Policy Resources
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Policy Resources Carl Kucharski is a long-time media activist and consultantfocusing on telecommunications research, requirements planning and policy analysis. This is an edited version of his extensive listing of resources.
Carl Kucharski

1. Organizations

A list of organizations noted elsewhere in the Review (and page/link) are shown on the right. There is a separate section for Rural organizations and Resouces; others are noted at the end here. Below are some key additional groups. For a larger list of related orgs, see the database of organizations developed by the Civil Rights Forum at   www.civilrights forum.org/linkalpha.htm  and the links at www.benton.org/Library/Low-Income/resources3.html.

The Alliance for Public Technology - www.apt.org

A coalition of individuals and nonprofit groups who share a vision of equal access for all consumers to telecommunications networks capable of a wide variety of information services. See "Blue Prints" in section 2 below.

American Library Association Office for Information Technology Policy - www.ala.org/oitp/index.html

Promotes the development and use of electronic access to information as a means to ensure the public's right to a free and open information society.

Center for Applied Special Technology - www.cast.org/

Dedicated to expanding opportunities for individuals with disabilities through innovative computer technology, research and product development that further universal design for learning.

Organizations noted in the Review (and page/link)

The Alliance for Community Media -

The Alliance for Technology Access

The Association For Community Networking (AFCN)

The Benton Foundation's Communications Policy Project

The Center for Media Education

The Civil Rights Forum on Communications Policy

The Community Technology Center's Network

Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility

Computers in Our Future - p. 24

Libraries for the Future

The Loka Institute and Community Research Network

Media Working Group

The National Indian Telecommunications Institute

The Ohio Community Computing Center Network

OMB Watch's Nonprofits' Policy & Technology Project



The National Trust for the Development of African-American Men

Center for Civic Networking - www.civicnet.org

Dedicated to applying information infrastructure to the broad public good, within local communities to improve delivery of local government services, improve access to information that people need in order to function as informed citizens, broaden citizen participation in governance, and stimulate economic and community development.

Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory Committee - www.netcaucus.org/

A diverse group of public interest, nonprofit, and industry groups working to educate Congress and the public about key Internet-related policy issues.

Education and Libraries Networks Coalition - www.itc.org/edlinc/

Seeks to expand the use of educational technologies in schools and libraries by making sure that they get the affordable rate guaranteed in the Universal Service Provisions of the Telecom Act of 1996.

Electronic Frontier Foundation - www.eff.org

Includes extensive libraries on telecommunications reform.

LINCT Coalition - Learning and Information Networks for Community Telecomputing - www.linct.org

Supports telecommunications program and policy resources special for organizations serving and working with low-income communities.

Media Access Project - www.mediaaccess.org

Freestanding public interest law firm primarily devoted to representing the public's interest on electronic media issues through policy advocacy at the FCC and the Courts, in the media and other public fora.

The Morino Institute - www.morino.org

Dedicated to opening the doors of opportunity - economic, civic, health, and education -- and empowering people to improve their lives and communities in the Communications Age.

National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Administrators - www.natoa.org/

A professional association that supports and serve the telecommunications interests and needs of local governments.

The National Urban League - www.nul.org

National civil rights organization with major projects to develop community technology centers among its affiliates and deal with telecommunications policy issues in the interest of its constituents.

Policywonk.com - http://policywonk.com

Features data downloads, a link database, free do-it-yourself link posting as a free public resource. Policywonk.com does not take any partisan position.

The Public Utilities Law Project - www.pulpny.org

PULP's Communities/Communications/Technology Campaign at www.pulpny.org/cct.html is a comprehensive multi-forum offensive to gain broad societal acceptance for placing and supporting advanced technologies and telecommunications, in the homes of every poor child and needy homebound patient in America.

Resource Center for Cyberculture Studies - http://otal.umd.edu/~rccs

An online, non-profit dedicated to research, study, teach, support, and create diverse and dynamic elements of cyberculture.

StateLine.Org - www.stateline.org/

Provides a set of tools to help journalists, policy makers and ordinary citizens stay abreast of important developments in the 50 state capitols.

2. Papers, Reports, and Articles

In addition to the papers and reports noted elsewhere in the Review , see the Benton Foundation's resource library at www.benton.org/Library and the searchable database in the reading room of the School of Information at the University of Michigan's Community Connections project at www.si.umich.edu/Community.

"Blueprints for Action: New Strategies for Achieving Universal Service" - www.apt.org

Represents APT's thinking about how to achieve equitable and affordable access to networks that can accommodate high-speed, switched, two-way transmission of voice, data, graphics and video -- "advanced universal service."

