Friday 27 July 2012

Apply some pressure

Based on the premise that “The internet is the greatest engine of economic growth the World has ever known” a new US based trade group representing the interests of Internet companies called the Internet Association has been announced and will formally launch in September – headed up by Michael Beckerman as its inaugural president and CEO. Beckerman formerly served as House Energy and Commerce Committee deputy staff director and has a background in telecom and Internet policy. With Google, Facebook, Amazon and eBay as founding members, the group intends to be “the unified voice of the Internet economy, representing the interests of America’s leading Internet companies and their global community of users” by taking advocacy positions on public policy issues".

The Internet Association's stated goal is to “strengthen and protect an open, innovative and free Internet." with Beckerman saying “The Internet isn’t just Silicon Valley anymore, the Internet has moved to Main Street. Our top priority is to ensure that elected leaders in Washington understand the profound impacts of the Internet and Internet companies on jobs, economic growth and freedom.” 

So cynics might expect substantially more pressure on legislators both in the USA and elsewhere to maintain or even extend 'safe harbour' provisions, stop web blocking legislation and three strikes, and prevent anything along the same lines as the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), SOPA (the Stop Online Piracy Act) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA) ever developing.

The Internet Association has a very basic website here 

More from the National Journal here

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