Net neutrality is pretty much being neutered and President Obama gave a big speech on spying, pretty much saying what you'd expect (except the metadata program might change if they can figure out how). Shocking? No. Confidence inspiring? What do you think?
CBS Interactive's Distinguished Lecturer David Gewirtz hosts ZDNet Government -- ZDNet's politics and policy coffeehouse -- where civics lessons meet technology, nothing is sacred, and everything is fair game.
David Gewirtz, Distinguished Lecturer at CBS Interactive, is an author, U.S. policy advisor, and computer scientist. He is featured in the History Channel special The President's Book of Secrets and is a member of the National Press Club.
Why does this sound like the beginning of a Godzilla movie?
It's been a quiet week for government news the world over. That doesn't mean everyone in government is avoiding doing stupid things. It's just that last year's stupid things are getting old, and this year's stupid things haven't yet trickled up into news stories. No worries: if there's government, there's stupid. Stay tuned.
Are you bored of the NSA yet? Are you suffering from NSA-fatigue? Apparently the fourth estate just can't help themselves, because the NSA news keeps on comin'. Is anything else interesting happening in the World 'o Gov this week? Not much. Nope.
You can describe 2013 in four words: NSA, shutdown, twerking, and selfie. Sigh. We need to do better this year. Humanity had better step up its game.
Is that too much to ask? One frickin' week of no disasters. I'm not asking for competence, just a quiet week of no mistakes. Yeah, like that's going to happen. Ah, well. Feast your eyes below on the spectrum of news and idiocy that is government in action.
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It's never a dull week watching and mocking the shenanigans of governments worldwide. This week is no different, except there's more NSA, a little nostalgia for 2013, and, well, porn. So pretty much same ol' same ol'.
As we move forward into a new year, fully aware of all the data gathering, surveillance, and big data out there, I have only one simple piece of advice: Watch where you step.
Legitimate patent owners won't be substantially negatively impacted by this bill. It's a little weak (leaving the door open to the big-boy trolls who use a different bag of tricks), but it's good, robust progress.