the yes-box, and send the message to a National Endowment for Journalism -- which would obtain an annual appropriation from the government. This money would be distributed to news organizations on the basis of a strict mathematical formula: the more clicks, the bigger the check from the Endowment.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

TWC Customers File Lawsuit over Retrans Disconnect with Milwaukee Station | Multichannel.com

TWC Customers File Lawsuit over Retrans Disconnect with Milwaukee Station | Multichannel.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

A trio of Time Warner Cable customers has filed a lawsuit against the cable operator over its retransmission-consent dispute with WTMJ-TV in Milwaukee.


Filed on Aug. 8 in Milwaukee County Circuit Court, the suit seeks unspecified damages for breach of contract, and a day's credit for each customer for every day service was interrupted more than four hours. The plaintiffs also are looking to elevate the legal pursuit to class-action status on behalf of all affected Time Warner Cable customers.


WTMJ-TV is one of six of stations owned by Journal Broadcast Group that has been off of Time Warner Cable’s systems since July 25 in a retransmission-consent battle. One apparent casualty of the impasse: The MSO's customers will be shut out from the station's presentation of the Aug. 9 NFL preseason game between the Green Bay Packers and Arizona Cardinals.


Journal Communications owns the Journal Broadcast and the Journal Sentinel, which first reported on the legal proceedings.


Time Warner Cable officials said they had not yet received the suit and could not respond to its assertions.


A TWC spokesman said the parties have had ongoing discussions, but “no meaningful progress” has been made. Journal Broadcast officials could not be reached by press time.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

MO: Nixa council questions value of municipal fiber network | Springfield News-Leader

Finley Engineering presented to Nixa City Council its findings on a municipal fiber network on Wednesday, but city officials are unsure it’s worth the multimillion-dollar cost.


“Do we really see ourselves spending $15 million to do this?” Nixa Mayor Sam Clifton asked. A network could provide Internet, cable TV and phone service for city residents.


The $15 million would cover facilities and equipment, but the city’s total could reach $28 million if all available Nixa subscribers participated in a city broadband system.


Each subscriber, a household or business, would cost the city $1,868. It has not been determined what subscribers would be charged.


District II Councilman Chris Russell said, “The question is: How long does it take to get our money back?”


City Administrator Brian Bingle said that would be answered if the council votes to continue researching the network.


The next step is a market study and business case analysis, Clifton said. These studies will indicate how much the service would cost subscribers and gauge interest in the service.


Jill Finney, Nixa communications director, said council would likely vote to pursue the studies at its next meeting.


She said each study costs the city money, so council members will weigh the costs against the worth of the research.


The preliminary study, which cost the city about $45,000, included afiber-to-the-premises network design, which brings fiber cables straight to houses and businesses. This allows for faster and more reliable Internet, cable and phone connections.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Clearing the Air About eHealth Security | ZeroDivide

Clearing the Air About eHealth Security | ZeroDivide | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Privacy and data security are in the news a lot lately. As healthcare moves online, it’s understandable that folks increasingly wonder about their health data and what steps are being taken to protect it. Unfortunately there is also increasingly misinformation and confusion out there.


One recent example does not even involve health data, though opponents of the Affordable Care Act hope the confusion continues. In their efforts to prepare for October 1st enrollment, the federal government is setting up a data hub that will query government databases in order to provide real-time eligibility information for insurance applicants using the Affordable Care Act’s online exchanges. Certain members of Congress caused an uproar recently by questioning the security of this data hub. Their efforts to derail the ACA are further fueled by misleading reports that describe the hub as a massive database of sensitive health and financial information without proper security safeguards. 


However, astute observers have noted, there will be no health data stored in the hub. More importantly, the data hub will not actually store any personal data at all, but instead will route it temporarily from existing secure government databases in order to determine eligibility for Medicaid and private health insurance subsidies. While some important questions have yet to be answered, CMS has reiterated the privacy and security safeguards will be paramount once the hub is operational. These details receive little to no press, while countless editorials and blogs have fretted about a massive government database and its potential security risks.


The confusion surrounding this relatively simple and important IT strategy for the ACA is emblematic of broader misunderstandings about health data security and privacy. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA, contains strong provisions to safeguard and protect sensitive health information. However, in the course of doing so, this law and its associated regulations have together managed to confuse and scare patients, advocates and providers alike, often preventing them from using eHealth tools to communicate.


