May 14, 2007

Master Final Project Gallery

Journalism on the Web by Matt Krieger (35.11 MB. Low-bandwidth version here, 9.65 MB)
A Texas Showdown Regarding Online Communities by Scott Szesterniak

The Influence of the Internet on the Music Industry by Pierre Tomi
From iTunes to BitTorrent by Matt Erickson
The Internet: Opening Up a New Level of Vulnerability by Nick Johnson
Online Social Habits, Pt 1 and Part 2 by Carl Cassel
The Truth About Gender Online by May Her (a series, so keep clicking along through it)
Identity Theft by Paul Thind (also a series)

Digital Divide by Julia Thieschafer
Grandpa, Tell Me About Filesharing by Richard Sletten
Indie Music Kid vs The Intern by Andrew Ranallo

Digital Books and Hypertexts
Intellectual Property by Nicole Harder
Virtual Community: History and Implications by Elizabeth Grant
The Internet as a Crisis Communication Tool by Amber Rose Bjerke

Internet Crime, It’s No Laughing Matter by Julie Swenson
The Affect of the Internet on the Political Arena by Mike Doyle
To Protect Yourself from an Internet Predator by Mark Mahan
Digital Divide: Urban and Rural by Lucas Sjostrom
The Internet and Public Radio by Neil Fahlstrom
Podcast TCarr: Filesharing and DRM by Travis Carr
Internet Crime by Erin Milbrath
Filesharing, by Nick Miller.
Internet Advertising by Jamie Johnson, with special bonus video:

May 4, 2007

Net Madness!

I am sorry for the late post, as I was busy finalizing my final project and didn’t realize that we had a blog for this week until now. Anyhow, how think this week’s topic is very interesting. Net Neutrality is definitely a new concept to me. I didn’t realize that this was going on, and that our familiar way of accessing and using the world wide web, is at stake.

I had a difficult time really grasping the concept of Net Neutrality from the readings and links for this week. So I decided to resort to YOUTUBE and check out some videos on Net Neutrality to grasp a better understanding. I really got a good description of the concept from this video below:

I think by taking away the neutrality from the net, you are going to upset A LOT of people. Sure large corporations want to make an extra buck or two, but there are doing it at the cost of billions of people. If I pay an internet provider monthly for high-speed access to the internet, I want to be able to access the sites I am comfortable and familiar with using. They phone companies should have thought about this when they first started offering internet access to their customers. I think by making things more complex, for their own benefit, which in turn means slower access to users, is selfish and not really looking out for the customer’s best interest. It’s interesting to hear that the government isn’t too concerned with this issue. I wonder how serious it has to become before they start to care.

May 3, 2007

I can't resist

I did not know Leslie Hall existed until five minutes ago, but now I'm a fan. Because the world needs more metallic jumpsuits!

the Digg HD-DVD revolt visualized

via Information Aesthetics: “the movie shows the different visualization techniques from digg labs, showing how diggers disappear along with the stories as Digg deletes them.”

Also see my post from yesterday on the topic.

so much Internet, so little time 2: VoiP

Ramona asks about VoIP, or Voice Over Internet Protocol, which is another thing we didn't have time to cover in depth this semester. There’s a good overview article on the O'Reilly Network. The app most used in my circles is Skype (more here). Matt’s midterm paper broadened my horizons a bit, and he pointed out that Ventrilo and TeamSpeak are heavily used in gaming circles.

May 2, 2007

The Ignorance of the Masses?

I actually think it is a little funny that one man was able to misdirect an entire nation, all in an effort to merge a company. It is actually laughable. The whole story actually reminds me of a similar Wag the Dog tale form the 1950’s. Back then, a few Senators owned major shares in the Chiquita Banana Corp. However, as often happened in South America in the 1950’s Communist Gorillas were threatening to take over the county where their Banana plantations were situated…these men stood to loose everything.

So what is a Senator to do…call a friend in Hollywood. You see, The movie industry created that war in South America…right down to the fake bombs droped from derelict WWII dive bombers…they fooled the entire American public into thinking the Communists were taking over…when in actuality, there were no Communists, the government there only wanted to nationalize the Bannana Company to get rid of the American Business men. However, because of this fake war, Red frightened Americans supported military support to the Senator puppet, and the rest is history, a Military Coup, and the Senators kept their plantations, but duping the American people. It is even said the President Eisenhower, upon hearing this…leaned back in his chair and laughed.

