Regulating The Internet

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Regulating The Internet

Postby shadylady » Sun Sep 15, 2013 1:07 pm

In China, Retweets Can Get You Prison Time
Although this clip is mostly about repressive laws regulating free speech in China, the commentators point out that we in the USA are not exactly immune to this sort of thing. Our leaders push ideas such as bullying and public safety as a way to justify holding people accountable for what they say online. Similarly most of the propaganda against anonymity is also intended to make it easier to hold people accountable for their online communications. Ultimately the leaders in China and here in the USA only want to hold people accountable - in other words, punish people for saying the wrong things online. The differences between the two countries are incredibly slight, but the similarities are overwhelming!
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Re: Regulating The Internet

Postby panamint_patty » Mon May 12, 2014 8:28 am

shadylady: Lots of people say that we have freedom of speech here in the USA, but that really isn't true. Not only does the government at the state and federal level have laws limiting what you can say in many different ways, but also corporations and other private organizations can penalize people for what they say. The the government should protect our freedom of speech, but they do the opposite and they do nothing to stop corporations from limiting what we can say either.
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Re: Regulating The Internet

Postby desertrat » Mon Jun 16, 2014 3:51 pm

Appeals Court Says Having 'Dirt' In Your Domain Name Doesn't Remove Safe Harbor Protections
This is one of those cases where a lower court judge made a stupid ruling based on poor reasoning and a basic misunderstanding of the law. This sort of thing happens fairly frequently, which just goes to show that the law is too complicated for even people with enough legal experience to attain a position as a lower court judge. Actually Safe Harbor Protections are pretty easy to understand and the need for such provisions should be obvious to anyone who values freedom of speech. Without such provisions few people would be willing to host online forums such as TronaNews and social media sites such as Twitter would not exist (or at least would have strict rules which would make it not terribly interesting).
This is important for a variety of reasons. Just this morning, I saw a debate break out on Twitter about whether or not someone is liable for retweeting a defamatory tweet. In other parts of the world the answer, ridiculously, is yes. Thankfully, this ruling highlights why that's not the case here in the US. Merely selecting and editing content for display does not remove your safe harbors. In this case, the court goes even further in noting that "ratifying or adopting" others' statements in no way makes you suddenly liable for those statements.

Read the entire ruling if you'd like!
LINK: https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20140616/10363927595/phew-appeals-court-says-having-dirt-your-websites-domain-name-doesnt-make-you-liable-defamatory-comments.shtml
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Re: Regulating The Internet

Postby a2z » Mon Jun 16, 2014 7:52 pm

desertrat wrote:Appeals Court Says Having 'Dirt' In Your Domain Name Doesn't Remove Safe Harbor Protections
This is one of those cases where a lower court judge made a stupid ruling based on poor reasoning and a basic misunderstanding of the law. This sort of thing happens fairly frequently, which just goes to show that the law is too complicated for even people with enough legal experience to attain a position as a lower court judge. Actually Safe Harbor Protections are pretty easy to understand and the need for such provisions should be obvious to anyone who values freedom of speech. Without such provisions few people would be willing to host online forums such as TronaNews and social media sites such as Twitter would not exist (or at least would have strict rules which would make it not terribly interesting).

A lower court judge can't get by with simply understanding the law when it comes to laws regulating what people do on the internet. The judge must also have some understanding of how computers, networks, and websites work. Without this "technical" knowledge judges are unable to properly interpret and apply law. The problem here is that judges tend to not be the types that understand science and technology. They are adept at comprehension, regurgitation, and oration (BS), but not so good at understanding how complex systems work, problem solving, or pattern recognition. However, they are able to insert themselves (and unnecessary laws) into lots of situations and make a lot of money as a result.
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Re: Regulating The Internet

Postby desertrat » Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:03 am

Cyberbullying 2.0: New Apps Allow Tormentors to Post Anonymously
This may literally be the dumbest news report I've ever seen. First of all, mean comments are no big deal and kids should be taught that such comments are nothing to worry about. It just takes a little rational discussion and the problem evaporates. Instead we have fake experts and security companies raking in big bucks in an attempt to deal with the imaginary problem. At one point a fake expert says that living in a world where people can make mean comments anonymously is like living in the mind of a psychopath. That may win the dumbest comment of the century award and is just so incredibly stupid at so many levels. At another point in this news report we learn that a high school went to the expense of putting up an electronic fence in order to keep an app called YikYak from being used on campus. Again and again we hear anonymity demonized as a big part of the make-believe problem. This propaganda blitz against anonymity is quite troubling. Anonymity is good. It allows people to express unpopular opinions. Sometimes people abuse anonymity in trivial ways, but no big deal. So what!!! Anonymity scares big corporations and big government because it allows citizens to slip the rug out from under them. That's why we see a news report (propaganda piece) like this.
:curse:

(Also posted in thread about latest school board meeting. This is also a school issue.)
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Re: Regulating The Internet

Postby wildrose » Wed Sep 03, 2014 9:16 am

REGARDING ANONYMITY: There are only two ways of telling the complete truth - anonymously and posthumously. Quote attributed to Thomas Sowell.
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Re: Regulating The Internet

Postby cactuspete » Sat Apr 29, 2017 6:37 am

Instead of an automated page ranking system (which can be gamed by website owners), it sounds like Google will now go with human curation (which is subject to human bias of those doing the curating). Either way some pages get promoted and some pages get demoted. Also I suppose the human curation method could also employ some artificial intelligence to help sort out content on web pages and so although either method can have an information control aspect to it, ideally it will be about quality in the purest sense possible.
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Re: Regulating The Internet

Postby desertrat » Mon May 01, 2017 7:47 am

cactuspete: There are two problems with human curation. First of all, humans are inconsistent and that's true whether we're comparing the judgement of different individuals or even the judgement of a single individual at different times. Secondly, humans are sometimes overly cautious. That is, rather than calling something by the letter of the law or according to the guidelines, often humans will err on the side of caution, thus reducing free speech. Automated page rank isn't perfect either, but humans are difficult to predict, which I guess from Google's point of view is good since it makes it hard to game the system.
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