White nationalists who got a $2.5m payout from UNC abuse the DMCA to censor lawyer's trove of documents about it

T. Greg Doucette is the North Carolina litigator who sleuthed out the incredible, bizarre details of the decision of the University of North Carolina's Republican-appointed governors to hand a group of white nationalists $2.5m to build a Confederacy museum. Read the rest

10 Cyber Monday Deals on CBD Oil, Candies, Pet Products, and More

Many people turn to CBD as an all-natural remedy for aches, pains, anxiety, insomnia, and more. You can take the extract in many forms, but the products can be expensive. Now is a good time to stock up, with prices falling on a wide variety of CBD-infused products.. This Cyber Monday, you can save an extra 20% on everything below when you use the discount code CMSAVE20.

Holiday CBD Premium Gummies

Each containing 10mg of high-quality CBD from organic hemp, these gummies are delicious and powerful. Tested by a third-party lab, they contain no THC — so you won’t feel any psychoactive effects.

MSRP: $39.99 

Sale Price: $32

Price with CMSAVE20 code: $25.60

CBD Gummies 500mg

Another tasty option, these colorful gummies are made with CBD hemp isolate that is 99.99% grown in the USA. The pack contains sour strawberry, sour apple, sour tutti-frutti, and sour blue raspberry flavors, with 25mg of CBD per rainbow belt.

MSRP: $40

Sale Price: $29.99

Price with CMSAVE20 code: $23.99

FOCUS 750mg Broad Spectrum CBD Tincture + Peppermint

This tincture is made with hemp that is farmed, extracted, formulated and packaged in Colorado. Along with CBD, it delivers a refreshing hit of peppermint to provide an additional punch. 

MSRP: $90

Sale Price: $71.99

Price with CMSAVE20 code: $57.59

FOMO Bones CBD Dog Treats

If you experience good things with CBD, it's only natural to want the same for your pet. These tasty treats deliver a safe dose, along with passion flower, L-Tryptophan, valerian, and chamomile to keep your pupper calm and happy. Read the rest

Podcast: Party Discipline, a Walkaway story (Part 1)

In my latest podcast (MP3), I've started a serial reading of my novella Party Discipline, which I wrote while on a 35-city, 45-day tour for my novel Walkaway in 2017; Party Discipline is a story set in the world of Walkaway, about two high-school seniors who conspire to throw a "Communist Party" at a sheet metal factory whose owners are shutting down and stealing their workers' final paychecks. These parties are both literally parties -- music, dancing, intoxicants -- and "Communist" in that the partygoers take over the means of production and start them up, giving away the products they create to the attendees. Walkaway opens with a Communist Party and I wanted to dig into what might go into pulling one of those off.

I don’t remember how we decided exactly to throw a Communist party. It had been a running joke all through senior year, whenever the obvious divisions between the semi-zottas and the rest of us came too close to the surface at Burbank High: “Have fun at Stanford, come drink with us at the Communist parties when you’re back on break.”

The semi-zottas were mostly white, with some Asians—not the brown kind—for spice. The non-zottas were brown and black, and we were on our way out. Out of Burbank High, out of Burbank, too. Our parents had lucked into lottery tickets, buying houses in Burbank back when they were only ridiculously expensive. Now they were crazy. We’d be the last generation of brown kids to go to Burbank High because the instant we graduated, our parents were going to sell and use the money to go somewhere cheaper, and the leftovers would let us all take a couple of mid-range MOOCs from a Big Ten university to round out our community college distance-ed degrees.


Read the rest

I chatted with Danny Elfman about his new MasterClass, and his ventriloquist dummy "Buddy"

You may remember I recently blogged about Danny Elfman's new "music for film" MasterClass (which launched on Halloween, naturally). A day or so after it posted I got an email from someone on his team asking if I wanted to interview him. My response, "Uh, who could say no to that...?!" I soon found myself Skyping with the founder of Oingo Boingo, the father of the Simpsons' theme, and one of the most prolific film composers of all time — Happy Mutant extraordinaire, Mr. Danny Elfman.

Here's what we chatted about:

Rusty: Hi there, Danny. I'm thrilled to speak with you today.

Danny: Hello, thank you.

Rusty: I wanted to share a couple of things we have in common real quick before we get into it. One... we're both redheads.

Danny: I was just going to say that. That's got to be the first thing.

Rusty: Right? Well, it's obvious. Two... we both collect strange and unusual objects.

Danny: Ooh...

Rusty: Just saw an article about your strange and unusual collection and they shared a picture of you with your creepy ventriloquist dummy.

Danny: Buddy!

Rusty: Yeah, Buddy! Well, I wanted to tell you, you must know Archie McPhee...

Danny: Yeah.

Rusty: So, a couple of years ago, they made my likeness into a product. I'm a creepy ventriloquist dummy toy, a finger puppet.

