Technological adaptation remained the norm as Lybian rebels re-appropriated Gadhafi’s cellphone network, a firefox reroute plugin appeared promptly in response to US government domaine seizures, and crowd-sourced corruption maps surfaced in India and Egypt. Meanwhile, the World Bank released its 4th iphone app, Symantec reported 3 billion malware attacks in 2010, the number of global daily tweets has risen to over 150 million, and the Russian army trained its dogs to use cell phones.
Internationally, intellectual property flexed its muscles, as New Zealand snuck a internet disconnect law in with quake recovery legislation, and the Dutch government introduced a national download ban on “copyrighted content” on the same day it denounced the export of censorship technology to “repressive countries.”
In the US, San Fransisco’s Entertainment Commission wants to require photo ID scans of everyone who goes to restaurants or theaters, the “National Online ID Card” was announced, and Senator Durbin has proposed an internet sales tax. Facebook, meanwhile, found itself a mouthpeice for national security warnings, hosting community engagement apps and plans for a Muslim Brotherhood page, and subjected to Taiwanese animation depicting its ownership squabbles .
While the police practice of “kettling” protesters was ruled illegal by a UK high court, unrest continued in the Arab Spring, with speculations turning again to Morocco. Yemeni women, meanwhile, took their indignation to the streets and threatened libel after Saleh implied that gender mixing in the protests was indecent. Post-revolutionary struggles continue in Tunisia despite a vibrant civil society, as economists warn of persistent pre-revolution patterns of inequality, free expression advocates criticize criminal defamation clauses in a draft press law, and France blocked all Italian trains due to an influx in Tunisian migration.
In Egypt, the NDP was officially dissolved, while Mubarak insisted that he was innocent of corruption and threatened the world with libel. Disregarding international optimism, journalists and activists formed a National Commission for Media Freedom, and the military required all print media to ask permission for mentioning the military.
The Monkey Cage posted interesting research, tracking how Israeli parole decisions were dramatically affected by mealtimes but not ethnicity, and a democratic kindergarten experiment, in which 5 year-olds voted away candy.