Links 8/1/2021: GNU Guile 3.0.5, Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa”, OpenSUSE Survey Results, GNOME 40 Shell Preview

Posted in News Roundup at 3:44 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Kernel Space

      • Getting Linux running properly on Apple M1 Silicon has begun with Asahi Linux

        Asahi Linux is the name of a new project aiming to get Linux properly supported and working on Apple Silicon, the new ARM based chips designed by Apple like the Apple M1 found in their latest hardware.

        This is being spearheaded by Hector Martin “marcan”, who some will recognise due to their work involved in porting Linux to the Sony PlayStation 4. It’s a crowdfunded effort, with Martin putting up a Patreon campaign which has now hit enough funding for the work to begin. Martin also has a GitHub Sponsor account, with plenty backing there too.

      • Alyssa Rosenzweig: Dissecting the Apple M1 GPU, part I

        Apple’s latest line of Macs includes their in-house “M1” system-on-chip, featuring a custom GPU. This poses a problem for those of us in the Asahi Linux project who wish to run Linux on our devices, as this custom Apple GPU has neither public documentation nor open source drivers. Some speculate it might descend from PowerVR GPUs, as used in older iPhones, while others believe the GPU to be completely custom. But rumours and speculations are no fun when we can peek under the hood ourselves!

        A few weeks ago, I purchased a Mac Mini with an M1 GPU as a development target to study the instruction set and command stream, to understand the GPU’s architecture at a level not previously publicly understood, and ultimately to accelerate the development of a Mesa driver for the hardware. Today I’ve reached my first milestone: I now understand enough of the instruction set to disassemble simple shaders with a free and open-source tool chain, released on GitHub here.

      • Early Work Is Underway On Reverse-Engineering The Apple M1 GPU – Phoronix

        Alyssa Rosenzweig who is known for her work on reverse-engineering Arm GPUs and in particular the multi-year effort so far working on the Panfrost open-source driver stack has taken up an interest in Apple’s M1 graphics processor.

        Over the past few weeks Alyssa began exploring the M1 GPU with a new Apple Mac Mini. The ultimate goal she hopes is to create a Mesa driver for the M1 GPU, which will be critical if the Linux efforts to get the new SoC/devices working outside of macOS are to succeed… Without a fully-working GPU, Linux on the Apple M1 devices won’t do much good for desktop/mobile use-cases.

      • Graphics Stack

    • Benchmarks

      • Ampere Altra vs. Amazon Graviton2 Linux Performance Benchmarks

        Last month we provided benchmarks of Ampere Altra against Intel Xeon and AMD EPYC with the Q80-33 CPUs in a 2P / 160 core configuration. From that article, reader questions were raised about how this high performance ARM server chip compares to Amazon’s Graviton2 processors, so in this article today are such benchmarks. The Graviton2 via an AWS m6g.metal instance with 64 cores was compared to the Ampere Altra Q80-33 in its 2P 160 core configuration, 1P 80 core configuration, and then a 64 core configuration to match the Graviton2 by disabling the excess cores.

    • Applications

      • Seven Best Web Design Tools for Linux

        When it comes to photo editing, GIMP is a powerful software solution. You can do pretty much everything you do with Photoshop, although if you are an experienced Photoshop user, you may need some time to adjust to GIMP’s workflow. The GIMP editor is ideal for image manipulation, free-form drawing, and transcoding between different file formats. It can even open PSD files. GIMP is open-source as well.

      • Best Accounting Software for Linux

        This article covers some of the best open-source accounting software available for Linux. All applications listed in this article can be installed and run offline in Linux without registering for cloud services or setting up a client and server for self-hosted solutions. These apps are mainly suitable for keeping books for personal finances and small to medium business expenses and transactions.

        This article covered some of the best offline accounting applications available for Linux. Nearly all these applications support importing and exporting databases in many file formats, and you can have some inter-compatibility between them. If you are looking for more offline solutions, you can search in the LibreOffice add-on repository, as it may have some extensions built specifically for accounting. You can also try scripts and plugins compatible with Microsoft Excel, as they may be compatible with LibreOffice Calc (a spreadsheet software) with some modifications.

      • 3 Best Free and Multi-Platform FTP Clients Usable on Linux

        Oftentimes, when we have to transfer files from one computer to another over the Internet. This is done using the File Transfer Protocol (FTP) that is built upon the client-server architecture in which the client is the one requesting the files and the server is responsible for listening to these requests and allowing the client to perform various operations such as uploading or downloading of files from them.

        These FTP Clients are therefore excellent tools to have for people who have their own blogs or websites as they can be in full control of uploading various content onto their medium. In addition to this, for people who want to download multiple files simultaneously, FTP Clients come in handy.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to add or create SUDO user in Linux

        SUDO is one of the most important and recommended methods to allow any user to access the system without giving them root access.

        If you are still accessing your Linux system with root access, then stop right now and create a new user with SUDO privileges.

      • Install Xfce 4.16 in MX Linux 19.3 [Testing Only]

        With the release of Xfce 4.16, the MX Linux team now working on migrating the Xfce package base from Xfce 4.14 to Xfce 4.16. The Xfce 4.16 packages are now available for testing for MX-19 series users.

      • Prune everything with a complete Docker cleanup

        Docker is a convenient tool for many, but with a few bigger images, the root filesystem becomes sooner or later full. Here is how to quickly and efficiently prune everything regarding Docker on your system to start fresh.

      • Time to Branch Out

        The rationale for branches is simple. Each snap in the Snap Store has a default track called ‘latest’ in which there are four channels named ‘stable’, ‘beta’, ‘candidate’ and ‘edge’. These are all typical buckets in which snaps are published for an extended period, perhaps months or maybe even years. Branches on the other hand are short-lived silos for publishing snaps.

        As a developer you may have a published application which has bugs users experience but you cannot reproduce. A temporary branch can be used to hold a test build of the application you’re working on to solve a bug.

        If you’re tracking and fixing multiple bugs in parallel, each can have their own separate branch under the same snap name in the Snap Store. Branches are ‘hidden’, so unless someone guesses the name of it, users aren’t going to stumble upon potentially broken bug-fix builds of your application.

        Branches only live for 30 days, after which they’re deleted, and any user with the snap will be moved to the latest track for the channel. So a user who tested the branch latest/stable/fix-bug-12 and didn’t switch to another channel within 30 days, will be moved to the latest/stable channel on their next refresh.

      • The phone name assigned automatically by Android on my new phone prevented Bluetooth pairing and connecting in Linux

        I recently installed Lubuntu 20.10 on a desktop machine, but Bluetooth did not work with my new phone (Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra with Android 11). Bluetooth had worked fine in Lubuntu 18.04 on the same desktop machine with my previous Android phone (Samsung Galaxy Note 8 with Android 9).

      • 8 open source software cheat sheets you’ll need in 2021 | Opensource.com

        When that pesky command is just at the tip of your tongue, a handy cheat sheet will save the day. This list of cheat sheets covers everything from programming languages to collaboration tools.

      • Best IM Clients For Whatsapp, Messenger, and Telegram on Linux

        Whatsapp, Messenger, and Telegram are by far the most used instant messaging clients in the world and while they are used by millions, Whatsapp and Messenger, both of which are owned by Facebook, do not have an official desktop client for the Linux desktop platform.

      • How to Execute .run and .bin Packages in Linux System

        There are tons of ways to install an application on a Linux system. Most of the methods are so conventional and easy to install. If we look at the package extensions of different Linux distributions, Debian and Ubuntu Linux use the .dep packages. RedHat and Fedora use the .rpm packages to execute and install the package. But what if you can’t find a suitable, installable, and compiled package for a specific package? No worries, you can always find either a .bin or a .run package file that you can install on your Linux system.

        The .bin file is the binary packages, and the .run file is the goto run file of a complied package, but they are not an actual package that you can conventionally execute on Linux. However, there are methods that you can apply to make the .bin and .run files executable on a Linux system.

      • How to Install Docker on Linux

        Docker is a tool designed to build, deploy, and run applications using containers.

        It is an open source lightweight virtualization tool that uses OS-level virtualization.

        It allows you to run an application with all its dependencies within software containers by sharing the host operating system kernel.

        It uses resource isolation features from the Linux kernel such as cgroups, namespaces and aufs (advanced multi layered unification filesystem).

      • How to Install Matomo (Piwik) Web Analytics on CentOS 8

        Matomo formerly known as Piwik is an open-source analytics application for the Linux operating system. It is very similar to Google Analytics that helps you to tracks and display the location of user visits. It was developed by a team of international developers that runs on a PHP/MySQL webserver.

      • How to Install Spotify on Ubuntu & Linux Mint

        Learn how to install Spotify on Ubuntu & Linux Mint using the Snap app or add the Spotify repository to install the Spotify desktop player for Linux.

      • How to quickly check to see if your Linux server is under a DDoS attack from a single IP address – TechRepublic

        If you have Linux servers in your data center or they’re being hosted on a cloud server (such as AWS, Google Cloud, or Azure), you cannot assume, simply because of the operating system you’ve deployed, they are secure. Even though Linux is one of the most secure operating systems on the market, it’s not perfect. In fact, there has been a rise of attacks on the platform, which will continue to trend upwards as Linux gains even more popularity.

        What do you do?

        When you suspect one of your servers might be under attack, you need to check on it. How? I’m going to show you a few commands that can help you discern if your server is being hit by a distributed denial of service (DDoS) coming from a single IP address. This type of attack is a coordinated effort, using one or more IP addresses, which attempts to cripple a website to render its server inaccessible.

        Let’s find out how to tell if your Linux server is a target.

      • How to block or unblock PING requests in Ubuntu

        To test the network quality, the PING facility is used and the hackers quite often use it to spoof the host and destination servers to perform flooding attacks. Users sometimes feel the need to block unwanted server requests to keep their system secure and protect the server from any kind of attack. In this article, we will see how to block the PING requests. The tutorial will walk users through unblocking PING requests as well.

    • Games

      • Godot Engine – Dev snapshot: Godot 3.2.4 beta 5

        While development keeps going at full speed towards Godot 4.0 (see recent devblogs on glTF 2.0 scene exporter, Complex Text Layout, Web export improvements, and a physics work package), a lot of work is also being done on the 3.2 branch for the upcoming Godot 3.2.4.

        This new beta 5 comes with 4 weeks’ worth of bugfixes and enhancements over the previous dev snapshots, as well as some nice new features.

        In particular, this build adds WebXR support for VR games! It also adds a much-requested minimap to GraphEdit, and thus to the VisualScript and Visual Shader editors. Moreover, there have been many fixes to features introduced in previous betas, so make sure to test this build and ensure that everything works as you’d want it.

      • Malmyr is a thoroughly charming city-building logistics puzzler out now

        Blending together city-building, resource gathering and logistics into a fine puzzle game Malmyr is worth taking a good look at with a wonderful relaxing atmosphere. Note: key provided to our Steam Curator.

        Like a lot of smaller releases, it’s almost criminally overlooked. It released back in December 2020 with full Linux support, and it works very nicely. Don’t let the charming intro and visuals fool you though, it’s a challenging game once you get going like any good logistics puzzler. While you are building up a city, it’s not a city-builder, don’t be fooled by that either. Malmyr is about careful resource distribution to overcome all the challenges.

      • Homura: A WINE-based Game Launcher for BSD – It’s FOSS

        Homura is a tool that allows you to play Windows games on FreeBSD. It was inspired by Lutris. It allows you to install and manage several Windows game and game store launchers. It mainly uses Wine, but also comes with a number of fixes and workarounds to get the games working.

        Homura’s creator, Alexander Vereeken, said that he created the application because “when I started using FreeBSD, there was no useful utility to set up games or launcher in wine, so I created one myself.” At the time, Wine was the only option. The Linux version of Steam did not exist.

      • How to capture and stream your gaming session on Linux – Linux Hint

        In the past, playing games was only considered a hobby, but with time the gaming industry saw a huge growth in terms of technology and the number of players. The gaming audience has increased by multiple folds due to the remarkable prevalence of online gaming. And now gaming has become a mainstream sport, aka e-sports.
        Like other sports, e-sports broadcasting is becoming popular. The viewership of e-sports has expanded in the last several years due to the overwhelming engagement of gaming fans. Mainstream media has started showing interest in gaming because of its whopping audience. Amazon’s famous platform, Twitch, is one of the renowned streaming platforms. Besides Twitch, other platforms like YouTube, Facebook, Streamlabs, and Discord are also being used by gamers to stream games. You can even publish your recorded games on Youtube.

        As we all know that Windows and gaming consoles are well-liked and accepted gaming platforms, but Linux is now slowly picking up the pace and becoming the third popular gaming platform, thanks to the support of Steam and many modern hardware manufacturers for Linux. There is a huge library of games on Linux, some have native support, and some work using third party plugins. This guide will focus on how to record games and stream on Linux.

