×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Beijing Police To Launch Animated Web Patrols

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the move-along-now-no-subversion-to-see-here dept.

It's funny.  Laugh. 228

Reader geoffrobinson notes an AP story on a new initiative by the police in Beijing to put a visible police presence on the screens of Chinese citizens. Starting Sept. 1, little animated cop figures will wander across the displays of users of a baker's dozen of Chinese Web portals. The program is set to expand by year's end to all sites "registered with Beijing servers," according to the report. The point of the anime-like figures seems to be to remind citizens that their Web usage is being monitored, not to actually implement any further monitoring themselves.

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

228 comments

Sweet! (5, Funny)

Spudtrooper (1073512) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393611)

Bonzi Buddy got a new job!

Re:Sweet! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20393659)

I have to admit that those cop figures look cute. It would be even more interesting if those cops were rendered in 3D and have special-designed uniforms on porn websites.

It's worse, this is an RIAA ripoff (0, Offtopic)

transporter_ii (986545) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394429)

Stung by criticism that it was utilizing unlicensed private investigators in order to track down alleged online copyright violators, the RIAA has admitted to "improperly obtaining" user data, and in an unusual near-apology, vowed to clean up its act. "It is time to face the music. We must stop the pursuit of personal destruction and the prying into private lives and get on with our national life. Our country has been distracted by this matter for too long, and I take my responsibility for my part in all of this. That is all I can do," said Mitch Bainwol, Chairman and CEO of the RIAA. Bainwole went on to say, "We have important work to do -- real pirated CDs to seize, real problems to solve, real security matters to face. I now ask you to turn away from the spectacle of the past eighteen months, to repair the fabric of our national discourse, and to return our attention to all the challenges and all the promise of upcoming American entertainment that will be brought to you by RIAA members.

On the same day, the RIAA also announced new software it would make available as a free download called riaaBuddy.

riaaBuddy is an on-screen "intelligent software agent" created by the RIAA, and based upon Microsoft Agent [wikipedia.org] technology. The goal of the program is to help users enrich their online musical experience as they discover digital music together with the included "riaaBuddy," which is an animated, purple Sheryl Crow. Users can interact with Sheryl by asking her questions, get recommendations on new music released by RIAA artist, as well as be politely informed when unapproved websites are loaded.

Other features include, an integrated download tracker, music-related themes, desktops, screen savers, and cute, animated emoticons, bearing a resemblance to top-selling RIAA artists. Also included is a desktop search utility that indexes a hard drive's contents in order to allow the user to easily perform searches.

While initial response to the program has been positive, a few early users complain that the program is buggy. The purple Sheryl Crow is said to only be able to sing the song Daisy Bell. "The program keeps changing my home page to a crappy RIAA home page," said one teenager who wished to remain anonymous out of fear of a RIAA-sponsored lawsuit. There have also been complaints of an increase in pop-up advertising.

Oh no! (5, Funny)

orionop (1139819) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393627)

What is next, an animated goatse reminding us of the horrors that are to be found on the internet?

Three avatars. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20393745)

They got both a male and a female cop. And a police car.

So to continue your analogy, perhaps we can have the goatse guy and the tub girl, and meatspin as the police cruiser.

Re:Oh no! (1)

vux984 (928602) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394079)

God no. That image as a still is bad enough. I do NOT want to see it move.

Re:Oh no! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394683)

Actually, goatse IS from a video...

So (5, Funny)

Vinegar Joe (998110) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393637)

If you google Tiananmen does a little animated tank come out and crush your cursor?

Re:So (3, Interesting)

Phybersyk0 (513618) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393723)

Nope. 404-Not Found.

(Most Chinese people under 30 don't know about the Tianamen Square protests -- Those that do don't really hold the event in high regard, as the student protest leaders are rumored to have had passports/visa's and transportation to get out of the country after the protest was held.)

Americans like the idea of revolution, but when it happens for real, good people die.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_revolut ion/ [wikipedia.org] ) The Chinese government knows this, and freedoms will come, but it's going to take time. Generations. Not weeks.

