Bonum Certa Men Certa

Links 26/11/2016: VLC 360, Wine 1.9.23

GNOME bluefish



  • Microsoft & Linux & Patents & Tweets [Ed: Microsoft Loves Linux Patent Tax]
    Fact-checking some tweets about Linux Foundation’s newest member and their harvesting of other members’ money.


    The revenue Microsoft gains comes a range of targets than can be colloquially called “Linux” with varying qualification. That includes embedded Linux and things that use it such as Android and shared SMB filesystems as well as Linux as a server and things that use it. Again, identifying the ratio of income per usage is impossible for anyone outside Microsoft (and probably for most people inside).

    Certainly the range of patents Microsoft is known to be attempting to monetise includes a broad range of functions. The best list I have found appears to have been inadvertently published by the Chinese Ministry of Commerce in 2014. But licensing activity is certainly not limited to Android; Microsoft also targets ChromeOS, Linux servers, Linux in consumer devices (each of those is a sample; there are plenty of other press releases) and much of the Android licensing actually appears to related to xFAT filesystem interoperability as in the Tom Tom case.

  • Desktop

    • Meet Pinebook, A Low Cost Linux Laptop That Looks Like A MacBook
      PineBook is a budget laptop running an Allwinner quad-core 64-bit processor. The device comes in two screen sizes both of them having 2GB RAM and 16GB eMMC storage along various ports and connectivity options. PineBook supports a number of Linux distros and Android versions.
    • Meet the Pinebook, a $89 ARM Laptop That Runs Ubuntu
      The Pine64 Pinebook is an ARM laptop priced from $89. It can run Android, ChromiumOS and various flavours of Linux, including Ubuntu.

    • Light and Thin 64-bit ARM based Open Source Notebook

    • The 12 Most Ridiculous Windows Errors of All Time
      Computers and humans are so different. While computers are infinitely faster at processing information, they run into trouble if they try to stray from their course. These “fast idiots” contrast to people, who can’t think as fast as machines but can adapt much more easily.

      These relations have produced some hilarious situations where novice users failed to grasp the basics of using Windows. On the other side of this are error messages. When a computer runs into an unexpected scenario, it usually throws up a message box for the user to review.

  • Server

    • Japan plans 130-petaflops China-beating number-crunching supercomputer
      Like 498 out of the top 500 systems, Japan's 27 supercomputers in the Top 500 list all run Linux, and it is highly likely the new system will do so as well. It is not yet known who will construct the system for the Japanese government—bidding for the project is open until December 8.

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • RadeonSI's Gallium3D Driver Performance Has Improved Massively In The Past Year
        As some more exciting benchmarks to carry out this US holiday week, here are benchmarks of all major Mesa releases from Mesa 11.0 from mid 2015 through the latest Mesa 13.1-dev code as of this week. Additionally, the latest AMDGPU-PRO numbers are provided too for easy comparison of how the open-source AMD GCN 3D driver performance has evolved over the past year. It's a huge difference!

      • LLVM 4.0 Causes Slow Performance For RadeonSI?
        Several times in the past few weeks I've heard Phoronix readers claim the LLVM 4.0 SVN code causes "slow performance" or has rendering issues. Yet it's gone on for weeks and I haven't seen such myself, so I decided to run some definitive tests at least for the OpenGL games most relevant to our benchmarking here.
      • It Looks Like We'll Still See A GUI Control Panel For AMD Linux
        Earlier this year I exclusively reported on the "Radeon Settings" GUI control panel may be open-sourced for AMD Linux users but since then I hadn't heard anything publicly or privately about getting this graphics driver control panel on Linux for AMDGPU-PRO and the fully-open AMDGPU stack. But it looks like that it's still being worked on internally at AMD.

      • Yet More AMDGPU DAL Patches This Week For Testing
        It had been a few weeks since last seeing any new enablement patches for AMD's DAL display abstraction layer code, which is a big requirement for HDMI/DP audio, HDMI 2.0, potential FreeSync support, and also needed for next-generation GPUs. The lack of fresh DAL patches changed though this week when new patches were sent out and already another round of revising to this display code has now been mailed out for review.

  • Applications

  • Distributions

    • Reviews

      • An Everyday Linux User Review Of Q4OS 1.8
        Q4OS is fairly straight forward to get to grips with and it runs like a dream.

        When I tried it last year it was on a much older machine and really worked well. On this machine it performs magnificently.

        The Windows look and feel might not be to everybody's taste especially the use of "My Documents" and "My Pictures" etc but you can easily rename them.

        The desktop environment is Trinity and it lacks certain features such as window snapping.

        I haven't tried Q4OS out with my NAS drive or printer and other hardware yet but I did last time around and it had no issues so I suspect it will be the same this time. I will update you in the next blog post about this. I will also update you as to whether Steam works or not.

        As with last time around I can't really fault Q4OS on anything. Well I suppoes there are a couple of things that could be improved such as dual booting and the network manager should be installed by default as the one that comes with Q4OS is a bit inconsistent.

        After just a couple of hours effort I had Q4OS installed with every application I need including PyCharm. I am now able to listen to music, watch films, surf the web, write software, edit documents, read and send mail, use DropBox, use Skype and play games.

        Q4OS also comes with WINE which is useful for running Windows software.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva Family

      • Mageia 5 Support Extension and General Update
        With the delays to Mageia 6 and the approaching initial end of life (EOL) for Mageia 5 (initially planned for early December), we felt that it would be good to give an update on where things were with both Mageia 5 and 6.

        Firstly, every release so far has been supported until 3 months after the next release, and Mageia 5 will be no different. Since Mageia 6 is being delayed, Mageia 5’s support is automatically extended in order to give users 3 months to upgrade before Mageia 5 stops receiving security updates.