This is just like Witachers duping of America over his merger. He made it look as though there was going to be this big change in the internet…and then used his merger to promise not do the thing he worried everyone to death that was on its way…he’s making billions…we have eggs on our face. Bravo. Thus proving the ignorance of We the People.

The Real Truth of Net Neutrality

I think that net neutrality is something that is our given right to watch, see, whatever we want on the Internet. The content that is on the Internet should be available for whatever I want to see. I think that big corporations shouldn't be able to control what we see online. I think the content that I want to see should be available fast and should not be blocked for any reason. I pay for the Internet and the government or anyone else shouldn't be able to stop me from seeing whatever content that I want. From the article, "So the AT&T lobby came out swinging with a crude, fundamentalist libertarian argument - Government is bad, and don't mess with big business." (Orlowski, 1). I think that AOL standing up for neutrality is good and bad. My feeling is that then they can come in the way of bashing Google or another site.

The content that we see online needs to remain free, free from big corporations or the government telling us we can't see something or can't post something on the Net. I think in order for this to be an open forum for all, we have to all take a stand and tell big business that we don't want you to block us from what we want to see. Like I said earlier, I pay money to get on the Internet, I spend a lot every 2.5 years or so on a new laptop or desktop computer and I should be able to view whatever content I want to view on the net.

Peeling the onion that is Net Neutrality

I think it is pretty hard for most people to know what isn’t showing up, or why our searches give us the hits they do, and in what order. Coupled with the expectation that if something doesn’t exist on the ‘net (or more accurately, isn’t easily findable) we think it doesn’t exist period. I think this combination of ignorance and apathy about media consolidation will make it possible for AT&T (or any powerful business and their lobbyists) to change the way Internet information flows. Orlowski refers to the "online culture that thrives on conspiracy theories and paranoia" as one reason that our collective attention can be so easily manipulated.

The media is owned by a handful of giant corporations, none of whom must look too kindly on relatively anarchistic technologies like the Internet that enable people to step outside the choices those companies offer. It doesn't earn them any money when (like we discussed a few weeks back) we decide to turn off the TV and its 18 minutes of commercials per hour to look at our fellow yay-hoos horsing around in front of their own cameras.

That’s what business is about, making money, whether it’s by delivering an audience to advertisers or by charging for access to commercial-free content. It is completely unsurprising that AT&T, Google, etc. would do whatever they can to make the most money.

I was relieved to read Orlowski's quote of Martin Geddes: "There is no "neutral" space devoid of favouring the interests of particular market players. The contradiction is inherent." This seems to be the puzzle in more heads than just my every situation (political, business, informational) there are winners and losers, and it's not always possible to figure out who those winners and losers really are.

Neutral as Black and White

Hi everybody. I'm actually having regrets about posting this last blog. This has been so much fun!

I guess I would take a more militant stance on net neutrality if I understood in more. In a way I've come full circle in this course, and am once again feeling like kind of a dummy. I did not understand all of the acromymns Orlowski used to explain the matter. VoIP? Anyone?

I liked how both sides say consumers will pay--this seems like a good subject for a student of rhetoric to dismantle. The truth is that no one can tell the future. Perhaps this debate will be something that sidetracks us from seeing a really big picture--kind of like the Apple vs. IBM war in the early 80s, which totally did not see Bil Gates with his purloined windows operating system taking over the planet. But I digress.

I feel that the telephone companies do not need to be paid for the use of their sytstem if the government was already paying them in the 1990s. I agree with the talking head in the Human Lobotomy spot, that telephone companies did not invent the Internet, so why should they find a way to profit? Also, I agree that the way the net is used, content created by business, nonprofits, and regular joe consumers--each given equal value and access, is just fine. I think narrowing possibilities so we can play movies on our computer (what's wrong with a TV?!?!?) does not add up.

I'm a little nonplussed, though, that Whitacre's few comments, supposedly made innocently enough, created this firestorm of net-community activism. If you look at it content-wise, as Orlowski tried to do, the pro-net neutrality arguments make as little sense as the cable/telecom arguments--because neither side really knows what it really meant. Thus by participating in emotional rumor-mongering, the pro-neutrality camp nearly proves the anti-newtrality camp right. We really are bunch of Wikipedia dweebs who don't know what we are talking about.

