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10.03.16

Links 3/10/2016: GNU Linux-Libre 4.8, DNF 2.0.0

Posted in News Roundup at 3:03 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

    • Down the rabbit hole, part 3: Linux and Tor are key to ensuring privacy, security

      So, I’ve decided I need to improve the privacy and security of my life (especially as it relates to computing). And I’ve come to the conclusion that in order to effectively do this, I need to focus on utilizing open source software as much as possible.

      What next?

      Let’s start at a very simple, basic level: the operating system of my laptop computers (I don’t actually have a desktop currently, but the same ideas will apply) and how they connect to the internet.

  • Server

    • Mellanox Deploys Standard Linux Operating Systems over Ethernet Switches

      Today Mellanox announced the availability of standard Linux kernel driver for the company Open Ethernet, Spectrum switch platforms. Developed within the large Linux community, the new driver enables standard Linux Operating Systems and off-the-shelf Linux-based applications to operate on the switch, including L2 and L3 switching. Open Ethernet provides data centers with the flexibility to choose the best hardware platform and the best software platform, resulting in optimized data center performance and higher return on investment.

    • Mellanox Introduces New Driver for Open Ethernet, Spectrum Switch Platforms
    • Mesos and Kubernetes on a hybrid (IBM Power and x86) architecture scenario

      Currently, there are several popular containers clustering system for Linux®, such as Kubernetes, Mesos and so on. Google Kubernetes and Apache Mesos are probably two commonly used tools to deploy containers inside a cluster. Both are created as helper tools that can be used to manage a cluster of containers. However, they differ greatly in their approaches.

      Always, our customs have a hybrid architecture that includes IBM® Power® and x86. So, this article provides the reference solutions about how to apply Mesos and Kubernetes into Linux on a hybrid architecture (including Power and x86) environment.

      See Figure 1 for the reference architecture.

  • Kernel Space

    • GNU Linux-libre 4.8-gnu Released, Deblobs More Drivers

      Hot off the release of the official upstream Linux 4.8 kernel, the GNU Linux-libre 4.8-gnu kernel is now available as the deblobbed code that strips out support for loading non-free firmware and other references to non-free kernel support.

      With GNU Linux-libre 4.8-gnu, there is a change to allow AMD Evergreen GPUs to be able to successfully initialize correctly without any binary-only blobs, a port from a change these developers did back for R600 hardware on an earlier kernel.

    • Linux Kernel 4.8 released with Microsoft Surface 3 touchscreen support [Ed: How on Earth have some people spun a Linux release as a “Microsoft” thing? Part of the “Microsoft loves Linux” Big Lie or is “Microsoft” the biggest Linux feature now? Maybe just headline baiting.]
    • Linux 4.8 kernel will support newer hardware, including your Microsoft Surface 3
    • Systemd bug allows ordinary user to crash Linux systems

      The systemd project is yet to release a fix for a bug that was disclosed on 28 September but at least one GNU/Linux distribution has patched the same.

      The bug, allowing a user to crash a system by using a short command as an ordinary user, was disclosed by a developer named Andrew Ayer.

      After running this command, according to Ayer, “You can no longer start and stop daemons. inetd-style services no longer accept connections. You cannot cleanly reboot the system. The system feels generally unstable (e.g. ssh and su hang for 30 seconds since systemd is now integrated with the login system).”

    • Major Linux distributions suffer from the latest system crippling bug

      A system administrator, Andrew Ayer discovered a crippling bug while working with his Linux System. He reported the issue at length in a blogpost pointing out how anyone could crash Systemd by one single tweet. The system will not collapse as soon as the tweet is rendered on screen by the system. Instead, what it meant was that any Linux distribution could be crippled by a command that can fit into one tweet. He even posted a tweet with the command to prove his point.

    • Linux 4.9′s CPUFreq To Make Greater Use Of Scheduler Info, IOWait Boosting

      The past few kernel releases there’s been a redesign of CPUFreq and P-State code for being able to make use of the kernel’s scheduler utilization data by these CPU frequency scaling drivers. That work also led to the introduction of the Schedutil governor. Work along this line has continued for Linux 4.9.

    • EFI Test Driver Added To The Mainline Linux 4.9 Kernel

      The EFI material is one of the early pull requests for the Linux 4.9 kernel and its bringing a new driver via EFI_TEST.

