For those of you who have spent the last few days under a rock, here’s the story:
Edward Snowden, NSA whistleblower
The Guardian “broke” a story last Thursday, June 6, that the NSA was basically telling Verizon to give them all of everyone’s phone metadata – who they called, where they called from, how long they spoke, stuff like that. On the same day, the Washington Post “broke” basically the same story, only they went for the Internet angle.
What both stories boiled down to is that the NSA was scooping up all of everyone’s phone and Internet data, possibly illegally and certainly without telling anyone, and then sharing it with at least one foreign government, IE, British intelligence agencies. Read more >>
The recent NSA/PRISM/Verizon phone records news inspired me to put together this timeline of articles. I’ve tried to weed out the real tin foil hat-type stuff, but if you find suspect stories/sources in the links below, or stories that have since been debunked, please comment and let me know. You should also check out the EFF’s timeline.
Great article at TechDirt, here: The Aftermath Of Napster: Letting Incumbents Veto Innovation Slows Down Innovation Drastically.
“They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” – Benjamin Franklin
I talk about the nature of innovation — and how it involves an awful lot of trial and error to get it right. The more trials, the faster what works becomes clear, and the faster improvement you get. But the industry’s early success against Napster made that nearly impossible, and massively slowed down innovation in the sector. Yes, a few players kept trying, but it developed much more slowly than other internet-related industries.
It’s very much worth a moment of your time to read – and also, be sure to click through the links. There’s some other good articles there about the results of the RIAA’s (and by insinuation, the MPAA and similar associations) policies.
Having the RIAA and similar clubs around is kind of like being in the same room with a really crabby silverback gorilla, when it comes to web innovation. Every time you look at it, the gorilla gets all pissy and chest-poundy. Every time you look at music, video, and other media on the web, the RIAA and their ilk get all pissy and sue-happy. After a couple of tries, you stop looking at the gorilla, and you stop trying to do cool new things with content on the Internet.
Even in the wake of the Boston bombing, Americans are safer now than they ever have been before. The news is already fear-mongering and the loonies are shouting about conspiracies, but you should remember that you’re safer now than ever, and two bombs and the surrounding media circus doesn’t change that.
“I’m safe. You are safe. 99.999999% of the country is safe. But there never is a completely safe, and there never will be.”
The violent crime rate in the US has been steadily declining for decades. All types of violent crimes are seeing less occurrences not only per capita, but also less total instances, even with the rising population. The violent crime rate in the US has declined nearly 50% from 1991 until 2010, and while 2011 data is still preliminary, the FBI recently announced that there was yet another drop in violent crime (4%) from 2010 to 2011[i]. Yet, people still believe that crime is higher than ever, even though it is quite the opposite.
Read the rest >>
Said to Lady Journos started out strong with quotes like this one and this one, but just lately I’ve seen several like the one above, or like this one, this one and this one. I’m concerned by this tendency lately to equate any off-color comment with sexism just because a guy said it to a girl.
Paying someone a polite compliment isn’t sexism. Asking a rude question isn’t (necessarily) sexism. Pointing out a hole in someone’s clothes isn’t sexism. Belittling someone and treating them like they’re less intelligent and less capable simply because of their gender is sexism.
The comment above is just a joke. It could have been something a guy said to another guy, or a girl said to a guy, etc, etc, and it’s would still be funny and/or relevant. There’s nothing inherently demeaning directly due to gender in the above quote.
It’s not sexism. It might be rude, but it’s not sexist.