Bad Link (4, Informative)

johndiii (229824) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393799)

I assume that you mean http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_Revolution [wikipedia.org] . And it was not a revolution in the way that we normally understand it. From the article:

It was launched by the Communist Party of China's Chairman, Mao Zedong on May 16, 1966, officially as a campaign to rid China of its "liberal bourgeoisie" elements and to continue revolutionary class struggle. It is widely recognized, however, as a method to regain control of the party after the disastrous Great Leap Forward led to a significant loss of Mao's power to rivals Liu Shaoqi and Deng Xiaoping, and would eventually manifest into waves of power struggles between rival factions both nationally and locally.

Many people did die, but the net result was that some people who already had power got more, and some people that had power lost it (and frequently their lives).

Re:Bad Link (4, Interesting)

Phybersyk0 (513618) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394113)

Many people did die, but the net result was that some people who already had power got more, and some people that had power lost it (and frequently their lives).

I think you grossly understate things.

I've personally met more than a handful people in China who simply refuse to discuss the Cultural Revolution in any detail at all. They wont even document their experience in writing. It's still too painful for them.

Change in the air (1)

rednip (186217) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394233)

Americans like the idea of revolution, but when it happens for real, good people die.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_revolut ion/)

Mao and his cronies called it a revolution, but it was really a purge. A revolution replaces the people in power, a purge helps to keep them in power.

The Chinese government knows this, and freedoms will come, but it's going to take time. Generations. Not weeks.

Yea, when the last communist party official becomes a billionaire, but then how would they keep a democratically elected governement from taking all of their ill gotten booty? OK, they'll just stay in power until they get thrown out.

The Tianamen Square protests, were just protests, sure they came close to starting a revolution, but too little of China knew about it. It was a magical time, the Russian just 'gave up', the Berlin wall was fall, Rush was putting out a new album, change was in the air. Sure we in the west knew what was going on, but the average Chinese didn't. Not enough of them were able to make the choice for change. Next time, perhaps in weeks, months, years, but not decades, the ruling class of China will not be able to stop the news. The spark could be anything, perhaps an external like N. Korea opening up, or Cuba, maybe an internal crisis like a political scandal, or a large state sponsored disaster (dam collapse?), but the communication infrastructure that wasn't there in 1989, now exists. Once the street protests start the business interest will force the 'communists' (if you can still call them that) to give up power peacefully. Well, fairly peacefully, at least, as the 'communist billionaires' have too much to lose

Re:So (2, Funny)

RuBLed (995686) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393801)

Remember those ads where you need to shoot the rubber ducks and win a prize? I'm smelling a firefox addon going to be made by a pissed Chinese.

Is it really funny? (4, Insightful)

Nymz (905908) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393865)

If you google Tiananmen does a little animated tank come out and crush your cursor?
I laughed at first too, because the whole idea seems pointless and annoying, as if we don't have enough unwanted pop-ups and such. But then I realize I'm free, so I can only imagine how creepy, and how sad it is to be reminded every half hour that you are so subjugated.

Re:Is it really funny? (4, Insightful)

Spikeles (972972) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393955)

The biggest trick the government ever pulled was convincing the citizen that he was free

Perception of Freedom (2, Informative)

Nymz (905908) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394077)

The biggest trick the government ever pulled was convincing the citizen that he was free
If I end up in prison after Yahoo 'complies' with my government, then I'll reconsider my perception of freedom.

Convincing yourself you're not is even harder (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394115)

The only thing closing you in is your closed mind. But you managed that.

Oh, wait. Hallibushitler closed your mind, too.

Tard. :-P

Re:Is it really funny? (4, Insightful)

fractoid (1076465) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394625)

The biggest trick the government ever pulled was convincing the citizen that he was free
Go outside and yell "The government sucks!" three times, then post conspiracy theory crap everywhere. Did they suppress you? No?

Re:Is it really funny? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394669)

That sounds eerily similar to "Satan's greatest achievement was convincing the world that he doesn't exist."

Re:Is it really funny? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394753)

That sounds eerily similar to "Satan's greatest achievement was convincing the world that he doesn't exist."


No shit, Sherlock.

Where's that "Well, DUH" moderation category when you need it?

