10.27.20

Links 27/10/2020: FuguIta 6.8, Fedora 33, Red Hat Satellite 6.8, KDE Plasma 5.20.2 and GStreamer 1.18.1

Posted in News Roundup at 1:06 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Server

      • Best Linux server distributions of 2020

        Let the yearly wrap-ups begin! Thanks to COVID-19, we’ll start them out just a wee bit early. And why not? It’s not as if the last two months of the year are nearly as productive as the first 10. As we start to wind down the year, let’s wind up the lists. This time around, I want to take a look back at what I believe to be the best Linux server distributions of 2020.

        Even though it was a tough year, there were still some exciting things to arrive in the tech industry. With Linux continuing to see big gains, especially in the world of enterprise computing, it should come as no surprise that the server world is being absolutely dominated by the open source platform.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Pop!_OS 20.10 – Full Review – YouTube

        System76 recently released the latest version of their popular Linux distribution, Pop!_OS 20.10. In this review, I go over what you can expect from the latest version and share my thoughts. We’ll take a look at the new features (and more).

      • Why Linux Users Should Pay Attention To Fedora 33

        Fedora 33 is a crucial (and awesome) Linux distro release for many reasons, including the new Welcome screen, Wayland stability and GNOME 3.38. Schykle is here to break it all down and explain why this is such an important version to pay attention to.

      • Late Night Linux – Episode 101 – Late Night Linux

        Drama with open source office suites, the RIAA attacks open source, a new Ubuntu release complete with Raspberry Pi support, new Arm hardware, and the usual KDE goodness.

      • Power Up Your Java Using Python With JPype – The Python Podcast

        Python and Java are two of the most popular programming languages in the world, and have both been around for over 20 years. In that time there have been numerous attempts to provide interoperability between them, with varying methods and levels of success. One such project is JPype, which allows you to use Java classes in your Python code. In this episode the current maintainer, Karl Nelson, explains why he chose it as his preferred tool for combining these ecosystems, how he and his team are using it, and when and how you might want to use it for your own projects. He also discusses the work he has done to enable use of JPype on Android, and what is in store for the future of the project. If you have ever wanted to use a library or module from Java, but the rest of your project is already in Python, then this episode is definitely worth a listen.

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.10 rc1 LTS Released: What’s New?

        Linus Torvalds has released Linux 5.10 rc1, which is the new LTS release after 5.4. Although the update does not bring any major changes, it does bring many minor ones like driver updates, support for processors, and improvements in network and storage performance. More changes are expected until the final release in December.

        Although the update does not bring any major changes, it does bring many minor ones like driver updates, support for processors, and network and storage performance improvements.

      • Linux 5.11 To Bring Early Bits Around DisplayPort 2.0, Orphans The Frame-Buffer Layer – Phoronix

        While Linux 5.10-rc1 was just released two days ago, the first pull request to DRM-Next of various changes was submitted today in beginning to stage material for inclusion with next year’s Linux 5.11 kernel release.

        There is a wide range of initial material that’s built up in drm-misc-next and now on its way to DRM-Next for evaluation until the Linux 5.11 merge window begins in December.

      • Linux kernel’s Kroah-Hartman: We’re not struggling to get new coders, it’s code review that’s the bottleneck • The Register

        Speaking in an “Ask the Experts” session at the online Open Source Summit Europe conference today, Linux kernel’s stable branch maintainer Greg Kroah-Hartman said there are plenty of new contributors to the code though the bottleneck is finding the people to review it.

        Perhaps in response to comments reported here from Linux Foundation board member Sarah Novotny, Kroah-Hartman was asked whether the reliance on plain-text email for submitting kernel patches for discussion was deterring new contributors.

        “That is not what’s holding back contributions,” Kroah-Hartman told the virtual audience. “We have over 200 new developers show up every single release. So every three months we have 200 new developers. We do not have a problem of new developers right now.

        “Yes, it is hard to get your email client to work but we have it documented really well … we have tutorials, posts on how to do this. We’ve [also] been working on lore.kernel.org to make things easier. But our main bottleneck is maintainers. It’s reviewing.”

      • Graphics Stack

        • It’s time to admit it: the X.Org Server is abandonware

          The transition to Wayland is taking far longer than it should, and a lot of important software simply isn’t ready yet. KDE is still hard at work, and my desktop environment of choice – Cinnamon – has zero support in the works for Wayland. Don’t get me wrong – I’m excited for Wayland – but it feels like we’re counting down by continually multiplying by 0.5 – no matter how many times you multiply, you never quite reach zero.

        • The 2020 State Of Wayland Support For Chrome/Chromium – Aiming For H2’2021 Default

          At this week’s virtual Embedded Linux Conference was a talk on Monday by Igalia engineer Maksim Sisov as to the state of native Wayland support for the open-source Chromium web browser and in turn Google Chrome.

          For years the consulting firm Igalia has been involved in adding Wayland support for Chrome/Chromium by means of the Ozone abstraction layer underneath Chromium’s Aura windowing system after Intel’s earlier effort failed to get upstreamed.

          Since last month Chrome/Chromium builds can be enabled with Ozone support via the run-time options of –enable-features=UseOzonePlatform –ozone-platform=wayland/x11. These options work as of v87 Chromium builds.

          With the current code most of the functionality is working fine on Ozone/Wayland but one of the temporary limitations is around tab dragging support, but that should be addressed soon.

    • Applications

      • GStreamer 1.18.1 stable bug fix release

        The GStreamer team is pleased to announce the first bug fix release in the stable 1.18 release series of your favourite cross-platform multimedia framework!

        This release contains important security fixes. We suggest you upgrade at your earliest convenience.

        This release only contains bugfixes and it should be safe to update from 1.18.0.

        See the GStreamer 1.18.1 release notes for more details.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to Install and Setup Zsh in Ubuntu 20.04

        This article is about installing and configuring ZSH on Ubuntu 20.04. This step applies to all Ubuntu-based distributions. ZSH stands for Z Shell which is a shell program for Unix-like operating systems. ZSH is an extended version of Bourne Shell which incorporates some features of BASH, KSH, TSH.

      • Using Microsoft SQL Server on Red Hat OpenShift [Ed: Red Hat boosting Microsoft's proprietary software]
      • How To Install SSH Server on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install SSH Server on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, OpenSSH (OpenBSD Secure Shell) is a connectivity tool that enables remote login via the SSH protocol, hence eliminating eavesdropping, connection hijacking, and other attacks. It helps to secure all network communications by encrypting all network traffic over multiple authentication methods through a secured tunnel.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step by step installation of SSH Server on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian based distribution like Linux Mint.

      • How To Upgrade Linux Kernel On Various Distributions [Tutorial]

        A kernel is the core of any operating system. Before you start calling Linux an operating system, you need to know the basic concept and Linux’s birth history. Linux is not an operating system; mainly, Linux is a kernel. Now, Let’s get to know about what a Kernel is! A kernel is a program that interacts between your hardware and software. When you insert any flash drive into your system, the Kernel detects that you have plugged in a pen drive. As Linux is an open-source kernel, you can update, upgrade and replace the Linux kernel if you know what you’re doing.

      • How to Clear Terminal Screen in Ubuntu and Other Linux

        When you are working in the terminal, often you’ll find that your terminal screen is filled up with too many commands and their outputs.

        You may want to clear the terminal to declutter the screen and focus on the next task you are going to perform. Clearing the Linux terminal screen helps a lot, trust me.

        Clear Linux terminal with clear command

        So, how do you clear terminal in Linux? The simplest and the most common way is to use the clear command:

        clear

        You need no option with the clear command. It’s that simple but there are some additional things you need to know about it.

      • How to Install Oh My Zsh in Ubuntu 20.04

        When working with Unix-based environments our majority of time will be spent on working in a terminal. A good looking terminal will make us feel good and improves our productivity. This is where OH-MY-ZSH comes into play.

        OH-MY-ZSH is an open-source framework for managing ZSH configuration and is community-driven. It comes bundled with tons of helpful functions, plugins, helpers, themes, and a few things that will make you better at the terminal. There are currently 275+ plugins and 150 themes supported.

      • How to Install and Use Siege Benchmarking Tool on Ubuntu 20.04

        Siege is an open-source multi-threaded load testing and benchmarking tool for Linux. You can perform a stress test using a single URL with a specific number of users or you can put all URLs in files and. stress them simultaneously. It also allows you to test a web server with n number of users t number of times. Siege offers three modes of operation: Regression, internet simulation, and brute force.

      • How to add/remove PPA repositories in Debian

        Linux users install the majority of the programs from their centralized official repository listed in the sources.list file. However, if the program is not listed in the repository list, you can install it via its PPA (personal package archive). These are unofficial repositories that Launchpad made available to users. Launchpad is a collaboration platform developed by Canonical that allows developers to upload their source package on it. Launchpad then makes those packages available for users to install the application from.

        In this article, we will explain how you can use the Debian command line and GUI to manage PPA repositories in your system. We will explain in detail how to add, view, and remove a PPA repository.
        Please note that we have used Debian 10 for running the commands and procedures discussed in this article. However, the same commands and procedures can also be followed in other versions of Debian.

      • Getting started with systemctl | Enable Sysadmin

        How about a brief but thorough introduction to mastering systemctl? Enable yourself to use it today.

      • How do I Install an Entire Ubuntu on a USB Flash Drive? – Linux Hint

        Among all the Linux distros out there, Ubuntu is one of the most well-known and popular ones. Maintained by Canonical, Ubuntu is a Debian-based distro with tons of additional features. It’s a distro that can meet the needs of all sorts of workloads, be it casual or professional.
        Linux is an operating system that can run on almost any hardware. Thanks to its lower hardware resource requirement (depends on the distro, but on average, still lower), you can run it on even the most potato computer you can find in your attic.

        In this guide, let me demonstrate to you just that. Of course, it’s not something crazy, but really fun.

        Check out how to install an entire Ubuntu system on a USB flash drive.

