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06.13.16

Links 13/6/2016: Linux 4.7 RC3, Samsung’s Tizen Focus

Posted in News Roundup at 5:12 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Whistleblower: EPA Officials Covered Up Toxic Fracking Emissions for Years

      Why has the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) failed to take adequate action against disastrous, climate-warming methane emissions from the fracking industry?

      An environmental watchdog alleges that the answer may be a years-long, systematic cover-up of the true data surrounding these toxic emissions.

      That cover-up, the group says, was at the hands of at least one EPA researcher who accepted payments from the oil and gas industry.

  • Security

    • Deception Cybersecurity Pioneer illusive networks Adds Linux and Advanced Forensics in Latest Release
    • San Antonio’s Infocyte Takes Cybersecurity Threat Hunting to Linux
    • Lieberman Software Provides Security Automation at Scale for Linux

      Lieberman Software Corporation is advancing the security of the Linux enterprise by keeping the privileged attack surface in constant motion on Linux systems. The announcement was made at the Gartner Security and Risk Management Summit, where the company is exhibiting this week in booth #719.

    • Mozilla launches fund to vet open-source software

      More and more, developers are using open source tools when building applications and online services because it allows users to openly share and collaborate on code. Because it encourages crowdsourcing and collaboration, open source has opened the doors for amateurs and professionals alike to make better software faster than ever before.

    • Security advisories for Monday
    • Outdated authentication practices create an opportunity for threat hunter Infocyte

      “Having Linux allows us to look at web servers, for instance. If you’re going to bypass the biometrics, you’re going to need to get into that system itself,” Gerritz says. “That’s where we come in, is finding people who have inserted themselves under that authentication layer.”

    • Cable Sees NFV Enhancing Network Security

      Network functions virtualization is all the rage because of the money it can save, and because of the network flexibility it helps afford, but the cable industry is enthused about NFV for yet another, less publicized benefit: the potential NFV creates for improving network security.

    • IoT Consensus – A Solution Suggestion to the ‘Baskets of Remote’ Problem by Benedikt Herudek

      Bitcoin is able to integrate and have endpoints (in Bitcoin terminology ‘wallets’ and ‘miners’) seamlessly talk to each other in a large and dynamic network. Devices and their protocols do not have the ability to seamlessly communicate with other devices. This presentation will try to show where Bitcoin and the underlying Blockchain and Consenus Technology can offer an innovative approach to integrating members of a large and dynamic network.

    • Ready to form Voltron! why security is like a giant robot make of lions

      Due to various conversations about security this week, Voltron came up in the context of security. This is sort of a strange topic, but it makes sense when we ponder modern day security. If you talk to anyone, there is generally one thing they push as a solution for a problem. This is no different for security technologies. There is always one thing that will fix your problems. In reality this is never the case. Good security is about putting a number of technologies together to create something bigger and better than any one thing can do by itself.

    • Email Address Disclosures, Preliminary Report, June 11 2016

      On June 11 2016 (UTC), we started sending an email to all active subscribers who provided an email address, informing them of an update to our subscriber agreement. This was done via an automated system which contained a bug that mistakenly prepended between 0 and 7,618 other email addresses to the body of the email. The result was that recipients could see the email addresses of other recipients. The problem was noticed and the system was stopped after 7,618 out of approximately 383,000 emails (1.9%) were sent. Each email mistakenly contained the email addresses from the emails sent prior to it, so earlier emails contained fewer addresses than later ones.

    • Universities Become New Target for Ransomware Attacks [iophk: "Calgary has no excuse, given the particular tech activity headquartered specifically in their town. Some top Univ executives need firing +fines for having allowed Microsoft into their infrastructure."]

      This week the University of Calgary in Canada admitted paying C$20,000 (€13,900) to a hacker to regain access to files stored in 600 computers, after it suffered a ransomware attack compromising over 9,000 email accounts. In order to receive the keys, the school paid the equivalent of C$20,000 in Bitcoins.

    • Blue Coat to Sell Itself to Symantec, Abandoning I.P.O. Plans

      Blue Coat Systems seemed poised to begin life as a public company, after selling itself to a private equity firm last year.

      Now, the cybersecurity software company plans to sell itself to Symantec instead.

