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Links 17/3/2016: 3 Stable Linux Releases, Elive 2.6.18 Beta

Posted in News Roundup at 11:24 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source

  • Slack smackback: There’s no IRC in team (software), say open-sourcers

    Open-source software is not possible without collaboration and collaboration is not possible without communication. Collaborative communication in open source projects typically means some form of distributed chat.

    In the past, and indeed the present for most projects, that has meant IRC. IRC has some disadvantages, though, and developers love a shiny new toy, which is part of the reason more than a few projects have moved to Slack, the startup attracting crazy amounts of venture investment and equally crazy valuations.


    There are ongoing efforts to improve IRC, notably the IRCv3 project, but if you’re looking for a solution right now, IRC comes up short.

    And there’s no question that Slack is a very well designed, easy to use chat system. But it’s closed source, which makes it a questionable choice for open-source projects. Still, if good old IRC really isn’t working any more – and I would suggest your project take some time to really evaluate that question before proceeding – there are open-source Slack imitators that can also solve some of the problems with IRC, but are self-hosted and FOSS licensed.

  • TP-Link blocks open-source router firmware to comply with new FCC rules

    If you’re a fan of third-party software that adds functionality to a Wi-Fi router, your options just got smaller. The Federal Communications Commission has new rules designed to make sure routers operate only within their licensed frequencies and power levels. TP-Link is complying by blocking open-source firmware like the Linux-based OpenWRT and DD-WRT from its routers. That’s the easiest way for router manufacturers to comply.

  • 4 projects for building an open source arcade

    You may have heard the news recently that the MAME project has been licensed under the GPL version 2.

    MAME, which originally stood for Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator, is probably the largest and most complete game emulation systems ever created, with the ability to emulate many original gaming systems, largely from the 80s and 90s. While primarily developed for Windows, MAME also compiles easily for Linux, and can be ported to other operating systems as well.

  • 4 open source tools for writing your next screenplay

    While I was putting together slides for my lightning talk at Great Wide Open (happening March 16-17), Not that Weird: Open Source Tools for Creatives, I remembered that in the last half of 2015 we had a bit of a loss from our open source creative toolbox. I think I was little late to the game in realizing this—after all, the last official stable release of Celtx (the open source, desktop version) was in 2012—but for folks paying attention, it’s been a long time coming.

  • Events

    • Open source is center stage at Open Networking Summit

      Open Networking Summit (ONS) kicked off in Santa Clara this week, the first event since becoming part of the Linux Foundation.

      Guru Parulkar, Nick McKeown and Dan Pitt started the Open Networking summit back in 2011. Yesterday, Parulkar said in his keynote that they started the summit as a small event to highlight the latest developments in software defined networking (SDN), and to accelerate SDN adoption by network operators and service providers.

      But as almost everything is become software defined and adoption is increasing, ONS became an important event for the industry and community. The immense adoption of open source led the team to increase focus on open source and open source platforms.

    • Great Wide Open Day One in Twitter Pics
  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Thunderbird’s defective method of enabling anti-virus software to scan incoming POP3 e-mail messages

        Thunderbird’s method of enabling anti-virus software to scan incoming e-mail messages is explained in the mozillaZine article ‘Download each e-mail to a separate file before adding to Inbox‘ and in Mozilla bug report no. 116443 (the bug report that resulted in the functionality being implemented). It is my contention that the design is deficient and is actually not a solution. In this post I explain why I believe this to be the case. Although here I will discuss Thunderbird in Linux, I believe the deficiency applies to Thunderbird in all OSs.

      • User Security Relies on Encryption

        Security of users is paramount. Technology companies need to do everything in their power to ensure the security of their users and build products and services with strong security measures in place to do that.

        At Mozilla, it’s part of our mission to safeguard the Web and to take a stand on issues that threaten the health of the Internet. People need to understand and engage with encryption as a core technology that keeps our everyday transactions and conversations secure. That’s why, just days before the Apple story broke, we launched an awareness campaign to educate users on the importance of encryption.

