What’s Hot 11/6/2013


@inafried AT&T Says iPad Activations Actually *Double* Those of Last Year’s Launch Weekend http://dthin.gs/1aZ5xwq

@publicknowledge New FCC chief Tom Wheeler taps media watchdog Gigi Sohn for role @latimes http://bit.ly/1b7lSvV

@KatyontheHill Study from @CEA & Preston Padden’s group found that bidding restrictions on #FCC‘s #spectrum auction could reduce rev by $5.8 B

@JointCenter 50% of African Americans say the Internet was very important to finding a job. 46 percent used the Internet for job search. #BroadbandJobs


The Greatest Enemy of Privacy Is Ambiguity (Foreign Policy, 10/31/2013)
The details of who is listening to wha tand who knew may be decidedly unclear, but it’s hard to escape the clamor over one of our most cherished possessions: privacy. But that word, and the concept behind it, is fluid, subjective, contextual, and self-referential — shifting sands that have come to the forefront.

The Lawmaker’s Internet Trick or Treat (AdWeek, 10/31/2013)

What are the worst laws threatening the Internet? NetChoice has a list for that. For the fifth year, NetChoice, a public policy organization that promotes net innovation, has surveyed the legal landscape and identified the laws and proposed laws that could potentially undermine key elements of Internet freedom and commerce.

New report urges FCC to avoid bidding restrictions for broadcast incentive auctions (Fierce Wireless, 11/4/2013)

Now that Tom Wheeler has been sworn in as the new FCC chairman, momentum is likely going to pick up for the agency’s incentive auctions of broadcast TV spectrum, which are scheduled to take place sometime next year. The latest salvo in how the auctions should be conducted comes from a report from the Expanding Opportunities for Broadcasters Coalition and the Consumer Electronics Association, which argues against setting restrictions on which carriers can bid for the spectrum broadcasters are expected to relinquish. At the same time, the report calls for an auction structure that will meet "the price expectations of potentially-willing TV broadcast sellers for their spectrum as repurposed for wireless broadband," while maximizing the benefits for consumers and public safety.

EU says no request to include data protection in EU-U.S. talks (Dow Jones Newswires, 11/5/2013)
Neither Germany nor any other European Union member state has asked for the inclusion of data protection in U.S. trade and investment negotiations, a spokesman for the European Commission said Monday. Olivier Bailly said there was "no question of mixing the two up" and that as trade talks progressed, so did a completely separate discussion with American authorities about data protection. Mr. Bailly said the idea that Germany was pushing the issue of data protection in crucial trade talks between the U.S. and EU was "pure speculation."

Anti-spying activists take telco complaint to the OECD (GigaOM, 11/5/2013)
Privacy International has asked the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development to investigate whether telecoms giants such as BT and Verizon Enterprise broke human rights rules by cooperating too much with British intelligence and not fighting back on their customers’ behalf. The telcos in question are BT, Verizon Enterprise, Vodafone Cable, Viatel, Level3 and Interoute, all of which operate the fat undersea cables that GCHQ is so fond of tapping (after all, they do mostly pass by the UK). According to Privacy International, the firms may have broken OECD guidelines around the respect of the rights to privacy and freedom of expression. As the group noted, there is no evidence of any of these telcos pushing back against intelligence requests for cooperation. By way of contrast, web firms such as Google and Yahoo have at the very least made a show of trying to fight back on their customers’ behalf.