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National Governments and the Internet?

Cliff posted more than 13 years ago | from the how-does-your-country-handle-it dept.

The Internet 109

Plastic Man asks: "I am writing a paper on how other countries' governments are handling the internet including censorship, the quality and availability of ISPs, the deployment of broadband infrastructure, and the general levels of involvement by government in the making of such policies. Specifically, how much content different governments allow to reach their respective peoples, and how they choose what that content will be. Where can I find reports on end users' experiences in attempting to 'get online' in their home country? Any personal experience in making and especially enforcing these policies will be extremely helpful." So which countries have agreeable Internet policies, and which impose draconican restrictions on online communications? Firsthand reports especially appreciated, since these are the sorts of things which might otherwise go unheard.

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Phone cost limitation (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#287551)

Have you also looked at indirect limitations to get on the Internet, such as high phone access charges.

I am thinking in particular about Europe (e.g. France) were we do not get unlimited local phone calls, and have instead to pay high per-minute connection fees for local calls. This inhibits many people from connecting to the Internet or being online.

This is especially troubling, as some countries limit competition on the phone business and/or directly or indirectly own the phone company (often a single one is allowed).

So, even if people can get access to Internet, phone costs limit their access for any practical purpose.

In addition, you could also look how many countries are promoting (or not promoting) Internet access. If people don't know about it, or if it is presented as a bad thing (as it had been in France for several years), why people would bother to even attempt to get connected?

Re:Do your own homework (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#287552)

America's civilization wasn't built upon the hard work of others. It was built by hand through the ethic of self help and self work.

I realize I'm trolling, but even so ... there's a fair bit of evidence to suggest that in fact America's civilization *was* built on the hard work of others. Look at the immigration policies this nation has had, from slavery and indentured servitude to the modern versions, letting outsiders come in and do the grunt work that "Americans" won't do, or won't do as cheap. The south was built on the back of the blacks, the southwest on the hispanics, the railroads by the chinese ... seriously.

What I find *really* amusing is that he comes to /. for this sort of thing, that /. has become the cheap grunt labor pool of the modern state. Yay Slashdot!

Re:Internet Freedom (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#287553)

>Except:

>1. Access child pornography.

>2. Commit treason, espinonage, or other subversive acts.

>3. Access "pirated" MP3s.

>4. Access the seven lines of code that can decrypt a DVD.

You do realize these are open to the government's own interpretation. Are pr0n actresses that *look* underaged really underageds? Is posting military information that was already published in commercial publications considered treason, espionage, or subversive? Are any or all .mp3s illegal? Is a poem considered code that can decrypt a DVD? Realistically, by referring to countries like China, our government is given a *blank check* to take away whatever rights we had.

Do your own homework (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#287554)

Slashdot is not here to do your homework for you.

Slashdot is not here to be your babysitter.

If you cannot get your work done in a reasonable time on your own, then you have no business showing your face in polite company.

If we were to do your work for you this time, you'd just come back for more later. Listening to others makes you weak; you stop thinking for yourself.

America's civilization wasn't built upon the hard work of others. It was built by hand through the ethic of self help and self work. If you don't reinvent the wheel, you can't understand anything.

Start from the bottom. Go to your public library. It's there for a reason, so stop masturbating on slashdot and get your nose into a book. Look up the answer for yourself. There, that's a good boy. Now write the answer down on index cards. Put the index cards in your pocket and go home. Now you're ready to write your damn paper.

The internet has raised a generation of cultural and academic invalids. Parents don't teach their children anymore; they leave that job to the internet. But the internet isn't the world's largest library; it's the world's largest brothel. Anyone who lets his kids get an education there is derelect in his duties as a parent.

You must not allow your children to think for themselves. You must constrain their every action. If they are allowed to be free, then they will choose not to be like their parents. Don't let them. Enforce your will. It's your duty as a parent to mould them in your own image. That is what it means to be a Creator.

Take my advice. Shut down the computer, get out a book, and start using words again. And always do your own work for yourself.

Crypto Law Survey (4)

abischof (255) | more than 13 years ago | (#287555)

The Crypto Law Survey [cwis.kub.nl] is a great resource on crypto law worldwide, listing country-by-country. To give an example, some people might still believe that France has outlawed domestic crypto, but as you can see that's no longer the case [cwis.kub.nl] .

Alex Bischoff
---

Internet is expensive in Germany (2)

unruh (414) | more than 13 years ago | (#287556)

The formerly state-owned Deutsche Telecom and its subsidiary company T-Online have driven its competitors out of business by offering a ridiculously cheap flat rate (cheap only by German standards, of course). Now that all providers who offered a flat rate are either bancrupt or in serious trouble, T-Online does not offer a flat rate anymore - and terminates all existing contracts. Accessing the internet over a low-bandwidth connection costs ~0.02 EUR/min.

Re:my addition (1)

unitron (5733) | more than 13 years ago | (#287558)

Glad I'm not flying anywhere near there either.

Re:Do your own homework (2)

unitron (5733) | more than 13 years ago | (#287559)

Why else do you think libraries have internet terminals?

Re:Chinese Propoganda Tool (2)

unitron (5733) | more than 13 years ago | (#287560)

One of the propellors was a spy?

Re:Do your own homework (2)

GypC (7592) | more than 13 years ago | (#287563)

You must not allow your children to think for themselves. You must constrain their every action. If they are allowed to be free, then they will choose not to be like their parents. Don't let them. Enforce your will. It's your duty as a parent to mould them in your own image. That is what it means to be a Creator.

Yeah, right... you don't have any kids do you?

Disclaimer: Yes, I know this is the second troll that I've responded to in this article. At least I'm not moderating them "Insightful" :-P

Re:Government is the last line of Defense. (3)

GypC (7592) | more than 13 years ago | (#287564)

The problem, of course, is who decides which ideas are dangerous? I'm not a moral relativist, but neither do I see the world as black and white. And I simply don't trust anyone else enough to do my censoring for me. After all, if I can't trust people not to fall for "dangerous ideas", how can I trust them to recognize which ideas are dangerous and which are merely uncomfortable? Or which ideas are harmless and which are sugar-coated poison?