  • Databases

    • Crate Built a Distributed SQL Database System To Run Within Containers

      Crate Technology has designed a database system for supporting Docker containers and microservices. The technology stresses ease of use, speed and scalability while retaining the ability to use SQL against very large data sets.

      Crate was built to run in ephemeral environments, said Christian Lutz, Crate CEO. It was the ninth official Docker image in the Docker Registry and has been downloaded more than 350,000 times in the past six months. It can be managed with Docker tools, or with Kubernetes or Mesos.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Tips for LibreOffice newbies

      Li Haoyi has written an excellent blog post entitled “Diving Into Other People’s Code” about diving into an unfamilar codebase (HN discussion here).

      I think this is really very helpful for anyone who wants to look at the LibreOffice source for the first time. Many of the things he mentions are directly relatable to LibreOffice – in particular getting your dev environment setup is particularly relatable.

  • CMS

  • Pseudo-/Semi-Open Source (Openwashing)

    • Share your Insights in the 2016 Future of Open Source Survey

      The interesting thing will be to see if the results continue to accelerate at the same rate or even faster. You can see results of last year’s survey here. Follow the 2016 Future of Open Source Survey on Twitter at #FutureOSS and @FutureOfOSS, and stay tuned to Linux.com for future updates and results.

  • BSD

    • AsiaBSDCon OpenBSD papers

      This year’s AsiaBSDCon has come to an end, with a number of OpenBSD-related talks being presented. Two developers were also invited to the smaller “bhyvecon” event to discuss vmm(4) and future plans.

  • Public Services/Government

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open Access/Content

      • Open Source Learning

        The U.S. Department of Education’s #GoOpen program is an initiative to use openly licensed educational resources in the classroom. Chesterfield schools have a national reputation as a pioneer in the use of these programs, and is one of six school districts nationwide to be named a #GoOpen Ambassador District, to mentor other school systems in implementing the program.

  • Programming

    • The Deep Roots of Javascript Fatigue

      When I was more active in the frontend community, the changes seemed minor. We’d occasionally make switches in packaging (RequireJS → Browserify), or frameworks (Backbone → Components). And sometimes we’d take advantage of new Node/v8 features. But for the most part, the updates were all incremental.


      On the other hand, Brendan Eich, now the Mozilla CTO, argued for the changes. In an open letter to Chris Wilson, he objected to the fact that Microsoft was just now withdrawing support for a spec which had been in the works for years.


  • Yankees’ Dumb Ticket Policy Turns Soccer Match At Yankee Stadium Into A Ghost Town

    You may recall that we discussed the New York Yankees’ bumbling attempt to institute a new ticket policy for Yankee Stadium that disallowed print-at-home tickets. Dressed up as a policy designed to combat fake tickets being sold by scalpers, the policy was actually designed to be a warm hug to the team’s partner Ticketmaster and a slap to Ticketmaster rival StubHub, as well as all of the other secondary market resellers out there. Still, some people probably shrugged, assuming that this would only have an effect on Yankees fans, a group that might find the soil of sympathy barren.

  • Science

    • Why Haven’t We Met Aliens Yet? Because They’ve Evolved into AI

      While traveling in Western Samoa many years ago, I met a young Harvard University graduate student researching ants. He invited me on a hike into the jungles to assist with his search for the tiny insect. He told me his goal was to discover a new species of ant, in hopes it might be named after him one day.

      Whenever I look up at the stars at night pondering the cosmos, I think of my ant collector friend, kneeling in the jungle with a magnifying glass, scouring the earth. I think of him, because I believe in aliens—and I’ve often wondered if aliens are doing the same to us.

    • Ben Goldacre on why a ban on researchers speaking to politicians and policymakers fails the taxpayers who fund them

      Last month it was quietly announced that anyone receiving research grants from the state will be banned from lobbying “government and Parliament” on either policy issues or funding. The rule is said to be aimed principally at charities, but who knows the truth: in any case it covers all government grants “related to research and development”, and that means academics like me.

