January 27, 2008

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Law enfarcement

From School Cop Investigated for Porn Link on Friend’s MySpace Profile — Updated:

  as the St. Peterburg Times puts it, “kids could navigate from Officer John’s page on the social networking site to ‘Amateur Match Free Sex’ in just three clicks.”
  You’re reading correctly. Gulf Middle School resource officer John Nohejl didn’t have porn on his MySpace profile, and he didn’t link to porn. But one of the 170-odd people on his friends list, which seems mostly populated by students at his school, had a link to a legal adult site. Now the New Port Richey Police Department and the Florida attorney general’s elite cyber crimes unit are investigating him for making adult content available to underage children.

Read on. It doesn’t get better.

Public Broadcasters Opt for CC is the encouraging title for an informative and linky post by Michelle Thorne at icommons.org.

By subsuming all electronic media, and by placing every recording and playback device at zero functional distance from each other, the Net makes radio and TV transmitters obsolete the moment high-enough-bandwidth wireless connectivity becomes ubiquitous.

We’re one good UI away from the cell phone becoming a radio. (Thanks to the iPhone, it already serves as a TV.) And we’re one smart cell company away from radio- and TV-as-we-know-it from being replaced entirely — or from moving up the next step of the evolutionary ladder.

Public broadcasters know that. That’s one reason they now call themselves “public media”, a move that separates the category from its transport methods. It’s also why they’re thinking hard and long about the role their online transmissions and archives play in a world without physical borders. That’s what Michelle’s article is about.

After visiting positive moves made by a number of institutions, Michelle’s final paragraph makes clear that the challenge is only beginning to be met:

  However, despite many positive strides, creators working for public broadcasters still often find themselves at odds with their institutions’ more traditional copyright policies. In-house legal departments can be reluctant to embrace user-generated content, remixes, downloads, and third-party material, and at times, they may endorse restrictive DRM while resisting new and open media formats. As more and more publicly-funded content goes online, it is important enable and empower users, rather than leaving enriching material to digitally decay.

She could easily have put depressing links behind every one of those “howevers”. If I had more time, I’d do it myself.

Still, it’s good to see movement in a positive direction. I’ll be looking to see more when I attend the IMA‘s Public Media 08 conference in Los Angeles next month.