      Blue Coat said late on Sunday that it would sell itself to Symantec for $4.65 billion. As part of the deal, Blue Coat’s chief executive, Greg Clark, will take over as the chief executive of the combined security software maker.

      To help finance the transaction, Blue Coat’s existing majority investor, Bain Capital, will invest an additional $750 million in the deal. The private equity firm Silver Lake, which invested $500 million in Symantec in February, will invest an additional $500 million.

  • Defence/Aggression

    • The Chinese Hackers in the Back Office

      At the N.S.A., Mr. Falkowitz had worked with teams that detected North Korean missile launches. Much of that early work was done with satellites that would look for sudden heat blasts.

      Eventually, Mr. Falkowitz’s team tried a more proactive approach. If they could hack the computers that controlled the missile launch systems, they could glean launch schedules. Area 1 is now taking a similar approach to digital attacks, tapping into the attackers’ launchpads, as it were, rather than waiting for them to attack.

      Hackers don’t just press a big red “attack” button one day. They do reconnaissance, scout out employees on LinkedIn, draft carefully worded emails to trick unsuspecting employees to open them and click on links or email attachments that will try to launch malicious attacks.

      Once they persuade a target to click — and 91 percent of attacks start this way, according to Trend Micro, the security firm — it takes time to crawl through a victim’s network to find something worth taking. Then they have to pull that data off the network. The process can take weeks, months, even years and leaves a digital trail.

    • Before Nightclub Shooting, FBI Pursued Questionable Florida “Terror” Suspects

      The attack on a gay club in Orlando in which 50 people were killed and more than 50 wounded — now the largest mass shooting in U.S. history — demonstrates how potential threats are escaping the FBI’s vast counterterrorism dragnet.

      While it’s unclear whether gunman Omar Mateen’s inspiration was hatred of gays, the Islamic State, or something else, attackers like him are the intended targets of the FBI’s post-9/11 prevention program. Federal law enforcement’s top priority today is to stop the attacker of tomorrow.

      But Mateen’s mass shooting is an example of how dangerous men slip past the FBI’s watch while federal agents focus on targets of questionable capacity.

    • Orlando Pulse Open Thread

      There is so much we need to fix in this country: the guns, the homophobia. But I fear we’re most likely to just throw more policing in the mix, rather than addressing the underlying issues.

    • Omar Mateen and Rightwing Homophobia: Hate Crime or Domestic Terrorism

      US law enforcement is at least initially categorizing the horrific Orlando shootings as “domestic terrorism.”

      I don’t think it probably was terrorism in any useful sense of the term.

    • The Orlando Horror

      Terrorism is a reality – but endless war is not the answer

    • Recent Events in Honduras

      This week’s program looks at recent events in Honduras, including the 2009 coup, the 2012 killing of four villagers by a joint US-Honduran patrol at Ahuas, and the March 2016 assassination of indigenous environmental campaigner Berta Caceres. The guests examine some of the underlying institutions and circumstances there, including the heavily militarized Honduran police, the US “drug war,” and US willingness to use drug trafficking accusations to bring down critics of the country’s ruling party.

    • Hillary Clinton’s ‘Entangled’ Foreign Policy

      Besides bashing Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton offered few specifics in her big foreign policy speech which stressed the value of “friends.” But those “entangling alliances” helped create today’s global chaos, writes Daniel Lazare.

    • Gun Industry Describes Mass Shootings Like Orlando as a “Big Opportunity”

      In recent corporate presentations, leading gun makers celebrated the fact that consumers bought more firearms because of the December terrorist attack in San Bernardino. And, prior to the massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando on Saturday night, executives were telling investors to expect another big bump — because of the upcoming elections.

      The surge in sales after mass shootings, as we’ve reported, is nothing new: Mass shootings lead to talk of gun control; the National Rifle Association — the gun advocacy group funded significantly by gun and ammunition manufacturers — uses its influence in Congress to block any legislative action; but gun owners, irrationally terrified that the government will restrict or ban firearms, rush out to buy more guns and ammo.

    • Donald Trump Calls Obama Complicit in Orlando Shooting, Escalating Years of Anti-Muslim Rhetoric

      Donald Trump’s first response to the mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando was to congratulate himself “for being right on radical Islamic terrorism.”

