QuickLinks - 23 January 1998
issue no. 39
Links to news items about
legal and regulatory aspects of Internet and the information society, particularly those relating to information content, and
market and technology.
Microsoft deal ends contempt charges
Netscape to give away browser, like Microsoft
Legal and regulatory issues
- Both Sides Chalk Up Victories In Microsoft-Justice Settlement
The settlement announced Thursday by Microsoft and the Department of Justice is one area where the two contentious sides can claim a victory before the real antitrust proceedings begin in March.
- Microsoft deal ends contempt charges
The Justice Department and Microsoft today announced a settlement on a major issue stalling
their high-profile antitrust dispute, clearing the software giant of contempt-of-court charges that could have resulted in an unprecedented fine of $1 million a day.
- EU - Noch keine Brüsseler Auflagen für Kirch-Bertelsmann-Allianz
EU-Wettbewerbskommissar Karel van Miert hat noch keine Auflagen für die geplante TV-Allianz des Bertelsmann-Konzerns und der Kirch-Gruppe festgelegt. Das verlautete am Rande der Sitzung der EU-Kommission am Mittwoch in Brüssel. Van Miert habe "bestimmte Bedenken", die erst im Laufe der zweiten Phase des Prüfverfahrens detailliert den beteiligten Parteien dargestellt werden sollten. Der oberste Wettbewerbshüter der EU hatte am Dienstag die Eröffnung des Hauptprüfverfahrens zur Kirch-Bertelsmann-Allianz angekündigt, nachdem er zuvor bereits den gemeinsamen Vertrieb des Decoders, der sogenannten d-box, für "illegal" erklärt hatte.
- Cybermusic pirates agree to stop pilfering
The first Internet music pirates to be sued have settled their cases with the Recording Industry Association of America, agreeing to no longer offer free downloads of hundreds of artists, including Aero-smith, U2 and Alanis Morissette, and to destroy any unauthorized recordings on their Web sites.
- Government Hurting Domain Name Process, Group Says
The Internet Council of Registrars (Core) said Thursday it is ready to launch its registry of new Internet domain names, but fears it may not get the backing it needs from the Clinton administration.
Security and encryption
- Vendors balk at deploying SET
Even as vendors gather to discuss the next version of the protocol that has been expected to be the key to popularizing Internet commerce, Secure Electronic Transaction (SET) has yet to be widely implemented in the real world.
- Hong Kong: Telecoms shake-up under attack
Hong Kong's steps towards deregulation of the telecoms sector have come under attack from politicians and industry executives who claim it protects domestic operators from foreign competition.
Market & Technology
Internet access and use
- Data transmission: Last mile is the longest
iFaster downloading from the internet is in prospect. Most users of the internet will have experienced frustration at how slowly data is downloaded to their PC. The information superhighway, we are often reminded, is still under construction. Fortunately, several new technologies promise to improve the situation.
- Microsoft to help wire hotels
Microsoft, Atcom/Info, and CGX Communications subsidiary CAIS Internet today announced plans to collaborate on offering high-speed Net access to hotels.
- Academy Awards Coverage on the Web
Hollywood Online, a movie-related Internet destination, is planning to launch a content area dedicated to the Academy Awards, called "Academy Awards at Hollywood Online," on January 26.
- Amazon.com Reports Strong Fourth Quarter
Amazon.com Inc. Thursday announced net sales of $66 million for the fourth quarter of 1997, a 74 percent increase over net sales of $37.9 million reported for the third quarter ended September 30, 1997.
- Netscape to give away browser, like Microsoft
Netscape Communications Corp, moving to shore up its share of the Internet software market against Microsoft's gains, said Thursday it will begin giving away its Navigator browser with " no strings attached." The company also said it will make the programming code of its products -- which are usually jealously guarded by software companies -- available on the Internet so that independent programmers can modify and improve the software.
- Electronic commerce: On-line shopping ready for take-off
The number of US households regularly using on-line services to buy groceries and related goods will rise from the current 200,000 to 15m-20m by 2007, according to a two-year investigation into on-line shopping habits.
- Japan's Net Population Explosion
(Wired News Report)
Japan's Internet population is soaring, a survey reported today in the Nihon Keizai Shimbun says. The number of people using the Net in Japan at the end of 1997 was 8.84 million, the Access Media International report said, an increase of 54.6 percent from February. The study said the boom is continuing: the Japanese netizenry is expected to number 14.67 million by the end of '98, 20 million by the end of 1999. The main reason for the rise, Nihon Keizai said: a surge in corporate workplace Net use.
- Quarterly study of Web usage and attitudes
LinkExchange Inc. and investment bank Hambrecht & Quist have launched what is expected to become a quarterly study of Web usage and attitudes. "WebCensus," to be assembled from public survey results, will be published on the Web at www.webcensus.com and will focus on a different theme each quarter.
- Tele Danmark: Chief resigns
Hans Wurzen, chief executive of Tele Danmark, yesterday resigned as shareholders voted in favour of the sale of a controlling interest in the Danish telecommunications group to Ameritech of the US.
- Will Microsoft bid on BT?
British Telecommunications today declined to comment on market speculation that U.S. software giant Microsoft might bid for the company.
- Cyber-Rights & Cyber-Liberties (UK) Newsletter, No: 5, January 1998
The ten page newsletter includes the following news items in this fifth issue:
(1) News Related to CR&CL (UK) (2) Kirkham student in court in Internet trial (3) Demon Internet fights child pornography (4) EPIC Releases New Report on Faulty Filters (5) ACLU's Barry Steinhardt Appointed EFF President (6) Internet Free Expression Alliance established (7) New EU Action Plan released (8) EU Green Paper on Convergence (9) Europe Still Leaves Bars on Windows to the Internet, by Andrew Oram (10) G8 wages war on cyber-crime (11) The Global Internet Liberty Campaign criticises the PICSRules 1.1 (12) Democracy and Cyberspace by Richard Moore (last part).
QuickLinks are edited by Richard Swetenham
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