Pro-consumer BBC television program "Watchdog" will take on Sony over its digital refunds policy related to its home console systems tonight, GamesIndustry.biz reports. The episode is the result of some high profile complaints against Sony's refund policy for digital goods on the PS3 - with a particular focus on a victim of identity theft named John Lappin.
A total of 28 rights groups and organizations sent a letter to lawmakers in the Senate urging them to oppose S. 1357. S. 1357 would extend the USA Patriot by two months up until July 31. The USA Patriot Act is set to expire on June 1 and the groups who sent the letter say that lawmakers should let it expire as it was intended to do.
UK watchdog agency the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) is taking Sony to task over the way the company and retailer GAME handled a competition to buy its 20th Anniversary Edition console. Only 12,300 units of the 20th Anniversary Edition PS4 were made available for purchase worldwide, and only a small portion of those systems were sold in the UK. The systems were highly coveted by consumers, so when Sony and GAME rolled out a competition in December of last year to have the privilege of buying one, people were excited.
If there was ever a seemingly unflappable group of individuals it is America's librarians, who take the privacy of their patrons very, very seriously. Since the introduction of the Patriot Act the group representing our nation's librarians has been fighting to protect its patrons from government intrusion.
GamesBeat reports that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has taken Valve Software to court over its "no refunds" policy on Steam.
While it will come as no surprise to anyone paying attention to proposed changes to the 2010 Open Internet Order (Net Neutrality rules) put forth by chairman Tom Wheeler, the FCC has confirmed that over one million people submitted comments during the public comment period so far.
The deadline to submit comments ends tonight at Midnight.
According to a tweet from Gigi Sohn, Special Counsel for External Affairs, Office of the Chairman, more than 1 million people have now submitted comments on net neutrality.
The British Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ruled that EA's free-to-play mobile title Dungeon Keeper can no longer be advertised in the region as being "free."
The watchdog agency said that timed in-game events that prevent players from progressing without micro-transactions are why EA needs to make changes in how it advertises the game, according to the ASA's website.
A new report from the Natural Resource Defense Council concludes that the newest generation of game consoles consumer way too much power. The report notes that these new systems are on track to consume as much power nationwide as all the homes in Houston this year. That equates to about $1 billion to operate these systems annually.
Much of this energy is consumed in "the middle of the night, when the console is in standby mode but still listening for voice commands or using higher power than necessary to keep USB ports active."
The founder of indie developer Vagabond Dog wants games to be honored for LGBT content and has taken the bold step of asking LGBT media advocacy organization GLAAD to start recognizing video games in its annual Media Awards. Justin Amirkhani made his case for games shortly after the organization criticized Nintendo for not including same-sex relationships in its Mii simulation game Tomodachi Life.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is calling on the Internet community to support the USA Freedom Act and oppose other "supposed reform bills." The rights group is calling on the Internet community to strongly oppose reform bills like the FISA Improvements Act, which pretends to fix the problems with the NSA's mass surveillance spying programs but instead gives the agency and the government more power to continue spying (like bills from lawmakers like Representatives Mike Rogers and Dutch Ruppersberger, and Senator Dianne Feinstein).
Comcast has begun to lay out its arguments to the Federal Communications Commission and the Justice Department on why its $45 billion merger with Time Warner Cable should be approved. In a public interest statement to the FCC released today, Comcast said that the merger will help the company compete against competition in the broadband space like Google and streaming entertainment service such as Netflix. It also claimed that the merger would bring the next-generation of broadband services to millions of households and businesses in America.
Jesse Ventura, former Minnesota Governor and host of a new show online called "Off the Grid," has endorsed tomorrow's planned Internet protest of NSA surveillance, attentively dubbed "The Day We Fight Back."
“Benjamin Franklin once said those who would give up essential liberty, to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety,” stated Jesse Ventura. “I hope to raise awareness of how dangerous the NSA has become, and I will be joined online with people around the world who feel the same way.”
