London Metropolitan Police Service bans Extinction Rebellion from entering the city

Folks have been protesting about our species' slow turning of the knife deeper into the belly of Mother Earth for a long time now. However, once it became evident that it was a killing wound we inflicted on the environment, leaving us well and truly fucked, the protests escalated in size and numbers. Quickly.

Kids have been walking out of class, taking to the streets by the thousands. The pillaging of the Amazon, which has been going on for decades, is suddenly on the agenda in a big way with the United Nations and popping up in news broadcasts around the world. The climate activist group Extinction Rebellion is all up in everyone's grills around the globe, too. Recently, members of the group took to the streets to block traffic and generally fuck shit up (in a good way!) in major cities around the globe. London was on their hit list and man, did they hit it: shutting down streets in the city's downtown core, primarily in Trafalgar Square. Flights out of Heathrow Airport were disrupted. Over an eight-day period, London's Metropolitan Police Service threw over 1,300 of the protesters in the clink. It seems that the MPS was so sick of filling out paperwork for the arrests that they opted to make it illegal for Extinction Rebelling to do their thing within the city's borders... which, when you think about it will likely result in more paperwork. But hey: I am but a simple writer.

From The Guardian:

The Metropolitan police issued a revised section 14 order on Monday night that said “any assembly linked to the Extinction Rebellion ‘Autumn Uprising’ ...

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Britain's unbelievably stupid, dangerous porn "age verification" scheme is totally dead

For years, Her Majesty's Government has been pursuing a plan to use the Great Firewall of Britain to block all porn sites unless they collect and retain personally identifying information on every porn user attesting to their age, thus fashioning the world's largest kompromat database, which -- thanks to the use of credit-cards as part of the verification scheme -- could be conveniently sorted by its members' net worth by would-be blackmailers. Read the rest

Zoophile stalked farmers who denied him their mares

At The Washington Post, Antonia Noori Farzan reports on an alleged zoophile who demanded farmers let him at the horses while conducting a terrifying stalking campaign against those who refused. For well over a year, two mysteries consumed a peaceful New Jersey community.

The 31-year-old was arrested Oct. 3, according to the New Jersey Herald. Prosecutors said at a Wednesday detention hearing that since August 2018, he had been sending letters and emails detailing his request to farms, stables and horse boarding facilities throughout Sussex County, located in the northernmost point of the state. Unsurprisingly, many of the recipients were not thrilled to learn than an adult man was interested in having a sexual relationship with their livestock

The man used the nickname "TackyChaps". Read the rest

The terrible "Blurred Lines" copyright decision is now threatening Lil Nas X and Cardi B

Back in 2015, the Marvin Gaye estate secured a bizarre copyright judgment against Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke over their hit song "Blurred Lines," in which the Gaye estate argued (successfully) that even though "Blurred Lines" didn't copy Gaye's songs, it copied the feeling of Gaye's music -- that is, that Thicke and Williams made a song that reminded people of Gaye. Read the rest

New Tekashi69 sentencing date announced

Not ashamed to admit I'm obsessed with this crime story. Read the rest

After an injunction against Pacifica radio, New York’s WBAI is back on the air

Yesterday, volunteers and staff at New York's beloved Pacifica Radio affiliate, WBAI, got an abrupt notice informing them that Pacifica had shut down the station, in order to prevent its "financial losses" from "jeopardiz[ing] the survival of the entire network." Read the rest

Trump's FCC won a terrible victory in last week's net neutrality ruling, but we're still winning the war

On Oct 1, a coalition of public interest groups and states' attorneys general lost their appeal in a legal bid to block the FCC's dismantling of federal Net Neutrality protections, accomplished through a mixture of lies and fraud. It was a crushing defeat for Americans and American competitiveness and access to digital life. Read the rest

Identity theft's newest target: your face

A lot of companies struggle with bias in the workplace, but for many big tech companies, the problem is a bit more extreme. Why, because it's not just the human beings that are racist, a lot of their algorithms are biased too. This is the problem that Google reportedly was trying to solve when they got themselves into their latest privacy scandal, tricking black and brown “volunteers” to submit to 3D face scans. Read the rest

US prosecutors say the "bankrupt" Sacklers still have billions hidden away

The Sackler family (previously) made more money than the Rockefellers when their family business, Purdue Pharma, misled the public about the addictiveness of its flagship opioid, Oxycontin, and induced doctors to overprescribe it, kicking off an epidemic that has killed more Americans than the Vietnam war, with the body count at 400,000 and still climbing. Read the rest

Beware this marijuana vaping cartridge brand

'Dank' is definitely not dank.

