- CA - Cleanfeed Canada - What Would It Accomplish? +/-
(Slashdot) Bennett Haselton looks at the implications of a Canadian initiative to protect children online. 'Cybertip.ca, a Canadian clearinghouse for providing information to law enforcement about online child luring and child pornography, has announced that a group of major ISPs will begin blocking access to URLs on Cybertip's list of known child pornography sites. A Cybertip spokesperson says that the list fluctuates between 500 and 800 sites at any given time.'
- Cybercrooks Deliver Trouble +/-
(Washington Post) It was the year of computing dangerously, and next year could be worse. That is the assessment of computer security experts, who said 2006 was marked by an unprecedented spike in junk e-mail and more sophisticated Internet attacks by cybercrooks.
- DE - Lawyers' association criticizes scrutiny of credit card transactions +/-
(Heise) The German Bar Association (DAV) has voiced grave doubts about the scrutiny of credit card data that the prosecuting authorities had initiated in the course of an enforcement operation aimed at the Internet-based child pornography scene; an approach that has allowed the authorities to score a spectacular success in their fight against child pornography.
- Interpol launches task force on child sex abuse +/-
(Reuters) Interpol is launching Project Guardian, a special task force to tackle a growing problem of pedophiles using fake 'modeling' sites on the Internet to gain access to children. The sites do not contain sexually graphic images, but serve as a front, enabling pedophiles to contact the site owners and gain physical access to the so-called child models, or to buy images of the children being abused.
- IT - Italy enacts law to block child porn Web sites +/-
(Reuters) Italy has introduced a new law requiring Internet service providers to block child pornography Web sites within six hours of being told to do so. The decree, which comes into force almost immediately, requires Internet providers to set up a system that blocks child pornography Web sites from being viewed soon after the providers are notified of their existence. Saranno subito oscurati i siti pedofili (Corriere della Sera) Il ministro delle Comunicazioni ha firmato un decreto per contrastare il fenomeno della pedopornografia in rete. I fornitori di connettivitą, i cosiddetti Internet Provider, dovranno dotarsi di sistemi in grado di oscurare entro 6 ore dalla comunicazione ricevuta da parte del neonato Centro nazionale per il contrasto della pedopornografia o dalla magistratura, dei siti che diffondano, distribuiscano o facciano commercio di immagini pedopornografiche.
- Police maintain uneasy relations with cybervigilantes +/-
(CNET News.com) The London Metropolitan Police Service has turned to some unlikely allies in the fight against Internet crime: cyberactivists who are taking action against online fraudsters. This includes Artists Against 419, whose activities include consuming the bandwidth of fraudulent banking and lottery sites in an attempt to force them off the Internet.
- UK - Ban urged on child abuse images +/-
(BBC) Computer-generated child abuse images should be banned and a new 'kite mark' standard introduced for software to protect children from paedophiles. The Home Secretary, John Reid, said the Cabinet was discussing how to ban the images, including cartoons and graphic illustrations of abuse. While distributing such images is illegal, it is legal to possess them. He also said that by spring, approved parental control software would come with a British Standards' Kitemark.
- UK - IWF reforms could pave way for net censorship +/-
(The Register) By the end of 2007, the Home Office intends that all ISPs 'offering broadband internet connectivity to the UK public' will have implemented systems for content blocking, primarily intended to block access to pornographic images of children, which are illegal to view or possess in the UK.
- DE - "Killerspiele": Selbstkontrolleinrichtung wehrt sich gegen Verleumdung +/-
(Heise) Die Unterhaltungssoftware Selbstkontrolle (USK) hat in der anhaltenden Debatte um ein Verbot von "Killerspielen" die Kritik des bayerischen Innenministers Günther Beckstein und des Kriminologen Christian Pfeiffer an ihrer Prüftätigkeit zurückgewiesen. Pfeiffer betreibe "seit Längerem eine Kampagne gegen die USK", heißt es in einer Mitteilung der seit der jüngsten Reform der Jugendschutzgesetzgebung im Rahmen der "Ko-Regulierung" staatlich beaufsichtigten Einrichtung.
- EU - Hindus opposing EU swastika ban +/-
(BBC) Hindus in Europe have joined forces against a German proposal to ban the display of the swastika across the European Union. Ramesh Kallidai of the Hindu Forum of Britain said the swastika had been a symbol of peace for thousands of years before the Nazis adopted it. He said a ban on the symbol would discriminate against Hindus.
