e dot dot dot
a mostly about the Internet blog by

January 2018
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
 
     


EU's Highest Court Says Privacy Activist Can Litigate Against Facebook In Austria, But Not As Part Of A Class Action

Furnished content.


Last November we reported on the legal opinion of one of the Advocates General that advises the EU's top court, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). It concerned yet another case brought by the data protection activist and lawyer Max Schrems against Facebook, which he claims does not follow EU privacy laws properly. There were two issues: whether Schrems could litigate against Facebook in his home country, Austria, and whether he could join with 25,000 people to bring a class action against the company. The Advocate General said "yes" to the first, and "no" to the second, and in its definitive ruling, the CJEU has agreed with both of those views (pdf). Here's what Schrems has to say on the judgment (pdf):

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) confirms that Max Schrems can litigate in Vienna against Facebook for violation of EU privacy rules. Facebook's attempt to block the privacy lawsuit was not successful.However, today the CJEU gave a very narrowly definition of the notion of a "consumer" which deprives many consumer from consumer protection and also makes an Austrian-style "class action" impossible.
The rest of his press release gives background details of the case. Schrems explains why being able to bring a class action in Austria is important:
If a multinational knows that they cannot win a case, they try to find reasons so that a case is not admissible, or they try to squeeze a plaintiff out of the case by inflating the costs.. Facebook wanted to ensure that the case can only be heard in Dublin [where its EU headquarters are located], as Ireland does not have any class action and litigating even one model claim would cost millions of Euros in legal fees. In this case we'd have a valid claim, but it would be basically unenforceable.
EU consumer groups agree that an option to bring class actions is needed, as EurActiv reports:
The ECJ's finding has caused outrage among consumer groups that have campaigned for years for the [European] Commission to propose legislation allowing for EU-level class action lawsuits involving complainants from different member states. They argue that collective redress will make it easier and cheaper for consumer to sue.
The same articles notes that Schrems and the consumer groups may soon get their wish: the European Commission is expected to unveil proposals for a new law that will allow collective redress to be sought across the EU. Even if that does happen, it's likely to take years to implement. Before then, Facebook has many other problems it needs to confront. First, there is Schrem's personal suit against the company, which can now proceed in the Austrian courts. As he points out:
Facing a lawsuit, which questions Facebook's business model, is a huge risk for the company. Any judgement in Austria is directly enforceable at Facebook's Irish headquarter and throughout Europe.
That is, if Schrems wins his case, other EU citizens will be able to use the judgment to sue Facebook more easily. And Facebook may have headed off the threat of a class action under existing law, but the EU's new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will be enforced from May of this year, explicitly allows non-profit organizations to sue on the behalf of individuals. Article 80 of the GDPR says:
The data subject shall have the right to mandate a not-for-profit body, organisation or association which has been properly constituted in accordance with the law of a Member State, has statutory objectives which are in the public interest, and is active in the field of the protection of data subjects' rights and freedoms with regard to the protection of their personal data to lodge the complaint on his or her behalf
With that in mind, Schrems is crowdfunding just such a public interest, not-for-profit body, None of Your Business (noyb), which Techdirt discussed in December. At the time of writing, noyb is within a few percent of achieving its goal of €250,000. Facebook is naturally well-aware of the GDPR's likely impact. The company's Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg said recently:
We're rolling out a new privacy center globally that will put the core privacy settings for Facebook in one place and make it much easier for people to manage their data
Satisfying the requirements of the GDPR is not the only looming problem for Facebook. In Germany, the company is facing what is potentially an even more serious challenge, as the FT reports (paywall):
Germany is threatening curbs on how Facebook amasses data from millions of users in what would be an unprecedented intervention in the social network's business model.Andreas Mundt, head of Germany's main antitrust agency, the Federal Cartel Office, said Facebook could be banned from collecting and processing third-party user data as one possible outcome of an investigation that in December concluded the US technology group was abusing its dominant market position.
If Germany goes ahead with these plans, it will drastically reduce the scope for Facebook to make money by using consolidated data about its users to sell advertising space, and may well encourage other EU nations to follow suit.Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and +glynmoody on Google+

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 31-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Hitwise: Three Surprising Super Bowl Trends

Furnished content.


More Women, More Trump, More YouTube Based on recent search and traffic analysis, Hitwise reveals three new trends about the Super Bowl audience that you probably haven’t heard about yet. #1. More Women *Based on women searching for the Super Bowl online (past winners, odds, and details) for 4 weeks ending 1/23/2016, 1/21/2017 and […]The post Hitwise: Three Surprising Super Bowl Trends appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 31-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Minnesota Supreme Court Says Unlocking A Phone With A Fingerprint Isn't A Fifth Amendment Issue

Furnished content.


When it comes to the Fifth Amendment, you're better off with a password or PIN securing your device, rather than your fingerprint. Cellphone manufacturers introduced fingerprint readers in an effort to protect users from thieves or other unauthorized access. But it does nothing at all to prevent law enforcement from using their fingerprints to unlock seized devices.The US Supreme Court hasn't seen a case involving compelled production of fingerprints land on its desk yet and there's very little in the way of federal court decisions to provide guidance. What we have to work with is scattered state court decisions and the implicit understanding that no matter how judges rule, a refusal to turn over a fingerprint or a password is little more than a way to add years to an eventual sentence.The Minnesota Supreme Court has issued the final word on fingerprints and the Fifth Amendment for state residents. In upholding the appeals court ruling, the Supreme Court says a fingerprint isn't testimonial, even if it results in the production of evidence used against the defendant. (h/t FourthAmendment.com)From the ruling [PDF]:

Although the Supreme Court’s distinction between the testimonial act of producing documents as evidence and the nontestimonial act of producing the body as evidence is helpful to our analysis, the act here—providing the police a fingerprint to unlock a cellphone—does not fit neatly into either category. Unlike the acts of standing in a lineup or providing a blood, voice, or handwriting sample, providing a fingerprint to unlock a cellphone both exhibits the body (the fingerprint) and produces documents (the contents of the cellphone). Providing a fingerprint gives the government access to the phone’s contents that it did not already have, and the act of unlocking the cellphone communicates some degree of possession, control, and authentication of the cellphone’s contents. See Hubbell, 530 U.S. at 36. But producing a fingerprint to unlock a phone, unlike the act of producing documents, is a display of the physical characteristics of the body, not of the mind, to the police. See Schmerber, 384 U.S. at 763.Because we conclude that producing a fingerprint is more like exhibiting the body than producing documents, we hold that providing a fingerprint to unlock a cellphone is not a testimonial communication under the Fifth Amendment.
The ruling notes the defendant did try to holdout on this, sticking to his Fifth Amendment arguments. But when the trial court gives you only unpalatable options, defendants tend to give prosecutors what they want.
The district court concluded that compelling Diamond’s fingerprint would not violate his Fifth Amendment privilege because “[c]ompelling the production of [Diamond’s] fingerprint or thumbprint would not call upon the use of [his] mind. It is more akin to providing a key to a lockbox.” Accordingly, it ordered Diamond to “provide a fingerprint or thumbprint as deemed necessary by the Chaska Police Department to unlock his seized cell phone.”Diamond continued to object to providing the necessary fingerprint for unlocking the phone. Nevertheless, he finally unlocked the cellphone with his fingerprint in court after being held in civil contempt and warned of the possibility and consequences of criminal contempt.
This is an aspect never discussed by the FBI and others engaged in the war on encryption. Many, many people can be motivated to unlock devices when faced with the prospect of indefinite imprisonment on contempt charges. It's something that should work in all but the most extreme criminal cases where the potential imprisonment might be as close to indefinite as humanly possible.


Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 31-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Go East - Digital Video Forecast for Asia in 2018

Furnished content.


Market Overview Asia is one of the largest digital video markets with some predictions showing that the region will account for over half of the total global digital video content consumption in 2018. Among the major factors contributing to the increased video consumption level are: growing smartphone penetration, greater mobile video viewing, increases in mobile […]The post Go East - Digital Video Forecast for Asia in 2018 appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 31-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Salt Lake Comic Con Files For A New Trial And Seeks Round 2

Furnished content.


In the wake of San Diego Comic-Con winning its years-long lawsuit against Salt Lake Comicon over its trademark on the term "comic-con", much of the media coverage was somewhat apocalyptic as to what the consequences would be for cons across the country. Despite the payout for winning the suit being a paltry $20k, more focus was put on just how other cons would react. The early returns are mixed, with some proactively undergoing name-changes to avoid litigation and others staying stalwart. The point we have made all along is that this win for SDCC was not some ultimate final act on the matter.And, as many predicted, it appears that win wasn't even the final act with regards to its SLCC foe, as the Utah-based con has filed for a new trial.

The Salt Lake lawyers filed the paperwork on Tuesday in response to last month’s eight-day trial in U.S. District Court, during which jurors decided that the California convention’s trademarks are valid. The jury found that the infringement was not willful and awarded $20,000 in damages to the San Diego Comic-Con, which had sought $12 million.The Salt Lake lawyers say evidence was wrongly excluded during trial and improper jury instructions undercut the evidence.
It will be very interesting to see where this goes, because many of us that observed the goings on of the initial trial were surprised at its outcome. From a trademark perspective, the arguments for genericide raised by SLCC seemed quite obvious. The evidence of genericide is present in every bit of follow up coverage one sees dealing with how many other shows with some version of "comic con" in their names are either changing those names or standing firm and continuing to use them. The phrase is everywhere in the industry, which only makes sense, given that the phrase is essentially nothing more than a description of the type of show being conducted. Part of the issue raised in the filing for a new trial appears to be how much the jury was allowed to hear about other cons using the term nationwide.
Part of the excluded evidence was testimony about the use of “comic con” by third-party competitors, which could make the term generic, the motion says. In addition, according to the motion, the trial judge gave a defective instruction that said competitive use is inadequate to establish genericness.
It's easy to see how such misguided instructions and barring of relevant evidence would give rise to such an erroneous verdict. Regardless, it seems likely that there will be more to come in round two of the wrath of cons.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 30-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Senators Demand Investigation Of Intelligence Community's Refusal To Implement Whistleblower Protections

Furnished content.


When the Snowden leaks dropped, plenty of people rushed to criticize his actions, saying he should have brought his concerns to officials via the proper channels. Always assumed to be mostly worthless, the intervening four years have proven nothing shoots messengers faster than the "proper channels." Despite periodic legislative attempts to institute better whistleblower protections, working within the system rarely produces positive changes. It does, however, subject the whistleblower to plenty of retaliation.This sad fact is personified by Dan Meyer -- the former official whistleblower channel for the Intelligence Community. Meyer blew the whistle himself, pointing out wrongdoing by top IC officials. Now, he's being forced out of office, clearing the path for the IC's attempt to rebrand whistleblowers as "insider threats." Meyer is facing an ad hoc Star Chamber of IC Inspector Generals, all of them apparently gunning for his swift removal.

Meyer, who for the past four years has served as executive director of Intelligence Community Whistleblowing and Source Protection, has come under fire amidst a move to reduce his role in educating employees at the 17 intelligence agencies about their rights and obligations in reporting alleged waste, fraud and abuse.A special executive review board composed of an unusual grouping of IGs from other agencies has been hearing from witnesses concerning management’s decision not to certify Meyer after his probationary period as program manager. That decision could result in his firing. Meyer has many years of experience working with whistleblowers in Defense Department agencies.
Meyer's whistleblowing concerned IC agencies' apparent refusal to shield whistleblowers from retaliation. The irony likely isn't lost on Meyer, but leaving the government with all the irony you can carry isn't much of a severance package. Meanwhile, officials accused of retaliation are jockeying for top spots in the new administration.
The nominee for CIA inspector general, Christopher Sharpley, has several outstanding retaliation complaints against him that could delay his confirmation. Sharpley is mired in ongoing reprisal cases from at least two former CIA Office of Inspector General employees, Jonathan Kaplan and Andrew Bakaj.The inspector general at the Defense Intelligence Agency, Kristi Waschull, is plagued by retaliation complaints by former employees who argue she is too deferential to her former colleagues and friends in management at the agency, and that she has softened internal reports and neutered the agency, as FP reported.Meanwhile, George Ellard, the NSA inspector general who was placed on administrative leave after he was found by a panel of other IGs in 2016 to have retaliated against a whistleblower, got his job back in the new administration.
Whatever whistleblower protections have been erected over the past several years are being methodically stripped away, even as the Intelligence Community talks a good game about "rigorous oversight" and "unprecedented transparency." This isn't sitting well with a few legislators, including longtime advocates of whistleblowers.
Sens. Mark Warner (D-Va.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), and Susan Collins (R-Maine) of the Intelligence Committee, along with Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, penned a letter to the Government Accountability Office on Dec. 7 demanding that the oversight agency conduct a far-reaching review.[...]“The Inspectors General within the Intelligence Community have the responsibility to oversee the protection of whistleblowers, ensure that whistleblower protection policies and processes are properly adhered to, and guarantee that claims made by whistleblowers are investigated in a timely and fair manner,” the senators wrote in a letter exclusively obtained by Foreign Policy.
It's going to be a mess of acronyms if everything goes to plan. The Government Accountability Office will audit the whistleblower protection efforts of the NSA, NRO (National Reconnaissance Office), CIA, and the IC Inspector General. That's a lot of secretive entities with zero desire to share their internal behavior with outsiders. But given the long history of whistleblower retaliation in these agencies, there's no way they can be trusted to investigate themselves.In the meantime, one of the best whistleblower outlets in the Intelligence Community is being kicked out of the inner circle, if not out of the government entirely. Replacing him won't be a priority for the IC, which has harbored several enemies of whistleblowers for several years. As this administration continues to root out leakers, the situation is only going to get worse.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 30-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



No Longer Apps First; There's a Website for That

Furnished content.


Heads up for the JavaScript Web Development Revolution! Are apps always the answer? Not anymore. Thanks to tech advancements, websites are not only poised to rival apps, but ultimately, be a better choice. The momentum of new technologies like ReactJS - the innovative JavaScript library backed by Facebook - is blurring the lines between native […]The post No Longer Apps First; There's a Website for That appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 30-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



This Week In Techdirt History: January 21st - 27th

Furnished content.


Five Years AgoThis week in 2013, the world continued to react to the death of Aaron Swartz, with more attention being turned towards prosecutorial misconduct, and direct criticism of the handling of Swartz's case — though US Attorney Carmen Ortiz doubled down and said her office wouldn't change anything. Meanwhile, we looked at the many other cases of prosecutors bullying "hackers", while misguided editors at the Globe & Mail were spewing nonsense and hackathons around the world were preparing to carry on Aaron Swartz's work.Ten Years AgoThis week in 2008, while AT&T was getting ready to filter copyrighted content at the ISP level, Time Warner was rolling out its overage charges for heavy users — and, funny thing, Time Warner-owned HBO was simultaneously putting its shows online for the first time. And Canadian lobbyists were pushing to make ISPs liable for piracy themselves. Meanwhile, we saw too trends in their infancy: adults moving into the young person's world of social media (to the consternation of many young people), and PC game companies experimenting with the freemium model that would later become a staple of mobile gaming (this was before the PC publishers figured out they could charge $60 for the game and have microtransactions).Fifteen Years AgoEarly this week in 2003, it was the RIAA seeking money from ISPs, with then-head Hillary Rosen calling for a P2P levy — though a journalist who called the RIAA found them denying she said it, and claiming the opposite. But then, midweek, Rosen announced her resignation. Meanwhile, Microsoft was introducing its own DRM technology, while Sony was trying out some DRM that charged people $2 to copy a song from a CD. Amidst this anti-circumvention obsession, tech firms were getting more aggressive in their fight against Hollywood's DRM demands.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 28-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Ads.txt Has Reached Critical Adoption: An Adform Analysis

Furnished content.


According to Adform, the Ads.txt adoption has moved rapidly from 30% in October 2017 to above 75% in January 2018. In October Adform shared preliminary figures on ads.txt adoption among the world's top 1,000 publishers across global markets. At the time, adoption was just beginning to ramp up. Since then, they have continued to track […]The post Ads.txt Has Reached Critical Adoption: An Adform Analysis appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 27-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Pablo Escobar's Brother Gives Up His Quest For A Billion Dollar Extortion Of Netflix Over 'Narcos'

Furnished content.


You will likely know that we've been following the absurd threats that Roberto Escobar, brother to and former accountant for noted drug kingpin Pablo Escobar, launched at Netflix and the makers of its hit show Narcos. The threats kicked off as something of a publicity rights challenge, with Roberto Escobar demanding one billion dollars over a show in which he does not appear and is not named. Escobar has appeared to believe that his knowledge of the inner workings of the Escobar cartel somehow granted him authority over the show, while pretty much everyone else has agreed that the First Amendment would ultimately torpedo any lawsuit that might actually get filed.But then things got even stranger. Escobar's lawyers began making noises that indicated the show was about to capitulate to the threats and demands. Meanwhile, the legal team on the other side were at the exact same time pointing out just how absurd and ficticious some of Escobar's claims were, such as that he had been using the term "Narcos" in conjunction with operating a website and providing computer gaming services on a computer network since 1986. For those of you who are too young to remember a time without a widespread internet, there basically was no such thing as a publicly facing website in 1986. Meanwhile, a location scout for the show was murdered in Mexico while scouting for the series' fourth season, with Escobar offering cryptic and coy commentary on the matter that bordered on suggesting he was somehow involved.All of that had just been happening in the fall, which might make it slightly less surprising that this whole thing will now go away.

The Escobar fam doesn't usually back down from a fight, but it waved the white flag in a showdown with a TV powerhouse ... TMZ has learned. Escobar Inc. -- the company run by Pablo's bro, Roberto -- folded in the battle to cash in on the terms "Narcos" and "Cartel Wars." Both were made famous recently by the popular Netflix show, and the related video game.According to new legal docs, the company filed an abandonment of its trademark application in November. We broke the story ... lawyers for "Narcos" called BS on Pablo for filing paperwork claiming ownership of "Narcos" in connection with a website.
As TMZ goes on to note, there is no official word if any kind of settlement was reached as a part of the trademark abandonment, but one has to assume that even if there were a settlement that the result would be considerably less than the billion dollars Escobar once dreamed he would receive. The laughably flimsy claims in the threat letters along with the firm protection of the First Amendment in the American court system ought to have precluded Netflix and the show's makers from having any fear over any of this. Indeed, given the sure status of the laws protecting them, I could argue that Escobar's saber-rattling only served as free publicity and advertising for the show.Regardless, the one-time accountant for his brother's drug mega-operation has not managed to beat down Narcos.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 27-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



'We Shall Overcome' Overcomes Bogus Copyright Claim -- Officially In The Public Domain

Furnished content.


