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08.25.17

Links 25/8/2017: GIMP 2.9.6 Released, SUSE Cushions Btrfs

Posted in News Roundup at 12:25 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open source professionals are more in demand than ever

    So, you want a technology job, do you? Then you should work on your open-source skills because that’s where the jobs are. According to Dice, the leading technology job site, and The Linux Foundation, opportunities for open-source professionals are abound, as companies strive to improve efficiency and cut time to market.

  • 2017 Open Source Jobs Report Available For Download
  • 2017 Jobs Report Highlights Demand for Open Source Skills

    Dice® and The Linux Foundation have once again partnered to produce the annual Open Source Jobs Report, focusing on all aspects of open source software.

  • The 2017 Open Source Jobs Report: Employers Prioritize Hiring Open Source Professionals with Latest Skills
  • Open source and proprietary software solutions: the key for an analytic project

    In the world of data analysis it may be no coincidence that open source tools like the ‘R’ statistical computing language have blossomed as analytics and big data have matured together.

    Hadoop, Python… There seems to be a special kind of magic between the curious minds of data analysts (with a small ‘a’ – as they may be ‘line of business’ users that don’t have a degree in statistics or a qualification in coding) and with new ways of exploring the world.

    Open source software has proven itself to be a very useful way of rapidly finding quality insights out about the world when out to the challenging task of finding insights from the enormous volumes of data out there. Big data analytics provides an opportunity for open source data quality tools to deliver new insights.

  • Telstra launches open source powered security operations centre

    Telstra has formally launched the first of what is intended to be a string of Security Operations Centres (SOCs) that will deliver services to its enterprise and government customers.

    Telstra CEO Andrew Penn and the minister assisting the prime minister for cyber security, Dan Tehan, today officially opened the Sydney SOC.

  • Telstra launches Sydney cybersecurity centre
  • Organizations are desperate for open-source technology skills

    Open-source technology skills are becoming highly sought after as organizations fight among themselves to attract the talent they need to take advantage of the burgeoning trend.

    That’s according to the Linux Foundation’s new 2017 Open Source Jobs Survey and Report, which found that companies are increasingly looking for full-time hires to boost efficiency and reduce time to market.

  • This Man Wants To Open Source Your Car

    So Hotz scrapped it and, last November, gave his technology away for free, releasing an open- source, self-driving platform called Openpilot. He also released open-source plans for Neo, a smartphone-powered device…

  • An open source approach to drive NFV innovation

    Network functions virtualisation (NFV) and software-defined networks (SDN) will play a vital role in the development and future of the telecoms industry. The hybrid network model, based on virtualised technology and hardware, has become mission critical, not just to operations but commercial success also. Telecoms is an industry traditionally steeped in proprietary solutions and insulated approaches to network development, writes Tzvika Naveh, the marketing director for NFV orchestration at Amdocs, however, the introduction of an open-source approach will help further fuel NFV and SDN commercialisation and innovation through collaboration.

  • Understanding OPNFV Starts Here

    If telecom operators or enterprises were to build their networks from scratch today, they would likely build them as software-defined resources, similar to Google or Facebook’s infrastructure. That’s the premise of Network Functions Virtualization (NFV).

    NFV is a once in a generation disruption that will completely transform how networks are built and operated. And, OPNFV is a leading open source NFV project that aims to accelerate the adoption of this technology.

  • Open Source Jobs Report: In-Demand Developers Can Get Paid to Earn Certification
  • Demand for Open Source Skills Continues to Grow

    On a scale of one to five, how are your open source skills? If you picked a number below four, you might want to do something about it. According to the Linux Foundation’s annual Open Source Jobs Report released on Wednesday, employment prospects for open source workers continues to rise.

    Consider this: 86 percent of open source professionals believe that just knowing open source has advanced their careers, with 52 percent saying it would be easy to find another job. If that doesn’t wet your whistle — only 27 percent report not receiving a recruiting call in the past six months.

  • Open source talent in demand, but jobs tough to fill

    Almost 90% of hiring managers reported difficulties acquiring qualified talent for open source jobs, according to a report released Wednesday from career site Dice and The Linux Foundation.

  • The Secret Sauce To Open Source

    One of the first items discussed when companies start using and leveraging open source is the determination of what, in their IP portfolio, is the unique differentiation between themselves and their competitors. What is, in other words, their “secret sauce.” Companies can then use open source to allow them, and their development, to focus on their secret sauce and to consume, or contribute/donate, non-differentiating software to the open source community. This allows companies to focus their time, talent and resources on those aspects of technology that provide the most innovation to them and their customers.

    Some companies, known as Open Core companies, also leverage the idea of “secret sauce” in that they release their code under an Open Source license, but sell “Enterprise Extensions” as commercial products, and keep that technology private and confidential, as their own secret sauce.

    But the most important “secret sauce” in Open Source is also the most unrecognized and most misunderstood. Ironically, science fiction understands this secret ingredient better than most. It’s the delicacy specified in the Twilight Zone’s “How To Serve Man”; it’s the basic constituent of Soylent Green; it’s Arthur C. Clarke’s “Food of the Gods.”

    It’s people.

  • How to handle criticism of your open project

    Over the course of the past year, the project I’m working on has been using open organizational principles as the cornerstone of the work. It’s the first attempt at using open methodologies inside of Greenpeace. The project, code named Planet 4, is the global redesign and development of Greenpeace’s digital presence. To put it quite simply, we are building a piece of software that content and web editors will use to put Greenpeace content on the web. We’re building the software on top of WordPress, a platform we selected in part because of its own open source roots. Throughout the project, we’ve used a remixed version of the Open Decision Framework to document and share everything we’re doing. Aside from me, this way of working was new to my team.

  • YOLO: Open source real-time image recognition

    For those of you who are looking to play around with image recognition in your UAS projects, there’s an open source real-time image recognition system for that. I am not sure yet how well this would work at longer distances with smaller images when capturing footage from a flying platform but could be interesting. I wonder if SAR and related ops could perhaps benefit from such an open source project. Gene?

  • Events

    • Much awaited.. DebConf’17 in Montreal.

      On 5th August I got a chance to attend, speak and experience DebConf 2017 at Montreal, Canada. The conference was ‘stretch’ed from 6 August to 12 August .

