Digital Media Mash Up: January 2012, Week 4

In this Issue

Upcoming Events - In Washington, D.C. and Beyond

In the News:


Upcoming Events - In Washington, D.C. and Beyond

Washington, DC

Can Media Development Make Aid More Effective?
Monday, January 30, 2012, 12:00-2:00 p.m.
The events of the Arab Spring highlighted the potential of digital and traditional media to transform political structures. With the revolutionary power of media catching the world's attention, it is a good time to examine the evidence on media, technology, and development. Do media matter? How effective has donor support to media been? What is the relationship of the media sector to economic development and good governance? How can stakeholders advance policy discussions on aid effectiveness to include independent media assistance?
Featuring: Daniel Kaufmann, Brookings Institution; Mark Nelson, World Bank Institute; Tara Susman-Peña, Internews; Mark Frohardt, Internews; Sina Odugbemi, World Bank
Location: Center for International Media Assistance at the National Endowment for Democracy, 1025 F Street, N.W., Suite 800, Washington, DC 20004

550 Challenge: World Borderless by February 3, 2018
Friday, February 3, 2012, 3:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
The 550 Challenge - the world borderless by February 3, 2018 - promotes the expansion of Internet access to include everyone on earth by the 550th anniversary of Johannes Guttenberg's death. Join us for a panel discussion, hosted by the New America Foundation's Open Technology Initiative, which formulates policy and regulatory reforms to support open architectures and open source innovations in addition to facilitating the development and implementation of open technologies and communications networks.
Featuring: Shalini Venturelli, Professor, American University; Rebecca MacKinnon (@rmack),
Bernard L. Schwartz Senior Fellow, New America Foundation; John Perry Barlow (@jpbarlow),
Co-founder, EFF; Daniel Berninger, Founder, 550 Challenge
Location: New America Foundation, 1899 L St NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20036

Global Internet Freedom and Human Rights Distinguished Speaker Series
Wednesday, February 22, 2012, 12pm
A journalist and an activist, Rebecca MacKinnon examines the intersection of the internet, human rights, and foreign policy. As a senior fellow at the New America Foundation, Ms. MacKinnon examines U.S. policies related to the internet and human rights. Her first book, Consent of the Networked, is a forthcoming publication by Basic Books. She is the co-founder of Global Voices Online, a global citizen media network, and is also a founding member of the Global Network Initiative, a multi-stakeholder initiative to advance principles of freedom of expression and privacy in the information and communications technology sector.
Featuring: Rebecca MacKinnon, co-founder, Global Voices Online, and Bernard L. Schwartz Senior Fellow, New America Foundation
Location: George Washington University School of Law

Beyond Washington

Consent of the Networked: The Worldwide Struggle for Internet Freedom
February 2, 6:00PM
A global struggle for control of the Internet is now underway. At stake are no less than civil liberties, privacy and even the character of democracy in the 21st century. Many commentators have debated whether the Internet is ultimately a force for freedom of expression and political liberation, or for alienation, and repression. In her timely book, Rebecca MacKinnon warns that a convergence of unchecked government actions and unaccountable company practices is threatening the future of democracy and human rights around the world.
Featuring: Rebecca MacKinnon, hosted by Berkman Center for Internet and Society and MIT Center for Civic Media
Location: MIT Media Lab, Silverman Room (E14-648), Boston, MA

In the News

Global Censorship Update

View the Global Censorship Update in a Google Map

Twitter to Restrict User Content in Some Countries
Twitter announced Thursday that it would begin restricting Tweets in specific countries, renewing questions about how the social media platform will handle issues of free speech as it rapidly expands its global user base. (Reuters, 1/27)

International Broadcasters Call for End of Satellite Jamming
Five of the largest international broadcasters have called upon delegates now convening in Geneva for an international treaty-making conference to address the problem of intentional interference with satellite transmissions. The practice, known as "satellite uplink jamming," seeks to disrupt international broadcast coverage. And it is spreading, according to the Directors General of five international broadcast organizations. (BBG, 1/24)

CHINA: As China Reins In Microblogs, Dissidents Find Haven on Twitter
Chinese ringing in the first second of the Lunar New Year on social media bombarded the country's biggest microblogging service with more than 30,000 messages on Monday, roaring past the previous record for a social media site, according to a news release by the company, Sina Weibo, quoted by Chinese news media. "In the first second of the Year of the Dragon, there were 32,312 concurrent posts," Do News, a Chinese-language technology news site, reported, citing a company news release. The report said 481,207 messages were posted over the whole first minute of the year. (New York Times, 1/23)

