[DNS] domain name news - March 25

[DNS] domain name news - March 25

From: David Goldstein <goldstein_david§yahoo.com.au>
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2008 21:26:01 -0700 (PDT)
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 March 27 edition of the news include:
.Asia Go Live kicks off: Millions of High Value Domains Still available on First-Come-First-Served basis | us: Parody of Wal-Mart Trumps Its Trademark | TRAFFIC Down Under Preview

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


The domain name news is supported by auDA


Sir Tim Berners-Lee attacks scheme to monitor web usage

State of the Internet & Challenges ahead: ?How is the Internet likely to evolve in the coming decade? by Olivier H. Martin [ICTConsulting, Gingins (VD), Switzerland]

ICANN GNSO recommends new anti-domain tasting solution

Judge Says We Can't Look Inside US .XXX deliberations by Milton Mueller

.cn passes 10 million registrations

SIDN Releases Numerical Domain Name Investigation Results

VeriSign Expands Project Titan to Strengthen Internet Infrastructure

Network Solutions pulls plug on Dutch politician's anti-Qur'an film

Domain Name Registrars: The Weakest Link in Online Free Speech

Get a good name on the web

Name That Firm: What should you call your business?

US-Swedish Carrier Spat 'Breaks' Net [AP]
President Bush famously spoke of "the Internets" in 2004. Well, they're here. Since March 13, customers of two large Internet providers, Cogent Communications Group Inc. and TeliaSonera AB are unable to contact each other through the Internet, unless they have backup connections from other companies. This means, for instance, that some U.S. Web sites hosted by Cogent customers are inaccessible to surfers in the Nordic countries, where Sweden-based TeliaSonera is the largest telecommunications operator. It's like Cogent and TeliaSonera customers are on different Internets.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee attacks scheme to monitor web usage
The inventor of the World Wide Web has warned consumers to be wary of new technology being tested by three British internet suppliers which will track the websites users that visit to create personalised advertising. Sir Tim Berners-Lee said he was concerned at the privacy implications presented by Phorm, a company that has invented a method of tailoring the adverts seen by internet users to their interests by monitoring the websites they browse.

State of the Internet & Challenges ahead: ?How is the Internet likely to evolve in the coming decade? by Olivier H. Martin [ICTConsulting, Gingins (VD), Switzerland]
Abstract: After a fairly extensive review of the state of the Commercial and Research & Education, aka Academic, Internet the problematic behind the, still hypothetic, IPv4 to IPv6 migration will be examined in detail. A short review of the ongoing efforts to re-design the Internet in a clean-slate approach will then be made. This will include the National Science Foundation (NSF) funded programs such as FIND (Future Internet Network Design) [1] and GENI (Global Environment for Network Innovations) [2], European Union (EU) Framework Program 7 (FP7), but also more specific architectural proposals such as the publish/subscribe (pub/sub) paradigm and Data Oriented Network Architecture (DONA) [3].


ICANN GNSO recommends new anti-domain tasting solution
In a proposal to stop domain tasting, ICANN?s GNSO Council has recommended to the ICANN Board restrictions to the Add Grace period that would mean, if accepted, during any given month a gTLD operator ?may not offer any refund to a registrar for any domain names deleted during the AGP that exceed (i) 10% of that registrar's net new registrations in that month (defined as total new registrations less domains deleted during AGP), or (ii) fifty (50) domain names, whichever is greater.?

ICANN Extends Comment Period for GNSO Improvements [news release]
In response to a request from three constituencies of the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO), the Executive Committee of the ICANN Board agreed to grant the month long extension of the original March 25 deadline to permit sufficient time for: (1) the parties requesting the extension to have additional time to prepare and provide their proposal to the ICANN Board (including the details of the consultations and nature of the support that they have gathered); and (2) to allow time for an additional call to the community to file submissions relating to all aspects of the posted report.

ICANN NomCom: Time Running Out to Make the Internet Your Business [news release]
Time is running out to make the Internet your business and put your name forward to join the global leadership volunteers who help the ICANN coordinate the polices and process that shape the future of the Internet. "If you want to be a part of ICANN?s exciting work on bringing the languages of the world to domain names, and creating more choice for consumers by allowing for the creation of new Internet extensions beyond the ones currently available like .net or .org, now is the time to let the us know," said Hagen Hultzsch, Chair of the Nominating Committee (NomCom). "ICANN?s global team of Internet leaders is working on some of the biggest changes to the Internet since it was created ? and this is the chance to help make that happen."

Judge Says We Can't Look Inside US .XXX deliberations by Milton Mueller
It's "Sunshine Week" in Washington, a week devoted to "open government," but the light came a few days late for ICM Registry and Stuart Lawley, proponents of the .xxx top level domain for adult content. A US court dismissed ICM Registry's litigation to pry more information out of the US government about the pressure it put on ICANN to reject ICM's application to operate the .xxx top level domain. The court decision favoring darkness is posted here.

 - (cc)TLD NEWS
Canada kicks off Countdown to One Million Internet Domain Names [news release]
The Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) today launches its campaign to celebrate the registration of one million dot-ca domain names with the unveiling of a campaign website at www.onemilliondomains.ca.

.cn passes 10 million registrations
With the recent announcements that the .au ccTLD passing one million registrations, and .es and .ca about to pass the magic number, in January this year .cn passed another milestone. They reached their ten millionth domain name registration and six millionth .cn registration in January 2008. And then in February they passed the three millionth .com.cn registration.