    • OpenSUSE/SUSE

    • Red Hat Family

      • Finance

      • Fedora

        • Korora 25 Upgrades, Mageia 6 Delays, Gift Ideas
          The Korora project announced a bit of good news for user waiting for the latest release while Mageia users will have to continue to wait. published a gift buying guide for Open Source fans and it looks like the netbook is back is back. Gary Newell reviewed Q4OS 1.8 and today reminded us of why we use Linux.

        • Impatient for Korora 25?

          We are busy preparing Korora 25 'Gurgle' for release but those who already have Korora 64 bit 24 or 23 installations don't have to wait.

        • Running Fedora 25 Design Suite on ASUS X550ZE laptop

        • Summary report on FUDCon APAC, Phnom Penh
          This year FUDCon APAC happened in Phnom Penh, Cambodia for two days 5th and 6th of November. This FUDCon happened as part of bigger conference called as BarCamp, ASEAN 2016. This BarCamp happened at Norton university from 4th to 6th November.

          On the first day of this BarCamp/FUDCon when we reach to the venue, we found it to be very nice place, full of people like students, volunteers, banners of BarCamp everywhere. It was a five floor building and the inauguration talk happened at the top 5th floor where all the honourable guests including Brian Exelbierd, Fedora Community Action and Impact Coordinator talked about FOSS.

        • Upgraded to Fedora 25

          Generally I used to upgrade after the Alpha releases, but this time I decided to wait till the final release. Reason: just being lazy. The other point is of course the nightly cloud images, which I am using for a long time.

          Before I upgraded my laptop, the first step was to sync the gold release of Everything repo, and then the updates repo for x86_84. The Everything repo is around 55GB, and the updates was 14GB+ when I synced. After I managed to get the local mirror at home fully synced, I upgraded using dnf system-upgrade.

    • Debian Family

      • Starting the faster, more secure APT 1.4 series
        We just released the first beta of APT 1.4 to Debian unstable (beta here means that we don’t know any other big stuff to add to it, but are still open to further extensions). This is the release series that will be released with Debian stretch, Ubuntu zesty, and possibly Ubuntu zesty+1 (if the Debian freeze takes a very long time, even zesty+2 is possible). It should reach the master archive in a few hours, and your mirrors shortly after that.

      • Debian package build tools
        When I was first introduced to Debian packaging, people recommended I use pbuilder. Given how complex the toolchain is in the pbuilder case, I don’t understand why that is (was?) a common recommendation.

      • vmdebootstrap Sprint Report
        This is now a little overdue, but here it is. On the 10th and 11th of November, the second vmdebootstrap sprint took place. Lars Wirzenius (liw), Ana Custura (ana_c) and myself were present. liw focussed on the core of vmdebootstrap, where he sketched out what the future of vmdebootstrap may look like. He documented this in a mailing list post and also presented (video).

        Ana and myself worked on live-wrapper, which uses vmdebootstrap internally for the squashfs generation. I worked on improving logging, using a better method for getting paths within the image, enabling generation of Packages and Release files for the image archive and also made the images installable (live-wrapper 0.5 onwards will include an installer by default).

      • Quicker Debian installations using eatmydata
        Two years ago, I did some experiments with eatmydata and the Debian installation system, observing how using eatmydata could speed up the installation quite a bit. My testing measured speedup around 20-40 percent for Debian Edu, where we install around 1000 packages from within the installer. The eatmydata package provide a way to disable/delay file system flushing. This is a bit risky in the general case, as files that should be stored on disk will stay only in memory a bit longer than expected, causing problems if a machine crashes at an inconvenient time. But for an installation, if the machine crashes during installation the process is normally restarted, and avoiding disk operations as much as possible to speed up the process make perfect sense.

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Deepstream: an Open-source Server for Building Realtime Apps
    Realtime apps are getting really popular, but they’re also hard to build. Wolfram Hempel introduces deepstream, an open-source server he co-founded to make data-sync, request-response and publish-subscribe a whole lot easier.

  • Open Source Email Marketing with phpList
    Email marketing has been exploding in popularity. You might have heard of the likes of MailChimp and Emma advertising the use of their services to send a whole bunch of messages for prospects and profit. The number of ways to promote goods online is forever growing, and research shows emails are still the most effective. I like to compare it with the “desktop is dead” myth; while mobile is on the rise, desktop is here to stay. I believe the same about email.

    Having said that, it’s no surprise that the number of services competing in the field have mushroomed in recent years, capitalising on demand from firms of all sizes to get access to that most personal of places, the email inbox.

    While big brand proprietary platforms and their sponsorship deals have been busy establishing themselves, an Open Source alternative has been minding its own business, making regular releases and accumulating a committed base of users since the year 2000. Enter phpList, the email marketing app you can run yourself without paying for messages, subscribers, or additional features.

  • 3 alternative reasons why you should test Nextcloud 11 Beta
    And many of the folks about to be put in power by President-elect Trump favor more spying, including on US citizens, expansion of the NSA, a crackdown on whistleblowers and more. Trump's pick for CIA director calls for Snowden's execution. For, what I can only guess must be giving proof of illegal government spying to dangerous terrorists like the Washington Post and the Guardian, who proceeded to win a Pulitzer prize by disclosing this information irresponsibly to the US public.

  • Mickey Mouse Open Source, Close Call at WordPress, and More…
    These days we’re seeing a lot of companies that aren’t officially in the software business releasing code developed in-house for internal use under open source licenses. You can now add Disney to that list, which includes Capital One, Walmart and others.

    This was pointed out on Wednesday by InfoWorld’s Paul Krill, who notes that in addition to Mickey Mouse, Pinocchio and Nemo, the company has given us advanced image projects such as OpenEXR, as well as DevOps tools for the Mac, such as Munki. More information on Disney’s open source projects can be found on its GitHub page.