      His second response was to accuse President Obama of complicity.

      “Look, we’re led by a man that either is not tough, not smart, or he’s got something else in mind,” Trump told Fox News early Monday. “There’s something going on. It’s inconceivable. There’s something going on. … He doesn’t get it or he gets it better than anybody understands — it’s one or the other and either one is unacceptable.”

    • As FBI Was Rolling Up Ibragim Todashev and Friends in Orlando, Omar Mateen Claimed a Tie

      Described as a tie to the brothers behind the Marathon killing, the claim is just wacky. But perhaps not as much when you consider the close FBI focus on Orlando’s Muslim community. The FBI killed Todashev in May of 2013, and started rounding up and deporting his friends shortly thereafter.

    • Stop Exploiting LGBT Issues to Demonize Islam and Justify Anti-Muslim Policies

      In the late 1990s, Eric Rudolph – raised Catholic and affiliated for a time with a Christian Identity sect – bombed abortion clinics and a gay bar, insisting they were venues of immorality and evil. Last July, an Orthodox Jewish Israeli attacked the marchers in the Jerusalem LGBT pride parade, stabbing six of them, and one of them, a teenager, died of her wounds; justifying his attacks by appealing to Talmudic punishments for homosexuality, he had just been released from a 10-year prison term for doing the same in 2005. Yesterday, a Christian pastor from Arizona, Steven Anderson, praised the slaughter of 49 people in an Orlando LGBT club on the ground that “homosexuals are a bunch of disgusting perverts” and are “pedophiles.”

    • Was Orlando Shooter’s Domestic Violence History a Missed Warning Sign?

      The ex-wife of Orlando shooter Omar Mateen described him as a volatile and violent spouse who abused steroids and beat her during their brief marriage. “He started abusing me physically, very often, and not allowing me to speak to my family, keeping me hostage from them,” Yusufiy told reporters gathered in front of her home yesterday. After four months of marriage, Yusufiy was physically rescued from Mateen by her parents and, she said, filed a police report about his abusive treatment.

    • America’s Many Mideast Blunders

      Official Washington’s neocon foreign policy establishment looks forward to more “regime change” wars in the Mideast and more “blank checks” for Israel, but ex-Ambassador Chas W. Freeman Jr. sees such actions as a continued march of folly.

    • Globalization and the American Dream

      Implicit in all the rhetoric promoting globalization is the premise that the rest of the world can and should be brought up to the standard of living of the West, and America in particular. For much of the world the American Dream – though a constantly moving target – is globalization’s ultimate endpoint.

    • A Tale of Two Terrorists

      Nearly 15 years since its fiery debut, Bush’s “War on Terror” has somehow (and for some time now, too) been banalized into the humdrum of Obama’s permanent war; in light of this, as terrorism continues to simultaneously deviate from and reflect social norms, it seems entirely fitting that the two people vying for the presidency of the United States should be terrorists themselves.

    • Campaign 2016’s Brave New World

      As the U.S. election shapes up as a battle between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, the prospect for the public hearing anything approaching a truthful exchange of ideas appears hopeless, writes David Marks.

  • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Newly Released Clinton Email Was Marked Classified When It Hit Clinton’s Unclassified Server

      When her use of an unclassified email server first broke in March 2015, Hillary Clinton’s earliest statements were that no classified information was sent or received.

      She quickly changed her standard reply to say nothing sent or received was marked classified at the time. As recently as Wednesday of last week, she told reporters, “nothing that I sent or received was marked classified. And nothing has been demonstrated to contradict that. So it is the fact. It was the fact when I first said it. It is the fact that I’m saying it now.”

      (The statement is itself an outright lie. Some information — the names of CIA undercover personnel, imminent drone strikes, details on U.S. NSA sources and methods, for example — is inherently classified and does not need to be marked to restate that. In addition, many suspected classified documents that were marked as such were simply retyped minus the marker when they were sent to Hillary. Leaving the marker off does not “declassify” information, and is in fact a national security crime.)

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife/Nature

    • Ten Degrees Above Average, Alaska is Having Its Hottest Year Since Records Began

      Like the rest of the world, Alaska has been unusually hot this year—and it’s about to get hotter.

      That’s according to the most recent data released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), as Climate Central reported.

