[DNS] domain name news - February 4

[DNS] domain name news - February 4

From: David Goldstein <goldstein_david§yahoo.com.au>
Date: Thu, 7 Feb 2008 01:52:47 -0800 (PST)
Don't forget to check out http://auda.org.au/domain-news/ for today's edition of the complete domain news, including an RSS feed - already online!

Headlines from the February 7 edition of the news include:

International Domain Name Law - new book released | ICANN Posts Initial
Operating Plan and Budget Framework for Fiscal Year 2009 | ICANN:
Public Comments Requested on DNS Stability: The Effect of New gTLDs on
the DNS | When can I register domain names under IDN TLDs? by Tina Dam
| Reforming ICANN Oversight: A Historic Opportunity by Milton Mueller |
.ASIA auctions deadline extended | Domain bureaucrats: Bungling the
.gov.au space | dotMobi Brings Highly Desired Adult and Entertainment
Domain Names to Market | Dell suit reveals lucrative trade in domain
names | Who's afraid of IPv4 address depletion? Apparently no one |
NIST Releases a Profile for IPv6 in the U.S. Government for Comment -
Comments Due Feb. 29 by Robert Cannon | IPv6 Address Added for Root
Servers in the Root Zone | Overhaul of net addresses begins | IPv6
Address Added for Root Servers in the Root Zone | Go Daddy provides
excitement of Super Bowl | Domainer Meeting - Paris; June 2008 | What's
in a (domain) name? Some serious cash. | Shopping.de sells for ?1.5m |
Cruises.co.uk sets .uk domain sale record | Rejected: $6M Offer for

And see my website - http://technewsreview.com.au/ - for daily updates in between postings.


The domain name news is supported by auDA


Governments, ICANN and the JPA (part 2) by Milton Mueller

What would the internet be like had there been no ICANN? by Karl Auerbach

Twenty years of .at domains

InternetNZ proposes official name-change

ICANN considering '.post' domain name for electronic postal services [AP]

US honing defences against cyber attack

What's in a domain name? Serious money


Joint Project Agreement - ICANN's Response
The Joint Project Agreement (JPA) is between the United States government and ICANN for the purpose of transitioning the Internet domain name and addressing system to a private sector multi-stakeholder model of leadership. This agreement is in the process of a mid-term review for which the NTIA is currently receiving comments. ICANN urges all interested parties to review the documents ICANN has submitted in response to this review (linked above) and would encourage the community to contact the United States government directly to make their views known.

Public Comments Requested on Initial Draft Fast-Track Mechanism for Introduction of a Limited Number of IDN ccTLDs
This is a first Discussion Draft of the Initial Report of the IDNC Working Group (IDNC WG). It is published for comment and input from the ICANN community. This document has not been signed-off on by the IDNC Working Group whose members will continue to provide their own comments and input during this consultation period.

ICANN Exploring Certification of Backend Registry Operators
In advance of the ICANN meeting in New Delhi, India, this announcement is to inform the community that ICANN is exploring a potential initiative for the certification of backend registry operators for new gTLDs. ICANN has identified registry operator certification as an area that may improve the application process for new gTLDs and improve security and stability by creating a pool of available and pre-qualified registry operators in the event of registry failure.

Successful Evaluations of .test IDN TLDs
In October 2006, ICANN engaged Autonomica AB of Stockholm, Sweden, to develop, conduct, and report on the results of laboratory testing of internationalized top-level domains in a setting corresponding to the public root. On 7 March 2007 the result of the laboratory tests were reported successfully. The laboratory technical test was one of the prerequisites to eventual insert internationalized top level labels in the root zone, which subsequently were done and the associated test facility was launched.

CDT: Plan for ICANN's Future Urgently Needed
ICANN does not have a mechanism to protect itself against governmental interference, CDT warned in comments filed with the U.S. Department of Commerce. While ICANN has made major strides in improving the transparency of its procedures, there is urgent need for a plan to guarantee its independence when its current contracts with the U.S. government are ended. Absent such such protections, CDT reluctantly opposed ICANN's request for early termination of one of its contracts.

Governments, ICANN and the JPA (part 2) by Milton Mueller
We were discussing how governments could take over ICANN. This was in response to a new meme gaining popularity within the Beltway: the idea that we need to retain the Commerce Department?s leash on ICANN (the JPA) because if we don?t, other governments (autocratic Russians, Chinese commie hordes, turbaned Islamo-fascists or languid, dirigiste Europeans) will somehow ?interfere? with DNS.

The Orwellian meme about the JPA by Milton Mueller
"War is peace, freedom is slavery, and ignorance is strength." And, according to the Center for Democracy and Technology, ICANN's Joint Projects Agreement giving the US government the ability to tell ICANN what to do is a way of "protecting the DNS against governmental interference." Hmmm...

