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Links 16/7/2019: Btrfs Gets ‘Cleaned Up’, Clonezilla Live 2.6.2-15

Posted in News Roundup at 12:53 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

  • Leftovers

    • Science

      • Scientists flee USDA as research agencies move to Kansas City area

        So far, just 27 ERS staff out of 250 have committed to moving to the Kansas City area, according to the employee tallies.

        The UDSA argues the move will save $300 million over 15 years, but critics have said their cost-benefit analysis was shoddy and did not follow guidelines.

        A different cost-benefit analysis from the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association found the move would cost taxpayers between $83 million and $182 million.

      • Will ships without sailors be the future of trade?

        The boat was made by SeaKIT, and the same vessel helped an international team of hydrographers, funded by the Japanese non-profit Nippon Foundation, win the $4m (£3.2m) Shell Ocean Discovery Xprize for advances in autonomously mapping the oceans.

        Now Hushcraft wants SeaKIT to be used for transporting cargo, hence mounting the 5kg box of oysters – a local delicacy – on to the vessel and sending it to Ostend. But is there a market for it?

      • Become a lifelong learner and succeed at work

        Of course, people don’t need training to learn something; often, people learn by researching answers, talking to colleagues, reflecting, experimenting, or adapting to changes. In fact, recent estimates suggest that between 70% to 80% of all job-related knowledge isn’t learned in training but rather informally on-the-job. That isn’t to say that formal training isn’t effective; training can be very effective, but it is a precise type of intervention. It simply isn’t practical to formally train someone on most aspects of a job, especially as those jobs become more complex.

    • Hardware

      • Acer Chromebook R 11
      • ASUS Chromebook Flip C302CA
      • ASUS Chromebook C202SA
      • The 2019 MacBook Air Has 35% Slower SSD Than 2018 Model

        Tests were conducted on MacBook Air variants with different internal storage options and the drop in the write speeds were witnessed in every variant regardless of the internal storage.

      • 11-Year-Old Girl’s iPhone 6 Exploded Burning Holes In Blanket

        With smartphones from various tech companies falling prey to the exploding game, it seems like it’s Apple’s turn, as this time an iPhone caught fire in Bakersfield, California.

        It is suggested that 11-year-old Kayla Ramos was sitting in her sister’s bedroom and was holding the iPhone 6 in her hands. She mostly used it for watching YouTube videos and sometimes gave it to her younger siblings.

      • How many kinds of USB-C™ to USB-C™ cables are there?

        Why did it come to this? This problem was created because the USB-C connectors were designed to replace all of the previous USB connectors at the same time as vastly increasing what the cable could do in power, data, and display dimensions. The new connector may be and virtually impossible to plug in improperly (no USB superposition problem, no grabbing the wrong end of the cable), but sacrificed for that simplicity is the ability to intuitively know whether the system you’ve connected together has all of the functionality possible. The USB spec also cannot simply mandate that all USB-C cables have the maximum number of wires all the time because that would vastly increase BOM cost for cases where the cable is just used for charging primarily.

        How can we fix this? Unfortunately, it’s a tough problem that has to involve user education. [...]

    • Security

      • Windows 7 Enters the Last Six Months of Support [Ed: Microsoft propagandist (for ages) Bogdan Popa won't advise people to hop over to GNU/Linux (which he lies about, saying Microsoft "loves Linux")]

        According to third-party data provided by NetMarketShare, Windows 7 continues to be one of the most popular choices for desktop users.

      • Security bootcamp: 8 must-read books for leaders

        The threat of cybercrime constantly looms over business leaders – and it becomes more urgent as cyber attacks become more sophisticated. In 2019, security breaches happen more frequently, and the associated financial hit has increased, according to research from Accenture.

        Notably, the report points out that hackers increasingly target humans – the “weakest link in cyber defenses” – at all levels of organizations, through tactics like ransomware and phishing. (Witness the recent wave of ransomware attacks against U.S. cities, large and small.) That’s why it’s becoming essential for everyone – not just security professionals – to be well-versed in risk and their organization’s security efforts.

