Anthony J. Pennings, PhD

WRITINGS ON DIGITAL STRATEGIES, ICT ECONOMICS, AND GLOBAL COMMUNICATIONS

Five Stages of ICT for Global Development

Posted on | February 19, 2020 | No Comments

Summarized remarks from “Five Stages of Global ICT4D: Governance, Network Transformation, and the Increasing Utilization of Surplus Behavioral Data for Prediction Products and Services,” presented at the 27th AMIC Annual Conference on 17-19 June 2019 at Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.

This presentation will explore and outline the following stages of development utilizing information and communications Computerization and Development in SE Asia technologies (ICT). The ICT acronym has emerged as one of the most popular monikers for the digital revolution and is often combined with “development” to form ICT4D. Development is a contested term with currency in several areas. Still, in global political economy, it refers to the process of building environments and infrastructure needed to improve the quality of human life. Often this means enhancing a nation’s agriculture, education, health, and other public goods that are not strictly economy-related but improve well-being and intellectual capital. Of particular interest is the use of data-intensive solutions to address a number of development issues as well as concerns that data can be used intrusively to manipulate behaviors.

1) Development/Modernization; 2) New World Economic and Information Orders; 3) Structural Adjustment and Re-subordination, 4) Global Integration, and; 5) Smart/Sustainable Mobile and Data-Driven Development.

The explication of these stages will provide historical context for understanding trends in ICT innovation and implementation. This research will also provide insights into the possibilities of ICT diffusion in developing environments.

1) Development/Modernization

“Development” and “modernization” characterized the post-World War II prescription for economic development around the world, and especially in newly decolonized nation-states. Scholars talked of an eventual “takeoff” if the proper prescriptions were followed, particularly the adoption of new agricultural techniques termed the “Green Revolution.”[1] Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) involved consisted primarily of the five communication revolutions (print, film, radio, television, and later satellite) that were utilized to spread information about modern development techniques in agriculture, health, education, and national governance.

Telegraphy and telephones were strangely absent from much of the discussion but were important for government activities as well as large-scale plantations, mining operations, and transportation, and shipping. Because of their large capital requirements and geographic expanse, countries uniformly developed state-controlled Post, Telephone, and Telegraph (PTTs) entities. Organized with the help and guidance of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the oldest United Nations entity, PTTs struggled to provide basic voice and telegraphic services.

Wilbur Schramm’s (1964) book Mass Media and National Development made crucial links between media and national development. Published by Stanford University Press and UNESCO, it examined the role of newspapers, radio, and television. Its emphasis on the role of information in development also laid the foundation for the analysis of computerization and ICT in the development process. I had an office next to Schramm for many years at the East-West Center while we worked on the National Computerization Policy project that resulted in the benchmark study Computerization and Development in Southeast Asia (1987).

2) New World Economic and Information Orders

Rising frustrations and concerns about neo-colonialism resulted in a collective call by developing countries for various conceptions of a “New World Economic and Communication Order.” It was echoed by UNESCO in the wake of OPEC oil crises and the resulting rising Third World debt. The issue was primarily news flow and the imbalanced flow of information from North to South. Developing countries were concerned about the unequal flows of news and data from developing to developed countries. In part, it was the preponderance of news dealing with disasters, coups, and other calamities that many countries felt restricted flows of capital.The calls caused a backlash in the US and other developed countries concerned about the independence of journalism and the free flow of trade. [2]

It was followed by concerns about obstacles hindering communications infrastructure development and how telecommunications access across the world could be stimulated. In 1983, UNESCO’s World Communication Year, the Independent Commission met several times to discuss the importance of communication infrastructure for social and economic development and to make recommendations for spurring its growth.

The Commission consisted of seventeen members – communication elites from both private and public sectors and representing a number of countries. Spurred on by the growing optimism about the development potential of telecommunications, they investigated ways Third World countries could be supported in this area. They published their recommendations in The Missing Link (1984) or what soon was to be called the “Maitland Report” after its Chair, Sir Donald Maitland from the United Kingdom.

The transition from telegraph and telex machines to computers also resulted in concerns about data transcending national boundaries. The Intergovernmental Bureau for Informatics (IBI) that had been set up as the International Computation Centre (ICC) in 1951 to help countries get access to major computers, began to study national computerization policy issues in the mid-1970s.

They increasingly focused on transborder data flows (TDF) that moved sensitive corporate, government, and personal information across national boundaries. The first International Conference on Transborder Data Flows was organized in September 1980, followed by a second held in 1984; both were held in Rome (Italy). The increasing use of computers raised questions about accounting and economic data avoiding political and tax scrutiny. The concern was that these data movements could act like a “trojan horse” and compromise a country’s credit ratings and national sovereignty, as well as individual privacy.

3) Structural Adjustment and Re-subordination

Instead, a new era of “structural adjustment” enforced by the International Monetary Fund emerged that targeted national post, telephone, and telegraph (PTT) agencies. Long considered agents of national development and employment, they came under increasing criticism for their antiquated technologies and lack of customer service. The flow of petrodollars facilitated new value-added data networks and satellite deregulation, and global circuits of digital money and news emerged. Reuters Money Monitor Rates linked currency exchange markets around the world in arguably the first two-sided virtual market.

PC-spreadsheet technologies were utilized to value and privatize PTTs so they could be corporatized and listed on electronically linked sharemarket exchanges. Communications markets were liberalized to allow international competition for sales of digital switches and fiber optic networks. Developing countries became “emerging markets,” consistently disciplined by the “Washington Consensus” stressing a set of policy prescriptions to continue to open them up to transborder data flows and international trade.[3]

4) Global ICT Integration

Packet-switching technologies standardized into the ITU’s X.25 and X.75 protocols for PTT data networks, transformed into ubiquitous TCP/IP networks. Cisco Systems became the principal enabler with a series of multi-protocol routers designed for enterprises, governments and eventually telcos. Lucent, Northern Telecom, and other telecommunications equipment suppliers quickly lost market share as the Internet protocols, mandated by the US military’s ARPANET, and later by the National Science Foundation’s NSFNET, were integrated into ISDN, ATM, and SONET technologies in telcos around the world.