      • What is MongoDB? How Does MongoDB Work?

        MongoDB is an open-source, modern, general-purpose, document-based distributed database management system developed, distributed, and supported by MongoDB Inc.

      • OpenStack Cluster Installer: the Debian way to deploy OpenStack
      • How to speed up Blender rendering – Linux Hint

        Blender, which was first launched in 1995 by Ton Roosendaal, a developer from the Netherlands, is a powerful 3D creation tool used to create 3D graphics, interactive 3D apps, video games, virtual reality videos, and animations. It has been available as an open-source software since 2002, and it runs on popular operating systems like macOS, Linux, and Windows. Blender has many features, and it can be used for 3D modeling, texturing, shading, rigging, particle simulation, sculpting, motion graphics, and compositing.

        Blender is easy to learn, and it has the support of a huge community. Blender is a very robust application, and its modeling, sculpting, and viewport navigation functions are smooth. However, for scenes with many 3D assets, glossy shaders, high-definition textures, particles, and volumetric lights, a significant amount of time is required for rendering. However, the time required for rendering can be reduced by employing the proper renderer settings. In this article, we will discuss methods for reducing the rendering time in Blender, and the effects of these methods on the final result.

        Rendering a scene in Blender is different than rendering an image in a photo editor or a video from a video editor. There are many factors to consider before rendering in Blender to avoid wasting time. For example, Blender (version 2.8) comes with two rendering engines: Eevee and Cycles. Eevee is much faster than Cycles, and it has lower time and resource requirements; however, while Eevee is a real-time viewport port renderer, Cycles is a ray-tracing rendering engine that achieves better results. A rendering engine can be selected based on personal preference, but professional designers tend to prefer Cycles due to its accuracy and realism, despite its higher time requirements.

      • How to Use the SAR Command in Linux: A Full Tutorial for Beginners – Linux Hint

        If you are a system administrator, then you probably perform many tasks related to monitoring, logging, and auditing. For such tasks to be completed successfully, all system activities must be recorded. Luckily, the Linux operating system provides the system activity reporter (SAR) command. The SAR command, which is used to track the activities performed in a computer system, is very useful to understand because it can facilitate various tasks related to system administration. This tutorial provides an in-depth look into Linux’s SAR command for beginners, beginning with the installation process. Please note that, for this tutorial, we use Linux Mint 20.

      • How to Copy a Folder in Linux? – Linux Hint

        The files and folders are commonly used in any operating system. At times, your folder contains some crucial data, and you prefer to keep several backup copies. The first solution that comes to our mind is to copy that folder somewhere else. Therefore, in this article, our target is to figure out all the methods of copying a folder in Linux, i.e., both the CLI-based methods and the GUI-based methods.
        Note: For explaining the different methods of copying a folder in Linux, we have made use of Linux Mint 20.

      • Configure Ansible and Run ad-hoc Commands

        In the first part of the Ansible series, you got acquainted with Ansible and learned to install it.

        In this tutorial, you will learn how to manage static inventory in Ansible. You will also understand various Ansible configuration settings.

        Furthermore, you will explore few Ansible modules and you will get to run Ansible Ad-Hoc commands.

    • Games

      • Avorion – Black Market expansion is due on November 2, has a new trailer up | GamingOnLinux

        The huge open-world space sandbox Avorion has the first expansion releasing on November 2, along with plenty more details revealed and a trailer.

        It’s going to include quite a lot of extra content for those who wants it. Avorion already had a huge open world with lots to do, and you can spend hours in it easily thanks to the deep ship-building mechanics. This expansion is aimed it those who want more story and more game mechanics overall though with 20 new story missions, side-missions and events. There’s a new hacking ability, a Black Market to trade at with illegal and stolen space goods along with weapons and upgrades only found there. On top of that there’s The Convoy story event, that has a huge convoy attempt an expedition towards the center of the galaxy and you can choose to join or fight it.

      • Iratus: Wrath of the Necromancer expands the reverse dungeon crawler – out now | GamingOnLinux

        Iratus: Wrath of the Necromancer is the brand new expansion to Iratus: Lord of the Dead, the pretty good reverse dungeon crawler where you control evil forces trying to make their way to the surface.

        For those that missed it, the base game Iratus: Lord of the Dead added Linux support along with the 1.0 release back in April 2020. Giving a similar style to the likes of Darkest Dungeon, without the brutal difficulty and much more of a turn-based dungeon crawling battler than anything else.

      • Little Ghost Project is an upcoming spooky modern 3D point and click adventure | GamingOnLinux

        Now crowdfunding on the Ulule platform, Little Ghost Project is a story driven adventure game, which aims to be a tribute to classic point and click adventures from Ron Gilbert and Tim Schafer, such as Monkey Island, Maniac Mansion or Grim Fandango along with more modern features.

        Created by French team Jolly Roger Productions, it’s a fully 3D afventure with a world of the dead inspired in style by Tim Burton movies like The Nighmare Before Christmas and Corpse Bride with an original satirical comedy story and a cast of colourful characters they say should be suitable for all ages.

        “Imagine a world full of ghouls, ghosts, vampires and many other terrifying undead! A world following its own rules and codes. A world where the living are real bogeymen for children.”

      • Modern open source level editor ‘LEd’ has a new release with the first Linux build | GamingOnLinux

        Announced and highlighted back here in September, LEd is a modern open source level editor from the previous development lead on Dead Cells.

        [...]

        Looks like they’ve started getting their Linux support into better shape too, with the 0.4.0 release that went out recently having their first attempt at a standalone Linux build with help from the community. This is why open source is great, anyone can get involved.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Plasma 5.20.2 Desktop Released with More Than 25 Bug Fixes

          Coming just one week after the first point release, KDE Plasma 5.20.2 is here to further improve the overall stability and reliability of the latest KDE Plasma 5.20 desktop environment series by addressing about 30 bugs in various core components and apps.

          Among the highlights, KDE Plasma 5.20.2 improves the consistency of the lid behavior on some laptops, fixes a bug affecting some user profile fields not being saved unless they all have unique new values, makes Tilde expansion work again in KRunner, and improved screen casting and screen capturing support.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Tracker 3.0: How did we get here?

          In 2006 the NEPOMUK project began. The goal was not a search engine but “a freely available open-source framework for social semantic desktops”, put even less simply a “Networked environment for personal ontology-based management of unified knowledge”. The project had €17 million of funding, much of it from the EU. The Semantic Web mindset had reached the free desktop world.

          I don’t know where all the money went! But one output was NEPOMUK-KDE, which aimed to consolidate all your data in a single database to enable new ways of browsing and searching. The first commit was late 2006. Some core KDE apps adopted it, and some use cases, ideas and prototypes emerged.

          Meanwhile, Nokia were busy contracting everyone in the Free Software world to work on Maemo, an OS for phones and tablets which would mark the start of the smartphone era had a certain fruit-related company not beaten them to it.

    • Distributions

      • New Releases

        • FuguIta 6.8
        • IPFire 2.25 – Core Update 151 released

          IPFire 2.25 – Core Update 151 has been released. It comes with various package updates and a number of bug fixes in IPFire Location and security improvements in the SSH service.

          Since the rollout of our new location database, we have made various improvements on the software implementation to increase accuracy and speed. These are now all included in this Core Update.

          In addition to that, we now show whether an IP address is marked as an “anonymous proxy”, “satellite provider” or “anycast” which helps debugging network issues and investigating attacks.

      • BSD

        • Bring old hardware back to life with OpenBSD

          OpenBSD is one of the main BSD distros. It is well-known because it is made with security in mind, with almost no security bugs in the default installation and a lot of cryptography tools available to users. Another cool feature, at least for me, is the fact that you can run it on a huge variety of hardware, from new computers to very old machines.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Fedora 34 Looking To Add An AArch64 KDE Plasma Desktop Spin

          Given the AArch64 laptops coming to market and continuing popularity around ARM64 SBCs for Linux desktop use-cases, Fedora’s KDE special interest group is proposing Fedora KDE Plasma edition also be spun for the 64-bit ARM architecture.

          While there is the Fedora KDE Plasma spin for x86_64, it currently isn’t produced for AArch64. The desktop-minded spins to date for Fedora AArch64 have been Fedora Workstation with GNOME Shell and then Fedora Xfce for a lighter spin. There is also the minimal and server images, but the proposal laid out this week is for delivering Fedora KDE on AArch64 in 2021.

        • Fedora 33 Released with GNOME 3.38.1 and Linux Kernel 5.8, Btrfs as Default Filesystem

          Continuing the six-month release cycle, Fedora 33 is here exactly six months after the Fedora 32 release to bring you all the latest GNU/Linux technologies and Open Source software, as well as some exciting new features that might turn some heads.

          Powered by the Linux 5.8 kernel series, Fedora 33 is the first release to use Btrfs as default file system for all the official spins. Btrfs comes with some great features compared to the EXT file system, including copy-on-write, snapshots, transparent compression, checksums, pooling, and the ability to span over multiple hard drives.

        • Fedora 33 is now available for download, This is What’s New

          Coming after 6 months from the earlier Fedora 32, the latest Fedora 33 distribution is supported until December 2021 with bug fixes and security updates. With this release, Fedora brings all of its desktop spins to their respective latest versions. Fedora releases two versions in a year and Fedora 33 is the last version of 2020.

        • How to Upgrade to Fedora 33 Workstation from Fedora 32 (GUI and CLI Method)

          Fedora 33 is available now. You might be thinking to upgrade to the latest version and wondering how to take advantage of new features. Here are the steps to upgrade to Fedora 33 Workstation from Fedora 32.

        • Fedora 33 released

          The Fedora 33 release is now available in a variety of editions, including the newly promoted IoT edition. “No matter what variant of Fedora you use, you’re getting the latest the open source world has to offer. Following our ‘First’ foundation, we’ve updated key programming language and system library packages, including Python 3.9, Ruby on Rails 6.0, and Perl 5.32.