    • Technoshamanism at Aarhus University

      We talked about the traditions of festivals before the festivals of technoshamanism, such as Brazilian tactical media, Digitofagy, Submidialogy, MSST (Satellitless Movement), etc. We presented the Baobáxia and the indigenous / quilombola struggles in the city and the countryside. The aesthetic manifestations of encounters of technoshamanism as well as ideas about free or postcolonial thoughts, ancestorfuturism and new Subjective territories.

    • UbuConLA 2017 Summit Summary

      These are my notes about UbuconLA, a bit of social activities and thoughts on the talks related to the snappy ecosystem.

    • Moby Summit at OSS North America

      In case you missed it, the next Moby Project Summit will take place on September 14, 2017 in Los Angeles, as part of the Open Source Summit North America. Following the success of the previous editions, we’ll keep the same format which consists of short technical talks / demos in the morning and Birds-of-a-Feather sessions in the afternoon.

  • Databases

    • Quest Software Releases New Platform to Tackle MySQL Open Source Environments

      Quest Software, a global systems management and security software provider, is releasing Toad Edge, a new commercial database toolset that can manage next-generation open source database environments.

      This release will support MySQL, saving time, minimizing the MySQL learning curve, and mitigating risks that can be associated with building applications on an open source database platform.

      “It’s a brand new development and DBA administration tool for the MySQL database whether that database is running on-prem or on Amazon RDS Azure, it doesn’t matter our tool can help the developer and DBA develop an application on MySQL on-prem or in the cloud,” said Greg Davoll, Executive Director of product management and product marketing.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Kolab Now Is a Smooth On-Ramp for LibreOffice Online

      As cloud popularity grows, so does the collection of free or low-cost online office tools that services like Microsoft Office Online and Google Docs/G Suite provide.

      However, those two major league offerings, along with a swarm of other cloud-based productivity platforms, are proprietary. Open source vendors have been promising a free open source online alternative. Until now, online open source office suites have been little more than vaporware.

      You can get your document work done fine using an open source local installation. Exchanging documents via email attachments or shared links to files stored on Dropbox and other cloud storage farms work reasonably well for low-level collaborative team tasks.

      However, the inconvenience factor kicks in very quickly when you try to handle collaborative tasks and need access to a continual stream of live edits. That is when a cloud-based open source office suite is sorely missed.

      Kolab Systems last month announced Kolab Now, a full-featured online office suite. The launch had the blessing of The Document Foundation, which gave up on fulfilling promises for a free open source online version of the LibreOffice suite it sponsors.

  • Healthcare

    • Open Source Collaboration Key to Healthcare Blockchain Adoption

      Interest in healthcare blockchain continues to grow as organizations realize the potential data sharing advantages. Blockchain is not currently used in healthcare, but open source projects, such as Hyperledger, are working to develop blockchain standards that can eventually be used in healthcare.

      Entities are showing genuine interest in blockchain and are currently working on projects for future adoption, according to Hyperledger Executive Director Brian Behlendorf.

      Last year the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) hosted a healthcare blockchain essay contest in response to vendors approaching the agency and suggesting uses for blockchain in healthcare for provider directories and EHRs. The contest gave HHS a broad pool of examples from vendors and providers alike to get a better grasp on the potential reality of healthcare blockchain implementation.

  • Pseudo-Open Source (Openwashing)

  • BSD

    • LLVM’s Clang C/C++ Compiler Is Still Having Problems With ~5% Of Debian Packages

      Debian developer and LLVM/Clang enthusiast Sylvestre Ledru has provided an update regarding the build results for trying to compile the Debian archive using this GCC compiler alternative.

    • Rebuild of Debian using Clang 3.9, 4.0 and 5.0

      tldr: The percentage of failure is decreasing, Clang support is improving but there is a long way to go.

      The goal of this initiative is to rebuild Debian using Clang as a compiler instead of gcc. I have been doing this analysis for the last 6 years.

      Recently, we rebuilt the archive of the Debian archive with Clang 3.9.1 (July 6th), 4.0.1 (July 6th) and 5.0 rc2 (August 20th).

      For various reasons, we didn’t perform a rebuild since June 2016 with version 3.8. Therefor, we took the opportunity to do three over the last month.

    • ARC Backend Merged In LLVM

      LLVM 6.0 SVN/Git now has landed a Synopsys DesignWare ARC processor back-end.

    • AF3e status, 22 August 2017

      Your irregular “Absolute FreeBSD” status report!

      It’s at 123,700 words. 12 of 26 chapters exist as first drafts. (Yes, the last report said 7 of 24. I can’t count.) Two more chapters are partially done. One of those partially-done chapters, on “Pre-Install Considerations,” won’t be done until I finish the whole book. I keep going back to add tidbits to it. It’s complete, except when I find something else I have to add to it.

  • Public Services/Government

  • Licensing/Legal

    • Patrick McHardy and copyright profiteering

      Many in the open source community have expressed concern about the activities of Patrick McHardy in enforcing the GNU General Public License (GPL) against Linux distributors. Below are answers to common questions, based on public information related to his activities, and some of the legal principles that underlie open source compliance enforcement.

      Who is Patrick McHardy? McHardy is the former chair of the Netfilter core development team. Netfilter is a utility in the Linux kernel that performs various network functions, such as facilitating Network Address Translation (NAT)—the process of converting an Internet protocol address into another IP address. Controlling network traffic is important to maintain the security of a Linux system.

    • Facebook Refuses to Alter React’s Open Source License

      The Apache Foundation recently announced that Facebook’s BSD+Patents open source license has been disallowed for inclusion with Apache products. The resulting fallout has caused gnashed teeth and much soul searching for React developers and Facebook has so far refused to reconsider.

  • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

    • Community building with a Q&A vs. online forum

      If you’ve ever built an online community, you know that the sheer number of options available can be daunting. Should you set up a forum, a Q&A site, or both? Would users prefer Slack, IRC, or perhaps a mailing list? Where does Telegram fit in? Maybe you should you just set up one of every available solution…

      I’ll discuss this topic at length during the upcoming Open Source Summit North America. But in the meantime, let’s focus on one aspect to better understand the overall decision-making process.

    • Open Data

      • Estonia to focus presidency on free movement of data

        Estonia, holding its first Presidency of the European Council as of July, hopes to advance the EU’s digital single market by focusing on the free movement of data. One of three key suggestions in a vision paper by the country’s Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications is to encourage the cross-border exchange of public administration data on the basis of the once-only principle.