      • Security scanning your DevOps pipeline

        Security is one of the most important considerations for running in any environment, and using open source software is a great way to handle security without going over budget in your corporate environment or for your home setup. It is easy to talk about the concepts of security, but it’s another thing to understand the tools that will get you there. This tutorial explains how to set up security using Jenkins with Anchore.

        There are many ways to run Kubernetes. Using Minikube, a prepackaged virtual machine (VM) environment designed for local testing, reduces the complexity of running an environment.

      • This Is Why We Have Betas. iOS 13 Beta Shows Saved Passwords

        There’s a reason we have beta versions of software: all the kinks need to be worked out. This is also why using beta versions always come with warnings and disclaimers that you’re using the software at your own risk.

        Users of the iOS 13 beta have discovered that there’s a bug that makes it easy to access the data in “Website & App Passwords” in the Settings app. Certainly, this is something Apple needs to get fixed before the official release, expected for September.

      • Hackers breached Bulgaria’s tax agency and leaked the data of 5M people

        Bulgaria has suffered what has been described as the biggest data leak in its history. The stolen data, which hackers emailed to local media on July 15, originates from the country’s tax reporting service – the National Revenue Agency (NRA).

        The breach contains the personal data of 5 million citizens, local outlet Capital reports. To put that into perspective, Bulgaria has a population of 7 million. Among other things, the trove includes personal identifiable numbers, addresses, and even income data.

    • Finance

      • The next UK prime minister is bad for the pound—whoever he is

        In just under a week, the contest to become the next leader of the UK Conservative party—and by extension, the country’s next prime minister—will come to a close. Traders aren’t waiting to find out who wins: they’ve already decided it’s bad news. Both candidates, current foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson, who previously held the same position, have pushed the UK on a path to a destabilizing “no-deal Brexit” at the deadline of Oct. 31.

        In a debate yesterday, both said a crucial part of the previously negotiated exit deal—the Irish backstop, which is like an insurance policy to avoid imposing a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland—had to be removed from any agreement between the UK and EU. But the EU has repeatedly said the backstop is an essential part of the withdrawal agreement.

        With Hunt and Johnson thus raising the chances that a deal both sides can agree on won’t be reached by the Halloween deadline, the pound is down against its major peers. At the time of writing, sterling was 0.7% weaker against the US dollar and down 0.4% against the euro, despite better than expected labor market data published today.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Twitter won’t hide Donald Trump’s racist tweets

        It’s hard to tell where Twitter’s actual bar for “hateful conduct” sits, though, because content is moderated by large numbers of people who interpret the rules in different ways — as with most social media platforms. Also, Twitter in particular has a convoluted stance on racist content. You apparently can’t be a self-professed Nazi, but Twitter has said it’s talking with experts to figure out its more general rules around white supremacy.

      • Green co-leader says Trump remarks ‘must not be accepted as part of mainstream politics’

        He said: “Donald Trump’s behaviour is racist. Let’s be clear about that, as the Tory leadership contenders were not last night.

        “I’m proud that the Green Party has been a leader in calling out dog-whistle politics over years in which it has been all too common in our politics.

        “But the US President’s tweets went beyond that.

        “We have seen a highly disturbed rise of Far Right rhetoric and support in many countries, but in all of them, it represents the views of only a tiny minority.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Age of Amnesia

        The spread of mass education may have exemplified the promise of liberal civilization. But, without an understanding and appreciation of what allowed it to flourish, it could also accelerate its dissolution. The reduction and reshaping of the past are essential to undermining liberal democracy. The great exemplars of the past—Washington, Madison, Burke, Jefferson, Lincoln, Churchill—all warned that human beings are not necessarily good and, for that reason, power must be dispersed and restrained not concentrated. Yet we are witnessing the creation of a society, as envisioned by HG Wells, controlled by a credentialed elite. This “emergent class of capable men,” Wells wrote, should take upon itself the task of “controlling and restricting…the non-functional masses.” This new elite, he predicted, would replace democracy with “a higher organism” of what he called “the New Republic.”5

