the unofficial Slashdot digest for 2019-Jul-08 today archive


  1. Indoor Carbon Dioxide Levels Could Be a Health Hazard, Scientists Warn
  2. Physicist Solves 2,000-Year-Old Optical Problem
  3. Sneaky Chrome Extension Disguises Netflix As a Google Hangout To Help You Slack Off At Work
  4. Instagram To Notify Users Comments Might Be Offensive Before They Are Posted
  5. Tesco, One of the World's Largest Supermarket Operators, Is Testing Cashierless Stores Solely Dependent On Cameras
  6. IDC: For 1 In 4 Companies, Half of All AI Projects Fail
  7. Amazon Staff Will Strike During Prime Day Over Working Conditions
  8. Brazil To Add Digital Data Protection To Fundamental Rights
  9. How Facebook Fought Fake News About Facebook
  10. Email App Superhuman's Superficial Privacy Fixes Do Not Prevent It From Spying on You
  11. Microsoft Releases Public Preview of Desktop Analytics To Help With Windows 10 Update Readiness Checks
  12. Microsoft Warns About Astaroth Malware Campaign
  13. Robocall Ban Should Target Texts and Foreign Calls, FCC Chief Says
  14. Pirate Our Games, Don't Buy Them From Key Resellers, Say Indies
  15. A Look at How Movies and Shows From Netflix and Amazon Prime Video Are Pirated
  16. Mozilla is Funding a Way To Support Julia in Firefox
  17. More Than 1,000 Android Apps Harvest Data Even After You Deny Permissions
  18. Is Ham Radio a Hobby, a Utility, or Both? A Battle Over Spectrum Heats Up
  19. British Airways Hit With Record Fine For Data Breach
  20. Unlivable Wages in Expensive Cities Are Plaguing the Video Game Industry
  21. Why We All Need To Agree That It Is Flat Out Unacceptable To Use RSA in 2019
  22. Ask Slashdot: Should the ISS Go Commercial?
  23. Meet The Community That Always Seem To Win Online Sweepstakes

Alterslash picks up to the best 5 comments from each of the day’s Slashdot stories, and presents them on a single page for easy reading.

Indoor Carbon Dioxide Levels Could Be a Health Hazard, Scientists Warn

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: Indoor levels of carbon dioxide could be clouding our thinking and may even pose a wider danger to human health, researchers say. The authors of the latest study -- which reviews current evidence on the issue -- say there is a growing body of research suggesting levels of CO2 that can be found in bedrooms, classrooms and offices might have harmful effects on the body, including affecting cognitive performance. "There is enough evidence to be concerned, not enough to be alarmed. But there is no time to waste," said Dr Michael Hernke, a co-author of the study from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, stressing further research was needed. Writing in the journal Nature Sustainability, Hernke and colleagues report that they considered 18 studies of the levels of CO2 humans are exposed to, as well as its health impacts on both humans and animals.

Traditionally, the team say, it had been thought that CO2 levels would need to reach a very high concentration of at least 5,000 parts per million (ppm) before they would affect human health. But a growing body of research suggests CO2 levels as low as 1,000ppm could cause health problems, even if exposure only lasts for a few hours. The team say crowded or poorly ventilated classrooms, office environments and bedrooms have all been found to have levels of CO2 that exceed 1,000ppm, and are spaces that people often remain in for many hours at a time. Air-conditioned trains and planes have also been found to exceed 1,000ppm.

Don't breathe

By nospam007 • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

"Indoor Carbon Dioxide Levels Could Be a Health Hazard"

So we halve the Dioxide and use Carbon Monoxide, then we won't have to bother anymore.

Re:Yes, the Navy and NASA have no clue about CO2

By Rei • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

A lot of the reason for our increased understanding of the negative impacts of higher CO2 levels is precisely because of research conducted on the ISS, where CO2 levels are both A) higher than on most environments on earth, and B) fluctuate significantly, allowing for crew health to be correlated with CO2 levels.

It's very difficult to keep ISS CO2 levels low, but research is pointing to the importance of keeping it as low as you realistically can.

Re:That burning sensation...

By Rei • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Indeed, anoxia without associated hypercapnia is probably the most painless way to die. It's so painless that it's insidious, having caused a number of plane crashes over the years. Mild hypoxia leads to symptoms similar to alcohol consumption - impaired decision making, impaired motor skills, etc. The impaired decision making makes it even harder for a person to notice and react to their hypoxic state. As the oxygen partial pressure continues to fall, it steadily progresses from there to loss of consciousness, and eventually, death.

It's hypercapnia that makes you suffer when you hold your breath or breathe air in a confined space.

Earlier Harvard study

By drinkypoo • Score: 3 • Thread

Re:That burning sensation...

By EvilSS • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Interestingly, your lungs will not detect a lack of O2.

This isn't entirely true. You are correct that you won't get that panic-burning sensation when hypoxia occurs without CO2 buildup, however your body can detect, via the peripheral chemoreceptors, low O2 levels without a corresponding increase in CO2 concentrations in the blood, and it will increase the respiratory effort accordingly. This can be observed during exercise or when visiting high altitudes.

Physicist Solves 2,000-Year-Old Optical Problem

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Mexican physicist Rafael Gonzalez has found the solution to spherical aberration in optical lenses, solving the 2,000-year-old Wasserman-Wolf problem that Isaac Newton himself could not solve. Newton invented a telescope that solved the chromatic aberration, but not the spherical aberration. PetaPixel reports: Fast forward to 2018 when Hector A. Chaparro-Romo, a doctoral student at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), who had been trying to solve this problem for 3 years, invited Rafael G. Gonzalez-Acuna, a doctoral student from Tec de Monterrey, to help him solve the problem. At first, Gonzalez did not want to devote resources to what he knew to be a millenary, impossible to solve problem. But upon the insistence of Hector Chaparro, he decided to accept the challenge. After months of working on solving the problem, Rafael Gonzalez recalls, "I remember one morning I was making myself a slice of bread with Nutella, when suddenly, I said out loud: Mothers! It is there!" He then ran to his computer and started programming the idea. When he executed the solution and saw that it worked, he says he jumped all over the place. It is unclear whether he finished eating the Nutella bread. Afterwards, the duo ran a simulation and calculated the efficacy with 500 rays, and the resulting average satisfaction for all examples was 99.9999999999%. Which, of course, is great news for gear reviewers on YouTube, as they will still be able to argue about the 0.0000000001% of sharpness difference among lens brands. Their findings were published in the journal Applied Optics. They also published an article in Applied Optics that gives an analytical solution to the Levi-Civita problem formulated in 1900. "The Levi-Civita problem, which has existed without a solution for over a century, was also considered a mythical problem by the specialized community," reports PetaPixel.

"In this [algebraic] equation we describe how the shape of the second aspherical surface of the given lens should be given a first surface, which is provided by the user, as well as the object-image distance," explains Gonzalez. "The second surface is such that it corrects all the aberration generated by the first surface, and the spherical aberration is eliminated."

Re: Yeah, so?

By nukenerd • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Maybe there was something in the way Nutella spreads on the bread that gave him an idea how to solve the problem? A little bit like Archimedes had his idea about buoyancy in the bathtub, where he could feel it. Or Newton's apple story.

The tacit allusion to the bathtub and apple incidents is deliberate. The writer wants you to place him on a pedestal next to those of Archimedes and Newton.

Re: 2000 years old?

By Freischutz • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Yeah, but the Ottomans got lazy on all the riches they skimmed off of trade between Europe, India and China. Then Europeans decided to build big boats, and the Ottomans suddenly had no money. All their technology (which included firearms superior to European ones) didn't matter in the end.

The Muslim world has a lot of complex problems. Major military defeats are part of it. American imperialism is a BIG part of it. But at the moment, too many Muslim countries are in chaos to the point they can't devote sufficient resources to scientific research. And some of that chaos is local. Not one top tier science university in Dubai? Corruption of Muslim leadership also has its place.

Ottoman firearms were more or less on par with the best in Europe from the 15th century onward. Ottoman Arsenals didn't ever really lose the ability to produce 1st rate firearms until the late 19th century when they became reliant upon imported industrial equipment. In fact their artillery was organisationally superior to much (though not all) of what could be found in Europe into the 17th century. What killed the Ottoman empire was corruption, the rigid conservatism of the feudal society from which the Sultans drew much of their military strength, the Sultan's political weakness vis a vis the nobility, economic stagnation partially due to their societal structure and partly due to shifting trade routes. Their religion had precious little to do with it. I just have issues with the clam that the Islamic cultures contributed nothing to modern science and engineering. The water hammer and the air pump powered steel furnaces copied from the Arabs in Spain took European from beating out a breastplate in a week or two by hand to each water hammer begin able to churn out one breastplate per day. The furnaces made possible the extensive use of high grade metal in wooden ships, which in turn enabled the construction of very large ocean going wooden ships to begin with. In fact, some early Spanish and Portuguese, ship designs with which they made their great discoveries were based on the Arab Dhow and when the Europeans made their discoveries in places like Africa and Asia, they very often found that there were already Arabs and Turks in the places they were 'discovering'. That does not detract from the Europeans' achievements as explorers but it kind of destroys the idea of the superiority of Judeo-Christian culture as an engine for superior levels of scientific discovery, business acumen, boldness, courage and moral superiority in it's adherents.