The same legal team that helped get the song "Happy Birthday" officially cleared into the public domain has done it again with the song "We Shall Overcome." As we wrote about, the same team filed a similar lawsuit against The Richmond Organization and Ludlow Music, who claimed a highly questionable copyright in the famous song "We Shall Overcome." As the lawsuit showed, the song had a lengthy history long before Ludlow's copyright claim.Last September, the judge made it clear that the song's claimed copyright was on weak grounds, rejecting arguments that key parts of the song were subject to copyright. Apparently, Ludlow Music tried to salvage something out of the wreck by just promising to offer a "covenant not to sue" against the plaintiffs... which the judge said wasn't good enough earlier this month.So, now the two sides have come to a settlement clearly admitting that the song is in the public domain:

Defendants agree that hearafter they will not claim copyright in the melody or lyrics of any verse of the song We Shall Overcome ("the Song").... Defendants agree that the melody and lyrics of those verses of the Song are hereafter dedicated to the public domain.
This is, obviously, a good result. Though I find it a little tacky that the defendants now want to "dedicate" the song to the public domain, when the truth is the song has been in the public domain all along, and it was only a false copyright claim by the defendants that attempted to hide the fact that it was in the public domain. Also, as with "Happy Birthday," these publishers still got to profit off of years of licensing a song they had no legitimate right to license.Still, it's good to see yet another song officially in the public domain without any legal dispute over its status. The full dispute isn't over yet, as the plaintiffs are still seeking legal fees, which they very well may get. Now let's see if these same two defendants can be convinced to let go of their bogus copyright claim on Woody Guthrie's "This Land Is Your Land," as they're facing a very, very similar lawsuit over that song too.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 27-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Adjust: Beware the Latest Form of Ad Fraud-SDK Spoofing

Furnished content.


So-called SDK Spoofing Fraud accesses users’ devices and fakes app installations. Fraud experts at Adjust, the world’s leading app measurement company, have launched a solution to eradicate a completely new form of ad fraud, which has been spreading rapidly throughout 2017 and gaining momentum in 2018. In so-called SDK spoofing, or replay attacks, fraudsters attack […]The post Adjust: Beware the Latest Form of Ad Fraud–SDK Spoofing appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 26-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Genome Of A Man Born In 1784 Recreated From The DNA Of His Descendants

Furnished content.


The privacy implications of collecting DNA are wide-ranging, not least because they don't relate solely to the person from whom the sample is taken. Our genome is a direct product of our parents' genetic material, so the DNA strings of siblings from the same mother and father are closely related. Even that of more distant relations has many elements in common, since they derive from common ancestors. Thus a DNA sample contains information not just about the donor, but about many others on the relevant family tree as well. A new paper published in Nature Genetics (behind a paywall, unfortunately) shows how that fact enables the genomes of long-dead ancestors to be reconstructed, using just the DNA of their descendants.As an article in Futurism explains, the unique circumstances of the individual chosen for the reconstruction, the Icelander Hans Jonatan, aided the research team as they sought to piece together his genome nearly two centuries after his death in 1827. The scientists mainly came from the Icelandic company deCODE Genetics, one of the pioneers in the world of genomics, and highly-familiar with Iceland's unique genetic resources. The following factors were key:

For one, Jonatan was the first Icelandic inhabitant with African heritage. Iceland also boasts an extensive and highly detailed collection of genealogical records. The combination of Jonatan's unique heritage and the country's record-keeping for inhabitants' family trees made this remarkable recreation possible.
For cultural and historical reasons, Iceland has one of the most complete genealogical records of any nation. This allowed the research team to establish with high probability 788 of Jonatan's descendants. Samples were taken from 182 of those individuals and then genotyped -- a kind of DNA screening. The deCODE group picked out those genomes most likely to provide the longest DNA sequences that had been passed down through the generations from Jonatan's mother, by looking for fragments of African-pattern chromosomes amidst the otherwise European genetic material. The full genomes of 20 of those 182 were sequenced, and then the parts derived from Jonatan's African ancestry pieced together to recreate 38% of his mother's DNA. From this, the researchers were able to establish that Jonatan's mother was probably from the African region spanned by Benin, Nigeria and Cameroon.This kind of large-scale reconstruction in the absence of physical samples has never been achieved before, and is certainly a major triumph of biological and computational technology. An important question is whether this is a one-off, made possible by the unique circumstances of Jonatan's life, or whether it could be applied more widely. According to the Futurism article:
Theoretically, a technique like this could help researchers create "virtual ancient DNA," which would allow scientists to recreate the DNA of historical figures. Agnar Helgason of deCODE stated that "Any historic figure born after 1500 who has known descendants could be reconstructed."While it's exciting, there are still major hurdles to overcome in terms of the potential future applications. The quantity, scale, and detail of the DNA from living ancestors required to recreate a person's DNA make it impractical for use within most families. Additionally, with each new generation identifiable DNA fragments get smaller and more difficult to work with.
As DNA sequencing becomes cheaper and more accurate, it will be possible to carry out DNA profiling and collection faster and more economically. Similarly, as computational power increases, chromosome fragments can be analyzed and stitched together more easily. In due course, these kinds of genomic reconstructions will probably become more common. Already, deCODE's research confirms how DNA can establish the connections not just between present-day members of a family, but also with those long dead. When unexpected patterns of maternity or paternity are revealed, they will bring with them who knows what social consequences for their descendants.Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and +glynmoody on Google+

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 26-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Vice Media Goes After Vice Industry Token, A Porn Crypto-Currency Company, For Trademark

Furnished content.


The last time we checked in with Vice Media it was firing off a cease and desist letter to a tiny little punk band called ViceVersa, demanding that it change its name because Vice Media has a trademark for the word "vice" for several markets. In case you thought that occurrence was a one-off for Vice Media, or the result of an overzealous new hire to the company's legal team, Vice Media is again trademark bullying another comany, Vice Industry Token. VIT is apparently a pornography cryptocurrency company, which is a three-word combination that I bet god herself could never have imagined being uttered. The claim in the C&D notice that VIT got is, of course, that Vice Media has a "vice" trademark and that this use infringes upon it.

Vice Media sent a cease-and-desist letter to the digital upstart in November, alleging its "Vice Industry Token" trademark infringes on its rights to "Vice," according to a complaint filed Friday in California federal court.
As noted, VIT is going to court to declare its use of the word "vice" non-infringing. The complaint as filed does not offer up the reasoning VIT has for its use to not be infringing, but it's fairly easy to guess. Vice Media is a major media company playing in a variety of markets, from magazines to music and journalism. It is not, however, the following:
VIT offers its proprietary cryptocurrency and also operates an adult entertainment platform, which, according to the complaint, are together designed to "change the nature and monetization of pornography."
There is simply nothing between the two entities that represents a competitive situation. Given that, I have to expect that the court will side with VIT, which was quite smart in seeking this declaratory judgement. What that will not answer, though, is why Vice Media ever thought any of this was necessary to begin with.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 26-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



The E-commerce Trends You Don't Want to Miss in 2018

Furnished content.


As the world of e-commerce continues to be dominated by emerging technologies, RBT House set out to predict the top trends we'll see this year, perhaps even in the next few months. Marketers shouldn't expect any slowdown in the adoption of e-commerce technology. The digital trends we predicted last year (chat assistants, web apps and […]The post The E-commerce Trends You Don’t Want to Miss in 2018 appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 25-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Denuvo Sold To Irdeto, Which Boasts Of Acquiring 'The World Leader In Gaming Security'

Furnished content.


Any reading of our thorough coverage of Denuvo DRM could be best summarized as: a spasm of success in 2015 followed by one of the great precipitous falls into failure in the subsequent two years. While some of us are of the opinion that all DRM such as Denuvo are destined for eventual failure, what sticks out about Denuvo is just how stunningly fast its fall from relevancy has come about. Once heralded as "the end of game piracy," even the most recent iterations of Denuvo's software is being cracked on the timeline of days and hours. You would be forgiven if, having read through all of this, you thought that Denuvo was nearly toxic in gaming and security circles at this point.But apparently not everyone thinks this is true. Irdeto, the company out of the Netherlands we last saw pretending that taking pictures of toys is copyright infringement and insisting that a real driver of piracy was winning an Oscar, has announced that it has acquired Denuvo.

Now, however, a new development has the potential to herald a new lease of life for the Austria-based anti-piracy company. A few moments ago it was revealed that the company has been bought by Irdeto, a global anti-piracy company with considerable heritage and resources.“Denuvo provides technology and services for game publishers and platforms, independent software vendors, e-publishers and video publishers across the globe. Current Denuvo customers include Electronic Arts, UbiSoft, Warner Bros and Lionsgate Entertainment, with protection provided for games such as Star Wars Battlefront II, Football Manager, Injustice 2 and others.”Irdeto says that Denuvo will “continue to operate as usual” with all of its staff retained – a total of 45 across Austria, Poland, the Czech Republic, and the US. Denuvo headquarters in Salzburg, Austria, will also remain intact along with its sales operations.
No terms of the deal are listed, but this is striking in how bizarre it all seems. Denuvo has been in something of a death spiral for going on two years now, so unless Irdeto acquired it on the cheap in order to get access to the underlying security technology to be applied elsewhere, it's hard to understand just what the point of all this is. Even more strangely, Irdeto boasts on its website that Denuvo is 'The world leader in gaming security", which is a bold claim to make of a company that can't keep itself out of the news for its tech failing to do its job.One clue that may provide an answer is the emphasis Irdeto's press release puts on Denuvo's anti-cheating applications rather than its anti-piracy abilities.
Cheating on gaming platforms is also a challenge which must be addressed, as it can distort virtual in-game economies. This makes the game less enjoyable or even unplayable for gamers, and can be used to manipulate or bypass in-game micro-transactions. Denuvo’s anti-cheat technology prevents hackers in multi-player games from manipulating and distorting data and code to gain an advantage over other gamers or bypass in-game micro-transactions. This prevents dilution of the value of the game for the user and the game studio.“Hackers and cybercriminals in the gaming space are savvy, and always have been. It is critical to implement robust security strategies to combat the latest gaming threats and protect the investment in games. Much like the movie industry, it’s the only way to ensure that great games continue to get made,” said Reinhard Blaukovitsch, Managing Director of Denuvo, Irdeto. “In joining with Irdeto, we are bringing together a unique combination of security expertise, technology and enhanced piracy services to aggressively address security challenges that customers and gamers face from hackers.”
For what it's worth, Denuvo's reputation for stopping cheating within online games is not nearly as flame-torched as its anti-piracy efforts. Still, much of the talk is about whether or not marrying Denuvo with Irdeto will breath new life into the Denuvo DRM, given the range and resources at Irdeto's disposal. It won't, at least not beyond some temporary situation. DRM will fail, forever and ever, amen.Still, this union between the world's most hated DRM and a laughably aggressive anti-piracy outfit is not a welcome one.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 25-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Danish Police Charge Over 1,000 People With Sharing Underage Couple's Sexting Video And Images

Furnished content.


Techdirt posts about sexting have a depressingly similar story line: young people send explicit photos of themselves to their partners, and one or both of them end up charged with distributing or possessing child pornography. Even more ridiculously, the authorities typically justify branding young people who do this as sex offenders on the grounds that it "protects" the same individuals whose lives they are ruining. Judging by a story in The Local, reporting on a press release that first appeared on the MyNewsDesk site (original in Danish), the police in Denmark seem to be taking a more rational approach. Rather than charging the two young people involved for sexting, they are charging 1,004 people who shared the video and images afterwards, some several hundred times:

The video was primarily sent to and shared between young people, the police said in a major announcement on Monday morning.Individuals under police suspicion in the case may have broken Danish child pornography laws, police wrote.The material contains sexual images involving persons under the age of 15 years at the time of recording, the Danish National Police (Rigspolitiet) confirmed in a press statement.
The case came to light after Facebook received reports of sexual video material involving young people under 18 being shared on its Messenger platform last year, and alerted the US authorities as a result. They, in their turn, passed the information on to Europol, the European police agency, who forwarded it to the authorities in Denmark. The Local quotes a Danish police officer pointing out the long-term effects of being convicted of breaking the country's child pornography laws:
"If you receive a criminal conviction as a minor it can stay on your record for it least ten years. That means you cannot get a job in a daycare or as a football coach. If American authorities are informed, it can also cause difficulties with travelling to the USA. So this is serious and has serious consequences far into the future."
It could be argued that child pornography laws are not the right way to deal with this kind of sharing by third parties. And it is not clear how the explicit material came to be spread around so widely -- to what extent, for example, one or both of the people involved in the sexting started sharing it elsewhere themselves. But it is surely some kind of progress that the police are concentrating on that wider diffusion, which involved hundreds of people, rather than on the initial sexting by two young people, as so many previous cases have done.Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and +glynmoody on Google+

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 25-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Large Digital Ad Spenders Favoring In-House Programmatic Ad Capabilities

Furnished content.


Centro and Advertiser Perceptions Survey Shows Interest Grows forPrivate Marketplaceand Open RTB, While Direct I/O-Based Ad Spend is Steady Centro, a provider of enterprise-class software for digital advertising, has published data showing that nearly all large digital ad spenders will adopt more programmatic advertising capabilities in-house over the next 12 months.Available in Centro's report, Tech, […]The post Large Digital Ad Spenders Favoring In-House Programmatic Ad Capabilities appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 24-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Co-Head Of Virginia's FOIA Council Introduces Bill To Make State's Court System Even More Opaque

Furnished content.


As the result of a public records battle with a local newspaper over court records, two Virginia politicians have decided to address the issue with legislation. One hopes to further open court records to the public.

Del. Mike Mullin, D-Newport News, filed House Bill 4, which would require the case management system maintained by the Office of the Executive Secretary to be open to the public. The bill was filed in November.
The other politician involved has, unsurprisingly, offered up a competing bill that would take public records laws in the opposite direction.
Sen. Richard Stuart, R-Stafford, has a different idea. He filed Senate Bill 727 this week, which would exempt all courts in Virginia from the Freedom of Information Act.
This would add to the large pile of exemptions the state government already benefits from. To the detriment of residents, state agencies and employees have nearly 175 FOIA exemptions available to them. The addition of court docket data would further separate the Virginian government from transparency and accountability.There's nothing surprising about a politician angling for more opacity. What is surprising is Sen. Stuart's stance, which is diametrically opposed to his position.
Open-government advocates said they were stunned that Stuart would file such a bill without consulting the Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council — of which he is vice chair.“It appears that he’s suggesting that an entire branch of government — one of the three branches of government — be removed from the Freedom of Information Act,” said Betsy Edwards, executive director of the Virginia Press Association.
Of course, it could be very cynically argued that Stuart is doing exactly what the state wants, while holding an insider position on a council meant to provide some form of public advocacy for greater transparency. Stuart feels the court system should be able to craft its own exemptions and pick and choose what it wants to release to the unwashed voting bloc. This would just be more of the same from vice chair of the FOIA Advisory Council.
In 2016, he sponsored a bill that would have exempted disclosure of salaries of many state employees and forbid release of government employee databases with names of the employees if their salaries were also listed. A House subcommittee on FOIA killed it.
Stuart's stated identity theft as the reason for exempting this information from public release -- something that no one has ever alleged has occurred because of official releases of salary information. (Personally-identifiable information is redacted in Virigina's release of salary data.) He also threw a little shade towards the First Amendment, claiming newspapers would be unhappy if the bill passed because they profit off the publication of public records.
Just to be very honest with everybody in here, the newspapers are not going to like it if you vote for this bill. I don't want you to be disillusioned. It bothers me a little bit because what the newspapers do is they get this big database from the state and then they republish this online. And it helps them gain subscribers to their newspaper to search that information. And so, they are very unhappy with me and I suspect if you vote for this bill they will be very unhappy with you. And I want to be very honest about that. But I think we have an obligation to protect our state employees from suffering from identity theft.
Then again, Sen. Stuart isn't so much the vice chair of the FOIA Advisory Council as he is an absentee landlord.
Although Stuart is the vice chairman, he rarely attends meetings. He missed nine of 10 meetings of the council in the past two years.
It appears Sen. Stuart likes the power that comes with political office, but none of the obligations to the public that come with it. Stuart blamed scheduling conflicts for being unable to attend meetings that occur roughly every sixty days. He's adding zero value to the Council and spends more of his time in the legislature actively thwarting it. It may be tough to remove Stuart from office, but there's certainly no reason the FOIA Advisory Council needs to continue posting his name to its masthead and inviting him to meetings he just not going to attend.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 24-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



US Army Files Dumb Trademark Opposition Against The NHL's Las Vegas Golden Knights

Furnished content.


This post will come as no surprise to those of us super-interesting people that for some reason have made trademark law and news a key fulcrom point in our lives, but the United States Army has filed an opposition to the trademark application for the Las Vegas Golden Knights. Some background is in order should you not be one of the roughly twelve of us in America that are hockey fans.Starting around 2007, the United States Army went on something of a trademarking spree, filing for marks long in use, including some of the monikers for well known units and/or what I would call "show units", or units that chiefly serve to be seen at entertainment venues such as air and water shows. Included in these marks were the Army's "Black Knights" mascot for its military academy athletic teams and its Golden Knights paratrooping unit that performs at air and water shows all over the country. The army uses these trademarks to rake in millions of dollars in merchandise.The Las Vegas Golden Knights is an NHL expansion hockey team started by a graduate of West Point, Bill Foley, who wanted the team's garb and name to serve as an homage to his military roots. To that end, he had initially wanted to name the team "The Black Knights", but switched to "The Golden Knights" after the Army voiced its displeasure. The color scheme for the team is a clear call back to the paratrooping team that shares the name.It has been these clear admissions of homage that the Army has pointed to as an indication that this is obvious trademark infringement.

