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Government Articles

Is Google’s Transparency Sufficient?
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Google has released what it is calling the Transparency Report, which shows the number of government inquiries for information about users and requests for Google to take down or censor content, as well as interactive traffic graphs that show information about traffic to Google around the world. 

Google Works on White Spaces Trial for Hospital in Ohio

Google has teamed up with Spectrum Bridge and the Hocking Valley Community Hospital in Logan, Ohio on the deployment of the first TV White Spaces broadband trial network for healthcare providers. The solution enables healthcare providers to utilize affordable broadband while providing data transmission for telemedicine applications.

Privacy Issues All Over the Place This Week
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There has been a lot of discussion about privacy in the news this past week, and surprisingly, not a whole lot of it has had to do with Facebook. Is the Facebook privacy concern fading? Feel free to discuss your concerns with that in the comments

Court Rules Government Must Get Warrant to Access Cell Phone Location Data
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According to the EFF, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia ruled that federal law allows judges the discretion to require that the government obtain a probable cause search warrant before accessing cell phone location data. 

Google Draws New Round of Scrutiny Over ITA Deal

Even before an acquisition was announced, talks between Google and ITA software were causing a stir in the travel industry. Once Google announced its intent to acquire the company at the beginning of July for $700 million, plenty of talk about regulatory obstacles ensued.

Google Aims to Separate Fact from Fiction Around Net Neutrality Proposal
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Update: Wired is reporting that Net neutrality group Free Press and MoveOn.org will lead a protest at Google’s headquarters Friday.

Google Taps Secretary of State Staff for “Ideas”
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Google will reportedly be launching a "global think tank" called Google Ideas at some point. This according to Fortune’s Seth Weintraub. To lead the initiative Google is reportedly hiring none other than Jared Cohen of the Secretary of State’s Policy Planning staff.

Cohen is known for is role in last year’s Iran protests and Twitter’s relationship to them. From Wikipedia:

Net Neutrality Protests Underway at Google HQ
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The protesting has begun outside of Google’s headquarters in Mountain View. This is in response to Google’s joint proposal with Verizon released earlier this week over net neutrality legislation. Mark Hachman posted the photo below to TwitPic.

Google/Verizon “Open Internet” Proposal Draws Mixed Reviews
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Update: Eric Schmidt and Ivan Seidenberg added some commentary in a Washington Post article today.

Original Article: Today Google and Verizon held a joint press conference, and issued a joint policy proposal for an Open Internet, as they say. The companies appear to be promoting an Open Internet indeed, but there remains a great deal of skepticism about the policy proposal. Really, could it have gone any other way?

FBI Picks a Fight with Wikipedia
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This week, the New York Times and BBC News both reported that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has sent the Wikimedia Foundatation a letter, ordering the removal of an image of the Bureau’s seal from its Wikipedia entry. The Wikimedia Foundation’s response thus far has basically  been, "no."

Google and Verizon: NYT “Wrong” About That Google Verizon Deal
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Update 2: Verizon adds, "The NYT article regarding conversations between Google and Verizon is mistaken.  It fundamentally misunderstands our purpose.

Intel and FTC Reach Settlement on Antitrust Case

Intel announced that it has reached a tentative settlement with the FTC in the antitrust suit the FTC brought against the company in December.

The suit alleged that Intel had violated Section 5 of the FTC Act. In this settlement, Intel does not admit any violations. Intel SVP and General Counsel Doug Melamed offered the following statement:
Intel and FTC reach agreement

Google Apps Applauded By Berkeley Lab
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Earlier today, Google made known that Google Apps for Government is available, and a representative of Berkeley Lab has now made clear that it should be popular, too.  Dr. Rosio Alvarez, Chief Information Officer at the institution, discussed the migration process in a special blog post this afternoon.

Google Launches Google Apps For Government
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Google has introduced a new Government Edition of Google Apps. It includes all of the features of other Google Apps editions, but adds policy and security features. Google says it was designed with guidance from the federal government, as well as the Cities of Los Angeles and Orlando.

Google Apps for Government stores Gmail and Calendar data in a segregated system located in the continental United States, exclusively for government customers.

WikiLeaks Afghanistan Documents Show Internet’s True Power in News

The big news of the moment is that the site WikiLeaks has published over 90,000 secret military documents related to the war in Afghanistan. Posted on Sunday, the documents had previously been shared with three publications (under embargo): The New York Times, The Guardian, and Germany’s Der Spiegel.

Dell Settles with SEC for $100 Million
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Dell announced that it’s reached a settlement with the SEC, resolving an investigation into Dell’s disclosures and alleged omissions from before Fiscal Year 2008, regarding its relationship to Intel, as well as other accounting and financial reporting issues.

70,000 Blogs Shut Down After FBI Finds Terrorist Materials, Blogs May Come Back
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Update 2: CNET’s Greg Sandoval now reports that users could see their blogs again, but Blogetery likely won’t be hosted by Burst.net in the future.

Burst.net CTO says that the service has not resopnded quickly enough to abuse claims in the past, which appears to be the reason the whole service was shut down in the first place. More on the story here.

Consumer Watchdog: Google Spent $1.34 Million Lobbying in Q2
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Consumer Watchdog issued a press release saying that Google spent $1.34 million trying to influence federal lawmakers and regulators in the second quarter of 2010, a 41% increase over $950,000 in the same period a year ago.

Who Would Benefit from the Government Regulating Google Search Results?
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There’s a very interesting discussion going on about whether or not the government should regulate search results. This began last week, when the New York Times ran an editorial titled, "The Google Algorithm", which suggests one way "to ensure the editorial policy guiding Google’s tweaks is solely intended to improve the quality of the results and not to help Google’s other businesses," is to "give some government commission the power to look at those tweaks."

Google Explains Cloud Computing Benefits to Washington
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Mike Bradshaw, Director of Google Federal, is delivering a testimony before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform today. This will take place during a hearing on federal IT and cloud computing.

On the Google Public Policy Blog, Google has listed the three main points that Bradshaw will make:

Twitter Reaches Agreement With FTC

Twitter just announced it has reached an agreement with the Federal Trade Commission that resolves some concerns the organization had with Twitter’s security practices.

The concerns at hand involve some compromises made last year, which Twitter had already addressed, and most people had probably forgotten about by now. Twitter’s A. Macgillivray explains on the Official Twitter Blog: