Too much information: week ending 1 July 2011

Civil Society representatives reject OECD internet policy plan
European Digital Rights (EDRi) report on the decision of the Civil Society Information Society Advisory Council to the OECD (CSISAC) not to endorse the OECD’s draft communiquÈ on internet policy: “the implication of much of the text is to abandon the rule of law and hand over both enforcement and policing of cyberspace to online intermediaries”.

Police crack down on Minsk protest using social media
Global Voices reports on a crackdown against a protest in Minsk, Belarus, detailing how authorities used Facebook and Twitter to identify, intimidate and discourage protestors.

EU: No mandatory internet filtering against images of child abuse
The Open Net Initiative reports that, “the European Commission, Council, and Parliament came to an agreement last week regarding controversial plans to mandate internet filtering as a means to fight the circulation of child abuse images”. Thanks to EDRi’s intensive, year-long campaign, internet filtering will now most likely not be mandated by draft legislation being negotiated.

Minimal stakeholder engagement at multilateral IP enforcement treaty negotiations
Krista Cox of Knowledge Ecology International reports from last week’s Vietnam round of negotiations of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, a multilateral free trade agreement which contains worrying proposals on intellectual property enforcement that could harm access to knowledge: “overall, civil society and academics were displeased with the limited stakeholder engagement and restricted opportunities to interact with the negotiators”.

FOIA: How to break the bottleneck
The New York Times looks at the future of Freedom of Information law and practice in the US, in light of news that “two and a half years after the president’s call for openness, only 49 of 90 federal agencies have reported making concrete changes to their FOIA procedures”.

Critical Point of View: A Wikipedia reader
This collection of essays, interviews and artworks seeks to provide new insight on the next generation of Wikipedia-related research, examining everything from “radical artistic interventions and the significant role of bots” to “hidden trajectories of encyclopaedic knowledge and the politics of agency and exclusion”. It is supported by, among others, the Centre for Internet and Society – India.

Social media: Good for revolution, bad for democracy?
Dave Power draws on a range of thinkers to make a case that social media’s ability to enact political change stops short of helping constitute new governing structures after a successful popular revolution.

Book: The power of open
Creative Commons (CC) publish a series of case studies into use of their licences, to demonstrate, “the breadth of CC uses across fields and the creativity of the individuals and organizations that have chosen to share their work via Creative Commons.”

ICT Accessibility progress report
This report, released this week by a United Nations accessibility taskforce, finds that despite commitments on paper to protect the rights of people with disabilities to access ICT, many countries are failing to guarantee those rights in practice. The report is based on a survey of 33 of 147 countries which have signed or ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Beyond impact workshop report
Cameron Neylon of York University UK publishes a report of the Beyond Impact workshop, held in London in May 2011 to identify opportunities and barriers in the aggregation, analysis, and measurement of research outputs.

Video: Internet connectivity in Ghana
Russell Southwood interviews a Ghanaian internet service provider about the challenges of providing connectivity in the country.

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