Beanstalk on Google+ Beanstalk on Facebook Beanstalk on Twitter Beanstalk on LinkedIn Beanstalk on Pinterest
Translate:
Published On:
SEO articles and blog published on ...
Hear Us On:
Webmaster Radio
Blog Partner Of:
WebProNews Blog Partner
Helping Out:
Carbon balanced.
Archives
RSS

XMLRSS

Beanstalk's Internet Marketing Blog

At Beanstalk Search Engine Optimization we know that knowledge is power. That's the reason we started this Internet marketing blog back in 2005. We know that the better informed our visitors are, the better the decisions they will make for their websites and their online businesses. We hope you enjoy your stay and find the news, tips and ideas contained within this blog useful.


July 26, 2012

SOPA Friends: Internet League of America

The recording industry, agents, and vendors of music aren’t the only ones spending way too much of their profits on lobbying the government. Major internet companies that see the harm of bills like SOPA/PIPA are spending the time and money to fight back against this lobbying.

Not to be confused with SuperFriends..

This organization is less about crime and more about reasonable expenses for making sure government is making informed decisions.

Google alone spent $3.9million in the second quarter of 2012, and $5.4million in 2012 total so far trying to help government see the internet as more than just a ‘series of tubes’.

Google isn’t alone in fighting for your rights, Amazon’s spending between Jan 2012 and June 2012 was pegged at $1.34million, EBay spent nearly as much at $827k, and Facebook also jumped into the fight for $650k of lobbying.

It stands to reason then that if they all had the same message a lot of time and money could be saved by joining forces, and this is how the Internet Association has come to be.

With Google, Amazon, EBay and Facebook already signed into the Internet Association it’s already huge and it’s still in the ‘coming soon’ phase of setting up.

This new group should not be confused with existing organizations like The Internet Defense League which are seeking other solutions to keeping people informed as to threats to online access/freedom.

A few sites (RIAA partners?) are panning this as ‘evil‘ and un-Google for companies to work together to support a shared message to the government, but I think anyone who knows the extent of SOPA/PIPA and other bills will see that spin for what it really is, fear and loathing of anything that stands in the way of an easy profit.

Google Fiber

Google Fiber Appliances
Remember us writing about Kansas City dark fiber, Google’s plans to light it up, and the various media/recording industry fears/objections?

While I was composing this article on the new Internet Association I managed to eavesdrop on the details coming from the live broadcast at the launch of Google Fiber in Kansas this morning.

Google Fiber Announcement Center

Here’s what I caught (again this was just details I overheard and not officially published):

  • Google Fiber is run right to your house
  • A fiber-conversion firewall appliance converts the optical signal
  • The Google fiber-wall has built in WiFi and 4 gigabit RJ45 ports
  • The WiFi radio is very fast (no specs given) and features a guest portal system
  • Google Fiber offers TV boxes that act as WiFi boosters
  • The TV boxes stream Netflix/Youtube in HD quality with more options to follow
  • Google’s TV boxes work with Bluetooth headphones and can be controlled by Bluetooth devices
  • Currently purchasing a TV box will including a free Nexus 7 Tablet that acts as a remote control for the TV box.
  • $300 is mentioned as the ‘construction fee’ to send a Google rep to your home to install the fiber cable.
  • $120/mth for the TV and Gigabit Internet package (on 2 year contracts the $300 fee is waived)
  • $70/mth for just Gigabit fibre internet (no install fee for 1yr contracts)
  • $Free/mth 5mbps down, 1mbps up, of capped fiber access to anyone who wants to pay the $300 install fee
  • The free service option is guaranteed for anyone in the service area for 7 years
  • You can pay the $300 fee off over time if you wish as an incentive to connect everyone regardless of income levels
  • 1TB of Google Drive storage (directly linked to the Fibre) comes with the $70/mth and up packages
  • No mention of monthly data use caps, but they would need to be fairly generous

Google Fiber Building in Kansas
Apparently they are deciding which homes get fiber first by running a lobbying contest where they reward the communities that lobby other communities the most. The speaker tried to sell this as ‘doing it for Kansas’ and ‘spreading the word about what fiber really means’, but of all the announcements, there was no applause for
this.

Clearly most of Kansas is tired of waiting for Google Fiber and would like to start actually using it vs. running around ‘competing’ with other communities for the first chance to get hooked up.

It’s an odd move for Google but you have to respect that they had to find a fair way to select the first communities to get connected.

UPDATE: They have published the official Google Fiber data plans and yes, there’s NO DATA CAPS. Wow.