What would the internet be like had there been no ICANN? by Karl Auerbach
Suppose that back in 1997 the US Department of Commerce, via its National Telecommunications and Administration Administration (NTIA) had not adopted, without any demonstrable source of legal authority, that hangnail from the Reagan-Thatcher school of government - the idea that governmental powers are best exercised by private actors without the nuisances of public constraint and public oversight.

Google and ICANN vs domain tasters
Under current ICANN rules, anyone who registers a new domain name has a five-day grace period to back out and receive a total refund. The policy is in place to prevent hassles if people mistype domain names during signup or simply have buyer?s remorse at signing up for ilovespaminacan.com. But because a five-day registration is free, some users ?taste? millions of domain names in order to see how well they perform as marketing vehicles. The sites that don?t perform are then deleted and the cash refunded.

ICANN joins Google in thwarting domain exploiters
ICANN has formally announced a proposal to make domain tasting a thing of the past by changing the way it charges for domain names.

Icann acts to stop domain name abuses
Internet oversight body Icann today announced proposals for a new system to crack down on the abuse of the domain name registration process known as domain tasting.

ICANN may solve domain tasting problem
Just a few days after Google announced changes to its AdSense program to combat domain tasting, ICANN is considering action to eliminate it completely.

Icann 'cans' domain tasting
Icann is going to try to stop the practice of domain "tasting," whereby people take advantage of a free trial of a domain before purchasing it.

ICANN announces clampdown on 'domain tasting'
ICANN has announced an initiative to end so-called domain tasting.

Adult .XXX domain rejected, again, by Icann
A proposal has been rejected to give adult websites their own top-level domain. This is the third time that Icann, the agency which regulates web addresses, has said no to the proposal from ICM Registry, which would involve pornographic sites changing from .com/co.uk, to addresses ending .xxx.

 - (cc)TLD NEWS
Twenty years of .at domains
The Austrian top-level domain .at was registered with IANA (the Internet Assigned Number Authority) in January 1988. From that time on, .at domains were open for registration. In Germany, the country domain .de started up on 5 November 1986, though "Twenty years of the Internet in Germany" was celebrated - somewhat arbitrarily - in April 2006.

.at TLDs grow to more than 725,000 - registrar [sub req'd]

Is China Preparing to Go its Own Way with its Own Internet Root? by Gordon Cook
Interesting things happening in China. An article in the English edition of the People?s Daily on line is headlined: Decimal network security address begins operation:

.es Domain Names and the Secondary Market
Following liberalisation of the .es ccTLD, there were 800,000 .es domain names registered in 2007, and for the first time more .es domain names were registered than .com domain names says Sedo in a Spanish article on domain names.

EURid is lowering the registration fee to ?4 starting Feb 1, 2008
As of February 1, 2008, EURid will be lowering the registration and renewal fees from ?5 to ?4. The trade and transfer fees will also be lowered to ?4. Other fees will remain unchanged (i.e. reactivation from quarantine, change of registrar for names in quarantine and bulk transfers).

InternetNZ proposes official name-change
The organisation has retained its original name as the official name under which it communicates with international bodies

ICANN considering '.post' domain name for electronic postal services [AP]
A new "dot-post" Internet address in the works aims to set apart the electronic services increasingly offered by postal agencies around the world.

Plans to relax registration rules for .pt
DomainNews.com has been made aware of plans to relax the rules for registering .pt domain names at the second level (for example, name.pt). It had been planned for these changes to go live on February 1, 2008 with a Sunrise period and a Go Live date for unrestricted registration on March 1, 2008. However these dates have been put back as the .pt registry consults further with the community. From what we understand, the changes will still take place, but at a date yet to be determined.

.tr registrants receiving letters re "WorldWideWeb Register"
Nic.tr have advised .tr registrants who are receiving letters regarding a "WorldWideWeb Register" that Nic.tr Administration is not associated with the abovementioned letters.

US honing defences against cyber attack
It has already provided the script for at least one blockbuster Hollywood movie, but if hackers managed on a busy day to shut down train networks, disrupt airport control systems and cause huge traffic jams in major cities, there would be no Bruce Willis around to come to the rescue.

Food fight over gourmet Web site
An international spat is cooking between a Carlstadt importer and two European specialty food companies over the rights to a pair of Internet addresses. A suit filed in U.S. District Court in Newark by Puratos NV of Belgium and a subsidiary, Patisfrance-Puratos SA of France, says that for more than a decade the French company sold specialty food in the U.S. through the importer, Paris Gourmet of New York Inc.

 - IPv4/IPv6
Taking control of IPv6
The arrival of IPv6 will eventually give agencies better security, more flexible networking and a number of available IP addresses so large it can make your head hurt just trying to grasp how many there will be. But how well agencies take advantage of IPv6 will depend in large part on how well administrators manage their newfound wealth of IP address spaces, experts say. By the end of June, the Office of Management and Budget expects agencies to have their network backbones ready to carry IPv6 traffic in addition to IPv4 traffic.

