Bonum Certa Men Certa

Links 27/12/2021: BLAKE2s, KiCad 6.0.0, and Orange Pi 3 LTS

  • Leftovers

    • Parents With Disabilities Face Medicare Rules That Exclude Parental Assistance
    • Health/Nutrition/Agriculture

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • We Encrypted the Web: 2021 Year in Review

              For more than 10 years, EFF’s HTTPS Everywhere browser extension has provided a much-needed service to users: encrypting their browser communications with websites and making sure they benefit from the protection of HTTPS wherever possible. Since we started offering HTTPS Everywhere, the battle to encrypt the web has made leaps and bounds: what was once a challenging technical argument is now a mainstream standard offered on most web pages. Now HTTPS is truly just about everywhere, thanks to the work of organizations like Let’s Encrypt. We’re proud of EFF’s own Certbot tool, which is Let’s Encrypt’s software complement that helps web administrators automate HTTPS for free.The goal of HTTPS Everywhere was always to become redundant. That would mean we’d achieved our larger goal: a world where HTTPS is so broadly available and accessible that users no longer need an extra browser extension to get it. Now that world is closer than ever, with mainstream browsers offering native support for an HTTPS-only mode.

              In 2020, Firefox announced an “HTTPS-only” mode feature that all users can turn on, signaling that HTTPS adoption was substantial enough to implement such a feature. 2021 was the year the other major browsers followed suit, starting with Chrome introducing an HTTPS default for navigation when a user types in the name of a URL without specifying insecure HTTP or secure HTTPS. Then in June, Microsoft’s Edge announced an “automatic HTTPS feature” that users can opt into. Then later in July, Chrome announced their “HTTPS-first mode”, which attempts to automatically upgrade all pages to HTTPS or display a warning if HTTPS isn’t available. Given Chrome’s dominant share of the browser market, this was a huge step forward in web security. Safari 15 also implemented a HTTPS-first mode in its browsers. However, it does not block insecure requests like in Firefox, Chrome, and Edge.€ 

              With these features rolled out, HTTPS is truly everywhere, accomplishing the long-standing goal to encrypt the web.

            • [Old] What's in a blue checkmark?

              Twitter has gotten a lot more transparent recently about what the blue checkmark means and is meant to achieve. Their documentation says that it’s used to mark authentic accounts of public interest. But there is still a lot to ponder about what those words mean (what’s “public interest”? what’s “authentic”?) and why this is a useful feature. The verification program could be motivated by mis-/disinformation, harassment and abuse (e.g. preventing impersonation), scams and phishing, or some combination of the above. It’d be fascinating to know what Twitter’s internal success metrics (if any) are for the blue checkmark feature.

            • Urban Indians set to make their homes smarter in 2022

              As per a recent report by Allied Market Research, the India home automation market size was valued at $1.79 billion in 2018 and is expected to reach $13.5 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 29.8 per cent during the forecast period.

            • Confidentiality

              • When a web PKI certificate won't cut it

                In recent years, setting up a public HTTPS website has gotten easier and easier, thanks to widespread automated certificate management, free certificates, inexpensive CDN support, and other developments. However, for the most part, these advancements – and the web PKI in general – are designed for publicly accessible websites. That is, a website with a publicly resolvable domain name can undergo domain name validation to get an HTTPS certificate. You can also get an HTTPS certificate for a public IP address, but this type of certificate is much more rare and less widely supported than certificates for public domain names. What you cannot do is get a publicly trusted HTTPS certificate for a non-public domain name (such as an intranet hostname) or a reserved private network or localhost IP address (such as That is, a certificate authority like Let’s Encrypt or DigiCert will not be able to provide you with an HTTPS certificate for foo.test or that works with an out-of-the-box client like a major web browser. This is because there’s no way for the certificate authority to validate that you are the true owner of such a name; by definition, there is no such concept of the true owner of such a name.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Islamists terrorise Muslim and non-Muslim pupils and teachers at schools in Berlin, Germany

        Students from Muslim families in particular are under strong pressure to adapt, for example in terms of behaviour during the fasting month of Ramadan, dealing with religious minorities or the headscarf. “It is not enough that the pupils privately decide in favour of a stricter interpretation of Islam. Increasingly, such views are dominating the mainstream, with increasingly clear demands that these rules also be observed by others,” the inventory states. “This then also applies to educational staff, provided they themselves have a Muslim migration background.”

