Meanwhile, cnet’s Declan McCullagh and Business Insider’s Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry provide 2012 predictions. Among them: Google will jump into the tablet market, Facebook will surprise everyone with more rapid-than-predicted growth, SOPA’s major opponents will undertake significant efforts to thwart the legislation, and aggressive antitrust enforcement will continue.
The continued markup of SOPA has been delayed until next year. As reported at engadget, a petition at WhiteHouse.gov calling on the President to veto SOPA and similar legislation has already gained nearly 32,000 signatures.
Tools and methods of circumventing SOPA provisions are already being deployed, according to a report by Forbes. SOPA’s flaws demonstrate that the law would merely “reinforce the Internet’s fundamental security problems without blocking access to copyright-infringing sites for any user savvy enough to use simple software tools.”
This morning the WSJ reported that hackers in China had successfully breached the systems of the US Chamber of Commerce, accessing “everything stored on its systems, including information about its three million members.” The breach was discovered and thwarted back in the spring 2010, though two sources suggested the hackers may have had access to the systems for over a year.
Better policy is needed to keep entrepreneurs coming to the US and creating jobs with venture-funded businesses, according to a study by the National Foundation for American Policy.
National Journal reports that the swift moves by the DOJ and FCC to stifle the AT&T / T-Mobile merger may chill any future mergers for the duration of the Obama administration.
AT&T announced it will scrap its planned merger with T-Mobile. ars technica gives a good rundown on the story. Some expressed relief that the merger bid was abandoned, while others suggest that the result will mean more harm for consumers in the long run.
Sprint, one of the merger’s most vocal opponents, was jubilant at the news, but nonetheless continues to face its own difficulties.
The Senate Judiciary’s Antitrust Subcommittee is at it again, calling for the FTC to give a “hard look” to Google’s search practices, which Sens. Kohl and Lee suggest may be anti-competitive.
FastCompany has a profile of Rep. Darrell Issa’s (R-CA) efforts at promoting citizen involvement in politics and government transparency through his “Project Madison” project and other efforts.
Despite the resiliency of the Internet, government actions are nonetheless doing much to undermine its robustness and threaten long term harm.
The Brookings Institute has an interesting report on how the explosive growth of digital storage is proving to be a valuable tool for repressive governments. (H/T @jenvalentino)
CircleID has a story on the ten main Internet Governance developments of 2011. Among them? Arab Spring and Social Media, the Egyptian Internet blackout, and SOPA.
FT reports that a “publicity” suit against Facebook will move forward, despite the company’s efforts to have it tossed out of court. The case focuses on “Sponsored Stories,” with plaintiffs (those about whom such stories are made) claiming they’re entitled to some ad revenue from those “unwitting endorsements.”
Finally, Tech Europe at WSJ has an interesting report: Internet never used by 24% of the EU population. More at the link.