        Any reasonable reading of history cautions us against such power grabs, however well-intentioned. But this won’t resonate if our next generation remains cut off from the past and molded by a highly manipulated tech-driven reality. If one does not even know about the legacies underpinning democracy, individual freedom, and open discussion, one is not likely to miss them when they are eroded.6

      • The Third Circuit Joins The Ninth In Excluding E-Commerce Platforms From Section 230′s Protection

        Remember when there was a terrible decision in the 5Pointz VARA case and I wrote 3000 words to explain just how terrible it was? Well, buckle-up, because here’s another awful decision, this time in the Section 230 realm. In fact, this one may even be worse, because it was a decision at the federal appellate level, and thus we are more likely to feel the impact of its terribleness. What follows is an explanation of how it so badly missed the mark.

        Not long ago we warned that the Ninth Circuit’s decision in HomeAway v. City of Santa Monica, if allowed to stand, threatened Internet commerce. This new decision from the Third Circuit in Oberdorf v. Amazon heightens that alarm. As with the Ninth Circuit, it reflects undue focus on the commercial transaction it facilitated instead of on the underlying expression the transaction was connected to. Worse, it did so in a way that gave short shrift to the policy interests behind why Section 230 exists in the first place.

        As is typical in cases with terrible Section 230 rulings, the underlying facts in this case are terrible too. One of the plaintiffs had bought a retractable dog leash via Amazon. The leash was defective, and when it broke it recoiled in a way that blinded her in one eye. She and her husband then sued Amazon over the injury. The district court dismissed their claims, partially for Section 230 reasons, and also because it could not find a way to deem Amazon a “seller” for purposes of the Pennsylvania consumer protection law the plaintiffs were trying to base their claim upon. But the Third Circuit, looking at the decision afresh, substantially rejected the district court’s analysis and largely reversed its holding. It’s this decision that joins the Ninth Circuit HomeAway decision in now seriously threatening Internet commerce.

        It is worth noting that this was a 2-1 decision, with a majority opinion providing the controlling analysis and a dissent. Much of the majority decision involves pages and pages of discussion about what counts as a “seller” under that Pennsylvania law. While on the surface this discussion may seem at first seem tangential to our larger Section 230 concerns, in this case it ends up being fairly relevant. For one thing, it’s part of the decision, and it shouldn’t be. Section 230 includes a pre-emption provision because state and local laws are often messy and, worse, contradictory. An Internet platform’s protection from liability should not be contingent on how any given state a platform’s services may reach has opted to write its local law. So the mere fact that the decision starts out by reviewing how Pennsylvania’s state law might affect the liability of an Internet platform like Amazon is the first sign that the decision is trouble.

    • Privacy/Surveillance

      • U.S. proposes barring big tech companies from offering financial services, digital currencies

        In a sign of widening scrutiny after Facebook Inc’s (FB.O) proposed Libra digital coin aroused widespread objection, the bill proposes a fine of $1 million per day for violation of such rules.

      • Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency is already facing being outlawed

        The meat and veggies of the deal says: “A large platform utility may not establish, maintain, or operate a digital asset that is intended to be widely used as medium of exchange, unit of account, store of value, or any other similar function, as defined by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.”

        It defines a ‘large platform utility’ as one with global revenue in excess of $25m.

      • Facebook’s Libra hearings in Congress are the best free entertainment you’ll get all week

        No one trusts Facebook, a company that repeatedly disregards privacy concerns, issues meaningless apologies for doing so, then violates them again. Significantly, though, much of the cryptocurrency community hated Libra. They argued it was not a cryptocurrency (plausible); that Libra was not based on a blockchain (likely); and that it violated the decentralized vision of cryptocurrency (absolutely). In a defensive follow-up blog post, Facebook’s David Marcus opens with the question “Is this really a blockchain?” and then proceeds to… not answer the yes-or-no question he himself posed.

      • House Democrats are considering a bill to ban Facebook from the finance industry

        The text of the bill says simply “A large platform utility may not be, and may not be affiliated with any person that is, a financial institution,” with further sections spelling out the definitions of various terms. Most notably, “large platform utility” is defined as “a technology company with an annual global revenue of $25,000,000,000 or more…predominately engaged in the business of offering to the public an online marketplace, an exchange, or a platform for connecting third parties.”