Re:Is it really funny? (4, Insightful)

Eivind (15695) | more than 6 years ago | (#20395013)

You're not free. You are *more* politically free than the average person in China, but freedom ain't an "on/off" kind of thing, it's a "more/less" kind of thing.

The sad thing is though, that while the average chinese has become steadily more and more free lately, the trend in USA has been the other way, you guys are significantly less *free* now than you where a decade or two ago.

You require government-permission if you want to take pictures of a group of more than 2 people for over 20 minutes in Central Park, using a tripod. You are not allowed to talk about certain kinds of knowledge, like for example even that de-CSS exist. Your government maintains it can legitimately keep people imprisoned indefinitely while giving same neither the rigths of a POV nor the rigths of a criminal. You cannot bring something as trivial as a can of coke with you on a plane. You have to walk trough metal-detectors and accept answering questioning to be allowed to enter public buildings. You're not allowed to take apart objects that you own to figure out how they work. (not generally anyway) and if you *do* figure out how they work, sharing that knowledge with others may be a crime. You've been falling steadily on "freedom-of-press" rankings for the last decade, you used to be near the top, these days you're under average for a western democracy. "Free speech zones" (no comment needed)

USA is still in pretty good shape, certainly miles ahead of countries like china. But you're on the wrong track. You need to wake up.

Re:So (1)

Stephen Tennant (936097) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393913)

If you google Tiananmen does a little animated tank come out and crush your cursor?

No, your cursor is thrown into a tiny animated prison, tortured with adorably rendered sharp implements, summarily executed ( :-D ), then harvested for its still quivering cute little cursor organs.

Re:So (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394299)

Oh ha ha! Lets laugh about how the Chinese are having their human rights trampled. It is downright hilarious that Chinese military went in and massacred civilians! How could anybody not find it funny that the Chinese government sent in tanks against college students? Heck, we might as well laugh at the recent Chinese murder of refugees and nuns on the border who tried to escape their tyranny.

And the fact that individual Chinese are censored? That is hilarious by itself, but the fact that the Chinese government is using cartoons to let you know that you live in an Orwellian society--ROTFLMAO!

You'll have to excuse me, I've laughed as much as I can today. Tomorrow I am going to laugh about the massacres in Cambodia. Next week will start the Desaparecidos comedy hour. That massacre was the most hilarious of them all. They dropped drugged people to their deaths from helicopters over the ocean--sometimes entire families with their children.

Re:So (1)

vhold (175219) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394949)

Actually, humor can be a good tool to make poignant statements about situations that are difficult to touch.

See Doonsebury's treatment of the war in Iraq.

These figures (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20393639)

Were these made by the same people that brought you Clippy from Microsoft Word? I could swear they already have a police cop Office Assistant.

That would probably work (2, Insightful)

The_Fire_Horse (552422) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393647)

many people have no idea about security and monitoring.

Even in the US the average Joe wouldnt know if it was an animated charactor, or a real person spying on them through their webcam.

Pretty lame though...

1984 (4, Interesting)

martinelli (1082609) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393657)

Big Brother is Watching You

Re:1984 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20393901)

Not only is Big Brother watching you, he's giving you annoying pop-ups too.

Most boring comment ever (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394331)

I can't see how such a trite post could get modded up to +5 Interesting. Okay, actually I can, but that involves either stupidity, or (not xor) something more sinister.

Re:1984 (1)

physicsnick (1031656) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394373)

Big Brother is Watching You
No kidding. It's like the Chinese government read 1984 and thought "Holy shit, this society is awesome!"

A study I was a part of in college (5, Interesting)

garcia (6573) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393667)

During college I took a SOC or PSYC class (I forget which) and as part of the class you were required to "volunteer" as a subject in a study on campus. The one I was part of was doing data entry and every so often a little head would appear in the top corner that was to signify that a "supervisor" was watching what you did.

They wanted to see if your data entry slowed/sped up, if your errors increased/decreased, etc. While I don't know what the end result was, I was shown my results and found that when the "supervisor" was in the corner I was less attentive and my data entry slowed.

What if a majority of students/researchers in China are working on their Internet (yes, their) and the "virtua-cop" fucks up their work? I can't imagine that this will do anything but be ridiculous and annoying.

Waste your time on something else, seriously.

