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2002 in Review

Working Groups
Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility

2002 in Review

CPSR Events

"Shrinking World, Expanding Net," CPSR's 2002 annual conference, and Norbert Wiener Award Dinner honoring Karl Auerbach, A Pioneer of Democratic Internet Governance, on Saturday, October 5th at Harvard University.

Andy Oram reported on the day in "CPSR conference brings people and Internet together"

PDC 2002 - Participation and Design: Inquiring Into the Politics, Contexts and Practices of Collaborative Design Work. in Malmo, Sweden, June 23-25.

CPSR's Public Sphere Project, in collaboration with the National Communication Association's Task Force on the Digital Divide, hosted the DIAC 2002 - Shaping the Network Society: Patterns for Participation, Action and Change symposium, Seattle, WA, May 16-19.

Herb Kanner, CPSR Board Secretary, hosted a delegation from Turkmenistan that visited with CPSR in Palo Alto on August 13th as part of a U.S. Department of State International project entitled "Internet Policy."


In Memorium: Kristen Nygaard, CPSR's 1990 Norbert Wiener Award Winner died August 10th. To read his obituaries, and/or express your feelings and thoughts about him, see



PDC 2002 Proceedings PDC 2002 - Participation and Design: Inquiring Into the Politics, Contexts and Practices of Collaborative Design Work

Researchers, designers, and other practitioners from diverse design fields such as architecture, urban planning, engineering, interaction design and others (such as the fine arts) focused on understanding collaborative design work. The PDC 2002 Proceedings give a sense of the variety of perspectives and discourse on participation and design, point to creative new directions and innovative approaches, and highlight challenges confronting design practitioners concerned with the art of participatory design in connection to longstanding political concerns with user participation and democracy.

DIAC 2002 Proceedings Shaping the Network Society: Patterns for Participation, Action and Change

Since 1987, Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility has hosted the biannual "Directions and Implications of Advanced Computing"(DIAC) symposium. The theme of the 2002 event, attended by 300 researchers and practitioners in Seattle in May, was "Shaping the Network Society: Patterns for Participation, Action and Change." Over 60 "patterns," based on the original concepts of Christopher Alexander and his colleagues, were presented.

The CPSR Journal Using Technology to Control the Flow of Ideas, edited by Paul Hyland

Includes articles by Andy Oram, Karen Coyle, Cory Doctorow, and Wen-Hsin Lin. This issue continues CPSR's interest and and contributions to the issues revolving around intellectual property, particularly since the debate around and passage of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act in 1998. It has always been the case that powerful interests steered the law in this policy arena, but in recent years they have become more brazen. Another recent change of significance is the impact of digital technology on the discourse of ideas and their expression, and the ways that this fact supposedly changes everything and necessitates vastly changed intellectual property rules.

The CPSR Journal CPSR Turns Twenty, edited by Aki Namioka

Includes articles by Severo Ornstein, Terry Winograd, Bob Wilcox, Erik Nilsson, Jeff Johnson, Doug Schuler, and Nathaniel Borenstein. The articles all appeared in the CPSR Newsletter, since its beginnings in 1983. The articles focus on answering the questions -- What were the issues that motivated the founding of CPSR? What were some of the questions we faced as Computer Professionals? How can CPSR activists influence policy makers?

Each article contains a retrospective update that focuses what has happened since the article was written. In many cases the issues are just as relevant as they were at the time of the original article.

Looking over these articles it shows the broad range of interests that CPSR activists have participated in. Turning twenty gives us the opportunity to sit back and reflect on how much we've accomplished. From Star Wars to Net Governance -- we've had an impact.

The Winter/Spring PING!

This year CPSR launched a monthly email alert for members, The Compiler, intended to inform our members of opportunities to become involved in advocacy work.

Andy Oram wrote an article, "Why Human Rights Requires Free Software," inspired by Patrick Ball's keynote at the CPSR Annual Meeting.

Paul Hyland contributed "Digital Rights Management: Whose Rights Are Being Managed?" to a briefing book for the Congressional Internet Caucus

This summer, CPSR was fortunate to have the services of a legal intern, Wen-Hsin Lin, from Cornell University Law School. Hsin contributed two important pieces of work to our developing intellectual property efforts.

Comments & Testimony

National ID Cards to the California State Assembly Judiciary Committee.

Submitted reply comments about Micosoft/DOJ on March 11, and was included as one of the 47 "major" filings of the 30,000 comments released by the Department of Justice.

Submitted comments to the Senate Judiciary committee, five state sponsors, and Representatives Boucher and Schiff to express our serious misgivings regarding the Consumer Broadband and Digital Television Promotion Act (CBDTPA)

CPSR was asked by The National Center for State Courts and the Justice Management Institute to comment on a proposed Model Policy on privacy and public access to electronic court records.

Harry Hochheiser testifiedon February 14th about Identity Theft and Social Security Numbers in relation to HB 281, a proposed Maryland bill that would prohibit businesses from refusing to do business with customers who choose to keep their SSNs private.

Submitted "Digital Rights Management: Whose Rights Are Being Managed?" to the Internet Caucus Advisory Committee.

