Friday, February 15, 2013

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Thursday, February 14, 2013

First Steps to Open Gov- Getting Your Ducts in a Row

From the article: "Modern versions of open government only work if the basic input, connectivity, can be taken for granted. We need electricity to light our homes and offices, and we need  cheap, abundant communications capacity to make open government function. The near-term payoff will be dramatically lower bills paid by local governments; long-term, you'll be empowering every member of your community and your local economy. And isn't that what governments are supposed to do?" Read more

Twitter: A Live Megaphone for Lobbying Groups, Companies

From the article: "On television, President Obama spent a commercial-free hour delivering his State of the Union speech. But on Twitter, the nation’s biggest lobbying groups and corporations found a megaphone to place ad money and promote their views." Read more

The Public Domain: Surveillance in Everyday Life

From the report: "People create profiles on social network sites and Twitter accounts against the background of an audience. This paper argues that closely examining content created by others and looking at one’s own content through other people’s eyes, a common part of social media use, should be framed as social surveillance. While social surveillance is distinguished from traditional surveillance along three axes (power, hierarchy, and reciprocity), its effects and behavior modification is common to traditional surveillance. Drawing on ethnographic studies of United States populations, I look at social surveillance, how it is practiced, and its impact on people who engage in it. I use Foucault’s concept of capillaries of power to demonstrate that social surveillance assumes the power differentials evident in everyday interactions rather than the hierarchical power relationships assumed in much of the surveillance literature. Social media involves a collapse of social contexts and social roles, complicating boundary work but facilitating social surveillance. Individuals strategically reveal, disclose and conceal personal information to create connections with others and tend social boundaries. These processes are normal parts of day-to-day life in communities that are highly connected through social media." Read more

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Online Privacy and Security is a Shared Responsibility: Government, Industry and You

From the article: "When it comes to privacy and security, I’m reminded of folks who drive to the airport without their seat belt on and then worry about the plane crashing.

Planes do crash on very rare occasions but not nearly as often as cars. And when driving, there are things you can do to increase your safety, whereas when flying, there’s not much you can do to protect yourself  but we do rely on the airline industry and government regulators to do all they can to protect us.
Likewise, when we’re online, there are things we can control and things we can’t." Read more 

Follow the Surplus: How U.S. Consumers Value Online Media

From the report: "U.S. consumers realize large and growing value from online media. In fact, they now derive more value from online media—net of the associated costs—than they receive from offline media, according to new research by The Boston Consulting Group. We call this measure of value “consumer surplus” and, for online media, it amounts on average to approximately $970 per U.S. connected consumer, or online user, per year—or about 2.5 percent of the average annual income in the U.S. The comparable consumer surplus for offline media is approximately $900." Read more

Obama Orders Voluntary Security Standards for Critical Industries’ Computer Networks

From the article: "Citing the growing threat from cyberattacks, President Obama on Tuesday announced that he had signed an executive order that calls for the creation of voluntary standards to boost the security of computer networks in critical industries such as those that keep trains from colliding and drinking water clean…. The order does not create regulations or authorities. Rather, it directs the Commerce Department to work with industry and federal agencies to craft a framework of standards within a year. The standards would apply only to sectors regulated by federal agencies, such as banking and electric power. “This is not designed to be a one-size-fits-all approach,” said a senior administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss an order before Obama announced it." Read more

Sovereignty and Liberty in the Internet Era

From the report: "The global revolution in communications technologies and services is fracturing the historic relationship between the media and the state. That relationship, born in the early print era, was first framed by the territorial authority of sovereigns and later found new legitimacy in the rise of popular sovereignty, thus becoming a definitive feature of the modern liberal democratic state. For centuries, states have sought to impose their territorial boundaries on the flow of information and ideas. This however has required ever increasing inventiveness and cost as new communications technologies have both empowered and threatened the security, authority and legitimacy of the state. In the internet era, the state’s capacity to control its public information sphere is now being tested to exhaustion." Read more

The First Amendment is an Information Policy

From the report: "This essay, based on the 20th annual Hugo Black lecture at Wesleyan University, argues that we should think about individual liberties of freedom of speech, press, and assembly not in isolation, but in the larger context of policies for the spread and growth of knowledge and information.