Re: 2000 years old?

By DNS-and-BIND • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
Well it just seemed quite odd to inject that in there out of nowhere. If our culture isn't innately superior, I'd like to see what is. Certainly not Islamic countries that throw people off buildings for being gay. I still do not understand why the Western Left allies with them. They hate your guts and will happily ruin you, just like they did after the 1979 revolution in Iran. You know the history of the leftists there, eh? I bet you don't. Look into it.

Re: 2000 years old?

By schweini • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
When I was in Istanbul a year ago, I went to the Museum of Islamic Science (or something like that) because I do think that Islams contributions to science are way undervalued in the current western world - especially in the popular current anti-islam consciousness.
I thought it would be nice to see the awesome contributions of the arab golden age of science being duly celebrated for once.
I was very very wrong.
That museum was a hogwash of propaganda. Every little advance was basically attributed to arab scholars, much in the way you described - some interesting small addition to science was used to justify a mentality of "we did this! we are better!"
The most ridiculous thing was that they seriously claimed that arabs 'discovered' the Americas, because some blurry piece of paper basically had a line on it that might resemble some american coastline, if you look at it in a certain way and have a good imagination.
It was really quite maddening, that the great parts of Arab scientific legacy were abused in that way.


By Tomahawk • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Directly from the article:

(Note: “Madres” is a Spanish word that means, of course, many moms. But in this context it is equivalent to the expression “Holy sh*t!” in English, or, to a lesser extent, “Eureka!” in Greek.)

Sneaky Chrome Extension Disguises Netflix As a Google Hangout To Help You Slack Off At Work

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Netflix Hangouts is a new Chrome extension that tries to make it easier to get away with watching Netflix while you're supposed to be working. Just go to the show you want to catch up on during work hours, and press the extension's icon in your Chrome menu to bring up a fake four-person conference call. Then you can sit back and watch the show in the window's bottom right feed while three fake colleagues get down to business. The Verge reports: The extension was developed by Mschf Internet Studios, which has produced a few internet curiosities like this over the years. There was the Slack channel that offered $1,000 in prize money for the first person to correctly guess each word of the day (it was shut down by Slack after just a week), a man who ate various foods as disgusting ice cream toppings, and who could forget Tabagotchi, the lovable virtual avatar that slowly died as you opened more and more tabs? Netflix Hangouts is the latest in a long line of services designed to let you slack off at work.

Seems irresponsible to encourage bad habits

By Improv • Score: 3 • Thread

If you feed the tendency to goof off, you'll find it increasingly hard to actually work, and eventually people around you will notice. Better to fix yourself and/or fix your job so this isn't an issue.

Netflix is probably blocked by sysadmins anyway

By jonwil • Score: 3 • Thread

At various previous jobs I worked at, YouTube, Facebook and other such sites were all blocked by sysadmins at the firewall. That was before Netflix really was a thing but I can't imagine sysadmins in the same sort of places I worked (the ones that blocked the other sites) wouldn't be blocking Netflix as well.

Or at the very least they are going to be monitoring everything you do and anyone who visits Netflix on work time will get a yelling at.

Instagram To Notify Users Comments Might Be Offensive Before They Are Posted

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
In an effort to curb cyber bullying, Instagram is rolling out a new AI feature that will automatically detect whether comments are offensive and notify users before they are posted. The Hill reports: In an example included in the company release, Instagram shows a user trying to comment "You are so ugly and stupid." Instagram follows up with a message asking the user "Are you sure you want to post this?" with an "undo" button. "From early tests of this feature, we have found that it encourages some people to undo their comment and share something less hurtful once they have had a chance to reflect," Instagram said.

To further help protect users from unwanted interactions, Instagram said it will start testing a new "restrict" feature. Restricting a user will make it so the user's comments are only visible to that person; a user will be able to choose whether or not to make that the restricted person's comments available to others by approving them. Restricted users also will not be able to see when an account is active or when a person has read their direct messages.

Cat-and-mouse counter-move

By Tablizer • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

Somebody will just make an app to get around it. Example:


You are full of horse-shit, you clueless idiot!"


Your ability to perceive the world around you accurately is clearly suboptimal in a way that can be compared to the result product of the equine digestive tract.


By Z80a • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Good to see someone trying something other than just banning shit until there's no one left.
Also will save the butt of a few people that trust too much on autocorrect.

I'm sure this will be offensive to some...

By malkavian • Score: 3 • Thread

But get back to teaching people it's not about what rights they can claim to speak how they want to who they want, and crow about abusing that privilege.
It's about interacting people and getting on with people (like most people do in every day life). One thing I've always stood by is framing in my mind that what I put down in type is actually going to be read at a screen, by a human, who has the same kind of feelings I have (give or take, we're all different, some edge cases quite radically so).
That "humanising" in the abstract puts me in the same frame of mind I'd be in if I were to wander round in public. Most people out in public have a good natter, and by and large send positive signals around (making eye contact and giving a quick smile is a great 'message' that I find endemic while walking round). Occasionally, someone will chat, and that can be nice too.

Reason: People have been taught how to behave in public. We don't need some "big brother" arbitrarily watching everything, and pointing out every possible incorrectness.

Why different for online? The only way to successfully interact with large bodies of people is to use etiquette. There are sometimes things I really would love to say, but I know full well that it's only because I'm irritated, and when I'm back to my usual self, I'd hate having said it. So I don't. There are things that I'm aware if I say them would breach an amiable social contract. So I don't do that, as I like amiable conversation. If the mental self discipline to be courteous is not taught, then no amount of prods and "This may be offensive" is going to stop the behaviour.
And honestly, the offloading of that self awareness of civility and ethics, and assuming it no longer needs to be taught is highly likely to mean that people become less ethical and reserved (relying on filters to tell them something they should know implicitly).

Unless this etiquette comes willingly from individuals, trained to think rationally, critically and with empathy without having to rely on completely arbitrary 'warning filters', I don't see a way for it to ever be foisted on people in a way that doesn't truly scare me. If you can train a mass to obey when an arbitrary entity telling them "this is incorrect thought", then I'm pretty sure at some point, some bright spark will use that exact (now trusted) mechanism to change the narrative. Orwell would really have been proud.

Like I keep telling people; free speech is really only free if you're sure it's your idea you're conveying.

The Three Great Untruths

By DNS-and-BIND • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread

These three misguided principles ("Great Untruths") form the foundation of the new moral culture we are seeing Big Tech enforce on the rest of us:

  • The Untruth of Fragility: What doesn't kill you makes you weaker.
  • The Untruth of Emotional Reasoning: Always trust your feelings.
  • The Untruth of Us Versus Them: Life is a battle between good people and evil people.

Read more on the topic here. Those who are easily triggered, consider this your trigger warning. The rest of you, keep on truckin'.

This could be offensive!

By Chas • Score: 5, Funny • Thread


The only proper response to "I'm offended." Is "fuck off".

Tesco, One of the World's Largest Supermarket Operators, Is Testing Cashierless Stores Solely Dependent On Cameras

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Wall Street Journal: Tesco, one of the world's largest supermarket operators, is one of several grocers testing cashierless stores with cameras that track what shoppers pick (Warning: source paywalled; alternative source), so they pay by simply walking out the door. The retailers hope the technology -- similar to that pioneered by Inc. in its Amazon Go stores in the U.S. -- will allow them to cut costs and alleviate lines as they face an evolving threat from the e-commerce giant.

Tesco plans to open its self-styled "pick and go" or "frictionless shopping" store to the public next year after testing with employees. Eventually it wants to use the technology, developed by Israeli startup Trigo Vision, in more of its smaller grocery stores. Tesco's 4,000-square-foot test store uses 150 ceiling-mounted cameras to generate a three-dimensional view of products as they are taken off shelves. In its recent demo, Tesco's system detected shoppers as they walked around the store. It also identified a group of products when a person holding them stood in front of a screen, tallying up their total price. Tesco is considering identifying shoppers through an app or loyalty card when they enter the store and then charging their app when they leave. Tesco told investors its method costs one-tenth of systems used by its competitors, partly because it only uses cameras. Amazon Go uses cameras and sensors to track what shoppers pick. Amazon customers scan a QR code at a gate when they enter a store, then walk out when finished.
While Tesco will track the movements of their customers, the company says the system used in its trial doesn't recognize faces.

Re:That's facial recognition payment, eh

By alvinrod • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
They could always not let the person in the balaclava into the store in the first place, at least not until they remove it for a facial recognition scan. They could use other authentication schemes as well. It's not exactly an insurmountable problem.

Trust the Retailer?

By Luthair • Score: 3 • Thread
Do you really want to trust the store to tally it up and send you a bill later? For me I'd still want a checkout so I could skim through the list ensuring it wasn't including extra items or incorrect pricing.

Re:That's facial recognition payment, eh

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

It's not exactly an insurmountable problem.

It also isn't a new problem. You can put on a balaclava and run into a normal grocery store and grab some stuff too. It is unlikely anyone will try to tackle you.

Believe it or not, it isn't a big problem, because few people are willing to risk jail time and a permanent criminal record just to steal a bag of potato chips.

Re:Trust the Retailer?

