In the tech news this week, Stephen and Brian bust me for buying an iPhone 4 on eBay to tide me over until there's a phone I really want--or until my Verizon contract is up. Nicole Lee joins us to talk about Nokia and Microsoft's new baby, the Lumia 800, and Sony's plans to get serious about making smart phones. Plus, stock advice from the gang, the coming nightmare that is the Stop Internet Piracy Act, and Computer Love.Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more
A new report from Google shows a rise in government requests for user account data and content removal, including a request by one unnamed law enforcement agency to remove YouTube videos of police brutality--which the company refused.
The latest Google Transparency Report, released today, also shows historic traffic patterns on Google services via graphs with spikes and drops indicating outages that, in some cases, indicate attempts by governments to block access to Google or the Internet. For instance, all Google servers were inaccessible in Libya during the first six months of this year, as was YouTube in China.
But the … Read more
China's long history of Internet censorship is what's best for the public, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu told reporters yesterday.
According to Reuters, which spoke with Yu in an interview published today, China believes that its "Internet management" is not only "lawful," but is designed to "safeguard the public."
"We are willing to work with countries and communicate with them on the development of the Internet and to work together to promote the sound development of the Internet," Yu told Reuters and other reporters that were at the press conference. &… Read more
The Chinese government can't stand online rumors, and in a commentary today from state-run media organization Xinhua it made that abundantly clear.
According to Xinhua, a mouthpiece for the country's ruling party, the growth of microblogging services, as well as blogs, is helping to fuel "toxic rumors" that, the government says, could lead to the rapid disintegration of the quality of the Internet.
"The rapid advance of this flood has also brought 'mud and sand'--the spread of rumors--and to nurture a healthy Internet, we must thoroughly eradicate the soil in which rumors grow," … Read more
Hackers have broken into a second Web site affiliated with the San Francisco Bay Area subway system, which has come under fire in the last week for turning off cell phone service before a planned protest.
A database belonging to the BART Police Officers Association was posted online today, complete with full names, e-mail addresses, home addresses, and passwords. BART stands for Bay Area Rapid Transit.
It was not immediately clear who was responsible for the embarrassing information leak--a Twitter account affiliated with Anonymous said that no one has "claimed responsibility for the hack," and speculated that it … Read more
Google has exited the Chinese market for online search, but two of its biggest rivals, Microsoft and Baidu, have signed a pact to cooperate in the populous country.
Specifically, Microsoft will supply search results for English-language queries on the Chinese search engine, according to representatives for both companies who spoke to The New York Times and Dow Jones today.
"More and more people here are searching for English terms...but Baidu hasn't done a good job. So here's a way for us to do it," a Baidu representative told the Times.
Baidu is the top search … Read more
The U.S. Supreme Court today reaffirmed the principle that the First Amendment protects free speech in the digital age, rejecting a 2005 California law that severely restricted the sale of "violent" video games to minors.
The statute had been blocked from taking effect by lower court rulings in suits brought by industry representatives. Following today's decision by a 7-2 majority of the court (PDF), the law is now a dead letter.
The decision was highly anticipated, and the result entirely expected.
The decision in Brown v. EMA is the second in as many weeks from the … Read more
After hacker group Anonymous' apparently successful Operation Turkey to protest Internet censorship, the country's authorities have detained 32 people in connection with the attack on Turkish government Web sites.
After Friday's attack, Turkey's telecommunications authorities investigated and took the people into custody, according to a report today by Turkey's state news agency. Eight of those detained were under 18 years old, the report said.
The arrests come just days after Spain said Friday it arrested three Anonymous hackers in connection with attacks on Sony's PlayStation Network, governments, banks, and others. Retribution followed quickly, with an … Read more
In the days of the Cold War, the United States used the Voice of America radio station to spread information in countries without speech and press freedoms. Now it's begun a 21st century equivalent to bypassing censors using independent Internet and mobile phones technology.
Through the shadow network effort, reported yesterday by The New York Times, involves activities such as building a mesh network of suitcase-housed wireless Internet access points. Another $50 million project seeks build an independent mobile phone network in Afghanistan that the Taliban can't shut down, the newspaper reported. A third shadow network, not described … Read more
Following widespread street protests demanding an end to autocratic rule by President Hosni Mubarak, a country of more than 80 million people found itself almost entirely disconnected from the rest of the world. Here's how the story has unfolded:
Vodafone: We were forced to send pro-Mubarak texts Egyptian government of President Hosni Mubarak forced carrier to send prescripted, propagandistic text messages during recent unrest, Vodafone says. (Posted in Politics and Law by Lance Whitney) February 3, 2011 11:43 AM PST
U.S. defended Egyptian activist's YouTube videos WikiLeaks cable shows U.S. State Department talked Google into … Read more