Posts filtered by tags: Internet History[x]


 

Here's What People Thought of YouTube When It First Launched in the Mid-2000s

When YouTube first launched 15 years ago, a lot of people weren’t sure what to make of it. Anyone can upload a video to this service? Why do I want to hear what some obnoxious teenager has to say from their bedroom?Read more...
Tags: Science, Youtube, Barack Obama, Snl, Ashton Kutcher, Flickr, Internet History, 2008 Presidential Election, Angelfire, Lazy Sunday, Imbd, Web 20


The Dancing Baby, re-rendered in high definition for your delight or horror

Lest we forget, the Dancing Baby of 1996 was one of the first viral videos online and became an iconic meme of the early Web. Now, creative programmer Jack Armstrong has brought the Dancing Baby (aka the Oogachaka Baby) back to life in high definition and ported it to Garry's Mod (GMod) sandbox game. Armstrong posted a fascinating Twitter thread detailing his quest for the original 3D model of the character and how he re-rendered it into an HD form fit for today's uncanny valley.
Tags: Post, Video, News, B-side, Memes, Viral Videos, Armstrong, Jack Armstrong, Garry, Dancing Baby, Internet History, Oogachaka, Oogachaka Baby


An oral history of Rickrolling

In 2006, Erik Helwig created the Rickroll. Maybe. Over at MEL Magazine, Brian VanHooker's "An Oral History of Rickrolling" takes us back to a time when the worst of the weaponized Internet memes were those created by advertising agencies, not corrupt politicians and warmongers. And if you're curious what I mean by that, watch the rather shocking video above. From MEL: Erik Helwig, founder of Rickrolling (maybe): This was small-town, rural Michigan and there was this radio program called the...
Tags: Video, News, Wikipedia, Memes, Philadelphia, Michigan, Nicolas Cage, Christopher, Internet History, Rickrolling, Never Gonna Give You up, Don Caldwell, Brian VanHooker, Erik Helwig, Duckrolling


Here's the Internet's 'Birth Certificate' From 50 Years Ago Today

Fifty years ago today, on October 29, 1969, the internet was born. It was a humble beginning—a single login from a computer terminal at UCLA in Los Angeles to the Stanford Research Institute (SRI) in the Bay Area. But it was a tiny baby step that would eventually catapult the world into the information age.Read more...
Tags: Science, Los Angeles, Darpa, Ucla, Bay Area, ARPA, Internet History, Arpanet, Stanford Research Institute SRI


New Paper Explains Why Technologists Should Rally Behind Section 230

At the request of James Grimmelmann, and with his editorial support, I wrote an essay for the Communications of the ACM called “Internet Immunity and the Freedom to Code.” The abstract: The Internet’s freedom to code is in jeopardy. In 1996, Congress enacted 47 U.S.C. § 230, which says Internet services aren’t liable for third-party content in many cases. In practice, for over two decades, Section 230 has legally immunized coders’ decisions about how to gather, organize, and publish third par...
Tags: Google, Facebook, UK, Law, Congress, San Francisco, United States, Airbnb, DOE, Grindr, Ugc, Homeaway, Daniel, James Grimmelmann, Derivative Liability, Internet History


So Long, YTMND

Before sharable internet jokes were even called memes, they lived on YTMND—which appears to have met its end. Read more...
Tags: Science, Max Goldberg, Internet History, You Were The Man Then Dog, Ytmnd


An Email Inbox Isn’t a “Place” for Purposes of Florida Privacy Law–Hall v. Sargeant

One of the most venerable cyberlaw questions: is cyberspace a physical place, and does it matter legally? For purposes of Florida’s privacy invasion law, a federal district court answers: no and yes. This case involves long-running litigation and drama between people who have more money than you or I have. Harry owned part of a family business and had an email account on the family business’ servers. The email account commingled business and personal emails. Harry got ousted from the business an...
Tags: Facebook, Florida, Law, Harry, ECPA, Hall, Nlrb, State, Daniel, Decker, Ouellette, Sargeant, CFAA, Publicity/Privacy Rights, Internet History, Private Facebook Group


Travel Back to 1990 With the Original World Wide Web Browser

The World Wide Web turns 30 this year, and to celebrate three decades of utter chaos and brilliance, CERN developers and designers have created a version of the original WorldWideWeb browser that can run inside a modern browser. What, you wonder, is it like to surf the original web? Well, give it a try here. It’s kind…Read more...
Tags: Science, Web Browsers, Cern, World Wide Web, Tim Berners Lee, Internet History