      Between March and May of this year, the meteorological spring, the entire state has been about 10 degrees hotter than normal, with an average temperature of 32°F.

      “That may sound cold,” Climate Central noted, “but warmth is a relative term. That temperature handily beat the previous record hot spring of 1998 by 2°F (1°C), according to NOAA.”

    • Mobilizing for COP21

      Tom Goldtooth is a Diné and Dakota environmental activist based in Minnesota. He has worked on environmental justice issues with tribal governments since the 1980s, and is widely respected as a grassroots leader throughout North America. In addition to serving as Executive Director of Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN), he is a founder of the Durban Group for Climate Justice, co-founder of Climate Justice NOW!, co-founder of the U.S. based Environmental Justice Climate Change Initiative, and a regular policy advisor to indigenous communities. In 2010, he was honored by the Sierra Club and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) as a “Green Hero of Color.” Last year, just weeks before COP21, he was awarded the Gandhi Peace Award, bestowed upon leaders who strive for world peace.

    • Nuclear ‘Ticking Time Bomb’ Is a Real Threat to New York, But the Feds Don’t Seem to Care

      A little more than a year ago, a transformer fire and oil spill reminded the world that Indian Point, an aging nuclear power plant, sits only about 45 miles north of midtown Manhattan. Later it was revealed that the fire was caused by a short circuit due to insulation failure in a high-voltage coil in the transformer.

    • Revealed: New evidence shows palm oil giant flouting rules to prevent Indonesian forest fires

      One of the world’s largest producers of palm oil appears to have defied instructions from the Indonesian government to stop practices that could cause a repeat of the extreme forest and peat fires of 2015, a new investigation has revealed.

      In November last year, the Ministry of Environment prohibited the palm oil industry from planting commercial crops on already burned land and instructed companies to ensure primary canals are blocked to prevent land being drained.

      Evidence unearthed by a Greenpeace Indonesia field investigation in April suggests that IOI has in fact violated these new rules.

    • Peabody Coal Bankruptcy Reveals Climate Denial Network Funding

      Peabody Energy, the world’s largest private-sector coal company, has provided funds to a network of individuals, scientists, non-profits and political organizations espousing climate change denial and opposition to efforts to tackle climate change, according to newly available documents reviewed by the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD/PRWatch).

      The recipients of funding from Peabody Energy were made public in the company’s recent bankruptcy filings.

    • Revealed: How This Coal Giant Became Treasury Dept. for Climate Denialists

      Peabody Energy, the largest coal producer in the U.S., funded dozens of groups spreading skepticism about climate change, according to new figures that reportedly surprised even environmental advocates with their scale.

      A Guardian analysis of the company’s filings reveal that Peabody gave money to at least two dozen companies including trade associations, lobbying groups, conservative think tanks, and other organizations that campaigned against climate science and fought President Barack Obama’s plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

    • Now THAT’s going to make you saddle sore! Hundreds of cyclists ride naked through London in protest against car culture
  • Finance

    • Walmart Canada to stop accepting Visa cards due to ‘unacceptably high’ fees

      Walmart says it intends to join the list of retailers in Canada that don’t accept Visa cards, citing high fees for transactions. It’s a move one retail analyst has said will cause “pain on all sides.”

      All credit cards charge fees to retailers, which generally are between one per cent and 2.5 per cent of the cost what’s being sold. The fees vary depending on the type of card the customer is using — cash-back and premium cards generally have higher fees — and the type of retailer they’re shopping at.

    • EU referendum: Gordon Brown urges Labour voters to stay in

      Former PM Gordon Brown is to tell Labour voters they have the “most to gain” if the UK stays in the European Union, as the party seeks to rally its supporters behind the Remain campaign.

      In a speech later, he will say the EU can deliver policies close to their concerns including tackling corporate tax avoidance and creating jobs.

      Mr Brown will make what he is calling the “positive” case for staying in.

    • Left-Wing Party In Spain Borrows Ikea Style to Promote Anti-Austerity Manifesto

      The Spanish anti-austerity political party Podemos has an interesting idea to make its new platform the “most-read manifesto ever produced”: put it in the form of an Ikea catalog.

