Knight Foundation Grant To Copia To Research Content Moderation, Governance, Rules & Norms For Internet Infrastructure

from the excited-to-dig-in dept

So many of the discussions around content moderation have focused on the so-called "edge-providers" (the companies that are more user-facing). We all know the stories about content moderation dealing with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google, etc. But for a while now we've been concerned about how the debate will play out regarding content moderation at the infrastructure layers -- that is the behind-the-scenes providers that people don't always even know exist. This includes hosting companies, DNS providers, domain registrars, CDNs, broadband providers and many, many more.

So we're (in the form of our Copia Institute think tank) are excited to be a part of a new grant to research this issue, with a specific focus on how these infrastructure content moderation issues may impact competition, privacy, and liability. We're planning to do some (virtual, for the time being!) gatherings, and putting together some research about these issues as well.

This is the first time we've worked with the Knight Foundation, and we're excited that they were willing to step up and support such important work.

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Filed Under: content moderation, governance, grant, infrastructure, internet infrastructure, platforms, protocols, research
Companies: copia institute, knight foundation

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Jun 2020 @ 5:17pm

    Re: Re:

    If, say a Comcast customer, is directed to their DNS servers and Comcast decides not to include say Techdirt, then they will get a 'host not found' result instead of the web page.

    This NXDOMAIN error needs to be signed when using DNSSEC. Therefore, an unsigned NXDOMAIN with no valid DNSSEC-opt-out record is automatically suspicious, and software ought to check with other servers (preferably in other countries, via encrypted links) before accepting it.

    SERVFAIL, a more generic error code, might also be reported by a server that blocks a domain.

    DNS servers, all of them, should carry everything, not just what they want.

    Certain data is illegal to possess or distribute. Therefore, that's not theoretically possible. I could, for example, use a series of DNS text records to distribute a book, once sentence at a time.

    But, it should not be legal for a court to force a DNS operator to censor responses just because they refer to the IP address of a server that's distributing something "bad". That's just lazy. We don't remove criminals from phonebooks.

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