Apple nominated for Internet Hero of the Year, Donald Trump nominated for Internet Villain of the Year

Donald Trump, Apple, the Internet troll, the Web Foundation, Mossack Fonseca, Jo Cherry QC MP and Sir Keir Starmer QC MP are amongst those shortlisted for Internet Hero and Villain at the 2016 ISPA Awards, the 18th UK Internet Industry Awards. The nominations, based on crowdsourced suggestions from the public with a final shortlist determined by the ISPA Council, recognise those who have done the most to help or hinder the Internet industry in the last twelve months. David Davis MP and Tom Watson MP were joint winners of the Internet Hero award last year with Home Secretary Theresa May MP named as Villain.

Internet Heroes
Once again surveillance and privacy are the dominant themes in this year’s awards. Jo Cherry and Keir Starmer MPs have been nominated for their sterling efforts to improve the Investigatory Powers Bill, as has their parliamentary colleague and chair of the Science and Technology Committee, Nicola Blackwood MP. The fundamental principle of encryption and customer privacy has been featured, with Apple nominated as a hero for its role in defending privacy, whilst the FBI are recognised as villains for undermining encryption.

The shortlist also goes beyond surveillance, recognising the Web Foundation for helping connect some of the most remote global communities, and to ThinkBroadband Editor, Andrew Ferguson, for years of tirelessly informing consumers about their broadband options.

Internet Villains

Donald Trump
Donald Trump
The Internet Villain shortlist is one of the most diverse ever. Donald Trump is nominated for famously calling on industry to ‘close down parts of the Internet’, showing a perceived complete lack of understanding of how the web works. Mossack Fonseca (of Panama Papers fame) are nominated for their poor cyber-security, TCYK LLP are nominated for their ‘speculative invoicing’ campaign aimed at alleged copyright infringers that an MP described as ‘ludicrous’. The “internet troll” is nominated too for making the Internet a hostile space for some people, completely overstep the bounds of reasonable behaviour and free speech. The FBI also receive a nomination for their efforts to undermine customer privacy and cyber security.

Announcing the shortlists, ISPA Secretary General Nicholas Lansman said “The Internet Hero and Villain awards go to those who have helped or hindered the Internet industry. These nominations, many from the public, reflect the importance of privacy, cyber security and great broadband and the work many MPs have done scrutinising the Investigatory Powers Bill. These awards are light-hearted in nature, but do contain a serious point, and I look forward to finding out who won in July.”

The ISPA Awards take place on 7th July 2016 at The Brewery in the City of London. There are sixty organisations nominated across the seventeen awards and the full shortlist can be seen here.

There are limited complimentary media places available at the awards and to express interest, please email

The 2016 Internet Hero shortlist

• Nicola Blackwood MP – For her Committee’s report into the Investigatory Powers Bill, which contained sensible recommendations around encryption, equipment interference and a commitment to full cost recovery, to limit the Bill’s impact on the tech sector

• Jo Cherry QC MP & Sir Keir Starmer QC MP – For their continued scrutiny of the Investigatory Powers Bill as the legislation passes through Parliament at a fast pace

• Apple – For defending the fundamental principles of encryption and customer privacy

• Andrew Ferguson, Editor, ThinkBroadband – for editing an invaluable resource that explains and maps out broadband to inform consumers

• Web Foundation – For working to extend the basic right of connectivity to the 60% of the global population unable to connect to the internet and enjoy the myriad benefits of internet access

The 2016 Internet Villain shortlist

• Donald Trump – For calling on industry to ‘close’ parts of the Internet

• Mossack Fonseca – For demonstrating poor cyber security practices

• The FBI – For attempting to undermine security by compelling technology companies to bypass existing security features

• ‘The Internet Troll’ – For overstepping the bounds of free speech, threatening the principle of an Internet for all

• TCYK LLP – For its heavy-handed ‘speculative invoicing’ campaign aimed at alleged copyright infringers

About the ISPA Awards
The 2016 ISPA Awards are the 18th Annual UK Internet Industry Awards and there are sixty companies nominated across seventeen categories. Vodafone are leading the way with 6 nominations and Catalyst2, Exa Networks, Hyperoptic and Storm Internet have 4. The full list of nominations can be found here.

Source: The Internet Services Providers’ Association

Donald Trump: To stop ISIS recruiting, maybe we should be talking to Bill Gates about ‘closing that Internet up in some way’ – December 8, 2015
Hillary Clinton: We need to put Silicon Valley tech firms to ‘work at disrupting ISIS’ – December 7, 2015

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Rainy Day” for the heads up.]


  1. Meaningless pig slop. Trump’s request was the same thing Hillary asked for, the same thing Obama asked for, and the same thing FBI director asked, and pretty much everyone else that was on the candidate list at the time. i.e. help in shutting down jihadist recruitment on the net. But I guess context and accuracy are irrelevant.