Netcraft January 2008 Web Server Survey
In the January 2008 survey we received responses from 155,583,825 sites, reflecting a much slower growth of only 354 thousand sites, compared with last month, where the increase was 5.4 million.

Czech court becomes UDRP provider
ICANN has just given the Czech Arbitration Court the go-ahead to become an official provider of UDRP dispute resolution.

Charges Lead to Wider VeriSign Loss [AP]
Hefty charges led to a wider fourth-quarter loss at VeriSign Inc., which manages the ".com" and ".net" Internet domain name registry, the company said Thursday.

Decrease in domain tasting?
Is one my predictions for 2008 becoming true? I believe that preventing domain tasters from having revenues is a solution to the abusive use of the add grace period.

us: You Are A Legitimate Domainer If ... You Do Not Cybersquat
There is a major perception problem that all domainers are cybersquatters. Of course, this is not true. Cybersquatters target well know brands and trademarks, as well as typos of those marks. Domainers target generic words that have limited or no trademark rights. The White Hat Domainers often get lumped in with Black Hat Cybersquatters. This misconception is typified this 'tongue-in-cheek" post on the Domain Kid Blog as set forth below. Notice how it implies that cybersquatting activities are inherent in domaining.

How to Choose a Domain Name - Brandable Domains vs Keyword Rich Domains
Here?s a question that I get quite a bit that I thought might make an interesting question for discussion: When choosing domain names do you get a keyword rich or more brandable name? What do I mean by keyword rich vs brandable names? Let me explain further with a segment from a previous post on choosing domain names for blogs.

What's in a domain name? Serious money
Xavier Buck planned to spend $100,000 last week to bid for domain names, those parcels of virtual Internet real estate, at a live auction in Los Angeles.

Spicy.com Tastes the Top Spot on 2008's First Weekly Domain Sales Chart
The 2008 domain sales race is underway. The opening week of the new year was shortened, from a business standpoint, by two major holidays - New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. Many businesses and individuals took the whole week off so sales activity was predictably slow. Only one reported sale was higher than $30,000 - that was Spicy.com, the leader on the year's first Top 20 chart after closing at $81,000. That name was auctioned off by Moniker.com in a live auction at the InterNext conference.

Newlyweds.com Honeymoons at the Top of the Weekly Sales Chart
With the holidays now behind us, this was the first full week of the 2008 domain sales season. With just about everyone back on the job, market activity started picking back up again but we still haven't seen our first blockbuster of the New Year. #1 Newlyweds.com was nothing to sneeze at though, finally closing at $130,000 after being auctioned off at the Moniker/T.R.A.F.F.I.C. East auction in October.

DomainFest SnapNames Live and Silent Final Results
Snap Names Live auction DomainfestSnapNames.com has released the final list of all domains sold at the live and silent auctions. The live auction was held during the Domain Fest Global conference and the silent auction followed the event and ended on January 31st. In total the auction sold over 400 domains with a total sales volume topping $4 million dollars.

Moniker.com Brokers US$4million Domain Name Sale
Moniker continued to lead the industry in premium adult-related domain name sales having successfully brokered the sale of FreePorn. com, an adult entertainment portal, for US $4 million. Separately, Moniker also finalized its domain name auctions at Internext Las Vegas, grossing more than $1.5 million in domain name sales from that event.

It's the "C" not the "I" by Rick Schwartz
Since I sold ireport.com to CNN I hear this chatter about "I" domains. The "I" part of the equation in the domain name is a very small part of the equation. The power the "I" had in this particular domain is extremely powerful. But as the title suggests, it is not about the "I" domain. It is about the "C" in "Circumstance." Circumstance is what drove this deal and drives almost all deals.

Domain name appraisal from SEDO
TVsOut of interest and seeing as I have never used an appraisal service for many years I decided to pay for a SEDO appraisal for the newly purchased TVs.co.uk which is one of my better domains - the valuation that SEDO make would not be something I would put a whole lot of weight on, at the end of the day a motivated buyer dictates a sale price and that can vary greatly dependant on whether the seller is motivated to sell.

The internet in China: Alternative reality
China will soon boast more internet users than any other country. But usage patterns inside China are different from those elsewhere

us: Gutierrez Hails Dramatic U.S. Broadband Growth [news release]
The U.S. Department of Commerce?s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) today released the report, ?Networked Nation: Broadband in America, 2007,? that highlights the dramatic growth of broadband in the United States. The report shows that the Administration?s technology, regulatory and fiscal policies have stimulated innovation and competition, and encouraged investment in the U.S. broadband market contributing to significantly increased accessibility of broadband services.

The Impact of Video and Rich Media on the Internet ? A ?zettabyte? by 2015?
An upsurge of technological change and a rising tide of new forms of data are working a deep transformation of the Internet?s capabilities and uses. In this third phase of Net evolution, network architectures and commercial business plans reflect the dominance of rich video and media traffic.