      • Facebook’s Big Libra Launch ‘Only Fanned the Flames’ for Critics

        Congress holding hearings on Facebook Inc.’s plan for a possible digital coin suggests that the high-profile debut for Libra was likely a public relations effort gone bad.

      • Putting a price on our data won’t make the platforms stop abusing our privacy

        But as my EFF colleague Hayley Tsukayama writes, “Our information should not be thought of as our property this way, to be bought and sold like a widget. Privacy is a fundamental human right. It has no price tag. No person should be coerced or encouraged to barter it away. And it is definitely not a good deal for people to receive a handful of dollars in exchange for allowing companies’ invasive data collection to remain unchecked.”

      • German schools ban Office 365 over privacy concerns

        When we say ‘banned’ we don’t mean detention for anyone that does, we’re talking illegal, proper illegal.

        The central state of Hesse has ruled that using the cloud-based version of the service opens children up to potential surveillance by US officials.

      • German state bans Office 365 in schools, citing privacy concerns [iophk: article failed to mention Calligra or LibreOffice, both of which are better]

        This isn’t a problem that’s unique to Microsoft. The commissioner notes that it’s also not possible for schools in Hesse to use cloud solutions from Google and Apple in a GDPR-compliant way. For now, the only option for schools is to use a locally stored piece of software like Microsoft’s non-cloud Office 2019, unless the company is willing to provide better assurances about data security.

      • German schools ban Microsoft Office 365 amid privacy concerns

        The Hesse Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information (HBDI) ruled that using the popular cloud platform’s standard configuration exposes personal information about students and teachers “to potential access by US authorities.”

        In declaring that Windows 10 and Office 365 is not compliant with EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) for use in schools, this development ends years of debate over whether “schools can use Microsoft’s Office 365 software in compliance with data protection regulations.”

        The heart of the issue concerns the telemetry information sent by Windows 10 operating system and the company’s cloud solution back to the US.

      • Office 365 banned from German schools, Google Docs and iWork also ruled out

        The issue is not specifically the storage of school documents on cloud services – that in itself is ok provided that proper steps are taken to comply with GDPR requirements, as HDMI says.


        The problem, says the regulator, is that telemetry data is sent out of Germany to the US, and this can include personal data.

      • Microsoft Office 365 banned in some schools over privacy concerns [iophk: s/concerns/violations/]

        Investigators in the Netherlands last year found that the data being transmitted by Microsoft Office 365 could include sentences from documents and email subject lines, in addition to the usual software diagnostics. This is a breach of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation, the Netherlands said.

      • EPIC on Libra: “Facebook Clearly Cannot be Trusted With Consumers’ Financial Data”

        EPIC also discussed the Cambridge Analytica scandal and outlined Facebook’s long history of failing to protect user data. As reported, a pending settlement with Facebook would not address proposals made by EPIC and others to strengthen Facebook’s protection of user data.

      • Amazon Alexa Is Coming To Windows 10 Lock Screen With 19H2 [Ed: Two deeply malicious companies work to put listening devices in more places; this way they can record billions of people (vicinity covered also), add ID to voices, turn to text, make searchable by US government. Unprecedented espionage operations on a global scale. This affects you even if you avoid all the GAFAM 'toys'; they also record/spy on non-censenting people in the vicinity of toxic people who deploy their listening devices for them.]
      • Russian Spy Discovers The Hard Way How Much His Smartphone’s Metadata Reveals About His Activities

        Smartphones are not just amazing pieces of technology that pack a range of advanced capabilities into a pocket-sized device. They are also the best tracking device invented so far. They reveal where we are, and what we are doing, every minute we have them with us. And the most amazing aspect is that we carry them not because we are forced to do so by authoritarian governments, but willingly.

        A permanent state of surveillance is something most people just accept as the price of using mobile phones. But for one class of users, the built-in tracking capabilities of smartphones are far worse than just annoying. For spies — especially more senior ones — the information revealed by their mobile phones is not just embarrassing but poses a serious threat to their future operational usefulness.