      • Epic Games has acquired RAD Game Tools so they now own Bink video and more | GamingOnLinux

        Epic Games latest acquisition is RAD Game Tools, one a great many game developers will be familiar with. As confirmed on the official Epic Games news post, the plan is to integrate RAD tooling into Unreal Engine.

      • Proton Experimental gets Microsoft Flight Simulator VR working on Linux | GamingOnLinux

        A fresh update to Proton Experimental has gone live, the special version of the Proton compatibility layer where all the latest features appear first. Seems like quite a big one, especially if you have a VR kit.

        Need more info on what Steam Play and Proton are? It’s a compatibility layer that allows you to run Windows games on Linux. See our dedicated page for more.

        In the update released January 7, Proton Experimental gained support for the new OpenXR virtual reality API which now means that Microsoft Flight Simulator can work in VR mode with compatible headsets and they specifically mention “AMD hardware.

      • WHAT THE GOLF? is a good question and a highly amusing game | GamingOnLinux

        WHAT THE GOLF? A game created by Triband who clearly have no idea what Golf actually is and as it turns out, they created a game that’s pretty amazing. Note: copy personally purchased.

        Funded originally on the Fig platform back in 2018, it later turned into a timed Epic Games Store exclusive in late 2019 and eventually a Steam release happened in October 2020. Linux support came just a bit later but now I’ve had plenty of time with it to give it some thoughts.

        So what is it, if not Golf? Well, that answer is somewhat complicated. It’s hilarious though, thoroughly entertaining but deciding on what type of game it is has proven difficult. It’s something along the lines of a physics comedy title that has a basic inspiration from the idea of Golf – to hit something across somewhere. Look, describing it is hard okay. It’s completely stupid but oh so brilliant.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Kaidan will receive a grant for end-to-end encryption

          Kaidan will be supported by NLnet for adding end-to-end encryption support. We will implement the latest version of the encryption protocol OMEMO and extend it by an easy trust management to solve issues other OMEMO-capable chat apps suffer from.


          As far as we know, there are no other implementations of Stanza Content Encryption and Automatic Trust Management in use at the moment. We will take the first steps and hope that other XMPP developers will follow our lead. XMPP client developers interested in implementing an easy trust management should have a look at ATM’s project site. It contains all relevant links, pseudocode and test cases.

          Kaidan’s goal is to minimize the effort for establishing free and secure communication, thus lowering the entry barrier to strong encryption mechanisms for the average user. NLnet and a couple of other organizations support us via the NGI Zero PET fund to achieve that. The money is provided by the European Commission. That is a great example (like the previous support by the DBJR (German Federal Youth Council)) of how public money can be used to develop free software.

        • KDE’s January 2021 Apps Update

          This month, we welcome a new chat app for Matrix, while KIO Fuse brings better integration with files on a local network.


          Some of our projects release on their own timescale and some get released en-masse. The 20.12.1 bundle of projects was released today with dozens of bugfixes and will be available through app stores and distros soon. See the 20.12.1 releases page for details.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • GNOME’s Bold New Look is Beginning to Take Shape

          Major GNOME Shell design changes are coming in GNOME 40, and devs are keen to show off the progress they’ve made to implement them.

          Every part of the core GNOME Shell user experience, from app launching to workspace switching, is being rejigged, revamped, or repurposed to work better.

          At least, better for some.

          See, not all feedback on GNOME’s bold plans has been enthusiastic. Some users are concerned that the ‘new’ workflows proposed run counter to the one they’re used to, or that corner-cases (like vertical monitors) won’t be catered for.

        • Progress On The GNOME 40 Shell Continues At Full Speed

          The GNOME Shell user experience improvements and other components continue in development at full-speed for the GNOME 40 release due out in March.

          Following word last month of some significant changes to the GNOME Shell UX, GNOME’s Allan Day has published a new blog post outlining some of their progress on these changes as well as a fresh video of the current stage.

        • Allan Day: A shell UX update

          Last month I shared an updated activities overview design, which is planned for the next GNOME release, version 40.

          The new design has prompted a lot of interest and comment, which we’re all really thrilled about. In this post I wanted to provide an update of where the initiative is at. I also want to take the opportunity to answer some of the common questions that have come up.


          That’s it for now. With this initiative proceeding quickly, we hope to have more updates soon. We also aim to provide another post with details on our user research in the not too distant future.

    • Distributions

      • 4 Best Non-Ubuntu-Based Distros That Are Beginner Friendly

        When we talk about Linux, the first thing that comes to our minds is Ubuntu — probably because the vast majority of people using it also suggest the same to others. The primary reason behind more people using Ubuntu is because of how easy it is to use.

        The problem with everyone suggesting Ubuntu is that it overshadows many non-Ubuntu-based and Ubuntu-based distros that are comparatively better. This has also led to a myth that using any distro other than Ubuntu is difficult, which is not true. In this article, let’s look at four beginner-friendly Linux distros that are not Ubuntu-based.

      • Reviews

        • Clear Linux Review: The McLaren of Linux Distros

          Most users are familiar with what are often called “Mainstream” distros. Ubuntu, Fedora, Mint, CentOS, Arch, you name it – they’re the distros that are most often targeted by guides, and they’re the distros that are supported most widely. However, there are other distros that are excellent for specific purposes.

          A great example of this tailored distro is Clear Linux. Clear Linux is a Linux distribution created by Intel, and it’s tailored to developers, researchers, and anybody who’s using Linux as a tool rather than a desktop. Here we take a look at Clear Linux, the McLaren of Linux Distros, and see who it is and isn’t for.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • openSUSE Community Publishes End of Year Survey Results – openSUSE News

          The openSUSE community has published the End of the Year Community Survey results.

          The results provided some significant information about the project’s tools, its distributions, the demographics of the users as well as how the community is contributing to the project.

          The highest percentage of users were between the ages of 35 and 49, according to the results. More than half the respondents were from Europe; the Americas made up roughly a quarter of the respondents and Asia 10 percent. Both Oceania and Africa respondents had similar percentages below 2 percent.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • PHP version 7.3.26, 7.4.14 and 8.0.1 – Remi’s RPM repository – Blog

          RPMs of PHP version 8.0.1 are available in remi-php80 repository for Fedora 31-33 and Enterprise Linux (RHEL, CentOS).

          RPMs of PHP version 7.4.14 are available in remi repository for Fedora 32-33 and remi-php74 repository for Fedora 31 and Enterprise Linux (RHEL, CentOS).

          RPMs of PHP version 7.3.26 are available in remi repository for Fedora 31 and remi-php73 repository for Enterprise Linux (RHEL, CentOS).

        • Learn new skills while working on volunteer projects

          I video chatted with Santiago, who currently lives in Mexico City. Like many others, the Covid-19 pandemic left him without a steady income. He was laid off, after working steadily for 23 years, and thought it was good to take a break. After indulging in a bit of “panic mode” (as he calls it), he saw an opportunity to work in a volunteer project and learn some new skills. Santiago discovered the Digital Volunteer team on a forum for technical volunteers around Covid-19 projects and saw that the skills they needed (Java and JavaScript) matched his profile and the project owner responded quickly.

          Santiago joined the team in April 2020. The Digital Volunteer project joined the Call for Code in the summer and became TheHeroLoop project. He worked on TheHeroLoop until November when he got a new job.


          For Santiago it was his first time volunteering on a software project, partially because his not-so-voluntary break. He recommends that everyone should join open communities, because you meet new people with many different views on life. TheHeroLoop project was a good ‘first step’ for him. The commitment of the community, even when people only have a little time, is great.

        • IBM Cloud Pak for Integration – Connect your applications & data with AI-powered automation
        • 3 serverless strategies to look for in 2021

          If you had at least one chance to attend business and technologies conferences recently, you probably saw lots of DevOps strategies, Agilist, and DevSecOps engineers around the digital transformation track. No matter what business you work in, it’s no secret that DevOps is a big trigger to craft new companies.

        • Cockpit 235 — Cockpit Project

          Cockpit is the modern Linux admin interface. We release regularly.

          Here are the release notes from Cockpit version 235.

        • Fedora 34 Approved To Enable Systemd-OOMD By Default For All Spins – Phoronix

          The release of Fedora 34 this spring is now cleared to enable systemd-oomd by default for all spins in an effort to enhance the out-of-memory / memory pressure experience on Linux.

          Systemd OOMD is currently an experimental feature of systemd based on Facebook code adapted for systemd to be used on both desktops and servers. Systemd-OOMD allows monitoring for resource contention and can kill opt-in processes when the memory/SWAP pressure is above a predefined threshold.

        • The first fully tested Fedora Firefox package

          We hit a big milestone in Firefox deployment on Fedora with firefox-84.0.2 package. It’s the first fully tested Firefox package released to Fedora users. Let’s see what’s so exciting on it.

          Mozilla has a large testsuite as a part of development and release process. When any new patch hits Firefox repository, it’s built and tested for functional and speed regressions. The testsuite is also a developers nightmare as it contains some old and outdated test environments and it may be difficult to pass patches through it.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa” Cinnamon released!

          The team is proud to announce the release of Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa” Cinnamon Edition.

          Linux Mint 20.1 is a long term support release which will be supported until 2025. It comes with updated software and brings refinements and many new features to make your desktop even more comfortable to use.

        • Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa” MATE released!

          Linux Mint 20.1 is a long term support release which will be supported until 2025. It comes with updated software and brings refinements and many new features to make your desktop even more comfortable to use.

        • Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa” Xfce released!

          Linux Mint 20.1 is a long term support release which will be supported until 2025. It comes with updated software and brings refinements and many new features to make your desktop even more comfortable to use.

        • Linux Mint 20.1 released, will be supported until 2025

          Linux Mint 20.1 has now been officially released, and this is an LTS version which means it will be supported for quite some time until 2025. Plenty of time to get comfy with Linux.

          Coming in three official flavours you can pick between the Cinnamon, MATE and Xfce desktop environments all supported by the Mint team directly. Cinnamon being Mint’s own flagship desktop environment, which saw lots of attention this release including some big performance improvements and less resource use with 4K.

        • Ubuntu-based Linux Mint 20.1 ‘Ulyssa’ is here with Cinnamon, MATE, and Xfce
        • Linux Mint 20.1 Released With Web Apps, IPTV Player, Cinnamon 4.8 Integrated
        • ECS Liva Q1A is a 2.9 inch mini PC that runs Android or Ubuntu

          ECS is expanding its Liva Q line of tiny computers with two new models sporting ARM-based processors. The new ECS Liva Q1A and ECS Liva Q1A Plus both measure just 2.9″ x 2.9″ x 1.4″ making the little computer small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, much like the Liva Q1D and Q1L models that launched in 2020.

          But while the older versions were Windows and Linux-ready PCs powered by Intel Apollo Lake processors, the new models are powered by Rockchip’s ARM processors and they’re designed to run Android 8.1 or Ubuntu 18.04 software.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • What is an open source evangelist?

        When people learn that I work as an open source evangelist (focusing on syslog-ng and sudo), they often ask me what it’s like to represent such well-known names in the Linux world. My short answer: It’s good!

        I am part of research and development, so it is never boring. I feel that I make an impact when people implement what they learn from me and when the feedback I collect from users influences the development of the product.

      • 5 Best Slacks Alternatives on Linux

        Slack is one of the most comprehensive team-based messaging tools that holds multiple features to manage teams easily. This application is used for organizing groups, communicating with members, and discussing projects. Slack has cross-platform support to use it on Windows, Linux, iOS, macOS, and Android.

        We have explained the five best Slack alternatives on Linux, including features, pros, and cons. Slack is an amazing tool, but many users want alternatives for improving productivity and team collaboration. It is better to switch on another software by knowing everything about it. You can get complete details of all software discussed above to choose the right one as per the requirements.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Mozilla Security Blog: Encrypted Client Hello: the future of ESNI in Firefox

            Two years ago, we announced experimental support for the privacy-protecting Encrypted Server Name Indication (ESNI) extension in Firefox Nightly. The Server Name Indication (SNI) TLS extension enables server and certificate selection by transmitting a cleartext copy of the server hostname in the TLS Client Hello message. This represents a privacy leak similar to that of DNS, and just as DNS-over-HTTPS prevents DNS queries from exposing the hostname to on-path observers, ESNI attempts to prevent hostname leaks from the TLS handshake itself.