  • Programming/Development

    • Top 3 open source Python IDEs

      Python is everywhere. These days, it seems it powers everything from major websites to desktop utilities to enterprise software. Python has been used to write all, or parts of, popular software projects like dnf/yum, OpenStack, OpenShot, Blender, Calibre, and even the original BitTorrent client.

    • Users as Co Developers OR The Secret of Programming Success

      And so I inherited popclient. Just as importantly, I inherited popclient’s user base. Users are wonderful things to have, and not just because they demonstrate that you’re serving a need, that you’ve done something right. Properly cultivated, they can become co-developers.

      Another strength of the Unix tradition, one that Linux pushes to a happy extreme, is that a lot of users are hackers too. Because source code is available, they can be effective hackers. This can be tremendously useful for shortening debugging time. Given a bit of encouragement, your users will diagnose problems, suggest fixes, and help improve the code far more quickly than you could unaided.

    • Oracle to open source Java Enterprise Edition (JAVA EE)

      They say that you can never expect a favor from the corporate world without them getting some profit. Oracle seems to be shutting shop on Java Enterprise Edition (Java EE) and has now decided to open source it. After earning millions from Java EE, now Oracle seems to have realized that it needs to move on.

Leftovers

  • Science

    • WIPO, IFPMA Adviser Sees No Problem With Trump Comments, May Become US Science Envoy

      A United States State Department science envoy quit yesterday in protest over US President Donald Trump’s pullout from the Paris climate accord and defensive comments after violence at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. But according to a press report, Peter Hotez, a past science adviser who has been a featured speaker of a UN agency and pharmaceutical industry group in Geneva, is stepping up to offer his services without concern for Trump’s actions.

  • Hardware

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Malaysia Inclusion In Gilead Voluntary Licence – A Product Of Compulsory Licence Pressure

      Gilead’s announcement today that they would include four middle-income countries (Malaysia, Thailand, Belarus, Ukraine) in their sofosbuvir voluntary licence was a welcome surprise, and will enable millions access to their highly effective, but exorbitantly priced, drug.

      The decision to include these countries, however, no doubt is a response to increasing pressure from within these countries to either issue a compulsory licence (CL) or a government use licence (GUL), invalidate the sofosbuvir patents, or block data exclusivity for the drug.

    • Access To Medicines Foundation Details Methodology For 2018 AMR Benchmark

      The Amsterdam-based Access to Medicines Foundation today published the methodology it will use for its 2018 framework for evaluating how pharmaceutical companies are taking action to limit antimicrobial resistance, addressing the rising the global problem of overuse of antibiotics leading to resistance with few new ones in the pipeline.

      The methodology will analyse company research and development, manufacturing and production, and appropriate access and stewardship.

  • Security

    • Xen Hypervisor Patched for Privilege Escalation and Information Leak Flaws

      The Xen Project has fixed five new vulnerabilities in the widely used Xen virtualization hypervisor. The flaws could allow attackers to break out of virtual machines and access sensitive information from host systems.

      According to an analysis by the security team of Qubes OS, an operating system that relies on Xen for its security model, most of the vulnerabilities stem from the mechanism that’s used to share memory between domains. Under Xen, the host system and the virtual machines (guests) run in separate security domains.

    • Crunchy Data Unveils Open Source Security Compliance Automation Platform

      The Defense Information Systems Agency released a STIG for Crunchy Data’s PostgreSQL open source database in March to provide guidance on how to deploy the database in government networks in compliance with DoD security requirements.

      “Crunchy Data’s mission is to enable enterprises to adopt open source PostgreSQL as a means to reduce [information technology] infrastructure costs and avoid unwanted vendor lock-in,” said Paul Laurence, chief operating officer of Crunchy Data.

    • How to scan and clean malware from a Linux server

      At first blush, you might be wondering why anyone would need to scan a Linux server for malware. Even though the Linux platform isn’t nearly as vulnerable to malware as other systems, that doesn’t mean your email or file server can’t host malicious files that could take down a connected (and vulnerable) machine. Say, for instance, your Linux server uses Samba to allow users to store files. Or maybe it’s a cloud server that allows users to sync and share their files to various devices. How do you know a user hasn’t inadvertently uploaded a malicious file to the server? You don’t, unless you take action.

    • GCHQ Knew FBI Wanted To Arrest MalwareTech, Let Him Fly To The US To Be Arrested There

      It looks like the UK found an easy way to avoid another lengthy extradition battle. Its intelligence agency, GCHQ, knew something security research Marcus Hutchins didn’t — and certainly didn’t feel obliged to tell him. Not only that, but it let a criminal suspect fly out of the country with zero pre-flight vetting. (Caution: registration wall ahead.)

    • Security updates for Thursday
    • Wanted: Weaponized exploits that hack phones. Will pay top dollar

      In a sign of the soaring demand for zeroday attacks that target software that’s becoming increasingly secure, a market-leading broker is offering serious cash for weaponized exploits that work against Signal, WhatsApp, and other mobile apps that offer confidential messaging or privacy.

    • White House cyber tsar warns against Kaspersky use

      The cyber security co-ordinator of the White House has publicly warned against the use of software from Kaspersky Lab.

    • Latest Linux Mining Malware Uses Minergate’s Monero Pool

      It has been a while since we last saw a new malware threat in the form of a cryptocurrency miner. Do not be mistaken in thinking cybercriminals have given up on the idea, though. A new cryptocurrency mining malware referred to as Linux.BTCMine.26 is actively distributed to Linux computers using default Telnet credentials. Unlike what the name suggests, it does not mine Bitcoin but is more interested in Monero. Additionally, it only targets X86-64 and ARM hardware-based devices.

    • SourceClear Announces First-of-its-Kind Domain-Specific Language to Identify Open-Source Vulnerabilities
    • How to protect your network from ransomware attacks
    • Google Improves Security in Android 8.0 Oreo

      Google officially announced the latest iteration of its mobile operating system on August 21 with the debut of Android 8.0 Oreo. While performance is one of the headline features in the new release, Google is also implementing multiple security enhancements in Oreo as well.

