Broadband Scandal – heading towards 3rd world connectivity

$200 Billion Broadband Scandal was posted to a list I am on today.

New investigative ebook offers micro-history of Verizon, SBC, Qwest, and BellSouth’s (the Bell companies) fiber optic broadband promises and the consequence harms to America’s economic growth because they never delivered and kept most of the money, about $200 billion.

New York: This is one of the largest scandals in American history. America is 16th in the world in broadband and the US DSL current offerings are 100 times slower than other countries such has Japan and Korea. How did we go from Number 1 in the web to 16th in broadband and falling?

* Are customers owed $2000 for a fiber optic service they paid for but never received? Did towns and cities, libraries and schools, government agencies, and every residential and business customer subsidize new networks that never showed up?
* Did America lose $5 trillion in economic growth, $500 billion annually, because of these missing networks?


Scoble just did this long… post on conferences and the issues around creating them. Adding to Jeff Jarvis’ post here.

I left this comment….

Hey Scoble,
We in the identity community are trying to figure out the venue thing too. 1st key is a place that lets you bring in outside catoring.
We are also doing 75% open space at our next conference – so no planning for ’sessions’ the attendees create them based on what is alive in the room that day. This is how you have a discussion with 2000 folks – not trying to have it all in one big room. You can also use process like Appreciative Inquiry where a whole room of over 5000 folks can have a meaningful conversatino ‘together’. I think we should have a conference for conference organizers to mull on options and issues faced by our crowd. Innvation is needed in this space and market needs are largely unmet.

The breakdown on the Identity Workshop was a fee of $75 for a two day conference that included lunch.
Those of us who organized it did it volunteer and we broke even. Everyone loved us bucking the trend of the ‘expensive’ conference. We are hoping to pull it off again this year in May.

The details – We had about 70 paying attendees. 80 people attended. Lunch was $800 a day -$10 a head (and people liked the food)
We paid the venue about $800 a day (but the wifi was iffy and chairs not super comfy). We got someone to help with refreshments for about $400. A neutral sponsor came through and sponsored dinner for everyone the first (and only) evening of the conference.

analog-digital Clash – HIGH transaction costs

Today I have had two analogue-digital clashes. Or perhaps digital loops that had to pass through an analogue phase

I went to the bank to get a print out of all the transactions on my account recently – so I could notify them of the fraudulent ones. You would think that i could tell a bank employee which ones are fraudulent and they would ‘mark them’ on my account electronically and then investigate. Nooo… I get a form that I must fill with a pen writing out each fraudulent transaction.

Then I have to come back tomorrow when the guy who can notarize them is there to mail the documents into the bank. It will then take them 15 days to even look at my claim – more time to investigate and no money is returned until they complete investigating…potentially a month or more away. Meanwhile I am out $2800.

Second clash. I did some work for PR company. They call me last week and leave a message that says…call us back. I really don’t like voicemails like that you have to write the number down. Then punch it back in to call them. I figured it was about my SSN for taxes. I changed my voicemail message that said if you really want me to call you back you have to e-mail me and left my e-mail address. So today I get this e-mail that is a W9 that i have to fill out and sign and fax back to her. Shouldn’t you be able to submit this to the company in some electronic way and then be assured they destroy this information (revocation) so it is not floating around forever in there accounting system. Not yet apparently. So first I fill out the PDF boxes then print it out to sign it. I don’t have a fax machine. So Then I scan in back into my computer and send her the JPEG.

Ross Mayfield said at an event last year that 50% of the economy was transaction costs. These experiences both have a lot of cost associated with just doing the transactions. We as a digital identity community need to address real costs baked into the system that are not working for people or organizations.

Identity Woman has Identity Stolen

This really happened believe it or not. It is not ElastaGirl pretending to be me or someone named Identity Chick emerging on the scene. I had my one bank/credit card counterfited used for transactions and draining my bank account to well below zero.

I knew something was wrong when on friday I got a call from Visa’s fraud center asking me to call them about some suspicious activities. I had gone through this before – it was when i had bought domain names from a france based seller and they had called to check with me that indeed I had bought something from france. I was not worried and figured this time would be something similar.

I waited a day to get back to them and called on Saturday night. They wanted to review about 30 transactions on my card…many were things I remembered. One was for sure not me $321 from Macys in Pleasanton (a suburb over the Oakland Hills) on Jan 26th the day I was at etel (in Burlingame that day). They said my card was turned off after this transaction. So I am thinking that I have only $321 of fraud to deal with.

That day I had $1300 in my bank account (I know cause I withdrew $100 that morning).

Monday morning I had negative 1300 in my account.

It is emotionally awful. Who could have gotten it where. Is it ‘just my VISA number’? What if they know more about me – my birth date (is that anywhere on the internet publicly I wonder?)

