The Internet Innovation Alliance presents its Biannual Symposium:
Developing a National Broadband Strategy: Deployment, Adoption and the Stimulus
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
8:45 a.m. - 2 p.m. The Newseum, 8th Floor
Breakfast and lunch will be served
The Symposium will:
• Examine the steps necessary to bring broadband access to unserved and rural communities
• Address issues of broadband demand and how content can be a driver of broadband adoption
• Discuss the future of broadband Internet, deployment of stimulus funds and impacts on minority and underserved communities
West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin III
Sylvia Aguilera, Director, Hispanic Technology and Telecommunications Partnership Becky Collins, Small Business Owner Howie Hodges, SVP of Government Affairs, One Economy Corporation John Horrigan, Associate Director, Research, Pew Internet and American Life Project Craig Settles, Industry Analyst, President of Successful.com Scott Wallsten, Senior Policy Fellow, Vice President for Research & Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute
For those who can’t attend, we’ll be live streaming the symposium right here. Check in tomorrow.
With Iran plunged into post-election turmoil, and the Iranian government cracking down on reporting from within the nation, Twitter has emerged as the go-to source for news from the streets. As the New York Times reports:
On Twitter, reports and links to photos from a peaceful mass march through Tehran on Monday, along with accounts of street fighting and casualties around the country, have become the most popular topic on the service worldwide, according to Twitter’s published statistics.
IIA has released its recommendation to the FCC on keys to an effective National Broadband Strategy. Among the recommendations:
• Focus on what we know while we learn what we need to know. We know roughly 10 million households lack any broadband options, and connecting them requires billions of dollars. By contrast, policy makers need greater qualitative information on why many Americans are choosing not to subscribe to broadband where it is available. The National Broadband Strategy should embrace new innovative programs, but not rush decisions that will benefit from the broadband mapping currently underway.
• Tap local knowledge. States and localities have much to offer to the broadband discussion. Federal officials should work closely with Mayors, Governors and community leaders, seeking every opportunity to empower those on the ground who are closest to the challenges and most creative in customizing answers.
• Enable Entrepreneurs and Plan for Major Innovations. Federal investments in broadband should never lock communities or the market into specific technologies or standards. While government planners should reflect previous experience, such as the benefits of connecting libraries and community technology centers, they should also enable game-changing technologies to transform the landscape.
• Implement sustainable solutions. We must take care to avoid new entitlement programs, connecting communities and individuals with broadband offerings that they can never afford to maintain. Government investments that lack sustainable funding are not sound investments in our future. Similarly, federal regulations to direct one-time grants should complement, not imperil, the $60-$80 billion annually invested by private actors in the telecommunications marketplace.
Interactive advertising is responsible for $300 billion of economic activity in the U.S., according to a new study released today by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). The advertising-supported Internet represents 2.1% of the total U.S. gross domestic product (GDP). It directly employs more than 1.2 million Americans with above-average wages in jobs that did not exist two decades ago, and another 1.9 million people work to support those with directly Internet-related jobs. A total of 3.1 million Americans are employed thanks to the interactive ecosystem.
In today’s edition of The Hill, Jason Brennan, a partner in Stream Strategies and an IIA Broadband Ambassador, has an op-ed on how it’s absolutely critical that the $7 billion in Federal funds set aside for broadband be used wisely:
Whether it’s in rural areas or big metro areas, the benefits of access to high-performance, affordable broadband to small businesses are often overlooked. Big businesses can count on multiple providers competing to offer them the best deal on broadband connections. Small businesses like mine don’t get that kind of built-in advantage, and yet small businesses have long been America’s prime engine of job growth.
That’s not about to change in the current economic climate, so the nation in general has a vested interest in seeing small businesses get the best broadband available. Broadband access is the potential great leveler. It gives small businesses access to the sophisticated online services and data bases that let us compete with much bigger companies, not just in the U.S. but overseas as well. Competitiveness like that creates profits and jobs.
China, known for its strict Internet rules, recently ordered every PC in the country have screening software installed in order to protect citizens from unseemly—and political—content. But via the BBC comes word that the mandated software may, in fact, put computers at risk:
The Chinese government has mandated that all computers in the country must have the screening software installed.
It is intended to filter out offensive material from the net.
The Chinese government said that the Green Dam Youth Escort software, as it is known, was intended to push forward the “healthy development of the internet” and “effectively manage harmful material for the public and prevent it from being spread.”
“We found a series of software flaws,” explained Isaac Mao, a blogger and social entrepreneur in China, as well as a research fellow at Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society.
Among the flaws is the fact that communication between the software and the developer’s servers is not encrypted, meaning a hacker could easily install code that would essentially allow them to seize control of almost every computer in China.
France’s controversial “Three Strikes” law, which would cut Internet access to online pirates, has been struck down by the country’s highest court. And as Read Write Web reports, the decision makes a surprising—and probably groundbreaking—claim: Internet access is a “fundamental human right.”
No doubt the rest of the world is watching closely.
Over at App-Rising, Geoff Daily offers his list of the “top ten applications for bettering healthcare through broadband.” Check it out.
Daily concludes his list with this word of caution:
In terms of what we need from next-generation broadband networks to enable all these applications to establish themselves and evolve the answers simple: we need everyone to have access to the best broadband. We need broadband networks with limitless capacity so as demands increase so can the supply needed to support them. We need broadband networks that we can rely on to always work. We need broadband networks with low latency to enable as close to real-time delivery as possible.
And while the benefits of next-generation broadband to how we administer medical care are profound, they’re only the tip of the iceberg.
As the Obama administration aims to reform health care and bring broadband to every person in America, the two issues can easily become one.
Forbes has an interesting profile of Ovidui-Ionut Nicola-Roman, a 23-year-old online “phishing” scammer who in March became the first foreigner extradited to the United States for cybercriminal activity:
The dismantling of the phishing scheme involving Nicola-Roman is an example of American law enforcement’s increasingly cozy relationship with foreign cybercrime investigations. Along with the 23-year-old Nicola-Roman, authorities arrested 37 other members of that cybercriminal ring last May. Those globally dispersed defendants were based in countries stretching from the U.S. to Romania to Pakistan.
Nicola-Roman has been sentenced to 50 months in prison. But with a reported 5 million Americans still being scammed online each year, he’s just a drop in the global cybercrime bucket.
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