Re:Quite self-defeating, really (2)

Pig Hogger (10379) | more than 13 years ago | (#287565)

Truth is the greatest enemy of Communist oppression,

It is also the greatest enemy of retailing. Only because consumers are kept ignorant, retailers are able to shove useless stuff upon them and not only have pay huge amounts of money on it, but also liking it a lot!


--

Chine Pilot Wang Site Uses IIS (1)

augustz (18082) | more than 13 years ago | (#287566)

http://www.wangwei.netor.com/ [netor.com]

the memorial site for the revolutionary martyr of china, and now official "Guardian of the Air and Sea". Clearly one goverment knows how to use the net properly.

It runs on IIS.

And EVEN worse... (3)

Stentapp (19941) | more than 13 years ago | (#287568)

Look who has posted it...

Ask Slashdot: National Governments and the Internet?
Posted by Cliff on Monday April 16, @23:54
from the how-does-your-country-handle-it dept.


Internet Policies in Other Countries?
Posted by Cliff on Monday April 02, @02:17PM
from the how-do-others-do-it dept.

Licensing (2)

legend (26856) | more than 13 years ago | (#287569)

I am currently living in the Bahamas, you know, that small little island chain southeast of Florida. Our govt. currently has heavy restrictions on bandwith on and off the island. I work at a small ISP, and we are forced to route all our traffic off the island via satellite. This means we must tack on an extra 500ms latency on anything coming in, or going out. The satellite is also costing us about 10x what a simmilar connection would run if we were in Florida, only 100 Miles to the northwest.
We, (along with many other groups in this country) have been trying to deploy a broadband wireless network on the island, to improve local infrastructure. At the moment the only choice for "high speed" connectivity, is a 128k/64k cable modem. I hardly call that broadband. So, we (and many others) have had our plan for broadband wirelss worked out for over two years. No license. Bermuda on the other hand, is bursting at seams with offshore hosting services, and offshore banking, and so forth. Only because their govt. was insightful enough to see that the Internet is a requirement in any modern country.
Oh well, for now, I sit here on my dialup, waiting on a proper connection...

Corporations or Nationals (3)

debrain (29228) | more than 13 years ago | (#287570)

Are you interested in what influences the internet, or how national governments influence the internet? Corporations are likely to have far more influence than national governments, since it not kosher for a national agency to make recommendations to policies of foreign nationals, but corporations have precise influences on all governments (hence lobbying). If you want to know how national governments will influence the internet, I think it will be a struggle between what the government thinks is best for its society and what corporations convince national governing bodies is necessary.

Too close to April Fool's (1)

ripcrd (31538) | more than 13 years ago | (#287571)

I imagine he got quite a bit of toungue in cheek the day after All Fool's Day. I know I avoided all 'news' sites until the 3rd to avoid the foolishness. It was only then that I could look back on the previous days and reflect on what was real news and what was faked.
This was just to preserve my sanity after the crazy stuff that got posted last year.

Re:Do your own homework (2)

wiredog (43288) | more than 13 years ago | (#287572)

Well, yeah. But you said that America "was built by hand through the ethic of self help and self work." True, but not complete. There was a strong component of helping your neighbors. You're right though, we shouldn't do his homework for him. Heck, he can find everything he wants in the YRO section ;-)

Re:my addition (1)

Skyfire (43587) | more than 13 years ago | (#287573)

So basically, ya can't do anything but surf.

Re:Flawed premise: Content (1)

commbat (50622) | more than 13 years ago | (#287574)

Why do posts like this come around only when I'm NOT a moderator? I actually copy/pasted it to my desktop to read again and grab quotes from for my own use. (A little trick I learned that lets me 'fake' intelligence ;-)

Well done friartux!

Re:In my country... (1)

meadowsp (54223) | more than 13 years ago | (#287575)

Idiot.

new laws in italy... (1)

thanatosis (67786) | more than 13 years ago | (#287576)

i've been informed that italy has just
launched some really harsh laws for
publishing anything on the internet, such
as paying 200 dollar tax..for any website,
but i can't
verify these claims as i don't read italian.
anyone want to take a shot at it?

http://www.interlex.it/testi/l01_62.htm

Re:Do your own homework (1)

countzero (76410) | more than 13 years ago | (#287577)

Is it just me, or did that have a wholly sarcastic tone? This sounds like the secret liner notes from "The Wall"....

-1: Redundant (5)

Puk (80503) | more than 13 years ago | (#287578)

I'm confused. This story even has a link to another, essentially identical slashdot story, excatly two weeks ago. You can't even claim ignorance. Um?

-Puk

April 16: Plastic Man asks: "I am writing a paper on how other countries' governments are handling the internet including censorship, the quality and availability of ISPs, the deployment of broadband infrastructure, and the general levels of involvement by government in the making of such policies. Specifically, how much content different governments allow to reach their respective peoples, and how they choose what that content will be. Where can I find reports on end users' experiences in attempting to 'get online' in their home country? Any personal experience in making and especially enforcing these policies will be extremely helpful." So which countries have agreeable Internet policies, and which impose draconican restrictions on online communications? Firsthand reports especially appreciated, since these are the sorts of things which might otherwise go unheard.

April 2: Panthro asks: "I am writing a paper on how other countries are handling the internet, including censoring, broadband infrastructure deployment, ISP availability and quality, and general involvement levels of governments in the delivery of content to their constituents. Any personal experience involving the creation or enforcing of such policies would be very helpful." It's always wise to know what internet policies are being enforced out there, if only to know what's been decided on by others, which policies you might want to implement and which ones you might want to avoid implementing at any cost.

Troll Nazis must die (1)

Rares Marian (83629) | more than 13 years ago | (#287579)

I can check Internet information myself quite easily. It takes weeks to check information in the dead tree world.

I'm really getting sick of this troll.

4 ? Goodbye slashdot. Hello Kuro5hin (1)

Rares Marian (83629) | more than 13 years ago | (#287580)

Goodbye suckers. Christ what a disappointment.

Re:4 ? Goodbye slashdot. Hello Kuro5hin (1)

Rares Marian (83629) | more than 13 years ago | (#287581)

I'll accept the funny moderation for the moment...
But there's something wrong when somebody gets modded up to 4 though fewer than 18 comments have been posted.