Communications Policy and the Public Interest — The Telecommunications Act of 1996, by Patricia Aufderheide (NY: The Guilford Press, 1999), ISBN #1-57230-418-9 -- www.guilford.com

This 110 page critique of the Telecom Act includes chapters on background, shaping the Act, overview, aftermath, and the public interest. Extensive bibliographic resources and appendices include an annotated guide to analyses of the act, resources for active citizens, and overviews by CPSR, the Telecom Policy Roundtable, and the Media Access Project.

"Communications Policy is a Civil Rights Issue," Mark Lloyd, www.ctcnet.org/review.htm

Presents its case to both communications policy activists and traditional civil rights organizations and outlines both the history and concept for the position and the alliance. The full original can be found at www.civilrightsforum.org/compolsum.htm

"Creating CyberPlaces" - www.mwg.org/webpub/webpub.html

An e-publication from Media Working Group dealing with telecommunications policy from the community perspective.

"Culture, Class and Cyberspace" - www.igc.org/amcgee/e-race.html

Art McGee's very up to date survey, encompassing "interesting and important resources, dealing with the intersection of ethnicity, culture, class, poverty, computers, and cyberspace."

"Cyberspace and the American Dream," Progress and Freedom Foundation - www.pff.org/pff/i-cad.html

Includes Newt Gingrich, Alvin and Heidi Toffler, and others giving their perspective on telecom reform.

Federal Communications Law Journal, V.51, #3, May 1999 - www.law.indiana.edu/fclj/fclj.html

Formerly The Federal Communications Bar Journal, this issue focuses on new approaches to minority media ownership.

"The Future of Media," Boston Review, Summer 1998 - http://bostonreview.mit.edu/BR23.3/contents.html

"Making Media Democratic" by Robert W. McChesney and responses which include "Bold Proposals," by Ralph Nader, "The Real World" by Lawrence K. Grossman, "Two Misplaced Objections" by C. Edwin Baker, "Diminishing Hopes?" by Doug Schuler, "Let People Choose" by Stephen Ansolabehere, "Internet Treasure" by Andrew L. Shapiro, and "McChesney Responds."

"The Future of Networking Technologies for Learning" - www.ed.gov/Technology/Futures/

The U.S. Department of Education's Office of Educational Technology commissioned a series of white papers and hosted a workshop to discuss the issues.

"Lessons Learned from the Telecommunications and Information Infrastructure Assistance Program" - www.ntia.doc.gov/otiahome/tiiap/lessons.htm

A snapshot look at the community impacts of TIIAP projects with examples of how specific projects are using advanced telecommunications and information technologies to provide better services, strengthen community ties, and provide increased access to information for thousands of Americans.

"Local Places, Global Connections: Libraries in the Digital Age" - www.lff.org/technology/local.html

A Libraries For the Future/Benton publication documenting libraries providing public access to technology.

"Losing Ground Bit by Bit: Low-Income Communities in the Information Age," June 1998 - www.benton.org/Library/Low-Income

This the Benton Foundation / National Urban League collaboration shows the widening gap in the digital divide and offers strategies for closing.

"Networking: Telecommunications and Information Technology in Indian Country" - www.benton.org/Library

Released May 27, this is Benton's latest report to provide policymakers and tribal leaders with essential resources and analysis of key issues facing tribes in the Digital Age.

"Nurturing Neighborhood Nets," The Technology Review, by Gary Chapman and Lodis Rhodes - http://web.mit.edu/org/t/techreview/www/articles/oct97/chapman.html

Providing free access to computer networking can extend the benefits of the Net to people in poor communities.

"Staking Out the Public Interest in the Merger Between Pacific Telesis and Southwestern Bell Corporation" by Armando Valdez, Charles Carborne, and Laura Syuchinsky - http://consumernet.org   or www.ucan.org/ucan/news/whte_doc.htm

This white paper offers interesting proposals for funding community technology as a condition of telco merger approval. An edited version can be found in the spring 1997 issue of The Community Technology Center Review, p. 27, at www.ctcnet.org/na6.html (Acrobat file).

"Telecommunication Information Resources on the Internet" - http://china.si.umich.edu/telecom/telecom-info.html

References to information sources relating to the technical, economic, public policy, and social aspects of telecommunications, including, voice, data, video, wired, wireless, cable TV, and satellite.