    • Rather than banning “lobbying” by academics, UK government should encourage it

      The UK government has passed rules banning academics who receive public funding from “lobbying” ministers and MPs about their research, meaning that the people whom the government pays to acquire expertise in matters of public policy aren’t allowed to speak to policy-makers anymore.

      The problem, from the UK government’s perspective, is that it wants to do things that scientists understand to be stupid: impose austerity as a means of stimulating the economy, give tax breaks to the rich as a means of stimulating the economy, limit migration as a means of stimulating the economy, and, of course, deny climate change.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • What Americans Don’t Get About Nordic Countries

      When U.S. politicians talk about Scandinavian-style social welfare, they fail to explain the most important aspect of such policies: selfishness.

    • Another Big Turnout For Second Public Dialogue Of UN High-Level Panel On Medicines Access

      Today in Johannesburg, South Africa, the second of two public dialogues was held by the United Nations Secretary General’s High-Level Panel on Access to Medicines, drawing another packed room and many ideas, experiences and suggestions for solutions.

      The archived livestream of the 17 March Johannesburg dialogue is available on the HLP website here. At press time, it appeared part of the webcast might be missing. The agenda of the event is available here [pdf]. Today’s public segment was preceded by a closed session yesterday.

  • Security

    • Big-name sites hit by rash of malicious ads spreading crypto ransomware [Updated]

      Mainstream websites, including those published by The New York Times, the BBC, MSN, and AOL, are falling victim to a new rash of malicious ads that attempt to surreptitiously install crypto ransomware and other malware on the computers of unsuspecting visitors, security firms warned.

      The tainted ads may have exposed tens of thousands of people over the past 24 hours alone, according to a blog post published Monday by Trend Micro. The new campaign started last week when “Angler,” a toolkit that sells exploits for Adobe Flash, Microsoft Silverlight, and other widely used Internet software, started pushing laced banner ads through a compromised ad network.

      According to a separate blog post from Trustwave’s SpiderLabs group, one JSON-based file being served in the ads has more than 12,000 lines of heavily obfuscated code. When researchers deciphered the code, they discovered it enumerated a long list of security products and tools it avoided in an attempt to remain undetected.

    • VMware fixes XSS flaws in vRealize for Linux

      VMware patched two cross-site scripting issues in several editions of its vRealize cloud software. These flaws could be exploited in stored XSS attacks and could result in the user’s workstation being compromised.

    • VMware patches severe XSS flaws in vRealize software

      VMware has patched two serious vulnerabilities in the firm’s vRealize software which could lead to remote code execution and the compromise of business workstations.

      In a security advisory posted on Tuesday, the Palo Alto, California-based firm said the “important” vulnerabilities are found within the VMware vRealize Automation and VMware vRealize Business Advanced and Enterprise software platforms.

    • Get ready to patch Git servers, clients – nasty-looking bugs surface

      A chap who found two serious security bugs in Git servers and clients has urged people to patch their software.

      The flaws are present in Git including the 2.x, 1.9 and 1.7 branches, meaning the vulnerabilities have been lurking in the open-source version control tool for years.

      It is possible these two programming blunders can be potentially exploited to corrupt memory or execute malicious code on remote servers and clients. To do so, an attacker would have to craft a Git repository with a tree of files that have extremely long filenames, and then push the repo to a vulnerable server or let a vulnerable client clone it from the internet.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • Drones, drugs and death

      The war on terror’s methods of mass surveillance and remote warfare are not unique. The US is also addicted to covert tools in its ‘war on drugs’, with disastrous consequences.

    • Russian Anti-Torture Activist Assaulted in Chechnya

      One of Russia’s leading human rights activists, Igor Kalyapin, was assaulted in the Chechen capital, Grozny, on Wednesday night by masked men who beat him and doused him in eggs, cakes and green paint.

      Kalyapin, whose nongovernmental group, the Committee for the Prevention of Torture, is known for investigating abuses in the region, was in the city to meet a member of the Chechen Human Rights Council, Heda Saratova, and some journalists, according to his colleague Dmitriy Piskunov.

