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News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 15 June 2018

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The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.


Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: EFF, Open Rights Group.

NEWS

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For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/


Amazon partners with law enforcement on cheap facial recognition

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At the Washington Post, Elizabeth Dwoskin reports that documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California reveal that Amazon is selling - for minimal amounts - facial recognition tools known as "Rekognition" and related consulting services - to law enforcement agencies in Oregon and Orlando, Florida. A coalition of civil rights groups, including ACLU, EFF, and Human Rights Watch, has called on the company to end the program, which they argue could lead to increased surveillance of vulnerable communities. Matt Wood, the general manager of artificial intelligence at Amazon, has published a blog posting defending the company's decision. At Democracy Now, Center for Media Justice co-founder Malkia Cyril calls the program "terrifying" and inherently discriminatory.

Washington Post: https://wapo.st/2JxKxXN

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2JQRkLl

Democracy Now: http://bit.ly/2JNh9Mg


Max Schrems sues Google and Facebook over "forced consent"

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At The Register, Rebecca Hill reports that Austrian privacy activist Max Schrems celebrated May 25, the first day of enforcement of the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), by using his NOYB non-profit organization to file lawsuits against Google and Facebook, along with Facebook subsidiaries WhatsApp and Instagram. Schrems' complaints argue that while the companies have introduced new privacy policies to comply with GDPR, the consent mechanisms do not meet the regulation's standards for specific consent.

Register: http://bit.ly/2JQhtdk


US: FBI caught overstating encryption problem

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At the Washington Post, Devlin Barrett reports that FBI director Christopher A. Wray has repeatedly overstated its concerns about encrypted cellphones. Instead of the nearly 7,800 devices the agency claimed investigators were locked out of in 2017, the true number is more likely to be between 1,000 and 2,000. The claim formed part of a campaign to prevent digital communications from "going dark" by ensuring law enforcement access to encrypted communications.

Washington Post: https://wapo.st/2HHyMYY


Tanzania orders unregistered bloggers to shut down

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Africa News reports that Tanzania has ordered all unregistered bloggers to shut down under new regulations coming into force in Tanzania that require all bloggers to apply for an online license by June 15. Registration costs bloggers and owners of online forums such as YouTube channels up to $900, approximately equal to the country's per capita income. Those convicted of failure to comply with the regulations face fines of at least $2,200 and 12 months in prison, or both. At Quartz Africa, Abdi Latif Dahir reports that among the closures is one of Tanzania's top homegrown online platforms, Jamii Forums. Founded in 2006, Jamii has been called the "Swahili version of Wikileaks" and the "Tanzanian Reddit". One of its founders appeared in court more than 50 times in 2017, and the site has been influential in exposing government corruption.

Africa News: http://bit.ly/2JLnsQp

Quartz: http://bit.ly/2t2wgHd


Brazil: Data protection law passes Lower House

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At America's Quarterly, Robert Muggah and Louise Marie Hurel report that the Brazilian' Lower House has passed legislation that would require all public and private entities operating in the country to secure users' and clients' consent to store their personal data. If approved by the Senate, although the law doesn't meet the standard set by the EU's General Data Protection Regulation, it will include many provisions to protect privacy and limit discriminatory profiling; it will also create a Data Protection Authority and a National Council for the Protection of personal Data. At G1, Marília Marques reports that after a three-month investigation the Public Ministry of the Federal District has found that the Federal Data Processing Service (Serpro) has been marketing and selling Brazilian's personal data. The case has been referred to the Federal Public Ministry.

America's Quarterly: http://bit.ly/2y5lztl

G1 (Portuguese): http://bit.ly/2t1YoKE

Google Translate (English): http://bit.ly/2JxKVFJ


European Parliament will vote June 20 on Copyright Directive

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The BBC reports that on June 20 the European Parliament will vote on the EU's proposed new Copyright Directive. Of particular concern is Article 13, which dozens of campaigning groups including Copyright4Creativity, the Open Rights Group, and EFF have warned could put an end to user-generated memes, remixes, and other content on the web by requiring platforms to filter out any uploaded content that violates copyright. At the Wikimedia blog, Jan Gerlach explains in detail the problems with Article 13: filters are generally overbroad; their use tends to expand into other areas not originally envisaged ("mission creep"); and automated content detection systems are expensive, disadvantaging start-ups and small sites. Communia, a network of activists, researchers, and practitioners from ten EU countries, proposes that the European Parliament should instead adopt the opinion of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee (IMCO), which has also been adopted by the Civil Liberties Committee (LIBE) and would limit Article 13's negative effects.

BBC: https://bbc.in/2Mls7qP

Wikimedia: http://bit.ly/2t4hXls

Communia: http://bit.ly/2sSBZQR


AI researchers boycott new Nature journal

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At the Guardian, machine learning researcher Neil Lawrence reports that more than 3,000 AI researchers have signed a pledge to boycott Springer Nature's new for-profit journal, Nature Machine Intelligence. Lawrence argues that since taxpayers fund his research they should not have to pay again to read the results, and that researchers at less well-funded universities deserve equal access.

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2LIvKGe



FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

====================

For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:

http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/


Google's AI principles

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In this blog posting, Google CEO Sundar Pichai publishes the company's AI principles. These include creating social benefits, avoiding unfair bias, and testing for safety, and include values such as accountability, privacy, and scientific excellence. The posting also lists applications the company will not pursue: weapons, surveillance outside of internationally accepted norms, and technologies likely to cause overall harm. At Jacobin Mag, Ben Tarnoff interviews one of the Google employees who led the successful campaign to get the company to promise not to renew its Project Maven contract with the Pentagon, which uses machine learning to improve the targeting of drone strikes. A separate blog posting outlines the company's recommended practices for building AI systems. Finally, on his blog MIT Media Lab director Joi Ito discusses the need to incorporate ethics alongside the optimism characteristic of research at the boundaries of science and technology.

Google (principles): http://bit.ly/2sSYiFQ

Jacobin Mag: http://bit.ly/2t4vdXc

Google (responsibility): http://bit.ly/2HIjGlZ

Media Lab: http://bit.ly/2sSAmCI


Why Americans' location data is no longer private

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In this blog posting, investigative security journalist Brian Krebs studies the regulatory and technical background leading up to the LocationSmart breach. In mid-May, Krebs discovered that LocationSmart, a US-based aggregator of real-time mobile device location data, had been leaking location data for customers of all the major US mobile carriers via its website in real time without consent or the need for any form of authentication or authorization. It's not clear how the Federal Trade Commission will handle this or any of the other similar leaks involving T-Mobile, Comcast, and Securus Technologies. Worst of all, Krebs writes, even though Carnegie-Mellon researcher Robert Xiao has demonstrated that it's easy to look up the precise location of any mobile number in the US, public interest faded quickly.

Krebs: http://bit.ly/2JDPB8L


Israel's law to ban filming soldiers

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In this Guardian article, Roy Greenslade argues that Israel should abandon proposals for a law that would prohibit photographing or filming Israeli Defense Forces "with the intention of undermining the spirit" of the army and make violations punishable by five to ten years in prison. Images, he says, leave indelible truth in viewers' minds even when the text is filled with propaganda. At TheNewArab, CJ Werleman explains the background: the 2014 Israeli siege in Gaza was one of the first wars to be photographed by amateurs who distributed their images via social media.

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2JxLYFF

TheNewArab: http://bit.ly/2l4bGTl


Twenty years of surveillance

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At this page are hosted the video streams from the UK's Foundation for Information Policy Research 20th birthday celebration, a one-day conference outlining the past, present, and future of surveillance and the internet. Of particular note are Ross Anderson's introduction, former MP Julian Huppert's account of his experiences during the debates over the Communications Data Bill and Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act, philosopher Onora O'Neill's provocations, and revelations by Jen Persson, whose NGO defenddigitalme finds that UK's Department of Education collects as many as 400 data items per pupil and sells them on to commercial firms while refusing to grant subject access requests by schoolkids and their parents. At net.wars, Wendy M. Grossman has a summary of the day.

YouTube: http://bit.ly/2sTW8WB

net.wars: http://bit.ly/2MkmRE1


Platform business models and their influence on workers' well-being

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In this Medium article, Marija Gavrilov summarizes the International Labour Office's Future of Work research paper, which examines the business models and impact on workers of platforms such as Uber and Deliveroo. The report analyzes the platforms' propensity to contribute to worker exploitation, and recommends that regulators focus on enabling worker agency and reducing platform control, which is being eroded by practices such as refusing to share data on which decisions are made.

Medium: http://bit.ly/2MmhCn2

ILO (report, PDF): http://bit.ly/2JIrUfH


Our phones are listening

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In this article at Vice, Sam Nichols examines the widespread belief that Facebook uses its smartphone app to listen to our conversations and serve up related ads. After some experimentation, he concludes it's true: although Google and Apple require a trigger to activate Siri and OK Google, third-party apps may have thousands of triggers even though Facebook and others deny they listen. At the Guardian, Sam Wolfson reports that an Amazon Alexa device recorded a private conversation between its owner and her husband and sent it to a random contact in their address book. An Amazon spokesman confirmed the privacy breach but offered no explanation.

Vice: http://bit.ly/2t9usfV

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2ycBk1Q



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DIARY

==============

To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:

https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your event listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.


22nd International Conference on Electronic Publishing

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June 22-24, 2018

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

The theme of ELPUB 2018 is Connecting the Knowledge Commons: From Projects to Sustainable Infrastructure. The question of sustainability in the open access movement has been widely debated, yet satisfactory answers have yet to be generated. In the past, ELPUB has featured research results in various aspects of digital publishing, involving a diverse international community of librarians, developers, publishers, entrepreneurs, administrators and researchers across the disciplines in the sciences and the humanities. It is unique as a platform for both researchers, professionals and the broader community. The conference contains a multi-track presentation of refereed papers as well as invited keynotes, special sessions, demonstrations, and poster presentations.

http://bit.ly/2rB60Ef


LIBER Annual Conference

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July 4-6, 2018

Lille, France

The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.

http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU


The Circle of HOPE

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July 20-22, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.

http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM


Defcon

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August 9-12, 2018

Las Vegas, NV, USA

The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.

http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE


VOX-Pol Third Biennial Conference

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August 20-21, 2018

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

The VOX-Pol Network of Excellence (NoE) is a European Union Framework Programme 7 (FP7)-funded academic research network focused on researching the prevalence, contours, functions, and impacts of Violent Online Political Extremism and responses to it.c

http://bit.ly/2Hhzj3Q


World Library and Information Congress

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August 24-30, 2018

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.

http://bit.ly/2qSXIta


Human Rights Measurement Initiative (HRMI) co-design workshop

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September 12 - 14, 2018

Johannesburg, South Africa

Co-hosted with Amnesty International, this workshop will develop innovative and collaborative approaches for using human rights data for impact, and agree on the next steps for HRMI's expansion of country and rights coverage.

http://bit.ly/2JwLWO6


SciELO 20 Years Conference

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September 26-28, 2018

São Paulo, Brazil

In 2018, the SciELO Program will celebrate 20 years of operation, in full alignment with the advances of open science. The conference will address and debate the main political, methodological, and technological issues and trends that define today's state of the art in scholarly communication. These issues will also be shaping the future of the universal openness of scholarly publishing and its relationship with today's Open Access journals, in particular those of the SciELO Network.

http://bit.ly/2FlpVzU


Global Congress on Intellectual Property and the Public Interest V

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September 27-29

Washington, DC, US

The Global Congress is the main meeting of a global network of over 800 researchers, activists, and practitioners who work on the intersection of intellectual property and promotion of the public interest. The core goal is to promote evidence-based policy-making by fostering partnerships between academics and policy advocates from around the world.

http://bit.ly/2sSuVnn


Amsterdam Privacy Conference

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October 5-9, 2018

Amsterdam, Netherlands

APC 2018 brings together researchers, practitioners, policy makers and professionals in the field of privacy to share insights, exchange ideas and formulate, discuss and answer the challenging privacy questions that lie ahead of us. The goal of the conference is to bring together academics, policy makers, journalists, and practitioners to promote active discussion on timely topics, and foster debate on privacy issues between participants from various backgrounds and perspectives.

http://bit.ly/2ucbFEu


International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners

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October 22-26, 2018

Brussels, Belgium

The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.

http://bit.ly/2B1bX38


Computers, Privacy, and Data Protection 2019

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January 30 - February 1, 2019

Brussels, Belgium

The 12th international CPDP conference is accepting submissions for panel and session proposals until June 21, 2018.

http://bit.ly/2sSQ02x


We Robot 2019

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April 11-13, 2019

Miami, Florida, US

We Robot is an interdisciplinary conference on the legal and policy questions relating to robots. The increasing sophistication of robots and their widespread deployment everywhere - from the home, to hospitals, to public spaces, and even to the battlefield - disrupts existing legal regimes and requires new thinking on policy issues. The conference fosters conversations between the people designing, building, and deploying robots, and the people who design or influence the legal and social structures in which robots will operate.

http://bit.ly/2x6T3XD


re:publica 2019

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May 6-8, 2019

Berlin, Germany

The re:publica in Berlin is Europe's biggest conference on topics concerning digitization and society while also being one of the world's most exceptional festivals on digital culture. Since its beginnings in 2007 with 700 bloggers in attendance, it has grown into an international society conference. In 2017 it had 9,000 national and international participants from all areas of society.

http://bit.ly/2GMXl6o



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News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 25 May 2018
====================================================
The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.

Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: Benetech, EFF.

NEWS
=====
For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/

US Senate overrules Federal Communications Commission on network neutrality
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At Ars Technica, Jon Brodkin reports that on May 9 the US Senate voted 52-47 to reverse the Federal Communications Commission's December 2017 repeal of network neutrality rules. The measure, a Congressional Review Act, undoes the FCC's vote; to come into force it must be approved by the House and signed by President Trump by June 11, when the FCC's repeal is due to take effect. At EFF, Ernesto Falcon explains the "discharge petition" process that will be needed to force a vote in the House, which is known to be reluctant to consider network neutrality.
Ars Technica: http://bit.ly/2IJxg9Z
EFF: http://bit.ly/2IEA0cB

Sweden cancels agreement with Elsevier over Open Access
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Times Higher Education reports that the Bibsam Consortium, which represents 85 Swedish universities and research institutes, has announced it will not renew its agreement with Elsevier when it expires on June 30. The Swedish government has said that all publicly funded research should be made freely available by 2026; the consortium says that Elsevier has not met its open access-related requirements. In balking at journal publishers' requirements, Sweden joins Germany, which has a long-running dispute with Elsevier, and France, where The Scientist reports that in March research institutions canceled their agreement with Springer rather than pay the increased subscription rates the publisher wanted.
THE: http://bit.ly/2IGVups
Scientist: http://bit.ly/2J63Eap

Brazil: São Paulo metro stations embed facial recognition
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At CityLab, Ignacio Amigo reports that the Via Quattro, the concessionary operator São Paulo Metro's Yellow Line, has experimentally installed a set of interactive platform doors that display ads and information in three stations. The doors also incorporate sensors and facial recognition in order to monitor viewers' reactions. The line, which is the only privately-run section of São Paulo's transport system, carries approximately 305,000 passengers every weekday to the three stations. Although Marco. the Brazilian Civil Rights Framework for the Internet, has a chapter covering the rights of app users, the Yellow Line monitoring is not covered. This may change soon, as a vote on the Personal Data Protection bill is pending in the lower house of the National Congress.
CityLab: http://bit.ly/2s8BW1U

India: WhatsApp plays crucial role in Karnataka state elections
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At the New York Times, Vindu Goel reports that WhatsApp played a crucial role in political campaigning in the lead-up to the May 12 elections in the Indian state of Karnataka. WhatsApp is often overlooked in the West, but in developing countries it is playing an increasingly central role in elections, both to distribute campaign messages and to sow misinformation, disruption, and sectarian tensions. Goel cites as contributing factors the loss of originating information when messages are forwarded, anonymity for users who identify themselves solely by a phone number, and the lack of transparency to outsiders because of the service's end-to-end encryption. Goel concludes that what, if any, effect WhatsApp had on Karnataka's final election results may never be clear.
New York Times: https://nyti.ms/2xd95iG

US: Court bars President Donald Trump from blocking Twitter users
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At Reuters, Brendan Pierson reports that US District Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald in New York has ruled that President Donald F. Trump, who tweets as @RealDonaldTrump, cannot legally block Twitter users because doing so violates their free speech rights under the First Amendment. Buchwald did not order Trump to unblock the users he has already blocked, but said she assumed that either he or his co-defendant and social media director, Dan Scanvino, would do so given her decision. The case was brought by the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University and several Twitter users, who argued that by blocking users critical of him Trump was shutting them out of discussion in a public forum.
Reuters: https://reut.rs/2J06qOe

Benetech discontinues Martus human rights reporting software
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At its blog, Benetech reports that it intends to cease development of its 15-year-old end-to-end encrypted Martus software for human rights data collection. While Benetech remains convinced that such a system is sorely needed by the human rights community, it believes that it is not practical to move forward with it given current technical requirements. Benetech stresses that it is not aware of existing vulnerabilities in the software and that the Martus backup server will continue to be available for use. The group is beginning to coordinate conversations to identify and address gaps and needs around human rights documentation.
Benetech: http://bit.ly/2kmxB7Y

Researchers devise inaudible commands that drive voice assistants
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At the New York Times, Craig S. Smith reports that researchers can send secret audio instructions the human ear can't detect to the speech-driven devices Siri (Apple), Alexa (Amazon), and Assistant (Google). Researchers in both China and the US have shown they can secretly activate these systems on smartphones and smart speakers and, simply by playing music, make them dial phone numbers or open websites - and, potentially, unlock doors, wire money, or make purchases online. All three companies say they have security measures in place including voice recognition and device locking. However, many people leave their devices unlocked, and interference techniques are improving all the time. So far, none have been seen in the wild. At the Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue blog, Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood communications and operations manager Melissa Campbell advises parents not to buy Amazon's new Echo Dot Kids for both developmental and privacy reasons.
New York Times: https://nyti.ms/2LrJe9V
TACD: http://bit.ly/2s7o8oE


FEATURES AND ANALYSIS
====================
For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:
http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/

The first real look at Facebook's community standards enforcement
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In this article at Gizmodo, Rhett Jones discusses Facebook's first bi-annual content moderation report, which shows that the company's moderation systems caught more objectionable content in the first quarter of 2018 than in the last quarter of 2017. However, because Facebook can't say how big the problem is, it's hard to determine whether the company's algorithmic systems are improving or whether the amount of objectionable content is increasing. Facebook estimates that fake accounts represent 3% to 4% of its estimated monthly active user base of 2.2 billion; in the first quarter of 2018 the company removed 583 million fake accounts. About 21 million pieces of content classed as nudity and sexual content were removed in each quarter; 38% of hate speech was removed before being reported by users. EFF's Jillian C. York praises the company's first steps toward transparency, but would like greater clarity about the reasons for content deletion, the mistakes moderators and automated systems make, and differentiation between the removal of fake accounts versus suspensions for other violations.
Gizmodo: http://bit.ly/2Lqxaph
EFF: http://bit.ly/2xcPpMe

Poking the intellectual property bear
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In this Wired article, Lawrence Lessig opposes the Classics Act, which would create a new digital performance right for musical recordings made before 1972. This new right, Lessig argues, is effectively a term extension, as the new right in these recordings would be protected until 2067, 144 years after some of them were created. Archives streaming early recordings that are currently in the public domain would now have to clear permission. The bill has passed the House of Representatives and is pending in the Senate; 40 professors of intellectual property have signed a letter asking Congress to reject the act. In a follow-up at Medium, Lessig addresses some of the most common attacks on him and his arguments.
https://www.wired.com/story/congress-latest-move-to-extend-copyright-protection-is-misguided/
Medium: http://bit.ly/2IIQHzN

The Selfish Ledger
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In this video clip obtained by The Verge, Google conducts a thought experiment to imagine a future in which collections of information known as "ledgers", like "selfish genes", use individuals to meet their own goals. In this imaginary future, through total data collection Google guides the behavior of individuals toward set goals and entire populations to solve global problems. The company explained that the clip is intentionally disturbing to provoke internal discussion but is not related to any current or future products. Creating a spectrum of "deservingness", Eubanks finds, often means prioritizing cost-effectiveness over need, and these systems are based on data drawn only from those who use the public programs, adding further discriminatory effects.
Verge: http://bit.ly/2J1khDX

Algorithms won't make poverty go away
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In this feature at the Guardian, Virginia Eubanks, author of Automating Inequality: How High-Tech Tools Profile, Police, and Punish the Poor, travels the US investigating the use of AI-driven decision systems for allocating scarce resources to poor people. Automated eligibility systems remove discretion from caseworkers and replace welfare offices with forms and privatized call centers; the result is that often the people who need the services are barred from using them. In a video clip at Data & Society, Safiya Umoja Noble, the author of Algorithms of Oppression, discusses the social problem of data discrimination and the biased search algorithms that discriminate against women of color.
Guardian: http://bit.ly/2kijj8l
Data & Society: http://bit.ly/2ki56bp

The problem with Chinese GPS
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In this posting at Now I Know, Dan Lewis discusses discrepancies in Chinese digital maps such as those available at Google due to technical differences between the World Geodetic System 1984, the basis for most of the world's mapping and guidance systems, and China's own GCJ-02 cartography system. China, Lewis writes, regards map data as a matter of national security, applies an obfuscation algorithm, and requires map-makers to obtain a cartography license. Translation tools exist, but they're hard to find, not that reliable, and against Chinese law.
Now I Know: http://bit.ly/2IIedNn

The untold story of Japan's secret spy agency
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In this article at The Intercept, Ryan Gallegher explores the past and present inner workings of Japan's equivalent of the US National Security Agency, C1. The article is based on a joint investigation by The Intercept and Japanese broadcaster NHK, beginning with the first internal document from Japan's surveillance agency that has ever been disclosed, which formed part of the cache of documents leaked by Edward Snowden. Work at C1's base at Tachiarai, about 700 miles southwest of Tokyo seems to focus on monitoring the activities of foreign countries by intercepting communications and data passing among the 200-plus satellites visible from there. Helping C1 is the specialist technical Ministry of Defense-connected J6 unit, which among other things analyzes malware and develops anti-hacking countermeasures.
Intercept: http://bit.ly/2J1G8v6


***

DIARY
==============
To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:
https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your event listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.