        • Fedora 33 is officially here!

          Today, I’m excited to share the results of the hard work of thousands of contributors to the Fedora Project: our latest release, Fedora 33, is here! This is a big release with a lot of change, but I believe all that work will also make it a comfortable one, fulfilling our goal of bringing you the latest stable, powerful, and robust free and open source software in many easy to use offerings.

        • Fedora 33 Released With Workstation Using Btrfs By Default

          Fedora 33 has just been released as the last major update to this Red Hat sponsored Linux distribution for 2020.

          Fedora 33 shipped on track even with its major changes like switching Fedora Workstation 33 to using Btrfs by default. Fedora Workstation 33 using Btrfs by default rather than EXT4 is certainly the mainline headline while the server spins continue to use XFS. But besides that Fedora 33 is also notable for using the fresh GNOME 3.38 desktop environment, LLVM 11, Python 3.9, RPM 4.16, Mesa 20.2, currently Linux 5.8 while Linux 5.9 is in testing as a stable release update, and more.

        • Charles-Antoine Couret: Nouvelle version de Fedora dite 33

          En ce mardi 27 octobre, les utilisateurs du Projet Fedora seront ravis d’apprendre la disponibilité de la version Fedora 33.

          Fedora est une distribution communautaire développée par le projet Fedora et sponsorisée par Red Hat, qui lui fournit des développeurs ainsi que des moyens financiers et logistiques. Fedora peut se voir comme une sorte de vitrine technologique pour le monde du logiciel libre, c’est pourquoi elle est prompte à inclure des nouveautés.

          Fedora garde un rôle central dans le développement de ces nouveautés via le développement en amont. En effet, les développeurs de la distribution contribuent également directement au code d’un certain nombre de logiciels libres contenus dans la distribution, dont le noyau Linux, GNOME, NetworkManager, PackageKit, PulseAudio, Wayland, systemd, la célèbre suite de compilateurs GCC, etc. Cliquez ici pour voir l’ensemble des contributions de Red Hat.

        • Oracle Linux 8 – Installation made easy with free videos

          With “work from home” mandates and less opportunity to go to in-person classes, you might be looking for training opportunities you can start on today. We all need some help to get started on developing our skills. To make it easy for you, we’ve put together a series of blogs where you’ll find free, short videos that you can take at your own pace to get a better at understanding of Oracle Linux 8. You can develop skills to use and administer Oracle Linux 8 on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, on-premises, or in hybrid environments.

          This first blog focuses on the installation and boot process. You can learn step-by-step how to complete an Oracle Linux 8 installation for on-premises deployment and how to create an Oracle Linux 8 instance on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. You can also learn about the boot process and how to configure different services to start at boot time.

        • Red Hat Satellite 6.8 is now available with upgrade improvements and IPv6 support

          Red Hat is pleased to announce that Red Hat Satellite 6.8, part of your Red Hat Smart Management Subscription, is now available. This release of Red Hat Satellite Server 6.8 focuses on Satellite Server and Capsule Server upgrade improvements, expanded provisioning options, and IPv6 support.

        • The Sandwich Situation: Ansible Modules for the OpenStack SDK
        • Linux command basics: printf | Enable Sysadmin

          Use printf to format text or numbers.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Pop!_OS 20.10 Released Based on Ubuntu 20.10

          Pop!_OS 20.10 is now available to download and install.

          Pop!_OS is an Ubuntu-based Linux distro created and maintained by Linux computer maker System76. Pop!_OS uses a customised version of GNOME Shell desktop (Pop! Shell); loads in some additional apps, utilities, and settings (their dark mode is a proper one); and the system is designed to work seamlessly with System76 hardware (which sadly I don’t own).

          The latest version of their home-grown OS is based on top of the recent Ubuntu 20.10 release. Pop!_OS 20.10 inherits all of the core foundational features found in regular Ubuntu 20.10, including a GNOME 3.38 base, the Linux 5.8 kernel, and guaranteed app and security updates for the next nine months.

          Pop!_OS 20.10 features a couple of notable improvements over the Pop!_OS 20.04 release. This includes fractional scaling support (Ubuntu introduced this in 20.04); a way to set floating window exceptions for apps too small to tile elegantly; and this release supports external monitors in hybrid graphics mode.

        • This Gorgeous New Linux Phone Ships With Ubuntu Touch And LineageOS

          If you happen to love Linux or Android, adored the Nokia N900 and miss the glory days of physical keyboards on your phone, say hello to your early Christmas present. UK-based F(x)tec and renowned smartphone community XDA have joined forces to create a beautifully crafted, privacy-focused smartphone that not only looks terrific but marks a significant first: The Pro1-X ships with pure Android alternative LineageOS out of the box.

          That lead paragraph was probably enough to hook many of you, so if you want to skip the finer points feel free to jump straight to the Indiegogo page (it’s not a fundraiser; the phone is already built and on sale for a limited time).

          What’s especially attractive (aside from that Sapphire Blue exterior) is that you can also get the Pro1-X delivered with Ubuntu Touch preinstalled. Or you choose the more traditional and opt for Android. That’s a refreshing amount of choice for a consumer-grade smartphone.

        • Ubuntu Touch + LineageOS? THIS Is The Linux Phone I Want!

          Meet the Pro1-X, a beautiful high-spec physical keyboard smartphone that offers LineageOS, Ubuntu Touch or Android right out of the box. Enjoy this exclusive Linux For Everyone interview with the team behind the phone, hear more about the partnership with XDA and much more!

        • Pro1 X Smartphone to Ship with Android, Lineage OS, or Ubuntu Touch

          Meet Pro1 X, the successor of the Pro1 smartphone, developed in partnership with the XDA Developers community and focused on being privacy aware and to give users the best mobile experience powered by the Linux kernel.

          To achieve that, Pro1 X ships pre-installed with either Google’s Android mobile operating system, as well as Lineage OS, an Android-based free and open-source mobile operating system, or the Ubuntu Touch OS from UBports Foundation.

        • Fxtec’s Pro1-X is an Ubuntu Phone with Physical QWERTY Keyboard

          Fxtec’s Pro1-X is the first smartphone available with Lineage OS preinstalled. The Pro1-X also boasts a physical QWERTY keyboard and supports Ubuntu Touch.

          This post, Fxtec’s Pro1-X is an Ubuntu Phone with Physical QWERTY Keyboard is from OMG! Ubuntu!. Do not reproduce elsewhere without permission.

        • F(x)tec Pro1-X smartphone runs Ubuntu Touch or LineageOS, has a physical keyboard (crowdfunding)

          The F(x)tec Pro1 is an unusual smartphone by contemporary standards. It has a large screen that covers most of the front of the device. But there’s also a physical keyboard that slides out from behind the screen when you need it, allowing you to use the phone like a tiny laptop.

          First launched in 2019, the F(x)tec Pro1 was originally available with a custom version of Android, the phone also has an unlocked bootloader and support for running the Linux-based Sailfish OS or Android-based LineageOS.

          Now F(x)tec is launching a new version of the phone that comes with a choice of Ubuntu Touch or LineageOS pre-installed. The F(x)tec Pro1-X is available for pre-order through an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign and it’s expected to ship to backers in March, 2021.

        • Ubuntu Fridge | Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 654

          Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue 654 for the week of October 18 – 24, 2020. The full version of this issue is available here.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • How to define a product in the open source software supply chain | Opensource.com

        In the first article in this series, “Is open source a development model, business model, or something else?” I introduced the concept that open source is part of the supply chain for software products. But to truly understand open source as a supply chain, you must have a decent understanding of what a product is. A product can be thought of as a business, and as legendary business guru Peter Drucker said, “The purpose of business is to create and keep a customer.” Drucker’s statement means a business or product must be useful enough to pay for, or it will fail. Product differentiation is the thing that creates and retains customers.

        [...]

        In a traditional manufactured product or service, there is a distinction between the value provided by the supplier and the value provided by the company selling directly to the consumer. You could make a further distinction between business-to-consumer (B2C) or business-to-business (B2B) products and services, but that’s beyond the scope of this series.

        The astute reader may already be thinking, “yeah, but with traditional products, the suppliers are also companies selling products with differentiation.” This is completely true, and in this way, open source projects are no different. Community-driven, open source projects don’t have the advantage of expensive marketing campaigns, focus groups, and sales teams to educate customers, but they must also differentiate themselves in the marketplace.

        Differentiation is an important concept for product managers, developers, and even systems administrators. Even in a broader context, the output of any sort of knowledge work—code, writing, music, or art—differentiation is what brings value and meaning to our work. Differentiation is what creates value, whether it’s a software product or service, labor, or even music.

        In the next article, I’ll dive deeper into how software product teams differentiate their solutions from the open source components provided by their suppliers. We’ll even cover software as a service (SaaS).

      • Apache HTTP Server

        The Apache HTTP server (or simply Apache) was launched in 1995 as an outgrowth of a public domain httpd project from the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA). According to the Apache website, development of that project stalled, so a group of webmasters got together to coordinate their own changes, extensions, and bug fixes in the form of patches. These developers, including Brian Behlendorf, Cliff Skolnick, and others, formed the basis of the original Apache Group, which in turn became The Apache Software Foundation.

        After launch, Apache quickly became the most popular web server on the Internet. The project is now developed and maintained, along with hundreds of other projects, by The Apache Software Foundation and is released under the terms of Apache License 2.0.

      • 8 Great Free Photo And Video Editing Software To Use For Beginners

        Blender

        On Linux, Ios, and PCs, Blender is another one of the most outstanding free video editing applications on the marketplace today. Blender is a fully free-to-use open-source platform. Blender was developed as a 3D animation kit, but it comes with a very convenient video editor.

        The video editor for Blender is an appropriate one for much of your video needs. This editor requires simple acts such as video cutting and sequencing to be done. It also helps you to do more difficult tasks, such as camera masking. This software makes it a compelling video editing that caters to beginners as well as experienced users.

