Info

WashingTECH Tech Policy Podcast with Joe Miller

The WashingTECH Tech Policy Podcast is your resource for tech law and policy news and interviews. Each week, the WashingTECH Policy Podcast presents the latest developments across the tech policy landscape plus interviews with a diverse array of tech policy influencers.
RSS Feed Subscribe in iTunes
WashingTECH Tech Policy Podcast with Joe Miller
2017
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2016
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2015
December
November
October
September


Categories

All Episodes
Archives
Categories
Now displaying: August, 2016
Aug 30, 2016

Jose A. Marquez-Leon (@LISTA1) is the National President, CEO, and Founder of Latinos in Information Sciences and Technology Association (LISTA). In this role he serves as lead advocate on state and federal issues related to the role of Latinos in the technology sector. He is also charged with coordinating organization-wide strategic planning for LISTA initiatives and is executive director of 15 LISTA TechLatino Councils nationwide.

Since LISTA’s inception the organization has developed programs to take the Latino community from the “schoolroom to the boardroom.” These programs are designed to introduce technology into classrooms, encourage information technology and science professions among young adults, facilitate technology-related professional development through certification training and job-matching programs, leverage online communications for continued collaboration, and recognize Latinos within the IT industry that are making a difference.

Jose has received several achievement awards including Politics 360 GameChangers Award, Hispanic Trends Magazine Technology Trendsetter 2007, National Hispanic Achievers Award, and the Greater NY Chamber of Commerce Advocate of the Year 2003, among others. In 2008, the Federal Communications Commission appointed Jose to serve on its Committee on Digital and Media Inclusion.

In this episode, we discussed:

  • how to cultivate Latino developers.
  • diversity on Capitol Hill.

Resources:

THE NEWS

Ellen Nakashima at the Washington Post reports on an FBI alert to states to secure their election systems.  The report didn’t name the states that were targeted, but the Post points to two reported instances of hacks into election systems in June and July in Illinois, which resulted in the state having to shut down voting registrations, and Arizona, where hackers obtained access to voting records. Some experts suspect Russia may be the culprit.

Evan Perez at CNN also reported that the FBI is investigating a series of cyberattacks against news organizations including the New York Times. Several US officials believe the attacks on reporters, as well as attacks on the Democratic National Committee, have been the work of the Russians.

----

For the first time in its nearly a quarter century existence, Wired magazine--the tech sector’s leading trade and lifestyle publication -- has endorsed a presidential candidate. Editor-in-Chief Scott Dadich praised Hillary Clinton’s support for net neutrality, student loan forgiveness for entrepreneurs, easing entry for people abroad who are skilled at science, tech and engineering, and strengthening the Affordable Care Act. Dadich painted Donald Trump as someone who is more interested in generating attention for himself than leading the country.

Nick Gass reports in Politico that Hillary Clinton’s tech agenda closely aligns with Silicon Valley.

----

Hillary Clinton’s praise from Wired was marred by a new FBI disclosure that revealed Clinton failed to turn over nearly 15,000 emails to the State Department. These emails will plague Clinton’s campaign until Election Day, because a federal judge has ordered the emails to be released to the public beginning in October. Steven Lee Myers has the story in The New York Times.

----

The Cybersecurity firm Lookout and the University of Toronto have discovered three previously unknown security flaws in Apple’s iOS mobile operating system. The report states the flaws made it possible for foreign governments to tap into users’ phones and spy on them using spyware that targeted journalists and activists. Andrea Peterson at The Washington Post has the story.

----

The American Civil Liberties Union, Center for Democracy and Technology and 26 other organizations sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security last week opposing the agency’s proposal to use social media to review visa-waiver applications. The groups say the proposed rules would unfairly target Arab-Americans and Muslims. Ali Breland has the story in the Hill.

----

Thirty-two tech and telecom companies including AT&T, Verizon, Google and Apple have formed a Robocall Strike Force to develop a self-regulatory approach to dealing with annoying calls from telemarketers, researchers and others. FCC Chairman Tom.Wheeler says the FCC receives 200,000 robocall complaints each year. The group’s plan for dealing with robocalls is due to the FCC on October 19th.

