cj#250/INFO> Internet NewsClips (fwd)

1995-07-24

Richard Moore

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                            CPSR-GLOBAL Digest 203

Topics covered in this issue include:

  1) (@) "International Internet NewsClips" ....
        by •••@••.••• (Marsha Woodbury)

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Date: Sun, 23 Jul 1995 17:27:31 -0600
From: •••@••.••• (Marsha Woodbury)
To: •••@••.•••
Subject: (@) "International Internet NewsClips" ....
Message-ID: <•••@••.•••>

Hello folks -
  Here are excerpts from this week's edition of my weekly
column, "International Internet NewsClips." You can find the full
column plus archives (as well as book reviews) at the MecklerMedia
Web site (http://www.mecklerweb.com) under the Net Day section.
     Happy reading! Questions, comments, feedback, translations
from other languages, etc. most welcome as always -
                                                       madan

Madanmohan Rao                     Phone: (212) 963-1175
Communications Director            Fax:   (212) 754-2791
Inter Press Service                E-mail: •••@••.•••
Room 485, United Nations, New York
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Internet Activism In Mexico: Destabilising Or Progressive?
----------------------------------------------------------
     The Washington Post, Newsweek, CNN, and other media have done
stories about the importance of the Internet in mobilising support
around the Zapatista movement in Mexico. David Ronfeldt, a
researcher at the military think-tank Rand Corporation, says that
such "netwars" constitute important political forces in regions
like Latin America. According to Ronfeldt, networking technologies
"disrupt and erode the hierarchies around which institutions are
normally designed." He argues that the only way to counter such
networks is to create government networks that are more effective
than the networks of social activists. Hence social activists in
turn should closely follow government activity in cyberspace, such
as crackdowns on BSSs in Italy and Britain and proposed Internet
regulation in the U.S.
                                     (Z Magazine; July/August 1995)

Concern About Online Sex And Violence Grows In Australia
--------------------------------------------------------
     Concern about sex and violence on online services and BBSs has
led the Federal Government to seek public comment on draft
legislation regulating online content. Questions remain as to how
to apply obscenity laws to service providers who knowingly or
unwillingly have "objectionable" content on their services. Several
approaches are under consideration - self-regulation according to
standards developed by consensus with community sentiment, offense
provisions, and educational strategies for schools and parents. It
is not clear, however, how intermediate agents such as Internet
access providers, gateways and database replicators will fare under
some of these provisions.
               (Sydney Morning Herald, Australia; July 18-24, 1995)

>>From Infoban To Infobahn - East Asians Emerge In Cyberspace
-----------------------------------------------------------
     Are East Asian governments becomingly increasingly worried
about their ability to withstand the challenges posed by
cyberspace? Confucian values are no safeguard against the impact of
new media technologies. Subversive messages have long been supplied
by the Voice of America, CNN, and BBC - and now via the Internet.
East Asia may also be particularly vulnerable to cybercrime, as
evinced by the 16-year-old British hacker who broke into South
Korea's nuclear secrets via U.S. Air Force computer networks.
                                (Washington Quarterly; Summer 1995)

Internet Usage Records Raise Privacy Concerns
---------------------------------------------
     Many Internet users fear that individuals could face public
humiliation, harassment, or damage their careers if some
information about their Internet usage patterns became public.
Though information about individual behaviour has always been
collected, the tremendous breadth and depth of information about
Internet usage raises new concerns. "People need to be fully
informed about how the data on each site are being collected, and
how their privacy is being protected," according to Ann Bishop, a
library science professor.
                     (Chronicle Of Higher Education; July 21, 1995)

Internet Ushers In Age Of Digital Art
-------------------------------------
     New digital art forms, such as on the Web or CD-ROM, present
a unique range of possibilities and limitations, and can be
compared to the invention of photography. "You can start to feel a
mutability or changeability, so it's more organic," according to
the director of the Dia Center for the Arts. There is no limitation
of space and no uniformed guards warning you not to touch the work
of art.
                                  (Associated Press; July 21, 1995)

Blacks Step Up Presence On Internet
-----------------------------------
     There is a marked increase in online information focusing  on
Afro-Caribbean, Afro-Latino, Afro-European, continental African as
well as African American cultures. U.S.-based organisations like
NetNoir, Black Pioneers of the Net, and the National Urban League
help feature forums on politics, news, business, the arts, travel
and calendars of events. According to Chicago-based Target Market
News, African Americans spent 60 percent more on computer equipment
and software in 1994 than in 1993, a finding which is drawing
interest from consumer services divisions in companies like AT&T.
                               (Inter Press Service; July 19, 1995)

Will People Spend More Time With Computers Than Television?
-----------------------------------------------------------
     According to Andrew Grove, CEO of Intel, the time spent in
front of personal computers will exceed the time spent before TV by
the end of the decade. However, Viacom's CEO, Frank Biondi,
countered that this estimate may be correct only if offices are
counted too. According to Biondi, TV is the avenue for passive
entertainment and escapism, and therefore its use may not be
overtaken by PCs. Several companies, including Intel, are currently
exploring alliances between cable TV providers and PC makers,
through products like high-speed cable modems for Internet traffic.
                       (Knight-Ridder Business News; July 18, 1995)

Will Internet Lead To New Model For Software Distribution?
----------------------------------------------------------
     Scott McNealy, CEO of Sun Microsystems, hopes that free
software distributed over the Internet will eventually displace
packaged application programs sold in computer stores. He hopes
that Java applets (application programs based on the Java
programming language) will "unleash the re-engineering of the
planet and the whole economic system." Sun would, of course, stand
to gain from increasing use of the Internet since it accounts for
56 percent of Internet servers; besides, this new model could
undermine leading software market leaders like Bill Gates'
MicroSoft. However, users may be reluctant to switch from well
known company products to freebie software. And software developers
like MicroSoft may simply use the Internet as yet another
distribution channel for their products.
                          (Financial Times, Britain; July 17, 1995)