The Global Information Infrastructure (GII) introduced at the annual ITU meeting in Buenos Aires in March of 1994 by Vice President Gore targeted national PTT monopolies. He proposed a new model of global telecommunications based on competition instead of monopoly, the rule of law, and the interconnection of networks to existing networks at fair prices. Gore followed up the next month in Marrakesh, Morocco, at the closing meeting of the Uruguay Round of the GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade) negotiations which called for the creation of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Formed in 1995, the WTO had two meetings in 1996 and 1997 that created a new era of global communications development. Members party to the new multilateral arrangement met quickly in Singapore in 1996 to reduce tariffs on the international sales of a wide variety of information technologies. The next year the WTO met in Geneva and established rules for the continued privatization of national telecommunications operations. Sixty-nine nations party to the WTO, including the U.S., signed the Agreement on Basic Telecommunications Services in 1997 that codified new rules for telecommunications deregulation where countries agreed to privatize and open their own telecommunications infrastructures to foreign penetration and competition by other telcos.

The agreements came at a crucial technological time. The World Wide Web (WWW) was a working technology, but it would not have lived up to its namesake if the WTO had not negotiated and reduced tariffs for crucial networking and computer equipment. The resultant liberalization of data and mobile services around the world made possible a new stage in global development.

5) Smart/Sustainable Mobile and Data-Centric Development

The aggressive trade negotiations and agreements in the 1990s significantly reduced the costs of ICT devices and communication exchanges throughout the world, making possible a wide variety of new commercial and development activities based on web capabilities. Blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies, the Internet of Things (IoT), and the proliferation of web platforms are some of the current conceptions of how reduced costs for communications and information analysis are enhancing network effects and creating value from the collection and processing of unstructured data.

This project will expand on these stages and provide a context for a further investigation of ICT for development drawing on historical and current research. Of particular concern is the implementation of policies and practices related to contemporary development practices, but commercial and monetization techniques are important as well.

Notes

[1] Rostow, W.W. (1960) Stages of Economic Growth: A Non-Communist Manifesto. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. See also Rostow W.W., (1965) Stages of Political Development. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
[2] An excellent discussion of the various New World Order discourses is found in Majid Tehranian’s (1999) Global Communication and World Politics: Domination, Development, and Discourse. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers. p. 40-41. Also, see Jussawalla, M. (1981) ) Bridging Global Barriers: Two New International Orders. Papers of the East-West Communications Institute. Honolulu, Hawaii.
[3] Wriston, W.W. (1992) The Twilight of Sovereignty : How the Information Revolution Is Transforming Our World.

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AnthonybwAnthony J. Pennings, Ph.D. is a Professor in the Department of Technology and Society, State University of New York, Korea. From 2002-2012 he was on the faculty of New York University. Previously, he taught at Hannam University in South Korea, Marist College in New York, andVictoria University in Wellington, New Zealand. His American home is in Austin, Texas and taught there in the Digital Media MBA program atSt. Edwards University He joyfully spent 9 years at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii.

From New Deal to Green New Deal, Part 3: “It’s the Infrastructure Stupid”

Posted on | February 9, 2020 | No Comments

Infrastructure, at the deepest level, is a techno-socio bond that brings together new communications technologies, new energy sources, new modes of mobility and logistics, and new built environments, enabling communities to more efficiently manage, power, and move their economic activity, social life, and governance.” – Jeremy Rifkin, The Green New Deal.[1]

This week, I had a chance to attend the Japan-Texas Infrastructure Investment Forum in Austin. Texas and Japan are prolific trade partners and got together to discuss more “public goods” like transportation, water, and the possibilities of “smart cities.” In this post, I want to connect the current imperative to build infrastructure in the US with green technologies and also with this series’ emphasis on the New Deal.

If Texas were a country, it would have the 10th largest economy in the world. Bigger than Australia, Canada, and even Russia. Japan, of course, is number 3, after the US and China. Japan is moving many of its US operations to Texas due to the Lone Star state’s business environment, rich resources and cosmopolitan cities. Texas exports chemicals, food, oil and gas, and electronic products.

I was primarily interested in seeing the presentations on Smart City developments, but was intrigued by the talks on water management in Texas (I’m Dutch, it’s in my genes) and transportation. I didn’t know, for example, that Texas desalinates over 150 million gallons of water every day. Also, Texans drive over 550 million miles a day. What would be the implications of renewable-powered desalination for agriculture and general water needs? How do you manage that much road maintenance? What alternatives are available to the traditional internal combustion vehicle? Just a few tidbits that set the context for the day’s presentations on building infrastructure in Texas.

One of the objectives for Japan was to pursue contracts for their Shinkansen, the high-speed railroad that makes Japan fairly easy to traverse. Its only a matter of time before Dallas, Austin, and Houston are connected with more efficient lines, and Japan wants to get in on that.

They even brought in the Japan Overseas Infrastructure Investment Corporation for Transport & Urban Development (JOIN) and the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) to support the funding of the operation. Having both driven the routes to Dallas and Houston as well as taken the railroad in Japan, I certainly would enjoy the Shinkansen bullet train for my next Texas trip.

Texas is unique because it is a major carbon-extracting and exporting state. But like Saudi Arabia, it recognizes the importance of pursuing infrastructural projects with a green tinge. Growth in Texas is expected to increase substantially over the next several decades, and that means new strategies for mobility, water availability, and disaster risk reduction.

Now we have to confront and analyze the implications of a post-petroleum age. Exploring the New Deal gives us a better perspective on the size of that task, how deep and sometimes intrusive the process will be. The New Deal was a monumental, multi-decade endeavor that made American great and will not be easily matched.

Roosevelt’s New Deal was primarily an infrastructure program. Facing economic collapse and massive unemployment, FDR promised “a new deal for the American people.”[2] In the first 100 days of the FDR administration some 15 bills were passed to assist the recovery and put people to work. Some of the major projects were the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), the Public Works Administration (PWA), the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and the related Rural Electrification Act. These were all designed to get people back to work and build a infrastructure that would support the new energy paradigm – hydrocarbons and electricity.

While economic recovery sputtered throughout the 1930s,
federally-funded infrastructure projects built the roads, tunnels, and bridges for cars and trucks, the dams and coal-fired utilities for electrification, and some 125,000 public buildings including schools, hospitals, and government facilities. Even airports like LaGuardia outside Manhattan were a product of the New Deal.

The Hoover Dam tapped the Colorado River and provided electricity for the entire Southwest, including Los Angeles and a small town called Las Vegas. When the dam was completed in 1936, it was the most extensive electricity producing facility in the world, providing power to Arizona, California, and Nevada. It electrified homes, entertainment, industry, and agriculture.