Danny: Really...?!

Rusty: Yes.

Danny: Wow... Oh my god, that's so cool. What an honor. You should be honored.

Rusty: Oh I am.

Danny: Wow. Well, you have to go look at my nine episodes of "Danny and Buddy." Read the rest

There are no humans in Star Wars, so what are the creatures we are watching?

From 2013, but new to me, Max Gladstone makes some close observations regarding the odd world of Episodes 1-6.

The title card tells us that the story takes place long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away. So the characters aren't actually human or even necessarily from a human-like society, they're just played by human actors.

What can we learn about the creatures true nature from studying the first six movies?

I think a few important context clues present a very different picture of the dominant race of the Original Trilogy.

Gender is the most important clue. The Original Trilogy has a shortage of women when considered by the standards of a two-sexed mammalian species. Leia is the most prominent female, and the only one to feature in all three movies. Aunt Beru and Mon Mothma also have named speaking roles. Aside from these three, I can’t think of another definitely-female-definitely-‘human’ in the series. In RotJ Leia describes her mother, who is obviously a queen. These females all possess at least local political and social authority.

Family is a second important clue—or, rather, the absence of family. With one notable exception, people in the series don’t talk much about parentage. No non-Force sensitive male ever describes his family, if I recall correctly. Han, Lando, Wedge, Biggs, Tarkin, Dodonna, and so forth, all might as well have sprung from the brows of their ships. In six+hours of film about war, I would expect to see someone to drop at least a single reference to parents of some sort.

Read the rest

35-year-old Commodore 64 Easter egg revealed on Christian rock album

Way back in 1984, Christian rock band Prodigal hid a Commodore 64 program on their "Electric Eye" album. The 35-year-old Easter egg, which I won't spoil for you, was recently unlocked by YouTuber 8-Bit Show And Tell.

The son of band's lead singer, Dan Boldman, left this fun comment, "Loyd Boldman, the lead singer of Prodigal, was my dad & I thank you so much for doing this! This is the first time I’ve ever actually seen somebody use this program! I’ve been hearing about it since I was a kid!"

(Coudal Partners)

screenshot via 8-Bit Show and Tell Read the rest

14 Can't-Miss Deals With an Extra 20% off This Cyber Monday

With the season of shopping in full swing, now is an excellent time to go looking for new tech and holiday gifts. Of course, that means everyone else has the same idea. Instead of fighting through the crowds, take a look at these Cyber Monday deals — now with an extra 20% off the sale price when you use coupon code CMSAVE20.

Beard Head Stubble Populous

Billed as the first-ever beard headwear, the Stubble Populous beanie hat comes with a cozy fake beard to keep your face warm. The beard makes a fun addition to your outfit, and the Velcro attachment makes it easy to remove.

MSRP: $24.99

Sale Price: $19.99

Price with CMSAVE20 code: $15.99

MEE audio EarBoost EB1 Adaptive Wireless Earphones

The unique EarBoost earphones connect to a companion smartphone app to provide tailor-made sound. They also have Qualcomm aptX Low Latency technology for better Bluetooth syncing, and the 6mm drivers deliver rich audio.

MSRP: $99.99

Sale Price: $49.99

Price with CMSAVE20 code: $39.99

Leather Notebooks & Journals

These beautiful notebooks have pages made from recycled cotton paper pages, and covers decorated with hand-stitched embossed leather. They are environmentally friendly and small enough to take anywhere.

MSRP: $39

Sale Price: $35.10

Price with CMSAVE20 code: $28.08

Wilfa Precision Automatic Coffee Maker

Straight out of Norway, the Wilfa Precision offers state-of-the-art brewing technology. This award-winning machine keeps tight control over the water content and temperature of your coffee to ensure consistent, flavorful results.

MSRP: $349.99

Sale Price: $74.99

Price with CMSAVE20 code: $59.99 Read the rest

Japanese overdesign fetish: Beetle 3-Way Highlighter

The business end of KOKUYO Beetle Tips highlighter looks a bit like a rhinoceros beetle's horns, hence the name. Three-way refers to the fun you'll have with the highlighter when you make three different kinds of marks with it.

Amazon sells a colorful 5-pack for [amazon_link asins='B001J5PBUO' template='PriceLink' store='boingboing' marketplace='US' link_id='c08ba8e9-91c2-4cbc-ba4c-119e5639d307'].

[via] Read the rest

White woman interrupted a Broadway talkback to call the playwright "racist against white people."

Jeremy O. Harris's Slave Play is meant to be provocative—certainly moreso than most other Broadway productions that transfer from Off Broadway theatres. The play itself is about a group of interracial couples who go to a kind of psychosexual couples' therapy that involves BDSM, reflecting Antebellum master-slave dynamics. During previews, the show even hosted a "Black Out," or a dedicated performance for black audiences, so they can enjoy and discuss the play without worrying about the reactions of white people around them.