        Shotcut

        Shotcut is completely an open-source software, like Blender. This platform suggests that you get linked to all the software without paying the update after installing it. This film editor provides a wide variety of file formats, and there is an excellent selection of instructional videos.

        Although this video editing app has excellent functionality, the interface can seem a little funky to some people. Initially, the platform Linux designed this application, and it sure reflects that. But, it is still a value video editor underneath the covers.

        [...]

        Openshot

        Openshot is a fully open-source, which renders it one of the most available tools for video editing. It’s simple to use drag and drop design and remind some Mac users a little more of iMovie.

        Openshot, though, contains more functionality, including infinite textures and audio mixing, than iMovie. This free editor achieves a good compromise among sophisticated functionality and a primary interface. When you build switches between scenes, it also enables real-time displays.

        GIMP

        GIMP is a popular picture editing app, shortened for GNU Image Processing Program, which features highly advanced and efficient tools. It is not for the faint-hearted or for those who do not understand much about pictures’ processing.

        Due to its software and functionality, it has been widely touted as a better Photoshop substitute. It contains the same resources for editing, blending, paints, text, and more. You can use presets and plugins in an instant, as well, but there is no cataloging feature.

      • Making the Business Case for Contributing to Open Source
      • Sending logs from syslog-ng to Grafana Loki – Blog – syslog-ng Community – syslog-ng Community

        Loki is one of the latest applications that lets you aggregate and query log messages, and of course to visualize logs using Grafana. It does not index the contents of log messages, only the labels associated with logs. This way, processing and storing log messages requires less resources, making Loki more cost-effective. Promtail, the log collector component of Loki, can collect log messages using the new, RFC5424 syslog protocol. This is where syslog-ng can send its log messages.

        From this blog, you can learn a minimal Loki & Promtail setup. We will send logs from syslog-ng, and as a first step, will check them with logcli, a command line utility for Loki. Once it works, we will also install Grafana in a container and query Loki from there.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Firefox 82 on POWER goes PGO

            You’ll have noticed this post is rather tardy, since Firefox 82 has been out for the better part of a week, but I wanted to really drill down on a couple variables in our Firefox build configuration for OpenPOWER and also see if it was time to blow away a few persistent assumptions.
            But let’s not bury the lede here: after several days of screaming, ranting and scaring the cat with various failures, this blog post is finally being typed in a fully profile-guided and link-time optimized Firefox 82 tuned for POWER9 little-endian. Although it multiplies compile time by nearly a factor of 3 and the build process intermittently can consume a terrifying amount of memory, the PGO-LTO build is roughly 25% faster than the LTO-only build, which was already 4% faster than the “baseline” -O3 -mcpu=power9 build. That’s worth an 84-minute coffee break! (-j24 on a dual-8 Talos II [64 threads], 64GB RAM.)

            The problem with PGO and gcc (at least gcc 10, anyway) is that all the .gcda files end up in the same directory as the built objects in an instrumented build. The build system, which is now heavily clang-centric (despite the docs, gcc is clearly Tier 2, since this and other things don’t work), does not know how to handle or transfer the resulting profile data and bombs after running the test load. We don’t build with clang because in previous attempts it never managed to fully build the browser on ppc64le and I’m sceptical of its code quality on this platform anyway, but since I wanted to verify against a presumably working configuration I did try a clang build first to see if anything had changed.

          • Arctic Fox 27.11.0 release

            This 2020 with COVID, quarantines and lockdown was and is a strange year, but it allowed me to take care of Arctic Fox quite a bit. A lot of work is going on in my Arctic Fox fork, which Matt dutifully imports.

            Thousands of commits flew in into this new release, tackling JavaScript upgrades, build fixes, further metro removal, JIT optimizations. SO much was imported from Firefox that this is really exciting!

          • New Release: Tor Browser 10.0a9 (Android Only)

            Android Tor Browser 10.0a9 is now available from the Tor Browser Alpha download page and also from our distribution directory.

            Note: This is an alpha release, an experimental version for users who want to help us test new features. For everyone else, we recommend downloading the latest stable release instead.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • LibreOffice 7.1 Alpha Is Up For Testing

          While LibreOffice 7.0 was just released back in August, LibreOffice 7.1 is now in alpha as the first step towards this next open-source office suite release.

          LibreOffice 7.1.0 is gearing up for release the first week of February and thus this week marked the first alpha while in one month will be the feature freeze and beta. The release candidates will continue through December and January.

      • CMS

        • 7 Best Free and Open Source Ruby-Based Web Content Management Systems

          A web content management system (WCMS) is software designed to simplify the publication of Web content. In particular, it enables content creators to submit content without requiring technical knowledge of HTML or the uploading of files. A CMS is most commonly used in creating an intranet or in establishing a presence on the Web.

          This type of software that keeps track of every piece of content on a Web site. Content can be simple text, photos, music, video, documents, or just about anything you can think of. A major advantage of using a CMS is that it requires almost no technical skill or knowledge to manage.

          Not only do content management systems help website users with content editing, they also take care of a lot of “behind the scenes” work such as automatically generating navigation elements, making content searchable and indexable, keeping track of users, their permissions and security setting, and much more.

          To provide an insight into the quality of software that is available, we have compiled a list of 7 high quality free Ruby-based Linux WCMS. Hopefully, there will be something of interest for anyone who wishes to manage a website.

      • Programming/Development

        • PHP version 7.3.24RC1 and 7.4.12RC1 – Remi’s RPM repository – Blog

          Release Candidate versions are available in testing repository for Fedora and Enterprise Linux (RHEL / CentOS) to allow more people to test them. They are available as Software Collections, for a parallel installation, perfect solution for such tests, and also as base packages.

          RPM of PHP version 7.4.12RC1 are available as SCL in remi-test repository and as base packages in the remi-test repository for Fedora 32-33 or remi-php74-test repository for Fedora 31 and Enterprise Linux 7-8.

          RPM of PHP version 7.3.24RC1 are available as SCL in remi-test repository and as base packages in the remi-test repository for Fedora 31 or remi-php73-test repository for Enterprise Linux.

        • PHP – Removing Specific Element from An Array – TecAdmin

          Q. How do I remove a specific element from an array using PHP.

          In this tutorial, you will learn two PHP unset() and array_splice() methods to remove specific array elements.

        • Perl/Raku

          • 2020.43 Release And Star

            Quite a number of releases this week(end): Alexander Kiryuhin released the Rakudo 2020.10 compiler release, Claudio Ramirez immediately provided many Linux package versions of that release, and JJ Merelo updated the standard Raku Alpine Docker image, as well as the special Raku Alpine Docker Image for testing modules by module developers.

        • Python

        • JS

          • 10 Useful Free and Open Source JavaScript Frameworks

            JavaScript is an extremely popular prototype-based scripting language that is one of the core technologies of the World Wide Web. It provides for enhanced user interfaces and dynamic websites. JavaScript can, for example, check information entered into a form to ensure it conforms to what is expected by a database.

            JavaScript should not be confused with Java. While both are used to write computer software that can run inside a web browser, they are unrelated programming languages; Java offers a lot more than a programming language.

            There is a wide range of open source JavaScript frameworks that are available to help speed up the development process of websites. The purpose of this article is to help newcomers to JavaScript narrow the field to a manageable number to explore. The frameworks offer a wide range of features, such as Document Object Model querying and manipulation, Asynchronous JavaScript and XML (Ajax) request handling, and an interface widget library being a few examples.

  • Leftovers

    • Why 2020 Is the Year of Black Holes

      Penrose showed that the consequence of Einstein’s general theory of relativity is the formation of black holes, not only in collapsing stars but also in certain dense regions of space. Such black holes capture everything: nothing can come out, not even light. Genzel and Ghez and their respective teams independently showed by tracking the trajectory of a star that a superheavy object—around 4 million solar masses—exists at the center of the Milky Way galaxy. Ghez is the fourth woman to win a Nobel Prize in physics, the first one being Marie Curie, who won in 1903.

      The Nobel Prize has assumed a halo that it does not deserve. Alfred Nobel was paying blood money for creating dynamite, which magnified the horror of war. But in sciences, it is still seen as the touchstone of greatness, even as its value is going down in peace and literature, which are seen to be far more guided by politics. How else do we explain Kissinger’s peace prize in 1973 and Churchill’s literature prize in 1953?

    • Education

      • Pulling strings to get your research students a job is not good mentoring

        Patronage, especially in research-intensive universities, results in what is known as academic inbreeding. It has been estimated that about three-quarters of academics are “pure inbred”. This means that they received all their higher education from the institution where they work. It is a scenario common in many parts of the world; a survey on the recruitment of UK researchers, for instance, by the careers support body Vitae shows that a high proportion hear of opportunities by word of mouth rather than by advertisement, indicating that recruitment is not a genuinely open process.

        Patronage is even rife in Sweden, a country with a reputation for being one of the least corrupt democracies in the world. A 2017 study based on data from three leading Swedish universities showed that most posts were advertised for just three weeks and that almost three-quarters of appointees were internal candidates.

        Indeed, academic patronage is so endemic in academic life that it is rarely subject to critical scrutiny or even perceived to be a problem. Trying to pull strings is often interpreted, instead, as the act of a supportive mentor on behalf of an aspiring or emergent academic. But the beneficiaries of this largesse tend to be junior academics from elite universities, nurtured by more senior colleagues whose educational background mirrors that of their protégés: a PhD obtained full-time from a leading university, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship and then a series of short-term contracts or part-time positions at similar institutions. Insiders are a known quantity and reinforce the positive self-image of a department, bolstering a belief that it is producing “excellent” academics – while the patron potentially gets to boost the representation of their particular field in the department.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Trump Calls the Media “Losers” for Reporting on Record-High Daily COVID Cases

        As coronavirus cases continue to surge throughout the country, and the White House struggles to stem the spread of COVID-19 behind its own doors, President Donald Trump is doubling down on his divisive rhetoric on the virus by pushing the idea that the pandemic itself is being overblown by the media.