Third undersea internet cable cut in Middle East
A third undersea cable has been cut after breaks near Egypt earlier this week disrupted internet access in parts of the Middle East and Asia, Indian-owned cable network operator FLAG Telecom said.

New cable cut compounds net woes
A submarine cable in the Middle East has been snapped, adding to global net problems caused by breaks in two lines under the Mediterranean on Wednesday.

Ships did not cut internet cables: Egypt
Ships are not responsible for damaging undersea internet cables in the Mediterranean, Egypt's Government says.

Repairs to start on undersea cable Tuesday [IDG]
Flag Telecom will start repairs next week on a damaged submarine telecommunications cable linking Egypt and Italy. A repair ship is expected to reach the site of the damage, 8.3 kilometers from Alexandria, Egypt, on Tuesday. The repair will take a week to complete, Flag Telecom said Friday.

Rare Cable Rupture 'a Wake-Up Call' for India
... The fiber-optic cables that carry data around the world have been damaged before. But experts said the simultaneous rupture of two underwater cables, reportedly caused by a ship's anchor 12 miles off the coast of Egypt, was rare, and served to highlight the vulnerability of the global information technology system.

India Internet capacity at 80 pct after cables break [Reuters]
India's Internet services were operating at about 80 percent of capacity on Friday after breaks in undersea cables disrupted Web access, and normal services could be restored in a week, an industry official said.

How one clumsy ship cut off the web for 75 million people
A flotilla of ships may have been dispatched to reinstate the broken submarine cable that has left the Middle East and India struggling to communicate with the rest of the world, but it took just one vessel to inflict the damage that brought down the internet for millions.

Undersea cable accident a test of the Internet
Two cables carrying Internet traffic under the Mediterranean Sea were snapped Wednesday, disrupting business half a world away.

Finger-Thin Cables Tie Internet Together [AP]
The lines that tie the globe together by carrying phone calls and Internet traffic are just two-thirds of an inch thick where they lie on the ocean floor.

Crippling Mideast Internet Blackout Could Last Two Weeks
Severe Internet and phone service outages hit Egypt and India Wednesday after two submarine cable communication lines were severed. Submarine cable lines are the main connection lines for Internet service providers (ISPs) and telephony companies. The two lines that connect Egypt sit just off the coast of Alexandria. They were severed at approximately 6 a.m. local time. The accidents knocked out Internet connections throughout 70 percent of the country and international calls throughout 30 percent of the country, according to the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.

comScore Releases Top German Web Rankings for December [news release]
... ?While Google and Microsoft remain the most popular properties in Germany, the biggest gainers in December were online retailers,? said Bob Ivins, EVP of European Markets for comScore. ?Despite a relatively soft season for online retail traffic in Germany, five of the top ten gaining properties were retail sites, highlighting the importance of the Christmas season in driving online traffic during December.?

comScore Releases Top French Web Rankings for December [news release]
... Retail sites dominated the top-gaining site category rankings for December, led by the Toys category, up 65 percent to 4.9 million visitors. The category was led by Eveiletjeux.com ? part of the Groupe PPR property ? with 3.3 million visitors (up 39 percent). Other retail-related categories experiencing gains included Fragrances/Cosmetics (up 21 percent to 3.4 million visitors), Sports/Outdoor (up 18 percent to 3.5 million visitors), and Jewelry/Luxury Goods/Accessories (up 12 percent to 2.4 million visitors). The Shipping (up 39 percent to 1.8 million visitors) and e-cards categories (up 34 percent to 4 million visitors) also saw increased activity due to the holiday season.

comScore Releases Top U.K. Web Rankings for December [news release]
... Online retail factored prominently into the top-gaining site category rankings for December as the culmination of the Christmas shopping season approached. The consumer goods category gained 21 percent for the month to nearly 9.7 million visitors, while the mall category jumped 10 percent to 14.6 million visitors. The mall category was led by Argos with 12 million visitors (up 18 percent from November). Greetings sites also grew in December. The e-cards category experienced a 26-percent increase to 8.2 million visitors, while the flowers/gifts/greetings category gained 12 percent to 6.9 million visitors. Meanwhile, the shipping category grew 10 percent to 5.5 million visitors.

comScore Releases Top Japan Web Site Rankings for December, 2007 [news release]
With the holidays and the celebration of the New Year, visits to e-card sites jumped 171 percent to 5.5 million visitors, making it the top-gaining category for the month. Retail site categories also experienced strong growth, including the Jewelry/Luxury Goods/Accessories category (up 34 percent to 1.6 million visitors) and toys (up 25 percent to 2.1 million visitors) as people searched for holiday gifts. Teen sites also experienced a surge in traffic in December, up 57 percent to 2.4 million visitors for the month, due in large part to increased activity at Disney.co.jp.