Re:A study I was a part of in college (4, Insightful)

JonTurner (178845) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393783)

>>every so often a little head would appear in the top corner that was to signify that a "supervisor" was watching...
Fascinating study! I guess the Panopticon would cause people to just freak out. Maybe the pervasive monitoring in some societies (UK, Hong Kong) is both a symptom AND a cause of the very crime it's meant to monitor.

>>What if a majority of students/researchers in China are working on their Internet (yes, their) and the "virtua-cop" fucks up their work?
The short answer is: the officials don't care. Truly. Government is about control, not service, and it's certainly not measured by the results it gives. That's a very "western" viewpoint. And this government has a particularly nasty (and long) history of killing its own folks.

Re:A study I was a part of in college (1)

Cyko_01 (1092499) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393821)

It's about as useful as the little warnings in limewire that pop up to warn you not to download illegal content. someone will just find a way to block the little heads and the whole thing will be pointless.

Re:A study I was a part of in college (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393873)

What if a majority of students/researchers in China are working on their Internet (yes, their) and the "virtua-cop" fucks up their work?

In China, the government values control over efficiency of its nation. Sorry, but nothing new here.

Interesting research BTW. I'd love to read more about it.

Re:A study I was a part of in college (1)

1u3hr (530656) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394205)

What if a majority of students/researchers in China are working on their Internet (yes, their) and the "virtua-cop" fucks up their work? I can't imagine that this will do anything but be ridiculous and annoying.

In TFA this is mentioned as being part of various sites, like Sina.com. Not an independent program. So you'd see it only if you are browsing these portals.

It doesn't mention the technology, but I'd bet it was just a Flash animation. There are plenty of other animated Flash ads to distract you online (and Chinese sites are even more obnoxious in that line than most). I'm sure it will be easy to block on your desktop, but not in an Internet cafe where you can't install blockers.

Re:A study I was a part of in college (1)

szap (201293) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394821)

a little head would appear in the top corner that was to signify that a "supervisor" was watching what you did. They wanted to see if your data entry slowed/sped up,...


Testing Hawthorne Effect [wikipedia.org] , I presume. The wikipedia page has interesting bits on when it. In a Management class in uni, the conclusion we were taught is the Hawthorne Effect causes productivity to increase when observed, but seems closer to the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle to me: productivity changes when directly observed or measured, but not always for the better.

Insert clippy joke here. (4, Funny)

rabiddeity (941737) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393693)

You look like you're trying to access the Real Internet! Would you like me to:

-block the sites you're trying to access
-uninstall your proxy software
-report you to the authorities for re-education
-subtly rewrite your search results

Re:Insert clippy joke here. (1)

NeverVotedBush (1041088) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393929)

You forgot: -shoot you in the head for acting against the motherland and then charging your family for the bullet

AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next on (0, Troll)

Lost Penguin (636359) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393697)

I am sure the NeoCons are drooling at a visual reminder "We are watching your every mouse click".
They will have the "Terror level" displayed on a flag carried by a little goose-stepping Uncle Sam.

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (2, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393737)

I am sure the NeoCons are drooling at a visual reminder "We are watching your every mouse click".
They will have the "Terror level" displayed on a flag carried by a little goose-stepping Uncle Sam.


They're doing enough of that in the media. They'd rather let you pretend you are supporting the "land of the free" with some sense of false freedom feeling.

Honestly, at least the Chinese know they're being watched at every step and don't have a government watching them closely but pretending they don't.

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394851)

There's a lot of Chinese with broadband using webcams and VoIP has taken over - that's what those cheap phonecards are using. That is a lot of traffic. The stable door is open and the "great firewall" and things like this are ineffectual attempts to pretend there is some sort of control. It's security theatre like the face recognition silicon snakeoil at airports.

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (0, Redundant)

megaditto (982598) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393823)

You are sure now, are you?

Perhaps if you hate America so much, you could emigrate to China. Do a lecture circuit in China perhaps, about how the Imperialist freedoms suck and how Democracy oh-so-opressive; it'll be great! And if you are a female or have a spouse, remember to enquire about forced abortions on arrival (FREE while supplies last!).