ICANN Board chair visits CNNIC [news release]
Mr. Peter Dengate Thrush, Chair of Board of Directors for ICANN, paid an official visit to China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) on February 19, 2008. Director General of CNNIC, Mr. Mao Wei showed Mr. Thrush around CNNIC and its DNS infrastructure.

?.hk? Domain Name Spamvertising & Phishing Cases Drop As Stringent Measures Take Effect
An 86% drop in daily reports of spamvertising and phishing cases using '.hk' domains was recorded in 2007, according to the '.hk' Domain Name Spamvertising & Phishing Report 2007 compiled by Hong Kong Domain Name Registration Company Limited (HKDNR). A daily average of 59 such cases was recorded from January to July 2007, while the number dropped drastically to 8 from August to December 2007.

How to Register a Domain Name in Hong Kong
Hong Kong Domain Name Registration Company Limited ("HK DNR") is the Hong Kong's authority in charge of domain name registrations since 2001. HK DNR is under the control of the Hong Kong Internet Registration Corporation Limited which is the national registry and registrar for the registration and assignment of domain names in this country. Companies or individuals can register the following country top-level domain names: .COM.HK, .EDU.HK, .GOV.HK, .HK, .NET.HK, .ORG.HK in English and other Chinese domain names. This article provides start-up guidance on how to register these English domain names in Hong Kong.

.LT domain is now accessible through IPv6 protocol
.LT domain name is accessible using IPv6 protocol since 9 March, 2008. This is one of the .lt domain registry planned DNS service infrastructure upgrades, to facilitate internet users and internet service providers who are using or want to start using IP version 6 protocol.

.INFO Awards for German-speaking .INFO-Website [news release]
From March 17 to May 25 owners of German-speaking .INFO-Websites can apply for the .INFO-Award that will award 18.000 Euro in prize money later this year. The Award is created by global domain name registry Afilias in media-cooperation with INTERNET WORLD Business and addresses .INFO domain owners from Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

.info Domains are Not Worthless!
While domain names with the TLD .info are highly associated with spam because of their low costs, the domains are not worthless or always associated with spam (I heard this about 10 times at SES NY).

it: Update of the Regulations for the resolution of disputes in the ccTLD ?it? [news release]
We would like to inform you that the new updated versions of the Regulations for the resolution of disputes (Version 1.1) has been published.

my: Second Level Domain Name (2LD) Public Launch [news release]
MYNIC are launching registrations of .my domain names at the second level and are encouraging eligible registrants to be ready for public registration when it begins on March 25.

SIDN Releases Numerical Domain Name Investigation Results
The controversial launch of .nl numerical domain names has been investigated by SIDN, the .nl registry, following complaints by a number of participants in the landrush between February 28 and 29.

no: Temporary scheme for refunding the complaint fee (in Norwegian only) [news release]

.SE releases report on tests of consumer broadband routers [news release]
Three of the ten routers that .SE has tested, have passed the test specification without any remarks. The other seven have had severe problems when using what might be considered plain Domain Name System (DNS). The majority of the routers does not manage to pass on DNSSEC to the client, which gives you problems when there are applications on the client that want to handle their own DNSSEC validation.

uk: Nominet Welcome email - custom options [news release]
On 18 March 2008 Nominet introduced some new functions to enable registrars to customise the Nominet welcome email. Nominet sends a welcome email to registrants 48 hours after a domain name is registered which allows the user to log into their Nominet online services account to check the details of their .uk domain name. Previously this welcome email simply contained the name and main web site for the registrar the customer used to register the domain name.

Cyber Solidarity: Five Nations, One Mission [news release]
Cyber attacks, we?ve been saying for some time now, are the ultimate borderless crimes: they can come from anywhere, anytime, impacting millions of people and systems across the planet in the blink of an eye. That?s why we in the global law enforcement community have been steadily building operational partnerships at every turn?through a growing number of joint investigations and both formal and informal collaborations and task forces. 

UK government's plans for cyber-crime 'half-baked'
The Government has severely underestimated the threat the country faces from cyber-crime and risks having its own networks breached by foreign spies if it doesn't devote more resources to the problem, the security industry has said.

FBI Opens Probe of China-Based Hackers
The FBI has opened a preliminary investigation of a report that China-based hackers have penetrated the e-mail accounts of leaders and members of the Save Darfur Coalition, a national advocacy group pushing to end the six-year-old conflict in Sudan.

Tibet - the cyber wars
We know that YouTube has been blocked in China, as the authorities seek to control what they see as biased Western coverage of events in Tibet, but there is a wider battle being fought in cyberspace. Tibet protest groups have been in touch to say they are under attack, with emails arriving containing attachments that are designed to infect or take over their computers.

Cyber Attacks Target Pro-Tibet Groups
Human rights and pro-democracy groups sympathetic to anti-China demonstrators in Tibet are being targeted by sophisticated cyber attacks designed to disrupt their work and steal information on their members and activities.

VeriSign Expands Project Titan to Strengthen Internet Infrastructure 
VeriSign announced an expansion of its Project Titan initiative to include additional security upgrades aimed at strengthening its global Internet infrastructure. Building on its initiative to expand and diversify the capacity of its global Internet infrastructure by 10 times by 2010, VeriSign announced it would expand its existing security by: 

VeriSign commits to increasing e-commerce capacity
On Thursday, VeriSign announced plans to expand Project Titan, a global initiative to expand the infrastructure of the Internet to anticipate future demand brought by increased e-commerce transactions.

VeriSign Expands Project Titan to Strengthen Internet Infrastructure with New Security Upgrades [news release]
VeriSign, Inc. announced an expansion of its Project Titan initiative to include additional security upgrades aimed at strengthening its global Internet infrastructure.

