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Why Facebook Is Not a Common Carrier

The ever-entertaining Fifth Circuit has recently upheld a strange Texas law that forbids most kinds of social media moderation. (Techdirt explains many of the reasons the court is wrong, so I won't try.) This brings us to the trendy question of whether Facebook, Twitter, et al. should be treated as common carriers. You can make a good argument to separate the point-to-point data transport from the ISP and make the former common carriage. more

Hijacked IP Addresses

From time to time, a party can get out of control. Raucous celebration can become careless, even destructive. Combine a critical number of young people, a certain amount of beer and lots of music and damage often happens. Partygoers leave a mess behind them. The same thing happens to some IP addresses. Malicious actors use IP addresses properly registered to someone else. more

Your Choice

Let's face it. The suppression of free speech is happening all over the Internet. Examples range from fanatics shouting down "unbelievers" in chatrooms to governments silencing voices to rig elections. We are equally convinced that freedom of speech as a principle should be generally upheld in cyberspace. This principle is strong where freedom and democracy are strong. It shines bright for those in search of freedom and democracy. Well, folks, think again. A recent experience has made me think otherwise. more

ICANN’s Accountability and Transparency – a Retrospective on the IANA Transition

As we passed five years since the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority transition took place, my co-authors and I paused to look back on this pivotal moment; to take stock of what we've learned and to re-examine some of the key events leading up to the transition and how careful planning ensured a successful transfer of IANA responsibilities from the United States Government to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. more

The 12 GHz Battle

A big piece of what the FCC does is to weigh competing claims to use spectrum. It seems like there have been non-stop industry fights over the last decade on who gets to use various bands of spectrum. One of the latest fights, which is the continuation of a battle going on since 2018, is for the use of the 12 GHz spectrum. The big wrestling match is between Starlink's desire to use the spectrum to communicate with its low-orbit satellites and cellular carriers and WISPs... more

Satellite Cell Service: What’s Coming

T-Mobile and Starlink made a joint announcement recently about an arrangement where Starlink will enable voice and texting capabilities to T-Mobile cellphones by the end of 2023. This is a service that would work with existing cell phones and would supposedly kick in when a phone can't find a signal from a cell tower. Starlink said the technology would be enabled by new satellites that have significantly larger antennae than the current satellites in the constellation. more

Registration Patterns of Deceptive Domains

A key requirement for a bad actor wanting to launch a brand attack is the registration of a carefully chosen domain name. The most convincing infringements frequently use a domain name that's deceptively similar to that of the official site of the target brand. This allows a variety of attacks to be executed, including phishing attacks... more

Cable Companies Tout Speed Increases

Last month, NCTA -- The Internet and Television Association -- posted an article on its website touting the big increases in broadband speeds since the start of the pandemic. NCTA is the industry trade and lobbying association for medium-sized and large cable companies. The article touts that the average U.S. download speed has grown from 138 Mbps in March 2020, the first month of the pandemic, to 226 Mbps in June 2022. more

How to Restore Trust Into Cyberspace? Beer Has the Answer!

Let's face it, when it comes to digital technologies, fundamental human rights are not on top of the digital agenda. They seem irrelevant and remote, even an obstacle to digital innovation and opportunities. We are quick to pay lip service to them, but we permit the profit motive and stakeholder self-interests to override human rights principles. It does not matter how right and righteous the cause might be; to be implemented, it must be profitable or carry stakeholder benefits. more

Keeping Telecom Sales Teams Motivated During Chaotic Times

Across all industries, the supply chain crisis has become a new way of life for companies and consumers. For telecom providers, not only are hardware systems delayed, but furthermore, the worker shortage has played a role in software development and service operations. From a slowdown of new innovation to delays in maintaining existing offerings, telecom sales teams are faced with longer and longer pipelines, leading to delays in commission checks. more

From “Network Neutrality” to “Sender Pays”, the Principles Remain Much the Same

The entire set of issues of network neutrality, interconnection and settlements, termination monopolies, cost allocation and infrastructure investment economics is back with us again. This time it's not under the banner of "Network Neutrality" but under a more directly confronting title of "Sender Pays." The principle is much the same: network providers want to charge both their customers and the content providers to carry content to users. more

Cyberhygiene Requires Critical Thinking

At his farewell speech in August outgoing, Telstra CEO Andy Penn mentioned that the cyber threat has never been as serious as the present. He mentioned the deteriorating geopolitical situation and the big shift in how criminals operate in the cyber domain. One thing is for sure is that in order to enjoy all the positives resulting from the digital economy, we need to be far more vigilant about the barrage of information that we are receiving and/or have access to. more

Four Crucial Questions to Ask When Considering Telecom M&A

Many industries have gone back to pre-COVID days but not telecom or their supporting technology partners. In fact, the pandemic gave a modern-day meaning to the decades-old iconic long-distance campaign to "reach out and touch someone." With so many months (and even years) of remote and isolated living, telecom audio and voice communications became the heroes of the era, bringing us together and forever changing our options in socializing and doing business. more

Streaming Video Continues to Grow

I saw recent headlines that claim that the time people watch streaming content is now greater than all of the time spent watching content from cable companies. A deeper look at the underlying statistics shows that this isn't entirely true, but it makes for a great headline. But it's still news that the percentage of viewing done through streaming continues to grow while the number of traditional cable customers continues to plunge. more

SpaceX Introduces Affordability-Based Starlink Pricing

When SpaceX announced the price of the Starlink service, Elon Musk said it would be the same everywhere but I wrote that eventually it would be priced to be affordable in different nations. (If you predict enough things, you are bound to get something right). The fixed cost of a satellite Internet constellation is high -- satellites are expensive to make and launch -- but the cost of adding and servicing a new customer is low, and the market is global. more

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