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Viacom's Messy Relationship With YouTube and The Rise of Stephen Colbert

Presto Vivace I think it is useful to document the history (39 comments)

From the article:

Viacom’s claim wasn’t that YouTube was just turning a blind eye to users infringing copyright—it was that YouTube was offering filtering technology to its media partners that it wasn’t making available to companies who weren’t playing ball.

8 hours ago
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Obama Offers Funding For 50,000 Police Body Cameras

Presto Vivace Re:corporate win fall? (262 comments)

I had the same reaction.

about three weeks ago
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Obama Offers Funding For 50,000 Police Body Cameras

Presto Vivace not enthuisastic about this (262 comments)

it just seems another step to pervasive surveillance.

about three weeks ago
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Apple's Luxembourg Tax Deals

Presto Vivace Re:Simple fix (158 comments)

I think the IRS would need legislation giving them legal authority to do that. Otherwise sounds like an excellent idea.

about a month ago

Submissions

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Viacom's lawsuit against YouTube

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  yesterday

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "

Viacom’s claim wasn’t that YouTube was just turning a blind eye to users infringing copyright—it was that YouTube was offering filtering technology to its media partners that it wasn’t making available to companies who weren’t playing ball.

I think it is useful to document the historical record."
Link to Original Source

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The Interactive Voter Choice System

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  2 days ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "The Technology Solution to the Democracy Crisis

The Interactive Voter Choice System comprises a unique web-based consensus building mechanism that enables democracy stakeholders to overcome this crisis. In particular, it enables voters to self-organize from the "bottom-up" into autonomous voting blocs and electoral coalitions around common transpartisan agendas that cross party lines. These blocs and coalitions, which can work with parties or independently, can outflank and outnumber the electoral base of any single political party and run and elect candidates to defeat opposing party candidates. This capability enables these blocs and coalitions to overcome the polarization and partisan divisiveness that political parties and special interests inject into electoral and legislation processes.

The Interactive Voter Choice System's social networking platform also overcomes the well-documented tendency of social groups of like-minded people — especially political groups, to move to extremes, particularly when they are led by self-serving politicians. While the common goals of social and political groups can unite their members, research shows that these goals can exert a divisive influence by prompting them to adopt extreme positions to compete with external groups. In contrast, the consensus building mechanism contained within the Interactive Voter Choice System counteracts this tendency by encouraging the members of voting blocs and coalitions to continuously reach out across partisan divides to attract the new members they need to build electoral bases that possess the voting strength required to win elections.

"
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Telephony Metadata Collection Program

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about two weeks ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Solicitation Number: ODNI-RFI-14-01

Agency: Office of the Director of National Intelligence Office: ADNI Acquisition Technology & Facilities Location: AT&F Buying Office ... ... Synopsis: Added: Feb 05, 2014 4:31 pm The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) is investigating whether existing commercially available capabilities can provide for a new approach to the government's telephony metadata collection program under Section 215 of the USA Patriot Act, without the government holding the metadata. Responses to this RFI will be reviewed and may help to shape the framework for the future telephony metadata program to include the potential for non-government maintenance of that data.

"
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Doxxing defense

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about two weeks ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Remove your personal info from data brokers

Unfortunately, doxxers don't have to work very hard to find a victim's personal info. A number of free and paid services known as data brokers create profiles of vast numbers of individuals based on aggregated data from business directories, social media and other public records. With a specific target in mind, all a doxxer has to do is search one or more of these services to find the details he or she wants.

More bad news: There are hundreds of data brokers, not all of which offer opt-out processes. (Exceptions are made for state-mandated protected groups, such as sexual assault survivors in California.) Removing yourself from all those that do can be a Sisyphean task, but managing your data with just the following 11 can be accomplished in an hour or two.

"
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Angela Merkel calls for end to net neutrality

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about two weeks ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Cory Doctorow of BoingBoing reports:

The German Chancellor — whose party is closely aligned with the telcoms sector — says she wants a two-tier Internet; on the "fast" Internet, carriers will be allowed to slow down access to services that haven't paid bribes for "premium" carriage; on the "regular" Internet, ISPs will just give you the data you ask for.

