Boing Boing 

Cory Doctorow

I write books. My latest are: a YA graphic novel called In Real Life (with Jen Wang); a nonfiction book about the arts and the Internet called Information Doesn't Want to Be Free: Laws for the Internet Age (with introductions by Neil Gaiman and Amanda Palmer) and a YA science fiction novel called Homeland (it's the sequel to Little Brother). I speak all over the place and I tweet and tumble, too.

Fair use: a guide for artists

Pat from American University's Center for Media and Social Impact writes, "Can an artist use images from Facebook in her collage? Can an art teacher show pictures he took at an exhibition in class? Can a museum put a collection online?"

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Twitterbot generates North Korean patriotic slogans with Markov chains


The 300 weird patriotic slogans that North Korea released last week had the stilted feel of machine-generated text.

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Jabberwocky in Nadsat


John-Lewis translated Jabberwocky into Nadsat, the synthetic Russified English dialect spoken by the protagonist of A Clockwork Orange, starting with "Twas dobby and the chellovecks—"

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Police questioning techniques make it easy to elicit false accusations


Horrified psychologists discontinued a study into how police interrogation tactics can create unshakable false memories of crimes; but it turns out that police questioning tactics are even better at elicting false accusations of crimes that never even occurred.

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Shining light on the shadowy, "superhuman" state-level Equation Group hackers


For more than decade, a shadowy, heavily resourced, sophisticated hacker group that Kaspersky Labs calls the Equation Group has committed a string of daring, cutting-edge information attacks, likely at the behest of the NSA.

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Dreamland: Adventures in the Strange Science of Sleep

David K Randall’s Dreamland is a review of the best scientific thinking that illuminates and important subject: namely, why do we spend a third of our lives paralyzed, eyes closed, having vivid hallucinations?

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Martin Luther playset is the best-selling toy of all time


Playmobil's German "Little Luther" toy sold 34,000 pieces in 72 hours.

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Tone-deaf Valentines tweets from the NSA

"Roses are red, violets are blue, #NSA loves privacy rights and you." No, seriously.

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Facebook tells Native Americans that their names aren't "real"


Facebook's "real names" policy means that from time to time, it arbitrarily decides what its users are allowed to call themselves, which sucks if your name is something like Dana Lone Hill or Robin Kills The Enemy or Shane Creepingbear.

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Adventure Time Docs


These Adventure Time Docs sell for $130-$150. (via Super Punch)

Links: Immigrant experience science fiction; principal calls FBI over flag-tossing; Sriracha doesn't want trademarks


Two of these should make you smile, one should make you shake your head.

☣ School Principal Contacts FBI After Student Throws American Flag Out A Window [Techdirt]
Middle School Principal Robert Archuleta from Espanola, NM thinks that there's a federal statute against flag desecration. He's wrong. He thinks veterans died to defend the flag. He's wrong about that too. People die to defend the things the flag symbolizes, like the First Amendment.

☣ Sriracha Boss On Trademark: Mmmmm, No Thanks [Techdirt]
Huy Fong Foods CEO David Tran never filed a trademark on his family's famous Sriracha sauce, and he doesn't plan on it either: he sees every Sriracha-alike as a compliment and validation for his products. No one else in the industry (including the goofy people in the C-suite at Tobasco) can figure it out. Tran does a daily search to look for new Sriracha-style products, each of which brings a smile to his face. (see also)

☣ How to Live on Other Planets: A Handbook for Aspiring Aliens
The first sf anthology about the immigrant experience, featuring Sarah Pinsker, Nisi Shawl, Ken Liu, Bryan Thao Worra’, and Pinckney Benedict. Pre-order on Amazon now.

Cognition, categories and oppression


Our minds naturally group things in culturally specific categories -- for Americans, robins are more "bird" than albatrosses -- and we're better at categorizing more prototypical items than outliers -- but what does this mean when we group humans in categories like "real Americans"?