SEO news blog post by @ 11:25 am


 

 

July 25, 2012

Skynet Police – The Infringement Wars

While the copyright infringement debate continues heating up in Canada and the United States, the "Skynet" copyright act has been in place for two months now which was passed by Parliament in an effort to combat piracy over peer-to-peer files sharing networks. Rights-holders estimate that the act has halved the number of instances of copyright infringements within the first month.

skynet

Telecom has received copyright infringement notices from the Recording Industry of New Zealand asking to notices to 42 customers accused of internet piracy and are in the process if validating them. Spokesperson Gary Bowering of TelstraClear stated that:

If they are found to meet the criteria of the new file sharing regulations then we will pass on these allegations to the relevant customers in accordance with the obligations set out in the Copyright Amendment Act."

terminator cop

Regardless of the relative success with its implementation, holders are still concerned that over 40% of New Zealanders are continuing to download, pirate and otherwise infringe online.
Rights-holders are clamoring to change the infringement notice processing fee payable to ISPs to be dropped from the current $25 to just a few dollars or cents, enabling them to send out thousands of notices every month.

The ISPs want the fee to be increased to over four times the current amount. The submissions for the review of government notice fees are withheld by the government and are not made public.
It will be interesting to see how the online piracy debate plays out elsewhere and if other countries will adopt the New Zealand process as an example of how to implement similar measures in their own countries.

SEO news blog post by @ 11:22 am


 

 

July 19, 2012

Warez between Google and DMCA

Google has published another transparency report, and thanks to the detailed removal requests info, it’s actually a decent index of pirated content on the web.
A googlish WAREZ sign
You want something from Microsoft? Sort the report by their requests, viola, a list of offending sites that Microsoft has verified as having options to download copyrighted content.

It’s like an all you can eat buffet for people who don’t know where to find warez!

In fact the report, warez aside, has all sorts of neat statistics for the curious among us to poke at:

It’s a pretty honest bit of transparency that is very informative and handy. If you didn’t know who the top sites are in terms of pirated content, this is a great resource.

Google News – More options?

To be frank, it’s another slow news day for SEO happenings, but it prompted me to hit news.google.com with my desktop browser for a change.

Since I’m logged into a Google account on my desktop machine the Google News page loaded up a preferences panel on the left hand sidebar which I’d never known about because I use my phone for browsing Google News (usually all about world headlines if you’re not logged in).

Options panel for Google News

With these options you can:
- Choose how much of each type
- Remove news types
- Add news types (ie: Women’s Sports)
- Add/Remove Sources
- And more..

Personally, I was quite impressed by this as Google seems to really want to handle the customization and learn from your habits, vs. letting you tell them exactly what to show you.

I suppose in the long run this is a lot less of a control and more of a suggestion, like how Google bot reads a canonical tag. ;)

If you don’t use Google for News, perhaps you aught to go take a look at what they have been working on?

 

SEO news blog post by @ 1:56 pm


 

 

July 18, 2012

Canada’s Supreme Court Rules “Technological Neutrality” as New Copyright Principle

The Canadian Supreme Court has made a ruling on various copyright issues. The Supreme Court of Canada has made “technological neutrality” a foundational principle of Canadian copyright and effectively adopted a fair use policy.

They have ruled that ISP will not be required to pay copyright fees for their subscribers download or preview music. They court also ruled that teachers will no longer pay fees associated with the photocopying of copyrighted materials for their students.

Some feel that the new technological neutrality principle may have a huge long term effects on Canadian copyright and will pose a threat to some copyright collective tariff proposals and to the newly enacted digital lock rules.

The technological neutrality principle is discussed in several cases, but gets its most important airing in the Entertainment Software Association of Canada v. SOCAN decision. The majority of the court states:

In our view, the Board’s conclusion that a separate, "communication" tariff applied to downloads of musical works violates the principle of technological neutrality, which requires that the Copyright Act apply equally between traditional and more technologically advanced forms of the same media: Robertson v. Thomson Corp., [2006] 2 S.C.R. 363, at para. 49.

The principle of technological neutrality is reflected in s. 3(1) of the Act, which describes a right to produce or reproduce a work "in any material form whatever".

In our view, there is no practical difference between buying a durable copy of the work in a store, receiving a copy in the mail, or downloading an identical copy using the Internet. The Internet is simply a technological taxi that delivers a durable copy of the same work to the end user.

It seems in this case, that Canada is making strides ahead in the contentious copyright foray that has been plaguing many countries for some time. It will be noteworthy to see if a similar ruling makes its way into the American legal system.

Here are some additional sites talking about this:

SEO news blog post by @ 11:41 am


 

 

July 16, 2012

Six-Strikes and You’re Out: the MPAA, RIAA & the Center for Copyright Information

It was over a year ago that the MPAA and the RIAA announced they would be introducing a groundbreaking anti-piracy plan in conjunction with US ISPs. The scheduled start was set for July 2012, the parties involved state that they are not yet ready to implement the graduated warning program.

