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May 04 2011



The gentle hopes of Hamid Karzai and Hillary Clinton – that the Taliban will be so cowed by the killing of Bin Laden that they will want to become pleasant democrats and humbly join the Western-supported and utterly corrupt leadership of Afghanistan – shows just how out of touch they are with the blood-soaked reality of the country. Some of the Taliban admired Bin Laden, but they did not love him and he had been no part of their campaign against Nato. Mullah Omar is more dangerous to the West in Afghanistan than Bin Laden. And we haven't killed Omar.

Iran, for once, spoke for millions of Arabs in its response to Bin Laden's death. "An excuse for alien countries to deploy troops in this region under the pretext of fighting terrorism has been eliminated," its foreign ministry spokesman has said. "We hope this development will end war, conflict, unrest and the death of innocent people, and help to establish peace and tranquility in the region."


Robert Fisk: If this is a US victory, does that mean its forces should go home now? | Commentators - The Independent - 2011-05-04
Reposted byiranelectionkrekk
4541 a02e



Skyscraper project Friedrichstraße, Berlin (unbuilt) by Mies van der Rohe, 1921

 marveled at this (and the model) at bauhaus archiv. If this would have been built, the nazis might have never had a chance. They would have simply exploded!

Reposted fromjhnbrssndn jhnbrssndn

Freedom #Fail - By Jillian C. York | Foreign Policy 2011-04-29


Last week, Facebook lobbyist Adam Conner accidentally made news. Asked by a Wall Street Journal reporter how the social networking giant, which is trying to break into the Chinese market, would navigate a country whose government is famously skittish about unfettered information exchange, Conner replied, "Maybe we will block content in some countries, but not others. We are occasionally held in uncomfortable positions because now we're allowing too much, maybe, free speech in countries that haven't experienced it before."

Conner's statement shocked many observers, but perhaps it shouldn't have. Lauded as a tool of revolutionaries in Tunisia and Egypt, Facebook has surely provided a unique platform for mobilization. And yet, Facebook regularly comes under scrutiny for privacy and free expression violations and, unlike Silicon Valley peers such as Twitter and Google, has itself shied away from recognition as a political tool. Most recently, after pressure from an Israeli minister, Facebook staff began monitoring a page calling for a third intifada in Palestine, eventually taking the page down, claiming that it contained incitement to violence.

That same week, Facebook hosted a virtual "town hall" with President Barack Obama, in which curious citizens could ask the president questions (selected by Facebook staffers) or just follow along at home (if they were willing to sign up for a Facebook account and "like" the event's page). By choosing Facebook, Obama's team implicitly endorsed a company whose actions, in China and elsewhere, run counter to the principles of Internet freedom set forth by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in her much-remarked-upon January 2010 speech on the subject. And while a town hall is usually a public meeting, Facebook is not a public space, even if its more than 500 million users treat it like one -- it is a privately owned enterprise with the freedom to do whatever it wants, be it mining user data to sell to advertisers or deleting pictures of your friends and family on a whim.


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Robert Fisk on Bin Laden Death | Al Jazeera 2011-05-03
Al Jazeera interviews Robert Fisk, British author and journalist for the Independent

May 03 2011

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Unearthed: A Documentary Treasure on the History of the Internet

15 minutes of a rarely-seen BBC documentary demolish the myth that ARPAnet was inspired by nuclear war, and explain the far more intriguing truth. 

The impending deletion of content from Google Video has inspired quite a few uploaders to port their content to Youtube, unearthing a trove of pre-YouTube-era gems like this one. It’s a BBC documentary from 1997 called Inside the Internet, and features interviews with the scientists who actually built the infrastructure on which the Internet is based.

via techspotlight

Reposted fromjhnbrssndn jhnbrssndn

May 02 2011

China: Exposing Internet Surveillance Abroad

The U.S-China Human Rights Dialogue did not have any concrete consensus last week. While the U.S government questioned Chinese government's crackdown on dissent, oppression of religion and expression freedom, Chinese leaders condemned Washington's hypocritical attitude, in particular the killing of civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Moreover, western countries' double standard in Internet governance, has also provided excuses for the Chinese government to justify the development and surveillance of the Internet. The State Council Information Office has recently issued an instruction requesting all websites

to continue effectively organizing positive on-line guidance related to the development and surveillance of the Internet.  Regarding the related special topic, “Exposing Internet Management Abroad,” during the May Day period all websites are requested to continue implementing the requirements by prominently placing this topic on website front pages. 