comScore Releases 2007 U.S. Internet Year in Review [news release]
... A study of the growth in visitors among the top 100 U.S. Internet properties revealed that 2007 was a strong year for several of the largest properties. Social networking giant Facebook.com reaped the benefits of opening registration to all users, jumping 81 percent versus December 2006 to 34.7 million visitors in December 2007. Wikipedia Sites gained 34 percent to reach nearly 52 million visitors, continuing its reign as the Web?s most popular reference hub. Leading classified site Craigslist.org jumped 74 percent to 24.5 million visitors, while AT&T grew 27 percent to 30.2 million visitors boosted by its exclusive deal with Apple as carrier for the iPhone. Yellow Book Network jumped an impressive 137-percent to 10.4 million visitors.

comScore 2008 Super Bowl Pre-Game Survey Reveals that the Internet Plays an Important Role on Game Day [news release]
... Three-quarters of respondents said that they intended to log onto the Internet on the day of the Super Bowl. Of those who planned to go online, most said they would do so before the game (82 percent) or after the game (61 percent). Nearly three out of ten also indicated they would log on during the game itself (29 percent) or during halftime (28 percent).

comScore Releases Rankings of Top U.S. Internet Properties Based on Number of Display Ads Delivered [news release]
... Yahoo! Sites ranked as the top display ad publisher property in November, with 18.8 percent of display ad views, followed by Fox Interactive (16.3 percent), Microsoft Sites (6.7 percent), Time Warner Network (5.8 percent) and Facebook.com (1.5 percent). Nearly half (49.1 percent) of all display ads seen by U.S. Internet users originate on only five properties, illustrating the concentration of advertising among a few properties.

us: MySpace regulation a must: Students agree federal government not right for task
At least one expert and several young MySpace users are somewhat skeptical of a recent agreement between MySpace and the National Association of Attorneys General to tighten security. David Finkelhor, director of the UNH Crimes Against Children Research Center, said there are elements of the agreement that could be "difficult to maintain."

Mobiles don't cause cancer: UNSW
Mobile phones, deodorants and coffee are extremely unlikely to cause cancer, according to a new risk report designed to combat urban myths about what causes the disease.

Africa's Portal To The Internet
At first glance, the idea that the Internet could have a major impact in the poorest parts of the developing world--Africa in particular--seems unlikely. Few people in those poor, rural areas have access to PCs or even electricity, for that matter. The Internet infrastructure is limited to major urban areas in most countries, and broadband services are scarce and quite expensive where they do exist. However, the picture is changing fast. The key is to look at the rollout of mobile telephone infrastructure, which is already widespread and growing rapidly in developing countries.

FTC goes after alleged MySpace hijackers [IDG]
The Federal Trade Commission has asked a federal court to require an alleged Web page hijacking operation to obey previous orders barring unfair and deceptive practices.

Suspicious spouses turn to spyware
Nasty computer spyware isn't only used by hackers to steal your credit card details - suspicious spouses have adopted it as a way of monitoring and controlling their partners' every online move. Spyware is software that is surreptitiously installed on a computer with the aim of collecting personal information and monitoring the user's activities. It is often used by hackers to steal personal data like passwords and, increasingly, by parents to monitor their kids' web activities.

Cyber-savvy Romanian town gets rich on eBay frauds
Hundreds of people in the poor Romanian town of Dragasani have grown rich by conning eBay online auction customers with deals that seem too good to be true - and often are. The scammers have even put the new town hall up for sale on eBay, the mayor admitted last week. ?I mean, who would want it?? he asked.

us: Note: Selling pot on Craiglist isn't wise [AP]
If you're looking to sell high-grade marijuana, Craigslist may not be the place to do it. A man learned that the hard way when the "buyer" who contacted him turned out to be an undercover officer, Stamford police said.

Imbee.com Settles With FTC Over Child Privacy Violations
The Federal Trade Commission has simultaneously filed and settled a civil lawsuit against the operators of the kids-only social networking site Imbee.com for privacy violations.

Imbee.com Settles FTC Charges Social Networking Site for Kids Violated the Children?s Online Privacy Protection Act; Settlement Includes $130,000 Civil Penalty [news release]
The operators of imbee.com, a social networking site specifically targeting kids and ?tweens,? have agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that their data-collection practices violated federal law. The settlement bars future violations of the Children?s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and the Commission?s implementing rule, requires that the defendants delete all personal information they collected and maintained in violation of the law, and provides for a $130,000 civil penalty.