MPAA

In a previous post I reported that once implemented, the Center for Copyright Information (CCI) will begin to take proactive measures to track down online deemed to be pirating media. Copyright infringement violators will be progressively warned about their actions, escalating over 5-6 notifications until the ISP will drastically cap the user’s bandwidth or even revoke access.

"With regards to timing, CCI is rigorously working towards implementing the Copyright Alert System in a way that is consistent with the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and with the needs of subscribers," a spokesperson stated.

The CCI is now hoping that ISPs will begin sending out graduated warnings later this year, but have not commented as to a reason for the delays. Such large delays it the plans implementation suggests that there have been logistical issues in the plan’s implementation.

"At this time, CCI is not ready to announce the experts we will use to evaluate the methodologies used by the content owners and ISPs to identify alleged piracy and deliver notices to the right consumers," said a CCI spokesperson.

Other Concerns

  • It has been suggested that the company hired to conduct tracking may not be made public to curb protests.
  • There are increasing amounts of new subscribers to VPN Internet providers in the US, presumably in anticipation of the schemes implementation.
  • There are increasing fears that backdoors will be used in the deal which may allow the MPAA and RIAA to request personal details of repeats infringers for legal action.
  • There has been no clear definition of what will happen to third party providers (free wi-fi providers) in this graduated six-strikes theme.
  • In a controlled state, who polices the police?

Certainly the issues of copyright protection and privacy have a long way to develop before a mutually beneficial method is established that protects everyone involved and allows the end user sufficient freedom.

SEO news blog post by @ 11:59 am


 

 

July 9, 2012

Hollywood & ISP Spies Are Watching YOU!

A partnership between the RIAA, MPAA and major ISPs such as AT&T, Verizon and Comcast and Hollywood and Big Music, could allow your ISP to police your internet usage once a final agreement is reached. The partnership would see these ISPs spying on your activity to monitor for sharing copyrighted movies or music files from your computer.

Traditionally, your ISP attempts to protect you and your data by utilizing software and hardware to keep the connections between your computer and their servers secured. The irony of course is that with the new graduated response plan dubbed the “Center for Copyright Information” (http://copyrightinformation.org/) would make the ISPs involved responsible for policing and enforcing the violations and would see offending users warned, restricted and eventually cut off from the Internet for successive infringements.

Until now, media companies have had to try and scour the internet in an attempt to find and locate violators, but if the agreement goes through, the studios will have associated ISPs sniff packets of incoming data to and from their customers computers. The process of the escalation of infringements is structured as follows:

  • Rights holders track infringing Internet users and send notices to ISPs.
  • ISPs used this data to send warnings, called “Copyright Alerts”, to subscribers.
  • If subscribers fail to improve their behavior, further warnings will be issued.

ISPs will be given some discretion as to the variety of sanctions, but would range from throttling back connection speeds to limited browsing or termination of the account.
The agreements between the MPAA, RIAA and ISPs in the United States will be completely voluntary. The ISPs will insist that they are completely within their rights to amend their Terms of Service to accommodate such an agreement and will almost certainly do so quickly.

&Voluntary cooperative solutions are a priority focus and we believe that, in combination with law enforcement action, voluntary actions by the private sector have the potential to dramatically reduce online infringement and change the enforcement paradigm,& said U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel.

“We will continue to push forward to encourage voluntary cooperative actions on multiple fronts. Our ultimate goal is to reduce infringement online so we will continue to assess our approach to ensure that it is as effective as possible.&

Not only does this new agreement rekindle the online privacy and piracy debates, but it also raises some equally disturbing problems:

  • Sharing an internet connection (be it private, business, or public) becomes a liability to the owner, who becomes responsible for an individual’s activities on a network or shared connection.
  • Expectations of privacy are lost. Companies that deal in vitally sensitive information are not only at risk of someone seeing sensitive information but are now become a liability if the information goes public.
  • And the most obvious Big Brother paradigm: If ISPs are required to police you; who will police them?

In the light of such measures being introduced and other perceived infringements on Internet freedoms, a campaign to establish a Digital Bill of Rights & Freedoms from Active Politic.com has been gaining momentum. It hopes to establish an Internet consisting of:

  • The right to a free and uncensored Internet.
  • The right to an open, unobstructed Internet.
  • The right to equality on the Internet.
  • The right to gather and participate in online activities.
  • The right to create and collaborate on the Internet.
  • The right to freely share their ideas.
  • The right to access the Internet equally, regardless of who they are or where they are.
  • The right to freely associate on the Internet.
  • The right to privacy on the Internet.
  • The right to benefit from what they create.

The Internet and the sharing of information (public or private) is still in its adolescence and will require much more deliberation and ratification of laws before we witness an Internet where media companies feel protected from piracy and users are guaranteed to have the freedom to share information without the fear of reprisal.

