Web

Indeed, quite so John

And then there was the shift in judicial thinking about antitrust triggered in the late 1970s by the prominent legal thinker Robert Bork and promulgated by the economics and law faculties of the University of Chicago. The essence of this new philosophy was that the size and dominance of corporations were only a problem if they resulted in consumer harm, inevitably measured by prices. And if the products were “free” (Google, Facebook and Twitter, say), where was the consumer harm?

Guess which argument John Naughton doesn’t try to refute in his piece here?

Idiot

Carissa Véliz is associate professor in philosophy at the Institute for Ethics in AI, a fellow at Hertford College, University of Oxford, and the author of Privacy Is Power (Bantam Press, 2020)

So, we know she’s going to say something stupid but what’s it going to be?

The United Kingdom is at a crossroads. On the verge of Brexit, it has to decide where it stands in relation to privacy: will it loosen data protection regulation, moving more towards China’s model, or will it guarantee its citizens’ right to privacy, moving more towards a Californian approach and securing a data adequacy agreement with the EU? It would be a mistake to choose the former.

The Irish data commissioner has just declared that the American system of data regulation is not compatible with the EU one…..

This cannot, possibly, be right

The complaint will focus on how Google has used its dominant position in online search to harm consumers and crush upstart rivals. It processes 90 per cent of global search requests

There are languages and countries that Google doesn’t operate in, aren’t there? Like China maybe?

About time to tell ’em to bugger off

“Elevating free expression is a good thing, but it should apply to everyone,” the report says. “The prioritisation of free expression over all other values, such as equality and non-discrimination, is deeply troubling to the auditors.”

Free expression is great, say the auditors of Facebook policies, except when the expressions freed disagree with us.

Interesting question

Do Google or Apple get to tell a democratically elected government or its public health institutions what they may or may not have on an app?

Answer: Yes.

That is, Apple and Google have worked together to produce an app to facilitate contact tracing. Here’s what it does. This is what you can do with it.

Want to do more? Do it differently? Then write your own app then matey.

In the long run, however, this poses a far more fundamental question: how much can the decisions of sovereign democratic countries be overruled by technology companies?

It’s all just code. Write your own.

How super

More than half of online grooming offences recorded under a law that made it illegal to send sexual messages to children were committed on Facebook-owned apps, figures reveal.

The data, obtained by the NSPCC under freedom of information laws, show 10,019 offences of sexual communication with a child were recorded since the legislation was introduced in April 2017.

And the percentage of all online communications carried out on Facebook owned services and apps is what?

Is Facebook doing better or worse than everyone else?

Oh, tee hee

Twitter’s anti-porn filters have blocked Dominic Cummings’ name despite Boris Johnson’s chief adviser dominating British political news for almost a week, the Guardian can reveal.

As a result of the filtering, trending topics over the past five days have instead included a variety of misspellings of his name, including #cummnings, #dominiccummigs and #sackcummimgs, as well as his first name on its own, the hashtag #sackdom, and the place names Durham, County Durham and Barnard Castle.

The filter also affects suggested hashtags, meaning users who tried to type #dominiccummings were instead presented with one of the misspelled variations to auto-complete, helping them trend instead.

This sort of accidental filtering has gained a name in computer science: the Scunthorpe problem, so-called because of the Lincolnshire town’s regular issues with such censorship.

Bizarrely, the shortened hashtag #cumgate has also trended, since the first word of the sentence is not included in Twitter’s filter list,

Might be a bit of time before AIs actually rule the world….

This isn’t cyberscamming

Instead of discovering information about Harry and Meghan’s charitable aims, they were diverted to a YouTube video for the song Gold Digger by the American rapper Kanye West.

The royal couple, it appeared, were the latest to fall victim to hackers known as “cybersquatters”, who, after learning about their plans, had quickly bought up the website www.archewellfoundation.com.

That’s a rather fun joke.

A source close to the Sussexes pointed out that the new Archewell venture is “not a foundation” and subsequently, will not be called the “Archewell Foundation”. They added that the couple could not buy “every formation” of possible websites. It means that the couple may have fallen victim to another scam that involves the registration of slightly different domain names that rely on people entering a typo or getting the website name slightly wrong.

Jake Moore, a cybersecurity specialist at ESET, an internet security company, said: “A typical trait of cybercriminals

It’s not a scam nor a criminal activity. If you pretend to be the real thing then of course that’s passing off. But just picking up the traffic of people who mispsell something isn’t either a scam nor crime.

Aha, Aha, Ahhahahahahahahahaha

The Swiss government has ordered an inquiry into a global encryption company based in Zug following revelations it was owned and controlled for decades by US and German intelligence.