Online Privacy: Achievable Goal or Web 2.0 Pipe Dream?
Does being a Web user automatically mean giving up your right to privacy? A growing chorus of voices says the evolution of the Internet, the increasingly cozy relationship between search and advertising companies and the rise of Web 2.0 social networking technologies adds up to an environment where true privacy may be but an illusion. That idea is not a necessarily a new one, of course. Sun Chairman Scott McNealy is famously quoted as saying "you have no privacy -- get over it," back in 1999, noted John Nicholson of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman.

uk: Our state collects more data than the Stasi ever did. We need to fight back writes Timothy Garton Ash
This has got to stop. Britain's snooper state is getting completely out of hand. We are sleepwalking into a surveillance society, and we must wake up. When the Stasi started spying on me, as I moved around East Germany 30 years ago, I travelled on the assumption that I was coming from one of the freest countries in the world to one of the least free. I don't think I was wrong then, but I would certainly be wrong now. Today, the people of East Germany are much less spied upon than the people of Britain. The human rights group Privacy International rates Britain as an "endemic surveillance society", along with China and Russia, whereas Germany scores much better.

Sentenced to death: Afghan who dared to read about women's rights
A young man, a student of journalism, is sentenced to death by an Islamic court for downloading a report from the internet. The sentence is then upheld by the country's rulers. This is Afghanistan ? not in Taliban times but six years after "liberation" and under the democratic rule of the West's ally Hamid Karzai.

Lifeline for Pervez: Afghan Senate withdraws demand for death sentence
In a dramatic volte-face, the Afghan Senate has withdrawn its confirmation of a death sentence on Sayed Pervez Kambaksh, the student convicted of blasphemy for downloading a report on women's rights from the internet.

uk: Bloody awful
Lionel Shriver: Two decades after they were banned by the censor, a crop of notorious 'video nasties' have been classified as acceptable for release on DVD. Have we become so inured to violence that they now appear tame? Or were the authorities merely being heavy-handed?

Google faces lawsuit for blocking name
A Chinese scholar who challenged the Communist government by setting up a democratic opposition party has vowed to sue the US internet company Google for excising his name from its local search results.

More than half of Russians approve of censorship in Runet
About 58% of the Russians, who participated in the survey held by the SuperJob.ru Research Centre, believe that censorship should be introduced in Runet. Among the reasons in support of censorship is abundance of porno websites, violence promulgation, a lot of unreliable information, doubtful advertising, spam, etc. According to the respondents, first of all children and adolescents, whose state of mind might be influenced by such information, should be secured.

au: Crackdown on kid's cyber crime
Cyber crime targeting children will be monitored more closely from today under a Federal Government plan to combat digital bullying.

We must fight child sexual abuse
by J. Thomas Schieffer U.S. Ambassador to Japan: The world is losing the fight against child pornography. Today's widespread use of home computer technology has led to a staggering number of people trading and distributing child pornography online. No country is immune to this form of child sexual exploitation. As two of the world's biggest consumers of child pornography, the United States and Japan must work together to combat its spread.

Report: EC expected to approve Google-DoubleClick deal in February
European regulators are expected to approve Google's proposed acquisition of online ad firm DoubleClick in February despite circulation of a threat assessment report, according to a research note released Thursday by Stifel Nicolaus.

Delays hamper NZ's intellectual property
Intellectual property has been touted as the foundation for New Zealand's future, but is being hamstrung by old legislation, underfunding and increasing delays.

OECD conference: The Future of the Internet Economy
A conference will be held in Seoul, Korea, in June on 'The Future of the Internet Economy'. This Ministerial promises to be especially rewarding writes Yoo, Younghwan, Minister of Information and Communication in the Republic of Korea. Ministers from OECD Member and non-Member countries as well as Internet experts will come up with a collective vision and a policy framework that will help guide the Internet economy over the next decade. In addition, you can experience what the future of the Internet economy would look and feel like by participating in various side events including the 'World IT Show' (an international exhibition of information and communication technologies)' and related seminars. Many social networking opportunities among participants will also be provided.

Appeals court sides with prosecution in Kazaa porn case
If someone stores files that are clearly identifiable as child pornography in a folder that can be searched for and accessed by other users on a file-sharing network, is he or she essentially publishing a notice offering to illegally distribute the images?

Pirate Bay Says It Can't Be Sunk, Servers Scattered Worldwide
The world's most notorious BitTorrent tracking site, The Pirate Bay, won't be going to Davy Jones' Locker, even if its four operators are convicted of facilitating copyright infringement, one of the defendants said in an interview Friday with THREAT LEVEL.

Notorious pirate website faces copyright case
Swedish prosecutors have filed charges of copyright infringement against the world's most notorious piracy website, claiming it is profiting from the trade in illegal downloads. The Pirate Bay, which is based in the southern Swedish city of Malm?, has become a thorn in the side of the film industry, as one of the internet's most popular destinations for people who want to find and download films and music illegally.

Swedish Prosecutors Aim to Blockade Pirate Bay
Swedish prosecutors are charging owners of The Pirate Bay, a peer-to-peer Web site, with "promoting other people's infringements of copyright laws." Hans Fredrik Neij, Per Svartholm Warg, Peter Kolmisoppi and Carl Lundstroem operate what is reportedly the world's largest BitTorrent tracker, connecting users to music, movies and other content on each others' PCs.