Re:Flawed premise: Content (1)

friartux (89443) | more than 13 years ago | (#287583)

Why do posts like this come around only when I'm NOT a moderator?
Why, that's a subject for a poll :-)
  1. Not every story is thought-provoking.
  2. One can't read everything on /. and get useful work done. (Now, about those who comment on a high percentage of stories... :-)
  3. Murphy's Law applies to everything, itself included.
  4. The person(s) best suited to comment on a post will be traveling for the duration of the story's run.
  5. Fates, Furies, Destiny, and Reeboks, all wrapped by the worm Ourobourous.
  6. [Fill in random /. staff's nick here] [optionally fill in a random activity or possession].

BTW, if you can use a quote to further (or further discuss) the idea, go for it!

The "War on Drugs" is really a war on the american people.

Sort of. I don't have a problem keeping highly addictive stuff off the streets; but adding legal troubles to addiction problems is like kicking a bleeding man. It also perpetuates a nasty cycle. The urge to abuse any substance, whether alcohol, illegal drugs, MP3's, or firearms, is yet another social ill... they're all tools and should be used wisely. Getting worked up about the tool isn't the way to go.

Flawed premise: Content (3)

friartux (89443) | more than 13 years ago | (#287584)

The internet is, by its nature, a disruptive technology. By this I mean that it allows every connected person to be her/his own publisher, which up to this point has not been possible.

Thus, any premises that include "choice of content" are flawed because there is an implied comparison to broadcast technologies. Certainly broadcasters can be part of the 'net, but they are only a subset of it.

Look around. There are family snapshots, source code, opinions, recipes, audio, video, and more: every form of human expression that can be digitized and copied is available on the internet.

There is no one, true source of content, nor is there a means to effectively control the materials available. There are billions of possible users, each with his/her own unique method of communicating. Censorship becomes extremely difficult, and copyright law is (as has been pointed out) fatally flawed.

Attempts at control face problems with scale (those zillions of publishers...er, users), with form (cf DeCSS as a GIF, and cryptography in general), with language, and with mixed content (a page that has useful information along with objectionable content).

Copyright law faces its own problems, but the fundamental problem is that copyright is based on social contract: any "intellectual property" is valuable only if it is shared in some way, and can be profitable only if there is a virtual meter on that means of sharing. When everyone can potentially share, how do you regulate the balance between an artist's right to make a living vs. the always-understated right of the public to incorporate the art into culture?

All in all, no attempt at control will be successful -- either useful material will be eliminated, or "objectionable" material will proliferate.

The answer probably lies in trying to form a more reasonable social view, or even society -- people will naturally avoid that which they're not interested in, or which they find distasteful.

We give, the author should give too (1)

lanner (107308) | more than 13 years ago | (#287585)

The author of this post wants. Well, give too.

Where will the users of Slashdot, and anyone else who may be interested in the subject, be able to download a copy of your end work and resources when you have completed this project?

Re:Government is the last line of Defense. (2)

JesseL (107722) | more than 13 years ago | (#287586)

Ideas need to be accountable. In other words, they have to hold water and be based on evidence. If they are not, they should be squashed. That is what the tradition of rationalism in the West, starting in Edinburgh in the 1760's, is all about. May it long continue, and may the dark ideas be vanquished for the greater good.

Every one of us should have the freedom to analyze ideas for ourselves to determine their validity. Furthermore I think it's important to have a variety of ideas to provide a counterpoint from which to refine the good ones, identify the flaws in the bad ones, and encourage people to consider alternate viewpoints in the quest for truth.

In my view I deem your idea bad.

Chinese Propoganda Tool (1)

Coward Anonymous (110649) | more than 13 years ago | (#287587)

The Chinese government has recently put up a "memorial" web site [netor.com] for the pilot who crashed into the American spy plane. This is a great example of a government using the internet for propoganda.

Of course, this could backfire for the Chinese because of "memorials" like this [netor.com] .

Re:Chinese Propoganda Tool (1)

Coward Anonymous (110649) | more than 13 years ago | (#287588)

Like the Chinese government really cares about this pilot. Who are you trying to kid? Since when have governments become so benevolent?

Re:Chinese Propoganda Tool (1)

Coward Anonymous (110649) | more than 13 years ago | (#287589)

I don't see the American pilots as heroes either and I do take issue with the media frenzy casting them as such.

Re:Internet could have helped prevent some atrocit (1)

-brazil- (111867) | more than 13 years ago | (#287592)

Yeah, that would have worked, like, so much better than newspapers!!

Re:Internet is expensive in Germany (1)

-brazil- (111867) | more than 13 years ago | (#287593)

A) If you pay 0.02 Euro per minute, you're using the wrong ISP. Try Callisa [callisa.de] or ExpressNet [expressnet.de] , both of which cost only about 0.013 Euro per minute, and subscription-based offers are in many cases even cheaper.

B) To claim that T-Online drove all of its competitors out of business is totally ridiculous. There still are thousands of other ISPs, they just don't offer cheap flatrates (there still are expensive ones).

A bit OT, but very interesting (1)

nlaporte (116203) | more than 13 years ago | (#287594)

There is a project called CyPRG [arizona.edu] going on with several professors, one (Todd La Porte [gmu.edu] )at George Mason University [gmu.edu] in Virginia, one at U Arizona [arizona.edu] and one in Denmark at the University of Roskilde. They are rating government websites for what they call "openness" and are coming up with very interesting results. I happen to know Todd, and he and I are working together on some related stuff. Give them a look-see.

Re:Do your own homework (1)

Velex (120469) | more than 13 years ago | (#287595)

I believe that the most important part of the question was personal experiences from end users. Slashdot seems as good a place as ever to research that.

Re:Quite self-defeating, really (1)

The Red One (120630) | more than 13 years ago | (#287596)

We've seen the same type of thing coming from the draconian content regulation of the leftist Australian government.

The Australian government is anything but leftist. The "Conservative Coalition" that is currently in power is pretty much the Australian equivalent of the Republican party - it's platform is based on family values, helping business and promoting free trade. The Labor party (the leftist party of Australian politics) hasn't been in power since the early 90's.

when you step in and censor gun-rights Web pages and basically anything that does not come from the anti-gun zealots, you're crossing a fine line between protecting your society and oppressing them.