      The activist had just checked in to the Hotel Grozny City when “employees of the hotel, accompanied by armed police officers, forced Kalyapin out of his room and onto the street just outside of the hotel,” Piskunov wrote in an email to The Intercept.

    • Evidence Mounts That U.S. Airstrike on ISIS in Libya Killed Serbian Diplomats
  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • TPPA at risk as the US political pendulum swings towards trade isolationism

      Whatever the outcome of the United States presidential primaries, let alone the presidential election later this year, there is no doubt that we are watching the strongest challenge to the 30-plus year consensus on the benefits of globalisation.

      That pendulum is swinging, embodied in the strength of the campaigns by two ‘outsider’ candidates – Donald Trump on the mercantilist right and Bernie Sanders on the protectionist left – in the US.

      From New Zealand’s perspective, their most significant impact may be their capacity to push the US back to the isolationist roots that characterised its engagement with the rest of the international community in the first half of the 20th century.

      That isolationism could take many forms, but its greatest appeal to a generation of American workers who feel left behind by globalisation is in its impact on trade policy.

      Both Sanders and Trump are, in their own way, wanting to pull up the drawbridge on the last 30 years of global trade liberalisation.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • When graded on tech issues, 2016 presidential candidates don’t do well

      On the same day that five key states voted in the presidential primaries, startup lobbying shop Engine took a close look at where the candidates stand on important tech issues like privacy, net neutrality, and patent reform. If your views on those issues align with Engine’s, you won’t find their 2016 Candidate Report Card an encouraging read.

      After taking a look at the candidates’ records in four policy areas, Democrat Hillary Clinton got the highest overall grade: a B+. Her challenger Bernie Sanders got a B, while Republican candidates ranked lower: C+ grades for Marco Rubio and John Kasich, a D for Ted Cruz, and straight F’s for Donald Trump.

    • The curse of “inevitability”: After Hillary Clinton’s big wins, the media is already ignoring Bernie Sanders

      Bernie Sanders is still in the Democratic presidential primary race, but Hillary Clinton did her best on Tuesday night to pretend that he isn’t.

      Clinton used her election night rally to bask in her blowout victories over Sanders in Florida, Ohio and North Carolina, and ignore much closer races in Illinois and Missouri. She paid tribute to Sanders’s “vigorous campaign,” the kind of condescending line that translates into “I won and he lost.” She noted that she has won more votes than anybody from either party so far—a valiant, if not particularly successful, attempt to cast her campaign as the kind of mass movement currently mesmerizing both the Democratic and Republican grassroots. And she spent a lot of time going after Donald Trump, the night’s other big victor and the man who will be the Republican nominee if he can avoid being deposed at the GOP convention.

      “Our commander in chief has to be able to defend our country, not embarrass it,” she said. “When we have a candidate for president call for rounding up 12 million immigrants, banning all Muslims from entering the United States, when he embraces torture, that doesn’t make him strong, it makes him wrong.”


      Sanders has plenty of money and plenty of support. He has a real base within the Democratic Party. He will keep winning states. He has had a seismic impact on the 2016 race. But his biggest battle now will be to overcome the twin forces of establishment pressure on him to drop out and a loss of media interest in his candidacy. Both forces were in evidence on Tuesday. Sanders and his supporters will be told repeatedly that the time has come to unite behind Clinton, that the primary race is done. Trump is an exceedingly dangerous candidate on just about every level; the clamor to craft an opposing message to him as early as possible will get louder and louder. The lack of media attention will only grow. It will be a very high tide for Sanders to swim against.

    • Remembering Journalist & Media Critic Ben Bagdikian, Author of “The Media Monopoly”

      Journalist John Nichols pays tribute to the investigative journalist, media critic, editor and educator Ben Bagdikian, who has died at the age of 96. Bagdikian wrote the 1983 book “The Media Monopoly,” about how the consolidation of media outlets by a small number of corporate owners threatened free expression and independent journalism. In 1971, as an editor at The Washington Post, Bagdikian received the Pentagon Papers from whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg and transferred them to Alaska Senator Mike Gravel, who entered them into the Congressional Record.

    • Adam Johnson in NYT Debate on ‘Sanders Taken Seriously Enough?’