UK national threat assessment to be made public
The full gamut of dangers facing Britain, from terrorist plots to disasters caused by climate change, is to be spelt out by the Government in the form of an annual national threat register, Gordon Brown announced. A new-style civil defence network, modelled on the Second World War air-raid wardens ? ?but without the uniforms? ? is also to be set up. Members of the public can join it to help local authorities and emergency services at a time of national crisis. ... Included in the threats delineated in the White Paper was cyber warfare.

China and Darfur by Nicholas D. Kristof
Is the Chinese Government orchestrating I.T. assaults on websites that advocate for Darfur? The Save Darfur Coalition reported that it has been subject to sophisticated Internet attacks ? attacks that apparently originated in China. And Eric Reeves, who runs a Darfur-related website, says that his site has been attacked as well, along with that of Dream for Darfur, an organization that focuses on pressuring China in the run-up to the Olympics because of its close associations with the Sudanese government.

US Firms Brace for Cyber War
A new breed of large-scale cyber attack threatens to wreak havoc on U.S. businesses and government organizations, according to Rutgers professor Michael Lesk. The academic used the example of last April's cyber mayhem in Estonia to illustrate this point during his keynote at yesterday's Business Continuity and Corporate Security show in New York.

FBI looks at Chinese role in Darfur site hack [IDG]
The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation is looking into a possible China connection in the hack of a nonprofit group created to draw attention to the ongoing genocide in western Sudan's Darfur region.

Florida botnet herder sheared by cops, faces 10 years in pen
Most 21-year-olds in the US are either off at college enjoying their newfound freedom to drink themselves into a stupor, or already throwing themselves into the workforce (possibly also drinking themselves into a stupor). But 21-year-old Robert Matthew Bentley instead faces jail time and up to $250,000 in fines after pleading guilty for installing adware on "hundreds of computers" across Europe.

Register.com Loses Register.cc Battle
In terms of size, Register.com is Goliath and Domain-It is David. According to RegistrarStats.com, Register.com controls 2,635,000 domains compared to Domain-It?s 25,000.

Network Solutions pulls plug on Dutch politician's anti-Qur'an film
The website where Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders was promoting his not-yet-released anti-Qur'an film has been suspended by its US hosting service.

Dutch Islam film website 'shut'
A website that a Dutch right-wing politician was planning to use to release a film expected to be fiercely critical of Islam has been suspended. The US hosting service, Network Solutions, said it was investigating complaints that it may have breached guidelines on hate language.

Fitna Website Suspended While Network Solutions Investigates [news release]
Network Solutions has suspended the fitnathemovie.com website while Network Solutions is investigating whether the site?s content is in violation of the Network Solutions Acceptable Use Policy.

NSI: ?Don?t Taunt Them, Kill Them? by John Berryhill
Clearly whatever it is that Dutch politician Geert Wilders wants to talk about in his film is going to be the end of the internet. The news that Network Solutions decided to pre-empt his use of a domain name registered through them for the purpose of promoting his film need not be re-hashed here.

Anti-Koran Film Site Suspended By Network Solutions
Network Solutions on Saturday suspended a Web site registered by controversial Dutch politician Geert Wilders who said he planned to use the site to host a movie critical of Islam and the Koran. "Network Solutions has suspended the fitnathemovie.com Web site while Network Solutions is investigating whether the site's content is in violation of the Network Solutions Acceptable Use Policy," the company said in a statement. "We have received a number of complaints regarding this site that are under investigation."

Domain Name Registrars: The Weakest Link in Online Free Speech
A storm building around a 15-minute online Dutch film critical of the Quran is emblematic not only of the growing ability of cyber forces to banish divergent views -- but also, more specifically, the utter unwillingness of domain name registrars to stand firm against those viral tides of protest. One of them, Network Solutions, has temporarily suspended a site on which Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders had planned to air his film.

Google loses bid for EU-wide trademark on Gmail name [Bloomberg]
Google lost its bid to get European Union-wide trademark protection for "Gmail," the name of its Web-based e-mail service. The Gmail name is too similar to an existing German trademark, according to a ruling by the EU's trademark agency published on its Web site.

Anti-Trust Complaint Filed Against ICANN, Registerfly and Enom
Two individuals have filed a complaint in US Federal Court in California accusing ICANN, Registerfly.com and Enom.com of anti-trust activities. The complainants are seeking $25 Million in damages. Accusations found in the court documents also claim the companies were involved in racketeering, RICO violations, Sherman Anti-Trust Act violations, fraud, breach of contract, negligence and more.

How to Protect Your 3 Character Domain Names
Three letter domain names are valuable. But owning them carries risk: since so many companies have three character acronyms, they often feel they are entitled to your domain.

This Week in Law #13: Domain Name Law
This episode of This Week in Law is hosted by Denise Howell with guests Bret Fausett, Cathy Kirkman, Collette Vogele and Marty Schwimmer. Topics covered are WikiLeaks, Julius Baer, Dynadot, registrars, domain tasting vs. front running, ICANN, Network Solutions, and more.

FBI posts fake hyperlinks to snare child porn suspects
The FBI has recently adopted a novel investigative technique: posting hyperlinks that purport to be illegal videos of minors having sex, and then raiding the homes of anyone willing to click on them.

VeriSign March/April Digital Branding Bulletin
VeriSign have released their March/April 2008 Digital Branding Bulletin that spotlights initiatives customers identified as important to them such as the ?Service Delivery team's renewed focus on providing excellent service? and Brand and Fraud Protection Services. There are also ccTLD updates on .pr, .asia, .rs and .cr, gTLD update on .tel and the recent announcement from VeriSign that there are now more than 153 million domain names registered. Other issues covered include Email Address Typosquatting Posing Serious Leakage Threat and Researchers Name top 6 Spamming Botnets.

