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08.02.20

[Meme] Is It Not a Layoffs Round When You Rebrand It?

Posted in Deception, Microsoft at 6:30 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“It doesn’t seem that the media is particularly interested in doing anything but blame the Coronavirus for everything, and also insist that “it’s layoff season at Microsoft anyway like it is every year”. “Layoff season” shouldn’t really be an annual event that you plan on. I can only imagine what that does to the employees in there. The whole “Winter is coming!” attitude that it must bring with it where you try to look busy and shove other employees under the bus to save yourself. Businesses that are well managed focus on core competency and things that will be around well into the future. Advertising has only ever been profitable at scale, and Skype was a particular way to do something that fell out of favor and was already dated at the time they sold it and ran for the hills. Then you have stuff that just doesn’t make sense, like why they would be interested in acquiring an entire company for Minecraft? All of that wasted money in the Nokia deal to try to push Windows phones into a market that was already saturated. That was just completely stupid. Zune 2.0. I would have probably tried to expand on the Nokia X, but they put that right into the trash. They’ve definitely overextended themselves.” -Ryan

Star Trek v Kirk Spock McCoy: Captain, are you hiding layoffs? Behind you? What layoffs? We just optimise and do reorg

Summary: More and more Microsoft layoffs; but the media is hardly interested in reporting those and/or analysing the growing scale of the layoffs (about half a dozen rounds of layoffs this summer alone)

IBM is Already Gutting Red Hat and Firing Employees Without Warning, Jim Whitehurst Isn’t Even Using GNU/Linux

Posted in IBM, Red Hat at 5:05 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Time is running out for more Red Hat and Fedora engineers; corporate media keeps the lid on this news

Red clocks

Summary: The situation at Red Hat isn’t good, employee morale is very low, and yet — perhaps unsurprisingly — nobody seems to be talking about it (at least not in the mainstream media)

THE layoffs at Microsoft are real and they go deep. Microsoft has recently laid off about 5,000 people (including people on contract) and based on reports from media near Red Hat, a similar number of people is to be discarded (laid off) by IBM. But since then (earlier this summer) not much has been said. Like with Microsoft, many of these things happen gradually and quietly. We took note of it several times earlier this year, but now we’re looking at actual messages from Red Hat insiders (or former insiders). We’ll provide some evidence as we go along, accompanied by our interpretation of the present and future of Red Hat. We welcome Red Hat insiders who can provide us with further input.

First, as a little bit of background, earlier this year we researched for long periods of time to better understand whether IBM’s planned (and openly announced) layoffs in NC area affect Red Hat (formerly RHAT and then RHT, now IBM). We looked for some rumours online, but came up with too little; almost empty-handed, but that was months ago. Remember that Red Hat has its own operations in NC (the headquarters and founding place); corporate media said IBM planned to lay off in NC and 4 other states, the total being — reportedly — about 5,000 people (IBM is still hiring in India by the way). The tricky thing is, IBM and Red Hat both have NC-based operations and a rather large number of workers there. It’s somewhat of a business hub. But we also know that IBM does not need two HR departments, two marketing departments, etc. Managers are sort of converging in duties, conflicting in terms of roles, overlapping in the workflow sense and so on.

Last year, as we noted here before, I had heard from an IBM acquisition victim (whom I cannot name, but he is a high-profile person) that they always wait 2 years before the guillotine falls. Why 2 years? Go figure. But if one studies the pattern (after IBM acquisitions), then it’s always 2 years. It has now been almost exactly two years since the acquisition was announced (a couple of months from now).

Has IBM begun axing staff of Red Hat? Well, nobody has explored or covered that subject (which we know of…) and it is unlikely that IBM or Red Hat will just spoon-feed this kind of information. It needs to be ‘pulled’, as they won’t ‘push’ out such information. Citing a recent press report, Ryan saw signs of impact for Red Hat. “They said it would “make it difficult to hire more people” with the pandemic raging,” he quoted. “No comment when asked about whether that meant layoffs from Red Hat.”

So deeper we go into anonymous posts like this one. It doesn’t take long to ‘get’ what’s going on. To quote a couple of messages: “If it’s like the red layoffs from last fall, they are given a month severance and their access to anything internal is immediately cut off. All the while, management will claim “these people were given the chance to find new positions”. They were? No they weren’t. That’s like being figuratively walked to the curb and being told you can’t talk to anyone inside anymore. Funniest thing is that even after being gone 6 months, there are still working links that many have and some logins that IT forgot to close. I guess that’s the obstacle when you let engineers build their own doors for a project.”

Another one says: “12+ people recently made redundant by Red Hat Management. As new VP at EMEA level took over the charge, his first action as to known to IBM management was to lay off people and ceased the department where the money isn’t showering as IBM/RH would have expected. Irrespective of How much time and talent those 12 people have put forward to do the branding of the new team. So, it has started here at RH as well and will continue to grow, I mean lay-offs ;) because IBM wants to use their 60% non-productive resources to be consumed in a brand like RH. As IBMers says, A good engineer is replaceable in 3 months But a chicky [sic] manager, hard to find. :)”

“Culture has definitely changed,” said another person, “and I can agree that the new management from especially the most recent company (big blue) has changed things. There is definite drinking of the koolaid that is necessary and if you dare to state the obvious, you’ll be quickly labeled and dismissed as no longer needed. As for “kingdoms”, there is only one now and containers is it. Work even on the OS itself is pushed down to the bottom of priority. Long time managers are scared and running. This is actually good new though for other companies who need good people.”

This one says a lot about Jim Whitehurst, who recently became President at IBM: “I was at RH for more than a decade, from the Matthew through Jim, and I saw the changes coming when Jim came on board. He never really seemed to grasp was the core value was that Red Hat offered. He didn’t use our products (used a Mac, along with other members of the executive management team), allowed RH to dump open source solutions for our own business to move things to Google’s services (which is a huge message to our very clients of “we don’t value or trust open source, so why should you?”) and the top-down view shifted away from what made Red Hat special and valuable and more towards what would make us value to another company who would want to buy us.

“IOW, something that would benefit the CEO, EMTs and shareholders.

“But would ultimately cause the company itself to crash and burn.

“The buyout by IBM, the culture change, and now the layoffs were all things I had expected. They came a year or two later than I expected. I’m sorry to see the company circling the drain now as I absolutely LOVED my time there, the people I worked with and what the company was at the time.”

“Not only has Red Hat been getting lay offs from IBM,” Ryan noted, “but they’re sloppy about how they do it and forget to cut off employee access to things apparently. After security proverbially walks them to the door. Red Hat sounds like it’s falling apart from the inside and their CEO doesn’t even understand what the product is, or use it himself. Other comments suggest that IBM is gutting Red Hat of anything it doesn’t expect to immediately turn a huge profit. Firing engineers without seeing if they could even be tasked elsewhere.”

MinceR then joked that “they don’t care about security, they just want to ruin yours and mine…”

“IBM is trying to stuff its own nonsense that isn’t making money into Red Hat products,” Ryan continued. “I guess the logic is that if they can shove it into a Red Hat product people are buying, they can say it’s “value added” and justify it.”

Containers hype is mentioned there along or between the lines. In many cases a container is just a binary blob, usually with proprietary core inside (no code), laced with an ‘OS’ somewhere ‘around it’ (not a very good design).

“They said that OS development was knocked down to lowest priority,” Ryan noted. It says it right there. That may explain quite a lot, not just about RHEL’s direction but also Fedora’s. We see more vendor tie-in/lock-in, more software patents (monopoly) and not much of real value.

IBM’s new CEO loves containers; we recently decided to see his videos, including fairly recent interviews where he talks about “Watson everywhere” (proprietary) and “cloud everywhere” (yes, those are the slogans).

“Too many bad things are happening in Fedora at once,” Ryan said. He recently used and participated in it. He saw things he disliked, including censorship of dissenting voices. “I’m not about to stick around and wait for “Silverblue” [Big Blue],” he said, alluding to what some might label “vapourware”. Planet Fedora has been mostly dead lately (I’ve followed it closely for years).

“This whole thing is getting comically bad,” Ryan said. “It’s no longer modern to install an RPM and just have the program there a few seconds later without REBOOTING. So that tells you it’s going to be one of those things that just breaks the entire world, and their answer to what about software is “Either reboot every time you install an RPM or just use Flatpaks!”.

Flatpak used to depend strictly on systemd (they apparently fixed that, at least temporarily). “Fedora seems to be increasingly out of the loop,” Ryan concluded. “I think at some point they might just stop pretending that they even care about testers. The push for BtrFS came from Facebook of all places. That guy from Facebook that doesn’t use an @facebook email because he doesn’t want to make it obvious. Looks like management they brought in from other companies is forcing reorgs on Red Hat. Sounds like morale in general among employees is low.”

If Red Hat isn’t part of GAFAM now, it’s certainly part of what figosdev calls “GIAFAM”. And judging by lack of commitment from IBM (e.g. to Fedora), it doesn’t look too encouraging, at least not for Red Hat. Thankfully we still have Debian and other large distros. There’s far more than one point of failure when it comes to GNU/Linux.

Going back to commitment issues, Ryan believes “that a Red Hat Enterprise Linux with no Fedora is a matter of perhaps a couple of years off. They’re far more interested in what other big companies want in RHEL, and you could just as easily spin up RHEL 9 Technical Preview releases and see if that works out for them. IBM has managed plenty of operating systems that didn’t get any outside input at all and doesn’t seem to really care about Fedora. It’s just a development structure that it inherited. The BtrFS discussion had no talk from Red Hat. Some people kept saying “Let’s talk to Red Hat and see why they dropped it from RHEL 8.”. Nobody from Red Hat ever offered any input, at least in public, on the BtrFS feature. The file system situation in Fedora and Red Hat has already been quite different with RHEL defaulting to XFS and Fedora defaulting to Ext4 for a long time now. Red Hat seems to have no interest in actively developing Ext4 or a potential successor. They support it in the sense that you could install to it with non-default options, but they strongly discourage that, especially with large volume sizes. Linux distributions are by no means on the same page anymore regarding what a sane default should be for the file system or what, if anything, should replace Ext4.”

One sure thing is, almost all distros sooner or later move to adopt systemd, sometimes because there’s no other choice (too many dependencies upon it).

Microsoft Lays Off Many More Workers in the Advertising Division/s and Terminates Products While the Press is Distracted by TikTok Rumours

Posted in Deception, Microsoft, Rumour at 4:06 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

WARN Act
“Might be an idea to look at WARN Act [1, 2] stuff,” Ryan noted today (in #techrights IRC). “Of course, Microsoft can just keep it coming in small chunks to get around the WARN Act.”

Summary: Microsoft is laying off a huge number of workers without properly reporting these and whilst exploring ways to divert attention away from those layoffs

Cortana’s many deaths were hardly covered in the media over this past week, maybe half a week or so (we saw some Microsoft-connected sites issuing face-saving spin about that, e.g. The Verge and GeekWire). There’s something potentially big going on there, but nobody is researching and properly reporting on it, as it is instead derived from Microsoft’s own statements. Don’t they have time to actually study what is really going on? An associate of ours blames the TikTok media storm (about 2 days old now), which grooms Microsoft while ignoring the severe issues it has been having. So we’ve examined what Microsoft insiders are writing anonymously in thelayoff.com. The findings are very telling.

Ryan and I have been looking closely, equipped with knowledge about prior layoffs, at anonymous posts. We examined things mostly so as to investigate whether layoffs are involved (or, in other words, whether Cortana workers were reassigned to another project/department). Since Microsoft propaganda sites belittle the whole thing (Microsoft has apparently killed it off completely, across everything, just like its stores) and there’s no indication that these developers will stay onboard, are we looking at yet another wave of layoffs? We lack contacts with people in these divisions so we can’t think of a way to find out if they’re sacked. But earlier today we heard about other units and it doesn’t look/sound too good. Microsoft sounds like a company that’s collapsing while lying to shareholders.

“There’s no way they’ll make any large layoffs abruptly as they’ve done in the past and they’ve already been cutting folks ~slowly~ since May,” says this message. “According to this guy,” Ryan noted, “Microsoft rarely, if ever, allows anyone working there to reach 55 and have their pension become vested.”

“Trickling layoffs out over time allows them to remain free of any potential bad press from contributing to the unemployment problem in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis,” says another message. Those are insiders from Microsoft, some of whom saw or suffered layoffs.

“I’m a PM [Program Manager] in windows COSINE D&I,” says this message, and “my job got eliminated yesterday. This was business driven and is not performance related. So, yes, layoffs are happening…”

“According to this,” Ryan noted, “Microsoft was twice as likely to lay you off if you were over 40.”

This is typical across many companies other than Microsoft. But it now seems like there’s another layoffs round at Microsoft (sixth this summer!), though we need to know the numbers. We have a associate who thinks they use TikTok to just (or mostly) bury this news even if the TikTok thing is made-up or superficial nonsense… just to provide ‘cover’ through it’ll never materialise.

“Layoffs in the Windows division according to this guy,” Ryan has found (Azure also, definitely!). “Didn’t say how many, but he was a Program Manager (their title for a supervisor that directly oversees an entire project, usually with 50-100 people reporting to them).” Ryan used to be a Microsoft MVP, so he knows a thing or two about the company.

“D&I is Data and Intelligence,” Ryan said. “That would be the people doing the data collection that Windows 10 performs on the user in the background in order to “optimize” advertising. Across Windows Store, Bing, Edge, and Skype. It’s interesting that they’re firing firing their adtech people, if true. Are they trying to pivot away from advertising?”

The real news at Microsoft right now is nothing related to TikTok (not anything related to mergers and/or acquisitions) but covert layoffs of large magnitude/scale. Ryan continued: “He describes working there as a descent into “paranoia” about quarterly performance reviews and if you’ll even have a job soon.”

“Another [Microsoft] poster said when he was close to becoming vested (2 years short), he started getting negative performance reviews out of nowhere and they eventually showed him the door.”

Earlier today I learned (on the phone) about people there being being denied “senior” roles for ages. This is unconventional by GAFAM standards.

Only about a month after Bill Gates had more or less “officially” left Microsoft (except as shareholder) they may have tested the response to Microsoft layoffs with that bogus spin about replacing “a few” workers with “AI”; since then about 5,000 layoffs have gone under the radar.

“Cortana is an analytics and telemetry app that data mines people while pretending to be a digital assistant,” Ryan remarked. “They built it directly into the Windows shell and turned it on by default (wasting a lot of panel space) to lure people into using it. I just don’t think they got the return on investment they were hoping for as an adtech.”