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Do you really want to trust the store to tally it up and send you a bill later?

I'll double check the first few times. If there are no mistakes, I'll soon stop checking and just trust the system.

What about cash as legal tender in the US?

By Alwin Barni • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

As in the topic. Didn't Amazon's cashier-less shops get into trouble because of this?
Tesco is a UK company isn't it? Are they operating in the US? How is it in the UK regarding cash government guarantees?

This technology might influence cryptocurrencies implementation.

Revelation 13:16-17

IDC: For 1 In 4 Companies, Half of All AI Projects Fail

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
A new study from International Data Corporation (IDC) found that of the organizations already using AI, only 25% have developed an "enterprise-wide" AI strategy, and it found that among those in the process of deploying AI, a substantial number of projects are doomed to fail. VentureBeat reports: IDC's Artificial Intelligence Global Adoption Trends & Strategies report, which was published today, summarizes the results of a May 2019 survey of 2,473 organizations using AI solutions in their operations. It chiefly focused on respondents' AI strategy, culture, and implementation challenges, as well as their AI data readiness initiatives and the production deployment trends expected to experience growth in the next two years. Firms blamed the cost of AI solutions, a lack of qualified workers, and biased data as the principal blockers impeding AI adoption internally. Respondents identified skills shortages and unrealistic expectations as the top two reasons for failure, in fact, with a full quarter reporting up to 50% failure rate.

However, that's not to suggest success stories are few in far between. More than 60% of companies reported changes in their business model in association with their AI adoption, and nearly 50% said they'd established a formal framework to encourage the ethical use, potential bias risks, and trust implications of AI, according to IDC. Moreover, 25% report having established a senior management position to ensure adherence.

Works every time

By somenickname • Score: 3 • Thread

"60% of the time, it works every time"

Isn't the bigger news

By rsilvergun • Score: 3 • Thread
that at least 12.5% of projects succeed? A.I. is pretty transformative. Heck, just fancy dancy automation is.

Wanted: Instant Magic, Experience Preferred

By Tablizer • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Respondents [blamed] skills shortages and unrealistic expectations

Translation: "There is no mortal capable of delivering on our PHB's nutty promises."

Re:Retard. BeauHD. You are a RETARD.

By Tablizer • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

There is no universal definition of "AI". And you can't use the human mind as the standard because we don't know how it works. If the definition is "at least as good as average humans" on a variety of task tests, that would mean AI cannot exist at all until it reaches that level. That's not practical because we still need something to describe results that are part-way there.

If you can define a clear-cut and practical definition, please do. (I've been in many similar debates and I'm not optimistic you can pull it off.)

Is this better or worse than regular projects?

By shess • Score: 3 • Thread

So 1 in 4 companies report up to 50% of projects fail, meaning ... that 3 in 4 companies didn't report? Or didn't have metrics solid enough to distinguish failure from success? And how do their regular projects do by the same metrics?

Worse, what is an "AI project" in the first place? AI tools are things you can use in pursuit of other goals, not an end unto themselves. If someone said "Make a project using TensorFlow", it's very likely to fail because you have ill-defined goals. The deliverables might work, they just might not solve any useful problems. The same is true if you say "Make a project using object-oriented programming" or "Make a project using Rust" or "Make a project using the blockchain".

[Oh, sorry, my fail, I didn't notice that this was from the IDC. Nevermind, carry on, nothing to see, here.]

Amazon Staff Will Strike During Prime Day Over Working Conditions

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Staff at a warehouse in Shakopee, Minnesota will hold six hours of strikes on July 15th (the start of Prime Day) to demand less stringent quotas and the conversion of more temporary workers into permanent employees. Engadget reports: The quotas make the work dangerous and unreliable, according to the workers, and permanent work will help create a "livable future." Workers in the U.S. have protested before (including a December protest in Minnesota over support for East African workers), but not during crucial sales days -- you've only really seen that practice in Europe until now. The company has declined to comment on the strike.

Re:Long term means bye-bye

By Dunbal • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

And Amazon would not simply replace them why?

If the strike is legitimate, you're not allowed to fire them for striking. That's actual law in most of the world. If the workers have a collective bargaining agreement, the employer has agreed as part of that agreement not to hire temporary workers to substitute striking workers.

CEO Jeff Bezos

By WindowsStar • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
With the CEO's approximate worth of 175 Billion Dollars and 650,000 employees he could give all of them a 1 time pay out of $270,000 dollars each and with is next paycheck still be a millionaire. Or with Amazon's payroll approximately 1.8 billion a month he could give 1 billion a month of his money to payroll and increase everyone's pay 50% and it would take 14 years for him to run out of money and that is not counting all the money made during those 14 years. Come on Jeff do the right thing and pay these people!!!!

Re:Long term means bye-bye

By LynnwoodRooster • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
And in most of the world striking while your collective bargaining agreement is in force is illegal, breaking the contract. You cannot strike until the agreement has expired - and then you're open to being replaced, wholesale.

Re: Long term means bye-bye

By kenh • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

So, because they DON'T have a collective bargaining agreement (AKA "a union") they could be terminated at will by their employer for failure to report for scheduled shifts.

Re:CEO Jeff Bezos

By Oceanplexian • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
Bezos' net worth is all in equities. If Bezos sold it all it would be worthless, or worth a fraction since the stock would tank milliseconds before he could sell it all. Sure he has a lot of money but the fantasy that he can drop 175B like you'd spend on a credit card is complete nonsense.

Brazil To Add Digital Data Protection To Fundamental Rights

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from ZDNet: The Brazilian Senate has approved a proposal to add protection of data in digital platforms to the list of fundamental rights and individual citizen guarantees set out in the country's constitution. Brazil's general data protection law was due to go live in February 2020 but a stopgap measure signed by former president Michel Temer just before leaving office in January 2019 has extended the deadline to August next year. Earlier this year, the National Authority for Personal Data Protection has also been created , with attributions including the creation of frameworks on how to handle information and guide organizations on how to adhere to the rules. The authority will also be responsible for monitoring and applying fines to non-compliant organizations. "State and society should be entitled, as a general rule, to knowledge about each other, as long as there is a real need," said senator Simone Tebet, rapporteur of the proposal. "Other than that, data privacy should be preserved as much as possible."

Glen Greenwald?

By bill_mcgonigle • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Could they have used this to prosecute Glen for blowing open a secret corruption scandal / soft coup by trading in stolen Telegram chats?

DEC's been dead for like twenty years now . . .

By PolygamousRanchKid • Score: 3 • Thread

. . . isn't it time that Slashdot retired the DEC logo for anything tagged "digital" . . . ?

Once again

By ArchieBunker • Score: 3 • Thread

The clueless editors have no knowledge of the legacy of the Digital Equipment Corp.


By Livius • Score: 3 • Thread

Data protection sounds good but how are we doing with the rights we supposedly already have?

How Facebook Fought Fake News About Facebook

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Facebook has built tools to track posts on Facebook and WhatsApp that talk about its executives, products, or moves Bloomberg reported on Monday. The company has been, for years, routinely using these tools to "snuff out" posts that it deems to offer untrue characterization of its services or people. From the report: Many companies monitor social media to learn what customers are saying about them. But Facebook's position is unique. It owns the platform it's watching, an advantage that may help Facebook track and reach users more effectively than other firms. And Facebook has been saddled with so many real problems recently that sometimes misinformation can stick. Stormchaser is just one of multiple tools Facebook has deployed to manage its reputation, which has taken a dramatic hit thanks to its role in spreading Russian misinformation during the U.S. election and numerous privacy scandals. The company employs hundreds of public relations officials and spent $13 million on government lobbying in 2018. Zuckerberg and Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg have become so intertwined with the company's image that Facebook routinely collects public survey data to understand how the general public views them -- data that shapes what the executives say and do publicly. Facebook's response: "We didn't use this internal tool to fight false news because that wasn't what it was built for, and it wouldn't have worked," the spokeswoman wrote in an email. "The tool was built with simple technology that helped us detect posts about Facebook based on keywords, so we could consider whether to respond to product confusion on our own platform. Comparing the two is a false equivalence." The New York Times' tech columnist Kevin Roose, writes: You could write a dissertation about this quote, and the difference between what Facebook considers "product confusion" (wrong stuff about us, which must be removed immediately) and "false news" (wrong stuff about other people, which is protected free speech).

Are we discussing China or Facebook?

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 3, Funny • Thread

It's really becoming difficult to separate the practices of the two. Zuckerberg is the president of China, right? Pooh bear is Facebook CEO?

Not to defend Facebook, but their point is

By RonVNX • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Facebook didn't write a tool for dealing with fake news about Facebook. Facebook wrote a tool to deal with news about Facebook that Facebook does not like. It doesn't matter to them whether the news is fake or true. The only takeaway here is that Facebook will devote the resources necessary when it's something they actually care a lot about.

Email App Superhuman's Superficial Privacy Fixes Do Not Prevent It From Spying on You

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Mike Davidson: It took an article I almost didn't publish and tens of thousands of people saying they were creeped out, but Superhuman admitted they were wrong and reduced the danger that their surveillance pixels introduce. Good on Rahul Vohra and team for that. I will say, however, that I'm a little surprised how quickly some people are rolling over and giving Superhuman credit for fixing a problem that they didn't actually fix. [...] Let's take a look at how Superhuman [an email app that charges users $30 a month] explains their changes.

