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Berkman Buzz, week of July 28

A look at the past week's online Berkman conversations. If you'd like to receive this by email, just sign up here.

What’s going on…take your pick here or browse below.

*Tim Armstrong comments on Urs Gasser's paper.
*David Weinberger debunks identity myths.
*Ethan Zuckerman gets excited for Wikimania.
* shames bad websites.
*Urs Gasser notes EU's delayed response on Internet censorship.
*Derek Bambauer talks about IP and security research.
*Dan Gillmor praises's collaborative journalism.

The full buzz.

"Urs rightly points out that many nations have done a very poor job at defining the terms employed in their anticircumvention statutes, to no one's benefit. (Urs doesn't say so, but the DMCA's definition of "effectively controls access to a work" is the poster child for obfuscatory legislative drafting her: the statue defines "effectively controls access" using terminology that has nothing to do with the ordinary meanings of the words "effective," "access," or control.") Urs also recommends clarifying the relationship between anticircumvention rules and the ordinary exception to copyright holders' exclusive rights.  In the United States, this ambiguity in hitherto-thought-to-be-fair uses of copyrighted works, yielding to a tangible contraction of the effective scope of the fair use doctrine..."
Tim Armstrong, "More on the International Dimensions of Anticircumvention Policy"

"Identity isn't a continuum with anonymity at one end and documented, certified, authenticated ID on the other. It probably never was and it certainly isn't online. There's a third vertex: Pseudonymity. Pseudonyms online are not midway between anonymity and ID. They're different in kind, but enough on the same plane that any discussion of anonymity and ID that does not include pseudonyms is likely to go wrong. ..."
David Weinberger"The identity continuum isn't a continuum"


"My colleagues at Berkman are preparing for Wikimania, the annual homecoming of the Wikipedia/Wikimedia movement to discuss the future of all things wiki. It will be the first Wikimania I’ll be attending, and I appear to be moderating one or more discussions. Since I’m not actually speaking - and I feel capable of moderating, so long as I only have to do it in moderation - I’m not feeling nervous, as David Weinberger, who is giving the closing keynote, is. He’s posting his notes in progress on a wiki which means, I suspect, that you can shape the direction of his talk if you act now. After Wikimania, there’s a daylong “unconference” on Citizen’s Media, organized by Dan Gillmor and the Center for Citizen Media, where I’ll be moderating… or unmoderating… a conversation about citizen’s media and the challenges of being heard..."
Ethan Zuckerman, "Cool events are afoot!"

"Last Friday we released’s first website report (available here). Why evaluate websites? For one thing, badware doesn’t appear on users’ computers out of thin air—much of it (maybe even most of it) is hosted on websites that make a profit from distributing these bad applications. Given the often close relationships between badware and the bad sites that distribute it, it made sense for to start shining a light on the websites themselves, not just the applications they host for download. In that vein, we’ve come up with some fairly basic internal guidelines for judging badware-distributing sites...", "Bad Websites Beware"

"With the usual time-lag, the debate about Internet censorship in repressive countries such as China and the role of Internet intermediaries such as Google, Microsoft and Yahoo! has now arrived in Europe. The EU Parliament now confirms what many of us have argued for months, i.e., that the problem of online censorship is not exclusively a problem of U.S.-based companies and is not only about China. The recent resolution on freedom of expression on the Internet by the European Parliament starts with references to previous resolutions on human rights and freedom of the press, including the WSIS principles, as well as international law (Universal Declaration of Human Rights) and opens with the European-style statement that restrictions on online speech “should only exist in cases of using the Internet for illegal activities, such as incitement to hatred, violence and racism, totalitarian propaganda and children’s access to pornography or their sexual exploitation..."
Urs Gasser, "EU Parliament Calls for Code of Conduct for Internet Intermediares Doing Biz in Repressive Countries"

"Jay Rosen has taken his biggest step yet into the world he’s been writing about for some time now. With the help of several grants he’s starting, based on this notion: “Reporter + smart mob + editor with a fund and backers get the story the press pack wouldn’t, couldn’t or didn’t.” Needless to say (because I’ve been saying it repeatedly), I’m an enthusiast. I continue to believe that the people who could pull this off best are the traditional media, and that there will soon be some amazing examples. But the media business can’t do everything, and we need to see experiments of this sort..."
Center for Citizen Media, "A New Way Toward Collaborative Journalism"

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