        That’s evident from a new investigation carried out by the Bellingcat team in partnership with various media organizations. Techdirt was one of the first to write about Bellingcat’s use of “open source information” — material that is publicly available — to piece together the facts about what are typically dramatic events. The latest report from the group is slightly different, in that it draws on mobile phone data leaked by a whistleblower in Russia. According to Bellingcat’s research, the account seems to be that of the mid-ranking Russian military intelligence (GRU) officer Denis Sergeev

      • The FTC And Facebook: Why The $5 Billion Fine Is Both Too Little And Too Much

        By now, you’ve certainly heard the news that was very likely leaked by Facebook late on Friday that the FTC, by a narrow 3 to 2 party line vote, had approved a $5 billion fine for Facebook for violating its earlier consent decree in the way it allowed an app to suck up lots of data that eventually ended up in Cambridge Analytica’s hands. Most of the reaction to this fine (by far, the largest in the FTC’s history) is anger.

        Many people focused on one key point to argue that the fine wasn’t enough: Facebook’s stock jumped upwards after the news broke, to the point that Facebook’s valuation probably went up more than the amount of the fine itself (never mind the difference between the value of equity and actual cashflow…). However, I wouldn’t read too much into the stock jump. After all, Facebook had already said back in April that it was expecting a $5 billion fine, meaning that Wall Street had already priced in exactly that. If the $5 billion fine had come out of the blue it might have been a different story. The bump, then, could be explained by investors reacting to the end of any uncertainty and the fear that the fine might have been larger.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • BTS: Why Saudi Arabia wants high profile pop stars

        But organisations such as Human Rights Watch (HRW) say there is doubt over how much change is actually taking place.

        Though they’ve been permitted to drive, HRW say women still face several barriers.

        They claim Saudi authorities have arrested several well-known women’s rights advocates just before lifting the driving ban, accusing them of “suspicious contact with foreign parties”.

      • Pennsylvania Legislators Quickly And Quietly Passed A Law That Strips Power From Its Reform-Minded DA

        The residents of Philadelphia elected Larry Krasner as their new DA in 2018. Krasner promised reforms to the criminal justice system. And he delivered. He secured 33 resignations from prosecutors and staff who didn’t feel they could back his reforms. Shortly after this, he received the best possible (inadvertent) endorsement for his reform efforts, one that took the form of criticism from the head of the local police union.

        Krasner eliminated cash bail for nonviolent defendants and made it clear he would not tolerate misconduct or abuse by police officers. More importantly, he did more than talk. Two officers were criminally charged for performing an illegal stop of a pedestrian and Krasner secured an indictment from a grand jury against a cop who shot an unarmed man in the back.

      • Leaked document: EU Commission mulls new law to regulate online platforms

        The EU Commission is considering the creation of a new authority for the regulation of online services. This is part of a possible legislative proposal by the Commission to regulate platform companies such as Google, Facebook and Amazon. Under the proposed scheme, the e-Commerce Directive is to be replaced by a new law, the Digital Services Act, according to a leaked Commission note. (Click here for full document.)

        The new Act is supposed to create European rules against online hate speech and disinformation. It also means to address issues such as political advertising online and fairness in e-Commerce. It would affect „all digital services and in particular online platforms“, according to the paper. The note mentions social networks, cloud services, services such as Uber and Airbnb as well as internet service providers.

        The paper was written by officials in the Commission’s Directorate-General Connect. It is part of a discussion process towards a more detailed proposal to be brought forward by the next Commission. As the news site Contexte reports, several versions of the paper have been circulating earlier. PoliticoPro reported on it as well.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • West Virginia’s Biggest Telco Says Broadband Business ‘Unsustainable’

        For years we’ve explored how the nation’s phone companies no longer really want to be in the broadband business. They routinely refuse to upgrade their networks, yet often lobby to ensure nobody else can deliver broadband in these neglected footprints either. Telcos in particular have a bizarre disdain for their paying customers, delivering the bare minimum (slow DSL) at the highest rates they can possibly charge without a full-scale consumer revolt. It’s not surprising then that many telco DSL customers are fleeing to cable, assuming they even have a second option for broadband.