      • Half a Million Chickens Will Be Boiled Alive This Year

        It’s time for these corporations to transition away from the cruel, outdated practices of factory farming, adopt much stronger animal welfare policies, and ultimately focus their energy on expanding their plant-based alternatives—all of which will help reduce this widespread, unfathomable suffering.

      • As Congress Drags Feet on Covid-19 Relief, 120+ Groups Urge CDC Director to Issue National Water Shutoff Moratorium

        “Water is essential for disinfecting and controlling the spread of Covid-19. This is a basic matter of public health.”

      • With Covid-19 Rife Among VP Staffers, Democrats Says Pence Presiding Over Senate a ‘Violation of Common Decency’

        “Your presence alone could be very dangerous to many people—not just Senators, but to all the truly essential staff—both Democratic and Republican—who must be physically present inside the U.S. Capitol for it to function.”

      • A Right-Wing Think Tank Is Behind the Controversial Great Barrington Declaration Calling for COVID-19 Herd Immunity

        Known as the Great Barrington Declaration, this statement advocating for herd immunity was introduced in early October at an event hosted by the American Institute for Economic Research, a conservative free-market think tank located in the western Massachusetts town of Great Barrington. This think tank, funded in part through a corporate investment firm with holdings in major oil and petrochemical companies, operates a network for the international business community that partners with other institutions backed by Koch and fossil fuel cash.

      • Despite CDC Moratorium—and With Help From White House—Corporate Landlords Have Gone on Eviction Spree

        “The spike in homelessness that results from the absence of continuing tenant protections in the Covid era spells disaster for too many Americans.”

      • Mike Adams: Why doesn’t Rush Limbaugh try “natural” treatments for his lung cancer?

        The COVID-19 pandemic has pretty much consumed this blog since shortly after it hit US shores (and, to some extent, even a bit before). It’s not surprising, given that COVID-19 is the single largest medical disaster to have befallen the world in over 100 years, when the influenza pandemic of 1918-1919 hit. The current estimated death toll in the US alone is 220,000 and climbing rapidly. Moreover, the pandemic has provided a cornucopia of material for this blog, be it the rise of COVID-19 denial and conspiracy theories, the unholy alliance of COVID-19 deniers, antimaskers, and conspiracy theorists with the antivaccine movement (which surprised some people but didn’t much surprise those of us who’ve been following the antivaccine movement), and all the pseudoscience, promotion of unproven treatments and other quackery for coronavirus, and fusion of all of this with a conspiracy theory as utterly bonkers as QAnon. That’s even leaving aside the degradation of federal scientific and medical agencies, such as the CDC and FDA, under our current leadership. Sometimes, I just hunger for a simpler time, a time from, say, 8-9 months ago, when the pandemic was just in China and we in the US were as yet blissfully laboring under the delusion that we would be OK and it wouldn’t affect us. I sometimes just long to go back to long time topics of this blog, no matter how odd that it might sound. So, for one day at least, I will do just that. This desire leads me, oddly enough, to Rush Limbaugh, his lung cancer, and über-quack Mike Adams’ reaction to an announcement about Limbaugh’s cancer last week.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Nitro PDF maker hit by breach it says is ‘isolated’, sec firm claims otherwise

          A software firm that had its origins in Melbourne has suffered a data breach that it has described in a notice to the ASX as “an isolated security incident” but which cyber security provider Cyble has claimed is a massive leak that affects companies like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Chase and Citibank.

        • Biden Campaign App ‘[Crack]‘ Shows Him Wearing MAGA Hat, Telling People to Vote Trump

          According to a video demonstration published today by experts from Norwegian mobile security company Promon, the software is open to attack via a bug called StrandHogg, which can be abused by malicious hackers to put fake overlay screens over apps and steal sensitive information, including usernames and passwords.

          In a test showing how such an attack could appear in the real world, the team was able to exploit the bug and insert a picture overlay on the Biden campaign app.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • IT pros with open-source skills still tough to find

                Despite the pandemic, locating IT workers with open-source skills remains difficult with 93% of hiring managers saying finding such workers is a challenge, according to a report by The Linux Foundation and edX, a provider of online courses.

                And while hiring is down, 37% of hiring managers say they will be hiring more skilled IT professionals in the next six months.

                DevOps has become the top role hiring managers are looking to fill with 65% saying that is the case. In second place is developers, cited by 59%.

              • Linux Foundation: Latest trends and most-needed skills for open source jobs

                Open source software is continuing to gain ground in the enterprise. A recent Red Hat survey revealed that 86% of IT leaders say the most innovative companies are using open source software. In that same survey, 77% of respondents said they plan to increase their use of open source software in the next 12 months.

                This is the eighth year The Linux Foundation has produced the open source jobs report, and this is the first time the foundation worked with edX to produce it. The last report was completed in 2018. The 2020 Open Source Jobs Report found, “a shift of priorities for hiring organizations towards cloud-native technologies and increasing use of open source solutions despite the severe challenges currently facing businesses and IT pros.”

              • Linux Foundation Launches Diversity and Inclusion Project [Ed: This is total and complete hogwash from hypocrites]

                The Linux Foundation has launched the Software Developer Diversity and Inclusion (SDDI) project to increase diversity and inclusion in software engineering by examining and promoting best practices from research and industry.

              • Linux Foundation Focuses on Science and Research to Advance Diversity and Inclusion in Software Engineering [Ed: Well, they support monopolies, not diversity]
          • Entrapment (Microsoft GitHub)

            • RIAA Tosses Bogus Claim At Github To Get Video Downloading Software Removed

              The RIAA is still going after downloaders, years after targeting downloaders proved to be a waste of time and a PR catastrophe. It’s not actually thinking about suing the end users of certain programs, but it has targeted Github with a takedown notice for hosting youtube-dl, a command line video downloader that downloads videos from (obviously) YouTube and other video sites.

            • RIAA Sued By YouTube-Ripping Site Over DMCA Anti-Circumvention Notices

              A company operating a YouTube-ripping platform has sued the RIAA for sending “abusive” DMCA anti-circumvention notices to Google. According to the complaint and contrary to the RIAA’s claims, the Yout service does not “descramble, decrypt, avoid, bypass, remove, deactivate, or impair” YouTube’s rolling cypher technology.

        • Security

          • ENTERPRISES SHOULD FIX THESE 25 FLAWS [Ed: NSA fails to mentions Microsoft Windows as a whole (because it has "good" back doors in it)]

            The United States National Security Agency identified 25 vulnerabilities in software that are most commonly targeted by state-sponsored attackers from China. Setting aside the question of whether or not the enterprise is more likely to be targeted by nation-state attackers or cyber-criminals, the list provides enterprise IT staff with a good starting place on which vulnerabilities to prioritize.

            The vulnerabilities on NSA’s list can be used to gain initial access to enterprise networks by targeting systems directly accessible from the Internet. Seven of the flaws are in remote access gateways, three are found in networking equipment, and three impact public-facing servers. Once in the network, the attacker can use other vulnerabilities to find other systems to compromise and carry out their activities. Seven flaws on the list involve internal servers, two affect Active Directory, and one exists in mobile device management.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • You Should Be Running Your Own VPN Server

              It’s going to be infinitely harder for a foreign government to come after some random IP address on Digital Ocean, for example, than just going to a known VPN provider.

              And if the box is already destroyed when they do come to Digital Ocean or whatever VPS provider you’re using, there’s not too much they’ll be able to do.

            • Why Getting Paid for Your Data Is a Bad Deal

              One bad privacy idea that won’t die is the so-called “data dividend,” which imagines a world where companies have to pay you in order to use your data.

              Sound too good to be true? It is.

            • Banned conspiracy channels are suing YouTube over its anti-QAnon moderation push – The Verge

              In the lawsuit, however, plaintiffs frame the moderation move as targeting conservative YouTube channels more generally, playing into long-standing Republican concerns about anti-conservative bias on platforms. The complaint cites the plaintiffs’ free speech rights under the First Amendment, arguing that the removal of the channels in the weeks running up to the election will trigger irreparable harm to the public.

            • Watchdog Fights Back as Facebook Attempts to Shut Down Research Exposing ‘Political Disinformation’ in Ad Practices

              “Rather than combat the rampant disinformation and hate on its platform, Facebook has decided to go after the people who are helping voters understand who is trying to influence their votes.”

            • Facebook, Twitter CEOs to testify post-election -U.S. Senate panel

              The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee said on Friday the chief executives of Twitter Inc and Facebook Inc will testify before the panel on Nov. 17 over their decision to block stories that made claims about Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s son.

              The Judiciary committee voted on Thursday to subpoena the two CEOs.

            • Facebook says it’s helped 4.4M people register to vote this year

              The social media giant’s push to include voting information ahead of this year’s elections follows intense scrutiny the company faced over the spread of disinformation on its platform during the last presidential election.

              In 2016, the Internet Research Agency, a Russian government-sponsored [astroturfer] farm, used Facebook as part of a disinformation campaign designed to sway the presidential election in favor of now-President Trump. Facebook later estimated that up to 150 million users were exposed to the misinformation on its platform ahead of the general election.

            • Former Facebook moderators worried for the upcoming US election

              Ferguson said it was one of several examples of the lack of structure and support Facebook moderators face in their day-to-day jobs, a vast majority of which are performed for third-party consultancies. Ferguson spoke on a call organized by a group that calls themselves the Real Facebook Oversight Board, along with Color of Change, a progressive nonprofit that led the call for a Facebook advertiser boycott over the summer, and UK-based nonprofit technology justice organization Foxglove.

              “In 2020 on the world’s largest social network, clickbait still rules lies and hate still travels on Facebook like a California wildfire,” said Cori Crider, co-founder of Foxglove. “Things are still so bad that in two days, Mark Zuckerberg will testify once again to the Senate about what Facebook is doing to address this problem, and protect American democracy.”