Sweden Accuses 4 of Copyright Offenses
Prosecutors in Sweden on Thursday charged four men who are associated with a popular file-sharing Web site called Pirate Bay with facilitating copyright infringement.

Pirate Bay defiant despite criminal charges
As Swedish prosecutors fixed their sights last week on The Pirate Bay, an Internet file-sharing service that is a scourge of the movie and music industries, the operators of the site responded by hoisting a defiant, digital Jolly Roger.

Microsoft wants to purchase Yahoo for US$44.6bn
Microsoft has offered to buy the search engine company Yahoo for $44.6bn (?22.4bn) in cash and shares. The offer, contained in a letter to Yahoo's board, is 62% above Yahoo's closing share price on Thursday.

Microsoft Bids $44.6 Billion for Yahoo
In a bold move to counter Google?s online pre-eminence, Microsoft said Friday that it had made an unsolicited offer to buy Yahoo for about $44.6 billion in a mix of cash and stock. If consummated, the deal would redraw the competitive landscape in Internet consumer services, where both Microsoft and Yahoo have both struggled to compete with Google.

Yahoo Deal Is Big, but Is It the Next Big Thing?
... Now Microsoft is trying to make up ground by buying what it has not been able to build. To many technologists and entrepreneurs here, the deal does not indicate any imminent threat to the Valley's start-up culture or suggest that the region might go the way of Detroit; it underscores the health of the heartland that has produced waves of ever-more powerful technologies for more than half a century.

Yahoo Sale Could Be Bad for Minnows
... But Microsoft is buying Yahoo because it has steadily fallen behind Google in the lucrative online search market and because the future of computing may not be forever linked to the desktop market that Microsoft now dominates. Apparently unable to keep up with Google through internal efforts, the legendary software giant in Redmond, Wash., has gone outside to solve its problems by trying to buy Yahoo. 

Microsoft Crafts New Mobile Strategy With Yahoo!
There's more to the proposed takeover of Yahoo! by Microsoft than a scramble for advertising dollars. There's something in the air. At the recent World Economic Conference in Davos, Google Chief Executive Eric Schmidt said mobile Internet services have the potential to spark a "huge revolution" in the coming year, comparable to the "re-creation of the Internet" and the personal computer.

Microsoft Finally Gets The Competitive Spirit
Microsoft: champion of competition? That's a headline that no one would have written--except in jest--a few years ago. But that was before Google gained dominance as the biggest search engine and biggest provider of targeted online ads on the planet.

Google warning over deal tailored to appeal to Brussels
Google?s warning about the implications of a Microsoft acquisition of Yahoo, drawing on an argument that the European Commission has employed in its own challenge of the software company, seemed designed to appeal directly to Brussels regulators.

Google Assails Microsoft?s Bid for Yahoo
Google said Sunday that Microsoft?s proposed $44.6 billion takeover of Yahoo could pose a number of potential threats to competition that need to be examined by policymakers around the world. Google said in a blog post on its Web site that given Microsoft?s anti-competitive conduct in the past and its continued dominance in the technology industry, the proposed transaction could pose threats to ?innovation and openness? on the Internet. But Google?s broadly worded concerns lacked detailed claims about the anticompetitive effects of the deal, and the company did not ask federal regulators to take any specific actions at this time.

Google's Microsoft Fixation
... If the Google management team has a weakness, it is an obsession with Microsoft. That?s understandable perhaps. Eric Schmidt, Google?s chief executive worked at Sun and Novell, two companies that did battle with the Redmond, Wash., giant. And much of the rest of the top management are veterans of Netscape, which was essentially done in by Microsoft.

Google weighs in against Microsoft
Google on Sunday raised a red flag over Microsoft?s unsolicited takeover offer for Yahoo, arguing that it could open the way for the software giant to extend its PC monopoly to the internet.

Why Yahoo! Can't Fix Microsoft
Microsoft and Yahoo! have a problem. Online ads are booming, and they're not. Microsoft's money-losing online business posted sales growth of just 10.9% last quarter. Yahoo! does make money, but last quarter its sales rose a mere 9%, excluding traffic acquisition costs.

Yahoo! Can't Say No: The logic of Microsoft's brilliant bid.
Also in Slate, Daniel Gross explains what Microsoft's bid for Yahoo! means for the economy and for Google, and Chris Wilson argues that Microsoft's play to purchase Yahoo! isn't about search.

Deal That May Create More, Not Less, Competition
In most industries, a merger of two major companies would cause everyone else to panic over a decline in competition.

Microsoft tries to buy way into 21st century
... Will it work? Academic studies indicates that most mergers fail because they are entered into for the wrong reasons (defence against a predator, buying market share or just management aggrandisement). It is not immediately obvious why this one will be any different. If this is a plan to use Yahoo's vast networks to protect Microsoft's monopoly base it will almost certainly fail. If it uses Yahoo as the vehicle to drive the combined company into hosting services - from photographs to documents - on the web rather than your hard disk (which is where Microsoft is powerful) then it could be a success.