Early Predictions of the Internet Date Back to 19th Century Sci-Fi

Science fiction writers are professional future-dreamers, imagining worlds far beyond their own. With technology advancing at astronomical rates, real life feels more and more like sci-fi every day (for better or worse). So it’s fun to look back at those writers who, decades and even centuries ago, imagined what life…Read more...
Tags: Science Fiction, Science, The Internet, Literature, Internet History


How Ancient Religious Texts Went Digital

In the 1940s, as the Italian Jesuit priest Father Roberto Busa studied “the verbal system” of Thomas Aquinas, he wondered if, perhaps, there was “any gadget” that could help him develop a concordance—an alphabetical listing of all words written by the 13th century philosopher saint, complete with conjunctions,…Read more...
Tags: Science, Technology, Religion, Thomas Aquinas, Internet History, Roberto Busa


Larry Roberts, Grandfather of the Internet, Dies at 81

Lawrence “Larry” Roberts, one of a small handful of people who can truly be called the grandparents of the internet, died of a heart attack on December 26 at his home in Redwood City, California. He was 81 years old.Read more...
Tags: Science, Obituaries, Darpa, Lawrence, Roberts, Larry, Redwood City California, Vint Cerf, ARPA, Internet History, Arpanet, Larry Roberts, Lawrence Roberts, Leonard Kleinrock, Email History, Arpanet History


Best and Worst Internet Laws [Repost from Concurring Opinions’ Archive]

[In 2007, I guest-blogged at the group law professor blog Concurring Opinions. With the demise of that blog, I am now archiving my guest posts on my own blog. This post first appeared on February 15, 2007.] __ [Preface: I’ve already overstayed my guest visit, but before I go, I want to say thanks to the Concurring Opinions team for the opportunity to blog here, and thanks to all of you for the great comments and stimulating dialogue. A complete index of my guest blog posts. Meanwhile, I’ll keep ...
Tags: Amazon, Utah, Law, Congress, Ebay, E-commerce, Spam, Icann, Copyright, United States, Alaska, Eff, Dmca, Michigan, Domain Names, Doj


MySpace Sued for Facilitating Offline Sexual Assaults [Repost from Concurring Opinions’ Archive]

[In 2007, I guest-blogged at the group law professor blog Concurring Opinions. With the demise of that blog, I am now archiving my guest posts on my own blog. This post first appeared on January 18, 2007.] AP reports that four families have sued MySpace because their daughters were sexually assaulted (offline) by other MySpace members. This isn’t the first time MySpace has been sued on this front; last year, MySpace was sued in Texas state court for the same issue in Doe v. MySpace. These lawsui...
Tags: Texas, Law, Congress, Virginia, Ap, Aol, DOE, Myspace, Usc, Fourth Circuit, McCain, Barnes, Bates, Yahoo Inc, Sen McCain, America Online


How '90s Cybersex Pioneers Looked for Action and Found Community

If you take a peek at the back pages of 1990s computer magazines, you’ll find plenty of ads for data recovery services, toner cartridges, and bulk shipments of computer disks. Look even closer, and you’ll discover a now-almost-forgotten world of early digital erotica and sexual chat services.Read more...
Tags: Science, Internet, Sex, Culture, Internet History


The Florida Bar and Competitive Keyword Advertising: A Tragicomedy (in 3 Parts)

In the late 2000s, keyword advertising was one of Internet Law’s hottest topics. Now, not so much. Relatively few lawsuits are filed; they rarely last long in court; and most trademark owners have moved on. But in the Florida Bar, the keyword advertising debate rages on like it’s 2009. If all this sounds familiar, you have a good memory. In 2013, the Florida Bar considered a proposal to ban competitive keyword advertising by lawyers. In a surprising upset, the Board of Governors narrowly rejecte...
Tags: Google, Amazon, Florida, Texas, Law, California, Marketing, Search Engines, Trademark, BPI, Ftc, Florida Bar, Federal Trade Commission FTC, Bog, Board of Governors, Internet History


PMO wants to screen internet footprint of candidates for top govt jobs: Report

The government has put in place a seven-step screening process for all appointments to key institutions and organisations; beginning with a candidate’s internet footprint and ends with clearance from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), reported The Economic Times. The process appears to the most... ...
Tags: Travel, News, Privacy, Economic Times, PMO, Internet History, Government Jobs, Screening Process, Internet Footprint, Office PMO


Did Paul Krugman Say the Internet’s Effect on the World Economy Would Be ‘No Greater Than the Fax Machine’s’?