Demand Media Raises Another $35 Million; Total Comes To $355 Million
Demand Media, the the Santa Monica-based social and domain name media firm, has raised another $35 million in its fourth round of funding, according to SEC filings picked up by PEHub.

What's Demand Media doing with all that money?
With $35 million in new financing disclosed Monday, Demand Media has now raised $355 million in about two years. This leads to an obvious question: what exactly are they planning to do with that money, take over the Internet?

Highlighterz: Helping to Kill Off Domain Parking One Click at a Time
Ever wonder why advertisers want to opt out of domain name advertising? Fraud. Here?s just another example that went live yesterday: highlighterz.com.

The Deep End by Paul Venezia: Domain squatting for fun and profit
I just got off the phone with MarkMonitor, a company that according to the fellow I spoke with is hired by multi-national corporations to register and squat on domain names in the interest of brand security. I was calling them to inquire about a specific domain name that they had registered -- a domain that was simply an ad page. I was hoping to use that domain for a little project, but I was told that in order to even inquire about the potential availability of the domain, I would have to have my attorney contact them directly, and then go through a process that might take a few months before finding out if I might have the privilege to buy the domain on their terms. I asked him if he saw any problem with this, and he went on a brief tirade about protecting brand identity, and then roughly slammed the phone down, hanging up on me. Great sales tactic, no?

Why Domaining is Not a Mainstream Industry
I was reading the State of the Industry report at DNJournal the other day and it helped to underline something that has been on my mind for a while now - on a global scale, domaining as a mainstream industry has a long way to go.

Extend the Value of Your Domain Name & Realize a Multiple on Your Investment
One of the coolest things about owning a domain name is that you can get into just about any type of business your heart desires. Domain ownership breaks down some of the barriers of entry in an industry, and it allows you to jump right in feet first. You don?t necessarily need to sell product or services to be in a particular business, and you can make your own niche in the industry....

Get a good name on the web
Having the right web address can boost business for small firms. Rachel Bridge looks at how to go about getting it

Name That Firm: What should you call your business?
Selecting a name is one of the most important decisions a company will ever make. But a lot of small businesses don't give it nearly enough thought. When Damien Wolf christened his branding and design business, for example, he did what a lot of professional-services firms do: He slapped his own last name on the office door.

What?s in a name? Plenty.
Today?s Wall Street Journal has a nice article on the importance of choosing a good name to establish a strong corporate identity. The story highlights some interesting aspects when deciding on a company name and identity. It also talks about the importance of making sure that there is a tie between online presence and the corporate name by way of a solid, memorable domain name.

Fund.com Changes Hands for $9,999,950 in the Largest Cash Deal Reported to Date
When news reports started appearing today (including one at CNN.com) that Fund.com had been sold for the highest cash price ever reported ($9,999,950) there were elements to the story that had me wondering if it was legitimate. I brought those doubts up in a thread at the DomainState.com forum but a member there, investor George Kirikos, dug through the purchaser's Jan. 15 SEC filing and confirmed the transaction had been reported to the U.S. government at the stated amount. You don't make that kind of stuff up in SEC filings unless you have a fondness for jail cells.

Afternic Hits Long Drive with DrivingRanges.com
It?s been several months since Afternic announced it would begin auctioning expiring domains. I?ve played around with Afternic?s expired domain auctions, but until this weekend most of the auctions have ended for less than a few hundred dollars.

Addiction to internet 'is an illness'
Tense? Angry? Can't get online? Internet addiction is now a serious public health issue that should be officially recognised as a clinical disorder, according to a leading psychiatrist. Excessive gaming, viewing online pornography, emailing and text messaging have been identified as causes of a compulsive-impulsive disorder by Dr Jerald Block, author of an editorial for the respected American Journal of Psychiatry.

EU Links New Broadband Target to Economic Prosperity
In Europe, broadband Internet access is seen as a ticket to economic freedom and prosperity. That's one of the key ideas behind the European Commission's announcement Wednesday of its intention to increase broadband penetration from the current 20 percent to 30 percent across the bloc by 2010. The EC unveiled this goal in its 13th Progress Report on the Single Telecoms Market.

Free TV heading way of vinyl
The rise of internet television (IPTV) - and in particular, user-generated websites such as YouTube - will soon see free-to-air networks "simply disappear", along the lines of how vinyl records were superceded, according to one of the world's most senior media consultants.

Internet jewellers - A boy's best friend: Gentlemen prefer buying diamonds online
?Men are intimidated when they go into a jewellery store to buy their first diamond,? says Diane Irvine, the chief executive of Blue Nile. Creating a website that looks good and makes it easy for men to learn about diamonds before buying has turned Blue Nile into the leading online seller of jewellery, confounding predictions that luxury and e-commerce would never mix. With revenues of $319m in 2007, 70% of which is from sales of engagement rings, it is now the biggest online specialist jeweller, and has a 4% share of the engagement-ring market in America. It is also gaining sales in Britain and Canada, where it has operated for a few years, and last month it opened in 12 new countries including Singapore and Japan.

A New Tool From Google Alarms Sites
Retailers and publishers have fought hard to work their way up in the ranking of Google?s search results and refine the search features of their own Web sites to help users once they arrive. Now, Google is taking a greater role in helping users search within particular sites. And some of the same retailers and publishers are not happy about it.

