James Losey from New America Foundation writes, "I thought you might be interested in a new 'feature' of the latest Android phone. Officially released tomorrow October 6, some T-mobile stores began selling the HTC G2 yesterday. Within 24 hours, users have discovered that the phone has built-in hardware that restricts what software a device owner might wish to install.
Specifically, one of the microchips embedded into the G2 prevents device owners from making permanent changes to the Android operating system, re-installing the original firmware."
Plugging a USB wireless modem into a laptop for T-Mobile's broadband services does not mean that T-Mobile can say that Ubuntu Linux is not an approved operating system, or that Skype is not an allowed voice service. Yet when unsuspecting members of the public buy Google's Android G2 at a T-Mobile store, they aren't getting a customizable mobile computer or phone but are instead getting a device where the hardware itself dramatically limits users' right to make changes to their computers and install the operating system of their choice.
Clearly, this is a major new initiative to control users rights to run their computers as they see fit. Instead, the new Google Android hardware rootkit acts just like a virus -- overriding user's preferences to change settings and software to conform to the desires of a third party. And just like a virus, this kind of behavior should be just as illegal. Users of the new Google Android G2 should be warned that their device has a rootkit that will overwrite their software modifications. We are seeking further clarification as to the legality of this malicious software.
Wells Fargo got caught ripping off millions of customers by setting up fake accounts in their names, then billing them for “services” related to those accounts, sometimes tanking their credit-ratings, costing them jobs, even their houses — but the company says you’re not allowed to sue them because their employees fraudulently signed your name to […]
You might think that when companies impose crappy, abusive terms of service on their customers that the market could sort it out, by creating competition to see who could offer the best terms and thus win the business of people fed up with bad actors.
Maybe it’s entirely because of podcast ads, but drag-and-drop tools like Squarespace have gotten immensely popular in recent years. While it’s definitely a great tool for any non-coders who want to get a small website up and running quickly, managing content with a primarily visual interface can become a pain once you have more than […]
When you can’t wait for the world’s longest meeting to end, the mindless leg bouncing makes your boredom obvious and just annoys everybody else. Everyone knows the TPS reports need the damn cover sheet, but some sadistic colleague keeps forgetting, probably on purpose just to eat into your lunch hour. Enough is enough!While serving a […]
What could be more fun than a slingshot that shoots tiny airplanes? A slingshot that shoots tiny glowing airplanes of course! These toy planes are outfitted with ultra-bright LEDs, so you can fly all night without losing them in the trees.Whether you are a regular-sized child, or an overgrown adult one, these light-up flyers offer […]