    • Linux 4.9 On x86_64 To Support Vmapped Stacks

      With the forthcoming Linux 4.9 kernel, x86_64 builds will support CONFIG_VMAP_STACK where kernel stacks are allocated with vmalloc_node for greater security.

    • Mellanox Platform Support Coming In Linux 4.9

      The x86/platform updates for the Linux 4.9 kernel that entered development on Sunday is bringing initial support for the Mellanox systems platform.

    • Linux Should Soon Start Receiving “Make WiFi Fast” Improvements

      In the months ahead the Linux kernel should start receiving the work out of the “make-wifi-fast” initiative for improving WiFi reliability and performance.

      The Bufferbloat project has been working on the Make-WiFi-Fast project because “the current Linux WiFi stack and drivers are far from optimal.” The project aims to reduce latency, develop new packet scheduling and AQM techniques, and improve the stack to allow 802.11ac MU-MIMO to properly work.

  • Applications

  • Distributions

    • Screenshots/Screencasts

      • Apricity OS, a beautiful way to to enter Arch era

        Last time we told you about Manjaro Linux, which is an Arch based linux distribution. Now the point is there is not only one fork but there are others too. Today we will discuss about another fork of Arch in this 12th segment of “Introduction with Linux Distro”. The distribution we will see today is one of the most beautiful distributions in linux world and it is named Apricity OS.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Finance

      • Fedora

        • DNF 2.0.0 and DNF-PLUGINS-CORE 1.0.0 Released

          DNF-2.0 is out! This major version release of DNF brings many user experience improvements such as more understandable dependency problem reporting messages, weak dependencies shown in transaction summary, more intuitive help usage invoking and others. Repoquery plugin has moved into DNF itself. Whole DNF stack release fixes over 60 bugs. DNF-2.0 release was focused on getting rid of yum incompatibilities i.e. treat yum configuration options the same (`include`, `includepkgs` and `exclude`). Unfortunately this release is not fully compatible with DNF-1. See the list of DNF-1 and DNF-2 incompatible changes. Especially plugins will need to be changed to the new DNF argument parser. For complete list of changes see DNF and plugins release notes.

        • DNF 2.0 Released For Improved Package Management On Fedora

          Version 2.0 of the DNF package manager is now available in release candidate form as a major update to this Yum successor. Meanwhile, DNF-Plugins-Core reached version 1.0 for testing.

        • When every Beta closes another Alpha opens…

          As many of you may know, deadlines for Beta packaging for Fedora 25 have recently come and gone. With this said, designs for the default wallpaper are underway and I’m continuing to work through quirks in the design in order to represent the subtle, yet bold and memorable aesthetic that is present in Fedora wallpapers. Getting closer to the Alpha package deadline, I figured that I’d post another progress picture of where I’m at so far. Be sure to check out https://fedorahosted.org/design-team/ticket/473 for more information as to the background and thought process of the design as well!

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu Software Can Now Show Screenshots of Snap Apps

            A small fix this one, but it’s something that will help Snap apps stand out in the Ubuntu Software store.

            Snap apps are already available to find and install from the GNOME Ubuntu Software app, on both Ubuntu 16.04 LTS and Ubuntu 16.10. As there’s (still) no way to search for Snap app specifically you need to know the Snap app you want to find before you can find it.

            But until recently Snap apps didn’t display application screenshots, a valuable feature of any app store.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Arduino on Arduino battle ends in reconciliation, merger

      On Saturday, the two rival groups—Arduino LLC (Arduino.cc) and Arduino Srl (Arduino.org)—announced that they had “settled their differences,” and agreed to merge. At present, the similarly-designed sites both carry the official Arduino logo, and both sell official Arduino products.

      The electronics platform Arduino describes itself as “the world’s leading open-source ecosystem for educators, Makers and IoT developers of all ages.” Its board plans are published under Creative Commons (CC) licences, while its software is released as open source. Ars interviewed one of Arduino’s co-founders, Massimo Banzi, back in 2013.

    • ROS: An Open Source Robotics Platform on Linux

      ROS is an open source framework allowing you to create advanced robots. Using ROS takes much of the tedious work out of creating useful robots because it supplies code for navigation, arm manipulation, and other common robot tasks. ROS allows various software components to communicate between one or more computers and microcontrollers, and it allows you to control one or more machine robot networks from a desktop, web browser, and/or other input device. Although ROS stands for Robot Operating System, it is really a framework that sits on top of an existing operating system such as GNU/Linux. Packages are provided for Ubuntu Linux to help get your robot up and rolling.