  • Plans Unveiled for R3s Corda to Move to Open Source
    Head over to on November 30 for links to the codebase, simple sample applications and a tutorial to get started writing your own CorDapps.

  • SaaS/Back End

    • How to Get Certified for Top Open Source Platforms and Applications
      The cloud computing and Big Data scenes are absolutely flooded with talk of shortages in people with deployment and management expertise. There just are not enough skilled workers to go around. The OpenStack Foundation, the Cloud Native Computing Foundation and other organizations are now taking some important steps to address the situation.

      As 2017 approaches, here are some of the best ways to get certified for the open source cloud and Big Data tools that are makng a difference.

      As part of its efforts to grow the OpenStack talent pool and global community, the OpenStack Foundation has announced professional certification programs that are meant to provide a baseline assessment of knowledge and be accessible to OpenStack professionals around the world. Some of the first steps in advancing the program are taking place now, and Red Hat is also advancing OpenStack certification plans.

  • Pseudo-Open Source (Openwashing)


    • More Offloading Code Hits GCC Mainline For Both HSA & NVPTX
      For those following GCC's offloading capabilities to devices like GPUs, more work continued being mainline this week. We are onto stage 3 development of GCC 7 but items that were still being reviewed at that time are still being allowed to land. It looks like in 2017 we may finally see more GCC support come to reality when it comes to AMD HSA support and OpenMP / OpenACC offloading to NVIDIA GPUs.

  • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

    • Open Data

      • Dutch Drecht cities published first batch of open datasets
        The Drecht cities (Drechtsteden), a collaboration of six municipalities in the delta region of the Netherlands, have published a first batch of open datasets. The data has been made available on several public open government data platforms. It includes information on complaints, monumental trees, groundwater levels, monuments, playgrounds, dumpsters, and real estate values. More datasets will follow in the near future.


  • Science

    • Sweden publishes report on 'The Social Contract in Digital Times'
      Last month, the Swedish Digitalisation Commission (Digitaliseringskommissionen) published a theme report on 'The Social Contract in Digital Times'. The report comprises a collection of articles contributed by a dozen authors working in academia, science and innovation.

      The report highlights social issues such as the meaning of equality for the individual. Welfare, healthcare and education, for example, can be provided in new, more personalised ways. What can and should be the State's commitment in this setting, and what rights and obligations should the individual have?

    • Two new planets for neuroscientists
      Those that have been around the free and open source community will already know what planets are. They're web pages that aggregate feeds from various sources - usually community members' blogs. There are quite a few around and I follow a few myself - Planet Fedora, Planet GNOME, and Planet Mozilla, for example. They're extremely useful to keep onesself up to date with the happenings in the communities.

      So, I've gone ahead and set up two new planet instances to aggregate information from a myriad of neuroscience sources. The first is Planet neuroscience. The feeds this one aggregates are all from peer reviewed journals. So, pure research on this one. It's one long list of new publications.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Tens of thousands of children at risk of starvation in Nigeria crisis
      More than 120,000 people, most of them children, are at risk of starving to death next year in areas of Nigeria affected by the Boko Haram insurgency, the United Nations is warning.

      Intense fighting in parts of Nigeria, Chad, Niger and Cameroon has left more than 2 million people displaced, farmers unable to harvest their crops and aid groups unable to reach isolated communities. One small state in Nigeria has more displaced people than the entire refugee influx that arrived in Europe last year.

  • Security

    • Friday's security updates

    • Linux hardening: a 15-step checklist for a secure Linux server [Ed: paywall]
      Most people assume Linux is secure, and that’s a false assumption. Imagine your laptop is stolen without first being hardened. A thief would probably assume your username is “root” and your password is “toor” since that’s the default password on Kali and most people continue to use it. Do you? I hope not.

    • Homeland Security Issues 'Strategic Principles' For Securing The Internet Of Broken Things
      For much of the last year, we've noted how the rush to connect everything from toasters to refrigerators to the internet -- without adequate (ok, any) security safeguards -- has resulted in a security, privacy and public safety crisis. At first, the fact that everything from Barbies to tea kettles were now hackable was kind of funny. But in the wake of the realization that these hacked devices are contributing to massive new DDoS botnet attacks (on top of just leaking your data or exposing you to hacks) the conversation has quickly turned serious.

      Security researchers have been noting for a while that it's only a matter of time before the internet-of-not-so-smart-things contributes to human fatalities, potentially on a significant scale if necessary infrastructure is attacked. As such, the Department of Homeland Security recently released what they called "strategic principles" for securing the Internet of Things; an apparent attempt to get the conversation started with industry on how best to avoid a dumb device cyber apocalypse.

  • Defence/Aggression

    • Analysis: Why Sweden is giving an award to the ‘White Helmets’?
      Sweden did not succeed in getting Bob Dylan to come to Stockholm to receive the Nobel Prize for Literature. Nevertheless as a consolation the “White Helmets” did arrive to get the Right Livelihood Award.

      This article examines a likely geopolitical rationale that the Swedish elites had for selecting that organization. Also, facts suggest a congruence between the stances of those elites on Syria and the declared political aims of the organization White Helmets. The reviewing of the institutions involved in the award-decision and process can also result relevant in pondering the reason for the event. Finally, to inquire into the role of Carl Bildt, as member of the board of directors in the institution ultimately deciding, is interesting against the backdrop of his opposition regarding the participation of Julian Assange and Edward Snowden in previous international events organized by the same institutions –all of them under the umbrella of the Swedish Foreign Office.