Below are a list of headlines and links to the articles in the special issue, “Exposing Internet Management Abroad”:

UK Internet governance: The government takes the lead to impose self-regulation

The USA reinforces Internet governance through legislation.

The development of Chinese Internet unveils the lie of U.S accusation against Chinese Human rights condition.

People's Net: The U.S.A's double standard on Internet Governance

The U.S human rights record: Strict restriction on the Internet

Google and the US CIA joint hand in monitoring the Internet

Indonesia: Internet blacklist to restrict the distribution of celebrities' sex video

Asian countries work together for a legal framework to keep the Internet in order

The Internet leaks privacy: Protection of privacy should be taken into account

French Internet governance bill (HADOPI): Prevention and Punishment in managing the Web

The U.S bill gives president emergency control of Internet

网络非化外之地 诽谤构罪也刑罚
The Internet is not barbaric space, defamation will be punished

Reposted bykrekk krekk

May 01 2011


New FBI Documents Provide Details on Government’s Surveillance Spyware | Electronic Frontier Foundation 2011-04-29

EFF recently received documents from the FBI that reveal details about the depth of the agency's electronic surveillance capabilities and call into question the FBI's controversial effort to push Congress to expand the Communications Assistance to Law Enforcement Act (CALEA) for greater access to communications data. The documents we received were sent to us in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request we filed back in 2007 after Wired reported on evidence that the FBI was able to use “secret spyware” to track the source of e-mailed bomb threats against a Washington state high school. The documents discuss a tool called a "web bug" or a "Computer and Internet Protocol Address Verifier" (CIPAV),1 which seems to have been in use since at least 2001.2

What is CIPAV and How Does It Work?
The documents discuss technology that, when installed on a target's computer, allows the FBI to collect the following information:

  • IP Address
  • Media Access Control (MAC) address
  • "Browser environment variables"
  • Open communication ports
  • List of the programs running
  • Operating system type, version, and serial number
  • Browser type and version
  • Language encoding
  • The URL that the target computer was previously connected to
  • Registered computer name
  • Registered company name
  • Currently logged in user name
  • Other information that would assist with "identifying computer users, computer software installed, [and] computer hardware installed"3

It's not clear from the documents how the FBI deploys the spyware, though Wired has reported that, in the Washington state case, the FBI may have sent a URL via MySpace's internal messaging, pointing to code that would install the spyware by exploiting a vulnerability in the user's browser. Although the documents discuss some problems with installing the tool in some cases, other documents note that the agency's Crypto Unit only needs 24-48 hours to prepare deployment.4 And once the tool is deployed, "it stay[s] persistent on the compromised computer and . . . every time the computer connects to the Internet, [FBI] will capture the information associated with the PRTT [Pen Register/Trap & Trace Order].


Ars Technica locked out of #Facebook account due to infringement complaint. Community policing is prone to abuse.

// by - started by 2011-04-29 with several updates:

Facebook shoots first, ignores questions later; account lock-out attack works (Update X)

Twitter / EFF: Ars Technica locked out of ... | 2011-05-01

April 30 2011

Sixteen principles of open government: #tcamp11

// cited from related blog entry:

Sixteen principles of open government

At Transparency Camp 2011, James Tauber of GovTrack laid out sixteen principles of open government. They are:

  1. Information is not meaningfully public if it is not available on the Internet for free.
  2. Primary data is data as collected at the source, with the finest possible level of granularity, not in aggregate or modified forms.
  3. Data are made available as quickly as necessary to preserve the value of the data.
  4. Data are available to the widest range of users for the widest range of purposes.
  5. Data are reasonably structured to allow automated processing.
  6. Data are available to anyone, with no requirement of registration.
  7. Data are available in a format over which no entity has exclusive control.
  8. Dissemination of the data is not limited by intellectual property law such as copyright, patents, or trademarks, contractual terms, or other arbitrary restrictions.
  9. Data should be made available at a stable Internet location indefinitely.
  10. Data published by the government should be in formats and approaches that promote analysis and reuse of that data.
  11. Government bodies publishing data online should always seek to publish using data formats that do not include executable content.
  12. Published content should be digitally signed or include attestation of publication/creation date, authenticity, and integrity.
  13. The public is in the best position to determine what information technologies will be best suited for the applications the public intends to create for itself.
  14. Have a process for ensuring that data you disclose are accurate and reliable, and show that process to users.
  15. To the extent two data sets refer to the same kinds of things, the creators of the data sets should strive to make them interoperable.
  16. Other things being equal, technological choices should be avoided that essentially endorse a single profit-making entity.