        This scenario has been particularly true in West Virginia, which has become the poster child for telecom sector graft and corruption. For years, incumbent phone provider Frontier Communications (which bought most of the state assets from Verizon), has seen zero competitive pressure to improve service. At the same time, they’ve enjoyed rampant regulatory capture, to the point where company executives have simultaneously acted as state senator, without a single question raised. The company has also been routinely under fire for bilking the government (read: you) out of millions of dollars intended to shore up coverage gaps.

    • Monopolies

      • Prosecution Disclaimer: Should patent law have a Parole Evidence Rule for Claim Construction?

        Back in February, the Federal Circuit issued a R.36 affirmance — affirming the lower court’s claim construction and non-infringement finding. Tech. Properties has now filed a statement of intent to petition for writ of certiorari, now with Ken Starr at the helm and focusing on prosecution disclaimer precedent from the 1880’s along with a constitutional argument.

      • Patents and Software Patents

        • Illumina v TDL (Round 2): Mr Justice Arnold finds NIPT novel, inventive and sufficient

          The UK courts last month dealt with another patent dispute concerning non-invasive prenatal blood testing (NIPT). NIPT is a method for genetically screening the unborn fetus. NIPT is performed on the maternal blood and is therefore safer than previous methods for genetically testing the fetus that required fetal cells or amniotic fluid. NIPT allows clinicians to screen the fetus for diseases such as Down’s syndrome. The global market for NIPT is growing rapidly, and has been predicted to reach almost $5 Billion by 2025. Commercial NIPT tests available in the UK such as The Harmony Test and the IONA test cost around £350-500 per test. The market for NIPT is currently very competitive, with key players jockeying for position; now being played out as patent disputes in the UK courts.


          Key players in the NIPT testing market include Roche/Ariosa (The Harmony Test) and Illumina, following their acquisition of Verinata Health (Verifi). Another key player is Sequenom, a San Diego based company that began offering its own NIPT in the US in 2011 (MaterniT21). Sequenom owns what are arguably some of the broadest patents in the NIPT field. For example, EP0994963 (Lo), claims the detection of fetal DNA in maternal blood.

          In 2014, NIPT patent disputes between Illumina and Sequenom were settled with a patent pool agreement. Illumina and Sequenom have since joined forces in going after other players in the field. In 2017, Illumina and Sequenom sued UK NIPT providers Premaitha and TDL for patent infringement of Lo (EP0994963) ([2017] EWHC 2930 (Pat), IPKat post here). Premaitha subsequently agreed to licence the technology from Illumina.

          The most recent UK action concerned another Sequenom patent, EP1524321 (Hahn). This patent relates to a key step in NIPT, the separation of fetal DNA from maternal DNA. EP1524321 (Hahn) is based on the discovery that fetal cell free DNA (cfDNA) in the blood of the mother is, on average, smaller in size than the cfDNA of the mother present in the blood. Fetal and maternal DNA could therefore be easily separated to allow the fetal DNA to be analysed.


          The judgment includes an interesting end note on the patentability of the subject-matter of the claim, in view of an attempt by the defendants to bring a US-style assessment of patent eligibility into proceedings. In the US, the Sequenom NIPT patents have fallen foul of Section 101. Particularly, the US Court of Appeals for Federal Circuit found Sequenom’s diagnostic patents invalid for relating to patent ineligible subject matter, particularly for relating to a natural phenomena (Ariosa v Sequenom). Sequenom were denied permission to appeal to the US Supreme Court (Sequenom v Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc 136 S.Ct. 2511 (2016)).


          This case in the High Court is unlikely to be the last relating to NIPT. The growing commercial importance of this technology, and the crowded market, will undoubtedly give rise to yet more patent disputes. It is not yet known if TDL will seek to appeal the decision.