CPSR Signed on to . . .

A free speech amicus brief to the 9th Circuit in LICRA's appeal to the district court's decision in the Yahoo France case from CDT.

Comments protesting the Microsoft/Department of Justice settlement with NetAction.

EPIC's comments on the Telemarketing Sales Rule on May 8th

Letter to Members of the House Commerce Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, May 8th.

Global Internet Liberty Campaign letter to the Council of Europe concerned about their activities on computer-related crime and international co-operation, and urging protection of human rights on the global Internet.

Letter from an international coalition of consumer and privacy organizations, organized by EPIC, to Guy Verhofstadt, President of the European Union Council of Ministers expressing their concerns about a letter from President Bush requesting that a proposed EU Directive on the protection of privacy in the electronic communications sector be altered to allow for data retention of telephone calls and Internet messages.

Letter to US Attorney General Ashcroft to demonstrate large support across a broad range of organizations, for the pre 9/11 domestic spying guidelines.

The ban on weapons in space bill, HR2977, sponsored by Rep. Dennis Kucinich.

A call to the Department of Commerceto open to competition the process for selecting who will control the process of how Internet addresses are designed and assigned.

Amicus briefs in the SonicBlue and Eldred v. Ashcroft

EFF's amicus brief - DMCA Sklyarov

EFF's amicus brief urging a federal court to prevent the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) from forcing Internet Service Provider, Verizon, to identify a customer the RIAA has accused of offering infringing music on a peer-to-peer system.

Comments to the Federal Trade Commission regarding the Microsoft Passport Consent Order.

A letter from Veni Markovski to the Bulgarian National Assembly, concerned with the recent proposed draft of a new Bulgarian Telecommunications Act that would establish a procedure for licensing Internet service providers.

A letter in support of H.R. 5544, the Digital Media Consumers Rights Act, from a broad bi-partisan coalition to preserve personal fair use of digital media.

Non-profit Reuse Recylcing Network letter to Judge Motze about the Microsoft settlement proposal

Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space petition written by Bruce K. Gagnon.

CPSR's amicus brief in the matter before the California Supreme Court of DVD-CCA v. Bunner, a case challenging the use of California trade secret law to squelch the reverse- engineering and distribution of DeCSS code.

CPSR's Projects

Civil Society Democracy Project


Hans Klein represented CPSR at Internet Crossroads Where Technology and Policy Intersect, Annual Meeting of the Internet Society

From September to November Hans Klein served as acting Chair of, an organization that seeks to provide an independent voice for users in the ICANN processes. organized an AtLarge Forum at ICANN's most recent meeting in Shanghai, China.


Hans Klein's Cyber-Federalist

"Staying the Course on Internet Privatization: Comments on ICANN Reform" for congressional hearings on ICANN

Quoted In:

Internet Daily, March 14 "ICANN Board May Consider Endorsing At-Large But Delaying Elections"

"Some Say ICANN Loses Legitimacy ,"

Reuters in Ghana in "Global Internet Body Set for Showdown in Ghana" by Kwaku Sakyi-Addo and Andy Sullivan

Hans Klein was elected Alternate Chair of the governing panel of, a newly-created organization to promote the user voice in Internet governance.

UPI and Dow Jones spoke with Hans Klein about ICANN


CPSR announced the creation of Privaterra to help secure human rights on January 31st


Robert Guerra, CPSR Board Member and Director of CPSR's project to secure human rights - Privaterra - has conducted workshops in New York.

Robert Guerra, Caryn Mladen, and Katitza Rodriguez represented Privaterra and CPSR during a week-long blitz of the San Francisco Bay Area while they were in the area for the Computers, Freedom, and Privacy Conference (CFP).

They spoke at the Stanford Law School, CPSR's Birds of a Feather session at CFP, and

CPSR Chapter meetings in Palo Alto and Berkeley

Jason Young, one of Privaterra's directors, served a clerkship at the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) as part of their Internet Public Interest Opportunities Program during the summer.

Included in:

As a result of the EPIC newsletter including Privaterra, it was mentioned on Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL)

Caryn Mladen,Director, Privaterra responded to a journalist from magazine.

The Issue Barometer included Privaterra and Robert Guerra in their "Special Interests" March 2002.

David Casacuberta and Privaterra were mentioned in the internet/new technologies section of Spain's National El Mundo Newspaper.

Privaterra got press in The Toronto Star, The Chicago Tribune, and The Vancouver Sun.

Public Sphere Project

In collaboration with the National Communication Associations's Task Force on the Digital Divide, the Project hosted DIAC 2002 - Shaping the Network Society symposium. Like previous DIAC symposia, it again provided a forum for practitioners, researchers, and activists who are building civic and community information systems.

The Pattern Language project of the Public Sphere Project now has a new main page and the listserv is up and running.

CPSR in the Press

Nira Schwartz, Norbert Wiener Award co-Winner 2001, was featured in the New York Times, "Congressional Inquiry Cites Flaws in Antimissile Sensor" by William J. Broad, March 4.