    • Over 500 Android apps with a combined 100 million downloads found to secretly contain spyware
  • Defence/Aggression

    • Reporting on Trump’s Afghan Escalation Omits Dead Afghan Civilians

      US media also continued their rich tradition of not blaming the US or Trump for the war—instead laying responsibility at the feet of some unknown geopolitical dark matter that has forced the US to occupy Afghanistan permanently. The US isn’t waging ongoing war in the Central Asian country; it is simply “stuck,” according to the AP (8/21/17) and the Washington Post’s Karen Tumulty. Trump isn’t continuing the occupation; according to the Sacramento Bee (8/21/17); he “Keeps US Stuck in Afghanistan Quagmire.” The US doesn’t seek further war and occupation, but to “break free from the quagmire,” the Chicago Tribune (8/22/17) spells out.* Bush, Obama and Trump didn’t make a deliberate choice to bomb Afghanistan, according to PBS’s Judy Woodruff (8/21/17); attacking the country just became “the burden of three presidents.” War was consistently depicted as being thrust upon the US government by forces outside of its control.

      The number of Afghan civilians killed during the 16-year US military occupation is well over 31,000, according to researchers at Brown University. The average American couldn’t possibly know this fact, since it’s almost never mentioned when weighing the cost/benefit ratio of further military occupation and bombing.

    • America’s ‘Global Policeman’ Role

      Global disorder is on the rise. What can the U.S. do about it? There are two fundamentally different approaches one can take — it all depends on your philosophy of how the world works.

    • Saudi Bombing Kills Dozens, and US Complicit, as ‘Man-Made Crisis’ in Yemen Worsens

      An airstrike by the U.S.-backed Saudi-led coalition on a hotel near the Yemeni capital Sanaa killed dozens of people on Wednesday, multiple news agencies have reported, as a “man made” humanitarian crisis extends its grip on the impoverished nation.

    • ‘Good Parents’ Who Kill Strangers

      A troubling paradox in world leaders is their apparent love for their own children while showing callous disregard for the lives of children and other innocents at the receiving end of their bombs and bullets, as Philip A Farruggio observes.

  • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Whistleblower Lawsuit Charges Illegal Retaliation, Dangerous Practices at CIA’s Elite Directorate of Operations
    • Senate bill would label WikiLeaks ‘non-state hostile intelligence service’

      Congress will formally consider WikiLeaks a “non-state hostile intelligence service” if lawmakers adopt the annual Intelligence Authorization Act passed 14-1 by a Senate panel last month — a provision the bill’s sole dissenter now cites as his reason for rejecting it.

      Sen. Ron Wyden, Oregon Democrat and the only member of the Senate Intelligence Committee to cast a ballot against the 2018 authorization act during last month’s vote, said Tuesday his decision was driven by the inclusion of language specifically targeting WikiLeaks, the antisecrecy website responsible for publishing millions of pages’ worth of U.S. state secrets ranging from military documents and diplomatic cables to internal Democratic Party emails.

      The provision was included at the very end of the annual intelligence authorization act passed in committee and quietly introduced in the full Senate on Friday amid summer recess.

    • Former NSA Official Sure DNC Wasn’t Hacked

      William Binney, a former “highly placed NSA official,” told investigative journalist Aaron Klein he’s convinced the Democratic National Committee wasn’t even hacked, much less that it was hacked by Russians seeking to do damage to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

    • Senate bill would label WikiLeaks ‘non-state hostile intelligence service’

      Congress will formally consider WikiLeaks a “non-state hostile intelligence service” if lawmakers adopt the annual Intelligence Authorization Act passed 14-1 by a Senate panel last month — a provision the bill’s sole dissenter now cites as his reason for rejecting it.

      Sen. Ron Wyden, Oregon Democrat and the only member of the Senate Intelligence Committee to cast a ballot against the 2018 authorization act during last month’s vote, said Tuesday his decision was driven by the inclusion of language specifically targeting WikiLeaks, the antisecrecy website responsible for publishing millions of pages’ worth of U.S. state secrets ranging from military documents and diplomatic cables to internal Democratic Party emails.

    • Intelligence Committee Pins A ‘Surveil Me’ Sign On Wikileaks’ Back In Latest Authorization Bill

      President Trump seemed to think Wikileaks was a fine establishment while on the campaign trail. As long as Wikileaks kept serving up DNC documents, it could do nothing wrong. Since his election, however, things have changed. The administration is plagued by leaks. Even though Wikileaks hasn’t played a part in those leaks, it has continued to dump CIA documents — something the White House isn’t thrilled with.

      Back in April, the new DOJ — under the leadership of 80s throwback AG Sessions — announced it had prepared charges to arrest Julian Assange. This was something Obama’s administration talked about, but never actually got around to doing. Pursuing Assange and Wikileaks for publishing leaked documents would set a dangerous precedent, paving the way for domestic prosecutions of news agencies.

      Fortunately, nothing has moved forward on that front yet. But it appears at least a few Senators would like to further distance Wikileaks from any definition of journalism. As Spencer Ackerman reports for The Daily Beast, the Senate Intelligence Community wants to redefine Wikileaks as a hostile entity.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife/Nature

    • Rick Perry’s “baseload” study released, offers a lifeline to coal, nuclear

      The US Department of Energy (DOE) released a report late Wednesday night recommending that power markets revise how they value coal and nuclear power. The report also admits that low natural gas prices are a primary cause of recent coal plant closures.

    • Analysis of 187 documents concludes Exxon “misled the public” on climate change

      The documents included internal papers published by journalists at InsideClimate News as well as 50 “peer-reviewed articles on climate research and related policy analysis” written by ExxonMobil researchers. The oil and gas company made the internal papers public and challenged anyone to “read all of these documents and make up your own mind,” accusing journalists of cherry-picking data.

      Geoffrey Supran and Naomi Oreskes, from Harvard’s Department of the History of Science, took up that challenge, comparing the information in the documents cited by ExxonMobil against the information conveyed in the publicly-available advertorial columns published by the company on anthropogenic (or human-caused) climate change in the New York Times. They found that “83 percent of peer-reviewed papers and 80 percent of internal documents acknowledge that climate change is real and human-caused, yet only 12 percent of advertorials do so, with 81 percent instead expressing doubt.”

  • Finance

    • Labor Day Used to Be a Grand Celebration in This Storied Factory Town
    • FTC: We won’t stand in the way of pending Amazon-Whole Foods merger

      The Federal Trade Commission has formally allowed Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods to go forward.

      According to a statement released Wednesday by acting FTC director Bruce Hoffman, “Based on our investigation, we have decided not to pursue this matter further. Of course, the FTC always has the ability to investigate anticompetitive conduct should such action be warranted.”