TIIAP Newsletter - www.ntia.doc.gov/otiahome/tiiap/Newsletter/

Provides short summaries of the activities and accomplishments of TIIAP grantees.

3. Toolkits, Directories, and Guides

"Advocacy on the 'Net" - www.benton.org/Practice/Best/advoc.html

Provides annotated links to the Web sites of nonprofits that use the Internet to encourage advocacy in behalf of their causes.

"An Activists' Strategy for Using Email and the World Wide Web" - www.onenw.org/toolkit/

By One Northwest, an organization that helps environmental groups in the northwest.

"Best Practices Toolkit" - www.benton.org/Practice/Toolkit/

Includes resources for nonprofit technical assistance providers, other helpful resources online.

"The Community Activist Guide to the Internet" - www.pressroom.com/~wabranty/caim.htm

Political consultant William A. Brantley, Jr., describes how to use the Internet as a tool for organizing and activism.

"Designing Effective Action Alerts for the Internet" - http://weber.ucsd.edu/~pagre/alerts.html

This is a guide to designing political action alerts. It also suggests what kinds of badly designed action alerts you should refrain from forwarding to others.

"Fourth Edition of the Directory of Low Income Organizations Working on Welfare Issues" - www.lincproject.org.

The Directory is in an interactive point and click map format and includes listings for 195 groups in 44 states and Canada. The Directory is an activity of the Welfare Law Center's Low Income Networking and Communications (LINC) Project (see section1).

"EFF Activism and Government Archive" - www.eff.org/pub/Activism/

Provides a long list of links to examples and articles how citizens can pursue Net grassroots political activism.

"Internet Toolkit" - www.itwfl.com/toolkit.html

Features noteworthy software tools to help library professionals with Internet-related projects such as training, Web site creation, bookmark management, and so on.

"The Library Advocates Guide to Telecommunications" - www.lff.org/technology/update.html

Main issues covered are: universal service, educational programming and direct broadcast satellite, and the digital broadcast spectrum give away.

"Open Studio Toolkit" - www.openstudio.org/tools.html\

Resources aimed at helping community arts access and mentoring sites do their work more effectively. Includes Public Access Site Resources, Mentor Site Resources, Lessons Learned, Papers, Nonprofit Technical Assistance Providers, Intellectual Property Rights, and Others.

"Oregon Telecommunications Planning Toolkit" -www.oregontelcom.org/clearinghouse/toolkit/

Created to assist others in developing their local and regional telecommunications plans and projects, and to provide ideas to inspire community mobilization, guidance in the local planning process, examples of projects, and links to resources, information, and other communities of interest.

"Public Library Internet Access Policies" - www.ci.oswego.or.us/library/poli.htm

Policies of 125 public libraries, alphabetical by city.

"Technology Needs Assessments" - http://camalott.com/~living/needs.htm

Sources for ideas in developing a useful Technology Needs Assessment Plan.

"Towards a Linkages Guide for the National Strategy for Nonprofit Technology - www.ctcnet.org/nsntlnk.htm

Provides a narrative about the National Strategy as well as an appendix of related directories and lists of organizations.

"20/20 Vision's Activist Toolkit" - www.2020vision.org/tools.html

Includes "Using Cyberspace: Activism Online."

"The Web and Activism: Making Your Voice Heard Round the World" - www.1earth.com/

Assembled panelists presented information for both activist organizations and individuals wanting to use the Internet for activism.

4. Government Sites

General Information:

Federal Register Online via GPO Access - www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs/aces/aces140.html

The official publication for presidential documents and executive orders as well as notices, rules and proposed rules from federal agencies and organizations. Helpful hints provide instructions for searching the database.

Library of Congress' Official Federal Government Web Sites - http://lcweb.loc.gov/global/executive/fed.html

Extensive links to executive departments, independent agencies, Congress and the courts.

THOMAS: Legislative Information on the Internet - http://thomas.loc.gov/

U.S. Business Advisor Search of GovBot Database - www.business.gov/Search_Online.html

The GovBot has gathered 197,655 web pages from government sites around the country into a searchabe GovBot database.

Executive and Legislative Sites

Department of Education - www.ed.gov

Includes education web pages of other government agencies at www.ed.gov/Technology/challenge/partic.html

Department of Housing and Urban Development - Neighborhood Networks - http://www.hud.gov/nnw/nnwindex.html

Program for low-income families and the elderly living in HUD-insured and -assisted properties providing residents with onsite access to computer and training resources.