The more we learn about Microsoft layoffs, the more likely it seems that the TikTok rumours serve to distract from the layoffs, and likely by design/intention. If that was the plan, it worked!

“Cortana would likely be in COSINE D&I,” Ryan said. They’ve fired even the managers there. Microsoft is in a bad state if not a state of collapse, but it’ll do anything to distract from that. It even lies to its own shareholders, as Microsoft insiders have told us repeatedly. If that’s not sinister enough (that insiders know Microsoft fakes its performance), we don’t know what is…

Links 2/8/2020: Wine-Staging 5.14, VokoscreenNG 3.0.5

Posted in News Roundup at 2:38 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Server

      • Why making mistakes makes me a better sysadmin

        I’ve been a Fedora Linux contributor for a little over a decade now. Fedora has a large community of developers and users, each with a unique set of skills ranging from being a particularly discerning user to being an amazing programmer. I like this because it inspires and motivates me to develop new skills of my own.

        For me, the best way to develop skills has always been to make mistakes. Like, really mess things up. It doesn’t really matter what kind of mistake it is because it’s less about the mistake itself and more about what I learn in the process of having to dig myself out of whatever hole I managed to get myself into.

        Why mistakes are good

        I remember my first computer mistake. My family’s first computer was an Epson laptop that my uncle gave us when he upgraded. It had a blazing fast 10 MHz processor and a carrying handle because it was so heavy. I loved that machine.

        It ran DOS, but it had a text-based menu application to make it a little friendlier for the novice user. Hard Disk Menu had ten “pages,” each of which could have ten commands configured. We had a page for games, another for “boring stuff” like word processors and spreadsheets, etc.

        Hard Disk Menu had some other features that, when I got bored of playing the games, I would explore. At some point, I decided that I should make use of the account feature. It didn’t change what applications appeared, but it would prevent unauthorized access, sort of. You could just drop to the DOS shell instead, but still, it was a nice try.

        I created accounts for myself, my parents, and my sisters. My parents were a little annoyed, but they humored me. Everything was fine for a while. Then my sister forgot her password. My parents told me to remove the passwords. But without my sister’s password, I couldn’t remove the password on her account (it was the early 90s, a much simpler time). What to do? What to do?

        For a little while, we kept going with the attempted passwords until one day when I decided I’d try something I hadn’t done yet. When I was first creating the accounts, I set a master password. What would happen if I typed the master password in place of my sister’s password?

    • Kernel Space

      • Facebook Engineer Improving BPF “User Programs” Support

        Facebook engineer Song Liu has sent out a set of patches for “BPF_PROG_TYPE_USER” as a new BPF type for the Linux kernel focused on better supporting user programs.

        Given the success of the eBPF in-kernel virtual machine and new use-cases continuing to be worked on it outside of the traditional networking scope, Facebook has been working on BPF_PROG_TYPE_USER for better handling of user-space programs within the realm of BPF. (e)BPF has numerous program types for areas of networking and other areas while this new type is for better handling of user programs.

      • Changes Expected For The Linux 5.9 Kernel From Intel DG1 To AMD Navi 2 To New CPU Capabilities

        The Linux 5.9 kernel merge window will open up immediately upon the release of Linux 5.8, which is expected to happen this evening unless Linus Torvalds decides to stave it off for one week to allow for additional testing. In any case, once Linux 5.9 kicks off there are a lot of changes expected.

        Based on our monitoring of the various kernel “-next” Git branches in recent weeks and the mailing lists, here is a look at some of the changes slated for the Linux 5.9 kernel. Stay tuned to Phoronix for much more once the Linux 5.9 merge window is underway.

      • Linux Plumbers Conference: VFIO/IOMMU/PCI Microconference Accepted into 2020 Linux Plumbers Conference

        We are pleased to announce that the VFIO/IOMMU/PCI Microconference has been accepted into the 2020 Linux Plumbers Conference!

        The PCI interconnect specification, the devices implementing it, and the system IOMMUs providing memory/access control to them are incorporating more and more features aimed at high performance systems (eg PCI ATS (Address Translation Service)/PRI(Page Request Interface), enabling Shared Virtual Addressing (SVA) between devices and CPUs), that require the kernel to coordinate the PCI devices, the IOMMUs they are connected to and the VFIO layer used to manage them (for userspace access and device passthrough) with related kernel interfaces that have to be designed in-sync for all three subsystems.

        The kernel code that enables these new system features requires coordination between VFIO/IOMMU/PCI subsystems, so that kernel interfaces and userspace APIs can be designed in a clean way.

    • Applications

      • VokoscreenNG Screencasting App 3.0.5 Released (Ubuntu PPA)

        VokoscreenNG screencasting application 3.0.5 was released a few days ago. Here’s how to install it in Ubuntu 18.04, Ubuntu 20.04, and derivatives.

        VokoscreenNG is an easy to use screencast creator that can be used to record videos from computers screen, webcams, external cameras, etc. This graphical tool can produce educational videos, live recordings of browser navigation, tutorials of installations, record video conferences, etc.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Wine or Emulation

      • Wine-Staging 5.14 Release In 2020 Finally Implementing… Findstr

        Incredibly it has taken until now with Wine-Staging 5.14 to implement more than just a stub to Wine’s FINDSTR program implementation. Yes, the long-standing command to search for strings.

        Up until now the Wine Findstr stub has just always returned zero as do most stubbed out functions for Wine. In the case of Findstr, its Windows behavior is inverted in returning 0 to signify a match or 1 for no match. So regardless of what is being fed to Wine’s Findstr stub, it has always returned a “match”. But now in Wine-Staging 5.14 is finally a minimal implementation of Findstr to actually handle string searching behavior.

        Wine’s Findstr stub has been problematic for at least some software and outlined in this 7 year old bug report about the Freemake Video Converter installer running into problems with the Findstr stub.

      • Wine 5.14 Released, How to Install in Ubuntu / Linux Mint

        Wine 5.14 was released one day ago as the latest development release of the compatibility layer allows to run Windows apps on Linux and Mac OS.

    • Games

      • Where Virtual and Augmented Reality Stand in 2020

        “Reality Check,” the new 21-page special report from Variety Intelligence Platform (VIP), explores the hype machine behind virtual and augmented reality, and how investors, particularly in the entertainment space, may have jumped the gun too soon and projected outlandish expectations onto a medium that still has plenty of significant, unexplored potential.

        The initial wave of investments in VR and AR following Facebook’s acquisition of start-up Oculus VR in 2014 was a seemingly great sign for the gaming and tech spaces, with up to an estimated $2.3 billion in funding for VR and AR companies in 2016 (per Digi-Capital).

        But something happened on the way to VR and AR’s happy Hollywood ending.

      • Valve’s Steam July 2020 Numbers Point To A Small Dip For Linux

        While some platforms like Netmarketshare have reported increases month-over-month for Linux desktop usage, that doesn’t appear to be translating similarly to the Linux gaming market-share, or at least not at the rate Steam is growing on Windows and macOS. Valve has just published their July 2020 numbers that are part of the Steam Survey.

      • Fedora 32 : Play games with Steam service.

        Steam is a video game digital distribution service by Valve. It was launched as a standalone software client in September 2003 as a way for Valve to provide automatic updates for their games, and expanded to include games from third-party publishers., see Wikipedia.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Kate – User Feedback – August 2020

          Starting with the 20.04 release, Kate allows the user to turn on some telemetry submission. This is a purely opt-in approach. We do not submit any data if you not actively enable this feature! For details about the introduction of this feature, see this post.

          After some months of having this out in the wild, I think it is time to show up with the first data we got.

        • Latte Dock v0.10~ | July Update

          Thanks to Martijn Vogelaar a new visibility mode for sidebars is supported. The new mode triggers Latte panel showing/hiding through the Latte Sidebar Button applet and global shortcuts but at the same time if the panel does not contain mouse for a period of time (can be set from Show timer) then it auto hides itself.

          Visibility modes in general have updated their organization in order to be grouped much better. Currently they look like…

    • Distributions

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

      • Debian Family

        • Andrew Cater: Debian 10.5 media testing – 202001082250 – last few debian-live images being tested for amd64 – Calamares issue – Post 5 of several.

          Last few debian-live images being tested for amd64. We have found a bug with the debian-live Gnome flavour. This specifically affects installs after booting from the live media using and then using the Calamares installer found in the desktop.

          Fixes are known – we’ve had highvoltage come and debug them with us – but will not be put out with this release but will wait for the 10.6 release which will allow for a longer time for debugging overall.

        • DebConf4

          This tshirt is 15 years old and from DebConf4. Again, I should probably wash it at 60 celcius for once…

          DebConf4 was my 2nd DebConf and took place in Porto Alegre, Brasil.

          Like many DebConfs, it was a great opportunity to meet people: I remember sitting in the lobby of the venue and some guy asked me what I did in Debian and I told him about my little involvements and then and asked him what he did, and he told me he wanted to become involved in Debian again, after getting distracted away. His name was Ian Murdock…

          DebConf4 also had a very cool history session in the hallway track (IIRC, but see below) with Bdale Garbee, Ian Jackson and Ian Murdock and with a young student named Biella Coleman busy writing notes.

          That same hallway also saw the kickoff meeting of the Debian Women project, though sadly today http://tinc.debian.net (“there’s no cabal”) only shows an apache placeholder page and not a picture of that meeting.

          [...]

          Finally, DebConf4 and more importantly FISL, which was really big (5000 people?) and after that, the wizard of OS conference in Berlin (which had a very nice talk about Linux in different places in the world, illustrating the different states of ‘first they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win’), made me quit my job at a company supporting Windows- and Linux-setups as I realized I’d better start freelancing with Linux-only jobs. So, once again, my life would have been different if I would not have attended these events!

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS Release Candidate ISOs Are Now Ready for Public Testing

          Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS is the first (of many to come) point releases in the latest Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal Fossa) operating system series, which is a long-term supported release that will receive updates for up to 10 years.

          Initially set to hit the streets on July 23rd, the first point release of Ubuntu 20.04 LTS was delayed for August 6th, 2020. Canonical gave us no reason for the delay, but looking at what happened recently with the BootHole vulnerability found in the GRUB2 bootloader I guess we all know the real reason.

          Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS isn’t a major update to the Focal Fossa series. It’s just an updated installation media, which will most likely help newcomers or those who want to deploy Ubuntu 20.04 LTS on new computer, as well as those who want to reinstall their systems, as they won’t have to patch the installations against BootHole, nor download hundreds of updates after the installation.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • Venerable text editor GNU Nano reaches version 5.0 and adds the modern frippery that is scrollbars

            Cult text editor GNU Nano has released a major update, taking the terminal-based program to its fifth version in twenty years.

            The new update, called “Among the fields of barely”, introduces a new –indicator command-line switch that will enable the display a kind of scrollbar on the right-hand side of the screen to indicate where in the buffer the viewport is located and how much it covers.

      • Programming/Development

        • Fortran newsletter: August 2020

          Welcome to the August 2020 edition of the monthly Fortran newsletter. The newsletter comes out on the first calendar day of every month and details Fortran news from the previous month.

        • Which Is The Best WordPress Caching Plugin?

          I’ve talked about how I optimise this site before, but I wanted to do some digging into which is the best WordPress caching plugin. I’ve tested some of the most popular caching plugins available, and decided to write this post with the results.

        • 10 Tips to Defeat Your Fear of Coding

          Why do you fear to code? Is it because you’re afraid to mess up or break something? is it because the technical concepts are confusing for you? is it because of so many overwhelming concepts in programming? Whatever your answer is…but, the most pleasurable thing for a programmer is the moment when they see their code run in the blink of an eye and the magic happens on the screen.

          Coding is intimidating, coding is overwhelming but if anyone defeats the fear of coding then it’s also one of the most enjoyable and fun things to do. Some people who enjoy coding get addicted to it and they start spending hours either trying different programming strategies or building the new applications, or solving some coding-related challenging problems. In this blog, we will discuss the top reasons why people fear of coding and tips to overcome this problem.

        • July 2020: webmail, custom MDA and python framework work

          The issue is that folder pinning is far from being the only thing I want to do with incoming mails at delivery time, and shoving everything in the mda executable is not ideal. I rewrote the MDA to have it handle delivery only and call an API to determine where it should do it, this let me play with a ton of ideas on a custom API server without tweaking the working MDA. At the end of the day, I had incoming mails processed by various text analyzers, attachments automatically extracted and put in an s3 backing store, and mails indexed for fast lookups.

          I will not expand much on how I did this as I think it makes a nice topic for a dedicated article on custom MDA, and fun stuff you can easily do with them to provide some awesome features on your mail setup.

        • Intel ISPC 1.14 Released With Initial GPU Offloading Support

          A few days back we wrote of Intel’s ISPC compiler landing GPU code generation support for their UHD/Iris/Xe Graphics from Gen9 Skylake and beyond. Following that code being merged, ISPC 1.14.0 was quickly tagged.

          Intel ISPC 1.14.0 was released shortly after the GPU support code landed for the Implicit SPMD Program Compiler. See more details on the GPU code landing in the aforelinked article. It’s an exciting milestone and another great Intel software achievement playing into their oneAPI efforts. ISPC 1.14.0 continues offering great first-rate CPU support across all platforms. All of these open-source goodies remain open-source as one of Intel’s continued strong points.

        • Perl/Raku

          • [Perl] Monthly Report – July

            God, the year 2020 seems never ending. I just pray it gets over quickly and we start fresh with new year 2021. Unfortunately we have to wait for another 5 months. In the current situation, anything can happen in this period. Please stay safe and avoid unnecessary human contacts.

            So what was the main attraction of last month?

            Well, quite a few, to begin with, I submitted 12 Pull Requests which is much better than the month before i.e. 9 Pull Requests. I remember there was time when I used to submit at least 50 PR every month. I aim to do at least 1 PR every 2 days i.e. 15 PR every month. Unfortunately I have only managed to do that in January i.e. 22 Pull Requests. I did come close to the target in two months e.g. May (13 Pull Requests) and July (12 Pull Requests). I am going to keep trying hard. Wish me luck.

            I would like to talk about my participation to the Pull Request Club contributions. Ever since I joined i.e. January 2019, I have never missed a single month. As of today, I have submitted 20 Pull Requests to 20 different distributions. Of those 10 have been accepted and merged. There are 9 PR still open and 1 closed without merge. So overall 50% success rate, not a bad attempt so far.