Rahul correctly lays out four of the criticisms leveled at Superhuman's read receipts: Location data could be used in nefarious ways. Read statuses are on by default. Recipients of emails cannot opt out. Superhuman users cannot disable remote image loading. However, he also omits the core criticism: Recipients of Superhuman emails do not know their actions are being tracked or sent back to senders.
Superhuman said it was keeping the read status feature, but turning it off by default. Users who want it will have to explicitly turn it on. Mike adds: This addresses the concern about teaching customers to surveil by default but also establishes that Superhuman is keeping the feature working almost exactly as-is, with the exception of not collecting or displaying actual locations. I've spoken with several people about how they interpreted Rahul's post on this particular detail. Some believed the whole log of timestamped read events was going away and were happy about that. Others read it as: you can still see exactly when and how many times someone has opened your email, complete with multiple timestamps -- you just can't see the location anymore. That, to me, is not sufficient. "A little less creepy" is still creepy. Also worth noting, "turning receipts off by default" does nothing to educate customers about the undisclosed surveillance they are enabling if they flip that switch.

Hurry while supplies last - FREE Shipping!

By AndyKron • Score: 3 • Thread
This article is only for people who are willing to pay $30/mo for email. The next article is also for them and it's about a bridge that's for sale.

Microsoft Releases Public Preview of Desktop Analytics To Help With Windows 10 Update Readiness Checks

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Microsoft has released a public preview of a new service aimed at helping businesses assess their app-compatibility levels ahead of deploying new Windows 10 feature updates. From a report: It allows for the quick and easy creation of app inventories to make compatibility checks simpler. Brad Anderson, corporate vice president for Microsoft 365, says that the tool makes use of machine learning and the cloud to make it easier to deploy and update Windows 10. The aim with Desktop Analytics is to avoid the compatibility problems that stand in the way of keeping machines up to date.

Microsoft Warns About Astaroth Malware Campaign

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The Microsoft security team has issued a warning today about ongoing malware campaigns that are distributing the Astaroth malware using fileless and living-off-the-land techniques that make it harder for traditional antivirus solutions to spot the ongoing attacks. From a report: The attacks were detected by the team behind Windows Defender ATP, the commercial version of the company's Windows Defender free antivirus. Andrea Lelli, a member of the Windows Defender ATP team said alarms bells sounded at Microsoft's offices when they detected a huge and sudden spike in usage of the Windows Management Instrumentation Command-line (WMIC) tool. This is a legitimate tool that ships with all modern versions of Windows, but the sudden spike in usage suggested a pattern specific to malware campaigns. When Microsoft looked closer, it discovered a malware campaign that consisted of a massive spam operation that was sending out emails with a link to a website hosting a .LNK shortcut file.


By Major_Disorder • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
So MS knows what software you are running, and what links it might be following? While this use of the information is worthwhile, I shudder to think of the invasion of privacy.

How can they even sell an AV product?

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

They can't secure their OS but they can sell an antivirus package that can? This is truly a clown world...

Robocall Ban Should Target Texts and Foreign Calls, FCC Chief Says

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Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai has proposed another set of robocall rules, this time to ban malicious calls that spoof caller IDs in text messages and international calls. From a report: The anti-spoofing rules will be voted on by the FCC Aug. 1, and they already have the support of more than 40 state attorneys general, Pai said Monday. These new rules would close the loopholes in targeting international callers, including one-way interconnected VoIP calls, and scammers using text messaging. They are part of the FCC's "multi-pronged approach to battle the noxious intrusion of illegal robocalls, as well as malicious caller ID spoofing," Pai said. Last month, the FCC voted unanimously on a proposal to give mobile phone companies greater power to "aggressively block" unwanted robocalls.

Doing the right thing?

By Joce640k • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Ajit Pai? Doing the right thing?

Where's the catch...?

This will pass because the FCC also gets robocalls

By ITRambo • Score: 3 • Thread
Everyone gets robocalls. I use Call Blocker by Vlad to send every call that is not from my contacts to voice mail. I have hope that the bureaucrats will pass this because this crap hits everyone and needs to stop. Cell carriers, and old timey phone companies, need to use shaken/stir ASAP.

Re:Doing the right thing?

By NoNonAlphaCharsHere • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
No catch, It's just that Comcast et al. have no dog in this particular fight.

Re:Doing the right thing?

By PolygamousRanchKid • Score: 4 • Thread

I'm guessing that AT&T and Verizon will label this as a "service" . . . and you will pay for it as a surcharge with your monthly bill. The charges for this "service" will outweigh the lost robocall revenues.

This sounds like a huge loop hole

By Grand Facade • Score: 3 • Thread

that will make robocalling more legal or give them some rights.

This is counter to what I desire, and you should too.

There are two phone numbers there is CID which is what is displayed on your phone and also what is spoofed using a loop hole introduced by corp switch boards that do not want internal extensions displayed.
The real number it the ANI this is the billing number and the true origination of the call, and this is the number I want displayed.

It is fucking useless to report spoofed numbers to the do not call registry and this is what makes this mechanism completely ineffective and useless.
The ANI is the info I want displayed on my phone as it shows the true source of the call and gives me a way to "follow the money".
This is the number that provides legal info as to the source of the call, that info has somehow been restricted as "private".
Every single call made has that info available and this is what the robo dicks are using to hide behind.
The callers don't what their true number displayed because what they are doing is prohibited.
The carriers don't want the number displayed because they derive revenue from the prohibited calls.

The Coup de Gras is that the carriers want to monetize call blocking so they can double dip.
They get paid to allow the calls and then they get paid to block them.
Politicians are terrified that call blocking will stop their own revenue stream, you will notice that all political calls are expressly allowed in any of these call limiting schemes.

Pirate Our Games, Don't Buy Them From Key Resellers, Say Indies

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Small video games studios are asking the public to stop buying their titles from "unauthorised" markets, saying the sales cost them more than they earn. From a report: Several have said it would even be better if consumers pirated their games rather than purchased discounted unlock codes from the "key resellers." One label is running a petition calling on the biggest such market -- G2A -- to halt sales of indie games outright. But G2A has defended its business model. It said the indies benefited from its policy of sharing a cut of sales made by third parties. "Hundreds of developers earn money from selling their keys through marketplaces such as G2A," head of communications Maciej Kuc told BBC News.

"We don't plan on taking away that possibility anytime soon, as it would be hurtful not only to our customers but also to the many developers who use our platform to their benefit." He added that G2A already took measures to tackle illegal sales. And he said developers were partly responsible for some of the scams on its site because of the "thousands of free keys" they had created for giveaways. The campaign's organiser, however, has dismissed this defence. "They are harming our industry and the value of our games," Mike Rose, from the Manchester-based publisher No More Robots, told BBC News.

via Kotaku

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread

via Kotaku: Shady Market G2A Offers To Pay Journalists To Run Pre-Written Article Defending Them

Re:Reverse psychology

By Blue Stone • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

>They just want the consumer-base to think they are more pissed than they would be from pirating, which is just stupid - there's no way in hell, no loophole, no technicality that would make selling keys worse than pirating copies.

Well, this is where you show your ignorance on the matter, I'm afraid, as do a number of other commenters here.

The problem arises from people using stolen credit cards to buy game keys. They then sell those keys on sites like G2A. The people whose cards have been stolen, discover this and reclaim the money/cancel the purchases through chargebacks. This hits the developers who have sold the keys and costs them more than a simple refund, so they lose money. The credit card thief, meanwhile has a nice tidy profit form their G2A sales.

So, it's a little more complicated than people would have imagined and results in real financial losses for the little indie developer.

Re:GOG and indies

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Not only "no promise of", but people have lost their Steam accounts for nebulous reasons that Valve has refused to spell out.

Now maybe that was justified and those people were doing something "wrong", and maybe it wasn't justified. We simply have to take Valve's word for it. Still, it has demonstrated that you do not own the games you bought on Steam. Valve does.

As you say, once you buy a game on GOG, nobody can stop you from playing it in the future. And it still supports the game authors! Piracy isn't ethical, but buying games on GOG is. Win/win for the game authors and the customers.

If they give you permission, then it's not pirated

By mark-t • Score: 3 • Thread
I think my brain is going to implode from a stack overflow.

Re:GOG and indies

By atrex • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
GOG is also apparently the only platform that ensures that their contracts with developers/publishers ensure that a purchased game cannot be removed from their platform, just removed from sale. Ref: Minecraft Story Mode:

A Look at How Movies and Shows From Netflix and Amazon Prime Video Are Pirated

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News blog TorrentFreak spoke with a member of piracy group "The Scene" to understand how they obtain -- or rip -- movies and shows from sources such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. The technique these people use is different from hardware capture cards or software-based 'capping' tools. From the report: "Content for WEB releases are obtained by downloading the source content. Whenever you stream a video online, you are downloading chunks of a video file to your computer. Sceners simply save that content and attempt to decrypt it for non-DRM playback later," the source said. When accessing the content, legitimate premium accounts are used, often paid for using prepaid credit cards supported by bogus identities. It takes just a few minutes to download a video file since they're served by CDNs with gigabits of bandwidth.

