Germany mulls sweeping surveillance bill, crypto backdoors and fingerprinting kids

Germany's interior ministry has announced sweeping new surveillance powers ahead of the coming national election, which would include the right to infect residents' computers with malware in order to spy on their encrypted communications (shades of the illegal Bundestrojaner program), ordering tech companies to deliberately introduce defects into their cryptography, and fingerprinting children as young […]

Great Firewall of Cameron goes mandatory, ISPs required to buy magic no-false-positive beans, as well

Britain's Great Firewall of Cameron has just made the jump from "voluntary" to "mandatory." The UK government has announced that the demand that all ISPs offer an opt-out "adult content" filter will soon be a requirement, covering even small ISPs and ISPs that advertise themselves as censorship-free. ISPs will be required to operate filters that […]

Disney gives Brave princess a body makeover

Gone are the wild tight curls, relaxed now into auburn waves. Her waist is cinched, her bust inflated: skinnier and sexier is the new Merida, star of Brave. And gone, in some of the new art, is that troublesome weapon: no fit thing for a Disney princess, after all. Fans and websites lamenting the changes, […]

UK immigration test to focus on Shakespeare and Christianity instead of human rights and civics

The UK Home Secretary has announced changes to the "Life in the UK" immigrant test. Instead of containing information on human rights, the nature of the political structure of the UK and the EU, and who has the legitimate right to access benefits, the test will focus on useful things that everyone in Britain really […]

Duluth: Forget Topeka, we will offer Google our first-born children

In an attempt to secure their place as the proving ground for Google's 1 gigabit-per-second fiber optic broadband, the leaders of Topeka, Kansas temporarily changed that city's name to "Google, Kansas". The leaders of Duluth, Minnesota—another would-be broadband guinea pig—think that's pretty smart. In order "to prevail in the Google pandering arms race" they're now […]