        • Python

          • Verbose regular expressions, now you have one and a bit problems

            Regular expressions (regexes) are famously hard to read or write. There are some techniques you can use to improve this. Like any other code you write, your regular expression patterns should

            include comments

            break apart large blocks into smaller related sections

            use named variables and identifiers

          • Talk Python to Me: #275 Beautiful Pythonic Refactorings

            Do you obsess about writing your code just the right way before you get started? Maybe you have some ugly code on your hands and you need to make it better. Either way, refactoring could be your ticket to happier days! On this episode, we’ll talk through a powerful example of iteratively refactoring some code until we eventually turn our ugly duckling into a Pythonic beauty.

          • Python Monthly July 2020

            Being a Python developer is a fantastic career option. Python is now the most popular language with lots of growing job demand (especially in the fields of Web, Data Science and Machine Learning). You have many job opportunities, you can work around the world, and you get to solve hard problems. One thing that is hard, however, is staying up to date with the constantly evolving ecosystem. You want to be a top-performing python developer, coder, programmer, software developer, but you don’t have time to select from hundreds of articles, videos and podcasts each day.

            This monthly newsletter is focused on keeping you up to date with the industry, keeping your skills sharp, without wasting your valuable time. I will be sharing the most important articles, podcasts and videos of the month. Think Tim Ferriss and the Pareto Principle (80/20 rule) meeting the Software Development world. What’s the 20% that will get you 80% of the results?

          • PSF GSoC students blogs: [Week 9] Check-in
          • How and why I built Machine Learning model to predict tennis table matches results

            First of all I have chosen Python as the language for the project since python provides many libraries and documentations to support with any challengs during this milestone.

          • Just updated – Optimize Images v1.3.6

            Optimize Images has just been updated to version 1.3.6, a minor but still important release that fixes a few bugs and improves its overall stability. Thank you for using Optimize Images and/or contributing with feature suggestions, bug reports, or pull requests!

        • Java

          • Java ternary operator

            Ternary operator can be used as the alternative of ‘if-else’ and ‘if-else-if’ statements. It is called a ternary operator because it takes three operands to do any task. If the conditional expression that is used in a ternary statement returns true, then it executes a particular statement; otherwise, it executes another statement. The ‘?’ and ‘:’ symbols are used to define the ternary statement. The ternary operator is better to use for solving a very simple task in place of ‘if’ statement. Different uses of the ternary operator in java are shown in this tutorial.

          • Java List Tutorial

            The list is a useful way to store ordered multiple data like an array in Java. But It has many features that do not exist in the array. The list is called an ordered collection, and it is an interface that extends the Collection interface. It cannot create an object like an array, but it implements four classes to use the functionalities of the list. These classes are ArrayList, LinkList, Stack, and Vector. These are defined in the Java Collection Framework. ArrayList and LinkList classes are widely used in Java. The insert, update, delete, and search operations are done in the list based on the index-value like an array. It can store both null and duplicate values. java.util package contains the ‘list’ interface, and it will require to import to use the ‘list’. How the different methods of the ‘list’ can be used in Java are shown in this tutorial.

          • Java switch case statement

            ‘switch-case’ statement can be used as the alternative of ‘if-else-if’ statement where different conditions are defined in different ‘if’ statements. If the first condition returns false, then check the second condition and so on. Defining multiple conditions using this way is a very lengthy process. The same task can be done very simply by using a switch-case statement. It contains different execution parts and executes the statement where the particular value matches with any ‘case’ value. The switch statement can be applied to the various types of primitive data such as int, char, byte, etc. The different uses of switch-case statements in Java are explained in this tutorial.

  • Leftovers

    • The Inner Chronicle of What We Are – Understanding Werner Herzog
    • Three Charged in July 15 Twitter Compromise

      Three individuals have been charged for their alleged roles in the July 15 [attack] on Twitter, an incident that resulted in Twitter profiles for some of the world’s most recognizable celebrities, executives and public figures sending out tweets advertising a bitcoin scam.

    • ‘Mastermind’ Accused of Twitter [Attack] Just Out of High School

      Graham Ivan Clark, 17, allegedly hijacked 130 Twitter accounts as part of a cryptocurrency scam, according to a criminal affidavit filed in Tampa, Florida. The accounts that were [cr]acked included those of former President Barack Obama, Amazon.com Inc. Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos and Tesla Inc. CEO Elon Musk.

    • Education

      • A Quarter-Billion Dollar Bag of Beans: Responding to Ken Whyte’s Attack on Library Book Loans

        If Whyte wants to argue that book loans unfairly mean lost revenues for authors, he must account for the fact that those books generate PLR compensation annually for 25 years, paying authors long after the majority of books have lost most of their commercial value and can be found on bookstore shelves. Given that the PLR already compensates for hundreds of book loans per year, the compensation (if the books remain usable) for authors can run into the tens of thousands of dollars covering thousands of loans. Further, these numbers have grown significantly in recent years given the 50% increase in the PLR allocation budget.

        The value of libraries obviously extends far beyond the PLR, but if the claims are focused on the compensation for authors, authors groups successfully addressed that issue in the 1980s. They have been the beneficiary of hundreds of millions of dollars for library loaning activity as a result, which, needless to say, is enough for those so-called “guileless authors” to buy a lot of beans.

      • Member News: Teaching Computer Science in Rural Nigeria

        The San Francisco Chapter has an article by a software developer using open source software and open standards hardware to teach computer science skills to students in rural Nigeria. Chioma Ezedi Chukwu, founder of the STEMTeers mentorship program, writes that open source is more than free tools, software, or hardware. “It was a great opportunity to learn, learn by building and create with innovation.”

      • From rustbelt to brainbelt

        Can these trends go on? Not every city can bank on a university. And many smaller colleges are threatened by demographic change, lower immigration, the pandemic and, for public ones, looming cuts in funding. But federal authorities, seeking ways to recharge the economy, could adopt an idea of professors at MIT to “jumpstart America” through $100bn of investment in 20 new centres of high-technology, innovation and commercialised research, similar to DPI in Chicago. The idea is that lots of rivals to Silicon Valley could bloom. Of the top 20 candidates in the professors’ list, 13 were around universities in the Midwest. With luck it will take less than 200 years to produce results.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Preventive guidelines for CKD and post transplant patients during the transition from LOCKDOWN to UNLOCK phase

        As we all know this lock down period cannot continue forever which is already pressing our economy badly in various ways. We cannot continue to bear this huge loss in economy for a long period of time. Therefore government has rightly taken the decision to unlock all necessary services with utmost care. In this transition phase from lockdown to unlock, COVID-19 cases are increasing exponentially by every passing day.

        Hence we all have to take care of ourselves more effectively than a normal individual because we stand at a greater risk for Covid-19 transmission. As we all know co-morbidity and immunity-compromised patient possess more vulnerability for Covid-19.

        CKD itself is a co-morbidity that poses a greater risk. And we all are aware that the reason behind CKD is primarily either diabetes or hypertension. Hence CKD patients are on high risk for Covid-19.

        “And those who are solid organ transplant recipients are all on immunity-suppression drugs to avoid organ rejection. This makes you more vulnerable and susceptible for infection. Therefore it is obvious that the degree of complications in covid-19 for these patients will be on the higher side”.

      • ‘Continued Kindergarten-Level Logic’: As Covid Cases Surge Across US, Trump Repeats False Claim Rise Is Result of More Testing

        “It doesn’t get less stupid if you say it more.”

      • Calling Ed Markey a ‘Benchmark’ Progressive, Dying Healthcare Activist Ady Barkan Endorses the Massachusetts Senator for Reelection

        “Ed has long been a progressive champion for universal health care as well as the environment, equity, and dozens of other issues.”

      • How a $175 COVID-19 Test Led to $2,479 in Charges

        As she waited for the results of her rapid COVID-19 test, Rachel de Cordova sat in her car and read through a stack of documents given to her by SignatureCare Emergency Center.

        Without de Cordova leaving her car, the staff at the freestanding emergency room near her home in Houston had checked her blood pressure, pulse and temperature during the July 21 appointment. She had been suffering sinus stuffiness and a headache, so she handed them her insurance card to pay for the $175 rapid-response drive-thru test. Then they stuck a swab deep into her nasal cavity to obtain a specimen.

      • “People Are Dying Alone Because of Donald’s Failure to Lead”

        Trump: The combination of his pathologies and his position is extremely dangerous. In some sense, you could say that any American in his position is potentially the most dangerous person on the planet. But my uncle clearly doesn’t have the intellectual capacity or the impulse control to be trusted.

      • Coronavirus: South Africa virus cases pass half million mark

        South Africa is the hardest-hit country on the continent and accounts for half of all reported infections in Africa.

      • Deadly Delay: The FDA’s Role in America’s COVID-Testing Debacle

        In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published a series of 2020 guidance documents on how to seek Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs) for new SARS-CoV-2 tests. These guidance documents suggest EUAs are needed for laboratory-developed tests (LDTs), a type of test created and used in-house by high-complexity clinical laboratories that already are regulated by the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA). These CLIA-regulated laboratories traditionally have provided a rapid response to emerging epidemics. Many laboratories viewed the FDA’s 2020 guidance documents as having a practical binding effect even though the FDA lacked clear statutory authority to require EUAs for LDTs developed at CLIA-compliant high-complexity laboratories. The FDA’s guidance documents led to decreased availability of testing, particularly in the early stages of the pandemic, which contributed to the catastrophic course of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States.

        This Essay concludes that the FDA lacks authority to require EUAs for COVID-related LDTs and that the FDA’s intervention, in key respects, just replicates protections CLIA already provides. The Essay then discusses recently proposed legislation, known as the VALID Act of 2020, which would expand the FDA’s authority to regulate LDTs. While spurred by longstanding concerns about tests used in genomics and precision medicine, the VALID Act’s reach is much broader and would have harmful consequences for more traditional tests, including tests for emerging communicable diseases. Before Congress acts on specific legislative proposals, a much broader, more inclusive, nuanced, and evidence-informed dialogue about diagnostic-testing policy is needed.

        [...]

        While nothing will buy back time already lost, the COVID-19 outbreak casts a useful light on flaws in recent laboratory-testing policy. These flaws need correction, both to improve oversight during the current crisis and to avert future problems. COVID-19 is not the last pandemic. Hundreds of different coronaviruses circulate in pigs, cats, camels, and bats.3 Over the past two decades, a handful of those viruses jumped to humans.4 More will do so on a crowded planet where human and animal habitats increasingly overlap.5 Coronaviruses are just one subset of viruses, and viruses are just one type of pathogen. Future pandemics may be worse—possibly much worse—than this one.6 Lessons from the current pandemic might still help us in the next one. This Essay offers recommendations for Congress on reform of diagnostic-testing policy.

      • Korean IPTAB Issues Leading Decision on Patent Term Extension (PTE) – Enforceable Scope Related to Medicinal Use

        Thanks to Sang Young LEE and Kevin Kyumin LEE of Kim & Chang for some news from Korea – reproduced below. There is no published decision available yet, and we will post it once it appears.

        “In contrast to some foreign jurisdictions where the patent scope during PTE covers all types of use, Article 95 of the Korean Patent Act stipulates that PTE patent scope should be restricted to the specific use of the approved originator product. It was generally considered that the use of medical inventions should refer to the target disease of the approved products but there has been no judicial precedent supporting how Article 95 should be interpreted on this issue.

        This changed on July 1, 2020 when the Korean Intellectual Property Trial and Appeal Board (IPTAB) rendered a historic decision regarding the type of “use” that is considered within the enforceable patent scope during the PTE of a pharmaceutical compound patent. Galvus® (API: vildagliptin), a type 2 anti-diabetic drug of Novartis, has five different types of dosage regimens (or efficacy and effect under the Korean translation). Utilizing the fact that Novartis filed a PTE application based on only one approved efficacy and effect, three Korean generic companies filed scope confirmation actions claiming that their products did not fall within the patent scope because they had carved out the efficacy and effect first filed by Novartis as the basis for the PTE. They argued that the patent scope during the PTE should be limited to the first approved efficacy and effect only, and that the later approved four efficacies and effects were not covered.

        An expanded five-member panel of the IPTAB held that the use (and therapeutic effect) that is within the patent scope of the compound PTE is not limited to the first efficacy and effect, and that the generic’s products were within the scope of the patent during PTE ruling in favor of Novartis.

      • Glyph Lefkowitz: Lenses

        If you’re suffering from ADHD and despairing that you will never finish a task or be on time to an appointment: you can. It’s possible to do it at least pretty reliably. I believe if you commit to one and only one task tracking system, and consistently use it every single day, all the time, you can commit to tasks and get them done.

        If you do it consistently enough, it will eventually become muscle memory, and not something you need to consciously remember to do every day.

        It’s still never going to be easy to Do The Thing, even if your digital brain can perfectly remember what The Thing is right now.

        At the very least, it was possible for me to learn to trust myself when I say that I will do something in the future, by designing a system around my own limited attention, and if I can do it, I think you can too.

      • Inequalities in health care put minorities at risk of COVID-19
      • Virus surges in India, Philippines; Australia imposes curfew

        Surges of new coronavirus cases continued Sunday in India and the Philippines, which recorded another daily high to surpass 100,000 total infections, as officials across the globe considered stricter measures to stymie the spread of the pandemic.

        A curfew was imposed on Australia’s second-largest city, Melbourne, following a spike in infections.

        Countries including the United States, India and South Africa are struggling to rein in their first wave of infections while South Korea and others where the disease abated try to avert a second wave as curbs on travel and trade ease.

        Governments worldwide have reported 684,075 deaths and 17.8 million cases, according to data gathered by Johns Hopkins University.

        India’s 54,735 new cases were down from the previous day’s record 57,118 but raised the total to 1.75 million. The month of July accounted for more than 1.1 million of those cases.

      • Asia Today: Victoria state declares disaster, night curfew

        The premier of Australia’s hard-hit Victoria state has declared a disaster among sweeping new coronavirus restrictions across Melbourne and elsewhere from Sunday night.

        An evening curfew will be implemented across Melbourne from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. Premier Daniel Andrews says the state of disaster proclamation gave police greater power.

        He says 671 new coronavirus cases had been detected since Saturday, including seven deaths. It comes among a steadily increasing toll in both deaths and infections over the past six weeks in Victoria.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Apple is now the world’s most valuable company, dethroning oil giant Saudi Aramco

          Apple shares closed up by 10.47 percent Friday, giving it a market valuation of $1.84 trillion. Saudi Aramco, which had been the most valuable publicly listed company since its market debut last year, now trails at $1.76 trillion, as of its last close.

        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Microsoft will remove Cortana from Harman Kardon Invoke and Surface Headphones in 2021

              In February, Microsoft revealed that it would be slowly phasing out Cortana functionality in mobile and other devices, implying that the third-party Harman Kardon Invoke would be among them. On Friday, Microsoft clarified that these changes will occur in early 2021, including the Invoke—but the company will offer gift cards of up to $50 to sweeten the deal.