It would would be illegal for the Australain government to censor "gun-rights Web pages", unless they contained some sort of graphic violence or anti-semitism. If you can point out any cases where gun-rights web-sites have been censored, I would like to know so I can consult my local Member of Parliament about it.

If Australia thinks that its filtering policies will stop gun advocates from learning the correct information about guns (such as crime rates that have not been doctored by the government), then they are wrong.

If the Australian Bureau of Statistics (the government funded data-gathering organisation) did in fact alter figures, then this would be a violation of the "Australian Bureau of Statistics Act 1975", and would be a serious offence indeed. It would probably result in a massive inquiry and dismissals of any MPs even thought to be involved in the doctoring. If you have any evidence of this, please pass it on.

I would be surprised if any of the claims you made above were more than rumour, as Australia has a cut-throat parliament, and the Opposition Parties would be happy to reveal any evidence of the Government breaking Australian law. In fact, there is a political party (with several senate seats), the Australian Democrats, whose creed is "keep the bastards honest", i.e. they act as a watchdog on the two primary parties - and have never been shy in revealing breaches of Australian law before.

Re:Australia (1)

The Red One (120630) | more than 13 years ago | (#287597)

I agree totally... the only sites that have been affected by Australia's laws (as far as I know) are kiddy porn sites, and I don't have a problem with them being censored (in fact I think they should be censored).

I wish the Internet community would get their facts right on the Australian censorship laws. Things really haven't changed since they were brought in, all that has happened is a few sickos have had their sites shut down (and apparently they promptly re-opened them offshore).

At least our public libraries don't use internet filtering, unlike some other countries.

Re:Chinese Propoganda Tool (1)

The Red One (120630) | more than 13 years ago | (#287598)

The Chinese government put up a web site for one of their servicemen who was killed by an American spy. I can't see a problem with this.

Re:Government is the last line of Defense. (2)

BlueBlade (123303) | more than 13 years ago | (#287599)

Of course. Ideas based on solid knowledge such as "sex is harmful to children" or "homosexuals cannot marry" or even "sexuality involving anal penetration is illegal". You see, there's a big problem with your conception of government control. A lot of laws that the different governements maintain/promote aren't based on any scientific ground, just a "moral" one. Give me one reason why it should be illegal to walk the street naked. A logical one I mean. Not a religious one. I'm taking sex laws here because they are the most obvious, but a lot of other laws are as silly.

You see, the internet gives the means to question lots of cultural things people usually simply take for being true without thinking about it. Such ideas should not be regulated in any way. You are suggesting censorship for no good reasons. Do you really think Hitler's anti-semitic campain would have been more successful with the internet? Hell no. Because, in the WWII Germany, you could get shot for not believing in the system and criticizing it. With the internet though, you would have had millions of people invoking logical arguments against nazism. It's more likely that Hitler would have needed to ban 'net access for his troups, less they would have revolted at what was asked of them.

Re:Do your own homework (1)

Lord Omlette (124579) | more than 13 years ago | (#287600)

I have no moderator points, but I'd mod this one up. Even ignoring a trip the library, Google would have answered this guy's questions pretty easily...

Peace,
Amit
ICQ 77863057

Worse than you think (5)

legLess (127550) | more than 13 years ago | (#287601)

Submitter of the April 2 story: devinsky@eng.buffalo.edu
Submitter of this April 16 story: devinsky@eng.buffalo.edu

He didn't like the answer he got the first time, so he tried again. Jesus, Slashdot, this is pretty bad - posting the same homework assignment from the same kid TWICE?

question: is control controlled by its need to control?
answer: yes

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

ekrout (139379) | more than 13 years ago | (#287602)

How was *my* post redundant? It was #7 under this storyline, and the #14 post was nothing more than an expansion of what I said above. Get your facts straight. Or else ask Slashdot to help you with them if you can't manage that yourself ;-D

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

ekrout (139379) | more than 13 years ago | (#287603)

You *are* right. Sorry, but my threshhold for comment viewing wasn't set low enough to read that first post. Thanks, Gay Motherfucker. (heh)

Re:Phone cost limitation (1)

kalifa (143176) | more than 13 years ago | (#287604)

Internet presented as a bad thing in France for several years??? Could you please stop lying? Thanks.

Isn't it ironic... (2)

dmccarty (152630) | more than 13 years ago | (#287605)

Firsthand reports especially appreciated, since these are the sorts of things which might otherwise go unheard.

Isn't this sort of like saying, "If you're deaf please raise your hand."

--

Amazing (1)

OpenGL (158318) | more than 13 years ago | (#287606)

A first post actually on topic, but just like a first post. Amazing!

Australia (2)

CarrotLord (161788) | more than 13 years ago | (#287607)

While the laws in Australia seem quite strict, my personal experience has been that they have no effect apart from a small tinge of guilt on occassions... However, I'm not exactly running a kiddyporn site, so I'm not really running from the laws or anything... Anyway, point is that they don't really affect my daily life, due to the fact that I'm not doing much illegal anyway and the fact that the internet is so unrestrictable...

rr

Good to see some more attention on this issue (2)

Yu Suzuki (170586) | more than 13 years ago | (#287609)

As we progress into the future of computing at an ever-expanding rapid rate, it is imperative that we occasionally take time to reflect on how others will react to these unprecendented advances. Examples liek the DMCA and Australia's draconian Internet censorship laws show how easily a new communications paradigm can be thwarted. While enthusiastic "early adopters", who represent the tide of new ideas and schematics into the technology field, are quick to recognize the virute of these advances, more experienced, but possibly behind-the-times, leaders may perceive these advances not as weapons but enemies. (e.g. While Slashdot readers see themselves as fighting against the attacking tide of user-access control, media industry and government figures see themselves as fighting against the attacking tide of copyright infringement.)

Of course, there is probably some merit to both of these viewpoints. Certainly, commerce and society as a whole will encounter some friction as it shifts to accomodate the power capacity and access provided by the Internet. However, the end result may be worth the infrastructural shifts; existing communications and media technologies simply may not be as efficient as Internet-based ones.