More here.

Twitter / Joey Mornin: Sixteen principles of open ... | 2011-04-30


Yesterday however may have marked a bell weather moment for Facebook and its willingness to compromise users, their privacy and their ability to freely associate and organise. As Guy Aitchison put it,

Profiles are being deleted without warning or explanation. In the last 12 hours, Facebook has deleted over 50 sites. It may well be that these groups are technically in violation of Facebook’s terms of agreement, which state that participants in social media must not make use of a "fake name". But the timing – on the royal wedding and May day weekend – is deeply suspicious. We don’t know for certain, but this purge of online organising groups could be linked to the wider crackdown on protest by authorities in Britain. Either way, it is a scandalous abuse of power by Facebook to arbitrarily destroy online communities built up over many months and years. These groups provide a vital means for activist groups to communicate with their supporters.


While these profiles were technically in breach of terms of use, only British anti-cuts profiles were taken down during the 12 hour period. This all being within the broader context of an offline repression of dissent that involved dozens of ‘pre-emptive’ arrests on charges as Kafkaesque as ‘Conspiracy to cause a public nuisance’. There were also raids on squats in London, Bristol and Brighton, heavy handed policing of public assemblies in Glasgow and Bristol and nearly a hundred more arrests on the day itself in and around central London for crimes such as having placards in bags and potentially offending royalist and homophobic sensibilities.

It appears that Facebook may have had contact with elements within the British establishment, be it the Home Office or the London Met. Given that these profiles could have been pulled on a technicality anyway, Facebook may have been quite willing to collaborate in shutting down these accounts, denying activist groups the ability to quickly organise around an event the authorities were determined to see pass off without the slightest possibility of protests or disruption.


The Facebook Purge: Corporate power, political influence and the need for alternative networks | openDemocracy - 2011-04-30

April 25 2011

New on Herdict blog: National Science Foundation Blocks Global Voices Advocacy: Last Wednesday, Berkman Senior R...


// oA:nth


When GVA inquired NSF’s commercial filtering provider Blue Coat about the reason, they responded,

“The website has verbiage indicating how to avoid proxy filtering, which clearly violates our security policy and therefore will remain blocked.”

As a non-profit organization that tracks Internet censorship across the globe and spreads knowledge about online filtering, GVA publishes information to teach others—specifically, online activists in developing countries that place restrictions on Internet content—how to circumvent domestic Internet filtering. However, Zuckerman noted the circular reasoning of this specific incident:

“In other words, the National Science Foundation is spending taxpayer money to (ineffectively) prevent scientists from learning about a debate about ‘internet freedom’ tools the US State Department and the Broadcasting Board of Governors are spending taxpayer money to support and promote, again using taxpayer money. Is there a Federal irony department where I can lodge a complaint?”

Twitter / Herdict: New on Herdict blog: Natio ... | 2011-04-25
"Ich glaube, wir werden verfolgt." Wie staatliche #Kontrolle und #Überwachung den #Widerstand blockiert:


// oA:nth


Was wäre, wenn das Ziel der staatlichen Überwachung bereits damit größtenteils erfüllt ist, dass wir uns kontrolliert fühlen? Wie verändert sich unser Verhalten, wenn wir unter dem Eindruck stehen, dass jeder Schritt überwacht, jeder Gedanken aufgezeichnet und jeder Kontakt protokolliert wird?

Das Gefühl unter ständiger Beobachtung zu stehen macht vorsichtig und misstrauisch. Diktaturen nutzen die Instrumente der Überwachung nicht nur zur konkreten Verfolgung politischer Widersacher. Sie profitieren alleine schon von der Atmosphäre der Kontrolle, die durch Misstrauen und Angst jeden Widerstand im Keim erstickt.

Angst und Misstrauen führen bei vielen Menschen dazu, dass sie ihre politischen Überzeugungen verbergen. Offen äußern sie sich nur im Kreise engster Freunde und achten ansonsten penibel darauf, dass ihre Position bei Arbeitgebern, Familiemitgliedern, Nachbarn oder Bekannten nicht erkennbar wird. Öffentliche Äußerungen erfolgen, wenn überhaupt, unter Pseudonym im Internet.


Twitter / Jacob Jung: "Ich glaube, wir werden ve ... | 2011-04-23
Reposted bykrekk krekk

April 24 2011

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