Click headline to read more--
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

C Spire Wireless grabs PCS spectrum from Leap | TeleGeography

Mississippi-based C Spire Wireless recently purchased PCS spectrum from Leap Wireless, Fierce Wireless reports, citing a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing from the latter company. On 4 June – more than a month before Leap formalised a deal to be taken over by AT&T Mobility – the San Diego-based firm offloaded a 10MHz PCS concession covering Biloxi to C Spire, for just USD6 million.


Although the transaction is comparatively small in the world of US spectrum deals, it offers an interesting indication that C Spire harbours aspirations to beef up its coverage in its core markets as an increasing number of ‘Tier 2’ operators scramble to agree takeovers with larger rivals.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

E-rate: The Next Generation of Funding? | Optica Network Technologies

If your community is looking to bring the next generation of broadband service and applications, funding is usually a major stumbling block. Regardless of whether you are looking to provide services, own and lease the infrastructure, or are working to entice a telecom/cable company to become a franchisee, you will most likely be tasked with finding ways to fund part or all of this project.


A major portion of funding for these types of projects has come from the NTIA administered BTOP and the USDA’s BIP program (both part of the larger 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act). Both of these programs helped fund large scale broadband adoption projects, with a special emphasis on reaching under-served or un-served areas.


However, the E-rate program, run by the FCC, has actually been funding smaller scale projects since 1996. Let’s look at a brief history of the E-rate program, explore conversations around updating this program, and explain how the E-rate program might fit into a community’s overall broadband plan.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Thanks for nothing, 1 percent! A selfish Silicon Valley must learn from history | Salon.com

Thanks for nothing, 1 percent! A selfish Silicon Valley must learn from history | Salon.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Bill Gates has never been a man who sugarcoats his opinions. While discussing his philanthropy goals with Bloomberg Businessweek reporter Brad Stone earlier this week, Gates made no effort to hide his disdain for billionaires who choose to fritter away their wealth on cool toys.


"Question: There are other successful businessmen who are orienting their extracurricular interests around space exploration. Is that interesting to you? Is that worthwhile for humanity?


Answer: Everybody’s got their own priorities. In terms of improving the state of humanity, I don’t see the direct connection. I guess it’s fun, because you shoot rockets up in the air. But it’s not an area that I’ll be putting money into."


Somewhere, Andrew Carnegie is nodding his head in sage approval. The late 19th-century steel tycoon would surely have applauded Gates’ efforts to eradicate diseases like polio and malaria, reduce child mortality, and improve educational access. Carnegie believed that the wealthiest members of society had a profound responsibility to spend as much of their riches as possible — during their own lifetimes — “to produce the most beneficial results for the community.” For Carnegie, that meant public libraries, institutions of learning, concert halls, and even pension funds for college professors.


Rocket ships? A clock designed to last 10,000 years? Fancy light displays on big bridges? Super-fast sailboats? Probably not.


How about purchasing a historically important and influential newspaper?


That’s where the conversation gets interesting. We don’t know yet what made Jeff Bezos decide to buy the Washington Post. It would be nice to believe that the billionaire feels a responsibility to the culture — that he thinks there is something intrinsically worthwhile in keeping the Post alive … “for the community.” But he’s been tight-lipped about his motivations. Maybe the paper is just an expensive bauble, a vanity play like his Long Now clock. More cynically, perhaps it’s just another way to exert influence on behalf of Amazon in the halls of Washington power. At this point, we just don’t know.


What we do know, however, is that the Post purchase has refocused attention on how a new generation of tech billionaires view their responsibility to society. And that’s hugely important. The technological advances of the last few decades have led directly to the concentration of billions of dollars of wealth in a remarkably small number of hands. What, if anything, are Bezos and Zuckerberg and Brin and Page and Ellison going to do with all their money? Will any of them, outside of Bill Gates, follow Andrew Carnegie’s stunning example, and set themselves to the task of doing everything in their power to ameliorate the gross inequities in the distribution of wealth that their version of the Industrial Revolution has precipitated?


Here’s a recommendation. The moguls need to form a book club. They’re all very busy, so we’ll keep the first reading recommendation quite short: Andrew Carnegie’s amazing statement of noblesse oblige, “The Gospel of Wealth.”


