<-- The Filter --> December 1998

December 15, 1998
No. 1.7  .  The Filter  .  12.15.98

Your regular dose of public interest Internet news and commentary from
the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School


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> Open Sun: Sun Microsystems announced that it is moving toward an open-source model in which it would freely distribute the work of its programmers in order to encourage outsiders to collaborate in Java software development. The move parallels Netscape's decision earlier this year to release the source code known as Mozilla.

      http://www.nytimes.com/library/tech/98/12/biztech/articles/08sun -java.html

> Sun's Illuminating Memo: Microsoft lawyers presented a memo during arguments in the antitrust case indicating that Sun Microsystems had tried to persuade Netscape not to compete with it in the browser market. The attorneys alleged that the memo proves Sun is guilty of the same kind of anticompetitive behavior of which Microsoft is accused.

      http:// www.nytimes.com/library/tech/98/12/biztech/articles/04soft.ht ml

> The Kappa Delta: The board of the Phi Beta Kappa Society is suing Compaq Computer for $10 million, charging that Compaq violated its trademark in a recent ad campaign. Compaq's campaign, now over, used the phrase "Phi Beta Compaq."


> Cryptic Civil Rights: On the 50th anniversary of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, strong-encryption advocates protested international efforts to curb crypto as part of an arms-reduction treaty. Advocates say that the UN Declaration distinctly states that privacy is a basic human right, and that therefore access to strong encryption should be considered a global civil right.

      http: //www.wired.com/news/news/politics/story/16768.html

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This week we're featuring a powerful essay by MIT economics professor Paul Krugman. Dr. Krugman explains how the libertarian approach to technology policy doesn't necessarily serve the public interest by default. Rather than "doing good by doing well," technology companies often do well by doing bad.

      http://web.mit.edu/kr ugman/www/ugly.html

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      *Impeach the Precedent

While the uS Congress wrestles with the third instance of impeachment hearings against a standing president, the Web gives us a back-to-the-future look at the first. Offering excerpts from Harper's Weekly reports from the period, the site details the trial of Andrew Johnson in 1868, including the political and constitutional arguments made both in favor and against Johnson's impeachment.

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"We built the whole industry around there not being patents."
—Dan Bricklin, inventor of the spreadsheet program

      http://www.nytimes.com/library/tech/98/12/biztech/articles/07microso ft-fla t.html

"You are going to put me in the Windows box. I am not going to do shit for you because I am king of the world. You know, I am AT&T."
—Tom Evslin, now former chief of AT&T WorldNet, to his former employers at Microsoft


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Comments? Questions? Opinions? Submissions?
Send a letter to the editor at filter-editor@cyber.law.harvar d.edu

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On December 6, the Berkman Center hosted a conference called "Legal/Technical Architectures of Cyberspace," the culmination of a joint Harvard/MIT course. The event was co-sponsored by the Berkman Center, the MIT Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, and the MIT Program on Science, Technology, and Society. For more on information on the proceedings, including an archive of papers presented at the conference, visit the web page below:


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We misidentified Ira Magaziner in the bookmarks section of issue #1.6. He was the Internet advisor to the White House.

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January 15, 2008