        For example, the head of one school reported that teachers and students there had been challenged about their “summer clothes”. The management of another school stated that a pupil told a staff member of Arab origin that he did not listen to her because she was a “very bad Muslim” due to her lack of a headscarf. The boy’s father, who was called in, had encouraged his son in his behaviour.

      • Taliban govt scraps Afghan election commission

        Established in 2006, the IEC was mandated to administer and supervise all types of elections, including presidential, according to the commission’s website.

        “They have taken this decision in a hurry... and dissolving the commission would have huge consequences,” Aurangzeb, who headed the panel up until the fall of the previous regime, said.

        “If this structure does not exist, I’m 100 percent sure that Afghanistan’s problems will never be solved as there won’t be any elections,” said Aurangzeb, who like many Afghans goes by only one name.

      • Sutherland man arrested on Christmas Eve over alleged terror attack plans

        The 34-year-old had planned to attack police officers, government officials and other Muslims that he deemed insufficiently devout, Detective Superintendent Michael Sheehy told reporters on Friday morning.

        “This individual is [allegedly] posting a significant amount of material about bombings and manufacturing explosives,” Det Supt Sheehy said.

    • Environment

      • Energy

        • Opinion | Top Six Reasons to Be Happy About Electric Vehicles in the US in 2022

          The Biden administration’s Infrastructure and Jobs Act, passed in October, and the new fuel standards set by the EPA will have a positive impact on electric vehicles in the United States in the coming year. Let’s review this good news.

        • Climate crisis puts oil in the crosshairs, but dependence persists

          The International Energy Agency warned in May that an immediate halt to new investment in fossil projects is needed if the world is to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 and to stand any chance of limiting warming to 1.5C.

          The call was a revolution for an agency created in the wake of the first 1970 oil shock to protect the energy security of rich, oil-consuming nations.

          Another major moment in 2021 was the emergence at the COP 26 climate summit in Glasgow of a coalition of nations that pledged to phase out oil and gas production, although no major oil and gas producing nation joined that group.

        • Miami wants to become [cryptocurency]'s financial capital. New York's response? Bring it on

          Cryptocurrencies are seen by many as the future of finance, and Miami is aggressively angling to become the world's crypto capital – in a direct threat to New York's status as the country's financial hub, threatening New York's dominance in finance.

        • How Bitcoin miners are exploiting cheap electricity in Siberian 'cryptocurrency allotments'

          In an extraordinary gesture of desperation that upset many Bitcoin miners in the region, local governor Igor Kobzev in a confidential memo to Russia’s energy minister this autumn complained about a “skyrocketing electricity use in the region” fraught with “accidents”.

          Irkutskenergo, the region’s main electricity company, insists that it cannot deny service to suspected Bitcoin miners as it is obliged to provide as much as electricity to households as it has the capacity for, and it has no right to ask if the customer wants to build five heated pools or install 100 mining rigs on their property.

          The energy company was desperate enough to launch private investigations into suspected illegal farms in order to seek damages in court.

        • Iceland Cuts Power to Industry, Turns Away New Bitcoin Miners

          Low hydro reservoir levels, a malfunction at a power station and a delay in obtaining power from an external producer led to the reduction, effective immediately, the company said on Tuesday. In addition to fish-feed plants, the reductions apply to large customers on curtailable short-term contracts. Record demand also played a part, said Tinna Traustadottir, executive vice president of sales and customer service at Landsvirkjun.

        • [Old] Bitcoin Mining Breathes Life into Zombie Coal Plants

          Scrubgrass is just the start. Stronghold has executed a purchase agreement to acquire a second waste coal plant in Pennsylvania, the Panther Creek Energy Facility, and aspires to buy a third. Like Scrubgrass, Panther Creek was increasingly unable to compete on the open electricity market– operating at less than one tenth of its capacity prior to its acquisition by Stronghold.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • PM shares rare snow leopard footage

          Amid the ongoing government efforts for wildlife conservation through community invo€­lve€­ment and afforestation in the country, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday shared a rare footage of a snow leopard roaming and roaring over the snowy mountains in the Khaplu area of Gilgit Baltistan.

      • Overpopulation

        • Iran Condom Ban Sparks Fears Of Disease, Unwanted Pregnancies, And A Black Market

          Iran has passed a law banning the free, state-subsidized distribution of contraceptives in a bid to boost its population growth -- but the move has raised fears of catastrophic repercussions. Iran's government systematically cracks down on the free flow of information and those who speak to foreign media may be subject to persecution. For that reason, the identities of the interviewees are not disclosed and their faces are blurred or not shown.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • A Year in, Biden Hasn’t Fulfilled Promise to Repair Refugee Resettlement Program
      • Control of House Up in Air as More Dems Say They Won't Seek Reelection in 2022
      • Are U.S. Charities Backing Hindu Nationalism?

