The Circuit: Clinton speaks on internet freedom; net neutrality hearings; Chrome lets you block content farms
LEADING THE DAY: Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will give a speech today at 12:30 p.m. on Internet freedom,
pledging to assist human rights activists and protesters in getting
their message out and to stop the limits on Internet use that
governments such as Tunisia, Iran and Egypt have utilized to squelch
dissent. In excerpts from the speech released Monday, Clinton says, "We
are convinced that an open Internet fosters long-term peace, progress
and prosperity.The reverse is also true."
Two net neutrality hearings this week: There will be two hearings on Internet privacy this week, one in the House Committee on Energy and Commerce and one in the House Judiciary Committee. The Energy and Commerce hearing will see all five FCC commissioners testify and being asked whether network neutrality is warranted or if it does more "harm than good."
Tuesday's Judiciary hearing, "Ensuring Competition on the Internet: Net Neutrality and Antitrust," will include testimony from TechFreedom, Public Knowledge and Lariat -- a community-based wireless network. Gigi Sohn from Public Knowledge will argue that repealing the net neutrality proposal would be detrimental to competition and the FCC's ability to address the preservation on an open Internet.
Chrome extension lets you block out sites: A new Chrome extension allows users to block out content farm Web sites. Users can click on a link to add a given site to a block list. They can also remove sites they have previously blocked, if needed. This is part of Google's ongoing effort to address criticisms about its search algorithm, which has been manipulated and weakened over the years as companies have learned to tailor their sites to rank high in Google searches. The company said it may use the feedback it gets from the experimental extension as a ranking signal in its search results.
Apple $100 billion over Microsoft in value: According to numbers run by TechCrunch, Apple's market cap is now $330 billion and Microsoft is valued at $228 billion, making Apple by far the most valuable tech company. Behind Microsoft at about $200 billion is Google, and Tech Crunch speculates it could take the number-two spot soon.
Comcast, Time Warner to try out IvP6: Comcast and Time Warner will both participate in World IvP6 Day on June 8 to try out the new protocol and test their readiness to deal with the transition CNET reported Mozilla will also participate in the testing and that Google, Facebook, Yahoo and Microsoft's Bing have already committed their participation.
U.K. court distinguishes between IP addresses and people: A U.K. court has asked lawyers in a file-sharing lawsuit if all activity at a given IP address can truly be used to prove the guilt of the subscriber who lives there. Ars Technica cheers this connection as a victory for common sense, saying it's clear that IP addresses are not people. What if, the judge asked, a subscriber's Internet connection was abused by another person granted permission to use that connection?
"Does the act of authorizing use of an Internet connection turn the person doing the authorizing into a person authorizing the infringement within s16(2)?" the judge asked. "I am not aware of a case which decides that question either."
| February 15, 2011; 6:36 AM ET
Categories: Apple, Broadband, Comcast, FCC, Facebook, Google, International, Microsoft, Net Neutrality, Privacy, Social media
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