Re:AT&T, NSA and Homeland scrutiny are the nex (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394001)

Perhaps if you hate America so much, you could emigrate to China. Do a lecture circuit in China perhaps, about how the Imperialist freedoms suck and how Democracy oh-so-opressive; it'll be great! And if you are a female or have a spouse, remember to enquire about forced abortions on arrival (FREE while supplies last!).

With opening act, Megaditto the Yankee Doodle Boy. It'll be the toast of Shanghai. Then on to Mynmar.

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394017)

Perhaps if you hate America so much,
My country! Right or wrong! Eh?

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (1)

megaditto (982598) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394827)

There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be fixed by what is right with America
-- Bill Clinton

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (5, Insightful)

pclminion (145572) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394047)

Maybe you should consider that a country can be fucked up even if it isn't the worst on Earth. Sure, we might be doing better than China based on some criteria, but that doesn't mean there aren't quite a few things seriously wrong. "If you don't like it, leave." No thanks. If I don't like it I'll do what I can to fix it. Pointing out what's wrong is the first step.

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (2, Insightful)

ari_j (90255) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394941)

Without reading the whole thread, I do know that the next step is formulating a coherent statement of what is wrong and why it is, in fact, wrong. The third step is proposing a solution that will not introduce more problems than it solves. The fourth is convincing enough of the right people that your solution has sufficient merit to be implemented.

One problem that the USA does not have that China does is that the above steps are impossible for a Chinese subject (I hesitate to use the word citizen) to complete. You normally don't make it past the first step before the government comes to explain why there isn't actually a problem to be solved.

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394093)

Perhaps if you hate America so much, you could emigrate to China. Do a lecture circuit in China perhaps, about how the Imperialist freedoms suck and how Democracy oh-so-opressive; it'll be great! And if you are a female or have a spouse, remember to enquire about forced abortions on arrival (FREE while supplies last!).

You're absolutely right, how could I ever have disparaged America?! Oh America, forgive me, you'll always be my number just-better-than-north-korea country!

Seriously, lay off whatever you're smoking that causes you to flip out whenever anyone points out what we're doing wrong, and put some of that effort towards fixing it.

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (2, Insightful)

non (130182) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394121)

i don't know where to begin, either you're a total idiot, or just another ditto-head, and frankly i can't tell the difference anymore. while your rights and liberties are being slowly^H^H^Hrapidly eroded, you sit back and say, "if you don't like it, leave." perhaps you'd care to comment on adequate controls in government as they apply to electronic communications by the executive branch staff? or even more so, on the number of executive orders made by the current administration?

foreigners, nationals of a country widely considered to be the most corrupt in the first world, have said to me, " its not that we're any more corrupt than you are, its just that you're professionals at it."

trust me, when it comes to electronic communications, you are every bit as monitored here as in china. why don't you google 'network packet monitor index'. the vendors returned by such a search will be those that contracted to the intelligence agencies years ago; the chinese use equipment cloned from such specifications.

and while you're on the subject of forced abortions, why don't you think about the possibly of forced pregnancy.

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (1)

The One and Only (691315) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394149)

and while you're on the subject of forced abortions, why don't you think about the possibly of forced pregnancy

Tell me, which government is in the business of rape?

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394889)

Algeria. One of the nastiest of our military allies at this point. It was also famously used as an intimidation tactic in Iraq in the 1990s and some western journalists saw plenty of evidence of that in the north. The difference with Algeria is that it is happening now.

Yahoo China jailed blogger? (0, Troll)

megaditto (982598) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394719)

It's ridiculous to equate the rights and liberties of people in USA or China. I too do not know where to begin, so just look at how we treat our enemies:

The worst of the worst terrorists are put up in an air-conditioned facility on a tropical island, with three square meals a day, and the bloody prayer time five days a week. Some abuses happened, now our military guys are in jail for it.

Compare that to China where they execute 10,000s people a year then bill the family for the bullet. Look up how well China does in Tibet, or whatever. Hell, there was an article earlier on /. today about Yahoo China jailed blogger, and all the outrage that generated in America. All the monitoring is besides the point; what matters is why the Govt does it and what they do with it: and it's damn hard to jail people in United States, given our independant Judiciary, jury system, and open courts.