    • Obama administration expands elite military unit’s powers to hunt foreign fighters globally
      The Obama administration is giving the elite Joint Special Operations Command — the same organization that helped kill Osama bin Laden in a 2011 raid by Navy SEALs — expanded power to track, plan and potentially launch attacks on terrorist cells around the globe, a move driven by concerns of a dispersed terrorist threat as Islamic State militants are driven from strongholds in Iraq and Syria, U.S. officials said.

      The missions could occur well beyond the battlefields of places like Iraq, Syria and Libya where Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) has carried out clandestine operations in the past. When finalized, it will elevate JSOC from being a highly-valued strike tool used by regional military commands to leading a new multiagency intelligence and action force. Known as the “Counter-External Operations Task Force,” the group will be designed to take JSOC’s targeting model — honed over the last 15 years of conflict — and export it globally to go after terrorist networks plotting attacks against the West.

    • How Donald Trump responded to Fidel Castro’s death

      Trump came under intense scrutiny in September following allegations that he knowingly violated the U.S. Cuban embargo in the 1990s, news that threatened to sour Cuban-Americans' opinion of him.

      A Newsweek story said the now-president elect spent $68,000 to send business consultants to Cuba despite the embargo. Trump Hotels reimbursed Seven Arrows Investment & Development Corp. shortly after Trump launched his bid for the White House.

    • Fidel Castro dies at 90
      Cuban leader Fidel Castro has died at age 90, his brother Raul announced on state television in the early morning hours Saturday.

      Raul Castro made a brief TV statement around 12:30 a.m. Eastern.

      "It is with great pain I come to inform our country, friends of our America, and the world that today, Nov. 25, 2016 at 10:29 p.m., the commander in chief of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz, died," he said.

  • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Setting the World to Rights

      Julian is very aware of the persistent rumours about his position or health. He is fine apart from a cold, and buoyed by recent events.

    • Readers choose Assange over Trump as Time's Person of the Year
      Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has overtaken President-elect Donald Trump for the lead in the online poll that allowed Time magazine readers to choose who the next person of the year should be.

      As of 1:00 pm (eastern time) on Monday, Assange and Trump were deadlocked with 9 per cent of all the "yes" votes cast by participants, but Assange pulled ahead to 10 per cent shortly after noon, Time reported.

      Wikileaks made headlines regularly during 2016 presidential election by releasing information, including leaked internal Democratic National Committee correspondence and messages from the account of Hillary Clinton's campaign manager John Podesta.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife/Nature

    • Arctic ice melt could trigger uncontrollable climate change at global level
      Arctic scientists have warned that the increasingly rapid melting of the ice cap risks triggering 19 “tipping points” in the region that could have catastrophic consequences around the globe.

      The Arctic Resilience Report found that the effects of Arctic warming could be felt as far away as the Indian Ocean, in a stark warning that changes in the region could cause uncontrollable climate change at a global level.

    • Despite tough talk, Indonesia’s government is struggling to stem deforestation
      TEGUH, chief of the village of Henda, in the Indonesian portion of Borneo, enters his office brimming with apologies for being late. The acrid scent of smoke wafts from his clothes. He explains that he was guiding police and firefighters to a fire just outside the village. A farmer had decided to clear his land by burning it. Henda sits amid Borneo’s vast peatlands; the fire had set the fertile soil smouldering for nearly 24 hours. It was a small fire, he says—perhaps a couple of hectares—but Mr Teguh still struggled to contain his exasperation, given the destruction wrought by fires set for land-clearance just a year ago.

      Last year, in the autumn for the most part, at least 2.6m hectares of Indonesia’s forests burned—an area the size of Sicily. The fires blanketed much of South-East Asia in a noxious haze and released a vast plume of greenhouse gases. Much of the island’s interior was reduced to sickly scrub; along its roads stand skeletal trees, reproachful witnesses to the ravages they endured. Indonesia’s forest fires alone emitted more greenhouse gases in just three weeks last year than Germany did over the whole year. The World Bank estimates that they cost Indonesia $16bn in losses to forestry, agriculture, tourism and other industries. The haze sickened hundreds of thousands across the region, and according to one study, hastened over 100,000 deaths.

    • Scientists Across the World Are Nervous About Trump, Survey Says
      With Donald Trump set to step into the Oval Office this January, we've reported before that scientists are concerned his policies could mean an attack on America’s scientific prowess and integrity.

      In fact, 72 percent of scientists surveyed in a recent worldwide poll said the results of the election would have a negative impact on research and science in the US. The survey was conducted by the Science Advisory Board, a panel of over 75,000 doctors, researchers, and scientific experts. It polled 3,289 scientists from every continent, except Antarctica. Of the American scientists, 85 percent said they voted for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, and about 10 percent said they voted for Trump.

    • Health Canada proposes ban on pesticide linked to bee deaths
      Canada's health regulator is planning to ban a controversial neonicotinoid pesticide, which it says has contaminated waterways and killed important aquatic insects.

    • Feds move to ban common neonicotinoid insecticide, say use 'not sustainable'
      The federal government is moving to phase out a common neonicotinoid insecticide after finding that it accumulates in waterways and harms aquatic insects.

      Health Canada has announced a 90-day public consultation period on imidacloprid, which is used on everything from cereals, grains, pulses and oilseeds to forestry woodlots and flea infestations on pets.

      Neonicotinoids as a class of pesticides have come under heavy scrutiny in recent years for their potential impact on bee populations.

  • Finance

    • TiSA-Leaks: Fundamental rights shall be levered out for free trade – also in the internet
      Today we publish new TiSA documents in cooperation with Greenpeace which have been kept secret until now. The „Trade in Services Agreement“ is a proposed trade treaty for services between 23 Parties, including the EU and the United States.