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

FCC Seeks Comment on Reforming the Multibillion Dollar E-rate | HL International Spectrum Review

FCC Seeks Comment on Reforming the Multibillion Dollar E-rate | HL International Spectrum Review | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In 2012, the government authorized the transfer of $2.25 billion from telecommunications consumers to schools and libraries to fund “E-rate,” the federal government’s largest education technology program. This year, the FCC proposed fundamental changes to the E-Rate program that could either help usher in a more efficient, more responsive program for students and educators, or swell funding for what some regard as an already inefficient government subsidy program. 

  

Since adoption of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 nearly twenty years ago, the E-rate program has subsidized access to advanced telecommunications services for schools and libraries. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) oversees the distribution of these subsidies, the funding for which comes from fees paid by wireless and wireline carriers, as well as certain other providers. 

Although the FCC has set an annual funding cap for the E-rate program, demand for E-rate support continues to increase, and for the 2013-2014 funding year, schools and libraries sought more than $4.9 billion dollars in E-rate support – far in excess of the annual funding cap for the program. 

In a recently released Notice, the FCC has not only sought comment on whether to change the allocation of Universal Service Fund (USF) fees to increase funding for E-rate services while potentially reducing funding for other USF-funded programs, but also whether and how to repurpose much of that funding for high-capacity broadband connections. 

The FCC release of the E-rate Notice is partially a response to the challenge the White House posed in June 2013 when it launched its ConnectEd initiative with the goal of providing high-speed broadband and wireless connectivity to 99 percent of America’s students within the next 5 years.

With billions of dollars’ worth of U.S. education technology spending at stake, the outcome of the debate promises to change the way that educators and libraries teach children and communicate with families. In its Notice, the FCC signals a strong preference for providing support for fiber-based broadband connections of the type that Comcast’s hybrid-fiber coaxial systems offer in its territories or that Google Fiber has begun offering in Kansas City, Kansas.  

The FCC’s strong support for fiber-based technologies could prove damaging to providers of non-fiber technologies, including DSL or wireless connections. In addition, changes to the current E-rate spending cap could divert money from other USF programs, and remove or sharply reduce subsidies for the many wireline and wireless carriers that currently receive hundreds of millions of dollars of USF funding. Providers of legacy technologies would see additional funding cuts if the FCC adopts its proposal to phase out E-rate support for some or all voice services and instead shifts the focus of the program exclusively to the provision of high-capacity broadband connectivity.

Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Reaching out to the next generation of manufacturing workers | New Hampshire Business Review

Reaching out to the next generation of manufacturing workers | New Hampshire Business Review | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The demographic dilemma facing U.S. manufacturers is simple: as older workers retire, many of whom from the baby boom generation, the next generation of workers is unprepared, ill-trained or uninterested in taking their place.


At least in New Hampshire, an initiative is under way through the Community College System of New Hampshire to reach, inform and, it’s hoped, recruit the next generation of workers for the advanced manufacturing sector. That initiative will eventually include online and social media outreach and an increased menu of online course.


“These are not your grandfather’s manufacturing jobs,” said Desiree Crossley, marketing coordinator for CCSNH’s Advanced Manufacturing Partnerships in Education, or AMPed, about the jobs available in the high-tech manufacturing sector – jobs that require a different skill set than in the past.


Reaching potential future workers through the media they use is one way to make considering a manufacturing career path a “cool” choice, she said.


“AMPed has really been about bridging any gaps that may have existed between educational institutions, industry and members or potential members of the workforce,” Crossley said. “An interactive, assertive and diverse social media strategy is another way to bridge the gap – this time with outreach and marketing. Just as AMPed reached out to regional advanced manufacturers to ensure the curricula developed would be an effective, targeted solution to a dwindling pool of qualified job applicants, we can use social media to really connect with prospective students and their influencers.”


CCSNH programs focus on such advanced manufacturing sectors as computer-numerical controlled machining, composites, robotics, automation and mechatronics, welding and precision manufacturing.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

GA: Atlanta Tech Village Partners With Trevelino/Keller to Foster Tech Sector Growth in Southeast | PR Newswire

GA: Atlanta Tech Village Partners With Trevelino/Keller to Foster Tech Sector Growth in Southeast | PR Newswire | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Atlanta Tech Village (the Village), a progressive community hub that houses the largest coworking environment for emerging tech companies and tech startups in the Southeast, announces its partnership with Trevelino/Keller as its public relations and marketing agency of record.  Trevelino/Keller will harness its expertise of the regional startup community to develop Atlanta Tech Village into one of the nation's most prominent emerging technology destinations.