If you are still reading this, then let me tell you that your argument is crap: you fume a little in the beginning, throw in a few strawmen about wiretapping (which is being taken care of as we speak), then you quote your alien buddies, go back to how China is not as bad as the US re: wiretapping again. Then you finish off with a remark about rape...

I do not believe what your friends from Krapistan said about corruption in America (is s/he an expert of some sort?); but if YOU believe her then just ask which country s/he would chose to live in and get a family going...

Forced pregnancy? We took care of Saddam's rape rooms back in 2003.

Re:Yahoo China jailed blogger? (1)

vux984 (928602) | more than 6 years ago | (#20395017)

The worst of the worst terrorists are put up in an air-conditioned facility on a tropical island, with three square meals a day, and the bloody prayer time five days a week.

Hah! Those aren't the worst of the worst terrorists. Those are primarily innocent people who we can't even be bothered to charge of a crime. We deny them all access to the legal system, lawyers. All for what? The worst crime they are guilty of is being sympathetic to anti-american sentiment! Go figure. We invade their country, destroy their cities, kill their family members, and then lock them in a prison without any access to the outside world. I'd be more concerned about anyone who was 'pro-american' after an ordeal like that.

As for the truly 'worst of the worst', we keep them neatly outside our jurisdiction, in prisons in other 2nd/3rd world countries where they can be held, interrogated, tortured and killed without having to get our hands dirty.

Even a massively high profile criminal like the captured Saddam Hussein? What did we do with him? Why we released him into Iraqi custody, knowing full bloody well they would convict and then execute him. Had he been tried in a more civilized court -- hell even an American court an execution would have been unlikely. We might as well have pulled the trigger ourselves.

and it's damn hard to jail people in United States, given our independant Judiciary, jury system, and open courts.

Indeed, that must be why nearly 12% of black males aged 20-34 are currently in prison.

In the US we have 702 inmates per 100,000 people. In other 1st world countries the number is a fraction that amount... Canada 116, Italy 100, Germany 91, France 85. Here's a rough graph to drive the point home. Each star represents ~33 people per 100,000.

********************* USA
*** Canada
*** Italy
*** Germany
** France

Call me crazy, but I wouldn't pick the USA as a country that's hard to jail people in.

Look up how well China does in Tibet, or whatever.

Really? You're going to go there now? Your going to bring up a country China invaded and has a relatively terrible record with? I mean hey, last time the US invaded a country, we were greeted as liberators, right? I mean, the studies that show 30,000 - 50,000 civilian deaths resulting from direct violence in the last 6 years, and the absolutely staggering estimates of 500,000 to 600,000 indirect deaths due to disease, exposure, infrastructure destruction, and so forth that would not have died if not for the war.

(Essentially... over the course of the last six years, the mortality rate -- the rate at which people die has gone up by 500 per day. Its reasonable to believe that if we hadn't invaded, the mortality rate would not have shot up like this.)

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (1)

Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394445)

Someone who hates America, or approves of how China is governed, would simply keep silent and let things go on as they have been.

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394539)

Grandparent expresses a concern that America is becoming like China in terms of civil liberties, and your response is "if you don't like it, go to China"? Do you honestly think that makes sense?

Re:AT&T, NSA andHomeland scrutiny are the next (1)

ResidntGeek (772730) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394029)

Your paranoia's completely off base. The current administration has very obviously shied away from visible losses of freedom and displays thereof, which is integral to its "protecting your freedom" defenses. The only exception is airline security, where the public wanted them to take some freedom. You need to pay more attention.

Airline security (1)

Joaz Banbeck (1105839) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394483)

...The only exception is airline security, where the public wanted them to take some freedom.
Sorry, but I have to quibble about this one. We - the public - wanted them to make air traffic safer. Perhaps we tolerated a loss of freedom, but it was not what we wanted.

Personally , I wanted an increase of freedom for airline security. I was hoping that anyone who had a concealed carry permit would be able to carry on a plane.

They outsourced it. (1)

twitter (104583) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394213)

Clippy watched your keystrokes and has grown up into "desktop search". The little shields and popups made sure you were "safe". In the background, encrypted communications stream back to the mother ship. If that's not all obvious and continuing reminder that every stroke is monitored, I'm not sure what is.