      Last month, there had been some public opposition to the deal. Back in June, the online retail giant announced it would acquire Whole Foods Market for approximately $13.7 billion.

    • The FTC says it won’t stop Amazon from buying Whole Foods
    • The government’s new Brexit position paper is actually pretty good

      Today’s Brexit position paper on enforcement and dispute resolution is a good piece of work. It makes reasonable demands and puts to bed a lot of the crazier hard Brexit rhetoric from No.10. It also has one central argument, which is that the European Court of Justice (ECJ) is not a suitable body to arbitrate on whatever new arrangement the UK and the EU strike up. As it happens, they are correct on both counts – the hard Brexiters are wrong and so is Brussels.

      The hard Brexiters want May to abide by her promise last autumn to remove Britain completely from ECJ jurisdiction. This was the exact moment it was clear she was a lunatic, reading scraps of paper her aides wrote without thinking and using them as the basis for the country’s future prosperity. It was an amazingly stupid thing for her to have said. The drawbacks became clear almost instantly, when the government confirmed its involvement in a new EU patent court which would have an umbilical cord to the ECJ. Suddenly, years of work and income were at risk. Later, it became clear that our entire nuclear regulation system, under Euratom, had been put in jeopardy due to this commitment.

    • Jeremy Corbyn’s living wage plan ‘would give one in four British workers a pay rise’

      Jeremy Corbyn’s £10-an-hour living wage plan would give one in four British workers a pay rise, new analysis from his party claims.

      Around 40 per cent of those in employment would benefit from Labour’s plan in some parts of the UK, it said, with warnings the Conservatives had not done enough to boost pay.

      The Government said 1.7 million workers had benefited from the latest rise in the living wage in April, which saw an increase from £7.20 to £7.50.

    • Manufacturing Giant Midea Wants to Put Bitcoin Miners in Household Appliances

      Midea Group, a major manufacturer of electrical appliances in China, is seeking to patent a method for mining bitcoin with household items, public records show.

      The previously unreported application was submitted last November and published earlier this year by the State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO) of the People’s Republic of China.

      The company’s application calls for appliances ranging from air conditioners, dehumidifiers and TVs to be built with specialized mining chips embedded inside. Once programmed, the products would connect to a cloud-based service and contribute their hashing power in the background.

    • Republicans try comparing tax code to Legend of Zelda, mix up their facts

      American Republican legislators have begun aiming their sights on a major policy initiative: the nation’s tax code. Any changes will certainly impact the American technology sector, but before getting to that possible impact, there’s the matter of the GOP’s publicity campaign on the matter.

      On Wednesday afternoon, the GOP showed that it could use some help in its attempts to make its sales pitch look “hip.”

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • 7 Rules For Reading Trump’s Approval Rating

      It still isn’t entirely clear how much President Trump’s reaction to the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia — which was criticized by both Democratic and Republican lawmakers after he blamed “many sides” for the violence there — has affected his job approval rating. As of Wednesday evening, Trump’s approval rating was 36.9 percent, according to the FiveThirtyEight average, down only slightly from 37.6 percent on the day before1 a counter-protester and two police officers were killed in Charlottesville. His disapproval rating was 56.8 percent, up only slightly from 56.3 percent before Charlottesville. So perhaps there’s been a little movement — but there hasn’t been the sort of unambiguous decline in Trump’s approval rating that occurred at earlier moments in his presidency, such as when Republicans began to debate their health care bill in March or after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey in May.

      Approval ratings, of course, aren’t the only way to judge a president’s standing. The fact that Republicans in Congress have become much more openly defiant of Trump could spell trouble for him later on, whether or not rank-and-file voters were all that moved by Charlottesville. Nonetheless, approval ratings provide a reality check of sorts, as the media’s guesses about what will or won’t affect public opinion aren’t always accurate. So let me walk you through a few propositions for what I think we’ve learned about Trump’s approval through the first seven months of his presidency — and why his approval ratings’ modest response to Charlottesville shouldn’t have been all that surprising.

    • Blocking Prosecutors From Creating Trump’s Enemies List
    • State Dept. science envoy resigns with letter that spells out ‘Impeach’

      The science envoy for the State Department has resigned following President Trump’s response to the violent clashes at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va.

      Daniel Kammen announced his resignation in a letter addressed to Trump — in which the first letter of every paragraph spelled out “Impeach.”

      “My decision to resign is in response to your attacks on core values of the United States,” Kammen said in the letter.

      “Your failure to condemn white supremacists and neo-Nazis has domestic and international ramifications.”

    • MSNBC’s Donny Deutsch: Trump possesses traits of a sociopath

      MSNBC’s Donny Deutsch on Wednesday read traits of a sociopath on air, arguing that President Trump exhibits many of the same qualities.

      “What a sociopath is a condition that prevents people from adopting to ethical and behavioral standards of community,” Deutsch said on MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House,” reading from a paper.

      “Sociopaths are usually extremely charming and charismatic. Sociopaths oftentimes feel entitled to certain positions, people and things. They believe their own beliefs and opinions are the absolute authority and disregard others.”

    • Hillary Clinton: My “skin crawled” when Trump stood behind me

      MSNBC’s Morning Joe has the first batch of excerpts from “What Happened,” Hillary Clinton’s forthcoming memoir on the 2016 presidential election, which feature her reflecting why she wrote the book and on President Trump’s intimidation tactics that made her “skin [crawl]” during their second, town hall-style debate.

    • Fact check: At Phoenix rally, Trump revises history, exaggerates accomplishments and makes false claims

      President Trump delivered a raucous, error-filled speech in Arizona on Aug. 22, just days after he was uniformly criticized for blaming “both sides” for the deadly violence at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va.

      The president gave a revisionist account of his remarks about Charlottesville, exaggerated his accomplishments, and made a series of false and misleading claims:

      • Trump cherry-picked excerpts from his past statements about Charlottesville to put a positive spin on his remarks. But in his retelling, Trump failed to say he blamed “both sides” for the violence that left one counterprotester dead and 19 others injured.

      • Trump also wrongly suggested that the media didn’t report that he had said “racism is evil,” a quote from his second statement — on Monday, Aug. 14 — on the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville. That quote was widely reported by the media.

