The Great Debate UK

Remembering how to forget in the Web 2.0 era

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Amid ongoing debates over the hazards of excessive digital exposure through such Web 2.0 social networking platforms as Facebook and Twitter, a new book by Viktor Mayer-Schonberger extols the virtues of forgetfulness.

Since the emergence of digital technology and global networks, forgetting has become an exception, Mayer-Schonberger writes in “Delete”.

“Forgetting plays a central role in human decision-making,” he argues. “It lets us act in time, cognizant of, but not shackled by, past events.”

Mayer-Schonberger shared his theory on how to fight back against the digital panopticon with Reuters before giving a lecture at the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce in London.

from For the Record:

The fall of the Wall–and the media’s role

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dean-150Dean Wright is Global Editor, Ethics, Innovation and News Standards. Any opinions are his own.

It was 20 years ago that the Berlin Wall, the most iconic symbol of the Cold War, fell, on Nov. 9, 1989.

from Reuters Editors:

Are we now too speedy for our own good?

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Last week I was told that Reuters has lost its ethical bearings. You've sacrificed the sacred tenet of accuracy by rushing to publish information without checking if it is true. Your credibility has suffered, the value of your brand will wither and the service you offer to clients has been devalued, I heard.

It was a meaty accusation, especially as it came in the midst of a debate on ethics in journalism held at the London home of ThomsonReuters, the parent of the Reuters news organisation. The charge came from former Reuters journalists and a senior member of the trustees body that monitors Reuters compliance with its core ethical principles.

Silver Web surfers face unique challenges

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Matthew Bath

-Matthew Bath is technology editor at Which? The opinions expressed are his own.-

Today’s children take PCs for granted. Comfortable with cursors and wonderful with Windows, children use PCs for everything from watching video clips on YouTube to logging onto school networks to virtually hand in homework.

Internet freedom prevails over Guardian gag order

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padraig_reidy- Padraig Reidy is news editor at Index on Censorship. The opinions expressed are his own.-

Solicitors Carter-Ruck have withdrawn the terms of an injunction preventing the Guardian from reporting a parliamentary question by Newcastle-under-Lyme Labour MP and former journalist Paul Farrelly.

The end of .com, the beginning of .yourbrand

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Joe White-Joe White is chief operating officer at Gandi, an Internet domain name registration firm. The opinions expressed are his own.-

Despite the importance of domain names for companies and the extraordinary amount of money many have paid for them, the vast majority of businesses are unprepared for imminent changes to the Internet.

Does the Internet empower or censor?

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What if the Internet is not really a utopian democratic catalyst of change?

The Web is often seen as a positive means of instilling democratic freedoms in countries under authoritarian rule, but many regimes are now using it to subvert democracy, Evgeny Morozov, a contributing editor at “Foreign  Policy“, proposes.

The Internet can actually inhibit rather than empower civil society, Morozov, argued in a lecture on Tuesday at London’s Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce.

from Global News Journal:

Germany’s ‘Pirate Party’ hopes for election surprise

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Founded by computer geeks in Sweden in 2006 and now active in 33 countries, the Pirate Party is hoping to win over young, disaffected voters in Germany's federal election on Sept. 27 with demands to reform copyright and patent laws along with their policies that oppose internet censorship and surveillance. But do the single-issue activists, with no stance on foreign policy or the economy, even have the faintest hope of overcoming the five percent hurdle needed to enter parliament?

This looks unlikely given the 0.9 percent of the vote they won at the European parliamentary elections in June.  Nonethless, the Piratenpartei with more than 8,000 members is the fastest growing party in Germany, a development partly sparked by the German parliament's ratification of controversial legislation on blocking certain websites in a bid to fight child pornography.

Do you know what people are saying about you?

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conniebenson-Connie Bensen is Director of Community Strategy and Architecture at Alterian, working cross functionally to provide strategy and best practice in social media. The opinions expressed are her own.-

It took radio 38 years to reach 50 million listeners, terrestrial TV took 13 years, the internet took four years… In less than nine months, Facebook added 100 million users. We are in the midst of a digital revolution that is shaping the way we communicate and these social media technologies are continuing to grow a pace in 2009. Now more than four out of five online users are active in either creating, participating in, or reading some form of social content at least once a month.

Is the Internet a dangerous playground?

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caroline-cockerill- Caroline Cockerill is the Internet Safety Advocate at Symantec, UK. The opinions expressed are her own.-

Today’s children have grown up with the Internet, they know more about it than their parents, but do they know the perils it holds?

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