      FAIR contributing analyst Adam Johnson was invited to write a piece for the New York Times‘ “Room for Debate” feature–on the topic “Has Sanders Not Been Taken Seriously Enough?”

    • Bernie Sanders Had to Overcome Media Consensus Around Hillary Clinton

      Who is and isn’t a “serious” candidate in our modern public relations-driven democracy is largely tautological. Whoever the news media say is important early on typically becomes the most important. This leads to a feedback loop that anoints the “frontrunner” in the “invisible primary,” where success is measured by name recognition, money raised, party insider support and a host of “serious” accomplishments, all before the most essential of feedback has been provided: actual voting.

      This dynamic helped create the artificial consensus around Hillary Clinton early on. According to one tally of nightly broadcast network news during the 2015 primary season, Sanders received a total of 20 minutes of coverage, compared to Clinton’s 121 minutes and Trump’s 327. This gap would narrow once Sanders began to gain parity in early primary states, a feat Sanders achieved not because of media coverage but despite it.

      That “frontrunner” status prejudices both viewer and pundit alike when news media presents delegate totals, often including the unearned “super delegates,” despite the fact that their declared preferences are not binding, and could only reverse the will of the voters at the risk of throwing the election. This makes it appear as if Clinton’s lead is more insuperable than it actually is — a vestige of the invisible primary that occurred months before anyone voted.

  • Censorship

    • The real reason all the big social networks have introduced filtered feeds

      First it was Facebook, with the filtered News Feed that shows you as few as one in three of the posts that your friends make.

      Then it was Pinterest, which — a year ago — began displaying pins by “relevance” instead of chronology.

      Just last month, Twitter provoked an outcry of its own when Buzzfeed reported that it too would introduce, though not compel, an algorithmically ordered feed.

    • Interview: Zhao Liang Talks Behemoth and Censorship

      Zhao Liang’s Behemoth blurs the lines between video art and documentary, visually exploring multiple open-pit coal mines in the sparse hinterlands of China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. The film, loosely inspired by Dante’s Inferno, forgoes the spoken word completely. It stylistically melds poetry and performance art to portray the lives of various coal miners and iron smelters as they struggle to produce raw material fast enough for China’s ever-growing economy. The largely plotless film draws one in through the sheer juxtaposition of its monstrous, inhuman-sized landscapes and the intimate close-ups of miners’ soot-covered faces. Though banned from being screened inside China, the film was shown to a packed house in an underground screening room on the outskirts of Beijing this past February. The next day, we sat down in Zhao’s Beijing art studio, where the filmmaker was as wry in his humor as he was cynical, discussing everything from his views on censorship to the relationship between art and activism.

    • Is there compromise to be had over film censorship?

      I still remember one of the first times I went to watch a movie after I moved back to the country. I went to see an independent film on a whim with friends. After barely an hour and a half in the theatre, we emerged with absolutely no idea what had happened. The actual runtime was supposed to be two hours. The evening left me feeling like I had wasted my time and money.

      My issue is not necessarily with the censorship itself, but rather with the inconsistency of it. For example, I have watched some movies where scenes have been cut for explicit language but heard that same language in other films. I understand that there are cultural sensibilities to be mindful of and I honestly have no problem when, for example, gratuitous nudity that doesn’t add to the plot is cut. But if part of the storyline or dialogue (even minor bits) is gone, it creates a break that is quiet jarring for the viewer.

      When I watched movies at the Abu Dhabi film festival, I noticed the movies were uncut. If it is acceptable for films to be screened in full during festivals, what changes when they go on to be released nationwide?

    • Headless board delays film censorship

      Censorship of as many as 10 films, including the trailer of Goutam Ghose’s ‘Sankhachil’ starring Prosenjit Chatterjee, has got stalled in absence of a regional officer at the Central Board of Film Certification’s (CBFC) Kolkata office.

    • A professor in Iran came up with an ingenious method for criticizing the government without getting imprisoned

      In the final years before the 1979 Iranian revolution, political freedom in Iran was so restricted that professors caught criticizing the Shah’s regime risked imprisonment.