    • Trump’s Fit in Phoenix Shames the Presidency and Humiliates America

      Trump’s disturbing diatribe and brutish assault on the media prove, once and for all, that he’ll never get better

    • The Arpaio Pardon: You’re Not the Audience
    • Donald Trump’s Defining Moments

      In the last few weeks, President Trump has gone through a series of defining moments in which his disturbing rhetorical reactions to historical developments have opened a window on his sense of the world and the nation.

    • Will Nothing Rid Us of President WTF?

      The Doomsday Clock has been edging closer to midnight since Donald Trump got his hands on the nuclear codes – not for ideological reasons, as would have been the case had Hillary Clinton not blown her chance to become Commander-in-Chief, but because he is morally inert and psychologically unhinged. Giving such a miscreant control over a nuclear arsenal is like handing a troubled teenager a loaded gun.

    • Wall Street Journal Editor Admonishes Reporters Over Trump Coverage
  • Censorship/Free Speech

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Here’s How CIA Spies On Its Intelligence Liaison Partners Around the World
    • CIA’s secret spy tool helps agency steal data from NSA & FBI, WikiLeaks reveals

      Details of an alleged CIA project that allows the agency to secretly extract biometric data from liaison services such as the NSA, the DHS and the FBI have been published by WikiLeaks.

      Documents from the CIA’s ‘ExpressLane’ project were released by the whistleblowing organization as part of its ongoing ‘Vault 7’ series on the intelligence agency’s alleged hacking capabilities.

      A branch within the CIA – known as Office of Technical Services (OTS) – provides a biometric collection system to liaison services around the world “with the expectation for sharing of the biometric takes collected on the systems,” according to a file released by WikiLeaks.

      ExpressLane, however, suggests the system has inadequacies as it was developed as a covert information collection tool to secretly exfiltrate data collections from such systems provided to liaison services.

    • ExpressLane

      Today, August 24th 2017, WikiLeaks publishes secret documents from the ExpressLane project of the CIA. These documents show one of the cyber operations the CIA conducts against liaison services — which includes among many others the National Security Agency (NSA), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

      The OTS (Office of Technical Services), a branch within the CIA, has a biometric collection system that is provided to liaison services around the world — with the expectation for sharing of the biometric takes collected on the systems. But this ‘voluntary sharing’ obviously does not work or is considered insufficient by the CIA, because ExpressLane is a covert information collection tool that is used by the CIA to secretly exfiltrate data collections from such systems provided to liaison services.

    • DOJ Walks Back Its Demands For Info On Everyone Who Visited A Trump Protest Site As Some Of Those Visitors Protest Subpoena

      Last week we wrote about a crazy warrant from the DOJ, effectively demanding information — possibly identifying information — on everyone who visited the site disruptj20.org, which had been used by people organizing protests of Trump’s inauguration. When we wrote about it, the site’s hosting company, DreamHost, had just announced that it was pushing back on the demand in court. On Monday of this week, some of the visitors to the site pushed back too. Public Citizen Litigation Group took on the case of five individuals who had visited the site, asking the court if they could intervene to oppose the warrant.

    • DOJ Backs Down From Overbroad J20 Warrant. But Problems Still Remain

      The government has backed down significantly in its fight with DreamHost about information related to the J20 protests. Late on Tuesday, DOJ filed a reply in its much publicized (and much criticized) attempt to get the hosting provider to turn over a large amount of data about a website it was hosting, disruptj20.org—a site that was dedicated to organizing and planning protests in Washington, D.C. on the day of President Trump’s inauguration.

      In the brief, DOJ substantially reduces the amount of information it is seeking. It also specifically excludes some information from its demand, including some of the most obvious examples of overreach.

    • It’s Time to Strengthen California’s Public Records Law

      In 2015, the Center for Public Integrity undertook a major investigation aimed at grading all 50 states to ascertain their transparency and accountability. When it came to California, the state received an abysmal ‘F’ rating in the category focusing on public access to information. That is unacceptable.

      Transparency advocates for years have complained about the enforcement measures in the California Public Records Act (CPRA). There is no appeal process when an agency rejects or ignores a records request. The burden is on the requester to go to court to fight for the documents. While the agency may have to pick up the requester’s legal bills, there is no penalty for agencies that willfully, knowingly, and without any good reason violate the law.

      The union’s most populous state and the sixth largest economy in the world should be setting an example rather than lagging behind the many states—such as North Dakota and New Mexico—that penalize agencies that improperly handle or reject request for public records.

    • Mozilla causes stir with opt-out data collection plans

      Mozilla has announced that it would like to collect anonymous user data in order to “better understand how people use” Firefox. The proposed move is quite contentious for many users because Mozilla is making it opt-out; many users feel betrayed by the move given that Mozilla touts Firefox as a privacy-oriented browser.

    • Silicon Valley siphons our data like oil. But the deepest drilling has just begun

      Recent reports suggest that three of the country’s largest supermarket chains are rolling out surge pricing in select stores. This means that prices will rise and fall over the course of the day in response to demand. Buying lunch at lunchtime will be like ordering an Uber at rush hour.

    • Sonos Users Forced To Choose Between Privacy And Working Hardware
    • Sonos to insist that users bend to its new privacy rules

      “If a customer chooses not to acknowledge the privacy statement, the customer will not be able to update the software on their Sonos system, and over time the functionality of the product will decrease.”

    • Hardware maker: Give up your privacy and let us record what you say in your home, or we’ll destroy your property

      Sonos is particularly sneaky about the part where they record sound. They say in their blog post that they “don’t keep the recordings” of sound recorded in your home, with the new Voice Assistant. However, they point out that they share their collected data with a large number of parties, the services of which you have “requested or authorized” — where people tend to read “requested”, but where “authorized” is the large part. Further, they point out that they share recorded sound with Amazon under all circumstances, and Amazon is already known to keep recordings for later use by authorities or others, so the point is kind of moot. “We don’t keep the recordings, we let others do it for us” would be a more straightforward wording.

    • Big push to go cashless, but hurdles remain
    • Facebook confirms it will add subscriptions to Instant Articles

      CEO Mark Zuckerberg confirmed that the company will begin testing subscriptions inside Instant Articles, the company’s fast-loading news format, later this fall.

    • Mark Zuckerberg confirms Facebook will add subscriptions for publishers, not take a cut

      Here’s how it works: Publishers using Instant Articles, Facebook’s fast-loading article pages, will be able to have a paywall (certain number of articles per month) or have locked articles (freemium model). For either case, Facebook users will be prompted to subscribe to read more. All payments will be processed directly via publishers’ websites, and Facebook will not take a cut—at least not now.