"Once files are downloaded from the streaming platform, however, they are encrypted in the .mp4 container. Attempting to view such video will usually result in a blank screen and nothing else -- streams from these sites are protected by DRM. The most common, and hard to crack DRM is called Widevine. The way the Scene handles WEB-releases is by using specialized tools coded by The Scene, for The Scene. These tools are extremely private, and only a handful of people in the world have access to the latest version(s)," source noted. "Without these tools, releasing Widevine content is extremely difficult, if not impossible for most. The tools work by downloading the encrypted video stream from the streaming site, and reverse engineering the encryption." Our contact says that decryption is a surprisingly quick process, taking just a few minutes. After starting with a large raw file, the finalized version ready for release is around 30% smaller, around 7GB for a 1080p file.

Re:Is the high demand?

By Kernel Kurtz • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

I may completely off here, but is there high demand for pirated Netflix shows? At 10-15$ a month for access to Netflix there really are many people pirating these shows? If you can afford decent tech to download torrents and watch these shows in good quality the price point is probably not a barrier. So do people really feel like $15 a month is way to high?

Sure, $15 for Netflix. More $ for Prime. More for the upcoming Disney service. And it's all region locked - what we get on Netflix in Canada is not the same as the US which is not the same as any other country. So yes, there is a demand, and it will only increase as the streaming services become more and more fragmented.

Why not be good with electronics.

By jellomizer • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Today's TV's are all digital. Why can't one just tap into the LCD matrix display, and the digital audio data before it is sent to the DA converter. Save the signals and save onto a separate medium.

No matter what DRM people do, it will need to be decrypted and sent as standardized signal to these devices that we get our normal output.

Re:Why do they do it?

By captbollocks • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Advertising. The money is very big for a popular torrent site.

Re:Why not be good with electronics.

By phantomfive • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Today's TV's are all digital. Why can't one just tap into the LCD matrix display

I worked for a company that did exactly that. It takes some hardware expertise, though.

Re:I'm entitled to whatever entertainment I want

By shmlco • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

It wasn't worth "paying for" but it was worth spending your time to seek it out, down it, and watch it... hmmm.....

Mozilla is Funding a Way To Support Julia in Firefox

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Mozilla is funding a project for bringing the Julia programming language to Firefox and the general browser environment. From a report: The project received funding part of the Mozilla Research Grants for the first half of 2019, which the browser maker announced on Friday. In April, when Mozilla opened this year's submissions period for research grants, the organization said it was looking for a way to bring data science and scientific computing tools to the web. It said it was specifically interested in receiving submissions about supporting R or Julia at the browser level. Both R and Julia are programming languages designed for high-performance numerical, statistical, and computational science.

Mozilla engineers have worked in previous years to port data science tools at the browser level, as part of Project Iodide. Previously, as part of this project, Mozilla engineers ported the Python interpreter to run in the browser using WebAssembly. "This project, Pyodide, has demonstrated the practicality of running language interpreters in WebAssembly," Mozilla engineers said.

A solution looking for a problem

By lucasnate1 • Score: 3 • Thread

Just like most stuff developed by Mozilla lately.

Dear Mozilla

By IWantMoreSpamPlease • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

It seems you have lost your way as of late, concentrating on any project that doesn't improve your core model of a solid browser.

Please consider the encroaching hegemony of Google and Chrome, and consider going back to basics, as it were, and make a browser that can go head to head with Chrome, because the more you spread yourself thin, the easier it is for the Google juggernaut to roll right over you. They already got IE, Opera (IIRC) and a few others, you are the last (again, IIRC) non-Chrome browser out there.

Firefox become the "Emacs" of web browsers

By grumpy-cowboy • Score: 3 • Thread

Firefox is a decent operating system lacking only a good web browser

Re:Just say no to running arbitrary code in a brow

By Tough Love • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

-2, Uninformed. This project uses WebAssembly which is just Javascript, already running in your browser. No new "arbitrary" here. Well, your arbitrary post. That's about the extent of it.

More Than 1,000 Android Apps Harvest Data Even After You Deny Permissions

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An anonymous reader shares a report: Permissions on Android apps are intended to be gatekeepers for how much data your device gives up. If you don't want a flashlight app to be able to read through your call logs, you should be able to deny that access. But even when you say no, many apps find a way around: Researchers discovered more than 1,000 apps that skirted restrictions, allowing them to gather precise geolocation data and phone identifiers behind your back. The discovery highlights how difficult it is to stay private online, particularly if you're attached to your phones and mobile apps. Tech companies have mountains of personal data on millions of people, including where they've been, who they're friends with and what they're interested in.

Lawmakers are attempting to reel that in with privacy regulation, and app permissions are supposed to control what data you give up. Apple and Google have released new features to improve people's privacy, but apps continue to find hidden ways to get around these protections. Researchers from the International Computer Science Institute found up to 1,325 Android apps that were gathering data from devices even after people explicitly denied them permission. Serge Egelman, director of usable security and privacy research at the ICSI, presented the study in late June at the Federal Trade Commission's PrivacyCon.


By Your_spleen • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
Is there any basis I wonder to initiate a class act lawsuit against Google and Apple for misleading customers on what control (if any) they have over their devices? If I say I don't want an app to have access to specific aspects of my system, that should be definitive, not just loosely implemented .

Flash your phone and use FDroid

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 3, Informative • Thread

Although it is quite a technical hurdle to overcome the challenges presented in this article, it is not impossible.

People need to become smarter with the products and services they use. That being said, if you use a cellphone, you should know how to make that device private using open source software.

Purchase a phone that has an unlocked bootloader (highly suggest OnePlus), and then flash all of that spy/bloat ware off and use a fully open source custom ROM.

Install FDroid (The Free/Libre Open Source Software app store) and use the apps available there. If you still need access to Google Play apps that provide push notifications, checkout the microG project which can fulfil these functions for you without the bullshittery that Google comes with.

And for the love of God, stop installing closedsource malware apps on your devices unless you can quarantine them at all times using AFWall+ (rooted phone) or NetGuard (non-rooted phone).

If you do not understand how these things work, then maybe you should do some DuckDuckGo searching and figure it out because your naivety is all being exploited, or stop using smart phones.

Summary of the techniques

By GuB-42 • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

The techniques used to circumvent permissions seem to fall into 2 categories.

Side channels:
App 1 has permission, app 2 doesn't. There is a communication channel between app 1 and app 2 (ex: a file on the SD card). App 2 ask for data through app 1.

Exploitation of the network stack:
Using standard networking system calls, it is possible to get things like the MAC addresses, which allow for unique identification or and some level of localization.


By rjstanford • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Its a little trickier than it appears - although a lot of the problems do indeed seem to be bugs in the OS or the permissions handling. Here's just one scenario that might surprise a user when we try to make them responsible for complex permissions interactions.

Let's say that you allow the camera to use location information, which is a normal and reasonable thing to do.
Now let's say that you disallow an app to use location information, also reasonable.
Finally, let's say that you allow the app permission to access the camera, because it wants to upload a photo of something - quite a lot of apps do this, after all.

All seems reasonable to the user, and they've done the Right Thing. But now let's say that the app periodically chooses to take a photo, read the embedded coordinates, and delete the photo if it was added to your library. Now it knows where you are, even though you've done your best as an informed consumer to prevent that from happening.

Without the kind of annoying app review that Apple brings to the table, its very hard to prevent things like this - even with human review it's not easy. Getting the permission chains reasonable but still allowing people to swap in/out their own helper apps of choice (maps, keyboards, etc) makes this even harder.

Is Ham Radio a Hobby, a Utility, or Both? A Battle Over Spectrum Heats Up

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Some think automated radio emails are mucking up the spectrum reserved for amateur radio, while others say these new offerings provide a useful service. Wave723 writes: Like many amateur radio fans his age, Ron Kolarik, 71, still recalls the "pure magic" of his first ham experience nearly 60 years ago. Lately, though, encrypted messages have begun to infiltrate the amateur bands in ways that he says are antithetical to the spirit of this beloved hobby. So Kolarik filed a petition, RM-11831 [PDF], to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proposing a rule change to "Reduce Interference and Add Transparency to Digital Data Communications." And as the proposal makes its way through the FCC's process, it has stirred up heated debate that goes straight to the heart of what ham radio is, and ought to be. The core questions: Should amateur radio -- and its precious spectrum -- be protected purely as a hobby, or is it a utility that delivers data traffic? Or is it both? And who gets to decide?

Since Kolarik filed his petition in late 2018, this debate has engulfed the ham world. Fierce defenders of both sides have filed passionate letters and comments to the FCC arguing their cases. On one side is Kolarik in Nebraska. In his view, it's all rather simple: "Transparency is a core part of ham radio," he says. "And yet, you can find tons of traffic from automatic[ally controlled digital] stations that are extremely difficult to identify, if you can identify them at all, and they cause interference." The automatically controlled digital stations (ACDS) Kolarik refers to can serve to power services like Winlink, a "global radio email" system. Overseen and operated by licensed volunteers around the globe, Winlink is funded and guided by the Amateur Radio Safety Foundation, Inc. (ARSFI). The service uses amateur and government radio frequencies around the globe to send email messages by radio. Users initiate the transmission through an Internet connection, or go Internet-free and use smart-network radio relays.