      The new leaks include the Annexes about Electronic Commerce and Telecommunications Services. Those will have a noticeable impact on net politics in the EU. They point to negative effects on data protection, net neutrality, freedom of speech and IT security.

      If the EU does not manage to defend its positions and grovels to the interests of industry lobbyists it will become unreliable and show that it prefers trade to fundamental rights.

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Wisconsin is preparing to recount election votes after receiving petition from Jill Stein
      True to her word, Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein filed for an election recount in the state of Wisconsin this afternoon, just 90 minutes before the deadline to file, according to the Wisconsin Elections Commission. The move comes after Stein raised over $5 million through a fundraising effort to cover the cost of recounts in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan — three key battleground states that helped Donald Trump gain the 270 electoral college votes needed to win the election. Trump won Wisconsin by a margin of just over 25,000 votes.

    • Trump election: Wisconsin prepares for vote recount
      Officials in Wisconsin are preparing to conduct a full recount of the votes from the US election in the state, which was narrowly won by Donald Trump.

      A formal request for the recount was filed by the Green Party's Jill Stein.

      Dr Stein, the Green Party's candidate, has also pledged to file for recounts in Michigan and Pennsylvania.

      The result would need to be overturned in all three states to change the outcome of the election, something analysts say is highly unlikely.

      Dr Jill Stein reportedly wants to make sure computer hackers did not skew the poll in favour of Mr Trump.

    • Wisconsin to recount presidential votes
      Wisconsin will undertake a recount of its presidential election votes after two requests from third-party candidates.

      Green Party nominee Jill Stein filed her request just before the deadline Friday afternoon, the Wisconsin Elections Commission announced. Reform Party candidate Rocky De La Fuente also filed for a recount.

      “We are standing up for an election system that we can trust; for voting systems that respect and encourage our vote, and make it possible for all of us to exercise our constitutional right to vote,” Stein said in a statement.

  • Censorship/Free Speech

    • Now Reddit is ‘censoring the alt-right’ after founder got fed up of being called a PAEDO
      THE CHIEF executive of Reddit has admitted to anonymously editing posts that were critical of him – changing them to refer to president-elect Donald Trump instead.

      Steve Huffman, posting under his username Spez on the discussion forum, told users that he was sick of being constantly called a paedophile in their discussions on the site.

    • Internet, a Double-Edged Sword Stained With Fake News and Censorship [Ed: The problem isn’t “fake news” but people not knowing how to validate news based on reputation of sources]

      By AsiaToday reporter Kim Eun-young - The Internet has created a new landscape of social change as an outlet for open communication. However, it also threatens Millennials with false information and censorship.

      Both Google and Facebook announced on Nov. 15 that they will ban fake news sites from using their ad networks to prevent the spread of false information, AFP reported. The shift comes as they face a backlash over the role they played in the U.S. presidential election by allowing the spread of false information supporting a particular candidate that might have contributed to the outcome of the election.

    • China Uses US Concern Over Fake News To Push For More Control Of The Internet

      In the context of this sentence, "reward" and "punish" both sound like they have the same definition. Unless the government official is hinting that those spreading fake news stories more aligned with the government's aims will be given… something for their assistance in pushing the party line.

      The United States has long been looked to as a free speech ideal, something other countries can strive for in their own governance. But countries opposed to those ideals are watching much more closely, looking for anything that belies the ideals the US government claims to hold dear. So, when President Obama suggests fake news is an actual threat to democracy, countries like China are going to use this to justify further control of citizens' communications and stricter regulation of news sources -- for the "good of the nation."

    • Election Prompts More Aggressive Twitter Censorship
      And according to some conservatives whose accounts have been suspended, Twitter has looked the other way when it comes to those on the Left who have bullied conservatives. An example discovered by USA Today was a California college student, Ariana Rowlands, who said she received personal attacks and death threats after Tweeting about her pride in her Hispanic heritage and her support for Trump. She said she reported the posts, but Twitter did nothing about the abusive account holders.

    • Gambia: Ahead of polls, digital media skirt censorship
      While state media in Gambia is government controlled and the private media practices self-censorship, political opponents of the small West African country’s strongman President Yahya Jammeh are using digital media to bypass the hurdles they face in reaching audiences.

      Gambians are heading to presidential polls next week, on Dec. 1, and campaigns are already in motion, with the incumbent facing his former ally and a coalition of seven opposition parties.

    • Major Journalism Trade Unions Stand with Sputnik Against Censorship
      Sputnik News Agency and Radio Broadcaster has received the support of both the International Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) following the passing of a controversial resolution by the European Parliament.

    • Nataliya Rostova: In Russia’s media, censorship is silent
      The idea of conducting a survey of Russian journalists came to me after seeing something similar in New York magazine, which earlier this year polled 113 people working in the US media on the problems and challenges they face. I thought it’d be interesting to compare the responses of journalists working on opposite sides of the Atlantic. On the one hand, you have the experience of a country where every schoolchild feels pride in the First Amendment, which forbids Congress to pass any legislation limiting freedom of speech and the press, and, on the other, experience from a country where censorship was officially banned only 26 years ago.

    • Will new censorship kill Chinese filmmaking?
      China's new film censorship laws would, at first blush, be enough to make a director cry.

      Movies must not promote gambling, superstition, drug abuse, violence nor teach criminal methods. What's more they should "serve the people and socialism". The horror!

      So will this mean the end of great Chinese cinema and the drowning of dwindling audiences in sea of dull, paternalistic fare?

      Not necessarily.

    • Dodgy Age Verification And Censorship Are Not The Answer

      Open Rights Group has got to know a disastrous policy when it sees it. Back in 2010, during the last Digital Economy Bill, music companies demanded that people be cut off the Internet after “three strikes” if they were accused of file sharing.