Will the Internet sink or swim? The question is still up in the air; with many unique forces and viewpoints at work, we'll likely see many interesting challenges and confrontations for the pioneers in the Internet field. Whatever the final result is, it's sure to give the key players on all sides of the issue a trial by fire.

Yu Suzuki

Re:Licensing (1)

sn00ker (172521) | more than 13 years ago | (#287610)

I'm less than 50 miles from Dallas, even closer to Plano and "Telecom Alley". I live in a small but not tiny town of almost 10,000 people.
Believe it or not, my only option is a 56K dialup.
Poor baby. We have people here in NZ who are less than 30km (not even 20 miles) from the nearest major town and can barely sustain 9.6k connections.
By major town, I am referring to villages with a population more than three times that of your hamlet.

Take a look at this article [nzherald.co.nz] from a local paper regarding just how pathetic our telecomm's infrastructure really is.

Question for my own paper (5)

fishbonez (177041) | more than 13 years ago | (#287611)

I'm writing a paper on the editorial process of Slashdot. I'm trying to determine what factors are considered when a story is posted. In particular, I'd be interested in knowing the types of stories posted in relation to the drug intake, days without sleep, childhood traumas, mental diseases and lifetime concussion totals of the editorial staff.

Not that you'll care: Internet laws in Trinidad (2)

seldolivaw (179178) | more than 13 years ago | (#287612)

As a cheerfully third-world country (officially a "developing nation" since we're not deteriorating further right now) Trinidad and Tobago has a small but rapidly-expanding Internet sector, and precisely zero laws which specifically legislate it. Does "no laws" count? :-) Many third world nations are in an identical position, for instance most of the rest of the Caribbean.

Re:Quite self-defeating, really (1)

Bingo Foo (179380) | more than 13 years ago | (#287613)

Absolutely. Internet culture will erase many distinctions across historical, cultural, and geographic boundaries.

I'm not trolling when I say that I'm just glad it's happening at a point in history when America and American culture is dominant. (Hear me out here) I have almost as much to dislike about American culture (not an oxmoron, as the snickering ACs who follow this post will likely assert) as the next guy, but seriously, If the dominant online ethos were the European philosophy of benevolent socialistic government granting limited rights to its citizenry (subjects?) then we'd all be in trouble. Maybe not this year, but soon enough, believe me.

I am thrilled (but not surprised) that it was the United States that provided the environment that allowed the internet (esp. www) to thrive as it has, and I am thrilled that it is the more libertarian cross-section of the population that has been so involved in the propagation of ideals with this medium.

Go ahead, mod me down, but at least read the Cliff's notes to our founding documents first.

Bingo Foo

---

International CyberCrime Treaty (2)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 13 years ago | (#287614)

Things like the International Cyber Crime Treaty recently discussed here [slashdot.org] , here [slashdot.org] , and here [slashdot.org] on Slash over the past six months jack the urgency of this and related issues. People in the USA can remember court cases from a year or two or three ago where some law enforcement from a state like Tennessee (?) went after a California website for being in violation of Tennessee laws.

Imagine this scenario down the road, being in violation of some countries laws where they are in sharp disagreement with the laws of that country. The absurd example would be China prosecuting the websites of exiled chinese nationals living in the USA.

This is not so absurd on second thought.

Check out the Vinny the Vampire [eplugz.com] comic strip

China? That's nothing. Try Saudi. (2)

ChrisCampbell47 (181542) | more than 13 years ago | (#287615)

Everyone here is jumping on China, and I'm sure that's an important target, what with 1.2 billion people yearning to breathe free and download porn and whatnot.

But why doesn't anyone seem to notice that Saudi Arabia is one of the most impossibly repressive regimes on the planet? My time spent there was the worst time of my life -- starved for news, starved for entertainment, starved for stimulation, the whole damn country feels like a damn hypnotic state.

Four years ago, a friend was pontificating about East Timor and how the Indonesian occupiers were goin' down, man! (this was about a year before they actually did go down). I mentioned the Saudi situation, and he said "oh, they're going down too".

Still waiting. I would imagine a few people on the inside are waiting too. What really pisses me off is that not only is most of the stuff inside Saudi propanganda, but most of the stuff outside is too.

[Meta stuff] Repeat story (1)

Erasmus Darwin (183180) | more than 13 years ago | (#287616)

He didn't like the answer he got the first time, so he tried again.

There are two mitigating factors here. The first time the story was posted, it probably wasn't on the front page (given how few comments were posted).

Also, it was an "Ask Slashdot" story posted on April 2nd -- anyone else remember what kind of garbage was flying around (especially on Ask Slashdot) on March 31st through April 2nd? So even if it had been front page news, I could easily see it getting replies such as "Here on Mars, supreme dictator for life Gxzcvcxvqa (blessed be his name) has declared the Internet to be evil, as TCP's maximum possible RTT is 120 seconds (do a grep in the Linux kernel source for 'University of Mars' in net/ipv4/tcp_timer.c). As such, we have chosen to declare war on the horribly chauvinistic Earthians who blindly assume that everyone is on the same planet. Furthermore, Linus has yet to implement the ISO 8859-42 characterset, despite repeated requests. How am I supposed to sign my name when I can't type a guziznork?"

Re:Do your own homework (2)

Elvis Maximus (193433) | more than 13 years ago | (#287617)

America's civilization wasn't built upon the hard work of others. It was built by hand through the ethic of self help and self work. If you don't reinvent the wheel, you can't understand anything.

Yeah, which is why we're all so against open-source software!

Oh, hey, wait a minute...

-

Re:Do your own homework (1)

speaker4thedead (193887) | more than 13 years ago | (#287618)

I get real sick of this line of reasoning. It's put out there everytime someone asks for information on a subject for a school project, and it's nothing but a troll. (yeah, I'm biting)

If this person relies solely on slashdot to do his homework, then yes, he is dumb. That's because slashdot is a gamble. However, slashdot is a very good place to get in touch with people who keep up with computer related. What if someone points him to the one resource he couldn't find on his own that can turn a mediocre paper into a stellar one? He would be dumb *not* to suppliment his normal research with that resource.

If you don't want to help him, then don't. However you waste your time if you trot out this dead horse every time and you waste your mod points if you mod it up.
--
I only post to slashdot when I'm sleep deprived.