Although we normally think about the First Amendment as an individual right, we should also see it as an integral part of a knowledge and information policy for a democratic state. That is because the practical ability to speak rests on an infrastructure of free expression that involves a wide range of institutions, statutory frameworks, programs, technologies and practices.

Using the examples of democratic protests in the Middle East and the controversy over WikiLeaks, the essay explains how free speech values are implicated in knowledge and information policies, in the design of digital networks and in the maintenance of infrastructure.

Around the world today, the fight over free speech is a fight over knowledge and information policy, and, in particular, how the infrastructure that makes free speech possible will be designed and implemented. Although the First Amendment is a crucial information policy for democracy, it is only one information policy among many. It needs the assistance of an infrastructure of free expression to make good on its promises. We must design democratic values into the infrastructure of free expression if we want an infrastructure that protects democracy." Read more

Patient Portal Explosion Has Major Health Care Implications

From the article: "A small fraction of physicians use a Web portal to interact and share information with patients today. But meaningful use Stage 2 requires that eligible professionals ensure at least 5% of patients view, download or transmit their electronic health records. As a result, the use of patient portals is likely to skyrocket. If that happens, experts say, the impact on health care could be quite significant." Read more

AHRQ Report Summarizes Health IT Grant Initiative's Efforts

From the article: "The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality recently released its findings from enabling patient-centered care through a health IT grant initiative, outlined in a report.

The report highlights key findings from the experiences of 16 projects awarded in 2007, which aimed to investigate approaches for using health IT to enhance patient-centered care and ambulatory care. The four main areas of interest in the analysis were: patient self-management, providing access to medical information, patient-clinician communication and shared decision making." Read more

The Rise and Decline of the Intellectual Property Powers

From the report: "In the past decade, China has experienced many impressive economic and technological developments. Intriguingly, the narrative about piracy and counterfeiting there is rarely linked to the narrative about the China's technological rise. To provide a more comprehensive picture, this article brings together these two different narratives to explore what their combination would mean for the United States and its intellectual property industries. 

Delivered as the keynote luncheon address at the Symposium on "Applications of Intellectual Property Law in China," this article begins with the good news that China is at the cusp of crossing over from a pirating nation to a country respectful of intellectual property rights. It draws on the historical developments of intellectual property protection in the United States and other once-developing countries.

The article then delivers the bad news that, even though China will finally experience improvements in the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights when it hits the proverbial crossover point, such improvements will bring some disappointments and unintended consequences.

In light of both the good and bad news, the article offers suggestions on three types of policy changes that could help prepare U.S. industries for the identified challenges. It specifically discusses changes at the domestic, bilateral and multilateral levels. Noting the challenges of making prognostications, this article concludes by suggesting that the United States may still have some time and wiggle room to decide its course of action for the near future." Read more

Monday, February 11, 2013

A Declaration of the Interdependence of Cyberspace

From the article: "On the anniversary of John Perry Barlow's issuing 'A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace,' a response and alternate call to action. Seventeen years ago today, on February 8, 1996, John Perry Barlow sent out his manifesto "A Declaration of the Independenceof Cyberspace," a statement of the core belief of many cyber-libertarians that governments should have no authority on the Internet. That belief may seem quaint to many of us today, when the separation between the real and the virtual is growing ever fuzzier. And yet the Declaration remains a fairly accurate representation of the views of many of the anti-government voices on the Internet." Read more

U.S. Said To Be Target of Massive Cyber-Espionage Campaign

From the article: "A new intelligence assessment has concluded that the United States is the target of a massive, sustained cyber-espionage campaign that is threatening the country’s economic competitiveness, according to individuals familiar with the report.

The National Intelligence Estimate identifies China as the country most aggressively seeking to penetrate the computer systems of American businesses and institutions to gain access to data that could be used for economic gain." Read more 

Dr. Watson Will See You Now: IBM Offers Supercomputer Watson Apps in Cancer, Health Insurance

From the article: "IBM Corp., the health insurer WellPoint Inc. and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center announced two Watson-based applications — one to help assess treatments for lung cancer and one to help manage health insurance decisions and claims.

Both applications take advantage of the speed, huge database and language skill the computer demonstrated in defeating the best human “Jeopardy!” players on television two years ago.