- EU - Media pluralism +/-
(RAPID) Responding to continuing concerns from the European Parliament and non-governmental organisations about media concentration, and its possible effects on pluralism and freedom of expression, Commissioner Viviane Reding and Vice-President Margot Wallström presented to fellow Commissioners three-steps on media pluralism in the European Union. 1. A Commission Staff Working Paper on Media Pluralism 2. An independent study on media pluralism in EU Member States to define and test concrete and objective indicators for assessing media pluralism in the EU Member States (in 2007). 3. A Commission Communication on the indicators for media pluralism in the EU Member States (in 2008).
- EU - Minister uneins über Verbot von "Killerspielen" +/-
(Heise) Die Justiz- und Innenminister der EU konnten sich bei ihrem Ratstreffen in Brüssel nicht auf gemeinsame Aktionen zur Verschärfung des Jugendschutzes einigen. Vor allem auf Druck von EU-Justizkommissar Franco Frattini beschäftigten sich die Vertreter des Gremiums der nationalen Regierungen mit einem europaweiten Verbot brutaler Computerspiele und Gewaltvideos. "Die EU hat hier keine Gesetzgebungskompetenz", erteilte Bundesjustizministerin Brigitte Zypries einem koordinierten Vorgehen aber eine deutliche Absage.
- New Tool to Circumvent Government Censorship on Web +/-
(Cairns Blog) Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto announces tool to help Internet users circumvent government censorship of the Web. The Psiphon software, developed by CitizenLab at the University of Toronto, is downloaded onto a computer in an uncensored country, becoming the host computer.
- Web journalist jailings 'reflect power of internet' +/-
(Guardian) The number of online journalists being jailed is increasing as authoritarian states seek to control news on the internet. In its annual survey, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) found that as at December 1, 134 journalists were imprisoned, an increase of nine from last year.
- Ageing rockers and evergreen stars in cash plea +/-
(Guardian) Some of the most famous names in music, including Sir Paul McCartney and Sir Cliff Richard, U2, Yoko Ono, Barry Gibb, Petula Clark and Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, were among 4,500 artists who put their names to a newspaper advertisement, calling on the government to extend the copyright in sound recordings to 95 years. se also Dead musicians sign petition in FT (Lawrence Lessig). For almost 10 years now, I've been waging a war against retrospective term extension. My simple argument has been that copyright is about creative incentives, and you can't create incentives retrospectively. I now see I am apparently wrong. An ad in the FT listed 4,000 musicians who supported retrospective term extension. At least some of these artists are apparently dead (e.g. Lonnie Donegan, died 4th November 2002; Freddie Garrity, died 20th May 2006). I take it the ability of these dead authors to sign a petition asking for their copyright terms to be extended can only mean that even after death, term extension continues to inspire.
- EU - Codified versions of Directives +/-
(IPKitten) Codified versions of 3 Directives have been adopted: Directive 2006/114 of 12 December 2006 concerning misleading and comparative advertising, Directive 2006/115 of 12 December 2006 on rental right and lending right and on certain rights related to copyright in the field of intellectual property, Directive 2006/116 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2006 on the term of protection of copyright and certain related rights.
- UK - Chancellor offers £5m for pursuit of pirates +/-
(Guardian) The government has endorsed calls for a stringent clampdown on music and film piracy and an end to restrictions on copying music for personal use. A wide-ranging intellectual property review by Andrew Gowers also recommended the existing 50-year copyright term for sound recordings be retained, much to the chagrin of a vocal lobby of major record labels and artists who wanted it increased.
- UK - Microsoft schools software 'lock-ins' under fire +/-
(Silicon News) Microsoft's software licensing scheme for schools and colleges has several "shortfalls", according to a new report by the British Educational Communications and Technology Agency (Becta).
- UK - Patent Office considers Wiki peer review +/-
(ZDNet UK) The UK Patent Office is considering reforms to the patent system based on recommendations made in last week's Gowers Review. Recommendation 23 of Gowers states: "The Patent Office should conduct a pilot of Beth Noveck's Community Patent Review in 2007 in the UK to determine whether this would have a positive impact on the quality of the patent stock." Professor Beth Noveck, director of the Institute for Information Law and Policy at the New York Law School, recommended a system of peer review for patents in a September 2006 paper entitled "Community Patent Review Project Summary" whereby inventors seeking a patent should submit an application first to a community of interested expert reviewers, to ease pressure on patent examiners.
