Unless you live in a cave, you heard about yesterday’s “Internet Blackout Day.” Major sites like Google, Wikipedia, Craigslist,Wired and others blacked out portions of their sites in protest of two internet piracy bills, SOPA (Stop Internet Piracy Act) and PIPA (Protect IP Act). The stated goal of these bills is to protect US companies from foreign pirates, like Pirate Bay, who sell copyrighted video and audio.
Unfortunately, the ramifications of these bills could be catastrophic to internet freedom and invention.
Looking at these bills it’s clear that our lawmakers still don’t get the internet, and are working to protect the interests of an ailing entertainment industry. It also makes clear that the entertainment industry needs to re think it’s business model to account for the reality that people aren’t always going to pay for their products and find new ways to monetize, as many independent artists already do.
The protest showed how quickly information can run through the internet. It trickled down even to young kids, as some of their gaming sites also shut down in support. It also makes clear that the internet of today thrives because of sharing.
So, take my content, please. And let’s keep the flow of information free.
Wondering about the digital divide, and the difference between the haves and the have nots this Thanksgiving? Visit the Pew Research Center’s site and read their report: “Use of the internet in higher-income households.”
95% of those in households earning over $75,000 use the internet and cell phones and those in higher-income households are more likely to use the internet on any given day, own multiple internet-ready devices, do things involving money online, and get news online.
Barracuda Networks today released their 2010 mid-year security report, and they’re looking askance at some big names. For one thing, the headline on Barracuda’s site reads:
Google Crowned “King of Malware” – Has Two Times More Malware than Bing, Yahoo! and Twitter Combined
So, search with care, friends. We encourage you browse the report and see what they mean.
The finding are worth a read, and you can get through the report quickly. The payoff is learning things like: of every 100 Twitter users, 90 have less than 100 followers. (I’m in that top ten percent, if you’re wondering, and so is the WSG Twitter account.)
UPDATE: A picture of the car is here. Can you say E-Love Bug?
This is a must read, if only to see what the headline really means. I found it as a press release on IBM.com.
IBM Provides Smartphone Data Services for Solar-Powered Robot Car Journey From Italy to China
Here’s the first sentence. I dare you not to click through and read it:
MILAN, Italy - 26 Jul 2010: The VisLab Intercontinental Autonomous Challenge (VIAC), an epic 13,000km journey from Parma, Italy to Shanghai, China using unmanned, solar energy powered vehicles, aims to showcase the benefits of green transport. (Full article here.)
I hope it looks like this, but I doubt it.
If you’re an eBay seller or buyer, this is good news for you. Today, Research in Motion (RIM), the makers of Blackberry smartphones, announced a new, integrated eBay application for its platform. The creatively-named eBay Application for Blackberry will all users to:
“…search, bid, buy and check their eBay buying and selling activity virtually anywhere. The application leverages the BlackBerry® Push Service to allow users to be wirelessly notified of the status of eBay listings in real-time.” (Source)
If you’re bidding on auctions all the time or selling lots of stuff on eBay, this probably means you will be happy. Unless, of course, you are already way too obsessed with watching the clock tick down to the end of an auction, in which case this means your addiction can now be mobile in nature. The value add with this application will be the integration with native features of the Blackberry, such as contacts and calendars, plus the ability to have this at your fingertips without toting around a laptop.
The bigger picture here is that RIM knows the Blackberry must, must, must make the transition from business use, which it dominates, to the fun side of life where the iPhone and Android phones are more prevalent. This is a stab in that direction. I tend to think of antique dealers when I think of eBay, as well as thinking of the cheesy look of the site. So combining eBay and Blackberry seems somewhat off, but I get it. What would be interesting shopping integration would be Amazon integration for Blackberry, complete with media downloads. Hm.