      Across pages of photographs depicting the party’s leaders relaxing or working in their sun-dappled homes, Podemos outlines its proposals (pdf) on key political issues, covering familiar ground with plans to reduce unemployment and increase taxes on the wealthy.

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Going Global: Bernie Sanders’s Challenge

      As Bernie Sanders ponders his next step, he could fall in line behind the Clinton bandwagon or break free and take his critique of economic injustice to a global stage, starting with a challenge to Brazil’s pro-corruption coup, writes Sam Husseini.

    • How Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton and Others Used Social Media to Reframe News of Orlando Shooting

      As news updates rolled in about Sunday’s shooting at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub, politicians, public figures, activists and journalists took to Facebook and Twitter to send out unfiltered statements about the significance of the massacre.

      For prominent politicians in and seeking office, the shooting represented an obligation to comment as well as a challenge, as the tragedy touched on several highly charged issues and themes in the public sphere, including but not limited to: LGBTQ rights, homophobia, Islamophobia, gun control and terrorism.

  • Censorship/Free Speech

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Embarrassed German intelligence official trying to discredit Snowden

      German intelligence mandarin Hans-Georg Maassen of the Verfassungsschutz has told the Bundestag’s NSA committee that it is “highly plausible” that whistleblower Edward Snowden is a Russian spy.

      Obviously, it is very hard if at all possible to know if anyone is a Russian spy. There are even speculations about Chancellor Merkel (who is of East-German descent). But speculations are just speculations.

    • DOJ Warns Calexico Police: Fix Institutional Problems Before Adopting Surveillance Tech

      Law enforcement agencies should not expand their electronic surveillance capabilities until they have addressed core problems of corruption, incompetence, poor oversight, and inadequate training.

      Echoing concerns long raised by EFF, that’s the message the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) sent the Calexico Police Department (CPD) following a years-long investigation into alleged corruption by officers.

    • NSA interested in exploiting internet-connected medical devices, spying on IoT

      The NSA has new tricks up its sleeve, looking for ways to exploit the Internet of Things and connected biomedical devices like pacemakers in order to monitor targets and collect foreign intelligence.

      At the Defense One Tech Summit on Friday, NSA Deputy Director Richard Ledgett said, “We’re looking at it sort of theoretically from a research point of view right now.”

      If that involves hackers from the NSA’s Office of Tailored Access Operations (TAO), then it’s practically a done deal when you consider the wide range of devices previously pwned and listed in the ANT division catalog of exploits. It surely wouldn’t be too difficult for the group, since IoT and wireless medical devices are notoriously insecure.

      Ledgett, according to The Intercept, claimed surveillance via biomedical devices might be “a niche kind of thing … a tool in the toolbox.” He reminded the audience that there are easier ways for the NSA to spy on targets.

    • NSA targets the Internet of Things as a new data source

      The Internet of Things (IoT) may be the US National Security Agency’s next potential target for spying and collecting data according to a comment made by its deputy director at a recent military technology conference.

      During the conference, which was held in Washington DC on 10 June, deputy director of the NSA Richard Ledgett said that the agency is considering potential ways it could collect data from internet-connected devices such as smart appliances and pacemakers. According to the Intercept, he said: “We’re looking at it sort of theoretically from a research point of view right now.” IoT technology has yet to become truly mainstream and as such the NSA exploring ways it could utilise this new wave of devices to collect information is in line with the agency’s past activities.

    • Snowden leak reveals Scottish links to GCHQ spy programme
    • Snowden exposes mass surveillance in Scotland by “unknown” government agency
    • Politicians and researchers raise questions over secret Scottish surveillance system
    • Apple vs FBI: NSA reveals why it couldn’t hack San Bernardino iPhone
    • NSA Explains Why It Couldn’t Hack San Bernardino iPhone
    • Could FBI Again Struggle To Get Access To Orlando Terrorist’s Phone?
    • BlackBerry hands over user data to help police ‘kick ass,’ insider says

      A specialized unit inside mobile firm BlackBerry has for years enthusiastically helped intercept user data — including BBM messages — to help in hundreds of police investigations in dozens of countries, a CBC News investigation reveals.

      CBC News has gained a rare glimpse inside the struggling smartphone maker’s Public Safety Operations team, which at one point numbered 15 people, and has long kept its handling of warrants and police requests for taps on user information confidential.