SEO news blog post by @ 1:01 pm


 

 

June 12, 2012

Microsoft sues Google: Rankings on Google are too crucial!

Microsoft knows the pains of anti-trust lawsuits, million dollar fines, and the expensive nature of dividing up a business so it doesn’t look like a monopoly.
Breaking up the monopoly
So it’s no shock that one of the biggest weapons in Microsoft’s war chest is a handful of small companies that can claim Google services have stymied their opportunities to succeed.

According to this “Google treads carefully in European antitrust case” article posted yesterday in Canada.com, companies with direct links to Microsoft are suing because they cannot compete in EU markets without ranking well on Google:

Google’s competition includes Microsoft but is mostly small, specialist Internet services which argue the Silicon Valley giant is ensuring their names come low or don’t even figure in searches. In Europe, 80 per cent of Web searches are run on Google, according to the most recent figures by comScore, compared with 67 per cent in the United States. Its opponents say that means Google, which makes its money by advertising sales, can make or break a business by its ranking.

… followed by:

Moreover, Google says the small companies claiming to be its victims are linked to Microsoft. The third original complainant, Ciao.de, is a German travel search site owned by Microsoft. Several are also members of I-comp, whose most prominent member is Microsoft, and which produces position papers on subjects such as web market concentration. I-comp lawyer Wood acknowledges the organization is not independent, but says “our palette is much broader than Microsoft’s.”
 
The scary truth is that if actions like this are successful we would have to reorganize or dismantle all companies like Google that offer free services which prevent smaller companies from selling the same services.

Typically such a thing would never happen here in North America, since due diligence requires proof of consumer harm, not just harm to the competition.

No matter how you look at it, Google is the opposite of consumer harm, but in the EU courts this may not matter.

Once Google loses in EU courts it will be ‘game-on’ for all other countries to dog-pile on the remains of Google, allowing greed to kill off one of the best things that’s ever happened to us.

Looking at history of humanity and greed vs. virtue, we should have seen this coming?

In my opinion it is as if Microsoft woke up one morning, looked into their magical mirror to reflect on how beautiful they are, and came to realize that some poison apples need to be handed out post-haste.

Speaking of humanity vs. greed, I MUST comment on this whole FunnyJunk vs. Oatmeal ‘fiasco’.

Either this is some brilliant promotional scheme or the owners of FunnyJunk painted a bullseye on their own foot. I am really not sure which one, but man is it sad.

Give it a read if you really want to be shocked at how low a business can stoop to make a profit from artists and the community.

It’s also refreshing to see the Oatmeal prove they could shut down TFJ, but instead they used the $20,000 they raised in 64 minutes to fund cancer research and support the World Wildlife Federation.

SEO news blog post by @ 11:08 am


 

 

May 16, 2012

Why Canada Will be “sorry” for The Canadian Copyright Modernization Act (Bill C-11)

The Canadian government has imposed a limit on Parliamentary debate for Bill C-11: The Copyright Modernization Act which will completely change the way that Canadians interact with web content.

While the bill’s proponents state that there are many benefits to the act, opponents state that the bill’s "digital lock" provisions are excessively restrictive and feel that they are the result of increasing pressure from US corporations.

Opponents state that these provisions will lock down content that has previously been available to consumers and must be immediately revised. In effect Canadians will not have the right to take material they purchase (music, movies etc) and transfer it onto different devices. If the proposed bill passes without amendment, any circumvention would be a crime; regardless if you have legally purchased the material you want to view on another platform.

The Stephen Harper conservative government has decided to defeat all proposed amendments to the bill from the Liberal and NDP parties. The Speaker of the House has selected 18 proposed amendments from Green Party Leader Elizabeth May for debate in the House of Commons.

In an email newsletter sent to constituents and in a video release, May contends that this is Canadians last chance to make any changes to the act:

"These amendments represent sensible changes that will ensure this bill does in fact modernize our copyright law, rather than unfairly undermine our rights as consumers – They will remove digital lock provisions and allow for exceptions, while addressing creators’ concerns about the possible effects of the addition of ‘education’ to the list of fair dealing categories."

The Liberal party has also launched a petition calling for amendments to Bill C-11’s digital lock rules which would make it illegal to copy a DVD so that you can watch it on your tablet device even if you are not infringing on the copyright.

They also state that "If the Bill passes without amendment, any circumvention will become a crime, even if it is only done to enjoy material you have legally purchased on the platform you want to view it on."

Following in the footfalls of the SOPA and PIPA controversies the ongoing debate for a fair and equitable balance between the copyright infringement and legitimate fair public usage is far from being resolved.

SEO news blog post by @ 11:46 am

Categories:copyright,Internet Law

 

 

« Newer Posts
Level Triple-A conformance icon, W3C-WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Copyright© 2004-2014
Beanstalk Search Engine Optimization, Inc.
All rights reserved.