        • Distribution of Working Draft to 250-Member Standard Setting Working Group – NOT a PUBLICATION

          In the inter partes review (IPR), the Patent Trial & Appeal Board (PTAB) sided with the patentee Infobridge — concluding that the purported prior art was not sufficiently publicly accessible prior to the patent’s November 7, 2011 filing date (and therefore not prior art). On appeal, the Federal Circuit has rejected that decision — holding that the PTAB “applied the wrong legal standard in assessing public accessibility.”

          The reference at issue is “Working Draft 4 of the H.265 standard” (WD4) which was developed by an MPEG group known as the Joint Collaborative Team on Video Coding (“JCT-VC”). The information included int he reference was discussed at a July 2011 meeting in Torino that included about 250 participants including both academics and corporate representatives. WD4 then written and uploaded to the JCT-VC website on October 4, 2011 as one of hundreds of documents listed on the Torino meeting sub-page. The documents are in no apparent order and when printed run 48 pages long. (The relevant page is listed below, can you find our reference of interest?).

          WD4 was also uploaded to an MPEG website on October 4, 2011, but required a password to access. Also, the same day the WD4 lead author posted a link to the document to a listserve that included JCT-VC members and other interested individuals.

          A publication must be either actually distributed or else made publicly accessible. Courts ask “whether a person of ordinary skill in the art could, after exercising reasonable diligence, access a reference.” If so, then it is a publication.


          On remand, the PTAB will reconsider these issues — and likely find again that the listserv distribution was not sufficiently public.

      • Copyrights

        • Today’s the 10-year anniversary of the CJEU judgment that changed EU copyright

          In fact, unlike what is for subject matter like software, databases and photographs, the InfoSoc Directive does not contain a harmonized concept of originality. In this sense, it might have well been the case that individual EU Member States could have defined originality in accordance with their own national copyright traditions.

          However, this is not what the CJEU decided.

          In fact, the Court held that the InfoSoc Directive is rooted within the same principles found in those directives that contain a harmonized notion of originality.

          Thus, also for subject matter falling within the scope of the InfoSoc Directive, protection arises when a sufficient degree of originality – to be intended as the ‘author’s own intellectual creation’ – is found to subsist.

          A Copernican Revolution had just begun and nothing could stay the same!


          Turning to the latter, the recently adopted DSM Directive [Katposts here] shows how any review of EU copyright rules would not just need to consider the (formally rich but substantially relatively thin) existing legislative framework, but also – and possibly above all – the CJEU interpretation of existing sets of rules.

          In this sense, the discussion around certain provisions in the DSM Directive included the relationship with existing CJEU case law and whether and to what extent EU legislature should retain it. Examples in this sense are: Article 17 (as stated in Recital 64, that OCSSPs communicate to the public is a clarification of existing (case) law); Article 16 (which was meant to ‘erase’ Reprobel) and Article 8 (which was meant to remedy Soulier).

          2009 was the year that changed EU copyright. There is no reason to think that the Court would cease having a central role in the clarification, construction and development of the copyright framework in the near future. Although doubts might remain regarding the role and actual competence of the Court in building, rather than just interpreting (but how do you draw the line?) the law around copyright, this trend appears bound to stay … Happy Infopaqversary!

        • UK Pirate Site Blocking Requests Have Stopped, For Now

          A few years ago, movie and music industry companies would regularly go to the UK High Court to demand pirate site blockades. These efforts, which were previously seen as an essential tool to combat infringement, have stopped for now. It appears other anti-piracy endeavors have priority instead.

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    "Every time a distro does not suit a user's purposes, and it is less work to adapt the distro on one's own than to affect the distro in any other way, a distro is born."

  9. Links 21/8/2019: Dell's XPS 13, Mesa 19.2 RC1, Librem Update

    Links for the day

  10. Links 21/8/2019: Open Source POWER, Alpine 3.10.2, Netrunner 19.08

    Links for the day

  11. Edward as a Nodder to Team UPC Kool-Aid

    Bristows LLP is at it again and it's getting pathetic, not just dishonest as usual

  12. Guest Post: António Campinos' European Patent Office Redefines Modern Slavery in the Heart of Europe in 2019

    The European Patent Office’s (EPO) President António Campinos — like his predecessor Battistelli — emulates Chinese labour practices

  13. Guarding and Rescuing the FSF Titanic: There is More Than One Iceberg Ahead

    "This strategy is not far from when Microsoft talked about "de-commoditizing protocols" in the late 90s, as part of their plans to control, dominate, and end Open Source and Free software."