    • BlackBerry: We’re Here To Kick Ass And Sell Out Users To Law Enforcement. And We’re (Almost) All Out Of Users.

      Back in mid-April, it was discovered that Canadian law enforcement (along with Dutch authorities) had the ability to intercept and decrypt BlackBerry messages. This level of access suggested the company had turned over its encryption key to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. BlackBerry has only one encryption key for most customers — which it maintains control of. Enterprise users, however, can set their own key, which cuts BlackBerry out of the loop completely.

      BlackBerry CEO John Chen — despite publicly criticizing Apple for locking law enforcement out of its phone with default encryption — refused to provide specifics on this apparent breach of his customers’ trust. Instead, he offered a non-denial denial, stating that BlackBerry stood by its “lawful access principles.”

    • US government asks to join key EU Facebook privacy case brought by Schrems

      The US government has asked to be joined as a party in the Irish High Court case between the Austrian privacy activist and lawyer Max Schrems, and the social network Facebook. In a press release, Schrems called this “an unusual move.”

      He told Ars that there are no documents relating to the “amicus curiae”—friend of the court—request yet. “The US government simply appeared via a barrister at the first (administrative) hearing today,” he said. “They will be able to file the documents until the 22nd.”

      Schrems speculated that the US government has made this move because it wanted to defend its surveillance laws before the European Courts. “I think this move will be very interesting,” he told Ars. “The US has previously maintained that we all misunderstood US surveillance.”

    • Now, please focus on Tor and its future

      Having seen the Swedish and the German Pirate Parties going down in flames after infighting, I can recognize some sort of underlying tone in the Tor dispute. Conflicts in tech-oriented communities often tend to spiral out of control and reason.

    • Snowden: Scotland has its own NSA conducting mass surveillance of phone and internet activity

      Documents leaked by Edward Snowden reveal that Scottish authorities have been engaged in gathering data about phone and internet usage in much the same way as the NSA and GCHQ.

    • Secret police phone tap unit was run by Strathclyde Police
  • Civil Rights/Policing

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Experts, scientists urge Kerala govt to include IPR in curriculum

      Now, the IPR experts and scientists have submitted a representation to the new Kerala government to include IPR in the educational curriculum from the school level and to set up an IPR Academy. Thiruvananthapuram: Since the last seven years, a proposal to set up an Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Academy in Kerala remains only on paper. IP literacy is still very low even after two decades since we signed the Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) at World Trade Organisation. “The proposal to include it in educational curriculum and to set up an IPR Academy will be taken forward by the new government and a clear picture on its modalities will emerge soon,” he said. IPR is already an optional subject for Law students in Kerala.

    • Why you just can’t have a one-size-fits-all IPR policy

      The National IPR (Intellectual Property Rights) policy was released on May 11. This 38-page document will give directions to the government to promote ‘creative and innovative India’. Questions have been raised in some quarters about the need for a new policy now, as extensive legislation has been passed amending patent, copyright, trademark and design laws. Was the report released because of the Prime Minister’s US trip? Will it play into the pharmaceutical lobby?

    • Alongside UN Commitments To End AIDS, Event On Access Brings Tears, Vision

      Last week, United Nations members agreed on a political declaration on ending AIDS by 2030, with some new and old commitments. Alongside the 8-10 June High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS, a side event looked at issues of access and got into intellectual property rights issues.

    • Myriad Genetics Refuses To Accept That People Have A Right To Access Their Own DNA Sequences

      One of the biggest victories on the patent front was when the US Supreme Court finally ruled that naturally-occurring DNA cannot be patented. The company involved in this case, Myriad Genetics, didn’t give up at this point, but tried to claim that despite this ruling, its patents on genetic testing were still valid. Fortunately, the courts disagreed, and struck down those patents too.

    • Love IP enforcement? Come to Brussels next week for the Commission’s IP Enforcement Conference!

      The AmeriKat currently has a four dedicated IP passions – SPCs, the UPC, trade secrets and remedies. Luckily for her 2016 has so far been an exciting year for all four. In particular, IP remedies in Europe is undergoing a potential renaissance in the form of the Commission’s Consultation on the IP Enforcement Directive (2004/48/EC) which closed on 15 April 2016 (see here).