----
Finally, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals has set its deadline for the FCC to respond to petitions telecom companies filed asking the full court to review the court’s 3-judge panel decision to uphold the FCC’s net neutrality rules. The FCC’s response is due September 12th.

Aug 23, 2016

Nicole Reitz-Larsen (@reitzlarsen) is a secondary classroom teacher with 15+ years teaching experience. She has taught everything from AP/IB Computer Science, to German, Multimedia and Business related courses. She loves working with students and is passionate about equity in education and providing opportunities for all students to be successful.

She works with teachers nationwide on the CS10K.org site and with Code.org to promote the importance of computer science, assist districts in implementing computer science K-12 in schools to broaden participation of underrepresented students of color and females.

You can often find her facilitating Computer Science workshops nationwide, presenting at teacher conferences or meet ups because she loves working with educators to provide them with resources, and teaching strategies around equity and inquiry, while creating an environment that is inclusive of all students, as well as in the classroom which she calls home.

 

In this episode, we discussed:

  • the key challenges students face in the computer science classroom and best practices for helping them overcome them.
  • tools parents can use to help their kids learn computer science.

Resources:

Code.org

CS10K

Made with Code

Scratch

Nonviolent Communication by Marshall B. Rosenberg

NEWS

Anonymous hackers some experts believe have Russian ties released a trove of tools the National Security Agency uses to exploit bugs on the Internet to conduct spying operations. For years, the NSA has resisted efforts by institutions to reveal the bugs it was exploiting so they could be fixed. Now, those bugs are on full display for all the world to see. Ellen Nakashima covers this story at the Washington Post and Andy Greenberg is covering it for Wired.
----
Hackers believed to have Russian ties also got into billionaire George Soros and his Open Society Foundations’ files last week, according to Julian Hattem at the Hill. Two thousand documents were released giving an inside look into how the powerful Democratic supporter and his Foundations operate.
----

Google isn’t out of the woods yet regarding the way it scans emails to serve up ads. Google scans not just Gmail messages, but also anyone interacting with Gmail, from any domain. The plaintiffs sued Google in the Northern District of California alleging that the company’s email scanning practices violate wiretapping provisions of both the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and California’s own state privacy laws. Google argued the practice is within the ordinary course of business. But US District Judge Lucy Koh disagreed, ordering the case to move forward. Joe Mullin covers this for Ars Technica.
----
It looks like internet service providers are going to have to start putting some of its users on blast for copyright infringement-even before they have been convicted of it. The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia ruled last week that Cox must pay $25 million to BMG Music for failing to notify users that they had infringed music copyrights by participating in illegal file sharing. BMG enlisted a 3rd party to monitor Cox’ users for infringement and when it found infringement, notified Cox. But Cox then prevented its users from receiving notifications. So the court ruled Cox now owes BMG a $25 million penalty. Brian Fung has that story at the Washington Post.

----

Univision has won the bid for Gawker Media’s bankruptcy assets. Gawker announced last week it would be ceasing operations. The announcement was made after months of speculation about the fate of the company, following a devastating $140 million judgment against Gawker in favor of Hulk Hogan. Hulk Hogan sued Gawker for posting a video showing Hogan having sex with radio Bubba the Love Sponge’s wife. Keepin it classy, baby! Anyway, Univision’s bid for Gawker’s assets was $135 million, pending approval by the Bankruptcy Court. Lukas Alpert has the story in the Wall Street Journal.
----
Finally, The DOJ and FTC are seeking comment on proposed rules to update the guidelines we use to license intellectual property. The comments are due September 26th.

Aug 16, 2016

Rachel Rodgers (@RachelRodgersEsq) is a business lawyer turned business coach, intellectual property strategist, and the creator of Small Business Bodyguard.

In 2013, she created the Small Business Bodyguard: Cover Your Bases, Cover Your Assets, Cover Your Ass. This game-changing legal resource has been called “fun and engaging” by New York Times bestselling author Chris Brogan and a “graduate-level course on how to build a strong foundation for your business” by CEO of OurDeal, Kyle Durand.