    1. From Time Magazine:

      Trump said earlier this month that he was in favor of closing parts of the Internet and brushed aside fears about restricting freedom of speech: “We have to go see Bill Gates and a lot of different people that really understand what’s happening. We have to talk to them about, maybe in certain areas, closing that Internet up in some way. Somebody will say, ‘Oh freedom of speech, freedom of speech.’ These are foolish people. We have a lot of foolish people.”

      I assume those include the foolish people who wrote and ratified the First Amendment.

      1. Trump has it easier in political campaigning, where rhetoric and bluster rule. If elected, he will need to face all the other winners on the world stage. They won’t be quite as easy to browbeat, and some of them have tempers as bad as his–and nuclear weapons to boot. He might need to re-read his own book, the art of the deal.

    2. Donald Dumpf is running for Dictator of the USA.

      But true enough, #MyStupidGovernment as a whole has been attempting to turn the USA into an equivalent of China: Criminal Nation. Sick scheiße from left, right, center and beyond.

    3. Thelonious: context and accuracy are indeed relevant. The trouble is, Trump takes most things out of context and is notoriously inaccurate in what he says – particularly when he denies saying things, or in recounting what other people actually did say.

      1. “takes most things out of context and is notoriously inaccurate in what he says – particularly when he denies saying things, or in recounting what other people actually did say.”

        Perfect description of Hillary Clinton too!

  2. It doesn’t stop most of the media from lying, making stories up, and leaving out critical context, or just taking bites out of context completely. If your the average citizen that takes no time to actually see whats going on, your mostly clueless, and even then its not easy to figure out whats true and whats BS,.

      1. And they succeed at their nefarious task. People around us are brainwashed by their favoured media outlets. Nobody thinks for themselves any more. I wonder if they ever did…

    1. Yeah One Note Broken Record Joe from Doofus, MO seen around these parts should get some kind of award, but I was hoping for the distinguished and satisfying Tar ‘N Feather Award or perhaps the Riding The Rail Out Of Internet Town Award. Drop Kick Award works for me too. Just as long as it’s painful and oh so sweet.

    2. Internet Troll, singular. In essence there is only one, as Jim Rome has emphasised for years with respect to rabid fans of sports franchises. They are multiple instances of a spring-loaded mindset, not unlike a botnet that can be activated with a Pavlovian signal. No thought is required; arguments proceed exactly like a political slugfest, complete with talking points.

      People that do this, attack and kill those privileged with meaningful lives, were the original inspiration for zombie movies, starting with Night of the Living Dead in 1968.

      That real people are willing to act like this on the Internet is a shocking commentary on the devaluation of civil discourse in an unregulated forum, and a frightening realisation of the number of basements in parents’ houses that are occupied by socially maladept 32-year-old losers.

    1. Really? I’d put it the other way round. All is not well with Hillary or Bernie, but you’d have to be a complete idiot to vote for Trump. He’s a racist and a xenophobe, a misogynist, a serial liar, a schoolyard bully with no sense of what’s appropriate and what’s not, he’s got the verbal skills of an 8th grader, and he’s a narcissist. He’s doing more to recruit Islamic militants than ISIS is; he’s considered the 6th biggest threat to the world economy; he speaks without thinking or understanding the issue he’s speaking about; he’s pissed off a great many US allies; he talks out of both sides of his mouth about things he knows nothing about because he has a need to say what he thinks people want to hear. He was born with a silver spoon in his mouth (the current equivalent of a $7 or 8 million loan) but went bankrupt 4 times, screwing working Americans out of their hard earned cash in doing so. He cheats on his taxes, has been sued 3500 times; defends his TrumpU scam and says he can’t wait to start scamming more people when these lawsuits are over. He has no concept of how the legal system works; the military and the CIA don’t want to have to brief him as a presidential candidate. He doesn’t have a single credible policy for dealing with any of the issues actually facing this country.
      Frankly, I don’t know how anyone with more than two working brain cells could vote for him.

        1. Actually George, if you could get that third brain cell to kick in, you’d find that there’s a lot of argument why Trump is not fit to be POTUS even if you take out the word racist.

  3. Trump was quoted on “The Men Who Made America” that Crashes and Economical Bad times are “Fantastic” opportunities to swoop in and pick things up cheap..Looks like he’s taking advantage of our broken political system to swoop in and take the Presidency.

  4. Wake up America! You country is dying because of years of globalist control of your government. Forget the biased national news stations. YouTube has full documentaries of the Bush & Clinton corruption. You should be proud that someone like Trump has the balls to take on the corrupt establishment. He’s not perfect, but who is. Many Americans seem totally blind to Hillary’s corrupt career. Even assisting in covering Bill’s atrocities. How could you allow this monster to become President. She will kill your country & get rich doing it.
    Make America Great again……

    1. Wow! What a brainless statement! Have You ever thought of the consequences? What a terrible nonsense! Nothing in the world could be worse than a country with a Trump at the wheel!

  5. Hang on ‘Mossack Fonseca’ should surely be top of the HEROES list for their inept cypher security. After all we have it to thank for the revelations of all the international corruption and tax avoidance that they had their dirty hands associated with in one way or another. Indeed one public servant just got put away yesterday for his part in corrupt practices that those files had a hand in proving.

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