On Winlink's website, the service says it provides its licensed users the ability to send email with attachments, plus messages about their positions, and weather and information bulletins. Representatives of the service say it also allows users to participate in emergency and disaster relief communications. But Kolarik's petition argues two points: First, because such messages "are not readily and freely able to be decoded," the FCC should require all digital codes to use protocols that "can be monitored in entirety by third parties with freely available, open-source software." Secondly, he wants the rule change to reduce the interference that he says services like Winlink can create between amateur-to-amateur stations -- by relegating the often-unattended automatic stations to operate solely on narrower sub-bands. Loring Kutchins, the president of ARSFI, says he believes Kolarik's petition is "well intentioned in its basis. But the fundamental conflict is between people who believe amateur radio is about hobby, not about utility. But nowhere do the FCC rules use the word 'hobby.'"

There is value in Hobbies.

By jellomizer • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The personal computer revolution came out of the Hobby groups. A lot of Art and Ligature comes from hobbies as well.
A Vibrant Hobby Community, is extremely important to our economy and our well being.

There is massive value with professionals, and specialists as they spend most of the time working on a particular subject to make it optimal... However the Hobby group isn't always about getting it right, but trying different methods and tricks, and often have limitations that professionals people don't have. So new ideas come from these limitations.

HAM Radio community is a vital infrastructure. Professional Radio Spectrum and other formal communication infrastructure can be targeted, and are at whim of cost vs benefit. If there is a problem with such formal communication infrastructure. Or natural disaster. Those HAM Radio Enthusiasts will probably be the only source of communication out there. As your Cell will be out, and employees for these big companies will not report to work to keep an infrastructure going when they are trapped.

Old men fix what the youth break

By drnb • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
The "youth" are really not so different from the grumpy old people. They are in a bubble of selective news sources and propaganda as well, and angry rather than grumpy.

They are largely ignorant of history and seem compelled to re-learn lessons the hard way. They fail to realize that "Democratic Socialism" is another name for Marxism. That the actions of a group define its nature not the words in its name, for example the violent element of antifa are actually fascists despite the "anti" in their name, like the nazi's were not socialist despite "socialist" being in their name. If you justify violence to achieve your political goal, claim the morality of your goal as justification, you are quite literally fascist regardless of whether you are on the left or right. Something your grandmother's generation learned the hard way as left wing fascists and right wing fascists battled in the street in the European streets between the two world wars, or shall we say the intermission between the single 30 year world war.

Overall the "youth" are to learn that their feeling and wishes and perceptions of morality mean little and that only measured performance ("success") is meaningful. A painful lesson some past generations had to learn. Neither will wishing really hard make your desires happen, nor will desperately needing your desires to manifest make them happen. Science and engineering will make renewables and storage take much more time that some believe, especially as the world increasingly electrifies and demand soars. The quackery and false promises regarding renewables are not unlike the quackery and false promises regarding electricity 140 years ago. The technology eventually gets sorted out but not as the promises stated. So the youth will re-learn that hard lesson as they dismiss all the alternatives that disagree with their ideological purity, renewables only - no nuclear, no climate engineering, no biofuels so internal combustion can become carbon neutral, etc. A more knowledge previous generation that learned things time take and you can't change that would recommend all of the above, renewables, nuclear, biofuels, ... anything not petroleum based; and they would turn to science and engineering for climate engineering. They would knows that scientists and engineers have always beaten the malthusian predictions of pending human catastrophe. That hard science plus time saved us again and again, not wishful ideological thinking, not passion.
No, the "youth" are not that different from their "elders". They are repeating the same mistakes that their elders made, thinking "this time will be different". And they tool will learn of their foolishness and trust more in science and demonstrable success as they age, and believe less in politicians that make passionate speeches that appeal to their emotions and accomplish little more than good feelings.

No old men don't ruin everything. Old men fix what the youth break, ironically its the same people, the same generation now older fixing what they broke in their youth. And the new generation of youth failing to learn from this repeating pattern, because, you know, we're different, so it'll be different this time.

HAM radio only a hobby until next nat disaster

By drnb • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
And to bring things back to topic. The current generation will learn, just as the previous generation learned, that HAM radio is only a hobby until the next natural disaster hits. Then it is a vital tool when infrastructure and utilities are out. When a "real" earthquake hits California (or a real hurricane in the south east) expect the youth to be staring at their cellphone's no service indication while some grumpy old dude uses HAM radio to find out for them where the Red Cross is setting up relief stations. Some of the youth will then develop an appreciation, learn HAM, and save some future generation's ass in turn. Assuming they retain some spectrum.

Re:Old men fix what the youth break

By epiphani • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

They are largely ignorant of history and seem compelled to re-learn lessons the hard way. They fail to realize that "Democratic Socialism" is another name for Marxism.

This morning I was awoken by my alarm clock, powered by electricity generated by the public power monopoly regulated by the US Department of Energy. I then took a shower in the clean water provided by the municipal water utility. After that, I turned on the TV to one of the FCC regulated television channels to see what the National Weather Service and National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration determined the weather was going to be like using satellites designed, built, and launched by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. I watched this while eating my breakfast of US Department of Agriculture inspected food and taking prescription medications which have been determined as safe by the US Food and Drug Administration.

At the appropriate time, as regulated by the US Congress and kept accurate by the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the US Naval Observatory, I get into my National Highway Traffic Safety Administration approved automobile. I set out to work on the roads built by local, state, and federal departments of transportation, sometimes stopping to purchase additional fuel of a quality determined by the Environmental Protection Agency. I pay for that fuel using legal tender issued by the Federal Reserve. While at the gas station, I deposit any mail I have to be sent into the mailbox, to be delivered by the US postal service. I then drop off my children at the public school where they will be provided an education curriculum of a standard defined by local and state governments.

After work, I drive my NHTSA car back on DOT roads to my home, which has not burned down or been burglarized in my absence thanks, in part, to local and state building codes, municipal inspections agencies, and local fire and police departments.

I then log on to the internet, developed by the Defense Advance Research Projects Administration and post on slashdot thread about how democratic socialism is the same as marxism.

Apologies to the original, unknown author

No, a bigger issue is 2m reallocation

By tlhIngan • Score: 3 • Thread

Who cares about how people use the frequency. What matters is there's a proposal to reallocate part of the 2m spectrum (144-148MHz) for aeronautical use (specifically, 144-146MHz).

This is currently on the ITU proposal stage, set to be debated in 2023.

Yes, it's a long ways away, but arguing over usage is less important if you lose the band in the first place.

And yes, you can't just arbitrarily take it over - after all, the only thing slower than frequency allocations is aviation, so while full reallocation will easily take a decade or more (and even then, aviation will probably take two or three decades to start using the band - ADS-B has been around for at least close to two decades and it's still optional (mandatory in 2020 in the US, but other countries will be optional).

British Airways Hit With Record Fine For Data Breach

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
AmiMoJo writes: British Airways is facing a record fine of 183m Pound ($230m) for last year's breach of its security systems. The Information Commissioner's Office said the incident took place after users of British Airways' website were diverted to a fraudulent site. Through this false site, details of around 500,000 customers were harvested by the attackers. The BA penalty amounts to 1.5% of its worldwide turnover in 2017, less than the possible maximum of 4%. The fine amounts to around 10% of BA's profits for that year.

EU only going after US companies

By houghi • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

This again. The EU is only going after the US companies. First Google, Facebook and Apple and now, er, now, uh. ... Wait.

Darn. How can I spin this to be anti-EU?

OK. Got it! This is proof that it is good that the UK leaves the EU. That way the UK companies can collect and sell data as they please, regardless of what the people in the EU voted for.

Shit. Doesn't sound as good as I thought it would.

Anybody else have a better idea on how to bash the EU for doing this, or is this actually a good thing?


By Rick Zeman • Score: 3 • Thread

I always hate when my data comes out backwards. Is that called "butt-endian?"

Re:EU needs some money

By Bert64 • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Only the fine is being levied by the Information Commissioners Office (ICO), which is UK based, not part of the EU itself and will continue to exist even after the UK leaves the EU.

One can hope

By Viol8 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

However one of BAs CEOs (they've had a few in the last decade) took great pride in talking about how he'd outsourced a lot of the IT systems , mostly to India. Then they had a couple of massive system crashes and now this. Unfortunately you can't educate MBA pork.

Re:Data Breech?

By drinkypoo • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

In my day, you were expected to learn that stuff at home.

Which, of course, is because I was born after they took the guns out of the schools.

We had archery in my junior high school, though. And in fact I did learn about gun safety at home.

We should bring it back just so the cops understand it, at this point.

Unlivable Wages in Expensive Cities Are Plaguing the Video Game Industry

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader shares a report: Crunch has been one of the biggest topics in video game industry news over the last year with reports of massive studio layoffs at established studios following closely behind. Another topic relating to these issues that hasn't received as much attention, however, are the low and unfair wages developers are being paid in exchange for their increasingly demanding work. Just like issues with crunch and layoffs, it's a problem developers are afraid to speak openly about because of the fear of retaliation from current and future job opportunities. In light of all the news surrounding crunch and layoffs at studios, Beck Hallstedt sparked the conversation about developers being paid unlivable wages on Twitter, using the Quality Assurance (QA) jobs at Gearbox Software as a prime example.