Armonk-based IBM said Watson has improved its performance by 240 percent since the “Jeopardy!” win." Read more

Power-Curve Society

From the report: "Power-Curve Society, written by David Bollier, examines how technological innovation is restructuring productivity and the social and economic impact resulting from these changes. It addresses the growing concern about the technological displacement of jobs, stagnant middle class income, and wealth disparities in an emerging "winner-take-all" economy. It also examines cutting-edge innovations in personal data ecosystems that could potentially unlock a revolutionary wave of individual economic empowerment. Power-Curve Society is the Report of the Twenty-First Annual Roundtable on InformationTechnology, a dialogue convened by the Communications and Society Program." Read more

EU to Order Banks, Energy Firms to Report Cyber Attacks

From the article: "Under the draft law, EU member states would have to draw up a monitoring system for companies that are critical to the economy. Those firms would then have to report major online attacks to national authorities and reveal security breaches.

Almost 15,000 transport companies, 8,000 banks, 4,000 energy firms, and 15,000 hospitals will have to report cyber attacks if the proposals are approved by EU governments and the European Parliament." Read more

Solving Big-Data Bottleneck

From the report: "In a study that represents a potential cultural shift in how basic science research can be conducted, researchers from Harvard Medical School, Harvard Business School and London Business School have demonstrated that a crowdsourcing platform pioneered in the commercial sector can solve a complex biological problem more quickly than conventional approaches—and at a fraction of the cost." Read more

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Coming and Going on Facebook

From the article: "Two-thirds of online American adults (67%) are Facebook users, making Facebook the dominant social networking site in this country. And new findings from the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project indicate there is considerable fluidity in the Facebook user population:
  • 61% of current Facebook users say that at one time or another in the past they have voluntarily taken a break from using Facebook for a period of several weeks or more.
  • 20% of the online adults who do not currently use Facebook say they once used the site but no longer do so.
  • 8% of online adults who do not currently use Facebook are interested in becoming Facebook users in the future." Read more

Health IT, Feedback Can Raise Quality of Care

Hall, Susan D. "Health IT, Feedback Can Raise Quality of Care." Fierce Health IT, February 6, 2013. 

From the article: "Providing feedback loops, as recommended by the Institute of Medicine, was a core recommendation in the pre-rulemaking report of the Measure Applications Partnership (MAP).

The public-private partnership, convened by the National Quality Forum to make recommendations to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, called feedback the best way to determine whether measurement is being used in the way it was intended.

"Ideally, the exchange of information through feedback loops is systematic, standardized, real-time, two-way, occurs among all levels of the system, and takes best advantage of information technology," the report states." Read more

See also

"MAP Pre-Rulemaking Report: 2013 Recommendations on Measures Under Consideration by HHS." National Quality Forum, February 2013. 

Millard, Mike. "MAP Weighs in on Performance Measures." Government Health IT, February 5, 2013. 

"NQF-Convened Group Provides Recommendations on Measures for Federal Healthcare Programs." Nationla Quality Forum, February 4, 2013. 

Crowdsourcing Grows Up as Online Workers Unite

From the article: "Crowdsourcing might be big business now but it has never been fair. The pay is terrible, there is zero regulation and no recourse for workers if things go wrong. But crowdsourcing's Wild West days of exploitation could soon be over. Moves to make employers more accountable and give crowd workers more benefits are helping shift the balance in favour of the employees." Read more

    CHIME Presses ONC on Patient Safety

    From the article: "The College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) is urging the federal government to ensure that patients are matched correctly to their health information.

    CHIME said it agreed with ONC that, “the accurate and efficient matching of patients to their health information is critical to ensuring patient safety,” and it urged a more focused effort to address patient data matching, saying that, “despite years of development, no clear strategy has emerged to accurately and consistently match patient data.” Read more

    Ovum: Big Data Collection Collides with Privacy Concerns

    From the article: "Ovum, in a recent survey of about 11,000 people across 11 countries, found that 68 percent said they would use a do-not-track feature if it was easily available on a search engine. Just 14 percent of respondents said they believe Internet companies are honest about their use of personal data." Read more

    FCC to Congress: U.N.'s ITU Internet Plans 'Must Be Stopped'

    From the article: "Today, U.S. Federal Communications Commissioner Robert McDowell will testify to Congress in a joint U.S. House subcommittee hearing on international Internet governance, that the free and open Internet is under attack — and inaction is not an option.