Another big infrastructure project for the New Deal was the Interstate Highway System of 1938 that eventually lay down almost 47,000 miles of public roads. Before the attack on Pearl Harbor Roosevelt appointed a National Interregional Highway Committee to study the need for several cross-country inter-state highways. The building of the “Autobahn” in Nazi Germany was a major source of motivation. In Interregional Highways, the committee recommended constructing 40,000 miles (64,000 km) interstate highway system. It was an extraordinary push for the mobilization and motorization of the US. It provided extraordinary interconnection between cities and was the “killer app” for the automobile.

Notes

[1] Quote “It’s the Infrastructure Stupid” in the title is also from Jeremy Rifkin, The Green New Deal. “It’s the Economy, Stupid” was coined by campaign strategist James Carville during the Clinton-Gore 1992 presidential campaign during the 1992 election to counter George H. Bush’s success with the first Iraq War.
[2] Blitz, M. (2017, November 20). When America’s Infrastructure Saved Democracy. Retrieved February 8, 2020, from https://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/infrastructure/a24692/fdr-new-deal-wpa-infrastructure/

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AnthonybwAnthony J. Pennings, PhD is a Professor at the Department of Technology and Society, State University of New York, Korea. Before joining SUNY, he taught at Hannam University in South Korea and from 2002-2012 was on the faculty of New York University. Previously, he taught at St. Edwards University in Austin, Texas, Marist College in New York, and Victoria University in New Zealand. He has also spent time as a Fellow at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii.

FROM NEW DEAL TO GREEN NEW DEAL, Part 2: The Failure of the National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933

Posted on | February 6, 2020 | No Comments

This is the second of an ongoing series about how the New Deal restructured the American political economy and what lessons it has for transiting to a Green New Deal. The first one dealt with the New Deal emerging from the wake of the Great Depression and the immediate policy responses by the Roosevelt administration to deal with the banking and financial crisis. This post looks at a failure, the National Industrial Recovery Agency’s (NIRA) attempts to administer a wide range of codes and practices for business and industry. What are the lessons of the NIRA for the Green New Deal?

The green energy revolution strives for zero emissions of harmful carbon by-products and near-zero marginal costs after installation. Hydrocarbons from coal or oil are incredible sources of energy but emit deadly carbon monoxide and climate threatening carbon dioxide. They are also used up in consumption and require constant replenishment. Good for petro-states like Russia and Saudi Arabia but a constant currency drain for the rest of the world. Renewables produce a constant supply of energy. They don’t last forever and eventually require replacement, but their economics are extraordinary and will make possible exciting new opportunities like desalination and purification of saltwater, for example.

The Green New Deal will reach deep into the commerce and industrialization of the global economy. While the movement is gaining momentum, a few sold Teslas, and some homes with solar panels do not a revolution make. Although I recently had my first ride in a Tesla and it was awesome.

The Green New Deal will need to continue to technologically build the Smart Grid while regulatory changing the utilities to allow smaller microgrids that can utilize local resources, including buying energy from residences and small businesses. Broadband networks and the Internet of Things (IoT) will be crucial to the convergence and providing the “smart” aspects of the grid. Other industries that will be affected include agriculture, architecture, automobiles, construction, supply chain logistics, military, etc. [1]

How will they all work together? Not only between different industries but different companies within the same sector. How will winners emerge? What will happen to losers? Solyndra, for example, became a major political issue when it filed for bankruptcy in 2011. It was a manufacturer of innovative thin- film solar cells based in Fremont, California. Solyndra received significant subsidies in guaranteed loans from the Department of Energy as part of the economic stimulus plan. But it still couldn’t compete with more traditional solar cell technology companies, especially from China. What are we to make of situations like this?

The Green New Deal faces many significant and complicated issues. What are the electrical standards, for example, the building codes? The sewage interconnections? Establishing networks of automobile recharging (or hydrogen refueling) stations? Can prices within an industry be regularized without penalizing consumers? Does labor organization need to be revived from its decimation during the Reagan years?

A step back for the New Deal…

In his larger attempt at industrial structuring, President Roosevelt sent a plan to Congress that became the National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933. Congress passed it into law on June 16 of that year. The Act created the National Industrial Recovery Agency (NIRA) to administer codes of practice for business and industry. The Act was “a clear victory for the many prominent businessmen who were backing cartelization as a solution to the nation’s industrial problems.” [1]

The Act allowed industries to create “codes of fair practice.” By suspending antitrust laws, these codes allowed corporations in particular sectors to set prices, restrict output, and increase profits. These were agreements that enabled the NIRA to administer, with the dominant trade associations, what were in effect national cartels. Although it was later declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, the codes became part of later legislation and became part of the national restructuring of the US economy.

While Hoover had limited his activism to the establishment of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation that served as a lender of last resort to banks and the railroads, he opposed cartelization and thus alienated himself from many business leaders. The NIRA placated most of the big business concerns. However, for political reasons, Roosevelt’s plan was designed to serve many other constituencies. He had made concessions to liberal conservatives to reassure them that socialism was not anywhere near the path he was taking, nor was he forwarding “monopoly.” But opposition did mount from small business people and farmers who saw the codes being dominated by big business.

Finally, the Act started to antagonize large corporations because of Section 7a, which encouraged labor organization. and had led to a series of violent strikes.

A poultry company from Brooklyn, NY, sued the NIRA and the case went all the way to the Supreme Court. In Schechter Poultry Corp. v. The United States, the U.S. Supreme Court, rejected the compulsory-code system. SCOTUS argued that the NIRA improperly delegated legislative powers to the executive and that regulating poultry codes did not meet the standards of interstate commerce, a constitutional requirement for Federal regulation. By May of 1935, the Supreme Court declared the Act unconstitutional.

The New Deal shows us how massive and complicated a major economic reorganization can be. The Green New Deal should seriously study the issues that FDR confronted to revive the economy and chart a new course for the US that avoided revolution. The case of the NIRA gives us some idea of the scale of the transition and the challenges of government intervention in the economy.

Notes

[1] Rifkin, J. (2020) Green New Deal. Retrieved from

McQuail, K. (1982) Big Business and Presidential Power. NY: William Morrow and Company. p. 27.

