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First POST: Signals

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, July 18 2014


  • While the FCC says it wants to bolster the ability of local municipalities to develop and market their own broadband offerings, Wednesday night, Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) successfully inserted an amendment to a spending bill that would bar the FCC from taking such action, David Sirota reports for the International Business Times. He notes, "Blackburn’s top campaign donors include private telecommunications firms that do not want to have to compete with publicly owned ISPs."

  • More than 1 million comments on the FCC's net neutrality proceeding--more than any other rulemaking--have now come in, with the deadline extended through today, reports Brian Fung for the Washington Post.

  • Taking the temperature of the liberal base at the Netroots Nation convention in Detroit right now, Katie Glueck reports that activists are "fine" with a Hillary Clinton 2016 presidential bid, but they "pine" for Senator Elizabeth Warren to run.

  • Describing a hot new mobile app that tells Israelis when a rocket is fired at them from Gaza, (summer intern!) Noah Kulwin writes for The Awl that, "Red Alert commodifies the pain of war, and helps render invisible its toll on Palestinians."

  • USAID's inspector general is probing whether the now defunct quasi-secret ZunZeneo or "Cuban Twitter" service was appropriately managed, Jack Gillum and Desmond Butler report for AP.

  • How we live today: Umair Haque is bored. In "The Bullshit Machine," he writes: Remember when cafes used to be full of people…thinking? Now I defy you to find one not full of people Tinder—Twitter—Facebook—App-of-the-nanosecond-ing; furiously. Like true believers hunched over the glow of a spiritualized Eden they can never truly enter; which is precisely why they’re mesmerized by it."

  • Consumer Reports has launched, a new site enabling cell phone users to report the quality of their carrier's service by location and then compare their results with their neighbors'.

  • Several of the new round of winners of the Knight Foundation's Prototype Fund are focused on building tools to enable users to take action in response to news stories or common concerns. Desiree Everts of NiemanLab has all the details.

  • The Government of Mexico's Open Data site has launched in beta.

  • The Hackers on Planet Earth conference opens in NYC this morning; livestreams provided by the Internet Society.