    The FCC Commissioner ominously warned Congress that what happened at WCIT-12 "ended the era of an international consensus to keep inter-governmental hands off of the Internet in dramatic fashion." Read more

    Tags, Blogs, Tweets: Social Media as Science Tool?

    From the article: "Is social media changing the way we do science—even speeding it up? Preliminary data, and a growing number of cases, suggest that the answer is yes.

    One now-famous example of its growing ubiquity is the social media storm that followed the publication of a NASA-funded paper in the journal Science, on 2 December 2010 (doi:10.1126/science.1197258). The authors of the paper claimed to have discovered a bacterium that could substitute arsenic in place of phosphate as a key nutrient necessary to support life.

    Rosie Redfield, zoology professor at the University of British Columbia (UBC), wasn’t buying it, and said so on her blog. Ironically, this was a communication platform that UBC graduate students chose to parody, along with Redfield, at their Christmas party. Asking the fake Redfield, “What’s a blog?” the reply was, “it’s a publication that nobody reads, not even reviewers.” Their mockery was to be quickly proved wrong." Read more

    Generational Differences in Content Generation in Social Media: The Roles of the Gratifications Sought and of Narcissism

    From the report: "This study examines the roles of the gratifications sought and of narcissism in content generation in social media and explores the generational differences in motivations and in narcissistic personalities when predicting the usage of Facebook, blogs, and forums. Data were gathered from a probability sample of 596 social media users through a telephone survey in 2010. Factor analysis results showed that content generation using social media was satisfying five socio-psychological needs: showing affection, venting negative feelings, gaining recognition, getting entertainment, and fulfilling cognitive needs. In particular, people who used social media to meet their social needs and their need for affection tended to use Facebook and blogs. In contrast, when users wanted to air out discontent, they often turned to forums. Results also showed that exhibitionists seemed to use social media to show affection, express their negative feelings, and achieve recognition. The study found no generational differences in using Facebook and blogs as a means to satisfy social needs or the need for affection. However, differences in patterns of social media usage were found among Baby Boomers with different narcissistic personalities. The paper includes a discussion of the study’s limitations and suggestions for future research." Read more

    What the Intelligence Community Is Doing With Big Data

    From the article: "It’s trying. Armed with billions of tweets, Google (GOOG) searches, Facebook (FB) posts, and other publicly available social-media and online data, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence is sponsoring research projects involving 14 universities in the United States, Europe, and Israel with the goal of using advanced analytics to predict significant societal events." Read more

    Wednesday, February 6, 2013

    How the Internet Reinforces Inequality in the Real World

    From the article: "Maps have always had a way of bluntly illustrating power. Simply appearing on one can be enough to make a place or community matter. Meanwhile, absence from "the map" conveys something quite the opposite. Recall 19th century colonial surveys of Africa with the continent’s vast interior labeled as “unknown.” That one word on unmapped territory was simply another way of saying – in the eyes of the mapmaker – that the region was of little consequence. Whoever lived there didn't matter.

    This old idea of paper maps as power brokers offers a good analogy for how we might think today about the increasingly complex maps of digital information on the physical world that exist in the "geoweb." This is where Wikipedia pages and online restaurant reviews and geocoded tweets live, all theoretically floating atop the actual cities and neighborhoods they describe." Read more

    The End of the Web, Search, and Computer as We Know It

    Gelernter, David. "The End of the Web, Search, and Computer as We Know It." Wired, February 1, 2013. 

    From the article: "People ask what the next web will be like, but there won’t be a next web.

    The space-based web we currently have will gradually be replaced by a time-based worldstream. It’s already happening, and it all began with the lifestream, a phenomenon that I (with Eric Freeman) predicted in the 1990s and shared in the pages of Wired almost exactly 16 years ago.

    This lifestream — a heterogeneous, content-searchable, real-time messaging stream — arrived in the form of blog posts and RSS feeds, Twitter and other chatstreams, and Facebook walls and timelines. Its structure represented a shift beyond the “flatland known as the desktop” (where our interfaces ignored the temporal dimension) towards streams, which flow and can therefore serve as a concrete representation of time.