EGYPT: Nile News Employees Stage Sit-in Protesting Censorship
VIDEO: Egyptian state TV- for decades the mouthpiece of the authoritarian regime - is an ugly towering block of concrete and steel overlooking the River Nile at Maspero in downtown Cairo. In the post-revolutionary era, it is a heavily fortified fortress surrounded by barbed wire and stone barricades. Snipers can be spotted on the rooftop and terraces, and uniformed soldiers with machine guns stand guard outside the main entrances and exits. Corrugated iron gates have replaced the once-glass façade adding gloom to an already tense and inhospitable atmosphere inside the building which houses some 45,000 employees. (Index on Censorship, 1/23)

INDIA: Indian Minister: Don't Want to Shut Websites
The volume of debate over Web censorship in India has reached high decibels lately, especially with a criminal lawsuit against companies including Google Inc. and Facebook Inc. that alleges they hosted objectionable content on their sites in violation of Indian laws. But there are signs the government wants to dial it down a bit and find a solution that doesn't make the companies feel like they're under siege. Milind Deora, Indian Minister of State for Communications and Information Technology, told India Real Time that the government has no interest in banning any websites. That's significant now, because a High Court judge recently threatened to shut down certain sites if they don't find ways to pre-screen content that is objectionable and delete it. (Wall Street Journal, 1/25)

INDONESIA: Atheist Civil Servant Arrested for Blasphemy
A 30 year-old civil servant in the Dharmasraya regency of West Sumatra, identified as Alexander, was arrested Friday for blasphemy after creating a Facebook fan page titled Ateis Minang (Minang Atheist), which was labeled 'liked' by some 1,238 Facebook users. (The Jakarta Post, 1/20)

IRAN: Pattern of Intimidation Is Seen in Arrests of Iranian Journalists and Bloggers
The judicial authorities in Iran have arrested at least half a dozen journalists and bloggers over the past few weeks, according to their acquaintances, opposition Web sites and rights groups. The moves appear to be part of a pre-emptive campaign of intimidation to thwart protests surrounding the parliamentary elections that are scheduled to be held in early March. (New York Times, 1/26)

Digital Media News Affecting Journalists and Activists

Help People Find You On Facebook Using Keywords
Although looking up specific companies on social networks has been a common practice for years, many consumers have now discovered that they can use social networks to actually find a company that deals with the product or service they need. (All Facebook, 1/23)

Ten Ways for Journalists to Protect Themselves and Their Contacts Online
Protecting a source used to be easy. You just kept your mouth shut - even if it meant being fined or being threatened with prison. The internet has made it harder. It's easy to disclose a source without even realising it. And that could have serious consequences for someone who had leaked you some information in confidence. This checklist will help to keep you out of trouble. (Press Gazette, 1/24)

Manual on Excel for Data Journalists
The Centre for Investigative Journalism came out with a handbook this year for journalists who want to master the art of interrogating and questioning numbers competently. Being able to work with figures and investigate numbers is not a new form of journalism but a skill that all journalists can acquire. The handbook, entitled Data Journalism or Computer Assisted Reporting (CAR), focuses on an essential tool in a data journalist's tool belt, the spread sheet. (Data Journalism Blog, 1/24)

@pandaproject, A Newsroom Data App that Provides a Place to Store, Search, and Share Data
VIDEO: Earlier this month PANDA, which helps news organizations better use public information by creating new software that cleans up and helps analyze it, went beta. Users can now test PANDA Project Alpha and give feedback on how it's doing. (Data Journalism Blog, 1/24)

Ten Interesting Articles on Social Media Optimisation
Here are 10 links to provide background reading and listening on interesting facts and figures on SMO. (News Rewired, 1/23)

New York Times Releases Code to Help Journalists Collaborate on WordPress, Other Platforms
More and more journalists use blogging platforms to write and edit stories, but those text editors are pretty basic: It's not easy to see what changes others have made to a post. And two people can open the same post, overwriting one another's edits. The New York Times has solved those problems for online journalists by building a tool that will track changes in a browser-based text editor. (Poynter, 1/23)