Foundation for Information Policy Research 20th anniversary
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May 29, 2018
Cambridge, UK
For its 20th anniversary, the UK's Foundation for Information Policy Research, founded to campaign against 1990s proposals for surveillance laws, will host a debate in Cambridge featuring representatives of NGOs and GCHQ, academia and DeepMind, the press and the Cabinet Office. Should governments be able to break the encryption on our phones? Are we entitled to any privacy for our health and social care records? And what can be done about fake news? If the Internet's going to be censored, who do we trust to do it?
http://bit.ly/2I65WT2

Privacy Law Scholars
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May 30-31
Washington, DC, USA
PLSC is a paper workshop with the goal of improving and providing support for in-progress scholarship. To achieve this, PLSC assembles a wide array of privacy law scholars and practitioners from around the world to discuss the papers. Scholars from many disciplines (psychology/economics, sociology, philosophy, political science, computer science, and even math) also participate.
http://bit.ly/2zgypRQ

Internet Shutdowns in Africa Workshop
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June 7-8, 2018
Johannesburg, South Africa
Internet shutdowns in Africa doubled between 2015 and 2016, affecting citizens in 11 countries on the continent. While the number declined slightly in 2017, governments that resorted to disrupting the internet did so more frequently and for longer periods. The justifications are diverse, from anti-government protests to Cameroon, to exam cheating in Ethiopia, concerns about election-related violence in Uganda, and quelling social unrest in Zimbabwe. This two-day conference is aimed at sparking in-depth and productive conversations about this issue. It is organized by the ERC-funded ConflictNet programme at the University of Oxford's Programme in Comparative Media Law and Policy, the CSLS, the Bonavero Institute for Human Rights, and the Department of Journalism, Film and Television at the University of Johannesburg's School of Communication. 
http://bit.ly/2HkVpSX

Personal Democracy Forum
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June 7-8, 2018
New York, NY, USA
Since 2004, Personal Democracy Forum ("PDF") has been the go-to place to tap into a community that believes in the power of technology to change politics and governance for the better.  This year's PDF, the 15th, will focus on meaningful collaboration, action, and participatory learning. Our number one goal is to plug attendees into the process of change-making. This year's theme, How We Make Good, will focus on how we turn our commitments - to democracy and ensuring that tech works for the public good - into concrete action.
http://bit.ly/2FjLAbD

22nd International Conference on Electronic Publishing
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June 22-24, 2018
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
The theme of ELPUB 2018 is Connecting the Knowledge Commons: From Projects to Sustainable Infrastructure. The question of sustainability in the open access movement has been widely debated, yet satisfactory answers have yet to be generated. In the past, ELPUB has featured research results in various aspects of digital publishing, involving a diverse international community of librarians, developers, publishers, entrepreneurs, administrators and researchers across the disciplines in the sciences and the humanities. It is unique as a platform for both researchers, professionals and the broader community. The conference contains a multi-track presentation of refereed papers as well as invited keynotes, special sessions, demonstrations, and poster presentations.
http://bit.ly/2rB60Ef

LIBER Annual Conference
----------------------------------------
July 4-6, 2018
Lille, France
The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.
http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU

The Circle of HOPE
----------------------------------------
July 20-22, 2018
New York, NY, USA
Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.
http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM

Defcon
----------------------------------------
August 9-12, 2018
Las Vegas, NV, USA
The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.
http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE

VOX-Pol Third Biennial Conference
----------------------------------------
August 20-21, 2018
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
The VOX-Pol Network of Excellence (NoE) is a European Union Framework Programme 7 (FP7)-funded academic research network focused on researching the prevalence, contours, functions, and impacts of Violent Online Political Extremism and responses to it.c
http://bit.ly/2Hhzj3Q

World Library and Information Congress
----------------------------------------
August 24-30, 2018
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.
http://bit.ly/2qSXIta

SciELO 20 Years Conference
----------------------------------------
September 26-28, 2018
São Paulo, Brazil
In 2018, the SciELO Program will celebrate 20 years of operation, in full alignment with the advances of open science. The conference will address and debate the main political, methodological, and technological issues and trends that define today's state of the art in scholarly communication. These issues will also be shaping the future of the universal openness of scholarly publishing and its relationship with today's Open Access journals, in particular those of the SciELO Network.
http://bit.ly/2FlpVzU

Amsterdam Privacy Conference
----------------------------------------
October 5-9, 2018
Amsterdam, Netherlands
APC 2018 brings together researchers, practitioners, policy makers and professionals in the field of privacy to share insights, exchange ideas and formulate, discuss and answer the challenging privacy questions that lie ahead of us. The goal of the conference is to bring together academics, policy makers, journalists, and practitioners to promote active discussion on timely topics, and foster debate on privacy issues between participants from various backgrounds and perspectives.
http://bit.ly/2ucbFEu

International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners
----------------------------------------
October 22-26, 2018
Brussels, Belgium
The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.
http://bit.ly/2B1bX38

Computers, Privacy, and Data Protection 2019
----------------------------------------
January 30 - February 1, 2019
Brussels, Belgium
The 12th international CPDP conference is accepting submissions for panel and session proposals until June 21, 2018.
http://bit.ly/2sSQ02x

We Robot 2019
----------------------------------------
April 11-13, 2019
Miami, Florida, US
We Robot is an interdisciplinary conference on the legal and policy questions relating to robots. The increasing sophistication of robots and their widespread deployment everywhere - from the home, to hospitals, to public spaces, and even to the battlefield - disrupts existing legal regimes and requires new thinking on policy issues. The conference fosters conversations between the people designing, building, and deploying robots, and the people who design or influence the legal and social structures in which robots will operate.
http://bit.ly/2x6T3XD

re:publica 2019
----------------------------------------
May 6-8, 2019
Berlin, Germany
The re:publica in Berlin is Europe's biggest conference on topics concerning digitization and society while also being one of the world's most exceptional festivals on digital culture. Since its beginnings in 2007 with 700 bloggers in attendance, it has grown into an international society conference. In 2017 it had 9,000 national and international participants from all areas of society.
http://bit.ly/2GMXl6o

***

Hear more from the Information Program!
================================
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================================
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Open Society Foundation, part of the Open Society Foundations, is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (company number 4571628) and a registered charity (charity number 1105069). Its registered office address is 7th Floor, Millbank Tower, 21-24 Millbank, London SW1P 4QP


News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 11 May 2018

====================================================
The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.

Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: EDRi, EFF, Open Rights Group, Privacy International.

NEWS
=====
For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/

Cambridge Analytica files for bankruptcy
----------------------------------------------------------------------
At the Guardian, Olivia Solon and Oliver Laughland report that Cambridge Analytica is closing and has filed for insolvency proceedings, along with its UK affiliate, SCL Elections. However, also at the Guardian, Wendy Siegelman reports that a web of at least 18 linked companies created by the company's executives is already in place to continue the same work. Based in the US and UK, these companies include Emerdata Limited, incorporated in August 2017 and expanded with new directors and funding in January 2018. Cambridge Analytica's business structure is highly complex; at Medium, Siegelman and Ann Marlowe have graphed its corporate relationships.
Guardian (insolvency): http://bit.ly/2G0bhct
Guardian (Emerdata): http://bit.ly/2FYMGVM
Medium: http://bit.ly/2KNhRqB

Amazon blocks "domain fronting"
----------------------------------------------------------------------
At Ars Technica, Sean Gallegher reports that Amazon has joined Google in blocking "domain fronting" that exploits content delivery networks to bypass national censorship. Amazon sent a message to the developers of the encrypted phone and messaging service Signal warning that their account would be closed if they continued to use Amazon's CloudFront service in this way. Signal head Moxie Marlinspike posted the warning email to Github.
Ars Technica: http://bit.ly/2wpNZgJ

UK: High Court strikes down portions of the Investigatory Powers Act
----------------------------------------------------------------------
The Open Rights Group reports that the UK High Court has ruled against the mass surveillance powers enshrined in the 2016 Investigatory Powers Act. There were two key elements to the ruling: first, that the purpose of access to retained data was not limited to combating serious crime, and second, that access to retained data was not subject to prior review by a court or administrative body. The case was brought by Liberty following the European Court of Justice (CJEU) ruling against the 2014 Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act; the CJEU held that the bulk and non-targeted surveillance powers in DRIPA were not compatible with EU law. The British court has given the UK government until November 1, 2018 to ensure that the IPA's surveillance provisions are brought into line with EU law.
ORG: http://bit.ly/2I5IZzj

A predictive policing pioneer aims to automate identifying gang-related crime
----------------------------------------------------------------------
At The Verge, Ali Winston and Ingrid Burrington report that UCLA anthropology professor Jeff Brantingham, a pioneer in predictive policing, is using military research funding to use machine learning to automate the classification of "gang-related" crimes. The system will rely on the Los Angeles Police Department's criminal data and a gang territory map that Winston and Burrington call "outdated". In LA, being classified as gang-related can result in additional sanctions: restrictions on movement and association with others, heavier prison sentences, or extra criminal charges. In his paper, presented at the first Artificial Intelligence, Ethics, and Society conference, Brantingham and his co-authors explain a "novel" partially generative neural network that they claim can accurately classify gang-related crimes whether full or only partial information is available.
https://www.theverge.com/2018/4/26/17285058/predictive-policing-predpol-pentagon-ai-racial-bias
http://www.aies-conference.com/wp-content/papers/main/AIES_2018_paper_93.pdf

US: "Golden State killer" identified via public genealogy databases
----------------------------------------------------------------------
At the LA Times, Benjamin Oreskes, Joseph Serna, and Richard Winton report that detectives in California identified "Golden State killer" suspect 72-year-old Joseph James DeAngelo by matching an exceptionally well-preserved DNA sample from a crime scene against samples submitted to GEDmatch, a public genealogy database. The elusive Golden State killer was linked to more than 50 rapes and 12 murders between 1976 and 1986. Many commentators have expressed relief that he was caught, but remain disturbed at law enforcement's use of highly personal data that people have provided in order to find relatives. The pending Supreme Court Carpenter v. US case, which focuses on police use of cell tower data, may set the stage for legal challenges to the use of other types of data, including DNA samples.
LA Times: https://lat.ms/2I1xX21

International intelligence sharing arrangements lack oversight
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Privacy International reports that an international collaborative investigation by 40 NGOs in 42 countries has found weaknesses in the oversight arrangement that are supposed to govern the sharing of information between state intelligence agencies. PI argues that legal safeguards and oversight mechanisms are essential. However, most countries lack domestic legislation to regulate intelligence sharing; only one has introduced specific legislation. In addition, oversight bodies in nine of 21 responding countries said the agencies have no clear legal obligation to inform them of the intelligence sharing arrangements they make. None of the oversight bodies said they have powers to authorize decisions to share intelligence.
PI: http://bit.ly/2wuTpY0


FEATURES AND ANALYSIS
====================
For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:
http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/

EU, Brazil: Disinformation initiatives and their threat to free expression
----------------------------------------------------------------------
In this blog posting at the Center for Democracy and Technology, Jens-Henrik Jeppesen discusses the report issued by the European Commission's High-Level Group on fake news and worries that the speed and poorly defined scope with which the EC wants to proceed will pose a threat to free expression, political debate, and access to information. In a blog posting, Access Now discusses several South American countries' proposed approaches to eliminating fake news, which are of concern to civil society because of the threat of censorship.
CDT: http://bit.ly/2rxwrd3
Access Now: http://bit.ly/2wr4fhL

How bookies use AI to keep gamblers hooked
----------------------------------------------------------------------
In this article at the Guardian, Mattha Busby discovers the gambling industry's use of artificial intelligence in order to get and keep gamblers hooked on their services. Industry insiders tell Busby that the result, based on analyzing every click and transaction, is highly accurate targeting designed to keep people betting. In an earlier article, Busby examined gambling companies' use of third-party data to help them target people on low incomes and those who have stopped gambling.
Guardian (AI): http://bit.ly/2I3TiYE
Guardian (third party): http://bit.ly/2jHTMF8

Future proofing civil society and our institutions
----------------------------------------------------------------------
In this transcribed talk at Access Now, European policy manager Fanny Hidvegi discusses the background that led her to her advocacy work and the importance of self-care to avoid burn-out for the resilience and future-proofing for both activists and our democratic institutions. Access Now operates a helpline to support journalists, activists, and users at risk. At the New York Times, Yale professor of law and history Samuel Moyn argues that the human rights movement has failed because it did not embrace the value of economic fairness. Changing course to advocate distributional fairness is, Moyn says, essential to combat the rise of populism.
Access Now: http://bit.ly/2InznDo
NY Times: https://nyti.ms/2rvXo0y

The challenge of humanitarian biometrics
----------------------------------------------------------------------
In this blog posting at IRIN, Paul Currion discusses how to use biometrics in the humanitarian context. In a 2006 report issued by the UN's Malaysian refugee agency, UNHCR, Currion finds evidence for his contention that biometric registration is typically driven by the interests of national governments, technology companies, and aid agencies. Originally funded by the EU and the US, building UNHCR's biometric system has involved a number of companies including PA Consulting, which also worked on the UK's biometric border control system. Currion goes on to raise two concerns about these systems: security, and the privacy risks to vulnerable communities and individuals. At the EDRI blog, Statewatch analyses new EU proposals for mandatory biometrics in national ID cards, which are issued to 370 million citizens in 26 EU member states. Introducing such a measure will require fingerprinting the majority of EU citizens, complementing the fingerprinting of non-EU citizens who require visas in order to enter the bloc.
IRIN: http://bit.ly/2K4Vls6
EDRi: http://bit.ly/2IoZcTv

Text and data mining in the European copyright overhaul
----------------------------------------------------------------------
In this blog posting at EFF, Jeremy Malcolm analyzes the text and data mining provisions taking shape as part of the EU's copyright negotiations, which are expected to become complete over the next few weeks. Because the EU lacks a US-style fair use law, there is little consistency between member states on user rights; the EU also has separate intellectual property protection for databases. As a result, the legality of text and data mining in Europe is questionable. With this - and with the needs of scientists - in mind, the EU proposed to clarify the situation. Malcolm goes on to discuss the limitations the EU is considering and the issues they create.
EFF: http://bit.ly/2G0037Y

We Robot 2018
----------------------------------------------------------------------
On its agenda page, the 2018 We Robot conference hosts the draft papers and abstracts from this year's conference. Of particular interest are two papers on robots in urban settings, Jesse Woo's paper on Urban Robotics and Kristen Thomasen's paper on Robots in the Public Square, as well as Karen Levy's short talk on the double threat of AI for low-wage work. Adrian Mannes's paper on Explaining Autonomy focuses on the importance of risk communication in building public trust in the companies making the robots that are beginning to populate our world.
We Robot: https://stanford.io/2wtj4A8


***

DIARY
==============
To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:
https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your event listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.