Only community based free software will really give you privacy and dignity. Non free systems will sell you to the highest bidder.

Re:They outsourced it. (1)

Macthorpe (960048) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394887)

Yeah, these are on the websites, not in any operating system you use.

Do you maybe want to re-read the story? I don't think you understood it.

Paper Cut-Outs (1)

biocute (936687) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393779)

I must admit that I do slow down sometimes when I see a paper cut-out on the side of a highway.

ob. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20393813)

I for one, welcome our new virtual anime motorcycling weblords!

Err.. no I don't! This sounds annoying and creepy as hell.

How annoying (2, Insightful)

Kris_J (10111) | more than 6 years ago | (#20393815)

I've voluntarily installed screenmate software [adtoolsinc.com] before and typically it doesn't last past the day. I can't imagine there won't be plenty of programs written to turn them off.

Re:How annoying (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394051)

I don't think this is the same thing. It's not something people are required to have installed on their machines, it's something running on the webserver and adding these images to the pages they serve. Unless all the images come from certain special servers, even adblock won't help.

Re:How annoying (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394403)

Not every web server could be controlled into doing this, foreign ones especially.
However, surely the 'great firewall of china' could auto-insert them in the same way certain ISPs were mulling auto-inserting ads into web pages?

in... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20393967)

In communist China, the internet surfs YOU!

Does it run on Linux? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20393995)

Does it run on Linux? Firefox?

or is this just for Microsoft Windows & Internet Explorer?

Easy Vista (4, Funny)

KingPrad (518495) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394009)

This should streamline running Vista. Now whenever you are prompted for Allow/Deny the character will go ahead and choose Deny for you. Every time.

oh shi- (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394011)

In before George Orwell yaoi fanart.

You rook rike you're trying to write a retter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394039)

Would you rike some help?

conflict with China (1, Interesting)

drDugan (219551) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394065)

With the end of the cold war, I was hopeful that the ideological conflict between the west and the rest of the world was over. It looked like China was opening up.

It appears, with stories like this and many others, not to be the case. China is obviously acting in ways that are not good for people - as defined by Western standards of freedom. Unlike Russia, they do not appear to have the financial decay leading to an eventual collapse.

I've heard people argue that no one will go to war with China - the stakes are too high. Frankly, I'd rather see a massive 3rd world war than have the world societies slip silently into a death-like state like that the of Chinese government oppression.

Got oppression?

Re:conflict with China (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394255)

Life in China is nowhere near as bad a life after a nuclear war.

The aftermath of a nuclear war would leave pretty much every surviving human in the world in a hunter/gatherer state, without the technology needed to maintain even minimal energy generation, much less power structure.

If you think life in the US or China is bad, wait until your whole life is spent existing in a tiny, nomadic tribe trying to fight other war weary tribes for scraps of non-radioactive land, scraps of food, and non tainted water, and not even dreaming of going to an agriculture based society due to bandits ready to burn or pillage any crops for food.

The West already went through a Dark Ages once. This time around, it would be worldwide, with no knowledge filtering from other countries to pull us out of the tailspin, and no resources (raw metals, coal, oil) usable to make another society even approaching modern day technology. Oil isn't just used for burning in your Hummer... its a critical element in making plastics. Even metals will be scarce... most are used in cities that would have been vaporized by direct strikes, or rendered too radioactive for use by the second wave of fallout.

Of course, history, culture, and knowledge of even basic things (like machining a metal piece to sub-millimeter tolerances) would be forever lost.

So, if you want nuclear war... great... but remember, ammo goes bad after a few years or decades, so better have some sticks and stones which can last you and your descendants a couple thousand years.

Live free or die (1)

xtal (49134) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394993)

There's a lot of wisdom in those four words. Freedom has nothing to do with comfort.

I'll bite the trollbait... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394295)

I live in China, and I can tell you that it's certainly not in a "death-like state like that the of Chinese government oppression". Sure, censorship exists, the government is quite corrupt and abusive, especially on the lower levels, and it can be hard to find a good book. It drives me up the wall sometimes, just how flat the popular culture is- anything controversial gets dropped like a hot rock.