Do I have to close my account cause the know how to access it? If I do that am I really safe? Who to trust now? is a question arising in me.

Kim Cameron’s Panel about Identity @ SD Forum

This is from the SD Forum on Interoperability January 31, 2006.

Prateek Mishra – Oracle
What is the identity problem?
It is stuck in a few places at employwer, bank and you want to
how does your identity get from your identity provider – the places were you have defined your identity to all these business processes and services.

We want to do this across the internet. There is the protocol piece – we know how to transmit identity from point a to point b this is solved…

Governence models how to transfer identity in trusted ways from point a to point b. Folks like Liberty Alliance have white papers and frameworks for this. This is a non-trivial problem. How you maintain and create governance?

How do you have normal folks sitting at their computers manage their identities in intuitive ways. How do they have a tool

Identity is stuck it wants to be free.
Protocol – Token Representaiton – solved
Governence and Infrastructure – somewhat solved
How does a person leverage these multiple identities?

Kim Cameron – fan of SAML and Liberty
As we move to more interconnected set of systems we need an identity layer. When you have an architectural whole of this magnitude you have a huge number of kludges.

Meta System

Users have no way of predicting how they should work – knowing when they are in danger.

old days fighting over token rings vs. ethernet – we got TCP/IP that encapsulated both.

We need a metasystem (I got a tiny bit distracted here, sorry. So the transcription is not perfect)

Karen Wendel, Identrus
Metasystem – single interface from an identity perspective.
Everyone has a visa card – that folks each having a card for each store. The industry would be stuck without interoperable.
Rules used consistently throughout the world.
VISA would take responsibility for legal, technical and policy issues.

Identrus was owned by the banks. Your identity will be given to you. It takes responsibility around the policy stuff. Legal aspects of your identity – dispute resolution. Liability of relying party who maintains it and lifecycle. We run this network and commonality on global basis.

(from there website) Identrus provides the global standard for identity authentication.
As communications expand and the world shrinks, knowing who’s who in the electronic universe becomes vital.
Identrus offers a full range of technology and services that support every aspect of safe eTransactions.

Rena Mears, Deloitte
Access – from a privacy point of view is different from access from a security point of view
Assertions and Claims are different

Kim Cameron..
Claims are assertions which are in doubt
everything being claimed has to be doubted so we can establish trust.

They considered using Claims but it would have become SCML (scammel)

It is to the benefit to the SAML make things secure in the browser. Shibboleth the hardest thing is home site discovery – infocards visual representation and

pick one of the 5000 higher education institutions…
or pick ‘your’ university identity.

Identrus: This is what we would call an identity provider.

SAML is the transport language
SAML is used between a portal and services to the portal.

I propose we have new ways of the user authenticating to the portal.
The systems still exist.

What constitutes and identity and the needs for security.
How does language play in this space – there are a lot of different models – identity is not the same as authentication or security.

problem blending identity and security – PKI
you get these people

anyone who works with a protocol they get infected by the protocol and their vision blurs and and narrows.
We need more fanatics about protocols

one of the challenges for us as a community – identity does more then authenticate – sign things and create legal contracts – engage in business transactions, incur liability and regulatory transactions.

you can’t look at the papers and not see an inherent relationship between identity and security.

Who has stepped up to be the binder of identity to the individual.

there is not such thing as single monlithic identity
there are multiple notions of identity useful for different contexts
Shibolith context higher education
Identrus is a context and a governance model

We like Infocards if we could use it when we get to the line in the spec it says Identity provider discovery – out of band
authentication is out of band for SAML

everyone is bound by
the bank that issues the identity to the person
the bank binds to the person – labile to up to 10 million dollars
issued within all the legal requirements

there all these pockets of identity – the level of binding – between issuer and relying party – it does not transfer through the bridge structure.

A lot of the federated model you don’t have that level of binding between the parties.

We will work with the bridges and it is a different element.

The government – thinking of itself as the ‘binding’ authority – reasons for relative autonomy.

Belgium a national identity card – but no card readers
One group was the association of mayors – they were now being asked to sign their legal documents with their individual citizen identity – they used to sign their documents with a stamp of their office – we must think of roles.

The issue is PRIVACY.
the characteristics that really respects privacy are the characteristics of a system that really is difficult to penetrate.

All of the identity issues – any initiative that takes this forward we should all applaud.

Thinking about the Valley

This morning getting to the SD Forum I had an adventure getting there. I was going to take the train but missed it. Got to the light rail but missed the train that was in the station…then got the next one. Got of one stop to late – Great American instead of Old Ironsides. Then walked the wrong direction across the Great America parking lot.

this wide open space was nice…you could see the myst around the edges of the mountains. It was overcast with the sun none-the-less shining through. The air was moist and i was listening to my i-pod. I thought about how early settlers here might have felt looking towards the horizon. “a promised land” of abundant fertile soil – the opportunity to plan trees and grow fruit. I felt sad for the trees that I know had been ripped up to make the parking lot I was walking over.