Recognized as one of the fourth fastest growing firms in the U.S., Trevelino/Keller is often sought after by companies in need of a strategic partner that cuts across branding, marketing and public relations.  Attracted to Trevelino/Keller's history of working with and launching startups as well as its veteran experience in the tech space, Atlanta Tech Village selected Trevelino/Keller based on a mutual goal of driving the economic success and technological development of Atlanta. 


"Atlanta's startup community has the resources and support to be one of the leading tech hubs in the U.S. and our goal with Atlanta Tech Village is to turn our city into a hotspot for emerging technology companies," says Johnson Cook, Managing Director of Atlanta Tech Village.  "With Trevelino/Keller by our side, we will continue to work to develop our community and foster the growth of our member companies."


Centrally located in Buckhead, Atlanta Tech Village has plans to renovate the iconic Ivy Place into a new haven for young Atlantan "techpreneurs."  The complex, which will be complete by spring 2014, is specifically geared towards fostering creative dialogue amongst the Southeast's top tech minds.  Through its partnership with Trevelino/Keller, Atlanta Tech Village dually seeks to attract tech-centric investors and encourage member proliferation.


Click headline to read more--


more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Rep. Justin Amash: House Intelligence Committee Withheld NSA Documents From Incoming Congressmen | Techdirt

Rep. Justin Amash: House Intelligence Committee Withheld NSA Documents From Incoming Congressmen | Techdirt | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Defenders of the NSA's program always point to two things: it's all legal and it's all subject to oversight. Part of the "oversight" is the FISA "thumbs up" system that has approved every request for two years in a row. The other part of the "oversight" is Congress itself.

Unfortunately, members of Congress have been lied to directly about the extent of the collections occurring under Section 215 (and 702), so that's one strike against the "oversight." Now, it appears that members of Congress are being selectively provided with information about the programs.

Rep. Justin Amash, (attempted) NSA defunder, posted this to his Facebook wall last night. It's a recently declassified document addressed to Mike Rogers and Dutch Ruppersberger. This cover letter accompanied documents detailing the bulk collections authorized by Sections 215 and 402 (pen register/trap and trace).


At the beginning of the second paragraph, the cover letter (dated Feb. 2, 2011) notes:


"We believe that making this document available to all Members of Congress, as we did with a similar document in 2009, is an effective way to inform the legislative debate about the reauthorization of Section 215."


There's your "oversight" for you: the assistant attorney general calling for these documents to be shared with all Congress members in order to give them the oversight capabilities NSA spokesmen keep claiming is keeping the agency in check. Except, as Amash points out on his FB page, Mike Rogers and Dutch Ruppersberger never bothered sharing these documents.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Making You 'Comfortable' with Spying Is Obama's Big NSA Fix | ForeignPolicy.com

Making You 'Comfortable' with Spying Is Obama's Big NSA Fix | ForeignPolicy.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Barack Obama held a press conference on Friday afternoon, supposedly to announce reforms of the NSA's far-flung surveillance programs. In reality, the White House briefing was the start of a marketing campaign for the spy programs that have turned so controversial in recent months. And the president's message really boiled down to this: It's more important to persuade people surveillance is useful and legal than to make structural changes to the programs.


"The question is, how do I make the American people more comfortable?" Obama said.


Not that Obama's unwilling to make any changes to America's surveillance driftnets -- and he detailed a few of them -- but his overriding concern was that people didn't believe him when he said there was nothing to fear.


In an awkward analogy, the president said that if he'd told his wife Michelle that he had washed the dishes after dinner, she might not believe him. So he might have to take her into the kitchen and show her the evidence.


The tour of the NSA's kitchen appeared today in the form of two "white papers," one produced by the Justice Department, another by the NSA, that offered a robust defense of the legal basis for the programs, and their value, but offered practically no new details to the administration's already public defense. If the president meant to offer more proof that the programs really are fine, it was not to be found in the information his administration released today.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Tiny screens are growing in importance for television viewers | FT.com

Tiny screens are growing in importance for television viewers | FT.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Television viewers are trading the small screen for the tiny screen, with a growing proportion of smartphone owners watching full-length television programmes on mobile devices.


New research shows a surge in people watching not just short clips but entire television episodes and films on tablets and smartphones. While 38 per cent of smartphone owners regularly watch videos on their device, about a tenth now watch full-length television programmes, according to Magid Advisors, a consulting group whose clients include large media and technology companies.


