July 2008

Going Into Space? Get a License from NOAA Before Taking Pictures

July 31st 2008

Recently, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) sent out a letter to participants of the X Prize, a sponsored, private-sector contest to create a reusable space vehicle. The letter stated that if participants actively or passively sense the Earth’s surface, including the use of electromagnetic waves emitted, reflected or diffracted, then they need to […]

Linkroll: More Online Law News Than the Pan Can Handle

July 30th 2008

FCC Prepares to Punish Comcast A majority of members of the Federal Communications Commission have cast votes in favor of punishing Comcast Corp. for blocking subscribers’ Internet traffic, an agency official said Friday. ISP Ad Networking Scheme May Violate Wiretap Laws The Center for Democracy & Technology has advanced a legal theory that the practice […]

Take Aways From Online Marketing Summmit in Boston

July 29th 2008

This week I participated in a the wrap-up panel discussion at Boston stop of the Online Marketing Summit. My co-panelists were Blake Coyle, a sales exec from Google, Paul Hyland, Executive Producer, edweek.org, and Theresa Regli, Principal, CMS Watch. As usual, I’m injecting personal observations along with what happened. If you were there too, please […]

Higher Ed Act May Require Cameras in Student’s Homes

July 26th 2008

Raising concerns about student privacy, the Chronicle of Higher Education reports that legislation renewing the Higher Education Act contains language that may bring video surveillance or biometric testing into the homes of students participating in distance learning. The paragraph is actually about clamping down on cheating. It says that an institution that offers an online program […]

Does John McCain “Get” the Knowledge Economy?

July 25th 2008

We’ve previously discussed Barak Obama’s comprehensive, and somewhat idealistic, technology plan for the federal government. He proposes establishing a CIO, and I discussed what we have learned from introducing this role at the state level. He’s idealistic, and perhaps naive. But John McCain’s still-emerging approach seems to be based on near-complete disregard. There, I’ve said […]

Update: Rogue Admin Returns Control of San Francisco Network

July 24th 2008

The Sanfrancisco Chronicle reports that after a secret visit by the mayor of San Francisco, the network administrator who locked the cities technology staff out of the network surrendered his password. See earlier coverage of this story. Terry Child’s defense attorney, Erin Crane, claimed that Mr. Childs was merely protecting the network from incompetent staff, […]

Slydial: Sneaky Voicemail for the Seinfeld Generation

July 24th 2008

Slydial is a free voice message service that directly connects you to someone else’s mobile voicemail. Their phone never rings, and you get to leave a message without actually speaking with them. (Wait for the legal angle; it’s coming.) Their wonderfully written weasely website spells it right out. There are people you must phone: bosses, significant others, […]

Be An Owner, Not A Consumer: Don’t Get Licensed Out of Your Stuff

July 23rd 2008

Do You Own What You Buy? Increasingly, it seems that we no longer own our own stuff. Is Your Website Yours? Are we getting used to governments seeking to regulate websites? If I own or rent a server, and pay to connect it to a private network so that other users can access my private […]

Further Reading: Reducing the Human Experience to Economics

July 23rd 2008

James Boyd White is a distinguished professor of Law and English at the University of Michigan. In the spirit of Erazim Kohak, his recent talk on Law, Economics and Torture admonishes us against reducing life, democracy or law to mere economics, and to resist this trend when it is presented as inevitable. Long ago I […]

Wikileaks: Cuba to Bypass US Internet Embargo via Venezuela

July 22nd 2008

Last week, the whistle-blower site Wikileaks published a confidential 2006 contract in which Venezuelan and Cuban firms agreed to lay an undersea fiberoptic cable connecting the countries. The cable is to be completed by 2010. Among the agreement’s stated objectives is to build a relationship of “strategic value,” which will permit Cuba and Venezuela to […]