Teaching Cyber-Security
Since 2007, Steve Doig, an investigative journalist, has been giving a talk called "Spycraft: Keeping your sources private." He's presented at conferences for Investigative Reporters and Editors and the National Institute for Computer Assisted Reporting, explaining a number of specific technological tips for reporters: using Tor for online anonymity, the benefits of no-contract cell phones, and how to trick keyloggers, among other tools. (Columbia Journalism Review, 1/24)

Update on Digital Media Companies and Outlets

Why Google and Twitter Need to Kiss and Make Up
If Google and Twitter were to describe their relationship in one word, it would probably be "complicated." For the past week or so, the two have been sniping at each other about Google's new social-search features, and how Twitter doesn't show up as high as it should in those results - thanks to what it sees as favoritism of Google's own Google+ network. But this particular brouhaha is only the latest manifestation of a much deeper problem between the two, like a fight over the toothpaste, or who did the laundry last. The reality is that both sides need each other more than they would probably like to admit. (GigaOM, 1/24)

Don't Be Evil Is Not a Slogan Nor a Browser Extension
Earlier this morning, Blake Ross, who was the lightening rod who re-ignited the dying Netscape platform and came up with Firefox, released a "don't be evil" browser extension. The tool essentially allows you to see Google results with social media inputs from Facebook and Twitter and other (if somewhat irrelevant) social networks like MySpace, rather than just those from Google+. (GigaOM, 1/23)

FACEBOOK: Facebook Added $17.6 Billion To European Economy
Facebook has added almost $17.6 billion to Europe's economy, or 15.3 billion euros. So says a Deloitte analysis of the Facebook effect across the 27 countries comprising the European Union. (All Facebook, 1/23)

FACEBOOK: Is A Facebook Newsroom On The Way?
There has been talk for years about the possibility of Facebook entering the news gathering and distribution game in a big way, given its size and the number of links posted to it every day. So today's news that Facebook has purchased a number of Facebook Newsroom-themed URLs shouldn't come as a surprise. (10,000 Words, 1/24)

GOOGLE: Google Launches Good to Know Campaign for Internet Safety
"Google's Good to Know campaign aims to help people stay safe on the Internet and manage the information they share online. The website and ads provide easy to use tips and advice on online security, help on understanding the data users share and tools they can use to manage their data. Written in clear language and featuring practical examples to illustrate complex security and privacy issues, the website and advertising campaign aim to empower users to tackle their online security concerns and make more informed decisions about their internet use. (Be Spacific, 1/18)

GOOGLE: News Agency Chief: Why Google News Doesn't Work
A news agency has expressed unease over how Google News operates and criticised the search engine's reluctance to discuss the "closely guarded" criteria it uses to judge media organisations. (Press Gazette, 1/23)

GOOGLE+: White House Joins Google+ Ahead of State of the Union Speech
The White House is now on Google+ and no, it's not technically a move to help President Obama get reelected -- there is a separate Obama 2012 page for that. So why is the Obama administration now on Google's social network? The State of the Union speech on Tuesday is at least one reason to join Google+. (LATimes, 1/23)

GOOGLE+: Google+ Relaxes Real Name Policy to Allow Pseudonyms
Established pseudonyms can be used to register accounts on Google+ after the social network relaxed its name policy. (BBC News, 1/24)

REUTERS: It's Not TV, It's Reuters TV: Rethinking a News Channel for Online Audiences
VIDEO: "We are deliberately not doing television on the web." As strategies go, that sounds like a solid start for Reuters TV, which launched this week as a YouTube channel and a new destination on But what Barclay Palmer, Reuters global executive producer, was getting at is that, while sharing some commonalities with cable and network news, Reuters TV won't just be CNN, MSNBC, or FOX News recreated for YouTube. That's because Reuters TV is an experiment in just what exactly online video news could become. (Nieman Journalism Lab, 1/22)

RIM Reboots: New CEO, New Board, New Plan to License QNX Software
VIDEO: Blackberry maker Research In Motion had an awful 2011, losing three-quarters of its market value and further ground to competitors on Google, Apple and even Microsoft's platform. But after founder/CEO Mike Lazaridis and co-CEO Jim Balsillie resisted public calls to change course or resign their posts for so long, now that they've done both, it's still something of a surprise. (Wired, 1/23)

SEDARI: Sedari Signs With Dot Moscow Bidders
Sedari has been engaged by the Foundation for Assistance for Internet Technologies and Infrastructure Development (FAITID), a not-for-profit Russian foundation which is preparing applications for the .MOSCOW and .MOCKBA (in Cyrillic) top-level domain names. The implementation of the new top-level domains will make possible websites with addresses such as WWW.COMPANY.MOSCOW and for museums МУЗЕИ.МОСКВА. (CircleID, 1/24)