"
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At the intersection of cyber crime and financial crime.

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about three weeks ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Computer hackers taking aim at insider information at health care companies

A surgically precise e-mail hacking effort is targeting health care companies in an effort to steal corporate secrets for insider stock trading.

In a world where everyone with a billion dollars acts as if the laws do not apply to them, there is very little possibility of cyber security."

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White House wants you to help write an opengov playbook for agencies

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about three weeks ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "White House crowdsources open-government playbook

The Obama administration is "walking the walk" on government transparency by asking the public to help write a guide for agencies on ways to engage the public.

"This resource reflects the commitment of the government and civic partners to measurably improve participation programs, and is designed using the same inclusive principles that it champions," wrote Corinna Zarek, White House senior adviser for open government, and Justin Herman, SocialGov lead for the General Services Administration, in a blog post announcing the Public Participation Playbook.

"
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Murdoch's hold on News Corp threatened

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about a month ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Mystery of missing News Corp votes

A Saudi prince, a disappearing share bloc and an upset voting result has produced the first serious threat to the Murdoch family’s future control of News Corporation and 21st Century Fox. ... So what happened to the missing shares in the proposal to abolish the two classes? .

The 87.6 million shares voted against the proposal was 4.3 million shares short of the Murdoch/Alwaleed total. The result was a terrifyingly close margin for a family that has not faced a serious threat to its control in 60 years. .

Two theories have emerged in the confusing aftermath of the annual meeting to explain the missing shares..

First, that it was a stuff up. Prince Alwaleed’s executives ticked the Approve box on every proposal and didn’t realise they needed to oppose the share classes resolution. Implausibly, this means News Corp executives who knew the proxy numbers didn’t pick up the phone to call their firmest supporter to ask what was going on. The result was a shambles..

Alternatively, Prince Alwaleed split his vote, with a majority supporting the Murdochs, with whom he could still say he had kept faith in, but a significant stake opposing them..

Whatever the reason, there is no mistaking the message from shareholders.

Excluding the Murdoch and Alwaleed stock, less than 24 per cent of shareholders voted for Rupert Murdoch to remain on the News board, part of an across-the-board vote against directors by institutions.

"
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Australian Greens Launch #StopDataRetention Meme Contest

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about a month ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "#StopDataRetention meme competition: over to you

Back in October we launched a competition to get #StopDataRetention memes in front of as much of the Australian internet as possible, with the slightly awkward offer of dinner at Parliament House as an additional incentive to get creative..

Instead of one concept going viral and making for an easy winner, something more interesting happened: hundreds of people got busy and sent this crazy assortment of memes and ideas out into the wilds of the internets, raising hell right when we needed it most. We've shortlisted the sharpest and most-shared ones: now we need you to choose the winner.

Whichever of these fine images gets the most shares/retweets/upvotes by 9am AEDT Wednesday morning November 26 will win — and yes, in the process, a bunch of this work will get in front of hundreds of thousands more eyeballs.

"
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Calibration issues with voting machines in Virginia

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about a month ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Voting irregularities in Virginia Beach, Newport News

The extent of the "calibration issues" is unclear. Virginia Department of Elections Commissioner Edgardo Cortes said 32 of Virginia Beach's 820 AccuVote TSX machines were pulled from service by 3:30 p.m. Another four were discontinued in Newport News, where most votes were recorded on paper ballots. ... Gov. Terry McAuliffe said at a party for Sen. Mark Warner in Arlington that the voting machines need to be examined. ... "I've always had a concern as it relates to these machines," he said. "I've talked about it for years and years. We gotta make sure that our votes, when they're cast, are accurately counted.

"
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Google, Facebook, et al on the sideline of fight for net neutrality

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about a month ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "In Net Neutrality Push, Internet Giants on the Sidelines

Silicon Valley’s giant companies have been quiet lately on the question of whether the government should protect an open Internet, which they’ve previously argued is vital to innovation. Don’t count on them staking out a stronger position even though President Obama has stepped into the fray, and Washington looks to be gearing up for an epic battle over the rules that govern the Internet. ...