The Army also highlights public comments made by Golden Knights officials where they admit to trying to connect to the Army. For instance, last July, Golden Knights general manager George McPhee revealed to The Washington Post’s Aaron Torres that the Golden Knights’ color scheme of black, gold, yellow and white was intentionally selected for its similarity to a color scheme used by the Army at West Point. “Bill Foley is a West Point guy,” McPhee noted. “You know his history at West Point. You know about the classmates he had that he lost serving this country. So, those colors mean a lot to us, and will mean a lot to our players. And we’re really proud of the logo. It’s clean, it’s symmetrical, it’s kind of bold and again it stands for something.”
Except that none of that makes any of this trademark infringement. For trademark infringement to have occurred, there needs to be either real or a reasonable likelihood of confusion in the market. While the US Army does sponsor professional sports leagues, and while its paratrooping Golden Knights do put on a show, none of that puts them in the same commercial marketplace as a professional hockey team. And I will say, as an aside, the concept that the United States Army, defenders of the free world, with all of its storied history and tradition, has been reduced to an intellectual property fight over a respectful homage in the professional sports commerce battleground is just sort of gross.For its part, while the Las Vegas Golden Knights have until late February to respond to the opposition, the team's public statement on the matter doesn't indicate that it will be surrendering to the Army any time soon.
“In the Patent and Trademark Office, the U.S. Army filed its opposition to the Vegas Golden Knights’ applications to register the trademark VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS used in connection with the sport of hockey. We strongly dispute the Army’s allegations that confusion is likely between the Army Golden Knights parachute team and the Vegas Golden Knights major-league hockey team. Indeed, the two entities have been coexisting without any issues for over a year (along with several other Golden Knights trademark owners) and we are not aware of a single complaint from anyone attending our games that they were expecting to see the parachute team and not a professional hockey game. That said, in light of the pending trademark opposition proceedings, we will have no further comment at this time and will address the Army’s opposition in the relevant legal forums.”
Unless the Army wishes to trivialize its reputation even further, hopefully this opposition will be the one and only pushback on the NHL team it will make.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 24-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Kantar Media's In Depth Look at Super Bowl Advertising

Furnished content.


Average Cost of 30 Second Super Bowl Ad Grew 87% Over Past Decade Record cost of commercial time helped last year's game generate $534 million in pre- and post-game advertising - more than the total revenue for a week's worth of programming on all four networks combined Against a backdrop of declining regular season ratings […]The post Kantar Media’s In Depth Look at Super Bowl Advertising appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 23-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Skyword Survey Shows the Difference Between Competent and Masterful Content Marketing

Furnished content.


Skyword, a content marketing software and services company, today released the results of a year-long investigation into the work of nearly 1,000 content marketers worldwide. Through an in-depth survey of marketers who had taken Skyword's Content Marketing Continuum Assessment, the research team uncovered a critical set of characteristics among the highest-performing content marketers. These provide […]The post Skyword Survey Shows the Difference Between Competent and Masterful Content Marketing appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 23-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



It Kind Of Looks Like Crytek Sued Star Citizen Developer By Pretending Its Engine License Says Something It Doesn't

Furnished content.


We see all kinds of crazy copyright disputes and lawsuits around here. It is, after all, kind of our thing. Still, occasionally you come across a copyright lawsuit so completely head-scratching as to make you question reality. Thus is the case with the lawsuit Crytek filed against CIG, makers of the long-anticipated Star Citzen game, for both breaking a licensing agreement between both parties and copyright infringement. Strangely, if you read the complaint, all of this centers around CIG choosing not to use the Crytek engine.

Crytek's lawsuit alleged that CIG broke a CryEngine licensing agreement and infringed on Crytek's copyrights by switching from CryEngine to Amazon's Lumberyard platform in late 2016. But CIG contends that Crytek's complaint selectively and misleadingly quotes from the full Game License Agreement signed by both parties.
CIG's response, as highlighted in its motion to dismiss looks really bad for Crytek. Essentially, CIG contends that Crytek either doesn't know how to read its own licensing agreement, or is selecting portions of the agreement to make it seem like it says something it simply doesn't. As an example, Crytek's suit claims the licensing agreement isn't supposed to extend to a spinoff game CIG is developing, Squardron 42, except that the full licensing agreement CIG put before the court specifically covers Squadron 42 by name.
And if that sort of gaff isn't enough to get your head shaking, CIG also points out that the licensing agreement, while providing exclusivity to the engine to CIG, doesn't actually require the company to use the engine at all.
CIG also argues that the "exclusive rights" to CryEngine granted in the license agreement do not extend to a requirement to use that engine. "The plain language of the GLA where the grant of rights to CIG appears, plus the well-established concept of an exclusive license, instead establish that the word 'exclusively' simply means that CIG’s right to use the Engine in the Game is exclusive to CIG and Crytek may not give that right to anyone else," the company writes."No provision in the GLA states that CIG 'shall not' embed any other engine or third-party software in the Game," the response continues.
That covers the contract dispute portion of this. The claim of copyright infringement brought by Crytek appears to center on CIG's failure to post Crytek's copyright notices for the game engine it is no longer using.
By extension, the requirement to list Crytek's copyright notices only applies when CryEngine was being used, CIG argues. Furthermore, CIG argues, the original agreement bars either party from seeking damages, as Crytek is attempting with its lawsuit. And Roberts Space Industries, which is named in the original Crytek complaint, didn't actually sign the agreement in question, CIG contends.
At face value, it's difficult to describe this whole situation as something other than Crytek's legal team stepping directly into a bucket of shit, comically hopping up and down while shaking its fist for a moment, and then simply falling over backwards. I'm hard-pressed to think of a bigger loser of a suit than this, assuming CIG's documentation is correct.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 23-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Tunisia's Plans To Bring In Its Own National 'Aadhaar' Biometric ID System Halted -- For Now

Furnished content.


The last time that Techdirt wrote about Tunisia was back in 2011, when the Internet helped bring about a major regime change there. Although violent protests against the government have flared up recently, in general, the processes that are being applied to shift national policies in Tunisia are both peaceful and successful. Here, for example, is some good news from Access Now on the privacy front:

This week the people of Tunisia won a major victory for privacy: the dangerous biometric ID card proposal has officially been withdrawn from consideration in the Assembly of the Representatives of the People (ARP).We worked hard with our partners at Al Bawsala to oppose passage of the bill, including encouraging members of the assembly to adopt a set of key amendments to ensure that if it did pass, the bill would protect citizens' data and their right to consult and rectify their own information. Over the past week, we spent hours talking to assembly members, highlighting the dangers of pushing the bill through without adding necessary and vital protections for Tunisians' privacy and data security.It worked! The assembly members advanced the amendments that we proposed, and nearly all were adopted within the Consensus Commission. The Ministry of the Interior, which had pushed hard to pass the bill without these important safeguards, dropped the proposal entirely.
That's particularly welcome at a time when the problems of India's biometric ID card system "Aadhaar" are becoming all-too clear. However, as Access Now rightly notes:
Even though we're overjoyed, we must remain vigilant. We could see this proposal revived. If that happens, we will continue working to ensure that any new legislation protects human rights.
Let's hope Tunisia's democratic legislative processes continue to function as effectively as they have in this particular case, and that the country does not end up with another Aadhaar.Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and +glynmoody on Google+

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 23-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Changing Pattern of Consumer Behaviour

Furnished content.


Changing Pattern of Customer Behaviour Keywords: changing routine of consumer behavior Today organizations need a deep insight into buyer behaviour and its changing patterns so as to survive in the market place. Large organizations have experienced individuals recruited to gather info on the consumer’s constantly changing needs and styles to ensure that they can get […]The post Changing Pattern of Consumer Behaviour appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 22-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



This Week In Techdirt History: January 14th - 20th

Furnished content.


Five Years AgoThis week in 2013, we were shook by the sad news of Aaron Swartz's death. Through the week, we looked at the actions of prosecutors and investigators and the fact that in the US "anyone interesting is a felon", and at all the other crimes that would have resulted in less jail time than Swartz was facing. But we also looked at what we should learn from him moving forward, about how to build up instead of tearing down, and how "content" can't be the end-game of knowledge, and we watched as researchers posted their work online for free in tribute.Ten Years AgoThis week in 2008, while NBC Universal was arguing in favor of ISP filtering and copy protection tech, the recording industry was kinda-sorta getting over its obsession with DRM — and moving to other stupid ideas like digital watermarks and annoying anti-piracy voiceovers on review copies instead. The DMCA was being abused to go after bad reviews, the EFF was making the argument that "making available" is not infringement, and J.K. Rowling was trying to block a third-party Harry Potter guidebook — and amidst this we noted that it seems like most people don't actually know what copyright is for.Fifteen Years AgoThis week in 2003, some people thought it looked like Hollywood's copyright control was loosening a little, but we weren't so optimistic. Indeed, that very week the Supreme Court upheld retroactive copyright extension in the Eldred ruling despite Lawrence Lessig's best efforts (though there was potentially some silver lining). The music and tech industries announced a rather worrying policy agreement that would see the latter stop fighting for user rights in exchange for the former dropping its calls for mandatory hardware-level DRM, though the agreement ended up being largely meaningless and, of course, was completely spurned by the MPAA. Meanwhile those movie studios were being strangled by their own IP obsession while trying to navigate the licensing thicket to get older movies online.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 21-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Media Rating Council Releases Final Version of NewDigital Audio Measurement Standards

Furnished content.


The Media Rating Council (MRC) today issued itsDigital Audio Measurement Standards. This first-of-its-kind standard outlines measurement and reporting requirements for digital audio advertising and content in either browser or application environments that require a software-based audio player. The principles noted in theseGuidelinesapply to digital audio ads and content regardless of whether they are delivered through […]The post Media Rating Council Releases Final Version of NewDigital Audio Measurement Standards appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 20-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



How to guard your handing out from Phishing and Ransomware

Furnished content.


This topic is all across the newspapers today – how smart cybercriminals has whipped out a extra showing off to acquire naive employees to offer away confidential details via beatific emails. Creating such emails is not that difficult, but each phishing onslaught disrupts matter processes, overloads the IT department, and can damage company’s reputation too. […]The post How to guard your handing out from Phishing and Ransomware appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 20-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Sequel To 'Man From Earth' To Be Released On Pirate Sites By Its Creators

Furnished content.


While we cover much here in terms of content creators actually embracing what the internet can do for them rather than fighting what is essentially mere reality, some stories truly do stand out more than others. If you aren't familiar with the story of the film The Man From Earth, you should read up on it because it's plainly fascinating. The sci-fi film was directed by Richard Schenkman on a fairly barebones budget and set for the sort of release that these types of independent films tend to get.And then somebody put a screener DVD up on The Pirate Bay and the film became known in a way it never would have otherwise.

“Originally, somebody got hold of a promotional screener DVD of ‘Jerome Bixby’s The Man from Earth’, ripped the file and posted the movie online before we knew what was even happening,” Man from Earth director Richard Schenkman informs TorrentFreak.“A week or two before the DVD’s ‘street date’, we jumped 11,000% on the IMDb ‘Moviemeter’ and we were shocked.”
Suddenly there was very real public buzz and interest in this small, independent film. No advertising budget for the film had been planned. Marketing was non-existent. And, yet, all of that work was essentially done by an internet that truly appreciated the film for what it was. Still, this was an unauthorized placement of a creative work put up on torrent sites. It would be quite understandable if the producers of the film lashed out at these sites.Instead, Eric Wilkinson, a producer for the film, reached out to those sites to thank them. Schenkman is on the record stating that filesharing was key to the success of the film as a whole. And, because they were smart, those behind the film decided to try to monetize this fandom.
“Once we realized what was going on, we asked people to make donations to our PayPal page if they saw the movie for free and liked it, because we had all worked for nothing for two years to bring it to the screen, and the only chance we had of surviving financially was to ask people to support us and the project,” Schenkman explains.“And, happily, many people around the world did donate, although of course only a tiny fraction of the millions and millions of people who downloaded pirated copies.”
Meanwhile, the film went on to win awards and still enjoys a healthy audience on modern platforms such as Netflix. Interestingly, the filmmakers and producers don't appear to be thinking of the piracy experience as some kind of one-off, nor do they see how well it turned out for them as being a function of being initially unknown. Indeed, they plan on making even more use of torrent sites this go around, no longer leaving it to chance that someone else will upload the film and instead choosing to simply do so themselves.
“It was going to get uploaded regardless of what we did or didn’t do, and we figured that as long as this was inevitable, we would do the uploading ourselves and explain why we were doing it,” Schenkman informs TF.“And, we would once again reach out to the filesharing community and remind them that while movies may be free to watch, they are not free to make, and we need their support.”
The Pirate Bay upload is rife with information and notes on the movie, and even goes so far as to include helpful tips on how the movie can be even more widely shared to generate additional audiences. Schenkman goes on to call this something of an honor system, relying on the general goodness of people to compensate directly the makers of a film they have enjoyed for free. This is of course still counterintuitive, but we've made the argument for years that treating people well, and specifically treating piracy as an untapped market, can be a fantastic avenue for success.And this isn't the only experiment in treating moviegoers like human beings that the makers of the film are undertaking.
Other partners include MovieSaints.com, where fans can pay to see the movie from January 19 but get a full refund if they don’t enjoy it. It’s also available on Vimeo (see below) but the version seen by pirates is slightly different, and for good reason, Schenkman says.“This version of the movie includes a greeting from me at the beginning, pointing out that we did indeed upload the movie ourselves, and asking people to visit manfromearth.com and make a donation if they can afford to, and if they enjoyed the film.“The version we posted is very high-resolution, although we are also sharing some smaller files for those folks who have a slow Internet connection where they live,” he explains.
It's hard to imagine how they could have gotten this any more right than they have. Meanwhile, this undertaking is knocking down all kinds of strawmen that currently guard the MPAA offices. Bravo all around.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 20-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Dashcam Recording Instantly Undercuts Officers' Concocted Reason For A Traffic Stop

Furnished content.


Dashcams -- unlike body cameras -- have been around for years. So while it might be understandable an officer could forget his actions are being documented by his new-ish body camera-- say, when he heads into an alley to plant evidence -- it's difficult to draw the same conclusion when an officer apparently forgets his dashcam is recording his bogus traffic stop.In a criminal case resulting in suppressed evidence, Officer William Davis of the Dayton (OH) Police seems to have done exactly that. His bogus traffic stop resulted in the discovery of marijuana and a firearm, but none of that matters now. What was captured by his cruiser's dashcam undercut his assertions and sworn testimony. That has lead to an Ohio appeals court's memorable decision, in which it's declared the lower court was correct to rely on dashcam footage -- rather than the officer's testimony -- when the two narratives diverged. (via FourthAmendment.com)On a dark, rainy night Officer Davis and Officer Bryan Camden were speeding down a street when a vehicle pulled out in front of them. (Literally speeding: speed limit was 35 mph. Despite the adverse driving conditions, the cruiser was travelling at 43 mph.) Apparently miffed he had to ease back to the posted speed limit, Officer Davis (with Camden's help) began to compose an alternate reality in which a traffic violation had occurred. The problem for the state -- which hoped to retain the evidence obtained during the resulting traffic stop -- is the entire thing was caught on camera. This included the officers' retcon of events in progress. From the decision [PDF]:

As the cruiser approached the intersection of Hoover and Elmhurst, Wilson’s vehicle (a 2015 Chevy Traverse SUV) turned right from Elmhurst onto Hoover in front of the cruiser. Officer Davis testified that only two or three car lengths separated the vehicles when Wilson pulled out and that he (Davis) “had to hit the [brakes] to avoid running into the rear of [Wilson’s] vehicle;” the trial court found this testimony to be not credible. Instead, after a review of the cruiser video, the trial court found that Wilson pulled onto Hoover “no less than 306 feet – or more than eighteen (18) car lengths – in front of the cruiser.” The trial court further stated that “[a] slamming on of the cruiser’s brakes would necessarily have precipitated a sudden dip of the cruiser’s nose – a dip completely absent on the video.” Rather, the trial court found that the cruiser “gently decelerated” from a speed of 43 miles per hour to the posted speed limit.
No traffic violation occurred and yet the officers seemed determined to stop the vehicle that had mildly offended them with its entry into traffic.
The officers remarked to each other about the out-of-state license plates on Wilson’s vehicle (a rental) and discussed towing Wilson’s vehicle. When the traffic light turned green, both vehicles moved forward to turn left onto North Gettysburg. At this juncture (over one and a half minutes after Wilson pulled onto Hoover), the officers engaged in the following exchange, which the trial court concluded was “staged”:Davis: “He pulled out there, pulled right in front of me!”Camden: “He pulled out in front of us.”Davis: “Had to hit the brakes to avoid * * *.”Camden: “Yeah, they had a – a failure to yield.”
Courts usually look the other way when dealing with pretextual stops. That has scaled back a bit in the wake of the Rodriguez decision, but still remains in play if a court can find some way to believe an officer might have believed a traffic violation had occurred. These officers might have received the same deference if only their cruiser's camera hadn't made it crystal clear the violation was completely concocted by two officers looking for a reason to pull someone over.A stop and a search ensued, resulting in citations for failure to yield and marijuana possession, as well as an arrest for improper handling of a firearm in a vehicle. Officer Davis claimed this was a by-the-book search and arrest. But to do so, he had to continue misrepresenting the events while under oath.
Davis testified that he provided Miranda warnings to Wilson and that Wilson answered a few questions and then requested an attorney. For reasons that Davis could not explain at the suppression hearing, the Miranda warnings and statements by Wilson following those warnings were not recorded on the cruiser video.
The appeals court then quotes the lower court, stating that if any traffic violation occurred here, it was committed by the police officers, rather than the person they pulled over.
[T]he Court finds as a matter of fact and law that Defendant did not fail to yield to the cruiser because the cruiser was not proceeding in a lawful manner. Rather, the cruiser was itself speeding on a dark, rainy night at low visibility further compromised by road glare. By proceeding in such a reckless manner – and in violation of both state and local law – Ofc. Davis forfeited the preferential status afforded a lawful driver under the right-of-way statute.
With no good faith in evidence anywhere, the good faith exception is denied. The appeals court also dismisses the state's claim the lower court overstepped its bounds by doing its own calculations on the distance between the vehicles involved. Nor did the trial court err on its finding there was no articulable suspicion a moving violation had occurred, thus no reason for the officers to perform a stop.
On this record and with deference to the trial court’s factual findings, we cannot find error in the trial court’s legal conclusion that the officers lacked a reasonable suspicion of criminal activity, namely a violation of R.C. 4511.43(A), to justify the traffic stop. The trial court specifically found that the officers were exceeding the speed limit when Wilson turned onto Hoover Avenue and that the cruiser merely “gently decelerated” to the posted speed limit after Wilson turned onto the road; there was adequate distance (regardless of the specific number of feet or car lengths) between the cruiser and Wilson. Given the trial court’s findings, which are substantially supported by the record, the officers had no reasonable suspicion that Wilson’s actions created an “immediate hazard” and that he failed to yield when he turned onto Hoover. In the absence of a reasonable suspicion of criminal activity, the trial court did not err in suppressing any evidence found as a result of the unlawful stop.
With the evidence gone, the charges should soon be dismissed. This will negate two felonies and a misdemeanor, thanks to an officer who apparently forgot his dashcam was on. There's nothing quite like being burnt by your own recording. The easiest fix -- but least likely to occur -- is to perform your public servant duties in accordance to the law and with an eye on respecting the rights of those you serve. Unfortunately, this seems to be a last resort -- something only to be done after tampering with recordings or routine "failure" to active recording devices has run its course.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 20-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



California Medical Marijuana Card Tips

Furnished content.