            Since publication of the ESNI draft specification at the IETF, analysis has shown that encrypting only the SNI extension provides incomplete protection. As just one example: during session resumption, the Pre-Shared Key extension could, legally, contain a cleartext copy of exactly the same server name that is encrypted by ESNI. The ESNI approach would require an encrypted variant of every extension with potential privacy implications, and even that exposes the set of extensions advertised. Lastly, real-world use of ESNI has exposed interoperability and deployment challenges that prevented it from being enabled at a wider scale.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GNU Guile 3.0.5 released
            We are delighted to announce GNU Guile release 3.0.5, the latest in the
            3.0 stable release series.
            Compared to the previous release in the 3.0 series, Guile 3.0.5 can
            compile chained "if" expressions into the equivalent of what a C
            compiler does with "switch".  It also adds some new warning passes.
            Compared to the previous stable series (2.2.x), Guile 3.0 adds support
            for just-in-time native code generation, speeding up all Guile programs.
            See the NEWS extract at the end of the mail for full details.
            The Guile web page is located at http://gnu.org/software/guile/, and
            among other things, it contains a copy of the Guile manual and pointers
            to more resources.
            Guile is an implementation of the Scheme programming language, packaged
            for use in a wide variety of environments.  In addition to implementing
            the R5RS, R6RS, and R7RS Scheme standards, Guile includes full access to
            POSIX system calls, networking support, multiple threads, dynamic
            linking, a foreign function call interface, powerful string processing,
            and HTTP client and server implementations.
            Guile can run interactively, as a script interpreter, and as a Scheme
            compiler to VM bytecode.  It is also packaged as a library so that
            applications can easily incorporate a complete Scheme interpreter/VM.
            An application can use Guile as an extension language, a clean and
            powerful configuration language, or as multi-purpose "glue" to connect
            primitives provided by the application.  It is easy to call Scheme code
            from C code and vice versa.  Applications can add new functions, data
            types, control structures, and even syntax to Guile, to create a
            domain-specific language tailored to the task at hand.
            Guile 3.0.5 can be installed in parallel with Guile 2.2.x; see
            A more detailed NEWS summary follows these details on how to get the
            Guile sources.
            Here are the compressed sources:
              http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/guile/guile-3.0.5.tar.lz   (10MB)
              http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/guile/guile-3.0.5.tar.xz   (12MB)
              http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/guile/guile-3.0.5.tar.gz   (21MB)
            Here are the GPG detached signatures[*]:
            Use a mirror for higher download bandwidth:
            Here are the SHA256 checksums:
            [*] Use a .sig file to verify that the corresponding file (without the
            .sig suffix) is intact.  First, be sure to download both the .sig file
            and the corresponding tarball.  Then, run a command like this:
              gpg --verify guile-3.0.5.tar.gz.sig
            If that command fails because you don't have the required public key,
            then run this command to import it:
              gpg --keyserver keys.gnupg.net --recv-keys 
            and rerun the 'gpg --verify' command.
            This release was bootstrapped with the following tools:
              Autoconf 2.69
              Automake 1.16.2
              Libtool 2.4.6
              Gnulib v0.1-1157-gb03f418
              Makeinfo 6.7
            An extract from NEWS follows.
            Changes in 3.0.5 (since 3.0.4)
            * New interfaces and functionality
            ** O(1) compilation of `case' and related expressions
            Guile now optimizes chains of eq? comparisons to constants, resulting in
            O(1) dispatch time, regardless of the length of the chain.  This
            optimization is also unlocked in many cases for `match' expressions with
            many similar clauses whose first differentiator are constants.
            ** New (ice-9 copy-tree) module
            This module includes the `copy-tree' procedure that was previously
            implemented in C and present in the default `(guile)' module.  See
            "Copying" in the manual.
            ** New warning: use-before-definition
            This analysis, enabled at `-W1', issues warnings for programs that use
            top-level variables before they are defined.
            ** New warning: non-idempotent-definition
            This analysis, enabled at `-W1', issues warnings for programs that whose
            use of a variable is ambiguous.  For example, in the program:
              (define saved-add +)
              (define + error)
            The intention would seem to be to "save" the value of the base `+'
            procedure, then override it locally.  However if this program is ever
            loaded twice, then the second time it is loaded, `+' will be taken from
            the local binding instead of the import.  Users that want this kind of
            behavior should either use lexical bindings instead of top-level
            bindings, or otherwise rename important clobbered bindings via modules.
            * New deprecations
            ** `copy-tree' in the default environment, and `scm_copy_tree' from C
            Import the `(ice-9 copy-tree)' module instead.
            ** `unbound-variable-analysis`, `macro-use-before-definition-analysis`
            These bindings from `(language tree-il analyze)' are replaced by the
            use-before-definition analysis, which powers a number of warnings.  Use
            `make-use-before-definition-analysis', but note that these interfaces
            are quite intimate parts of the compiler!
            * Incompatible changes
            ** `copy' read-option removed
            This read option would include a copy of the source expression in the
            source-properties of each subexpression.  This option has always been
            off by default and lost most of its use value with the switch to a
            compiler in Guile 2.0.
          • GNU Guile 3.0.5 released

            We are delighted to announce the release of GNU Guile 3.0.5. This release adds optimizations that can turn chains of repeated comparisons, such as those produced by the case and (sometimes) the match macros, into efficient O(1) table dispatches. For full details, see the NEWS entry. See the release note for signatures, download links, and all the rest. Happy hacking!

          • GNU Tar Version 1.33

            Version 1.33 of GNU tar is available for download.

      • Programming/Development

        • Simplify Your Development Toolset with Qt for Everything from MCUs to Desktop PCs

          Fragmented toolsets are insidious. While not blocking development at any one step, the constant start and stop, context switching, and other inefficiencies can slow progress to a crawl.

          Where there is a single framework that can be applied to multiple platforms, you will almost always see it being used.

          Qt is one of those frameworks, now enabling a unified graphical user interface (GUI) for everything from microcontrollers (MCU) to desktop PCs.

        • The International Obfuscated C Code Contest: A 27th IOCCC Winner

          We perform arbitrary computation with printf treating memory as a binary array—one bit per pair of bytes: – The zero bit is represented by the sequence 00 00 – The one-bit is represented by the sequence xx 00 where xx is any non-zero byte.

        • Compiling on ARM board is like watching grass grow

          Right now, the 5.10.4 kernel is compiling on my Rock64 board. I want to compile a 5.10.x kernel for the rpi4, and have followed instructions here:


          Not cross-compiling though, doing it on the Rock64 board. The Rock64 has EasyOS 1.0.4 Pyro, 64-bit. This is a nice board. I migrated to this in 2019, after trying to compile SeaMonkey on my rpi3 model-B, and all it did was hang after about 20 hours.

        • Java

          • Java development on Fedora Linux

            Java is a lot. Aside from being an island of Indonesia, it is a large software development ecosystem. Java was released in January 1996. It is approaching its 25th birthday and it’s still a popular platform for enterprise and casual software development. Many things, from banking to Minecraft, are powered by Java development.

            This article will guide you through all the individual components that make Java and how they interact. This article will also cover how Java is integrated in Fedora Linux and how you can manage different versions. Finally, a small demonstration using the game Shattered Pixel Dungeon is provided.

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Intel Releases High Performance Computing Reference Stack 2.0

        Intel has released their High Performance Computing Reference Stack 2.0 as the latest Docker image optimized for HPC/AI workloads.

        Intel’s High Performance Computing Reference Stack (HPCRS) 2.0 is built atop a CentOS base (yes, not their own high performance Clear Linux) and bundles PyTorch, various Intel oneAPI components, and more. HPCRS also incudes some proprietary components like the Intel Math Kernel Library.

  • Leftovers

    • Opinion | Real Change on a Living Planet

      Restorative Justice, which can be used to address—and heal—harm that was been done, is part of our indigenous heritage.

    • The Legend of MF DOOM

      There’s a moment in the 2003 film Bomb the System that perfectly captures the magic of rapper and producer MF DOOM. The scene begins with Blest, an insular graffiti writer, sitting on a couch in a posh Manhattan club and bobbing his head as the song “Money Folder” plays from speakers. The woozy, tinny track doesn’t lend itself to the acoustics or optics of a club, but Blest smiles from ear to ear, mouthing the lyrics. As the camera slowly pans out and shows other clubbers to be less enthused, Blest’s bliss feels deviant, like he’s hearing something inaccessible to everyone else.

    • Short Cuts: the 20 Best Films of 2020
    • Health/Nutrition

      • Russian officials report more than 60,000 deaths from COVID-19

        On the morning of Thursday, January 7, Russian officials reported that 60,457 people in Russia have died from the coronavirus since the start of the epidemic. In the past day, 506 people reportedly died from the disease.

      • Russia’s Buryatia introduces mandatory coronavirus testing for visitors from Moscow

        The authorities in Russia’s Republic of Buryatia have announced that anyone arriving from the cities of Moscow, Novosibirsk, Krasnoyarsk, and Khabarovsk will have to undergo mandatory testing for COVID-19.

      • A New COVID Strain Is 70 Percent More Transmissible and Already Widespread in US
      • Nearly 4,000 Americans Died From Covid-19 on Wednesday as Trump Incited Anti-Democratic Insurrection

        “Trump completely abdicating all responsibility for federal Covid response is not even on the radar today.”

      • Covid-19 Has Been Hardest on Women

        Sometime in the 1990s, a friend told me we didn’t have to worry about progress for women: “Feminism is in the drinking water now.” She wasn’t entirely wrong. Despite all the complexities and counterexamples, for a while it looked as though women were finally making real progress—in the workplace, in the home, in government, in the way they saw themselves.

      • Andrew Wakefield spews nonsense about how the COVID-19 vaccine will “permanently alter your DNA”

        As 2021 dawned, my first post of the year was about how many of my fellow physicians behaved very badly last year with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic. While many physicians, nurses, and other health care professionals bravely risked their lives to care for COVID-19 patients (and some even died of COVID-19), a small but disturbing and impossible-to-ignore number of doctors denied or minimized the pandemic, sold unproven or even quack “cures,” and helped spread conspiracy theories designed to spark resistance to public health interventions, like masking, social distancing, and closures of businesses that involve large numbers of people gathering. Some have even engaged in germ theory denial by claiming that SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that has been shown to cause COVID-19, either doesn’t exist (it’s an exosome!) or doesn’t cause COVID-19. As these examples led me to think about how such people could get through medical school (just as Andrew Wakefield always did), I learned earlier this week that it wasn’t just doctors, but pharmacists as well, who fall prey to conspiracy theories:

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Boeing Will Pay $2.5 Billion to Settle Charge Over Plane

          Prosecutors said Boeing employees concealed important information about the plane from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), then covered up their actions.

          “The misleading statements, half-truths and omissions communicated by Boeing employees to the FAA impeded the government’s ability to ensure the safety of the flying public,” said Erin Nealy Cox, the U.S. attorney in Dallas.

        • Boeing criminally charged for lying about 737 Max crashes, fined $2.5 billion

          Boeing has been criminally charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States by the Department of Justice and will have to pay a $2.5 billion fine for lying to the Federal Aviation Administration before and after the fatal 737 Max crashes in 2018 and 2019.

          The Justice Department announced the charges and fine, which were part of a deferred prosecution agreement, on Thursday. The $2.5 billion fine includes a $243.6 million “criminal monetary penalty,” $1.77 billion that will be paid out to airlines that were customers of the plane, and $500 million that will go to a fund to help families and relatives of the people who died in the two crashes.

        • DOJ charges Boeing with criminal conspiracy, fines it $2.5B

          The charge of “conspiracy to defraud the United States” specifically stemmed from allegations that employees concealed details from Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulators in its investigation of two crashes between October 2018 and March 2019 that killed 346 people.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

        • Security

          • 33 hardware and firmware vulnerabilities: A guide to the threats | CSO Online

            Meltdown and Spectre raised the alarm over vulnerabilities that attackers can exploit in popular hardware and its firmware. Here’s a roundup of the ones that present the most significant threats.

          • 6 Open Source Tools for Your Security Team

            Open source tools are a fact of life in application development. A growing number of open source security tools makes the noncommercial license a realistic option for more security teams.

            Traditionally, open source tools have been viewed as options for academic institutions and smaller companies. But current-generation open source tools, developed with an emphasis on scale and deployment flexibility, have been developed with larger enterprises in mind.

            Dark Reading looked at a range of tools and system across the open source landscape to find a half-dozen that enterprise security teams will want to know about. Several are at the beginning of their product lives; one is at the end, though it is still useful. In most cases, these tools compete against commercial offerings, though in every case the open source option provides qualities (aside from purchase price) that make them worthy of consideration for specific situations.

          • All Aboard the Pequod!

            Like countless others, I frittered away the better part of Jan. 6 doomscrolling and watching television coverage of the horrifying events unfolding in our nation’s capital, where a mob of President Trump supporters and QAnon conspiracy theorists was incited to lay siege to the U.S. Capitol. For those trying to draw meaning from the experience, might I suggest consulting the literary classic Moby Dick, which simultaneously holds clues about QAnon’s origins and offers an apt allegory about a modern-day Captain Ahab and his ill-fated obsessions.

          • Sealed U.S. Court Records Exposed in SolarWinds Breach

            The ongoing breach affecting thousands of organizations that relied on backdoored products by network software firm SolarWinds may have jeopardized the privacy of countless sealed court documents on file with the U.S. federal court system, according to a memo released Wednesday by the Administrative Office (AO) of the U.S. Courts.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • ‘Going Dark?’: Cops Grab Vehicle Data To Identify A Murder Suspect

              All the cops in the federal shops say “going dark” is a thing. Local cops have much less to say about the issue, even though they’ve got as much at stake. The FBI can’t be trusted to count its own inventory of “locked” devices, so how much of a problem encryption poses is still highly theoretical. Which is the way the FBI and DOJ want it.

