<--The Filter--> March 2005

March 17, 2005
No. 7.03 <--The Filter--> 03.17.05

[1] In the News
[2] Berkman News
[3] Conference Watch
[4] Bookmarks
[5] Quotables
[6] Filter Facts


* B-School Info Break-Ins: Is It Hacking?

US business schools have degraded the term "hacking" to "backspacing,"
writes Philip Greenspun on his weblog. He was responding to Harvard
Business School's decision March 7 to reject 119 applicants for
following a hacker's instructions to sneak a peek into the school's
admissions site to see if they'd been accepted. MIT followed suit
March 8, rejecting 32 applicants, and Carnegie Mellon has promised to
reject anyone proven to have snooped. Stanford, Dartmouth, and Duke
are still deciding the fate of their cyber-snoops.

The prospective B-schoolers accessed admissions sites for about 10
hours March 2 after a hacker posted instructions in a BusinessWeek
Online forum. The instructions essentially told applicants how to edit
a particular URL so that it would take them to a page where their
admissions decision would be found. So did these sneaks "hack"?

Greenspun's history of "hacking":

More on the break-ins:

* Faculty Members File Amicus Briefs in Supreme Court Grokster Case

Harvard Law Professors Terry Fisher and Jonathan Zittrain along with
John Palfrey, executive director of the Berkman Center, have filed an
amici brief to the Supreme Court in MGM v. Grokster - a closely
watched case that is likely to have a dramatic impact on the future of
music downloading. The brief urges the justices to adhere to a
20-year-old legal standard that has historically exempted technology
distributors from liability of copyright infringement because of the
"substantial noninfringing uses" of their technology. The brief also
warns that altering the standard and potentially holding technology
makers of devices like iPods or CD burners liable could jeopardize the
future of technological innovation. Professor Charles Nesson wrote his
own brief, posted in full on his weblog; it argues that the suit
"threatens to deny scholars access to essential materials in
cyberspace."  The high court will hear oral arguments in the case on
March 29.

The Briefs:


Overviews of the Case:

* White House Credentials Its First Blogger

Marking a major turning point for bloggers, Harvard alumnus Garrett
Graff '03 last week became the first blogger to be granted a daily
pass to White House press briefings. He gained access as editor of the
blog FishbowlDC, which is published by mediabistro.com and reports on
media affairs in Washington, D.C. The 23-year-old has blogged about
his many attempts to acquire the pass, which included 30 phone calls
made over a week.


Graff's weblog:

* Bloggers Bite Apple - Apple Bites Back

Speaking of the ever-evolving definitions of "bloggers" and
"journalists," blog sites have been abuzz about the issue since March
3 when a Santa Clara County judge delivered a tentative ruling that
bloggers and online publishers are not "journalists" - and therefore
do not deserve the same rights under the First Amendment. In a
preliminary ruling, the judge said Apple can force three Web site
publishers to reveal the names of their sources who had disclosed
inside information about the company's unreleased products. However,
in a ruling on March 11, Judge James P. Kleinberg again ruled against
the bloggers but not due to any relationship to journalists - he said
that even journalists must disclose source information when a crime
has been committed.

The Bloggers say:

The Mainstream Media says:

* Former FCC Chair Takes Fellowship at Aspen Institute

Michael K. Powell, outgoing chairman of the Federal Communications
Commission, is following in his predecessors' footsteps.  Powell will
be the third FCC chair who will step down and immediately enter a
three-month senior fellowship at the Aspen Institute, in the
Communications and Society Program.  Executive Director of the
Program, Charles Firestone, said in a press release, "We are fortunate
to have the benefit of his advice and insights in developing new
activities and in reinvigorating our ongoing projects."



* Internet Filtering in United Arab Emirates Study Published by
  OpenNet Initiative

The OpenNet Initiative (of which the Berkman Center is a part)
published an in-depth, empirical analysis of how the United Arab
Emirates filters and controls the Internet content its citizens can
access. UAE blocks nearly all pornographic, gambling, religious
conversion, and illegal drugs sites tested by ONI, with lesser
filtering of gay and lesbian sites, material on the Bahai faith, and
English-language dating sites.  Overall, UAE filters a significant
number of sites unrelated to its expressed goals, and the state relies
on an American filtering software product, SmartFilter, to make key
normative decisions about what content is blocked. This study is the
next in a series of ONI analyses -- forthcoming reports include
Vietnam, Bahrain, and Singapore.