      Even then, it was clear that this was a disproportionate response that wouldn’t bring any of the supposed benefits.

      “Three strikes” and disconnection was never put into action. It crashed and burned, and everyone does their best to forget it.

      Now, I am experiencing a strong sense of déja vu. The new incarnation of the Digital Economy Bill starts with a real concern, that children can access pornography online, and puts forward a ‘modest proposal”. This is a deserving group whose interests are indisputably important.

    • Brazilian Activists Outsmart Facebook's Censorship of the Female Nipple
      Gradually this has been challenged in Brazil, with many feminist movements doing marches attended by many women who, in protest against hypersexualization and shaming of women's bodies, bare their chests in public. This has been accompanied by increased frustration with Facebook and Instagram's Community Standards, which allow specific non-sexual images of women's nipples (they make exceptions for breast feeding and post-mastectomy photos), but not others. They also allow some images of graphic violence, such as photos of people who have been tortured. Hypersexualized images of female breasts are also considered appropriate (as long as the nipple is not clearly visible), while photos including women's nipples ranging from indigenous ceremonies in Australia to campaigns against breast cancer are prohibited.

    • Facebook doesn't need to ban fake news to fight it
      Mark Zuckerberg’s social media site doesn’t have to become a censor to help tackle false stories. It can do a lot by helping its own users with context

    • On Blacklists and Russia 'Hacking' American Democracy

    • MacWorld, PCWorld Kill Site Comments Because They 'Value And Welcome Feedback'
      For a while now the trend du jour in online media is to not only block your readers from making news story comments, but to insult their intelligence by claiming this muzzling is driven by a deep-rooted love of community and conversation. NPR, for example, muted its entire readership because, it claimed, it "adored reader relationships." Reuters and Recode, in contrast, prevented their own users from speaking on site thanks to a never-ending dedication to "conversation." Motherboard similarly banned all on-site reader feedback because it greatly "values discussion."

      There's a number of reasons to ban comments, but few if any have anything to do with giving a damn about your community. Most websites, writers and editors simply don't want to spend the time or money to moderate trolls or cultivate local community because it takes a little effort, and quality human discourse can't be monetized on a pie chart. Instead, it's easier and cheaper to simply outsource all public human interactivity to Facebook. In addition to being simpler, it avoids the added pitfalls of a public comment section where corrections to your story errors are posted a little too visibly.

    • Will Facebook's China Censorship Tool Work?

    • Facebook ‘quietly developing censorship tool’ for China

    • Facebook is ready to censor posts in China -- should users around the world be worried?

    • Court (Again) Tosses Lawsuit Seeking To Hold Twitter Accountable For ISIS Terrorism

    • The 5 Worst Places To Be An Internet User In Southeast Asia

    • Top 10 Countries With Highest Internet Censorship in 2016

    • 'It's like they were selling heroin to schoolkids': censorship hits booksellers at Kuwait book fair

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Microsoft gives third-parties access to Windows 10 Telemetry data
      Microsoft struck a deal with security company FireEye recently according to a report on Australian news magazin Arn which gives FireEye access to all Windows 10 Telemetry data.
    • European Union wants to regulate cryptography?

      Regulating cryptography is of course a bad idea. It's true that cryptography can be an obstacle for collecting digital evidence. Generally, that's one of the aims of cryptographic methods: make it difficult to obtain plain-text data. It can be used for the good, as well as for the bad, as with many other tools or technologies. But it's unclear if policy makers can achieve reasonable regulatory frameworks. And the stakes are high. Weakening cryptography would ultimately lead to far reaching negative impact on digital markets, society, trust, cybersecurity and privacy. Intentional weakening of cryptography and security solutions - whether by requiring weaker algorithms or key sizes, or introducing backdoors - in order to make life easier for local law enforcement agencies means that criminals and foreign powers will also benefit from those measures. Good cryptography is strong cryptography.

    • Edward Snowden's extradition lawsuit is rejected by Norway's Supreme Court

      Norway's Supreme Court has rejected Edward Snowden's attempt to win free passage to visit the country and receive an award for free speech.

      Mr Snowden, who currently resides in Russia, copied and leaked thousands of classified NSA documents in 2013, revealing the scale of US government surveillance after the 9/11 attacks.

      In April, the 33-year-old took Norway to court in an attempt secure free passage, through Oslo's District Court, an appeals court and finally the country's Supreme Court.

    • Edward Snowden loses Norway safe passage case
      Edward Snowden's bid to guarantee that he would not be extradited to the US if he visited Norway has been rejected by the Norwegian supreme court.

      The former National Security Agency contractor filed the lawsuit in April, attempting to secure safe passage to Norway to pick up a free speech award.

      It had already been rejected by Oslo District court and an appeals court.

      Mr Snowden is a former NSA analyst who leaked secret US surveillance details three years ago.

      As a result, he is facing charges in the US which could put him in prison for up to 30 years.
    • Twitter Says Its API Can't Be Used For Surveillance, But What Does It Think The FBI's Going To Do With It?
      Dataminr, the company whose Twitter firehose access has become somewhat of cause celebre on both sides of the privacy fence, is back in the news. After being told it couldn't sell this access to government agencies for surveillance purposes, Dataminr had to disconnect the CIA from its 500 million tweets-per-day faucet.

      Twitter was pretty specific about what this buffed-up API could and could not be used for. The CIA's surveillance efforts were on the "Don't" list. This rejection of the CIA's access was linked to existing Twitter policies -- policies often enforced inconsistently or belatedly. What the CIA had access to was public tweets from public accounts -- something accessible to anyone on the web, albeit with a better front-end for managing the flow and an API roughly 100x more robust than those made available to the general public.