            • GM Halts Facebook Ads in Push to Prod Action on Hate Content

              GM’s move is a sign that the pressure on Facebook will continue in August and potentially longer. Ford and Honda Motor Co.’s U.S. subsidiary also said Friday they have no plans to resume spending on Facebook. On Thursday, Unilever NV-owned ice-cream brand Ben & Jerry’s extended through the end of the year its halt of paid social-media advertising.

            • Amazon will invest $10B+ in low-Earth orbit [I]nternet satellites

              Amazon’s plan is to use the [I]nternet satellites to improve connectivity in parts of the world that are underserved or unserved by terrestrial networks. Whereas traditional [I]nternet satellites fly at altitudes of more than 20,000 miles, Amazon is proposing to deploy its constellation just a few hundred miles above the Earth. The increased proximity could provide lower latency for users and potentially cut launch costs, since the satellites will need to be carried a shorter distance to their perch.

            • Donald Trump Says He’s Going to Ban TikTok. But Can He Actually Do That?

              But it’s not clear how a Trump order to “ban” TikTok would work — or if it would stand up in court. The Trump administration might try to threaten to punish Apple and Google if they carry TikTok in their U.S. app stores, by adding TikTok to the Commerce Department’s list of foreign entities that “present a greater risk of diversion to weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs, terrorism, or other activities contrary to U.S. national security and/or foreign policy interests.”

            • [Old] TikTok reportedly buried posts from ‘ugly, poor, obese and disabled users’

              Video-sharing app TikTok “instructed moderators to suppress posts created by users deemed too ugly, poor or disabled for the platform,” according to leaked documents obtained by The Intercept, an online publication known for investigations and analysis.

              Some videos that were reportedly censored featured serious subjects such as military movements, natural disasters, “defamed civil servants” and material threatening to national security. But other kiboshed videos were ones showing more innocuous images related to “fat” people, run-down houses, “rural poverty, slums, beer bellies and crooked smiles.”

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Abel Cedeño and Queer Youth of Color Are Still Caged for Self-Defense

        In 2017, Abel Cedeño was an 18-year-old high school senior when the bullying he’d experienced for so many years came to a head. Defending himself from a homophobic attack, Cedeño injured one student and killed another. In September 2019, a New York judge sentenced him to 14 years in prison.

      • House Approves $740 Billion Pentagon Budget While Millions Can’t Afford Rent

        Win Without War was among the anti-war voices on Friday issuing blistering condemnations of the passage in the U.S. House of a $740 billion defense bill as part of the 2021 Appropriations Minibus.

      • The Space Wars Have Begun

        “Space is now a distinct warfighting domain,” says the U.S. Defense Space Strategy.

      • Convicted Jihadist Arrested For Terrorism Financing

        The Public Prosecution Service (OM) suspects A. of sending money to women “who traveled ot the Middle East to participate in violent jihad”. He took the money from these women’s family and acquaintances and sent it to them in the Middle East through others, including another man also arrested at the end of June, the OM believes. At this stage, A. is charged with violating the Sanctions Act, money laundering, and hawala banking – a form of unlicensed banking.

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • Twilight of Democracy—A Review

        Which is to say that, on the subject of illiberalism, Applebaum is more familiar with the topic than most popular commentators. She is surely correct to note that authoritarianism is a protean “–ism,” expressing itself in both right-wing and left-wing forms. Of the world’s two leading authoritarian or despotic states, Russia inclines to the Right and China (ostensibly) to the Left. In the Western world, the right-wing form is presently more evident in opposition, holding power in only Poland, Hungary, and the United States. The left-wing variant, meanwhile, tends to dominate in South America (excepting Brazil), especially in Venezuela and Nicaragua.

    • Environment

      • Climate experts want fossil fuel industry to pay for bushfire crisis

        Climate experts, former firefighters, doctors and bushfire survivors are urging the Federal Government to introduce a levy on the fossil fuel industry for a climate disaster fund to help pay for the impact of “climate fuelled” bushfire costs.

        “If an industry produces a product, which is later found to be hazardous, it’s bound by law to help clean it up,” Emergency Leaders for Climate Action (ELCA) member and former Fire & Rescue NSW commissioner Greg Mullins told NCA NewsWire.

      • Fossil fuel industry levy should pay for bushfire impact, climate action group report says

        It comes as part of 165 recommendations by the Emergency Leaders for Climate Action (ELCA), a group of more than 150 experts and affected community members, in a bid to improve bushfire readiness, response and recovery.

        It follows the ELCA National Bushfire Summit, which took place in June and July — and it’s hoped the findings will be included in the royal commission report, which is due to be handed to

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Human Rights Defenders: Palestinian Eyewitness Testimony of the Execution of Abdul Fattah al-Sharif by Israeli Soldier, Elor Azaria

        A testament to the resolve of Palestinian society.

      • Mass Arrests in 2020 Echo the Brutality Endured by RNC Protesters 20 Years Ago

        Police surrounded a West Philadelphia warehouse on the afternoon of August 1, where more than 70 protesters were making puppets. Multiple Pennsylvania state police officers infiltrated the group of “puppetistas” days earlier and, that afternoon, the deputy police commissioner of the Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) claimed that protesters had bomb-making materials inside. Everyone was arrested, including the owners of the warehouse.

      • It’s Easy to Laugh at Louie Gohmert. But…

        The Texas congressman’s a dangerous fool, like the president he so admires.

      • Insurgents and Iconoclasts Needed (But for Now Lay Low)

        Even before Donald Trump and his trophy bride rode down that gilded escalator in Trump Tower, launching his campaign for the White House by denouncing “Mexican rapists,” it was plain as day that he was, at best, a sick joke, unfit for the office he would go on to win in the Electoral College after losing the popular vote.

      • Feds Give In, Maybe

        It’s possible someone finally persuaded President Donald

      • Barack Obama: End the Filibuster to Restore Voting Rights Act

        In his stirring eulogy at the funeral service for Congressmember John Lewis, President Barack Obama said expanded voting rights would be the greatest way to honor the civil rights icon’s legacy. In a speech that condemned the status of American democracy without ever naming the sitting president, Obama called for election day to be declared a national holiday, full Congressional representation for Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, and the end of the filibuster, which he called a “Jim Crow relic.” “You want to honor John? Let’s honor him by revitalizing the law he was willing to die for,” Obama said in reference to the Voting Rights Act. We feature an extended excerpt from Obama’s remarks at Ebenezer Baptist Church.

      • Trump’s Lawyers Contradict His False Claims on Mail-In Voting

        President Donald Trump on Thursday tried to draw a distinction between “mail-in voting” and “absentee voting,” but his own lawyers acknowledged in court documents the two are the same thing.

      • Speaker Nancy Pelosi Writes to Me!

        What political ambition it takes to defend expensive Obamacare (that still left 30 million people uninsured and more than double that number underinsured), instead of bucking up to support full Medicare for All.

      • Trump’s threatened TikTok ban could motivate young users to vote, some say

        TikTok has recently been scrutinized in the United States because of its China-based owner. Chinese law can compel any domestic company to hand over data it has collected on users.

      • Brazil Bolsonaro: Facebook told to block accounts of president’s supporters

        On Friday Brazil’s Supreme Court fined Facebook 1.92m reais ($368,000; £280,000) for refusing to block worldwide access to the accounts – it had only agreed to block access to accounts that could accessed from Brazil – and a further 100,000 reais for each day it failed to comply.

        It was not clear whether Twitter had also been fined.

      • Facebook puts global block on Brazil’s Bolsonaro supporters

        Justice Alexandre de Moraes had ruled on Thursday that Facebook and Twitter failed to comply with orders to block the accounts because they were only blocked within Brazil, but remained accessible with foreign IP addresses.

        On Friday, he ruled that Facebook must pay a 1.92 million reais (281,123.9 pounds) fine for not complying and face further daily fines of 100,000 reais per day if it does not block the accounts in question globally.

      • Brazil Judge Fines Facebook for Not Blocking Bolsonaro Supporters

        Before the fine was announced, Facebook said on Friday that it would appeal the decision. The world’s largest social network said it respects the laws of countries where it operates, but that “Brazilian law recognizes the limits of its jurisdiction.”

      • Facebook bows to Brazil judge, blocks ‘fake news network’ of Bolsonaro supporters

        Supreme Court Justice Alexandre de Moraes said Friday night that the company had failed to fully comply with a previous ruling ordering the accounts to be shut down, saying they were still online and publishing by changing their registration to locations outside Brazil.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Media’s ‘Cancel Culture’ Debate Obscures Direct Threats to First Amendment

        A short and rather vaguely worded open letter published in Harper’s Magazine (7/7/20) earlier this month caused an unlikely media storm that continues to rumble on. Glossing over right-wing threats to the First Amendment, the letter, signed by 150 writers, journalists and other public figures, decried a new intolerance to dissent and a threat to freedom of speech coming from the left.

      • Zimbabwe [I]nternet disruption limits coverage of planned protests
      • Somalia [I]nternet shut down after parliament votes to remove prime minister

        On Saturday, Somalia’s parliament removed prime minister Hassan Ali Khaire from his post in a vote of no confidence. 170 of 178 MPs backed the motion against Khaire citing a dispute over the scheduling of elections.

        Real-time metrics showed national connectivity levels at just 30% of ordinary levels, with most impact recorded in capital city Mogadishu. Journalists noted that the cuts limited news coverage of political reactions to Saturday’s events.

      • The Futility of the Conservative War on Pornography

        This ideological obsession with pornography is bad for conservatives for several reasons. First, evidence linking pornography to negative outcomes is weak. Second, it’s an easy issue to lampoon because, notwithstanding conservatives’ expressed outrage about pornography, it is actually more popular in conservative enclaves. And third, producers of pornography involving consenting adults are protected by the First Amendment, so there’s little hope of satisfying constituents’ desire for its suppression. None of this means that those who dislike and disapprove of pornography should change their stance; in a free society, individuals or organizations must be free to express their views and make their case. But as a political issue, this is a loser.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Black Teen Jailed for Not Doing Her Online Schoolwork Is Released

        A Michigan teenager who has been detained since mid-May after not doing her online schoolwork was set free on Friday, after the Michigan Court of Appeals ordered her immediate release from a juvenile facility in suburban Detroit.

      • To Reopen Schools Safely, We Need to Fund Teachers — Not Cops

        Ask Randi Weingarten, president of the 1.7 million-member American Federation of Teachers (AFT), what public schools need in order to safely reopen this fall and her answer is immediate: more money for the daily deep-cleaning of schools; personal protective equipment (PPE) for teachers, staff and students; the hiring of thousands of additional school nurses and counselors to help students navigate social and emotional roadblocks; reliable computers and internet access for every kid; and a 10 percent increase in the number of instructors so that class size can be reduced.

      • Was the Jewish Holocaust Influenced by the Armenian Genocide? Part 1

        The crucial question is what were the imperatives and motivations for the radical change in Nazi policy from ethnic cleansing of the Jews to genocide? Himmler and Heidrich were in the front. As we shall see, like others among the Nazi leadership, they both were deeply influenced by the Islamic propaganda and operations of Amin al-Husseini. He pushed and pressured against the ethnic cleansing and deportations of Jews but propagated and implored for their extermination. However, from their vantage point, the trigger and the example model was the Armenian genocide perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire in 1915.

      • Abolish DHS

        Homeland Security’s size and sprawling mission are what creates the mechanisms by which these rights can be violated with impunity. And when there is a president like Donald Trump in the White House, who isn’t embarrassed about ignoring civil liberties and constitutional rights, it is DHS agents he will call upon to act on his behalf.

        It’s time to acknowledge the mistakes of the past. An agency created by two centrist lawmakers (Ridge and Lieberman), wanted by no one else, passed by a Congress cowed into believing that voting against anything with the word homeland, patriot, or terror in it would result in attack ads, and a failure from the start was a mistake of history.

        Whether to abolish the Department of Homeland Security is not a question of safety versus liberty. The department makes us less safe and violates our liberties.

        It’s time to make it a thing of the past.

      • Black Lives Matter — Lake County holds peaceful protest in Painesville
    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • A Partnership to Improve Africa’s Internet Infrastructure Resilience and Reliability

        Work is already underway, with teams from AFRINIC and the Internet Society collaborating on establishing a framework of metrics that will help to determine Internet resilience throughout Africa. This framework will eventually inform the Internet Resilience focus area of the Measuring the Internet project’s Insights platform (currently under development), which will provide actionable data to governments and policymakers as well as provide historical data on the growth of, and improvements to, the continent’s Internet resilience.

    • Monopolies

      • Exclusive: TikTok’s Chinese owner offers to forego stake to clinch U.S. deal – sources

        Under ByteDance’s new proposal, Microsoft, which also owns professional social media network LinkedIn, will be in charge of protecting all of TikTok’s U.S. user data, the sources said. The plan allows for a U.S. company other than Microsoft to take over TikTok in the United States, the sources added.

        “What’s the right answer? Have an American [sic] company like Microsoft take over TikTok. Win-win. Keeps competition alive and data out of the hands of the Chinese Communist Party,” Republican Senator Lindsey Graham wrote on Twitter on Saturday.

      • Microsoft reportedly puts TikTok acquisition talks on hold

        Microsoft was in advanced talks with ByteDance prior to the president’s comments, the WSJ said. Trump’s remarks led TikTok to agree to add 10,000 jobs in the US. Whether that will still hold after the president’s comment was unclear Saturday. A deal was possible as early as Monday, according to the WSJ.

      • Trump to Demand TikTok’s Chinese Owner Divest App, With Microsoft Reportedly in Acquisition Hunt

        A deal by Microsoft for TikTok’s U.S. operations would “resolve the security issues with this app” and also give the software giant an immediate inroad into social media, according to Wedbush Securities analyst Dan Ives wrote.

        “For Microsoft, this would be a big bet on the consumer social-media space, which the company has stayed away from over the last decade,” Ives wrote in a research note Friday. An acquisition of TikTok, or a strategic investment, “would be Microsoft throwing its hat in the ring and trying to compete with other tech giants such as Facebook in a new avenue of growth for the next decade for its consumer business.”

      • Graham defends Trump on TikTok, backs Microsoft purchase

        Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) defended President Trump’s plans to ban the social media platform TikTok from operating in the United States.

      • ByteDance would forfeit stake in US operations of TikTok to preserve deal: report

        The newly proposed deal would see a complete exit of ByteDance from the platform and usher in Microsoft to take on the management of TikTok in the U.S., the sources told Reuters.