    • ORWL Open Source, Physically Secure Personal Computer $699 (video)

      First unveiled back in 2012 the ORWL open source personal computer has been designed with your data security in mind and is being marketed as the very first open source physically secure computer.

      What’s the promotional two-minute video below to learn more about the ORWL and how it can be used to keep your personal data safe. ORWL is currently in the final days of its crowdfunding campaign and has nearly raised double what the team requires to take the secure personal computer into production. For more information, full specifications and to make a pledge jump over to Crowd Supply via the link below.

    • Phones

      • Linux V4.8 on N900

        Basics work, good. GSM does not work too well, which is kind of a problem. Camera broke between 4.7 and 4.8. That is not good, either.

      • Android

        • Best Phones for Rooting and Modding

          If you’re not content with the software some company decided you are allowed to use and are willing to roll up your sleeves and do something about it, the Nexus 5X is the best phone to do it with.

          Because it’s a phone directly from Google, the bootloader is easy to unlock using tools and directions Google gives you, and you’ll have no restrictions on the software you can install. If you keep going until the phone just stops working getting back to the factory software is just as easy, and Google provides a downloadable image you can use to restore.

        • EU to Google: stop Android anti-competitive deals, or else [Ed: Remember Microsoft was behind this, remember Android is Linux based, ask yourself if "Microsoft loves Linux"]
        • White Google Pixel and Pixel XL leaked by Bell
        • Google Maps for Android Update Brings Calendar Integration, Shows Upcoming Events
        • Most Secure Android Phone

          The Nexus 6P is the most secure Android phone you can buy, and one of the most secure phones of any available today.

          Without disabling any security protections, the Nexus 6P is protected against known public security exploits and remote installations are monitored by Google’s scanning software which blocks potential malicious content. While security and privacy are two very different things, when you decide you want private things to stay private you need to make sure your phone is secure to keep them that way.

Free Software/Open Source

  • How startups can use open source software to compete against the big guys

    Open source software allows more small businesses in industries that haven’t yet been completely disrupted by technology to create agile software with a small team. This kind of access is what helped my team create our own content marketing software to better service our clients in-house. We did it with a small dev team, and we aren’t alone in that. I think we’re going to start seeing more companies use open source software to create custom tech solutions to fit their needs and make them more competitive against industry giants. – John Hall, Influence & Co.

  • Zeppelin: a Secure Smart Contracts Open-Source Framework for Blockchain Applications

    On September 15, the roadmap proposal for Zeppelin, a MIT licensed open source framework for building secure smart contracts, was published. This comes at an appropriate time as evidenced by the number of talks and discussions at DevCon2 surrounding formal verification of smart contracts.

    Demian Brener and Manuel Aráoz, founders of Smart Contract Solutions, are pioneering the effort around Zeppelin. Zeppelin is a community effort to enable the development of secure, tested and audited smart contract code. Earlier this year, “The DAO”, the largest smart contract application to date, was hacked for $60M by exploiting a loophole in its smart contract. This has justified many concerns in the community bringing formal verification to the forefront.

  • Google Open Sources Powerful Image Recognition Tool

    On the artificial intelligence front, there is a true renaissance going on right now, and it includes a slew of new open source tools, many of which are likely to give rise to businesses built around them. For example, Google recently open sourced a program called TensorFlow. It’s based on the same internal toolset that Google has spent years developing to support its AI software and other predictive and analytics programs. You can find out more about TensorFlow at its site, and you might be surprised to learn that it is the engine behind several Google tools you may already use, including Google Photos and the speech recognition found in the Google app.

    Now, Google has open sourced a “Show and Tell” algorithm to developers, who can purportedly use it recognize objects in photos with up to 93.9 percent accuracy, and help to automate smart photo captioning. It’s based on TensorFlow, and here are details.

  • Events

    • OpenStack Summit to Include Distinguished Contributor Awards

      Not long ago, the OpenStack Foundation created a Superuser publication to facilitate knowledge sharing and collaborative problem solving among individuals who are running OpenStack clouds. It’s actually become a very rich site, and if you are at all involved with OpenStack, it’s worth investigating.