    It’s a bit like moving from a desktop to a magic diary: Picture a diary whose pages turn automatically, tracking your life moment to moment … Until you touch it, and then, the page-turning stops. The diary becomes a sort of reference book: a complete and searchable guide to your life. Put it down, and the pages start turning again." Read more

    A National Action Plan To Support Consumer Engagement Via E-Health

    From the article: "Patient-centered care is considered one pillar of a high-performing, high-quality health care system. It is a key component of many efforts to transform care and achieve better population health. Expansion of health information technology and consumer e-health tools—electronic tools and services such as secure e-mail messaging between patients and providers, or mobile health apps—have created new opportunities for individuals to participate actively in monitoring and directing their health and health care. The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology in the Department of Health and Human Services leads the strategy to increase electronic access to health information, support the development of tools that enable people to take action with that information, and shift attitudes related to the traditional roles of patients and providers. In this article we review recent evidence in support of consumer e-health and present the federal strategy to promote advances in consumer e-health to increase patient engagement, improve individual health, and achieve broader health care system improvements." Read more

    Your Social Networking Credit Score

    From the article: "The buzzword tsunami that is “big data"—a handy way of describing our vastly improved ability to collect and analyze humongous data sets—has dwarfed “frictionless sharing” and “cloud computing” combined. As befits Silicon Valley, “big data” is mostly big hype, but there is one possibility with genuine potential: that it might one day bring loans—and credit histories—to millions of people who currently lack access to them. But what price, in terms of privacy and free will (not to mention the exorbitant interest rates), will these new borrowers have to pay?" Read more

    Eric Schmidt, in New Book: China Could Contribute to Fracturing the Internet into Pieces

    From the article: "Google CEO Eric Schmidt’s new book, co-authored with a former State Department superstar named Jared Cohen, doesn’t come out until April. But The Wall Street Journal’s Tom Gara got a hold of an advance copy and has been going through some of its ideas about the future of the Web. Particularly interesting are Schmidt’s comments on China, which, according to Gara’s reading, seem to portray the country as a rising threat not just to Web freedom but to the Internet itself.

    Schmidt and Cohen write that China is the world’s “most sophisticated and prolific” hacker, according to Gara. Their book reads, ”It’s fair to say we’re already living in an age of state-led cyber war, even if most of us aren’t aware of it.” But their predictions for where that might lead the Internet, according to the Journal’s report, include the dark possibility that it could split apart entirely." Read more

    The Philosophy of Data

    From the article: "Over the next year, I’m hoping to get a better grip on some of the questions raised by the data revolution: In what situations should we rely on intuitive pattern recognition and in which situations should we ignore intuition and follow the data? What kinds of events are predictable using statistical analysis and what sorts of events are not?....

    In sum, the data revolution is giving us wonderful ways to understand the present and the past. Will it transform our ability to predict and make decisions about the future? We’ll see." Read more

    New Technology Helps Doctors Link a Patient’s Location to Illness and Treatment

    From the article: "These initiatives seek to reveal how the place where you live affects the quality of your health, and then map out ways to address problems. For instance, soon Loma Linda doctors and case managers will be able pinpoint food pantries and soup kitchens in the medical center’s service area, making it easier to suggest ones near the homes of low-income patients who need to improve their diet.

    Othergeomedicine technologies under development include Health Begins, a social networking platform that seeks to make clinicians more aware of socioeconomic factors that can affect health. The site, now in the testing phase, allows doctors, patients and family members to update entries, such as where to apply for affordable housing or how to contact a legal clinic for reporting unhealthy working conditions. The site also has a section that shows the latest research assessing links between social, economic and environmental factors and health." Read more

    Privacy Versus Security

    From the report: "Legal scholarship tends to conflate privacy and security. However, security and privacy can, and should, be treated as distinct concerns. Privacy discourse involves difficult normative decisions about competing claims to legitimate access to, use of, and alteration of information. It is about selecting among different philosophies, and choosing how various rights and entitlements ought to be ordered. Security implements those choices – it intermediates between information and privacy selections. This Article argues separating privacy from security has important practical consequences. Security failings should be penalized more readily, and more heavily, than privacy ones, because there are no competing moral claims to resolve, and because security flaws make all parties worse off. Currently, security flaws are penalized too rarely, and privacy ones too readily. The Article closes with a set of policy questions highlighted by the privacy versus security distinction that deserve further research." Read more

    Monday, February 4, 2013

    Data Protection Laws, an Ocean Apart

    From the article: "Over the years, the United States and Europe have taken different approaches toward protecting people’s personal information. Now the two sides are struggling to bridge that divide.