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AnthonybwAnthony J. Pennings, Ph.D. is Professor of the Department of Technology and Society, State University of New York, Korea. From 2002-2012 was on the faculty of New York University. Previously, he taught at Hannam University in South Korea, Marist College in New York, Victoria University in New Zealand. He keeps his American home in Austin, Texas and has taught there in the Digital Media MBA program at St. Edwards University He joyfully spent 9 years at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii.

YouTube Meaning-Creating (and Money-Making) Practices

Posted on | February 2, 2020 | No Comments

Note: This is required reading for my Visual Rhetoric and IT class.

Youtube has emerged as the primary global televisual medium, attracting about 1.3 billion viewers from countries around the world with over 5 billion videos watched every day. People suck up some 3.25 billion hours of YouTube videos each month and over ten thousand YouTube videos generated over 1 billion views since they were posted. YouTube contents range from homemade DIY videos to professional high definition television productions.

Alphabet recently announced that YouTube made $15 billion in advertising revenues in 2019, growing 36% over 2018. That is a lot of money to spread around.

YouTube provides opportunities for new publishers or “vloggers” covering a wide range of topics. Every minute, some 400 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube from all around the world. Not many of those owners get rich but some have done extraordinarily well. Together, the world’s 10 highest-paid YouTube stars made $180 million in the year between June 1, 2017, and June 1, 2018, almost double the year before.

One big star to emerge on YouTube is Daniel Middleton (DanTDM) who made US$18.5 million in 2018. Middleton is an Australian professional gamer, and his videos primarily cover games like Minecraft, Plants vs. Zombies, and other favorite games that DanTDM’s primary audience, young kids, enjoy. Here he reviews the massive hit called Fortnite.

What makes DanTDM’s YouTube videos successful? What does he do to keep the viewer’s interested in his content and what keeps his audience coming back for more? How does he create entertainment and meaning for those who watch his show?

Even more extraordinary is Ryan ToysReview (now called Ryan’s World!). Ryan is a 7-year-old host of the YouTube show and is the top-earning YouTube channel at $22.5 million for the year up to June 1, 2018.

What knowledge can we gather about Ryan’s World!? What observations can we make about his show and other popular channels?

This series of posts will set out to explore a crucial relationship in (digital) media studies – between cultural/technical production practices and the meanings, emotions, and feelings that are produced by those practices. Media production involves a combination of equipment and processes to capture and construct various images, edit sequences, and integrate audio and sound effects to produce specific results. These are the meaning-making techniques that construct our blockbuster movies, our Netflix binge favorites, our local newscasts, and also the YouTube channels that educate and entertain us. Can we use some of the same analytical techniques to “interrogate” YouTube channels?

A good deal of related work has been done on film and television. By exploring camera shots: close-ups, zooms, pans, shot composition, as well as montage: cutting rates, parallel editing, reaction shots, wipes, etc., film studies and even television studies have given us a literacy to understand the power of these mediums. These important meaning-making practices can also be discerned in the realm of YouTube videos.

Social media apps like YouTube present significant new complications in understanding the power of the global mediasphere. One area of concern are the metrics associated with YouTube. Ratings were always a significant part of television services to determine the value of programming. YouTube measures “views” and adds likes, dislikes, shares, play-listing, and subscribers to measure the credibility and commercial viability of a channel. But vulnerabilities in the system allow many of these numbers to be tweaked by the “fake-view” ecosystem that has grown around YouTube.

YouTube has become a new frontier for media studies. The opportunity exists now to pioneer strategies for understanding this intriguing visual medium and the sets of meanings they create. What techniques are used in YouTube “channels?” What types of persuasive techniques are effective on YouTube channels. How do they differ from techniques used in film and television? Who is driving the narration of the video and what voices are they using?

But there are broader issues to address as well. What are the cultural, economic, and social implications of YouTube? What new ideas and cultural forms diffuse via Youtube? What economic activities and opportunities are made available through the platform? What impact will YouTube have on existing institutions?

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AnthonybwAnthony J. Pennings, PhD is Professor and Associate Chair of the Department of Technology and Society, State University of New York, Korea. Before joining SUNY, he taught at Hannam University in South Korea and from 2002-2012 was on the faculty of New York University. Previously, he taught at St. Edwards University in Austin, Texas, Marist College in New York, and Victoria University in New Zealand. He has also spent time as a Fellow at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii.

FROM NEW DEAL TO GREEN NEW DEAL, Part 1: Roosevelt Saves Capitalism

Posted on | February 2, 2020 | No Comments

“I pledge you, I pledge myself, to a new deal for the American people.” – FDR in the summer of 1932.

Recent discussions about a proposed Green New Deal encouraged me to review some of my notes on the original New Deal and if it could provide relevant insights into our current situation. The New Deal began in the early 1930s as a response to the economic crash in the late 1920s. It built up momentum during the “Great Depression” of the next decade. It ended, arguably, just before the end of the millennium with the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act on November 12, 1999 when President Clinton signed the Financial Services Modernization Act. The New Deal was one of the most influential sets of legislation in American history and it set the course of modern US history.

On October 1, 1928, the Dow Industrial Average closed at 240.07. Earlier that year, “the Dow” was increased to thirty stocks from the traditional 12 stocks. The “Roaring Twenties” had been a good decade for many investors. But that was about to end for most.

It would continue to rise over the next year to 381 before beginning its dramatic descent. In October 1929, the Dow began its steep decline as investors hastened to liquidate their positions. From Thursday, October 24 to Tuesday, October 29, the stock market crashed dramatically, eventually falling to just 41.

Capitalism had run into deep trouble. Never before had public confidence been shaken so thoroughly. Unemployment was estimated to have fallen to 25% in the US and England. It was even worse in Germany, which had been strapped with war reparations at the Treaty of Versailles. Political unrest was brewing in democratic political economies around the world. It was little more than a decade earlier that a Communist revolution had occurred in Russia, and many believed that the problems of the industrial economy needed a communist or socialist solution.

In the US, protest marches became frequent. Rent riots broke out as people organized to prevent home evictions and farm foreclosures, often physically. The country was in such dire straits that many believed it could have gone in any political direction. This confusion lapsed into the term of the next President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, who beat Republican incumbent Herbert Hoover and was inaugurated as President on March 4 1933.[1]

Roosevelt moved immediately to save the banking system that had been experiencing significant drains on deposits. He closed the banks until the federal auditors could review the books. Although many were deemed insolvent, he decided to save the remaining banks by signing the Bank Moratorium that suspended acknowledgment of their demise.