TUMBLR: Tumblr Blows Past 15 Billion Pageviews Per Month, Thumbing Nose At Old Media Thinking As It Goes
The latest social-media phenomenon, Tumblr, continues to post astounding traffic metrics.
Founder and CEO David Karp spoke at the DLD conference in Munich this morning, where he reiterated some of the company's recent milestones: 100+ million uniques per month, 15+ billion pageviews per month. (Business Insider, 1/23)

TWITTER: Twitter Takes the World: Microblogs Explode Overseas, Attract Global Brands
It's hard to pinpoint the exact moment, but sometime during the last six months the game changed dramatically for Twitter and its overseas imitators. After years of questioning how many people really use Twitter or whether Twitter would ever develop a meaningful business model, the blogosphere started speculating about the date of Twitter's inevitable IPO. This has been accompanied by a surge of investor interest in China's microblogging platforms, known as "weibo," as well as would-be Twitter clones such as Russia's Futubura, owned by, and Singapore's Mig33. (Forbes, 1/22)

TWITTER: Twitter Acquires Second Security Firm in Three Months
If recent acquisitions are any indication, Twitter is beefing up security on its site. On Monday, it acquired Dasient, a three-year-old Internet security start-up, marking Twitter's second security acquisition in just three months. Last November, Twitter acquired Whisper Systems, a security service for mobile devices. Terms for both deals were not disclosed. (New York Times, 1/24)

TWITTER: Is Twitter Finally Ready to Launch in Arabic?
Twitter's long-awaited Arabic interface may be launching soon. The interface has been translated by a global group of volunteers, who are reportedly finishing up Monday, January 23. (IJNet, 1/24)

VIMEO: Vimeo's Massive Redesign Puts Videos Front and Center
Vimeo has rewritten its website from the ground up, introducing a brand new player and multiple new features aimed at improving navigation and discovery of new videos. Built with its user base in mind, the new Vimeo site was designed to reduce clutter and increase the speed with which pages load and videos can be found. (GigaOM, 1/24)

YOUTUBE: YouTube Uploads Hit 60 Hours Per Minute
VIDEO: "Since the dawn of YouTube, we've been sharing the hours of video you upload every minute. In 2007 we started at six hours, then in 2010 we were at 24 hours, then 35, then 48, and now...60 hours of video every minute, an increase of more than 30 percent in the last eight months. In other words, you're uploading one hour of video to YouTube every second." (The Telegraph, 1/25)

Digital Media in the Middle East

Arabic Channel Alhurra Orders Magazine Show About Social Media
Alhurra TV, which is operated by the Middle East Broadcasting Networks (MBN), has called on Mercury Media and ITN (Independent Television News) to produce a weekly half-hour magazine show that will focus on social media, global technology and the Internet. (World Screen, 1/19)

EGYPT: The Current Media Landscape in Egypt
PODCAST: An interview with Hossam Al Hamalawy, Egyptian journalist and activist. (Jadaliyya, 1/21)

EGYPT: "The Egyptian Revolution" One Year Later
VIDEO: "The Egyptian Revolution", a multimedia documentary produced by TrustMedia, the media development wing of the Thomson Reuters Foundation (TRF). (Daily Star, 1/23)

EGYPT: Alhurra and Radio Sawa Mark the Anniversary of the Egyptian Revolution
Alhurra Television and Radio Sawa commemorate the anniversary of the start of January 25th protests in Egypt with more than 10 days of programming examining the reasons behind the protests and the outcome one year later. Starting January 20th, Alhurra and Radio Sawa will dedicate reports within their newscasts, as well as entire programs highlighting the historic revolution. (BBG, 1/23)

EGYPT: You Tweet You Want a Revolution
Book review of "Revolution 2.0: The Power of the People is Greater Than the People in Power, a Memoir" by Wael Ghonim. (The Daily, 1/22)

EGYPT: #Jan25 - One Year Later, Egypt Is Still Struggling for Media Freedom
I'll never forget it. I received a text message and raced over to meet a friend at a bar on a dark street in the Hamra district of Beirut. The place was packed with young and old alike, their faces stretched with emotion as they experienced a sensation unfamiliar to much of the Arab World-that of hope. A massive screen had been set up in a corner as if we were going to watch a World Cup match. Indeed, the anticipation felt much like that of the start of an exciting sporting event, and the subsequent deflation of spirit that followed was as disappointing as a defeat. But this was far more important than any football game. This was freedom at stake. (CIMA Media Blog, 1/25)