      As the Superuser site has announced, at the upcoming OpenStack Summit in Barcelona, a special round of community awards will be handed out by the OpenStack Foundation. The idea is to recognize esteemed contributors, and here are the details on how you can enter a submission for consideration.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • GnuCash A Free & Open Source Accounting Software For Linux

      GnuCash is a free open source accounting program launched in 1998 for small business. GnuCash implements a double entry bookkeeping system. It was first designed for Linux but later in 2004 it was released for Mac and in 2007 was available for Windows. Its current version is 2.6.14. GnuCash is also available for Android in Playstore.

  • Public Services/Government

Leftovers

  • Security

    • security things in Linux v4.7
    • Microsoft warns Windows security fix may break network shares

      The latest of these, Preview Build 14936 – for testers on what Microsoft refers to as the Fast Ring – comes with the usual set of updates, new features, and fixes for things that the previous release managed to break.

      However, what caught our eye was a warning that after updating, users may find that shared devices such as NAS boxes have mysteriously disappeared from the home network folder, and that any previously mapped network drives are unavailable.

      Microsoft offers a fix for this; if you change your network to “private” or “enterprise”, it should start working again.

      It seems that the cause of this hiccup is a fix that Microsoft made earlier in September to address a security hole severe enough that it might allow remote code execution with elevated permissions on an affected system, although this would require an attacker to create a specially crafted request.

      The fix addresses this by, among other things, “correcting how Windows enforces permissions”.

      Windows Insiders are typically no newbies and used to preview builds breaking stuff, but it is likely that this change will find its way into the Windows 10 code everybody else is running sooner or later.

    • Android Devices Are Targeted By New Lockscreen Ransomware
  • Defence/Aggression

    • Inside the Shadowy PR Firm That’s Lobbying for Regime Change in Syria

      On September 30, demonstrators gathered in city squares across the West for a “weekend of action” to “stop the bombs” raining down from Syrian government and Russian warplanes on rebel-held eastern Aleppo. Thousands joined the protests, holding signs that read “Topple Assad” and declaring, “Enough With Assad.” Few participants likely knew that the actions were organized under the auspices of an opposition-funded public relations company called the Syria Campaign.

    • Under Intense Pressure to Silence Wikileaks, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Proposed Drone Strike on Julian Assange

      Julian Assange and his free-speech brainchild Wikileaks were once lauded as global heroes of public service among United States politicians and policy makers. But by 2010, four years after its inception during the President George W. Bush administration, Assange and his organization were no longer considered lovable troublemakers and mavericks.

      A year into President Barack Obama’s first term, Wikileaks was suddenly considered an out-of-control free-speech Frankenstein wreaking havoc on United States foreign policy and intelligence gathering at the direction of Assange, its proverbial Dr. Frankenstein.

      The honeymoon for the whistle-blower web site, once a darling of the Democratic Party, was now over. Even more alarming, Assange’s personal safety and organization were increasingly at risk from U.S. concerns.

      By November 2010, Assange was a household name globally, but especially on Capitol Hill. And in the State Department alone his prowess of releasing otherwise secret, damning military documents and emails were filling conference rooms at Foggy Bottom and the White House with policy wonks and bureaucrats desperately seeking to squelch the upstart Wikileaks. At the State Department, meeting after meeting was conducted about how Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her inner circle were going to squash Assange and Wikileaks latest planned document dump on the United States. Deemed “CableGate,” Assange planned to release confidential cables, or communications, unveiling damaging internal conversations between State Department personnel and its foreign assets and allies.

      Prodded by the looming CableGate, Clinton met with staff on Tuesday November 23, 2010 shortly after 8 a.m. on Mahogany Row at the State Department to attempt to formulate a strategy to avert Assange’s plans to release an enormous batch of 250,000 secret cables, dating from 1966 to 2010. Assange had professed for months to rain the internal cables down on Clinton and President Obama. The collective fear was the context of the secret cables would hamper U.S. intelligence gathering and compromise private correspondences and intelligence shared with foreign governments and opposition leaders. Splashing such juicy details on television news shows and the front pages of major newspapers in the country was great for the media but lousy for intelligence and foreign policy. Many, including Clinton and her elected boss, expressed fear these revelations would embarrass and expose intelligence allies of the United States and set America’s already fragile foreign policy back decades.

