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Technological Sovereignty: Missing the Point?

Open Technology Institute

This report finds that many of the proposals suggested to achieve "technological sovereignty" in the wake of the 2013 surveillance disclosures do not effectively protect against surveillance. Moreover, some of them, especially those forcing localized data storage or routing, are likely to negatively affect an open and free Internet.

Upcoming Events

Activating Citizens: Organizing for Change in the Digital Era

EVENT December 10, 2014 9:30 am– 11:00 am

Wednesday December 10, 2014

9:30 am – 11:00 am


[u'New America', u'1899 L Street NW Suite 400', u'Washington, DC 20036']

From MoveOn.org to the National Rifle Association, Health Care for America Now to the Sierra Club, membership-based civic associations constantly seek to engage people in civic and political action. What makes some more effective than others?

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policy paper | November 24, 2014 | Open Technology Institute
Technological Sovereignty: Missing the Point?

Technological Sovereignty: Missing the Point?

An Analysis of European Proposals after June 5, 2013

Tim Maurer Robert Morgus Isabel Skierka Mirko Hohmann

This report finds that many of the proposals suggested to achieve "technological sovereignty" in the wake of the 2013 surveillance disclosures do not effectively protect against surveillance. Moreover, some of them, especially those forcing localized data storage or routing, are likely to negatively affect an open and free Internet.

Recent Content

press release | November 24, 2014 | Open Technology Institute

Technological Sovereignty: Missing the Point?

New Study Finds that European “Technological Sovereignty” Proposals Fall Short of Expectations

New America

New America’s Open Technology Institute in partnership with the Global Public Policy Institute in Berlin, Germany, released a new report today assessing the potential impacts of “technological sovereignty” proposals that came out of Europe after reports about foreign government surveillance starting in June 2013.

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in the news | November 21, 2014 | Open Technology Institute

"China's 600 Million Searchers Push Global Internet Towards Censorship"

“There’s an effort to get American and European companies to be more transparent on how they handle government information requests,” said Rebecca MacKinnon, a U.S.-based director of the Ranking Digital Rights project at the New America Foundation and former Beijing bureau chief for CNN. “Obviously, that’s not happening with the Chinese.”

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in the news | November 21, 2014 | Open Technology Institute

The Universal Internet

New America

A recent study by New America Foundation (which is neither predictably liberal nor conservative) showed that America is falling behind. It found that a few cities like Chattanooga, Tennessee, have fast service at low prices, but in most of the U.S., it’s hard to do much better than $130 per month for a 150 Mbps home broadband connection

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in the news | November 17, 2014 | Open Technology Institute

Why the South lags behind when it comes to home broadband use

"Cost is a huge factor in terms of broadband adoption, and in the U.S. we tend to pay more for broadband at entry level speed tiers as well as the higher levels," said Danielle Kehl, a policy analyst at the New America Foundation's Open Technology Institute. One reason for this, Kehl suggests, is that there isn't enough competition to drive down the cost of broadband subscriptions. As you can see in this chart from the FCC below, more than a third of Americans live in areas served by two or fewer fixed-location Internet providers with download speeds of at least 6 megabits per second -- enough for basic Internet use but not ideal for streaming video.

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in the news | November 15, 2014 | Open Technology Institute

A Plumbing Problem for the Internet (and the Stock Market)

Cogent’s story became part of the net neutrality debate last winter, when a big plumbing problem afflicted the Internet. Thousands of Netflix customers complained that TV shows and movies were being interrupted by slow data transmissions. A report by the independent Measurement Lab Consortium traced those blockages to the interconnections between Cogent’s plumbing and the “last mile” Internet pipes run by cable and phone companies like Comcast and Verizon.

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in the news | November 14, 2014 | Open Technology Institute

"U.S. Cellular partner, Cellcom and other small carriers oppose using Title II for net neutrality rules"

New America

However, the New America Foundation report rejected the arguments carriers have made. The report included an engineering study, conducted by the foundation's Open Technology Institute (OTI), that concluded that LTE networks are "capable of managing moderate congestion through prioritization protocols that are application-agnostic (e.g., user-directed prioritization). When faced with severe congestion, such as at a major sporting event, LTE networks are able to prioritize delay-sensitive traffic while avoiding discrimination among like applications, content, or services."