In a 1998 article about the pitfalls of making predictions about technological progress, the Nobel Prize-winning economist questioned the future role of the Internet.
Tags: News, History, Paul Krugman, Fax Machine, Internet History, Questionable Quotes


The Original Gmail Was Garfield Mail

Back when a brand-new company called Google was getting its first trickle of angel investment from the likes of Jeff Bezos and others, early netizens could already use a service called G-mail in 1998. Mainly, it was used by fans of a certain obese, lasagna-loving cartoon cat.Read more...
Tags: Google, Science, Gmail, Jeff Bezos, Garfield, Jim Davis, Internet History, Low Stakes Internet Mysteries, Catsrulegarfieldcom, E Garfield


John Perry Barlow, EFF Co-Founder and Author of 1996 Cyberspace Manifesto, Dies at 70

John Perry Barlow, co-founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and author of the 1996 manifesto, “A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace,” has died. He was 70 years old.Read more...
Tags: Science, Obituaries, Eff, Grateful Dead, Electronic Frontier Foundation, Lsd, Timothy Leary, John Perry Barlow, Internet History, Web History, A Declaration Of The Independence Of Cyberspace


Here's the Sequel to 'End of Ze World,' the First Viral Video Ever

The new “End of Ze World” video looks just like the original for exactly two seconds. A few moments later, the long-awaited sequel to what many call the world’s first viral video displays a collage of missiles, pumpjacks, a Nazi flag, a hurricane, and protest signs. Your eyes will immediately drop to the one that says…Read more...
Tags: Science, Animation, Viral Videos, Internet Culture, Internet History, End Of The World, Dont Fire Ze Missiles, End Of Ze World, End Of Ze World 2, End Of The World 2


US Court Protects Google From Canadian Court’s Delisting Order–Google v. Equustek

[It’s impossible to blog about Section 230 without reminding you that it remains highly imperiled.] Datalink allegedly misappropriated Equustek’s trade secrets to develop competitive products. Equustek sued Datalink in Canadian courts and obtained various court orders. The Datalink principal fled Canada and can’t be found. Equustek requested that Google delist Datalink from its search results. Google said no, but after Equustek obtained a Canadian injunction against Datalink, Google removed 300 ...
Tags: Google, Europe, Law, Congress, France, US, Eu, Search Engines, Trade Secrets, Canada, United States, Rtbf, Barnes, Google Google, EU Google, Content Regulation


Conference Announcement: “Content Moderation & Removal at Scale,” SCU, Feb. 2

I’m pleased to announce “Content Moderation & Removal at Scale,” a conference we’ll be holding on campus on February 2, 2018.  I anticipate a full house, so we’ve set a registration cap. When we reach the cap, we will put subsequent registrations on a waitlist. If you’d like to come, I strongly recommend early registration. If the registration fees pose a hardship in any way and you don’t fit into one of the free registration categories, please contact me. The Backstory: I was disheartened when ...
Tags: Law, Senate, Dc, Bay Area, Wagner, Content Regulation, Derivative Liability, Internet History


Section 230’s Applicability to ‘Inconsistent’ State Laws (Guest Blog Post)

by guest blogger Cary Glynn [Eric’s intro: in the SESTA debates, occasionally there has been some confusion about how Section 230 interacts with state criminal laws. This issue is addressed by Section 230(e)(3), and Harvard Law 3L Cary Glynn is back to help us navigate how courts have interpreted that provision.] Not many Section 230 opinions focus on § 230(e)(3). The subsection speaks to the relationship between Section 230 and state law. It reads as follows: Nothing in this section shall be co...
Tags: Law, Congress, California, Senate, San Francisco, Bird, California Supreme Court, Doj, DOE, Teamsters, Zuckerberg, Cooper, Schneider, Eric, Wagner, Corbett


New Essay: The Ten Most Important Section 230 Rulings

[It’s impossible to blog about Section 230 without reminding you that it remains highly imperiled.] I’ve posted a new essay entitled “The Ten Most Important Section 230 Rulings.” It will be published in the Tulane Journal of Technology & Intellectual Property. Everyone loves lists and rankings, but this essay is more than just fluffy clickbait. Organizing Section 230 cases by importance actually creates a helpful narrative about the development of Section 230 jurisprudence and the ongoing dialog...
Tags: Law, Congress, DOE, Alexa, Congressional, CDA, Derivative Liability, Internet History, Backpage, CDA Congress