After deliberating with Treasury Department officials, former Hoover advisers, and several leading bankers to come up with intervention measures and reform practices, Roosevelt reopened many banks. He decided to leave them in the hands of their original owners instead of nationalizing them as many thought he might.

The Emergency Banking Act of March 9 allowed the Federal Reserve to make loans to businesses and nonmember banks against the assets that they were allowed to define very broadly. The Reconstruction Finance Corporation, Hoover’s singular response to the economic collapse, was authorized to buy stock in banks and thus provide them with working capital. Three days later, Roosevelt made his first “fireside chat,” in which he made a plea for citizens to redeposit their money. The legislation plus his encouragement were a success, and by the end of the month, he had saved the banking system.

Immediately after inauguration, Roosevelt took controversial measures to stop the hoarding of gold. In April Roosevelt took the US off the gold standard and called on all Americans to turn in their gold coins for a new gold-backed paper currency. On Jan 31, 1934, the US devalued paper money from $20.67 to $35 dollars for an oz of gold.

In 1935, amidst concerns about the threat of fascism growing in Europe, Roosevelt decided to move US gold reserves from New York to Fort Knox in Kentucky. By moving the gold past the Appalachian Mountains and next to a military tank battalion and training facility, it reduced the risk of a Nazi attack on Manhattan that might capture significant amounts of gold bullion. Central bank vaults were the primary targets of the Nazis in their early invasion of Czechoslovakia and Poland, as gold was essential to efforts to procure oil and other critical supplies internationally for its war effort.

Despite the boldness and swiftness in which FDR carried out his plan, it was basically a very conservative to the national disaster. The plan he embarked on was to essentially save capitalism. At the time was Russia was firmly in the grips of its Communist leaders, and Hitler and the National Socialists (Nazis) had strengthened their grip on Germany. Many business leaders, ensconced in the rhetoric of laissez-faire and free enterprise economics, were slow to realize the conservativeness of the New Deal. They chastised Roosevelt in the newspapers and on the radio. But he was very popular with the people, including Ronald Reagan, the future US president that would later become one of the New Deal’s fiercest critics.

Over the next few years the administration set into place a reformed capitalist system based on the rationalization of business, finance, and labor practices and focused on long-term stability. Banks were separated from their other activities such as investment banking and stock-brokerage through the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933. The Securities Exchange Act passed in the next year created the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to oversee and prevent manipulation and rigging in the stock markets. The Federal Reserve Board in Washington was also given greater powers to oversee the regional Reserve Banks and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporations (FDIC) was instituted to prevent further bank panics and to restore depositor confidence.[2]

Hopefully, the transition to a green economy will not take such a dramatic event as the Great Depression. Tragically, we might be facing a bigger threat with climate change and environmental pollution. The New Deal was central to transiting to a carbon-based industrial model still heavily reliant on manual labor. Coal and oil were central to the New Deal, as was the process of electrification.

A very crucial component of the new economic transition will be “green finance” – how will the Green New Deal be paid for, and what are the ideological implications of the process? Will the current banking system suffice? Can pension funds and other wealth management funds be sufficiently incentivized to make the crucial investments? Will the political will be developed to stop subsidizing fossil fuels?

Finally, will the Green New Deal be “socialist?” or can capitalism be harnessed for the transition? The 2020 elections will be an important forum for discussion on these matters.

Part 2 of this series will discuss an early failure of the New Deal, the National Industrial Recovery Agency’s (NIRA) attempts to administer the economy and a wide range of codes and practices for business and industry.

Notes

[1] The Three Roosevelts. (n.d.). Retrieved February 16, 2020.
[2] McQuail, K. (1982) Big Business and Presidential Power. NY: William Morrow and Company.

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AnthonybwAnthony J. Pennings, Ph.D. is Professor of the Department of Technology and Society, State University of New York, Korea. From 2002-2012 was on the faculty of New York University. Previously, he taught at Hannam University in South Korea, Marist College in New York, Victoria University in New Zealand. He keeps his American home in Austin, Texas and has taught there in the Digital Media MBA program at St. Edwards University He joyfully spent 9 years at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Factors Supporting Early Computerization and Data Communications

Posted on | January 15, 2020 | No Comments

Several factors contributed to the development of computers and data networking in the early post-World War II era. This post looks at major influences that created the modern realm of computerization and networking of data and information that has transformed the world.

During the war, the first computers were created to calculate tables for artillery ballistics and to help decode encrypted messages. The British developed general-purpose computing technology to break the German’s Enigma-based codes. Eventually, a giant vacuum-tubed computer, the ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer), emerged as the first completely electronic, general-purpose computer. Although it was completed too late to impact the outcome of war significantly, the promise of its potential made it a celebrity in the mid-1940s.

One major factor that supported post-war economic development was the availability of an electronics infrastructure on the East Coast. Wartime funding, primarily for the development of radar, helped build a complex of industrial organizations and expertise that provided a foundation for the computer and electronics industries. Located primarily in Boston, it stretched out to the IBM’s Hudson River facilities, down through Manhattan and New Jersey’s Bell Laboratories and to Philadelphia’s University of Pennsylvania. MIT emerged as the primary center of innovation with the development of the early real-time computers, monitors, modems, and time-sharing technology.

A second factor was the invention and sharing of the transistor by Bell Labs. This technology provided the seminal system for the miniaturization of processing power leading to the integrated circuit and later the microprocessor. What helped the process was that AT&T was facing anti-trust action and the divestiture of its manufacturing arm, Western Electric. It consequently decided to share its technology with other companies to avoid serious government intervention in its affairs. Companies such as Texas Instruments, Fairchild, and Motorola were a few of the new licensees. They set out to capitalize on the new invention. The result was a wide variety of inventions starting with missile guidance systems and computers and later consumer products like transistor radios and calculators.

The escalation of tensions with Communist China and the USSR was a third factor. The “Cold War” provided a permanent stream of funding for the development and maturation of information technologies and created the impetus to institutionalize a trajectory that President Eisenhower called the “Military-Industrial Complex.” The support for the industry was extensive, especially from the newly created Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the ultra-secretive National Security Agency (NSA). They literally built hectares of big mainframe computers, as did the Office of Naval Research and government organizations such as the Atomic Energy Commission at Los Alamos.