      • China’s ByteDance Prepared to Divest 100% of TikTok in U.S.

        ByteDance is now waiting on the administration to approve Microsoft Corp.’s potential acquisition of TikTok, said one person, who wasn’t authorized to speak publicly about the matter.

        A deal would give the software company a popular social-media service and relieve U.S. government pressure on the Chinese owner of the video-sharing app — although Trump seemed to throw cold water on the plan in his remarks on Friday.

        Microsoft’s move is “not the deal that you have been hearing about, that they are going to buy and sell, and this and that. And Microsoft and another one. We’re not an M&A company,” Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One.

      • This week in IP: post-COVID strategies, Coachella, Avanci 5G pool

        ing together 5G patent owners and car makers after the US Department of Justice said it was unlikely to harm competition.

        Avanci revealed its 5G automotive licensing programme on Wednesday, July 29, a day after the DoJ’s Antitrust Division issued a business review letter giving it the green light.

        Makan Delrahim, assistant attorney general, said the 5G platform can enable potentially thousands of standard essential patents to be licensed on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory terms.

        The review letter, penned by Delrahim, said the platform may bring efficiency gains by providing car companies with a “one-stop shop” for licensing 5G technology. It may also reduce patent infringement and ensure that 5G patent owners are compensated, the letter added.

        Avanci has included several safeguards to help protect competition, including licensing only technically-essential patents and allowing essential patents to be independently evaluated, the DoJ noted.

        Kasim Alfalahi, founder and CEO of Avanci, said: “5G will power the internet of things (IoT) to expand to many new categories of connected products. As we begin operating our first 5G licensing programme for connected vehicles, we will continue to transform how patent licensing is done.”

        Avanci, which was founded in 2016 and also offers licences to 2G, 3G and 4G patents, confirmed it has 38 patent owners and 14 automotive brands as licensees. It said it will now enter discussions with IoT device makers, the auto industry and patent owners about the new platform.

      • Patents

        • How to optimise Malaysian patent prosecution
        • Seeds of Neo-Colonialism: Why GMO’s Create African Dependency on Global Markets

          As COVID-19 continues to lay bare the deficiencies in the global food system, imagining new food futures is more urgent than ever. Recently, some have suggested that seeds that are genetically modified to include pest, drought, and herbicide resistance (GMOs) provide an avenue for African countries to become more self-sufficient in food production and less reliant on global food chains. Although we share the desire to build more just food systems, if history is any indicator, genetically-modified (GM) crops may actually render African farmers and scientists more, not less, reliant on global actors and markets.

          In a paper we recently published in African Affairs, we trace a nearly 30-year history of collaborations among the agribusiness industry, US government agencies, philanthropic organizations, and African research councils to develop GMOs for African farmers. We found that these alliances, though impressive in scope, have so far resulted in few GMOs reaching African farmers and markets. Why, we ask, have efforts to bring GMOs to Africa yielded so little?

          One reason, of course, is organized activism. Widespread distrust of the technology and its developers has animated local and transnational social movements that have raised important questions about the ownership, control, and safety of GM crops. But another issue has to do with the complex character of the public-private partnerships (PPPs) that donors have created to develop GM crops for the continent. Since 1991, beginning with an early partnership between the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Kenyan Agricultural Research Institute, and Monsanto to develop a virus resistant sweet potato (which never materialized), PPPs have become a hallmark of GMO efforts in Africa. This is mainly so for two reasons. The first is that GM technology is largely owned and patented by a handful of multinational corporations, and, thus, is inaccessible to African scientists and small to mid-sized African seed companies without a partnership agreement. The second is that both donors and agricultural biotechnology companies believe that partnering with African scientists will help quell public distrust of their involvement and instead create a public image of goodwill and collaboration. However, we found that this multiplicity of partners has created significant roadblocks to integrating GMOs into farming on the continent.

        • JUB : Breaking news !

          Celaire_search.jpg Neither Brexit nor Covid-19 seems to have hindered the motivation of the European Commission (EC) to see the project of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) and the Unitary Patent realized.

        • Medtronic’s dual patent strategy helps keep it at the forefront of medtech innovation
        • Merck calls for ‘democratisation’ of CRISPR-cas9 patent licensing
        • The R&D Dept.: Local patents for 7.15.20

          Viscoelastic, lightweight composite armor that is resistant to backface deformation, and to a method for evaluating the effectiveness of composite armor in resisting backface deformation. The index of retraction of a composite is determined by evaluating the degree of composite retraction at the site of impact of projectile after movement of the projectile is stopped. The degree of retraction indicates the ability of the composite to resist backface deformation.

        • The U.S. Leads Boom in 3D Printing Patents at the European Patent Office

          With a share of 35% in patent application in the field of additive manufacturing (AM) at the European Patent Office (EPO), U.S. companies are the clear leaders in innovating AM, also known as 3D printing, a new study by the EPO published today shows.

          The study reveals that the EPO has been experiencing a boom in patents in 3D printing. Patent applications for additive manufacturing increased at an average rate of 36% from 2015 to 2018. This is more than ten times greater than the average annual growth of all applications at the EPO combined in the same period (3.5%).

        • The role of IP and challenges for the IP system
        • What is patent prosecution? Your A to Z guide

          Patent prosecution entails arguing for the patentability of your invented machines, devices, methods or systems. This starts with applying for and successfully receiving a patent from the appropriate government agencies. It also involves asserting the novelty of your Intellectual Property through the submission of supplementary materials, including design blueprints and detailed instructions.

          However, the term defining this process is one that can, at times, be misunderstood or confused by those new to the world of IP law. To mitigate the chances of something like this ever happening, it will be critical to dive deep into the ins and outs of patent prosecution. The more informed you are before you get started, the more likely your bid for patent rights will be successful, no matter where you are.

        • Around the IP Blogs

          In the on-going context of Covid-19, the SpicyIP blog analyses the relevance of Art. 73(b) TRIPS, granting states the right to take actions that breach their obligations under TRIPS, but are necessary for the protection of the state’s essential security interests. While TRIPS also allows for compulsory licenses, the blog’s conclusion is that Art. 73(b) may be more suitable in cases where a bundle of a third party’s patents will have to be used to fight the pandemic.

          [...]

          The SPC blog discusses a decision from the Korean Intellectual Property Trial and Appeal Board (IPTAB), where the Korean system of Patent Term Extension (PTE, local equivalent of the European SPC) was addressed. Up until recently, Art. 95 of the Korean Patent Act was interpreted as limiting the PTE for medical inventions only to the original target disease of the approved products. Now, the IPTAB has ruled that PTEs shall not be limited to the first efficacy and effect, as interpreting Art. 95 otherwise will violate the purpose of the PTE system.

        • Should India Invoke Section 157A in the Context of Covid-19?

          In response to the COVID-19 pandemic as a global priority, the recent WHA resolution (PDF) has called upon countries for the removal of unjustified obstacles related with the provisions of international treaties including TRIPS and Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and Public Health. However, IP barriers in the context of COVID 19 go beyond medicines and are not confined to patents alone. Therefore, the use of flexibilities needs a new approach in the COVID 19 context.

          In this context, the Executive Director of the South Centre called upon the Directors General of the World Health Organization (WHO) and WTO as well as the United Nations Secretary-General “to support developing and other countries, as they may need to make use of article 73(b) of the TRIPS Agreement to suspend the enforcement of any intellectual property right (including patents, designs and trade secrets) that can potentially obstruct the procurement or local manufacturing of the products and devices necessary to protect their populations”. This write up discusses the use of this option in the context of the Indian Patents Act.

        • EPO filing statistics: is 3D printing due some hype (again)?

          Many predictions have been made about 3D printing over the years. They have ranged from hype that every household would have its own 3D printer to being tracked on the Gartner Hype Cycle (with its emotive labels of plummeting to the ‘trough of disillusionment’ and reaching the ‘plateau of productivity’). Could patent applications shed another light?

          According to recent European Patent Office (EPO) statistics in its report “Patents and Trends in 3D printing technologies”, there has been a significant growth in European patent applications for additive manufacturing, more commonly known as 3D printing. The increase in patent applications for 3D printing was recorded at an average annual rate of 36% between 2015 and 2018. In comparison, the average yearly growth of patent applications to the EPO in the same period across all technologies increased at a rate of 3.5%, indicating that 3D printing applications are increasing more than ten times faster than the average.

        • Software Patents

          • Around 1600 viewers register for live video stream of computer software patent case

            It is rare for the Enlarged Board to consider questions about patentability of software related inventions and potentially make a change. Any change in patent law in this area has significant commercial implications for those developing and exploiting software products and services. Many parties had filed amicus briefs in advance of the oral proceedings. Depending on how the Enlarged Board answers the questions which have been referred to it there are potential implications for software related patents more generally (even though the referred questions are about simulations). There is also a possibility of an existing case, referred to as T1227/05, becoming law which is no longer followed.

            When will the outcome be known?

            The Enlarged Board have not said when they will issue their written decision. In similar cases such as case G1/15 there was an oral proceedings on 7 June 2016 and a written decision on 29 November 2016. On that basis we can expect a written decision in the present case, G1/19, around December 2020.

            What happened during the oral proceedings?

            During the oral proceedings the representative of the patent applicant and the representatives of the President of the EPO made arguments in favour of maintaining the current position. The current position includes established case law which says that software simulations of things like noise in electrical circuits is inherently patentable. The current position includes established case law setting out how to examine inventions which have a mixture of technical features and non-technical features (such as mathematics).

            Direct link with physical reality

            The referred questions were made by a Board of Appeal and in the referral there are statements about a direct link with physical reality being a requirement for patentability. These statements are possibly one of the reasons for the high level of interest in the present case. At present a requirement for a direct link with physical reality is not made by the EPO in all cases. Introducing such a requirement would be a change that might exclude many software implemented technologies from patent protection.

          • Patentable or not? Regulating AI inventions for a digital future

            The recent G 1/19 hearing at the Enlarged Board of Appeal has reignited the patent community’s interest in the law on AI patents. Although concerning computer simulations, the scope of G 1/19 is such that its conclusion could fundamentally alter the patenting of AI-related or AI-driven inventions. For many patent attorneys, the development of guidelines on AI patents would be welcome. But the approach of patents courts and offices requires a careful balance of interest.

            [...]

            The hearing sparked interest among a global patent community for whom patenting in the computer inventions and AI is gathering importance. Artificial intelligence belongs to the framework of computer-simulated inventions; both are based on abstract mathematical theory. As a result, so far there are no specific rules on patenting AI. Current case law in computer simulations is also applicable to AI patenting cases.

            For some patent attorneys, existing law is sufficient. AI sits at the intersection between technical and non-technical patenting. They take the view that as technology continues to develop, so too will the legal and political response to AI patents. Furthermore, the technicality of an AI invention remains a fundamental part of its patentability.

            [...]

            G 1/19 concerned a referral made by the EPO’s Technical Board of Appeal. The referral asked the Enlarged Board to clarify the case law on computer simulations under the European Patent Convention (EPC). This is due to a discrepancy over a similar case regarding Infineon Technologies (T 1227.05).

            The original application, EP 15 46 948, is entitled “Simulation of the movement of an autonomous entity through an environment”. The Enlarged Board focused largely on whether computer-simulated inventions need a ‘direct link with physical reality’ or if having ‘technical effect [and] purpose’ is sufficient. This meant the Enlarged Board considered what is patentable in the realm of computer simulation technology, and to what extent the technical aspects of an invention can be considered.

            [...]

            G 1/19 is not the only well-known patent case with the potential to impact future AI patenting case law. In January 2020, the EPO rejected two AI patent applications which designate the inventor as a non-human entity known as Dabus. The EPO rejected the applications on the grounds that AI, rather than a human, is listed as the inventor. In fact, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) have also both rejected patent applications for Dabus.

            But last week, the UK High Court heard a referral from the UKIPO due to the potential importance of Dabus on future patent law. It is likely the UK parliament will have the final say on whether the IPO can award the application. At government level, such developments are crucial in setting a precedent for future inventions. Indeed, the IPO referred the case because deciding on the patentability of Dabus could fundamentally impact the future law on AI patents.

            Thus, the future of AI patents is seeing movement. Hervey says, “Internationally, similar approaches are taken to core exclusions to patentability, for example in computer programs and mathematical methods. So the position of inventions covering AI is tolerably stable.”

            At a global level, over July, patent offices such as the EPO and WIPO took part in consultations regarding potential future legal developments. The offices have discussed what future IP law should look like. This is not only for patent, but also for copyright and data protection. All aspects of IP are impacted by AI developments.

          • G1/19 Hearing – law through a lens

            Simulation type claims have been allowed by the EPO before, the key case being T1227/05, which relates to a simulation of an electronic circuit subject to noise. The Board of Appeal in that case ordered the claims to be allowed, the claimed subject matter determined to be “technical”. G1/19 arose because there was felt to be some sort of distinction with simulating pedestrian movement. Simulations by their nature involve mathematical methods but, also due to their nature, do not physically exist outside of the computer on which they are run. A key use of simulations is in the development of engineering products without the need for costly production of physical prototypes. Basic simulation tools even now turn up in free versions of CAD software, and you can perform these simulations on a laptop computer with meagre amounts of memory and processing power. Improvements in simulations can radically speed-up the design process by providing more reliable data about the ultimate performance of a design. Some of these improvements will inevitably be based on the mathematical methods being used.

            What did we hope for with this case? Well, the questions posed included a few points regarding whether simulations claimed as such could be considered technical. High up the list of things we wanted to see was a response to the first part of question 2: “what are the relevant criteria for assessing whether a computer-implemented simulation claimed as such solves a technical problem?”. Sadly, the Enlarged Board have made it quite clear that they do not feel they have to provide these. So, for now, we will not be getting any kind of test which lets us know when a simulation is technical. For now we have been introduced to some new terms which will undoubtedly make their way into the European patent attorney’s vernacular. “Potential technical effects” and “Virtual technical effects” look set to provide some determination over whether subject matter will be deemed technical.

            We’re in limbo until we see the written decision, but we thought we’d end by taking a punt at what we think the answers to the questions might be. Don’t hold us to it, but at least it might help understand what the case was directed at!

            1. In the assessment of inventive step, can the computer-implemented simulation of a technical system or process solve a technical problem by producing a technical effect which goes beyond the simulation’s implementation on a computer, if the computer-implemented simulation is claimed as such?