    • Here's how to delete yourself from the internet - at the click of a button
      In our smartphone-obsessed digital age, we effectively live our entire lives online, which makes us increasingly vulnerable to unseen threats.

      Cyber crime, fraud and identity theft are exponentially growing concerns. Our personal lives, locations, and increasingly our passwords are made public online for anyone to find.

      If the highly invasive Investigatory Powers Bill (AKA the Snooper's Charter) isn't blocked, then every single digital move you make will be recorded for up to 12 months.
    • Germany planning to 'massively' limit privacy rights
      A draft law released by the German union for data protection (DVD) this week revealed that the interior ministry was proposing to drastically limit the powers of Germany's data protection authorities, banning them from investigating suspected breaches of people's medical and legal records.

      As well as expanding video surveillance with facial recognition software, the bill would limit the government's own data protection commissioners to checking that the technical prerequisites are in place to ensure that doctors' and lawyers' files are secure, but it stops them from following up when citizens report concerns that their data has been leaked.

      The bill would also shut down citizens' right to know what data is being collected about them - even by private firms, if releasing that information would "seriously endanger" a company's "business purposes," the SZ quoted the draft as saying. Thilo Weichert, former data protection commissioner for the state of Schleswig-Holstein and now DVD board member, condemned de Maiziere's plans as a "massive" erosion of privacy in Germany.

    • Donald Trump's national security chief 'took money from Putin and Erdogan', says former NSA employee
      A former NSA employee has accused Donald Trump’s selection for National Security Advisor of taking money from both Russia and Turkey and of breaching information security regulations.

      John Schindler said Michael Flynn, who Mr Trump has nominated for the senior post, had taken money from the governments of Vladimir Putin and Recep Erdogan. Mr Schindler claimed on Twitter that Mr Trump would be a “hypocrite” if he stood by his nomination of the former general given his promise to “drain the swamp” of Washington.

      “Flynn took money from Putin & ErdoÄŸan AND he broke important INFOSEC laws+regs,” he said. “If Trump stands by him now, he is a monstrous hypocrite.”

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Bill Introduced To Push Back Approval Of DOJ's Proposed Rule 41 Changes
      In addition, the DOJ wants permission to break into "compromised" computers and poke around inside them without the permission or knowledge of the owners of these computers. It also wants to treat anything that anonymizes internet users or hides their locations to be presumed acts of a guilty mind. The stripping of jurisdictional limits not only grants the FBI worldwide access for digital seizures and searches, but also encourages it to go venue shopping for judicial rubber stamps.

    • Jakarta's violent identity crisis: behind the vilification of Chinese-Indonesians
      Before Jakarta, there was Batavia, the 17th-century capital city of the Dutch East Indies, built with the skill of just a few hundred ethnic Chinese artisans who had settled as traders along the shore.

      How little has changed.

      Many big projects in modern day Jakarta, a city of more than 10 million, have been built by developers from the minority group, the descendants of the original merchants and other Chinese who have arrived since.

      Chinese-Indonesians – estimated to make up 1% to 4% of the country’s 250 million people – have had an impact on Jakarta which is vastly disproportionate to their physical numbers. The economic success of the group’s small elite has led to repeated bouts of resentment, discrimination and even violent assaults.

    • Dozens injured, hundreds arrested in riot at Bulgaria refugee camp
      Around 1,500 migrants have rioted in Bulgaria's largest refugee camp, triggering clashes that left two dozen police injured and prompted the arrest of hundreds of protesters, officials said.

      "Around 300 migrants, six of them considered a threat to national security, have been arrested," Prime Minister Boyko Borissov told BNR public radio after visiting the camp in early hours of Friday.

      He added that 24 police officers and two migrants had been injured and that the situation had been brought under control.

    • Migrants Clash With Police in Bulgaria; 200 Detained
      Police detained 200 migrants after they clashed with police at a refugee camp in southern Bulgaria on Thursday, injuring several officers.

    • President Erdogan: I will open gates for migrants to enter Europe if EU blocks membership talks

      President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned Turkey could open its border for refugees to stream into Europe after EU MEPs voted for a temporary halt to membership talks.

      Speaking at a congress on womens' justice in Istanbul, the president warned: "If you go any further, these border gates will be opened. Neither me nor my people will be affected by these dry threats. It wouldn't matter if all of you approved the vote".

      He said the EU had "wailed" for help controlling the flow of refugees and migrants in 2015 and the bloc worried what would happen if Turkey opened its borders. Mr Erdogan made specific reference to Turkey's main border crossing with EU member Bulgaria.

    • North Dakota Pipeline camp prepares for winter with donations

    • Islamic banking is the another name of destruction of civilization through Economic Jihad.
      Islamic banking traces its roots to the 1920s, but did not start until the late 1970s, and owes much of its foundation to the Islamist doctrine of two people: Indian-born Abul Ala Maududi of the Jamaat-e-Islami and Hassan al-Banna of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. While these two pillars of the Pan-Islamist movement propagated jihad and war against the West, they also recognised the role international financial institutions could play in carrying out their political objectives.
    • Hacker who helped expose Ohio rape case pleads guilty, faces more prison time than rapists
      Earlier this week, Deric Lostutter, 29, known online as "KYAnonymous," pleaded guilty in federal court in Kentucky to one count of conspiracy and one count of making false statements to law enforcement agents for his hack of the Steubenville (Ohio) High School football fan website Roll Red Roll in December 2012.

      Lostutter has said he hacked into the site to expose information about the gang rape of an unconscious teenage girl from West Virginia by members of the football team. Two of those team members, Trent Mays and Malik Richmond, were eventually sentenced to serve time — two years and one year, respectively — in a juvenile detention center for rape and kidnap.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Amended TRIPS Agreement Close To Ratification, Says WTO’s Azevêdo
      For Roberto Azevêdo, director general of the World Trade Organization, an amendment to the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) Agreement that affects access to pharmaceuticals for developing countries remains a priority of the WTO.

