Tag Archives: digital liberty

Manifesto bingo, digital liberty and the internet

I have had a look  at the manifestos and see what they have to say on the internet and Digital Liberty. I have been very influenced by the EDRi voting exchange and summarise the issues of Digital Liberty as e-citizenship, equality before the law, privacy and copyright reform, to which for this election we must add internet governance and industrial & innovation policy. I have created a table summarising the positions of the Tories, Labour, LibDems and Greens. Possibly I should have analysed the SNP manifesto since much of this is Westmister reserved powers. I was hoping to write something easy and quick to read. I don’t think I have succeeded. My super summary is in the figure immediately below, and here is the table I built to help me write this article. (I lost the excel file, so this will have to do!)  My main source was the ORG pages but I have been reading the Labour Manifesto also. I feel that the opposition parties have suffered from the surprise; they probably expected more time to develop their promises. All three opposition parties 2015 manifestos covered these issues in more depth.   … » Read more …

Digital inclusions & democracy

25% of the UK population don’t have broadband, this is higher amongst the poor and the old; it generally costs more than the BBC Licence. Also not all internet users are Facebook users. Facebook (& other social media providers) cannot act as a guarantor of identity in government and political business, partly because they’re proprietary, closed source systems and thus users, citizens and judges do not know what the code does. Digital inclusion is still one of the key political issues to be addressed in the internet age, governments and political parties need to step very carefully when they use social media platforms as a means of understanding people’s views; this is before we consider the anti-democratic nature of survey’s and referenda, you can only answer the questions asked, usually in a binary or scalar fashion. It’s not good enough …..oh yeah & open source.  … » Read more …

Labour & Digital

Trefor Davies of trefor.net commissioned and published an article by me on the state of the politics of digital and its likely impact on the General Election. In the article I classify the issues around citizenship and economics. Obviously the manifesto has not been published and so prediction of its content is not easy. Regular readers will know that I am a supporter of both the Open Rights Group and Privacy International. I have also served on NESSI, the EU’s internet/I.T. R&D project incubator.  I am hopeful on the issues of citizenship, unsure on copyright and intellectual property laws and expect a good offer on digital government.  … » Read more …

The EU D.P. Regulations falls at the hurdle

Glynn Moody, of course,  at TechDirt, syndicates the EDRi scoop about the final stages of the new EU Data Protection Regulation exposing the National Governments’ role in weakening the current legislation which have completed their 1st & 2nd stages. The EDRI have published a document called “Broken Badly” which contains their critique of the Council’s behaviour and positions because they weaken the rules around consent (both authorisation and purpose), corporate sanctions, duty to notify breaches, and the problematic one stop shop for jurisdiction. Correspondence to Chris Grayling I suppose.  … » Read more …

Grandstanding

The gall of Julian Huppert and the LibDems beggars belief. Computer Weekly report that he is campaigning for a Digital Bill of Rights to be included in the LibDem manifesto.  I covered his intervention at OrgCon14 earlier this year. The LibDems have a serious problem in that they made a number of promises which they have broken, most obviously on tuition fees, but others have problems with some of the government reforms on welfare, the bedrom tax, and judicial administration, the introduction of secret courts for cases involving intelligence material. In the policy area of surveillance and digital politics, the LibDems are not as strong as they might like. The computer weekly article states that Huppert is looking to mandate encryption and ban “revenge porn”.   … » Read more …

Campaiging with Politicians

Still at orgcon14, the first session in the afternoon was titled “Campaigning with Politicians”. I wasn’t going to report this since on the whole it wasn’t that good, but it does set the scene for what may be coming and so I changed my mind. The chair opened the session by stating the session would be best used as a campaigning symposium and not treated as a hustings, he might have saved himself the trouble. The three speakers, Jullian Huppert MP (LibDem), Natalie Bennett (Green Party) and Claude Moraes MEP set out their (Parties’) stalls.  … » Read more …

Don’t Spy on Us

dont spy on us

I was at #Dontspyonus day of action earlier today. Since it was more of a conference than a demo, one of the more comfortable I have been on. The plenary sessions were noted at this article at Liberal Democrat Voice. Apart from its cynical LibDem sectarianism, it’s reasonably accurate and gives a good flavour of the speeches made in the plenary sessions, particularly Alan Rusbridger & Cory Doctorow. Alan Walpole presents his report on his blog here. For more and less, you can see English Pen’s curated Storify here.  … » Read more …

I.T. & e-referenda

One of the proposals at the Top of the Manifestos event was loads of e-referenda. (That’s an interesting sentence, the plurals of manifesto and referendum are both unusual.) So apart from the IT security issues, one has to ask, where’s the debate and where’s the evaluation of evidence. Obviously the debate would once have happened in a broadcast world where the cost of a seat at the table was immense and thus the voices of the wealthy are amplified; and this applies to the newspapers as well as the 24 hour news channels such as Sky. The relevance of the print is diminishing, but the TV not so much. Social media platforms are developing new collaboration and voting mechanisms, often specifically to solve issues of governance. But it’s not yet ready. There is little argument that blogging software has empowered many people to express their views which has in some, but not all cases, drawn them into the policy development and analysis.  … » Read more …

Supporting the EDRi Charter

Earlier this month I wrote about the 10 Point Charter for a Digital Society and the voting exchange supporting it. Claude Moraes, Labour’s 1st place candidate on the London List, an incumbent and a leading member of the EU Parliament’s LIBE (Civil Liberties) Committee has already signed it as has Ivanna Bartolleti, who is also on Labour’s London list. Two days ago, I wrote to the remaining London Labour candidates and asked them to also support it. The rest of this article is a synopsis of the argument I used in favour of all 10 points. I said something like this,    … » Read more …

Another brick in the wall of decency

Earlier today, I discovered on Twitter that Claude Moraes, one of London’s two Labour MEPs is backing the wepromise.eu charter which I wrote abut last month here. 10 promises to ensure the internet works for citizens, not corporations, nor the secret police.  … » Read more …

Another voice speaks for an Internet Bill of Rights

Among the voices campaigning for a web/internet fit for people is Sir Tim Berners Lee, the inventor of the world wide web. In this Guardian article here his fears that government’s surveillance and corporations desire to shape traffic for commercial benefit will threaten the interests of the people of this planet.   … » Read more …

Digital Liberty, Labour’s Policy?

I have today, posted a submission to Labour’s YourBritain site, arguing for the Labour Party to support the EDRi’s charter of digital rights. I repeat my categorisation of the charter as supporting citizenship activism, defending privacy from corporate and state surveillance, promoting equality before the law and seeking to ensure a democratically regulated internet. I suggest that this builds on two of the last Labour Government’s greatest democratic reforms, the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act and the Human Rights Act (HRA). I conclude with the proposal that the Labour Party supports the Charter for the European Parliamentary elections and the general election in 2015.   … » Read more …

A digital manifesto for Europe

Perhaps it really is the day we fight back, since the EDRi, the European umbrella digital liberty organisation has over the last couiple of days just launched its manifesto for the European Parliament elections. They have published their manifesto on a pseudo trading site where voters and politicians can pledge their votes and promises in public around the EDRi’s charter which consists of the following 10 points.  … » Read more …