... In another era, the White House’s position might have elicited squeals of joy from the technology giants, which have long maintained that the future of innovation online depends on such strict net neutrality rules. But Google, which was once the industry’s most ardent supporter of net neutrality, and Facebook, which could mobilize millions of supporters through its service, both declined to comment on Mr. Obama’s position. Instead, they joined a supportive statement put out by the Internet Association, a trade group that represents a coalition of technology companies, including Amazon, eBay, Yahoo, Twitter and PayPal.

It seems to me that the FCC has authority to reclassify Internet service providers as common carriers. I don't understand why Obama is proposing legislation."

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ISPs Removing Their Customers' Email Encryption

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about a month ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "EFF reports:

Recently, Verizon was caught tampering with its customer's web requests to inject a tracking super-cookie. Another network-tampering threat to user safety has come to light from other providers: email encryption downgrade attacks. In recent months, researchers have reported ISPs in the US and Thailand intercepting their customers' data to strip a security flag—called STARTTLS—from email traffic. The STARTTLS flag is an essential security and privacy protection used by an email server to request encryption when talking to another server or client.1

By stripping out this flag, these ISPs prevent the email servers from successfully encrypting their conversation, and by default the servers will proceed to send email unencrypted. Some firewalls, including Cisco's PIX/ASA firewall do this in order to monitor for spam originating from within their network and prevent it from being sent. Unfortunately, this causes collateral damage: the sending server will proceed to transmit plaintext email over the public Internet, where it is subject to eavesdropping and interception.

Great moments in customers relations!"

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Apple's Luxembourg tax deals

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about a month ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Apple’s iTunes earnings mostly untaxed

More than two-thirds of the money Apple’s iTunes makes outside North America goes through the group’s Luxembourg holding company where it is not taxable, thanks to an intra-group fees agreement signed in 2008, tax documents obtained by The Australian Financial Review show.

While Apple pays less than 1 per cent tax in Ireland on sales of its iPhones, iPads and computers, most of its revenues from the sale of music and films outside the US flow to a Luxembourg company, iTunes Sàrl.

"
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How to end online harassment

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about a month and a half ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "With Gamergate, it’s not enough to ignore the trolls

Gendered bigotry against women is widely considered to be “in bounds” by Internet commenters (whether they openly acknowledge it or not), and subsequently a demographic that comprises half of the total human population has to worry about receiving rape threats, death threats, and the harassment of angry mobs simply for expressing their opinions. This needs to stop, and while it’s impossible to prevent all forms of harassment from occurring online, we can start by creating a culture that shames individuals who cross the bounds of decency..

We can start by stating the obvious: It is never appropriate to use slurs, metaphors, graphic negative imagery, or any other kind of language that plays on someone’s gender, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, or religion. Not only is such language inappropriate regardless of one’s passion on a given subject, but any valid arguments that existed independently of such rhetoric should have been initially presented without it. Once a poster crosses this line, they should lose all credibility.

Similarly, it is never acceptable to dox, harass, post nude pictures, or in any other way violate someone’s privacy due to disagreement with their opinions. While most people would probably agree with this in theory, far too many are willing to access and distribute this humiliating (and often illegal) content. Instead of simply viewing stories of doxing, slut-shaming, and other forms of online intimidation as an unfortunate by-product of the digital age, we should boycott all sites that publish these materials.

"
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Irregularities in the 2014 election

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about a month and a half ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "The Results Were Skewed Toward Republicans: A Response to Nate Silver

The presumption is that the results are always right, and if they don't match the pre-election polling, its the polling that must be wrong, as opposed to the election results.

Brad Friedman proceeds to document the well known voter suppression techniques of photo voter ID requirements and threatening robo calls. He also documents cases where new voter registrations were never entered into the system, shortages of paper ballots in places that use paper ballots, and of course, the well known problems with touch screen voting machines."

