The WasteWatcher: The Staff Blog of Citizens Against Government Waste

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World Intellectual Property Day Is April 26

World Intellectual Property Day is April 26, 2014.  Set aside by the international community in 2000, as a day to increase and promote a general understanding of intellectual property (IP), this event is recognized worldwide at numerous events.  Among those events this year was the 2014 IP Champions Conference, held on April 23, 2014 by the Global Intellectual Property Center of the U.S.

Times Have Changed

Once there was a time when 30-page college papers were typed on portable electric typewriters, research was done in library stacks, and job applications were filled out by hand.  Taxes were filed on paper and mailed (postmarked no later than April 15th) at the local post office, and shopping meant going to the local market and buying what was available at the store.  How times have changed.

A Continued Push for Net Neutrality

Proponents of net neutrality are once again working towards imposing net neutrality rules and regulations over the Internet.  The Internet has thrived in an open and competitive market to become a vital part of society and the global economy.  There has been incredible growth in both the speed and quality of the web, largely because the government has resisted onerous regulations.

Eighteen Years and Counting

On February 8, 2014, the Telecommunications Act of 1996 will turn eighteen years old.  For most eighteen year-olds this is a major milestone in life.  Gaining a sense of maturity; showing that one is ready to face the world.  You even get to vote. 

Opening up Wi-Fi to the Internet of Things

Over the weekend, a high school freshman printed a history report; a man researched job postings over the Internet on his tablet; a family watched a TV show on their laptop while waiting for an appointment; and, a woman talked to her mother on her home’s cordless phone.  All of these actions used unlicensed spectrum either through a Wi-Fi connection, or near-point radio frequencies.

Public Utility Model Doesn’t Hold Traction for Broadband

On November 4, 2013, a study released by Reason Foundation found that government-owned broadband networks (GONs) do not provide the value that cities and towns hope to achieve.

Private Sector Solution to Digital Literacy

As students return to school this fall, they are finding that their teachers are using technology tools, such as online curriculums and textbooks, and assigning online homework more frequently.  Today, virtually all schools and libraries are connected to the Internet.  However, once the school day has ended, students may find a different picture when they return home.

Keeping Internet Access Free of Taxes

On November 1, 2014, the moratorium banning discriminatory taxes on the Internet and taxes on Internet access imposed by the Internet Tax Freedom Act in 1998 will expire.  At the time the legislation was initially enacted, the Internet had approximately 300 million users.  Since then, the number of users on the Internet has increased to nearly 2.3 billion world-wide.

E-Rate Program Reform To Take Center Stage at FCC

On Friday, July 19, 2013, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will be meeting to discuss, among other items, reforms to the Universal Service Fund (USF)’ E-Rate program, which was highlighted in the July edition of Wastewatcher.  It is expected that the outcome of this meeting will be a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) to obtain comment on how the program can be re-organized to meet the goals of the President Obama’s recently

"Campaign to Cut Waste" Falls Short

On June 13, 2011, President Obama issued Executive Order No.

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