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surveillance

What do political parties in Berlin think about Internet policy issues?

Grumpy Cat builds a GNU Internet (9693327611) This post is for those who who are allowed to vote for the “Abgeordnetenhaus” next Sunday, September 18, but do not speak German and therefore have no clear idea about the different political parties and what they stand for. If you are interested in Internet policy issues, however, I translated the content of a press release by the “Koalition Freies Wissen” (means the coalition of free knowledge) for you, to help you choosing your favorite party.

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The outcome is unpredictable but your contribution is priceless

Tomorrow is Document Freedom Day and this is the time when I am happy to see people around the world engaging on a local level to highlight the importance of Open Standards. All of them in their very own way and all of them together, spreading the word about document freedom. They do it although no one knows about the particular impact or outcome of their specific local activity to the big story. And no one can measure it. However, this impact can be really big. I know, because recently I was lucky to see such an effect. And today I like to share this story for your inspiration and motivation.

Since two months we have a new participant in our local FSFE group.

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Internet (un)governance in Turkey

Do you remember the protests around #GeziPark in Istanbul, Turkey, in June 2013? People were heavily using Twitter and other social media to mobilize and organize an opposition against Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his government. Since then, the Internet is Erdogan’s personal enemy.

If we look at a rough timeline of Erdogan’s recent turkish government decisions on internet policy:

  • February 2014: Turkey passes a new internet law No 5651, to censor the web and for data retention (Guardian, BoingBoing). content:
    • block any website within four hours without first seeking a court ruling
    • store all data on web users’ activities for two years and make it available to the authorities upon request
  • March 2014: Turkish government blocks Youtube and Twitter ahead of national elections. (anmnesty international)
  • April – June 2014: Twitter compiles with court decisions to aid and assist Turkish authorities in ceonsoring political content. (Daily Sabah)
  • May to July 2014: Turkey blocks access to approximately 48.000 websites

… we can see that Internet governance in Turkey equals censorshop. However …

What t f?
#IGF2014’s agenda is about reforming ICANN, privacy, fundamental rights, surveillance and net neutrality. Now, guess, who sends most participants into the discussions and decisions about these important topics? Erdogan’s government and authorities.

If you are interested in more details about Turkish governments attack on the internet, read why Yaman Akdeniz and Kerem Altiparmak are boycotting the Internet Governance Forum.
Both are speaking at the Internet Ungovernance Forum, instead. It’s first sentence reads:

We’re organizing the Internet Ungovernance Forum on September 4-5, for people who demand that fundamental freedoms, openness, unity and net neutrality remain the building blocks of the Internet.

About ownership, remote control and privacy

Recently, I made a blogpost about the ownership of your own device and how control of technology is directly linked with the freedom of society – as well as with the freedom of each individual. The argument made in that post was, that remote control of technology in the hands of manufacturers put users out of their own control and makes censorship, supervision and control of society more and more easy and – therefore – likely to happen. Image of a router that looks like a camera

Just some weeks later, Edward Snowden leaked documents that show how the NSA was granted access to users data from US internet giants like Facebook, Apple, Microsoft and many more. These documents show that remote storage of private data puts users out of control of their privacy. As we will see, the worst still is to come: remote private data storage by a machine that is under remote control.

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