Related but still deserving of a separate mention was the desire to create an early warning defense system linking computers via telecommunications to an extensive grid of radars around the US and Canada. Created by MIT in the 1950s and built in IBM’s Poughkeepsie facilities, it would later become NORAD and be located deep within the Cheyenne Mountains in Colorado. The project cost the US government billions of dollars at a time that was considered big money. Called Semi-Automatic Ground Environment or SAGE, it created the foundation of the computer industry by supporting the IBM FSQ-7. Burroughs, DEC, and Honeywell were also spinoffs that became viable business computers suppliers. The SAGE technology was instrumental in the development of the IBM System/360 mainframe, released in the mid-1960s to become the re-programmable business computer of choice. It also helped develop the data communications modem and “survivable” communication technology concepts that would later be crucial for the Internet.

Fifth, the formation of ARPA in reaction to the USSR’s Sputnik satellite helped seed computer science departments throughout the US and directly funded the ARPANET, the precursor to the Internet. Specifically its Information Processing Technology Office (IPTO) spearheaded an aggressive attempt to develop interactive computer technologies. At first timesharing technologies were developed that shared a mainframe among numerous terminals, Later resource-sharing was created, allowing a terminal to access many different computers in different locations. Add TCP/IP and Hypertext protocols in the next two decades and we would have the modern Internet.

Sixth, the formation of the US space program leading to NASA propelled the development of US rockets and the capability to launch satellites into high orbits. Drawing on Nazi Germany’s V-2 rocketry, the US overcame a weak start to become the leader in the “space race.” The advent of human-crewed space flights served the dual purpose of developing rockets capable of carrying heavy payloads for nuclear warheads and satellites, as well as for harnessing the popular imagination for the future funding of the space program. A global network of communications satellites in the geosynchronous “Clarke Belt” orbit around the Earth and the “New Look” reconnaissance program with remote sensing and surveillance spacecraft effectively utilized space for military and commercial purposes.

The Communications Act of 1962, committed the US to the establishment of Intelsat, an international consortium for satellite communications. Intelsat mobilized national telecommunications organizations from around the world to invest in Arthur C. Clarke’s vision of a global communications system based on satellites placed in orbit 22,300 miles in space. Intelsat was quickly transformed into a workable commercial system for voice, video, and later data communications.

Seventh, the refinement of transistors into new “integrated circuits’ that put several transistors on a single “chip” furthered the miniaturization process of information processing. At first, the process was heavily subsidized by government and military projects. The goal to put humans on the moon created the need for a “fourth crewmember,” the Apollo Guidance System (AGS). It was a new set of “miniaturized” guidance technologies utilizing advanced ICs that could control major functions on the Command and Lunar Modules. Also, the implementation of a new defense policy that came to be called MAD (Mutually Assured Destruction) required a buildup of Minuteman intercontinental missiles. It also gave a significant boost to the subsidization and refinement of new ICs and the eventual development of semiconductor microprocessors with transistors etched into the material.

Eight, the bureaucracies of the “Great Society” created new needs for information processing technologies. Just as the New Deal helped IBM survive the Great Depression by passing the Social Security Act, the growth of the civilian government allowed new companies to prosper. Ross Perot’s Electronic Data Systems (EDS), for example, earned billions of dollars from Medicaid contracts. Xerox was another company that profited extensively from the Great Society, placing its photocopying machines in a wide variety of bureaucracies. It took part of its profits and invested them in a crucial technological incubation center, the Palo Alto Research Center (PARC).

PARC hired many of the best ARPA-sponsored computer scientists from around the US. It produced many of the seminal technologies crucial for graphical user interfaces, laser printers, local area networking, and object-oriented programming. In exchange for the opportunity to buy Apple shares, it gave Apple Computers much of the technology that went into the Lisa and the Macintosh. Other employees went to Microsoft and 3Com to produce Windows and Ethernet.

These factors reflect the extraordinary investments by the US government during the Cold War and Space Race to building a new infrastructure based on information technologies and data communications technologies. Later, global finance made significant investments to advance these technologies for their purposes. With the introduction of the Internet and World Wide Web, the infrastructure was developed enough to attract widespread commercial investment.

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AnthonybwAnthony J. Pennings, Ph.D. is Professor of the Department of Technology and Society, State University of New York, Korea. From 2002-2012 was on the faculty of New York University. Previously, he taught at Hannam University in South Korea, Marist College in New York, Victoria University in New Zealand. He keeps his American home in Austin, Texas and has taught there in the Digital Media MBA program at St. Edwards University He joyfully spent 9 years at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Four Futures: One Humanity

Posted on | January 2, 2020 | No Comments

I’ve had a long-term interest in an area of research called “Futures Studies.” I had read Alvin Toffler’s Future Shock in high school and Third Wave in college and reading science fiction actually led to my studies in biochemistry and other sciences as an undergraduate. But the future is hard to predict and it was coming on so fast that by the 1990s, one of my favorite authors, William Gibson, quipped appropriately, “the best science fiction is on CNN.”

This post looks at a few of my favorite futurists and a book I recently found intriguing that presented four visions of the future.

One of my favorite futurists was Buckminister Fuller. He mixed science with politics and had a unique view on economics. Comprehensive Anticipatory Design Science was the name he gave to his approach to the future. It was, in part, based on his “Synergetics” science that would eventually lead to a significant discovery in chemistry called Fullerenes or “Bucky Balls.” These are small soccer ball like molecules that are leading to new materials and medicines. One of his first inventions based on Synergetics was the geodesic dome, which provided durable protection for radar installations starting in the Cold War and is still used in the design of many buildings.

Fuller challenged the status quo with his peculiar use of language that seemed to counter common sense and yet be surprisingly insightful. He often used the metaphor of a bow and arrow to describe the importance of history in the study of the future. The further back you can pull the string of the bow he explained, the farther the arrow will travel. Likewise, he believed the further back you take your historical analysis, the better you can project into the future. Fuller promoted the idea of a utopian future based on technologies, if those technologies did more with less.

Another major influence was Jim Dator, a professor at the University of Hawaii while I was working on my PhD. He dissuaded his students of the idea of a one true future whose probability could be calculated with positivistic certainty, and suggested we use a futures visioning process to develop several alternative scenarios.