      The repressive environment forced one professor to come up with a very creative way to speak his mind.

      “You couldn’t criticize the regime directly – you had to be discreet about it,” Dr. Abbas Milani, a former assistant political science professor at the National University of Iran from 1975 to 1977, told Business Insider. Milani is now the director of Stanford University’s Iranian Studies program.

    • Minds in Malaysia, other Muslim countries ‘under yoke of censorship’, Turkish writer says

      urkish author Mustafa Akyol, whose book on Islamic liberalism was translated into Malay in Malaysia, has criticised censorship here and in other Muslim countries that he said are now languishing intellectually.

      Akyol, who was recently in Malaysia to promote the publication of the Malay edition of his book Islam Without Extremes: A Muslim Case for Liberty, pointed out that Putrajaya has outlawed more than a thousand books translated into Malay, including Charles Darwin’s On The Origin of Species and Karen Armstrong’s Islam: A Short History.

  • Privacy

  • Civil Rights

    • Defense Department Agencies Have Been Operating Drones Domestically Without Cohesive Guidelines

      It’s amazing how much stuff government agencies “take seriously” and claim they’re handling in accordance to all sorts of secret, but presumably strict, guidelines… once their actions have been exposed.

    • Pentagon admits it has deployed military spy drones over the U.S.

      The Pentagon has deployed drones to spy over U.S. territory for non-military missions over the past decade, but the flights have been rare and lawful, according to a new report.

      The report by a Pentagon inspector general, made public under a Freedom of Information Act request, said spy drones on non-military missions have occurred fewer than 20 times between 2006 and 2015 and always in compliance with existing law.

    • The Great Certainty

      America will have a President who supports apartheid, land grab and the continual murder of children.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • How a former lobbyist became the broadband industry’s worst nightmare

      After all, Wheeler had been the top lobbyist for both the cable and cell phone industries, having worked for the National Cable Television Association (NCTA) from 1976 to 1984 and the Cellular Telecommunications & Internet Association (CTIA) from 1992 to 2004. Though he had left those jobs years before, people wondered if a former lobbyist would properly regulate the industries he once represented.

      “Obama’s Bad Pick: A Former Lobbyist at the FCC,” said the headline in The New Yorker on the day after Wheeler’s nomination. Consumer advocacy groups such as Free Press and the New America Foundation’s Open Technology Institute publicly doubted whether Wheeler would be tough on his previous employers.

    • Canadian Cable Companies Make A Mockery Of Government’s Push For Cheaper TV

      So far, the Canadian government’s attempt to force innovation and lower prices on the Canadian TV industry doesn’t appear to be going so well. As previously noted, the government has demanded that all Canadian cable TV operators begin offering a so-called “skinny” bundles of smaller, cheaper channels starting this month, and the option to buy channels “a la carte” starting in December. But this being the cable industry, companies are finding all manner of ways to tap dance over, under and around the requirements.

    • ISPs Are Blocking Google Fiber’s Access To Utility Poles In California

      And while this is generally an idea that would benefit all broadband providers, it would benefit new providers like Google Fiber the most. That’s why companies like AT&T, Comcast and Time Warner Cable have been blocking this pole-attachment reform, in some cases trying to claim such policies violate their Constitutional rights. The ISPs figure that if they can’t block Google Fiber from coming to town, their lawyers can at least slow Google Fiber’s progress while they try to lock customers down in long-term contracts.

  • DRM

    • Apple ‘AceDeceiver’ DRM Flaw Allows Malware To Install Itself On Non-Jailbroken iPhones

      Security researchers from Palo Alto Networks uncovered a new iOS malware family that takes advantage of vulnerabilities in Apple’s DRM software and can infect non-jailbroken devices. The researchers called the malware “AceDeceiver.”

      AceDeceiver uses a novel way of attacking iOS devices by managing to install itself without any enterprise certificates. Instead, it exploits design flaws in Apple’s “FairPlay” DRM mechanism that allow the malware to be installed on non-jailbroken devices.