            • Google’s next Nest Hub could use radar to track your sleep, and I have questions

              Earlier this week, we reported that Google could be working on an updated Nest Hub that had Soli technology, and a report from 9to5Google now suggests that it could be for something unexpected: sleep tracking.

              If you aren’t familiar, Soli is Google’s radar technology used to detect gestures and human presence. It was first introduced in the Pixel 4 (which was discontinued in August), and while it isn’t in any of Google’s current Pixel devices, it’s now showing up in smart home devices, like the Nest Thermostat.

            • The state of digital rights in Latin America

              Oftentimes, we read about the state of digital rights on the Global North and their challenges, but we hear little from the Global South. What is, then, the state of digital rights on the Global South and, specially, in Latin America? Are those rights threatened in the same way that they are in the Global North? Do those rights apply in the same way? On this talk, we will explore these questions. We will touch upon the history of digital censorship in Latin America, how it has evolved, and how surveillance in the region is increasing.

              Perhaps one of the biggest challenges that we have as a community is the fact that we hear little from the perspectives from other regions of the world that are often consuming the technology and ideas produced from the Global North. This talk will aim to bring the Latin American perspective to the table: to talk about the state of digital rights in the region, about the challenges facing towards a digital sovereignty, about the state of digital rights from a legal and political perspective, and more.

            • Trump allowed back onto Twitter

              Earlier on Thursday, the popular gaming platform Twitch also placed an indefinite ban on Mr Trump’s channel, which he has used for rally broadcasts.

            • Amazon’s Twitch Disables Donald Trump Account, Citing ‘Incendiary Rhetoric’

              In a statement Thursday, a Twitch rep said, “In light of yesterday’s shocking attack on the Capitol, we have disabled President Trump’s Twitch channel. Given the current extraordinary circumstances and the President’s incendiary rhetoric, we believe this is a necessary step to protect our community and prevent Twitch from being used to incite further violence.” Trump’s Twitch account will be disabled at least through the end of his presidential term this month.

            • Facebook Bans Trump Indefinitely as CEO Mark Zuckerberg Cites Need for ‘Peaceful Transition of Power’

              The move comes after Facebook yesterday initially said it would freeze Trump’s access to its services for a 24-hour period, following the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol by pro-Trump rioters who were egged on by the lame-duck president.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • ‘Unacceptable!’: Probe Demanded After Footage Shows Capitol Police Standing Aside for Pro-Trump Mob

        “The images of police officers calmly allowing barricades open, letting the crowd enter, and taking selfies inside the building with those who have stormed it cannot go without investigation and penalty.”

      • PSA: If Someone Doesn’t Accept Your Friend Request, Do Not Threaten To Kill Them And Kick In Their Front Door

        We’ve all been there. You jump on some social media platform having met someone in this existence that passes for real life and fire off a friend request to them. And then you… wait. Sometimes you then wait some more. And then, sometimes, you’re left in this terrifying, self-absorbed limbo, having tried to make this connection only to see it never accepted. Your mind races. Why didn’t they accept my request? Do they not like me? Is it something I said? I know, you think, I’ll just threaten to murder them and go break down their front door!

      • Carrying Death Sentence If Convicted, Iraq Issues Arrest Warrant for Trump on Murder Charges

        The U.S. president is now wanted by law enforcement in the Middle East nation for ordering the assassination of Iranian Gen. Qassim Soleimani and Iraqi commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.

      • Opinion | They’re Not Going Anywhere. Trump Has Created Right-Wing Beast He Cannot Control

        When Biden takes the oath of office later this month, Trump’s presidency will be over. White supremacy, however, will not be.

      • A Dark, Dark Day for America

        Today, I went to the White House to see the rally that Trump had instigated with his false claims about the election.

        “Soon enough, this distressing episode in American history will be behind us. But its corrosive impact will remain.”I saw thousands and thousands of people who have been fooled by Trump’s lies. They truly believe the election was stolen from Trump.

      • Wednesday, January 6th: The Day The Game Of Politics Turned Into Insurrection

        It’s Thursday, January 7th, one day after a group of thuggish, Trump-supporting hooligans stormed the nation’s Capitol building and attempted to take up residence in the vaunted halls of our self-governance. Already there is an effort to paint this attack on democracy as anything other than what it was: an attempt to either disrupt or overthrow a democratic form of government as dictated by the will of the people. Lin Wood, a lawyer who has been independently creating post-election craziness, suggested the rioters were actually Antifa without evidence, before heading to Parler to claim that a coup was underway. Sarah Palin suggested likewise on Fox News yesterday, while also taking to Twitter to cast doubt on the support these people had for Trump.

      • On the 20th Anniversary of the “War on Terror,” Is There Any End in Sight?
      • The Police “Use of Force,” and Berkeley’s “Use of Farce”

        When we consider minimal force, and we look at the tools, the weapons, the technologies of force, aren’t we looking at the wrong thing?

        What the police consider proper use of force, however, is something else. Ordinances requiring the police to use a minimum of force have been passed at the state and city levels. In particular, the Core Principle of De-escalation in Berkeley has been that “…in any encounters that call for applying force, officers must always use the minimal amount of force that is objectively reasonable …”. And the police have wanted to insert “strive to” before “use the minimal” in that sentence. But if it isn’t the technology that kills, then it is the “striving” to use force in the first place that is the problem. “Strive to” use minimal force; does that mean going up or down in degree? Clearly, behind this ambiguity, the cops want the decision on what constitutes “minimum” to be entirely in their own hands. So much for civilian regulation of “excessive force.”

      • Opinion | As Far Right Storms Capitol, Media Need to Look at Their Own Role in How We Got Here

        The media needs to take responsibility for its own role in normalizing the GOP’s long-term efforts to drag this country toward authoritarian rule—and their cynical enjoyment of the ratings bonanza provided by the enthralling spectacle of Trump’s assault on democracy.

      • Pro-Trump Insurrectionists Seize Capitol

        Hundreds of demonstrators swarmed past a ring of police and pushed into the Capitol, busting through doors and windows, ransacking offices. Someone fired a shot in unknown circumstances that hit a woman. She died at a hospital.

        The ballot counting was suspended, the Senate locked down and the House closed its doors in what possibly marked one of the worst breaches of the hallowed building in history. The Washington, D.C., National Guard was activated. The building later was evacuated.

      • Facebook Bans Trump Indefinitely, Citing His Intent to Incite Violence
      • ‘White Privilege on Steroids’: Ire After Pro-Trump Mob Gets Red Carpet Compared to Black Lives Matter

        Had the Capitol insurrectionists “been Black and Brown,” they “wouldn’t have made it up those steps,” asserted Rep. Cori Bush. 

      • The Coup in Washington: Why is Anyone Surprised by Trump’s Fascist Politics?

        How did we get here? And why is any of this a surprise to the legions of fascism deniers in the U.S. who have long insisted that the U.S. is not falling into authoritarian politics? Nothing about what’s happened in the capital should be a surprise to those who have taken a sober look at the rising fascism that now characterizes American politics.

        Trump told the nation that he would not accept the results of an election he lost before a single ballot was counted on election day. And he has been leading an effort on countless fronts to overturn the results for the last two months, in the states, in the judicial branch, in Congress, and now in the streets.

      • The Squad, Pelosi and 130 Other Lawmakers Call for Trump’s Removal
      • A Police Bulletin Instructs Officers to Look for Explosives

        Following the discovery of two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) amid the pro-Trump mob in Washington, D.C., yesterday, Virginia police instructed officers to be on the lookout for suspicious packages, according to an internal bulletin obtained by The Nation.

      • As Far Right Storms Capitol, Media Need to Look at Their Own Role in How We Got Here

        Media seem to have finally found the line they won’t abide crossing. After both sides–ing the political situation for four years of Donald Trump, the storming of the Capitol by an armed rebellion incited by Trump himself has brought out swift and strong words.

      • Opinion | Was Trump Hoping for a Coup?

        There remain 13 potentially dangerous days before Biden is inaugurated.

      • ‘Murder the Media’: Pro-Trump Insurrectionists Target Journalists Covering Attack on US Capitol

        The takeover followed an inflammatory speech in which the president, yet again, called the press “the enemy of the people.”

      • “Might As Well Hang ‘Kick Me’ Signs Around Their Necks”: Instead of Trump Impeachment, House Dems Adjourn

        “We are in an emergency situation and need people in positions of power to act. Going home sends a signal to these Nazis and fascists.”

      • A Snap Impeachment Should Be Done Within 24 Hours
      • Opinion | The United States Is in a Dangerous State of Emergency

        The day Donald Trump ‘stood down and stood by’ after inciting an insurrection.

      • Opinion | Will America’s Forever Wars Ever Be Over?

        The 20th anniversary of the war on terror arrives.

      • Trump Loyalists’ Breach of Capitol Is Likely to Embolden Far Right Street Forces
      • Police Inaction in Face of Trumpist Mob Was White Supremacy in Action
      • Domestic Terrorism: A More Urgent Threat, but Weaker Laws

        In the days leading up to the attack on the U.S. Capitol, the FBI received intelligence that extremists were planning violence as lawmakers gathered in Washington to certify the electoral victory of President-elect Joe Biden.

        FBI officials managed to dissuade people in several places from their suspected plans, a senior FBI official said — but there was not enough evidence to issue arrest warrants.

      • Capitol Rioters Planned for Weeks in Plain Sight. The Police Weren’t Ready.

        The invasion of the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday was stoked in plain sight. For weeks, the far-right supporters of President Donald Trump railed on social media that the election had been stolen. They openly discussed the idea of violent protest on the day Congress met to certify the result.

        “We came up with the idea to occupy just outside the CAPITOL on Jan 6th,” leaders of the Stop the Steal movement wrote on Dec. 23. They called their Wednesday demonstration the Wild Protest, a name taken from a tweet by Trump that encouraged his supporters to take their grievances to the streets of Washington. “Will be wild,” the president tweeted.

      • “Americans Are Now Getting a Mild Taste of Their Own Medicine” of Disrupting Democracy Elsewhere

        World leaders reacted in horror over the storming of the U.S. Capitol, with the U.N. secretary-general calling on political leaders to demand their followers refrain from violence. Leaders of the U.K., New Zealand, Australia, Canada, India, Japan, France, Germany, NATO and the European Council called for a peaceful transfer of power to Joe Biden. Investigative journalist Allan Nairn looks at what steps Trump may take next, and says despite protestations from President-elect Joe Biden and others that the insurrection was “not who we are,” the U.S. has a long track record of disrupting democratic processes elsewhere. “What has shaken the U.S. population so badly, this assault on the Capitol yesterday, is really nothing by comparison to what U.S. operations have done in Latin America, in Asia, in Africa, in the Middle East, to other democratic movements and elected governments over the years,” says Nairn.

      • White Supremacy in Action: Police Stand Down as Trump Mob Storms Capitol to Disrupt Election Vote

        The U.S. Congress has certified President-elect Joe Biden’s victory, hours after a violent, right-wing mob incited by President Trump interrupted proceedings and stormed the U.S. Capitol. Four people died during the chaos, which has been described as an attempted coup. The insurrection was the culmination of months of lies by President Trump, widely repeated in right-wing media and on social media platforms, that the 2020 presidential election was rigged for Joe Biden. At a rally Wednesday, Trump urged supporters to head to the Capitol, who later broke through barriers and lines of police outside the Capitol and made their way inside, where they ransacked offices and sent lawmakers scrambling. Bree Newsome Bass, an antiracist activist, artist and housing rights advocate arrested in 2015 after she tore down the Confederate flag at the South Carolina state Capitol, says it’s impossible not to note “the obvious difference in terms of how police have a coordinated, overtly militarized response to any kind of protest that is challenging racism in policing or racism in the government versus what we witnessed yesterday” in Washington, D.C. “It is very clear that the primary function of police forces in the United States is to enforce racism above enforcing public safety.”

      • Historian: White Terrorist Groups Attacked Democracy During Reconstruction, They Are Doing It Again

        As Washington reels from the storming of the U.S. Capitol by a pro-Trump mob intent on overturning the 2020 election results, lawmakers are considering new impeachment proceedings against President Trump for fomenting the insurrection. Civil War and Reconstruction historian Manisha Sinha says this isn’t the first attempt to disrupt the democratic process by right-wing white domestic terrorists, citing the 1898 Wilmington coup and other efforts before that throughout the Southern states. “These groups today remind me of those people,” says Sinha. In response to the call to invoke the 25th Amendment against Donald Trump, she argues, “This is an awful portent for our democracy, and we need to respond forcefully to it.”

      • This Is How Tyrants Go: Alone

        I remember reading an essay a month or so ago — sadly I forget where — talking about how things end for tyrants. If I were to sum it up, it would be with the word “alone.” Their power fading, they find that they had few true friends or believers; just others that were greedy for power or riches and, finding those no longer to be had, depart the sinking ship. The article looked back at examples like Nixon and examples from the 20th century in Europe and around the world.