          • Virtually the same, but different: this year’s IP Corporate Strategy Summit

            IP risk mitigation – IP management now has its own ecosystem including organisations specifically focussed on NPE risk (RPX and LOT Network), destroying bad patents (Unified Patents), patent acquisition (AST) and patent risk associated with open source (OIN). The panel will also include a discussion of data as a new “IP right” and how organisations are tackling the significant legal and commercial issues associated with both the volume and value of data.

      • Copyrights

        • Print-on-Demand Vendor Doesn’t Qualify for DMCA Safe Harbor–Feingold v. RageOn

          This case involves two copyright-protected photos that users submitted to the RageOn print-on-demand service. Among other defenses, RageOn invoked the DMCA safe harbor. The Greg Young v. Zazzle case held that Zazzle qualified for the 512(c) safe harbor for displaying user-supplied photo on its site, but not for manufacturing and shipping the physical items contain the photos. This court says that RageOn disqualified for several of the DMCA safe harbor’s elements.

          The court says RageOn got financial benefits from selling the items. It also had the requisite “right and ability to control” the infringements because “RageOn is an online retailer. Commonsense dictates that RageOn had the ‘right and ability’ to control what it sold.” The legal distinction between an online marketplace and a retailer is the source of substantial litigation. Calling it “commonsense” unhelpfully sidesteps the nuance.

          The court also says that RageOn didn’t expeditiously remove infringing “merchandise.” It’s ambiguous if the court is referring solely to the online photos or to the actual printed merchandise (which, remember, the Zazzle court said wasn’t covered by the DMCA at all). RageOn promised 24 hour response times but admitted it took 18-23 days to remove the items. The court says the 18+ day turnaround time isn’t expeditious.

          The case is moving onto damages and attorneys’ fees. Despite the bad news for the defense, there’s a tiny chance the case could lay the foundation for future defense win if other courts interpret it as saying the DMCA safe harbors apply to the physical merchandise in addition to the online photos.

        • Dynamic blocking injunction confirmed by Swedish Patent and Market Court of Appeal

          Blocking injunctions against internet service providers (ISPs) remain one of the most interesting and litigated issues of contemporary copyright law. Though the concept of blocking injunctions per se is firmly established on the basis of CJEU case law (C‑324/09 L’Oréal, C-70/10 Scarlet Extended, C-360/10 Sabam and the seminal C-314/12 UPC Telekabel), blocking injunction jurisprudence in the EU continues to develop apace. Perhaps the most interesting recent development concerns so-called dynamic blocking injunctions.

          As noted by the EU Commission in its 2017 Guidance on certain aspects of Directive 2004/48/EC, dynamic blocking injunctions are:

          “injunctions which can be issued for instance in cases in which materially the same website becomes available immediately after issuing the injunction with a different IP address or URL and which is drafted in a way that allows to also cover the new IP address or URL without the need for a new judicial procedure to obtain a new injunction.”

          In the context of the modern internet, regular (i.e. static and fixed) blocking injunctions targeting a specific domain or website with infringing content can easily be circumvented by posting the infringing content on another domain or website.

        • The Pirate Bay Receives Under $5 in Bitcoin Donations Per Day

          When The Pirate Bay added support for Bitcoin donations in 2013, copyright holders were worried. Cryptocurrencies provided a new revenue stream that was impossible to stop. Today, Bitcoin donations continue to roll in, but for the TPB team it’s little more than lunch money, currently averaging less than $5 per day.

        • Japanese Government Appoints Hello Kitty as Copyright Ambassador

          Japan’s Agency for Cultural Affairs, a body of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, has hired Hello Kitty to become its Copyright Ambassador. According to the people behind her appointment, Hello Kitty volunteered for the position because she really respects copyright.

IBM and the Bomb – Part VI: Diplomacy Replaced With ‘Trade’ (Money Over Politics), or How Watson Jr. Was Sold to the Public, in the Same Way His Father (IBM Co-founder) Sold His Business Relationship With Dictators Like Hitler

Posted in America, IBM at 8:59 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Final part, shades of IBM’s “final solution” profiteering

'World Peace Through World Trade' -president of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and also IBM co-founder

Summary: Sometimes people are led to believe that corporations directly and indirectly run their country; judging by the events of 4 decades ago (IBM chief becoming the American representative in Russia/Soviet Union), this is hardly a new thing and it’s not a myth, either

THE DETAILS surrounding Watson Jr. and his appointment inside the US government were covered again in part 4 (“IBM’s Watson Came Under Fire for Representing the U.S. in U.S.S.R./Russia With No Qualifications or Any Relevant Experience”; see also introduction; part 1; part 2; part 3). Like his brother, it was about money, not skills. They were just born into a very wealthy family. That’s their supposed skill. They then repeated their father's error.

This isn’t an unusual thing by the way. “That would be a violation of the Logan Act,” Ryan explained. But who’s even enforcing it?

Personal wealth means loyalty to one’s business rather than loyalty to one’s country.

“Personal wealth means loyalty to one’s business rather than loyalty to one’s country.”The Logan Act, according to Encyclopaedia Britannica‘s editors (most recently Michael Ray), says: “Any citizen of the United States, wherever he may be, who, without authority of the United States, directly or indirectly commences or carries on any correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both. This section shall not abridge the right of a citizen to apply, himself or his agent, to any foreign government or the agents thereof for redress of any injury which he may have sustained from such government or any of its agents or subjects.”

The background to this was unrelated to Russia. It was about France. “During the 1790s tensions were high between the United States and France,” it says. “In 1778 France had formally allied itself with the 13 American colonies and French military and financial support was critical to the success of the American Revolution. As the French Revolution intensified and the ancien régime was swept aside in 1789, France’s Revolutionary government looked to the United States for support. As the powers of Europe moved to stifle France’s attempts to export its revolution, factions within the cabinet of U.S. Pres. George Washington advocated a range of responses to the French Revolutionary wars. Washington wished to adhere to a policy of strict neutrality between the belligerents, while treasury secretary Alexander Hamilton sought closer ties with Britain. Secretary of state Thomas Jefferson, who had just returned from a five-year mission in Paris, promoted a pro-French policy under the terms of the 1778 treaty. In the end, Hamilton’s Federalists carried the debate, and the French were incensed when the United States passed the Jay Treaty in 1794. The treaty smoothed relations and expanded commercial ties with Britain. France, interpreting this as a violation of the 1778 treaty, placed an embargo on U.S. merchant ships and detained the seamen. [...] In order to stave off war, statesman George Logan traveled to France in 1798 as a private citizen to meet with government officials. Although he successfully concluded a pact whereby France ceased all detrimental actions against U.S. merchant ships, he was criticized upon his return to the United States. Political opponents called his acts treasonous. On January 30, 1799, the Logan Act was thus passed by the U.S. Congress to prevent any individual from corresponding with a foreign government without permission from the U.S. government. The Logan Act has been used in only one indictment (in the early 19th century), but that case was never prosecuted.”

“Does money solve everything? Does trade overcome all issues and transcend tensions? Ask Watson the father how his business relationships with the Nazi Party turned out.”According to media which Bill Gates has been paying, Gates is a virus expert and is also a techie. Sure, he has no degree in that area and he broke the law in that area to compensate for lack of technical edge. That same media tells us that he’s an economist because his dad was rich and his mom came from a banking dynasty. We made a meme about it last night.

Does money solve everything? Does trade overcome all issues and transcend tensions? Ask Watson the father how his business relationships with the Nazi Party turned out.

Here’s a document we found some days ago:

appointment-1

appointment-2

appointment-3

appointment-4

Notice how, in part 3, the rejection of Watson is being rejected. It says that the “New York Times published United Press International report that Averell Harriman, in his congressional testimony yesterday, endorsed Thomas Watson as ambassador to USSR. Harriman said IBM executive would help improve relations by promoting trade.”

The magic of “trade”; To quote Wikipedia, regarding his father (same name): “Throughout his life, Watson maintained a deep interest in international relations, from both a diplomatic and a business perspective. He was known as President Roosevelt’s unofficial ambassador in New York and often entertained foreign statesmen. In 1937, he was elected president of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and at that year’s biennial congress in Berlin stated the conference keynote to be “World Peace Through World Trade”. That phrase became the slogan of both the ICC and IBM.”

This is then followed by this section:

Dealings with Nazi Germany before World War Two

Watson’s merger of diplomacy and business was not always lauded. In 1937 Watson met Adolf Hitler in his capacity as President of the International Chamber of Commerce[14][15]. During the 1930s, IBM’s German subsidiary was its most profitable foreign operation, and a 2001 book by Edwin Black, IBM and the Holocaust, proves that Watson’s pursuit of profit led him to personally approve and spearhead IBM’s strategic technological relationship with Nazi Germany. It describes how IBM provided the tabulating equipment Hitler used to round up the Jews. His Hollerith punch-card machines are in the Holocaust Museum today. The book describes IBM’s punch cards as “a card with standardized holes”, each representing a different trait of the individual. The card was fed into a “reader” and sorted. Punch cards identified Jews by name. Each one served as “a nineteenth-century bar code for human beings”.[16] In particular, critics point to the Order of the German Eagle medal that Watson received at the Berlin ICC meeting in 1937, as evidence that he was being honored for the help that IBM’s German subsidiary Dehomag (Deutsche Hollerith-Maschinen Gesellschaft mbH) and its punch card machines provided the Nazi regime, particularly in the tabulation of census data (i.e. location of Jews). Another study argues that Watson believed, perhaps naively, that the medal was in recognition of his years of labor on behalf of global commerce and international peace.[6] Within a year of the Berlin congress though, where Watson’s hopes had run high, he found himself strongly protesting the German policy toward the Jews.

So “World Peace Through World Trade” didn’t work out too well, did it?

Here we go again with “IBM executive would help improve relations [with another nuclear superpower] by promoting trade.” Highlighted below:

1. ROBERT KAISER OF WASHINGTON POST SAID AVERELL HARRIMAN’S APPEARANCE YESTERDAY WAS “THEATRICAL HIGH POINT” OF SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE HEARINGS ON SALT TREATY. KAISER SAID HARRIMAN, WHO TESTIFIED IN FAVOR OF TREATY, MADE HIS POINTS WITH CONVICTION AND STRONG VOICE, AND
UNCLASSIFIED
UNCLASSIFIEDSTATE 188113

ANSWERED QUESTIONS WITH INTELLECTUAL AND POLITICAL AGILITY. HARRIMAN TOLD COMMITTEE THERE WAS NOTHING ABOUT SOVIET SYSTEM THAT HE LIKED, BUT HE NEVERTHELESS WAS CERTAIN SOVIET LEADERS WERE INTERESTED IN AVOIDING WAR AND IN ARMS CONTROL AGREEMENTS. COMMITTEE ALSO HEARD TESTIMONY FROM FORMER UNDER SECRETARIES OF STATE GEORGE BALL AND EUGENE ROSTOW. BALL SAID NATO ALLIES WANTED SALT TWO APPROVED, KAISER

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014
REPORTED. -ROSTOW SAID THEY WOULD WELCOME ITS REJECTION IF THAT WAS ACCOMPANIED BY AN AGGRESSIVE NEW U.S. FOREIGN AND DEFENSE POLICY.
2. RICHARD BURT OF NEW YORK TIMES REPORTED ON ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINKI “STRUGGLE FOR PREEMINENCE IN FOREIGN POLICY,” QUOTING STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL AS SAYING “HE’S NOW MOST INFLUENTIAL GUY AROUND.” BURT SAID SOME OBSERVERS, INCLUDING SOME OF BRZEZINSKI’S FORMER ADVERSARIES IN STATE DEPARTMENT, BELIEVE THAT, IF CARTER IS REELECTED, BRZEZINSKI STANDS GOOD CHANCE OF REPLACING VANCE. BURT SAID AN AIDE CLOSE TO VANCE POINTED OUT THAT BRZEZINSKI, ONCE SEEMINGLY SKEPTICAL ABOUT BENEFITS OF SALT, HAS BECOME AN ENTHUSIASTIC SUPPORTER OF NEW TREATY. OTHER OFFICIALS SAID BRZEZINSKI STILL WAS BENT ON GETTING STATE DEPARTMENT TO CONFORM TO HIS VIEWS, BURT ADDED. THEY ATTRIBUTED SMOOTHER RELATIONS TO DEPARTURE FROM GOVERNMENT OF TWO OF HIS “FIERCEST ADVERSARIES” — PAUL WARNKE AND LESLIE GELB. BURT QUOTED DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL AS SAYING BRZEZINSKI HAD CREATED “AN UNCONGENIAL ATMOSPHERE” FOR WARNKE AND GELB IN POLICY DEBATES. OTHER AIDES, ACCORDING TO BURT, SAID BRZEZINSKI HAD B;EN ASL? TO MADUCT IN?L’E’CE OF MARSHALL SHULMAN, WHO IS EXPECTED TO RETURN TO COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY EARLY NEXT YEAR. BURT SAID ALTHOUGH BRZEZINUNCLASSIFIED
UNCLASSIFIED
PAGE 03

STATE 188113

SKI WOULD NOT DISCUSS DETAILS OF MX DECISION, OTHER OFFICIALS STATED THAT, TOGETHER WITH ACDA DIRECTOR SEIGNIOUS AND JCS CHAIRMAN JONES, BRZEZINSKI PLAYED KEY ROLE IN CONVINCING PRESIDENT TO APPROVE MX.
3. NEW YORK TIMES PUBLISHED UNITED PRESS INTERNATIONAL REPORT THAT AVERELL HARRIMAN, IN HIS CONGRESSIONAL TESTIMONY YESTERDAY, ENDORSED THOMAS WATSON AS AMBASSADOR TO USSR. HARRIMAN SAID IBM EXECUTIVE WOULD HELP IMPROVE RELATIONS BY PROMOTING TRADE.
4. UPI REPORT ALSO NOTED THAT U.S. SALT NEGOTIATOR RALPH EARLE TOLD SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE THAT SOME WEST EUROPEAN MILITARY LEADERS ONCE HAD SOME DOUBTS ABOUT PACT BEFORE BEING FULLY INFORMED OF ITS TERMS, BUT EARLE INSISTED THAT SKEPTICISM “IS MORE RESIDUAL THAN CURRENT.”
5. CHARLES CORDDRY OF BALTIMORE SUN SAID SENATOR HOWARD BAKER ALIGNED HIMSELF FIRMLY WITH REPUBLICAN POLITICAL RIGHT YESTERDAY WITH NEW ANTI-SALT ATTTACK FILM BY AMERICAN CONSERVATIVE UNION FOR NATIONWIDE TV SHOWING ON PURCHASED AIR TIME. CORDDRY SAID BAKER’S APPEARANCE IN

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

FILM CALLED “PEACE YES — SALT NO,” SEEMED TO DIM EVEN FURTHER CARTER ADMINISTRATION’S LINGERING HOPES THAT IT CAN SOMEHOW GET HIM BEHIND SALT TREATY, AS IT-DID IN CASE OF PANAMA CANAL TREATIES. COLOR FILM IS AN ATTACK ON SOVIET TRUSTWORTHINESS AND AN EFFORT TO DISPLAY U.S.SOVIET MILITARY BALANCE AS PERILOUS FOR U.S., CORDDRY SAID. “IT IS DIRECT ATTACK ON ADMINISTRATION CONTENTION THAT RESTRAINTS ON SOVIET POWER UNDER TREATY WILL HELP TO SOLVE U.S. SECURITY PROBLEMS, AND THAT THIS COUNTRY CAN DO WHAT IT NEEDS TO DO TO STAY EVEN.”
6. UPI SAID IT WAS LEARNED YESTERDAY THAT TEXAS GOVERNOR WILLIAM CLEMENTS, “AN OPPONENT OF SALT TWO,” RECENTLY HAD
UNCLASSIFIED
UNCLASSIFIED
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STATE 188113

BREAKFAST WITH HENRY KISSINGER. UPI SAID MEETING HAS SPARKED REPORTS IN TEXAS THAT TWO MAY CAMPAIGN TOGETHER AGAINST SALT. KISSINGER AIDE WAS QUOTED AS SAYING KISSINGER WAS STILL UNDECIDED ABOUT TREATY. KISSINGER IS DUE TO TESTIFY JULY 31 BEFORE SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE. VANCE

UNCLASSIFIED

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Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Putting a bunch of oligarchs and businessmen (or business sharks) in charge of a government doesn’t quite work out, does it? Look how Donald Trump has run his country into the ground, treating COVID-19 like a mere “PR” issue of a private business with quarterly targets, choosing to belittle its severity at the expense of public safety (like ‘consumer welfare’). When governments are run like businesses they become nihilistic and they’re doomed to fail more badly than conventional governments. The term “fascism” is often used to refer to that former form of governance.