      It was witnessed this week by Benin, which signed up to an amendment to the agreement this week in Geneva, joining several other nations that have signed in 2016.

    • Copyrights

      • Court Freezes Megaupload’s MPAA and RIAA Lawsuits

        A federal court in Virginia has granted Megaupload's request to place the cases filed by the music and movie companies on hold until April next year, while the criminal case remains pending. Meanwhile, Megaupload is working hard to ensure that critical evidence on decaying hard drives is preserved.

      • $1bn Getty Images Public Domain Photograph Dispute is Over

        Earlier this year, photographer Carol Highsmith received a $120 settlement demand from Getty Images after she used one of her own public domain images on her website. Highsmith responded with a $1bn lawsuit but after a few short months the case is all over, with neither side a clear winner.

Recent Techrights' Posts

Coercion From the "Consent" and "CoC" Crowd is a Self-Defeating Tactic
Freedom of the press; Nothing less
According to statCounter, GNU/Linux Increased From 3.77% to 3.89% This Month (Worldwide), Windows Now Below 20% in 78 Nations, Below 10% in 27 Nations
Highest since March (for GNU/Linux)
Patriotism is OK, But We Need Facts and Reason, Not Blind Obedience to Authority
Very seldom in the history of human civilisation has groupthink proven to be of real merit
Gemini Links 16/06/2024: Scarecrows, Moles, Ham Radio, and No IPs
Links for the day
Africa is Android and Green (Chrome, Not Just Android Logo)
In Africa Firefox is almost below 1% now
Covering Abuses and Corruption
We'll never surrender to blackmail
Ubuntu Running Out of Energy
Its planet too is deteriorating
Links 16/06/2024: In Defence of Email and Why Recycling Symbol Lost All Meaning
Links for the day
Gemini Links 16/06/2024: Computer Science Course Union and Potentiometer
Links for the day
Cross border crime: sale of Swiss insurance in France and European Union without authorisation
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Letting Microsoft systemd Manage /home Was a Terrible Idea All Along
systemd-tmpfiles, deleting /home
When You Touch One of Us You Touch All of Us
We have a principled, uncompromising stance on this matter
Links 16/06/2024: New Sanctions Against Russia, Fentanylware (TikTok) Causing More Problems
Links for the day
Social Control Media in Japan: Twitter (X) Has Collapsed, YouTube Rising (Apparently)
What a genius Mr. Musk is!
Windows Cleansed in South Africa (Already Hovering Around 10% Market Share)
Plus Microsoft's mass layoffs in Africa
[Meme] Satya Nadella's Windows PC RECALLS Not What He Did
Satya got lucky
Usage of Let's Encrypt in Geminispace Has Collapsed (That's a Good Thing!)
Ideally, or eventually, all capsules will sign their own certificates or have their own CA
North Macedonia: Windows Down From 99.2% to 28.5%
Last year it was even measured at 26%
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Saturday, June 15, 2024
IRC logs for Saturday, June 15, 2024
Gemini Links 16/06/2024: Hand Held Maneuvering Unit and Hugo Static Files
Links for the day
Removing the Tumour From IRC
looking back
[Meme] The Free(dom) Software Engineer in European Elections
“When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser.”
Vista 11 Was 'Leaked' Exactly 3 Years Ago and This One Picture Says It All
how 'well' Vista 11 has done
A Smokescreen for Brad Smith
Maybe the key point was to say "Linux is not secure either" or "Windows and Linux are equally vulnerable", so don't bother dumping Microsoft
Windows Sinking Below 13% Market Share in the Island of Jamaica
Microsoft's decline continues and will mostly likely continue indefinitely in Jamaica and its neighbours
Links 15/06/2024: Microsoft's Intellectual Ventures Attacks Kubernetes With Software Patents, More Layoff Waves
Links for the day
Gemini Links 15/06/2024: On Lagrange and on YouTube Getting Worse
Links for the day
Edward Brocklesby: hacker received advance notice of zero-day vulnerabilities in MH and NMH email software
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
[Meme] Code Liberates Kids
Matthias Kirschner: I can't code, but I can write a book
In Armenia, Bing is Measured at 0.6%, About Ten Times Less Than Yandex
Bing will probably get mothballed in the coming years
[Meme] A Pack and Pact (Collusion Against Computer Users)
They never really cared about users, no more than drug dealers care about drug users...
GNU/Linux in Azerbaijan: From ~0.1% to 7%
Azerbaijan is around the same size as Portugal
Women in Free Software (FOSS) Need Action, Not Mere Words
the men who are loudest about women's rights are some of the very worst offenders
Embrace, Extend, Extinguish Minecraft
These folks should check out Minetest
Techrights Statement on Men Who Viciously Attack Women in Free Software
history shows women will win
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Friday, June 14, 2024
IRC logs for Friday, June 14, 2024
[Meme] People Who Cannot Find Gainful Employment Because of Their Poor Behaviour Online (Not the People Who Merely Call Them Out on It)
Imagine trying to become a lecturer while talking like this in public
You Too Would Get Nervous
countries where Windows is down to 2%
[Meme] The Two Phases (and Faces) of Microsofters
Microsofters: stalk IRC, then troll IRC
The 'Nobody Reads Techrights Anyway' Crowd
Send In the Clowns
Books in the Making
I intend to spend a considerable amount of time explaining what my family and I were subjected to for the 'crime' of promoting/covering Free software
Microsoft is Still Losing Malta
And GNU/Linux is doing well on laptops and desktops
Tux Machines: Third Party Impending
There will be more next week