Chinese News Agency To Sell Advertisement Space On Internet
-----------------------------------------------------------
     The official Chinese news agency, Xinhua, will allow companies
to establish a presence on the Internet - without letting it become
a tool of political dissent. Xinhua hopes to sign up as many as
200,000 companies for Web advertisements by next year, but all
communications will be screened. Foreign firms will be offered a
translating service to publish Web pages in Chinese for access by
companies in China.
                      (Asian Wall Street Journal; July 10-16, 1995)

Porn Issue Sparks Largest Internet Mobilization
-----------------------------------------------
     The response of the Internet community to allegations of
rampant online pornography may be "the largest mobilisation yet on
the Internet over a current event." Internet users have made "a
practical crusade" out of investigating the study's author and
debunking its conclusions. For instance, it appears that Martin
Rimm has a history of conducting research in which the results are
criticised but that leads to government action, such as his earlier
study on gambling in New Jersey. The World Wide Web pages at
http://www2000.ogsm.vanderbilt.edu/cyberporn.debate.cgi have useful
information on such issues.
                       (Knight-Ridder Business News; July 15, 1995)

Japan Fails To Link Itself Comprehensively To The Internet
----------------------------------------------------------
     Japan trails behind the English-speaking world and even the
Czech Republic in number of Internet users per head. Lower density
of computer ownership, the language barrier, and the high cost of
doing business with the Japanese telco NTT account for this low
level of Internet penetration.
                            (The Economist, Britain; July 15, 1995)

Internet Helps British Government Stay Open Round The Clock
-----------------------------------------------------------
     The British Government Center for Information Systems recently
hosted a conference to review its progress down the information
superhighway, such as through information centers in schools,
libraries, and on the Internet. It is hoped that citizens will soon
be able to fill tax forms, claim state benefits, apply for
passports and licenses, and correspond with officials - via e-mail.
Keeping the government "open for business around the clock" will
enable citizens to ask questions at their own convenience, instead
of when it suits civil servants.
                                 (The Times, London; July 15, 1995)

South African Minister Makes Policy Debut On Internet
-----------------------------------------------------
     South African Post and Telecommunications Minister Pallo
Jordan will be releasing his green paper on telecommunications on
the Web (http://wn.apc.org/technology/telecoms/greenpaper.html).
Jordan's support for the information superhighway is perceived as
critical for unlocking the Net's potential in South Africa. Future
plans for Jordan include participating in an IRC forum next month.
          (Weekly Mail and Guardian, Johannesburg; July 7-13, 1995)

Is The Public Interest Being Ignored By U.S. Congress Legislation?
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     Some of the most spectacular technologies which can revitalise
communications in the U.S. include online computer services and the
Internet. But in some senses, the current communications revolution
closely parallels that of the 1920s, when the emergence of
radio broadcasting forced society to address the same political
questions. Now - as then - the legislative process governing the
telecommunications bill is being guided by the same assumption that
led to the disastrous Communications Act of 1934: namely, that
corporate competition will provide the most efficient and
democratic communications system. Instead of having a positive
impact on politics, education and culture, the new legislation may
just enable corporations to transform cyberspace into a giant
shopping mall.
                                    (In These Times; July 10, 1995)

140 British Recruitment Agencies Establish Web Presence
-------------------------------------------------------
     About 1,000 recruitment agencies around the world have now
established a presence on the Web, of which 140 joined from Britain
this year alone. Most recruiters specialise in information
technology vacancies. One advantage of using the Web is its
international reach, recruiters and applicants do not have to
"check out the appropriate media for Hong Kong or Bermuda,"
according to the Price Jamieson group. However, using the Internet
raises several challenges for recruiters and companies - Net users
expect a quick response and updated information on Web sites.
                              (The Observer, Britain; July 9, 1995)

Shakespearean Insults Available On The Internet
-----------------------------------------------
     If you feel the need to "broaden your cultural horizons," you
may wish to visit Web sites which generate insults beautifully
crafted in Shakespearean English. At one of these sites, called
Joey's list (http://www.preferred.com/~joey/insult.html), you can
type in your name and receive personalised insults. You can also
insult your friends by e-mail - but be warned that you will not be
able to see the insult until after it has been sent.
                             (New Scientist, Britain; July 8, 1995)

South Korean Candidates Use Internet For Political Campaigning
--------------------------------------------------------------
     One of the unique features of the June 27 local elections in
South Korea was the use of computer networks as a means for
campaigning. More than 50 candidates, including primary members
from the ruling and opposition parties, used local networks and the
Internet for electronic chat sessions and to distribute personal
information, campaign pledges, and photographs. The "online
election campaign" was aimed chiefly at the computer generation
which accounts for 60 percent of the total eligible voters. This
experiment in teledemocracy was marred, though, by the uploading of
slanderous remarks which accounted for about 15% of the e-mail.
                                  (Korea NewsReview; July 1, 1995)

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 Posted by Richard K. Moore (•••@••.•••) Wexford, Ireland (USA citizen)
                 Moderator: CYBERJOURNAL (@CPSR.ORG)

    World Wide Web (shared with cyber-rights):
        http://jasper.ora.com/andyo/cyber-rights/cyber-rights.html
        http://www.cs.virginia.edu/~hwh6k/public/cyber-rights.html
    FTP:
        ftp://jasper.ora.com/pub/andyo/cyber-rights

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