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Haiti Has a Long History of Being Assaulted by Its Latin American Neighbors

        The most dramatic intervention took place in 2004, after the coup d’état against the democratically elected President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. Camille Chalmers, executive director of the Haitian Platform to Advocate Alternative Development, a civil society organization network, said in 2019 that a domestic political conflict was used as the pretext. The coup was carried out by ex-military personnel whose forces had been dissolved by Aristide in 1995. Backed by the United States, Canada and France, the army of the coup entered from the Dominican Republic and marched to Port-au-Prince.

        After Aristide’s forced exile, interim President Boniface Alexandre requested the first deployment of a Multinational Interim Force. Composed of Canadian, French, U.S. and Chilean soldiers, this force would be the seed of the future United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH). Both the request and the occupation itself contravened Haiti’s 1987 Constitution; only the National Assembly has the power to make these decisions, but it was circumvented by Alexandre.

      • Nuclear Weapons Banned—Illegal at Last

        With Honduras delivering the 50th ratification of the treaty on Saturday, the world has spoken and the global community has banned these most dangerous of weapons.

      • Removing Sudan From the Terror List Is Welcome; Yes to Assistance No to Extortion

        We should be celebrating the bold nonviolent revolution in Sudan, investing in their economic development, empowering them to become the shining light and a model for other countries in the region to follow.

      • ‘Let This Echo Around the World’: Nearly 50 Years After US-Backed Coup, Chile Votes to Rewrite Pinochet Era Constitution

        “This historic day belongs to those who have struggled for decades, to those who have given their lives, to the tortured, to the mutilated, and especially to those who remain imprisoned.”

      • How Bolivia’s new socialist senator resisted coup terror: Meet MAS party leader Patricia Arce
      • Chile, Bolivia, El Salvador Lead On Decolonial Constitutional Change

        Legalizing the world we need: social movements with constitutional visions.

      • Ballots Defeat Bullets: MAS Wins Historic Mandate in Post-Coup Bolivian Election

        The election took place a year after a coup overthrew former MAS President Evo Morales and installed right wing Senator Jeanine Áñez in power. Under Áñez and her notorious Government Minister Arturo Murillo, the government repressed dissidents and anti-coup activists, killing dozens and wounding hundreds of people in massacres in Sacaba and Senkata, Bolivia last November. They politically persecuted MAS figures, allies, and leftist activists over a tumultuous year leading up to the recent election.

        The MAS victory is a rejection of the racist coup government. Áñez pushed the MAS down, but the party and its diverse base of supporters rose up and won.

      • Trump’s Nuclear Weapons are Standing Up And Standing By

        This is the Trump who contracted the Covid 19 virus and on October 2 was taken to hospital where he was drugged to the eyeballs, referred to the infliction as “a blessing from God”, and declared “I’m a perfect physical specimen.” He then was flown to a massive election rally in Florida on October 12, joining his supporters in shoulder-rubbing maskless happiness and announced “Now they say I’m immune. I feel so powerful. I’ll walk in there. I’ll kiss everyone in that audience. I’ll kiss the guys and the beautiful women, just give you a big fat kiss.”

        The mental instability evident in these and many other utterances of that “perfect physical specimen” is disturbing.  And the fact that it exists in a man who could destroy the world is terrifying.

      • Erdogan repeats his remarks about French president

        Anger at Macron spilt over into the streets in several Muslim-majority countries, with further demonstrations expected.

      • Islam: A Permanent War Institution

        Is there any difficulty in grasping the message here? It is about as clear as it can be. Yet will you hear any Western European politician, apart from Geert Wilders, saying anything remotely comparable? No.

      • Erdogan’s Calamitous Authoritarianism

        A brief synopsis of Erdogan’s criminal domestic practices and his foreign misadventures tell the whole story.

        Domestically, he incarcerated tens of thousands of innocent citizens on bogus charges, including hundreds of journalists. Meanwhile he is pressuring the courts to send people to prison for insulting him, as no one can even express their thoughts about this ruthlessness. Internationally, Erdogan ordered Turkish intelligence operatives to kill or smuggle back to the country Turkish citizens affiliated with the Gülen movement.

      • Turkey’s Erdogan urges French goods boycott amid Islam row

        Mr Erdogan has angrily criticised French President Emmanuel Macron for pledging to defend secularism against radical [sic] Islam.

        It comes after a teacher was killed for showing Prophet Muhammad cartoons.

        Samuel Paty was beheaded on 16 October by 18-year-old Abdullakh Anzorov outside Paris, after presenting the images to his pupils during a class about freedom of speech.

    • Environment

    • Finance

      • Arkansas: My Landlord Is Trying to Kick Me Out. What Can I Do?

        Are you facing eviction in Arkansas? Before you do anything, there are lawyers available who might be able to provide you with advice. Legal Aid of Arkansas and the Center for Arkansas Legal Services are two groups that offer free services to people who can’t afford to hire a lawyer. You can also find a lawyer through the state’s bar association or the Arkansas Access to Justice Commission.

        Do you live in income-based housing, like a public housing authority? Do you have a Section 8 voucher? There may be other laws that apply to you than the ones described below. You can call one of the legal services above to ask about the specifics.

      • Wall Street: Traditional Cable TV Sector ‘Unraveling’ In Wake Of Covid

        While COVID-19 has been great for some sectors (like video games or webcams), it’s beating traditional entertainment options (like brick and mortar movie theaters and cable TV subscriptions) to a pulp. To the point where Wall Street analyst Craig Moffett has declared that the traditional cable TV sector is unraveling thanks to a sharp spike in cord cutting. Recent data suggests that traditional pay TV subscriptions have dropped 22.8% from its peak back in 2014. And by the end of 2024, analysts expect that fewer than half of US homes will subscribe to a traditional pay TV service.

      • When Falling Behind on Rent Leads to Jail Time

        It was bad enough when Jazmon Allen lost her waitressing job in March at a Hot Springs, Arkansas, barbecue restaurant during statewide closures meant to curb the pandemic.

        Then after she fell behind on her rent came the shock that only happens to tenants in Arkansas: In May, her landlord filed a criminal complaint for failing to pay and failing to vacate the property.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Vote for What You Believe In
      • Trump’s Message of Covid-19 Happy Talk Amounts to Surrender

        Donald Trump has been predicting the imminent disappearance of Covid-19 ever since the outbreak of the pandemic at the beginning of the year. During Thursday night’s debate, he reiterated his claim that the pandemic was almost over. “We’re rounding the corner,” Trump claimed. “It’s going away.” Citing his own bout with the coronavirus, Trump claimed that new therapeutic drugs amounted to a cure. “I can tell you from personal experience, I was in the hospital,” Trump said. “I had it and I got better. And I will tell you that I had something that they gave me, a therapeutic, I guess they would call it. Some people could say it was a cure, but I was in for a short period of time. And I got better very fast or I wouldn’t be here tonight. And now they say I’m immune. Whether it’s four months or a lifetime, nobody’s been able to say that, but I’m immune. More and more people are getting better.”

      • The Election Isn’t Over Until Trump’s Gone

        Donald Trump tells lots of lies. But he lies most adventurously about elections. Even when it was clear he had lost the popular vote by millions of ballots and won the Electoral College by a handful of razor-thin margins in battleground states, he claimed on November 27, 2016, that “in addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.” Both statements were false. But Trump was determined to control the narrative, and he has maintained that determination to such an extent that his supporters imagine him to be far more popular than polls have ever suggested.

      • Journalists Pick Sides When They Call Adding Justices ‘Court Packing’

        As Republicans ram through Trump’s third Supreme Court nomination with an election underway, Democrats are increasingly contemplating expanding the court. But rather than cover it with the “objectivity” they claim to strive for, the country’s dominant media outlets have adopted a right-wing frame of the issue—calling it “court packing”—that delegitimizes court expansion.

      • Republicans Have Confirmed Amy Coney Barrett—and Officially Captured the Supreme Court

        Amy Coney Barrett was confirmed this evening as an associate justice on the United States Supreme Court. Her confirmation to a lifetime appointment comes just eight days before an election that could cast out the man who nominated her and many of the people who confirmed her. Barrett is just 48. Assuming she receives excellent socialized medicine—the kind to which she’s entitled as a federal employee and which she will soon take away from other Americans—she can be expected to wield power well into her 80s.

      • What Amy Coney Barrett Means for the Future of Voting Rights

        My grandparents grew up in Jim Crow Virginia. Back then, Black folks like them faced poll taxes, literacy tests, and intimidation that kept them from exercising their right to vote. The white ruling class successfully kept Black people from fully participating in the political process. It was unthinkable that two generations later, their grandson, a 33-year-old openly gay, Black man, would be the Democratic nominee for Congress in the predominantly white, affluent suburbs of New York City.

      • In ‘Partisan Power Grab,’ Republican Senators Confirm Third Trump Nominee Amy Coney Barrett to Supreme Court

        Critics warn that she “will only embolden the court’s most conservative judges to further gut protections for Americans’ healthcare, free speech, and the environment, and unleash a new wave of corporate greed.”

      • Because We Don’t Have a Right to Vote…

        If you care about the survival and expansion of democracy in America, this may be your last chance to get out there and vote.

      • Arm Wrestling Authoritarianism: The Homestretch

        What will the next week be like? Kelly Hayes talks with journalist Sarah Kendzior about what to expect in the final days of the 2020 presidential race.

      • So Trump Loses to Biden….Then What?

        If Trump loses in November, he won’t just moan about election rigging, he’ll also lose all interest in providing more help to millions of Americans at the edge of penury and despair.

      • International Study Finds US Republican Party Heading Towards Becoming One of World’s Most Authoritarian Factions

        “Disrespect of political opponents, the encouragement of violence, and also the violation of minority rights… they have all clearly increased with the Republican Party in recent years,” said one of the lead authors.

