Links for last week

Posted late, due to travels, here are the most interesting links from last week’s Information Program mailout.

Turkey blocks use of Google services
Turkey’s Telecommunications regulator has issued a ban on several Google services, including Google Translate, Google Books and Google Docs. According to a statement issued by the regulator, the services will be blocked or throttled within Turkey. The statement was not clear on the reasons for the ban.

U.S. Intelligence Analyst Arrested in Wikileaks Video Probe
A 22 year-old US Army intelligence analyst has been arrested and is being detained in Kuwait on suspicion of leaking classified material about army operations to whistle-blowing website Wikileaks. SPC Bradley Manning allegedly bragged online to a former computer hacker that he was the source of the Wikileaks video “Collateral Murder”. The video depicts an air attack in Iraq that resulted in the death of two Reuters journalists and several other Iraqi civilians.

Concerns in Vietnam over new “Green Dam”
Following failed attempts last year by Chinese authorities to mandate the installation of content-control software known as Green Dam on every PC in China, human rights activists are expressing concern over similar regulations in Vietnam. The regulations, targeted at internet cafes in Hanoi, require cafe owners to install a mysterious “Internet Service Retailers Management Software,” on every domain server they operate.

New Rwanda IP Policy Taps Information For Development
The government of Rwanda has adopted an unusual and wide-ranging intellectual property policy they say forms part of their comprehensive development strategy. The policy includes provisions for shorter-term “petty” patents, the exclusion of pharmaceuticals from patent protection, exceptions and limitations for education and translation, and the policy that enforcement shall generally be a civil, not a state, matter.

The end of bloggers’ anonymity in France?
The French senator Jean-Louis Masson has submitted a draft law that could end anonymity of bloggers. According to the text, bloggers would have to provide identification data such as name, phone number and address on their blogs. It is unclear how the law would be enforced.

Google campaign tools
Google details how to use its suite of services to run effective campaigns. Although geared towards the US congressional elections, this introduction to Google’s campaign tools will also be useful to campaigners and advocates in other parts of the world.

“Transparency is not enough”
This speech by danah boyd explains why we need to look beyond transparency to the way information is interpreted – and manipulated – once it is out in the open.

Does the internet make you smarter or dumber?
Two digital gurus – Nicholas Carr and Clay Shirky – argue over whether the internet makes us better or worse at thinking.

Overcoming apathy through participation?
Ethan Zuckerman examines theories of change and social media.

The Rise of Crowd Science
This Chronicle of Higher Education feature focuses on the rise and rise of the crowd-sourced astronomy project, Galaxy Zoo.

Open Data and Creative Commons: It’s About Scale…
John Wilbanks’ confronts licensing issues around open data.

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