    On this side of the Atlantic, Congress has enacted a patchwork quilt of privacy laws that separately limit the use of Americans’ medical records, credit reports, video rental records and so on. On the other side, the European Union has instituted more of a blanket regulatory system; it has a common directive that gives its citizens certain fundamental rights — like the right to obtain copies of records held about them by companies and institutions — that Americans now lack." Read more 

    Geeks are the New Guardians of Our Civil Liberties

    From the article: "A decade-plus of anthropological fieldwork among hackers and like-minded geeks has led me to the firm conviction that these people are building one of the most vibrant civil liberties movements we’ve ever seen. It is a culture committed to freeing information, insisting on privacy, and fighting censorship, which in turn propels wide-ranging political activity. In the last year alone, hackers have been behind some of the most powerful political currents out there." Read more

    Thursday, January 31, 2013

    UNCTAD Technology and Innovation Report 2012: Innovation, Technology and South-South Collaboration

    From the report: "Fast-growing South–South trade and investment is an opportunity to ramp up developing countries’ abilities to master market-useful technologies and to bolster their abilities to innovate new products and services, an UNCTAD report says. The Technology and Innovation Report 2012, subtitled Innovation, Technology and South–South Collaboration, was released today. South–South economic cooperation is one of the major global economic developments of the past two decades. Exchanges between developing countries accounted for 55 per cent of global trade in 2010, as compared to 41 per cent in 1995, and this trend is already leading to useful diffusions of technology and innovative capacity, the Report says. Increased South–South exchange can lead to greater technological sharing, in a variety of ways. A first important channel is the import of goods, the Report says, which are used by importing countries to improve their production processes through copying and reverse engineering. Global production networks and foreign direct investment (FDI) are other factors that could promote transfers of technology and technological development in countries." Read more

    Mapping Creates Jobs and Drives Global Economic Growth

    From the article: "The transformation of the maps we use everyday is driven by a growing industry that creates jobs and economic growth globally. To present a clearer picture of the importance of the geo services industry, we commissioned studies from Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and Oxera. What we found is that maps make a big economic splash around the world.

    In summary, the global geo services industry is valued at up to $270 billion per year and pays out $90 billion in wages. In the U.S., it employs more than 500,000 people and is worth $73 billion. The infographic below illustrates some examples of the many benefits of maps, whether it’s improving agriculture irrigation systems or helping emergency response teams save lives." Read more

    Power and the Internet

    From the article: "All disruptive technologies upset traditional power balances, and the Internet is no exception. The standard story is that it empowers the powerless, but that's only half the story. The Internet empowers everyone. Powerful institutions might be slow to make use of that new power, but since they are powerful, they can use it more effectively. Governments and corporations have woken up to the fact that not only can they use the Internet, they can control it for their interests. Unless we start deliberately debating the future we want to live in, and information technology in enabling that world, we will end up with an Internet that benefits existing power structures and not society in general." Read more

    U.S. Kids Need Computer-Science Education

    From the article: "The future of the U.S. economy depends upon technological progress, and learning basic skills like computational thinking and programming are great ways to expose students at an early age to its importance. If the U.S. doesn't follow suit, we will lose out in the global economy.

    By 2018, there will be nearly three times as many job openings requiring computer science knowledge than qualified applicants. This goes well beyond just becoming a professional programmer -- learning computer science can teach problem solving skills, new ways of breaking down complex scenarios, and a means to build something tangible in our software-driven age." Read more

    Hackers in China Attacked The Times for Last 4 Months

    From the article: "For the last four months, Chinese hackers have persistently attacked The New York Times, infiltrating its computer systems and getting passwords for its reporters and other employees.

