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LocationFox

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about one of the upgrades in the iPhone 3.0 software update that allows the Safari browser on iPhone to be location-enabled. Firefox had previously implented something similar in a beta version of the browser, and now that functionality has been released to the world. Firefox 3.5, released on Wednesday, is…

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Broadband Grants Will Require Nondiscrimination

The federal agencies responsible for administering the broadband stimulus program have announced their initial grant criteria, and the news on the openness front is good. In comments filed in April, CDT urged that broadband services supported by stimulus money should connect users to the full Internet and the full range of Internet-based content and applications, as selected by…

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Enter the Advertisers

Given how much advertising we all see, especially online, you know it means something when the entire advertising industry gets together to make an announcement. Today, the advertising industry, as represented by a cohort of trade associations, joined together to publish their own self-regulatory principles, with an aim toward increasing privacy protection for online behavioral advertising. It’s…

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China Backs Off Green Dam filtering mandate

Chinese authorities today delayed implementation of the much-disparaged Green Dam-Youth Escort filtering mandate, just one day before the July 1 implementation deadline. Since the Green Dam directive was made public, we have learned that the filtering software does not work as proposed or publicized, may create serious security vulnerabilities, may contain stolen code, and likely…

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Happy Conclusion to Remote DVR Case

Happy Conclusion to Remote DVR Case I noted at the beginning of the month that the Solicitor General had advised the Supreme Court not to reconsider the important Second Circuit case giving the green light to Cablevision’s “remote storage digital video recorder” (RS-DVR). I’m very happy to report that the Supreme Court has followed that advice. Yesterday the Court…

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CRS Weekly Report: Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative

The Congressional Research Service is a $100 million a year think tank that researches and writes informative and non-partisan reports on topics suggested by members of Congress. The catch–and the reason you might not have read their work–is that CRS reports are only made easily available to members of Congress. Citizens can request these reports from lawmakers, but without…

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Another Side of Section 230

Yesterday the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued an excellent decision in a focused-but-important appeal dealing with “Section 230,” which provides vital protections to service providers who facilitate online speech and users’ ability to control their Internet experiences. The case involved a less familiar aspect of Section 230, which is commonly applied in free speech rulings that…

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Leveraging Trade as a Tool Against Censorship

An article in the Washington Post today outlines how some senior U.S. officials are leaning on trade issues to pressure China on its recent mandate that all computers sold in that country must come pre-installed with Web-filtering software. Computer experts that have examined the Chinese developed Web-filtering software have found a laundry list of problems, from security holes…

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A Remedy for Every Wrong? Why We Need a Consistent Privacy Act

The Privacy Act of 1974-the law designed to protect your rights as the government collects, uses, and shares your data-fails to consistently protect of citizens' privacy because circuit courts disagree on how to interpret its language. Different interpretations and decisions based on this law have come out of circuit courts and have helped support the notion that a consistent…

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Give Me My Data!

On Monday night, a website called HealthDataRights.org went live.  The site promotes better access to one’s own health data, and serves as a portal where individuals and entities can endorse/support A Declaration of Health Data Rights. “We the people,” the site asserts: 1) Have the right to our own health data; 2) Have the right to know…

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