KUWAIT: Al-Jazeera Gets Green Light to Reopen Office
Kuwait has allowed pan-Arab news channel Al-Jazeera to reopen its office in the Gulf state more than a year after ordering its closure, the television network's Kuwait director said yesterday. (Kuwait Times, 1/26)

PALESTINE: From Unyielding Cameraman, an Acclaimed Film
Emad Burnat was born to the land and, like generations of his family in this hilltop West Bank village, he has eked out a modest living from its rocky soil. But six years ago, at the birth of a son, he was given a video camera and turned unexpectedly into the village chronicler. (New York Times, 1/23)

TUNISIA: Between Twitter and the Street: Tunisia Celebrates Its Second Independence
A year ago, on this same day and on this same street, Tunisians came united to shout "Dégage" (Leave), a key word of the Tunisian Revolution. Today, they come to celebrate the first anniversary of their revolution. (Open Democracy, 1/23)


AFGHANISTAN: Kabul Innovation Lab Happening This Week
The Innovation Lab consists of two events; the public forum which will be held on 23JAN and then the Lab from 24-26JAN. This forum will be an important networking event for emerging IT developers! The forum will begin with the MoICT presenting recent policy changes for 2012. (Kabul Innovation Lab, 1/23)

BULGARIA: As of February 1 Radio Bulgaria Suspends Shortwave Broadcasts
As of February 1 our media stops broadcasting on short waves, 76 years after the first emission in this frequency range. The reasons are both financial and related to our wish to keep pace with new trends. Programmes in Balkan languages will keep coming in medium waves. As of February 1 you will be able to find and listen to us in the Internet. (Radio Bulgaria, 1/16)

INDIA: Report: Young Urban India Ditches Social Media
The young and educated have been largely responsible for the phenomenal rise of Facebook and other social-media networks in India and elsewhere around the world. But a new report suggests urban Indian students are over social media networks and focusing instead on mobile applications that allow them to talk directly and instantly to their friends. (Wall Street Journal, 1/24)

IRELAND: Is Ireland about to Pass Its Own SOPA?
Any day now, the Government of Ireland will sign a statutory instrument that will give courts the power to grant orders to ISPs and other entities suspected of infringing copyright. This will be done at the stroke of a minister's pen and without any parliamentary debate. (Silicon Republic, 1/24)

LATIN AMERICA: Technology Update: A Crowdsourcing Guide to Latin America
Across Latin America, crowdsourcing, or using a large group of people for a task normally performed by a single person, has become a popular method for citizen participation in law enforcement, public health, consumer rights, and social issues. In particular, a number of websites appeared across the region allowing users to report crimes anonymously through crowdsourcing, due in part to violence against witnesses and journalists. At times crowdsourcing sites pass information on to the appropriate authorities, be it the police, investigative journalists, or government officials, helping connect citizens to government and media. (Americas Society, 1/12)

POLAND: Polish Websites Attacked After Government Signs ACTA
While United States Congressional members have been experiencing uproar with the SOPA/PIPA controversy, Poland's gotten into its own legislative crisis regarding a different Internet censorship bill. Immediately following the government's announcement of its planned signing of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, several public administration sites were compromised, including that of the prime minister. Anonymous is claiming to be behind the hacks. (Open Net Initiative, 1/24)

DLD Munich

DLD Conference Website

Internet Policing and Copyright Protection Must Be in Balance: EU
Governments must strike a balance between policing the Internet to protect copyright and upholding freedom of expression, EU justice commissioner Viviane Reding said Sunday. (National Post, 1/22)

EU Proposes 'Right to Be Forgotten' by Internet Firms
A new law promising internet users the "right to be forgotten" will be proposed by the European Commission on Wednesday. It says people will be able to ask for data about them to be deleted and firms will have to comply unless there are "legitimate" grounds to retain it. (BBC, 1/23)

Europe's 'Right to Be Forgotten': Privacy as Internet Censorship
The European Commission is apparently set to adopt formal rules guaranteeing a so-called "right to be forgotten" online. As part of the Commission's overhaul of the 1995 Data Protection Directive, this new regulation will mandate that, "people will be able to ask for data about them to be deleted and firms will have to comply unless there are 'legitimate' grounds to retain it," the BBC reports. (Tech Liberation Front, 1/23)