        Today we saw images of a failed coup attempt.

      • Nearly half of Republicans support the invasion of the US Capitol

        It is an extraordinary argument to have about an event that was promoted by the president himself. “Big protest in D.C. on January 6th,” Mr Trump tweeted on December 19th. “Be there, will be wild!”.

      • Biden: ‘Don’t Dare Call Them Protesters. They Were Domestic Terrorists’

        “For the past four years, we’ve had a president who has made his contempt for our democracy, our Constitution, the rule of law clear in everything he has done,” Biden added, “He has unleashed an all-out assault on our institutions of democracy from the outset, and yesterday was but the culmination of that unrelenting attack.”

      • Trump’s Enablers Face Violent Reckoning

        The full statement: “Today’s violent assault on our Capitol, an effort to subjugate American democracy by mob rule, was fomented by Mr. Trump. His use of the Presidency to destroy trust in our election and to poison our respect for fellow citizens has been enabled by pseudo-political leaders whose names will live in infamy as profiles in cowardice.

      • On Parler, the MAGA social media platform, Trump supporters are ready for insurrection

        For the unfamiliar, Parler’s platform combines many of the prominent features of both Facebook and Twitter. Users have a newsfeed and can follow influencers, but they can also post themselves. The general Parler timeline contains much of the brand of far-right [disinformation] that would be slapped with a warning label on either Twitter or Facebook, or be taken down.

        Parler was founded in 2018 by two computer programmers named John Matze and Jared Thomson, and is financially backed by Rebekah Mercer, whose father is Robert Mercer, a major funder of Breitbart.

      • Giuliani to Senator: ‘Try to Just Slow it Down’

        Giuliani tells Tuberville that McConnell wants to narrow the objections to just three states and explains that the Trump team wants to object to 10. “So if you could object to every state and, along with a congressman, get a hearing for every state, I know we would delay you a lot, but it would give us the opportunity to get the legislators who are very, very close to pulling their vote, particularly after what McConnell did today.”

        The problem for Giuliani? He left his message on the voicemail of another senator, who shared it with The Dispatch.

      • A shadow over democracy, the White House and the Republican Party

        Before Wednesday, there was no precedent for a president’s inciting citizens to storm the Capitol. And it had been more than 150 years, dating to the Civil War, since a large group of lawmakers gave comfort to an insurrection.

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • Putting Trump on Television Will Never Do Anything But Further His Own Agenda

        The more exaggerated his speech, the more news networks scrambled to make room for it. The more “unbelievable” his statements, the harder comedy shows worked to satirize them. He lies, knowing the truth doesn’t particularly matter as long as the falsities go live first. The Trump Show is an all-consuming beast, and as Trump well knows, it would starve without TV. Over the last several years, it’s been both fascinating and terrifying to watch other politicians learn that same lesson to the point that today, when contesting an election with no evidence of fraud, Senator Ted Cruz referenced the “viewers” instead of “voters.”

      • Matt Gaetz’s antifa-detecting facial recognition story is complete nonsense

        There is no evidence to support the Times’ article, however. An XRVision spokesperson linked The Verge to a blog post by CTO Yaacov Apelbaum, denying its claims and calling the story “outright false, misleading, and defamatory.” (Speech delivered during congressional debate, such as Gaetz’s, is protected from defamation claims.) The Times article was apparently deleted a few hours after Apelbaum’s post.

      • It took thugs roaming the halls of Congress for media to speak the truth

        Reporters who for months used sanitized language to normalize Donald Trump’s attempt to overthrow the duly elected government of the United States finally overcame their scruples Wednesday, enthusiastically hurling hyperbolic epithets at the ragtag mob of yahoos who breached security at the U.S. Capitol and stomped around screaming and taking selfies for a few hours.

        The drama of what happened Wednesday was undeniable. It was terrifying. It was an outrage of epic proportions, a shameful moment for the country, and a scandal of law-enforcement failure and complicity. And Trump obviously sent the mob on its way.

        But I find it pathetic that it wasn’t until they had the visuals they needed that the elite journalists of the Washington press corps could bring themselves to call what Trump has been doing since before the election by its proper name: An attempted coup.

    • Environment

      • One Year After Declaring Climate Emergency, Scientists Say ‘Massive-Scale Mobilization’ Necessary

        “Aggressive, transformative change, framed against the backdrop of social justice, can ignite an enormous deployment that will let us avert the worst of the climate emergency.”

      • Caspian Sea loss puts Asian water supplies at risk

        The Caspian Sea’s decline means a climate-led water crisis for at least five Asian nations as inland seas dry up.

      • Energy

        • Stopping Trump’s Last Pipeline Will Take All of Us

          And not just in Palisade. Indigenous people and our allies are resisting across the whole pathway of this pipeline, from near the Red Lake Reservation in the Northwest, where a new camp just opened, to the Fond du Lac reservation on the eastern end, where Water Protectors have been disrupting the destruction everyday. This past month we’ve been praying by the river, and asking others to come. And they have answered the call: legislators, friends from the cities, people of all religious faiths, relatives from South Dakota, Iowa, Illinois, water protectors from all four directions to sing those Water Songs, as Enbridge drills.

          The pipeline project is one month in, and already 44 people have been arrested. Forty-four good people who put their bodies on the line because they believe in water more than oil. And more are coming every day.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • An Open Letter to the Oregon Bureau of Land Management on Hammond Ranches, Inc. Proposed Grazing Permit

          I am writing today to ask you to please defend the proper administration of public lands. The recent decision to award Hammond Ranches, Inc. a livestock grazing permit and grazing preference to use four allotments in the Burns Field Office appears to have been politically influenced, and we need you to shed some light on the process.

          In 2014, the Bureau refused to renew the Hammonds grazing permit, citing years of conflict and poor stewardship. The decision not to reissue the permit included the statement: “This narrative describes the actions of Dwight and Steven [Hammond] and demonstrates how the Hammonds violated BLM grazing regulations and the terms of Hammond Ranches, Inc.’s grazing permit, endangered the lives of numerous individuals including firefighters, and altered ecological conditions on public lands.” It goes on to describe multiple incidents of improper actions.

        • Deceptions for Logging the Ochoco National Forest

          As with almost everything the Forest Service does these days, the Mill Creek “Restoration” is emblematic of the agency’s narrow perspective on what constitutes a healthy forest ecosystem. They see a “problem” where none exists and propose a “solution” that will not achieve positive results. But if you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

          Like the old-time snake oil salesman whose magic elixirs were a cure to every ailment known to humankind, the Forest Service has, by happy coincidence, has discovered there is nothing that threatens a tree that cannot be “fixed” with chainsaw medicine.

    • Finance

      • ‘A Profoundly Troubling Pick’: Progressives Slam Biden Choice of Gov. Raimondo for Commerce Chief

        “Raimondo has a history of supporting cuts to public assistance programs, selling public pensions to Wall Street, undermining labor unions, and grossly mishandling Rhode Island’s Covid-19 response.”

      • What to Look for in the December Jobs Report

        Soaring coronavirus infection rates are likely to be the main story in the employment report in December. Fear of the pandemic, coupled with new state and local restrictions, has led to a fall in restaurant reservations to levels not seen since early June. Presumably, other businesses requiring close personal contact have been similarly affected.

        In addition, the looming end of the CARES Act programs, which were not extended until the end of the month, possibly led many people to cut back on spending. As a result, we are likely to see job loss in December for the first time since April, with declines in restaurant and retail employment leading the way.

      • Brexit Anxieties

        Supported by the pro-Brexit media and the Murdoch Press, Boris Johnson’s infamous Brexit Painted-Bus proclaimed these lies and deceptions, what Chomsky once called the Spectacular Achievements of Propaganda, won the day.

        In June 2016, 52% of the British people voted for Brexit. By 1 January 2021, the UK finally exited the EU. After forty-seven years of EU membership and seemingly never-ending Brexit negotiations, it happened but Brexit has not ended.

      • How Biden Can Save the USPS

        In a year that shattered assumptions, even the trustworthy US Postal Service found itself at the center of a political scandal. Months after the pandemic delivered a gut punch to the already beleaguered agency, its workers became pawns in a partisan attempt to suppress voting by mail. Louis DeJoy, the Trump administration’s handpicked postmaster general, busied himself with sticking his fingers in the daily operations of the USPS, leading to dramatic disruptions in mail delivery ahead of the election.

      • The recovery year ‘Meduza’ answers key questions about what awaits the Russian economy in 2021

        Thanks to the peculiarities of its structure, the Russian economy has been riding out the coronavirus pandemic more easily than many others. That said, Russia now faces a longer and more difficult recovery than many other countries around the world. And this will likely be felt already in the coming year. Meduza looks back on how the “coronavirus crisis” has affected the Russian economy and breaks down what might happen in the months ahead, as well as the government’s plans for handling the situation.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Opinion | The Capitol Invasion Must be the End of the Line for Trump

        The inciter-in-chief has urged his supporters to destroy every vestige of democracy and truth. Only two weeks left but he’s gotta go.

      • Politics Is Not A Game

        I spent yesterday quite numb watching the events unfolding in Washington DC, in which an angry mob of insurrectionists — egged on by the President of the United States, a few key Senators, and certain news media personalities — literally stormed the US Capitol to try to block the formality of Presidential vote counting or, worse, to overthrow the government. I couldn’t write anything. I couldn’t take care of other work happening. I was witnessing the kind of history I never thought I would witness. I was angry. I was scared. I was frustrated. But most of all I was disappointed. What can you say after a day like yesterday? Most of what I could say would be covered by everyone else. Indeed, this morning I got to my desk to find that our own Tim Geigner had written the kind of post I originally thought I would write.

      • Poll Shows Nearly Half of GOP Voters—Lied to by Right-Wing Media—Approve of US Capitol Ransacking

        “Among Republican voters, 45% approve of the storming of Capitol, 30% think the perpetrators are ‘patriots’, 52% think Biden is at least partly to blame for it, and 85% think it would be inappropriate to remove Trump from office after this.”

      • Opinion | The United States Has Entered a Frightening Weimar Era

        The violent storming of the Capitol by pro-Trump extremists underlines the face of crises to come.

      • Opinion | Biden and Congress Must Repeal Law Authorizing Endless Wars

        As the 117th Congress prepares to get to work and President-elect Biden continues to put together his administration, it is time to repeal and replace the 2001 AUMF.

      • Biden Attorney General Pick Merrick Garland Urged to Establish DOJ Task Force to Probe Trump Crimes

        “Donald Trump, and his aides and associates, have engaged in a flurry of unethical, unconstitutional, and often criminal activity, culminating yesterday with the seditious insurrection on the United States Capitol.”

      • Congress Certifies Biden’s Win, and Trump Grudgingly Says He’ll Accept It
      • A Growing List of Lawmakers and Groups Support Impeaching Trump or Invoking the 25th Amendment

        “President Trump must be removed from office as soon as possible, indicted, and convicted,” said the head of Common Cause.

      • Opinion | 13 More Days Is 13 Too Many. Invoke The 25th Amendment Now

        Where is the Cabinet, invoking the 25th amendment to remove this deluded narcissist from office for the unprecedented threat he poses to American democracy?

      • ‘Cannot Endure This Nightmare for a Second Longer’: Nearly 100 Lawmakers Demand Pence Invoke 25th Amendment

        “Once removed, Trump should be criminally prosecuted,” said Robert Weissman of Public Citizen.

      • Ocasio-Cortez Says Cruz and Hawley ‘Must Resign’—or Be Expelled From Senate

        “No ‘turning the page,’” said Public Citizen regarding Republicans who helped incite Wednesday’s pro-Trump mob. “No abstract ‘healing.’ Accountability. Immediately.”

      • Myth of ‘Exceptionalism’ Shattered as Globe Expresses Shock Over ‘Day of Shame for American Democracy’

        “After four norm-shattering years of Trump, it took just a few hours of mob rule to make America look pretty ordinary, and as fragile as anywhere else.” 

      • Omar Trump Impeachment Resolution Charges ‘Attempted Coup Against Our Country’

        “The urgency of this moment is real,” said the Minnesota Democrat.

      • Here Are the Names of Every Republican Who Voted to Overturn Election Results
      • Quitting Trump Cabinet Is ‘Not Courageous, It’s Cowardly,’ Say Supporters of 25th Amendment Ouster

        “At this late a stage, resignations help little beyond serving as late attempts at self-preservation,” argued Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

      • After Right-Wing Coup Effort in DC, Venezuela Offers Sympathy for US Suffering What ‘It Has Generated’ Elsewhere

        The government of President Nicolás Maduro condemned “the political polarization and the spiral of violence” fueled by a “deep” political and social crisis in the U.S.

      • A Preview of What’s to Come

        It is tempting to see the violence in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday as the death rattle of a disintegrating political order—the Trump administration and its most cultish devotees’ final spasmodic grasp for power. In truth, it is the shape of things to come.