      Apparently, this “FairPlay Man-In-The-Middle” attack was identified for the first time in 2013, but so far Apple still hasn’t fixed it. It’s been used to spread pirated iOS apps so far, but now malware makers seem to be taking advantage of it as well.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Trademarks

      • Two Brazilian Restaurants Battle Over Trademark For Logos Because Both Include Fire

        For whatever reason, we’ve seen all kinds of trademark actions over logos that are claimed to be very similar, but which aren’t. Most often these disputes center on the use of a single identifying thing within the logo, such as the umbrella in the Travelers Insurance logo, or the apple in the logo of, well, Apple. These disputes take trademark law, chiefly designed to aid the public in discerning between brands, and reduce it to slap-fights over the attempted ownership of images of everyday items.

        But in the trademark spat between two Brazillian restaurants, Fogo De Chao and Espirito Do Sul, we see this sort of thing sink to a new low as the former is threatening to sue the latter over the use of fire in its logo. Yes, fire. You know, one of the first things early mankind was able to manipulate in order to start down the road of societal progress.

      • Bacardi files amended complaint in Havana Club trade mark dispute

        Bacardi has filed an amended complaint with the US District Court for the District of Columbia in the dispute over the Havana Club run brand and trade mark in the US.

    • Copyrights

      • Powerman5000 Takes To Facebook To Complain About Similar Sounding Final Fantasy Song, Fans Rebut Them

        I imagine, as a musician, it must be common to come across other music that sounds somewhat similar to one’s own. I would think that not all genres of music are created equal in this respect. Jazz, for instance, while sharing common elements across the genre, seems to have enough instruments and space within the music for unique expression that perhaps similarities occur less often or are less severe than, say, industrial rock, which seems to have some more rigid common core elements. How much similarity is there in songs from Ramstein and Nine Inch Nails, for instance, or in songs from Nine Inch Nails and Powerman5000? Or in songs from Powerman5000 and Final Fantasy XIV…wait, what?

      • “Open WiFi Operators Are Not Liable for Pirating Users”

        Restaurants, bars and shops that offer their customers free and open Wi-Fi are not liable for pirating users. This is the advice Advocate General Szpunar has sent to the EU Court of Justice in what may turn out to be a landmark case. While there’s no direct liability, the AG notes that local courts may issue injunctions against Wi-Fi operators and long as they are fair and balanced.

      • EU Court Of Justice Advocate General Says Open WiFi Operators Shouldn’t Be Liable For Infringement
      • EU court: Public WiFi providers are not responsible for the actions of their users

        IN A PRELIMINARY OPINION, a bunch of sage European legal bigwigs have decided that public WiFi hotspots are not responsible for the actions of the general public.

        Let’s face it, who would want to be responsible for the actions of the general public?After all, they can get up to all sorts of very silly things, like ride hoverboards or agree with Katie Hopkins.

      • Napster Founder’s Movie Plan Will Fuel Torrent Sites, Theaters Say

        If Napster co-founder Sean Parker’s plans come to fruition, the latest movies will be available for viewing from day one in the home via a set-top box. But despite support from big name directors, not everyone is happy. According to a 600 theater chain, Screening Room will only provide quick, quality content for torrent sites.

      • Pirate Party to Dominate Iceland Parliament, Survey Finds

        The Pirate Party would dominate Iceland’s parliament if elections were held today. That’s the conclusion of a new survey which found that the Pirates appear to be maintaining an impressive lead over their rivals, with around 38% of voters saying they will be voting for the party and kicking the ruling coalition out of power.

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    Links for the day

  8. FSF's Interim Co-President Alexandre Oliva on Being Cancelled

    It was reading this that I realized I’d been cancelled myself. In my case, I was painted misogynist and transphobic, and for a post in which I supported women but denounced a crowd of men twisting the feminist cause, that I share, to attack rms, as if he wasn’t a feminist himself; and in which I express curiosity as to what pronoun to use to refer to zero women to paint me as someone who disregards gender identities and their pronouns.