Censorship using ICANNs UDRP (1)

Garry Anderson (194949) | more than 13 years ago | (#287619)

Big business can censor you by taking your domain away, using ICANNs UDRP.

They know the answer to the trademark conflicts, it is just excuse to steal your domain (for several reasons). Laws the authorities break and the solution to problem is at WIPO.org.uk [wipo.org.uk] - no connection with the World Intellectual Property Organization - WIPO.ORG, part of U.N., paid for (owned) by big business.

Re:Censorship using ICANNs UDRP (1)

Garry Anderson (194949) | more than 13 years ago | (#287620)

Sorry - left off the question mark in (owned?) again.

It must be because I believe it to be true.

It's really simple (1)

Urd (198177) | more than 13 years ago | (#287621)

Is it not obvious? After the US government passing all those silly internet laws for so long, all the other nations feel left behind and they too want their fair share of stupid backward laws obviously designed by people who don't know what they are trying to control.

There are lots of new laws out there and more and more also outside of the US. Unfortunately everybody makes the same mistakes, in 10 years the internet will be entirely illegal and the sending of an email will be a criminal offense.

Three cheers for progress!

Urd.

What? Can't see post. (1)

lazn (202878) | more than 13 years ago | (#287622)

The US must be blocking this thread nationally.

==>Lazn

Re:my addition (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 13 years ago | (#287623)

I'm soooo glad I live anywhere else but there....

Jaysyn

Re:Do your own homework (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 13 years ago | (#287624)

0wNe2 f001....

Jaysyn

Re:Licensing (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 13 years ago | (#287625)

Line of sight laser gigabit to Florida, from the tallest point in Bermuda....wouldn't that work? ooh...I guess 100 Mi is a little far. Well you could run an OC-192 down from Florida but that might be prohibitivley expensive for your country...

Jaysyn

Well (2)

bitva (206067) | more than 13 years ago | (#287626)

I don't know where to find that kind of information, but I bet it'll be pretty interesting to read.

It's funny, we'll all bitch about censorship here in the U.S. until we read what other country's are doing and then we'll think: "oh, i guess it's not that bad here".
ya, not that bad until our government regulates/controls/censors something else. But then we'll read about how it is in, say Uganda, and then we'll think: "oh, that's okay I guess"

(sigh)....passifism will be the end of us

Check this out. (5)

ageitgey (216346) | more than 13 years ago | (#287627)

Have you tried the EFF's archive of internet censorship laws and information for the US and other Countries? It has bills, laws, and other information broken down by country and local region (state, etc). Check it out. [eff.org]

Why not donate to the EFF while you are there?

Re:Do your own homework (5)

BlowCat (216402) | more than 13 years ago | (#287628)

Go to your public library. It's there for a reason, so stop masturbating on slashdot.
Oh yes! What else can be so delightful as masturbating in a public library? It's there for a reason!

I've never seen good newsfeeds here in Taiwan. (1)

ahfoo (223186) | more than 13 years ago | (#287630)

I hear the satellite service can cover that though. Otherwise, I'm tempted to say we're gonna pass the States in fiber penetration. They like to hype the possibility locally.
I can't complain about that. Access sucked for years, but the gov telecoms monopoly rolled with cheap DSL about six months ago after a few years of lousy cable service from a partly MS owned company. Hourly charges are a thing of the past now. Changes happen fast.

Re:Phone cost limitation (1)

at_18 (224304) | more than 13 years ago | (#287631)

I don't know about the rest of Europe, but here in Italy the cost of online access is decreasing rapidly. I live in an urban area, and I have 640k DSL for the equivalent of $35/month (and I often hit 1Mbps), which is pretty in par with the US rates I hear of.
Pay-per-minute fees still exists, but more and more people use 56k or ISDN flats ($20/25 per month).

Re:new laws in italy... (1)

at_18 (224304) | more than 13 years ago | (#287632)

After a big concern by just every Italian webmaster, the law has been clarified: only professional newspapers/"webpapers" are subjected to a yearly tax, while the others (read: 99%) "news" websites are ok.
The confusion rose from the bad wording present in the law, that lead many to the conclusion that any regularly-update web site was subjected to the tax. Luckyly, they were wrong.

Re:Do your own homework (1)

Cephas Keken (224723) | more than 13 years ago | (#287633)

^5 to the trolls
for they have proved once more who it is that owns
/.

Re:Guatemala (1)

deXela (226837) | more than 13 years ago | (#287634)

Well, the only reason you and I have money to buy stuff is because the country's we live in have allowed strong trade unions to speak up for things like workers rights. You know what happens to trade union leaders here in Guatemala? The Dole fruit company pays thugs to kill them.

Guatemala (2)

deXela (226837) | more than 13 years ago | (#287635)

I haven't noticed any restrictions on what sites we can see, though some politicians and church leaders have talked about doing something.

But the biggest restricions here in Guatemala are cost and ignorance. A big part of the population can't read. And salaries here are a 10th of what they are in Canada, while the line costs 5 times as much. These things are very much a result of US government policies thru the IMF, etc, etc.

Do you think the US really is interested in getting the worlds 5 billion poor online?

Re:Quite self-defeating, really (1)

awful (227543) | more than 13 years ago | (#287636)

"We've seen the same type of thing coming from the draconian content regulation of the leftist Australian government.

The Australian government is a coalition of the Liberal Party and the National Party. Despite the name, the Liberal party is anything but liberal, being much more like the Republicans - i.e. conservative, family-values, free-trade - bascially your average right-wing conservatives. The National Party is smaller, and a bit more right wing. Neither of them could be described as "leftist" unless:
a) you are significantly more right wing i.e. a Nazi; and
b) you are stupid.

Finally, re: your comments on gun-control and Australia's doctored crime rates - doctored or not, I can't think of a single school in Australia that has a metal detector. Yep, that's right - not one.

