Press review

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The press review catalogues press articles related to la Quadrature's issues, compiled by its volunteers.
See also our French press review.

[DW] Erdogan pushing Internet censorship forward

[The Turkish government] submitted a bill to parliament this week that would allow authorities to block specific websites and keep a record of users' Internet activities for up to two years. [...]

"Previously, there were a limited number of types of alleged illegal content that could be blocked in Turkey," said Yaman Akdeniz, a professor of law at Istanbul's Bilgi University. "For example, child pornography, obscene materials, gambling-related content, encouragement of suicide or encouragement of prostitution and escort websites," Akdeniz told DW.

Akdeniz explained that now, the government is trying to extend this block to include violations of personal rights and also privacy. "That could include defamation, for example," he said.

[TheGuardian] Xbox Live among game services targeted by US and UK spy agencies

NSA and GCHQ collect gamers' chats and deploy real-life agents into World of Warcraft and Second Life. [...]

The agencies, the documents show, have built mass-collection capabilities against the Xbox Live console network, which has more than 48 million players. Real-life agents have been deployed into virtual realms, from those Orc hordes in World of Warcraft to the human avatars of Second Life. There were attempts, too, to recruit potential informants from the games' tech-friendly users.

[BBC] MEPs seek video link with Snowden for NSA spying probe

Euro MPs have agreed to invite fugitive US whistleblower Edward Snowden to give evidence via live video link to a European Parliament inquiry into US surveillance.

[...] There is speculation that Mr Snowden could speak to the MEPs via video link in late January. But he has not yet responded to the invitation.

[RT] France hands down data privacy fine to Google

French data protection watchdog CNIL [Commission nationale de l’informatique et des libertés] fined Google 150,000 euros ($204,000) for ignoring its three-month deadline to align its practice of tracking and storing user information with the country’s law.

[...] Back in June CNIL ruled that Google has breached six counts of the country’s privacy laws. The biggest concern was that the company did not provide “sufficient” information to users in terms of how their information was being used and stored.

[30C3] A DIY BookScanner In Every Hackerspace? - Benjamin Sonntag

Lightning conference that Benjamin Sonntag, cofounder of La Quadrature du Net, gave at the 30C3, the 30th Chaos communication conference of the German CCC, in Hamburg on 28 December 2013.

See also:

[Wired] How the NSA Almost Killed the Internet

Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and the other tech titans have had to fight for their lives against their own government. An exclusive look inside their year from hell—and why the Internet will never be the same.

In a sense, the tech companies are more like the NSA than they would like to think. Both have seized on the progress in computing, communications, and storage to advance their respective missions. [...] Both have sought to fulfill those missions by amassing huge troves of personal information—and both offer trade-offs that seemingly justify the practice. Google, Facebook, and others argue that they can use that information to improve the lives of their customers far in excess of any discomfort that may come from sharing that data. The NSA believes that it’s necessary to draw on that information to prevent a replay of 9/11 or worse.

[Quarz] How a bureaucrat in a struggling country at the edge of Europe found himself safeguarding the world’s data

The Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (DPC) of Ireland was established in 1989. When Ireland lowered its corporate tax rate, Google, Facebook, Apple, LinkedIn, Twitter, eBay and PayPal set up shop.

"Facebook was the first to declare that users outside North America have a legal relationship with its Irish subsidiary (see section 19), not the American mothership. [...] LinkedIn did the same for its 175 million users, including Canadians, who live outside the United States. Adobe followed suit. Dropbox is expected to do so soon. (Google retains California as the sole jurisdiction for any issues, data-protection-related or otherwise.)"

"Privacy advocates accuse [the office] of practising light-touch regulation. The Irish DPC allows companies to “do whatever they want with personal data,” plays down the threat of sanctions, and rarely uses enforcement powers, says EDRi."

[EFF] What Do You Want From Copyright? Tell the EU now and Change the Future of Global Innovation Policy

A rare opportunity to change the path of copyright in Europe has emerged, but there's not much time to take advantage of it. The European Commission (EC) has opened up for public comment copyright policy across the European Union for the first time in 15 years. [...]

While this process is a welcome improvement from having no opportunity for public input, La Quadrature du Net notes that the process is still far from perfect.

[ComputerWorldUK] TTIP Update XI

Because of the absurdly and unjustifiably secret nature of the TAFTA/TTIP negotiations, piecing together what is going on is a matter of looking for scraps of information wherever they can be found, and then trying to see the bigger picture. In my last two updates, I analysed some interesting attacks that the European Commission made on articles that dared to be sceptical about TTIP. In this one, I'll examine another important source: meetings with those that are privy to the negotiations. [...]

Enforcement was one of the most contentious issues in ACTA, and was one of the reasons that the European Parliament killed it off last year. So the big question is: what is going on here? Was De Gucht simply trying to mislead us? Or is one of his staff taking the initiative on his own, and undermining De Gucht's statement that TTIP will not be ACTA by the back door? Presumably we will find out as more information leaks out. But Pettersson's report on this meeting highlights a number of disturbing issues. [...]

After all, once they have been revealed to the US negotiators, tabled documents are no longer secret. That's not least because the US negotiators are believed to share everything with hundreds of companies and lobbyists, which means that the well-connected (and those with good spies) can easily find out what's going on. The only people that are kept in the dark by this process are the ordinary people in whose name the negotiations are theoretically being conducted. That's just unacceptable in an age where transparency and openness are rightly taken for granted.

[Techdirt] Study: File Sharing Leads To More, Not Fewer, Musical Hits Being Written

A new study, written by Glynn S. Lunney, Professor of Law at the Tulane University School of Law in New Orleans, shows that "concludes that file sharing has not reduced the creation of new original music. It may have led to fewer works as a result of fewer new artists entering the field, but it was also associated with an increase in output by those artists who chose, despite the lower returns, to devote their talents to making music. Given that file sharing undeniably promotes the broad dissemination of existing works, this conclusion suggests that file sharing is both fully consonant with copyright's constitutionally-delimited purposes and welfare enhancing."

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