A series of controversies regarding the involvement of politicians from the Balkan countries in the social networking website Facebook is taking its toll.
by Nick O’Neill
Over the past week there has been a bunch of buzz about what essentially are Facebook marketing hacks; quick “guerilla” tactics that help boost exposure to your profile or brand. Whether you are a small business or a big business, there are some quick “tricks” that can instantly gain you more exposure. These Facebook marketing hacks are not encouraged by Facebook and ultimately, I would assume that Facebook will develop filters for people gaming the system.
Part of the encyclopaedia website Wikipedia was censored in the UK between Friday 5th December 2008 and Tuesday 9th December 2008. Errors in the way that this was done has shown up a number of inconsistencies in the blocking mechanisms employed.
The story is relatively simple. A member of the public made a ‘hotline’ report to the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) about a scanned image of the album cover art for a 1976 LP from the German heavy-metal band The Scorpions. The IWF concluded that the image was ‘potentially illegal’ because they believed it to be an ‘indecent’ image of a child under the age of 18 (the definition in UK law, see statute as currently amended). They then added two URLs to their ‘Child Sexual Abuse Content URL List’. The IWF list is distributed twice a day to most UK ISPs, who then use various technologies to block access to the URLs.
Post from: TorrentFreak
As 2008 moves toward its end, we have been taking a a look at the most pirated titles in various categories. Following our Top 10 games post where ‘Spore’ headlined, we now take a look at movies. Unsurprisingly, The Dark Knight comes out on top, with the rest of the chart featuring a few surprising entries, and some unexpected absentees.
Earlier this week, I wrote about a teacher in Austin who threatened to report a local free-Linux-machines charity to the police because "there’s no such thing as free software" and they had therefore deceived the student she caught distributing Linux disks in class.
The teacher has since had a long conversation with the gentleman from the free Linux project, which is called HeliOS, and he’s published a long, mature, and insightful note about the peace he’s made with her (in particular, he posted a graceful and heartful apology for some out-of-line remarks he made about the teaching profession and the US teachers’ union). It’s worth a read:
The American Civil Liberties Union filed a federal lawsuit yesterday “on behalf of a former Pembroke Pines Charter High School student Katherine Evans” according to the Associated Press. The reason? Katherine was suspended for criticizing her teacher on Facebook and now would like to have that suspension removed from her record. The ACLU is claiming that the principal of the high school “violated her First Amendment rights” and I would have to agree.
Today Facebook updated their public statistics with the number of active users on the site now over 130 million. The company also updated their advertising estimates provided to advertisers when creating an ad and the total number of users there adds up to more than 133 million users. Also of interest is that Facebook has grown over 14 percent in the past month to almost 41 million active users within the United States according to their advertising statistics.
“Would Obama be the President without the Internet? Yes, he would.”
That’s Peter Daou, internet strategist for Hillary Clinton. His perspective is more or less the mainstream opinion at a conference held by the Berkman Center in Cambridge today. For me, as someone who doesn’t study US politics nearly as closely as I follow African politics, this is a bit of a surprising opinion. After all, four years ago, a similar conference at Berkman was a celebration of the power of the Internet in political campaigns.
by Edward Lucas
From The Economist print edition
A cyber-attack alarms the Pentagon
BATTLEFIELD bandwidth is low at best, making networks sticky and e-mails tricky. American soldiers often rely on memory sticks to cart vital data between computers. Off-duty, they use the same devices to move around music and photos. The dangers of that have just become apparent with the news that the Pentagon has banned the use of all portable memory devices because of the spread of a bit of malicious software called agent.btz.
YouTube Live celebrates the first streamed event in San Francisco. Part concert, party variety and part party, it brings to life many of the amazing YouTube videos and talent. As I’m watching the live show on my laptop, I can’t help to think how much YouTube has changed the world — the way we consume video entertainment, the lives of thousands YouTube talents, and the whole media entertainment industry.
Description:It is said that the future of the world is left in the hands of the youth. More than ever, young people are using the Internet as a tool for advancing social change. Recently, a coalition of youth-oriented nonprofits got together and demanded that they have had enough of extremism worldwide, and are now putting those who use violence as a method on notice.
Digital Tools Being Used: Facebook, blogs, video, wikis
Post from: TorrentFreak
In these Internet and file-sharing times, it seems unthinkable that we could ever be in the position of any media becoming ‘rare’ again. No matter where material appears, it always seems to end up on the Internet and, once there, it is copied time and time again to every corner of the globe. Losing a movie, song or TV show forever should be a thing of the past – but it hasn’t always been that way.
My friend and colleague Evgeny Morozov is spending a year as an Open Society Institute fellow, working through some of his ideas about cybernationalism and cyberwarfare, and organizing events to discuss the future of the Internet at OSI. I was lucky enough to be included in the first of these events, a presentation by Columbia University and Berkman Center researcher John Kelly and a panel discussion on the role of the blogosphere in closed societies. Good fun, though a 9am event after a long night out on the town the evening before is no one’s idea of a good time.
Dumbing down? Perhaps not — it’s the age of mass intelligence.
Millions more people are going to museums, literary festivals and operas; millions more watch demanding television programmes or download serious-minded podcasts. Not all these activities count as mind-stretching, of course. Some are downright fluffy. But, says Donna Renney, the chief executive of the Cheltenham Festivals, audiences increasingly want "the buzz you get from working that little bit harder".
Description:Homeless Nation was started by Daniel Cross, a documentary filmmaker who has highlighted Canada’s homeless population in several of his films. While gathering thousands of stories given by the homeless, most of which wouldn’t fit into the films, Cross envisioned a space where these reports wouldn’t be lost.
He thus created a social network that not only brought many of these stories to the forefront, but offered continued opportunities for sharing and interaction between the homeless and those interested in listening. Furthermore, part of their mission is “ensuring that digital tools for media, learning and communication are made available for homeless Canadians.”
Tools: Internet, podcasting, video
Tim Jones of the Electronic Frontier Foundation has some good commentary on the news that the MPAA has asked Obama to spy on the entire Internet, and to establish a system where being accused of copyright infringement would result in loss of your Internet connection (and your VoIP line, your access to your university, your lifeline to your parents in the old country, your means of participating in civic life, your means of fighting your parking ticket, etc etc etc). The MPAA also wants Obama to lean on other countries (notably Canada!) and force them to adopt US copyright laws.
The Space of Democracy event was held at Newcastle University last week. Their own site doesn’t mention it (!) but Anthony Giddens and Will Hutton held a conversation which included a discussion of the public intellectual. See this post, which quotes the following from Foucault: “It seems to me that we are now at a point where