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • James Damore Case Could Spawn More Legal Headaches for Google

      Damore says he felt more persecuted as managers responded to his memo and, he says, misrepresented his arguments. He accused one manager of “providing a platform to crucify me.” Such exchanges helped prompt him to file the unfair-labor-practice charge with the National Labor Relations Board on Aug. 2. Damore says that Google was aware of the NLRB charge when he was fired five days later.

    • Supermarket Removes All Foreign Food From Shelves To Make A Point About Racism, And Here’s The Result

      When customers walked into Edeka supermarket in Hamburg recently, they were surprised to find that the shelves were almost empty, and the small handful of products that remained were all made in Germany. It seemed like the supermarket had simply forgotten to restock their produce until customers saw the mysterious signs left around the shop. “So empty is a shelf without foreigners,” read one sign at the cheese counter. “This shelf is quite boring without variety,” read another.
      It turns out that Edeka, in a rather controversial move, had opted to solely sell German food for a day in order to make a powerful statement about racism and ethnic diversity. As a result, there were no Greek olives, no Spanish tomatoes, and very little of anything else that can normally be found in a typical modern household. “Edeka stands for diversity, and we produce a wide range of food in our assortment, which is produced in the different regions of Germany,” said an Edeka spokesman. “But it is together with products from other countries that we create the unique diversity that our customers value.”

    • Deputy Who Rear-Ended Driver At 104 MPH Had Horrendous Service Record, Received Almost Zero Discipline

      Normally, I wouldn’t grab an isolated story about police misconduct and present it here. The misconduct is indeed serious — an officer involved in high-speed crash that left another man critically injured — but one cop doing something dumb is barely even newsworthy these days.

      But the more you read about this law enforcement officer, the worse it gets. And it starts with Deputy Brandon Hegele nailing a smart car driven by a sixty-year-old man while Hegele was travelling 100+ MPH towards a suspect he’d already been told repeatedly not to pursue.

    • EU nationals deportation letters an ‘unfortunate error’, says May

      Theresa May admitted the Home Office made an “unfortunate error” when it mistakenly sent up to 100 letters to EU nationals living in the UK ordering them to leave the country or face deportation.

      The prime minister was forced into the statement after it emerged that a Finnish academic working in London had highlighted the warning letter she had received, which told her to leave the UK or risk being detained.

      Although Eva Johanna Holmberg has lived in the UK with her British husband for most of the last decade, the correspondence from the Home Office said that if she did not leave the country of her own accord the department would give “directions for [her] removal”. It added that she was “a person liable to be detained under the Immigration Act”.

      Holmberg, a visiting academic fellow from the University of Helsinki at Queen Mary University of London, was told that she had a month to leave, a demand that left her baffled. “It seems so surreal and absurd that I should be deported on the grounds that I’m not legal. I’ve been coming and going to this country for as long as I remember,” she said. “I don’t know what kind of image they have of me but it’s clearly quite sinister based on the small amount of info they actually have on me.”

      [...]

      The government has repeatedly told the 3.5 million EU nationals living in the UK they did not need to apply for residency after Brexit because their status was not at risk. Despite this, there have been several occasions where people have been told wrongly they should leave the country after trying to apply for permanent residency but this is the first time the Home Office has issued a letter telling people to leave.

      After the mistake came to light, the Home Office called Holmberg to “apologise profusely”, she said. But the person who telephoned her would not confirm that the government would cover her legal costs of about £3,800. “The best way to apologise and ease my distress would be to cover my expenses,” she said. The Home Office would not say whether it intended to cover the costs of those who received the letters.

    • UN racism committee issues ‘warning’ over US tensions

      A UN committee tasked with combatting racism has issued a formal “early warning” over conditions in the United States, a rare move often used to signal the potential of a looming civil conflict.

      The United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination said it had invoked its “early warning and urgent action procedure” because of the proliferation of racist demonstrations in the US.

      It specifically noted the unrest in Charlottesville, Virginia, in which a woman was killed after an avowed white supremacist ploughed his car into a group of anti-racism counterprotestors.

    • Artificial Intelligence at Any Cost Is a Recipe for Tyranny

      The more powerful technology becomes, the more governments and corporations may use it to endanger our rights.

      This post was adapted from a presentation at an AI Now symposium held on July 10 at the MIT Media Lab. AI Now is a new initiative working, in partnership with the ACLU, to explore the social and economic implications of artificial intelligence.

      It seems to me that this is an auspicious moment for a conversation about rights and liberties in an automated world, for at least two reasons.

    • Pro-Russian Bots Take Up the Right-Wing Cause After Charlottesville

      Angee Dixson joined Twitter on Aug. 8 and immediately began posting furiously — about 90 times a day. A self-described American Christian conservative, Dixson defended President Donald Trump’s response to the unrest in Charlottesville, criticized the removal of Confederate monuments and posted pictures purporting to show violence by left-wing counterprotesters.

      “Dems and Media Continue to IGNORE BLM and Antifa Violence in Charlottesville,” she wrote above a picture of masked demonstrators labeled “DEMOCRAT TERROR.”

    • New Scottish Tory MP slammed for anti-Gypsy attack

      New Moray MP Douglas Ross has been slammed by Amnesty International and Traveller groups after saying that his top-priority is “tougher enforcement against Gypsies”.

    • New Bill Would Force Arrested Protesters to Pay Police Overtime, Other Fees

      A new bill introduced by seven Pennsylvania Republican state lawmakers could force protesters arrested at demonstrations to pay for police overtime and other fees related to the action.

      The bill, SB 754, has been introduced by Rep. Scott Martin of Lancaster County; his district has been the site of anti-pipeline protests aimed at the Atlantic Sunrise natural gas pipeline.

      Under the terms of the bill, “a person is responsible for public safety response costs incurred by a State agency or political subdivision as a result of the State agency’s or political subdivision’s response to a demonstration if, in connection with the demonstration, the person is convicted of a felony or misdemeanor offense.”

    • Mar-a-Lago is paying for Trump’s Charlottesville comments

      At least 18 charities have cancelled their plans to hold events at Donald Trump’s private club Mar-a-Lago following his incendiary comments on the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia last weekend, the Washington Post reported Thursday.

