A more worrying development regarding ISP actions came to light at the end of May, when the activist group Anonymous India hacked into the servers of one provider, Reliance Communication, and released a list of 434 web addresses that had been blocked. Among these were 45 addresses that Reliance had not been asked to block by either government or the courts—all of them related to an accused in the 2G scam, Satish Seth, a group managing director at its parent company, Reliance ADA Group (R-ADAG). The 45 addresses were soon unblocked. (For the record, an R-ADAG executive denied in an email that their servers had been compromised by Anonymous India, and said they had not blocked any web pages unless asked to do so by the government or the courts.)
CIS has a detailed blog post explaining why all of us who care about freedom of expression on the internet should support annulment motion by MP P. Rajeeve.
You should actually read that blog post but the following are the most important points
No chance to defend.
There is no need to inform users before this content is removed. So, even material put up by a political party can be removed based on anyone’s complaint, without telling that party. This was done against a site called *CartoonsAgainstCorruption.com”. This goes against Article 19(1)(a).
Government censorship, not ‘self-regulation’.
The government says these are industry best-practices in existing terms of service agreements. But the Rules require all intermediaries to include the government-prescribed terms in an agreement, no matter what services they provide. It is one thing for a company to choose the terms of its terms of service agreement, and completely another for the government to dictate those terms of service.
Government, police or an angry mob can force your blog (freedom of expression) or your business (web-based) to go offline without notice. Which is kind of insane isn’t it?
Thankfully there are some smart MPs in our parliament who are trying to pass a motion to annul these rules. We can’t just sit and watch. We need to support MPs who are supporting this motion. Call other MPs and ministers to urge them to support this motion.
To call your MP, ministers and to send them an email, use this online form provided by CIS. Its easy doesn’t take more than a minute. If you want to do more use the postal address to send a hard-copy of the letter or use the given official phone number to call them.
I am trying to visualize the constitution of India to make it easy for myself. The first one would be of-course a word cloud. Might take a while to load. Click on the image if you want bigger one.
More readable one
I downloaded the PDF files from Govt site. I have uploaded the same to Scribd for easy access and sharing.
Looks like our constitution is very egoistic, speaks more about itself than its people/citizen :)
Well I have many reasons not to agree with Team Anna. But what I agree is their (or anybody’s) right to fight. Specially if its against a corrupt system. What raged me is tactics used by Government to kill the movement even before it started. And probably that is the reason I support this movement.
Arun Jaitely talks about the same in Rajya Sabha and I completely agree with him.
These days my work mainly involves around government data (or the data that I assume govt should provide). You must have already seen the open data initiatives by both USA (Data.Gov) and UK(data.gov.uk) governments. I am not sure how good or the bad the data is but the initiative as such is a great move. For that matter it is not just countries but the cities like London have opened up their data. I think its high time for democracies like India to open up the data. Well at least the govt bodies of so called silicon valley of India, Bangalore’s BBMP or GOK to begin with.
Imagine raw data you will get to play around, its programmers heaven. Imagine the kind of mashups we can build with election results and geo data. As of today even though we have some kind of data on-line. Its very distributed, not open and of course not developer friendly.
What we need today is an open data initiative, where GOI and state/local govts can publish data in a developer friendly format. Even though I am not an expert, by developer friendly I mean, open standard, online, search-able, semantic data. Unfortunately in India it might take years for Govt to come up with such a plan. So as active citizens, how can we force the govt to that? or should it be taken up by an NGO or Society? or should we the citizens start a simple community project of collecting and publishing data?
Btw as an interim solution I am bookmarking all the Govt related data on delicious with #open-data-india. Feel free to tag/comment more about available data.
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