As such, it's not surprising that it might make some white people (and others) uncomfortable; that is, after all, the purpose of provocative art. But it reached a head after the Friday night performance on November 29 during a post-show talkback hosted by the playwright:

Apparently, the unnamed woman missed the whole part of the play about white people taking up space and centering things around themselves. She yelled at Harris for—in her words—"being told as a single woman I'm not good enough to fucking raise [my own children]," and asked, "How the fuck am I not a fucking marginalized member of this goddamn society?" Read the rest

A dying Stars Wars fan got an advance screening of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

A Star Wars fan in hospice is not expected to live long enough to see Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker when it is released in theaters on December. But a representative from Disney went to Rowans Hospice in England with a laptop containing the movie and showed it to the patient.

The hospice staff also  held a Star Wars themed party for the man and his family. "We were joined by Stormtroopers, wookies and droids and a brilliant time was had by all," tweeted a staffer.

Image: Rowan's Hospice

[via Neatorama] Read the rest

China tech firms shape new facial recognition and surveillance standards at UN: Report

“Chinese technology companies are shaping new facial recognition and surveillance standards at the UN, according to leaked documents, as they try to open up new markets in the developing world for their cutting-edge technologies,” reports the Financial Times in a piece making the rounds on Monday. Read the rest

Trump imposes metal tariffs on Brazil and Argentina

Acting United States President Donald J. Trump just imposed some new metal tariffs against the South American nations of Brazil and Argentina. Read the rest

Delta evacuation slide falls from jet in sky, nobody hurt

Can you imagine seeing this yourself, while you're wandering around, minding your own business, not expecting to see part of an airplane falling from the sky? Read the rest

What it's like to take a vacation in Singapore's Changi Airport

Singapore's Changi Airport is rated the #1 airport in the world by most entities that rate airports. It has theme parks, free movies, a retro video game arcade, hiking trails, and much more. Stephanie Rosenbloom took a 27-hour vacation there with her husband and wrote about it for The New York Times. I was in Singapore in 2018 but didn't spend much time at the airport. I'm headed there again soon and this time I plan to wander around.

As with all wonderlands, though, there’s a fine line between fantasy and dystopia. Looking around, it isn’t hard to imagine a future in which everyone lives in domed cities in temperature-controlled, never-ending summers. Signs refer to “trails” that you can “hike,” as if Jewel’s smooth, clean floors are rugged arteries through the wilderness. The trees and shrubs around the waterfall have a corporate name: the Shiseido Forest Valley, after the Japanese beauty company. The waterfall is officially known as the HSBC Rain Vortex. And it’s surrounded by stores and restaurants, allowing a visitor to keep one eye on the jungle-scape and the other on the latest fashions at Calvin Klein — or the queue for Shake Shack. The result is a staggering display of artificiality and nature, with lights that can turn a waterfall crimson, or make it seem as if you’re dining al fresco under a starry sky.

Image: Creative Commons Zero - CC0 Read the rest

Behind the One-Way Mirror: EFF's "deep dive into corporate surveillance"

EFF's Behind the One-Way Mirror: A Deep Dive Into the Technology of Corporate Surveillance is a long, comprehensive look at corporate tracking, particularly invisible, third-party tracking, as with ad-networks, license-plate readers and facial recognition. Read the rest

This rebar-tying video is weirdly calming

I'm not an engineer, but I can't stop watching this hypnotic and oddly satisfying video of tying rebar. Read the rest

Two ways to argue more effectively with a political opponent

It's very difficult to change someone's mind on a political issue. Facts rarely work, because the person you are arguing with has likely already been told the facts and has already formed reasons to dismiss the facts. But there are two science-back ways to argue, according to this Vox article by Brian Resnick, that will give you a better change of nudging someone, ever-so-slightly, in the direction you wish them to go.

Strategy 1: "If the argument you find convincing doesn’t resonate with someone else, find out what does."

Here’s an example. If you’re trying to convince a conservative of the merits of kneeling for the national anthem in protest, emphasize the traditional values around political and religious freedom. Willer suggests, “arguing that the founding fathers were deeply concerned with protecting our rights to social protest.”

Strategy 2: "Listen. Your ideological opponents want to feel like they’ve been heard."

In 2016, the journal Science published a remarkable bit of insight: It's possible to reduce prejudice, and sway opinions on anti-transgender legislation, with one 10-minute conversation. What's more, the researchers found that the change of heart can last at least three months and is resistant to anti-transgender attack ads.

It worked because the canvassers in the study did a simple thing: they listened... In talking about their own lives, the voters engage in what psychologists call "active processing." The idea is that people learn lessons more durably when they come to the conclusion themselves, not when someone "bitch-slaps you with a statistic," says Fleischer.

Read the rest

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