Florida judge jails man for missing jury duty

Deandre Somerville, 21, of West Palm Beach, overslept and missed jury duty. Florida judge John S. Kastrenekes threw him in jail for 10 days.

"Now I have a record," he told local media. "I almost feel like a criminal now. Now, I have to explain this in every interview."

Somerville was to be one of six jurors, and it was his first time serving on a jury. He told local media he slept though his alarm and woke up hours later, realising he had missed the trial.

Kastrenakes also demanded a letter of apology, and went as far as to say how much of his time Somerville wasted: "almost an hour." After the media noticed, Kastrenakes reduced the sentence -- but Somerville had already served his 10 days.

It's not the first time a questionable decision has made the case about Judge Kastrenakes. He threatened a highway patrol trooper who gave him a ticket and ended up disqualified from a case involving another patrolman because of what he said to her.

Kastrenakes called trooper Sandra Thompson a “liar” during the 12:30 a.m. traffic stop and said the tickets she wrote him would color his opinion of troopers in court, the highway patrol didn’t make a report of the incident until five months later.

Even so, Kastrenakes this morning granted prosecutors’ motion for disqualification, stating “the public must have the perception of judicial fairness.”

“At the time, I was upset about receiving a ticket which seemed to me to be unjustified by the circumstances,” Kastrenakes wrote in his order, filed separately this morning in each of seven cases made by the FHP.

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The Hippocratic License: A new software license that prohibits uses that contravene the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Coraline Ada Ehmke's Hippocratic License is a software license that permits the broad swathe of activities enabled by traditional free/open licenses, with one exception it bars use by: "individuals, corporations, governments, or other groups for systems or activities that actively and knowingly endanger, harm, or otherwise threaten the physical, mental, economic, or general well-being of individuals or groups in violation of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights." Read the rest

Lawyers for Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes want to quit

Elizabeth Holmes continues to struggle.

ABC7:

According to our media partner, the Mercury News, Holmes' lawyers have asked a judge to let them quit the case. They're claiming Holmes is not paying them. "Ms. Holmes has not paid Cooley for any of its work as her counsel of record in this action for more than a year," lawyers Stephen Neal, John Dwyer and Jeffrey Lombard said in the filing obtained by the newspaper. "Further, given Ms. Holmes's current financial situation, Cooley has no expectation that Ms. Holmes will ever pay it for its services as her counsel."

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Women arrested after complaining to police that hitman ripped them off

El Pais reports that a mother and her daughter were arrested after hiring a man to kill a swindler, then complaining to police when he failed to do the job.

To be able to start working on the operation and locate the target, the fake spy requested a kind of deposit, of €7,000. This, he claimed, was the money needed to pay his informants and locate hitmen who could carry out the operation. But time passed, and the hit did not take place.

The fake hitman was also arrested and charged. The alleged swindler was finally found—to ensure he lives—and may finally face charges of his own in what Spanish police have named "Operation Kafka."

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In Supreme Court filing, Apple CEO Tim Cook opposes Trump, supports immigrant rights and 'Dreamers'

On Wednesday, Apple CEO Tim Cook filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court declaring opposition to efforts by Donald Trump’s administration to end the federal 'Dreamer' program which protects from deportation hundreds of thousands of immigrants who brought into the country as kids. Read the rest

That time my husband reported me to the Facebook police: a case study

[Stanford's Daphne Keller is a preeminent cyberlawyer and one of the world's leading experts on "intermediary liability" -- that is, when an online service should be held responsible for the actions of this user. She brings us a delightful tale of Facebook's inability to moderate content at scale, which is as much of a tale of the impossibility (and foolishness) of trying to support 2.3 billion users (who will generate 2,300 one-in-a-million edge-cases every day) as it is about a specific failure. We're delighted to get the chance to run this after a larger, more prestigious, longer running publication spiked it because it had a penis in it. Be warned: there is a willie after the jump. -Cory]

Those of us who study the rules that Internet platforms apply to online speech have increasingly rich data about platforms’ removal decisions. Sources like transparency reports provide a statistical big picture, aggregating individual takedown decisions. Read the rest

Man unperturbed by armed robber

This security footage depicts the armed robbery of a bar in St. Louis. One of the patrons, named as Tony Tovar, simply ignores the robber while the others duck and hide, even when prodded with a rifle. Here's an interview with him.

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