Public Knowledge on Thursday announced that former Justice Department antitrust official Gene Kimmelman has joined the watchdog group as its new president. Kimmelman has long been a leading proponent of net neutrality, and given the recent Appeals Court decision striking down part of the FCC's rules in its Open Internet Order, Public Knowledge and other organizations that support Net Neutrality need all the help they can get.
Several states (or at least a handful of state lawmakers) have decided to fight against the federal government's surveillance activities in their own way. In California, two state senators have introduced a bill in Sacramento that would forbid state agencies from cooperating with the National Security Agency to collect "any electronic data or metadata... not based on a warrant." The bill sponsored by state senators Ted Lieu (D-Torrance) and Joel Anderson (R-San Diego), is the first state-level proposal to compel non-cooperation with the federal agency.
Berin Szoka, President of Internet rights organization TechFreedom has penned an interesting editorial over at the Huffington Post detailing his group's opposition to Massachusetts state lawmakers pushing for research on the connection between real-world violence and playing violent video games.
Canadian Internet rights group La Quadrature du Net warns that a trade treaty between Canada and the European Union will ultimately hurt internet freedoms in both regions if its ratified. CETA recently reached "agreement in principle" status during a meeting between José Barroso, the President of the European Commission, and Stefen Harper, the Canadian Prime Minister.
The U.S. Supreme Court is considering a review of the 677 New Loudon Corp. v. State of New York Tax Tribunal, following a decision from the New York Supreme Court that the state government may tax exotic dancing but not other forms of dancing. Free speech advocacy group Media Coalition thinks that if the Supreme Court were to review this decision, it would likely overturn it because it violates the First Amendment. The group recently filed an amicus brief with the court urging it to review the case.
In a blog post republished on Gamasutra, Barbara Jones (a shareholder in Greenberg Traurig’s Corporate and Securities practice group, a member of the Global practice group and the Emerging Technologies Team, and co-coordinator of the firm’s Conflict Minerals Compliance Initiative) discusses the video game industry's compliance with the Securities and Exchange Commission's new conflict minerals rules.
The American Civil Liberties Union is calling its recent efforts to petition President Barack Obama to veto CISPA a smashing success, with 49,513 signatures so far. The civil liberties group also took out a full page ad on popular political website (found here) Politico yesterday urging members of Congress to oppose the controversial cybersecurity bill.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) details what information could be shared between government agencies, corporations and other entities if CISPA is ever passed and signed into law by President Barack Obama. With the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence set to mark the bill up next week, and the full House scheduled to vote on it the week after that, it is important that Internet users understand why this bill is bad news for them.
A letter signed by 33 organizations and nine individuals asks the top ranking lawmakers in the House of Representatives (Reps. Bob Goodlatte and John Conyers) and the United States Senate (Sens. Patrick Leahy and Charles Grassley) to make an exception for unlocking electronic devices to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Recently a petition signed by over 110,000 Americans asked President Barack Obama's administration to make the same exception.
A letter signed by 34 different organizations has been sent to the White House this week urging President Barack Obama to veto Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) if it crossed his desk this year. Last year the President promised to reject the House bill if it was not drastically overhauled to provide more privacy protections and remove some other elements like immunity from litigation for corporations that share information with the government.
Today lawmakers in Connecticut held a public meeting to get feedback from the community and interested parties on several pieces of legislation that have been proposed about video games in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting in December. Supporters of legislation to regulate video games told members of the General Assembly’s Children’s Committee that they believe that there is a causal link between playing violent video games and violent real-world act committed by youth.
Internet privacy and advocacy group Demand Progress is continuing its fight against CISPA (the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act) and is mobilizing the Internet community to contact their elected representatives to let them know that they do not care for CISPA. Demand Progress said today that over 90,000 members have expressed their displeasure with CISPA, which was re-introduced last week by Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) - without out any changes from last year's bill.
On January 18, 2012 something amazing happened: the Internet community, advocacy groups, internet personalities, popular websites, and even some brave politicians banded together to send a message to lawmakers and special interests that backed the poorly crafted SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and PIPA (Protect IP Act) legislation.