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Amazon's Luxembourg tax deals

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about a month and a half ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Amazon and the case of the missing $1.7b

Leaked tax documents from accounting firm PwC in Luxembourg show how Amazon sidesteps the 30 per cent tax rates local [Australian] players face. The Luxembourg documents, obtained in a review led by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, contain some of the first hard numbers and details on how Amazon pays virtually no tax for its non-US earnings, including in Australia. Last month, the European Commission announced an investigation into the secret 2003 advance tax agreement Amazon struck with Luxembourg that is the key to its global tax strategy. The Luxembourg documents show not only the extent of the related-party transactions in Amazon’s Luxembourg companies but how Amazon has changed its tax strategy after investigation by French tax authorities and the US Internal Revenue Service. The change is so dramatic it raises questions whether the European Commission is targeting the right transactions.

"
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An Australian's view of GamerGate

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about 1 month ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "John Birmingham writing for the Sydney Morning Herald

The first rule of Gamergate is that nobody talks about Gamergate. Not unless you want a horde of vicious man-babies coming at you. ... However, the plaintive wail of the gamer dudebros that "actually, Gamergate is about ethics in game journalism", sounds like the shrieking whine of an old dial-up modem when placed next to the tsunami of fearful loathing which crashed onto anybody, but particularly onto any woman who dared join the discussion or even reflect on it.

Paragraph after paragraph, it is a wonder to behold."

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Labor Dept. to destroy H-1B records

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about 2 months ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Records that are critical to research and take up a microscopic amount of storage are set for deletion

In a notice posted last week, the U.S. Department of Labor said that records used for labor certification, whether in paper or electronic, "are temporary records and subject to destruction" after five years, under a new policy. ... There was no explanation for the change, and it is perplexing to researchers. The records under threat are called Labor Condition Applications (LCA), which identify the H-1B employer, worksite, the prevailing wage, and the wage paid to the worker. ... ... The cost of storage can't be an issue for the government's $80 billion IT budget: A full year's worth of LCA data is less than 1GB.

"
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Former NSA director had thousands personally invested in obscure tech firms

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about 2 months ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes ""No conflicts appear to exist" among Keith Alexander's investments, NSA said.

New financial disclosure documents released this month by the National Security Agency (NSA) show that Keith Alexander, who served as its director from August 2005 until March 2014, had thousands of dollars of investments during his tenure in a handful of technology firms.

Don't worry, the NSA assures us that there was no conflict of interest."

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City of London police call for more state intervention in the Internet

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about 3 months ago

Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Since last year City of London Police's Intellectual Property Crime Unit have been working with copyright holders to tackle online piracy

Founded little over a year ago, the City of London Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) has quickly grown to become one of the world’s most active anti-piracy operations. ... PIPCU is determined to continue its anti-piracy efforts in the years to come. However, the unit’s head Andy Fyfe also believes that the Government may have to tighten the rules on the Internet, to stop people from breaking the law.

We live in a world where corporations have set up their own private spying operations, and the police regard spying as a second career. We live in a world where nations protest America's surveillance operation, even as they run their own. We live in a world where Bloomberg feels free to run an intelligence operation on Goldman Sachs. We live in a world where News Corps feels free to run saboteur operations against it competitors. I wonder how many members of the PIPCU are planning second careers as cyber security consultants/hackers? In a world where everyone with a billion dollars acts as if the laws do not apply to them, there is very little possibility of cyber security."

Journals

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Security through obscurity?

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about 10 months ago

Cryptography Breakthrough Could Make Software Unhackable

As a graduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1996, Amit Sahai was fascinated by the strange notion of a âoezero-knowledgeâ proof, a type of mathematical protocol for convincing someone that something is true without revealing any details of why it is true. As Sahai mulled over this counterintuitive concept, it led him to consider an even more daring notion: What if it were possible to mask the inner workings not just of a proof, but of a computer program, so that people could use the program without being able to figure out how it worked?

There must be something I am missing; because this sounds like proprietary software.