California Medical Marijuana Card Tips So in case you reside in California and you has to have yourself a health and fitness Card, then it’s possible to secure a physician’s professional medical marijuana card on line, in minutes. Having the cannabis card really is a time-consuming process, nonetheless to get yourself a single online is […]The post California Medical Marijuana Card Tips appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 19-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



What Everybody Is Saying About How to Get Medical Weed and What You Must Do

Furnished content.


What Everybody Is Saying About How to Get Medical Weed and What You Must Do In the event that you too have found there are no underlying medical issues, subsequently by abiding with this specific list, you could also rid your self of coronary heart palpitations. What the vast majority people are somewhat more inclined […]The post What Everybody Is Saying About How to Get Medical Weed and What You Must Do appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 19-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Iowa State's Attempt To Violate Its Students First Amendment Rights To Cost State Nearly $400k In Damages

Furnished content.


In the early part of 2017, we brought you the story of an Iowa State University student group pushing for marijuana reform in the state that was being targeted by the university for trademark infringement after the group used some school iconography on t-shirts it developed for its cause. The whole episode was fairly bonkers, with the school initially approving the students' use of the imagery, only to rescind that approval after Iowa House Republicans sent a letter to the school's leadership questioning the decision. That sort of infringement of speech by a school and, in the background, by state legislators that really should have known better, was always destined to result in legal proceedings, given the enormous First Amendment implications. Well, as we reported, that trial ran its course, including an appeal, and was decided in the favor of the student group.While all of that was settled last year, what we didn't know until recently is just how much taxpayer money would be paid out as a result of a public university and state legislators seeking, quite plainly, to infringe on perhaps the most sacred right this country enjoys. Now we have an answer to that question: at least $350,000.

The State Appeal Board voted to pay $150,000 in damages to two leaders of the university chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws whose free-speech rights were violated by campus administrators. The board also approved a $193,000 payment to two law firms that represented the group for their efforts to defend against the university's unsuccessful appeals, and additional legal fees for their trial work in an amount to be decided by a judge.The costs stem from what federal judges found were the university's politically motivated, illegal attempts to ban T-shirt designs that featured the Iowa State mascot and a small cannabis leaf — and its yearslong, unsuccessful defense of those efforts in court. The payouts will come from the state's general budget.
I will be severely disappointed in the state of Iowa if every House member that signed that letter to the school doesn't have campaign ads running against them highlighting the fact that this plainly unconstitutional action cost state taxpayers at least well over a quarter of a million dollars. Especially when you consider that the legal team for the student group practically begged the school to settle early on to avoid exactly these kinds of costs.And that $350k figure is almost certainly just a starting point and not what the ultimate payout from the state will be.
"It is an unambiguous win for our clients and for the First Amendment and for an understanding that violating people's rights isn't free," said the plaintiffs' lead attorney, Robert Corn-Revere. "One reason we urge universities to settle early is to avoid these kinds of expenses."He said he expects to request a fee award that is "substantially more" for trial work than the $193,000 awarded for the appeals, based on the amount of time spent. The deal requires the state to increase the amount awarded by $15,000 to compensate lawyers for their time spent on the fee application. The costs do not include work by the taxpayer-funded Iowa Attorney General's office, which represented former ISU President Steven Leath and three other administrators who were found responsible for the constitutional violations.
All of this because a school decided not to tell a bunch of meddling lawmakers to piss off and instead bowed to their unconstitutional requests. That this reliance on taxpayer money to resolve this mistake is on everyone's record will hopefully go some way to changes in job status for many of these people.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 19-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



The Insider Secret on Weed Card Online Discovered

Furnished content.


The Insider Secret on Weed Card Online Discovered When you’re using cannabis as a legitimate remedy of disease, state law’re still breaking in case that you never own a health bud prescription from a licensed physician. Selecting practice and the correct medical bud doctor for your healthcare marijuana advice can be an intimidating undertaking. Marijuana […]The post The Insider Secret on Weed Card Online Discovered appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 19-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



A Bunch Of Politicians Who Complain About Trump's Authoritarian Tendencies Just Gave Him 6 Years To Warrantlessly Spy On Americans

Furnished content.


As was widely expected after Tuesday's close vote on cloture, the Senate officially voted to renew (in a somewhat expanded way) Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act by a vote of 65 to 34. That also means a few of those who voted against cloture switched over and voted for the program, including Senators Ted Cruz and Chuck Schumer. President Trump will almost certainly sign the bill shortly, despite confusing basically everyone last week by tweeting out complaints about the program, despite his White House vehemently supporting it.Trump's confusion isn't all that surprising. What is surprising is just how many people who have been complaining and warning about Trump made this possible. In the House, vocal Trump critics including Nancy Pelosi, Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell were among those who voted for this bill which, again, gives the FBI the power to spy on Americans without warrants via the collection of content (not metadata) swept up by the NSA. While defenders of the program keep insisting the program cannot be used to "target" Americans, they leave out that a ridiculous amount of American content is swept up into this collection, which can then be sifted through without a warrant, including a huge amount of communications of Americans.Over on the Senate side, things were even more ridiculous. Senator Jeff Flake voted for cloture, helping to end (the already non-existing) debate on such surveillance, and blocking any amendments. And then, the very next morning, went on the Senate floor to slam the President, compare him to Stalin, and warn that our democracy may not survive. Again, this was mere hours after Senator Flake voted to give more surveillance powers to the President he was about to compare to Stalin.Or how about Dianne Feinstein? It may be no surprise that Feinstein voted to continue and expand surveillance -- she has a long history of doing exactly that. But just about an hour before voting for cloture, Feinstein herself introduced an amendment that would have required a warrant to search the corpus of data collected under 702. And then she voted to block that amendment from even being voted on. Let me repeat that, because it's just that insane: Feinstein introduced an amendment to the 702 renewal, that would have required a warrant to sniff through the data... and then voted against allowing that amendment to be heard and voted on. Within an hour or so. And, since cloture needed 60 votes and just squeezed through with those 60 votes... Feinstein could have changed the debate herself. But chose not to.Or how about Senator Claire McCaskill. She was the final vote for cloture and took over an hour after the vote was called to actually reach the floor. She was the actual deciding vote, as, if she voted against it, the cloture vote would have had only 59 yaes, and the debate would have continued, and amendments proposed. Trump has been loudly denouncing McCaskill for months as she's facing a tough reelection campaign. And her response was to deny any further debate or amendments and to vote to give Trump more surveillance powers.These are not the only ones. Many vocal critics of the President just handed him much greater power to warrantlessly spy on Americans -- something the President (in a confused way) complained about concerning what he believed (incorrectly) was illegal spying on his own campaign.Zack Whittaker at ZDnet has also compiled a list of elected officials who had put out earlier statements promising to reform surveillance... only to then vote for this program. It includes both Swalwell and Feinstein mentioned above, but many others as well.Over at Lawfare, a site that has long defended basically every aspect of the surveillance state, reliable surveillance defenders Jack Goldsmith and Susan Hennessey tried to defend the paradox of not trusting Trump, but giving him the ability to warrantlessly spy on Americans. The crux of it is basically... "we don't trust Trump, but there are good people in the intelligence and law enforcement communities and they'd never abuse these powers."

More broadly, one of the underappreciated developments in the post-Snowden-revelations era is the absence of credible allegations of political or venal use of 702 authorities. In essence, the public evidence confirms that the problems that used to bedevil secret electronic surveillance through the Hoover/Nixon era—namely, senior political figures deploying intelligence agencies and tools for inappropriate, abusive political purposes—have been resolved by a robust legal regime of oversight and reporting. When Sen. Elizabeth Warren points to the surveillance abuses directed at Martin Luther King Jr. to argue against 702, she actually highlights the opposite point: the massive transparency, both voluntary and involuntary, over the past few years about how Section 702 operates shows that it has not been abused for domestic political spying and implies that the 40 years of post-Hoover legal reforms are largely a success (though not without hiccups). The fact that President Trump has not focused his abusive energies on intelligence collection is a testament to the efficacy of the legal and cultural constraints on electronic surveillance.
Not surprisingly, Marcy Wheeler rips these claims to shreds in a response on her own blog, noting that beyond factual errors in the piece, it more or less ignores the FBI's role in all of this. Even if we grant the (incorrect) claim that the NSA doesn't abuse this data, that's not at all clear on the FBI side -- especially when the FBI refuses to provide any details at all:
You can’t pass a bill that effectively blesses FBI’s use of back door searches on Americans about whom it has no evidence of any wrongdoing, while admitting you don’t know how FBI conducts those back door searches, and make any claim to conduct adequate oversight. Rather, the bill permits FBI to continue practices it has stubbornly refused to brief Congress on, rather than demanding that FBI brief Congress first, so Congress can impose any restrictions that might be necessary to adequately protect Americans.
Furthermore, Wheeler notes that Hennessey and Goldsmith completely ignore how this gives Attorney General Jeff Sessions incredible unreviewable power to make use of this warrantless data for criminal prosecutions, hiding where he got the information from.
But it’s the unreviewable authority for Jeff Sessions bit that is the real problem. We know, for example, that painting Black Lives Matter as a national security threat is key to the Trump-Sessions effort to criminalize race. We also know that Trump has accused his opponents of treason, all for making critical comments about Trump. This bill gives Sessions unreviewable authority to decide that a BLM protest organized using or whistleblowing relying on Tor, discovered by collection done in the name of hunting Russian spies, can be referred for prosecution. The fact that the underlying data predicating any prosecution was obtained without a warrant under 702 would — in part because this bill doesn’t add teeth to FISA notice — ensure that courts would never learn the genesis of the prosecution. Even if a court somehow managed to do so, however, it could never deem the domestic surveillance unlawful because the bill gives Jeff Sessions the unreviewable authority to treat dissent as a national security threat. This is such an obviously bad idea, and it is being supported by people who talk incessantly about the threat that Trump and Sessions present. Yet, rather than addressing the issue head on (which I doubt Hennessey could legally do in any case), they simply remain silent about what is the biggest complaint from privacy activists, that this gives a racist, vindictive Attorney General far more authority than he should have, and does so without fixing the inadequate protections for criminal defendants along the way.
And, now, it appears that (unless Fox News somehow intervenes again) the President will sign this bill. EFF has put out an open letter about how awful this is, and how it intends to fight this in court. But, this was a major missed opportunity, and what's most incredible and disappointing is how many people who complain about Trump's authoritarian tendencies were central to making it possible.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 19-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Tracking What the 5 Best Video Ads of 2017 Can Teach Marketers

Furnished content.


Gone are the days when having a video for your website checked the video needs box for your brand. A single video is no longer enough, and big brands are demonstrating the value of a constant supply of fresh video content. HubSpot's Instagram Stories offer a great example, and the company has put its money […]The post Tracking What the 5 Best Video Ads of 2017 Can Teach Marketers appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 18-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Using AI To Identify Car Models In 50 Million Google Street Views Reveals A Wide Range Of Demographic Information

Furnished content.


Google Street View is a great resource for taking a look at distant locations before travelling, or for visualizing a nearby address before driving there. But Street View images are much more than vivid versions of otherwise flat maps: they are slices of modern life, conveniently sorted by geolocation. That means they can provide all kinds of insights into how society operates, and what the differences are geographically. The tricky part is extracting that information. An article in the New York Times reports on how researchers at Stanford University have applied artificial intelligence (AI) techniques to 50 million Google Street View images taken in 200 US cities. Since analyzing images of people directly is hard and fraught with privacy concerns, the researchers concentrated on a proxy: cars. As an academic paper published by the Stanford team notes (pdf):

Ninety five percent of American households own automobiles, and as shown by prior work cars are a reflection of their owners' characteristics providing significant personal information.
First, the AI system had to be trained to find cars in the Google Street Map images. That's something that's easy for humans to do, but hard for computers, while the next stage of the work -- identifying car models -- is much easier using AI. As another paper reporting on the research (pdf) explains:
the fine-grained object recognition task we perform here is one that few people could accomplish for even a handful of images. Differences between cars can be imperceptible to an untrained person; for instance, some car models can have subtle changes in tail lights (e.g., 2007 Honda Accord vs. 2008 Honda Accord) or grilles (e.g., 2001 Ford F-150 Supercrew LL vs. 2011 Ford F-150 Supercrew SVT). Nevertheless, our system is able to classify automobiles into one of 2,657 categories, taking 0.2 s per vehicle image to do so. While it classified the automobiles in 50 million images in 2 wk, a human expert, assuming 10 s per image, would take more than 15 y to perform the same task.
The difference between the two weeks taken by the AI software, and the 15 years a human would need, means that it is possible to analyze much larger data collections than before, and to extract new kinds of information. This is done by using existing datasets, for example the American Community Survey, which is performed by the US Census Bureau each year, to train the AI system to spot correlations between cars and demographics. The New York Times article lists some of the results that emerge from mining and analyzing the Google Street Map images, and adding in metadata from other sources:
The system was able to accurately predict income, race, education and voting patterns at the ZIP code and precinct level in cities across the country.Car attributes (including miles-per-gallon ratings) found that the greenest city in America is Burlington, Vt., while Casper, Wyo., has the largest per-capita carbon footprint.Chicago is the city with the highest level of income segregation, with large clusters of expensive and cheap cars in different neighborhoods; Jacksonville, Fla., is the least segregated by income.New York is the city with the most expensive cars. El Paso has the highest percentage of Hummers. San Francisco has the highest percentage of foreign cars.
The researchers point out that the rise of self-driving cars with on-board cameras will produce even more street images that could be fed into AI systems for analysis. They also note that walking around a neighborhood with a camera -- for example, in a smartphone -- would allow image data to be gathered very simply and cheaply. And as AI systems become more powerful, it will be possible to extract even more demographic information from apparently innocuous street views. Although that may be good news for academic researchers, datamining offline activities clearly creates new privacy problems at a time when people are already worried about what can be gleaned from datamining their online activities.Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and +glynmoody on Google+

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 18-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Community Backlash Leads Adult Diaper Company To Drop Its Trademark Application for 'ABDL'

Furnished content.


When a company goes down a wrong or abusive road regarding trademark rights, the public has a lot of tools for remedy. Legal disputes between interested parties can often times correct a company attempting to secure trademark rights it ought not have. Invalidating a trademark that never should have been granted is another tool. But often times, the best and quickest remedies can come from the public itself in the form of a good old fashioned backlash.The likelihood of such a backlash is necessarily a function of the devotion of a particular fanbase. The craft beer industry has had to learn this lesson several times, with a portion of the public devoted to seeing the industry thrive also being unwilling to let stand aggressive trademark bullying that threatens that same industry. We saw another of these backlash instances cause a company to reverse course recently and I struggle to think of a more potentially devoted fanbase to an industry than those among us whose fetish is role-playing as adult babies.

A company that makes diapers for the adult baby/diaper lover fetish community (known as ABDL) gave up on its attempt to trademark the term “ABDL” on Thursday after message boards for the community exploded in anger last week.Rearz, a Canadian-based supplier of adult diapers with cutesy patterns and other adult baby accessories, like pacifiers, told BuzzFeed News, “we had no malicious or strange intentions in trying to register it, but obviously it struck a nerve with people. This is a community we love and serve, and we don't want to make people feel less valuable.”
It will be both tempting and facile for our comments section to devolve into opinions about this specific fetish, but that is entirely besides the point. The real story here is that a company attempted to register a trademark that is essentially the identity of an entire community which it serves and was immediately slapped around by that same community. It seems that many of the same folks that enjoy wearing diapers as adults for any reason other than necessity were also perfectly willing to let Rearz know that trademarking their communal identity would not be tolerated. Boycotts were threatened with promises to patronize other makers of these products, which, yes, this is an industry with multiple players.As is typical, Reddit communities led the way.
Rearz filed to trademark “ABDL” in October 2017, but it was only this week that someone in the community noticed. At this discovery, the /r/ABDL subreddit filled with angry threads about Rearz’s trademark filings. “This is scummy. Period,” wrote one user. In another thread, angry ABDL redditors planned to ruin Rearz’s standing on Facebook by rating it one star on its business page. On a forum for adult babies called ADISC.org, one adult baby said, “Rearz is now off my shopping list.” People even made memes about the scandal.
In rescinding its trademark application, Rearz went on to post its reasoning for applying for in the first place on its blog. That reasoning had mostly to do with the company's complaints about certain online ads and online payments not being accepted due to the products' stigmitized status in popular culture. What a trademark for "ABDL" would do to correct any of that is a question nobody seems interested in answering, but Rearz's claim that it would not enforce its trademark against competition if it had received it doesn't pass the smell test. Even if that were true, it would mean losing the trademark to genericide.But, in the end, the community Rearz served did all of that work long before the legal system had a chance to swing the bat. If nothing else, this ought to show the rest of the public what a good old fashioned backlash can do to correct poor trademark behavior.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 18-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Shipyard Brewing Sues The Brewery It Is Trademark Bullying Over The Public Backlash To Its Trademark Bullying

Furnished content.


You may recall that the middle of last summer saw us reporting on a somewhat odd trademark dispute between two breweries, Shipyard Brewing Co. and Logboat Brewing Company. Chiefly at issue was the fact that both breweries used images of schooners on their respective labels, except that the images used were laughably different. Also at issue was that Logboat's "Shiphead" beer used the word "head", which Shipyard says it uses in a variety of other beers, such as Pumpkinhead, Melonhead and other variations. Shipyard, notably, does not have a beer called "Shiphead", making this all the more eyebrow-raising.Well, after we and others reported on this silly lawsuit, it seems that many within the craft beer fanship and community, a passionate group to be sure, felt a desire to let Shipyard Brewing know what they thought of this behavior. This is a common result when passionate fanbases get wind of bad actions taken within an industry. Despite that, Shipyard had apparently decided that all of this backlash was the fault of Logboat Brewing, and added a defamation charge to its lawsuit.