- 2007-01-28 CoE Data Protection Day +/-
(CoE) An initiative of the Council of Europe with the support of the European Commission. A 2003 Eurobarometer survey on the protection of privacy in the European Union showed that 70% of European citizens feel they know little about what is done in their country to protect their personal data. In 2007, for the first time, the Council of Europe will be celebrating a Data Protection Day on 28 January. This will be the occasion for European citizens to become more aware of personal data protection and of what their rights and responsibilities are in that regard.
- EU - Data protection and transfer of PNR data +/-
(RAPID) Franco Frattini, European Commissioner responsible for Justice, Freedom and Security, European Parliament, Strasbourg, 13 December 2006.
- UK - Giant ID computer plan scrapped +/-
(BBC) The UK government has abandoned plans for a giant new computer system to run the national identity cards scheme. Instead of a single multi-billion pound system, information will be held on three existing, separate databases. see also UK - Government drops iris scan plan (OUT-LAW News) Iris scans will not form part of the UK Government's planned identity card system the National Identity Register (NIR). The only biometric information to be held on ID cards will now be fingerprints, in contrast to previously stated plans.
- UK - What price privacy now? +/-
(ICO) Richard Thomas, Information Commissioner, is repeating his call for a two year jail term to deter those convicted of trading unlawfully in personal information. The report What price privacy now? reflects the six months progress made since his initial report What price privacy? was published in May 2006.
- EU - European Commission takes new initiatives in favour of missing and sexually exploited children +/-
(RAPID) Vice-President Franco Frattini, Commissioner responsible for Justice, Liberty and Security, and Viviane Reding, Commissioner responsible for Information Society and Media, are in Paris today attending an international meeting on the issue of missing, abducted and sexually exploited children. Also present are the members of the Honorary Board of the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (ICMEC), including Her Majesty the Queen of the Belgians, Her Majesty the Queen of Sweden, Mrs Laura Bush, Mrs Lyudmila Putin and Mrs Margarida Sousa Uva-Barroso. See also Laura Bush urges police cooperation on child pornography (- International Herald Tribune). EU - Stratégie européenne des droits de l'enfant. Discours de Franco Frattini, Commissaire européen responsable de la Justice, Liberté et Sécurité. Palais de l'Elysée, Paris, 17 janvier 2007.
- EU - Now on track: the single EU hotline number for missing children +/-
(RAPID) A committee of Member State representatives has endorsed the Commission's initiative to reserve throughout the EU common freephone numbers for services of social value. This means in particular that the 116000 number will be made available for hotlines for missing children. Member States are asked to make this major initiative for children's rights a reality as soon as possible. Hotline telephone numbers for parents to report missing children already exist in several EU countries, but they currently use different telephone numbers in different countries. Having a common hotline number, 116000, will greatly help parents if they lose their child while travelling or on holiday in another European country. The Commission's draft Decision to reserve numbers beginning with 116 for harmonised services of social value in Europe has been endorsed by the Communications Committee, an expert group of Member States' representatives. Approval by this committee paves the way for the Commission to adopt this Decision, which will be binding on Member States, in early 2007. A public call will be launched early next year to identify other services that may benefit from 116 numbers.
- EU - Protection of minors +/-
(Europarl) European Parliament legislative resolution on the Council common position for adopting a recommendation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the protection of minors and human dignity and on the right of reply in relation to the competitiveness of the European audiovisual and online information services industry. Adopted on Tuesday 12 December 2006 in Strasbourg. See also Council Common position.
- MySpace developing parental-notification software +/-
(CNET News.com) Under fire from both the U.S. government and parental organizations, MySpace.com is creating software to give parents a window into what their children are putting on their online profiles. Once the monitoring software is finished and distributed, parents can install it on a home computer to see what any MySpace user who logs on from that computer lists as his or her profile name, age and location. It will also track updates made to those profiles.
- UK - Reid targets online paedophiles +/-
(BBc) A 'kite mark' standard is being planned by the home secretary to help protect children from internet paedophiles. John Reid told GMTV he planned a system of approved software so parents could feel assured their child was safe from paedophiles while online. He said the idea was to have a system which alerts parents if trigger phrases were used while their child was online.