“Mobile is the connected television that we all carry in our pockets,” said Amir Ashkenazi, chief executive of Adap.tv, the digital video advertising company that AOL said it would acquire for $405m last week.


The growth in mobile-video viewing has been triggered by the rapid adoption of smartphones with larger screens as well as faster internet connectivity both through mobile operators and WiFi networks. This has resulted in people using phones to catch up on television programmes while travelling on public transport or turning to mobile devices when the household television and computer is otherwise occupied.


“You have this device that is really widely distributed, and there is a lot of content available through subscriptions and free services,” said Mike Vorhaus, president of Magid Advisors. “[Watching television programmes on smartphones] is not the dominant behaviour right now, more people are watching on TVs and computers, but the smartphone is growing.”


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Move aside, .com: .wed, other domains will make Internet more crowded | Wash Post

Move aside, .com: .wed, other domains will make Internet more crowded | Wash Post | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Adrienne McAdory, a Washington military contractor, remembers exactly when she learned the Internet was about to get a lot bigger. She was at work, at the Pentagon in 2011, and she saw an article about a nonprofit group called ICANN, which oversees the Internet. She saw that ICANN was going to expand the number of generic top-level domain names from fewer than 20 to what ultimately became nearly 2,000 and that visiting the Web was never going to be the same again.


And she knew she wanted a piece of it.


First, some terminology. A second-level domain name is everything that comes before the dot in the Web address: Facebook. EBay. Google. These are easy to buy — if the address you want is available, you can purchase it for less than $20 with a click online. The top-level domain of a Web address is everything that comes after the dot: the .gov, the .org, the .mil. They are a foundational muscle of the Internet.


What ICANN, the California-headquartered Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, was offering was the chance to create and buy what comes after the dot. All McAdory needed was the $185,000 application fee. Which she had, because, she explains, “I’m old, and I’m frugal” (she’s 42). So she worked through the lengthy application process, named her company “Atgron,” and, two months ago, learned she’d had won the rights to own a domain: .wed.


McAdory was part of a land grab — something that could fundamentally change the way average users experience the Internet.


Click headline to read more--

more...
Joshua Hall's curator insight, July 15, 2014 6:24 PM

Interesting article about how new domain categories (.wed, etc.) will crowd the web even more

Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

What is Verizon Wireless cooking up with its cable partners? | FierceWireless.com

What is Verizon Wireless cooking up with its cable partners? | FierceWireless.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

One key part of Verizon Wireless' $3.9 billion purchase of 20 MHz of nationwide AWS spectrum from a group of cable companies (Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks and Cox Communications) last year was a joint technology venture with the companies, formally known as the "Joint Operating Entity." The joint venture was designed to develop technology to better integrate wireline and wireless products and services. However, it's still unclear what the joint venture is actually working on.


Here's what I know so far: The joint venture is being led by Tony Heyman, Verizon's president for converged solutions. He's also been spearheading the marketing partnerships between the carrier and the cable companies, in which they have been reselling each other's services in stores across the country.

But what exactly is the joint technology venture working on? None of the companies will really say at this point. Some work on "converged solutions" is being done at Verizon's LTE Innovation Center in Waltham, Mass., but the companies aren't providing details.


The fullest explanation on record so far comes from Verizon Wireless CEO Dan Mead, who said in May that "we are at the very early stages of the value creation. But what you're going to see is a tremendous pipeline in terms of the value experience," according to a transcript of his remarks. Mead talked vaguely about some kind of converged video solution because "video expansion in our business is going to be very important in the future."


Mead said Verizon's cable partners would likely introduce products as a result of the technology joint venture one at a time and not all at once. It seems like Comcast is the lead partner in the cable venture. And when might an actual product come to market? Mead said "we look at the fourth quarter as a very important time for us in the marketplace."


Click headline to read more--


more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

IA: Mudd Advertising and Cedar Falls Utility Talk Gigabit Broadband | community broadband networks

IA: Mudd Advertising and Cedar Falls Utility Talk Gigabit Broadband | community broadband networks | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

As we reported back in May, Cedar Falls Utilities (CFU) now offers citywide gigabit broadband. Mudd Advertising is one local company poised to take full advantage of the new blazing speeds. Mudd invited officials from CFU into its studio for a live panel discussion about the new gigabit service and what it means for the community. The video is embedded below and is available via MuddTV - look for the 6/19/2013 archived show.