      • Opinion | The GOP Owns This
      • 14 Hours After Fascist Mob Stormed Capitol in Coup Attempt, ‘Democracy Prevails’ as Congress Certifies Biden Win

        “This will be a stain on our country not easily washed away, the final indelible legacy of the 45th president of the United States,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said of the assault on the Capitol.

      • ‘Co-Conspirators in Sedition’: Here Are the Names of Every Republican Who Voted to Overturn Election Results

        “Trump and members of Congress must face consequences for inciting an attempted coup to stop the peaceful transition of power.”

      • Madness on Capitol Hill

        It was 5 pm when the explosions started, one after another, washing the crowd of Donald Trump supporters in plumes of tear gas. For hours, these protesters had swarmed and stomped atop of the Capitol steps. They had torn down barricades and pushed into the Capitol rotunda, forcing members of Congress and staffers to shelter in place. But now there were explosions, and the protesters ran. In the tear gas, they retched.

      • Citing ‘Open Sedition,’ Rep. Ilhan Omar Vows Trump Impeachment Resolution

        “Today, I watched as armed terrorists stormed the United States Capitol,” the Minnesota congresswoman wrote. “We should not mince words about what this was: a coup attempt.”

      • No Sympathy for Trump Officials Jumping Ship—Especially Mick Mulvaney

        I would like to see Congress and/or cabinet officials get rid of Donald Trump ASAP, whether by impeachment or using the 25th Amendment. Neither is likely to happen, especially now that the House and Senate have been sent home by their leadership. That’s a dereliction of duty, in my opinion. But for now, some administration officials are attempting to demonstrate their integrity by resigning. For most, it’s too little too late. (That’s for you, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, who happens to be the wife of Senate majority—soon to be minority—leader Mitch McConnell.)

      • The Black Voters Who Defended Democracy in Georgia

        It was about three in the afternoon of the election, at the Pittman Park Recreational Center in Pittsburgh, a historically Black neighborhood south of downtown Atlanta.

      • Training Day
      • Smash and Grab Politics

        Are they shouting “Down with the U.S.!” as so many anti-Vietnam protestors were allowed to do while still retaining their designation as “protestors,” rather than “traitors.” No, in fact, many are carrying American flags. They are America Firsters who feel that the political establishment has become a collection of individualists who have no loyalty to anything but their own personal enrichment, a bunch of elitists who couldn’t care less about what happens to the country so long as they get theirs.

        Sadly, they are correct.

      • De-Mining America After Trump

        So, here’s my look back at our final Trumpian months (at least for a while). As I review the weeks just past, however, you may be surprised to learn that I’m not planning to start with the president’s former national security adviser (of 23 days — “you’re fired!”) cum-convictee-cum-pardonee urging The Donald to declare martial law; nor will I review the president’s endless tweets and fulminations about the “fraudulent” 2020 election or his increasing lame (duck!) assaults on all those he saw as deserting his visibly sinking Titanic, including Mitch McConnell (“the first one off the ship”); nor do I have the urge to focus on the conspiracy-mongress who captured the president’s heart (or whatever’s in that chest of his) with her claims about how “Venezuelan” votes did him in; nor even his doom-and-gloom “holiday” trip to Mar-a-Lago, including on Christmas Day his 309th presidential visit to a golf course; nor will I waste time on how the still-president of these increasingly dis-United States, while pardoning war criminals and pals (as well as random well-connected criminals), managed to ignore the rest of a country slipping into pandemic hell — cases rising, deaths spiraling, hospitals filling to the brim in a fashion unequaled on the planet — about which he visibly couldn’t have cared less; nor will I focus on how, as Christmas arrived, he landed squarely on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s position of giving $2,000 checks to the American people and so for a few days became an honorary “socialist”; nor will I even spend time on his unique phone call for 11,780 votes in Georgia.

        Instead, in this most downbeat of seasons, I’d like to begin with something more future-oriented, a little bit of December news you might have missed amid all the gloom and doom. So, just in case you didn’t notice as 2020 ended in chaos and cacophony, as the president who couldn’t take his eyes off a lost election sunk us ever deeper in his own version of the Washington swamp, there were two significantly more forward-looking figures in his circle. I’m thinking of his daughter Ivanka and her husband Jared Kushner who plunked down $30 million on the most exclusive bit of real estate they could find in Florida, a small island with only 41 residences known among locals as the “billionaire’s bunker.”

      • The GOP Is No Longer a Viable Governing Party
      • Opinion | A Post-Election Strategy for National Unity: Focus on Future Generations

        It is abundantly clear that we cannot continue to be governed by the short-termism that prioritizes ever-expanding material wealth over health and well-being.

      • TikTok will remove videos of Trump inciting supporters to storm the Capitol

        TikTok will remove videos of President Trump’s speech inciting supporters to mob the US Capitol on Wednesday, saying they violate the company’s misinformation policy. TikTok will still let people post “counter speech” videos that dispute incorrect claims, however, and will let videos remain on the platform if they condemn violence or if they’re posted by news organizations. TechCrunch was the first to report the news.

      • AOC pulls out the receipts on Ted Cruz’s coup attempt after he calls her a “liar”

        However, Ocasio-Cortez immediately confronted him with a screenshot of a text message sent out by Cruz’s office boasting he was “leading the fight to reject electors” — over two hours after the Capitol was breached.

      • Exiled Tibetans Hold First-Round Voting for New Leaders of India-Based Government

        Voters around the world selected two candidates for Sikyong, or president of the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA), who will face off against each other in a final round scheduled for April 11. They also selected 90 candidates for 45 parliament seats. The election commission will announce the results on Feb. 8.

        In Nepal, where Tibetan issues are sensitive, the local Tibetan community held the elections in secret on Dec. 25 and 26, but police on Dec. 27 detained five Tibetans, including an RFA reporter based in Kathmandu.

      • Facebook Forced Its Employees To Stop Discussing Trump’s Coup Attempt

        Facebook employees were appalled by President Donald Trump’s encouragement of his supporters as they stormed the US Capitol building on Wednesday to prevent the ratification of a free and fair election.

        The employees were scared and frustrated, and some came to the realization that the platform they had helped build and operate had contributed to the wave of fear, disinformation, and chaos that flooded Congress. So they spoke out on an internal message board, and some called for Trump’s removal from the platform.

        In less than an hour, Facebook moved to silence them. Without any apparent explanation, administrators froze comments on at least three threads in which employees had discussed removing Trump from the site.

      • Shades of hatred online: 4chan duplicate circulation surge during hybrid media events

        The 4chan /pol/ platform is a controversial online space on which a surge in hate speech has been observed. While recent research indicates that events may lead to more hate speech, empirical evidence on the phenomenon remains limited. This study analyzes 4chan /pol/ user activity during the mass shootings in Christchurch and Pittsburgh and compares the frequency and nature of user activity prior to these events. We find not only a surge in the use of hate speech and anti-Semitism but also increased circulation of duplicate messages, links, and images and an overall increase in messages from users who self-identify as “white supremacist” or “fascist” primarily voiced from English-speaking IP-based locations: the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Great Britain. Finally, we show how these hybrid media events share the arena with other prominent events involving different agendas, such as the U.S. midterm elections. The significant increase in duplicates during the hybrid media events in this study is interpreted beyond their memetic logic. This increase can be interpreted through what we refer to as activism of hate. Our findings indicate that there is either a group of dedicated users who are compelled to support the causes for which shooting took place and/or that users use automated means to achieve duplication.

      • Grassroots Organizers Flipped the Senate and Are Ready to Take on the Democrats
      • Georgia’s runoff: an answer from the US

        This is a guest post by Tom Henderson, written in response to what I shared yesterday, during the Georgia Runoff on how unbelievably broken voting is in the USA, when you watch it from a distance.


        The rural populations, isolated in the US from urban observations, have a stronger sense of distrust. Natively, they have generations that also believe in community and religion. Observations made of activities outside of their community and religion drive fear and distrust.

        Fear and distrust were harnessed by astute if inept social media manipulators. Because of the opaque nature of portions of US Government, the parts that can’t be seen or easily understood became the components of something termed, “The Deep State”, which became attached to another problem with government, bureaucracy, called “The Swamp”.

        Differing fears and visible (and invisible) distrusts merged into a movement, whose energies were amplified by social media into still stronger movement.

        Merged into Deep State, Swamp, were other seeming robberies, those of jobs (to immigrants, illegal immigrants, and hazily, people of color) losses. Fears of sexual identities, those of non-heteronormative individuals, hazily LGBTQA/etc people were formed into The Gay Agenda, and the Gay Agenda was merged into the aforementioned fears and distrusts.

        Now, the tent was larger for Fear as an Identity, but Make America Great Again/MAGA was used as the focal point to focus the fear memes together as an agenda. These same elements are found internationally, but the US is very good at media dissemination, and this glued-together Frankenstein of an agenda, became a political movement.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • EFF’s Response to Social Media Companies’ Decisions to Block President Trump’s Accounts
      • A Cheerleader’s Vulgar Message Prompts a First Amendment Showdown

        Though Snapchat messages are ephemeral by design, another student took a screenshot of this one and showed it to her mother, a coach. The school suspended the student from cheerleading for a year, saying the punishment was needed to “avoid chaos” and maintain a “teamlike environment.”

        The student sued the school district, winning a sweeping victory in the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, in Philadelphia. The court said the First Amendment did not allow public schools to punish students for speech outside school grounds.

      • The Death of Political Cartooning—And Why It Matters

        Six years ago, on January 7th, 2015, two brothers armed with Kalashnikov rifles assaulted a building on Rue Nicolas-Appert in Paris, where they killed a maintenance man named Frédéric Boisseau and forced their way into the second-floor offices of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. They asked for four cartoonists, by name, and executed each of them. They also killed four other journalists, a bodyguard assigned to protect one of the cartoonists in the event of just such an attack, police officer Ahmed Merabet, and a friend of one of the cartoonists. Following a nihilistic two-day crime spree, the brothers were killed in a hail of police bullets outside a printworks north-east of Paris.

      • On This Day: Militants kill 12 members of Charlie Hebdo staff

        On Jan. 7, 2015, Islamist terrorists stormed the Paris office of Charlie Hebdo, killing 12 members of the satirical publication’s staff. French President Francois Hollande described it as “an act of exceptional barbarism.”

      • French teachers afraid to offend after jihadist murder

        Nearly half of French secondary school teachers are avoiding or downplaying subjects such as sexuality, the Holocaust and evolution to avoid angering Muslim pupils, a survey suggests.

        Questioned in December, two months after a teacher in the outskirts of Paris was beheaded by a young jihadist, 49 per cent of teachers said they had steered clear of subjects that upset pupils to avoid creating a “scene”.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Mexico Offers Asylum to Assange: a Step Forward for Government Accountability and Press Freedom

        This bold announcement by López Obrador draws a stark contrast to the revocation of asylum by the President of Ecuador, Lenin Moreno, who turned Assange over to British authorities in April 2019 after the journalist had spent seven years inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London. To provide political cover for this controversial act, part of the mainstream press deployed character assassination, painting an image of an erratic Assange, ungrateful for Ecuadorian hospitality. Numerous human rights and civil liberty organizations, however, denounced the decision of the Moreno administration to violate Assange’s diplomatic protection and allow the police to penetrate the Embassy building and arrest the journalist. The sudden reversal of Ecuador’s provision of asylum and protection was consistent, however, with Moreno’s dramatic pivot to the right after he was elected on a leftist platform. It was viewed by his critics as an act of subordination of Ecuador’s foreign policy to the imperatives of Washington.

        The struggle to free Assange is far from over. Since Judge Vanessa Baraitser employed the humanitarian argument that extradition to the U.S. could lead Assange to attempt suicide, instead of using the substantive arguments advanced by Assange’s legal team, the door remains wide open to a United States appeal which could drag out litigation for months or even years. Assange’s lawyers argued that he was acting as a journalist when he published leaked documents about U.S. military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, and that these disclosures are protected by the First Amendment.

      • “It’s Not as Bad as Iwo Jima, I Suppose”: The Julian Assange Extradition Verdict

        Kevin Gosztola of Shadowproof also gave us a sense of the scene. “I see a bench of a glass container, where Assange will be isolated during the announcement of his extradition decision. This has been standard practice during this case, even after he complained about how it infringed upon his ability to participate in his defense.”

        As it transpired, District Justice Vanessa Baraitser went against her near perfect streak of granting extraditions by blocking the request by the US government for 17 charges based on the Espionage Act of 1917 and one of conspiracy to commit computer intrusion. Crudely put, she accepted the grounds of poor mental health, evidence that Assange was a suicide risk, and that his conditions of detention in a US supermax prison facility might well accentuate it. She also noted a “real risk that … Assange will be subject to restrictive special administrative measures [SAMs].”

