All Articles Tagged "internet regulation"
The past two years have been bumpy ones for the relationship between Congress and Internet regulation, with the introduction and shutting down of SOPA and PIPA, among other things. But Representative Darrell Issa (R-CA) hopes to get Congress to “take a break from messing with the Internet” with a proposed new bill.
On November 26, Issa introduced a draft of the Internet American Moratorium Act (IAMA), which would “create a two-year moratorium on any new laws, rules or regulations governing the Internet.” And he turned to Reddit, the user-generated news site, on Wednesday to discuss the law and get feedback from Internet users.
“I’m not advocating for no rules or laws on the Internet ever. But it has been made abundantly clear to me, and to a lot of other people, that both legislators and regulators have gone down the road of trying to take actions that impact the Internet without knowing their full effect,” Issa said on Reddit. “This is the case today both domestically and internationally.”
Naturally, not everyone agrees with Issa and there was some backlash on Reddit regarding Issa’s past behavior on Internet regulation laws. According to Gigi Sohn, president of consumer advocacy group Public Knowledge, who spoke to The Hill, “Even if they pass this bill, Congress could pass another Internet regulation bill that would supersede the previous bill.”
Do you think Issa’s bill would have any real impact in Congress? Or is it good protection to keep the status quo of internet regulation in place for a couple more years?
By Charlotte Young
India has put its country on Internet lockdown. The Indian Department of Information Technology has issued new regulations that attempt to restrict web content they view as “harassing, hateful” or “blasphemous,” reports The New York Times.
The restrictions have caused an uproar among free speech advocates and Internet users who say the regulations “could severely curtail debate and discussion on the Internet.”
Additionally, the law also demands that sites such as YouTube and Facebook remove any offensive content within 36 hours of a request from the Indian government without allowing the Internet user responsible for the content a chance to respond.
“What are we, Saudi Arabia?” asked Pushkar Raj, the general secretary for the People’s Union for Civil Liberties in India. “We don’t expect this from India. This is something very serious.”
Although fewer than 10 percent of Indians even have access to the Internet, mobile devices are quickly increasing the numbers. More than 700 million cell phone accounts have been created in India.
The country has also largely benefited financially from the technology increase due to its role in software and Web services creation.
Even China admits that they may not have the most liberal of governments. But at least, they say, they are not as hypocritical as the United States.
According to the Guardian, last week Secretary of State Hillary Clinton criticized China for detaining artists such as AI Weiwei and others in the annual state department survey of the human rights situation around the world.
Well, China has a report of its own to refute U.S. criticism. State news agency Xinhua said the report “turned a blind eye to its own terrible human rights situation” and points to the U.S. government’s treatment of Wikileaks. The report also makes mention of domestic problems in the U.S. such as poverty, crime and racism. Furthermore, the report holds the U.S. responsible for the large number of civilian deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the prisoner abuse accounts.
The report concludes that the U.S. imposes double standards by “requesting unrestricted ‘internet freedom’ in other countries, which becomes an important diplomatic tool for the United States to impose pressure and seek hegemony, and imposing strict restriction within its territory.”
(Wall Street Journal) — In a contentious hearing, House Republicans attacked new regulations for broadband Internet lines and criticized the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission for adopting them. Republicans are targeting the “net neutrality” rules, which would bar Internet providers from blocking or slowing Internet traffic and services, as well as new regulations in such areas as health care and the environment, as unnecessary and overly burdensome on industry.
“Why would you put the government in charge of the Internet?” asked Rep. Fred Upton (R., Mich.), who chairs the House Energy and Commerce Committee. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, a Democrat, defended the new rules during the hearing, saying the FCC “did the right thing” and that it is “pro-job and pro-investment” for the U.S. economy. Democratic lawmakers on the panel also defended Mr. Genachowski. Sveral said the FCC hadn’t gone far enough in regulating Internet lines. They said the agency should have more firmly established its authority to play Internet traffic cop by reregulating Internet lines under rules designed for land-line phones.
(Slate) — Most discussions of “government and the Internet” focus oncontent regulation: Should there be a law against cyberbullying? Sanctions against companies who help Wikileaks? What about Egypt shutting down the Internet? These days, such questions are raised in the United States only by extreme behavior, the electronic equivalents of shouting “Fire!” in a crowded theater. For the most part, there is broad political, legal, and social consensus that government shouldn’t fiddle with how information flows in a free society. But the ideal of neutral government is a mirage. Government hasalways played a significant role in how we communicate.