    • Copyrights

      • “Piracy Monitoring Outfit Uses Flawed Tracking Technology”

        Every day anti-piracy outfits monitor millions of unauthorized BitTorrent transfers. Among other things, the data collected is used to sent stark warnings to alleged pirates. However, according to a torrent site owner the tracking methods of these companies are not all foolproof.

      • Neil Young Onstage: ‘F–k You, Donald Trump’

        In a lengthy Facebook post, Neil Young cleared the air about how he feels about Donald Trump using his songs: “YOUNG CONTINUES TO DENY TRUMP PERMISSION TO USE HIS MUSIC,” the rocker wrote, attaching a short clip of him yelling “Fuck you, Donald Trump” onstage.

      • Not The Onion: Morocco Bans Sharing Newspapers To Protect Publisher Business Models

        It’s no surprise that traditional newspaper publishing is a struggling business. That’s been the case for a long time, leading to a variety of silly proposals to try to prop up their failing businesses. There’s been talk of changing copyright law to ban linking to or paraphrasing newspaper articles online. There’s been a lot of focus on somehow harming search engines, as if they’re the problem that newspapers face. There have been proposals to create a special version of the hot news doctrine to stop search engines from linking to stories. And, of course, over in the EU there’s been a years-long push to “tax” links, which was so broad in Spain that Google News shut down in that country. That law, designed to protect newspapers, actually harmed them.

        However, I don’t think any proposal we’ve seen is crazier than what’s happening in Morocco, where apparently newspaper publishers are lashing out at anything they can think to blame in response to decreasing revenue — including people in cafes sharing newspapers with others. And thus, a compliant government has now banned the practice. No one’s putting any spin on this other than “OMG, newspapers are making less money, and let’s ‘protect’ them.”

      • Pure Bullshit: AMC Threatens Huge Fan Community With Copyright Claim Over ‘Spoiler’ Predictions

        What’s up, Hollywood TV people? Hey, could you do everyone a favor and maybe stop being complete assholes to your biggest fans — and especially completely abusing copyright law to harass and bully those people? Almost exactly a month ago we wrote about HBO abusing the DMCA process to go after people who were predicting what would happen in Game of Thrones, accusing them of violating copyright law in accurately predicting what would happen in the future. As we noted, that’s not at all how copyright law works, but apparently AMC took a look at what HBO was doing and said “hey, let’s do that too.”

      • EU digital copyright consultation: Last chance to have your voice heard

        An important EU public consultation on copyright closes on Wednesday. As well as the official consultation page from the European Commission, there is an easy-to-use site set up by the Copyright for Creativity group that aims to facilitate the process by explaining what the questions really mean. It takes only a few minutes to complete, and automates the entire submission process. There are versions in English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, and Polish.

        The consultation offers a rare chance for members of the public to help shape the EU’s future digital copyright policy in two areas that are highly relevant for Ars readers. The first is the idea of placing a “Google tax” on snippets. More formally called a “neighbouring right” or “ancillary copyright,” it would allow publishers to demand payment from search engines and content aggregators when the latter include short snippets that link to the original text. As Ars explained last year, the approach has been tried in Spain and Germany with disastrous results—a powerful argument not to extend it across the whole of the EU, as the European Commission is still considering.

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    The mental dysfunction — an infectious condition — that says everything in the world must be patented should be resisted; it overlooks the fact that patents were introduced to protect/promote actual invention, not thoughts, feelings, nature and art



  8. [Humour/Meme] IBM's Money is Unhealthy to the Free Software Foundation (FSF)

    IBM will never be happy as long as RMS (Richard Stallman) has a say in the FSF — directly or indirectly — or even in the GNU Project, both of which he himself created back when IBM was the biggest monopolist



  9. IRC Proceedings: Monday, July 06, 2020

    IRC logs for Monday, July 06, 2020



  10. Never Let IBM/Red Hat Lecture Us on Morality

    Ethics and morality should not be taught by those who themselves need a lesson; in the meantime we're losing the courage to speak freely and those who commit atrocious acts like it a lot better that way



  11. [Humour/Meme] Wear the Red Hat as the Open Org Becomes Openwash

    IBM is changing Red Hat and not for the better; sooner or later IBM will become another Microsoft and changing from one to the other will be like swapping 'masters'