Google's Search-Within-Search Draws Scrutiny
Google has quietly unveiled a search-within-a-site feature on its main Web search engine, giving users the ability to refine searches before going to a merchant or publisher's page. The company launched search-within-a-site on March 5 after several days of testing, according to a posting to the official Google blog.

Latin America's ECommerce Leader
There is a market of 500 million people--about 8.6% of the world's population--that the business media all too often neglects as it serves up story after story about China and India. That would be Latin America. Between 2000 and 2007, the number of Internet users in Latin America grew from 18.1 million to 122.4 million, a compounded annual growth rate of 32% compared with only 12% in North America during the same period.

For the young, TV's passivity is pass? next to the Internet
A study conducted by Grunwald Associates on kids' use of social networks found 64 percent of people between the ages of 9 and 17 aren't just glued to the couch while the TV is on -- they're going online at the same time. In fact, the TV is what's driving them to go online while watching their favorite shows, sometimes by offering interactive activities to go along with what they're watching.

UK online newspaper readers fall after bumper January
The UK's leading newspaper websites bumped back to Earth after record visitor numbers in January, with all the five groups that publish officially audited figures posting traffic declines last month.

uk: Funerals to be shown live on the web
Grieving relatives will be able to watch their loved one's funeral via the internet as a crematorium goes hi-tech. Services at Cambridge Crematorium can be webcast so mourners thousands of miles away can feel they are part of the service.

Internet communities: Break down these walls
History suggests that open standards will once again trump ?walled gardens? on the internet: ?The farther back you can look, the farther forward you are likely to see.? Apply Winston Churchill's aphorism to the internet, and about the farthest back you can look is 1994, when the previously obscure computer network first became known to a wider public. Many people first ventured onto the internet from AOL, CompuServe and Prodigy, which were subscription-based online services that offered e-mail, chatrooms, discussion boards and so on. Having provided their users with access to the internet, however, these venerable digital communities were undermined by it.

Online social networks: Everywhere and nowhere
Social networking will become a ubiquitous feature of online life. That does not mean it is a business: A large but long-in-the-tooth technology company hoping to become a bigger force in online advertising buys a small start-up in a sector that everybody agrees is the next big thing. A decade ago, this was Microsoft buying Hotmail?the firm that established web-based e-mail as a must-have service for internet users, and promised to drive up page views, and thus advertising inventory, on the software giant's websites. This month it was AOL, a struggling web portal that is part of Time Warner, an old-media giant, buying Bebo, a small but up-and-coming online social network, for $850m.

uk: Plea to ban employers trawling Facebook
A powerful coalition of children?s charities is urging ministers to make it illegal for companies to trawl Facebook and other social networking websites for information on prospective recruits. They say that employers and educational establishments are known to be browsing the internet looking for ?digital dirt? on young people who have applied for positions.

MySpace, Facebook Need To Be Useful To Make Money [Reuters]
If people do more things on social networks, and reveal more about their tastes and habits, advertisers can better focus their messages, Web analysis groups suggest. Virtual beer and vampires may no longer be enough to keep members of social networks like Facebook and News Corp's MySpace riveted to their computers.

German Jewish Group Takes YouTube to Court
Germany's leading Jewish group has accused Google and YouTube of hosting anti-Semitic content on its globally popular video site. The group alleges the videos incite racial hatred and discrimination.

Israel-Palestine dispute moves on to Facebook
The conflict over land in the Middle East is fought out not only on the ground in Israel and the Palestinian territories. Now the pages of social networking site Facebook have become the latest scene of dispute.

Why Old Technologies Are Still Kicking
In 1991, Stewart Alsop, the editor of InfoWorld and a thoughtful observer of industry trends, predicted that the last mainframe computer would be unplugged by 1996. Last month, I.B.M. introduced the latest version of its mainframe, the aged yet remarkably resilient warhorse of computing.

au: Phone manufacturers' features a turn-off
Mobile phones keep adding whiz-bang features, but research released this week suggests fewer people than makers would like are bothering to use them.

Andrew Keen on New Media: Has the prophet Steve Jobs found the secret of our digital futures?
... The most lucid explanation of life after TV I've ever heard came from a nine-year-old. "After TV," the boy said, "comes bedtime." You may laugh, but life after television may well mean bedtime for the careers of many TV executives. And that's why there is such a frenzied rush to create product that will become the standard ? the platform, if you like ? for the post-television age. This is the new new-media gold rush. Everyone ? from Apple's Steve Jobs to News Corp's Rupert Murdoch to NBC's Jeff Zucker to the BBC's Mark Thompson ? is scrambling to ascend this summit first and get their hands on the digital holy grail.

Aussie Linux head: Microsoft more open than iPhone
The world has been turned upside down for Linux developers, thanks to Microsoft's approach to its mobile platform--today it's the most open functioning platform on the market, says new Linux Australia president Stewart Smith. The star of application-rich mobile phones, Apple's iPhone, has been met with criticism from the open source community and even confusion by major software developers like Adobe.

China Looks Into The Case Of The Mobile Spam
Beijing vowed to quell mobile phone spam messages on Sunday after seven advertising companies including Nasdaq-traded Focus Media were discovered to have sent commercial messages to practically half of China's population of cell phone users without their consent.

Beijing investigates spam attack
China is investigating a spam attack after almost half of China's mobile phone users received unwanted text messages from advertisers.

us: Adult Web site company wins spam case
A Renton-based adult Web site operator won a unanimous jury verdict Monday in a case brought by the Federal Trade Commission under U.S. anti-spam law. The jury in U.S. District Court in Seattle said Impulse Media Group Inc. was not responsible for hundreds of unsolicited, sexually explicit commercial e-mails sent by some of its affiliates to bring traffic to its sites. During the trial, the company cited its policies against spam, and said it terminated relationships with affiliates who broke its rules.