Rachel is known in the legal industry and beyond for being an innovator and master of productizing services and creating high-quality, high profit products. SBB and the other legal kits she has created have been transformative, generating half a million dollars in revenue in just two years and serving 1,700 small businesses around the country. And she achieved those results with almost no active marketing because she simply didn’t have the time (she literally launched SBB with a newborn in her arms).

When she’s not taking care of clients, she enjoys baking in the kitchen (barefoot, with rosé in hand), lifting weights, juicing (the green kind, not the steroid kind), reading to her toddlers, being a “dance mom” to her girls and going on new adventures with her family (her favorite destination being the South of France, of course!).

In this episode, we discussed:

  • Critical first steps every business owner should take to prevent legal headaches.
  • How to stop working "in your business" and start working "on it" to catapult your success.
  • How to establish strategic partnerships and alliances with other entrepreneurs.

Resources

The Rodgers Collective

Small Business Bodyguard

Slack

Helpscout

Mastermind Dinners by Jason Gaignard

The Alchemist by Paul Coehlo

The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks

NEWS

Julia Love at Reuters reports that neither Donald Trump nor Hillary Clinton are pulling in Silicon Valley funding anywhere near what Mitt Romney and Barack Obama did in 2012. Trump has pulled in less than 6% of what Romney did and while Clinton has significantly outraised Trump in the Valley, she’s raised less than half of what Obama did there. The full story is at Reuters.com.
----
Curt Woodward at the Boston Globe reports that, as financial firms and retail outlets have significantly tightened their fraud prevention tactics, criminals have now turned to hacking health care records. The health care records of 4.5 million people have been compromised this year, and while this is down from last year, the long term consequences are much more severe than those of financial data breaches.
----
Security software maker Check Point has uncovered a huge security flaw in Android phones known as Quadrooter. The breach affects as many as a billion phones, including high-end phones like the Samsung Galaxy 7 and HTC 10. Ina Fried at Recode has more.
----
Three House Democrats are calling for GOP leaders to investigate Donald Trump for encouraging Russia to hack into the 30,000 emails still missing from the private email server Hillary Clinton used when she served as Secretary of State. Congressmen Patrick Murphy from Florida, Andre Carson from Indiana and Eric Swalwell from California are all asking a House panel to investigate. Check out Haroun Demirjian’s (DE-MEER-JOHN'S_ full coverage in the Washington Post.
——
Privacy advocates are getting worried about customers exchanging their privacy for lower-priced internet services. David Lazarus at the LA Times points to Comcast and AT&T who offer customers lower prices in exchange for tracking their online behavior. Advocates are worried the model is creating a society of privacy haves and have-nots in which privacy will only be available to people willing to pay for it.
----
The federal 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver ruled last week that entities that mimic government agencies must observe the Fourth Amendment warrant requirement for searches and seizures. The case involved a defendant who sent child pronography via his AOL account, which AOL then flagged and sent to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), which it was required to do. A Department of Homeland Security special agent then obtained a tip through NCMEC’s system and then a search warrant to search the suspect’s home. The court found that NCMEC should never have opened the email without a warrant in the first place, since it was acting on the government’s behalf. Cyrus Farivar has more full coverage at Ars Technica.
---
A federal judge on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals issued a largely sealed ruling last week criticizing the FBI’s new gag order rules. Gag orders demand secrecy from companies regarding data requests the FBI makes to investigate national security cases. The new gag order rules require the FBI to review either on the “close of an investigation” or on the “three year anniversary of an investigation”, whether a gag order is still necessary. So this means the FBI could, theoretically at least, at the close of every single investigation, deem the gag orders to still be necessary, and keep them in place indefinitely. But these are just criticisms. The judge did not order a revamping of the rules. Ellen Nakashima at the Washington Post has the story.
----
Finally, Greenberg Traurig—the international law firm— will be lobbying on behalf of the Pokemon Company International, which has come under scrutiny after the release of its widely popular Pokémon Go game. The game has caused concern among lawmakers regarding distracted driving and the potential for pedophiles to exploit the game to harm children. For example, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo banned sex offenders on parole from using Pokemon Go for fear they would put down lures to entice children to come to a particular location. Greenberg Traurig will work to counter that negative perception among federal lawmakers. Megan Wilson at the Hill has more.