In my country... (1)

TWX_the_Linux_Zealot (227666) | more than 13 years ago | (#287637)

... they make it very hard to use the internet. Since our GNP is very low, we don't have very good infrastructure to supply us electricity or give us telephone lines to connect. We also only have one computer in my village, and since we use the village bicycle hooked up to power it, if someone has to go get supplies we cannot be on the internet. We are tending to winning the footraces with the other villages lately though since this internet thing came around. I hope some day our poor village will do better, so we can get a better bicycle to use to power the computer with a more comfortable seat, so we can not get shut off quite so many times in the day.


"Titanic was 3hr and 17min long. They could have lost 3hr and 17min from that."

Internet could have prevented some atrocities (1)

virg_mattes (230616) | more than 13 years ago | (#287639)

> Yeah, that would have worked, like, so much better than newspapers!!

It would, and it does. Newspapers require physical presence. You can't deliver a newspaper to someone without somebody handing it to them. Since Hitler's folks tended to kill dissenters, this made the job of delivery boy very hazardous. The Internet requires no such contact. You can host a site from Canada or the Philippines, and not be at risk for bullet or truncheon poisoning.

Virg

Bringing up Hitler (1)

virg_mattes (230616) | more than 13 years ago | (#287640)

There are some discussions in which bringing up Hitler is appropriate. The use of a propaganda engine is most certainly one of them.

Virg

net culture and small countries (1)

OblongPlatypus (233746) | more than 13 years ago | (#287643)

I'm sure this probably isn't material for your paper, but I need to vent.

Being an internet user from a small country whose inhabitants have an abysmally low average level of netiquette, I've often faced prejudice online. One thing is the social level, where the prejudice is easy to negate by behaving politely and intelligently, but the technical level is different: As a user of the one major ISP in my country, an ISP which serves approximately 60% of the country's net users, I find myself banned from a large number of IRC channels. And just a few weeks ago, DALnet klined my ISP... sigh. How do I convince channel operators and IRCnets that my online.no IP doesn't necessarily mean I'm a moron?

Re:Do your own homework (3)

sideshow-voxx (242126) | more than 13 years ago | (#287644)

So what is the Ask Slashdot forum there for if not for the free exchange of information to those who need it or can use it for the betterment of society?

If you don't want to participate, that's fine. You can jealously guard your little stash of facts and keep out of the knowledge pool. Let the rest of us provide someone in a position to be listened to (by university professors who might have the power to make things better) with the information they need in order to present an informed opinion.

Internet Freedom (4)

SteveTheRed (244567) | more than 13 years ago | (#287645)


As a proud and free citizen of the United States, I have free and unfettered access to the internet, because it is completely free (as in speech).

Except:

1. Access child pornography.

2. Commit treason, espinonage, or other subversive acts.

3. Access "pirated" MP3s.

4. Access the seven lines of code that can decrypt a DVD.

...

10. Use encryption technology that makes snooping through my personal correspondence hard for the FBI. (COMING SOON ;)

...

1,124. Use products or services not authorized by the friendly Microsoft-Intel-AOL-Time-Warner monop^H^H^H^H^H conglomerate. (COMING SOON ;).

Other than those things (and just a few more...),


I CAN DO ANYTHING I WANT !!!


Re:my addition (1)

ishark (245915) | more than 13 years ago | (#287646)

Let's do a quick check.
  • 1. Entering computer information networks involved with national affairs, national defense or advanced technology;
    Entering is enough to be an offense. Wow, I wonder what the Eu/Us military would do if they found you entering their network...
  • 2. Spreading slander and rumors or publicizing harmful information on the Internet;
    Ah, here it's much more limited. It's "illegal" only if you do it on someone who has more money than you.
  • 3. Stealing or disclosing state, intelligence or military secrets through the Internet;
    Again, something extremely legal around here world....
  • 4. Inciting ethnic hatred and discrimination or sabotaging national unity through the Internet;
    Ok, I must admit we don't have any trouble with sabotaging national unity....
  • 5. Organizing a cult and keeping in touch with cult members, or undermining the enforcement of state laws and regulations through the Internet;
    You can organize a cult here, but try to have it meddle with the laws and you'll see how legal it is.
  • 6. Selling fake or substandard products, or advertising goods and services in a deceitful way through the Internet;
    Illegal quite everywhere...
  • 7. Damaging the reputation of a business or a commodity through the Internet;
    This is the same as above. Except here it's likely they'll have more money, so stay clear.
  • 8. Infringing upon the intellectual property of others through the Internet;
    Can you say "DMCA"?
  • 9. Fabricating false information affecting securities and futures trading or otherwise disturbing the financial order through the Internet;
    As soon as someone bigger than you gets hit, check point 7.
  • 10. Setting up pornographic Web sites or Web pages, providing access to pornographic Web sites, or spreading pornographic books, movies, video products and photos on the Internet;
    Legal here.
  • 11. Insulting or defaming other people on the Internet;
    Repetita iuvant. It's the 3rd time they write this....
  • 12. Illegally intercepting, altering or deleting others' e-mail or data, infringing upon citizens' freedom and confidentiality of communication, and
    Illegal here as well, unless you're the government.
  • 13. Committing theft, fraud and atrocities through the Internet.
    I'd like to see where this is legal....

    Ok, we have learned that the difference between China and us is that we can create cults, undermine the national unity and distribute porn.

    It's wonderful to see how the great democracies are more advanced than China.....

    :)

Re:new laws in italy... (1)

odo_on_slashdot (255327) | more than 13 years ago | (#287647)

The law is still not clear, and there is a strong movement here to cancel it: a petition, banner on sites, requests for _official_ explaination of it, etcetera. We are working against this law, in this moment.
The law says "ANY publication, either on paper or electronic form" means multimedia, cdrom and ONLINE (not just webpapers!). Also, all "publications", but those with a "periodic" (what does this mean?) are forced to comply the law. Again, the problem is to understand what the law means.
There is not a yearly tax, that is not a problem. Such (any) publication MUST have a responsible selected from the Italian Journalist Guild (founded during the fascism so to control the press, now it is still a strong association).
Those who won't have it will be fined up to 250 u$a and 2 years of jail.
You must also publish on the webpages the address of the "publisher" (server?) and the name and address of the editor. Hard to explain.
You can't also move your webserver out of Italy, as the law checks that the upload started from within Italy. This problem can also hit web servers anywhere in the world, because they are accomplices to the criminal; the problem is that the Italian (as any national law) is not easily valid outside our borders.
The old law, against the clandestine press, can be used to control the information online: it is not clear when (or against who) this law can be applied so (theorically) anybody is guilt but this will be used to enforce any dissident voice during a trial.
This law ALSO (why not a specific law about this) gives funds to legally registered newspapers (paper and online), in a moment where information portals are in economic trouble; maybe the real target of the law.
That's why on www.punto-informatico.it/petizione.asp there are 30K email signatures and thousands of websites who adhere with banners and ads etc to this campaign. Many politicians and representatives also joined the petition.
Unfortunately, there aren't many links or documents in English language to explain the situation.