    ….The timing of the attacks coincided with the reporting for a Times investigation, published online on Oct. 25, that found that the relatives of Wen Jiabao, China’s prime minister, had accumulated a fortune worth several billion dollars through business dealings." Read more

    Consumers Now Trust Microsoft More than Apple with Their Privacy

    Samson, Ted. "Consumers Now Trust Microsoft More than Apple with Their Privacy." InfoWorld, January 29, 2013. 

    From the article: "Big-name tech companies including Hewlett-Packard, Amazon, IBM, eBay, Intuit, Microsoft, and Mozilla are among the 20 most-trusted organizations among American consumers, according to Ponemon Institute's "2012 Most Trusted Companiesfor Privacy." Meanwhile, companies who've made the list in years past -- such as Apple, Google, Facebook, Yahoo, and Dell -- didn't make the cut this time around." Read more

    Smartphone Users' Privacy Betrayed By Their Gadget Sensors, Says Study

    From the article: "Research into smartphone security has revealed that your phone's sensors could help criminals unlock your stolen gadget. And, given that these elements all come as standard on most smartphonemodels, and are not subject to the same controls as other phone functions, they are a bigger security risk. The study was carried out by a visiting professor at Swarthmore College, who analyzed data captured from a smartphone's accelerometer--that's the gadget that analyzes the direction your phone is tilting or moving and turns the screen accordingly, and used for games like Doodle Jump--and found it could be used to work out where someone tapped the screen." Read more

    Who Owns, Controls Social Media Activity?

    From the article: "Now that the use of social media is part of the TV newsroom norm, the industry is wrestling with the next wave of issues associated with the medium — hashing out matters ranging from who owns on-air personalities’ Facebook accounts to delineating between professional and personal tweets.
    Individuals on all sides of the equation, from station group owners to newsroom staffers, are pushing to add more structure to the use of social media both on and off the job, primarily so the practice doesn’t come back to bite them, industry watchers say. 

    The lack of industry wide standards regulating social media practices also is starting to create unexpected problems, particularly for anchors and reporters who, to some degree, are winging it." Read more

    EU Data Supervisor Wants Greater Powers

    From the article: "The European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS), Peter Hustinx, has unveiled a two-year strategy aiming to promote a “data protection culture,” increase oversight of EU institutions, and cut red tape.

    Speaking at an event in Brussels alongside EU justice commissioner Vivianne Reding and EU home affairs commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom, Hustinx on Tuesday (22 January) said the strategy is designed to make the EDPS more efficient and effective." Read more

    Open Data Economy: Eight Business Models for Open Data and Insight from Deloitte UK

    From the article: "The first response concerned Deloitte’s ongoing research into open data in the United Kingdom [PDF], conducted in collaboration with the Open Data Institute.

    Harvey Lewis, one of the primary investigators for the research project, recently wrote about some of Deloitte’s preliminary findings at the Open Government Partnership’s blog in a post on “open growth.” To date, Deloitte has not found the quantitative evidence the team needs to definitely demonstrate the economic value of open data. That said, the team found much of interest in the space." Read more

    Wednesday, January 30, 2013

    Gartner: Social Business Efforts Largely Unsuccessful So Far

    From the article: "Many large companies are embracing internal social networks, but for the most part, they're not getting much from them, according to analyst firm Gartner.

    By 2016, some 50% of enterprises "will have internal Facebook-like social networks," and 30% of these will be considered to be as crucial as email and telephones, a Gartner study announced on Tuesday states.

    However, through 2015, 80% "of social business efforts will not achieve the intended benefits due to inadequate leadership and an overemphasis on technology," according to the report." Read more

    Tuesday, January 29, 2013

    Protecting Online Freedom as the Internet Turns 30

    From the article: "The Internet turned 30 earlier this month. On Jan. 1, 1983, engineers launched the basic protocol for sharing bits between computers, setting in motion the networked world we live in today.

    It’s during anniversaries like these that we have a chance to take stock of this remarkable network and the people who make it what it is.

    As the Internet enters its middle years, we users can no longer take it for granted. It’s more than a cloud. It’s people, technology and physical infrastructure. As with any infrastructure, the Internet needs protection and maintenance to survive; otherwise the wires and signals that send digital communications will cease to function. The online community also needs protections — to prevent our ideas from being blocked, our identities from being hijacked and our wallets from being picked." Read  more

    Twitter Gives Up User Data to Feds 69% of the Time

    From the article: "Twitter has released new numbers showing that the social network complied with government data requests 69% of the time in the U.S., as government requests for user information worldwide continue to rise.