  9. Good People Need to Run for Free Software Foundation (FSF) Board Positions After an FSF Coup Threw in the Towel, Pushing Out the Founder

    "I have been hit, but not knocked out, and my campaign for free software is not over." --Richard Stallman, October 2019

  10. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, February 22, 2020

    IRC logs for Saturday, February 22, 2020

  11. Alexandre Oliva's Message About Cancel Culture at the FSF

    Being cancelled is no fun. In my case, it was for standing for a friend who got canceled for defending someone else from an accusation that was later proven false.

  12. Links 22/2/2020: Polish Government Increases GNU/Linux Use, Samza 1.3.1

    Links for the day

  13. Being Rich Does Not Imply Being Smart (Especially When One is Born Into Wealth)

    Presenting the 'genius' (college dropout, but that does not matter when the yardstick of wisdom is wealth alone), with his own predictions overlaid on top of his photo from the show of Bloomberg (another 'genius' whose supposed brilliance is measured using money alone)

  14. The Rise and Fall of Free Software

    "We simply need to make the movement less corporate, and more grassroots."

  15. Why You Should Adopt Debian 10, Not Vista 10 (Windows Vista With Microsoft's Latest Surveillance Add-ons)

    A little personal story and recommendation of Debian "Buster" (10) or Devuan (whose developers persist)

  16. Ethics by Exclusion

    It's the same old philosophical question; can excluding those who are perceived to be intolerant be seen as an act of tolerance?

  17. Even Worse Than Microsoft Inside the Board of the OSI

    The OSI has accepted people from companies that actively attack Software Freedom and there may be more on their way

  18. ZDNet Continues to Stuff Its 'Linux' Section With Proprietary Software of Microsoft

    The above is what the "Linux" section of ZDNet is going to look like throughout the weekend (and this is hardly unusual, either)

  19. IRC Proceedings: Friday, February 21, 2020

    IRC logs for Friday, February 21, 2020

  20. Links 21/2/2020: EasyOS 2.2.11 Released, Microsoft's Control of the Linux Foundation Increases and More Binary Blobs Arrive

    Links for the day

  21. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, February 20, 2020

    IRC logs for Thursday, February 20, 2020

  22. Video: LinuxWorld 1999, Torvalds and Stallman

    LinuxWorld 1999, Torvalds and Stallman

  23. GNU World Order is a Personal Sacrifice, LinuxWorld Just Business

    As the Linux Foundation shows, Linux is just business (and proprietary software) as usual, software patents included, whereas it’s GNU that continues the Free Software Movement’s battles

  24. Links 20/2/2020: Oracle Solaris 11.4 SRU18, Mesa 20, VirtualBox 6.1.4

    Links for the day

  25. Open Source Did Not Win, It Was Assimilated to and by Proprietary Software

    Don’t fall for the whole “Open Source has won!” spiel; You know we’ve lost the battle (and were in effect gradually conquered) at OSI and elsewhere when those who speak for the OSI are Michael Cheng (Facebook), Max Sills (Google), and Chris Aniszczyk (Linux Foundation); they say “Open Source Under Attack” (FOSDEM talk) but their employers are the ones attacking and they downplay openwashing

  26. Former Microsoft Employees Don't Like Talking About Past and Present Microsoft Back Doors (Designed for Spy Agencies)

    In a typical Microsoftian fashion, once they cannot defend the illusion/delusion that Microsoft values security the 'Softers' run away and block any further debate

  27. Techrights Warns Against Impending Extradition Efforts (Passage of Julian Assange to His Death in the United States)

    Imprisonment of journalists who are effective at exposing crimes (of the powerful, not petty crimes) must never be condoned

  28. Team UPC: Many Mouths and No Ears

    The mental condition of Team UPC gets more worrisome by the week

  29. Team UPC Insults Judges Because the UPC is Dead and UPC Lobbyists Have Nothing Left to Lose

    More judge-shaming tactics are in the mix; Team UPC seems to feel like there's nothing left to lose as the UPC is already dead (hope itself is next to die)

  30. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, February 19, 2020

    IRC logs for Wednesday, February 19, 2020

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