I got back out onto the street. Very wide full of cars streaming off the freeway. A massive scale. There were no people on the sidewalks with me. I thought about how this landscape built for cars shaped the thinking of the people here. The technology developed in this valley is spreading “everywhere”. What does it mean that it comes from a place that is so car-based on such a large scale almost trans-human. The scale here reminded me of the scale of the government buildings in DC – massive.

Can we build technology that is rooted in community that serves the human scale and has life serving values at its roots.

SD Forum on Interoperability: Interoperability via Standards

I managed to make it to make it to the SD Forum at TechMart this morning.
I caught the end of Anne Thomas Manes’ talk. Her was her last slide –

Interoperability is the goal
Standards are the solution
Standardization takes time
Vendors typically do the standardization
Venders always pursue their own agenda

Youth, Identity and Technology

Dana Boyde is working on her PhD at at UC Berkeley. She is about to move to LA to do field research with youth. I read her blog regularly and a lot of what is happening is that youth, there use of technology and exploration of identity. I wanted to share this highlight from her post yesturday and if you are interested in these things you might want to subscribe to her blog.

I am currently more interested in understanding the theoretical and historical underpinnings of youth and identity. That said, what i am doing is not removed from social software. Most youth today use social technologies as part of their coming of age processes. They have far richer social lives than most adults. What they are doing with technology is far more complex. Furthermore, they are really focused on the act of socializing, not collaboration or any other work-centric model. Youth have a lot to teach us about social software – about its strengths, weaknesses and where innovation should go. Obviously, i’m biased – this is the root of how my research is applicable to technologists.

I hope those of you building technology will enjoy my journey to the depths of youth. I certainly am. If not, i’m sorry.

Declaration of Network Independence

Rick Ringel (yes this is his real name) presented this Declaration of Network Independence at etel that will resonate deeply with the user-centric identity community.

Declaration of Network Independence

that among these are
Identity -> Existence -> Life
Mobility -> Movement -> Passage -> Freedom -> LIberty
And the pursuit of Innovation

Unalienable Right to Identity – Independent of devices, modes, service providers or access networks – Equality

Unalienable Right to Identity – Create, destroy and transfer ownership – Property

Unalienable Right to Identity – Control When, How, What and With Whom – Privacy and Association

Unalienable Right to Mobility – Move between services providers while retaining identity – Liberty

Unalienable Right to Pursue Innovation – End Users have a right to creat applications that interact with the Network on their behalf, or on behalf of many Users – Individualism.

We mutually pledge to each other our Vision, Our Standards, and our Interoperability.

Down with Buddy lists….

Mobile Jones

Jazz, an application that provides audio messaging to yet another circle of friends. More invites….more buddy lists….

There were so many identity silos at the etel.

Each phone handset has one for address books –

  • Motorola,
  • Nokia

Telecom Incumbents

  • Orange(france telecom),
  • British Telecom

Cool “apps”

  • YackPack

The Incumbent internet players

  • ebay/Paypal/skype [PESk]
  • Yahoo!
  • Google (using Jabber)
  • Microsoft

FLUIDS…they are just names

This is a post IDs: where do they lead … ? by Bill Anderson that is great.

Bill and I were introduced by Jerry Michalski – (sociate) and have had quite a few great conversations over the past year. He did this post in early December that I just found. I though you would enjoy the humor and point he is making.

I’ve been noticing that I’m getting more and more behind on the online identity conversations, implementations, ruminations, and exploitations (?). But I try to keep track of what pops up on the weblogs of Mary Hodder and Kaliya Hamlin, for starters.

I was looking at the acronym “ID” and that triggered the following set of associations:

IDs = identifiers, could even be names, but seem to be more formal, as in “Show me your ID.”

UIDs = unique ones of these ID thingys. These show up sometimes on software modules.

GUIDs = globally unique ID thingys. I’ve seen these being applied to globally identifying species, and again to software (where it’s sometimes spelled UUID).

and this led me to yet another acronym:

FLUIDs = which I’m defining as familiar, famous, or favorite local, unique, identifier thingys. These, I think, are also known as names.

Who is that Person? Firefox extension

I just found out about this Firefox extension by Ted Rheingold of Dogster Fame called who is that person.

I posted my first Firefox extension. It’s called ‘Whois This Person’ and it’s a simple little right-click menu item which will query any name you’ve highlighted against LinkedIn, Wikipedia, Technorati, GoogleNews, Yahoo Person Search, TailRank as well as some family and address sites. It’s not gonna change the world, but it may save some seconds here and there.

