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Stop the Secrecy

ABC: Internet Freedom on a global scale

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:18 -- OpenMedia

Citizens worldwide are continuing a campaign for NetFreedom in speaking out against dangerous trade treaties and legislation that would compromise Internet security.

We've seen the defeat of CISPA, the death of ACTA and small steps taken within other countries in halting discussions pertaining to online spying. Even during the current negotiations of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, we were able to find a way to make your voices heard through our online tool OpenTheTPP.net.

Now, in advance of the upcoming American election, both political parties have made mention to Internet freedom as a detrimental part of their platforms going forward. Let's keep our governments aware the Internet is much more than a political hot topic; it's a tool of connectivity and creativity that deserves their utmost respect and attention. Sign on to the Internet Freedom Declaration and let your voice be heard.

Article by Leslie Harris for ABC News

With the U.S. in high political season, partisan rhetoric is in no short supply. But one area of agreement stands out: both parties have put solid endorsements of Internet freedom in their political platforms.

Common to both the Democratic and Republican platforms are vows to defend the Internet's core values of openness, innovation and free expression and to resist current efforts to shift control of the Internet toward governance by an international organization. All well and good, but can partisanship be laid aside when platform platitudes are replaced by real world policy debates?

The campaign to defeat SOPA and PIPA (the two bills last year that were meant to protect copyrighted material, but at the expense of Internet freedom) suggests that it is possible for a politically diverse group to come together to defend a set of shared values without the corrosive atmosphere of partisan politics.

In the next year and beyond, the president and Congress will have ample opportunity to turn the SOPA moment into a lasting bipartisan effort to take on challenging Internet issues and resolve them in a manner that protects Internet openness, enhances our freedom and encourages innovation. Here are some of those issues on the agenda:

Cybersecurity

Despite years of a consistent drumbeat from government officials and an emerging "Cyber Industrial Complex," about the vulnerability of America's critical infrastructure to malicious hacking, Congress failed to pass a cybersecurity bill this summer after differences over industry regulation stopped the bill in the Senate. The Senate could try again this month or during the lame duck session, but I'm betting the issue will carry into next year for the new Congress to deal with.

Beyond resolving disagreements on regulation, Congress has to ensure that privacy is not compromised while enhancing the security of government and private sector networks. At the top of my list is keeping the NSA from being the primary agency receiving our communications information for cybersecurity purposes.

Meanwhile, the White House is mulling over whether and if it can deal with some cybersecurity issues through an executive order. That route has some support in the SenateRead more»

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