• ICT

    Challenge of Change – 1961 Bell Labs film on communication

    Looking into the future from the past is often fascinating. A Bell Labs film from 1961 on the changing communication environment predicts the future information age as it projects its technology into the future. This includes machine to machine communication, online ordering, e-commerce, and cellular phones, is no different. The underlying purpose is preparing the audience for change.

  • ICT,  Media,  Now Media,  Psychological Struggle,  Public Diplomacy

    North Koreans Quietly Open to International Broadcasts

    By Alan Heil (This post originally appeared at The Public Diplomacy Council.) For well more than a decade, Korea experts who specialize in international media have been examining the impact of foreign broadcasts and DVDs on users in North Korea. They have done so through a combination of in-country surveys and debriefings of defectors from North Korea, refugees and travelers abroad. In annual reports, Freedom House and Reporters Without Borders invariably have ranked that country as having the “least free” media in the world. Yet the curtain of near total silence appears to be opening as never before in North Korea.

  • ICT

    Using Information to Beat Gadhafi

    This morning, I was on the radio show The Takeaway, a co-production of WNYC Radio and Public Radio International, to discuss non-military options for the U.S. in Libya. My comments focused on the empowerment of Libyans by enabling the acquisition and dissemination of information. In other words, freedom to get and give information creates not only knowledge of the environment, it lays the foundation for an open society. The actions of the Libyans must be by and of the Libyans. The only substantial role here, at this early phase of the establishment of a new state, for the United States (or the West in general), is one of facilitator. The…

  • China,  Government Broadcasting,  ICT,  Public Diplomacy

    Another US Deficit – China and America – Public Diplomacy in the Age of the Internet

    The Senate Foreign Relations Committee released its report on the imbalance of public diplomacy activities between China and the United States. Entitled “Another U.S. Deficit – China and America – Public Diplomacy in the Age of the Internet,” this is the final version of the report I reviewed on 11 February. Commissioned by Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN), the Ranking Member of the Committee, the report is a unique and necessary review of Chinese Government engagement in America. The report also highlights Chinese obstruction of reciprocity and U.S. Government failure to act, notably in the area of information freedom initiatives. The timing of this report is critical. It comes on the…

  • Government Broadcasting,  ICT,  Media,  Public Diplomacy

    Freedom to Connect

    By Jerry Edling “You will not be able to stay home, brother. You will not be able to plug in, turn on and cop out. You will not be able to lose yourself on skag and skip, Skip out for beer during commercials, Because the revolution will not be televised.” — Gil Scott-Heron, From the album “Small Talk at 125th and Lennox” (1970) “The revolution will not be televised…but it may be tweeted.” Posted on weeseeyou.com January 28, 2011 In some ways, Gil Scott-Heron’s song “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” was ahead of its time. The lyrics were recited rather than sung, accompanied by congas and a bongo drum,…

  • ICT

    False flag: social engineering the social network of IO professionals

    Some colleagues are reporting a phishing expedition to identify and engage Information Operations experts on LinkedIn. They’ve reported invitations from “George W.” who purports to be “Colonel Williams”, an “IO professional” in the DC area. Invitations, with a number of wording variations, has been received by a number of active duty IO personnel recently.  Investigation by several others has shown that the profile is for a nonexistent person. In short, be careful who you let into your social network. While you may not be passing along explicit data, bringing an unknown into your network allows the phisher – who may be a hacker, a curious teenager, looking for the next…

  • Events,  ICT,  Psychological Struggle,  Social Media

    MountainRunner Institute at InfoWarCon 2010

    By Chris Dufour This week kicks off the second year of AOC’s InfoWarCon in Washington, DC. Subtitled “Future Warfare Today: The Battle for Information & Ideas”, the three-day gathering sports luminaries from different information disciplines beyond information operations, or IO. Joel Harding, the director of AOC’s IO Institute, has put together an agenda with panelists from across the spectrum of informational engagement: strategic communication, public diplomacy, public affairs, technology, and emerging media. The stated purpose of InfoWarCon is to advance the discourse about the evolving role of information in warfare of today and tomorrow, especially the kind where explosions, in the case they actually occur, are shaping events in support…

  • ICT,  Media,  Now Media,  Psychological Struggle,  Social Media

    Hugo Chavez vs. the Online Media Environment

    By Melanie Ciolek President Hugo Chavez has a long history of dominating the media environment in Venezuela, using radio and television to belittle his critics and project his political agenda to national and regional audiences. His administration has referred to the closures of privately held radio and television stations as efforts to “democratize” the media. Now facing the ultimate democratic media environment–an online space featuring millions of independent actors–he seems unsure how to compete.

  • ICT,  Now Media,  Psychological Struggle,  Social Media

    Hugo Chávez: taking the battle to the Internet

    By Mariana González Insua Hugo Chávez’ tight grip on Venezuelan media threatens to reach new levels. The Venezuelan leader’s recent announcement that every country needs to regulate the Internet and the launch of his “guerrilla” communicational campaign have sparked fears that his control over the media might be extended to the online world. Chávez’ dominance of traditional forms of media in Venezuela is unquestionable. Not only does the Venezuelan leader have his own weekly show, but he is the brain behind Telesur and Radio del Sur, television and radio channels aimed at exporting the Venezuelan “socialist” model beyond Venezuela’s borders while reinforcing Chávez’ message at home. However, what has caused…

  • ICT,  Now Media

    Shadows in the Cloud: An investigation into cyber espionage

    The Information Warfare Monitor (Citizen Lab, Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto and the SecDev Group, Ottawa) and the Shadowserver Foundation released a new report documenting a cyber espionage ring that “operated or staged their operations” from Chengdu, Peoples Republic of China. Targets of this espionage activity included Indian government computers and the offices of the Dalai Lama.