RightsCon
----------------------------------------
May 16-18, 2018
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
RightsCon has become one of the world's largest gatherings on human rights and technology, and it's people like you that make it an engine for change. The 2018 event is staged in Canada for a conversation built on the principles of diversity, inclusion, and respect.
http://bit.ly/2rR0IX3

Workshop on Technology and Consumer Protection
----------------------------------------
May 24, 2018
San Francisco, CA, USA
ConPro #18 will explore computer science topics with an impact on consumers. This workshop has a strong security and privacy emphasis, with an overall focus on ways in which computer science can prevent, detect, or address the potential for technology to deceive or unfairly harm consumers. Participants will consist heavily of academic and industry researchers but are also expected to include researchers from the Federal Trade Commission - the U.S. government's primary consumer protection body - and other government agencies with a consumer protection mission.
http://bit.ly/2iCUt5r

Foundation for Information Policy Research 20th anniversary
----------------------------------------
May 29, 2018
Cambridge, UK
For its 20th anniversary, the UK's Foundation for Information Policy Research, founded to campaign against 1990s proposals for surveillance laws, will host a debate in Cambridge featuring representatives of NGOs and GCHQ, academia and DeepMind, the press and the Cabinet Office. Should governments be able to break the encryption on our phones? Are we entitled to any privacy for our health and social care records? And what can be done about fake news? If the Internet's going to be censored, who do we trust to do it?
http://bit.ly/2I65WT2

Privacy Law Scholars
----------------------------------------
May 30-31
Washington, DC, USA
PLSC is a paper workshop with the goal of improving and providing support for in-progress scholarship. To achieve this, PLSC assembles a wide array of privacy law scholars and practitioners from around the world to discuss the papers. Scholars from many disciplines (psychology/economics, sociology, philosophy, political science, computer science, and even math) also participate.
http://bit.ly/2zgypRQ

Internet Shutdowns in Africa Workshop
----------------------------------------
June 7-8, 2018
Johannesburg, South Africa
Internet shutdowns in Africa doubled between 2015 and 2016, affecting citizens in 11 countries on the continent. While the number declined slightly in 2017, governments that resorted to disrupting the internet did so more frequently and for longer periods. The justifications are diverse, from anti-government protests to Cameroon, to exam cheating in Ethiopia, concerns about election-related violence in Uganda, and quelling social unrest in Zimbabwe. This two-day conference is aimed at sparking in-depth and productive conversations about this issue. It is organized by the ERC-funded ConflictNet programme at the University of Oxford's Programme in Comparative Media Law and Policy, the CSLS, the Bonavero Institute for Human Rights, and the Department of Journalism, Film and Television at the University of Johannesburg's School of Communication.
http://bit.ly/2HkVpSX

Personal Democracy Forum
----------------------------------------
June 7-8, 2018
New York, NY, USA
Since 2004, Personal Democracy Forum ("PDF") has been the go-to place to tap into a community that believes in the power of technology to change politics and governance for the better. This year's PDF, the 15th, will focus on meaningful collaboration, action, and participatory learning. Our number one goal is to plug attendees into the process of change-making. This year's theme, How We Make Good, will focus on how we turn our commitments - to democracy and ensuring that tech works for the public good - into concrete action.
http://bit.ly/2FjLAbD

22nd International Conference on Electronic Publishing
----------------------------------------
June 22-24, 2018
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
The theme of ELPUB 2018 is Connecting the Knowledge Commons: From Projects to Sustainable Infrastructure. The question of sustainability in the open access movement has been widely debated, yet satisfactory answers have yet to be generated. In the past, ELPUB has featured research results in various aspects of digital publishing, involving a diverse international community of librarians, developers, publishers, entrepreneurs, administrators and researchers across the disciplines in the sciences and the humanities. It is unique as a platform for both researchers, professionals and the broader community. The conference contains a multi-track presentation of refereed papers as well as invited keynotes, special sessions, demonstrations, and poster presentations.
http://bit.ly/2rB60Ef

LIBER Annual Conference
----------------------------------------
July 4-6, 2018
Lille, France
The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.
http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU

The Circle of HOPE
----------------------------------------
July 20-22, 2018
New York, NY, USA
Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.
http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM

Defcon
----------------------------------------
August 9-12, 2018
Las Vegas, NV, USA
The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.
http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE

VOX-Pol Third Biennial Conference
----------------------------------------
August 20-21, 2018
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
The VOX-Pol Network of Excellence (NoE) is a European Union Framework Programme 7 (FP7)-funded academic research network focused on researching the prevalence, contours, functions, and impacts of Violent Online Political Extremism and responses to it.c
http://bit.ly/2Hhzj3Q

World Library and Information Congress
----------------------------------------
August 24-30, 2018
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.
http://bit.ly/2qSXIta

SciELO 20 Years Conference
----------------------------------------
September 26-28, 2018
São Paulo, Brazil
In 2018, the SciELO Program will celebrate 20 years of operation, in full alignment with the advances of open science. The conference will address and debate the main political, methodological, and technological issues and trends that define today's state of the art in scholarly communication. These issues will also be shaping the future of the universal openness of scholarly publishing and its relationship with today's Open Access journals, in particular those of the SciELO Network.
http://bit.ly/2FlpVzU

Amsterdam Privacy Conference
----------------------------------------
October 5-9, 2018
Amsterdam, Netherlands
APC 2018 brings together researchers, practitioners, policy makers and professionals in the field of privacy to share insights, exchange ideas and formulate, discuss and answer the challenging privacy questions that lie ahead of us. The goal of the conference is to bring together academics, policy makers, journalists, and practitioners to promote active discussion on timely topics, and foster debate on privacy issues between participants from various backgrounds and perspectives.
http://bit.ly/2ucbFEu

International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners
----------------------------------------
October 22-26, 2018
Brussels, Belgium
The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.
http://bit.ly/2B1bX38


***

Hear more from the Information Program!
================================
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================================
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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0
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Open Society Foundation, part of the Open Society Foundations, is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (company number 4571628) and a registered charity (charity number 1105069). Its registered office address is 7th Floor, Millbank Tower, 21-24 Millbank, London SW1P 4QP

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Open Society Foundation London, part of the Open Society Foundations, is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (company number 10187396). Its registered office address is 7th Floor, Millbank Tower, 21-24 Millbank, London SW1P 4QP

News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 27 April 2018

====================================================

The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.


Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: Privacy International, SPARC.

Digital Freedom Fund seeks program officer
----------------------------------------------------------------------
The ideal candidate will have four to five years of professional experience in the non-profit sector, preferably in a grant-making capacity, and has a demonstrable commitment to human rights. Prior experience with digital rights is not required, but an interest in human rights in the digital sphere is of course important for the role.
http://bit.ly/2Fjtphh

NEWS

=====

For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/


Facebook moves 1.5 billion users outside the reach of EU data protection law

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the Guardian, Alex Hern reports that Facebook will shift legal responsibility for its 1.5 billion users outside the US, Canada, and the EU from its international headquarters in Ireland to its main offices in California, thereby removing them from the reach of the incoming General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Those users will be covered by US law, although for tax purposes Facebook will continue to book their revenue through its Irish office. LinkedIn will follow suit on May 8. At CNN, Bruce Schneier discusses the likely impact of GDPR on the thousands of companies that are spying on us. At Medium, Privacy International argues that Facebook has avoided acknowledging the importance of data about individuals that is inferred, derived, or predicted from information automatically collected from others' postings. PI also details how social media profiling works and why it's both dangerous and illegal under GDPR. In an interview at New York Magazine, Richard Stallman argues that rather than controlling how companies and governments collect and use data we should stop them from doing it. At Medium, Linet Kwamboka discusses the impact of Facebook's data scandal in Africa, where only 17 countries have data protection laws; she especially looks at Kenyans' reduced Facebook usage.

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2HwWYOc

CNN: https://cnn.it/2HwMjXV

Medium (PI): http://bit.ly/2r0mlkH

NY Magazine: https://slct.al/2Khxp5G

Medium (Africa): http://bit.ly/2r1l1yR


Google closes network bug that enabled bypass of state censorship

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At The Verge, Russell Brandom reports that Google's App Engine is discontinuing a practice known as "domain-fronting", which enabled services such as Signal, GreatFire.org, and Psiphon's virtual private networking to bypass state-level internet censorship. First noticed by developers on April 13, the change to Google's network architecture stops these services from using Google's network as a proxy to forward traffic to their own servers. Google says domain fronting was never an intended network feature. Along with other groups, Access Now is asking Google to reconsider.

Verge: http://bit.ly/2vMwIho


Russia blocks millions of IP addresses to enforce Telegram ban

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the Guardian, Andrew Roth reports that Russia's internet watchdog, Roskomnadzor, is blocking an estimated 16 million IP addresses, including subnets used by Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud, as part of efforts to enforce its ban on the Telegram messaging app. Telegram is used by more than 13 million people in Russia, including Kremlin officials. The ban is supported by a court decision and the FSB. Also at the Guardian, Roth and Saeed Kamali Dehghan report that Iran seems ready to follow suit, as Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has announced he is leaving the service "to safeguard the national interest". An estimated 40 million Iranians, or about half the country's population, use Telegram for its broadcast functions as well as one-to-one messaging.

Guardian (Russia): http://bit.ly/2JsWoSc

Guardian (Iran): http://bit.ly/2vMx47I


Sri Lanka: False rumors on social media spark violence

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the New York Times, Amanda Taub and Max Fisher report on riots and lynchings in Sri Lanka, where false rumors, which are spread primarily on Facebook, have led people to believe that the small town of Ampara is the epicenter of a Muslim plot to sterilize and destroy the country's Sinhalese majority. Taub and Fisher argue that in countries with weak or undeveloped institutions, posts that tap into anger and fear have greater impact because Facebook is seen as synonymous with the internet and other reputable information sources are scarce. Similar situations have arisen in rural Indonesia, India, and Mexico. At the Guardian, Michael McGowan reports that Ian MacKay, a high-ranking Australian official with the National Union of Workers, helped set up and run a fake Black Lives Matter Facebook page. MacKay has been suspended; the page, which had nearly 700,000 followers, was removed after CNN began investigating.

NY Times: https://nyti.ms/2Hzoueg

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2I1CYnZ


France develops homebrew encryption system

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At TechDirt, Mike Masnick reports that France is testing a homegrown encrypted messaging system for its government officials while continuing to push for backdoors for other encrypted communications. Masick questions the logic of this decision, both for the inequitable "Let them eat insecure messages" attitude toward the general public and for the technical risks of using a system that has not been repeatedly tested by cryptanalysts.

TechDirt: http://bit.ly/2HsUXXv


Study finds Android apps track children

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At Tom's Guide, Henry T. Casey reports that a new study by the Berkeley-based International Computer Science Institute finds that 57% of the 5,855 apps it studied appear to be in potential violation of the 1998 Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). The apps are all popular, free, and targeted at children. Many plug into Facebook's application programming interface (API). Others collect identifiers or personally identifiable information despite terms of service barring use for children's apps; 40% do not encrypt data for transmission. At Slate, Justin Peters asks why Google won't admit that YouTube is for children. Consumer protection advocates have complained to the Federal Trade Commission that the platform violates COPPA.

Tom's Guide: http://bit.ly/2HZ5eHO

Slate: https://slate.me/2HYsGF7


Fingerprint scanning technology moves forward

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At Undark, Rod McCullom reports that new techniques developed by researchers at the University of Surrey can analyze biochemical traces in the sweat in fingerprints to reveal whether the subject has taken drugs. The article goes on to discuss the privacy and ethical implications of turning fingerprints from biometric identifiers into revealing sources of forensic information. At its blog, the South Wales Police reports that an enhanced phone image of a hand enabled fingerprint experts to secure drugs convictions against 11 people.

Undark: http://bit.ly/2HyHE3B

South Wales Police: http://bit.ly/2HxnKWQ



FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

====================

For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:

http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/


Palantir knows everything about you

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at Bloomberg, Peter Waldman, Lizette Chapman, and Jordan Robertson examine the life, times, and inner workings of the secretive data-crunching company Palantir. Founded in 2004 by PayPal founder Peter Thiel, Palantir's intelligence platform was designed for the War on Terror and has been turned to surveilling ordinary Americans by government departments such as Health and Human Services (to detect Medicare fraud), the FBI (criminal investigations), and the Department of Homeland Security (screening travelers and immigrants). The article studies Palantir's platform in detail, considers why courts have not ruled on its legality, and finds that at twice the age at which most start-ups either go public or sell out, the company is courting corporate customers to build its revenues.

Bloomberg: https://bloom.bg/2HzppLK


Battle over college course material shows technological change

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this feature at the Washington Post, Danielle Douglas-Gabriel discusses textbook pricing, the rise of open textbooks, and inclusive-access programs that deliver all course materials on the first day of class at a discounted rate. The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) hopes for an open education marketplace with options that allow both reduced costs and expanded access. One benefit is enabling students to hold onto digital courseware for years rather than reselling their textbooks in order to afford those they need for the next semester. Concerns persist that publishers remain in control and can raise prices in this captive market.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/battle-over-college-course-material-is-a-textbook-example-of-technological-change/2018/04/14/fb3d0394-0db5-11e8-95a5-c396801049ef_story.html


Ridesharing versus public transit

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at American Prospect, Steven Hill considers Uber's and Lyft's contribution to social divisions in urban transportation systems. Ridership on many public transport systems is down, which researchers at the University of California Transportation Center link to the rise of ride-hailing services. In the US, where public transport is already weak, Hill argues that Uber is mounting a venture capital-subsidized predatory price war to drive off all competition. Meanwhile, car use, pollution, and congestion are all increasing. At the Washington Post, Faiz Siddiqui reports that the city's ride-hailing tax receipts show that ride-hailing has quadrupled since 2015 while taxi and Metro ridership has steadily fallen. Uber shares some data with transport regulators on vehicle travel time and demand, and is piloting sharing data on curb use, but does not disclose the number of rides or average fares.

Prospect: http://bit.ly/2JtoFZ2

Washington Post: https://wapo.st/2HyRhiZ


Blockchain might have a role to play in digital archiving

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this blog posting, the Open Data Institute (ODI) asks if blockchains - distributed ledger technologies - can help guarantee the integrity of digital archives. The ODI is partnering with the University of Surrey and the UK's National Archives on the ARCHANGEL research project to investigate how blockchains might be used to verify that historical documents have not been altered or adapted while stored in archives. This is a particular problem for documents that are too personally sensitive to release now but that will be of value to future historians. At Quartz, Bright Simons argues that for blockchains to be useful in Africa they must lose their Western cultural baggage and adapt to Africa's different understanding of trust, which may rely on the kinds of third parties blockchain's inventors wanted to eliminate.

ODI: http://bit.ly/2HskMai

Quartz: http://bit.ly/2FmfO9a


India: The consequences of linking women's medical records to their Aadhaar

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at the Indian Express, Ramya Chandrasekhar opposes India's decision to link women's medical records to their Aadhaar numbers, which she argues is female-targeted surveillance that removes women's and girls' autonomy. The proposals date to 2016, when Women and Child Development minister Maneka Gandhi proposed that it should be made mandatory to disclose the sex of the fetus to pregnant women and for pregnancies to be tracked in order to deter the practice of female feticide. In February 2018, two doctors argued in an editorial that every abortion should be recorded against the women's Aadhaar along with records of the doctors who performed it.

Indian Express: http://bit.ly/2r3MLSi


Single identifier could wreck the internet

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at New Scientist, Sally Adee and Carl Miller discuss a next-generation internet plan intended to solve cybersecurity problems including ransomware, denial-of-service attacks, and even trolling. The plan, a "handle system" based on one conceived by TCP/IP co-inventor Robert Kahn in the 1990s, is recognized by the UN as an international standard and is based on giving every piece of material on the internet a unique identifier. The downside is that the system could become an authoritarian internet power grab that could lead to real-time surveillance and tracking of every device and individual connected to the web. Western countries typically oppose the handle system on these grounds, but Russia, China, and some Arab states want to start rolling it out.

New Scientist: http://bit.ly/2JpJ3di



***


DIARY

==============

To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:

https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your event listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.


Personal Democracy Forum Central-Eastern Europe

----------------------------------------

April 26-17

Gdansk, Poland

The sixth edition of the Personal Democracy Forum Central-Eastern Europe will include two days of keynote speeches, practical workshops, networking sessions, and many satellite events. Personal Democracy Forum CEE is a platform for exchanging ideas and experience for those working for civic participation and transparency in public life with the help of new technologies in Central and Eastern Europe. Launched in Poland in 2013, it is a regional branch of New York City PDF organized by Civic Hall (earlier Personal Democracy Media) since 2004.

http://bit.ly/2Dc0Dhx


Open Knowledge Summit 2018

----------------------------------------

May 3-6, 2018

Thessaloniki, Greece

For 2018, the Open Knowledge Foundation has replaced the OKFestival with a summit intended to gather the Open Knowledge network to collaboratively build the future of the Open Knowledge Network. The format and programming will be developed as a collaboration between Open Knowledge International, Open Knowledge Greece, and all other groups in the network.

http://bit.ly/2iISyJb


RightsCon

----------------------------------------

May 16-18, 2018

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

RightsCon has become one of the world's largest gatherings on human rights and technology, and it's people like you that make it an engine for change. The 2018 event is staged in Canada for a conversation built on the principles of diversity, inclusion, and respect.

http://bit.ly/2rR0IX3


Workshop on Technology and Consumer Protection

----------------------------------------

May 24, 2018

San Francisco, CA, USA

ConPro #18 will explore computer science topics with an impact on consumers. This workshop has a strong security and privacy emphasis, with an overall focus on ways in which computer science can prevent, detect, or address the potential for technology to deceive or unfairly harm consumers. Participants will consist heavily of academic and industry researchers but are also expected to include researchers from the Federal Trade Commission - the U.S. government's primary consumer protection body - and other government agencies with a consumer protection mission.

http://bit.ly/2iCUt5r


Privacy Law Scholars

----------------------------------------

May 30-31

Washington, DC, USA

PLSC is a paper workshop with the goal of improving and providing support for in-progress scholarship. To achieve this, PLSC assembles a wide array of privacy law scholars and practitioners from around the world to discuss the papers. Scholars from many disciplines (psychology/economics, sociology, philosophy, political science, computer science, and even math) also participate.

http://bit.ly/2zgypRQ


Internet Shutdowns in Africa Workshop

----------------------------------------

June 7-8, 2018

Johannesburg, South Africa

Internet shutdowns in Africa doubled between 2015 and 2016, affecting citizens in 11 countries on the continent. While the number declined slightly in 2017, governments that resorted to disrupting the internet did so more frequently and for longer periods. The justifications are diverse, from anti-government protests to Cameroon, to exam cheating in Ethiopia, concerns about election-related violence in Uganda, and quelling social unrest in Zimbabwe. This two-day conference is aimed at sparking in-depth and productive conversations about this issue. It is organized by the ERC-funded ConflictNet programme at the University of Oxford's Programme in Comparative Media Law and Policy, the CSLS, the Bonavero Institute for Human Rights, and the Department of Journalism, Film and Television at the University of Johannesburg's School of Communication.  

http://bit.ly/2HkVpSX


Personal Democracy Forum

----------------------------------------

June 7-8, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Since 2004, Personal Democracy Forum ("PDF") has been the go-to place to tap into a community that believes in the power of technology to change politics and governance for the better.  This year's PDF, the 15th, will focus on meaningful collaboration, action, and participatory learning. Our number one goal is to plug attendees into the process of change-making. This year's theme, How We Make Good, will focus on how we turn our commitments - to democracy and ensuring that tech works for the public good - into concrete action.

http://bit.ly/2FjLAbD


LIBER Annual Conference

----------------------------------------

July 4-6, 2018

Lille, France

The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.

http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU


The Circle of HOPE

----------------------------------------

July 20-22, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.

http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM


Defcon

----------------------------------------

August 9-12, 2018

Las Vegas, NV, USA

The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.

http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE


VOX-Pol Third Biennial Conference

----------------------------------------

August 20-21, 2018

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

The VOX-Pol Network of Excellence (NoE) is a European Union Framework Programme 7 (FP7)-funded academic research network focused on researching the prevalence, contours, functions, and impacts of Violent Online Political Extremism and responses to it.c

http://bit.ly/2Hhzj3Q


World Library and Information Congress

----------------------------------------

August 24-30, 2018

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.

http://bit.ly/2qSXIta


SciELO 20 Years Conference

----------------------------------------

September 26-28, 2018

São Paulo, Brazil

In 2018, the SciELO Program will celebrate 20 years of operation, in full alignment with the advances of open science. The conference will address and debate the main political, methodological, and technological issues and trends that define today's state of the art in scholarly communication. These issues will also be shaping the future of the universal openness of scholarly publishing and its relationship with today's Open Access journals, in particular those of the SciELO Network.

http://bit.ly/2FlpVzU


Amsterdam Privacy Conference

----------------------------------------

October 5-9, 2018

Amsterdam, Netherlands

APC 2018 brings together researchers, practitioners, policy makers and professionals in the field of privacy to share insights, exchange ideas and formulate, discuss and answer the challenging privacy questions that lie ahead of us. The goal of the conference is to bring together academics, policy makers, journalists, and practitioners to promote active discussion on timely topics, and foster debate on privacy issues between participants from various backgrounds and perspectives.

http://bit.ly/2ucbFEu


International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners

----------------------------------------

October 22-26, 2018

Brussels, Belgium

The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.

http://bit.ly/2B1bX38



***


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News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 13 April 2018

====================================================

The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.


Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: Digitale Gesellschaft, EDRi, EFF, SHARE Foundation, SPARC.

