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NTIA Plans to Relinquesh Control Of ICANN To Global Community

On March 14 the United States Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) announced plans to transition oversight of the nonprofit Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to the global “multi-stakeholder” community. Headquartered in the Los Angeles suburb of Marina del Rey, ICANN controls what is essentially the address book of the Internet: the massive database...

Connect2Health Initiative Announced By FCC

For the past few years, the FCC has been trying to set up better Internet for schools and health care facilities. The Commission has already set up a fund to bring high speed Internet to schools, and now it’s going to focus on education.

House Committee Approves Bill That Would Ban In-Flight Calls

The FAA made a lot of fliers happier last year when it relaxed its ban on using electronic devices during take-off and landing. The ban on in-flight calls was still in effect though, but it looked like the FCC was going to strike that one down too. Well, the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee doesn’t really like that idea.

The Hill reports that the Committee, headed up by Chairman Bill Shuster, has just passed a bill that would ban in-flight cell phone calls. It’s not that Shuster thinks a cell phone call will suddenly tear a plane from the sky though. He just doesn’t want to hear you talking to your boyfriend at 30,000 feet.

“In our day-to-day lives, when we find someone’s cell phone call to be too loud, too close, or too personal, we can just walk away,” Shuster said. “But at 30,000 feet, there’s nowhere else for an airline passenger to go. Under this bill, passengers will be able to use their mobile devices to stay connected, through getting online, emailing, texting, and more. During flights, it is common sense and common courtesy to continue keeping cell phone calls on the ground.”

It would appear that the House Committee is not alone on this matter. A companion bill has already been introduced in the Senate by Sen. Lamar Alexander. The aviation and travel industries also backed the legislation. The U.S. Travel Association notes that polls have found that frequent fliers would prefer that in-flight calls remain banned because nobody wants to hear you blabber on like an idiot on an already stressful flight.

It’s nothing personal, mind you. We’re all obnoxious when talking on a cell phone. Just stick to texting and we’ll all be happy. Well, as happy as 100 humans cramped in a flying tin can can be.


NSA Reforms To Be Outlined Next Week

Shortly after Edward Snowden leaked details regarding the NSA’s surveillance practices, President Obama announced that he would put together a review panel that would recommend changes to how the agency conducts its surveillance operations. Now that that report is in the hands of the president, he’s ready to act upon those recommendations.
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President Obama Suggests That Americans Should Learn To Code

Ever since the dawn of computing, computer programming has always been a subject that has been heavily influenced by math and science. Just the thought of programming, where a person sits in front of a computer staring at lines and lines of code on end, does not sound like an exciting career to most. However, there is one initiative that has recently come to pass to let the “Average Joe” create a simple program without having to break a sweat or strain their brain cells. This initiative has been called The Hour of Code.
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NSA Allowed To Continue Spying On American Citizens Phone Records

The Electronic Privacy Information Center, also known as EPIC, skipped lower federal courts and took their petition against the NSA straight to the Supreme Court.
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Hundreds Of Anti-NSA Protesters Gathered In Washington

Hundreds of anti-NSA protestors gathered in Washington, D.C. on Saturday to take part in the “Stop Watching Us” rally. The people marched in front of the Capitol to protest the National Security Agency’s mass surveillance of American citizens. Several White House politicians were in attendance at the rally that the ACLU called the “biggest protest yet against NSA spying.”
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Secret Social Network Was Created By NSA To Spy On Americans

How many social networks do you use today? If you’re like most Internet users, you at least have a Facebook and Twitter account. After that, you might also hop onto Google+, Instagram, Vine or Pinterest. If you really want to push your social hipster cred, you might even still rock a MySpace profile. Regardless of your social network allegiances, you all also belong to a social network that you don’t even know about.
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List of How Many People Who Were Targeted By The NSA In 2012 To Be Declassified

Earlier this month, President Obama outlined four ways that he would like to reform the NSA and FISA court. A big part of those reforms was increased transparency, and it looks we’ll finally be getting a little more transparency.
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Lavabit Halts Email Service Due To U.S. Government

In early July, it was suggested that former NSA contractor Edward Snowden used Lavabit. For those unaware, it’s a small email provider based out of Texas that promises the utmost privacy through encryption. The service had a small following, but now it’s gone.
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Email Privacy Amendment Unanimously Passed By House

The ECPA amendment that would require government agencies to obtain a warrant when accessing email hasn’t made much headway since the Senate Judiciary Committee approved it back in April. Now the House is trying to make sure email privacy is here to stay with a different strategy.
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Under Certain Conditions The NSA Can Use Incidental Data

One of the scariest parts about the NSA’s spying program is its collection of incidental data – information that may or may not be about American citizens that just so happens to be picked up with information on non-U.S. targets. It’s been said that the NSA can’t use this data, but a new report says they can under certain conditions.
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