Much of the content appeared in the February 1st issue of Science (Vol. 295, No. 5556; p. 776), which also included the role of Theodore Postol (CPSR Norbert Wiener Award co-Winner 2001).

The story and the crucial role of Schwartz and Postol was also reported in The Boston Globe March 4 in "MIT team tied to questionable missile studies," by David Abel.

The April 2002 Tech Review included "Why Missile Defense Won't Work" by Theodore Postol

Coralee Whitcomb spoke with IEEE Spectrum magazine about intellectual property and the engineer -- specifically the case of DSC/Alcatel vs. Evan Brown and Mr.Brown's web site.

CBS spoke with Robert Guerra about employers monitoring employees at their keyboards.

Harry Hochheiser, CPSR Board Member, was quoted by Wired News about the settlement between the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and Microsoft

Harry Hochheiser was quoted by Wired News and translated into Hotwired Japan News

The New York Times quoted Karen Coyle about FasTrak, the San Francisco Bay Area's traffic tracking system and concerns for privacy, on August 26th.

Karen was also quoted in the Ventura Star Free Press about Digital Angel's tracking device for kids.

NBC Channel 3 and another San Francisco Bay Area TV station covered "Chris Hibbert's January 8th testimony to the California State Judiciary Committee about ID Cards in Sacramento, CA.

Ellen Spertus and Bennet Haselton were featured by Anick Jesdanun, AP Internet Writer, in "Fed up with spam? You aren't only one."

Ellen Spertus sued the online retailer, which still sent her e-mail after she declined such pitches, under California's 1998 anti-spam law.

Bennett Haselton recently won four judgments of $500 each in Washington state, and plans to write a "how-to" guide.. See

Rich Meagher, CPSR San Francisco Chapter Contact, spoke with KPFA radio (Berkeley, CA) about a California spam decision.

Chris Hibbert spoke with The Christian Science Monitor about Social Security Numbers.

Al Whaley spoke with Barometer/Issue Management Council about CPSR's October 2nd "Comments on Legislative Proposals to Protect National Security and their impact on the Communications Infrastructure."

Womenspace Magazine online cited our website on their page about charitable status for advocacy groups.

Shinji Yamane, CPSR/Japan Chair, was interviewed

Hiroki Azuma, a Japanese cultural critic commented about CPSR in Hacker Crackdown and about CPSR Japan


We have new Chapter and Working Group guidelines

CPSR-Canada responded to proposed Cybercrime and Lawful Access in Canada.

CPSR Japan held their 1st Annual Meeting on August 23rd.

Nobuo Sakiyama of CPSR Japan is working on FOIA requests on email intercepting devices which belong to the National Police Agency of Japan.

CPSR Pittsburgh hosted a September 10th forum - Strings Attached?: Academic Freedom and Career Realities- featuring Theodore Postol, CPSR's 2001 Wiener Award winner and David Farber.

CPSR/Spain put out a "Without Tax" manifesto and participates in weekly radio segments on cyber rights.

The Spain Chapter inaugurated the first Spanish Big Brother Awards.

CPSR Peru became an official chapter in November 2002.

2001-2002 Essay Contest

CPSR received almost 70 essays from 22 U.S. states, 3 other countries, high schools, community colleges, state universities, and private colleges. Subject areas included: Community Networks, CyberRights, Education, Ethics, Intellectual Property, Law, Privacy and Civil Liberties, Reliability and Risk, Working in the Industry, and Workplace issues.

Grand Prize Winner:

Tu Tran, Graduate Student at Mills College for "Computer Forensics and Your Rights"

1st Round Winners: (all just happened to be attending University of Wisconsin-Parkside)

Carla Castellano for "Terrorism Not Reason for Use of National Identification Cards"

Sheri Villers for "A Leap in the Wrong Direction"

Adam Leggett for "Why the Security Systems Standards and Certification Act Cannot Prevent Piracy"

Lars Peterson for "The Case for Digital Onramps in Every U.S. Community"

2nd Round Winners:

Leah S. Roderman, Graduate Student at Mills College for "Technology and the Very Young: Lapware, Smart Toys, and Beyond"

Kinari Patel, Undergraduate at Princeton University for "Business Method Patent Policy: Preserving Innovation in the Internet Environment"

Karen Korhorn, Undergraduate at the University of Illinois - Urbana/Champaign for "Steganography Uses and Effects on Society"

Brenda Ashmore, Undergraduate at University of Wisconsin - Parkside for "Changing Careers to Information Technology"

Things to Look Forward To:

There will be seven openings on the Board of Directors in 2003. If you are interested in CPSR leadership at this very exciting time, please watch for the nomination announcement early next year.

CPSR will be building a major presentation for the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) in December 2003.

If you would like to become involved, please join or renew your membership in CPSR, and contact

Archived CPSR Information
Created before October 2004

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International Chapters -

> Canada
> Japan
> Peru
> Spain

USA Chapters -

> Chicago, IL
> Pittsburgh, PA
> San Francisco Bay Area
> Seattle, WA
Why did you join CPSR?

I want to be part of the solution. I think CPSR is working to guide society in the proper creation and use of technology.