The Maine craft brewery’s complaint alleged that the hundreds of one-star reviews as well as negative news articles were prompted by Logboat employees, who made defamatory statements concerning Shipyard to the public “as retribution for Shipyard filing suit.” The brewery listed three examples of statements it considered to be defamatory:-Suggestions that Shipyard is pursuing the trademark lawsuit for ulterior motives-Unsubstantiated claims that Shipyard is a trademark bully-General insults concerning Shipyard’s business and the quality of its beers
Well, the judge presiding over all of this has issued a ruling on that portion of this dispute, roundly rejecting the latter two of those three claims by Shipyard because they are matters or expressions of opinion. She went on to say that the claim of ulterior motive is something that could be proved in court and allowed Shipyard to amend its filing accordingly.
U.S. District Court Judge Nanette Laughrey dismissed parts of a defamation claim against Logboat that alleged the craft brewery’s employees slandered Maine-based Shipyard Brewing Company in retaliation for a lawsuit filed in May.
It's not a good first look for Shipyard and it's worth remembering that all of this consternation is in the service of a trademark lawsuit that is wholly unnecessary and one that is almost certainly itself tarnishing the reputation of the brewery in the eyes of the craft beer consuming public. It's probably time for Shipyard to cut both anchor and its losses.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 17-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



After Basically No Debate, And No Opportunity For Amendments, Senate Votes To Expand NSA Surveillance

Furnished content.


As was unfortunately expected, after a very short (and fairly stupid) debate that was full of misleading statements that focused more on "but... but... terrorism!" than anything substantive, the Senate has voted for cloture on the same bill the House approved last week that extends and expands the NSA's 702 surveillance program, opening it up to widespread abuse and refusing to do simple things like adding in a warrant requirement when used to spy on Americans. The vote was actually surprisingly close -- going right down to the wire. They needed 60 votes to get this bill over the top and they almost didn't get them. The final vote was 60 to 39 with the final vote (well over an hour after the vote starting) coming from Senator Claire McCaskill in favor of warrantless spying on Americans.This is not all that surprising, even if it's disappointing. It follows the pattern that we've seen with surveillance programs over the past decade. Whenever they are up for renewal, Congress refuses to debate or discuss serious reforms until there's like a week left... and then they have a simplistic and rushed debate that basically consists of the hawks freaking out about how we're all going to die if the NSA can't keep spying on people, and civil liberty defenders pointing to the 4th Amendment, only to have the surveillance state supporters push back that the NSA protects us and is full of good people and how dare you question their good nature by insisting on petty little things like "warrants" as required by the Constitution.The cloture vote is not technically the final vote. It just shuts down debate and blocks the ability to raise any amendments. There will be a final vote soon, but the cloture vote is, effectively, the important vote here, and having voted for cloture the bill will pass -- and despite President Trump's confusion last week, he will sign the bill, and the NSA will get to turn back on its "about" surveillance capabilities it had been forced into shutting down last year, and the FBI will continue to get full, warrantless access to the "backdoor" or "incidental" collections of the communications of many, many Americans without a warrant and without anything approaching probable cause.While this was expected to turn out this way, it's still bad. It's our Senate (and the House and the White House) purposely spitting on the 4th Amendment of the Constitution to appease the NSA and the FBI. And, as with last week, it's especially incredible to see a number of Senators who have spoken out against Donald Trump -- including Senators Jeff Flake and Dianne Feinstein -- then turn around and vote for this. Last week, Flake compared Trump to Stalin. And just days later he votes to give that same Trump vast surveillance powers over Americans. Incredible. Meanwhile, Trump has been attacking Claire McCaskill left and right as she's up for re-election... and she repays that by giving him more surviellance power and selling out the American public. Missouri voters should remember that.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 17-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Progressive Web Apps: The Future of Mobile

Furnished content.


The AppInstitute Offers a A Beginner's Guide to Progressive Web Apps And…an infographic to sum it all up! Technology is ever-changing and the way that businesses can market themselves evolves with it. With the exponential growth of smartphone adoption, businesses witnessed an incredible shift in the way that it was possible to market products and […]The post Progressive Web Apps: The Future of Mobile appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 17-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



2018 Customer Engagement Award Winners from Retail TouchPoints

Furnished content.


Retail TouchPoints, a source for customer engagement strategies in the retail industry, today announced the winners of the2018 Customer Engagement Awards. The 2018Retail TouchPointsCustomer Engagement Awards recognize 10 retail companies that are pushing the boundaries of innovation and technology to engage consumers across channels. This year's winners have each strived to amaze, gratify and delight […]The post 2018 Customer Engagement Award Winners from Retail TouchPoints appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 17-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Welcome world

Furnished content.


It’s my first articleThe post Welcome world appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 17-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



TEST

Furnished content.


TEST textThe post TEST appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:02am on 16-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



This Week In Techdirt History: January 7th - 13th

Furnished content.


Five Years AgoThis week in 2013, we watched as new players tried to get into the copyright trolling game but were rebuffed by a court system getting wise to their antics — even if, at the same time, established copyright trolls were upping their insane demands. We got some great examples of copyright nonsense as Lionsgate issued a takedown on a video that the Copyright Office itself had featured as an example of fair use, and Sony released an album literally called The Bob Dylan Copyright Extension Collection in order to extend their European copyrights. Amidst all this, we published a long interview we conducted with Derek Khanna, author of the suppressed RSC copyright policy brief.Ten Years AgoThis week in 2008, the web of piracy was getting increasingly complex as large entertainment companies realized they could be mining the world of user-generated content. Hollywood's latest DRM efforts were doing their usual job of punishing only paying customers (though perhaps not as much as their extra-special screener DRM punished Academy members), and the UK was reforming its copyright to adopt DRM anti-circumvention laws of its own. Meanwhile, eBay was fighting back against DMCA abuse and Canadian courts struck down the latest efforts to put a piracy tax on iPods.Fifteen Years AgoThis week in 2003, it was the pirate tax on CDs that Canadians were starting to (unsuccessfully) fight back against. We watched as Lexmark got in on the DMCA abuse game to try to block third-party ink cartridges, while the EFF outlined the many unintended consequences of the DMCA, and more people were realizing that Hollywood just doesn't get it. At least Rep. Rick Boucher was trying to defend fair use against the DMCA's onslaught.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 14-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Outlook 2018: Brand Safety & Transparency Are Game Changers for Native Advertising

Furnished content.


Last year's IAB predictions for content marketing and native advertising focused on mobile, native and data as the game changers. And while this largely holds true for this year, a few new themes have emerged that have changed the tone and outlook for this type of marketing, namely brand safety, transparency and the growing role […]The post Outlook 2018: Brand Safety & Transparency Are Game Changers for Native Advertising appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 13-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Senate To Vote Tuesday On Surveillance Bill; Four Senators Try To Rally Others To Oppose

Furnished content.


Following yesterday's bizarre vote in the House, in which many members who opposed President Donald Trump and warn about his abuses of office voted to give him much greater surveillance capabilities, the issue quickly moved to the Senate. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made a procedural move to ensure no amendments are added, and the bill the Senate will vote on will be basically the awful bill in the House.On top of that he put out a misleading statement, playing up the usual fear mongering about Section 702 and even name-checking 9/11.

Republicans and Democrats agree that we must not deprive the men and women who protect our country of this important tool. Five years ago, a reauthorization of Section 702 passed the Senate with overwhelming bipartisan support. Al Qaeda, ISIL and associated terror groups remain intent on striking our people, and those serving us overseas. I look forward to renewing the bipartisan consensus on this issue now that the time has come to approve a new extension.With each day that passes since this nation was attacked on September 11th, 2001 it seems that the concern over terrorism has waned. That is in part due to the success of our defense and intelligence community in preventing another attack. And they rely upon section 702 to accomplish that mission. But as we know, Al Qaeda, ISIL and associated terror groups remain intent on striking our people, and those serving us overseas.
Of course, this ignores that Section 702 didn't even show up until almost a decade after 9/11 -- so really wasn't responsible for most of the intelligence work that McConnell is giving it credit for. And, on top of that, it ignores the widespread abuse of Section 702 programs that we now know about. It also ignores that in some ways this new bill expands the power to conduct surveillance on Americans without a warrant and to use that surveillance for law enforcement, rather than intelligence purposes.An intellectually honest debate about this would address these issues. But McConnell does not appear interested in an intellectually honest debate, preferring to scream "9/11!" and demand Senators vote to approve the plan. There is a group of four Senators pushing back against this: Senators Rand Paul, Ron Wyden, Mike Lee and Pat Leahy have sent a powerful letter to their colleagues, detailing the many problems with the bill.
This bill allows an end-run on the Constitution by permitting information collected without a warrant to be used against Americans in domestic criminal investigations. It endorses the possibility that the government will resume about collections on Americans, a practice that the government was actually forced to abandon last year due to significant non-compliance with privacy protections ordered by the FISA Court. And it does nothing to protect innocent Americans from expanding warrantless surveillance.
  • Continuing the backdoor loophole: The bill does nothing for the thousands of Americans whose private communications are searched without a warrant every year, including those who are not even the subject of an investigation. Nor would it prevent unlimited searches for Americans' information, even for non-national security purposes. The so-called warrant requirement reform in the bill applies only to criminal suspects, and then only to the government's access to their information at the final stage of an investigation, a situation that, according to the most recent annual data from the Director of National Intelligence, has occurred once. This means that the bill actually treats those suspected of a crime better than innocent Americans.
  • Restarting About collection: The bill, for the first time, would statutorily recognize the possibility of the government restarting about collection, essentially by default, which would necessarily include warrantless collection of communications to and from Americans for whom there is no suspicion at all. The government was forced to abandon this problematic form of collection last year due to extensive compliance problems, and should not be allowed to resume it without specific Congressional approval.
  • Unreviewable end use: The bill grants new, unchecked powers to the Attorney General to allow data collected without a warrant to be used in domestic criminal prosecutions of Americans. The Attorney General merely has to determine that a criminal proceeding affects, involves, or is related to the national security of the United States or involves a transnational crime. Alarmingly, the bill explicitly prohibits any challenge to the Attorney General's decision.
To be clear, FISA's purpose is to collect foreign intelligence, but without additional meaningful constraints, Congress is allowing the government to use information collected without a warrant against Americans in domestic court proceedings. We have introduced two separate bills which preserve the government's ability to pursue terrorists abroad and protect the country from foreign threats while also making the necessary reforms to protect the Fourth Amendment rights of Americans here at home.The FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act, however, further expands the risks of unconstitutional spying on innocent Americans, and we encourage you to join us in opposition to this bill. We believe that a clean, short-term extension would be markedly preferable to this legislation. Section 702 was last extended for the length of the Continuing Resolution; if Leadership does not allow any amendments to the FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act and it does not pass this coming week, then Section 702 authorities can be extended again on the next Continuing Resolution to allow the Senate to fully debate how to appropriately reform this powerful surveillance tool.
It would be nice if other Senators actually paid attention and listened to these four... but the fact that it is just these four (and they tend to be the most reliable four Senators talking about protecting the 4th Amendment) suggests that McConnell knows that he has enough votes to pass the bill and allow the NSA and domestic law enforcement to increase their warrantless surveillance of Americans. This also means that it might be a good time to call your own two Senators and make sure they're voting against this. Fight for the Future is crowdfunding to buy billboards advertising against some Senators who vote for the bill, but the more these Senators hear from constituents saying that this bill obliterates our 4th Amendment rights, the better.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 13-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Colorado Cities Keep Voting To Build Their Own Broadband Networks

Furnished content.


So we've long mentioned how incumbent ISPs like Comcast have spent millions of dollars quite literally buying shitty, protectionist laws in more than twenty states. These laws either ban or heavily hamstring towns and cities from building their own broadband networks, or in some cases from even engaging in public/private partnerships. It's a scenario where ISPs get to have their cake and eat it too; they often refuse to upgrade their networks in under-served areas (particularly true among telcos offering DSL), but also get to write shitty laws preventing these under-served towns from doing anything about it.This dance of dysfunction has been particularly interesting in Colorado, however. While lobbyists for Comcast and CenturyLink managed to convince state leaders to pass such a law (SB 152) in 2005, the legislation contains a provision that lets individual Colorado towns and cities ignore the measure with a simple referendum. With frustration mounting over sub-standard broadband and awful customer service, more than 100 towns and cities have done so thus far.Late last year in Fort Collins, for example, 57.15% of locals voted to open the door to community-run broadband despite Comcast and Centurylink spending nearly $1 million on misleading ads claiming the plan would cause the city to fall into disrepair. And this week, the city council voted unanimously on a plan that will help deliver cheap, ultra-fast (gigabit) fiber broadband to most city residents. Under the proposal, the city will take out a $1.8 million loan to help the local utility with startup costs, with expansion funded by bonds:

"Last night's three unanimous votes begin the process of building our city's own broadband network," Glen Akins, a resident who helped lead the pro-municipal broadband campaign, told Ars today. "We're extremely pleased the entire city council voted to support the network after the voters' hard fought election victory late last year. The municipal broadband network will make Fort Collins an even more incredible place to live."
With the Trump administration's assault on net neutrality, broadband privacy rules and pretty much all meaningful oversight of telecom duopolies, interest in these kinds of creative solutions as an escape from the broken telecom market is only going to grow. In Fort Collins, a city planning document indicates the city is promising to operate a network that actually adheres to net neutrality and avoid usage caps:
"The network will deliver a 'net-neutral' competitive unfettered data offering that does not impose caps or usage limits on one use of data over another (i.e., does not limit streaming or charge rates based on type of use). All application providers (data, voice, video, cloud services) are equally able to provide their services, and consumers' access to advanced data opens up the marketplace."
ISP lobbyists, executives, and their paid policy parrots like to paint these community broadband efforts as automatic boondoggles. In reality, they're just like any business plan, with some good and some arguably awful. But lost in this claim is the fact that ISPs are bribing state legislatures to take local infrastructure decisions out of the hands of local voters -- simply because they're terrified of anything vaguely resembling competition. Also lost is the fact that these towns and cities wouldn't be looking into these efforts if U.S. broadband wasn't such an anti-competitive, uncompetitive shitshow.But why should ISPs like Comcast compete when it's much easier to buy awful state laws, then sue any community broadband efforts into oblivion (as Comcast attempted to do in Chattanooga)? The problem for incumbent ISPs is their ham-fisted efforts to obliterate things like net neutrality is only fueling anger in communities looking for any alternative to the dysfunctional status quo.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 13-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Flurry State of Mobile 2017: With Captive Mobile Audiences, New App Growth Stagnates

Furnished content.


By: Chris Klotzbach, Director at Flurry and Lali Kesiraju, Marketing and Analytics Manager at Flurry For an industry that's seen staggering growth and disruption since the launch of the first smartphone, 2017 was the year that mobile app innovation and growth was disrupted. Stalwart industry players held and gained market position, while years-old disruptors struggled […]The post Flurry State of Mobile 2017: With Captive Mobile Audiences, New App Growth Stagnates appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 12-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Kyle Hubert Promoted to Chief Technology Officerat Simulmedia; Gumas Advertising Names Craig Alexander Agency President

Furnished content.


Simulmedia, a company that creates data-optimized national TV campaigns for major brands, announced thatKyle Hubert, who has been the company’s Chief Scientist since December 2016, has been promoted to Chief Technology Officer. “Kyle is also a true visionary in how technology can make television advertising not only work better for marketers and media owners, but […]The post Kyle Hubert Promoted to Chief Technology Officerat Simulmedia; Gumas Advertising Names Craig Alexander Agency President appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 12-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Appeals Court OKs F-Bombs For Federal Trademark Protection

Furnished content.


The Supreme Court's decision in The Slants' trademark case is already beginning to pay off for trademark seekers whose applications were determined to be a bit too racy for the Trademark Office's (subjective) taste. Section 1052(a) of the US Code used to forbid the registration of trademarks that "disparaged" other persons or groups or anything the USPTO found to be "immoral or scandalous."That's all gone now, thanks to the Supreme Court, which found this restriction to registrations unconstitutional. The Supreme Court struck down the language limiting "disparaging" trademark registrations. The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals has just struck down the remaining limiting language ("immoral or scandalous"), allowing clothing brand FUCT to finally secure federal trademark protection.Marc Randazza breaks down the entire ruling at Popehat. Here are some of the highlights of the decision [PDF]:

The Brunetti court [rejected] the government’s argument that the “immoral or scandalous” prohibition of Section 2(a) was aimed at commercial speech. The primary test for determining whether a mark is “immoral or scandalous” is if the general public would find the mark “shocking to the sense of truth, decency, or propriety; disgraceful; offensive; disreputable; . . . giving offense to the conscience or moral feelings; . . . or calling out for condemnation.” In re Fox, 702 F.3d 633, 635 (Fed. Cir. 2012). The court noted that this restriction is aimed solely at the expressive content of trademarks, rather than their commercial source-identifying function, and necessarily involves moral value judgments. (Decision at 27.) The court could have stopped after this determination, since the government agreed that the “immoral or scandalous” portion of Section 2(a) could not survive strict scrutiny, but it went on to find that the restriction could not survive even intermediate scrutiny.
The decision takes even more pointed shots are the government's unavailing arguments later in the ruling.
The government’s interest in protecting the public from profane and scandalous marks is not akin to the government’s interest in protecting children and other unsuspecting listeners from a barrage of swear words over the radio in Pacifica. A trademark is not foisted upon listeners by virtue of its being registered. Nor does registration make a scandalous mark more accessible to children. Absent any concerns that trademark registration invades a substantial privacy interest in an intolerable manner, the government’s interest amounts to protecting everyone, including adults, from scandalous content. But even when “many adults themselves would find the material highly offensive,” adults have a First Amendment right to view and hear speech that is profane and scandalous.[...]Even if we were to hold that the government has a substantial interest in protecting the public from scandalous or immoral marks, the government could not meet the third prong of Central Hudson, which requires the regulation directly advance the government’s asserted interest. 447 U.S. at 566. As the government has repeatedly exhorted, § 2(a) does not directly prevent applicants from using their marks. Regardless of whether a trademark is federally registered, an applicant can still brand clothing with his mark, advertise with it on the television or radio, or place it on billboards along the highway. In this electronic/Internet age, to the extent that the government seeks to protect the general population from scandalous material, with all due respect, it has completely failed.
This doesn't end the battle. The government may decided to appeal this decision, lining up this portion of Section 2(a) for a review by the Supreme Court. Or, as Randazza points out, legislators could decide to ruin the registration of bad words for everyone with "for the children" legislation altering the contours of language eligible for trademark protection.But, for the moment, the First Amendment triumphs over USPTO prudery. Let the F-bomb gold rush begin!

