Wowsers writes: In an effort to get ever more taxes for doing absolutely nothing, the United Nations are to consider a European proposal to tax the internet based on data that gets sent. The proposal is designed to get money from large bandwidth users like Google, Facebook, Apple, and Netflix. Smaller companies that have high bandwidth would be forced off the internet due to the taxes.
The proposed measure is also claimed to be an effective tool for censorship as companies will just block access to countries to limit the amount of taxes they pay for data.
Wowsers writes: In vogue with other countries cracking down on freedom and democracy on the internet as discussed in Slashdot recently, the UK is joining in with plans to track all phone calls, text messages, email traffic and websites visited online, all to be stored in vast databases under new Government anti-terror plans. As reported in The Telegraph.
Security services will have access to information about who has been communicating with each other on social networking sites such as Facebook, direct messages between subscribers on Twitter would also be stored, as well as communications between players in online video games.
The scheme is a revised version of a plan drawn up by the ex-Labour government which would have created a central database of all the information. The idea later dropped in favour of requiring communications providers to store the details at the taxpayers’ expense.
Wowsers writes: Whilst everyone thought that the UK's Digital Economy Bill currently passing though the government machine was going to have the contentious "block websites" clause removed, the government has re-introduced the clause at the last minute, in the hope that it will pass into law before the UK general election is called. With the three main political parties not having anyone with an IT degree between them, it looks certain to pass into law. The blocking of websites clause has been changed, but not by much. A government minister will now have to have a shame public consultation before blocking a website under pretext of copyright "piracy", however, it's no stretch of the imagination that the legislation will allow ANY website to be blocked, in particular of political opponents, or opponents of government policies. Who said the UK was free and democratic!