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Scope of U.S. Online Piracy Bill Too Broad, Says the Business Software Alliance

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Monday, November 21 2011

A piece of legislation designed to thwart online piracy and counterfeiting being considered in the House is still too broad in its scope not to risk interfering with innovation, said the head of the Business Software ... Read More

What's In a Domain Name? For #OWS Protesters, Whatever It Is, It's Worth $8,000

BY Nick Judd | Friday, November 4 2011

Jon Huntsman didn't own jonhuntsman.com, Tim Kaine didn't own timkaine.com, and both sites were for a time actually devoted to making fun of their namesakes. (As of today, Timkaine.com still redirects to the Communist ... Read More

How to Lobby the Internet

BY Nick Judd | Monday, October 31 2011

Beginning in January, anyone with the know-how to run a domain name registry, a $185,000 application fee and the time ride out a lengthy application process will be able to apply to run their own top-level domain, ... Read More

Anatomy of a Political Twitter Strategy Gone Wrong

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, July 27 2011

Call it squatting, or parody, or just being a watchdog, but occupying domain names or user names similar to ones used by your opponents has been in the online politics bag o' tricks for years. On the Internet at large, ... Read More

Democrats Say "GutsyCall.com" Wasn't Them

BY Nancy Scola | Friday, May 6 2011

The Democratic National Committee tells the Huffington Post's Sam Stein that the Obama campaign apparatus had nothing to do with the redirection of GutsyCall.com to the Obama campaign website, despite speculation floated ... Read More

DNS Takedowns Fold Poker Sites

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, April 18 2011

The latest target in the federal government's domain name sweep: poker sites. Forget civil libertarians; those really crying are the graphic designers. Read More

Jon Huntsman Learns the Pain of Not Registering His Eponymous Domain

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, April 18 2011

Resigning Ambassador to China and possible Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman doesn't own JonHuntsman.com, and he gets a reminder of why that's not the best idea. Up live on the site is a handwritten mash ... Read More

Comrade Kaine?

BY Nick Judd | Friday, April 8 2011

The political prankster who owns TimKaine.com has changed the site so it now redirects to the Communist Party USA's webpage, the Washington Examiner has observed. The Examiner's Yeas & Nays column seems to think this ... Read More

How Google's Looking for Haley Barbour

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, March 16 2011

Slate's Justin Elliot parses the severity of Haley Barbour's "Google problem." (Still, a point in Barbour's column is that the first result for a straight name search on Barbour is governorbarbour.com, his ... Read More

Master of His Domain II

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, March 15 2011

Dave Weigel picks up on the fact that TimKaine.com redirects to Virginia AG Ken Cuccinelli's site, and Dave at least initially gets caught up in what we're calling the Rhubarbrhubarbrhubarbrhubarb.com trap -- remember, ... Read More

Transparency and Public Shaming: Pakistan Tackles Tax Evasion

In Pakistan, where only one in 200 citizens files their income tax return, authorities published a directory of taxpayers' details for the first time. Officials explained the decision as an attempt to shame defaulters into paying up.

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wednesday >

Facebook Seeks Approval as Financial Service in Ireland. Is the Developing World Next?

On April 13 the Financial Times reported that Facebook is only weeks away from being approved as a financial service in Ireland. Is this foray into e-money motivated by Facebook's desire to conquer the developing world before other corporate Internet giants do? Maybe.

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The Rise and Fall of Iran's “Blogestan”

The robust community of Iranian bloggers—sometimes nicknamed “Blogestan”—has shrunk since its heyday between 2002 – 2010. “Whither Blogestan,” a recent report from the University of Pennsylvania's Iran Media Program sought to find out how and why. The researchers performed a web crawling analysis of Blogestan, survey 165 Persian blog users, and conducted 20 interviews with influential bloggers in the Persian community. They found multiple causes of the decline in blogging, including increased social media use and interference from authorities.

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tuesday >

Weekly Readings: What the Govt Wants to Know

A roundup of interesting reads and stories from around the web. GO

Russia to Treat Bloggers Like Mass Media Because "the F*cking Journalists Won't Stop Writing"

The worldwide debate over who is and who isn't a journalist has raged since digital media made it much easier for citizen journalists and other “amateurs” to compete with the big guys. In the United States, journalists are entitled to certain protections under the law, such as the right to confidential sources. As such, many argue that blogging should qualify as journalism because independent writers deserve the same legal protections as corporate employees. In Russia, however, earning a place equal to mass media means additional regulations and obligations, which some say will lead to the repression of free speech.

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Politics for People: Demanding Transparent and Ethical Lobbying in the EU

Today the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) launched a campaign called Politics for People that asks candidates for the European Parliament to pledge to stand up to secretive industry lobbyists and to advocate for transparency. The Politics for People website connects voters with information about their MEP candidates and encourages them to reach out on Facebook, Twitter or by email to ask them to sign the pledge.

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monday >

Security Agencies Given Full Access to Telecom Data Even Though "All Lebanese Can Not Be Suspects"

In late March, Lebanese government ministers granted security agencies unrestricted access to telecommunications data in spite of some ministers objections that it violates privacy rights. Global Voices reports that the policy violates Lebanon's existing surveillance and privacy law, Law 140, but has gotten little coverage from the country's mainstream media.

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