IBM and the Bomb – Part V: Arms Control by Company That Profits From Nuclear Arms? World War II Mistakes Repeated?

Posted in IBM at 7:58 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Watson Jr. fought for his country, but he also profited from the military–industrial complex (state monopoly capitalism)

Thomas Watson Jr.

Summary: A decade after the end of the deadliest war his father died and two decades later he repeated the same mistake — the error of conflating business with politics, as if maximising revenue would miraculously achieve the best outcome for nations as well

THE series may not culminate in this part which is longer than the rest (see introduction; part 1; part 2; part 3; part 4). Based on documents declassified/released after a review 6 years ago we see “arms control” talks that involve Watson Jr. from IBM, a company that profited from nuclear stockpiling (see prior parts). Here’s the raw document:

arms-control-1

arms-control-2

arms-control-3

The key part is highlighted below:

1. PLEASE ACCREDIT USDEL TO SUBJECT MEETING AS FOLLOWS:
REPRESENTATIVES
THE HONORABLE
ADRIAN FISHER
AMBASSADOR
U.S. REPRESENTATIVE TO THE COMMITTEE ON DISARMAMENT
GEORGE M. SEIGNIOUS II
DIRECTOR
ARMS CONTROL AND DISARMAMENT AGENCY
(HEAD OF DELEGATION, EX OFFICIO WHEN IN ATTENDANCE)
UNCLASSIFIED
UNCLASSIFIEDSTATE 011288

ALTERNATE REPRESENTATIVE
CHARLES FLOWERREE
ARMS CONTROL AND DISARMAMENT AGENCY
ADVISERS
ALEXANDER AKALOVSKY
ARMS CONTROL AND DISARMAMENT AGENCY

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

CHARLES BAY, COLONEL
OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
THOMAS F. BARTHELEMY (JANUARY 24 – FEBRUARY 9)
ARMS CONTROL AND DISARMAMENT AGENCY
MATTHEW DALEY (MARCH 5 – APRIL 13)
ARMS CONTROL AND DISARMAMENT AGENCY
ROGER HAGENGRUBER
DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
ROBERT P. MIKULAK (MARCH 5 – APRIL 13)
ARMS CONTROL AND DISARMAMENT AGENCY
BLAIR L. MURRAY (JANUARY 24 – MARCH 2)
ARMS CONTROL AND DISARMAMENT AGENCY
MANUEL L. SANCHES, COLONEL
JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
THOMAS WATSON
CHAIRMAN OF THE GENERAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE
UNCLASSIFIED
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ARMS CONTROL AND DISARMAMENT AGENCY
ADAM YARMOLINSKY
COUNSELOR
ARMS CONTROL AND DISARMAMENT AGENCY
2. MISSION IS REMINDED THAT ONLY OFFICIALLY
ACCREDITED MEMBERS OF THE DELEGATION ARE AUTHORIZED TO
PARTICIPATE IN CONFERENCE SESSIONS (11 FAM 633.1).
3. HEAD OF DELEGATION SHOULD BE REMINDED BEFORE
DEPARTURE THAT A TELEGRAPHIC SUMMARY REPORT OF
CONFERENCE RESULTS IS REQUIRED. VANCE

UNCLASSIFIED

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Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

This may not seem like much, but remember there’s conflict between IBM’s interests and disarmament. At the same time, understandably, Mr. Watson may not want nuclear war (just buildup), as he had fathered 6 children (Thomas John Watson III, Jeanette Watson, Olive F. Watson, Lucinda Watson, Susan Watson, and Helen Watson) and likely had a lot of grandchildren.

ASAT was already mentioned here before (named and explained first in part 2). The following long document teaches us very little about what Watson had to do with ASAT. He was involved in these talks.

asat-watson-1

asat-watson-2

asat-watson-3

asat-watson-4

asat-watson-5

asat-watson-6

asat-watson-7

asat-watson-8

asat-watson-9

asat-watson-10

Notice that they keep “secret” the part about Watson. It was the fifth plenary meeting.

1. SUMMARY: US DEL PRESENTED TEXT OF INFORMAL, PRELIMINARY IDEAS FOR INITIAL AGREEMENT AND ASKED FOR SOVIET IDEAS. REMAINDER OF PLENARY TAKEN UP BY DISCUSSION OF POINTS IN U.S. TEXT. END SUMMARY.
2. FIFTH PLENARY MEETING HELD AT U.S. EMBASSY ON FEBRUARY 2, 1979, FROM 1500 TO 1815. THOMAS WATSON,
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CHAIRMAN, GENERAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON ARMS CONTROL
AND DISARMAMENT, AND WILLIAM JACKSON, ACDA, ATTENDED
FIRST PART OF MEETING.
3. BUCHHEIM STATED U.S. HAD PUT SOME PRELIMINARY,
TENTATIVE IDEAS ON PAPER FOR DISCUSSION BY BOTH SIDES,
ALONG THE LINES OF EXAMPLE OF SOVIET SIDE. HE THEN

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014
PASSED COPIES OF NON-PAPER TO KHLESTOV. TEXT WAS ON
ONE PAGE, UNLABELED, UNDATED, WITH TWO ELEMENTS SEPARATED.
A. TEXT OF FIRST ELEMENT FOLLOWS: BEGIN TEXT.
EACH PARTY UNDERTAKES NOT TO DESTROY, DAMAGE, OR
CHANGE THE TRAJECTORY OF, AND OBJECT WHICH HAS BEEN
PLACED IN ORBIT AROUND THE EARTH OR ON ANY OTHER TRAJECTORY INTO OUTER SPACE UNLESS SUCH OBJECT HAS BEEN
ENTERED ON THE REGISTRY OF THAT PARTY IN ACCORDANCE
WITH THE CONVENTION ON REGISTRATION OF OBJECTS LAUNCHED
INTO OUTER SPACE, EXCEPT THAT EITHER PARTY OR THE
PARTIES ACTING TOGETHER MAY CHANGE THE TRAJECTORY OF
AN OBJECT WHICH HAS BEEN PLACED IN ORBIT AROUND THE
EARTH OR ON ANY OTHER TRAJECTORY INTO OUTER SPACE WITH
THE AGREEMENT OF THE STATE ON WHOSE REGISTRY SUCH
OBJECT HAS BEEN ENTERED. END TEXT.
B. TEXT OF SECOND ELEMENT FOLLOWS: BEGIN TEXT.
EACH PARTY UNDERTAKES, FOR A PERIOD OF ONE YEAR
FROM THE DATE OF THIS AGEEMENT, NOT TO LAUNCH, FOR
TEST OR ANY OTHER PURPOSES,AN INTERCEPTOR MISSILE
FOR DESTROYING OR DAMAGING OBJECTS WHICH HAVE BEEN
PLACED IN ORBIT AROUND THE EARTH OR ON ANY OTHER TRASECRET
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JECTORIES INTO OUTER SPACE. END TEXT.
4. IDENTITY OF OBJECTS. KHLESTOV’S OPENING QUESTIONS
CONCERNED IDENTITY OF OBJECTS COVERED (NOT TO CARRY
OUT ACTS “UNLESS SUCH OBJECT HAS BEEN ENTERED ON THE
REGISTRY OF THAT PARTY”). BUCHHEIM EXPLAINED THAT
ESSENCE OF IDEA WAS THAT U.S. WOULD UNDERTAKE NOT TO
CARRY OUT CERTAIN ACTS AGAINST ANY OBJECT, EXCEPT THAT
U.S. WOULD RETAIN RIGHT TO CARRY OUT SUCH ACTS AGAINST
OBJECTS ON U.S. REGISTRY, AND USSR WOULD UNDERTAKE CORRESPONDING OBLIGAIONS. HE SAID, AS AN ILLUSTRATION,
THAT IT IS NOT UNUSUAL TO PLACE AN OBJECT IN ORBIT AND
SOMETIME LATER USE ON-BOARD PROPULSION UNIT TO CHANGE
OBJECT’S ORBIT. THIS IS A LEGITIMATE AND COMMON PRACTICE WHICH SHOULD BE RECOGNIZED AND NOT PROHIBITED.
KHLESTOV INDICATED THE SOVIET SIDE UNDERSTOOD.
5. DAMAGE AND DESTRUCTION. KHLESTOV THEN QUESTIONED
EXACTLY WHAT U.S. SIDE MEANT BY TERM “NOT TO DESTROY,
DAMAGE…ANY OBJECT.” HIS PRINCIPAL QUESTION, ARTICULATED IN VARIOUS FORMS, WAS WHETHER U.S. TEXT MEANT
SAME AS SOVIET TERMS “DAMAGE TO THE INTEGRITY OF A

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

SPACE OBJECT” AND “DISABLEMENT OF ITS ON-BOARD EQUIPMENT” (SEE ASAT TWO 005, BERN 528, PARA 11).
A. BUCHHEIM SAID “DESTROY” MEANS TOTAL DESTRUCTION AND “DAMAGE” MEANS PARTIAL DESTRUCTION. FOR PURPOSES OF CLARITY AND COMPETENESS U.S. SIDE INCLUDED
BOTH TERMS; ALTHOUGH “DAMAGE” BY ITSELF MIGHT BE SUFFICIENT, U.S. WOULD PREFER NOT TO SEEM TO LEAVE A “LOOPHOLE” BY PROHIBITING DAMAGE AND NOT PROHIBITING TOTAL
DESTRUCTION. U.S. SEES AN OBJECT IN SPACE AS A WHOLE
UNIT, AND DAMAGE TO ANY PART IS DAMAGE TO THE OBJECT.
AS EXAMPLE, BUCHHEIM SAID THAT IF HE WERE TO PUT AN
EGG IN THE DRINKING GLASS BEFORE HIM AND PUT THE COMBINATION IN ORBIT, “DAMAGE TO THE OBJECT” WOULD MEAN
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BREAKING THE GLASS, OR CHIPPING THE RIM, OR BREAKING
THE EGG IN IT.
B. KHLESTOV STILL WAS NOT CONVINCED HE CLEARLY
UNDERSTOOD U.S. CONCEPT. HE SAID SOVIET APPROACH WAS
THAT NOTHING CAN BE DONE TO THE OBJECT–NOT TO DAMAGE
IT, NOT TO DESTROY IT, OR NOT TO DISABLE ON-BOARD

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Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

EXDIS
EQUIPMENT. IN RESPONSE TO HIS QUESTION OF HOW U.S.
CONSIDERS A PIECE BROKEN OFF THE SIDE OF AN OBJECT,
BUCHHEIM SAID U.S. VIEWS ON THAT ARE SAME AS SOVIET
VIEWS AND SUCH DAMAGE WOULD NOT BE ALLOWED. KHLESTOV
CONTINED TO ASK QUESTIONS AS TO WHETHER EQUIPMENT ON
OUTSIDE AS WELL AS “STUFFING” INSIDE SHELL OF OBJECT
WOLD BE COVERED.
C. BUCHHEIM ELABORATED ON EGG IN GLASS EXAMPLE
BY SAYING THAT IF OBJECT WERE ORBITED WHICH CONSISTED
OF A TIN CAN WITH WALNUT ON ITS OUTSIDE AND DRINKING
GLASS WERE INSIDE CAN AND CONTAINED AN EGG WITH A CHICK
INSIDE, THEN ALL WOULD BE COVERED UNDER AGREEMENT AND
NO DAMAGE COULD BE DONE TO ANY OF THESE.
KHLESTOV STILL CONTINUED TO
PROBE U.S. INTENT BY ASKING IF U.S. FORMULATION WOULD
PROHIBIT NOT ONLY PHYSICAL DAMAGE TO OUTER SHELL OF
OBJECT BUT ALSO THOSE ACTIVITIES WHICH WOULD LEAD TO
DISRUPTION OF NORMAL FUNCTIONING OF INTERNAL EQUIPMENT.
(KHLESTOV ASKED ABOUT FUNCTIONING OF INTERNAL EQUIPMENT
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IN A VARIETY OF WAYS.) BUCHHEIM ASKED IF KHLESTOV MEANT
ONE WAS NOT ALLOWED TO SHAKE GLASS AND BREAK THE EGG
INSIDE. MAYORSKY INTERJECTED A QUESTION IN ENGLISH,
“HOW ABOUT SHAKING THE GLASS AND GIVING THE CHICKEN A
HEADACHE?” BUCHHEIM ASKED IF THAT WAS WHAT THE SOVIET
SIDE MEANT. MAYORSKIY SAID, “MORE OR LESS.” BUCHHEIM
SIAD THAT THE SOVIET SIDE SHOULD SAY WHETHER THAT IS
WHAT THEY MEANT SINCE THERE SEEMS TO BE SOME UNCERTAINTY IN THEIR MEANING. KHLESTOV SAID THE MOST
IMPORTANT WORD WAS “DAMAGE” AND IT WAS NECESSARY TO BE
CLEAR ON IT. BUCHHEIM SAID KHLESTOV SHOULD TELL HIM
WHAT THE WORD “DISABLE” MEANT.
D. FOLLOWING THIS PRELIMINARY EXCHANGE, KHLESTOV
CHANGED THE CHARACTER OF HIS QUESTIONS AND DESCRIBED
TWO SPECIFIC SITUATIONS. THE FIRST SITUATION IS WHEN A
PIECE HAS BEEN BROKEN OFF THE OBJECT, PIECES HAVE BEEN
BROKEN OFF OBJECTS ON THE SURFACE OF THAT OBJECT, OR
WHEN THE SURFACE OF THE OBJECT IS DAMAGED IN SUCH A
WAY THAT CONTENTS HAVE BEEN DAMAGED-THAT IS ONE STATE.
KHLESTOV SAID THE SECOND SITUATION WAS ONE WHEN PHYSICALLY THE OBJECT IS INTACT–THE SURFACE OF THE OBJECT
IS INTACT–BUT THE CONTENTS START MALFUNCTIONING, THEY
CEASE TO FUNCTION NORMALLY, ON-BOARD EQUIPMENT IS NOT
FUNCTIONING. ALTHOUGH YOU HAVE STRUCTURAL INTEGRITY
INTACT, THE ON-BOARD EQUIPMENT IS NOT FUNCTIONING, THE

