Thursday, 3 July 2014

EU's Almunia says could probe Google's YouTube dominance

EU's Almunia says could probe Google's YouTube dominance | Reuters: ""We are receiving more complaints, for instance the way Google leverages the search engine," Almunia told a Chatham House conference.

"YouTube for instance, it's another kind of activity where Google can also leverage their market power in search engine, and maybe this will give way to another investigation," he said.

Almunia said one issue was whether to extend the ongoing case against Google following new complaints or to open a separate investigation." 'via Blog this'

Friday, 27 June 2014

GAC rejects multistakeholderism, tells ICANN to ignore the GNSO

GAC rejects multistakeholderism, tells ICANN to ignore the GNSO | DomainIncite - Domain Name News & Opinion: "The GAC seems to have screwed up, in other words, by not asking for all the protections it wanted three years ago.

And now it’s apparently demanding that its new, very late demands for protection get implemented by ICANN without a PDP and with no input from any other area of the ICANN community.

 The GAC spent a lot of time this week talking up the multistakeholder process, but now it seems prepared to throw the concept under a bus either in the name of expediency or to cover up the fact that it seriously dropped the ball.

Nobody can deny that its heart is in the right place, but is abandoning support for multistakeholderism really the best way to go about getting what it wants, at a time when everyone is claiming governments won’t control the newly liberated ICANN?" 'via Blog this'

Thursday, 1 May 2014

What happens next: European Commission & Google’s commitments

Breaking news: European Commission will accept Google’s commitments | Chillin'Competition: "What happens now is that the Commission will send complainants a letter (pursuant to Article 7(1) of Regulation 773/2004 informing them that the Commission has obtained what it considers adequate commitments and that in its view there are no longer grounds to pursue the case. They will then have a chance to complain again. The Commission will then adopt a number of decisions: one under Art. 9 of Regulation 1/2003 in order to make those commitments binding, and a number of decisions rejecting all complaints received. I suppose that Google’s very active and well funded rivals will want to appeal those decisions before the General Court (with, I believe, arguable chances of success after the Court’s recent ruling in Microsoft/Skype, which was extremely favorable to Google for reasons that I might explain in a later post). This is, by the way, the outcome we always predicted." 'via Blog this'

Monday, 28 April 2014

Netmundial moves Net governance beyond WSIS

Netmundial moves Net governance beyond WSIS | IGP Blog: "We are now in a post-WSIS world, an Internet governance arena that explicitly endorses a form of multistakeholder governance in which non state actors have rough parity with state actors. Indeed, while some civil society actors were disappointed with and somewhat petulant about last minute language modifications related to issues like net neutrality, intermediary liability and surveillance, these criticisms missed the point. The essential debate we were having was not about specific policy issues (which anyway are mostly handled at the national level) but about the overall approach to global Internet governance, the nature of the ‘ecosystem’ itself." 'via Blog this'

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Kroes: thoughts on NETmundial and the Future of Internet Governance

My thoughts on NETmundial and the Future of Internet Governance - European Commission: "I found some of the language related to human rights unnecessarily weak. I refer in particular to the passage "Internet governance should be open, participatory, Multistakeholder, technology-neutral, sensitive to human rights". We have an obligation to respect and promote human rights, not merely be "sensitive" to them, and this should be clearly reflected throughout the outcome document. This includes, among a number of important issues, the protection of privacy and personal data protection, which should have a prominent role in the outcome document.

Secondly, self-regulation and self-organisation of different stakeholders are certainly to be preserved and promoted. However, this cannot be to the detriment of basic democratic principles. It is not sufficient that the mechanisms through which "different stakeholder groups […] self-manage their processes [are] based on publicly known mechanisms", if this results in the explicit or implicit exclusion of persons in a manner that would contradict democratic processes." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Web We Want | Celebrating the free, open, universal Web

Web We Want | Celebrating the free, open, universal Web: "Web We Want campaign is calling on people around the world to stand up for their right to a free, open and truly global Internet. The first step: Drafting an Internet Users Bill of Rights for every country, proposing it to governments and kickstarting the change we need. There are three ways to get started:

  • Add your name to the Web We Want mailing list to the right. We’ll keep you informed as our campaign begins to gather momentum.
  • Start a national dialogue about the Web that your country wants. 
  • Draft an Internet Users Bill of Rights for your country, for your region or for all. 

From national regulations to an international convention, we can work together to propose the best legislation to protect our rights.
Right now the U.N. is requesting an investigation into global online surveillance. As more and more people awaken to the threats against our basic rights online, we must start a debate — everywhere — about the Web we want." 'via Blog this'

Friday, 24 January 2014

Bad science: No, Facebook won’t lose 80% of its users by 2017

What the articles about this non-reviewed article do not state, is what to a lawyer might be the obvious. This is perfect ammunition for Facebook to deflect any antitrust investigation into its social networking domination - we're a virus with a cure, nothing to see here, we're not Google or MSFT. Priceless propaganda reinforcing the 'MySpace decay' mythology that Facebook encourages:
"Facebook and Myspace are vastly different contagions. For both networks, young people were the first to get the disease. But they were also the first to develop an immunity; even Facebook admits it’s beginning to lose its appeal with teenagers. Myspace, however, never evolved past the stage of infecting the young, whereas Facebook worked hard to bring on new demographics, from young professionals to senior citizens. And it’s still hungry for more, now targeting emerging markets in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Facebook also benefited from the explosion of mobile devices in a way Myspace never could. By the time the iPhone 3G was released, Facebook had already overtaken Myspace in traffic. To use the authors’ terminology, the rise of mobile phones created a “new vector” for Facebook to spread. As of last Summer, 78 percent of its daily users were on mobile.
Finally, the authors based their projections in part on Google Trends. The study notes that Google searches for “Facebook” peaked back in December 2012 and have been falling ever since. But as the Guardian’s Juliette Garside says in her write-up, Facebook’s Google search slippage is likely due to an increase in users who access the site through its mobile app as opposed to typing “Facebook” into the Google search bar.
Despite the study’s flaws, it does pose interesting ways to think about how social networks grow and recede."
UPDATE: Facebook researchers have replied light-heartedly - but a more serious commentator Jesse Czelusta notes: "Perhaps the biggest hole in the Princeton "study" is the model itself--in the system of differential equations, 1) the "recovered" population can never be re-infected and 2) the larger the "recovered" population, the more rapid the decline in the "infection" rate. Strikes me as highly unrealistic. Not to mention that the paper pays no attention to network externalities, which are the real reasons Facebook is Facebook and MySpace is MySpace, and this is likely to remain the case until we run out of air in 2060. "