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 12-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Shareholder Groups Say Apple Should Do More To Address Gadget 'Addiction' Among Young People: Should It?

Furnished content.


In an open letter to Apple, two of its major shareholders, Jana Partners and the California State Teachers' Retirement System, have raised concerns about research that suggests young people are becoming "addicted" to high-tech devices like the iPhone and iPad, and the software that runs on them. It asks the company to take a number of measures to tackle the problem, such as carrying out more research in the area, and providing more tools and education for parents to help them deal with the issue. The letter quotes studies by Professor Jean M. Twenge, a psychologist at San Diego State University, who is also working with the shareholders in an effort to persuade Apple to do more:

Professor Twenge's research shows that U.S. teenagers who spend 3 hours a day or more on electronic devices are 35% more likely, and those who spend 5 hours or more are 71% more likely, to have a risk factor for suicide than those who spend less than 1 hour.
Other quoted research found:
The average American teenager who uses a smart phone receives her first phone at age 10 and spends over 4.5 hours a day on it (excluding texting and talking). 78% of teens check their phones at least hourly and 50% report feeling "addicted" to their phones.
According to the letter, at least part of the solution needs to come from Apple:
we note that Apple's current limited set of parental controls in fact dictate a more binary, all or nothing approach, with parental options limited largely to shutting down or allowing full access to various tools and functions. While there are apps that offer more options, there are a dizzying array of them (which often leads people to make no choice at all), it is not clear what research has gone into developing them, few if any offer the full array of options that the research would suggest, and they are clearly no substitute for Apple putting these choices front and center for parents.
The Apple shareholders behind the letter admit that it is not entirely altruistic:
we believe that addressing this issue now will enhance long-term value for all shareholders, by creating more choices and options for your customers today and helping to protect the next generation of leaders, innovators, and customers tomorrow.
Building on this, they also shrewdly point out that Apple has little to fear from moves to give parents more control over their children's use of Apple products:
Doing so poses no threat to Apple, given that this is a software (not hardware) issue and that, unlike many other technology companies, Apple's business model is not predicated on excessive use of your products. In fact, we believe addressing this issue now by offering parents more tools and choices could enhance Apple's business and increase demand for its products.
That's in contrast to Facebook or Google, for example, both which want people to use their respective products as much as possible so as to maximize the opportunities for advertising.Apple has already responded with a fairly generic reply, published on the iMore site:
we are constantly looking for ways to make our experiences better. We have new features and enhancements planned for the future, to add functionality and make these tools even more robust.
Unless that functionality goes well beyond the perfunctory, it is unlikely to satisfy the shareholder groups, who presumably want the "full array of options" they mention. The danger for Apple is that a limited response might lead to it being swept up in the growing backlash against Silicon Valley and its products, evident in a number of recent articles. One thing Apple could do is to make it easier for third parties to write apps that address the problem in a thoroughgoing way -- something its tightly-controlled ecosystem may make harder than for Android.A broader issue is how serious the problem of gadget "addiction" in children really is -- and how it should be tackled. Clearly, the parents play a key role here, but what about the hardware and software companies who profit from it? To what extent should they provide fine-grained parental controls -- should social media, for example, offer parents the capability to limit the number and timing of daily posts made by their children, and would that even help?Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and +glynmoody on Google+

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 12-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Retailers Report Dramatic Mobile Revenue Increases Via PWAs

Furnished content.


Mobify reports that retailers offering faster, more app-like experiences to mobile web shoppers viaProgressive Web Apps(PWAs) are getting immediate increases in mobile revenue and mobile traffic. Such sites are increasingly mission-critical to ecommerce leaders and IT organizations in the retail sector as mobile emerges as the main driver of continued growth in ecommerce. For retail […]The post Retailers Report Dramatic Mobile Revenue Increases Via PWAs appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 11-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



The Internet of Trusted Things: Blockchain as the Foundation for Autonomous Products & Ecosystem Services

Furnished content.


The Internet of Trusted Things, a research report co-authored by Jessica Groopman and Jeremiah Owyang (pictured left),Kaleido Insights Analyst and Founding Partner, analyzes the enterprise opportunities and use cases for the convergence of the Internet of Things and Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT). Despite recent growth of connected devices and networked services, the lack of shared […]The post The Internet of Trusted Things: Blockchain as the Foundation for Autonomous Products & Ecosystem Services appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 11-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Appeals Court Drives Another Stake Into The Heart Of Idaho's 'Ag-Gag' Law

Furnished content.


The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld a 2015 decision finding Idaho's "ag-gag" law unconstitutional. Despite the protestations of legislators and the state itself, the court finds the law prohibiting people from obtaining access to farms and other agricultural entities under false pretenses a violation of protected speech.As the lower court pointed out, the law would have made Upton Sinclair's expose of the meatpacking industry illegal. The upshot of Sinclair's book was significant changes to food and employee safety laws. Without the efforts of whistleblowers this law clearly targeted, the safety of the public -- both consumers and employees -- would be negatively impacted.The Appeals Court finds little to like about the state's arguments the law is meant to protect the privacy of agricultural entities. Instead, it points out statements made by legislators -- as well as the law's wording -- indicates the state intended to block speech critical of these entities. The decision [PDF] highlights comments made by legislators during the passage of the law which show the true impetus for the law's creation.

Lawmakers also discussed damage caused by investigative reporting: “One of the things that bothers me a lot about the undercover investigation [at the dairy], and the fact that there’s videos, well, we’re being tried and persecuted and prosecuted in the press.” Other legislators used similar language demonstrating hostility toward the release of these videos, and one supporter of the legislation dubbed animal rights groups as “terrorists” who “use media and sensationalism to attempt to steal the integrity of the producer and their reputation.” One legislator stated that the dairy industry’s reason behind the legislation was “[t]hey could not allow fellow members of the industry to be persecuted in the court of public opinion.” Another described these videos as used to “publicly crucify a company” and “as a blackmail tool.” Finally, one legislator indicated that if the video had not been published, she did not “think this bill would ever have surfaced.”
The video mentioned here was released in 2012 by a group called Mercy for Animals. An activist involved with the group obtained a job at a dairy farm and secretly filmed employees abusing livestock. As a result of the video's release, the dairy fired the abusive employees and instituted animal welfare protocols. Legislators -- pushed and prodded by dairy lobbyists -- went a completely different route, deciding the exposure of animal abuse should result in punishment of those documenting the abuse, rather than the abusers themselves.As the Appeals Court points out, the law was narrowly crafted to prevent whistleblowing and criticism of activities performed by employees of a certain industry. As such, there's no way the law can even be considered a close call in terms of the Constitution.
Guided by Alvarez, we conclude that subsection (a)’s misrepresentation provision regulates speech protected by the First Amendment. The targeted speech—a false statement made in order to access an agricultural production facility—cannot on its face be characterized as “made to effect a fraud or secure moneys or other valuable considerations.” Alvarez, 567 U.S. at 723 (plurality opinion). Nor can the misrepresentation provision be characterized as simply proscribing conduct. Like the statute in Alvarez, subsection (a) “seeks to control and suppress all false statements [related to access] in almost limitless times and settings. And it does so entirely without regard to whether the lie was made for the purpose of material gain.” Id. at 722–23 (plurality opinion). Unlike lying to obtain records or gain employment—which are associated with a material benefit to the speaker—lying to gain entry merely allows the speaker to cross the threshold of another’s property, including property that is generally open to the public. The hazard of this subsection is that it criminalizes innocent behavior, that the overbreadth of this subsection’s coverage is staggering, and that the purpose of the statute was, in large part, targeted at speech and investigative journalists.Idaho’s argument that “the material gain to the person telling the lie is the entry to the property,” is not supported by any authority and does not establish how entry onto the property and material gain are coextensive. Under the statute, any misrepresentation to gain entry could net a criminal prosecution. Take, for example, a teenager who wants to impress his friends by obtaining a highly sought after reservation at an exclusive pop-up restaurant that is open to the public. If he were to call the restaurant and finagle a reservation in the name of his mother, a well-known journalist, that would be a misrepresentation. If the restaurant offers up a reservation on the basis of the mother’s notoriety, granting a “license” to enter the premises and sit at a table, the teenager would be subject to punishment of up to one year in prison, a fine not to exceed $5,000, or both.
The court then goes on to point out the fallacy of the state's argumentative logic: if the state desired only to protect private business owners from unwanted intrusion, it already has a law on the books to handle this.
Even assuming Idaho has a compelling interest in regulating property rights and protecting its farm industry, criminalizing access to property by misrepresentation is not “actually necessary” to protect those rights. If, as Idaho argues, its real concern is trespass, then Idaho already has a prohibition against trespass that does not implicate speech in any way. If instead, as a number of the legislators made clear and the dairy lobby underscored, the statute was intended to quash investigative reporting on agricultural production facilities, then the speech aspect of the statute prohibiting misrepresentations is even more problematic. The focus of the statute to avoid the “court of public opinion” and treatment of investigative videos as “blackmail” cannot be squared with a content-neutral trespass law.
Allowing the law to stay on the books would encourage selective prosecution. Whistleblowers capturing evidence of abusive behavior by farm employees would be targeted for fines and jail time while the proverbial teenager described in the court's analogy would be left unperturbed. The state hardly even pretends the restriction is content-neutral -- an argument that might have been more successfully raised if legislators hadn't undercut it so severely while debating the bill.The court also notes the law is broadly-written, which could lead to even more criminalization of First Amendment-protected activity.
We are also unsettled by the sheer breadth of this subsection given the definitions of “agricultural production facility” and “agricultural production.” Id. § 18-7042(2)(a), (b). Applying these definitions, the subsection reaches misrepresentations not only in the context of a large-scale dairy facility or cattle feedlot, but also grocery stores, garden nurseries, restaurants that have an herb garden or grow their own produce, llama farms that produce wool for weaving, beekeepers, a chicken coop in the backyard, a field producing crops for ethanol, and hardware stores, to name a few.[...]The reach of subsection (a) is so broad that it gives rise to suspicion that it may have been enacted with an impermissible purposeOur suspicion is not eased after reading the legislative history. The record reflects that the statute was partly motivated to protect members of the agricultural industry from “persecut[ion] in the court of public opinion,” and journalists who use exposés to “publicly crucify a company.” Although, for Equal Protection Clause purposes, we need not decide whether animus motivated this subsection, we do not ignore that a vocal number of supporters were less concerned with the protection of property than they were about protecting a target group from critical speech, which adds to our skepticism that the provision survives the “exacting scrutiny” required under Alvarez.
The court then dismantles the state's argument that creating recordings is not First Amendment-protected activity because it is (somehow) "not speech."
We easily dispose of Idaho’s claim that the act of creating an audiovisual recording is not speech protected by the First Amendment. This argument is akin to saying that even though a book is protected by the First Amendment, the process of writing the book is not. Audiovisual recordings are protected by the First Amendment as recognized “organ[s] of public opinion” and as a “significant medium for the communication of ideas.”[...]As with the Misrepresentation Clauses, Idaho asserts that the Recordings Clause protects both property and privacy interests. Even assuming a compelling government interest, Idaho has not satisfied the narrow tailoring requirement because the statute is both under-inclusive and overinclusive.
This is what happens when you craft a bill specifically designed to target one type of speech legislators (and their favored industries) don't like: you create a law soaked in cognitive dissonance. The court digs further into the law's inconsistencies:
Prohibiting only “audio or video recordings,” but saying nothing about photographs, is suspiciously under-inclusive. City of Ladue v. Gilleo, 512 U.S. 43, 51 (“[T]hat a regulation of speech may be impermissibly underinclusive is firmly grounded in basic First Amendment principles.”). Why the making of audio and video recordings of operations would implicate property or privacy harms, but photographs of the same content would not, is a mystery. This distinction defies the old adage that “a picture is worth a thousand words.”Nor has Idaho explained how limiting the filming of operations, but nothing else, effectuates its interests better than eliminating all audio and video recordings at agricultural production facilities. Presumably, for example, an unauthorized recording of the agricultural production facility’s buildings would still implicate Idaho’s concerns about property, and the unauthorized filming of an employee birthday party would implicate concerns about privacy. Without some legitimate explanation, we are left to conclude that Idaho is singling out for suppression one mode of speech—audio and video recordings of agricultural operations—to keep controversy and suspect practices out of the public eye. Reed, 135 S. Ct. at 2229 (content-based laws lend themselves to use for “invidious, thought-control purposes”). The district court aptly noted that “[t]he recording prohibition gives agricultural facility owners veto power, allowing owners to decide what can and cannot be recorded, effectively turning them into state-backed censors able to silence unfavorable speech about their facilities.”
The entire law isn't overturned, however. The Appeals Court finds two aspects of it are still acceptable. It is still illegal to gain access to company records under false pretenses as well as to gain employment through misrepresentation. The court doesn't find these to be violations of rights, but rather a sensible way to allow companies to protect proprietary information that might benefit competitors if released to the public.Whistleblowers already employed by agricultural companies are still protected under the Constitution. Investigative reporters who film agricultural operations while undercover are still protected as well, although they won't be able to seek employment under false pretenses to obtain recordings. This may make it more difficult to perform investigative journalism, but it won't make it impossible. The law as written did nothing more than give one industry an easy way to prevent criticism of its actions, policies, and employee behavior. Too bad the legislators it prodded into action undercut the state's arguments before it even had a chance to make them. Unfortunately, the only lesson the ag industry may have learned from this courtroom debacle is to buy a better brand of politician -- one that won't immediately out the law's intent during legislative discussions.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 11-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



In Keeping And Improving News Comments, The Intercept Shows Websites What Giving A Damn Looks Like

Furnished content.


For the last few years, the trend du jour in online media has been to demonize, vilify, then shutter the traditional news comment section. Usually these closures come with all manner of disingenuous nonsense about how websites are banning comments for the sake of "building relationships" or because the website in question just "really loves conversation." Usually, on-site users are then shoved toward social media silos at Twitter and Facebook we're told are "just as good" as an active, on-site community (read: doing this is cheaper and makes it somebody else's problem).Traditionally, readers of these websites are told that news comments simply had to die because it's impossible to cultivate healthy discourse in the post-truth, mega-troll era. But as Techdirt and countless other websites have made clear for more than a decade, that's simply not true. And while being lazy, cheap and actively hostile to on-site community is any website's prerogative, this ignores the fact that online news comments are an excellent avenue for transparency and a tool to hold websites, and authors, accountable.With so many websites muzzling community speech because they just so adore conversation, it's good to point out when websites swim upstream against this trend. For example the Intercept last month announced that the news outlet would be partnering with the The Coral Project at Mozilla to make their news comments system better via a myriad of changes to their commenting platform. The Coral Project interviewed some 300 individuals from 150 newsrooms in 30 countries as part of an effort to improve online discourse.Informed by this research, The Intercept's changes include the ability to mute annoying users, the ability to track comment edits, a new offensive comment reporting feature, the "featuring" of exceptional comments by website staff, and the expanded ability of staff to interact with users that pose particularly important questions. Again, none of this is particularly revolutionary. Most of it involves treating readers like human beings. But in this day and age -- doing so is apparently now a revolutionary act.As the Intercept's Glenn Greenwald and Rubina Madan Fillion note, lost in the vilification of comments sections as little more than troll gardens is the fact that on-site comments are a great way to hold journalists accountable:

"Journalists often tout their responsibility to hold the powerful accountable. Comments are a way to hold journalists themselves accountable. Unlike posts on social media, comments occupy the same space as the stories and travel with them as they're shared across platforms. Comments also make it possible for people to share their reactions without having to connect them to a social media account. That's why we continue to be strong proponents of comments and encourage our colleagues at The Intercept to read (and respond to) them."
Again, for better or worse news in the modern era is a conversation. Muting your on-site audience may feel good to editors on tight budgets, tired of trolls, and wistful for the bygone days of carefully-chosen letters to the editor, but it's doing your community (and the news industry at large) a disservice. As such, the Intercept's moves are a welcome change of pace for an industry that has spent the last few years insisting that muzzling your readership somehow represents a breathless dedication to quality online discourse.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 11-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



UnsubCentral Introduces Super-Scrubbing Solution to Protect Marketers' Brand Reputations & Enable People-Based Marketing

Furnished content.


UnsubCentral, a PostUp company, announces its Super Scrubbing service, which allows marketers to compare and scrub multiple lists, prioritize partners, ensure email list data security, maintain opt-out compliances and protect brands from irreparable harm. This solution enables one-to-one, people-based marketing by preventing different affiliates from sending equivalent email offers to the same consumer. By managing […]The post UnsubCentral Introduces Super-Scrubbing Solution to Protect Marketers' Brand Reputations & Enable People-Based Marketing appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 10-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Yeahmobi Partners with Forensiq to Bolster Ad Fraud Detection, Purify Web Traffic

Furnished content.


Forensiq, a leader in ad fraud detection and prevention, today, announced its partnership withYeahmobi, to help curb the effect of advertising fraud across its mobile ad platform. Yeahmobi is an intelligent mobile advertising platform helping organizations reach global growth. While Yeahmobi initially had the capabilities to detect invalid web traffic, it was in need of […]The post Yeahmobi Partners with Forensiq to Bolster Ad Fraud Detection, Purify Web Traffic appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 10-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



The Other Side: Phoenix Comicon Proactively Changes Names To Avoid San Diego Comic-Con Bully

Furnished content.


We had just been talking about the brewing trademark civil war set to break out across the country in the comics conventions space, with Yakima Central City Comic Con choosing not to react to the fiasco of a court case that saw San Diego Comic-Con enforce its trademark against a convention in Salt Lake City. Their decision, publicly revealed relatively soon after the court case outcome, indicated that some comic conventions take the view that SDCC's trademark is invalid for any number of reasons and that they can simply wait for the Salt Lake Comic Con's attempt to invalidate SDCC's trademark to shake out. These would be conventions deciding not to freak out just because one bully got one win.But of course that stance could never be universal among all comic conventions in America and now we have our first convention deciding to show everyone what a chilling effect trademark bullying can have. The previously-named Phoenix Comicon has announced it will be rebranding as the Phoenix Comic Fest, with the company behind the convention, Square Egg Entertainment, providing only the thinnest of veils over its reasoning for the change.