Applications for Mozilla Fellowships are now open for open web activists, scientists and researchers, and technology policy professionals. Applications close on April 20.
https://mzl.la/2HtQwbw

***

Applications for Civil Society Scholarships are now open for the International Copyright Law Summer Course and the Privacy Law and Policy Summer Course organised by the Institute for Information Law (IViR) at the University of Amsterdam (UvA). The course will take place from 2-6 July 2018 in Amsterdam. The scholarships are supported by the Open Society Foundations.
https://www.ivir.nl/nl/courses/icl/
https://www.ivir.nl/nl/courses/plp/

NEWS

=====

For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/


EU: Copyright reforms draw fire from scientists

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At Nature, Quirin Schiermeier reports that open science advocates are opposing proposals for the upcoming directive on copyright in the digital single market on the basis that these conflict with Europe's principles of open science and freedom of expression. Among those who offered objections are SPARC and the Association of European Research Libraries. The most significant change: instead of allowing non-profit repositories and research data services to take down material when notified of infringements, they would have to operate an upload filter to scan submissions for infringements. The proposals are due for a vote in the European Parliament's legal committee on April 23-24.

Nature: https://go.nature.com/2JEaxx5


Grindr sets off privacy firestorm after sharing users' HIV status data

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At The New York Times, Natasha Singer reports that the social network Grindr, aimed at gay, bisexual, and trans men, is facing a firestorm of criticism after European researchers reported on Buzzfeed that the site was sharing users' HIV status, sexual tastes, and other intimate details with third-party software vendors. Two US senators have written to Grindr's chief executive asking whether the app had asked users to opt in to this sharing. The Norwegian Consumer Council has filed a formal complaint with the Norwegian data protection regulator. Grindr has said it will stop sharing this information.

New York Times: https://nyti.ms/2GT0Vwi

NCC: http://bit.ly/2qoJMo2


India: State is using blockchain to collect DNA data of 50 million citizens

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At Quartz, Ananya Bhattacharya reports that the government of Andhra Pradesh, India's eighth-largest state, has announced a partnership with the German genomics and precision medicine company Shivom to build a blockchain-based DNA database of its 50 million citizens. A state government official says that testing for citizens will be optional. The goal is to improve diversity in the genomic data available to researchers.

Quartz: http://bit.ly/2JypaSt


Africa: Cambridge Analytica influenced elections in Nigeria and Kenya

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At Quartz, Linet Kwamboka reports that in Africa, where for millions of people Facebook effectively is the internet, the ongoing data scandal is fueling fierce political battles in West and East Africa, particularly Nigeria and Kenya, where Cambridge Analytica was a player in elections going back to 2007. For most in Africa, deleting Facebook is not an option; Quartz argues that what's needed is better laws and web literacy. At the Guardian, Rana Dasgupta links these developments to the waning of nation-states, which cannot individually extricate themselves from political and moral decay and which are seeing big data companies assume functions previously associated with them, such as cartography and surveillance. The South China Morning Post finds links between Cambridge Analytica head Alexander Nix and political campaigners who worked on Rodrigo Duterte's 2015 presidential campaign in the Philippines. Facebook has announced a new initiative, funded by a group of foundations, to help scholars assess social media's impact on elections. Facebook says it will have no right to review or approve the research findings prior to publication.

Quartz: http://bit.ly/2GRhngH

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2GQFGiV

SMCP: http://bit.ly/2qnl9YR

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2GTMeJJ


Secret Facebook tool deletes Zuckerberg's messages from users' inboxes

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At TechCrunch, Josh Constine reports that a previously secret tool allows Facebook to delete messages from the company's senior executives from the Facebook inboxes of those who received them. The resulting user pushback led the company to announced this "unsend" features will be made available to all users in the next several months. At the Guardian, Alex Hern and Julia Carrie Wong report that the company says it created the feature in order to protect executives' communications after the 2014 Sony hack. Simultaneously, a group of privacy and consumer groups have filed a complaint with the US Federal Trade Commission arguing that Facebook's use of facial recognition software violates both users' privacy and the company's 2011 consent decree. In a "media apology tour", chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg said that one day Facebook's users may be able to opt out of the company's data mining - but would have to pay for the privilege. At the New York Times, Matthew Rosenberg and Gabriel J.X. Dance profile a group of Facebook users who were among the first whose data was collected for Cambridge Analytica via a survey hosted by a company called Qualtrics.

TechCrunch: https://tcrn.ch/2GToXrg

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2GPK9hL

New York Times: https://nyti.ms/2JAro3E


EU: Top-level .eu domain will drop UK registrants at Brexit

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At The Register, Kieren McCarthy reports that the European Commission has announced it will cancel all 317,000 domains under the .eu top-level domain that have a UK registrant when the UK withdraws from the European Union. These represent approximately a tenth of the domains registered by EURid, the company that has run .eu since it was awarded the contract in 2005. EURid says it was not consulted or informed before the plan was made public. Traditionally, existing domains have been "grandfathered in" when rules change.

Register: http://bit.ly/2IJURqA


US Department of Justice and Microsoft seek dismissal of Supreme Court case

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At FindLaw, William Vogeler reports that immediately after the passage of the CLOUD Act, which creates new procedures for acquiring data stored in foreign countries, both the Department of Justice (DoJ) and Microsoft asked the Supreme Court to dismiss United States v. Microsoft. The case, which was argued before the Supreme Court on February 27, centers on whether the Stored Communications Act authorized US law enforcement warrants for data stored abroad by US companies. The DoJ has applied for a new warrant to compel Microsoft to turn over the data.

FindLaw: http://bit.ly/2v3VGZx



FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

====================

For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:

http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/


Facebook's Cambridge Analytica problems are nothing compared to what's coming for all of online publishing

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this blog posting, Doc Searls writes that Facebook's Cambridge Analytica problem is the tip of an iceberg. All online publishers, he writes, "bring readers' bare digital necks to vampires ravenous for the blood of personal data". All these sites leak data in similar ways, and the EU's new General Data Protection Regulation will soon force publishers - as much as Facebook - to change their ways. It's time, he says, for publishers to drop adtech in favor of a return to the kind of high-value brand advertising that ruled the physical world. Searls went on to discuss this further in a video clip at TechCrunch's Gillmor Gang. At Pro Publica, Julia Angwin suggests four ways to fix Facebook: impose fines for data breaches; police political advertising; make technology companies liable for objectionable content; and install ethics review boards.

Searls: http://bit.ly/2qoe7Cs

Gillmor Gang: https://tcrn.ch/2GQjBRJ

Pro Publica: http://bit.ly/2Hi0LlW


US: How tech lost on the sex trafficking bill

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at Politico, Steven Overly and Ashley Gold analyze the passage of the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act, which undermines Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. For the last 22 years, S230 has protected online platforms like Facebook, Reddit, Craigslist, and others from liability for user-generated content. Tech companies, they argue, failed to recognize that business-focused arguments were doomed to fail in a conversation about protecting children and that attitudes towards the technology sector are changing in Washington. EFF opposed the bill, and warns that further exceptions to S230 are being mooted. Within days of the law's passage and before it was signed into law, The Register reports that US authorities have seized and shut down Backpage.com, a website with a longstanding reputation for serving sex-related classified ads, many involving minors.

Politico: https://politi.co/2qozrbZ

EFF: http://bit.ly/2EDwhp4

Register: http://bit.ly/2GQ9H2i


Fifteen years of European digital rights

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this special issue of EDRi-gram, EDRi celebrates its 15th birthday by highlighting the achievements of the European digital rights movement. Among the highlights: Digitale Gesellschaft's efforts for digital rights in Germany; the Foundation for Information Policy Research work to support better government IT systems in the UK; Share Foundation's opposition to internet filters in Serbia; and many others.

EDRi: http://bit.ly/2JCJFNC


Signal Foundation

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this blog posting, Moxie Marlinspike and WhatsApp founder Brian Acton announce the creation of the Signal Foundation, a non-profit organization with the goal of developing open source privacy technology that protects free expression and enables secure global communications. Signal Messenger is a cryptographic system that enables secure messaging on phones and desktops. The goal is to make the foundation, which is initially funded with $50,000,000, self-sustaining. Acton will serve as the first executive chair, while Marlinspike will continue to serve as CEO of the newly created Signal Messenger non-profit organization.

Signal: http://bit.ly/2JCgDhj


Can an app track sexual predators in the theatre?

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at The New Yorker, Rebecca Mead attends a demonstration of Callisto, an online non-profit start-up that enables victims of sexual assault to create a secure, time-stamped record of the incident and place it, protected by encryption, in "information escrow". If someone else reports an assault by the same person, a Callisto operative will discreetly offer to connect the victims with each other so they can decide how to proceed. The demonstration was held at a gathering of people involved in professional theater. Membership in Callisto costs $40 a year, which the start-up hopes will be paid by unions rather than individuals.

New Yorker: http://bit.ly/2Hi2bgg


The case for fairer algorithms

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at Medium, DeepMind research scientist Iason Gabriel discusses his company's efforts to create fairer algorithms. He suggests four principles: be transparent about the limitations of datasets; research and develop techniques to mitigate bias; deploy algorithms responsibly; and increase awareness of the problem. DeepMind has begun publishing research papers on this topic and is helping fund external efforts such as those of AI Now and sponsoring several new postdoctoral positions. In a new report, the AI Now Institute recommends how agencies should conduct algorithmic impact assessments to ensure there is a framework for accountability before such systems are used to make decisions about human beings in sensitive domains.

Medium: http://bit.ly/2ILyn8A

AI Now: http://bit.ly/2HcYTuy



***


DIARY

==============

To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:

https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your gevent listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.


TICTeC

----------------------------------------

April 18-19, 2018

Lisbon, Portugal

During two days of diverse presentations and workshops, attendees will examine what works - and what doesn't - in the fields of digital democracy, accountability, anti-corruption, and transparency tech. There's just one rule for those making a presentation at TICTeC: it's not enough to present a new digital initiative; you must also bring the research that examines its efficacy. Keynotes Martha Lane Fox and Jonathan Fox will set the tone for a full program, with speakers and delegates including representatives from Google, Facebook, and scores of cutting edge practitioners from many countries.

http://bit.ly/2IJW6pK


TRILCON18

----------------------------------------

April 25, 2018

Winchester, UK

The fifth interdisciplinary Winchester conference on Trust, Risk, Information and the Law has as its overall theme "Public Law, Politics and the Constitution: A new battleground between the Law and Technology?"

http://bit.ly/2A1DwrU


Internet Freedom Forum

----------------------------------------

April 24-26, 2018

Abuja, Nigeria

The sixth edition of the Internet Freedom Forum will present a unique platform for discussions and engagement around current trends and emerging issues affecting internet freedom in Africa. Participants at IFF include civil society organizations, policy actors/makers, legal/policy experts, academics, advocates, tech enthusiasts, industry representatives and active citizens among others.

http://bit.ly/2Aoj0Tr


Personal Democracy Forum Central-Eastern Europe

----------------------------------------

April 26-17

Gdansk, Poland

The sixth edition of the Personal Democracy Forum Central-Eastern Europe will include two days of keynote speeches, practical workshops, networking sessions, and many satellite events. Personal Democracy Forum CEE is a platform for exchanging ideas and experience for those working for civic participation and transparency in public life with the help of new technologies in Central and Eastern Europe. Launched in Poland in 2013, it is a regional branch of New York City PDF organized by Civic Hall (earlier Personal Democracy Media) since 2004.

http://bit.ly/2Dc0Dhx


Open Knowledge Summit 2018

----------------------------------------

May 3-6, 2018

Thessaloniki, Greece

For 2018, the Open Knowledge Foundation has replaced the OKFestival with a summit intended to gather the Open Knowledge network to collaboratively build the future of the Open Knowledge Network. The format and programming will be developed as a collaboration between Open Knowledge International, Open Knowledge Greece, and all other groups in the network.

http://bit.ly/2iISyJb


RightsCon

----------------------------------------

May 16-18, 2018

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

RightsCon has become one of the world's largest gatherings on human rights and technology, and it's people like you that make it an engine for change. The 2018 event is staged in Canada for a conversation built on the principles of diversity, inclusion, and respect.

http://bit.ly/2rR0IX3


Workshop on Technology and Consumer Protection

----------------------------------------

May 24, 2018

San Francisco, CA, USA

ConPro #18 will explore computer science topics with an impact on consumers. This workshop has a strong security and privacy emphasis, with an overall focus on ways in which computer science can prevent, detect, or address the potential for technology to deceive or unfairly harm consumers. Participants will consist heavily of academic and industry researchers but are also expected to include researchers from the Federal Trade Commission - the U.S. government's primary consumer protection body - and other government agencies with a consumer protection mission.

http://bit.ly/2iCUt5r


Privacy Law Scholars

----------------------------------------

May 30-31

Washington, DC, USA

PLSC is a paper workshop with the goal of improving and providing support for in-progress scholarship. To achieve this, PLSC assembles a wide array of privacy law scholars and practitioners from around the world to discuss the papers. Scholars from many disciplines (psychology/economics, sociology, philosophy, political science, computer science, and even math) also participate.

http://bit.ly/2zgypRQ


Internet Shutdowns in Africa Workshop

----------------------------------------

June 7-8, 2018

Johannesburg, South Africa

Internet shutdowns in Africa doubled between 2015 and 2016, affecting citizens in 11 countries on the continent. While the number declined slightly in 2017, governments that resorted to disrupting the internet did so more frequently and for longer periods. The justifications are diverse, from anti-government protests to Cameroon, to exam cheating in Ethiopia, concerns about election-related violence in Uganda, and quelling social unrest in Zimbabwe. This two-day conference is aimed at sparking in-depth and productive conversations about this issue. It is organized by the ERC-funded ConflictNet programme at the University of Oxford's Programme in Comparative Media Law and Policy, the CSLS, the Bonavero Institute for Human Rights, and the Department of Journalism, Film and Television at the University of Johannesburg's School of Communication.  

http://bit.ly/2HkVpSX


Personal Democracy Forum

----------------------------------------

June 7-8, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Since 2004, Personal Democracy Forum ("PDF") has been the go-to place to tap into a community that believes in the power of technology to change politics and governance for the better.  This year's PDF, the 15th, will focus on meaningful collaboration, action, and participatory learning. Our number one goal is to plug attendees into the process of change-making. This year's theme, How We Make Good, will focus on how we turn our commitments - to democracy and ensuring that tech works for the public good - into concrete action.

http://bit.ly/2FjLAbD


LIBER Annual Conference

----------------------------------------

July 4-6, 2018

Lille, France

The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.

http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU


The Circle of HOPE

----------------------------------------

July 20-22, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.

http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM


Defcon

----------------------------------------

August 9-12, 2018

Las Vegas, NV, USA

The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.

http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE


VOX-Pol Third Biennial Conference

----------------------------------------

August 20-21, 2018

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

The VOX-Pol Network of Excellence (NoE) is a European Union Framework Programme 7 (FP7)-funded academic research network focused on researching the prevalence, contours, functions, and impacts of Violent Online Political Extremism and responses to it.c

http://bit.ly/2Hhzj3Q


World Library and Information Congress

----------------------------------------

August 24-30, 2018

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.

http://bit.ly/2qSXIta


SciELO 20 Years Conference

----------------------------------------

September 26-28, 2018

São Paulo, Brazil

In 2018, the SciELO Program will celebrate 20 years of operation, in full alignment with the advances of open science. The conference will address and debate the main political, methodological, and technological issues and trends that define today's state of the art in scholarly communication. These issues will also be shaping the future of the universal openness of scholarly publishing and its relationship with today's Open Access journals, in particular those of the SciELO Network.

http://bit.ly/2FlpVzU


Amsterdam Privacy Conference

----------------------------------------

October 5-9, 2018

Amsterdam, Netherlands

APC 2018 brings together researchers, practitioners, policy makers and professionals in the field of privacy to share insights, exchange ideas and formulate, discuss and answer the challenging privacy questions that lie ahead of us. The goal of the conference is to bring together academics, policy makers, journalists, and practitioners to promote active discussion on timely topics, and foster debate on privacy issues between participants from various backgrounds and perspectives.

http://bit.ly/2ucbFEu


International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners

----------------------------------------

October 22-26, 2018

Brussels, Belgium

The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.

http://bit.ly/2B1bX38



***


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News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 23 March 2018

====================================================

The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.

 

Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: EFF.

 

 

Applications for Civil Society Scholarships are now open for the International Copyright Law Summer Course and the Privacy Law and Policy Summer Course organised by the Institute for Information Law (IViR) at the University of Amsterdam (UvA). The course will take place from 2-6 July 2018 in Amsterdam. The scholarships are supported by the Open Society Foundations.

https://www.ivir.nl/nl/courses/icl/

https://www.ivir.nl/nl/courses/plp/

 

NEWS

=====

For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/

 

Facebook suspends Cambridge Analytica after hack of 50 million profiles

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the Guardian Observer, in a joint investigation with the New York Times, Carole Cadwalladr and Emma Graham-Harrison report that 50 million Facebook profiles were harvested for Cambridge Analytica. Facebook has suspended Cambridge Analytica's account, pending further information about this misuse. Separately, the writers examine, with help from Canadian whistleblower Christopher Wylie, the workings of the algorithm used to trawl intimately through personal data. Cadwalladr also interviews Wylie about how the algorithm was developed and how it works. In a follow-up, Cadwalladr and Graham-Harrison report that the head of the UK parliamentary committee investigating fake news has accused Cambridge Analytica and Facebook of misleading MPs in their testimony and is calling for Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to testify in person. At the Guardian Paul Lewis interviews former Facebook insider Sandy Parakilas and learns that hundreds of millions of Facebook users have probably had their private information harvested by other companies using the same techniques while the company failed to enforce its terms and conditions or audit how the data was used. In an undercover investigation using secret cameras, Channel 4 News caught Cambridge Analytica's suspended CEO, Alexander Nix, claiming to have run "all" of Donald Trump's digital campaign, while other staffers claimed responsibility for untraceably propagating "defeat crooked Hillary" advertising, possibly breaking the law in the process.  Finally, Crowd Justice reports that it has won its UK case in which New School professor David Carroll sought to compel Cambridge Analytica and SCI Elections to provide him with his complete data profile under section 7 of the Data Protection Act 1998.

Observer: https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/mar/17/cambridge-analytica-facebook-influence-us-election

New York Times: http://nyti.ms/2IE4RCw

Guardian (Wylie): http://bit.ly/2u3iAzq

Guardian (algorithm): http://bit.ly/2puovYV

Guardian (MPs): http://bit.ly/2pveOcO

Guardian (Parakilas): http://bit.ly/2G6A0QP
Channel 4: http://bit.ly/2FSzYg4
Crowd Justice: http://bit.ly/2IFZv9T
 

Indonesia: Police uncover fake news operation

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the Guardian, Kate Lamb reports that police in Indonesia have arrested a network of 14 people suspected of spreading fake news and hate speech in order to corrupt the political process and destabilize the government. According to police, the network was coordinated via a WhatsApp group called the Family MCA. Indonesia is among the top five biggest global users of Facebook and Twitter, and its Muslim Cyber Army uses fake accounts, lies, bots, and automated accounts. The group is expected to "weaponize" social media for the 2019 election.

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2ptuZIq

 

China to bar people with bad "social credit" from planes and trains

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Reuters reports that China has said it will begin barring people with bad "social credit" from planes and trains. The people to be placed on the list of restricted travelers will include those found to have spread false information about terrorism, caused trouble on flights, or, on trains, used expired tickets or smoked, as well as those who have committed a variety of financial misdeeds.