Encryption weaknesses added to products sold by Crypto AG allowed the CIA and its German counterpart, the BND, to eavesdrop on adversaries and allies alike while earning million of dollars from the sales, according the Washington Post and the German public broadcaster ZDF, based on the agencies’ internal histories of the intelligence operation.

“It was the intelligence coup of the century,” the CIA report concluded. “Foreign governments were paying good money to the US and West Germany for the privilege of having their most secret communications read by at least two (and possibly as many as five or six) foreign countries.”

Gurgle, snort…….

Presumably this joke has already been made

France will go ahead with its controversial new tax on the profits of large technology firms such as Google and Facebook despite US threats to retaliate, as the government vows that it is just the start of a crucial rethink of the regulation of tech monopolies.

Cédric O, the French junior minister for digital affairs, told the Guardian that Emmanuel Macron’s drive to make companies including Amazon and Apple pay more and fairer tax would go ahead, despite US warnings that it could open up a new front in the international trade war.

The novel was about being submissive Cedric, not dominant. Still, we can still mutter something about cocksuckers when we’ve a junior French minister insisting the entire world must bow to his demands….

Need some advice about Macbook Pros

So, grandchild thinking that she must have a Macbook Pro.

There’s not the money around to buy something new.

So, how far back and lower performance can we go?

As far as I understand it she needs – she’s doing dance just to give the academic background – to be able to play videos that show new dance steps and so on. And to be able to tape her own and then upload them.

I’ve asked, no, she doesn’t need to be able to do whizzy graphics. It’s video reality, show them, watch videos of reality.

Now, my understanding of Apple sware is that if the OS will run then anything that runs on that OS will work. It’s not like Windows where things only work grudgingly if they’ve not got 10 GB of RAM to play in.

So, she’s an iPad and a iPhone, so she can record stuff. And so what is the entry level of Macbook Pro that goes with that? Amazon.co. uk has old (ie, 2012) boxes at £250. Then there’s a box with 1 TB hard drive, OS looks 2 steps behind today’s (Sierra maybe?). But only 4 GB RAM. Is that enough? Or is it necessary to step up to £500?

This might be wrong but my impression is that Apple’s boxes get whizzier screens, more fun keyboards etc, but the basic operating functions of video, record, play, haven’t changed much.

So, is this so?

Anyone actually know all of this?

Err, no Admiral

[2] Why does New Jersey have the most toxic waste dumps and California the most lawyers? California got first choice.

It’s because New Jersey got first choice.

Otherwise the piece is a very good explanation of olds*.

*Stuff that isn’t news via Sir Pterry.

An easy way to test this sorta stuff

Up to fifty per cent of five star reviews for some of the highest-ranking hotels on TripAdvisor are “suspicious”, a Which? investigation has found.

The consumer watchdog has criticised TripAdvisor for failing to stop luxury hotels being boosted by fake reviews which can mislead travellers and ruin holidays.

It’s not that difficult to find work writing reviews…..

Esther, that’s not the point

Dame Esther Rantzen says Skype won’t combat loneliness of elderly like a hug and cuppa

And a hug and a cuppa doesn’t cure it as well as staying all afternoon.

Thus that’s not actually the question. Rather, does Skype aid in curing loneliness compared to no Skype?

Because it’s different honey

The head of the National Crime Agency (NCA) has challenged the social media giants to explain why they can develop Artificial Intelligence (AI) to target adverts at users but not create AI capable of protecting children from child abuse.

In an exclusive interview with the Telegraph, Lynne Owens said the failure of the social media firms to prevent paedophiles targeting children on the open web was distracting the NCA and police from hunting down the “worst offenders” who were operating on the dark web.

It’s a different problem with a different level of difficulty.

For example, false positives in advertising don’t matter very much. Indeed, they’re expected and allowed for. False positives in allegations of child grooming or paedophilia are quite an important thing.

I know we’ve some telecoms peeps here

So, just had fibreoptic installed at 100 Mbits.

Sometimes, the BBC asks for me to be on one of their radio shows. They don’t like using VOIP. Prefer – for a “big” show that I go to Faro to a studio where they have an arrangement to do ISDN from studio to studio.

Better sound that way apparently.

So, is there a way to get BBC quality ISDN-like over that 100 Mbits fibreoptic connection?

Skype, Google Voice (?) whatever don’t cut it. Is there something better than that?

And yes, it’s specifically to try to link up with the BBC.

Just an idle thought

So, Gutenberg and his printing press. Add that translation of the Bible into the vernacular. The Common Man no longer needed the intercession of the established Church to read God’s word. Which is why printed Bibles in the vernacular were burnt, along with their translators.

Social media allows the direct interaction of the unwashed. Without the intercession of the establishment power structure through the vertical media. No wonder they’re trying to regulate.

And who won first time around? And do we think the result was, after the burnings, a good one or not?