“In recent months, the use of the word Comic-Con, and its many forms, has become litigious. We would prefer to focus on creating the best events and experiences for our attendees. Therefore, effective immediately, our event held annually in Phoenix in the spring will be rebranded as Phoenix Comic Fest.”Square Egg also said that they will change the event’s website and other assets over the next week to reflect the new name. As of this writing, they’ve already updated the event's Facebookand Twitter accounts and have posted an updated logo for the event.
This, necessarily, must be considered a win for the San Diego Comic-Con folks. The whole point of the lawsuit that kicked all of this off was that they didn't want anyone else using their plainly generic and descriptive, yet now enforced, trademark. Still, the obvious question is exactly what sort of win is this? If anything, this move by the now-named Phoenix Comic Fest seems to indicate that even the fearful out there will simply rebrand. With no actual customer or public confusion to seriously be worried about, it seems to me that the only real incentive in all of this for SDCC is licensing and partnership agreements. A simple name change does away with those potential rewards.Still, it's worth keeping in mind that there are over 100 conventions in America alone using some flavor of the "comic con" mark. What percentage will undertake the very real costs in rebranding and what percentage will stand their ground carries some importance, but so long as the latter number is sizable SDCC will have quite a bit in the way of court costs and lawyers' fees to pay for the pleasure of eking out five-figure jury awards.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 10-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Copyright Maximalists Throw In The Towel On Term Extension; Admit That Maybe Copyright Is Too Long

Furnished content.


Last week, in writing about how this should be the last year (for forty straight years) that no old works have moved into the public domain in the US due to repeated copyright term extensions, I noted that there did not appear to be much appetite among the usual folks to push for term extension. Part of this is because the RIAAs and MPAAs of the world know that the fight they'd face this time would be significantly more difficult than when they pushed through the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act 20 plus years ago. Not only do they know it would be more difficult, they know that they'd lose. Unlike last time, this time the public is paying attention and can mobilize on the internet.Indeed, we were surprised a few years back when then Copyright Office boss, Maria Pallante -- who has long pushed for copyright maximalism in many different areas -- suggested one tiny aspect of potential copyright reform could be to make the last twenty years (the life plus 50 to life plus 70 years) sort of optional. Even this very, very minor step back from the idea of automatic life plus 70 years (or more!) was fairly astounding for what it represented. Copyright interests have never been willing to budge -- even an inch, and here was a tiny inch that they indicated they were willing to give up.Tim Lee, over at Ars Technica, has now (incredibly) got three of the biggest copyright maximalist organizations on the record to say that they will not lobby for copyright term extension, and (even more incredibly) got the Authors Guild (the perpetually pushing for crazy new expansions of copyright law freaking Authors Guild!) to even say that they think maybe we should scale back to life plus 50 again:

The Author's Guild, for example, "does not support extending the copyright term, especially since many of our members benefit from having access to a thriving and substantial public domain of older works," a Guild spokeswoman told Ars in an email. "If anything, we would likely support a rollback to a term of life-plus-50 if it were politically feasible."
The RIAA and MPAA were slightly more muted, basically saying they "are not aware" of any efforts or proposals and it's not something they're pushing:
"We are not aware of any such efforts, and it's not something we are pursuing," an RIAA spokesman told us when we asked about legislation to retroactively extend copyright terms. "While copyright term has been a longstanding topic of conversation in policy circles, we are not aware of any legislative proposals to address the issue," the MPAA told us.
Of course, those statements are kind of funny, because they both know damn well that the only way such proposals would even be a topic for discussion is if they were pushing for them. That won't mean some nutty copyright holder won't push for an extension, but the RIAA and MPAA's recognition that they would lose (and lose spectacularly and embarrassingly) means that no such proposal is going to go anywhere.Now, let's see what it will take to get them on board with the Authors Guild plan to start to move copyright terms in the other direction.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 10-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Kantar Consulting Launches

Furnished content.


Kantar,WPP's data and investment division,today announced the launch of Kantar Consulting, an integrated sales and marketing consultancy designed to 'switch on growth' for brand owners and retailers. Kantar Consulting offers fully integrated 'brand and marketing', and 'retail, sales and shopper' consultancy. Built on a deep understanding of how and why people buy, Kantar Consulting was […]The post Kantar Consulting Launches appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:02am on 09-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



CES Responds to Accusations of Gender Bias in Lead Speakers: Defends Situation as Reflection of Industry-Wide Problem

Furnished content.


AdAge reports that after CES started receiving backlash forappearing to include only menin the keynote addresses listed online, the group that runs the tech conference is describing details of a previously planned “Keynote Panel” that includes at least one prominent female executive. The group, the Consumer Technology Association, has also responded to criticismin a blog […]The post CES Responds to Accusations of Gender Bias in Lead Speakers: Defends Situation as Reflection of Industry-Wide Problem appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:02am on 09-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



The Stasi's Tiny Torn-Up Analog Files Defeat Modern Digital Technology's Attempts To Re-Assemble East Germany's Surveillance Records

Furnished content.


It is nearly 30 years since the wall separating East and West Berlin came down, and yet work is still going on to deal with the toxic political legacy of East Germany. As Techdirt readers are well aware, one of the defining characteristics of the regime in East Germany was the unprecedented -- for the time, at least -- level of surveillance inflicted on citizens by the Stasi (short for Staatssicherheitsdienst, or State Security Service). This led to the creation of huge archives holding dossiers about millions of people.As it became clear that East Germany's government would fall, and that its long-suffering citizens would demand to know who had been spying on them over the years, Stasi officers began to destroy the most incriminating documents. But there were so many files -- a 2008 Wired article about them says they occupied 100 miles of shelving -- that the shredding machines they used started to burn out. Eventually, Stasi agents were reduced to tearing pages by hand -- some 45 million of them, ripping them into around 600 million scraps of paper.After thousands of bags holding the torn sheets were recovered, a team working for the Stasi records agency, the body responsible for handling the mountain of paper left behind by the secret police, began assembling the pages manually. It was hoped that the re-assembled documents would shed further light on the Stasi and its deeper secrets. But it was calculated that it would take 700 years to deal with all the scraps of paper by hand. A computerized approach was devised by the Fraunhofer Institute, best-known for devising the MP3 format, and implemented following a pilot project. After some initial successes, the program has run into problems, as the Guardian reports:

A so-called ePuzzler, working with an algorithm developed by the Fraunhofer Institute and costing about €8m of [German] federal funds, has managed to digitally reassemble about 91,000 pages since 2013. However, it has recently run into trouble.For the last two years, the Stasi records agency has been waiting for engineers to develop more advanced hardware that can scan in smaller snippets, some of which are only the size of a fingernail.The ePuzzler works by matching up types of paper stock, typewriter fonts, or the outline of the torn-up page. It has struggled with hand-written files that were folded before being torn, leaving several snippets with near-identical outlines.
While the hardware engineers try to come up with a suitable scanner that can handle these tiny fragments, a small team continues to match up the more crudely ripped pages manually. Inevitably, some people will be thinking: "If only the Stasi had used blockchain, all these problems could have been avoided..."Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and +glynmoody on Google+

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:02am on 09-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Dennis Prager Seeks Injunction To Keep YouTube From Administering Its Own Site While YouTube Seeks Dismissal

Furnished content.


Late last year, we brought to you the story of Dennis Prager, noted conservative commentator, suing YouTube, noted place where you can watch videos, because the site had put some of his videos into restricted status to keep them from the eyes of younger users. The case is still ongoing and is still strange for many reasons, including Prager asserting his lawsuit on First Amendment grounds, his insisting that YouTube is a public forum and not a private company, and his belief that the Section 230 protections that protect YouTube from every last bit of this somehow don't apply.But now he is upping the ante, requesting the court grant him a preliminary injunction against YouTube to keep it from operating its filters on its own site when it comes to his video content.

Presenting U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh with a free speech issue of "profound importance," Prager on Friday even nodded in court to the thoughts of net neutrality supporters."Among others, legal scholars Professors Jeffrey Rosen and Timothy Wu warn that private corporations like Defendants 'have more power over free speech and privacy than any president, king, or Supreme Court justice,'" states a court brief. "Because the First Amendment is 'centered on the problem of wrongful discrimination in communications' these scholars point out that 'anyone who wants to understand free speech in the twenty-first century needs to know how the concept has expanded over time' to include the vast and concentrated power over speech wielded by purportedly private internet intermediaries. And, with the recent curtailment of net neutrality by the FCC, the unprecedented concentration of power over speech by private intermediaries will necessarily be 'followed by an effort to crush ... political opponents and favor ... political supporters.'”
Let's just start out by noting that the nod to the repeal of net neutrality feels rather odd coming from someone who does't support net neutrality to begin with. On top of that, the complaint that YouTube has built a great platform for speech that many, many people enjoy using does not somehow put it under the scope of the First Amendment. To get there, Prager's legal team continues to suggest that YouTube is a public forum rather than a private entity, relying mostly on YouTube's own statements about being a forum for speech to do so. This will almost certainly not work, however, as a statement like that doesn't magically strip a private entity of its rights and transform it into a public forum. Worth noting too is that for all the talk of "censoring" in Prager's complaints, his videos are still on the site for anyone wishing to see them. They are just differently searchable having been flagged as restricted. Given that this all comes down to subjective filtering by a private entity, and given that Prager's restricted videos tackle subjects such as rape and abortion, it's hard to see how his claim that this is all the work of a liberal conspiracy to shut down his conservative speech is going to survive.Google, not surprisingly, has likewise moved to have all of this thrown out on its own First Amendment basis.
Just as Prager was filing a bid for an injunction, YouTube's parent was moving to dismiss the case that alleges that Prager's videos are on lockdown while liberals like Bill Maher and Lady Gaga are allowed to speak freely on YouTube without being restricted in kind.According to Google, "restricted mode" merely means that the video has been determined to contain "potentially mature" content that may not be suitable for all audiences. "Decisions about which videos fall into that category are often complicated and may involve difficult, subjective judgment calls," write Google's lawyers, adding that none of the videos are removed from YouTube, and all of them can be viewed by users who want to find them.Google argues that Prager's claims are barred by Section 230 of the Communications Act as well as the First Amendment.
While the Section 230 argument is more than enough to make this lawsuit fit for the dismissal pile, note that what Prager actually wants is to strip YouTube of its own First Amendment rights by asserting his, all while he continues to enjoy YouTube's product,whcih is hosting his videos and which, again, are still on the site. This sort of pretzeling of one of the key laws governing our country would be sad from anyone, but Prager's own noted interest in protecting the First Amendment makes this all the more eyebrow raising.I don't expect any injunction to be levied against YouTube.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:02am on 09-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



This Week In Techdirt History: December 31st - January 6th

Furnished content.


Five Years AgoThis week in 2003, we kicked off the year by witnessing things start to go seriously wrong for a little law firm by the name of Prenda. Well, that and noting how, as usual, nothing at all was entering the public domain (a situation that looked like it could be extended thanks to the supreme court). The Megaupload case was mired in the courts and some companies were getting impatient. And we saw some pretty stunning DMCA nonsense with a takedown over a barely-customized default blog login page.Ten Years AgoThis week in 2008, Hollywood was getting a taste of trade negotiation problems, the RIAA was admitting some errors in the Jammie Thomas trial (while flubbing an opportunity for some not-awful PR), and RealNetworks (which was still around) was shutting down competitors. We couldn't help think the entertainment industry needed to learn from the folks making a living by selling public domain content on eBay.Fifteen Years AgoThis week in 2003 (and the last few days of 2002), the internet was changing and growing: it appeared that criminals had really figured out to use it, and there was a debate over dropping the capital "I" at the beginning, and of course some time to mourn the death of the payphone. We saw the DMCA abused to take down an entire web host over one claim of infringement, and record labels try to claim that even 95 years is too short for copyright, while one author was trying to challenge the unusual copyright on Peter Pan, and the tech industry was gearing up to fight back against DRM. Also, we celebrated the 20th birthday of TCP/IP.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 07-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



New York State Appellate Court Says Cell Site Location Records Have No Expectation Of Privacy

Furnished content.


The Supreme Court will deliver its ruling on the issue of cell site location info later this year, possibly changing the contours of the Third Party Doctrine for the first time since its erection out of thin air more than four decades ago. Until then, a patchwork of decisions has been handed down by state courts, some finding state law provides more protection for cell phone users than the US Constitution. At the federal level, however, years of precedent has resulted in a mostly-unified front by appellate courts. According to their decisions, cell site location info is a third-party record, undeserving of Fourth Amendment protections.One of New York State's appellate courts has sided with the federal level. According to its recent decision, there are no privacy expectations in CSLI collected and stored by cell phone providers.

[W]e conclude that the acquisition of that information was not a search requiring a warrant under either the federal or state constitution. As the People point out, this case involves only historical cell site location information, contained in the business records of defendant's service provider, which placed his phone within a certain cell site "sector" at the time he used the phone to make calls, send text messages, or receive calls or messages.Under these circumstances, we conclude that the acquisition of the cell site location information was not a search under the Fourth Amendment to the federal constitution because defendant's use of the phone constituted a voluntary disclosure of his general location to his service provider, and a person does not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in information voluntarily disclosed to third parties…
The court goes on to declare that even if it had felt like suppressing the evidence and extending privacy protections to CSLI, it wouldn't have helped the defendant.
As a final matter, we agree with the People that any error in the court's refusal to suppress defendant's cell site location information is harmless. The evidence of defendant's identity as a participant in the crime is overwhelming, and there is no reasonable possibility that the verdict would have been different if the location information had been suppressed…
This decision will stand even if the Supreme Court upends 40+ years of Third Party Doctrine rulings. Decisions like these are rarely retroactively applied. Even if Carpenter wins his Supreme Court case, it's likely the lower court will allow the evidence to remain in play, pointing out officers were reasonable to rely on precedential decisions finding no Fourth Amendment protections for third party records. The same goes for the defendant here. Post-decision alterations to the contours of the Constitution rarely help those whose rights have been determined to be violated after the fact.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 06-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



For Cops Handing Out Bogus Pedestrian Tickets, Ignorance Of The Law Is The Most Profitable Excuse

Furnished content.


Ignorance of the law is no excuse… unless you're a police officer. Then it's a magical world of immunity and good faith exceptions! But it gets even better. In Florida, ignorance of the law is highly-profitable.

On its face, Florida’s pedestrian statute 316.130(11) seems straightforward enough: fail to cross a street in a crosswalk where required, and you are liable for a ticket ranging from $51 to $77. The authorities across the state issue hundreds of the tickets every year with the public claim that they were trying to cut down Florida’s outsize number of pedestrian deaths.
Good for them. Whatever the government can do to cut down on deaths is probably good, considering the average Floridian's propensity for harming themselves and others in extremely creative ways. The problem is it's unclear how much safer Florida residents are going to be when they're being busted for violations they didn't commit. ProPublica looked at the data and found that a vast majority of pedestrian tickets aren't backed by the law.
In Broward County, for instance, around 70 percent of the more than 3,300 crosswalk tickets issued in those years were given in error, according to the Times-Union/ProPublica examination. In Hillsborough County, where more than 500 crosswalk tickets were given, the percentage of bad tickets was around 80 percent; in Orange County, around 56 percent of the almost 650 tickets were given erroneously.
The letter of the law -- which we are reminded is what really counts when the government enforces it -- says no one is allowed to cross in the middle of street between two adjacent intersections with traffic lights. This is supposed to route people to intersections with crosswalks controlled by signals, rather than playing in traffic or taking their chances at less-controlled intersections. This isn't how the law is being enforced. Police are ticketing people crossing between unprotected intersections as well. That doesn't really make people that much safer.
[E]xamination shows that officers routinely write tickets for people crossing the street in places that are not in between intersections with traffic lights. In short, people are being punished for failing to avail themselves of safety features that aren’t readily accessible.
The official reaction to ProPublica's report has been worse than a shrug. It's been genuine indifference to the problems it causes people ticketed for non-violations of the law. Most law enforcement agencies said nothing more than recipients were welcome to challenge the bogus tickets in court. But people always could, so it's not like the agencies are making some sort of concession, much less offering apologies or promises to improve. The "fight it in court" proposal is a non-starter, since it's likely wages lost due to a day in court will far outweigh the face value of the ticket they never should have received. The potential savings of $55-77 just isn't worth it for most people, so the government will continue to collect on bogus tickets simply because it's hit a sweet spot in pricing.Then there's the reaction of this agency, which openly admits pedestrian stops aren't about pedestrian safety or even actual violations of the law.
In Jacksonville, the sheriff’s office said it also used pedestrian tickets as a way to stop and question people suspected of criminal activity. The tickets, the officials said, gave officers probable cause to do so.
Except that an un-violated law isn't really "probable cause." Unfortunately, courts are often willing to grant officers the benefit of a doubt when it comes to the wording of the laws they enforce. They won't extend this courtesy to citizens, but officers stand a fair chance of keeping evidence in play even if the evidence was derived from a bullshit pedestrian stop. Given that reality, there's zero incentive for law enforcement agencies to improve officers' knowledge of the laws they're enforcing. In fact, the steady drip of $55-77 fees is the only incentive in play, and it's skewed completely towards issuing as many tickets as possible for perceived violations.And that brings us to another troubling finding: it appears pedestrian tickets are just another way for police officers to (further) hassle certain citizens.
In Hillsborough, blacks make up 18 percent of the population, but received 43 percent of the bad tickets, according to our data analysis. In Orange County, where 23 percent of the population is black, blacks were issued 40 percent of the bad tickets. In Miami-Dade, black residents are 16 percent of the population, but received 29 percent of the flawed tickets. And in Broward, 61 percent of the bad tickets went to blacks, who make up just 30 percent of population.
Pressure is going to have to come from above if anything is going to change. None of the law enforcement agencies offering comments or statements made any pledge to actually start enforcing the law as written. One stated pedestrian tickets had almost nothing to do with pedestrian traffic violations. And one agency disagreed with the findings, but refused to state why it refused to believe ticket stats it had generated itself.This is the attitude of law enforcement agencies when confronted with their ignorance of the law. They simply do not care. Keep that in mind the next time someone says something about most cops being good people, etc. Those at the top -- or at least those given the power to speak for law enforcement agencies -- are not good people. If they're leading by example, their departments are rotten to the core.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 06-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Anurag Harsh Joins IPsoft; Aprimo Adds Mark Fera; Matt Knust Joins Aki Technologies

Furnished content.


IPsoft Appoints Digital Management Visionary, Anurag Harsh, as Chief Marketing Officer IPsoft, the leader in artificial intelligence, cognitive and autonomic solutions, today announced the appointment of Anurag Harsh (pictured left), a well-known business leader in the technology industry, as Chief Marketing Officer (CMO). As CMO, Harsh will lead the company's global marketing efforts across 16 […]The post Anurag Harsh Joins IPsoft; Aprimo Adds Mark Fera; Matt Knust Joins Aki Technologies appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 05-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



It Begins: Some Comic Conventions Refusing To Fold After San Diego Comic-Con Gets Its Trademark Win

Furnished content.


