freedom of information

See the following -

2011 in Review: Developments in ACTA

Maira Sutton | Electronic Frontier Foundation | December 27, 2011

While Internet blacklist bills exploded into the domestic U.S. Congressional scene this year, foreboding international forces are also posing new threats to the Internet around the world. The most prominent of these is the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), signed by the U.S. in 2011, which would strengthen intellectual property enforcement norms between signatory countries, handing overbroad powers to the content industry to preserve their antiquated business model.

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A Perfect Streaming Storm

Sean Mutchnick | Open Source Medicine | February 13, 2012

This entire project has been a unique opportunity for several different departments within Wayne State University School of Medicine to work closely with its medical students to create a rich new resource for everyone involved. The new streaming website is a perfect example of what Open Source Medicine has been trying to provide since it was formed in February of 2011: A venue for developing ideas and making new connections.

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ACTA Goes Too Far, Says MEP

Charles Arthur | The Guardian | February 1, 2012

The French MEP who resigned his position in charge of negotiating the international Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) has said it "goes too far" by potentially cutting access to lifesaving generic drugs and restricting internet freedom.

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ACTA to Be Examined by Top EU Court

David Meyer | ZDNet UK | February 22, 2012

The European Commission is to refer the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement to Europe's highest court to check that ACTA really does comply with existing EU laws.

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ACTA Update I

Glyn Moody | ComputerworldUK | February 1, 2012

Anyone who follows me on Twitter or, or on Google+ will have noticed something of a crescendo of posts about the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) recently. There are two reasons for this.

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ACTA Update II

Glyn Moody | ComputerworldUK | February 2, 2012

Although ACTA is billed as a global treaty, there are only two participants that really matter: the US and the European Union. If either of those dropped out, it would be completely ineffectual. I think the US is unlikely to do that, for two reasons. First, ACTA is essentially the US copyright industries' shopping list of measures that they would like to see forced on the rest of the world: it gives huge benefits to Hollywood and the recording industry, but little to anyone else.

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ACTA's Back

Simon Phipps | | February 6, 2012

Now that the US bills SOPA and PIPA have been put on ice, attention has returned to their parent, an international treaty called ACTA. I've written extensively about ACTA before, but in summary it is an international treaty that has been secretly negotiated to ensure as little input as possible from the citizens of any country.

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ACTA: “Would Usurp Congressional Authority”

Washington's Blog | Washington's Blog | January 30, 2012

The much-criticized cloak of secrecy that has surrounded the Obama administration’s negotiation of the multilateral Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement was broken Wednesday. The leaked draft of ACTA belies the U.S. trade representative’s assertions that the agreement would not alter U.S. intellectual property law. And it raises the stakes on the constitutionally dubious method by which the administration proposes to make the agreement binding on the United States.

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Apple's iBooks 2: An Attack on Educational Freedoms

Glyn Moody | ComputerworldUK | January 20, 2012

This is the dark side of the e-textbook revolution. Yes, it's clearly fantastic to have all those "interactive animations, diagrams, photos, videos" available to enhance learning; and yes, it's great that you can carry around an entire library in a single iPad (assuming you can afford both of those elements), but the ugly truth is these are not your books: you are simply licensing them, just like proprietary software.

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Davos: Ushahidi Grows Its Global Crowd-Sourcing Platform, Slams Twitter Censorship [TCTV]

Mike Butcher | TechCrunch | January 27, 2012

VIDEO - At Davos I managed to catch Juliana Rotich, Co-Founder of Ushahidi, the incredible crowd sourcing platform which came out of Kenya. Starting with just a handful of countries in 2009, it’s main product, Crowdmap, is now used in hundreds of countries for crisis mapping and even crowd sourcing information about nuclear weapons in Iran. Read More »

Dear Congress, Guess What? We Already Have Copyright Laws

David Gewirtz | ZDNet | January 20, 2012

What you need to do, my dear politician friends, is to stop listening to the lobbyists and start listening to the innovators.

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Education, Not SOPA, Best Weapon Against Web Piracy

James Marshall Crotty | Forbes | January 31, 2012

One innocent bystander of proposed anti-piracy legislation might be libraries, students, and educators. According to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, many trailblazing open source education initiatives I’ve written about on Forbes might be silenced if the “broad” and “vague” enforcement provisions of the proposed SOPA (Stop Online Piracy act) and/or PIPA (Protect IP Act) were to become law.

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Elsevier Backs Down, Removes Support for Research Works Act as Elsevier Boycott Grows

Mike Masnick | Techdirt | February 27, 2012

While it never got as much attention as the GoDaddy boycott, it appears the growing boycott of academics, refusing to publish papers in any Reed Elsevier journal, has caused the company to back down. It has now announced that it no longer supports the Research Works Act. Read More »

Elsevier Backs Off RWA Support; Still Opposes Mandated Open Access

Meredith Schwartz | Library Journal | February 27, 2012

Scientific journal publisher Elsevier today withdrew its support for the Research Works Act (RWA), a bill which would have prohibited open access mandates for federally funded research. The publisher had been the target of a boycott among academics, as LJ reported. At press time, 7,486 researchers had pledged not to publish, referee or do editorial work for Elsevier’s journals. Read More »

Elsevier Blinks, Will No Longer Support Research Works Act

Mark Hoofnagle | ScienceBlogs | February 27, 2012

In a victory for science, and those who favor open access for the easy dissemination of scientific results to the public and scientists around the world, Elsevier has withdrawn support for the Research Works Act. Read More »