On the other hand, there are raunchy popular novels (printed by half-legal vanity presses) being sold right outside my door. There's tons of (bad) modern art expressing the pain of living in Chinese society, and (bad) rock 'n roll expressing the pain of being young and unloved. Although there are fewer than 100 movies released to theaters each year on the mainland, every film ever made is sporadically available on DVD, from Deep Throat to To Live to They Live. Chinese people can find every sort of approved and forbidden idea under the sun if they're curious, and they're mostly free to discuss it in private. Publishing is another thing, but the Cultural Revolution is over, and you can pretty much say whatever you want to your friends.

China is booming, and the authorities can barely keep it under control. I won't defend their actions (although cartoon cops are hardly the worst things they do....) but the notion that China in any way resembles 1984 is absurd. While the government is sliding from totalitarian Communism towards plutocracy, the people are getting away with everything they can, and it's a lot. I don't hold out a lot of hope that we'll have big D Democracy here anytime soon, but to imagine that this country, or the US, or anyone else would somehow be better off in a Massive 3rd World War is insane.

You are insane.

Re:I'll bite the trollbait... (1)

ubernostrum (219442) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394705)

China is booming, and the authorities can barely keep it under control.

China has a sword hanging over its head, and the smarter government officials know this (some have rather candidly admitted as much in interviews with Western media). Not a sword of war, but a sword of population; the crunch of America's "Baby Boom" generation retiring will be looked on with nostalgia when China's recent (late-20th-century) population booms reach old age, and state-mandated population control policies leave too few active workers to support them.

World War 3 (1)

plierhead (570797) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394353)

Frankly I hope you don't get your misguided wish. To quote Albert Einstein:

I do not know with what weapons World War 3 will be fought, but World War 4 will be fought with sticks and stones.

Re:World War 3 (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394457)

I'd rather be dead, or live in the stone age, than live under the government in 1984. Are these not the principles by which America was founded?

Re:World War 3 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20394535)

Yeah, but they were subverted by Raymond Cocteau.

Now the American ideal is, "Whatever, as long as I can live in my basement, sit around in beige pajamas and sing, 'I'm an Oscar Meyer Weiner'."

Re:conflict with China (0, Troll)

dbIII (701233) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394771)

China is changing one way - the USA another. While there are idiots waving sabres at China it is a far better place for everyone than it was a decade ago and will continue to get better - you cannot have a totalitarian state without tight control and once you lose the tight control it is very hard to get it back (fortunately). It's also a bit large increasingly administratively dissconected to generalise - like talking about Micronesia and Texas in terms of the USA.

Olympics pledges? (1)

NewsWatcher (450241) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394173)

With all this intimidation of web surfers, I am beginning to get suspicious the Chinese delegation must have had their fingers crossed when the promised to alleviate human rights abuses in their country in time for the 2008 Olympic Games.

Nah, I guess it is impossible to believe that with the eye of the world on their country, China would continue to hold the world's youngest political prisoner, the Panchen Lama, and kill prisoners so they can harvest their organs. They clearly wouldn't continue to block access to websites that hold views contrary to the wishes of their government either (even though the information is considered the truth by the rest of the world).

Awww... (3, Funny)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394241)

They're so cute they just make me want to limit my searches to government approved propaganda and puppies.

This is a problem because...? (3, Insightful)

Mr. Roadkill (731328) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394261)

Look, we all know that the Chinese government is going to be monitoring as much as it can. They're control freaks. I, for one, welcome any measures they take to remind the people that they're being watched - maybe such reminders will help the people of china think about what kind of society they live in and what kind of society they would like to live in, and encourage them to take action to try to shape their future.

Good Evening Chinese Web Surfer... (1)

PlusFiveInsightful (1148175) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394391)

...I see you are viewing a pornographic website. I'd like to remind you that viewing websites with one hand underneath your desk can cause damage to your keyboard.

Carry on and have a nice day.

Ironic to link to Yahoo's report (1)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 6 years ago | (#20394763)

Given that they'll do anything for the Holy Dollar (or Yuan Reminbi), even if it would violate our laws as well.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...