Reports available at:

* Internet Law Program Returns Abroad and At Home

Registration is now available for two Internet Law Programs this
spring.  May 25-27 in Turin, Italy, a program will be hosted by
Dipartimento dei Sistemi di Produzione e di Economia dell'Azienda -
Politecnico di Torino and Istituto di Elettronica e Ingegneria
dell'Informazione e delle Telecomunicazioni - Consiglio Nazionale
delle Ricerche; registration is available online.  Back at Harvard, we
will offer a program on June 22-24. Registration for the Cambridge,
Massachusetts program is available now by phone; online registration
will launch shortly.


* Signal or Noise 2: Creative Revolution?

This conference will explore how digital technologies enable audiences
to become artists and publishers by building off others' work.
Participants will present and discuss legal, ethical, and cultural,
and business implications through performances, demonstrations, and
panels.  The event will address serious and substantive issues in an
entertaining and accessible way, highlighting impacts on traditional
artists and their means of creation as well as new genres and business
models like machinima and Internet-published fan fiction.  Signal or
Noise 2 will take place in the Ames Courtroom on the Harvard Law
School campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts from 9am to 5pm on Friday,
April 8.




* March 29-April 1, 2005, Shanghai, China - The Seventh Asia Pacific
  Web Conference

* March 29-April 1, 2005, Hong Kong - IEEE International Conference on
  e-Technology, e-Commerce and e-Service

* March 30-31, 2005, Washington, D.C. - Freedom to Connect


* April 2-7, 2005, Portland, Oregon - CHI 2005: Technology, Safety,
  Community: Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems

* April 8, 2005, Cambridge, Massachusetts - Signal or Noise 2: Creative

* April 12-15, 2005, Seattle, WA - PANOPTICON: 15th Annual Conference
  on Computers, Freedom & Privacy

* April 13-16, 2005, Vancouver, British Columbia - Museums and the Web
  2005: The International Conference for Culture and Heritage On-line

* April 21-22, 2005, San Antonio, Texas - Conference on Business and
  the Internet

* April 27-28, 2005, Cambridge, UK - International Forum on "Less is
  More - Simple Computing in an Age of Complexity"


* May 9-12, 2005, Singapore - Workshop on Internet Communications

* May 16, 2005 - New York, New York - Personal Democracy Forum

* May 17-18, 2005, New York, New York - Syndicate

* May 20-22, 2005, Stanford, California - Online Deliberation 2005

* May 23-26, 2005, San Diego, California - Future in Review

* May 25-27, 2005, Turin, Italy - Internet Law Program


* June 8-10, 2005, Badajoz, Spain - 3rd International Conference on
  Multimedia and ICTs in Education

* June 22-24, 2005, Cambridge, Massachusetts - Internet Law Program

* June 27-30, 2005, Qawra, Malta - e-Society 2005


* Blogging Beyond the Men's Club

* Wiki Becomes a Way of Life

* Tech Chiefs Warn of Threat

* Blogwise - Blogs By Country

* Pew Report: The Internet and Campaign 2004


"We're small now, but one day we're going to be as big as Google." --
StreamCast CEO Michael Weiss

"Here's how it will work under the new regime: Bloggers, instead of
blogging, will report the news to reporters. Those reporters, who are
not bloggers despite the fact that many have blogs, will then report
rather than blog the information. Got it?" -- Thomas Claburn posting
on Lot 49:

"We're moving toward a system under which only the folks who are
deemed to be professionals will be granted the status of journalists,
and thereby more rights than the rest of us. This is pernicious in
every way."  -- Dan Gillmor, founder of Grassroots Media Inc.


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Editor: Wendy Koslow
Writer: Sara Steindorf, Derek Bambauer, Erica George

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Last updated

January 16, 2008