Thursday, May 13, 2010

A Day in the Life

Beginning with net neutrality - Here's a primer with much help from the great people at C&L who are responsible for cluing me in: In 2007, the Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF) and the Associated Press confirmed that Comcast was clandestinely blocking BitTorrent traffic. It was a clear demonstrations that ISPs are technologically capable of interfering with your internet connection, and that they may not even tell you about it. After numerous complaints, the FCC in 2008 stepped in and threw the book at Comcast, requiring them to stop blocking BitTorrent. At this point it bacame of vital importance to the FCC.

Yet the FCC has formally issued draft net neutrality regulations with a huge copyright loophole in them. The loophole effectively permits Comcast to block BitTorrent just like it did in 2007 by claiming that it was "reasonable network management" to "prevent the unlawful transfer of content."

So the new proposed net neutrality regulations allow the same practices that net neutrality was first invoked to prevent, even if these ISP practices end up preventing perfectly lawful content and activities.

So, is this net neutrality? The answer is no. The entertainment industry is pressuring ISPs to become Copyright Cops. Carving a copyright loophole in net neutrality leaves numerous lawful activities at the mercy of over-reaching copyright filtering schemes, and there has already been plenty of evidence that copyright enforcers will target legitimate users by carelessness and design.

For net neutrality regulations to be taken seriously and to not screw up accessibilty, the loophole must be closed. If they fail the corps like Comcast  the internet will become more like radio and TV. With a few major corporations who control which voices are heard. It would be much more difficult for grassroots groups, individuals and small businesses to create their own online presence and compete with large corporations and well-funded special interests.

So, here from ThinkProgress is a very in-depth look at all the issues as it's not receiving sufficient coverage in the MSM, and the coverage it does get is mostly lies, some of it is inane and some downright insane.

Moving on, BP admits its estimates of how much oil is spewing into the Gulf could be off by a factor of 5. Now where have we heard that before? No one can say for sure where that oil is headed either. Don't worry your pretty little head about all this - just a one-off, so Shell wins rights to drill in the Arctic! Here's that ghastly video of the oil pouring into the Gulf.

Seymour Hersh says battlefield executions are taking place in Afghanistan.

Obama says he will delay Iraq troop withdrawals - not for long but still not a good sign.

Climate Progress asks if we'll see a 4th straight year of record low ice volume in the Arctic?

Pope Benedict the Hypocrite declares Gay Marriage dangerous but (celibate) boy-buggering priests still okie-dokie!

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