Data and Privacy Rears Its Head at DLD
It's only day one of DLD, the annual TED-like conference in Munich thrown by German media giant Burda, and already we have a few misunderstandings brewing. Amid the furor surrounding the SOPA protests and lobbying form media companies, at the other end of the debate-spectrum, the European Commission, in the shape of EC vice-president Viviane Reding, has been looking at harmonising privacy and personal data in Europe. (TechCrunch, 1/22)

EU Data-Privacy Rules to Make Breach Disclosures Mandatory Within 24 Hours
A European Union proposal to simplify and toughen the region's data-protection rules will require companies to disclose data breaches within 24 hours of their occurrences, Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding said. The EU will this week outline an overhaul of its 17-year- old data-protection policies addressing online advertising and social-networking sites. (Bloomberg, 1/22)

Blocking The Net 'Not The European Option' -- EU Commissioner Reding
One of the useful side-effects of the groundswell of protest against SOPA and PIPA is that a surprising number of people in positions of power have come out against their approach, notably in Europe. First, we had Neelie Kroes, Vice President of the European Commission responsible for the Digital Agenda for Europe...And now she's been joined by her colleague, Viviane Reding, EU Commissioner for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship. (TechDirt, 1/24)

Jack Dorsey: Twitter's Not Really Social
What are the most important words to describe Twitter versus its competitors? "Public," "real-time" and "simplicity," said Twitter co-founder and executive chairman Jack Dorsey today in a talk at the DLD conference in Munich. (All Things D, 1/22)

Twitter Is Much More than Social: Co-founder Dorsey
Twitter is much more than a social network and has no time to waste worrying about newcomers like Google+ (GOOG.O) as it becomes more important as an information service and builds its advertising business, co-founder Jack Dorsey said on Sunday. (Reuters, 1/23)

Felix Salmon: How Sharing Disrupts Media
I'm at DLD in Munich, where David Karp of Tumblr and Samir Arora of Glam Media helped me understand the way that media and publishing are evolving these days, and the way in which creating, editing, and publishing are increasingly separate things which interact with each other in fertile and unpredictable ways. There are lots of ways of publishing content onto the web, and if you look at the relative popularity of, say, WordPress vs Tumblr vs Twitter, then it's easy to come to the conclusion that the easier you make it to publish, the more popular you're going to be. But at Tumblr, at least, there's something else very interesting going on: according to Karp, there are nine curators for every creator on his site. (Wired, 1/24)

The Europe Roundup: Twitter to Hire a Team in Germany
Yesterday, at the DLD conference in Munich, Twitter chairman Jack Dorsey announced that the company is about to add another European staff in Germany. The team will be the third one for Twitter in Europe, after ones in London and Dublin.(Tech President, 1/23)

Around the Blogosphere

Global Policy Weekly
Internet Openness, Free Expression, Privacy (Center for Democracy and Technology, 1/22)

Can We Create Solitude on the Web?
VIDEO: Can we graft our humanity and our souls onto the web-using the Internet to craft a life story which grows in richness over time? In the 19th century, the Romantic poet Wordsworth famously stated: "all good poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings; it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquility." Jonathan Harris, who spoke at the MIT Media Lab last Monday, is trying offer something similar with his new storytelling platform Cowbird. (MIT Center for Civic Media, 1/14)

Online Safety: Technology Has Changed Our World
Chances are you are not a cybersecurity expert. Well, neither am I. The last computer class I took was DOS programming in 1987. But my family and I do spend much of our time online, as I'm sure many of you do, and I now work for a computer security organization - the national not-for-profit Center for Internet Security. I spend my days spreading the message about staying safe online, and I'm thrilled to be writing this new column so I can share easy, "non-techy" tips about how to keep you and your family protected. (Heritage, 1/22)

#mediamonday: Changing the Climate of Training for Journalists
Tornadoes touching down in ice storms. Tsunamis wiping out cities. Drought and famine destroying populations. All of these are stories the media has had to report in recent times. Journalists need to know how to write about these events, and training programs on environmental reporting are popping up in universities and media training centers across the warming globe. (CIMA Media Blog, 1/23)

