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Why the FCC's proposal to reclassify the Internet under Title II is a big win for the Open Internet

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Recently, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler proposed reclassifation of the internet as a Title II communications service.  The move gives the FCC the legal authority it needs to preserve and protect and preserve the Open Internet.

This is a good thing.  Here's a TV interview we did explaining what's going on.

 

KUSI News - San Diego, CA

You can also listen to a more in depth interview here.

Without this reclassification we face the trade-off of improved profits for already hugely profitable companies, in exchange for the internet as we know it. This trade-off is unacceptable to the creators and consumers we serve.

The nature of the internet as an open, accessible network has allowed individuals and businesses to create technologies and services that have transformed our world.  It also has allowed individuals and organizations to speak and communicate with audiences in unprecedented ways. 

Event: Unintended consequences of hyperlocal social apps

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Hyperlocal social platforms, like Yik Yack and Whisper,  are hot right now. But when things turn ugly, or they get into the wrong hands, whose responsibility is it? Who foots the bill for the fallout? The founders and developers who didn't foresee the (negative) possibilities? Parents? Teachers? Consumers? Law enforcement?

Staff Attorney Teri Karobonik will join a panel of other experts on Thursday May 14th to discuss these issues and more at CyberHive's StartUp Breakfast; Unintended Consequences:  Who is responsible when hyperlocal social apps get in the wrong hands?

For more information and to RSVP check out theCyberTECH and CyberHive Startup Incubator Meetup page for the event here.

Staff attorney to speak on "Ethics and Laws in Border Reporting" panel hosted by The National Association of Hispanic Journalists San Diego/Tijuana chapter

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The National Association of Hispanic Journalists San Diego/Tijuana chapter has put together an exciting panel, including our own Staff Attorney Teri Karobonik, which will cover ethical and legal issues related to border reporting. The panel will also discuss what border stories we need to start telling focusing on case studies from the panelists and end with a Q&A.

The panel will take place Saturday March 21, 2015 from 11a.m.- 1p.m.  in U-T San Diego's 3rd floor Meeting Room.  Click here for more information.

Déjà vu: Viacom removes Jonathan McIntosh's Daily Show remix with 2nd abusive DMCA takedown notice

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Recently, remix artist Jonathan McIntosh ( a New Media Rights client and Advisory Board member) has been facing off with Viacom. Viacom sent a second abusive DMCA takedown to the same video, despite withdrawing a DMCA takedown back in 2013.  With our help, Jonathan is appealing the takedown and working to restore the video. The incident highlights the many abusive DMCA and copyright related takedowns New Media Rights has seen over the years, often from large media companies like Viacom.  Read more about the case, and how we're helping Jonathan in this post.

February Newsletter -- Getting results: FCC now considering proposal that would actually protect the Open Internet.

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In this months newsletter:

The FCC's proposal to reclassify the Internet under Title II is a big win for the Open Internet!
Recently, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler proposed reclassifation of the internet as a Title II communications service.  If adopted February 26, the proposal would give the FCC the legal authority it needs to preserve and protect the Open Internet. Executive Director Art Neill sat down with KPBS to discuss why the Federal Communication Commission's new Open Internet rules are necessary to ensure a free and open internet




For more on the Net Neutrality debate and what it means for you, check out our latest blog post on Net Neutrality here.

The Internet is counting on you Senator Wyden

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On January 27, 2015, New Media Rights, along with 6 other organizations and 7,550 concerned Internet users, signed a letter calling on Senator Wyden for his assistance opposing the renewal of “Fast Track" authority [also known as Trade Promotion Authority or TPA].

Particularly, this letter urges Sen. Wyden to stand up to the recently proposed Fast Track bill.  If this bill passed and Fast Track were renewed, Congress would lose its power over trade policy. That power would go directly into the hands of the White House. This would deny Congress the opportunity to review and amend treaties negotiated entirely in secret like the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement and the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).This lack of meaningful review could lead to more extreme regulations which threaten Internet freedom and many of the efforts to reform Intellectual property law in the US. 

As a Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee Sen. Wyden has significant influence on the future of FastTrack. And as a long-time defender of digital rights and outspoken critic of the TTP, it is critical Sen. Wyden knows that once again we need his support. The letter concludes:

Users urge you to stand strong and oppose any new version of trade authority that does not include these critical guarantees of transparency, inclusiveness and accountability…


We are counting on you, as a pioneer in the digital rights movement, to oppose any TPA bill that does not truly address these troubling procedural issues.


Please do not support TPA. The Internet is counting on you.


The coalition of 7 public interest groups signing onto the letter include: Creative Commons, Electronic Frontier Foundation, Internet Archive, Knowledge Ecology International New Media Rights, Open Media International, Public Knowledge. The full text of the letter is attached to this post.

New Media Rights files comments at the Copyright Office supporting the right to jailbreak mobile devices and lawfully reuse video content

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New Media Rights has filed comments with the Copyright Office supporting four specific exemptions to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s anti-circumvention provisions that will protect both internet users and creators' rights under fair use. Exemptions are argued every 3 years, and ensure that accessing copyrighted material for purposes of fair use don't needlessly violate federal law.

Similar to our 2009 and 2012 comments to the Copyright Office, these comments offer direct evidence supporting the right of internet users and video creators to circumvent technological protection measures to a) allow individuals to take control of the apps and services they use on their mobile devices, and b) allow creators, internet users, and filmmakers to reuse video content for fair use purposes. Thanks to our legal intern California Western School of Law 2L Pat McManus for his assistance in preparing these comments.

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