Google privacy

This Week in the World of Conflict… February 6th-13th, 2012.

  • The UN conference on trade and development (UNCTAD) secretary-general published a report on Tuesday that called for fundamental reform of the global financial system that would be of benefit to the global poor. The report will act as the theme for the UNCTAD XIII conference in Doha, Qatar in April.
  • An Online Dispute Resolution Conference is set to be held from June 27th to 29th, 2012 in Prague.
  • The United States Institute of Peace’s Academy for International Conflict Management and Peacebuilding has launched two new courses on nuclear non-proliferation. One is on Iran and Pakistan’s Nuclear Proliferation Challenges and the other is on China’s Nuclear Posture, North Korea’s Nuclear Challenge and US National Security.
  • The Atlantic ran an article about rape in war and how to stop it, based upon a new project by activist Gloria Steinem.
  • An American public interest group has asked a federal court to block Google Inc from consolidating its privacy policies, saying it could make it easier for advertisers to target users.
  • The UPEACE Centre for Executive Education is running an online course in negotiation and conflict resolution. The course will run six-weeks starting March 1st, 2012.
  • The Chairperson-in-Office of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) called upon a closer partnership between them and the United Nations during a Security Council meeting on Thursday.

This Week in the World of Conflict… January 30th-February 6th, 2012.

  • The University of Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies is running its 4th Annual Summer Institute for Faculty in Peace Studies Program Development from June 10-15, 2012.
  • Twitter defended its recently announced online content policy, saying it was meant to be a transparent way to handle government requests for the removal of certain content and did not mean that it is actively monitoring tweets. Last week they announced that they would begin restricting Tweets in specific countries. Google also defended their privacy policy changes, saying they would not take away the control its customers have over how data is collected and used.
  • Debate raged over the FDA approval of a tiny computer chip for implantation in a patient’s arm to hold their medical history. Many were concerned that it would become yet another invasion of pricacy and possibly open new ways to damage the confidentiality of medical records.
  • The Metta Centrer for Nonviolence Research has opened its research fellowship for the summer of 2012. Applications are due March 25th for up to 3 awards of $2,000 and summer housing.
  • Eastern Mennonite University in Virginia, USA has opened the application process for its Summer Peacebuilding Institute 2012. The institute offers three 7-day sessions and one 5-day session in several different aspects of peacebuilding.
  • The University of Ulster and International Conflict Research Institute in Northern Ireland have opened the application process for their MSc in Applied Peace and Conflict Studies (that I would LOVE to apply to if I had the money—looks amazing!). They have also opened application processes for their INCORE Summer School program in conflict resolution and peacebuilding.
  • Mike Bourne released a new article in the Global Change, Peace and Security Journal entitled Guns don’t kill people, cyborgs do: a Latourian provocation for transformatory arms control and disarmament. The article explores existing assumptions about mainstream arms control and disarmament theory.
  • Simon Mason and Sabina Stein wrote a new article entitled Mediating Conflicts with Religious Dimensions that discuss ways to facilitate negotiations between conflict parties with non-compromising religious identities.
  • The Atlantic ran an interesting article about the effect science can have on war.
  • Rights and Resources Initiative released a new study warning of the global rush for land in “developing” countries around the world and how this could trigger a wave of civil unrest if governments fail to recognize the rights of those using communal land.
  • The Open Society Justice Initiative is currently taking applications for the summer school in Human Rights Litigation. The course will run from July 16-20th in Budapest.

This Week in the World of Conflict… January 22nd- 30th, 2012.

  • A new UN report warns that there soon won’t be enough food, water or energy to meet the needs of a rapidly growing population. The world will reportedly need at least 50% more food, 45% more energy and 30% more water.
  • The Fellowship of Reconciliation and Uniting for Peace announced an international conference in peacebuilding “Peace In My Lifetime” scheduled for Thursday, March 15th, 2012 in London, the United Kingdom.
  • The University of Kent and the University of Marburg began accepting applications for their international double degree Masters programme in Peace and Conflict Studies for their 2012-2013 year.
  • The Park University approved the establishment of a Centre for Global Peace Journalism to promote the concepts of peace and peace journalism.
  • On Friday, the world marked the International Holocaust Remembrance Day, the day when Soviet troops liberated the German Nazi-run Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp in Poland in 1945. The Day has been recognized since 2005 by the UN General Assembly.
  • Micro-blogging site Twitter announced that they altered their technology to allow for country-specific censorship of messages. The move has angered users, some of whom are calling for a boycott and organizing an online protest in response.
  • Google announced that it was revising its privacy policy on how it uses data from users of its services. Many are concerned that the new combined privacy services for all its products would allow them to deduce a more complete picture of who the user is, what they read, where they are going and what they are up to.
  • The UN humanitarian office announced on Wednesday that $104 million was being allocated to support 13 neglected emergencies around the world.  A second round of allocations is scheduled to follow in July.
  • Battles over copyrighted materials on the internet have been raging these last couple weeks, with shutdowns of major websites such as Wikipedia in protest over the SOPA and PIPA bills, and now rising concerns over the fate of the ACTA bill, as well as the Canadian Bill C-11.
  • Freedom House released its 2012 report that categorizes freedom, political rights and civil liberties in the world. Tunisia showed the largest improvement a country has ever made in a single year, while the Gambia’s freedom score declined significantly.
  • Human Rights Watch released its 2012 World Report summarizing human rights conditions in more than 90 countries worldwide. A special introduction examined the Arab Spring uprisings.
  • The Monkey Cage had an interesting blog post about the actions of states after they acquire nuclear weaponry.