    • The Empire Strikes Back

      A decade ago left-wing governments, defying Washington and global corporations, took power in Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Venezuela, Uruguay, Bolivia and Ecuador. It seemed as if the tide in Latin America was turning. The interference by Washington and exploitation by international corporations might finally be defeated. Latin American governments, headed by charismatic leaders such as Hugo Chavez in Venezuela, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in Brazil, Evo Morales in Bolivia and Rafael Correa in Ecuador, won huge electoral victories. They instituted socialist reforms that benefited the poor and the working class. They refused to be puppets of the United States. They took control of their nations’ own resources and destinies. They mounted the first successful revolt against neoliberalism and corporate domination. It was a revolt many in the United States hoped to emulate here.

      But the movements and governments in Latin America have fallen prey to the dark forces of U.S. imperialism and the wrath of corporate power. The tricks long practiced by Washington and its corporate allies have returned—the black propaganda; the manipulation of the media; the bribery and corruption of politicians, generals, police, labor leaders and journalists; the legislative coups d’état; the economic strangulation; the discrediting of democratically elected leaders; the criminalization of the left; and the use of death squads to silence and disappear those fighting on behalf of the poor. It is an old, dirty game.

      President Correa, who earned enmity from Washington for granting political asylum to Julian Assange four years ago and for closing the United States’ Manta military air base in 2009, warned recently that a new version of Operation Condor is underway in Latin America. Operation Condor, which operated in the 1970s and ’80s, saw thousands of labor union organizers, community leaders, students, activists, politicians, diplomats, religious leaders, journalists and artists tortured, assassinated and disappeared. The intelligence chiefs from right-wing regimes in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay and, later, Brazil had overseen the campaigns of terror. They received funds from the United States and logistical support and training from the Central Intelligence Agency. Press freedom, union organizing, all forms of artistic dissent and political opposition were abolished. In a coordinated effort these regimes brutally dismembered radical and leftist movements across Latin America. In Argentina alone 30,000 people disappeared.

    • Colombia referendum: Voters reject Farc peace deal

      Voters in Colombia have rejected a landmark peace deal with Farc rebels in a shock referendum result, with 50.2% voting against it.

      The deal was signed last week by President Juan Manuel Santos and Farc leader Timoleon Jimenez after nearly four years of negotiations.

      But it needed to be ratified by Colombians in order to come into force.

      Addressing the nation, President Santos said he accepted the result but would continue working to achieve peace.

    • Democracy At Its Worst – Colombians Choose War

      The recent result in Colombia is very unsatisfactory. It allows both sides to see victory is achievable with a little more killing or screaming or whatever…

      The world is not a better place when democracy decides that war is better than a few compromises and wider participation of groups in society. Let’s hope that cooler heads prevail and people care enough to do the right thing sooner or later.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife/Nature

    • Reykjavík: the geothermal city that aims to go carbon neutral

      Reykjavík used to be marketed as a place of ‘pure energy’, run on geothermal power – and now Iceland’s capital is trying to become the world’s first carbon neutral city.

      Last month, Iceland became the one of the first countries to ratify the Paris climate deal with a unilateral parliamentary vote, shortly after Reykjavik announced its aim to be carbon neutral by 2040.

      It wants to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions from 2.8 tonnes per person in 2013 to zero – largely by changing the shape of the city to reverse urban sprawl and encouraging Icelanders out of their beloved cars to walk, cycle or use public transport.

      The city already has a head-start thanks to its reliance on geothermal energy. The US, for example, has a greenhouse gas footprint of 16.5 tonnes per person.

  • Finance

    • 589 million Chinese tourists will spend $72 billion in just seven days celebrating “Golden Week”

      Nearly 600 million Chinese tourists will flock to local tourist spots or fly overseas during the country’s 67th National Day holiday, a seven-day break nicknamed “Golden Week.” Unexpectedly, the new hot destination is Morocco, the North African country.

      South Korea, Thailand and Japan continue to be the top 10 most popular travel destinations (link in Chinese) for Chinese tourists, but there was a 3500% year-on-year increase in visa applications to Morocco processed by Ctrip, a Nasdaq-listed travel agency based in Shanghai, China, according to a 2016 National Day Holiday travel prediction report by Ctrip and the state-backed China Travel Academy. The report also said the United Kingdom, Cambodia, Russia and New Zealand will each see a 60% year-on-year increase.

