Other jurisdictions

Technology policy outside of Canada

Netherlands Government Goes Open Source

In yet another blow to vendor lock-in and proprietary software standards, the Associated Press is reporting that the Dutch Government on Wednesday adopted laws requiring all national agencies to use the Open Document Format by April 2008. Even state and local agencies are required to comply by 2009; though there is flexibility in the new policy - agencies can chose to use proprietary standards, such as MS Office, but they must justify use. The new laws also mandate the use of FOSS in all agencies in a similar manner, for cost savings and accessibility reasons.

GOSLING, eat your heart out!

U.S. copyright protection group wants Canada blacklisted

An ITBusiness.ca article by Paolo Del Nibletto starts with, "Before I start explaining what the International Intellectual Property Alliance is doing, I wish to say what a load of crap this all is." The editors at ITBusiness rightly suggest that, "Harper has more important things to do than pander to these interests".

What the Democrats' win means for tech

There is a good article by Declan McCullagh and Anne Broache of CNET News.com that summarizes some of the technology law issues. I have my reservations about the Democrats, considering they brought in the controversial policy behind the DMCA (If technology can be abused to disrupt established content industry business arrangements, then private citizens shouldn't be allowed to own/control this technology).

This issue is really not about partisanship, but about the knowledge and experience of individual policy makers. In Canada we had a major shift in our leftmost elected party (the NDP) with their Heritage critic changing from a playwrite to an independent musician. The playwrite held the line that technologies or business models that disrupted established content industry arrangements should be regulated away, while Mr. Angus recognizes the value both of new technologies and new business models for creators and the general public.

I will be interested to see what the thinking is of some of the newer additions to the US government.

Haaretz - Israel News: American Fundamentalism

This article by Yuval Dror includes:

The U.S. is one of the world's most zealous protectors of its citizens' intellectual property. But this American zealotry has recently crossed the line into fundamentalism. At the urging of American record and film companies - some of the wealthiest U.S. corporations, which donate millions of dollars to politicians - the U.S. enacted draconian laws that have no parallel elsewhere in the world, whose sole goal is to supply protection that borders on the absurd to cultural works that

Do you trust the US election results? I don't!

While I predicted the winner that the DRE vendors would return, I would be skeptical of the results of the election regardless of who the winner was. From the short-lived poll on the Globe and Mail website it suggests that other Canadians are also skeptical. I wonder what the election results would be if someone tabulated only the ballot results, excluding the ballot-less DRE machines.

Fortunately there are groups in the USA that will be working hard to expose this potential or abused method of electoral fraud. Black Box Voting has sent in a huge Freedom of Information request.

e-Week: Integrity of Florida E-Voting in Doubt

This e-Week article by Rachel Konrad, AP Writer includes:

This time, the outrage wouldn't be over dimpled, pregnant and hanging chads; the state banned the maligned punch cards after 2000. Instead, it would almost certainly be directed at those who decided on the touch-screen machines.

Computer scientists, practically as a profession, don't trust them—not without a range of safeguards that aren't in place for this election. They say the touch screens now in use could alter or delete votes—and th

Boom Chicago Video: Bush Wins Florida!

This video by Boom Chicago is quite telling:

With Jeb Bush as governor, and voting machine maker Diebold contributing to the Republican party, this might be what voting is like across Florida on Nov 2.

Would President Kerry defang the DMCA?

This News.com story by Declan McCullagh includes:

John Kerry finally has hinted at a position that would mark one of the first real differences from his Republican rival.

In a barely noticed remark on Thursday, the Democratic senator said he might support defanging the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA)--the unpopular law that has prompted take-to-the-street protests from the geek community.

US election on the Internet.

There are a few interesting political animations relating to the US which I wanted to point people to:

Code=Law: Computer Problems Already Affecting Florida Voters

An article on SlashDot titled: Computer Problems Already Affecting Florida Voters prompted me to write an article about ICT fraud in the DCC mailing list.

As I am drafting my mini auto-biography I have also written down related thoughts in the Code is law section.

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