Dator has been working on four types of future scenarios: Growth, Collapse, Discipline, and Transformation. Growth projects the current emphasis on economic development and its social and environment implications. Collapse suggests a catastrophic turnaround due to natural or human-made disasters. Discipline appeals to a society that values precious places, processes, or values that are threatened by the existing social trajectory. In this scenario, it is believed that life should be “disciplined” around a set of fundamental cultural, ideological, or religious values. Finally, a Transformative society anticipates a radical makeover of society based on a technological revolution creating new “posthuman” bodies and an entirely redesigned set of global economic and political structures.

So I was immediately drawn to Four Futures: Life After Capitalism (2016) by Peter Frase when it was recommended by a former classmate. It is an extremely interesting read. His publisher Verso, advertises it as “an exhilarating exploration into the utopias and dystopias that could develop from present society.”

For Frase, something new is coming, and its based on two main drivers: climate change and automation. These issues are bringing problems and promises for humanity and will likely result in one of four scenarios:

  • a society of equality and abundance (Communism);
  • a society of hierarchy and abundance (Rentism);
  • a society of equality and scarcity (Socialism); and;
  • a society of hierarchy and scarcity (Exterminism).

Or at least we can use these four “ideal types” to think about the future and plan strategies for approximating a preferred one.[1] They set up contrasting visions of the future and work to produce an analytical structure that provides provocative ideas and insights. Granted some of these terms are quite charged in contemporary society. Communism is the boogeyman of the right, Exterminism is the great fear of the left.

But this is not your father’s Communism. This is a highly automated future with increased leisure time and a new abundance of resources based on renewal energy. While some think this only comes with great political mobilization and struggle, Frase believes the process will be facilitated by technological change and the institutional responses that come with regulatory adjustments. Those technological changes will also be the catalyst for a stronger democracy.

Rentism is a future that is produced when strong intellectual property (IP) laws persist and dominate over a new era of manufactured commodities produced by 3-D printers and Star Trek-like replicators. We already live in a world economy dominated by supply chains that produce major international flows of royalty payments. Copyrights and patents bestow rents to the owner of these intellectual properties, making them the newly rich and also creating a new era of scarcity. Legalism will proliferate to keep track of all the IP uses, but AI will largely replace lawyers.

Socialism is a future that has not kicked its carbon habits. It thus operates within the limits of hydrocarbon access on the one hand, and the extreme ecological damage it creates on the other. Addressing the resultant environmental issues may create new conditions for democratic governance and distribution.

Exterminism is a future of both scarcity and inequality. Automation has made labor redundant, and environmental damage has made them dangerous. The rich hide in “enclave societies” behind gates or perhaps “off-world” and become increasingly desensitized to the conditions of the poor. Just as tabulating machines, punched cards, and tattooed prisoners enabled the Nazi’s Final Solution, social media and big data technologies are available for identifying those classified as unwanted by a society. Immigrants, refugees, gender deviants, as well as poor people in general, could be easily targeted.

Frase grounds his work in The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies (2014), by Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee. The first machine age was made possible by the application of steam power to industrial processes that led to subsequent innovations in energy and other technologies changing work, society, and the economy. Brynjolfsson and McAfee argued the second machine age is based on digital technologies. These technologies produce information that has little to no marginal costs when reproduced and shared, continues to double in processing power every two years, and stays user-friendly with its “combinatorial” power.

Music, for example, can be reproduced and distributed with little cost and distributed to smartphones with incredible abilities to provide high-quality sound, produce playlists, and provide lyrics and other artist information. That same device records data, takes and stores pictures, makes phone calls. The authors call this “bounty,” massive benefits allowing us to do Bucky Fuller’s more with less – like talking or videoconferencing overseas for hours for virtually no cost.

Lastly, the term “spread” refers to the increasing inequality that is also resulting from the widespread adoption of new technology. Automation will continue to eliminate routine jobs and at least keep wages stagnating in certain areas. Furthermore, networked technologies tend to create winner-take-all markets, and the globally linked stock markets have dramatically improved the wealth of investors.

These digital technologies produce more: more education, more entertainment, more health care, more travel, etc. Still, the future of the social and political institutions that they will produce is yet to be determined. Futures studies is an interesting exercise in thinking about available directions and choices to be made.

Notes

[1] The notion of ideal types comes primarily from Max Weber.

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AnthonybwAnthony J. Pennings, Ph.D. is a Professor in the Department of Technology and Society, State University of New York, Korea. From 2002-2012 was on the faculty of New York University. Previously, he taught at Hannam University in South Korea, Marist College in New York, Victoria University in New Zealand. He keeps his American home in Austin, Texas and has taught there in the Digital Media MBA program atSt. Edwards University He joyfully spent 9 years at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii.

The CDA’s Section 230: How Facebook and other ISPs became Exempt from Third Party Content Liabilities

Posted on | November 26, 2019 | No Comments

The rewrite of the communications law that emerged by early 1996 was driven by the appetite of the Bell legatees to position themselves as central providers of both content and conduit for the information age. – Patricia Aufderheide [1]

Facebook and other Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are facing criticism for the legitimacy of the third party content they carry and their attempts to manage it, especially political advertising. According to Title V of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, online intermediaries such as ISPs and telcos are legally protected from what users and publishers might do or say. The legislation was passed to enhance the service providers’ ability to monitor and even delete content without becoming publishers. In an emerging age of user-curated and user-generated content, the legislation has specific implications for the provision of news and social media in general.

Specifically, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) stated that, “No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.”[2] Section 230 also offered protection to bloggers who host comments on their blogs. Bloggers and later vloggers were not liable for comments left by readers or tips left via email.[3] Although the CDA was struck down by the Supreme Court as being too restrictive to free speech, Section 230 continued.

The Clinton Administration and its appointed Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman worked with the Republican-controlled Congress to pass the Telecom Act of 1996 and its associated Section 230 of the CDA. President William Jefferson Clinton, Vice President Al Gore, and the new FCC Chair, Reed Hundt, drove the policy process intending to enact a new telecommunications re-regulation to help revive the economy with a strategy based on the centrality of information technology. An agreement depended on getting some support from the new Republican Congress.

Republicans grouped around Newt Gingrich, a history professor from Georgia, who had been elected to the US House of Representatives in 1979. “Newt” proposed a new strategy of extreme partisanship, encouraging a total lack of cooperation with Democrats. He attacked House Speaker Jim Wright on ethics charges of bribery and not reporting book receipts, eventually driving him from office. Often invoking the memory of Ronald Reagan, Gingrich helped move the political landscape significantly to the political right.