  12. IBM is Imposing Non-Free, Privacy-Infringing Tools and Patent Tolls on Red Hat Staff

    There are signs that Red Hat under IBM will be more like assimilation to IBM, not IBM assimilating to the 'Red Hat way' or the so-called 'open org'



  13. They Tell the Free Software Community That It is Racist While Saying Nothing at All About Trump's Racism (Because He Gives Them Government and Military Contracts)

    While their president compares 'foreign' people to a virus (using innuendo, dog whistles and racist rhetoric reminiscent of the Nazi era) the big US corporations (American surveillance giants) turn their attention to rather innocuous words inside people's code (which almost nobody sees anyway)



  14. LibreOffice 'Personal Edition' Seems Like a Marketing and Communication Fluke

    Had LibreOffice developers (and the Document Foundation) communicated these changes more openly, they would have averted/avoided some of the FUD



  15. It Almost Feels Like Microsoft Has Already 'Bought' Canonical

    Canonical's disturbing trajectory and betrayal of the community continue unabated; one can easily get the impression that Ubuntu exists to help Microsoft at some level



  16. Update to GNU Project Bleeding into Microsoft

    Update



  17. Microsoft is Going to Get Tired of Whining About “GAFA” and Accept That It's Just as Bad If Not a Lot Worse at Privacy

    Microsoft is being treated by the US government as if it's not abusing anything, let alone people's privacy; if anything, this demonstrates the degree to which Microsoft infiltrated or 'vendor-captured' regulatory branches



  18. Links 6/7/2020: LibreOffice 7.0 RC1, MX-19.2 KDE Beta 1, Linux 5.8 RC4

    Links for the day



  19. ZDNet's 'Linux' Section: Linux is Full of Problems and It Loves/Embraces Software Patents

    Software patents promotion and GNU/Linux FUD; your daily dosage of 'news' from the tabloid known as ZDNet...



  20. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, July 05, 2020

    IRC logs for Sunday, July 05, 2020



  21. Links 5/7/2020: Slackel 7.3 Mate Beta and GNOME Gingerblue

    Links for the day



  22. Technological Progress? Only If We Assume The Wrong Things...

    When we're told that we're all dumb we're being given increasingly dumb technology (and they tell us dumber is better)



  23. Linux Foundation Still Owned and Controlled Largely -- and More Over Time -- by Surveillance Companies (Openwashing Services for Bad Practices and Bad Actors)

    The Linux Foundation‘s growing role in spying or the focus on data-mining operations is an eternal reminder or warning that the Foundation follows power and money, not freedom or ethics (it began as a salary-paying venture, crowdfunding among large corporations which conduct mass surveillance)



  24. Sharing is Caring, as Those Who Share Usually Care

    Going back to our human roots, people who cooperate and collaborate are vastly more likely to survive and thrive; Free software is almost guaranteed to become the norm when/once everyone demands it (proprietary software is too divisive, supremacist and even racist)



  25. Systems Can Crash and People Can Die by Changing Language (Even in Parameter and Function Space) to Appease Activists

    It seems clear that Intel takes the lead in trying to change Linux not in technical means but purely social means; even when (and where) that can compromise the robustness of the kernel (Intel is nowadays known for profoundly defective chips with back doors)



  26. António Campinos Should Speak to Peasants, Not Litigation Lawyers

    Mr. Campinos does not work for campinos but against campinos; he represents the people who sue or threaten them using ludicrous patents that should never have been granted (e.g. in Ethiopia)



  27. Christine Lambrecht (German Minister of Justice and Consumer Protection) Ignores the Fact That Even Patent Experts Reject the Unitary Patent (UPC)

    The debacle single-handedly caused by and attributable to Christine Lambrecht, who is eager to appease litigation lawyers, is made yet worse by the fact that people in this domain/profession reject what she's trying to ram down people's throats



  28. [Humour] The Linux Foundation is Not Even Using Linux

    The Linux Foundation does not support Linux except in name; it is important to remember that



  29. Microsoft Loves Power

    An explanation of why Microsoft says it loves this and that; Microsoft lacks the capacity to love or to express empathy as it's always about self gratification or coercion, nothing else



  30. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, July 04, 2020

    IRC logs for Saturday, July 04, 2020


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