 

Aug 9, 2016

Jermane Bond (@JermaneBond) is a Senior Fellow at the National Collaborative for Health Equity where he leads efforts to address the determinants of health for boys and men of color. His research interests include men’s preconception health and reproductive life planning, paternal involvement in pregnancy outcomes and racial and ethnic disparities in infant mortality. With funding from the Office of Minority Health in the Department of Health and Human Services, Dr. Bond formed the Commission on Paternal Involvement in Pregnancy Outcomes, (a transdisciplinary working group of social scientist and public health professionals) to raise awareness for the importance of paternal involvement in pregnancy and family health by reframing debates, informing research, policy and practice to support greater involvement of expectant fathers in pregnancy. Dr. Bond is a member of the American Public Health Association, the American College of Epidemiology and serves on several editorial boards, including the Maternal and Child Health Journal and the American Journal of Public Health. He received a B.A. from Morehouse College, and a Ph.D. from Howard University.

In this episode, we discussed:

  • Health disparities within the black community.
  • Specific health disparities affecting black men.
  • How health technology can play a vital role in creating better outcomes for black men.

Resources:

----

This Week's News

The Federal Trade Commission plans to crack down on celebrity product endorsements on social media. The agency thinks the endorsements aren’t transparent enough because they often don’t contain an explicit statement that the endorsement is actually a paid advertisement. So this will affect celebrities like DJ Khaled who promotes Ciroc vodka on Snapchat and other celebrities who earn revenue from sponsorships in exchange for giving products their stamp of approval.
 
The FTC has brought lawsuits against several companies that secure product endorsements from celebrities.
 
But marketing executives think this is an overreach, saying the these celebrity influencers recognize the trust their audiences place in them and would never violate that rapport by endorsing products they don’t actually believe in.
 
Experts are advising celebrity endorsers to know include hashtags in their sponsored posts, with #ad being the preferred indicator, although these hashtags often get jumbled up with a bunch of other hashtags.
 
Sarah Frier and Matt Townsend at Bloomberg have more.
 
----
 
The U.S. is concerned that voting machines will be hacked on election day. Remember that crazy 2000 election that was ultimately decided by the Supreme Court? Well, picture that scenario—except no one even knows where to start counting—since the entire system was hacked.
 
The problem is that with more than 9,000 voting districts in the U.S., it’s quite a task to monitor all those. So the Obama administration is considering whether to designate voting machines as “critical infrastructure”.
 
Check out Julie Hirschfeld Davis’ Coverage in The New York Times.
 
----
 
So if you’re in or around a court house, you may want to watch what you say—even if you’re talking to your own lawyer. Apparently, the FBI placed bugs in and around the San Mateo County courthouse while they were investigating an alleged foreclosed homes bid-rigging scheme. The FBI started out sending under-cover agents with wires, but apparently the agents fell out of favor with the suspects who began sharing less information with the undercover agents. So the FBI decided to try and capture the suspects’ conversations at the courthouse. But they went ahead and captured EVERYONE’S conversations—including people discussing their sex lives.
 
In any case, US District Judge Charles Breyer issued an order last week suppressing over 200 hours of audio recordings because he found the suspects had a legit expectation of privacy and so the surveillance tactic violated the Fourth Amendment. But technically, the FBI can keep placing bugs outside courthouses, since another federal judge in San Mateo issued the exact opposite ruling in another case—saying the suspects didn’t adequately protect their own privacy.
 
Joe Mullen covers this story over at Ars Technica.
 