Intel: Classmate PC appeals beyond kids in developed countries [IDG]
Intel Corp.'s Classmate PC isn't just for students in emerging markets anymore. The low-cost laptop will be made available to companies that want to sell it to consumers, an Intel executive said Wednesday.

"Digital Skills Divide" Emerging [news release]
A new study from Tufts University shows that while the "digital divide" may be narrowing in terms of access to the Internet, a significant "digital skills divide" is emerging. "Parents' access to childrearing information appears to be on the rise, in large measure because of the Web," said Professor Fred Rothbaum from the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Development at Tufts University.

'Digital Skills Divide' Emerging
"Parents' access to childrearing information appears to be on the rise, in large measure because of the Web," said Professor Fred Rothbaum from the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Development at Tufts University.

CMS Cameron McKenna Technology Annual Review [reg req'd]
The CMS Cameron McKenna Technology Annual Review is now available to download. The Technology Annual Review contains short, easy to read articles on topics of interest over the last year, presented on a month-by-month basis. Topics in this year's Review include: selling spam lists, illegal spyware, software copyright, VoIP, the i-Gasm, CD-WOW, the Fresh Prince, E-Commerce defences, data retention, digital downloads, domain name decisions, patent ambushes, the smiley :-), Bluetooth spam, and much, much more.

Germany's Top Court Curtails Disputed Data Storage Law
Germany's constitutional court on Wednesday severely curbed parts of a wide-reaching and highly controversial data collection law that requires telecom companies to store telephone and Internet data for up to six months, dealing a setback to government efforts to fight terrorism.

German court tightens up ISP, phone data retention rules
Germany's highest court apparently had memories of Nazi and Stasi abuses in mind when it ruled on a series of surveillance and data privacy cases this year. In the most recent ruling, made today in Karlsruhe, the Constitutional Court found that Germany's recent data retention directive targeting ISPs and telephone companies was problematic; going forward, the data retention will still be mandatory, but the information can only be accessed with a warrant and only for serious crimes.

Google loses bid for EU-wide trademark on Gmail name [Bloomberg]
Google lost its bid to get European Union-wide trademark protection for "Gmail," the name of its Web-based e-mail service. The Gmail name is too similar to an existing German trademark, according to a ruling by the EU's trademark agency published on its Web site.

The Web as al-Qaida's safety net
With the world focused on the war in Iraq, it is easy to forget about al-Qaida. But al-Qaida has not forgotten about the war. Even before the first U.S. missiles hit Baghdad, the terrorist network and its sympathizers were posting calls for vengeance on Web sites that have taken the anti-American jihad into cyberspace.

Anti-Virus Firms Scrambling to Keep Up
The sheer volume and complexity of computer viruses being released on the Internet today has the anti-virus industry on the defensive, experts say, underscoring the need for consumers to avoid relying on anti-virus software alone to keep their home computers safe and secure.

Infected Australian computers fetch top dollar
Hackers are paying top dollar on international blackmarkets for computers from Australia that have been unknowingly hijacked and infected with spyware. A Russian malware distribution site offers $US100 for a haul of 1000 spyware-infected Australian machines, double the price offered for US machines and 30 times more than those from Asia.

uk: Civil Serf blogger faces disciplinary action
A senior civil servant who detailed the inner workings of Government has reportedly been suspended pending an investigation into her conduct. The author of the popular Civil Serf blog is reported to have confessed to a Government investigating team.

uk: Cyber crime stays one step ahead
Computer crime is not only exploding in volume but is mutating faster than it can be contained, a new report to be published next week will warn. Some 2.5 million new types of malicious programme have been launched in the past two months alone ? more than the previous 15 years put together, according to the latest data from the security firm Trend Micro. The UK now has around 1.25 million "infected" computers. And the average number of PCs across the world sending out spam emails every month shot up to 10 million last year, more than double the 4.2 million in 2006, which was double the 2.1 million in 2005.

us: A Push to Limit the Tracking of Web Surfers? Clicks
After reading about how Internet companies like Google, Microsoft and Yahoo collect information about people online and use it for targeted advertising, one New York assemblyman said there ought to be a law. So he drafted a bill, now gathering support in Albany, that would make it a crime ? punishable by a fine to be determined ? for certain Web companies to use personal information about consumers for advertising without their consent. And because it would be extraordinarily difficult for the companies that collect such data to adhere to stricter rules for people in New York alone, these companies would probably have to adjust their rules everywhere, effectively turning the New York legislation into national law.

Phorm tracks every Web move in Britain
As the debate continues over how much data should be gathered by companies like Google and Yahoo about people who surf the Web, one new company is drawing attention and controversy by boasting that it will collect the most complete information of all.

Schmidt: Google may share user info with US gov't
Google chief executive Eric Schmidt has revealed that the US government has made "requests" for the search giant to share information about its users, and that Google would comply if the requests were legal. During his flying visit to Sydney, ZDNet.com.au asked Schmidt whether, if Google was sharing information with the US government, the company would admit to it.

Billy Bragg: Let us decide how to exploit our own music
Sometimes there are words that really reverberate with people. What Thomas Jefferson wrote in the preamble to the U.S. Constitution is one. I think Barack Obama's disquisition on race in America is another. I'm curious to know how the smackdown Billy Bragg delivered to the social-networking moguls is going to be received. If history's any guide, his New York Times op-ed on Saturday called "The Royalty Scam" will fall on deaf ears. Still, it's worth a serious hearing.

