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First POST: Launch Codes

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, March 4 2014

Launch Codes

  • Foreign Policy's Shane Harris reports that Russian forces are "jamming cell phones and severing Internet connections" between Crimea and the rest of Ukraine, but so far they have not launched full-fledged cyber attacks on Ukraine's government or infrastructure.

  • Reuters reports that the mobile phones of members of the Ukrainian Parliament have come under attack.

  • Inside Russia, more than a dozen websites on VKontakte linked to the Ukraine #maidan movement have been shut down by the country's Internet monitoring agency, AP reports.

  • Our Jessica McKenzie offers a roundup of resources to help you follow the Ukraine crisis.

  • PDF Poland-CEE, coming up this March 13-14 in Warsaw, will include a special focus on Ukraine, "featuring civic activist and journalist Svitlana Zalishchuk and Roman Udot, co-chairman of the Golos movement, an organization with extensive experience in the field of civic election monitoring," our Antonella Napolitano reports. "They will be joined by the founders of Yanukovych Leaks, an open archive of secret files belonging to the former Ukrainian president." Registration is free.

  • Jailed Egyptian blogger and activist Alaa Abd El-Fatah addresses the RightsCon conference via YouTube.

  • Senator Al Franken (D-MN) has written to the FCC urging that it scrutinize Comcast's proposed merger with Time Warner because the giant company has "a history of breaching its legal obligations to customers."

  • Julia Angwin, author of the new book Dragnet Nation, points out in a New York Times op-ed that protecting one's privacy in a digital age has become like a "luxury good" available only to those who can afford it.

  • Meetup.com is still fighting a DDOS attack that started last Thursday, reports Scott Heiferman, its CEO.

  • Pot, kettle, black: "David Cameron's porn-filter advisor arrested for possession of images of sexual abuse of children," reports Cory Doctorow of BoingBoing.

  • After running TV ads praising Republicans, now Mark Suckerberg's FWD.us is attacking them for stalling on immigration reform, Hillicon Valley's Julian Hattem reports. (No, not a typo Alex.)

  • TeaLeafNation's Yiqin Fu reports that Chinese Internet users are unhappy that Western media has been downplaying the terrorist connotation of Saturday's railway station rampage in Kunming, which left 29 dead.

  • Cartoonist Hugh MacLeod senses a cultural shift among (longtime?) Internet users: "We’re sick of of all the endless crap we see online, the never-ending content blizzard. We’re sick of spending most of our free time staring into our phones. Our lives devoured by all these billions of carnivorous Web 2.0 pixels, and we’re sick of it."

  • Vice News has launched.

  • The MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Opening Governance, convened and organized by GovLab, has announced its formal launch.

  • The Brookings Institution has launched a new blog devoted to tech policy, TechTank, edited by Darrell West.

News Briefs

RSS Feed tuesday >

First POST: Patient Zero

Monica Lewinsky emerges with a mission to fight cyber-bullying; Marc Andreessen explains his political philosophy; tech donors to MayDay PAC get pushback from Congressional incumbents; and much, much more. GO

monday >

First POST: Front Pagers

How Facebook's trending topics feed is wrecking political news; debating the FBI's need for an encrypted phone "backdoor"; democratizing crisis data; and much, much more. GO

friday >

First POST: Tracking

Questions about whether Whisper is secretly tracking its users' secrets; the FBI's continued push against the new wave of encrypted phones; community service, high-tech-mogul-style; and much, much more. GO

thursday >

First POST: Hosts

Airbnb in hot water in NYC; Knight Prototype Fund backs some civic tech projects; pondering Google's position on net neutrality; and much, much more. GO

wednesday >

First POST: Africa Calling

How some techies are starting to respond to the Ebola crisis; everything you need to know about GamerGate; how Twitter may upset the 2015 UK elections; and much, much more. GO

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