Reuters: http://reut.rs/2ucufvQ

 

US: Congress considers bilateral information-sharing with other countries

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At FCW Derek B. Johnson reports that the US Congress has introduced the Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data (CLOUD) Act, which would allow the government to enter into bilateral information-sharing agreements with other countries. The bill would clarify the jurisdictional issues under consideration by the Supreme Court in Microsoft v. United States, which tests whether geographical and territorial considerations limit the government's ability to compel the production of data under the 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act. Johnson reports that the proposed bill draws divided reactions from industry and civil society. At EFF, Camille Fischer argues that it represents a dangerous expansion of US police powers, allowing them to override other countries' privacy laws. The ACLU's Neema Singh Guliani agrees, saying the bill lets the US executive branch bypass Congressional oversight in creating these agreements. At Lawfare, Jennifer Daskal and Peter Swire dissent; they believe the bill would improve privacy and civil liberties protections by updating the slow process of Mutual Legal Assistance and creating a mechanism for the US government to review what other countries do with the data they receive from the US.

EFF: http://bit.ly/2px4b9d

ACLU: http://bit.ly/2FQmpO4

Lawfare: http://bit.ly/2ucaYLo

 

Egyptian minister announces national Facebook-like platform

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Egyptian Streets reports that the Egyptian minister of communications and information technology, Yasser el-Kady, has announced that the country will soon have its own Facebook-like platform, as well as other applications and programs that he claims will protect citizens' data and help protect national security. The country has also drafted a cybercrime bill, now approved by the cabinet and referred to the parliament for discussion; opponents claim it will give the state greater ability to control and monitor social media accounts. Finally, the article cites a study by the Association for Freedom of Thought and Expression that finds that Egypt is blocking 429 websites from news and human rights organizations, as well as VPNs.

Egyptian Streets: http://bit.ly/2Gf6RD7

 

Tim Berners-Lee calls for regulation

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the Guardian, Olivia Solon reports that web inventor Tim Berners-Lee has published an open letter to mark the web's 29th anniversary, in which he calls for the large technology firms to be regulated in order to prevent their concentration of power from weaponizing the web at scale. He adds, "I want the web to reflect our hopes and fulfill our dreams, rather than magnify our fears and deepen our divisions."

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2DJQcSF

 

 

FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

====================

For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:

http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/

 

The intellectual properties of learning

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at Poynder, Richard Poynder reviews John Willinsky's new book on open access and interviews the author. Placing open access within the larger historical context of scholarship, the push-pull between access and intellectual property rights runs all the way back to the earliest days of Western learning. However, Poynder argues, the open access movement has paid insufficient attention to supporting researchers.
Poynder: http://bit.ly/2IDjlma
 

Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency in Machine Learning

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In these videos, speakers at the Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency (FAT*) conference consider gender stereotyping, ethics, and automation, among other topics. Of particular note is Harvard professor Latanya Sweeney's keynote, "Saving Humanity", in which she discusses the "technocracy" we live in and her study of racial bias in contextual advertising, and MIT Media Lab head of social innovation Chelsea Barabas's talk about her work studying how pre-trial risk assessment algorithms work and why they're ill-equipped to help judges decide which measures to choose.

YouTube: http://bit.ly/2DJLdBi
 

The globalization of countering violent extremism policies

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this report, the Transnational Institute studies Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) policies around the world and concludes that these policies, which were pioneered in a small number of Western countries, have spread widely through the international groupings of the EU, the UN, and the Global Counter Terrorism Forum (GCTF). The report applies 12 tests of legitimacy and effectiveness to these policies, and finds that they are being implemented outside of formal democratic scrutiny or the input of public debates. The report warns that the use of "soft law" without definitional clarity means that the tools CVE policies create foster political policing and abuse.

TNI (PDF): http://bit.ly/2GdyDQo

 

What Airbnb did to New York City

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at CityLab, Alastair Boone examines studies of the company's operations in New York City and concludes that Airbnb critics are correct when they claim that the service causes rents to rise and reduces available housing. As the service has become more the purview of commercial operators than of students with a spare air mattress, it has also "supercharged" gentrification. What has happened in New York is likely to be repeated in other cities.
CityLab: http://bit.ly/2FTYqgM
 

Building a record of data harms

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this document at Data Justice Lab, Joanna Redden and Jessica Brand attempt to compile examples of "data harms", which privacy advocates often struggle to identify. Redden and Brand explore a number of categories of personal, political, government exploitation, and algorithmic bias that are based on the exploitation of data. The authors intend to maintain this as a running record and are actively soliciting further cases to add.
Data Justice Lab: http://bit.ly/2DGSUs9
 
The age of reputation

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at Aeon, Italian philosopher Gloria Origgi argues that reputation is more important in determining the truth of claims than fact-checking. In the paradigm shift from the age of information to the age of reputation, we should foster competence in reconstructing the reputational path of pieces of information by evaluating the intentions of those who circulate it and identifying the agendas of the authorities that it relies on for credibility.

Aeon: http://bit.ly/2FNGHHU

 

India: Deep class divides follow youth online

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at Quartz, Maria Thomas profiles the interactive website Life in a Metro, intended to convey the struggles India's youth face online because of the country's extreme class divide. The top 1% of the country's population controls over 20% of its wealth. The site follows a day in the life of a lower middle-class college student in Pune who struggles to find affordable access. Designed by King's College London PhD student Rahul Advani, the site is based on his research, which includes interviews with 300 college students and several months studying the lives of ten of them more closely. Millions of lower-class Indians have adapted to the limitations of slow speed and intermittent access; the result is that they use the internet very differently from their wealthier counterparts. The internet, he concludes, is highlighting offline inequality.
Quartz: http://bit.ly/2pvCtts
 
 

***

 

DIARY

==============

To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:

https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your event listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.

 

We Robot 2018

----------------------------------------

April 12-14, 2018

Palo Alto, California, USA

This conference is the annual gathering of academics, policy makers, roboticists, economists, ethicists, entrepreneurs, and lawyers who care about robots and the future of robot law and policy. We Robot fosters conversations between the people designing, building, and deploying robots, and the people who design or influence the legal and social structures in which robots operate.

http://stanford.io/2juk94u

 

TRILCON18

April 25, 2018

Winchester, UK

The fifth interdisciplinary Winchester conference on Trust, Risk, Information and the Law has as its overall theme "Public Law, Politics and the Constitution: A new battleground between the Law and Technology?"

http://bit.ly/2A1DwrU

 

Tomorrow's Transactions Forum

----------------------------------------

April 24-25, 2018

London, UK

The 21st edition of Tomorrow's Transactions will provide an opportunity to look back at the lessons that have been learned across the past decades and cast an eye toward the future to ask, where will technology and regulation, take our world of transactions? For 2018, topics will include AI, futures, open banking, and conversational and contextual commerce.

http://bit.ly/1Qc84Fx

 

Internet Freedom Forum

----------------------------------------

April 24-26, 2018

Abuja, Nigeria

The sixth edition of the Internet Freedom Forum will present a unique platform for discussions and engagement around current trends and emerging issues affecting internet freedom in Africa. Participants at IFF include civil society organizations, policy actors/makers, legal/policy experts, academics, advocates, tech enthusiasts, industry representatives and active citizens among others.

http://bit.ly/2Aoj0Tr

 

Personal Democracy Forum Central-Eastern Europe

----------------------------------------

April 26-17

Gdansk, Poland

The sixth edition of the Personal Democracy Forum Central-Eastern Europe will include two days of keynote speeches, practical workshops, networking sessions, and many satellite events. Personal Democracy Forum CEE is a platform for exchanging ideas and experience for those working for civic participation and transparency in public life with the help of new technologies in Central and Eastern Europe. Launched in Poland in 2013, it is a regional branch of New York City PDF organized by Civic Hall (earlier Personal Democracy Media) since 2004.

http://bit.ly/2Dc0Dhx

 

Open Knowledge Summit 2018

----------------------------------------

May 3-6, 2018

Thessaloniki, Greece

For 2018, the Open Knowledge Foundation has replaced the OKFestival with a summit intended to gather the Open Knowledge network to collaboratively build the future of the Open Knowledge Network. The format and programming will be developed as a collaboration between Open Knowledge International, Open Knowledge Greece, and all other groups in the network.

http://bit.ly/2iISyJb

 

RightsCon

----------------------------------------

May 16-18, 2018

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

RightsCon has become one of the world's largest gatherings on human rights and technology, and it's people like you that make it an engine for change. The 2018 event is staged in Canada for a conversation built on the principles of diversity, inclusion, and respect.

http://bit.ly/2rR0IX3

 

Workshop on Technology and Consumer Protection

----------------------------------------

May 24, 2018

San Francisco, CA, USA

ConPro #18 will explore computer science topics with an impact on consumers. This workshop has a strong security and privacy emphasis, with an overall focus on ways in which computer science can prevent, detect, or address the potential for technology to deceive or unfairly harm consumers. Participants will consist heavily of academic and industry researchers but are also expected to include researchers from the Federal Trade Commission - the U.S. government's primary consumer protection body - and other government agencies with a consumer protection mission.

http://bit.ly/2iCUt5r

 

Privacy Law Scholars

----------------------------------------

May 30-31

Washington, DC, USA

PLSC is a paper workshop with the goal of improving and providing support for in-progress scholarship. To achieve this, PLSC assembles a wide array of privacy law scholars and practitioners from around the world to discuss the papers. Scholars from many disciplines (psychology/economics, sociology, philosophy, political science, computer science, and even math) also participate.

http://bit.ly/2zgypRQ

 

Internet Shutdowns in Africa Workshop

----------------------------------------

June 7-8, 2018

Johannesburg, South Africa

Internet shutdowns in Africa doubled between 2015 and 2016, affecting citizens in 11 countries on the continent. While the number declined slightly in 2017, governments that resorted to disrupting the internet did so more frequently and for longer periods. The justifications are diverse, from anti-government protests to Cameroon, to exam cheating in Ethiopia, concerns about election-related violence in Uganda, and quelling social unrest in Zimbabwe. This two-day conference is aimed at sparking in-depth and productive conversations about this issue. It is organized by the ERC-funded ConflictNet programme at the University of Oxford's Programme in Comparative Media Law and Policy, the CSLS, the Bonavero Institute for Human Rights, and the Department of Journalism, Film and Television at the University of Johannesburg's School of Communication.  

http://bit.ly/2HkVpSX

 

Personal Democracy Forum

----------------------------------------

June 7-8, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Since 2004, Personal Democracy Forum ("PDF") has been the go-to place to tap into a community that believes in the power of technology to change politics and governance for the better.  This year's PDF, the 15th, will focus on meaningful collaboration, action, and participatory learning. Our number one goal is to plug attendees into the process of change-making. This year's theme, How We Make Good, will focus on how we turn our commitments - to democracy and ensuring that tech works for the public good - into concrete action.

http://bit.ly/2FjLAbD

 

LIBER Annual Conference

----------------------------------------

July 4-6, 2018

Lille, France

The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.

http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU

 

The Circle of HOPE

----------------------------------------

July 20-22, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.

http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM

 

Defcon

----------------------------------------

August 9-12, 2018

Las Vegas, NV, USA

The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.

http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE

 

VOX-Pol Third Biennial Conference

----------------------------------------

August 20-21, 2018

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

The VOX-Pol Network of Excellence (NoE) is a European Union Framework Programme 7 (FP7)-funded academic research network focused on researching the prevalence, contours, functions, and impacts of Violent Online Political Extremism and responses to it.c

http://bit.ly/2Hhzj3Q

 

World Library and Information Congress

----------------------------------------

August 24-30, 2018

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.

http://bit.ly/2qSXIta

 

SciELO 20 Years Conference

----------------------------------------

September 26-28, 2018

São Paulo, Brazil

In 2018, the SciELO Program will celebrate 20 years of operation, in full alignment with the advances of open science. The conference will address and debate the main political, methodological, and technological issues and trends that define today's state of the art in scholarly communication. These issues will also be shaping the future of the universal openness of scholarly publishing and its relationship with today's Open Access journals, in particular those of the SciELO Network.

http://bit.ly/2FlpVzU

 

Amsterdam Privacy Conference

----------------------------------------

October 5-9, 2018

Amsterdam, Netherlands

APC 2018 brings together researchers, practitioners, policy makers and professionals in the field of privacy to share insights, exchange ideas and formulate, discuss and answer the challenging privacy questions that lie ahead of us. The goal of the conference is to bring together academics, policy makers, journalists, and practitioners to promote active discussion on timely topics, and foster debate on privacy issues between participants from various backgrounds and perspectives.

http://bit.ly/2ucbFEu

 

International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners

----------------------------------------

October 22-26, 2018

Brussels, Belgium

The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.

http://bit.ly/2B1bX38

 

 

***

 

Hear more from the Information Program!

================================

If you want to hear more from the Information Program team each week, consider subscribing to our shared bookmarks on delicious using this RSS feed:

http://feeds.pinboard.in/rss/secret:95194ab804ccccac713b/u:osi_info_program/

 

You can also read more about our work on the Open Society Foundations website: http://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/about/programs/information-program

 

Hear less from the Information Program!

================================

If you wish to subscribe to this fortnightly digest, please send an email with the subject line "Subscribe" to infonewsdigest@opensocietyfoundations.org.

 

If you wish to unsubscribe from this fortnightly digest, please send an email with the subject line "Unsubscribe" to info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.

 

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Additionally, it uses the bit.ly URL shortening service, which operates under the following privacy policy: http://bit.ly/pages/privacy/

 

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0

License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/

 

Open Society Foundation, part of the Open Society Foundations, is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (company number 4571628) and a registered charity (charity number 1105069). Its registered office address is 7th Floor, Millbank Tower, 21-24 Millbank, London SW1P 4QP

 

 

News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 9 March 2018

====================================================

The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.


Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: EDRi, EFF, SPARC Europe.

NEWS

=====

For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/


Belgian court orders Facebook to stop collecting user data

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the Guardian, Samuel Gibbs reports that two weeks after a German court ruled that Facebook's data use contravenes German consumer law a Belgian court has ordered Facebook to stop collecting data on internet users or face daily fines of €250,000 a day. The Belgian case began in 2015, when University of Leuven researchers found that Facebook's tracking of all visitors without explicit consent using cookies was a violation of EU law. The company says it will appeal and that the cookies and invisible pixels it uses to track online behavior across the web is standard industry practice.

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2p4pn6z


Pakistan: Court rules mobile phone service suspension illegal

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The Express Tribune reports that the Islamabad High Court has ruled that the government's suspension of mobile phone services on the grounds of national security is illegal under the Pakistan Telecommunications Act 1996. The ruling is in response to several petitions filed in March 201 that challenged frequent suspensions in the capital. Although sub-section (3) of Section 54 of the Telecom Act does grant the government power to suspend services, the power may only be exercised in extraordinary situations when the president has issued a Proclamation of Emergency.

Tribune: http://bit.ly/2oRApNa


EU threatens internet companies: censor content or face regulation

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the Guardian, Samuel Gibbs reports that the European Commission has issued non-binding recommendations giving Google, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter,  and other internet companies three months to show that they are ready to remove "terrorist content" within an hour of being notified of its presence on their sites or face regulation. For other types of undesirable content, the EC will assess their progress within six months. EDRi opposes the plan on the basis that it puts internet giants in charge of regulating free speech in Europe and argues that the "voluntary" approach avoids legislation that would be subject to democratic scrutiny and judicial challenge. EDRi also notes that all EU member states must agree for the recommendations to be adopted and that the Commission is collecting no data to show that content deletion actually helps fight serious crime and terrorism. At JustSecurity, Justin Hendrix believes that regulation is inevitable for these technology companies even though the US is still resisting it. Hendrix goes on to suggest that regulation could be useful in three areas: transparency regarding their operations to governments and researchers; accountability for their practices to citizens; and responsibility for addressing externalities.
Guardian: http://bit.ly/2p0KF4J
EDRi (opposition): http://bit.ly/2Dbc74W
EDRi (recommendations: http://bit.ly/2FtaXni
JustSecurity: http://bit.ly/2HiPbDm

Pacific Rim partnership agreements continue to progress

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At EFF, Jyoti Panday reports that trade representatives from 11 Pacific rim countries including Canada, Mexico, Japan, and Australia are due to ratify the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, now known as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). Twenty-two items, including most of the intellectual property chapter, have been suspended from the original draft, which Panday relates to the withdrawal of the US, which drove those provisions. However, the previous agreement's electronic commerce (or "digital trade") chapter remains, along with a number of flaws. CPTPP will set new rules for the free flow of electronic data, access to source code, dispute resolution, and domain name privacy. Another such agreement may soon follow: the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (RCEP) is under negotiation by 16 countries, including China and India. The group is struggling to find agreement on the free movement of professionals and intellectual property.

EFF: http://bit.ly/2p0bK8m


EU enables ratification of the Marrakesh Treaty

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Intellectual Property Watch reports that the European Council of Ministers has adopted a decision that enables the EU to ratify the Marrakesh Treaty, starting in the summer of 2018. The Treaty grants blind and visually impaired people access to published works. The treaty was negotiated and adopted at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in 2013 and went into effect in September 2016, but Europe has delayed adoption. In September 2017, the Council adopted implementing legislation to introduce into EU law. WIPO announced in late February that Russia has joined the Marrakesh Treaty.

IP Watch: http://bit.ly/2G6F8BJ


China: Censors block dissent as government removes presidential term limits

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the New York Times, Javier C. Hernández reports that since China's ruling Communist Party announced plans to remove term limits, allowing President Xi Jinping to stay in power indefinitely, censors are scouring the internet to remove criticism and maintain an appearance of mass support. Among the censored material are phrases and words like "my emperor", "lifelong", and "shameless," as well as images of Winnie the Pooh, which Xi is sometimes said to resemble. For a short time, the English letter "N" was also censored, believed to be an attempt to block social scientists from using the mathematical term "N > 2" as an expression of dissent. 

NY Times: http://nyti.ms/2tsa3ps



FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

====================

For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:

http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/


Europe: Analyzing research-related open data policies

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this blog posting, SPARC Europe introduces its report analyzing open data policies across Europe. Among the report's findings: 11 of the 28 EU member states have national research data-related policies in place, as do two further non-EU members of the European Research Area, Norway and Switzerland. Most of the policies examined are owned by or heavily involve the national research funders. SPARC Europe hopes to include evidence of update and engagement, as well as codes of research ethics, as the report is refreshed over the next two years.

SPARC Europe: http://bit.ly/2FBytlj


Leaked secret documents from Russia's election trolls

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at The Daily Beast, Ben Collins, Gideon Resnick, and Spencer Ackerman examine a large cache of internal documents, the results of a catastrophic security breach at the Internet Research Agency, the Kremlin-backed troll farm that interfered with the 2016 US presidential election. Among the new information contained in the leaked material: the IRA's US efforts included Reddit and Tumblr; the imposter accounts targeted named American activists for specific causes such as Black Lives Matter; and the troll farm was connected to two more 2016 rallies, one of which turned violent. The documents provide insight into the IRA's tradecraft - both strengths and weaknesses.

Daily Beast: http://thebea.st/2Fv3jZq


US: Supreme Court hears arguments in US v. Microsoft

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at the Washington Post, Ellen Nakashima summarizes the questions and arguments made in the February 27 US Supreme Court hearing in US v. Microsoft. At issue in the case, which dates to 2013, is whether US law enforcement should be able to access data stored abroad via a simple warrant under the Stored Communications Act (1986). Microsoft contends that a US warrant is not applicable to data stored outside the US - in this case, emails stored on its Irish servers - and law enforcement should pursue a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) request. The US government argues that because the emails would be turned over at Microsoft's Redmond, Washington headquarters there is no international transfer. EFF and the ACLU have signed onto a joint amicus brief with a number of other organizations in support of Microsoft. At Lawfare, Nora Ellingsen explains the legal points at issue in the case.