Taking on the Godzilla of video-sharing sites: Dailymotion takes on YouTube
In a gray bunker of a building with a graveyard as its neighbor, a freshly hired strike force of Internet executives, programmers and advertising representatives is mounting a grand mission to take on a global behemoth: Google's YouTube.

Breaking the Law To Get a Break: Social Site Partners With Music Label That Sued It
For many music-oriented Web start-ups, a copyright lawsuit can be a death sentence. But for Imeem, getting sued by one of the biggest record labels played a pivotal role in its success.

us: MPAA to Congress: Filtering is in colleges? best interests
The MPAA has a bee in its collective bonnet about collegiate piracy, and the group isn't about to let anything so banal as "facts" get in the way of some cathartic outrage. How else to explain the fact that the group continues to petition members of Congress for special favors that would force colleges to make plans for offering up legal music services to students and for implementing copyright filters after the MPAA's own data shows that schools have little to do with the overall problem? In a new letter this week, the MPAA continued to push its agenda in Congress, arguing that filters aren't just good for the movie business, they're good for the schools.

China releases video website 'blacklist' [Reuters]
A Chinese video-sharing website has received an official government warning under new rules to curb pornographic, violent and political content. Industry insiders said the move could scare away future investors in the sector.

China publishes 'blacklist' of video Web [Reuters]
Chinese authorities ordered 25 video-sharing Web sites to halt operations and issued warnings to dozens of others on Thursday, tightening their grip on online content in a move which could scare away future investment in the sector. Among the Web sites to be warned was Tudou.com, which is backed by a unit of venture capital heavyweight IDG and received an official warning under new rules to curb pornographic, violent and political content.

Madonna to release new album via mobile
Madonna, the singer who famously refused to make her music available on iTunes, will become the first artist to release an album via mobile phone prior to its release in store.

Business in the Hotseat over Net Censorship by Michael Geist
Michael Geist's weekly technology law column focuses on the growth of Internet censorship and the accompanying pressure on the business community to do something about it. He begins by noting that as the Internet moved into the mainstream in the mid-1990s, John Gilmore, one of the founders of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, coined the phrase "the Internet interprets censorship as damage and routes around it. "Gilmore's comments were a reference to the architecture of the Internet, which was designed to ensure that information was delivered by the most efficient means possible and render attempts to block content nearly impossible. Yet years later, a growing number of countries seem determined to challenge Gilmore's maxim. China is the best known (as evidenced by recent events in Tibet), having implemented both a massive content filtering system that exerts control over external content and demanded that foreign Internet firms establish
 Chinese-versions of their services that abide by the government's requirements.

Wikileaks defies 'great firewall of China'
Whistleblower website Wikileaks has made 35 censored videos of civil unrest in Tibet available in a bid to get round the "great firewall of China". Wikileaks said that posting the videos was a "response to the Chinese Public Security Bureau's carte-blanche censorship of YouTube, the BBC, CNN, the Guardian and other sites" that had carried sensitive video footage about Tibet.

China sidesteps internet criticism
A senior Chinese government official has said that he welcomes closer international ties to develop the country's burgeoning digital media sector, but also delivered a stark warning to foreigners not to use "internet issues" to meddle in China's "internal affairs".

YouTube Unplugged
As Foreign Governments Block Sensitive Content, Video Site Must Pick Between Bending to Censorship, Doing Business: On Sunday, access to Google Inc.'s YouTube inside China was cut off after the Web site was flooded with graphic images from Tibet, including videos of burning trucks and monks being dragged through the streets by Chinese soldiers.

Tibet: how can we get at the truth when China bans journalists and blocks the net? by Roy Greenslade
Journalists are doing their best to report from inside Tibet. But the Chinese authorities are doing their worst to stop them from filing copy or from transmitting film and pictures. Internet access is restricted too. But, as the Daily Telegraph's China correspondent Richard Spencer reports, some bloggers are managing to put up material on the net. For example, EastSouthWestNorth carries video clips - though one has been taken down - plus analysis which calls into question claims by the Chinese authorities that the revolt is merely a "race riot." It also alleges that film purporting to show Tibetans attacking Chinese may in fact be examples of Chinese assaulting Tibetans (it points out that Han Chinese outnumber ethnic Tibetans in Lhasa).

Rusbridger attacks Chinese 'censorship'
The Guardian editor, Alan Rusbridger, has accused the Chinese authorities of committing an "act of deliberate and wholly unacceptable censorship" by blocking access to news websites covering the unrest in Tibet.

State TV switches to non-stop footage of Chinese under attack
China has begun to fight back against criticism of its handling of the Tibetan protests, launching a sustained publicity offensive as well as blocking foreign broadcasters and websites and denying journalists access to areas of unrest.

The great firewall of China
Imagine living in a country where bird flu is a constant danger, yet you can't look it up on Google. You're diagnosed with HIV AIDS but you can't search for a Facebook support network. You're trying to research a school project on religion but Wikipedia's content on the subject is blocked. You're in the mood for some distraction but can't access YouTube. Even worse, imaging living in a country where trying to find this information online could land you in trouble. This is the everyday reality for people in China, where online censorship is carried out by 30,000 internet police and state-owned internet service providers. And China is far from the only country in which controlling information and opinion in cyberspace is pervasive.

FBI posts fake hyperlinks to snare child porn suspects
The FBI has recently adopted a novel investigative technique: posting hyperlinks that purport to be illegal videos of minors having sex, and then raiding the homes of anyone willing to click on them.