My Senate Testimony on SESTA + SESTA Hearing Linkwrap

Last week, the Senate Commerce Committee held a hearing on the Stop Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017 (SESTA). I testified as an academic expert on Section 230. My remarks: * * * I appreciate this opportunity to testify about the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act of 2017. Sex trafficking is a horrific crime, and I applaud Congress’ ongoing efforts to combat it. However, I am concerned that SESTA is not the right solution to stop sex trafficking. Specifically, SESTA will counterproductively lea...
Tags: Google, Law, Congress, Senate, Department Of Justice, Mike Masnick, Ferrer, Sarah Jeong, Blumenthal, CDA, Mike Godwin, Senate Commerce Committee, Zach Graves, Content Regulation, Derivative Liability, Internet History


Congress Is About To Ruin Its Online Free Speech Masterpiece (Cross-Post)

[Before last week’s Senate hearing on SESTA, I posted a version of this blog post on the ACS Blog. This has been partially superseded by my Senate testimony, which I’ll post more about shortly.] In 1996, Congress became concerned that excessive liability would threaten the free flow of information over the Internet. To protect the Internet from this risk, Congress passed 47 USC § 230 (Section 230), which eliminates (with limited exceptions) the liability of online services for publishing third ...
Tags: Facebook, Law, Congress, California, Senate, United States, House, Airbnb, Doj, Usc, Jones, Phoenix, U S Department of Justice, Ferrer, Content Regulation, Derivative Liability


Global Content Removals Based on Local Legal Violations (Internet Law Casebook Excerpt)

[Eric’s note: I’m sharing an excerpt from my Internet Law casebook discussing transborder content removal orders, including the Equustek case.] From the Internet’s earliest days, the tension between a global communication network and local geography-based laws has been obvious. One scenario is that every jurisdiction’s local laws apply to the Internet globally, meaning that the country (or sub-national regulator) with the most restrictive law for any content category sets the global standard for...
Tags: Google, Europe, Law, Germany, US, Trade Secrets, Canada, United States, Rtbf, Cnil, Eric, Google Inc, Michael Geist, Content Regulation, Derivative Liability, Internet History


How Section 230 Helps Sex Trafficking Victims (and SESTA Would Hurt Them) (Guest Blog Post)

by guest blogger Alex F. Levy [Eric’s introduction: Alex Levy teaches Human Trafficking and Human Markets at Notre Dame Law School. She has written a timely and provocative article, The Virtues of Unvirtuous Spaces, about Backpage and online sexual commerce. A sample of the article: “allowing Internet platforms on which sexual services are brokered to thrive may be key to apprehending traffickers and recovering victims….it is nonsensical to hold Backpage accountable for what traffickers do with ...
Tags: Law, Congress, Senate, Fbi, Doj, Alex, Eric, Content Regulation, Derivative Liability, Internet History, Backpage, Alex Levy, Notre Dame Law School, SESTA, Alex F Levy, Backpage Section


Announcing the 2017 Edition of ‘Internet Law: Cases & Materials’

I’m pleased to announce this year’s edition of my Internet Law casebook, Internet Law: Cases & Materials. It’s available for sale as a PDF at Gumroad for $8, as a Kindle book for $9.99, and in hard copy at CreateSpace for $20 + shipping–once again, same price as last year. For my thoughts about self-publishing an ebook casebook, see this article. If you’re an academic and would like a free evaluation copy, please email me. I can also send you my presentation slides and lecture notes. You might ...
Tags: Google, Facebook, General, Law, California, Ebay, US, Icann, Intel, People, Noah, Aclu, Aol, Dmca, RMG, Gumroad


Ban on Sex Offenders Using Social Media Violates First Amendment–Packingham v. North Carolina

Yesterday, the Supreme Court struck down a North Carolina law that banned registered sex offenders from using social media sites. It’s a rare treat to get a Supreme Court opinion delving into Internet content regulations, and as a bonus, this case enthusiastically embraces Internet exceptionalism. As Justice Alito’s concurrence says plainly, “Cyberspace is different from the physical world.” Whoa! The Court’s Ruling North Carolina G.S. §14–202.5 makes it a felony for registered sex offenders to ...
Tags: Amazon, Facebook, Supreme Court, Law, Congress, California, Washington Post, White House, Court, People, Aclu, States, North Carolina, Reno, Kennedy, Cyberspace