More Internet everywhere while the world manages the COVID-19 pandemic

With factories, offices, public places, transportation, schools are colleges shut down, and no clear picture of whether normal life would resume in 4 weeks or 4 months, it is the Internet that could make life go on. While it is necessary to keep an eye on fake news and the dangers of fake news causing panic, it is equally important to keep the Internet globally connected, perhaps even with directives to access providers NOT to disrupt connectivity to any user under any pretext together with a heightened awareness among Governments that everyone needs Internet, even to seek medical help, and more to preserve mass psychological well being.

“More Internet” here implies an approach that is on the other end of the tendency to lock down, it implies a greater willingness to keep more of the people of the world more connected, and to make news, educational, spiritual and entertainment content more available and also to think of more of curated streams  for e.g,  you tube recommendation, you tube curated streams, a better face book news stream etc… On the constructive / reconstruction front, Internet could bring together groups to collaborate on crisis management, economic reconstruction questions and could generate innovative ideas to solve problems.

The following is a post published in CircleID by the CircleID Reporter, referenced by Glenn McKnight in the Internet Society mailing list, with the title “Companies in the USA Take Connectivity Pledge Amid COVID-19 Crisis”. CircleID is an indispensable platform for the world’s Internet industry professionals where they come to connect, inform and be informed; The blog is widely read by Internet policy makers around the world across stakeholder groups.

Broadband Companies Take Connectivity Pledge Amid COVID-19 Crisis

Broadband and telephone service providers of all sizes in the US have signed on to a “Keep Americans Connected Pledge” aimed at maintaining connectivity for citizens amid disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic. For the next 60 days FCC has urged service providers to “(1) not terminate service to any residential or small business customers because of their inability to pay their bills due to the disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic; (2) waive any late fees that any residential or small business customers incur because of their economic circumstances related to the coronavirus pandemic; and (3) open its Wi-Fi hotspots to any American who needs them.” Close to 80 companies have confirmed to take the pledge, according to FCC.

Read articles on Related topics: Access ProvidersBroadbandTelecom

Apply now for the 2018 Youth@IGF program fellowship

The Internet Society is now accepting applications for the  Youth fellowships to the IGF:

Internet governance topics
Internet Governance issues : Everything concerns you.

The Internet Governance Forum (IGF) takes place in a different country every year at the UN premises. Participants include leaders from Government, Business, Civil Society, Academic Community and the Internet Community from around the world. At the IGF, all participants are seated on the level in the multi-stakeholder model.

As a youth participant, you will have good opportunities to share your views on how important Internet is for you, on how you feel about the Internet, its freedom, about restrictions, if any, on the use of the Internet at your work or at school, and about the cost and quality of Internet bandwidth available to you.  You could share your thoughts on how secure you feel on the Internet or about your concerns if any on what appears to be Internet surveillance on you.  Or about your privacy needs.

This year, the IGF will take place in Paris, France. The Internet Society offers two different Youth fellowships to travel to Paris to attend the IGF, which covers travel, accommodation in a comfortable hotel and all expenses, including visa fees.

If you spend a lot of time on the Internet, and if you care about the Governance of the Internet, you are free to participate as a young person, without any specific policy expertise or technical expertise. Your participation would directly add value to the work of the Internet Governance Forum and would help preserve the Internet as a Free, Open and Global Internet, without any changes to the way it works.

There are 2 good news from ISOC Fellowship programme to 13th IGF
  1. Youth@IGF for 18 to 25 years old young people to apply. Link: https://www.internetsociety.org/youth/youth-igf-programme/
  2. IGF Ambassador Programme for 20s to 40 years old people to apply. Link :https://www.internetsociety.org/leadership/igf-ambassadors/

The Internet Society is now accepting submissions. If you have any questions, please contact isocindiachennai (at) Gmail (dot) com.

A spider web of Internet connections in New York

NYCMesh is a group dedicated to establishing an internet free from corporate dominance in New York, but can they realistically stand up to the big internet service providers? Its members set up antennas on rooftops around the city to create a spider web of connections. CBC News got a look at how the underground network is building its own internet.

Thousands of companies spy on you

Bruce Schneier is an internationally renowned security technologist, called a “security guru” by The Economist. He is the author of 13 books–including Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World–as well as hundreds of articles, essays, and academic papers. His influential newsletter “Crypto-Gram” and his blog “Schneier on Security” are read by over 250,000 people. He has testified before Congress, is a frequent guest on television and radio, has served on several government committees, and is regularly quoted in the press. Schneier is a fellow at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University; a Lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School; a board member of the Electronic Frontier FoundationAccessNow, and the Tor Project; an Advisory Board Member of the Electronic Privacy Information Center and VerifiedVoting.org; and a special advisor to IBM Security and the Chief Technology Officer at IBM Resilient.

Schneier says “Thousands of companies are spying on you” in his CNN Opinion. Some excerpts:

… while Facebook is one of the biggest players in this space, there are thousands of other companies that spy on and manipulate us for profit…It has existed in secret far too long, and it’s up to lawmakers to force these companies into the public spotlight, where we can all decide if this is how we want society to operate and — if not — what to do about it.

There are 2,500 to 4,000 data brokers in the United States whose business is buying and selling our personal data. [and a thousand in India, thousands in Europe and so on???]

…Smart phone is probably the most intimate surveillance device ever invented. It tracks our location continuously, so it knows where we live, where we work, and where we spend our time. It’s the first and last thing we check in a day, so it knows when we wake up and when we go to sleep. We all have one, so it knows who we sleep with. Uber used just some of that information to detect one-night stands; your smartphone provider and any app you allow to collect location data knows a lot more…

…None of this is new…

Surveillance capitalism is deeply embedded in our increasingly computerized society, and if the extent of it came to light there would be broad demands for limits and regulation. But because this industry can largely operate in secret, only occasionally exposed after a data breach or investigative report, we remain mostly ignorant of its reach.

This might change soon

More here