----
 
Privacy Shield went into effect last week. That’s the privacy deal worked out between the U.S. and European Union after lawyer and PhD student Max Schrems — who is Austrian — successfully challenged Facebook’s privacy protection practices. Schrems filed 22 complaints against Facebook in Ireland, which ultimately led the EU to strike down the so called Safe Harbor—which for 16 years had governed transatlantic data exchanges between European citizens and servers in the United States. After the Safe Harbor was struck down, tech companies had to make individual agreements, which proved cumbersome, while the U.S. and E.U negotiated an alternative arrangement that would protect Europeans’ private data from the prying eyes of the National Security Agency.   The result is the Privacy Shield. But 28-year-old Schrems thinks Privacy Shield still isn’t good enough.
 
Adam Satariano and Stephanie Bodoni covered this for Bloomberg.
 
----
 
In a letter to Congress, the U.S. Copyright Office weighed in on the Federal Communications Commission’s proposed rules to open up set-top boxes to competition. The goal is to allow consumers to choose which set-top box they access content from, instead of being stuck with the box that they lease from their cable provider for an average of $231 per year. The U.S. Copyright Office wrote that the FCC’s proposed rules would give rise to widespread copyright infringement.
 
The Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Mitch Stolz argues that the Copyright Office’s legal analysis is full of holes, mainly because it fails to account for the fact that copyright law doesn’t confer any rights with respect to how the technology that consumers use to access the actual, copyrighted material, is designed.
 
Check out Mitch Stolz’ analysis at EFF and John Bergmayer analysis at Public Knowledge.
 
----
 
The Justice Department has decided it will not update the consent decrees performing rights organizations ASCAP and BMI entered into back in 1941. Those agreements set the standard for how media outlets would pay royalties. But, of course, the Internet wasn’t around then, and ASCAP and BMI had sought to have the consent decrees updated for the digital age. The Department of Justice declined and actually are adding a rule requiring ASCAP and BMI to get clearance from all of the artists who contributed to a song, and pay each of them their share of royalties. This is known as 100% licensing.
 
ASCAP and BMI, of course, were not happy with the decision, arguing that it would lead to musicians being paid less for their works.
 
Ben Sisario has the full story and analysis in the New York Times.
 
---
 
Finally, a former technician a the FBI has pled guilty to charges that he spied for the Chinese government, providing sensitive intelligence to Chinese officials, in exchange for travel reimbursements, cash and even prostitutes. Kun Shan Chun, a Chinese-born naturalized U.S. citizen faces 10 years in prison.
 
Camila Domonoske covered this story for NPR.
Aug 2, 2016

Jessica Gonzalez (@JGonzalezNHMC) is the Executive Vice President and General Counsel of the National Hispanic Media Coalition. Jessica oversees all NHMC operations from headquarters in Pasadena, California. Jessica has testified before the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), and has been interviewed on television and radio. Additionally, she played an instrumental role in drafting the historic Memorandum of Understanding between Comcast Corporation and leading national Latino leadership organizations. Before joining NHMC, Jessica was a staff attorney and clinical teaching fellow at Georgetown Law’s renowned Institute for Public Representation (IPR). At IPR Jessica represented NHMC and other consumer, civil rights and public interest organizations before the FCC, the NTIA and in the Courts of Appeal. While in law school, Jessica clerked at the Media Access Project in Washington, DC, and prior to law school she was a public high school teacher in Los Angeles, California. Jessica earned a Master of Laws (LLM) degree from Georgetown Law, a JD from Southwestern Law School, where she worked on the Journal of Law and Trade in the Americas and the Journal of International Media and Entertainment Law, and a BA in Communication Studies and Spanish from Loyola Marymount University. She is licensed to practice law in California and the District of Columbia. Jessica serves on the Executive Board of Directors of the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda and sits on the FCC’s Diversity and Open Internet advisory committees. In recognition of her public service accomplishments and commitment to mentoring, Harvard Law School selected Jessica as a Wasserstein Public Interest Fellow for the 2013-2014 school year.

In this episode, we discussed:

  • the relationship between media ownership diversity and hate speech.
  • the FCC's role in promoting media ownership diversity and where it has fallen short.
  • the psychological impact of hate speech.
  • how making broadband more affordable can help counter the effects of hate speech.

Resources:

National Hispanic Media Coalition

Why Not Me?  by Mindy Kaling

1