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Fight voter suppression, work as an elections official

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 2 years ago

One way to insure the upcoming election is honest is to serve as an elections official. These are the people who check you in as you come in to vote and show you a voting machine or hand you a ballot, depending upon the jurisdiction. It is a long day, in Virginia it begins at 5 AM and lasts until the votes are counted, which can be past midnight in a Presidential year. As an elections official you cannot change unjust voter ID laws; but you can make sure that they are administered fairly.

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Open source e-mail marketing software

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Fellow Slashdotters, is there a good software package to run and manage e-mail marketing and list management? If so, what is it?

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Politico salutes SOPA

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about 3 years ago Media Matters reports that the newspaper Politico hosted an awards ceremony honoring, amongst others, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) and Sen. Pat Leahy (D-VT).

Smith and Leahy are also the chief sponsors of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA), respectively. Both bills, which purport to combat online piracy of copyrighted material, face opposition from big-name technology companies that fear they will stifle online innovation. Legal scholars have denounced the bills as unconstitutional and said that they are tantamount to Internet censorship. Perhaps most significantly, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Rep. Darrel Issa (R-CA) both oppose SOPA in its current form.

Just about everyone hates these bills ... but the entertainment industry loves them. And among the sponsors of the Politico awards gala is the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), the video game industry's chief lobbying group. According to disclosure records, the ESA has spent thousands of dollars this year lobbying in support of PIPA, designated S.968. (For the individual filings, click here, here, here, and here.) ESA has also donated $1,000 to Smith each election cycle going back to 2008. They donated $2,400 to Leahy in 2010.

Payola journalism, Washington, DC style.

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FAA investigating News Corp

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Forbes is reporting that the FAA has launched an investigation into News Corps' use of drones to collect news. The New York Observer is reporting that News Corps is experimenting with the Parrot AR.Drone âoequadricopterâ, which can be controlled with an iPad. And yes! drones can be used for phone hacking. The latest in secret police journalism.

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Who owns your online profile

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Writing for PC World, Katherine Noyes reports that companies are monitoring their employees online profiles at LinkedIn and Facebook. If I understood the report correctly, the monitoring software has the power to block user changes to their profiles. As a self-employed person I am not immediately affected, but am certainly not ethusiastic. I don't think that this will work very well for employers once the job market picks up.

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Market for stolen cell phones

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Here in DC we are having a crime wave of stolen cell phones (article in Washington Post Express, not onlline). How does the market for stolen cell phones work? As I understand it, if mine were stolen I would notify my provider, who would disable it, thus destroying its resell value. Except clearly it does not work that way, hence the market for stolen phones.


  • Also, since our cell phone providers are clearly tracking our phones, surely they could work with police to recover stolen phones. So why don't they?

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Federal solicitation for online astroturf

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Writing for Exainer.com, Sean Kerrigan reports that the federal government has put out a solicitation ( PDF) for the development of "Persona Management Software" which would help the user create and manage a variety of distinct fake profiles online. The job listing was discussed in recently leaked emails from the private security firm HBGary after an attack by internet activist last week.


  • There is such a thing as being too clever, putting aside other considerations.

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The walled gardens of Mobile computing

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about 4 years ago

Writing for Corrente Wire, danps points out that the ecosystem of app stores combined with usage caps on mobile devices has the effect of restoring the old walled gardens of the early internet. As more of us become dependent upon mobile computing, this poses a de facto threat to the neutral net.

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Who else has been dis'ed by PayPal?

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about 4 years ago

I have not had access to my PayPal account for over a year now. For reasons best known to PayPal, but never communicated to me, I cannot access my account, even less send out invoices and receive payment. This is extremely annoying as many clients prefer to pay by PayPal. Bad vendor! bad! bad!

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FCC's Genachowski backing away from neutral net

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  about 4 years ago Arts Technica is reporting that the FCC's Genachowski has indicated in a net netrality preview that the FCC is ready to back usage based pricing. The FCC will vote on net neutrality December 21. Instructions for comments to the FCC here.

Throughout this whole controversy I have been stunned by the complacency of the application service providers, SaaS, Web 2.0, and venture capitalists whose entire business model is built on the assumption of a neutral net.