Washington Post: http://wapo.st/2FrZt3A

EFF: http://bit.ly/2FBz1aR

Lawfare: http://bit.ly/2oWsSM6


US: Proposed act would block pornography at consumers' expense

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this blog posting at EFF, Gennie Gebhart explains the Human Trafficking Protection Act, under consideration in 15 US states. In 2017, EFF opposed versions of the bill in over a dozen states, and it failed in all of them. The model legislation would require device manufacturers to install "obscenity filters" on all internet-connected devices, removable only if the owner pays a $20 fee per device. EFF argues that such a requirement contravenes the First Amendment and allows government intrusion into citizens' private lives.

EFF: http://bit.ly/2DbHDQh


Do neural nets dream of electric sheep?

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this AI Weirdness blog posting, Janelle Shane tweaks images to investigate the effect on neural networks and finds their interpretations are entertainingly off-base. Microsoft's Azure computer vision API saw sheep where none existed, tagged goats as birds when they were positioned in a tree, and identified orange-painted sheep in a field as flowers. These algorithms, she concludes, rely on probability and luck.

AI Weirdness: http://bit.ly/2toouuE


The economics of YouTube stars

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this Bloomberg article, Chris Stoke-Walker studies the economics of YouTube success and concludes that 96.5% of all YouTubers won't make enough money from advertising to move above the US poverty line. The top 3% of most-viewed channels could bring in about $16,800 a year while attracting 1.4 million views per month. The top 1%, who got 2.2 million to 42.1 million views per month in 2016, make extra money through sponsorships and other deals. A third of British children aged six to 17 told pollsters in 2017 that they wanted to grow up to be full-time YouTubers. However, the odds of breaking through are significantly less than they are in Hollywood, and the imbalance in YouTube revenues is getting worse.

Bloomberg: https://bloom.bg/2oZQ8ZK



***


DIARY

==============

To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:

https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your event listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.


ICANN61

----------------------------------------

March 10-15, 2018

San Juan, Puerto Rico

ICANN's Community Forum for 2018 will be focused on outreach, capacity building, and showcasing ICANN's work to a broader global audience.

https://go.icann.org/2zwpDBV


World Social Forum on Science and Democracy

----------------------------------------

March 13-17, 2018

Salvador de Bahia, Brazil

The World Forum on Science and Democracy (WFSD) is an initiative launched in 2007 to promote political dialogue between scientific institutions and social actors on Science and Society issues at a global level. The forum is intended to to help scientific and social actors to dialogue about shared interests, issues and concerns.

http://bit.ly/2FyRCo5


IFLA President's Meeting 2018

----------------------------------------

May 19, 2018

Barcelona, Spain

By bringing together the biggest brains trust in the library field and gathering the best ideas and experience from outside, this event offers a unique chance to hear how leading players are approaching the future, how libraries can break down barriers and form new partnerships, how they can build sustainable foundations for their work, and how they can use digital tools to achieve the goal of access to information for all.

http://bit.ly/2Fn1tef


We Robot 2018

----------------------------------------

April 12-14, 2018

Palo Alto, California, USA

This conference is the annual gathering of academics, policy makers, roboticists, economists, ethicists, entrepreneurs, and lawyers who care about robots and the future of robot law and policy. We Robot fosters conversations between the people designing, building, and deploying robots, and the people who design or influence the legal and social structures in which robots operate.

http://stanford.io/2juk94u


TRILCON18

April 25, 2018

Winchester, UK

The fifth interdisciplinary Winchester conference on Trust, Risk, Information and the Law has as its overall theme "Public Law, Politics and the Constitution: A new battleground between the Law and Technology?"

http://bit.ly/2A1DwrU


Tomorrow's Transactions Forum

----------------------------------------

April 24-25, 2018

London, UK

The 21st edition of Tomorrow's Transactions will provide an opportunity to look back at the lessons that have been learned across the past decades and cast an eye toward the future to ask, where will technology and regulation, take our world of transactions? For 2018, topics will include AI, futures, open banking, and conversational and contextual commerce.

http://bit.ly/1Qc84Fx


Internet Freedom Forum

----------------------------------------

April 24-26, 2018

Abuja, Nigeria

The sixth edition of the Internet Freedom Forum will present a unique platform for discussions and engagement around current trends and emerging issues affecting internet freedom in Africa. Participants at IFF include civil society organizations, policy actors/makers, legal/policy experts, academics, advocates, tech enthusiasts, industry representatives and active citizens among others.

http://bit.ly/2Aoj0Tr


Personal Democracy Forum Central-Eastern Europe

----------------------------------------

April 26-17

Gdansk, Poland

The sixth edition of the Personal Democracy Forum Central-Eastern Europe will include two days of keynote speeches, practical workshops, networking sessions, and many satellite events. Personal Democracy Forum CEE is a platform for exchanging ideas and experience for those working for civic participation and transparency in public life with the help of new technologies in Central and Eastern Europe. Launched in Poland in 2013, it is a regional branch of New York City PDF organized by Civic Hall (earlier Personal Democracy Media) since 2004.

http://bit.ly/2Dc0Dhx


Open Knowledge Summit 2018

----------------------------------------

May 3-6, 2018

Thessaloniki, Greece

For 2018, the Open Knowledge Foundation has replaced the OKFestival with a summit intended to gather the Open Knowledge network to collaboratively build the future of the Open Knowledge Network. The format and programming will be developed as a collaboration between Open Knowledge International, Open Knowledge Greece, and all other groups in the network.

http://bit.ly/2iISyJb


RightsCon

----------------------------------------

May 16-18, 2018

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

RightsCon has become one of the world's largest gatherings on human rights and technology, and it's people like you that make it an engine for change. The 2018 event is staged in Canada for a conversation built on the principles of diversity, inclusion, and respect.

http://bit.ly/2rR0IX3


Workshop on Technology and Consumer Protection

----------------------------------------

May 24, 2018

San Francisco, CA, USA

ConPro #18 will explore computer science topics with an impact on consumers. This workshop has a strong security and privacy emphasis, with an overall focus on ways in which computer science can prevent, detect, or address the potential for technology to deceive or unfairly harm consumers. Participants will consist heavily of academic and industry researchers but are also expected to include researchers from the Federal Trade Commission - the U.S. government's primary consumer protection body - and other government agencies with a consumer protection mission.

http://bit.ly/2iCUt5r


Privacy Law Scholars

----------------------------------------

May 30-31

Washington, DC, USA

PLSC is a paper workshop with the goal of improving and providing support for in-progress scholarship. To achieve this, PLSC assembles a wide array of privacy law scholars and practitioners from around the world to discuss the papers. Scholars from many disciplines (psychology/economics, sociology, philosophy, political science, computer science, and even math) also participate.

http://bit.ly/2zgypRQ


Internet Shutdowns in Africa Workshop

----------------------------------------

June 7-8, 2018

Johannesburg, South Africa

Internet shutdowns in Africa doubled between 2015 and 2016, affecting citizens in 11 countries on the continent. While the number declined slightly in 2017, governments that resorted to disrupting the internet did so more frequently and for longer periods. The justifications are diverse, from anti-government protests to Cameroon, to exam cheating in Ethiopia, concerns about election-related violence in Uganda, and quelling social unrest in Zimbabwe. This two-day conference is aimed at sparking in-depth and productive conversations about this issue. It is organized by the ERC-funded ConflictNet programme at the University of Oxford's Programme in Comparative Media Law and Policy, the CSLS, the Bonavero Institute for Human Rights, and the Department of Journalism, Film and Television at the University of Johannesburg's School of Communication.  

http://bit.ly/2HkVpSX


Personal Democracy Forum

----------------------------------------

June 7-8, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Since 2004, Personal Democracy Forum ("PDF") has been the go-to place to tap into a community that believes in the power of technology to change politics and governance for the better.  This year's PDF, the 15th, will focus on meaningful collaboration, action, and participatory learning. Our number one goal is to plug attendees into the process of change-making. This year's theme, How We Make Good, will focus on how we turn our commitments - to democracy and ensuring that tech works for the public good - into concrete action.

http://bit.ly/2FjLAbD


LIBER Annual Conference

----------------------------------------

July 4-6, 2018

Lille, France

The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.

http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU


The Circle of HOPE

----------------------------------------

July 20-22, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.

http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM


Defcon

----------------------------------------

August 9-12, 2018

Las Vegas, NV, USA

The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.

http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE


VOX-Pol Third Biennial Conference

----------------------------------------

August 20-21, 2018

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

The VOX-Pol Network of Excellence (NoE) is a European Union Framework Programme 7 (FP7)-funded academic research network focused on researching the prevalence, contours, functions, and impacts of Violent Online Political Extremism and responses to it.c

http://bit.ly/2Hhzj3Q


World Library and Information Congress

----------------------------------------

August 24-30, 2018

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.

http://bit.ly/2qSXIta


SciELO 20 Years Conference

----------------------------------------

September 26-28, 2018

São Paulo, Brazil

In 2018, the SciELO Program will celebrate 20 years of operation, in full alignment with the advances of open science. The conference will address and debate the main political, methodological, and technological issues and trends that define today's state of the art in scholarly communication. These issues will also be shaping the future of the universal openness of scholarly publishing and its relationship with today's Open Access journals, in particular those of the SciELO Network.

http://bit.ly/2FlpVzU


International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners

----------------------------------------

October 22-26, 2018

Brussels, Belgium

The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.

http://bit.ly/2B1bX38


***


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News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 9 February 2018

====================================================

The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.


Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: Bits of Freedom, EDRi, EFF.

NEWS

=====

For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/


Chinese police spot suspects with surveillance glasses

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The BBC reports that police in China have begun using connected sunglasses equipped with facial recognition to scan crowds looking for suspected criminals. In a test at a busy train station in the city of Zhengzhou, police were able to identify and apprehend seven suspects accused of crimes ranging from hit-and-run to human trafficking and identify 26 people using fake IDs, according to the Communist Party's People's Daily Newspaper. The glasses allow police officers to take a photograph of a suspicious individual and compare it to pictures held in an internal database. If the system finds a match, it sends identifying details such as name and address to the officer. China is a world leader in facial recognition and frequently reminds its citizens that it will make escape impossible. The country is thought to have 170 million CCTV cameras already in place, with 400 million more due to be installed between 2018 and 2021. The Verge reports that in December 2017 the digital surveillance manufacturer IC Realtime launched a web and app platform named Ella that uses AI to analyse video feeds and make them instantly searchable, like a Google for CCTV.

BBC: http://bbc.in/2GATEkj

Verge: http://bit.ly/2GAxij4


India: Competition Commission fines Google

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Reuters reports that on February 8, the Competition Commission of India fined Google Rs 136.86 crore ($21.17 million) for "search bias" and abuse of its dominant position; the amount represents nearly 5% of Google's average total revenue in India for the financial years 2013, 2014, and 2015. Google has 60 days to appeal. The case began in 2012, when cases were filed by the consumer organization Consumer Unity and Trust Society and Consim, a matrimonial website and Google AdWords customer.

Reuters: http://reut.rs/2ohNqyX


Russia: Scientists arrested for mining cryptocurrencies at nuclear research facility

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The BBC reports that Russian security officers have arrested several scientists for attempting to mine cryptocurrencies at the top-secret Federal Nuclear Centre in the restricted and tightly guarded area of Sarov. The scientists were caught when they attempted to connect the warhead facility's supercomputer to the internet. The supercomputer is intentionally kept offline to protect its security.

BBC: http://bbc.in/2ELLipp


US: Federal court rules an embedded tweet a copyright infringement

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The EFF reports that a New York federal court has ruled in the case Goldman v. Breitbart that embedding a tweet in a web page can be a copyright infringement. The ruling could apply to all inline linking, up-ending years of settled precedent that only the host, not the linker, is liable for infringement. The judge argued that the "server test" created by the Ninth Circuit's opinion in the 2006 case Perfect 10 v. Amazon and the Seventh Circuit's 2012 opinion in Flava Works v. Gunter did not apply because the defendants in Goldman "took active steps" that resulted in public display of the photos in question. At the Technology and Marketing Law Blog, Eric Goldman explains the ruling and its consequences in more detail. The web's best hope is an appeal.

EFF: http://bit.ly/2FlnbiB

Goldman: http://bit.ly/2EH1Jr8


Chinese regulator rebukes Ant Financial for automatic credit scoring enrollment

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The Wall Street Journal reports that in January the Cyberspace Administration of China rebuked representatives of Alibaba subsidiary Ant Financial Services Group for automatically enrolling its 520 million users in its credit-scoring system, Sesame Credit. Regulators said Ant's Alipay service violated China's new national data protection standard by not properly notifying users that enrolling in the credit-scoring system would permit Ant to share their personal financial data with third parties, including information about their income, savings, and shopping habits. The regulator said the policy broke the pledge the company signed in 2017 to protect this type of information and ordered Ant to ensure it doesn't happen again. Sesame Credit is one of the new rating systems emerging in China, where the government intends to spread social scoring throughout society. The case is also an example of Chinese people's increasing concerns about data privacy, although they reserve their concern for companies rather than government.

Wall Street Journal: http://on.wsj.com/2HDFWyy


Germany: Court rules Facebook's data practices illegal

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The Guardian reports that in a suit brought by the Federation of German Consumer Organizations (VZBV), a Berlin court has ruled that Facebook's privacy settings and personal data use contravene German consumer law. A week later, the company said it would radically overhaul its privacy settings, and that the work would also prepare it for the incoming General Data Protection Regulation. The Guardian also reports that in January Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff said at the World Economic Forum in Davos that social networks should be regulated like cigarette companies. In November 2017, the multi-stakeholder UN IGF Dynamic Coalition on Platform Responsibility (FGV) published a book analyzing the online platforms' responsibility to respect human rights and providing guidance for "responsible" terms of service.
Guardian (suit): http://bit.ly/2BII2fO
Guardian (Benioff): http://bit.ly/2HEhrBi
FGV: http://bit.ly/2FkWP02


FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

====================

For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:

http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/


Turkey: How a single line of computer code jailed thousands of innocent Turks

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At CBC News, Nil Köksal explains how a single line of computer code landed thousands of innocent Turks in jail. The story began with the free Bylock messaging app, which was used between 2014 and 2016 and which the Turkish government associated with treason and followers of Fethullah Gülen, the man the Turkish government believe was behind the attempted 2016 coup. Digital forensics expert Tuncay Beşikçi finds that people who have never downloaded or used the app were arrested because a line of code in other apps opened a single-pixel window onto Bylock.net - which Beşikçi believes may have been an attempt at obfuscation. In the Guardian, Owen Bowcott explains the UK legal opinion arguing that the arrests were illegal.

CBC: http://bit.ly/2Ceo7Xh

Guardian: http://bit.ly/2CDTgz6


Break up the big tech companies

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at Esquire, Scott Galloway, founder of several early internet firms and author of The Four, argues that it's time to break up Google, Facebook, Apple, and Amazon, given their big profits and small paybacks in the form of taxes, their destruction of jobs, and their weaponization during the 2016 US presidential election. He complains that government is handing off responsibilities such as allocating tax money, managing defense, and protecting teenagers to these companies while markets fail. He cites Microsoft as the original model, but Microsoft's power was checked by regulators, a fate the Big Four have so far avoided. Amazon has 4% of US retail - but 34% of the worldwide cloud business; phones are "delivery vehicles for Facebook"; Google owns 92% of the internet search market; and Apple has "the profit margin of Ferrari with the production volume of Toyota". Galloway concludes, "A key part of a healthy economic cycle is pruning firms when they become invasive, cause premature death, and won't let other firms emerge." In a lengthy piece at Wired, Nicholas Thompson and Fred Vogelstein trace Facebook's slow acceptance of responsibility over the news that appears on its platform.

Esquire: http://bit.ly/2BL0QeI

Wired: http://bit.ly/2FlqcQ3


US, UK: Surveilling immigrants

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In the Guardian, Atlanta-based Azadeh Shahshahani, a human rights attorney with Project South, discusses US government spying on immigrants, including naturalized US citizens. The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security already track the internet activity of all visa applicants, visa holders, and legal permanent residents, including social media account information, aliases, and search results from both public search engines and commercial databases. Shahshahani believes these measures, which violate the First Amendment, are intended to fracture and control dissent and keep immigrants marginalized. For many, it is reminiscent of the repression they left their former countries to escape. At the Guardian, MEP Claude Moraes complains that the UK government's proposed data protection rules implementing the incoming General Data Protection Regulation will remove subject access rights relating to immigration procedures from all non-UK nationals, including EU citizens resident in the UK. In a blog posting, Liberty opposes the West Yorkshire Police's roll-out of a system under which they stop people in the street and use a portable scanner to run their fingerprints against both criminal and immigration databases.

Guardian (Shahshahani): http://bit.ly/2EKQcmP
Guardian (Moraes): http://bit.ly/2oooZiB

Liberty: http://bit.ly/2EL8hoC


Stop saying smart cities

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at The Atlantic, science fiction writer Bruce Sterling argues that cities need to be "rich, powerful, and culturally persuasive, with the means, motive, and opportunity to manage their own affairs" - but not necessarily smart. "Smartness," he says, "is just today's means to this well-established end." Sterling goes on to discuss surveillance, the influence of incoming Chinese technology such as AI facial recognition, and a future of "localized, haphazard mash-ups of digital tips, tricks, and hacks. Follow the money, he says, and this isn't about smart cities but about GAFAM (Google-Apple-Facebook-Amazon-Microsoft) disrupting the older technology companies that have been building cities' command and control systems until now.

Atlantic: http://theatln.tc/2EL3r6U


The house that spied on me

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at Gizmodo, Kashmir Hill and Surya Mattu discover that the only thing worse than getting a bad night's sleep...is getting a report from the bed afterwards advising that you "missed your sleep goal". Still: the newly "smart" apartment had its conveniences: it gave Hill voice-activated lights, coffee maker, and music, the ability to convey a message to a toddler through a toy, a self-heating bed, and a robot vacuum cleaner. Meanwhile, Mattu built a Raspberry Pi router to monitor what data all these devices collected and where they wanted to send it. They found a steady stream of outward bound data even when the house was empty - and massive annoyances because of the friction involved in getting all the devices to work together and satisfying their demands. Free advice: when you install connected CCTV cameras inside your home, think before you walk around nude. Hill's conclusion: "Smart homes are dumb." Science fiction writer Ray Bradbury foresaw this in his short story "There Will Come Soft Rains", published in 1950.

Gizmodo: http://bit.ly/2CBNrSL

Bradbury: http://bit.ly/2BLp8Fs


Is your software racist?

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At Politico, Raymond Biesinger considers how to solve the problem of bias in software, citing numerous examples from Google Translate and voice-based assistants to recidivism-predicting algorithms. Prospective solutions are less clear than the problem. As one option, New York is appointing a task force to review and test the city's algorithms. Other options include requiring algorithms and data to be open source, industry-wide standards or benchmarks that algorithms need to meet, and a new federal agency to oversee the development of AI.

Politico: http://politi.co/2GxD84H



***


DIARY

==============

To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:

https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your event listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.


Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency

----------------------------------------

February 23-24, 2018

New York, NY, USA

FAT* is an international and interdisciplinary peer-reviewed conference that seeks to publish and present work examining the fairness, accountability, and transparency of algorithmic systems. The FAT* conference solicits work from a wide variety of disciplines, including computer science, statistics, the humanities, and law. It intends to bring together the community that has grown through a number of workshops at other conferences.

http://bit.ly/2iHQTUX


PrivacyCon

----------------------------------------

February 28, 2018

Washington, DC, USA

Organized by the Federal Trade Commission, the 2018 PrivacyCon will expand collaboration among leading privacy and security researchers, academics, industry representatives, consumer advocates, and the government. As part of this initiative, the FTC sought general research that explores the privacy and security implications of emerging technologies, such as the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence and virtual reality. The 2018 event will focus on the economics of privacy including how to quantify the harms that result from companies' failure to secure consumer information, and how to balance the costs and benefits of privacy-protective technologies and practices.

http://bit.ly/2sL3C0F


Internet Freedom Festival

----------------------------------------

March 5-9, 2018

Valencia, Spain

The global unconference of the Internet freedom communities brings together those who defend digital rights around the world - journalists, activists, technologists, policy advocates, digital safety trainers, and designers - with the goals of creating an inclusive space, increasing diversity, and improving the services, strategies, and tools offered to the most vulnerable individuals on the frontlines.

http://bit.ly/2Ds1wn1


ICANN61

----------------------------------------

March 10-15, 2018

San Juan, Puerto Rico

ICANN's Community Forum for 2018 will be focused on outreach, capacity building, and showcasing ICANN's work to a broader global audience.

https://go.icann.org/2zwpDBV


IFLA President's Meeting 2018

----------------------------------------

May 19, 2018

Barcelona, Spain

By bringing together the biggest brains trust in the library field and gathering the best ideas and experience from outside, this event offers a unique chance to hear how leading players are approaching the future, how libraries can break down barriers and form new partnerships, how they can build sustainable foundations for their work, and how they can use digital tools to achieve the goal of access to information for all.

http://bit.ly/2Fn1tef


We Robot 2018

----------------------------------------

April 12-14, 2018

Palo Alto, California, USA

This conference is the annual gathering of academics, policy makers, roboticists, economists, ethicists, entrepreneurs, and lawyers who care about robots and the future of robot law and policy. We Robot fosters conversations between the people designing, building, and deploying robots, and the people who design or influence the legal and social structures in which robots operate.

http://stanford.io/2juk94u


TRILCON18

April 25, 2018

Winchester, UK

The fifth interdisciplinary Winchester conference on Trust, Risk, Information and the Law has as its overall theme "Public Law, Politics and the Constitution: A new battleground between the Law and Technology?"

http://bit.ly/2A1DwrU


Tomorrow's Transactions Forum

----------------------------------------

April 24-25, 2018

London, UK

The 21st edition of Tomorrow's Transactions will provide an opportunity to look back at the lessons that have been learned across the past decades and cast an eye toward the future to ask, where will technology and regulation, take our world of transactions? For 2018, topics will include AI, futures, open banking, and conversational and contextual commerce.

http://bit.ly/1Qc84Fx


Internet Freedom Forum

----------------------------------------

April 24-26, 2018

Abuja, Nigeria

The sixth edition of the Internet Freedom Forum will present a unique platform for discussions and engagement around current trends and emerging issues affecting internet freedom in Africa. Participants at IFF include civil society organizations, policy actors/makers, legal/policy experts, academics, advocates, tech enthusiasts, industry representatives and active citizens among others.

http://bit.ly/2Aoj0Tr


Open Knowledge Summit 2018

----------------------------------------

May 3-6, 2018

Thessaloniki, Greece

For 2018, the Open Knowledge Foundation has replaced the OKFestival with a summit intended to gather the Open Knowledge network to collaboratively build the future of the Open Knowledge Network. The format and programming will be developed as a collaboration between Open Knowledge International, Open Knowledge Greece, and all other groups in the network.

http://bit.ly/2iISyJb


RightsCon

----------------------------------------

May 16-18, 2018

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

RightsCon has become one of the world's largest gatherings on human rights and technology, and it's people like you that make it an engine for change. The 2018 event is staged in Canada for a conversation built on the principles of diversity, inclusion, and respect.

http://bit.ly/2rR0IX3


Workshop on Technology and Consumer Protection

----------------------------------------

May 24, 2018

San Francisco, CA, USA

ConPro #18 will explore computer science topics with an impact on consumers. This workshop has a strong security and privacy emphasis, with an overall focus on ways in which computer science can prevent, detect, or address the potential for technology to deceive or unfairly harm consumers. Participants will consist heavily of academic and industry researchers but are also expected to include researchers from the Federal Trade Commission - the U.S. government's primary consumer protection body - and other government agencies with a consumer protection mission.

http://bit.ly/2iCUt5r


Privacy Law Scholars

----------------------------------------

May 30-31

Washington, DC, USA

PLSC is a paper workshop with the goal of improving and providing support for in-progress scholarship. To achieve this, PLSC assembles a wide array of privacy law scholars and practitioners from around the world to discuss the papers. Scholars from many disciplines (psychology/economics, sociology, philosophy, political science, computer science, and even math) also participate.

http://bit.ly/2zgypRQ


LIBER Annual Conference

----------------------------------------

July 4-6, 2018

Lille, France

The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.

http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU


The Circle of HOPE

----------------------------------------

July 20-22, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.

http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM


Defcon

----------------------------------------

August 9-12, 2018

Las Vegas, NV, USA

The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.

http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE


World Library and Information Congress

----------------------------------------

August 24-30, 2018

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.

http://bit.ly/2qSXIta


SciELO 20 Years Conference

----------------------------------------

September 26-28, 2018

São Paulo, Brazil

In 2018, the SciELO Program will celebrate 20 years of operation, in full alignment with the advances of open science. The conference will address and debate the main political, methodological, and technological issues and trends that define today's state of the art in scholarly communication. These issues will also be shaping the future of the universal openness of scholarly publishing and its relationship with today's Open Access journals, in particular those of the SciELO Network.

https://www.scielo20.org/en/


International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners

----------------------------------------

October 22-26, 2018

Brussels, Belgium

The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.

http://bit.ly/2B1bX38


***


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News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 26 January 2018

====================================================

The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.


Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: Bits of Freedom, Derechos Digitales América Latina, EDRi, EFF, Fundación Karisma, La Quadrature du Net, Panoptykon Foundation.

NEWS

=====

For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/


Apple health app data provides crucial evidence at murder trial

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At Gizmodo, Kristen V. Brown reports that Apple's Health App, which is pre-installed on the iPhone 6S and later models and records steps taken, nutrition and sleep patterns, and other body measurements, has provided crucial evidence at a German trial in which a refugee, known as "Hussein K", has pleaded guilty torape and murder. Police showed that app data suggesting the suspect was climbing stairs could correlate to his dragging his victim down a riverbank and back up by reenacting the movements to produce similar results. Chief of police Peter Egetemaier told the court it was the first time they have been able to correlate health and geodata.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-42663297


India: Authority addresses privacy concerns with Virtual ID

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Rediff Business reports that the Unified Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the ministry responsible for India's Aadhaar identification system, has introduced Virtual IDs to attempt to counter privacy concerns after a widely reported hack of the numbering system resulted in inexpensive online access to user details. Users can generate these Virtual IDs on its website to use instead of their official 12-digit number for purposes of authentication when opening a new bank or telephone account. Users may generate as many Virtual IDs as they like; old ones get canceled automatically when a new one is created. At the New York Times, Reetika Khera calls the Aadhaar system "a big flub" that has created new problems while failing to solve the ones it was created to fix. In September, an 11-year-old girl died in the poverty-stricken eastern state of Jharkhand when her family was denied benefits after failing to link an Aadhaar number to their ration card. Khera concludes that the system should be returned to voluntary status.

https://m.rediff.com/business/report/uidai-introduces-virtual-id-to-address-privacy-concerns/20180110.htm

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/21/opinion/india-aadhaar-biometric-id.html


Apple's Safari tracking blocker costs publishers millions

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the Guardian, Alex Hern reports that Apple's September 2017 block on pervasive tracking in its Safari web browser, which has 15% of market share, is costing advertising companies millions; Criteo alone is likely to cut its 2018 revenues by more than a fifth. Things are likely to get worse for these companies: in February 2018 Google will roll out a built-in blocker of "intrusive ads" for Chrome, which has 55% of the global browser market.

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/jan/09/apple-tracking-block-costs-advertising-companies-millions-dollars-criteo-web-browser-safari


China: Google cross-licenses patents with Tencent

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The South China Morning Post reports that Google and Tencent have agreed to share patents covering a range of products and technologies, including artificial intelligence software, and collaborate on future development. SCMP suggests that the collaboration is Google's way of continuing to expand its presence in the Chinese market even though it withdrew its search engine from the country in 2010. At the Guardian, Mark Sweney profilesTencent, which remains largely unknown in the West despite being a $500 billion company and, with Ali Baba, one of China's two biggest internet companies. Tencent's success rests on three prongs: the messaging app WeChat; its gaming franchies, which are the largest in the world; and its ecosystem, which offers its 1 billion users the services Silicon Valley companies do not operate in China, including Tencent Video (like Netflix), Tencent Music (Apple's iTunes and Spotify). About 40% of the company's revenues come from gaming: it owns Clash of Clans, League of Legends, and Honour of Kings, and has stakes in Epic and Activision Blizzard.

http://www.scmp.com/tech/innovation/article/2129650/google-tencent-agree-share-patents-global-tech-alliance

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/jan/13/tencent-the-500bn-chinese-tech-firm-you-may-never-have-heard-of


Tunisia: Government withdraws biometric ID after protest

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Access Now reports that the country's biometric ID card proposal has officially been withdrawn by the Assembly of the Representatives of the People (ARP). Access Now and local Tunisian NGO AlBawsala proposed amendments to protect citizens' data and their right to consult and correct their information. After nearly all these amendments were adopted by the Consensus Commission, the Ministry of the Interior dropped the proposal.

Indonesia: Central bank bans cryptocurrencies

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The Jakarta Post reports that in mid-January Bank Indonesia (BI), the country's national bank, and the National Police are collaborating to prevent bitcoin transactions in Bali after BI issued regulations declaring that rupieh is the only valid currency in Indonesia. A few days later, the Post also reported that Bank Indonesia is investigating two bitcoin transactions alleged to have been made in Bali, in which two cafes accepted bitcoin invoice payments of more than IDR243,000 ($18.25, or BTC0.001). Each transaction took and hour and a half to process and cost IDR123,000. Earlier, BI banned financial technology companies using cryptocurrencies without prohibiting trading of the currencies themselves.
http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2018/01/21/bi-investigates-use-of-bitcoin-in-bali.html

http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2018/01/15/bank-indonesia-police-prevent-bitcoin-transactions-in-bali.html

http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2018/01/14/indonesia-warns-against-owning-selling-trading-cryptocurrency.html



FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

====================

For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:

http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/


Privacy International's amicus brief in support of Microsoft

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this amicus brief, Privacy International, joined by EDRi, Bits of Freedom, Derechos Digitales América Latina, Fundación Karisma, La Quadrature du Net, Panoptykon Foundation, and numerous other human rights and digital rights organizations, submits arguments to the Supreme Court. PI argues that construing the Stored Communications Act to require Microsoft to turn over email data stored on its Irish servers in contravention of Irish and EU data protection law would create international conflicts that should be avoided. PI believes that instead US law enforcement should use established channels, such as "mutual legal assistance treaties" (MLATs), to accomplish such data transfers.

https://www.supremecourt.gov/DocketPDF/17/17-2/28354/20180118170547648_17-2%20USA%20v%20Microsoft%20Brief%20of%20Privacy%20International%20Human%20and%20Digital%20Rights%20Organizations%20and%20International%20Legal%20Scholars%20as%20Amici%20Curiae%20in%20Support%20of%20Respondent.pdf


How to fix Facebook before it fixes us

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At Washington Monthly, technology investor Roger McNamee recounts his efforts to get Facebook, Google, and the public to take seriously the threat of bad actors exploiting social media's attention-maximizing business model and his alliance with the Open Markets group, and publishes recommendations for tackling the problem. Among his suggestions: ban bots that pretend to be human; block all new mergers and acquisitions until the platforms have addressed the present damage; force platforms to be more transparent about the sources of their ads and their algorithms; make the contract with users more equitable; require platforms to allow users to opt back to the EULA they accepted when they joined; limit their ability to exploit the data they collect; reopen discussions about market power and antitrust. In the Guardian, John Naughton considers Facebook's recent announcement that the site will change its algorithms to focus on social interactions rather than finding relevant content. Naughton argues that Facebook is acting strategically to avoid further political action against it over fake news. Also at the Guardian, Emily Bell argues that the changes are bad for democracy. At the Economist, Eve Smith drafts an email to the CEOs of Apple, Google, and Amazon warning of the regulatory backlash and antitrust litigation that are likely to hit them in the US in the next few years.

https://washingtonmonthly.com/magazine/january-february-march-2018/how-to-fix-facebook-before-it-fixes-us/
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jan/21/facebook-abandons-news-important-business-of-trivia
https://www.theguardian.com/media/media-blog/2018/jan/21/why-facebook-news-feed-changes-bad-news-democracy
https://www.economist.com/news/briefing/21735026-which-antitrust-remedies-welcome-which-fight-techlash-against-amazon-facebook-and


The Golden Age of (democracy-poisoning) free speech

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article for Wired and video-recorded TED talk, Zeynep Tufekci discusses the modern version of censorship: optimization for engagement by a few global-scale advertising companies. Traditionally, censors found the right choke point and then squeezed it; today's version is to meddle with trust and attention. We think of Twitter and Facebook as public spaces, but in fact all posts are targeted and delivered privately, fragmenting the public sphere and creating new forms of censorship that do not obviously breach the US First Amendment or the European Charter of Human Rights. At the Los Angeles Review of Books, John Bell and John Zada review Tim Wu's latest book, The Attention Merchants, and study the way our attention has been turned into a profitable commodity.

https://www.wired.com/story/free-speech-issue-tech-turmoil-new-censorship/

https://www.ted.com/talks/zeynep_tufekci_we_re_building_a_dystopia_just_to_make_people_click_on_ads

https://lareviewofbooks.org/article/the-great-attention-heist/#!


Canada: Privacy protests and Google's Sidwalk Labs

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article at Civicist, John Loring discusses the doubts being expressed by public agencies and participants in Toronto about the privacy implications of Google's Sidewalk Labs' (SWL) pitch to redevelop the city's waterfront. SWL's plan is to leverage data gathered in the public realm to meet public-service goals such as improving traffic flow, reducing emissions, and enabling autonous vehicles on a brownfield site known as Quayside while turning the 12-acre area into a technology hub. SWL has made much of its planned privacy pledge, led by Canadian privacy advocate Ann Cavoukian. Even so, specifics about how the project will use data are scarce.

https://civichall.org/civicist/sidewalk-labs-toronto-project-stirs-privacy-debate/


Global threat actor Dark Caracal's infrastructure of malicious apps

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this blog posting and report, EFF unveils the results of a collaboration with the cybersecurity company Lookout uncovering Dark Caracal, a global threat actor that spreads malicious fakes to impersonate the Android versions of popular privacy-preserving apps like Signal and WhatsApp. Those who have downloaded their apps from Google's Play Store should be unaffected, but the new infrastructure makes it harder to attribute attacks and malware campaigns to a particular nation or state and exposes the increased danger to the targets of such attacks, typically individuals and entities that a nation-state might target, as well as malware researchers. The researchers are aware of hundreds of gigabytes of exfiltrated data in more than 21 countries across thousands of victims, and believe the infrastructure is being used simultaneously by many groups. 
https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2018/01/dark-caracal-good-news-and-bad-news


Brazil's WhatsApp fake news problem

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article in Vice, Noah Kulwin reports on WhatsApp's fake news problem in Brazil, where the service is the dominant messaging platform. Because WhatsApp is closed and private, researchers have little insight into how fake news spreads over it; their primary information comes from lurking in large WhatsApp political groups and studying tiny contextual clues. The secrecy-protecting design also amplifies the toxic aspects of fake news, since nothing is visible enough to be challenged. As a result, Glenn Greenwald reports at The Intercept, a top Brazilian police official has threatened to identify and punish the authors of fake news in the run-up to the 2018 presidential election, similar to a law La Quadrature du Net reports that French president Emmanual Macron proposes to introduce. At the BBC, Kenyan journalist Joseph Warungu identifies six approaches WhatsApp administrators use to run the groups they manage, which may represent local communities, professions, or topics of common interests. Wurungu, who was recently promoted to become the administrator of such a group mobilizing support for development projects in his home village, is disturbed by the power of such administrators to silence others.

https://news.vice.com/en_us/article/mbpkyv/whatsapp-is-causing-a-serious-fake-news-problem-in-brazil

https://theintercept.com/2018/01/10/first-france-now-brazil-unveils-plans-to-empower-the-government-to-censure-the-internet-in-the-name-of-stopping-fake-news/

https://www.laquadrature.net/en/macron_fake_news

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-42653088



***


DIARY

==============

To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:

https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your event listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.


Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency

----------------------------------------

February 23-24, 2018

New York, NY, USA

FAT* is an international and interdisciplinary peer-reviewed conference that seeks to publish and present work examining the fairness, accountability, and transparency of algorithmic systems. The FAT* conference solicits work from a wide variety of disciplines, including computer science, statistics, the humanities, and law. It intends to bring together the community that has grown through a number of workshops at other conferences.

http://bit.ly/2iHQTUX


Internet Freedom Festival

----------------------------------------

March 5-9, 2018

Valencia, Spain

The global unconference of the Internet freedom communities brings together those who defend digital rights around the world - journalists, activists, technologists, policy advocates, digital safety trainers, and designers - with the goals of creating an inclusive space, increasing diversity, and improving the services, strategies, and tools offered to the most vulnerable individuals on the frontlines.

https://internetfreedomfestival.org/


ICANN61

----------------------------------------

March 10-15, 2018

San Juan, Puerto Rico

ICANN's Community Forum for 2018 will be focused on outreach, capacity building, and showcasing ICANN's work to a broader global audience.

https://go.icann.org/2zwpDBV


We Robot 2018

----------------------------------------

April 12-14, 2018

Palo Alto, California, USA

This conference is the annual gathering of academics, policy makers, roboticists, economists, ethicists, entrepreneurs, and lawyers who care about robots and the future of robot law and policy. We Robot fosters conversations between the people designing, building, and deploying robots, and the people who design or influence the legal and social structures in which robots operate.

http://stanford.io/2juk94u


TRILCON18

April 25, 2018

Winchester, UK

The fifth interdisciplinary Winchester conference on Trust, Risk, Information and the Law has as its overall theme "Public Law, Politics and the Constitution: A new battleground between the Law and Technology?"

http://bit.ly/2A1DwrU


Tomorrow's Transactions Forum

----------------------------------------

April 24-25, 2018

London, UK

The 21st edition of Tomorrow's Transactions will provide an opportunity to look back at the lessons that have been learned across the past decades and cast an eye toward the future to ask, where will technology and regulation, take our world of transactions? For 2018, topics will include AI, futures, open banking, and conversational and contextual commerce.

http://bit.ly/1Qc84Fx


Internet Freedom Forum

----------------------------------------

April 24-26, 2018

Abuja, Nigeria

The sixth edition of the Internet Freedom Forum will present a unique platform for discussions and engagement around current trends and emerging issues affecting internet freedom in Africa. Participants at IFF include civil society organizations, policy actors/makers, legal/policy experts, academics, advocates, tech enthusiasts, industry representatives and active citizens among others.

http://bit.ly/2Aoj0Tr


Open Knowledge Summit 2018

----------------------------------------

May 3-6, 2018

Thessaloniki, Greece

For 2018, the Open Knowledge Foundation has replaced the OKFestival with a summit intended to gather the Open Knowledge network to collaboratively build the future of the Open Knowledge Network. The format and programming will be developed as a collaboration between Open Knowledge International, Open Knowledge Greece, and all other groups in the network.

http://bit.ly/2iISyJb


RightsCon

----------------------------------------

May 16-18, 2018

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

RightsCon has become one of the world's largest gatherings on human rights and technology, and it's people like you that make it an engine for change. The 2018 event is staged in Canada for a conversation built on the principles of diversity, inclusion, and respect.

http://bit.ly/2rR0IX3


Workshop on Technology and Consumer Protection

----------------------------------------

May 24, 2018

San Francisco, CA, USA

ConPro #18 will explore computer science topics with an impact on consumers. This workshop has a strong security and privacy emphasis, with an overall focus on ways in which computer science can prevent, detect, or address the potential for technology to deceive or unfairly harm consumers. Participants will consist heavily of academic and industry researchers but are also expected to include researchers from the Federal Trade Commission - the U.S. government's primary consumer protection body - and other government agencies with a consumer protection mission.

http://bit.ly/2iCUt5r


Privacy Law Scholars

----------------------------------------

May 30-31

Washington, DC, USA

PLSC is a paper workshop with the goal of improving and providing support for in-progress scholarship. To achieve this, PLSC assembles a wide array of privacy law scholars and practitioners from around the world to discuss the papers. Scholars from many disciplines (psychology/economics, sociology, philosophy, political science, computer science, and even math) also participate.

http://bit.ly/2zgypRQ


LIBER Annual Conference

----------------------------------------

July 4-6, 2018

Lille, France

The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.

http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU


The Circle of HOPE

----------------------------------------

July 20-22, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.

http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM


Defcon

----------------------------------------

August 9-12, 2018

Las Vegas, NV, USA

The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.

http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE


World Library and Information Congress

----------------------------------------

August 24-30, 2018

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.

http://bit.ly/2qSXIta


International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners

----------------------------------------

October 22-26, 2018

Brussels, Belgium

The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.

http://bit.ly/2B1bX38


***


Hear more from the Information Program!