    The total number of information requests increased to 1,009 during the second half of 2012, up from 849 during the first half of the year, according to Twitter's transparency report. Government requests for content removal also increased to 42 from just six." Read more

    Digitization, Innovation, and Copyright: What is the Agenda?

    From the report: "This essay discusses the need for research on the consequences of digitization, as well as the impact of alternative policies governing the creation and use of digital information. This agenda focuses on the development of research to investigate the economics of digitization, to analyze the governance of intellectual property in this sector, particularly through copyright, and to pioneer approaches to analyzing measurement of digitization. This agenda overlaps with many related open questions in organizational and strategy research." Read more

    What Google's Transparency Report Doesn't Tell Us

    From the article: "Google's Transparency Reports, released every six months, are interesting not just for what they reveal about government requests for Internet user data, but also for what they do not reveal...

    The company's latest report, released on Wednesday, shows that the U.S. government again led other nations in submitting the most requests for user data with Google. In the second half of 2012, the U.S. put in 8,438 requests for Internet user data, up 6% from the 7,979 requests it placed in the first six months of the year.

    Between 2011 and 2012, U.S. data requests from Google increased by more than 30%....

    Google's transparency reports do not include requests for user data made by the government under the U.S. Patriot Act, the Foreign Intelligence SurveillanceAmendment Act or through the use of National Security Letters (NSLs). Most of the requests made via these statutes are tied to national security issues and often compel providers to disclose far more data than ECPA subpoenas and court orders permit." Read more

    5 Findings in ONC HIE Research

    From the article: "The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT has published research that aims to help providers and professionals better understand several high-impact services that can sustain health information exchange organizations.

    The research is meant to help professionals who are putting in place health information exchange (HIE) with policy, technical and business-related skills related to query-based exchange, push notification and subscription services, provider directories, master data management and consumer engagement." Read more

    Monday, January 28, 2013

    More Using Electronics to Track Their Health

    From the article: "Whether they have chronic ailments like diabetes or just want to watch their weight, Americans are increasingly tracking their health using smartphone applications and other devices that collect personal data automatically, according to health industry researchers.

    “The explosion of mobile devices means that more Americans have an opportunity to start tracking health data in an organized way,” said Susannah Fox, an associate director of the Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project, which was to release the national study on Monday. Many of the people surveyed said the experience had changed their overall approach to health." Read more

    See also

    Using Twitter to Track the Flu: Researchers Find a Better Way to Screen the Tweets

    From the article: "Sifting through social media messages has become a popular way to track when and where flu cases occur, but a key hurdle hampers the process: how to identify flu-infection tweets. Some tweets are posted by people who have been sick with the virus, while others come from folks who are merely talking about the illness. If you are tracking actual flu cases, such conversations about the flu in general can skew the results.

    To address this problem, Johns Hopkins computer scientists and researchers in the School of Medicine have developed a new tweet-screening method that not only delivers real-time data on flu cases, but also filters out online chatter that is not linked to actual flu infections. Comparing their method, which is based on analysis of 5,000 publicly available tweets per minute, to other Twitter-based tracking tools, the Johns Hopkins researchers say their real-time results track more closely with government disease data that takes much longer to compile." Read more

    More Than 700 Million Smartphones Shipped in 2012 as Apple, Samsung Dominate

    From the article: "A record 700 million smartphones were shipped in 2012, with more than half of those coming from industry leaders Samsung and Apple.

    Samsung shipped an estimated 213 million smartphones — roughly 30 percent of the market — according toStrategy Analytics.

    Apple, meanwhile, saw its shipments rise 46 percent to 135.8 million, giving the company about the same 19 percent of the market it had a year earlier." Read more

    Thursday, January 24, 2013

    Big Data Brings Big Privacy Concerns

    From the article: "Wary of privacy implications of massive data collection systems, the Senate Commerce Committee plans to continue a probe of the industry, coinciding with a separate inquiry underway at the Federal Trade Commission." Read more