Normal service is resumed

Probably one more set of links to come from Ed, but I think that’s it from me. Unless Yves has once again  succumbed to the lure of Water Eaton, on the way back home to the States.

Special thanks to Ed, Tom, John Bougearel, Francois T, Bob G, Mike G, Scott F, MA, anonymous, dd,  RebelEconomist and (defying bandwidth constraints) YS, for helping focus my thoughts, or providing posts or post ideas. Special apologies to anyone I should have mentioned above – it’s been a whirl.

Thanks to the rest of you for patience, encouragement, links and comments; or just for reading and thinking.


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  1. LeeAnne

    Thank you Richard.

    Remembering that this blog is a gift and Net Neutrality is under siege, you would think that every blog on the Internet would be participating actively in the proceedings.

    Net neutrality can be ended by a court decision like the recent Comcast/BitTorrent decision against FCC authority. That decision has resulted in the necessity for an appeal to Congress for a legislative mandate in regulating broadband as an information service.

    The battle against Net Neutrality in favor of Telecom control is being waged on many fronts; you could say it is ubiquitous.

    Foreign treaties is one; Obama’s appointment of a friend of Telecoms to the FCC another:

    First, foreign treaties:

    Secretive treaty negotiations leaked, published on a French website
    here and here

    Disagreements between the European Union and the U.S. over whether to release the current negotiating text of a secretive international copyright treaty became moot this week, with the publication on a French website of a leaked version of the latest draft of the treaty.

    Notice American penchant for criminalizing, thusly

    The leaked document, dated July 1, is labeled as an “informal predecisional deliberative draft” of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) reflecting changes made during negotiations held in Lucerne, Switzerland, late last month, according to its title page.

    It indicates that, beyond their disagreements on transparency and terminology, other differences remain between the U.S. and E.U. negotiating positions.

    It suggests that the E.U. wishes to exclude copyright infringement by consumers from the requirement for criminal sanctions, while the U.S. proposal is that signatory states “may” exclude it. The E.U. negotiators also want penalties for copyright infringement to be “fair and proportionate.”

    The new text appears to retreat still further from the prospect of a global “three strikes” law requiring Internet service providers to spy on customers’ copyright infringements and cut them off after a number of warnings.

    Not attributed to the US side, but no doubt is.

    Article 2.18.3 (formerly 2.17.3) exempting Internet service providers from responsibility for their clients’ actions in certain circumstances now provides that “no party’s legislation may condition the limitations … on an obligation that the online service provider monitors its services or … actively or affirmatively seeks facts indicating that infringing activity is occurring.” The previous draft suggested somewhat more loosely that states may not impose a general obligation to monitor services on a daily basis for infringing activity.

    Under the latest draft, rights holders will have to go to court to obtain the identities of Internet users from their ISPs. The earlier draft required only that rights holders provide notice of copyright infringement to the ISP in order to obtain the subscriber’s identity information.

    Thanks to EU negotiators for looking out for American consumers.

    Obama’s duplicity if not outright fraud (we dare not say because he always holds out HOPE that he will throw a crumb to THE PEOPLE) But I am saying it straight out for the first time.

    Obama’s new appointment Mignon Clyburn to the FCC is a product of the Telecom industry, a shill for the telecom companies.

    “Since voting in October for a proposed rule to enact Net Neutrality rules, Clyburn has signaled her support for an open Internet with a couple of strong statements.

    But after a speech she gave on January 22, Clyburn could well vault quickly from supporter to Neutrality Hero. The speech was to the Minority Media and Telecommunications Council (MMTC). This is a group that on one hand could provide her a sympathetic audience, were it not for the fact that their stance on Net Neutrality has tended to embrace the talking points for the telephone and cable companies. Late last year, MMTC, after having been criticized for edging up to, and possibly stepping over the line into, the Bell position on Net Neutrality, held its own little American Idol session, giving a number of parties a couple of minutes to describe their Net Neutrality positions. There was no debate, there was no feedback. Looks like anything Net Neutrality proponents had to say didn’t make an impression.

    In comments they filed in the Net Neutrality docket, MMTC and other organizations put forward the industry talking points that an open and non-discriminatory Internet could raise prices for consumers (citing a Bell front group as evidence). Then the groups raise the spectre of regulation of search engines and other applications, justifying this intrusion into the Internet as grounded in civil rights law, filtered through the prism of making certain that search engines don’t harm minorities. Of course, this attack is one that AT&T, which generally disdains regulation, has put forward for years as a means of attacking Google.

  2. Paul Handover

    Richard, you were outstanding. And on top of Yves’ huge commitment to the Blog, I could never have imagined someone being her equal.

    But I was wrong!

    Well done!


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