      • Trump Aims to Convince Supporters That a Loss Means Election Is “Rigged”

        One of the more interesting (and somewhat confounding) polling results in this election cycle has been the belief among members of both parties that Donald Trump will win re-election, regardless of who they’re actually planning to vote for. His approval rating has been stuck in the low 40s throughout his term, which is unprecedented, and he’s been behind in the polls from the beginning of the campaign. Yet most Americans still remain convinced that he is going to win. This is from Gallup in early October:

      • ‘Prove Him Wrong’: Progressives Demand Democrats Accept McConnell’s Challenge, Expand Supreme Court If They Win Elections

        “Mitch McConnell doesn’t think we can fight back to save our courts. He’s wrong. The first step is winning in November.” 

      • Trump Out Now

        That’s because these are not “normal” times. The deadly coronavirus that has been spread by the pandemo-fascist Trump administration has already killed 220,000-plus Americans and will likely 200,000 to 300,000 more by Inauguration Day (January 20th) next year. The United States is in the middle of a related and attempted rolling coup being carried out by a White House that knows it cannot win a second term in conventional fashion. With a long list of enemies and groups on its hit list, the Trump administration seeks unchallenged dominance but lacks enough voter support to prevail without subverting what’s left of democracy in the elections system. It is therefore undertaking a multi-level assault on the American electoral process.

        The cable news talking heads keep scratching their heads on how Trump is talking only to his base and not trying to broaden his voter support beyond his 43-45%. They might want to reflect that Trump and the GOP’s main plan this summer and fall has been to cripple and steal the election, not to win it in a “normal”/conventional fashion.

      • Hello, Neighbor: My Letter to a Trump Supporter

        “The only way we will love our neighbor as ourselves is by getting to know our neighbors, even in the midst of our differences.” I love that.

      • What to Do If You Change Your Mind About Voting by Mail

        If you’ve received a mail ballot but have changed your mind and want to vote in person, there’s some good news: You probably can do this.

        The details differ from state to state. In some, you’ll be allowed to cast a regular ballot, and in others you’ll cast a “provisional” ballot, to be counted once election officials determine you haven’t already voted.

      • Muslims in Trump Country: “Natours Grocery” Tells Story of Palestinian American Family in Virginia

        As the presidential race enters its final full week, we speak with filmmaker Nadine Natour about “Natours Grocery,” her new documentary short that tells the story of her Palestinian American family living in Trump’s America. Natour’s immigrant parents own a store in the highly conservative town of Appomattox, Virginia, which voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump in 2016. The Natours say they don’t talk about politics or religion with their customers to avoid confrontation, but as they strive to build bridges with their neighbors, President Trump’s anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim rhetoric inspires a backlash in Appomattox. “In the election of Donald Trump we saw a lot of that bubbling racist sentiment toward immigrants, towards Muslims, become part of the mainstream discourse,” says Natour. “You really could see a shift in attitudes.” “Natours Grocery” premieres tonight as part of ”POV Shorts” on PBS.

      • With All Eyes on Wisconsin, Partisan Gridlock at State Elections Commission Frustrates Voters and Local Officials

        As ballots began pouring in by mail after Wisconsin’s April 7 primary, local election officials became increasingly perplexed over which ones to count.

        A federal judge had ordered that ballots arriving as many as six days after the election should be accepted, but the U.S. Supreme Court narrowed that window, ruling that ballots should be counted only if they were postmarked by Election Day.

      • Jared Kushner Eviscerated as ‘Face of White Privilege and Nepotism’ After Mocking Racial Justice Protesters

        President Donald Trump’s son-in-law—some of whose wealth comes from being what one user called “the highest-ranking slumlord in the country”—also implied that Black people do not want to succeed. 

      • Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner Threaten Defamation Suit Over Lincoln Project’s Non-Defamatory Billboards

        Donald Trump’s offspring are as thin-skinned as the President himself. And, like him, they apparently have access to the worst legal counsel money can buy. First Daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, apparently can’t handle being criticized for their involvement in the mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Content Moderation and the U.S. Election: What to Ask, What to Demand

        With the upcoming U.S. elections, major U.S.-based platforms have stepped up their content moderation practices, likely hoping to avoid the blame heaped upon them after the 2016 election, where many held them responsible for siloing users into ideological bubbles—and, in Facebook’s case, the Cambridge Analytica imbroglio. It’s not clear that social media played a more significant role than many other factors, including traditional media. But the techlash is real enough.

        So we can’t blame them for trying, nor can we blame users for asking them to. Online disinformation is a problem that has had real consequences in the U.S. and all over the world—it has been correlated to ethnic violence in Myanmar and India and to Kenya’s 2017 elections, among other events.

      • Corbett Report: YouTube Is Purging Again – LinuxReviews

        YouTube has been removing small independent content creators from it’s platform with regular purges since 2016. YouTube did another big purge this week. Independent content creators who are only on YouTube should take notice and get a presence on alternative platforms. Investigate journalist James Corbett of the Corbett Report is prepared to get purged from YouTube. His videos are available on his own self-hosted website and a number of other video platforms. Most independent creators are not even though YouTube has been suppressing and removing independent creators in favor of large corporate media outlets for nearly half a decade.

        [...]

        The latest round of YouTube-purges should not be a surprise to anyone, YouTube has gradually increased their censorship of mostly smaller and independent creators under guise of it being related to “community guidelines” that allow them to remove any video with no explanation. What YouTube is doing in terms of outright censorship of smaller channels, as well as de-monetization of smaller content creators, something that’s probably killed more small creators than they’ve kicked off their platform, may be morally questionable.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Join The Fan Fiction Deep State And Watch This Latest Video That Addison Cain Really Doesn’t Want You To See

        Last month we had a post about wolf kink erotica writer Addison Cain (pen name) and her abuse of the DMCA which we had first written about in May, but which came up again after YouTuber Lindsay Ellis did a fantastic video analyzing the entire case. If you haven’t seen that, here it is:

      • Italy and Frontex now monitor the Mediterranean Sea with large drones

        Last week, the EU Border Agency decided on the multi-year deployment of large drones in the Mediterranean, now Italy is following suit. The contractors have already carried out tests for Frontex over the past two years.

      • The Postmaster General’s Manufactured Mail Slowdown and Racial Inequality

        Compared to the national average, mail delay complaints are nearly 50 percent higher in zip codes with populations that are more than 45 percent Black, Indigenous, or other people of color.

      • Survivor Deported After Speaking Out About Medical Abuse in ICE Jails

        An independent medical review team has submitted a report to Congress on a lack of informed consent and “disturbing pattern” of questionable gynecological surgical procedures at the Irwin County Detention Center in Georgia, after an account from a nurse whistleblower in September prompted congressional and federal investigations. At least 19 women, most of whom are Black and Latina, have come forward to allege they were pressured into “unnecessary” gynecological treatment and surgeries — including procedures that left them sterile — while they were detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. We speak with Jaromy Floriano Navarro, a survivor of medical abuse and neglect at Irwin who was the original source of the information about medical abuse by Dr. Mahendra Amin that was eventually included in the whistleblower report. “From day one that I met Dr. Amin, he said, ‘OK, you need surgery,’” Navarro says. “They were really trying to do the surgery on me, for whatever reason. They wanted to take my womb out.” We also speak with Dr. Maggie Mueller, an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern Medical Center who was part of the independent medical review team that produced the new report, and Adriano Espaillat, Democratic congressmember from New York who visited the Irwin County Detention Center in September as part of a delegation from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

      • “They Wanted to Take My Womb Out”: Survivor of Medical Abuse in ICE Jail Deported After Speaking Out

        An independent medical review team has submitted a report to Congress on a lack of informed consent and “disturbing pattern” of questionable gynecological surgical procedures at the Irwin County Detention Center in Georgia, after an account from a nurse whistleblower in September prompted congressional and federal investigations. At least 19 women, most of whom are Black and Latina, have come forward to allege they were pressured into “unnecessary” gynecological treatment and surgeries — including procedures that left them sterile — while they were detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. We speak with Jaromy Floriano Navarro, a survivor of medical abuse and neglect at Irwin who was the original source of the information about medical abuse by Dr. Mahendra Amin that was eventually included in the whistleblower report. “From day one that I met Dr. Amin, he said, ‘OK, you need surgery,’” Navarro says. “They were really trying to do the surgery on me, for whatever reason. They wanted to take my womb out.” We also speak with Dr. Maggie Mueller, an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern Medical Center who was part of the independent medical review team that produced the new report, and Adriano Espaillat, Democratic congressmember from New York who visited the Irwin County Detention Center in September as part of a delegation from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

      • Surveillance company harassed female employees using its own facial recognition technology

        A surveillance startup in Silicon Valley is being accused of sexism and discrimination after a sales director used the company’s facial recognition system to harass female workers. Verkada, which was valued in January at $1.6 billion, equips its office with its own security cameras.

        Last year, the sales director accessed these cameras to take photos of female workers, then posted them in a Slack channel called #RawVerkadawgz alongside sexually explicit jokes. The incident was first reported by IPVM and independently verified by Vice.

      • ‘Rebirth’: Chileans vote by millions to tear up Pinochet’s constitution

        With more than three quarters of the votes counted, 78.12% of voters had opted for a new charter. Many have expressed hopes that a new text will temper an unabashedly capitalist ethos with guarantees of more equal rights to healthcare, pensions and education.

        “This triumph belongs to the people, it’s thanks to everyone’s efforts that we are at this moment of celebration,” Daniel, 37, told Reuters in Santiago’s Plaza Nunoa. “What makes me happiest is the participation of the youth, young people wanting to make changes.”

      • ‘Translation machines’: Interpretation gaps plague French asylum process

        France received nearly 120,000 asylum requests in 2019 – more than any EU country bar Germany. The numbers applying for protection have increased every year since 2015, but successive French governments have failed to match this rising demand with sufficient funding. One of the most glaring gaps is the lack of quality language interpreters, who play a critical role in the legal process.
        On a rainy March morning, days before the coronavirus pandemic closed it to the public, seven people filed into a courtroom in the Parisian suburb of Montreuil.
        At the table in the centre, a middle-aged man and his wife sat down. The man’s lawyer, a woman in her mid-sixties, introduced herself to her client by yelling at him to hurry up in a language he didn’t understand.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Substack is Great For Newsletters, But Not For New Creators

        So, congrats to Substack. Great stuff.

