Privacy on the Internet. Net Neutrality. Copyright law and Digital Rights
Management. The Digital Divide.
Four of the hottest topics on the Internet. Governments around the world
have been passing laws determining what people can and can't do online.
Change is coming, but what will be driving it?
At 7 PM, Monday, October 26th, 2009 the Chebucto Community Net in
association with the Dalhousie Student
Union and the Dalhousie Computer
Science Society (CSS) will be hosting a public Internet Town Hall
meeting in the McInnes Room of the
Dalhousie Student Union Building, 6136 University Avenue in Halifax
called "Who is Shaping Your Digital Future?"
This is the only meeting of its kind in Atlantic Canada, one in a series
of such meetings being held across the country. Admission is free and the
general public is welcome. Doors open at 6:30 PM.
Moderated by CBC Radio's Costas
Halavrezos, this Town Hall meeting will
feature keynote speaker
Laura Murray, co-author of "Canadian Copyright: A
Professor Murray currently is the English Department Undergraduate Chair
at Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, a Fulbright scholar, and is
well-versed in copyright law and theory. Professor Murray writes about
Canadian copyright issues on her blog at
Copyright law and Digital Rights Management (DRM) issues have been high
profile targets for new government legislation. With strong lobbying from
groups representing copyright holders, there has been much debate on
questions such as what constitutes fair use of copyright material, how
long copyrights should last, and if strict enforcement of copyright is
ultimately damaging to culture and society as a whole.
Four local panelists, each an expert in their field will talk on each of
our hot topics.
Privacy on the Internet will be addressed by
Halifax-based lawyer with McInnes Cooper, and widely regarded as one of
the leading privacy and technology lawyers in Canada.
With more and more parts of everyone's lives available online, questions
of who has access to personal information and under what circumstances are
more timely than ever. Canada is one of the world's last bastions of
personal privacy - for now. In the United Kingdom, citizens can be
arrested and jailed for refusing to hand over personal encryption keys to
the government. In the United States, digital information can be seized by
the American government any time it crosses their border. Proposed
Canadian legislation will go a long way toward eliminating our personal
Andrew D. Wright will be talking on the subject of the Digital Divide.
Office Manager for the Chebucto Community Net for more than a decade, he
has seen first-hand the struggle for Internet access some people must go
through, and the people left behind.
Whose child will do better in school, the one with home access to the
Internet or the one waiting for limited time at a public terminal? Senior
citizens, people on assistance or disability and low income families are
some of the folks who have to make sacrifices in their lives to get
online. For some, even public access is not an option and Halifax
residents, once national leaders in online access, are now trailing much
of the rest of the country. Barriers to access are now more economic in
nature than geographic.
The topic of Net Neutrality will be addressed by
Chair of the
Atlantic Canada Organization of Research Networks in Nova
Scotia (ACORN-NS), an Optical Regional Advanced Network (ORAN) in
association with the Canadian Network for the Advancement of Research,
Industry and Education (CANARIE), and an active member of the CANARIE ORAN
Advisory Committee representing advanced networking initiatives for the
province of Nova Scotia.
Net Neutrality is the idea that corporations who own parts of the Internet
backbone should have to play fair with network traffic. They should not be
able to make some traffic faster and other traffic slower. They should not
be able to redirect traffic and make some web destinations they control
work better while other web destinations they may not like don't work as
Darren Abramson is an Assistant Professor with the Dalhousie
Department of Philosophy specializing in Logic, the Philosophy of Computer
Science and the Philosophy of Mind and Cognitive Science.
Digital Rights Management (DRM) is a form of copyright protection that can
be built into devices so that authorized content can be played.
However authorizations can expire, not work properly, and in some cases
even be withdrawn completely or create problems unrelated to their
functioning. Games can stop working because the manufacturer closes the
authorization server, purchased content can be taken back after sale and
computers can be made vulnerable to hostile takeover through
vulnerabilities created by badly written or broken DRM.
Panelists will be taking questions and feedback from the audience. The
event will be recorded by CBC Radio.
The Chebucto Community Net is a
registered charity and the oldest Internet
Service Provider in Atlantic Canada. It is the second oldest community net
in Canada and is dedicated to the proposition that everyone should have
fair access to the tools of communication.
Dalhousie Student Union represents the
diverse interests of Dalhousie
students. It is a leading advocate and provider of innovative and valued
Chebucto Community Net:
Contact: Andrew D. Wright
Phone: (902) 494-2449
Dalhousie Student Union:
Contact: Rob LeForte
Phone: (902) 494-1275