        The two viruses are related due to the way in which Hindu nationalist aligned charitable organizations in the United States and the United Kingdom have raised money for Covid relief and then funnelled these funds to Hindu nationalist groups in India, where they are potentially used to spread hatred against religious minorities.

        To read this article, log in here or subscribe here. In order to read CP+ articles, your web browser must be set to accept cookies.

      • President ErdoÄŸan has only brought poverty to Turkey, numbers show

        In the past two days, President Recep Tayyip ErdoÄŸan and his supporters have rejoiced in the rebound of the Turkish Lira against the dollar. However, reporting by daily BirGün shows that that celebration is misplaced. Not only was the currency crisis self-inflicted, but over the past two decades of Justice and Development Party (AKP) rule, people in Turkey have only gotten poorer.

      • Lira plunges again after Erdogan cites Islam to defend rate cuts

        Erdogan has previously cited his religion in explaining why he believes interest rates cause inflation instead of reining it in.

        High interest rates are a drag on activity and slow down economic growth.

        But central banks raise their policy rates out of necessity when inflation gets out of hand.

        The Turkish lira has now lost nearly half its value in the past three months alone.

      • Nigeria places Erdogan’s enemies on surveillance in exchange for Turkey’s military assistance

        Nigeria’s unfavourable response further infuriated the Turkish government. Consequently, several Nigerian students attending Turkish schools abroad were arrested while others were deported for reasons never stated.

        President Buhari’s adviser on Diaspora Affairs at the time, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, confirmed to local media that “the Ministry of Foreign Affairs through the permanent secretary summoned the Turkish Ambassador immediately the information was received. While both countries are working at resolving the issue through every possible diplomatic channel, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs made it clear that such acts against Nigerians will not be accepted.”

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • 2021 Was the Year Lawmakers Tried to Regulate Online Speech

        So, it’s inevitable that services make mistakes—removing users’ speech that does not violate their policies, or terminating users’ accounts with no explanation or opportunity to appeal. And inconsistent moderation often falls hardest on oppressed groups.€ 

        The dominance of a handful of online platforms like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter increases the impact of their content moderation decisions and mistakes on internet users’ ability to speak, organize, and participate online. Bad content moderation is a real problem that harms internet users.€ 

        There’s no perfect solution to this issue. But U.S. lawmakers seem enamored with trying to force platforms to follow a government-mandated editorial line: host this type of speech, take down this other type of speech. In Congressional hearing after hearing, lawmakers have hammered executives of the largest companies over what content stayed up, and what went down. The hearings ignored smaller platforms and services that could be harmed or destroyed by many of the new proposed internet regulations.€ 

      • More Tiananmen massacre memorials removed in Hong Kong

        The removal of the monuments testifies to the ruling Communist Party’s efforts to erase the bloody events from the public consciousness. It also comes as the party snuffs out democratic challenges in Hong Kong to its rule.

        On Thursday, a monument at the University of Hong Kong was dismantled, wiping out one of the city’s last remaining places of public commemoration of the crackdown.

        The government has never provided a figure on casualties and the pro-democracy movement remains a taboo topic in mainland China. Hong Kong and Macao, the two semi-autonomous territories, were the only places on Chinese soil where commemorations of the crackdown were allowed until authorities banned annual candlelight vigils for two consecutive years.

      • Steam Global Domain Appears to Be Banned in China

        Indeed, the Steampowered domain isn't accessible anymore to Chinese users according to Comparitech, while Steamchina is. That's the domain of the Chinese version of Steam, which Valve launched in February 2021 through a partnership with Perfect World.

        Steam China is far more limited than the global version, though. It was built to comply with the Chinese government's strict regulations on videogames and Internet usage. First and foremost, to publish a game on this platform a developer would need Chinese government approval for the game. That's why the Chinese version only had 53 games at launch, not to mention the lack of features such as Steam Forums, Steam Workshop, Steam Market, and more.

      • The global version of Steam appears to be banned in China

        China’s apparent ban on Steam Global is a rough way to end a year that the country has spent cracking down on gaming. In July, Tencent rolled out a facial recognition technology that scans kids’ faces to keep them in compliance with the 10PM curfew that China set to prevent kids from gaming late at night. Just one month later, China implemented a new rule that restricts minors from playing games for more than three hours per week. China later banned Fortnite, even though the game was already heavily modified to comply with China’s strict rules.

