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Timeline Update: Why TCP/IP Is Inherently Political, According to Vint Cerf, One of Its Inventors

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, August 15 2012

Since yesterday afternoon, when we launched the "Politics and the Internet" timeline here at techPresident, we've been getting emails and tweets suggesting additions and corrections. So, I'm going to start blogging the changes as we make them, starting with this one, and we're going to compile those changes on this page, as the timeline grows. Read More

Where Did the Internet Really Come From?

BY Steve Crocker | Friday, August 3 2012

Steve Crocker (foreground, and in the illustration) in 2007. Photo: Veni Markovski

Gordon Crovitz has argued that the government really played no role in the creation of the Internet, and others are looking to renegotiate the role of government in its future. To properly understand where the Internet is going, and maybe where it should, techPresident asked Steve Crocker to give his account of the global network's true origins.

Crocker was a UCLA graduate student who helped create the ARPANET back in the late 1960s, and is today the chair of the board of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, ICANN.

He writes, "Could the Internet have been created by private industry? Without government’s help as funder and convenor? I don’t think so. Here’s why."

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ITU Chief Calls Fears Of The "UN Takeover" Of The Internet "Frankly Ridiculous"

BY Sarah Lai Stirland | Thursday, June 7 2012

ITU Secretary-General Dr. Hamadoun I. Touré Photo: Flickr/ITU

The chief of the United Nations' special telecom agency on Wednesday called recent characterizations of its negotiation process as an attempt by the agency to "take over" the Internet "frankly ridiculous." The U.N.'s International Telecommunications Union's Secretary-General Dr. Hamadoun I. Touré delivered a speech to his staff in Geneva, Switzerland Wednesday in an apparent attempt to reframe the basis of the long-running international conversation about how best to expand and build upon the broadband Internet infrastructure as it grows up. Read More

Google Tries to "Start Something" Post-SOPA/PIPA

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, April 9 2012

This morning somewhere between two and four million people got an email in their inbox from Vint Cerf, Google's official "Internet evangelist," asking them to complete the following sentence: "The Internet is the power to …" and to share their answers with the tag #ourweb. The effort is a direct outgrowth of the seven million-plus petition drive Google ran last January 18th against the Stop Online Privacy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA), with the people being emailed the ones who opted in to getting more information on the issue. With this move, the other shoe that hadn't dropped since January's legislative battle is now in motion. Read More

White House Deputy CTO Andrew McLaughlin Slapped for Gmailing with Googlers

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, May 17 2010

A 2008 photo of Andrew McLaughlin taken by Joi Ito, used under a Creative Commons license. Read More

Daily Digest: Obama's Surveillance Stand Shakes the Netroots

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, June 26 2008

As Barack Obama's support for a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act that includes telecom immunity causes, in the words of one blogger, "a shift in the zeitgeist online," can his online fundraising hold up?; John ... Read More

Daily Digest: PdF '08 Day Two -- Power Corrupts. PowerPoint Corrupts Absolutely.

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, June 24 2008

This second and final day of Personal Democracy Forum '08 saw the presentations from the likes of John Zittrain, Larry Lessig, Mark Pesce, and many others; the launch of a new universal broadband initiative; that ... Read More

Bite-Sized Broadband: Your Quick Guide to the Launch of "Internet for Everyone"

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, June 24 2008

I'm here at PdF '08 at a press conference marking the launch of InternetforEveryone.com, a coalition pushing for universal high-speed Internet, centered around four core tenets: access, choice, openness, and innovation. ... Read More

Daddy Digi-Bucks and Election 2008

BY Micah L. Sifry | Monday, April 16 2007

Obama got Chad Hurley and Ted Leonsis's checks. Clinton got Terry Semel's. Edwards got Michael Eisner's. And uber-venture-capitalist Vinod Kholsa invested in three presidential candidates: Obama, Edwards and McCain. A ... Read More

News Briefs

RSS Feed wednesday >

Another Co-Opted Hashtag: #MustSeeIran

The Twitter hashtag #MustSeeIran was created to showcase Iran's architecture, landscapes, and would-be tourist destinations. It was then co-opted by activists to bring attention to human rights abuses and infringements. Now Twitter is home to two starkly different portraits of a country. GO

What Has the EU Ever Done For Us?: Countering Euroskepticism with Viral Videos and Monty Python

Ahead of the May 25 European Elections, the most intense campaigning may not be by the candidates or the political parties. Instead, some of the most passionate campaigns are more grassroots efforts focused on for a start stirring up the interest of the European electorate. GO

At NETmundial Brazil: Is "Multistakeholderism" Good for the Internet?

Today and tomorrow Brazil is hosting NETmundial, a global multi-stakeholder meeting on the future of Internet governance. GO

Brazilian President Signs Internet Bill of Rights Into Law at NetMundial

Earlier today Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff sanctioned Marco Civil, also called the Internet bill of rights, during the global Internet governance event, NetMundial, in Brazil.

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tuesday >

Ruck.us Reboots As a Candidate Digital Toolkit That's a Bit Too Like Democracy.com

Ruck.us launched with big ambitions and star appeal, hoping to crack the code on how to get millions of people to pool their political passions through their platform. When that ambition stalled, its founder Nathan Daschle--son of the former Senator--decided to pivot to offering political candidates an easy-to-use free web platform for organizing and fundraising. Now the new Ruck.us is out from stealth mode, entering a field already being served by competitors like NationBuilder, Salsa Labs and Democracy.com. And strangely enough, Ruck.us seems to want its early users to ask Democracy.com for help. GO

Armenian Legislators: You Can Be As Anonymous on the 'Net As You Like—Until You Can't

A proposed bill in Armenia would make it illegal for media outlets to include defamatory remarks by anonymous or fake sources, and require sites to remove libelous comments within 12 hours unless they identify the author.

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monday >

The Good Wife Looks for the Next Snowden and Outwits the NSA

Even as the real Edward Snowden faces questions over his motives in Russia, another side of his legacy played out for the over nine million viewers of last night's The Good Wife, which concluded its season long storyline exploring NSA surveillance. In the episode titled All Tapped Out, one young NSA worker's legal concerns lead him to becoming a whistle-blower, setting off a chain of events that allows the main character, lawyer Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies), and her husband, Illinois Governor Peter Florrick (Chris Noth), to turn the tables on the NSA using its own methods. GO

The Expanding Reach of China's Crowdsourced Environmental Monitoring Site, Danger Maps

Last week billionaire businessman Jack Ma, founder of the e-commerce company Alibaba, appealed to his “500 million-strong army” of consumers to help monitor water quality in China. Inexpensive testing kits sold through his company can be used to measure pH, phosphates, ammonia, and heavy metal levels, and then the data can be uploaded via smartphone to the environmental monitoring site Danger Maps. Although the initiative will push the Chinese authorities' tolerance for civic engagement and activism, Ethan Zuckerman has high hopes for “monitorial citizenship” in China.

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The 13 Worst Bits of Russia's Current and Maybe Future Internet Legislation

It appears that Russia is on the brink of passing still more repressive Internet regulations. A new telecommunications bill that would require popular blogs—those with 3,000 or more visits a day—to join a government registry and conform to government-mandated standards is expected to pass this week. What follows is a list of the worst bits of both proposed and existing Russian Internet law. Let us know in the comments or on Twitter if we missed anything.

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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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