Harvard University Berkman Center for Internet and Society

Posted November 3rd, 2010 at 11:11 pm (UTC-4)
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A research center in Cambridge whose “…mission is to explore and understand cyberspace; to study its development, dynamics, norms, and standards; and to assess the need or lack thereof for laws and sanctions.”

Address: 23 Everett Street, 2nd Floor, Cambridge, MA 02138
Phone: 617.495.7547
Website: cyber.law.harvard.edu

Pew Internet and American Life Project

Posted November 3rd, 2010 at 11:11 pm (UTC-4)
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One of seven on-going projects that comprise the Pew Research Center, the Internet Project is “a nonpartisan, nonprofit “fact tank” that…produces reports exploring the impact of the internet on families, communities, work and home, daily life, education, health care, and civic and political life.”

Address: 1615 L Street NW, Washington, DC 20036
Phone: 202.419.4500
Website: http://www.pewinternet.org/

Open Network Initiative

Posted November 3rd, 2010 at 10:44 pm (UTC-4)
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Collaborative partnership of the Berkman Center at Harvard, Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto, and the SecDev Group in Ottawa, Canada.  Together, ONI’s “…aim is to investigate, expose and analyze Internet filtering and surveillance practices in a credible and non-partisan fashion.”

Website: http://opennet.net

Censoring Korea’s Internet

Posted October 19th, 2010 at 2:13 pm (UTC-4)
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North Korean propaganda is emerging on popular Internet social media sites. Not for domestic consumption – as virtually no North Korean has Internet access – but targeted to other countries, especially South Korea. But in the democratic South, considered the world’s most connected country, the government censors such content.

South Korea’s Internet censors are working harder these days to keep up with an expanding number of Web sites showing material from or sympathetic to North Korea.

But is it a good thing for the South to censor the North?  And can it even be done?   That, after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

What Went Wrong With Haystack?

Posted September 24th, 2010 at 12:58 pm (UTC-4)
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It seemed too good to be true, and perhaps that should have been the first warning. “Haystack” was said to be just the needed tool for Iranian democracy activists to break through governmental firewalls and hide their identity.

In the end, it may have put them at risk.  How did the promise of Haystack go so wrong?

Some ideas, and blame, after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

The Tweet That Shook The World

Posted September 13th, 2010 at 12:46 pm (UTC-4)
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Armed with little more than a flammable message, pastor Terry Jones set the Internet on fire recently when he announced he planned to burn copies of the Quran at his Florida church.

He now says he doesn’t intend to follow through on his threat, but damage has already been done. With few followers and fewer resources, Jones was able to seize the world stage in part through the use of social media. Which leaves some asking: If Jones can do it, who and what else may be next?

That, and more, after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

The Electronic Rumor Mill

Posted August 23rd, 2010 at 11:51 pm (UTC-4)
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The false rumor that President Barack Obama is Muslim has been getting a lot of attention recently, fueled in part by a new poll suggesting a growing number of Americans believe it to be true.

The rumor itself isn’t new – it’s been around since before Mr. Obama began his run for the Presidency. But it has been spreading rapidly lately – due in large measure to the Internet.

VOA’s Doug Bernard has a deeper look here.

Thai Political Battle Moves Online

Posted August 11th, 2010 at 1:40 pm (UTC-4)
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The Internet is the latest battleground in Thailand’s stormy political climate as the government attempts to shut down Web sites critical of it and the monarchy. The government is using tough laws to silence online criticism, but net users are finding ways to be heard.

During months of political protests earlier this year, the Thai government shut down thousands of Web sites it said fanned the protests or criticized the royal family.

VOA’s Ron Corben in Bangkok has more on the story.

Repression 2.0

Posted August 11th, 2010 at 1:34 pm (UTC-4)
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A media watchdog group called Reporters Without Borders has accused the United Arab Emirates of arresting people who used the popular BlackBerry device to organize a street protest against petrol price increases. The incident highlighted how governments around the world are increasingly using internet and mobile technology to undermine civil liberties.

Internet freedom activists say the Dubai episode is the latest incident in an alarming trend – that entire governments are censoring the internet.

VOA’s Mana Rabiee has much more here.

The Distraction Machine

Posted July 30th, 2010 at 1:11 pm (UTC-4)
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Is the Internet Making Us Smarter, or Dumber?

A controversial new book by journalist Nicholas Carr makes the bold claim that the Internet is not only changing how we think, but that it’s also lessening the quality of our thought.  Amid the many changes the Internet is bringing to our cultures, a new questions arises: what changes is it bringing to our minds?

VOA’s Doug Bernard has this look.

What’s Digital Frontiers?

What’s Digital Frontiers?

The Internet, mobile phones, tablet computers and other digital devices are transforming our lives in fundamental and often unpredictable ways. “Digital Frontiers” investigates how real world concepts like privacy, identity, security and freedom are evolving in the virtual world.

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