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Use Facebook while in South Carolina jail, go to solitary for 37 years


Prisons have a legitimate interest in controlling contraband, but in South Carolina, using social media from behind bars is a Class I offense, carrying stiffer penalties than murder, escape and hostage-taking.

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Glitch playing cards

Glitch aesthetic meets sleight of hand -- or games of chance. Rather good glitch-aesthetic and varied across each card. ($14)

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Kickstarting a next-gen steampunk nixie clock


Kyle writes, "The first clock in my series of Steampunk Nixie timepieces was successfully funded on Kickstarter last year, and I've just released the next design! Sleeker, smaller, and at a lower price point, the clock is available in black walnut or purpleheart. 700+ backlight colours, and a ton of other features, each unit is handmade by me."

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If dishwashers were Iphones


My latest Guardian column is design fiction in the form of an open letter from a dishwasher company whose kitchenware marketplace and Dish Rights Management system is under fire.

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Buddhist monks punished for playing Quidditch


"NOB Director Nopparat Benjawattananan said today (July 10) that the monks in the widely shared photo acted inappropriately and lack discipline."

Generic YA dystopian novel (Twitter edition)


The @Dystopianya account is tweeting an entire cliched YA dystopian novel in bite-sized chunks.

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EMI claims it owns copyright to videos of cats purring

Hugh writes, "YouTube's automated takedown tool is known for its flaws, but this week it crossed a line by attacking a purring cat. According to YouTube's Content-ID system both EMI Publishing and PRS own the rights to a 12 second purring loop. The cat in question, Phantom, has filed a dispute and hopes to reclaim his rights." (Thanks, Hugh!)

MC Frontalot dresses up as Grandma, Little Red Riding Hood and the wolf

MC Frontalot has released the video for "Start Over" -- the Little Red Riding Hood song from his album Question Bedtime. He writes, "I finally got the new video out! And I'm extremely happy with it. Director Alicia J. Rose did a bang-up job putting this project together when I came through Portland in December, marshaling the city's youngsters and more makeup than I've ever worn for anything."

If the foreign press treated American measles the way US media covered ebola


If Over There Was Like Over Here [Safwat Saleem]

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Tor.com announces new line of novella-length books

Starting next Sept, the company will publish 3-4 new, DRM-free, original science fiction novellas as ebooks, audiobooks and print-on-demand paper books per month, and they're launching strong, with titles by Seanan McGuire, Mary Robinette Kowal and Paul Cornell, as well as a slate of first-time authors.

R2D2 handbags


These embroidered felt R2D2 handbags ($185, 17" high) are made to order in Moscow by Krukrustudio. (via Bonnie Burton)

Nuanced view of corruption: money doesn't buy elections, it buys influence

Jonathan Soros, son of George Soros and heavy donor to campaigns to get money out of politics, writes a nuanced account of what huge, open campaign contributions do to electoral politics.

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Nathan Barley: old comedy turned out to be a documentary about our future

When Charlie "Black Mirror" Brooker came up with his trustafarian new media parody Nathan Barley for TV Go Home, no one suspected the character would last this long -- or be so relevant.

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Crowdfunding Toronto restaurant expansion for Fonda Lola

Our own sysadmin Ken Snider writes, "Toronto Mexican Restaurant Fonda Lola, in an attempt to both raise capital for bulk purchases (to lower costs) as well as create a War Chest to open a second location, has decided to issue 1000 public shares at $75 each, via Indiegogo."

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Scots! Here's your chance to kill Scotland's national ID database


Ed from the Open Rights Group sez, "The Scottish Government has plans to create a national identity database and we have to stop it."

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You autocomplete me


A letterpress Valentine from Paperwheel ($6.75). (via Dan Hon)

Giant Ron English art-book: Status Factory

Whether putting up his own US/Mexican border-crossing signs or appearing on the Simpsons, street artist Ron English is a versatile, trenchant, eyeball-kicking master of the form.

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Links: EFF won't stop fighting NSA spying; luxury family treehouse; Jeb Bush doxxes the entire state of Florida (& more)


A collection of links to make you think, scream, giggle and then think again.

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