      • Steam Global Faces Ban in China; Chinese Version Available Only with 103 Games in Its Library

        According to The Verge, Steam China only has 103 titles on its library, and it is a massive step down for gamers and enthusiasts. The library only holds less than ten percent of the games it originally featured.

      • After the cross of Notre-Dame de la Garde on the New Year’s card of Marseille’s city hall was erased by the Islamist-Stalinist city government, the opposition protests

        The New Year’s card proposed by the city of Marseille shocked the conservative opposition a few days before the New Year. The reason: in the photo, the cross of the Basilica Notre-Dame de la Garde was removed from its dome, France 3 reported in an article published on Thursday December the 23rd. This detail caught the attention of numerous local politicians, such as Valérie Boyer, who addressed the city council on Twitter. The Les Républicains (LR) senator of the Bouches-du-Rhône department reacted not without irony: “Thank you to the city administration for being so attached to our traditions, our roots and our identity. After the disappearance of Merry Christmas (which has been replaced by Happy Feast), we learn that Notre-Dame-de-la-Garde has no cross. The Virgin Mary could be next?”.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • New Year’s Eve Rally in Boston to Support Julian Assange

        This article was originally published on If This Be Treason.

        New Englanders concerned about the treatment of Julian Assange, the founder of the radical news site Wikileaks who is currently in custody in the UK awaiting extradition to the US under espionage charges, will gather as part of a “First Night Against the Wars” event at Boston’s Copley Square on the afternoon on December 31. The gathering will take place between 2 pm-3:30 pm.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Envisioning a World With No Bosses
      • Opinion | The Age of Discontent: What Drives the Rising Wave of World Protests?

        In recent years, the world has been shaken by protests. From the Arab Spring to the social uprisings in Chile and Latin America, the world has seen a dramatic rise in protests. In a polarized world, the COVID-19 pandemic has only accentuated feelings of outrage and discontent.

      • Desmond Tutu, Fierce Opponent of South African and Israeli Apartheid, Dies at 90
      • Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Defender of Human Rights in South Africa and Beyond, Dies at 90

        Leaving behind a legacy of fighting for oppressed people in South Africa and around the world, Archbishop Desmond Tutu died Sunday at age 90 in Cape Town, South Africa. The cause was reportedly cancer.

        Advocates for human rights, health equity, economic justice, and nonviolence honored Tutu, who helped lead the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission which was formed afterwards.

      • Ugandan maid dies in Egypt two years after travelling to Saudi Arabia

        Many young women like Namazzi who try to escape unemployment and poverty at home, often end up as domestic workers in the Middle East where over the years, there has been systematic documentation of cases of exploitation, physical and/or sexual abuse, and even fatalities.

        In August this year, Uganda said it was to review the agreements with a number of countries, particularly in the Middle East, as cases of abuse of migrant workers continue to rise.

      • Iran Executes Kurdish Man Despite International Appeals, Rights Activists Say

        Heidar Ghorbani was executed early on December 19 in Sanandaj prison in western Iran's Kurdistan Province, the Oslo-based Iran Human Rights (IHR) and the France-based Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) said, adding that neither his family nor his lawyer had been given prior warning.

        Ghorbani's execution was carried out while his case was still under consideration at the Supreme Court.

      • [Old] I travelled around Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. This is what I saw

        Perhaps no woman on Earth can relate to an Afghan woman more than an Iranian. With shared language and culture, we know what it means when a political power transfer happens and men in power decide on women’s issues. We know that when those men say that ‘proper systems are in place to ensure the safety of women’, it means that they are going to gradually ignore us.

        We know the process: first, they announce their respect for women, emphasising women’s duty of childbearing, then they rule how women should cover themselves, before banning us from going to work or having higher education, ‘for our own good and security’. And then, some time later, after wars, bombs, suicide attacks or economic crises, women's issues are forgotten altogether.

      • Pak Court Allows Minor Christian Girl Who Converted To Islam To Go With Parents

        Arzoo had earlier refused to go home with her parents, who filed a case last year claiming that a Muslim man named Syed Azhar Ali, who is much older than their daughter, first abducted her and then forcibly converted her to Islam and married her.

      • Taliban Further Restrict Afghan Women With New Travel Rules

        Afghanistan’s ruling Taliban issued on Sunday new travel restrictions for the country’s women, an action criticized by the U.S. as further mistreatment of Afghan women by the terror group.