      Not all of the charities — which include the Red Cross, the Susan G. Komen Foundation, and the Salvation Army — publicly cited politics, or even any reason at all, for their abrupt departure. Many had been holding events at the Palm Beach, Florida club for years — some of the club’s biggest money makers.

      The loss of one of the latest charities to cancel, the Bethesda Hospital Foundation, will likely hit Mar-a-Lago hard: In 2015, the charity spent about $95,000 in total on the event, dwarfing most of the other charities that spent anywhere between $25,000 and $40,000. On Monday, a local chapter of United Way also canceled a reception scheduled for the Trump National Golf Club in Teaneck, New Jersey, citing the events in Charlottesville.

  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

  • DRM

    • Remembering That Xbox Wanted Always Online DRM For Its Console In The Wake Of Major Xbox Live Outtage

      Nearly half a decade into the current generation of gaming consoles, you will be forgiven if you don’t recall some of the consternation surrounding Microsoft’s initial plan to make the Xbox One have an “always online” requirement to play the games customers purchased. Microsoft initially floated this concept ahead of the console’s release, perhaps testing the public waters for the requirement. If that was indeed the plan, the instinct to take the public’s temperature on it was a good one, as the backlash was both swift and severe, particularly in light on Sony taking every opportunity to remind consumers that the Playstation 4 would have no such requirement. Predictably, at least to this author, Microsoft caved and removed this “feature”, even as company employees who should have known better made insulting comments about how always online was the way of not just the future, but the present, and everyone should essentially shut up and get used to it.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Trademarks

      • General Mills loses bid to trademark yellow color on Cheerios box

        The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board on Tuesday set aside the cereal maker’s two-year quest to trademark “the color yellow appearing as the predominant uniform background color” on boxes of “oat-based breakfast cereal.” A contrary ruling could have given the Cheerios maker an exclusive right to yellow boxes of oat cereal.

      • Chateau Marmont, Hotel For Celebrity Humans, Sends Trademark C&D To Cateau Marmont, Hotel For Cats

        While spending a great deal of time writing about dumb trademark disputes can be both monumentally frustrating and fill your mind with despair, I will be the first to admit that it also is a great avenue for entertainment and laughter. This story is about a situation firmly in the latter categories. The Chateau Marmont is a famous hotel in Los Angeles with a reputation for catering to celebrities both in its lodgings and at the restaurant. Roman Polanski took up residence there, while Hunter S. Thompson, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Tim Burton all produced some of their works from within its walls. John Belushi overdosed while residing there in 1982. It’s kind of a thing for human celebrities, in other words.

    • Copyrights

      • Copyright Troll Insists Septuagenarian Is An Enormous Copyright Infringer, Then Runs Away After Backlash

        Except that this only brings up more questions. We can start with the obvious one: why did Culpepper agree to dismiss Harding? What makes his case different than all of the others? It cannot simply be his age. The Elderly are capable of infringing copyright, after all, and if all of the evidence against Harding equates to the evidence against younger targets of these letters, his age alone shouldn’t be the difference maker. Except that of course it is. What this dismissal does is highlight the laughable idea that the authors of these settlement offers have any real evidence against the recipients at all. If they did, this evidence could not be defeated by someone simply shouting, “But I’m just so old!”

        And yet the threat letters go out, embarrassing miscalculations and mistargets and all. It’s probably long past due that we had some legal clarity on the legal value of IP addresses as evidence of infringement.

      • Graham v Prince set to test the limits of fair use

        A case that is heating up in a New York district court could have broad implications for copyright in the context of social media and the internet, and could ultimately end up at the Supreme Court

      • Will TPP-11 Nations Escape the Copyright Trap?

        Latest reports confirm that the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is being revived. The agreement had been shelved following the withdrawal of the U.S. from the negotiation process. Over the past year, countries eager to keep the pact alive have continued dialogue and rallied support of less enthusiastic members to move forward with the agreement without the U.S. A revised framework is expected to be proposed for approval at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) TPP-11 Ministerial Meeting in November.

        We had previously reported the remaining eleven nations (TPP-11) had launched a process to assess options and consensus on how the agreement should be brought into force. A recent statement by New Zealand’s Prime Minister suggests that countries favor an approach that seeks to replicate TPP provisions with minimal number of changes. The revival of the trade bloc comes at a critical juncture. Two trade agreements—the U.S. led North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and China led Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) are racing to establish rules to control data flows and the digital economy. The TPP without the U.S offers an alternative to the China-centric and U.S led treaties under negotiation.

      • The Dilemma Of Fair Use And Expressive Machine Learning: An Interview With Ben Sobel

        Intellectual Property Watch recently conducted an interview with Ben Sobel, law and technology researcher, teacher, and fellow at Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society. Sobel has focused his research on copyright and the fair use doctrine, in particular in the context of artificial intelligence (AI). Below, he shares his views on expressive machine learning, “the fair use dilemma” and “Big Content versus Little Users”. Of note: the most pressing copyright question has to do with AI readers, not AI authors, according to Sobel.

      • Is the copyright industry above the law and exempt from respecting human rights? Some companies seem to think so

        The whole sorry tale exposes how easy it is for deep-pocketed companies to abuse the legal system in an attempt to crush weaker opponents. Even when judges subsequently strike down those abuses, the damage already caused is not easily reversed. Above all, it shows once again how some members of the copyright industry seem to regard themselves as above the law and exempt from respecting the basic human rights of the people they bully.

      • Why universities can’t be expected to police copyright infringement

        The other problem, less discussed, is the danger that universities could be enlisted as copyright surveillance and enforcement watchdogs.

      • Police Intellectual Property {sic} Crime Unit Secures Funding Until 2019

        The London-based operation, which has been instrumental in disrupting the activities of dozens of sites and people operating generally in the ‘pirate’ sector, has been given £3.32m to spend over the next two years.

        [...]

        Formed four years ago and run by the City of London Police, the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) [...]

      • Pirate Bay Founders Ordered to Pay Music Labels $477,000

        Two founders of The Pirate Bay have been ordered by a court in Finland to pay record labels more than $477,000 in compensation. Fredrik Neij and Gottfrid Svartholm were found liable for ongoing copyright breaches on the site. Neither appeared to mount a defense so both were found guilty in their absence.

      • BREIN Goes After Developers of ‘Pirate’ Kodi Builds

        Pursuing sellers and developers of pirate Kodi add-ons has become a prime focus in recent months after the European Court of Justice handed down a landmark ruling.

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