FCC, the Federal Communications Commission - www.fcc.gov/

An independent government agency responsible for regulating interstate and international communications by radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable. It is also king of all communications web sites with universal service proposals—including information on discounts for schools and libraries, calendars for hearings and decisions on regulations and instructions for how to file comments in FCC proceedings.

HUD User - www.huduser.org

The primary source for Federal Government reports and information on housing policy and programs, building technology, economic development, urban planning, and other housing-related topics.

National Telecommunication and Information Administration - www.ntia.doc.gov/

NTIA offers a variety of assistance to the public in the telecommunications arena, including grants, training, information, and research services that promote greater public participation in the development of telecommunications and information technology and services.

The U.S. Census Bureau - www.census.gov

The official home page of the United States Census Bureau houses a database that is searchable by zip code.

United States House of Representatives - www.house.gov/

Includes House Telecommunications Subcommittee at www.house.gov/commerce/telecom.html which has information regarding hearings and markups, membership of the Subcommittee, as well as the limits of its jurisdiction.

United States Senate - www.senate.gov/

Includes Senate Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Communications at www.senate.gov/~commerce/subcmte.htm#Comm which has information on the Subcommittee's members, its areas of jurisdiction, legislation currently under consideration, and ways to contact the Subcommittee.

The White House - www.whitehouse.gov


5. Electronic Mail Lists

Alliance for Community Media Forum

An open, unmoderated email list service provided for advocates of community media. To subscribe send a request to: majordomo@igc.org and in the message type: subscribe alliance-forum

Benton Foundation - Communications Policy Program News-Clipping Service

The Headlines are highlights of news articles summarized and posted each weekday. To subscribe to the Communications Policy List, write to: listserv@cdinet.com and in the body of the message type: subscribe benton-compolicy. To subscribe to the Up For Grabs discussion list write: upforgrabs-request@cdinet.com  and in the body of the message type: subscribe [your email@host.domain]

Community Technology Center Campaign list

To conduct research, prepare educational materials, and work with Members of Congress to support this Department of Education community initiative. Subscribe by sending a message to  lyris@ombwatch.org   leaving the subject line blank, and writing in the body of the message: subscribe ctc Your Name.

Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility general list

To subscribe send a request to: listserv@cspr.org  and in the body of the message write: subscribe cspr [your first and last name].

Electronic Frontier Foundation Mailing Lists

Send a request to: listserv@eff.org   and in the body of the message write: "help longindex" for a list of all EFF mailing lists (including their telecomm reform list) and instructions on how to subscribe.

Electronic Policy Network (EPC) mailing list

Announcements of new features and what's been added to the EPN, the electronic network complementing The American Prospect, in the past week. To subscribe send a request to: majordomo@epn.org   and in the message write: subscribe epnnews [your e-mail address]

Internet Intelligence Bulletin

Free monthly bulletin on electronic government, teledemocracy and public sector Internet use. To subscribe write to: subs@iib.com  and in the subject header type: subscribe monthly.

NetAction Notes

A free electronic newsletter to promote effective grassroots organizing on the Internet. To subscribe send a request to: majordomo@netaction.org  and in the body of the message type: subscribe netaction

OMB Watch Nonprofits' Policy and Technology Project

To subscribe to NPTalk, the NPT listserv, send a message to  lyris@ombwatch.org , leave the subject line blank, and write in the message body: subscribe nptalk Your Name.

People For the American Way Press Releases

Sign up for the PFAW Activist Network at www.pfaw.org/activist/ or write to majordomo@lists.pfaw.org : in the subject line and message, write: subscribe pfaw-presslist.


Moderated mailing list of politics and technology. To subscribe send a request to: majordomo@vorlon.mit.edu   and in the body of the message type: subscribe politech


From the Hubert H. Humphrey institue of Public Affairs, this is an electronic forum for professionals, graduate students, faculty, and staff in the fields of public policy, public administration, planning, and other related areas. To subscribe send a request to: listserv@tc.umn.edu   and in the body of the message type: Subscribe PUBPOL-L [your first and last name]

Roundtable (Telecom policy discussion)

The Telecom Policy Roundtable is a broadbased coalition with some coordination provided by the Center for Media Education. To subscribe send a request to: listserv@cni.org  and in the body of the message write: subscribe roundtable [your first and last name].

LISZT - http://liszt.com

Provides a searchable database of thousands of Internet mailing lists.

6. Rural Resources

7. Schedule of Events

8. International Resources

9. Microradio Resources

10. Culture, Class, & Cyberspace Resources from Art McGee