    • After article 50, Brexit will be easy. A trade deal will be anything but

      Article 50, providing for Brexit, will be triggered by the end of March next year, Theresa May has promised. Two years after it is triggered, Britain will find itself outside the European Union, unless there is unanimous agreement among the other member states to extend the time limit.

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Trump Campaign Threatens To Sue NY Times For Sharing His 1995 Tax Returns

      It’s kind of amazing how quickly Donald Trump’s lawyers seem to threaten any media outlet for publishing information about him that he doesn’t like. The latest target is the NY Times which ran a big story over the weekend with some leaked pages of his 1995 tax returns, suggesting that the guy who repeatedly claims he’s great at business, reported personal losses of $916 million. We’ll leave the analyzing of the tax returns to those who do that sort of thing (though I will recommend reading this analysis, which suggests that it’s likely a key part of the NYT article is wrong concerning Trump’s ability to use those losses to avoid taxes for 18 years), but we did want to focus in on something more relevant to what we discuss here at Techdirt.

      [...]

      But, it’s not that simple. The NY Times would have a pretty strong First Amendment defense that what they’re doing here is very much in the public interest. After all, Trump himself has made his tax returns (and his supposed acumen as a business man) an issue in this campaign by refusing to release them, despite every other major party candidate for President releasing tax returns going back decades (and even Trump himself mocked Mitt Romney for taking too long to release his own tax returns in 2012). So there’s no argument here that this isn’t newsworthy. It clearly is, and that certainly helps the NY Times’s case. To me it seems like it should be a clear First Amendment win for the Times — and plenty of others agree.

      Plus, there’s the fact that if Trump actually did sue, he’d have to admit the returns are really his and are accurate.

  • Censorship/Free Speech

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Hackers auctioning NSA code disappointed in bidding
    • NSA Secrets Could Be Yours for Only $1,083!
    • Hacker group finds no takers for NSA exploits
    • Nobody wants hacked NSA tools; The Shadow Brokers go on an angry rant in broken English
    • No-one wants to buy the Shadow Brokers’ stolen NSA tools
    • The Peculiar Case of Email in the Cloud [Ed: All E-mail goes through a server; stop using the Clown Computing buzzword, it’s misleading and harmful]

      If you install Postfix on your server, it’s possible to use a Gmail account to send all e-mail on your system. There are a few downsides to this method, but the configuration is simple, and Google’s e-mail servers are very reliable. Plus, because you’re not acting as an e-mail server yourself, you don’t have to worry about having your e-mail rejected by recipients. It’s legitimately coming from gmail.com.

      The first unfortunate consequence is that for its simplest implementation, you need to enable “less secure apps” to log in to your Gmail account. I actually set up a separate gmail.com account for my server, and then I don’t worry about the less secure setting. Thankfully, if this is a concern, it’s possible to use two-factor authentication (more on that later).

    • Snowden — see this film!

      You’ve seen the news stories, and maybe the documentary. The film Snowden will still scare and inspire you. Oliver Stone has made a film that will draw you in, engage you, and even feel anxious about Snowden’s safety. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is amazingly like the man you’ve seen on TV or Youtube.

      Imdb says about Snowden: Its performance during its opening weekend was the lowest opening of Oliver Stone’s career for a film playing in over 2,000 theaters. So go to a theater near you, and see it!

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • UNSOLVED: The Murder of Ferguson Activist Darren Seals

      It’s been three weeks since the body of 29-year-old Ferguson, Missouri protester Darren Seals was discovered inside his burning vehicle with a gunshot wound to the head. St. Louis County police say the homicide investigation is still without leads. However, some community members are questioning the legitimacy of that investigation.

      Darren Seals was one of the most visible and vocal activists to emerge from Ferguson following the 2014 police shooting of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown. Seals was known as a “day one-er” – meaning he was a visible presence from the very beginning.

      Watching, from just outside the yellow police tape on the afternoon of August 9th, 2014, as Brown’s body lay in the middle of Canfield Drive, and then demonstrating later that same day just a few blocks away on West Florissant Avenue – where clashes between police and protesters would eventually capture the world’s attention.

    • Chelsea Manning’s Integrity

      In Laura Poitras’s documentary, Citizenfour, Edward Snowden worries to Poitras and Glenn Greenwald that “they” (the press and government) will use his “personality” as a distraction when Greenwald starts publishing stories about the documents that Snowden has leaked. Snowden’s concern was meaningful considering the media coverage of Chelsea Manning, who was on trial at the time Poitras was filming the documentary for charges arising from the Espionage Act, including the charge of aiding the enemy.

