U.S. loses Internet mojo

Cenk Uygur, host of The Young Turks, explains this sad day in American history

It’s a very somber day for Internet freedom in the United States, the FCC bent over to Republican lobbyist control and catered to the interests of AT&T, Verizon and Comcast.

The big three can now throttle it’s speed and censor unwanted content in their pipelines. And in the irony of names, thanks to a Republican majority of 3-2 votes, the act dubbed itself „Restore Internet Freedom“ (pdf).

ISPs will be “gatekeepers” with the ability to promote their own content first and silence anything else (and the largest ones own their own networks, channels, tv shows, and products), so you can see how this arrangement is not at all in the best interest of the general public. This will be the biggest change to the Internet since it was created. Smaller independent sites and platforms will become less accessible and many will eventually disappear completely.

This is why the Indieweb movement is more important than ever. We need to support our decentralized networks, build better human relations and work out for future political battles. Not sure if the States will play an important role in that space in the future, most definitely not se control freaks in China.


Wovon träumt das Internet?

Der einzige Unterschied zwischen Träumen und dem Tod ist die Präsenz des Körpers.

Werden wir uns schon bald ins Internet hochladen um unsterblich zu sein? Und können Kühlschränke träumen? Wird uns durch unsere Internet-Abhängigkeit, ob datengestützte Lieferungssysteme von Lebensmittellagerhallen oder dem Über-Smartphone, eine Sonneneruption unsere Kommunikationssysteme komplett lahm legen? Und warum tragen Gamer Windeln?

Werner Herzog’s Dokumentarfilm „Wovon träumt das Internet?“ aus 2016 wurde gestern im linearen Fernsehen ausgestrahlt, in Englisch „Lo und Behold“ genannt, und liegt ein paar Tage auf den Servern von 3Sat. Herzog versucht die kolossale Veränderung des Internets auf den Menschen herauszufiltern, spricht mit Pionieren der ersten Stunde, unter anderm mit Hirnforschern, Robotik-Wissenschaftler, einer Sonnenforscherin und Elon Musk.

Eines wurde mir nach der Doku verstärkt bewusst: Wir müssen unabhängiger vom Internet werden und konstruktiv kritischer mit den Entwicklungen umgehen, es gibt noch soviel auf der Erde zu tun bevor wir uns auf den Mond oder Mars flüchten, I wonder don’t you?

via 3Sat

Rebooting, not only the Web of Trust

A bit ironic that Microsoft and PWC support the #RebootingWebOfTrust Design workshop in Paris tomorrow and you can pay up to 750 Euros without submissions, albeit, the topic is relevant and here’s an overview of submitted papers.

The Web of Trust. It’s a buzzword for a new model of decentralized identity. However, it’s also a phrase that dates back almost twenty-five years and has been heavily overloaded with meaning during that time. The classic definition of Web of Trust derives from PGP, but the top Google results refer to a website reputation rating system created by a Finnish internet company. Meanwhile, some use it as a big tent that includes identity authentication and verfication, certificate validation, and reputation assesment, while the vibrant blockchain community is also drawing new attention to the classic concept.

Thanks to our personalized, digital filter bubbles, the need to build trust outside of walled gardens akin to iTunes or Facebook is pertinent in meat space as well. Whether it’s text walking lanes, lack of empathy or fake perfectification on social channels, trust needs some serious rebooting on a couple of fronts. I have reboot hope, even for good old journalism; the NYT has seen digital subscribers soar since the election and the stock is worth a peek.

Source: Yahoo Finance. Since November 2016 the Grey Lady has traded more than 30% higher

Sure, throw away your ad money

„Ad fraud is estimated to be between 2% and 90%. In other words, no one has a fucking clue. Most knowledgeable people (including the WFA) believe it may easily be 30%. No matter what your „cyber-security team“ tells you, nobody knows how much fraud there is in online advertising. But everyone agrees it’s massive.“

I still don’t understand why clients spend their money with well known tricksters, who care more about cheap automation than human information, oh and kickbacks. Sure, there are efforts to get viewable impressions trackable and credible and Google’s AdSense still makes so much sense, jaa, but too many parts of the interwebs enjoy affinity to money that disappears into cybernirvana or pockets of hot air.

via The Ad Contrarian


Drudge Factor Re-Visited

„This is the most exciting moment in the history of news. Anyone from anywhere can cover anything. And send it out to everyone,“ writes Matt Drudge in his Manifesto.

Ten years ago, the Internet’s protégé independent journalist Matt Drudge launched the Drudge Report from his L.A. apartment coupled with a 486 Packard Bell computer and phone line. His Web space provides links to other news articles online, but also produces a fair amount of exclusive content, most noteworthy, the exclusive post of Clinton’s affair with Lewinsky that lead to his impeachment. What Drudge opened up was the era of the citizen press without editors, “rejecting the corporate notion of news – controlling news cycles, embargoing things, killing stories,” adds Drudge in his book.


Most of the criticism Drudge still receives is his inaccuracy, an aspect of the news profession that requires time and effort. And that he spreads gossip on the Internet. With the spread of webloggers and their participation in the citizen press, Drudge said in an interview with Camille Paglia that he doesn’t view himself as a blogger, rather as an independent voice who challenges Big Media. The key difference between his site and those of webloggers is the format, because webloggers challenge Big Media just as well.

Drudge, M. (2000). Drudge Manifesto. New York, New York: New American Library.

Scott, E. (2004). Big Media Meets the Bloggers: Coverage of Trent Lott’s Remarks at Strom Thurmond’s Birthday. Cambridge, MA: John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.