Microsoft could face EU antitrust hurdles with Yahoo bid
A $44.6 billion offer for Yahoo is expected to place Microsoft at the mercy of the same aggressive European Union competition regulators that it has squared off with for the better part of this decade.

With Yahoo, Microsoft faces antitrust fight once again
Microsoft's proposed $44.6 billion purchase of Yahoo could subject the software giant to the kind of critical antitrust scrutiny from Washington it hasn't experienced in nearly a decade.

Microsoft/Yahoo ad threat to rivals
The combined businesses of Microsoft and Yahoo could provide a staunch competitor to Google in key international markets such as Asia and India in the global battle for control of the $80bn-a-year (?40.6bn) online advertising market.

Privacy groups vow to fight Microsoft-Yahoo deal [IDG]
Privacy groups are promising a fight before U.S. regulatory agencies if Microsoft's offer to buy Yahoo for $44.6 billion is accepted, and the deal could face significant hurdles in Europe as well.

Privacy advocates sound alarms over Microsoft's bid to buy Yahoo
The mere specter of a merger between Microsoft Corp. and Yahoo Inc. is sounding alarms among some privacy advocates, who say that any union of the two companies should be permitted only after a thorough investigation of how it would affect online privacy.

Microsoft and Yahoo's shotgun marriage
ANALYSIS: Is this Bill Gates' last big throw? Microsoft's proposal to buy internet veteran Yahoo for a whopping $44.6bn (?22.4bn) certainly grabs the attention. But does it make business sense?

Profiles: Microsoft and Yahoo
Microsoft's announcement that it would like to buy search engine Yahoo for $44.6bn (?22.4bn) is major news for the computer sector. Here we take a closer look at the two US giants.

Cultural differences loom large in Microsoft-Yahoo
When you look at the cultural differences between Microsoft and Yahoo, you don't need to look much further than a floor plan.

Chart: A Microsoft-Yahoo combo by the numbers
Microsoft's bid for Yahoo would create one of the world's largest Web companies, when examined using several different metrics.

FAQ: What's next for Microsoft's Yahoo bid?
Microsoft faces several financial and legal hurdles on its way to wooing Yahoo to accept its $44.6 billion buyout bid. Here's a brief FAQ explaining some of the reasoning behind Microsoft's actions Friday and what may be on the horizon for the two Google rivals in the near future.

Microsoft Bids $44.6 Billion for Yahoo
Microsoft Corp. has offered to buy struggling Internet search provider Yahoo for $44.6 billion, a merger that would combine two of the technology world's most well-known names into a potentially potent competitor for Google in the lucrative Web search and advertising market.

Microsoft offers to buy Yahoo for $44.6 billion
Microsoft has offered to buy Yahoo for around $44.6 billion in cash and shares, to better compete with Google in the market for online services.

Microsoft Proposes To Buy Yahoo For $31 Share, In $44.6-Billion Deal
Microsoft Corp. today announced that it has made a proposal to the Yahoo! Inc. Board of Directors to acquire all the outstanding shares of Yahoo! common stock for per share consideration of $31 representing a total equity value of approximately $44.6 billion. Microsoft's proposal would allow the Yahoo! shareholders to elect to receive cash or a fixed number of shares of Microsoft common stock, with the total consideration payable to Yahoo! shareholders consisting of one-half cash and one-half Microsoft common stock. The offer represents a 62 percent premium above the closing price of Yahoo! common stock on Jan. 31, 2008.

Google Disappoints
Is the Google financial juggernaut starting to sputter? The Internet giant reported fourth-quarter earnings per share Thursday, excluding stock-option expenses, of $4.43--a penny shy of analysts' estimates. Including stock expenses of $245 million, the Mountain View, Calif., company reported earnings per share of $3.79.

Ad Growth Still Strong, Google Says
Google said it has seen no effect from a slowing economy on its advertising business, as it reported a 17 percent jump in profit and a 51 percent growth in revenue in the fourth quarter.

Google's earnings up but just shy of expectations
Despite some market concerns over Google's growth potential in a slowing economy, the search giant continues to report strong growth, with fourth-quarter revenue up 51 percent over the same period the year before.

nz: Telcos upset over last minute rules change
A telecommunications industry body is accusing Telecom Corporation and the government of colluding behind closed doors to make last minute changes to rules affecting the company?s forced three-way split.

nz: Telco commissioner likely to take digital media role
Telecommunications Commissioner Ross Patterson could be invited to take on additional responsibilities for policing the market in newly converged media according to most scenarios canvassed in a discussion paper on the regulations for digital broadcasting released by Ministers Trevor Mallard and David Cunliffe.

au: Child porn allegedly found on work computer
A West Australian man from the state?s mid-west has been charged with having child pornography on his work computer.


(c) David Goldstein 2008

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Received on Thu Feb 07 2008 - 09:52:47 UTC

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