Nearly. I think it is time to take a page from Courtney Love's page and look at legislation that is being written by assistant's and passed in the dead of night. Therein we will find the truth. I just hope it will not be too late.

Man, this sounds so pessimistic! Sorry to end on this sour note. You all have been a pleasure.

Net Neutrality Nowadays-- Not Necessarily!

Again, I have to say WOW. Sometimes I feel like I am living in a cave after reading the articles for the week. I have never really thought or learned about Net Neutrality until this week. I didn’t think about whom or what is controlling what I view or how it is monitored or who is actually providing it for me. I am aware that in some nations government can control what is available to view. But, for Americans I always thought that we could see what we want, when we want and as fast as we want (As long as we are of age, have time and money to pay for a fast connection.) But, I never thought this privilege or right could or would be taken away. It would be quite the day when some things downloaded faster than others and if companies like AT&T or Comcast controlled what google could or could not do. When business’ struggle for power and control it does start to get messy. I guess I do not know who should have rights in the case of AT&T and online companies. But, I am guessing since there are more companies like google online, they would win. In conclusion, my overall thoughts are that we will just have to wait and see what type of new controversies or ideas arise online, and what will be the trigger for more direct change to net neutrality.

Say no to Swiss neutrality when it comes to net neutrality!

Over that past eight years, I have really come to cherish the internet. It's such a dynamic way to gather information and communicate with people. All users have the opportunity to create things online. As mentioned by the "Humanity Lobotomy" video, this simple right could be under threat. Telecommunication companies seem to want more control over the internet. As the video said, this could turn the internet into a one way device, much like radio and television.

Over the past few years especially, I have held the internet in high regard because it seems to be taking the place of television journalism. In the past, television news outlets did a better job reporting the news. News programs were willing to broach difficult topics. But now, there seems to be a genuine reluctance to report on anything that may be controversial or anything that could hurt their parent corporations stock prices.

Author Ben Bagdikian claims that, in 1983, 50 corporations owned the majority of all news media. As of 2004, that umber has fallen to just 5. This to me does not seem healthy. The press is supposed to be the unofficial fourth branch of the government. Since the TV press has gone soft, guess which medium has taken the place of television in regards to reporting the news? That's right, the internet.

If the telecom companies have their way and gain control over the internet, we could be in trouble. We really need to make sure that the internet stays a public domain. I sure don't want the internet turned into their corporate vision of how they want it. It would probably look like our physical world. A McDonalds on every corner and a Target or Wallmart within spitting distance. Ick! As Orlowski showed us in his article, these big corporations want it all.

It's our country. I'm all for creativity. The world needs a place to express themselves.

Have a good summer my invisible classmates!

Is the Internet becoming another one-way highway?

Net neutrality is a very interesting topic. Although Ed Whitacre, and other who share his point of view, claim that net neutrality is not going to choke off indepednet websites, that doesn' mmean there won't be power abuse in the future. Companies like AT&T are not intersted in looking out ofr the small people, all they care about is satisfying their greedy bank accounts. This is clearly shown by their desire to own the Internet. Enough will never be enough, so they need to settle. I oppose net neutrality; the Internet is one of the fastest and most efficient communication mediums in our time and should not be limited to the consumers. I don't see why people can't have unlimited and inexpensive access to the Internet. Why should this communication highway become a higher priced commodity? It is clear to me as daylight that this is just the start in large corporations putting a price tag, surveillance, and limitation to ALL of our entertainment and communicaiton mediums. It has already started in the radio and TV broadcasts.

The "Humanity Lobotomy" discussed how 99% of TV programs and radio broadcasts are one-way communication channels. The Internet is the last communication toll that is mostly comprised of everday people's websites, music, blogs, etc. I don't think that its fair to cut their channel and make it one way just like the radio broadcasts and TV channels. I don't want to say mean things baout Ed Whitacre, and others like him, but its because of people like him, who only look out for the best interest of their wallets, that this country will face social chaos and political uproar. I agree with "Mumbo Jumbo" that net neutrality is bad for consumers. I believe the price we'll pay will span deeper than our pockets. Our greatest price will be paying for freedom of speech.