      Manning’s queerness, gender nonconformity (she now identifies as trans*), and experiences of being bullied in the Army made her an easy target for claims that her leaking of documents was not true whistleblowing, but amounted simply to a private vendetta against the Army and government. In one of the first articles on Manning in the New York Times, for example, Ginger Thompson suggested that Manning might have leaked documents as a way of seeking revenge for being bullied in the military, or for her struggles under Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, or out of “delusions of grandeur.”

    • Arkansas Congressman Who Helped Protect Citizens’ Right To Record Police Arrested For Recording Police

      While the recording of police activities has been covered here for years, I think we’re starting to see what is at least a slight ratcheting down of the drama over the issue. Once almost universally rejected by law enforcement groups, the freedom to record police as they go about their public duty has become more recognized rather than less. That doesn’t mean the issue is settled, though, as shown in a recent example in which Arkansas police arrested a state Congressman who had helped push through a state law protecting the rights of citizens to film police.

    • Arkansas lawmaker who pushed law protecting right to video police is arrested for videoing an arrest

      Officer Jeff Thompson of the Little Rock Police Department arrested Arkansas state Representative John Walker for recording their treatment of a black man who had been put in handcuffs during a traffic stop.

    • Green Party vice presidential candidate Ajamu Baraka on Palestine and Syria

      Ajamu Baraka: Well, of course. The linking of these struggles for liberation in Central America and South Africa with the struggles in the US is a part of the tradition of black internationalism, the center of which is a struggle against the continuity of the colonial, capitalism system. So the quite natural connection has always been with Palestine. In fact, one of the first real structural, organizational connections we point to is the fact that SNCC, the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee issued a statement standing in solidarity with the liberation aspirations of the Palestinians in the mid-1960s. And of course there was a very negative backlash for that. So solidarity with Palestinian struggles for self-determination has always been part of the black internationalist tradition. The connection for us has always been clear.

  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • Domain name system transitions to private sector

      ICANN, the body that regulates the domain name system, is no longer under US government oversight as of October 1

      The contract between ICANN and the US Department of Commerce National Telecommunications and Information Administration to perform the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) functions expired at midnight on Friday.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Big Week For WIPO Marrakesh Treaty On Access For Visually Impaired; Human Rights Side Under Focus [Ed: WIPO is attacking its own staff and Gurry needs to resign]

      The Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled was adopted on 27 June 2013, and the 20th WIPO member ratified it on 30 June 2016, bringing it into force 90 days later on 30 September. The first-ever meeting of the Marrakesh Treaty Assembly is scheduled to take place on 5 October at WIPO.

      The Social Forum of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) is taking place from 3-5 October at the UN Palais. The theme of the 2016 session of the Social Forum is the “promotion and full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons with disabilities in the context of the tenth anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD),” according to the event website.

    • External Offices, WIPO Normative Work At Heart Of General Assemblies

      WIPO Director General Francis Gurry, in his opening speech, said “very good process has been made across the organisation over the course of the past 12 months.” He remarked on the last biennium’s (2014-2015) overall surplus of CHF 70.3 million (US$ 72.3 million). WIPO is faring well in the current biennium, he said, and is foreseen to yield an overall surplus as well.

    • Copyrights

      • Phoneix Police Issues Totally Bogus Cease & Desist To Trump Campaign Claiming Copyright Infringement

        Yes, yes, we know that resorting to copyright to take down speech from a politician you don’t like is pretty common. Most of the time it involves musicians not liking politicians playing songs, but lately we’ve seen some other ones as well. Last week, for example, we wrote about a photographer successfully using the DMCA to remove the now infamous image of a bowl of Skittles that Donald Trump Jr. tweeted.

        The latest, however, is even more ridiculous. The city of Phoenix Arizona has sent a cease & desist letter to the Donald Trump campaign, arguing (incorrectly) that Trump was violating their copyrights and publicity rights, by using imagery of Phoneix police officers in an advertisement (first reported by a local NBC affiliate in Arizona). The ad is available on YouTube, and don’t blink or you might miss the Phoneix police officers. It’s a pretty generic politician ad, frankly, but there’s a very brief shot of Trump shaking hands with some Phoneix police officers on a tarmac somewhere (I’m guessing Phoenix…). It appears to last all of about a second.

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