Texas: prisoners whose families maintain their social media presence face 45 days in solitary

Cellule du quartier d'isolement de la prison Jacques-Cartier de Rennes (France), à travers le judas.

According to a new offender manual from Texas Department of Criminal Justice, prisoners whose families maintain a social media presence to call attention to their incarceration will be liable to harsh punishment, including up to 45 days in solitary, loss of privileges, and extra work duty. Read the rest

Facebook morphs into a clickhole, at the expense of personal sharing

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1035

Surveillance capitalism continues to astound and confound: as Facebook has turned into the traffic-factory life-support for ad-supported media -- and as Facebook profits from those companies by charging for "access" to their own followers -- the amount of personal sharing on Facebook is dropping off sharply. Read the rest

The UK government's voice-over-IP standard is designed to be backdoored

dadams2

GCHQ, the UK's spy agency, designed a security protocol for voice-calling called MIKEY-SAKKE and announced that they'll only certify VoIP systems as secure if they use MIKEY-SAKKE, and it's being marketed as "government-grade security." Read the rest

Four days in, and the BBC hasn't even mentioned the biggest bribery scandal in history

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1025

On Wednesday, Fairfax and Huffington Post broke the Unaoil story, revealing that they had been leaked a trove of email from an obscure Monaco family business that had acted as a global fixer in bribery and bid-rigging that looted the treasuries and oil-fields of some of the world's poorest countries, from Iraq to Yemen, acting on behalf of blue-chip companies like Rolls-Royce and Halliburton. Read the rest

Today is your last day to comment on Internet censorship through copyright abuse

animation (3)

Evan from Fight for the Future writes, "Hey Internet! Ever since SOPA we've all known that copyright laws have a huge impact on the Internet, free speech, innovation, creativity." Read the rest

"Reputation management" companies apparently induce randos to perjure themselves by pretending to be anonymous posters

hqdefault

Pissedconsumer has noticed that a bunch of "reputation management" companies are filing lawsuits to get anonymous customer complaints removed, and very quickly identifying the anonymous posters, who swear affidavits okaying the removal of their complaints. Read the rest

Trains Botting: twitterbot posts a new emoji train landscape every 4 hours

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1019

Trains Botting/@choochoobot is a new twitterbot from prolific botmaster and EFF staffer Parker Higgins. Read the rest

Landmark study on the effects of copyright takedown abuse on online free expression

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1018

Three of America's sharpest copyright scholars have released a landmark study of the impact of copyright takedowns on free expression in America: Notice and Takedown in Everyday Practice, by Jennifer Urban (UC Berkeley), Joe Karaganis (Columbia), and Brianna L. Schofiel (UC Berkeley) uses detailed surveys and interviews and a random sample from over 100,000,000 takedown notices to analyze the proportion of fraudulent, malformed or otherwise incorrect acts of censorship undertaken in copyright's name, using the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's takedown procedure. Read the rest

Surveillance has reversed the net's capacity for social change

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1009

Sociologists describe the "spiral of silence": people with socially unpopular ideas fear that they're the only ones who think that way, and say nothing, and their silence convinces others that they, too are alone, begetting yet more silence. Read the rest

Instagram is a dialup BBS

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x999

JWZ reminds us that all social media is some variation on the walled garden strategy, designed to lock you in and lock value away from the open, interoperable Web into a silo where it languishes and rots. You know, AOL. Read the rest

Jerks were able to turn Microsoft's chatbot into a Nazi because it was a really crappy bot

dying__robot_by_poofproff-d9phzy7

Microsoft Research deployed a tween-simulating chatbot this week, only to recall it a few hours later because it had turned into a neo-Nazi, and the next day, they published a bewildered apology that expressed shock that it had been so easy for trolls to corrupt their creation. Read the rest

Bruce Sterling's SXSW 2016 closing remarks

Cdn7XIRUYAAJ1fx

It's his 30th consecutive closing address to the attendees of SXSW Interactive, and as always, Bruce delivers: an overarching, everything-in-the-world tour of everything weird, dystopian, screwed up, hopeful and ugly in the year 2016. Read the rest

Russia moots ban on discussions about VPNs, reverse proxies, and other anti-censorship techniques

Emblem_of_Roskomnadzor.svg.

Russian law provides for a national censorwall that entertainment companies can populate with the URLs of websites they dislike, without much oversight or review (it's similar the system used in the UK in that regard). Read the rest

BART's twitter manager drops truth-bombs, world cheers

pk9fbzssr3amiyiek8ve

On Wednesday night, the person who runs the Twitter feed for San Francisco's BART system began answering riders' frustrated tweets with frank, honest statements that eschewed the bland "thank you for your feedback" and the chipper "we're working on it!" norms of corporate social media in favor of brutally honest assessments of the sorry state of the system, starting with, "BART was built to transport far fewer people, and much of our system has reached the end of its useful life. This is our reality." Read the rest

Group chat: "an all-day meeting with random participants and no agenda"

foosd

37 Signals' Jason Fried was there when the company launched Campfire, a pioneering group chat for business that made it easier for whole companies to follow each others' work; 10 years later, he's ready to talk about the ways that group chat gets in everyone's way. Read the rest

Glitch News Network: glitched and mashed news in less than 2 seconds

tumblr_o3bk81rGma1v9pnfqo1_400

The Glitch News Network is the latest twitterbot from Shardcore, a prolific purveyor of mad bots (previously). Read the rest

Some ad-blockers are tracking you, shaking down publishers, and showing you ads

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x977

The ad-subsidized Web is at a crossroads: faced with pressure from social media platform, publishers are accepting ever-more-intrusive ads, which combine with the mounting public concern over privacy and tracking to encourage ad-blocking, which, in turn, makes publishers more desperate and more biddable to the darkest surveillance and pop-up desires of advertisers. Read the rest

More posts