Why Can't We Just Share?

Net neutrality is a concept that not many people have ever heard of. My guess is that not many people out of the technology industry actually know what it is, I know that I had never heard of it before I had read and watched about it. It really is a scary concept, if things being going the corporate way, the public may not like the way the Internet is headed. It seems as if corporations are asking for people to go away from the Internet, because the use of the Internet will not be neutral anymore. Technology has found a way to keep corporations from showing advertisements with the invention of TIVO. Therefore, companies must find a way to show their ads quickly and without loading time so people don't have a chance to delete the ad. Is net neutrality a violation of the constitution? Is it violating any of our rights? Dan Gillmor, journalist, says, "This is horrendous, It's a threat not just to Citizens Media (sic) but to democracy itself."

We can compare the path of the Internet to that of print. As stated in "Human Laboratory", where the narrator states that, "Once commercialized, newspapers became a one directional medium, no longer benefiting from the contributions of everyone." This same thing has occurred with radio and television. However, people never thought that this could happen to the Internet. But what happens when the Internet is taken over? Corporations have already began posting on Youtube, taking the place of poster videos, Youtube already sold out to corporations and many videos that should not have been taken down, have. If this is the past the Net is taking blogs will disappear, message boards will be of no use, and wikipeida will be a distant memory. While Bittorrents may be a bad thing for the entertainment industry, what is going to happen to those bands that have received record deals because of the Internet? Independent music will go back to trying to get airtime on local radio and independant filmmakers will have to pray their video is accepted into a film festival. If net neutrality is destroyed, the voice of the public will once again be silenced by big corporations and I do not know if there will be another way we could have our voices heard again.

Pardon our freedom

Very very interesting videos and article this week! I had absolutely no idea about what the Net neutrality was and how crucial it was for the future of Internet. I thought it was pretty alarming, even if I have to admit that I did not get everything. The beautiful thing with Internet until now is this complete freedom that the users can enjoy: freedom of writing anything, communicating with anyone they want to, read everything, or consume any kind of media when and how they want to.
Putting gates to that freedom would mean the end of Internet, for sure. The paralel with newspapers and radio, made in the second video, is quite interesting. The interesting thing is that it happened everywhere (at least everywhere in western societies) and not only in the US. However, I was wondering (and I absolutely don't know the answer) what would happen if AT&T and Time Warner gain what they want to (on this point, I did not understand everything) but at the same time, all the other countries would refuse it. As we said earlier, Internet does not have any borders, and the materials is available for everyone, everywhere... I know that French people are pretty touchy with everything that deals with freedom online, and such laws or actions by French Internet providers would be impossible right now.
How would that work online, with different rules between providers in different countries? I am really asking, because I have no idea.

Anyway, I'll try to get more informed about net neutrality and to inform the people I know.


With the issue of "net neutrality" being as large as it is made to seem, it is alarming to me that this is the first I've heard of it. It seems as though it is an important issue, regardless of whether or not is was nothing more than a coupe de grace conspired by Whitaker. And yet, what the actual meaning of new neutrality is has managed to escape me, as there is not really a solid definition (at least that I could find, and that seemed at least semi-reputable). Even so, I was so alarmed after watching the video clip outlining the isue that I immediatly copied and pasted the text to embed it in my personal blog. As far as Whitaker's comments regarding the use of his pipelines, I didn't see that as too big of an issue, other than the way in which he implies the "internet pipelines" are his to regulate. It never occured to me that companies such as Google should get free access to the internet, it is not a recent thing, that a higher bandwidth server costs more than the similar product utilizing a smaller bandwidth. Even if all of this makes a few rich people even richer, I still don't have a problem, but the second that the internt itself, the way in which it functions and the freedoms in which I have been able to enjoy ever since they were there to enjoy, becomes threatened, that is when I start to have a problem. The thing is, at this point in time (and if this is the direction that this is going) it is too difficult to tell whether this is nothing more than a myth. Better to address the issue now, even if it may be a myth, than to wait until it is too late to do anything about it.

With people reacting the way they are to the Digg issues now, I can't see the integrity of the internet being comprimised.

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