UK outrage at Miss Bimbo website
A website that encourages girls as young as 9 to embrace plastic surgery and extreme dieting in the search for the perfect figure was condemned as lethal by parents? groups and healthcare experts yesterday. The Miss Bimbo internet game has attracted prepubescent girls who are told to buy their virtual characters breast enlargement surgery and to keep them ?waif thin? with diet pills.

How Australian police broke net pedophile ring
Australian police have played a leading role in smashing an international pedophile internet network. More than 22 pedophiles who thought their super encryption code was unbreakable have been arrested in the US, Canada, Europe and Australia.

au: Fight footage on web
Footage of local students involved in a fight as at least 10 schoolmates form a circle to watch was posted on the internet on Saturday.

ph: Fighting online child porn then and now
There is visible disgust when Alex Ramos, computer forensics specialist of the Philippine National Police, talks about the rising incidence of online child pornography in the Philippines.

uk: Parents urged to ban computers from their children's bedrooms.
Parents will this week be urged to ban computers from their children's bedrooms. A report by TV psychologist Tanya Byron into the damaging impact of video games and the internet will point out that parents have little idea what their youngsters do online.

uk: Game ratings under more scrutiny
Game ratings are under increased scrutiny following the decision to give Manhunt 2 an 18 certificate in the UK.

us: Cyber bullies could face penalties
Responding to the October 2006 suicide of Dardenne Prairie teen Megan Meier, Illinois and Missouri lawmakers have introduced bills aimed at keeping teens safe from cyber bullies. One proposal could put cyber bullies in prison for up to five years.

Internet Fuels Child Exploitation
The advent of the World Wide Web has provided child predators a new way to connect with children?and with other abusers. With approximately 20 per cent of all Internet pornography involving children, law enforcement agencies are hard-pressed to respond effectively.

We'll regulate until we have an open EU market, says Reding
Europe?s market in telecommunications is still not fully opened or competitive, information society chief Viviane Reding has said. Speaking at the launch of a progress report on the market in electronic communications on Wednesday, Reding said that she would continue to push through her reforms until the market was opened.

ru: Medvedev saves internet providers from deputies
Amendments will be made to the draft law on strategic sectors. A source in the State Duma reports that the newly elected Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has disapproved of the intension to include internet providers into the list of strategic companies. Leonid Reiman, RF Minister of IT and communications, warned earlier that introducing investment restrictions in telecommunications might result in the internet drain away from Russia.

SARFT Punishes Illegal Chinese Internet Video Service Providers
China's State Administration of Radio, Film and Television has published the results of online audio and video service provider checks it has recently completed and it has punished websites that have been involved in illegal operations.

Microsoft NZ head warns of OOXML no vote
InternetNZ has waded into the divisive OOXML debate urging Standards New Zealand to reject Microsoft's document standard on March 29, the deadline nations have to accept modifications proposed late last month and allow the standard to proceed to publication.

ACMA appoints specialist industry advisor to its spectrum consultation group as a ?public interest advocate? [news release]
The Australian Communications and Media Authority has appointed Geoff Luther as Specialist Industry Advisor to its new spectrum consultation body, the Radiocommunications Consultative Committee (RCC). The RCC held its first meeting earlier this week.

It's Too Darn Hot: The huge cost of powering?and cooling?data centers has the tech industry scrambling for energy efficiency
A 35-minute drive south of Iceland's capital of Reykjavik lies the tiny fishing village of Grindavik. One January day, Kristinn Haflioason steers his car a few minutes out of town to a vast, snow-swept expanse of volcanic rock that juts out into the Atlantic Ocean. He climbs out and launches into an unlikely sales pitch that he hopes will persuade corporations from the U.S. and Europe to locate operations there. "Dozens of companies have expressed interest," he says.

Real World 2.0
In a new book, Here Comes Everybody, author and academic Clay Shirky argues the future is here; it's time to get on with it: "Our principal challenge is not to decide where we want to go, but to stay upright as we go there." In his book, Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations, author and NYU faculty member Clay Shirky describes the profound impact of social technological tools on contemporary culture?from e-mail and blogs to Twitter and wikis.

nz: Broadband top telco election issue
Telecommunications lobby group Tuanz is promoting broadband internet and telecoms political policy as an election issue this year, as it was in Australia's November poll.

Google proposes using unused U.S. airwaves for wireless Internet services
Google gave U.S. regulators a proposal Monday seeking permission to use the airwaves between television broadcast channels for mobile broadband services.

Google outlines proposal for 'Wi-Fi on steroids'
Google on Monday said it has a plan to have American consumers from Manhattan to rural North Dakota surfing the Web on handheld gadgets at gigabits-per-second speeds by the 2009 holiday season.

Google revives push to get free airwaves
Google Inc.'s wireless strategy could be summed up this way: Why pay for something you can get for nothing?

US court reminds states that VoIP is exempt from service fees
Late last year, VoIP provider Vonage sued the state of Nebraska over the Nebraska Public Service Commission's attempts to force it to pay into the state's Universal Service Fund. A federal court has rebuffed the Cornhusker State's attempts, barring the PSC from collecting USF fees from Vonage and, by extension, any other VoIP provider operating within the state.

nz: Man jailed for possessing child porn
One of the country's worst child porn offenders has been jailed for five years after he was found with thousands of child porn photographs and movies.

nz: Sentence reduction `not justified' for child porn offender
A district court judge has been slammed for giving a recidivist child porn sex offender a 2-1/2-year discount on his prison sentence.


(c) David Goldstein 2008


David Goldstein
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Received on Thu Mar 27 2008 - 04:26:01 UTC

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