They go on to say, "I know crunch is the big thing to criticize in games but please, please, please talk about how bad wages are too. People are living in their cars and pulling out loans to pay rent because of this stuff." They point out information from PayScale, which shows the average Gearbox Software salary at $54,000, but that number isn't the full picture. That average is taken from a small group of people -- in Gearbox Software's case, 10 -- who reported their earnings. Some of these individuals are senior level designers that are making as much as 105k, bumping up the average salary higher than it is. [...] Many game studios are located in major cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, and New York. This makes the cost of living far higher than it is in other places in the country. Since many studios do not allow their staff to work remotely, developers have to live in the city or relocate to find consistent work. Rent, food, transportation, and sometimes even student loans and medical care can factor into the cost of living.

Hallstedt has been working as a freelance concept artist for over three years, with their first in-house job being a 2D Art internship at High Voltage Software in Chicago. "I was hired at $12 an hour, which I'm honestly happy with for an intern position in the Midwest. I was learning as much as I was contributing, and the artists there spent time guiding me through adapting to a studio pipeline," they said. "It was great, and the generosity of those artists has guided my entire career." A few weeks after the internship ended, Netherrealm Studios reached out and asked Hallstedt to submit their resume as an associate concept artist. During the interview, they were offered to work on Injustice 2 for their standard 9-month temporary contract. The offer they received wasn't anywhere near what they imagined it would be. The salary was $11 an hour, which was $1 less than their prior internship had offered, except that this would a full-time commitment.

Re:$11 per hour?

By Frobnicator • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

How they get away with paying wages like this ...

Mostly what they describe is hyperbole. Read the actual tweets, they aren't talking about the programmers or artists, they're talking about QA testers. From the actual tweet: @randy: your QA testers are hardly even paid a living wage. do better. The office is in Frisco Texas.

QA is an hourly role, usually part time or hourly for a 3-6 month contract and fairly low skill. The posts say their entry level QA folk are paid $10/hr. Looking around that part of Texas, other hourly low-skill short term jobs pay a similar rate.

A bit of web searching later ... Sure the work of game testing is a few steps above making pizza at CiCi's pizza buffet in Frisco, but GearBox's $10/hr tester wage is 25% more money than CiCi's $8 starting wage. As people have mentioned Target recently bumping their wages, if those people working in game QA want to stock shelves at the Frisco TX Target store for a 30% pay increase, they're free to change jobs.

If there is enough competition from other business increasing pay for entry level hourly workers, then naturally other businesses will need to follow suit. But for now that is within the prevailing wage for low skill, entry level work in that location.


By PmanAce • Score: 3 • Thread
Why are they comparing a Quality Assurance position with a developer position? QA folks aren't devs (sorry if I offend anyone).

Re: $11 per hour?

By kenh • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

H1-B workers need to make $60K/yr, they can't be paid anything close to $11-12/hr.

Why take a job when you can't live off the wages? Because you want to work in the industry, of course. This is common in many industries, not just game development - for example, radio DJ, performing music, broadcasting, minor league baseball, etc. Over time your skills increase, your ability to command higher wages increases, etc.

That the wages don't cover living expenses is your problem, not your employer's. When people refuse to take the low wages, they will go up, until then realize it is you, the worker willing to accept $11/hr that keeps the wages at $11/hr.

The best example of why a minimum wage is stupid

By LynnwoodRooster • Score: 3 • Thread
There is a massive call and demands for a Federal minimum wage at a "livable" rate. Yet, here we have a story showing that there is a massive disparity of what a living wage would be in many different cities. The cost of living in Manhattan, NY is about 1.5 times the national average. The cost of living in Harlingen, TX is about 75% of the national average. That's a factor of 2. Should we set the Federal minimum wage at NY rates? Harlingen rates? What is "livable"? It's insanity, it belongs at a local level (as the cost between San Francisco and Fresno is also quite different, and that's the same State). Calls for a setting at the Federal level is simply the ultimate manifestation of greed and envy, demanding to take from others to line one's own pockets.

Re: $11 per hour?

By swillden • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Yeah, India got too expensive at least a decade ago. Romania was a much better alternative for a few years, not least because, like India, lots of Romanians speak quite a bit of English. As a result, Romanian wages have risen and now other eastern European countries are more attractive.

However, it's always temporary. Their wages will rise, too. Then it will be on to the next, to lift their wages. This is how globalization works to gradually erode global inequality.

Why We All Need To Agree That It Is Flat Out Unacceptable To Use RSA in 2019

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An excerpt from a post on Trail of Bits: From major open source projects to exciting new proprietary software, we've seen it all. But one common denominator in all of these systems is that for some inexplicable reason people still seem to think RSA is a good cryptosystem to use. Let me save you a bit of time and money and just say outright -- if you come to us with a codebase that uses RSA, you will be paying for the hour of time required for us to explain why you should stop using it. RSA is an intrinsically fragile cryptosystem containing countless foot-guns which the average software engineer cannot be expected to avoid. Weak parameters can be difficult, if not impossible, to check, and its poor performance compels developers to take risky shortcuts. Even worse, padding oracle attacks remain rampant 20 years after they were discovered. While it may be theoretically possible to implement RSA correctly, decades of devastating attacks have proven that such a feat may be unachievable in practice.

Re:TLS 1.3 uses Curve25519

By tepples • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The article doesn't even fathom that you might not make the colossally stupid mistake of writing your own amateur cryptography library.

When the widely vetted open source libraries won't fit into the memory of the 8-bit microprocessor that has been chosen for you, what alternative is there to coding your own crypto?

I don't understand

By PPH • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

if you come to us with a codebase that uses RSA

What does this mean? If I come to you .... as what? A prospective employee? Then I don't have to 'agree' to anything. You are building a product spec'd to use ROT13. Then it's up to me to build the best ROT13 implementation I possibly can.

If I come to you looking for a development shop, then the shoe is on the other foot. I'm the customer. If I come in with a codebase, I'll expect you to work with it. There are lots of other shops who won't argue with me.

If you are the end user and I am a salesman, then it's up to me whether I want to rewrite my codebase to suit your requirements (on your nickel). Or show you the door. IMO, more software vendors need to take whiny customers and escort them off the premises.

Re: Rolling your own is the best.

By Miamicanes • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

No, "rolling your own" implementation is bad, precisely because with RSA, the way you generate your keys & USE them (including short-term memory allocation & scratch files) matters at least as much as RSA (the algorithm) itself. And if you try to do it yourself, you WILL fuck up in entirely predictable ways, and make EXACTLY the kind of mistakes that have allowed RSA's ultimate security to be compromised in the first place.

There's even name for an entire class of such exploits: "Textbook RSA". Those are the exploitable weaknesses you end up with whenever someone tries to use Bruce Schnierer's book like a literal cookbook (which it was never intended to be).

Libraries like BouncyCastle aren't immune to fuck-ups. The difference is, when BouncyCastle fucks up, the fuckup gets quickly discovered & fixed. If YOUR home-rolled scheme has a weakness, the only people likely to know about it for years are attackers.

The big thing with Java crypto is, you NEED to keep your app in a state that allows it to be rebuilt with a newer library & updated at a moment's notice. It doesn't help your app at all if a vulnerability in version x.y.z.8 of BouncyCastle gets fixed in x.y.z.11 if the copy of YOUR app on the user's hard drive is still using x.y.z.9.

RSA is no better or worse than other asymmetric encryption schemes in this regard. It has more public vulnerabilities than others, but nobody can say that others don't have even WORSE issues that simply aren't public knowledge. Crypto is DEFINITELY one of those areas where "works for me" isn't good enough, and rigorous mathematical proof is essential. Crypto that appears to work, but without proof, might very well be a metaphorical skeleton key (or a more secure key, hidden nearby under a flower pot).

Re:Totally ignorant article

By phantomfive • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Right. It's really a rant against rolling your own crypto, which is stupid.

Unless it's OpenSSL. Then there's a good chance you could roll your own crypto better.

IT Security vs the real world

By holophrastic • Score: 3 • Thread

My front door has a lock. It is easily defeated with a card. It has a dead-bolt. It is easily defeated with some lock picks.

Still doesn't matter, because there are glass windows everywhere. Maybe you live with bars on your windows.

Still doesn't matter, the door/window frames that hold the bars aren't strong, your garage door isn't strong, I can smoke you out through your own ventilation system, and even using your own smoke.

My air conditioner is outside of my house, and for weeks every year you can kill me just by turning it off -- with the safety switch on the outside.

I drive 140 kph surrounded by other cars going 140 kph, and separated from on-coming 140 kph cars by nothing more than a yellow strip of paint.

Our lovely IT industry is a protection racket, of which any organized crime ring must be so proud.

We entered a world where machines were unreliable and needed maintenance, we made them completely reliable with no moving parts and zero maintenance required, then we spawned groups of people to simply attack everything, so that other groups of people could tell us that we need more security.

And there's no law enforcement action against any of it.

I'll remind you that law enforcement is the only thing that stops us from having the wild wild west today. It's the only reason that you don't steal windshield wipers, shrubbery, and pets.

If you're upset that someone is using old security, just be happy that they're using any security at all. Most of the rest of life isn't secured by anything ever.

