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Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s recall election on Tuesday, June 5, won’t be the only special election where this online tactic will be used. Law prof and blogger Ann Althouse, who resides in Madison, Wisc., and teaches at the University of Wisconsin Law School, last Friday posted about an “incredibly creepy” mailing she received from the Greater Wisconsin Political Fund.
The correspondence showed her name and address and the names and addresses of a dozen of her neighbors, indicating whether they had voted in the last two elections.
The letter read, “We’re taking a new approach … sending this mailing to you and your neighbors to publicize who does and does not vote.”
Althouse wrote, “We’re told this is a matter of ‘public record’ and that ‘After the June 5th election’ – the recall – ‘public records will tell everybody who voted and who didn’t.’ I found that quite disgusting.”
She continued, “This is an effort to shame and pressure people about voting, and it is truly despicable. Your vote is private, you have a right not to vote, and anyone who tries to shame and harass you about it is violating your privacy, and the assumption that I will become active in shaming and pressuring my neighbors is repugnant.”
In an abuse of the judicial system, convicted felon Brett Kimberlin used judicial jujitsu in a Maryland courtroom last week on blogger Aaron Walker, claiming that Google alerts triggered from Walker’s posts violated a “peace order” brought by Kimberlin, resulting in Walker’s arrest by “a judge with a misunderstanding of how the Internet – particularly Google Alerts – works.”
Lee Stranahan writes, “The judge clearly doesn’t understand either Twitter or the First Amendment or even the basic facts of the case.”
Law professor and blogger William Jacobson at Legal Insurrection wrote: “Kimberlin knew how to use the system so that by the time Walker arrived in court on Tuesday, he had no idea there already was a warrant for his arrest.”
Cyberjerks coloring outside the lines
Here’s a cautionary and strange tale of one woman who was duped out of her heart and her money after falling in love with an online “boyfriend” who didn’t exist. Ouch! Was there a legal recourse? Not so much. Neither was there legal remedy in the suicide deaths of a 13-year-old girl or a “gay” college roommate, both of whom who had been maliciously exploited by others on the Internet.
It’s evident the Internet and the legal system have run out of road, with the Internet going off into areas where our legal system hasn’t yet caught up.
Video: The future of Internet
Though this article was written six months ago, its predictions are becoming a reality. Mark Suster explains why a massive change in television viewing is accelerating this year. It’s a fascinating look into how outfits like YouTube are making bundled cable channels obsolete.
Apple has sold 2.7 million Apple TVs in the first half of its fiscal year 2012, compared with 2.8 million all of last year. At least one analyst predicts Apple television is coming and it will revolutionize the TV industry in the way we consume content.
The big winner in online movie viewing last year was Netflix, which surpassed Apple to become the top revenue earner in the U.S. online movie business. And IHS Screen Digest is reporting that the number of movies and TV shows legally streamed and downloaded this year will exceed the demand for those films and shows on physical discs.
Print media continues to die off with several newspapers recently reducing the number of publication days, resisting going digital. Internet analyst Mary Meeker explains why in this presentation.
Domains gone wild?
Hundreds of new domains will be announced June 13, including “.google” and “.youtube.”
ICANN, the organization that assigns names for websites, will reportedly unveil the top level domains that will join suffixes like “.com” or “.org”
ICANN is an independent, non-profit group based in Los Angeles and makes 18 cents on every domain name registered.
In a blog post, Google announced it has applied for “.google” or “.youtube” and a series of other names as well, saying it desires names “related to its core business” like “.docs” as well as some with “interesting and creative potential” like “.lol.”
Bits & Bytes
- Judge says authors, photographers can sue Google over book scanning.
- On Facebook, ‘likes’ become ads.
- Bad news for Facebook, with a site crash.
- Google to charge companies for listings.
- The addictive component of “Angry Birds.”
If this is the list, we’re being followed!
It’s positively Orwellian. Better mind your language. “Attack,” “Al Qaeda,” “terrorism,” “dirty bomb” – uh oh. Here are the words to avoid if you don’t want the U.S. government monitoring you.
My vote for most creative photo uploaded to Twitter!
This whimsical positioning of the solar eclipse was tweeted from a user in Japan on May 20:
Twitter recently announced some new developments. They include a new weekly email that delivers news and items from those you’re connected to on Twitter.
Getting Twitchy yet?
Twitchy is “the news wire of the 21st century,” a curation site powered by “a kinetic staff of social media junkies” who mine Twitter to bring “who said what” in U.S. politics, global news, sports, entertainment, media and breaking news 24/7. Send your tips to Twitchy’s editorial team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Among the stories Twitchy reported last week: Florida Congressman Bill Posey was victimized, and apparently he was not alone. “Dubious fat-loss tweets are being published every minute of every day. It appears that thousands of innocent Twitter users’ accounts have been compromised.” The tweets were suspected of containing links to malware.