Roberto Odoardi, odo@micronet.it

Re:Phone cost limitation (1)

vkt-tje (259058) | more than 13 years ago | (#287648)

As everyone knows communication cost are the highest in Belgium. Also elektricity cost much more than the European avarage...
Therefore all you French and Germans should not complain.

On the other hand there is allmost no censorship on Internet. Only child-pr0n and holocaust denail is illegal. Still, I do not recall any processes

Germany (1)

Someone Different (262631) | more than 13 years ago | (#287649)

I can't seem to find Germany in the previous posts, so...

Restrictive laws:
Like German laws in other areas of life, you must not publish Nazi propaganda or child pornography.
Encryption is ok, even supported by the government.
We have a discussion about some proposal that would force ISPs and communication providers in general (like all the Telcos) so save connection data (like who called who when, who had what IP when and so on) for up to six months. But then, other parts of the government actively support projects like the Java Anon Proxy [tu-dresden.de] (click "English" on the top right).
So, besides Nazi propaganda restrictions, it's pretty much like in the US, which gladly hosts the Nazi propaganda for us.
Oh, and downloading mp3s via napster & co for private use is legal, if uploading is is uncertain.

Quality of service:
I have an aDSL connction, 768kb/s downstream and 128 up. That's some 30$/month alltogether (incl. unlimited data transfer). However, the infrastructure has yet to be build in some areas.
Alternatives are ISDN or satellite. Hardly anybody has cablemodem access. And that Powerline stuff (connection via powerline, most obviously) in quite new and again, the infrastructure has to be build (but of course the cables are already there).
Then, of course you can connect via your mobile, 9.6k with standart GSM available virtually anywhere, GPRS (depends on your mobile, >ISDN), or just wait for UMTS which will give you up to 2MBit/s on your mobile in abut 2 years (if you can afford it - the Telcos paid some $50Billion for the licences alltogether).

The rest of the EU is pretty much alike.

my addition (4)

deran9ed (300694) | more than 13 years ago | (#287650)

Sorry dont feel like making a rambling post... So here goes China's newly passed laws [internet.com]

Re:Ask Slashdot. (1)

1+1trouble (302912) | more than 13 years ago | (#287651)

What's wrong with asking for a little help? This site [wordismind.net] is a pretty good resource for privacy and censorship issues. IMO, Mexico and Brazil seem like they have the best system worked out. Once the get a greater percentage of their citizens online, we'll really be able to see how feasible their plan is.

Your post's new score is.... (1)

1+1trouble (302912) | more than 13 years ago | (#287652)

(Score:-1, Redundant)

Re:China? That's nothing.Try Saudi...or Singapore (1)

jotaeleemeese (303437) | more than 13 years ago | (#287653)

In the "fantasy island" *all* Internet traffic has to go through proxies and people is known to be sued to oblivion by the goverment (in unfair, goverment biased courts) when the post anti goverment stuff in USENET.

Re:Do your own homework (2)

mech9t8 (310197) | more than 13 years ago | (#287654)

Of couse, looking for information on the Internet at the typical public library will result in a brilliant discourse on the state of the Internet circa 1972. If one wants up-to-date information (as would be necessary on a topic like the Internet) the typical library would be useful only for its free access to the Internet.


--
Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies.

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

KingAzzy (320268) | more than 13 years ago | (#287655)

tihs gy is jist a produk of or fien eduakashon sestim plees dont be so meen

Quite self-defeating, really (2)

Last Requiem (325054) | more than 13 years ago | (#287657)

The whole point of the Internet is that there are no more borders, and that there are no more cultural, racial, or economic distinctions. (This is assuming that you're on the Net .. there are huge cultural, racial, and economic factors that play into whether you can access the Internet or not, but that's a subject for another day.)

When a country like China moves to censor the Internet for its citizens, there are usually very specific reasons for it. In the case of China, you've got a totalitarian Communist regime that needs to keep its citizens away from news and information that has not been "sanitized" by the government. Truth is the greatest enemy of Communist oppression, and it is only by way of excessive censorship and filtering that China can keep its citizens from learning the truth via the Internet.

We've seen the same type of thing coming from the draconian content regulation of the leftist Australian government. A ban on "indecent material" may be laudable (if not ill-defined and unenforceable), but when you step in and censor gun-rights Web pages and basically anything that does not come from the anti-gun zealots, you're crossing a fine line between protecting your society and oppressing them. Fortunately, it appears that the tide may be turning and freedom-loving Australians are beginning to fight back.

The bottom line is this: technological solutions will never solve political problems. Political problems can only be solved by people. If China thinks that strong filtering can prevent its citizens from one day learning the truth, they are wrong. If Australia thinks that its filtering policies will stop gun advocates from learning the correct information about guns (such as crime rates that have not been doctored by the government), then they are wrong. And so the conclusion is this: either give your citizens complete access to the Internet, or none at all. There is no acceptable middle ground. (School libraries in the US would do well to learn this lesson, BTW.)

Re:new laws in italy... (1)

valdo (411941) | more than 13 years ago | (#287658)

Actually, here in italy the government has recently approved a bill which extends some povisions about newspapers on the net. It says that if you run an "informative" and "regularly updated" web-site you have to be registered as a professional journalist in the national register of journalists. How absurd: every site is "informative"... the bill was strongly supported by the guild of the journalists, so they can grab some public funds. Italian netizens are trying to raise their voice about this mess.

Hack Shoeboy (1)

Hack Shoeboy (441994) | more than 13 years ago | (#287659)

His password is "Hitler-is-the-last-refuge-of-the-unimaginitive"
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