  14. EPO Cannot Handle Patent Justice With a Backlog of About 10,000 Cases at the Boards of Appeal

    The EPO's long war on judges and on the law has proven to be costly; it's difficult to pretend that the EPO functions like a first-world legal framework

  15. The European Patent Office Increases Surveillance: Can't Get Food Without Being Spied on

    The infamous "War on Cash" has been 'won' at Europe's second-largest institution, where people's diet can now be monitored and indefinitely retained on the system

  16. To GNU/Linux, the Operating System, GAFAM (Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft) is Not the Threat. Microsoft is.

    Don't let Microsoft get away with its bogus narration; GNU/Linux is primarily under attack from Microsoft, whereas Software Freedom in general is under attack from many directions

  17. The Free Software Foundation (FSF) Has the Full Support of Techrights

    Our support for the FSF is strong enough that we want to occasionally suggest improvements; there are growing frictions designed to isolate the FSF and cause self-restraint/censorship

  18. Why We Support Phoronix (Whereas Some Others Do Not)

    Some people try to characterise Michael Larabel as the 'bad boy' of Linux even though Michael is probably the hardest working Linux journalist out there

  19. Guarding and Rescuing the FSF Titanic: The Simplest Ways that AI will Change Computing

    "AI is already used to help kill people. We should be cautious, and know that the best rules we come up with (like no doing magic outside the school grounds) won't be followed all the time."

  20. Links 20/8/2019: DragonFlyBSD Developing DSynth

    Links for the day

  21. Guarding and Rescuing the FSF Titanic: Narcissism in The Community

    "Narcissists are drawn to intelligent people. They take great pleasure in attacking, controlling and defeating intelligent people because it makes them feel smarter and more important."

  22. Breaking the Law Has Become the Norm at the European Patent Office

    The European Patent Office’s ongoing practice of destroying critics/whistleblowers and crushing unions, judges, examiners etc. — as well as threats and bribery of the media — ultimately mean a perpetual state of lawlessness that, if it prevails, will let patent trolls raid the European economy and stall innovation

  23. Links 20/8/2019: KMyMoney 5.0.6, Kdenlive 19.08

    Links for the day

  24. Guarding and Rescuing the FSF Titanic: Free Software in Education

    "If everyone learns to code, then everyone gains some understanding of how to code in other languages."

  25. Links 19/8/2019: Another Linux 5.3 RC, OpenSUSE's Richard Brown Steps Down, Slackware Creates Patreon Page, Qt 6 Initiated

    Links for the day

  26. Speaking Truth to Monopolies (or How to Write Guest Posts in Techrights)

    We need to have more articles tackling the passage of all power — especially when it comes to software — to few large monopolies that disregard human rights or actively participate in their abolishment in the digital realm

  27. Guarding and Rescuing the FSF Titanic: Free as in Speech

    "While a new breed of so-called anarchists campaign against expression that even the state allows, people are also foolishly overplaying the relevance of the state to free speech issues -- as if it's not a freedom issue when a project is increasingly thought-policed, because the thought-policing isn't on a state level."

  28. Toxic Culture at Microsoft

    Racism, intolerance, sexism and bullying are rampant at Microsoft; but Microsoft would rather deflect/divert/sidetrack to Google and so-called 'GAFA'

  29. Guarding and Rescuing the FSF Titanic: Introduction

    "The FSF isn't just threatened, it will hit a large iceberg in the future that changes it permanently."

  30. Linux Journal and Linux.com Should Have Been Kept Going

    There's apparently no good explanation for the effective shutdown of Linux Journal and Linux.com; London Trust Media Holdings (LTMH), owner of Linux Journal, saw numbers improving and the Linux Foundation, steward of Linux.com, is loaded with money

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