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Messages - pipthom

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A NEW Zealand teenage internet troll has been convicted of assaulting an Australian television journalist during an interview and ordered to pay him $440 for emotional harm.

Tristan Barker, son of former Split Enz drummer Michael Barker, was sentenced in Rotorua District Court today after pleading guilty to assaulting Seven Network's Today Tonight reporter David Eccleston.

He was convicted and discharged, and ordered to pay $440 to Eccleston as emotional compensation.

The assault took place in Rotorua in March during an interview that focused on Barker's internet trolling, which occurred when he was living in Australia.

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2
The Canadian government in recent years has banned government scientists from talking about a growing list of research topics including: snowflakes, the ozone layer, salmon, and previously published work about a 13,000-year-old flood.

Now it seems the scientists are talking back.

Researchers in 16 Canadian cities have called protests on Monday against science policies introduced under the government of Stephen Harper, which include rules barring government researchers from talking about their own work with journalists and, in some cases, even fellow researchers.

"There a lot of concern in Canada right now about government scientists not being allowed to speak about their research to the public because of the new communications policies being put into place," said Katie Gibbs, director of a new group, Evidence for Democracy, which is organizing the protests.

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3
It wasn’t ever seriously in doubt, but the FBI yesterday acknowledged that it secretly took control of Freedom Hosting last July, days before the servers of the largest provider of ultra-anonymous hosting were found to be serving custom malware designed to identify visitors.

Freedom Hosting’s operator, Eric Eoin Marques, had rented the servers from an unnamed commercial hosting provider in France, and paid for them from a bank account in Las Vegas. It’s not clear how the FBI took over the servers in late July, but the bureau was temporarily thwarted when Marques somehow regained access and changed the passwords, briefly locking out the FBI until it gained back control.

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4
Microsoft and Google announced Friday they are going forward with a lawsuit against the US government for the right to reveal more information about official requests for customer data by American intelligence.

The companies originally filed suits in June following revelations provided by Edward Snowden of their relationship with the National Security Agency and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which oversees the government’s requests of the companies’ systems.

Microsoft’s general counsel Brad Smith announced the companies were following through with a suit, saying negotiations with the government since June have not yielded significant progress. The companies maintain they should be allowed to disclose the nature of their relationship with government spying — via the program known as PRISM — in the face of public criticism after the NSA stories were reported by The Guardian and The Washington Post.

“On six occasions in recent weeks we agreed with the Department of Justice to extend the Government’s deadline to reply to these lawsuits.  We hoped that these discussions would lead to an agreement acceptable to all.  While we appreciate the good faith and earnest efforts by the capable Government lawyers with whom we negotiated, we are disappointed that these negotiations ended in failure,” Smith wrote in a post entitled “Standing Together for Greater Transparency” on Microsoft’s corporate blog.

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5
The UN is under growing pressure from Syria to do its job and prevent an American “war of aggression,” and the Arab League demanding punishment for “war criminals” in the Syrian government.

The two identical letters delivered to the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and President of the UN Security Council, Maria Cristina Perceval call on the international body to maintain its role of protector of international legitimacy and prevent US-led aggression against Damascus, Syria’s permanent representative to the UN Bashar al-Jaafari told Sana.

The Syrian government continues to deny any use of chemical weapons on the civilian population, with Jaafari reminding of Syria’s cooperation with the UN on this issue, which was often downplayed and twisted in the western media.

“The Syrian government is the first side who asked the UN Secretary General to form an objective investigation team to investigate the use of chemical weapons in Khan al-Assal in Aleppo,” Bashar al-Jaafari said, adding that they warned, “more than a year ago, against the serious risks of the possibility of using chemical materials by the armed terrorist groups in Syria.”

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6
Big Cars makes big improvement in extra time

There is something both very familiar and very alien about the characters and the world of AOL's Little Women, Big Cars.

We all know a group of soccer moms with a dynamic like the one depicted in this AOL scripted series. There's Meg (the supermom) and her cohorts Barbara (the feminist divorcée, played by Julie Warner), Rocky (the diva), and Connie (the diva's BFF). But through the eyes of outsiders, the world they inhabit is often perceived as small, driven by overprotective, neurotic tendencies.

The Vuguru-produced Little Women invites the audience to experience that world's intricacies as a way to cast away any preconceived notions about the difficulties of being a mother while also gently poking fun at that sub-culture. However, despite the creators’ best intentions, the shallowness with which the show treated that world in its first season disappoints; the potential is there, but often falls flat.

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If you can’t beat China’s censors, why not join them?

That’s what a Harvard University professor decided to do, in a creative effort to learn firsthand just how censorship in China works.

To get inside the system, professor Gary King and two Ph.D. students started their own fake social network over the past year, which—while it never formally went online—allowed them to reach out to some of China’s many companies offering censorship software. Their results, published this week, show the wide array of tools that social media companies like Sina Corp. and Tencent Holdings Ltd. can harness to control information as required by authorities.

Read more at WSJ’s China Real Time.

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Arriana Huffington / An Inside Look at China’s Censorship Tools
« on: August 31, 2013, 05:30:32 PM »
If you can’t beat China’s censors, why not join them?

That’s what a Harvard University professor decided to do, in a creative effort to learn firsthand just how censorship in China works.

To get inside the system, professor Gary King and two Ph.D. students started their own fake social network over the past year, which—while it never formally went online—allowed them to reach out to some of China’s many companies offering censorship software. Their results, published this week, show the wide array of tools that social media companies like Sina Corp. and Tencent Holdings Ltd. can harness to control information as required by authorities.

Read more at WSJ’s China Real Time.

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US intelligence carried out 231 offensive cyber-ops in 2011, nearly three-quarters of them against key targets such as Iran, Russia, China and N. Korea, as well as nuclear proliferation, a classified report obtained by The Washington Post says.

The “most challenging targets” also include suspected terrorists “in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Iraq, Somalia, and other extremist safe havens,” according to one list of priorities. US budget documents describe the attacks as “active defense.”

Some cyber-operations reportedly feature what one budget document calls “field operations” organized “to physically place hardware implants or software modifications” with the help of CIA operatives or clandestine military forces.

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Quote
After 9/11, President George W. Bush turned to Civil War precedents to create military tribunals for trying alleged “terrorists.” But in applying those draconian rules to a worldwide battlefield, he created the nightmarish potential for a global totalitarianism, as retired U.S. Army JAG officer Todd E. Pierce explains.

Very true


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Arriana Huffington / Re: Arrianna Huffington's Courageous Move
« on: August 27, 2013, 02:42:13 PM »
There is very little that is happening in those areas that is worth reporting about. But let's wait and see.

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Not true. The percentage is higher.

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It happens everywhere. It is not only journalists who do this. Who wants to be in-between jobs anyway?

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Censorship is necessary. I remember reading an article about a student magazine that was under fire for censoring parts of a cover page that had a display of female anatomical parts.  :'(

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Quote
have you heard about the racism in the Argentina only 15 year ago?

Andy, there is racism everywhere. The human being is built to reject discriminate against anything that doesnt look like they do. That is not to say that I support it.

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