ETel – Rural wireless and Voip – Racoons and Ants challenges

I am Etel today (and for the next two days) and watching this great DIY presentation by Brian Capouch from Saint Joseph’s College. He is giving us all the tricks and tips to get rural wireless networks going for farmers.

The biggest challenges – racoons who turn the switch on the box on and off not infrequently and ants that invaded the box once.

The biggest threat to him being able to provider services to his community is regulation.

After you confirm who you are, you may log in.

This is the message that I got today when I logged into a new collaborative atlas site Platial.

Thank you, we have sent you an email to confirm you are you. After you confirm who you are, you may log in.

All sending you an e-mail and clicking on a link does is prove that you own that e-mail address.

User-centric services have for UUID’s (universally Unique identifier) linked to real people. I had a conversation with one of the lead technical people on this project and they are in a bit of a bind without being able to access third party identity servers. They don’t want to ask people for their login to Yahoo, MSN, Flickr etc. but services like Mobido do this and (young) people give them to use.

There now doubt in my mind there is a market need for these services.

Technorati Tags: , ,

Going ‘to’ the interent

Last weekend I was hanging out in a cabin with ‘no’ internet. There is internet about a mile down the road…Liz and made pilgramage there and described it as ‘going to the internet’. This way of framing the outing is interesting because the metaphor we use to describe it…a place worthy of protection of freedom of speech.

Identity Gang 2 – How did John get involved?

This was the big identity event that I missed while I was away. The good thing about podcasting is that you get to listen to it after it is recorded. There was a question that Doc asked John Clippinger about where he really got involved with the identity conversation…he really was a bit stumped and was like PCForum…John Clippinger and Paul Trevethick came out the Planetwork in 2004 where identity was a big topic of discussion. I met them there.

I knew that Harvard was critical to get involved in the discussion so when I found out about the conference on Internet and Society I flew out there specifically to talk at length with John about what Identity Commons and i-names. We had a great meeting in the Charles hotel for about two and a half hours. I also on that trip spoke at length with Paul and Mary.

Then when we were out at PCForum for a pre-Forum identity gang. John couldn’t make that but got there late in the day. I set up a breakfast meeting with Owen Davis, Drummond Reed and John Clipppinger to talk about identity matters including how to get support from the big players for the kind of research and dialogue needed to address the social concerns. It seems the subsequent conversations went well and they secured some funding.

So…Doc that is part of the story about how John Clippinger and the Berkman Center got involved in the identity conversation.

“getting Attention”

At the Syndicate Conference Seth Goldstein and Steve Gilmore were on screen talking about Attention Trust (via Isight). Seth started talking about how delicious sold for x-million dollars and that meant that Yahoo paid them between $30 and $100 for a persons links in the system. Seth said that as users start of figure out the equity of their attention they invest in systems that they will demand new models of equity (read $/resources) emerging. Lots of folks in the crowd really could not follow what he was saying or get it. This article makes it really clear. Who owns the wisdom of the crowd? The Crowd.

There was much discussion about the point at which things do get screwed up: Somebody grows by being open. Then they want to stay on top so they exert control (getting greedy about trying to keep you in or about money or information). When they exert too much control, then competitors can gang up by being more open (regaining the advantage that made the big guy big) or the public the big guy serves can desert.

All of which is to say that there are values that must be shared to succeed. But we’re still not sure what those values are; we’re still scribbling down Hammurabi’s Code. Once again, we are building a new society here.

I believe we start with the notions that:
* We all want to control our contributions.
* We all want the community to benefit if we in turn benefit.
* We expect mutual trust in the forms of transparency and honesty
* And we all — individual, collective, enabler — find uncivil behavior (spam, fraud, hate) unacceptable.

But there’s one more fundamental notion that informs this new society, a notion that big companies and institutions invariably forget because they were build in the old order:

This is no longer a centralized world, a world controlled by those institutions. This is a decentralized world, a world controlled by us.

And if you try to take control away from us, you will lose. It used to be that you could take control away from us and we had nowhere to go. But in this post-scarcity world, we can always go somewhere else for content or information or service. There’s always another news story, always another email service, always another search engine. Thus my first law, once again: Give us control and we will use it. Don’t and you will lose us.

Domocracy 2.0

I am excited to read about this effort Democracy 2.0. I know a lot of folks that have been working hard on innovative upgrades to our current democracy among them Tom Attlee and the National Coalition on Dialogue and Deliberation. This year there was also the release of Extreme Democracy.

I am hoping that in the coming year the tools that are being developed around identity can have some applicability to improved civil engagement, collective decision making and building more livable, thriving communities.

Democracy 2.0 Memes are articulated here.