There's a parking lot full of windshield wipers right across the street from you. Think about that the next time you buy a set.

Ask Slashdot: Should the ISS Go Commercial?

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
Slashdot reader stevent1965 writes: The costs of running the International Space Station are a burden for NASA's budget. It has cost over $100 billion to construct and annual operating expenses run between $3 and $4 billion per year, representing a substantial percentage [about half] of NASA's manned space exploration budget. What to do, what to do?

A potential solution is to turn over operations (if not ownership) to private enterprise (Elon, are you listening?) Commercialization of space exploration may be anathema to some, but there is ample precedent for the government ceding control of publicly-funded endeavors to private enterprises. The Internet is the obvious example.

Why not give corporations control of the ISS? Are there drawbacks? Benefits? Which will prevail? Let's hear your opinions.

Sunday NPR noted that a few weeks ago NASA held a press event at Nasdaq's MarketSite to announce and promote "the commercialization of low Earth orbit," with astronaut Christina Koch beaming down a video from space to say that the crew was "so excited" to be a part of NASA "as our home and laboratory in space transitions into being accessible to expanded commercial and marketing opportunities" (as well as to " private astronauts.")

But there are big logistical and financial hurdles. (Even NASA admits to NPR that revenue-generating opportunities first "need to be cultivated by the creative and entrepreneurial private sector.") So leave your own best thoughts in the comments -- the how, why, what if, or why not.

Should the International Space Station go commercial?

Pull a Willard Scott

By magusxxx • Score: 3 • Thread

He became famous for saying hello and Happy Birthday to people.

Do that on the ISS...for a price of course. Though Willard mostly said hello to older folks, the skies the limit (yeah, that just happened) on what ages would get the shout out.

And let's not stop there. Individually sealed pictures children have made could be taken to the station, held up to the camera with the astronaut announcing, "Happy Birthday Billy!". These messages would be recorded and played on the actual birthday. Afterward the pictures would return to Earth and be framed with a certificate of authenticity. Included in the frame would be a little screen which would then play the video. Again...for a price.

Before they de-orbit it? Sure!

By Qbertino • Score: 3 • Thread

If they're going to de-orbit it sometime anyway and there still is use for it I say they should sell it. Not to some douche who can't handle the thing of course, but to a company that has a reasonable plan and can prove they know what they are doing.

My 2 cents.

Nobody would pay

By Goonie • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
In the unlikely event that a commercial entity wanted a long-term presence in Earth orbit, it would be cheaper to design and build something from scratch rather than dealing with the ISS.

It's 20-year-old (and more) technology, the management structure is horrendously complicated, and it has a bunch of infrastructure that is most likely unnecessary for whatever a commercial company would do with it.

But, before we even get there, what the hell would a commercial enterprise want to put humans in low-Earth orbit for months on end? What is the point? We know it's a terrible environment for people, and there's nothing useful that they can do there that can't be done by robots equally well.

Mars is hard

By Viol8 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Perhaps stop watching so much Sci fi and look at reality. It takes years to get there and in zero G that means serious health problems. And thats just the start - the mars soil is highly toxic which means far greater decontamination issues than going to the moon, they will have to stay on the surface for years if they come back at all which means huge amounts of food required (and water possibly , depends if they can melt some ice and decontaminate that) and huge amounts of fuel to power the mission. This is HARD.

Sadly just saying "warp factor 9 Mr Sulu" and being there in 2 minutes doesn't work in the real world.

Re:Mars is hard

By Kjella • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

This is HARD.


We choose to go to the Moon! We choose to go to the Moon...We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard;

Yes, Mars is hard. But I'll wager the bet that Mars in the 2020s is easier than the Moon in the 1960s. We've had people in zero-G for 438 consecutive days, most plans take around 180 days to reach Mars. Radiation is on the order of career limits, where career limits involve a moderate increase in cancer risk not lethal doses. Perchlorates are nasty but you're in a space suit functioning as a hazmat suit, it's not worse than many toxic chemicals on earth. We need a lot of supplies and fuel yes, but we have experience from remote outposts, expeditions, military rations etc. that packing for two years is not really a big problem. On the ISS we have experience with food and water reclamation, CO2 scrubbers and whatnot. If you compare the Saturn I/IB/V to F9/FH/BFR the rocket itself is well on the way.

We have a lot of stretch goals if we want to make it more than a flags and footprints mission, but if you're looking at the capability gap I think we're good. What's been lacking is the economic will to actually do it, but SpaceX has done the F9 and FH so if they say here's the BFR with a fixed price delivery to Mars I can't help to think it will be used. Heck if the US won't pay it I wouldn't be surprised if the EU will, actually that would be hilarious. Here's a billion euros or two, let us plant the first flag. Too bad it won't happen on Trump's watch - there really is no time even if he gets re-elected - otherwise I'd get the popcorn for that one.

Meet The Community That Always Seem To Win Online Sweepstakes

Posted by EditorDavidView on SlashDotShareable Link
The Hustle profiles a community for whom entering online sweepstakes are a way of life. And they "consistently land hundreds of prizes year after year -- vacation packages, cars, event tickets, electronics, and cash -- and their hauls sometimes amount to tens of thousands of dollars..."

"Winning online sweepstakes is supposedly an act of pure luck -- but some contestants claim to have it down to a science." According to an informal poll of 585 respondents, roughly half of all regular sweepers report winnings equivalent to $1,250 or more per year; a quarter win $3k+ in prizes. What about that small 4% fraction that rakes in more than $12k per year in prizes? Are they just extraordinarily lucky or do they have some kind of system that increases their odds of locking down that dream vacation? To find out, we spoke with several women who have collectively made more than $500k winning contests online...

Carolyn Wilman (AKA, the "Contest Queen") has raked in $250k in her sweepstaking career using a quantitative strategy based on sheer volume:

- She creates a new email specifically for sweepstakes.

- She uses sweepstake aggregators (resources that list thousands of legitimate promotions in one location) to find form-based competitions.

- She uses software to auto-fill hundreds of entry forms with her information.

In a one hour-long sitting, with a few clicks, Wilman can enter more than 200 sweepstakes. The goal is two-fold: To enter as many contests as humanly possible, and to minimize the amount of time it takes to do it. "Luck has nothing to do with winning," she says. "It all comes down to effort and persistence."

Her persistence has paid off. In her best month, she won 83 prizes; in her best year, earnings topped $60k. Highlights include a $40k vacation package to the 2010 winter Olympics, a trip to London to visit the set of Harry Potter, and tickets to the British Open in Scotland.

One member of the "sweeper" community brags that they don't engage in highly risky behavior -- "But with sweepstakes, I can pretty much guarantee I'll win."

Re:My parents know someone like that

By AmiMoJo • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

People in the UK have been doing it for decades too. There is a community over on the Money Saving Expert forums.

The main issue, aside from the will to put the time in, is that your name, address and phone number ends up in thousands of marketing databases. Your house gets flooded with spam, let alone your inbox. Obviously you can do things to limit the damage, like having a dedicated spam email address and spare SIM card, but you still have to check them periodically to see if you have won. And you can't really lie about your name and address because it would invalidate many of your winnings.

These people kind of suck if you think about it

By SirDrinksAlot • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
I once worked for a SCCA Pro racing team as a pit monkey for a weekend. The team some time before had a sweepstakes to send two people to the Toronto Grand Prix fom the United States and someone who does this activity of throw shit at the wall and see what sticks won. This person who won it was some single mom with a toddler, neither of them gave any shit about what they were doing there and screwed off as soon as the paddock tour was over, I assume they tried to sell their sweet tickets for the rest of the weekend. I didn't see them again even though we were supposed to.

I guess if you're a single mom and you can't afford to do things like vacations for your kids then this is kinda cool way to expand their world but in this case the kid was in a stroller and wouldn't remember sitting in a race car 5 minutes later.

The contest was intended for fans of the team and this outcome really disappointed one of the drivers. This is when I found out about "contest winners" because it's usually a contest winner not a fan that wins these prizes they have. So ultimately in this case, the contest winner took something away from the intended audience and it wasn't even something they appeared to enjoy.

Re:Might include money launderers

By jrumney • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
These aren't real lotteries though, they offer non-cash prizes like holidays, so not particularly useful for money laundering, and the price of entry is your soul presented to marketers on a platter. These people are merely gaming the system by superficially giving the marketers the personal info they want, while withholding probably the most valuable part - their eyeballs on all the disguised advertising in the competition entry form.


By fluffernutter • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
This person is only successful doing this because to most other people it feels like fraud.

Congratulations to those people who live between the lines of what is 'legal' and what is 'allowed'. Some of us can't live with ourselves if we behave this way.


By mark-t • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
That's because if you read the boilerplate that is part of the rules for most sweepstakes, it will say something not entirely unlike this:

The use of any automated launching or entry software or any other mechanical or electronic means that permits the participant to automatically register and/or enter repeatedly is prohibited and all such entries will be disqualified.

So, while perhaps not exactly fraud in a legal sense, definitely a violation of the rules

But I expect that the person probably holds the perception that there's nothing wrong with breaking rules as long as you don't get caught, especially since the consequence for breaking the rules even if you do get caught is no worse than if you hadn't entered in the first place.