        But creators should keep their main domains and platforms as agnostic and untethered as possible to avoid lock-in and migration problems in the future.

      • Safety in Name, Commercial in Fact: The Auto Industry Spectrum Squatting Campaign on 5.9 GHz Widens the Digital Divide

        Here’s an idea for a business model. Instead of using valuable spectrum to close the digital divide by opening it for everyone to use, get the FCC to give us exclusive use for free. Next, convince states and the federal government that rather than build broadband networks to the disconnected in rural America, they should build out our network (also at no cost to us). Then we will use this network to harvest everyone’s driving information while serving up advertisements and other commercial services. In order to persuade taxpayers to support it, we’ll pretend the network is “absolutely essential” to preventing car accidents, despite the recent development of superior technology. To really sell the idea, we’ll label this piece of spectrum the “Safety Band.”

      • 2K Sports Could Have Avoided Its Un-Skippable Ads Backlash If The Ads Were Better Content

        For over a decade, we have been trying to drive home the point that advertising actually is content and that content is advertising. It’s a mindset sort of thing, but one that is incredibly important in an internet age where so much of a revenue emphasis is on ad-driven business models. The point of this all is that you can make any advertising included in a good or service all the more effective if –wait for it — your customers actually want and enjoy the ads. If they’re engaging, useful, or funny, the normal complaints you hear about commercials and the like simply melt away.

      • Twitter preconnects to the wrong domains

        Twitter redirects links through its t.co link-shortening service. It was once a useful addition to its service as it helped people stay underneath the strict character limits. The link shortener reduced all links to 23 characters. Twitter gains some more data-insights about its users in the form of click-stream data and insight into popular links.

        However, the link shortening service has another cost: links resolve slower. Instead of clicking-through directly to the destination website, the browser needs to connect to Twitter’s link-shortening service and then follow a redirect to the destination website. To speed up the process, Twitter preconnects to its link-shortening service every time you scroll a link card into view. Link cards are boxes that show an image, title, and description of a link. This shows that Twitter finds it highly likely that people will click on external links in tweets.

        To speed things up even further, Twitter also preconnects to the destination website at the other end of the redirect. This is where it has made some mistakes, though.

        You may be wondering why it’s even using the link-shortening service anymore if it already knows the destination address. Reread the previous paragraph for clarification on Twitter’s motivations.

      • Ofcom Extend Broadband ISP Switching and Ban Locked Mobiles

        Ofcom UK has set out new measures that will make switching between broadband ISPs on physically separate networks easier (e.g. Openreach to Cityfibre), but due to the complexities involved providers will be given until December 2022 implement it. Mobile operators will also be banned from selling “locked” handsets.

        [...]

        The regulator states that any “loss of service” that might occur during a switch will NOT be allowed to exceed 1 working day and ISPs will be expected to compensate customers if things go wrong. Ofcom will also ban notice period charges beyond the switch date for residential customers (they’ve already done the same more mobile networks), which is intended to prevent situations where a customer ends up paying for two services at the same time (despite only being able to use one of them).

        Meanwhile the losing provider will be required to continue to supply the end-user on the same terms, until the new service is activated by the gaining provider, and to automatically terminate end-users’ contracts upon conclusion of the switching process. The losing ISP will also be required to reactivate the number and all related services where a switching process fails and until the port is successful.

        In keeping with all this the regulator will also be making some “limited” changes to phone number porting, which includes giving customers the “right to port their number for one month after they have terminated their contract and a prohibition on charging customers to port their number.” This should be a big help as at present it can be quite tedious to get your number back if it’s lost during a switch.

        Providers have been working behind the scenes for a while to develop a new switching process through the Office of the Telecoms Adjudicator (OTA) and a separate consultation is due to follow, which will set out the technical details of the proposed process. These are significant changes to how switching processes work and as such, the new rules are NOT expected to come into force until December 2022.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • What Is Google Widevine DRM and Why Do You Need It?

        If you’re streaming content from services like Netflix and Hulu, you may have seen a prompt to install Google Widevine. Depending on your device and browser, it may already be built in by default. Either way, many users want to know exactly what it is and what it does. The good news is it isn’t a virus and it’s safe. It’s also required to view certain streaming content.

    • Monopolies

      • Apple & Google Agree to Cooperate By Removing Pirate Apps From Stores

        New amendments to copyright law in Russia require companies including Apple and Google to remove infringing apps from their respective stores or face blocking by local ISPs. With Apple already being sued in a local court for offering ‘pirate’ apps, both companies have now officially confirmed they will begin cooperation to remove piracy apps.

      • Apple, Google and a Deal That Controls the Internet

        Apple now receives an estimated $8 billion to $12 billion in annual payments — up from $1 billion a year in 2014 — in exchange for building Google’s search engine into its products. It is probably the single biggest payment that Google makes to anyone and accounts for 14 to 21 percent of Apple’s annual profits. That’s not money Apple would be eager to walk away from.

        In fact, Mr. Cook and Mr. Pichai met again in 2018 to discuss how they could increase revenue from search. After the meeting, a senior Apple employee wrote to a Google counterpart that “our vision is that we work as if we are one company,” according to the Justice Department’s complaint.

      • Patents

        • Software Patents

          • Patent Docs: Realtime Data LLC v. Reduxio Systems, Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2020)

            One of the more frustrating aspects of current patent-eligibility law is that it lends itself all too easily to mischief. In particular, given that the eligibility test under 35 U.S.C. § 101 as interpreted by the courts is poorly-defined, conclusory reasoning frequently rears its ugly head. Such reasoning is sometimes found in § 101 rejections of claims by examiners of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The more egregious of these rejections involve little actual analysis, no actual analysis, the ignoring of claim elements, the ignoring of stated improvements of the claimed invention, and attempts to minimize case law favorable to patentees by limiting the scope of those decisions to their facts. But district courts are not immune to jumping to conclusions either.

            Realtime LLC brought an action in the District of Delaware alleging that multiple parties infringed claims of U.S. Patents 7,415,530, 8,717,203, 9,054,728, 9,116,908, and 9,667,751. The defendants moved the District Court to dismiss, contending that the patents are ineligible (among other grounds). Immediately after oral argument, the District Court declared all 159 claims of the five patents ineligible without a formal written opinion. The only memorialization of the judge’s reasoning is a five-page transcript. Realtime asked the District Court for leave to amend its complaint, but the judge refused. He admitted that “reasonable people can disagree” on the eligibility of the asserted claims, but nonetheless stated “I think you can take your issues up with the Federal Circuit, and if I’m wrong, I’m wrong.” Realtime appealed.

      • Trademarks

        • Special Protection of Trade Marks with a Reputation under European Union Law

          Trade marks with a reputation (TMwR) in the EU and the additional layers of protection provided to them, like the famous trade mark regimes in other jurisdictions in general, is a controversial subject surrounded by unresolved problems of ambiguity and uncertainty that, sometimes, involves political databases over, for instances, the threshold of reputation. The shift in the essential function of trade marks, from an anti-deception regime to a strong property-based regime, has been accompanied by both questions and attempts at justification.

          Having been delving into comparative research on famous trade mark regimes for a while herself, this Kat was very interested to read Special Protection of Trade Marks with a Reputation under European Union Law by Michal Bohaczewski (Assistant Professor at the University of Warsaw), which presents a comprehensive guide to EU law practices concerning TMwR.

      • Copyrights

        • Twitch’s Freak Out Response To RIAA Takedown Demands Raises Even More DMCA Questions

          As many of you probably saw last week, Twitch decided to delete a ton of videos in response to DMCA takedown claims (which most people believe came from the RIAA). As we pointed out earlier this year, the RIAA had started flooding Twitch with DMCA takedowns over background music used in various streams. The whole thing seemed kind of silly, and now it appears that Twitch (despite being owned by Amazon and having some pretty good lawyers) was caught without a plan.

        • The music industry has taken another step toward a legal fight with Twitch

          Amazon received a “blistering” letter last Thursday about copyright infringement and Twitch’s nonexistent licensing deals with major music rights holders, Variety reports. The letter was signed by organizations including the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Recording Academy, the National Music Publishers Association, the American Association of Independent Music, SAG-AFTRA, and more.

          The document accuses Twitch of allowing streamers to play copyrighted music without getting the proper licensing to do so. (Music copyright is a thorny, complicated subject; if you want to play music to audiovisual content, you need at least two different licenses to do it legally: a synchronization license and a mechanical license.) “Twitch appears to do nothing in response to the thousands of notices of music infringement that it has received nor does it currently even acknowledge that it received them, as it has done in the past,” the letter reads in part, according to Variety.

        • Movie Company Sues Pirates Who Used an Anonymous VPN

          The makers of the film ‘Angel Has Fallen’ have filed a lawsuit against seventeen alleged pirates. According to the complaint, several defendants used the VPN service ‘Private Internet Access,’ which can expect to be subpoenaed. That effort will likely be fruitless as the VPN doesn’t keep any logs. However, with help from information shared by torrent site YTS, users are still at risk.

        • Defending Fair Use in the Omegaverse

          Copyright law is supposed to promote creativity, not stamp out criticism. Too often, copyright owners forget that – especially when they have a convenient takedown tool like the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

          EFF is happy to remind them – as we did this month on behalf of Internet creator Lindsay Ellis. Ellis had posted a video about a copyright dispute between authors in a very particular fandom niche: the Omegaverse realm of wolf-kink erotica. The video tells the story of that dispute in gory and hilarious detail, while breaking down the legal issues and proceedings along the way. Techdirt called it “truly amazing.” We agree. But feel free to watch “Into the Omegaverse: How a Fanfic Trope Landed in Federal Court,” and decide for yourself.

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