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

INTERNAL EQUIPMENT CEASES TO FUNCTION NORMALLY. DID
U.S. MEAN BOTH CASES WOULD NOT BE ALLOWED WHEN IT USED
TERM “DAMAGE” IN ITS FORMULATION? BUCHHEIM SAID HE
WOULD REPEAT BACK TO SEE IF HE UNDERSTOOD WHAT KHLESTOV
HAD JUST SAID. THE FIRST CASE WAS ONE IN WHICH THE
PHYSICAL STATE OF THE SURFACE OF AN OJBECT, OR OF THE
EQUIPENT MOUNTED ON THE OUTSIDE OF THE OBJECT, OR OF
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THE EQUIPMENT INSIDE THE OBJECT WAS CHANGED. DID
KHLESTOV MEAN THAT? KHLESTOV AGREED. BUCHHEIM CONTINUED BY SAYING THE SECOND CASE WAS ONE IN WHICH THE
OBJECT AND ITS PARTS REMAINED PNYSICALLY INTACT BUT
THE EQUIPMENT MOUNTED OUTSIDE OR INSDE CEASED TO
FUNCTION NORMALLY. WAS THAT CORRECT? KHLESTOV SAID
YES. BUCHHEIM SAID THAT THOSE TWO CASES TOGETHER
WAER A GOOD ESCRIPTION OF WHAT WE MEANT BY DAMAGE.
KHLESTOV REPLIED THAT WE HAVE IDENTICAL UNDERSTANDINGS.
E. KHLESTOV STATED THAT SOVIET FORMULATION
“DAMAGE TO THE INTEGRITY” AND “DISABLEMENT OF ITS ONBOARD EQUIPMENT” WERE BETTER. THE “INTEGRITY” FORMULATION MEANS THT PHYSICAL STATE. THE LATTER PHRASE,
“DISABLEMENT,” SPEAKS TO THE SECOND CASE–THAT THE
EQUIPMENT INSIDE OR OUT CEASES TO FUNCTION NORMALLY,
HAS BEEN MADE UNOPERATIONAL.
6. TRAJECTORY – DISPLACEMENT. KHLESTOV BEGAN DISCUSSION ON COMPARISION OF U.S. GERM “NOT TO…CHANGE THE
TRAJECTORY OF ANY OBJECT WHICH HAS BEEN PLACED IN ORBIT
AROUND THE EARTH OR ON ANY OTHER TRAJECTORY INTO OUTER
SPACE” WITH SOVIET TERM PROHIBITING “DISPLACEMENT FROM
ORBIT” (ASAT TWO 005, PARA 11).
A. BUCHHEIM STATED THAT ESSENCE IS WE SHOULD NOT
DISTURB THE ORBIT OF OBJECT IN ORBIT AND ALSO SHOULD
NOT DISTURB TRAJECTORY OF OBJECT GOING OFF INTO DEEP SPACE;
AND THAT U.S. SIDE HAD USED “NOT TO…CHANGE THE
TRAJECTORY” BECAUSE “TRAJECTORY”IS THE GENERAL TERM
WHICH INCLUDES “ORBIT.” HE ADDED THAT SOVIET LANGUAGE
WOULD PROHIBIT CHANGING THE ORBIT OF AN OBJECT IN ORBIT
BUT WOULD NOT PROHIBIT CHANGING TRAJECTORIES OF OBJECTS IN OTHER KINDS OF FLIGHT PATHS IN OUTER SPACE.
SUBSEQUENT CONVERSATION CLARIFIED NUANCE IN ENGLISH
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Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

TEXT (“ANY OBJECT WHICH HAS BEEN PLACED”) TO MAKE CLEAR
TO KHLESTOV THAT ANY OBJECT WHICH HAD LANDED ON MOON
OR ANY OTHER CELESTIAL BODY WOULD COME UNDER COVERAGE
OF U.S. FORMULATION BECAUSE IT HAD PREVIOUSLY BEEN
“PLACED…ON…(/) TRAJECTORY INTO OUTER SPACE.” BOTH
AGREED THAT OBJECTS IN ORBIT AROUND THE EARTH AND ON
OTHER TRAJECTORIES IN OUTER SPACE WERE TO BE COVERED
UNDER THE POTENTIAL AGREEMENT.
B. VIGOROUS DISCUSSION ENSUED CONCERNING AT WHAT
POINT AN OBJECT “HAS BEEN PLACED…ON ANH OTHER TRAJECTORY INTO OUTER SPACE.” SOVIETS WOULD EXCLUDE ANY
OBJECT WHICH HAD NOT ENTERED INTO EARTH ORBIT OR HAD
NOT YET ACHIEVED THE ALTITUDE OF THE LOWEST POSSIBLE
ORBIT IF ON A TRAJECTORY INTO OUTER SPACE. MAYORSKIY

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INTERJECTED “90 KILOMTTERS” AS THAT ALTITUDE. BUCHHEIM SAID HE WAS NOT INTERESTED IN USING SPECIFIC
NUMBERS. KHLESTOV USED AS JUSTIFICATION FOR THEIR VIEW
THAT OTHER SPACE CONVENTIONS DEFINED “SPACE OBJECTS”
AS HAVING BEEN PLACED IN EARTH ORBIT OR BEYOND, AND
THOSE CONVENTIONS DID ONT COVER OBJECTS BETWEEN EARTH
AND THE LOWEST POSSIBLE EARTH ORBIT, INCLUDING AN
OBJECT ON A TRAJECTORY GOING INTO OUTER SPACE.

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

C. BUCCHEIM SAID HE DID NOT BELIEVE IT NECESSARY
TO DEAL WITH QUESTION OF WHERE AN OBJECT “BEGINS” ITS
TRAJECTORY INTO OUTER SPACE. HE STATED THAT THE MOMENT
WHEN AN OBJECT HAS BEEN PLACED ON A TRAJECTORY INTO
OUTER SPACE IS UNIQUE IN EVERY CASE AND NOT HARD TO
UNDERSTAND. OPERATORS ON GROUND CAN DETERMINE THE
MOMENT IN TIME WHEN AN OBJECT HAS BEEN PLACED IN ORBIT
AND WHEN AN OBJECT HAS BEEN PLACED IN A “TRAJECTORY INTO
OUTER SPACE.” HOWEVER, BUCHHEIM SAID, THE SOVIET VIEWPOINT INVOLVES AN ARBITRARY FORMULATION OF WHERE A
TRAJECTORY INTO OUTER SPACE BEGINS.
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7. EXTENT OF COVERAGE. KHLESTOV NOTED THAT U.S. TEXT
HAS COMPLETELY DIFFERENT APPROACH REGARDING THOSE
OBJECTS COVERED BY THE REGIME OF THE POTENTIAL AGREEMENT. (COMMENT: U.S.-SUGGESTED TEXT WOULD PROHIBIT
ACTS BY A PARTY AGAINST “ANY OBJECT” NOT ITS OWN BUT
USSR WOULD PROHIBIT ACTS AGAINST ONLY EACH OTHER’S
OBUECTS.) KHLESTOV BREEFLY REPEATED PREVIOUSLY EXPRESSED VIEWS CONCERNING THE OBLIGATIONS OF A PARTY
TO A BILATERAL AGREEMENT WITH RESPECT TO OBJECTS OF
THIRD PARTIES (SEE ASAT TWO 014 BERN 627). HE INDICATED SOVDEL WOULD FURTHER ANALYZE U.S. TEXT AND
REPLY IN FUTURE.
8. TEST SUSPENSION.
A. KHLESTOV BEGAN DISCUSSIONS ON THIS TOPIC BY
STATING U.S. SIDE IN VARIOUS STATEMENS HAD USED FOUR
DIFFERENT TERMS IN REGARD TO TESTING: (1) “TO SUSPEND TESTING ANTI-SATELLIGE SYSTEMS”; (2) “TO CEASE OR
STOP TESTING ANTI-SATELLITE INTERCEPTOR SYSTEMS”;
(3) “ANTI-SATELLITE MISSILE INTERCEPTORS” OR “INTERCEPTOR MISSILE” USED IN TEXT TODAY, AND (4) “TO REFRAIN
FROM LAUNCHING MISSILES REGARDLESS OF WHETHER THEY ARE
INTERCEPTORS OR NOT.” WHICH IS THE CLEAREST FORMULATION OF THE U.S., SHOWING ITS APPROACH?
B. BUCHHEIM RESPONDED THAT THE TERMS “INTERCEPTOR”
AND “INTERCEPTOR MISSILE” ARE PRECISELY IDENTICAL IN
AMERICAN USAGE. U.S. HAD SAID AT FEBRUARY 1, 1979,
PLENARY (ASAT TWO 015, PARA 12) THAT PROHIBITION ON
TESTING ASAT SYSTEMS SHOULD BE AN ELEMENT OF A COMPREHENSIVE AGREEMENT. IDEA OF SUSPENDING TESTS FOR
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ONE YEAR WAS IN CONTEXT OF IDEA OF INITIAL AGREEMENT
OF LESSER SCOPE THAN COMPREHENSIVE AGREEMENT. REFERRING TO KHLESTOV’S QUESTION ON FEBRUARY 1 FOR SPECIFIC
U.S. IDEA IN PARCTICAL TERMS, U.S. SIDE HAD SAID IT
THOUGHT A PRACTICAL WAY TO IMPLEMENT THE OBJECTIVE OF
SUSPENDING ANTI-SATELLIGE SYSTEM TESTS WOULD BE TO
REFRAIN FROM LAUNCHING ANY ANTI-SATELLITE INTERCEPTOR
MISSILES FOR ONE YEAR AS AN ELEMENT IN AN INITIAL AGREEMENT, IF AN INITIAL AGREEMENT IS OF INTEREST TO SOVIET
SIDE. BUCHHEIM STRESSED THAT U.S. IS TALKING SPECIFICALLY ABOUT ANTI-SATELLITE INTERCEPTOR MISSILES AND
HAS NOT MACE REFERENCE TO ANY OTHER KINDS OF MISSILES
OTHER THAN ANTI-SATELLITE INTERCEPTOR MISSILES. IT IS
U.S. VIEW THAT NO ANTI-SATELLITE INTERCEPTOR MISSILES
SHOULD BE LAUNCHED FOR ANY REASON.
C. BUCHHEIM SAID THIS IDEA WAS SUGGESTED AS A
SPECIFIC NARROW UNDERTAKING FOR PURPOSE OF AN INITIAL
AGREEMENT–SHOULD THE SOVIET SIDE BE INTERESTED IN AN
INITIAL AGREEMENT.
9. EFFECTIVE DATE. KHLESTOV SAID HE UNDERSTOOD THAT
THE TWO PARTS OF THE TEXT WERE TWO ELEMENTSOF AN
INITIAL AGREEMENT WHICH THE U.S. SIDE HAD MENTIONED.
HE NOTED THAT THE DURATION OF A TEST SUSPENSION WAS
FOR ONE YEAR AND ASKED WHAT DATE THE U.S. SIDE HAD
IN MIND FOR THE BEGINNING OF A TEST SUSPENSION.
BUCHHEIM RESPONDED THAT THIS WAS OBVIOUSLY A MATTER
FOR THE TWO SIDES TO DECIDE TOGETHER. HE SAID THAT
HE PRESENTLY HAD NO VIEWS ON THE FORM OF AN AGREEMENT,
ON WHEN TO PLACE AN AGREEMENT INTO FORCE, NOR EVEN
WHEN THESE TALKS WOULD MATURE SUFFICIENTLY TO PRODUCE
A PRODUCT WHICH MIGHT BE PUT INTO FORCE. IT MIGHT,
FOR EXAMPLE, BE POSSIBLE TO PUT SOME KIND OF INITIAL
AGREEMENT INTO FORCE AS OF THE DATE OF SIGNATURE,
BUT THAT IS NOT CLEAR. REFERRING TO A TEST
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SUSEPNSION, KHLESTOV ASKED WHEN WOULD THE ONE YEAR
BEGIN. BUCHHEIM SAID HE COULD NOT ANSEWER AT PRESENT.
KHLESTOV ASKED WHAT OTHER ELEMENTS MIVHT BE IN AN
INITIAL AGREEMENT. BUCHHEIM RESPONDED THAT THE TWO
ELEMENTS WE HAVE DISCUSSED MIGHT BE INCLUDED, AS WELL
AS ARTICLES ON ENTRY INTO FORCE, ON INADVERTENT ACTS,
AND ON OTHERS KHLESTOV HAD MENTIONED. CROWLEY

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

SECRET

NNN

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

Sheryl P. Walter Declassified/Released US Department of State EO Systematic Review 20 Mar 2014

The next part, which is the last part, hopefully shows us that no lessons were learned since IBM’s darkest blunders. Government interventions that involve corporations never end too well; profits precede morality and ethical considerations.

IRC Proceedings: Saturday, August 01, 2020

Posted in IRC Logs, Site News at 2:41 am by Needs Sunlight

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