      • Ukraine Investigates Audio Appearing to Reveal Plot to Kill Journalist

        Ukrainian authorities are investigating documents and audio recordings that appear to reveal a plot to murder Pavel Sheremet, an investigative journalist who was killed in a car bombing.

        Ukrainian police confirmed Monday that they had received documents and recordings from 2012 in which anonymous people discuss a plot to kill Sheremet. The recordings have been passed to an expert for analysis.

      • UK Judge Denies Julian Assange’s Freedom

        WikiLeaks founder was expected to be released on bail during the time it takes for Washington to appeal the U.K.’s decision not to extradite him to the U.S.

        “Assange has already been detained solely based on the U.S. extradition request. That request has been denied, now he must be given liberty,” the journalist’s defense urged.

      • Journalism Is No Crime: Assange’s Supporters Reject Denied

        The decision “is a mistake. Assange owes no debt to justice,” former Ecuadorian Ambassador to London Fidel Narvaez explained, adding that “Assange is a political prisoner.”

        Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence’s specialist Renata Avila joined the massive repudiation against Judge Baraitser’s decision.

        “The U.K. has done irreparable damage to the institution of asylum. It is not illegal or wrong to seek asylum if you are politically persecuted,” she said, adding that Assange is in jail because of these words he said: ‘if wars can be started with lies, wars can be stopped with the truth’.”

      • U.K. Judge Rejects Julian Assange’s Bail Request, Citing Flight Risk

        Assange will remain in Belmarsh prison in south-east London, where he has been held since the spring of 2019. He was arrested after spending seven years in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.

      • How Julian Assange Beat Extradition

        The judge actually went beyond the claims of the US prosecutors when she said that the fact that the extradition treaty was not fully written into UK law means that there is, intentionally, no defense for political dissidents in the UK’s extradition arrangements. This cannot be allowed to stand, and it is not how MPs, both Labour and Tory, remember the assurances given by the Blair government when the current treaty was adopted.

        Nor should we accept for a second the judge’s claims that there is no public interest defense for whistleblowers and journalists, or her claim that those being persecuted for their political opinions should not enjoy the protection of the law. All these glaring contradictions with accepted norms are a product of the judge’s decision to reject extradition on narrow grounds while accepting the overwhelming majority of the prosecution case.

        No doubt this approach appeals to the political establishment. Ruling against Assange on questions of journalistic freedom but banishing the political embarrassment of his case on the basis that he is too weak to endure the US prison system is an expedient way out of the mess that they have created.

      • Julian Assange denied bail by U.K. judge

        The state of play: Deemed a flight risk by the judge, Assange must now remain in British prison as the U.S. government appeals the decision to block his extradition. Assange’s lawyers say his mental health has deteriorated significantly after he spent years in London’s Ecuadorian Embassy seeking asylum before his arrest last year.

        The big picture: Assange’s has raised significant questions about First Amendment protections for publishers of classified information, as the WikiLeaks founder argues he was acting as a journalist when he published leaked documents on Iraq and Afghanistan.

      • Julian Assange denied bail by UK court

        Even if the US loses again, it could also appeal to the UK Supreme Court, which would mean longer delays.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Appeals Court: Just Because Someone Used An Email Account To Send Threats Doesn’t Make It An ‘Interstate’ Crime

        If you want to turn a local crime federal, all you need is the internet. This has been the federal government’s M.O. for years: bring federal charges as often as you can because everyone uses the internet to communicate. A plethora of content servers located around the United States makes this easy for prosecutors to use and abuse. Almost every communication — IM, email, or comment — passes through a number of servers located miles away from the person now accused of violating federal law.

      • WNBA Players Just Showed Their Political Power

        WNBA players are having a moment. Pundits and politicos across the spectrum are pointing out that without the support of the basketball league, the Rev. Raphael Warnock would be returning to Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church instead of heading to Washington, D.C., as Georgia’s first-ever Black senator.

      • Seoul Court Orders Japan to Compensate 12 Korean Sex Slaves

        A South Korean court on Friday ordered Japan to financially compensate 12 South Korean women forced to work as sex slaves for Japanese troops during World War II, the first such ruling expected to rekindle animosities between the Asian neighbors.

        Japan immediately protested the ruling, maintaining that all wartime compensation issues were resolved under a 1965 treaty that normalized their ties.

        The Seoul Central District Court ruled the Japanese government must give 100 million won ($91,360) each to the 12 women who filed the lawsuits in 2013 for their wartime sexual slavery.

      • Pakistan virginity test: How rape victims go through a ‘second trauma’

        On Monday, a court in Lahore outlawed invasive examination of rape victims — a long-standing practice in the Islamic country that is used to assess a woman’s so-called honor.

        The test involves a medical examiner inserting two fingers into a woman’s vagina to determine her virginity. According to the World Health Organization, the procedure holds no scientific merit.

        The Lahore High Court judges ruled the practice “offends the personal dignity of the female victim and therefore is against the right to life and right to dignity.”

      • Cut Off Petty Thieves’ Hands, Iranian MP Suggests

        Iranian authorities can invoke the Islamic Penal Code to enforce sentences such as amputation, while corporal punishment is prohibited under international law.

        The United Nations has repeatedly called on Iranian officials to stop using corporal punishment in their resolutions on Iran’s human rights situation.

        Nevertheless, in recent years, Iran’s judiciary has used corporal punishment in many cases, such as amputation and flogging.

        The World Convention against Torture, adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1984, prohibits corporal punishment and “inhuman and degrading treatment”, but Iran is one of the few countries that has not acceded to the Convention.

      • Christian prisoner moves PHC for release from ‘illegal’ detention

        Shakeel Masih alleged that the trial court without assigning any reason had been extending his judicial remand after every 14 days for keeping him behind bars.

      • Police criticized for double standard after Capitol riot

        Civil rights groups, NBA stars and many others are criticizing what they said was a glaring difference in how police treated Black Lives Matter protesters over the summer and their treatment of a predominantly white, pro-Trump crowd that assaulted the U.S. Capitol.

        One glaring example many pointed to was a now-viral Instagram live video. In the clip, officers of the Capitol Police are shown offering no resistance to the rioters as they streamed into the building.

      • A Letter to NLG Members

        The National Lawyers Guild is committed to racial justice internally and externally. In mid 2020, BIPOC leaders in the NLG came together to address important issues stemming from the disclosure that former NLG president, Natasha Bannan, has been passing as a person of color and Latina in spite of being white and of European descent.

        We acknowledge the harm that our fellow Guild members have experienceds by Natasha’s acts regarding her identity–including her occupying space and taking up leadership for years within The United People of Color Caucus, a space created exclusively for people of color in the NLG.

        We have spent a long and intentional period of time working to understand this particular case of mispresentation. We understand that Latinx identity is nunaced, and we cannot unpack its complexity within this letter. Yet, we can say definitively that a lived experience as a member of a colonized community cannot be conjured by means of association, spirituality, choice, or performance.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • AT&T Is Restoring Its Bullshit Broadband Caps Because Apparently The COVID Crisis Is Over

        Last March, the Trump FCC put on a big show about a new “Keep America Connected Pledge” to help broadband users during COVID. In it, the FCC proudly proclaimed that it had gotten hundreds of ISPs to suspend usage caps and late fees, and agree to not disconnect users who couldn’t pay for essential broadband service during a pandemic. The problem: the 60 day pledge was entirely voluntary, temporary, and because the FCC just got done obliterating its consumer protection authority as part of its net neutrality repeal, was impossible to actually enforce. It was regulatory theater.

      • FCC chairman Ajit Pai gave up on his legally dicey attempt to ‘clarify’ [Internet] law

        But he might also be giving up because the idea that the FCC had the power to do such a thing was laughable. As Recode explains in depth, the FCC’s justification was effectively that it has the power to make whatever rules it needs to make — which flies in the face of the logic Pai’s own FCC used to kill net neutrality. But that didn’t stop Pai from claiming the FCC did have the authority to do it, a political tactic that’s become so common in the Trump administration that my colleague Russell Brandom coined a phrase for it: “stunt legalism.”

        Never mind that Section 230 isn’t actually that difficult to understand — though that admittedly didn’t keep 60 Minutes from falling on its face earlier this week. Here’s our explainer.

      • Ajit Pai is distancing himself from President Trump

        In an interview on C-SPAN’s “The Communicators,” Pai told Protocol and C-SPAN co-host Peter Slen that he does not intend to move forward with a rule-making on Section 230, which was laid out in Trump’s social media executive order. He said he won’t “second-guess” the decisions made by Facebook and Twitter to bar Trump from posting. And he said the president bears some responsibility for the riots that engulfed Capitol Hill on Wednesday.

        “I think it was a terrible mistake to suggest that the results of the election, and particularly the process that culminated yesterday in the Senate and the House, could in any way be changed,” Pai, who has announced his intention to leave the FCC on Jan. 20, said. “That was a terrible mistake and one that I do not think in any way should have been indulged.”

        Here are some of the highlights from the conversation with Pai, which will air on C-SPAN this weekend.

        This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • Netflix, Hulu Can’t Hide Behind Internet Tax Freedom Act in Missouri Fee Fight

        The main thrust of the controversy is whether streamers should fork over a portion of revenue (up to 5 percent) to local municipalities as cable operators have for decades. These cable companies once needed “right of way” to dig up the ground and lay their wirelines. They paid for that privilege. Now, the trend of cord-cutting has hit city coffers at the exact moment when COVID-19 is busting budgets. So will Netflix and other streamers be assessed utility fees, or has technology outrun outdated law?

        In Missouri, Netflix and Hulu claimed they weren’t really “video service providers” under the definition of the statute. There was also comparisons to a television broadcast station. Does it matter that streamers don’t have channels in the traditional sense, and don’t, in the case of Netflix, exhibit any live content? Does consumers’ ability to pick and choose content matter?

        In holding that these streamers were indeed “video service providers,” St. Louis County Circuit Judge Ellen Ribaudo points to the FCC’s 1992 determination that “video-on-demand images can be severed from the interactive functionalities and thereby constitute video programming.”

    • Monopolies

      • Speculation Grows Over Fate of Chinese Tech Billionaire Jack Ma

        Unseen in public since October, analysts say Ma may be lying low as Chinese authorities investigate his sprawling business empire after he made an incendiary speech days before the highly anticipated stock market listing of Alibaba’s financial affiliate, Ant Group.

      • Brand owners question EU counterfeit watch list credibility [Ed: Monopolists and robber barons shaming the EU into becoming their monopoly enforcer, using think tanks and misleading 'news' sites which they fund to lobby]

        On Tuesday, January 5, in-house counsel criticised the EU’s decision not to include major e-commerce platforms in its list of sites that reportedly facilitate intellectual property infringement.

        According to the European Commission, which published the Counterfeit and Piracy Watch List in December 2020 with the support of the EUIPO, Amazon, Alibaba and eBay were not included because of their continued engagement with rights owners.

        Counsel at Philips, a fashion company and drinks brand Jägermeister pointed out to Managing IP that these platforms were the most frequently reported for IP infringement, and said this omission went against the aim of the watch list to warn and protect businesses and IP owners.

        “In order to reproduce complete and unbiased results, these platforms must be included,” said Laila Gutt, manager for IP legal and compliance at Jägermeister in Germany.

        She added that a special emphasis on the continuing engagement was fine, but that this alone should not be enough to exclude them completely.

      • UK practitioners call for ambitious post-Brexit IP vision [Ed: That same propaganda rag also refers to #patent fanatics and litigation profiteers as "UK practitioners" (what do they practice? Taxing those who are actually productive and blackmailing them?)]

        Counsel say the UK should ensure it remains competitive by releasing its own IP action plan that includes SME incentives and updates to court procedures

      • Patents

        • CIPO and European Patent Office to formalize their Patent Prosecution Highway program

          CIPO) and the European Patent Office (EPO) have announced that the Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) program between the 2 offices will become permanent on January 6, 2021.

          The offices have agreed to extend the agreement, following the completion of a pilot program that started in January 2015.

          The PPH enables applicants filing a patent at either CIPO or the EPO to have their application processed faster at the other office. This helps increase the efficiency and quality of the patent-granting process by enabling the offices to benefit from each other’s work.

          Since its launch, the PPH has generated over 1,400 requests at CIPO (as of March 31, 2020) and over 200 requests at the EPO (as of September 30, 2020).

        • 2020′s legal hurdles for pharma

          January – significant ruling in Broad Institute CRISPR saga

          The year began with the European Patent Office (EPO) revoking a patent for CRISPR-Cas technology, owned by the Broad Institute. Despite an initial intention to refer questions of such fundamental legal importance to the Enlarged Board of Appeal, the EPO deemed the patent’s priority claim to an earlier-filed US patent application invalid under European law. While this decision served as an important reminder of the need for a global perspective when seeking to protect inventions of worldwide significance, it was by no means the conclusion to this ongoing saga.

          Meanwhile,the genetic sequence of COVID-19 was published on 11 January 2020, mobilising the global pharmaceutical community – and associated collaborators – to respond to the need for an effective vaccine.