When asked what gigabit service means for the community, CFU’s Director of Business Management Rob Houlihan said “We have a lot of businesses that transfer huge files to and from their customers and this enables them to do even more of that activity.” Houlihan elaborated by saying that gigabit broadband opens up “a whole new host of opportunities for them to innovate.”


The panel was moderated by Mudd’s Gary Kroeger and consisted of Steve Bernard, Director of Business Development, Robert Houlihan, CFU’s Network Services Manager, and Rob Mudd, President of Digital Media and Chief Futurist of Research and Development for Mudd Advertising.


Mr. Mudd followed Houlihan’s lead by explaining what gigabit broadband means to Mudd Advertising: “Anytime that you can communicate to the world via video, live, with no buffering, no latency, anywhere in the world that you pick, that gives an advertising agency, or anybody that has a message to tell people, a leg up.” He went on to explain how the live panel itself, along with similar demonstrations they recently conducted from Bangkok, Moscow and Shanghai, are examples of what gigabit connectivity brings his company.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

AT&T invested over USD40m in fixed, wireless Puerto Rican networks in H1| TeleGeography

In the first half of 2013 AT&T says it invested more than USD40 million in its wireless and fixed networks in Puerto Rico. The investments included deployment of new macro cell sites and capacity enhancements across the state as part of AT&T’s Project Velocity IP, a three-year investment plan announced last autumn to expand and enhance its IP broadband networks. The company also expanded and enhanced its 4G LTE network.


Highlights of network upgrades completed so far this year in Puerto Rico include a 4G LTE expansion to Vieques and LTE expansions in San Juan, Yabucoa, Ponce, Dorado, Guaynabo and Toa Alta. AT&T’s LTE services are available in areas across the island including the greater San Juan area, Guayama, San German, Cabo Rojo and Yauco.


The 2013 year-to-date network investment follows the USD325 million-plus that AT&T invested in its Puerto Rico wireless and wired networks from 2010 through 2012, according to its press release.

more...
Scott St. John's curator insight, August 13, 2013 4:41 PM

#hot #news from #ATT wrt #network #expansion in #LATAM.

Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

MO: Broadband Provider Faces FCA Liability for Fraudulently Procuring Stimulus Funds | Sidley False Claims Act Blog

A federal judge has refused to dismiss a False Claims Act suit against a Missouri telecommunications company accused of fraudulently procuring a federal stimulus grant for providing broadband services in underserved areas. The case, Schell v. Bluebird Media LLC (W.D. Mo. June 28, 2013), provides further evidence that the False Claims Act (“FCA”) is playing an important role in rooting out fraud in the procurement of economic stimulus funds.


In Schell, Bluebird Network LLC (“Bluebird”), a Missouri-based broadband provider, faces allegations that it fraudulently procured a three-year, $45 million federal stimulus grant for broadband services. Administered by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, the broadband program is part of the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (“ARRA”) and aims to provide broadband internet services to underserved rural areas across the United States. Bluebird procured a grant for the purpose of constructing and operating a fiber optics cable network in northern Missouri.


The relator is Steven Schell, the former vice president of operations at Bluebird, and one of the key managers of the northern Missouri project. Schell alleges that Bluebird fraudulently procured the stimulus grant by misrepresenting its eligibility for the program. Among other things, Schell alleges that Bluebird exaggerated the need for broadband in the area the company proposed to service, misrepresented the company’s access to matching funds, and falsely claimed that it could create a viable business model. With respect to the first allegation, according to Schell, the “underserved” area targeted by Bluebird is actually saturated with service providers and covered by a 3,000-mile fiber optics network “that weaves in and out of the 59 counties” in the proposed territory. Schell also claims that Bluebird fired him, in violation of the FCA’s anti-retaliation provisions, when he objected to the company’s misrepresentations.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

LEAKED: Intelligence Agencies Running Mass Number of Propaganda Accounts on Social Media | PoliticalBlindSpot.com

If there is one thing we can take away from the news of recent months it is, in the words of the New York Times, that “the modern American surveillance state is not really the stuff of paranoid fantasies; it has arrived.”


“Surveillance and deception are not just fodder for the next ‘Matrix’ movie, but a real sort of epistemic warfare,” the paper reported.