The Internet Begins Discussing What To Do With Its New Found Powers
Even before last week's "uprising" by the internet, lots of people had been talking about how the larger internet generation needed to be more engaged in policy issues. This was part of the very reason that I helped start the new organization Engine Advocacy over the past couple months -- because of the belief of a group of folks that there needed to be a conduit of education both between the wider "internet" and policy makers... and in reverse. Along those lines, you can't imagine how thrilling it's been over the past few days to see hundreds of people suddenly coming to similar realizations. (TechDirt, 1/23)

AFRICA: Predicting the Future: the 2012 African Tech Space
This year, Afrinnovator started 2012 by sharing 12 predictions for the African technology scene. These predictions touch on a number of industries such as health care, media, and business (to name a few) and present an exciting 2012 for the continent. (NDI Tech, 1/24)


Q&A: Copyright Enforcement Vs. Censorship -- Impact Of 'Megaupload' Case
Joss Wright, a researcher at the Oxford Internet Institute at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom, speaks to RFE/RL correspondent Ron Synovitz about the possible impact of the Megaupload copyright case on Internet freedoms around the world. (Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1/23)

ITU Member States Urged to Guarantee Freedom of Information
As a plenipotentiary conference of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) gets under way today in Geneva, Reporters Without Borders urges this UN agency's member countries to give clear undertakings to guarantee freedom of information and the free flow of ideas and opinions, and to sanction countries that use censorship and violate the fundamental right of access to news and information. (Reporters Without Borders, 1/23),41751.html

Forget SOPA, Europe Is about to Ratify Its Bigger Brother ACTA
Just as the SOPA and PIPA debate winds down in the US, the European Union is later this week set to work on ratifying a global intellectual property enforcement treaty: the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. (Silicon Republic, 1/23)

YouTube Space Lab Finalist Turns to Snowflakes for Cosmic Answers
When most people think about the science of snowflakes, they tend to bring up that old adage that no two snowflakes are alike. But for Emerald Bresnahan, a 17-year-old from Plainville, Mass., snowflakes hold a much more interesting scientific concept - one that could provide clues to how galaxies are formed. (Washington Post, 1/23)

Not Lovin' It: McDonald's Eats Humble Pie after Twitter Backlash
McDonald's has admitted a venture into social media backfired when a Twitter campaign designed to spread good news about the fast-food giant was hijacked by unhappy eaters. (The Independent, 1/24)


The Numbers Just Keep On Getting Bigger: Social Media And The Internet 2011 [STATISTICS]
Did you know that there are now more than a billion social media profiles, representing around half of all internet users worldwide? Or that 44 percent of all online users are in Asia, and that China accounts for 485 million people, even with a countywide internet penetration of just 36.3 percent? (All Twitter, 1/23)

Report from the Internet Privacy Workshop
It's been a long time coming, but last week saw the publication of RFC 6462, the Report from the Internet Privacy Workshop. The workshop, which was jointly hosted by the Internet Architecture Board (IAB) and others in December 2010, brought together experts from industry and the Internet standards community to better understand the role of privacy in Internet standardization work. (Center for Democracy and Technology, 1/23)

Mapping Digital Media: Social Media and News
The Open Society Media Program has commissioned background papers on a range of topics that are important for understanding the effects of new technology on media and journalism. The papers accompany a series of reports, "Mapping Digital Media," on the impact of digitization on democracy in 60 countries around the world. (Open Society Foundations, 1/17)

MENA: From Media Revolution to Street Revolution Twenty Years of Arab Commercial Satellite Television
These proceedings are the result of a symposium titled "From Media Revolution to Street Revolution: Twenty Years of Arab Commercial Satellite Television" hosted by Northwestern University in Qatar. The aim of the symposium was to bring together media scholars and professionals to develop a framework for teaching and researching media in the Arab world. (Northwestern University, January 2012)

BAHRAIN: Justice Denied in Bahrain: Freedom of Expression and Assembly Curtailed
This report documents the findings of a delegation comprised of representatives from six international rights groups (three members and three partners of the International Freedom of Expression Exchange, IFEX), which carried out a fact-finding mission between 20-30 November, 2011, in order to gain an understanding of the state of free expression and the status of human rights defenders in Bahrain.1 The 11 recommendations made in this report include calls to end the harassment, imprisonment and prosecution of Bahraini citizens for what essentially amount to persecution of free expression and legitimate human rights work. The mission team was composed of the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI), Front Line Defenders, the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR), Index on Censorship, International Media Support (IMS) and the Writers in Prison Committee (WiPC) of PEN International.
(International Mission to Bahrain Report, January 2012)