================================

If you want to hear more from the Information Program team each week, consider subscribing to our shared bookmarks on delicious using this RSS feed:

http://feeds.pinboard.in/rss/secret:95194ab804ccccac713b/u:osi_info_program/


You can also read more about our work on the Open Society Foundations website: http://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/about/programs/information-program


Hear less from the Information Program!

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If you wish to unsubscribe from this weekly digest, please send an email with the subject line "Unsubscribe" to info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.


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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0

License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/


Open Society Foundation, part of the Open Society Foundations, is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (company number 4571628) and a registered charity (charity number 1105069). Its registered office address is 7th Floor, Millbank Tower, 21-24 Millbank, London SW1P 4QP



News digest | Open Society Information Program | Week ending 9 February 2018

====================================================

The Information Program NEWS DIGEST, published the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, aims to update colleagues in the Open Society Foundations and friends further afield about the news, opinions and events the Program team have been watching this fortnight. The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily reflect those of the Information Program or the OSF. Prepared by Wendy M. Grossman.


Our staff, advisers and major grantees tweet at http://bit.ly/13j5fjq. Current and former grantees featured in this issue: Bits of Freedom, EDRi.

Digital Freedom Fund

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The recently established Digital Freedom Fund, which supports strategic litigation to advance digital rights in Europe, is looking to recruit a part-time, Berlin-based legal officer and a a project-based remote consultant. Deadline for applications is 14 February.
https://digitalfreedomfund.org/vacancies

NEWS

=====

For breaking news stories, visit: http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:news/


Strava fitness app exposes jogging routes around military bases

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The BBC reports that a heat map published by San Francisco-based Strava, maker of a GPS-enabled fitness app, exposes individual jogging routes, including those used by soldiers around military basis. The problem appears to be that although an opt-out mechanism is provided users do not always know to activate it or how to use the app's privacy settings. At Foreign Policy, Jenna McLaughlin gives background to the debate over the use of fitness apps in sensitive areas. The US National Security Agency allows wearable fitness monitors in some localities, but in general such decisions are left up to the special security officer in charge and therefore they are banned in some places.

http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-42853072

https://foreignpolicy.com/2018/02/01/how-the-spies-learned-to-stop-worrying-and-love-fitbit/


App enables video face-swapping

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At Motherboard, Samantha Cole reports that a user-friendly app is fueling an explosion of convincing face-swap pornography. The app, which began in late 2017 with manual efforts by a Reddit user, makes it easy to use machine learning to create convincing fake videos, with the result that people are using the app to create fake porn of their friends and classmates, as well as celebrities. Users only need one or two high-quality videos of the faces they want to fake. In a leader article, the Guardian argues that the technology, which is already expanding to other types of video simulations, will destroy trust within and between communities.

https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/bjye8a/reddit-fake-porn-app-daisy-ridley

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jan/28/the-guardian-view-on-fake-video-a-trick-too-far


UK: Court of Appeal rules data retention illegal

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At ZDNet, Steve Ranger reports that London's Court of Appeal has ruled that parts of the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act (2014) are unlawful; the result will be to require changes to the the Investigatory Powers Act, which replaced it in 2016 and includes many of the same powers. The three judges ruled that the Act was inconsistent with EU law because it granted the government access to retained data without prior independent review and allowed its use in cases that were not limited to fighting serious crime. Engadget reviews the background of the case, and notes that the European Court of Justice has already ruled that new legislation must follow in the spirit of its 2014 ruling that blanket data retention is illegal.

http://www.zdnet.com/google-amp/article/government-mass-surveillance-powers-ruled-unlawful/

https://www.engadget.com/2018/01/30/uk-surveillance-powers-unlawful/


Russia: Kremlin plans to build an independent internet

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At IEEE Spectrum, Tracy Staedter reports that Russia is building its own independent internet. The plan is perfectly possible, in that the internet's protocols and design are open and can be easily copied to create a separate network of interconnected networks if Russia is willing to duplicate the hardware and software currently managing internet traffic. It would need its own domain name system and numbering scheme; the hard part would be getting users to use them. In the meantime, Russia is forcing US companies to store data about its citizens on local servers.

https://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/telecom/internet/could-russia-really-build-its-own-alternate-internet


Canada: Facebook rolls out advertising transparency plan

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At ProPublica, Jennifer Valentino-DeVries reports that Facebook is responding to complaints about the lack of transparency in its political advertising by enabling users outside the advertiser's specified audience to see the ads. The approach is being rolled out now in Canada and will expand to other countries this summer.  Critics complain that the system is still too difficult for users to benefit from, and propose more effective ways of policing ads, such as making information more readily available about who is placing the ads and how they're targeted. Pro Publica believes its own tool, Political Ad Collector, launched in September 2017,  does the same job more accessibly. The Reuters Institute provides a factsheet that measures the reach of fake news and online disinformation in Europe. It finds that although most fake news websites attract smaller and less engaged audiences, on Facebook a few popular fake news sites generate greater interaction than more established news brands. At The Atlantic, Ethan Zuckerman argues that Facebook will only improve if others begin building better alternatives and introduces the gobo.social project, which he describes as a "provocation, not a product".
https://www.propublica.org/article/facebook-experiment-ad-transparency-toronto-canada
https://www.propublica.org/article/help-us-monitor-political-ads-online
https://reutersinstitute.politics.ox.ac.uk/our-research/measuring-reach-fake-news-and-online-disinformation-europe
https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2018/01/facebook-doesnt-care/551684/

Commercial industry of fraudulent accounts plagues social media

----------------------------------------------------------------------

At the New York Times, Nicholas Confessore, Gabriel J.X. Dance, Richard Harris, and Mark Hansen uncover a multi-layer black market of fake Twitter followers. Celebrities, entertainers, businesses, and social media "experts", under pressure to deliver follower numbers, buy followers by the hundred thousand at relatively modest prices. Many of these are supplied by the Florida-based company Devumi, which itself buys bots for resale, but many are also counterfeit copies of disused accounts that use the real names, profile pictures, and hometown details of real Twitter users, some of them minors.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/01/27/technology/social-media-bots.html



FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

====================

For more features and analysis selected by the Program team, visit:

http://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:oped/


George Soros: Open societies are in crisis

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this article in the Financial Times, Peter Wells and Katie Martin summarize the talk given at Davos by Open Society Foundation founder George Soros, who said open societies are in crisis due to the rise of "dictatorships and mafia states" and the obstacles to innovation posed by Facebook and Google, which are causing people to give up their autonomy. At the rate at which Facebook has been adding its billions of users, Soros believes it will run out of newcomers to sign up within three years. An alliance between these data-rich IT monopolies and their corporate surveillance systems with already-developed systems of state-sponsored surveillance could pose an alarming prospect. Soros believes that the platform giants will be broken soon by regulation, taxation, and the activities of EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager. At the Wall Street Journal, Natalia Drozdiak discusses Vestager's increasing concerns about the use of big data to lock competitors out of markets.

https://www.ft.com/content/584c66cc-020f-11e8-9650-9c0ad2d7c5b5
https://www.wsj.com/articles/eu-competition-chief-tracks-how-companies-use-big-data-1514889000

New York: Algorithmic accountability

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In this letter to the mayor of New York City, NYU's AI Now Institute offers recommendations for subject matter expertise, staff, and organizations that should be included in the city's planned Automated Decision System Task Force. Among the less obvious areas of expertise they suggest are ethics, social work, peer review, and operations. They also recommend requiring appointees to publicly disclose any potential conflicts of interest with vendors of automated decision systems used in New York City government. Also at the Times, Dan Hurley inspects a predictive-analytics system in use in Pittsburgh to predict which of the children who come to the attention of social services should be further investigated. After careful study, this system appears to be making better screening decisions than humans can. Hurley gives three reasons: the companies developing the system are transparent about their methods; the criteria used in this case really do appear to be countering some of the historical bias; and the tool is used only for screening. Humans do follow-up investigations and make the final decisions about protecting the children.

https://ainowinstitute.org/announcements/nyc-algorithmic-accountability.html

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/02/magazine/can-an-algorithm-tell-when-kids-are-in-danger.html


Australia: Austerity is an algorithm

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In this article at Logic, Gillian Terzis recounts the results of Australia's "robo-debt" scandal. In the interests of austerity, Australia turned its largely means-driven welfare system over to an error-prone scoring algorithm that can issue 20,000 debt notices a week. Terzis argues that these commercially-designed systems - a similar one in the US state of Michigan is showing similar results - are deliberately designed to discourage formal complaints, raise money, and make the system as punitive as possible. Using technology to impose "personal responsibility" on citizens is shredding the Australian social contract; means testing proved to be a lucrative opportunity for private firms to capitalize on a new market. A tool, she writes, is only as good as the politics that underpin it.

https://logicmag.io/03-austerity-is-an-algorithm/


Africa: The Silicon Valley-funded quest to educate the world's poorest kids

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In this feature at Quartz Africa, Jenny Anderson compares Silicon Valley-funded private education initiatives in Liberia, Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda, and India to each other and to government-provided public education. In developing countries, nearly 600 million children are either not in school or not learning; in some African countries as much as 40% of teachers were not in the classroom or not in school at all. Quartz visited schools in Kenya, Nigeria, and Liberia, and spoke to more than 40 people about Bridge, a highly scripted technology-based system that is currently educating about 100,000 students and losing $12 million a year. It hopes to educate 10 million children by 2025. Bridge and its methods are opposed by a number of civil society organizations and teachers on grounds of efficacy, transparency, and sustainability, but, says Anderson, shows that innovative models can improve education.

https://qz.com/1179738/bridge-school/


Is the target's citizenship a justified basis for different surveillance rules?

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In this video clip from January's Computers, Privacy, and Data Protection conference in Brussels, privacy scholar Peter Swire, Stiftung Neue Verantwortgun's Thorsten Wetzling, Mario Oetheimer, Joseph Cannataci, and Access Now's Amie Stepanovich discuss whether nationality should be used as a criterion for surveillance. Swire believes it's justified to place foreigners under greater surveillance than domestic citizens; Wetzling believes that foreigners should have greater protection against surveillance; and Stepanovich argues that greater privacy rights for any group is a public good. In a net.wars posting, Wendy M. Grossman summarizes the discussion.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RvjD0x5eUs

http://www.pelicancrossing.net/netwars/2018/02/schrodingers_citizen.html

https://www.linuxjournal.com/content/every-user-neo


Could price manipulation be killing Bitcoin?

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In this blog posting, the fourth in a series on Bitcoin, Tony Arcieri examines Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for signs of price manipulation. Bitcoin's price peaked at $17,000 in November 2017, and slid as low as $7,178.65 in early February 2018, taking other virtual currencies along with it. Like other early Bitcoin investors, Arcieri desires a cryptocurrency system that delivers real value, but fears that instead some cryptocurrencies are Ponzi schemes. Arcieri begs regulators and journalists to look into Tether, which is pegged to the US dollar and makes specific claims about the reserves it holds and the auditing these undergo. CNBC expresses concerns that Tether may be propping up the rest of the cryptocurrency market. The Washington Post reports that in Kentucky poor, umemployed, and retired people are speculating in cryptocurrencies in the hope of finding better prospects. The South China Morning Post reports that China has announced it will block all websites related to cryptocurrency trading and initial coin offerings, and CNBC reports that the Indian finance minister wants to eliminate the use of digital currencies in criminal activity, suggesting tighter regulation in that country.
https://tonyarcieri.com/the-tether-conundrum

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/02/02/tether-what-you-need-to-know-about-the-cryptocurrency-worrying-markets.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/bitcoin-is-my-potential-pension-what-is-driving-people-in-kentucky-to-join-the-craze/2018/02/03/aaaea3be-05dc-11e8-b48c-b07fea957bd5_story.html

http://www.scmp.com/business/banking-finance/article/2132009/china-stamp-out-cryptocurrency-trading-completely-ban

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/02/01/india-wants-to-eliminate-criminal-use-of-cryptocurrencies.html


The right to not be addressed

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In this blog posting at EDRi, Bits of Freedom summarizes a speech given by director Hans de Zwart as part of the Big Brother Awards 2017. Zwart proposes a "right to not be addressed" - that is, a right to advertising-free (and surveillance-free) public spaces. Airports  - "a high-dwell environment, delivering a captive audience" - exploit every available opportunity for both. Advertisers and companies like Facebook, Google, and Amazon steal our attention to their benefit rather than our own. The Dutch version includes images and links.

https://edri.org/enditorial-living-as-if-being-at-an-airport/

https://www.bof.nl/2018/01/17/living-as-if-being-at-an-airport/



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DIARY

==============

To see more events recommended by the Information Program team, visit:

https://pinboard.in/u:osi_info_program/t:events/. If you would like your event listed in this mail, email info.digest@opensocietyfoundations.org.


Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency

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February 23-24, 2018

New York, NY, USA

FAT* is an international and interdisciplinary peer-reviewed conference that seeks to publish and present work examining the fairness, accountability, and transparency of algorithmic systems. The FAT* conference solicits work from a wide variety of disciplines, including computer science, statistics, the humanities, and law. It intends to bring together the community that has grown through a number of workshops at other conferences.

http://bit.ly/2iHQTUX


Internet Freedom Festival

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March 5-9, 2018

Valencia, Spain

The global unconference of the Internet freedom communities brings together those who defend digital rights around the world - journalists, activists, technologists, policy advocates, digital safety trainers, and designers - with the goals of creating an inclusive space, increasing diversity, and improving the services, strategies, and tools offered to the most vulnerable individuals on the frontlines.

http://bit.ly/2Ds1wn1


ICANN61

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March 10-15, 2018

San Juan, Puerto Rico

ICANN's Community Forum for 2018 will be focused on outreach, capacity building, and showcasing ICANN's work to a broader global audience.

https://go.icann.org/2zwpDBV


We Robot 2018

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April 12-14, 2018

Palo Alto, California, USA

This conference is the annual gathering of academics, policy makers, roboticists, economists, ethicists, entrepreneurs, and lawyers who care about robots and the future of robot law and policy. We Robot fosters conversations between the people designing, building, and deploying robots, and the people who design or influence the legal and social structures in which robots operate.

http://stanford.io/2juk94u


TRILCON18

April 25, 2018

Winchester, UK

The fifth interdisciplinary Winchester conference on Trust, Risk, Information and the Law has as its overall theme "Public Law, Politics and the Constitution: A new battleground between the Law and Technology?"

http://bit.ly/2A1DwrU


Tomorrow's Transactions Forum

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April 24-25, 2018

London, UK

The 21st edition of Tomorrow's Transactions will provide an opportunity to look back at the lessons that have been learned across the past decades and cast an eye toward the future to ask, where will technology and regulation, take our world of transactions? For 2018, topics will include AI, futures, open banking, and conversational and contextual commerce.

http://bit.ly/1Qc84Fx


Internet Freedom Forum

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April 24-26, 2018

Abuja, Nigeria

The sixth edition of the Internet Freedom Forum will present a unique platform for discussions and engagement around current trends and emerging issues affecting internet freedom in Africa. Participants at IFF include civil society organizations, policy actors/makers, legal/policy experts, academics, advocates, tech enthusiasts, industry representatives and active citizens among others.

http://bit.ly/2Aoj0Tr


Open Knowledge Summit 2018

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May 3-6, 2018

Thessaloniki, Greece

For 2018, the Open Knowledge Foundation has replaced the OKFestival with a summit intended to gather the Open Knowledge network to collaboratively build the future of the Open Knowledge Network. The format and programming will be developed as a collaboration between Open Knowledge International, Open Knowledge Greece, and all other groups in the network.

http://bit.ly/2iISyJb


RightsCon

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May 16-18, 2018

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

RightsCon has become one of the world's largest gatherings on human rights and technology, and it's people like you that make it an engine for change. The 2018 event is staged in Canada for a conversation built on the principles of diversity, inclusion, and respect.

http://bit.ly/2rR0IX3


Workshop on Technology and Consumer Protection

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May 24, 2018

San Francisco, CA, USA

ConPro #18 will explore computer science topics with an impact on consumers. This workshop has a strong security and privacy emphasis, with an overall focus on ways in which computer science can prevent, detect, or address the potential for technology to deceive or unfairly harm consumers. Participants will consist heavily of academic and industry researchers but are also expected to include researchers from the Federal Trade Commission - the U.S. government's primary consumer protection body - and other government agencies with a consumer protection mission.

http://bit.ly/2iCUt5r


Privacy Law Scholars

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May 30-31

Washington, DC, USA

PLSC is a paper workshop with the goal of improving and providing support for in-progress scholarship. To achieve this, PLSC assembles a wide array of privacy law scholars and practitioners from around the world to discuss the papers. Scholars from many disciplines (psychology/economics, sociology, philosophy, political science, computer science, and even math) also participate.

http://bit.ly/2zgypRQ


LIBER Annual Conference

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July 4-6, 2018

Lille, France

The 47th annual conference of the Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) will include plenary sessions with top international speakers, presentations on current research, posters, and an exhibition of products and services for the library sector, as well as a comprehensive social programme.

http://bit.ly/2zFcbbU


The Circle of HOPE

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July 20-22, 2018

New York, NY, USA

Organized by 2600 Magazine, the 12th biennial Hackers on Planet Earth conference celebrates the hacker spirit. Talks typically feature new ways of examining and dissecting technology to reveal inconvenient truths.

http://bit.ly/2BbzJpM


Defcon

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August 9-12, 2018

Las Vegas, NV, USA

The heart of the DEF CON 26 theme is the concept of the counterfuture. The counterfuture is the open-source alternative to totalitarian dystopia; a world where we use tech and ingenuity for empowerment and connection rather than isolation and control.

http://bit.ly/2A2ojUE


World Library and Information Congress

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August 24-30, 2018

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The 84th edition of the World Library and Information Congress has the theme, "Transform Libraries, Transform Societies" with the additional tagline, "Reaching out to the hard to reach", which was chosen in recognition of the critical role played by libraries in the development of a nation, particularly in their ability to transform societies.

http://bit.ly/2qSXIta


International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners

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October 22-26, 2018

Brussels, Belgium

The 40th version of this event will be hosted by the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Giovanni Buttarelli and the chair of the Commission for Personal Data Protection of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ventsislav Karadjov. The conference is expected to focus on the recently launched international debate on the ethical dimension of data protection in the digital era. Accompanying conference events will also take place in Bulgaria.

http://bit.ly/2B1bX38


***


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