In their recently piece entitled “The Real War on Reality,” detail information uncovered from hacked data regarding the military operation to stage ‘grassroots’ responses and organizations in order to deceive the masses. Professor of philosophy Peter Ludlow writes for the Times:


"The hack also revealed evidence that Team Themis was developing a “persona management” system — a program, developed at the specific request of the United States Air Force, that allowed one user to control multiple online identities (“sock puppets”) for commenting in social media spaces, thus giving the appearance of grass roots support. The contract was eventually awarded to another private intelligence firm."


This cyber warfare is clearly not just in the capacity of ‘improving international reputation’ as military commanders are claiming on record (just like there is ‘no such thing’ as domestic spying and it’s only for terrorists). Instead, we’re talking about running a major network of computers that are constantly running code specifically written to post to social media and news comment pages.


This is hardly the first that we’ve heard about this. Two years ago, Raw Story ran an article on the Military’s multi-million dollar ‘persona’ software used for ‘classified social media activities’:


Click headline to read more--


more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Zimmermann's Law: PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder Phil Zimmermann on the surveillance society | GigaOM Tech News

Zimmermann's Law: PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder Phil Zimmermann on the surveillance society | GigaOM Tech News | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Phil Zimmermann might be a technologist, but he tends to get philosophical when it comes to issues of privacy and security and how they intersect with our society. A cryptographer, in 1991, he created Pretty Good Privacy (PGP), an email encryption software and published it for free on the internet. Since then he has become an eloquent proponent for need for privacy and tools. Zimmermann has had his run-ins with the authorities in the past, but he is widely respected for his views on cryptography and privacy — one of the reasons why he was inducted into the Internet Hall of Fame and has been a recipient of multiple awards recognizing his achievements.


The spotlight fell on Zimmermann again this week when Silent Circle, a secure-private communications company he co-founded, decided to suspend its Silent Mail service amid fears of future government interference. That action followed on the heels of a decision by another secure and private email service provider, Lavabit, to shut down operations.


Given the frenetic nature of the news, I didn’t think I would get a chance to have a measured discussion with Zimmermann. Much to my surprise, he got on the phone and we ended up discussing everything from the rise of the surveillance state; big data and its devastating impact on society; data totalitarianism; the somewhat dubious role of Google and Facebook in our lives; and why as a society we can’t fall victim to the cynicism that is starting to permeate our lives. He also talked at length about the important role of our legislators in pushing back against the unstoppable tide of “survillenance society.”


The only thing we didn’t discuss at length — the whole Silent Mail malarkey. (Forbes’ Parmy Olson did a good job of interviewing Phil on the email shutdown and its impact on his customers.) These are excerpts from a conversation. I have edited my questions a tad (I tend to ramble a bit) and Phil’s comments are trimmed in parts where I had trouble reading my own shorthand/handwriting:


Click headline to read the interview--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Avoiding the mobile data traffic jam | The Hill's Congress Blog

Avoiding the mobile data traffic jam | The Hill's Congress Blog | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Every weeknight around 9 p.m. local time, in each of the largest cities across the nation, there is a traffic jam.  Not on our freeways and highways, but on cellular and Wi-Fi networks. Parents are researching last minute summer vacations.  Teens are video chatting with friends from school.  People of all ages are streaming content for evening entertainment.  And, increasingly, they’re doing this on smart phones, tablets, laptops and other mobile devices.


Going forward, we can only expect that mobile data traffic will grow.  More email.  More apps.  And, especially, more video.  And so the traffic is just going to get worse.  In fact, total mobile traffic is expected to increase nine-fold within the next five years.

To put this in context, imagine the Washington Beltway at rush-hour.  That’s basically what wireless networks are today.  Sometimes open road; but frequently congested, especially at peak hours.

Now imagine adding 50% more traffic to the Beltway each year for the next five years – a nine-fold increase.  You’d get grinding gridlock, with major delays… frustration, anger, and a major loss of productivity.


Those same effects will occur if Congress and the FCC don’t act to address the looming spectrum crunch, which will take place because mobile data traffic in the United States will be 687 times greater in 2017 than it was in 2007. 

We already feel the crunch today, particularly when thousands of people are texting photos from an NFL game or more importantly, in times of crisis, when we all try to reach out to loved ones.

Just a few years ago, mobile data traffic was at relatively low levels, the product of a handful of text messages, mostly by our teenagers.


Click headline to read more--


more...
No comment yet.