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Twitter to expand collection of user data

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 4 years ago

From the NNSquad discussion list: Twitter to log every click on every link in every tweet

(Google Buzz)

"Soon, Twitter will be collecting data on which Twitter users click any
    links in any Twitter streams. They will also be able to collect IP
    address info for any user (even non-Twitter users) who click on any
    link in any Twitter message via the Twitter Web interface."

I can't say that I am enthusiastic.

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Want to buy a cell phone? Papers please!

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 4 years ago

The Identity Project alerts us to

S. 3427, a bill introduced in the Senate this week by Senators Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) and John Cornyn (R-TX), would require would require ID âoeverificationâ as a prerequite to buying a prepaid cell phone or SIM card.

Putting aside the not insignificant civil liberties issues, this would be a devastating blow to homeless people who often lose their documents in the events that lead to their homelessness.

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Apple supports open standards, except when it doesn't

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Christopher Blizzard writes about Apple's HTML5 marketing effort. It seems Apple has a blurb about how they support open standards followed by a demo that can only be viewed in Safari. Bit of a disconnect between the message and the practice eh? Besides that, Apple drastically cuts back on the number of people who will bother to look at the demo. The drop off rate will be prodigious under the best of circumstances; but will anyone download a browser just so that they can look at a demo?

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India's voting machines are insecure

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Hari K. Prasad, J. Alex Halderman, Rop Gonggrijp are reporting that India's voting machines are vulnerable to fraud:

In the video above, we demonstrate two kinds of attacks against a real Indian EVM. One attack involves replacing a small part of the machine with a look-alike component that can be silently instructed to steal a percentage of the votes in favour of a chosen candidate. These instructions can be sent wirelessly from a mobile phone. Another attack uses a pocket-sized device to change the votes stored in the EVM between the election and the public counting session, which in India can be weeks later.

We have known for years that these machines are insecure, yet there use continues to spread.

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Virginia AG investigating climate scientist

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 4 years ago

The Hook, the student newspaper of Virginia Tech, is reporting that Virginia's Attorney General, Ken Cuccinelli, has launched an investigation into the research of Michael Mann.

In papers sent to UVA April 23, Cuccinelliâ(TM)s office commands the university to produce a sweeping swath of documents relating to Mannâ(TM)s receipt of nearly half a million dollars in state grant-funded climate research conducted while Mannâ" now director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn Stateâ" was at UVA between 1999 and 2005.

If Cuccinelli is successful he could force the return of research money, legal fees, and trebled damages. It is hard not to believe that this will have a chilling effect on climate science research in Virginia; indeed a chilling effect upon scientific research in general, at least in Virginia.


  • It is a great day for economic development in DC and Maryland.

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The GIGO deficit game

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 4 years ago

1up reports: Microsoft, Government Working Together on Deficit Reduction Game

Game would be update of 1994 simulator that was designed to educate the public. ...

  • ...Fiscal commission co-chair Erskine Bowles has reportedly been in talks with Microsoft CEO Steve Balmer about creating the title in order to educate the public on the difficulties of balancing the budget.

What do you want to bet that Microsoft will be very selective with the inputs? Somehow I am guessing that a transaction tax will not be one of the game's options.


  • Are there any public spirited game developers within the Slashdot community interested in building an alternative deficit game with a wider selection of options?

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The piracy wars & social discourse

Presto Vivace Presto Vivace writes  |  more than 4 years ago

TorrentFreak is reporting that Warner Brothers is recruiting students to set up accounts at BitTorrent and similar sites to "develop link-scanning bots, make trap purchases and perform various other anti-piracy tasks." BitTorrent's response is to encourage its members to apply for the jobs and, in effect, become double agents. There is such a thing as being too clever. It is disheartening to see young people encouraged to take up a career of being a professional liar.


  • It is just too easy to rationalize this; but to the people involved it becomes a question of which identity is the real identity? It also will poison the organizations who engage in these practices. It will swiftly devolve into a case of say anything, pretend anything if it serves the business model.

    • Society will become unsustainable under these circumstances; like pre-1989 Eastern Europe.

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