        The Ministry for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice directive limits a woman’s ability to travel farther than 72 kilometers unless accompanied by a close male relative. It also advised taxi drivers to offer rides only to women wearing an Islamic hijab or a headscarf.

        Ministry spokesman Sadiq Akif Mahajer defended the restrictions, telling VOA they were in line with Sharia, or Islamic law.

      • No trips for Afghan women unless escorted by male relative: Taliban

        The move follows the Taliban barring many women in public-sector roles from returning to work in the wake of their August 15 seizure of power, and as girls remain largely cut off from state secondary schooling.

        It also comes despite the hardline Islamists seeking to project a moderate image internationally in a bid to restore aid suspended when the previous government imploded during the final stages of a US military withdrawal.

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • Japan to pay companies to keep sensitive patents secret- Nikkei

          Japan will compensate companies to keep secret patents with potential military applications under proposed legislation, the Nikkei reported on Sunday, without citing sources.

          The patents under review in the proposed economic security legislation will include technology that can help develop nuclear weapons, such as uranium enrichment and cutting-edge innovations like quantum technology, the financial daily said.

        • Japan To Pay Firms To Keep Sensitive Patents Secret: Report

          Japan will compensate companies to keep secret patents with potential military applications under proposed legislation, the Nikkei reported on Sunday, without citing sources.

          The patents under review of the proposed economic security legislation will include technology that can help develop nuclear weapons, such as uranium enrichment and cutting-edge innovations like quantum technology, the Nikkei report said.

        • Hush money: Japan to pay companies to keep sensitive patents secret

          The Japanese government will introduce legislation to keep patents with potential military applications secret, compensating companies and applicants for forgone licensing income, Nikkei has learned.

      • Copyrights

        • Amazon, Lee Child & John Grisham Win $7.8m Judgment Against eBook Pirates

          In 2020, Amazon teamed up with publisher Penguin Random House and authors including Lee Child and John Grisham to sue several pirate eBook sites operating out of Ukraine. After a tortuous legal process, a Washington court has awarded the maximum available statutory damages of $7.8 million.

Recent Techrights' Posts

Stefano Maffulli's (and Microsoft's) Openwashing Slant Initiative (OSI) Report Was Finalised a Few Months Ago, Revealing Only 3% of the Money Comes From Members/People
Microsoft's role remains prominent (for OSI to help the attack on the GPL and constantly engage in promotion of proprietary GitHub)
[Video] Online Brigade Demands That the Person Who Started GNU/Linux is Denied Public Speaking (and Why FSF Cannot Mention His Speeches)
So basically the attack on RMS did not stop; even when he's ill with cancer the cancel culture will try to cancel him, preventing him from talking (or be heard) about what he started in 1983
On Wednesday IBM Announces 'Results' (Partial; Bad Parts Offloaded Later) and Red Hat Has Layoffs Anniversary
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Ean Schuessler, Branden Robinson & Debian SPI accounting crisis
Reprinted with permission from
William Lee Irwin III, Michael Schultheiss & Debian, Oracle, Russian kernel scandal
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Microsoft's Windows Down to 8% in Afghanistan According to statCounter Data
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The EPO's war on paper
EPO: We and Microsoft Will Spy on Everything (No Physical Copies)
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Links 22/04/2024: Windows Getting Worse, Oligarch-Owned Media Attacking Assange Again
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Quality control
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An Unfortunate Miscalculation Of Capital
Reprinted with permission from Andy Farnell
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Trying to 'nix' the founder over alleged "safety" of so-called 'minorities'
[Video] Inauthentic Sites and Our Upcoming Publications
In the future, at least in the short term, we'll continue to highlight Debian issues
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[Teaser] EPO Leaks About EPO Leaks
Yo dawg!
IBM: We Are No Longer Pro-Nazi (Not Anymore)
Historically, IBM has had a nazi problem
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Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Bad faith: how many Debian Developers really committed suicide?
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Links 21/04/2024: Censorship Abundant, More Decisions to Quit Social Control Media
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Bad faith: Debian Community domain used for harassment after WIPO seizure
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If Red Hat/IBM Was a Restaurant...
Two hours ago in
Why We Republish Articles From Debian Disguised.Work (Formerly Debian.Community)
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Google: We Run and Fund Diversity Programs, Please Ignore How Our Own Staff Behaves
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Paul Tagliamonte & Debian Outreachy OPW dating
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[Meme] Fake European Patents Helped Fund the War on Ukraine
The European Patent Office (EPO) does not serve the interests of Europe
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IRC logs for Saturday, April 20, 2024
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Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt (FUD) is the business model of "modern" media
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