      • Copyrights

        • Judge: Sci-Hub Blocking Case “Important” For Science, Community Representations Will Be Heard

          A High Court judge says that nineteen scientists and three scientific and medical organizations will have their intervention applications heard before any decision is handed down in the ongoing Sci-Hub blocking case. Filed by several publishers, the lawsuit seeks ISP blocking of the platform in India. Justice JR Midha notes that the case addresses an “issue of public importance.”

        • Rights Alliance Declares Victory in Its War On Danish Pirate Sites

          Danish anti-piracy group Rights Alliance has declared victory on local private torrent trackers. Following a series of enforcement actions, arrests, and legal pressure, all popular pirate sites with Danish roots have reportedly shut down. This is a “huge victory for the Danish rights holders” according to the group, which is now keeping a lookout for newcomers.

        • Copyright Troll Richard Liebowitz Helps Protect Free Speech & Fair Use By Losing Yet Another Case

          Richard Liebowitz is infamous as the notoriously inept copyright troll lawyer. He’s so bad at his job that he’s been sanctioned repeatedly, and recently was suspended from practicing law in the Southern District of NY (his home court). The details of him lying under oath over and over again are simply staggering.

InteLeaks – Part VIII: Microsoft and Its Facilitators Destroying Intel From the Inside

Posted in Hardware, Microsoft at 2:11 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link

Summary: Intel is being ‘infested’ or increasingly dominated by people who lack technical skills and have an affinity for Microsoft’s proprietary software (even in divisions dedicated to GNU/Linux)

THIS series is getting longer and longer because of additional material and input that we receive (we've invited further contributions/contributors). We now expect at least two dozen parts and we’re grouping these parts based on issues, themes, aspects, and logical chronology. This is not “old news”; this is months old. It is still very much relevant.

“The video ends with a word or two about Microsoft’s role, which we’ll come to later on in the series.”This particular part focuses on Drupal; as we noted in the introduction, there’s also a Microsoft role (with more elements as covered in Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI, and Part VII).

This whole ‘InteLeaks’ series shows that Intel’s supposed “love” of Linux is mostly posturing or pretences. Check out this post from the so-called “Intel Community”. Intel is a corporation, not a community. They keep misusing that word. But look deeper at what Intel is doing. It’s incredible, isn’t it? Some ‘community’, eh? When we discussed it this morning MinceR said they “should have thought about that before handing money to the Redmond mafia” (they’re proposing Windows as a “solution”…)

“These people really like becoming victims of their own short-sighted decisions,” said to us a person who knows Intel from the inside. They’re harming their own clients. The above video mentions the M.E. as it says a lot about how Intel views its so-called ‘clients’ (that aren’t the United States military/government). MinceR asserted that “they’re too stupid to learn from their own mistakes, regardless of how many times they get burned…”

The video ends with a word or two about Microsoft’s role, which we’ll come to later on in the series. “Maybe Intel management doesn’t know what they want,” MinceR stated the other day, “try to survive [with Microsoft] or tie their destiny to Microsoft and go wherever Microsoft goes [...] then again, maybe they believe that they need to throw us [GNU/Linux users] a few bones temporarily before locking us into Microsoft world again or maybe they’re doing a similar kind of misdirection as the Redmond mafia, just less ad-based…”

The Intel insider said MinceR “is right on the money and this is what has disappointed me for a long time [as] it reeks of Stockholm Syndrome [and] really not much different from Microsoft tactics…”

“One story we heard concerns Drupal’s use and misuse, or even outright rejection.”We’ll make it more apparent later in this series that Intel seems eager to help Microsoft’s proprietary software monopoly (and an attack on software freedom) called GitHub. Why is Intel doing that? And about Drupal, which is also mentioned in length (Intel uses it internally), we’ve heard some truly disturbing stories…

One story we heard concerns Drupal’s use and misuse, or even outright rejection. “Information about the refusal to use a non-proprietary process,” one person told us, is quite a giveaway. It shows who really runs the company and what the real objectives are. Developers are ignored and clueless people override their decisions or veto common sense.

Intel engineers basically “developed a process using git and markdown to create guides,” one source told us. “This process was accepted as a process to create and collaborate on documentation efforts – replacing a proprietary process,” the source emphasised. “The previous proprietary process was using Microsoft or Google Docs with an Adobe-centric process of proprietary roots.”

The developers were eager to get rid of these proprietary monopolies. And they did it! “No to docx. No to your proprietary tools. No to your proprietary formats. Most devs were excited and happy to use this process,” we were told. “The publishing platform was Drupal, so it was about time! After a successful test – the process was in place for all future docs. The validation, product or engineering team would lead a doc project using the internal gitlab.”

“So from a proper, self-hosted, Free software process they moved to passing around Microsoft Word documents.”“The team would self-edit – on their time – and make a push request,” we were told. “After edits/review, the document was pushed to the Drupal instance and staged. Final review and approval – and the content was live. This process sped up time to publish and improved accuracy. The devs owned the doc project and future edits would be easy to apply.”

This was all very standards-based. As one Intel expert told us, “these days Markdown and LaTeX are just as easy to handle using web tools as Google Docs and Microsoft Word with vastly better results, so the problems with using freely available and generally user-friendly tools must be cultural…” (later adding that “this reminds me of what is going on at the Linux Foundation“)

cybrNaut has responded (in IRC) by saying: “I know some aerospace engineers who “can’t handle” LaTeX, so the project opted for genuine Microsoft Word, which of course is a complete disaster when checking binary docs into Clearcase and then doing a diff for reviews.”

“I didn’t accept the rationale,” he added, “that they can’t handle it… I think management just hates engineers to maintain docs that alienates managers [as] low-tech managers like Microsoft Word, and that preference gets imposed on engineers doing the real work. The project manager said “we don’t use LaTeX because no one knows it”. Then I went to a university and asked “why are these science students using Google Docs instead of LaTeX?” The reply was: “Because LaTeX is not in industry”…”

Going back to Intel, the same thing happened in Intel even after a proper process had been put in place and worked well.

“The preferred method was markdown,” we were told. “There was flexibility for rst or asciidocs as an alternate [format] if needed. The guides were published (in the end) as HTML.”

“After the process was in place,” we learned, “several teams (mostly low-technical or even close to what could be considered non-technical) refused to conform to the process and requested, first, to use Google Docs for a GNU/Linux project – this request was refused. A manager suggested reporting the non-conformity to other management.”

“To my knowledge,” we were told, “this was never pursued.”

One can guess where that went next.

Eventually the clueless dissenters decided to impose OOXML (docx) on everybody else. “The format was used with 0 versioning and multiple versions being passed around with no confirmation as to the “current” version.” What a mess. Welcome back to the 1990s with large E-mail attachments of proprietary Microsoft files.

“It sounds like the have a gaggle of Microsoft resellers embedded in the organization and, despite being on the payroll, working against the company to advance Microsoft goals against it from within.”
“After insisting the git process be conformed to,” we learned, “a resource reminded the group of a looming deadline at this point, and forced an exception in this case. First, the content of docs were staged in gitlab by a writing resource – in markdown.”

Welcome Microsoft mindset: “The engineering team stated they did not know markdown. Those on the team in another capacity – content strategy, still refused to edit in gitlab passing multiple versions of [OOXML] format after Google Docs was outright refused for this GNU/Linux project.”

So from a proper, self-hosted, Free software process they moved to passing around Microsoft Word documents. This is how you can quickly drive out any GNU/Linux talent you’ve managed to attract.

“This resonates strongly with me,” said a person who knows Intel insiders (former and current staff), “as their HR people’s attempt to reach out to potential candidates doesn’t even seem genuine. They know they need those people with GNU/Linux skills, but don’t even mention anything about the job out of a fear of never being able to attract them in the first place, if people knew what was going on from the inside.”

As someone else put it (having witnessed the above): “It sounds like the have a gaggle of Microsoft resellers embedded in the organization and, despite being on the payroll, working against the company to advance Microsoft goals against it from within.”

Trial by Media and Revisionism

Posted in Deception at 12:51 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link

Summary: A quick (unscripted) rebuttal to this awful article from Reuters, whose journalists were killed by the US government, which then lied about it (until Wikileaks exposed the truth)

SOME RECENT articles of ours spoke about the Assange verdict before and after the decision. The “Trial by Media” aspects, however, have rarely been addressed here. That’s mostly because we try to focus on technology and patents, not politics and journalism which is politically-connected. We don’t avoid politics because it’s not important but because many sites out there already cover many facets of politics all around the world (we link to these in Daily Links) and we’ve never specialised in politics and laws, which vary across countries and cultures.

“Edward Snowden once explained that as the state (and corporations that feed the state) collects a lot of data on people it can construct false narratives and rewrite sequences of events in a way that embarrasses just about everything/everyone, giving it tremendous coercive power (public shame, private blackmail and so on).”The above video was done without preparation because nevertheless it’s a subject that’s easier for me to address, having watched Wikileaks since its early days (Wikileaks is almost the same age as Techrights, give or take a month/couple of months).

Weaponisation of the media is very interesting. A pattern we’ve long witnessed (one among many) is that the media will personify a subject or site, then attack/shoot the messenger. Infiltration tactics and provocateurs are another pattern, but they’re separate from the character assassination tactics, which typically target leaders or perceived/potential leaders (charismatic outliers). It is done a lot by union-busting professionals and we’ve seen that at the EPO countless times.

Under the guise of “facts”, corporate media (owned by plutocrats) is distorting the record of Wikileaks and paints Assange as some sort of perverse serial offender. This sort of narrative has been perpetuated for 10 years now, having been partly supported by misleading coverage that makes it seem like Assange is wanted for crimes against women as opposed to exposing war crimes, putting an empire at risk/peril (harder to run the world when someone airs some ‘dirty laundry’).

Wikileaks quotesWikileaks has published many leaks, ranging from business crimes to political crimes and war crimes. These publications came from many countries and have often led to accountability for the real criminals, not those who merely ‘embarrassed’ them by exposing their crimes.

The video may seem cluttered, my voice isn’t benefiting from sub-zero temperatures (we never use the heating here), but it is attempting to explain — from start to finish — what’s wrong with one of many articles (or so-called ‘timelines’) about Julian Assange. It’s not so much about what they say but what they do not say and the way they frame/present things. Edward Snowden once explained that as the state (and corporations that feed the state) collects a lot of data on people it can construct false narratives and rewrite sequences of events in a way that embarrasses just about everything/everyone, giving it tremendous coercive power (public shame, private blackmail and so on).

Support GNU by Supporting the FSF in 2021 (10 Days Left for the Latest Campaign to Join)

Posted in Free/Libre Software, FSF, GNU/Linux at 10:47 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link

Summary: The GNU Project is about as old as yours truly and it needs support; to maintain and improve its infrastructure one can pay the FSF, which was established almost 36 years ago

THIS post isn’t about myself (RSS) or Richard Stallman (RMS) but about the FSF and the GNU Project, both of which created in the 1980s by Dr. Stallman.

“Those who care about software freedom and value the vast extent of GNU’s contribution to software freedom (far more than Linux ever did) can consider paying for FSF membership.”The GNU Project was announced when I was a year old, so I cannot be expected to have grasped software freedom. I was probably too busy growing up, learning how to communicate. I was introduced to software freedom a lot later, although I was first introduced to programming before age 10 and I started programming myself shortly after that (many of my early programs weren’t backed up properly, so I have only a distant memory of what they did).

Regardless, this video is devoted to the FSF, which was created when I was 3. It’s dedicated to their important campaign to raise money — a campaign whose deadline was extended so as to meet the ambitious goal. In this video I explain why the FSF has mostly self-repaired (following the travesty of 2019), unlike the OSI, which is circling down the drain (we recently did a long video about that).

Roy in the 1990sI know I’ve not been in the Free software community long enough; I don’t maintain a GNU project, I’m not an FSF member myself, but for nearly 15 years I’ve supported the FSF, whose role is becoming very critical as everything goes “digital”. When the OSI was founded I paid no attention at all; I was still busy growing up, studying how to program (Prolog, Pascal etc.) and later winning medals as a goalkeeper for the school — way back in my teenage years (also for the Computer Science Department at University). On the right it’s a 1990s passport photo (I think aged 16). I think I have good excuses for not being there “since the start” for the FSF; but I spent my entire adult life supporting Free software and I think that the only trustworthy cause or group at the moment is the GNU Project, which depends on the FSF. Do not waste money on the OSI and certainly do not pay a dime to the Linux Foundation (they’ve just added yet more Microsoft).

Those who care about software freedom and value the vast extent of GNU's contribution to software freedom (far more than Linux ever did) can consider paying for FSF membership.

NB: For a perspective from Alexandre Oliva (FSF Board) see last week's post. “What the FSF is missing,” Oliva wrote, “in my still candid opinion, is the kind of inspiring (if often controversial) leadership and vision that Richard [Stallman] provided.”

IRC Proceedings: Thursday, January 07, 2021

Posted in IRC Logs at 2:51 am by Needs Sunlight

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