Gingrich became the chief architect of the infamous “Contract with America,” an attempt to revive the Reagan Revolution. The Contract attempted to legislate the radical agenda of the Republican right, such as cutting back on welfare, forcing a balanced budget, eliminating public television, and phasing out government regulations on the media and telecommunications industries. Newt also wanted to get rid of the FCC, and relax accounting and securities rules on corporations.

On November 8, 1994, the Republicans obtained the House majority with a flood of new freshmen Congressmen, including Sonny Bono, the former Mayor of Palm Springs, and the slightly less talented side of the “Sonny and Cher” act. Another new Congressmen, Joe Scarborough later became the host of “Morning Joe,” an MSNBC morning cable news show. With the Republican victory, Gingrich became the Speaker of House, coordinating the legislative agenda and stepping up his divisive efforts.

On the legislative docket was a major reform of the Communications Act of 1934, eagerly pursued by both the Democrats and the Republicans. Central for Gingrich was the abolishing of the FCC and rolling back of anti-monopoly regulation. Tom DeLay’s (R-Tex.) worked with some 350 industry lobbyists drafting deregulation bills. Called Project Relief, the secretive group organizing campaign contributions for the legislation’s supporters while charting the course for a new era of oligopoly-controlled distribution of content.

It was the Democrats that took the more prurient course. Despite Gore’s objection, Senator J. James Exon, a Democrat from Nebraska, inserted the Communications Decency Act that criminalized offensive content. Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act was not part of the original Senate legislation, but took shape in negotiations with the House of Representatives, where it had been separately introduced by Congressmen Christopher Cox (R-CA) and Ron Wyden (D-OR). Called the Internet Freedom and Family Empowerment Act, it passed by a near-unanimous vote.

One of the key issues guiding Section 230 goes back to a lawsuit called Stratton Oakmont v. Prodigy. Stratton Oakmont was a financial institution, and Prodigy was an online service that ran a chat room and offered a number of other services such as news and weather. Stratton Oakmont sued Prodigy because an anonymous participant in the chat room tarnished the financial company’s good name. Because the person who posted the information could not be found, Stratton Oakmont sued Prodigy. They won in court because they considered Prodigy a publisher as they had been filtering offensive content.

Congress, with encouragement from the telcos, did not agree and Title V was introduced to the Senate Committee of Commerce, Science, and Transportation by Senators James Exon (D-NE) and Slade Gorton (R-WA). Title V attempted to regulate both the exposure of indecency to children and obscenity online. It was added to the Telecommunications Act in the Senate on June 15, 1995 by an 81–18.

It effectively immunized both ISPs and Internet users from torts committed by others using their online services. A tort is legal liability for a civil wrong done by a person that unfairly causes someone else to suffer some harm or loss. The exemption was designed to protect the service provider, even if they fail to take action after receiving complaints about the harmful or offensive content.

The Telecommunications Act of 1996 was the most significant legislation affecting media industries since 1934. Signed into law by President Clinton on February 8, 1997, it contained several prominent provisions. Most notorious was the CDA that sought to make it a crime to post indecent materials on the Internet. The CDA was later overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court as an infringement of the First Amendment. After much fanfare, it was struck down on June 26, 1997 although it maintained protection for the private sector blocking and screening of offensive material.

Also controversial was Section 551, “Parental Choice in Television Viewing” which required that a V-Chip be installed in all new television sets so that parents could program their TVs to block programming according to a new ratings system. The V-Chips went in but they were largely ignored by parents.

It was an awkward piece of legislation, but one that allowed the FCC to create a new environment for the Internet to grow. Telcos were required to allow other companies to lease their network at regulated rates. This led to large number of ISPs offering low-cost Internet access.

The Act had a lot of political pork; in particular, the broadcast networks were given free spectrum for future offerings of digital high definition television. Section 336 specifying “Broadcast Spectrum Flexibility” doubled the frequency spectrum to 6 MHz for established licensees. The value of these public airwaves given away to private media corporations was estimated at $150 billion at the time. Although decried by some politicians like Bob Dole, the story did not get a lot of media coverage.

High-definition television (HDTV) in the United States began in 1998 and became a major economic force. HD (ATSC 1.0) and ATSC 2.0 provided 19.4 Mbps transmission and advanced video compression techniques that allowed major broadcasters to reach cord-cutters. With ATSC 3.0, 4K (3840 X 2160 at 60 frames per second) TV viewers will have web-enabled interactive features, Video on Demand (VoD) but also targeted ads.

Part of the Act broke open the segmentation that had separated the different communication sectors. After the Act, companies could invade the other’s turf. It removed barriers to entry to the once protected monopoly-controlled sectors. For example, broadcasters could move into broadband, and carriers could offer content. It also allowed consolidation of different media companies, creating a new frenzy of mergers. AT&T, for example, made significant multi-billion purchases of Media One and TCI to become a cable behemoth after they invented cable modems for broadband delivery along with television services. AOL, by far the largest ISP, merged with Time-Warner in an attempt to cross-pollinate between the “old economy” and the “new economy.”

Notes

[1] Aufderheide, Patricia (1998) Communications Policy and the Public Interest: The Telecommunications Act of 1996. NY: Guilford Publications, Inc. p. 37.

[2] (47 U.S.C. § 230). U.S. Code Title 47. TELECOMMUNICATIONS Chapter 5. WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION Subchapter II. COMMON CARRIERS Part I. Common Carrier Regulation Section 230.

[3] Mackey, Aaron, et al. “Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.” Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, Electronic Frontier Foundation, www.eff.org/issues/cda230. Accessed November 25, 2019.

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AnthonybwAnthony J. Pennings, Ph.D. is Professor and Vice-Chair at the Department of Technology and Society, State University of New York, Korea. From 2002-2012 was on the faculty of New York University. Previously, he taught at Hannam University in South Korea, Marist College in New York, Victoria University in New Zealand. He keeps his American home in Austin, Texas and has taught there in the Digital Media MBA program atSt. Edwards University He joyfully spent 9 years at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii.

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    Professor and Associate Chair at State University of New York (SUNY) Korea. Recently taught at Hannam University in Daejeon, South Korea. Moved to Austin, Texas in August 2012 to join the Digital Media Management program at St. Edwards University. Spent the previous decade on the faculty at New York University teaching and researching information systems, media economics, and strategic communications.

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