After following the saga of what seemed like a truly misguided lawsuit brought by the San Diego Comic-Con against the company putting on the Salt Lake ComiCon, the whole thing culminated in the SDCC getting a win in the courtroom. One of the reasons this verdict threw many, including this writer, for a loop is that the defendant in the case made the argument that the SDCC had allowed the term "comic con" to become generic, an argument buttressed by the reality of there being roughly a zillion comic conventions using the term across America. Despite the SLCC's public discussions about appealing the decision and the fact that proceedings are already underway to cancel the SDCC's trademark entirely, much of the media speculation centered around what those zillion other conventions would do in reaction to the verdict.It was a question that seemingly made sense, but the actual reaction by at least some conventions should have been plainly predictable. And, indeed, now there are some conventions willing to come out and publicly say they aren't going to change a damned thing based on this one verdict.

Yakima’s Central City Comic Con will hold off on a name change after one of the nation’s largest comic conventions won a trademark lawsuit. Yakima’s comic convention started in 2015, and is one of more than 100 conventions that uses “Comic Con” in their names.“I don’t know how you can trademark two words that are common,” said Jamie Burns, Central City Comic Con events coordinator.She said Yakima’s convention organizers are taking a wait-and-see attitude, watching to see whether the Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle or Portland’s Rose City Comic Con change their names in response.
Rose City, of course, wouldn't need to change its name as it somewhat infamously and more conveniently decided to partner with the San Diego Comic-Con in the middle of the whole trademark trial, but the larger point remains. The war was not the trademark trial. That was merely the opening battle. To win this war, that the SDCC decided to start for no conceivable reason, it will need to pepper the country with lawsuits against a hundred or so comic conventions, hopefully winning more than it loses and hopefully getting more than $20k a pop, which is what it earned from the three-year campaign against SLCC. All the while, mind you, it must also hope its "comic-con" trademark isn't suddenly cancelled out from underneath it by a USPTO that might finally realize the term is both generic and descriptive.That's quite a hill to climb and must look more like Waterloo than Normandy.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 05-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Could It Be? Congress Actually Wants To Do The Right Thing On Electronic Voting!

Furnished content.


One of the topics we've talked about longer than any other topic on Techdirt is the problems with basically all electronic voting systems out there. Remember the good old days of Diebold, the well known voting machine maker? We wrote dozens of stories about its insecure machines starting back in 2003 and continued to write about the problems of electronic voting machines for years and years and years. We've gone through four Presidential elections since then and lots and lots of other elections -- and while the security on e-voting machines has improved, it hasn't improved that much and still is subject to all sorts of risks and questions. And those questions only serve to make people question the legitimacy of election results.And, for all those years, it appeared that basically no one in Congress seemed to have any interest in actually doing anything. Until now. A new bipartisan bill has been introduced, called the Secure Elections Act, that would actually target insecure e-voting machines. The ideas in the bill are not revolutionary -- they're just what almost all computer security professionals have been calling for since we first started writing about e-voting machines all those many years ago, namely:

  1. Strongly encourage states to get rid of paperless e-voting machines so that there is a verifiable paper trail that can be checked to make sure the electronic votes were counted accurately.
  2. Do post-election audits of the machines to make sure that the machines accurately counted votes (i.e., not just in recount situations).
There's more in there as well, including a lot about information sharing on possible cybersecurity threats, which could be potentially quite useful, since elections are not run in any centralized way, but with locals (who often don't have much in the way of computer security knowledge) handling the details. This bill could help standardize some pretty key security practices that would make sure that the machines are safer and that the votes are more credible.While some have raised concerns about the costs of getting rid of the older e-voting machines, the bill also allows for a grant-making process to help election agencies make this work -- and, really, the cost of botching elections seems like a bigger deal to me. The bill doesn't force states to get rid of the old machines (which Congress probably doesn't have the authority to do...), but does certainly give plenty of incentives (i.e. $$$$) for states to do the right thing.The article (linked above) over at Ars Technica quotes a few e-voting system experts who are excited about the bill, but note that Congress should act fast if it wants states to actually follow through by the next election. And, of course, Congress is not exactly known for acting quickly. Still, this is a rare instance where it seems to have (finally) figured out how to take on an important issue and to do so intelligently.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 05-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Understanding the Benefits of Instagram's New Branded Content Tool

Furnished content.


Instagram is offering new tools to bring transparency and consistency to Branded Content on Instagram. They say “the tools consist of a tag to help creators disclose when a post is the result of a partnership and insights to help businesses access the performance of their branded content campaigns. Ultimately, these tools bring transparency around […]The post Understanding the Benefits of Instagram’s New Branded Content Tool appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:02am on 04-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Consumer Frustration With OTT Experience Will Drive Important 2018 Changes, Ooyala Report Finds

Furnished content.


Rising Smartphone Penetration, Improved Connectivity, Convenience Contribute to Significantly Increased Mobile Viewing and Traditional TV Disruption. State of the Broadcast Industry 2018 Report Highlights: Mobile video consumption is an estimated 28 minutes a day, up 25% from 2016, per Zenith Media Live, linear OTT viewing will surpass traditional broadcast TV viewing by 2020, per Unisphere […]The post Consumer Frustration With OTT Experience Will Drive Important 2018 Changes, Ooyala Report Finds appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:02am on 04-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Confused Judge Says Video Game Play Has No Copyright, Because The Work Is Not 'Fixed'

Furnished content.


Just last month we joked about how confused the creator of PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, Brendan Greene, was when he claimed that there was no intellectual property for video games. That's completely wrong, and there are many, many cases to show that it's wrong. Yet... now there's a case that bizarrely, argues that video games don't get copyright (hat tip to Rick Sanders and Owen Barcala for flagging this one). The case is one that's been dragging through the courts for years, bouncing around, concerning publicity rights of former professional football players when used in EA games like Madden NFL.The latest issue involves EA asking for the latest iteration of the case to be dismissed based on another ruling concerning NCAA basketball players and their publicity rights. In that ruling from April of this year, the 9th Circuit ruled (among other things) that federal copyright preempted state-based publicity rights claims. I don't want to dig too deeply into what all of that means, but suffice it to say that under the 1976 Copyright Act, the law says that federal copyright law now trumps all state copyright or copyright-like laws, and you can't hide behind some state law when federal law should apply. Here, the court said that the state-based publicity rights claims were blocked because of that, as the only issue should be covered under federal copyright law, where they would fail.So, EA asked for this other case, filed by Michael Davis, to be dismissed, citing that ruling about preemption of publicity rights claims. But the district court judge, Richard Seeborg, has denied the motion, claiming that the ruling in that earlier case does not apply here. And he does so for... the most bizarre of reasons. Basically, he claims that large parts of video games don't get copyright... because they're interactive.

Here, game play in the Madden games is dynamic, interactive, variable, and in the hands of the consumer. Plaintiffs contend the avatars allegedly representing their likenesses even have performance characteristics representing plaintiffs' own capabilities in their time as active NFL players. While recordings of actual football games are subject to copyright notwithstanding the independent actions of players during the course of the games, such recordings satisfy the requirement of copyright that the work be fixed in a tangible medium of expression. See Dryer v. Nat'l Football League, 814 F.3d 938, 942 (8th Cir. 2016) (Although courts have recognized that the initial performance of a game is an 'athletic event' outside the subject matter of copyright . . . the Copyright Act specifically includes within its purview fixed recordings of such live performances.); 17 U.S.C. § 101. The Madden games, in contrast, allow game play that is not fixed in a tangible medium of expression, and part of plaintiffs' claims is that their identities are reflected in that game play.
So... while there's something compelling about this particular reasoning for those of us who believe copyright has been stretched way too far, I'm pretty sure this is simply... wrong. The term "fixed in a tangible medium" generally just means that the work is somehow "recorded" on some form of media. It's basically saying that ephemeral things do not get copyright, but something that is recorded on paper, film, tape or a digital hard drive or whatever is "fixed." And thus, I'm pretty sure that Judge Seeborg... is just wrong here.There is, potentially, a different argument that might be interesting if the works are created by artificial intelligence -- at which point we'd have to remember Naruto and the fact that non-humans don't get copyright. However, assuming that the actual artistic elements in the game were created by people working for EA, and are "fixed" within the game, it's difficult to see how the judge's ruling would hold up.The fact that the game is dynamic when playing doesn't change the fact that the elements of the game itself are fixed in a tangible medium. I wouldn't necessarily mind it if copyright did, in fact, determine that individual game play elements were not fixed, but I can't see how under the law today that's actually the case. I would imagine that EA will appeal this particular ruling, and lots of copyright holders may weigh in on problems with the ruling itself.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:02am on 04-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Revealed: Vietnam's 10,000-Strong Internet Monitoring Force, Tasked With Stamping Out 'Wrongful Views'

Furnished content.


Over the years, Techdirt has published quite a few stories about Vietnam's moves to stifle dissent online. On Christmas Day, Colonel General Nguyen Trong Nghia, deputy chairman of the General Political Department of the People's Army of Vietnam, revealed that the country had secretly created a massive Internet monitoring unit called "Force 47":

Nghia said the special force tasked with combating wrongful information and anti-state propaganda is called the Force 47, named after Directive No. 47 that governs its foundation.The team currently has more than 10,000 members, who are "the core fighters" in cyberspace.The three-star general underlined that members of this team are "red and competent," implying that they have both technology expertise and good political ideals in addition to personality.
As Tuoi Tre News reports, Force 47 is tasked with fighting "wrongful views". Bloomberg points out some recent moves by the Vietnamese authorities to police the online world:
Facebook this year removed 159 accounts at Vietnam's behest, while YouTube took down 4,500 videos, or 90 percent of what the government requested, according to VietnamNet news, which cited Minister of Information and Communications Truong Minh Tuan last week. The National Assembly is debating a cybersecurity bill that would require technology companies to store certain data on servers in the country.
The Wall Street Journal notes that heavy sentences have been imposed on people for using the Internet to spread some of those "wrongful views":
In recent months, the country has increased the penalties for anyone using Facebook as a platform to attack the government. In November, a young blogger was given a seven-year prison sentence for "spreading propaganda against the state," while a well-known environmentalist, Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quynh, was handed a 10-year sentence on the same charges in June.
Vietnam is hardly alone in wanting to censor online content on a massive scale. As well as the obvious example of China, Germany, too, now requires Internet companies to delete "hate speech". In addition, the UK is threatening to impose tax penalties on companies that don't take down "extremist" material. In order to meet these global demands for rapid and even pre-emptive removal of material, the leading online companies are taking on thousands of people as in-house censors. Both Google and Facebook have promised to increase their "safety" teams to 20,000 people. Against that background, it's hard for the West to condemn Vietnam's latest moves without appearing hypocritical.Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or identi.ca, and +glynmoody on Google+

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:02am on 04-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Mobivity to Leverage Blockchain Architecture to Power Cross-Brand Commerce

Furnished content.


Mobivity Holdings Corp., makers of a platform for intelligent and personalized marketing in the real world, announced plans to make blockchain distributed data architecture the backbone of its next-generation platform, MobivityMind, in 2018. MobivityMind is an AI-driven platform for commerce and customer communication in brick and mortar locations, and already fuels more than 200 Million […]The post Mobivity to Leverage Blockchain Architecture to Power Cross-Brand Commerce appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 03-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Universal ID Attribution Requires Advertisers to Import Their Offline Data

Furnished content.


Advertising has become an increasingly data-driven endeavor. When theLUMA State of Digital Media 2017was released this past summer, it came with a declaration that data is the new oil. As the number of touchpoints for reaching consumer grows, so to do the number of data signals a user generates, from purchase intent to geo-location to […]The post Universal ID Attribution Requires Advertisers to Import Their Offline Data appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 03-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Industry Preview Agenda Update

Furnished content.


Below is the latest update on the agenda for Industry Preview, which takes placeJanuary 17-18, 2018at the Grand Hyatt New York. It offers a look at what to expect in the next 12 months in marketing technology. DAY 1 WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 17 9:05 AM– The Four: What To Do -Scott Galloway, Founder, L2 9:30 AM– […]The post Industry Preview Agenda Update appeared first on Adotas.

Read more here


posted at: 12:00am on 03-Jan-2018
path: /Online_Marketing | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Hopefully For The Last Time: The US Has Zero New Works Enter The Public Domain On January 1st

Furnished content.


For many years now, during the first week of January, we write a post about Public Domain Day. That's the day -- January 1st -- where works that have reached the statutory limit reach the public domain. The Public Domain Review has an excellent collection of the Class of 2018 -- showing what works entered the public domain this week in the "life plus 50" copyright countries (Canada, New Zealand, and many countries in Asia and Africa) and the "life plus 70" copyright countries (most of the EU, Brazil, Israel, Russia, Turkey, Nigeria). For life plus 70 countries, the works of Aleister Crowley and Winston Churchill are now in the public domain. For the life plus 50 countries, Rene Magritte's paintings, the song compositions of Woody Guthrie and Otis Redding, and the writings of Jean Toomer are now in the public domain -- among many others.Except, as we note each and every year, there is no such "graduating class" in the US. Because, thanks to Disney's heavy lobbying, copyright keeps getting extended and extended and extended. If you're interested, the Center for the Study of the Public Domain at Duke University has also put together its depressing annual "What Could Have Entered the Public Domain..." list for the US, if the law had remained as it was prior to 1978, when the maximum length of copyright was 56 years. Under that setup, Josepher Heller's Catch-22, Salinger's Franny & Zooey and Robert Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange Land all would have entered the public domain. Grok that. Movies including Breakfast at Tiffany's, West Side Story, and The Guns of Navarone all would have entered the public domain as well. And, of course, a ton of music:

What 1961 music could you have used without fear of a lawsuit? If you wanted to find guitar tabs or sheet music and freely use some of the influential music from 1961, January 1 2018 would have been a rocking day for you under earlier copyright laws. Patsy Cline's classic Crazy (Willie Nelson) would be available. So would Stand By Me (Ben E. King, Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller), Runaway (Del Shannon, Max Crook), and Let's Twist Again (Kal Mann, Dave Appell). You could publicly perform or set short films to Surfin' (Brian Wilson, Mike Love) or Crying (Roy Orbison, Joe Melson), all without permission or fee. Today these musical works remain copyrighted until 2057
There's much more as well. As the Center notes in a companion post, this should be seen as highly problematic. Locking up our culture like this does no one any good -- except for a very, very, very, very small number of copyright holders on the few works that are still economically viable. Even worse, because things are locked up for so long, so much of our culture becomes orphan works -- which tend to disappear entirely, as no one can even figure out who holds the copyright in question, should they even want to make use of it. And, without the public domain, we lose access to potentially wonderful aspects of culture:
What happens when works enter the public domain? Sometimes, wonderful things. The 1947 filmIt's A Wonderful Life entered the public domain in 1975 because its copyright was not properly renewed after the first 28-year term. The film had been a flop on release, but thanks to its public domain status, it became a holiday classic. Why? Because TV networks were free to show it over and over again during the holidays, making the film immensely popular. But then copyright law reentered the picture. In 1993, the film's original copyright holder, capitalizing on a recent Supreme Court case, reasserted copyright based on its ownership of the film's musical score and the short story on which the film was based (the film itself is still in the public domain). Ironically, a film that only became a success because of its public domain status was pulled back into copyright.
The one bit of good news, hopefully on the horizon is that this should be the last year that nothing enters the public domain on Public Domain Day. While Disney and other big copyright holders have been able to continually push out the eventual entrance of new works into the public domain in the US, if nothing changes, next January we will finally have works published in 1923 enter the public domain in the US. There had been rumblings about another attempt at copyright term extension in the US a few years back, but it's been much quieter in the past few years, as I think even the lobbying powerhouses in the music and movie industries have realized this isn't a fight they could win, or one really worth having. That doesn't mean someone won't try to extend the term again, but I hope most people now recognize what a bad idea it would be.Of course, it's still ridiculous that it's only now that those works from the 1920s are entering the public domain -- while other countries are at least getting works from the 1940s or 1960s. Rather than worrying about copyright term extension, it seems we should really be exploring ways to bring copyright term back down to a much more reasonable time frame.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 03-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Police Training Firm Dumps Interrogation Technique Linked To Multiple False Confessions

Furnished content.


There may be a significant shift in police interrogation methods over the next several years. The Marshall Project reports one of the nation's largest police consulting firms is abandoning a technique that has been used by a majority of law enforcement agencies over the last six decades. It's called the Reid Technique, and it's been linked to a large number of false confessions. But after fifty-plus years of religious reliance on the technique, the consulting firm says it's no longer going to be training officers to deploy it.

Wicklander-Zulawski & Associates, a consulting group that says it has worked with a majority of U.S. police departments, said Monday it will stop training detectives in the method it has taught since 1984."Confrontation is not an effective way of getting truthful information," said Shane Sturman, the company's president and CEO. “This was a big move for us, but it's a decision that's been coming for quite some time. More and more of our law enforcement clients have asked us to remove it from their training based on all the academic research showing other interrogation styles to be much less risky."
It should have been viewed as risky from the beginning. The technique, first deployed in 1955 by a police polygraph expert named John Reid, uses nine steps to push arrestees towards confessions. It relies in part on officers making judgment calls on body language, when not encouraging them to directly lie to arrested subjects. The thing about the Reid Technique is that the first deployment in 1955, by Reid himself, secured a false confession. This resulted in a state supreme court decision tossing out the suspect's conviction on the basis the false confession had been coerced.Despite this inauspicious start, the Reid Technique has remained popular pretty much everywhere, even as confessions secured with the technique are frequently proven to be false. Given its creator was deeply fond of polygraph testing, it should come as no surprise the confessions elicited by the technique would be dubious at best.The company behind the technique claims it's still as useful as ever, if not even better given recent, unspecified "updates."
Joseph P. Buckley, the president of John E. Reid & Associates, which licenses the Reid method, said Wednesday that Wicklander-Zulawski’s announcement was “very misleading and disingenuous.” He said the technique has consistently held up in court and that it is not “confrontational” except when evidence already suggests the suspect’s guilt.
The technique relies on confrontation. It relies on officers lying about the amount of evidence they've gathered, making false claims about admissions from conspirators, or simply refusing to believe anything an arrestee says unless it agrees with their predetermined conclusions. It's a terrible system but it's been in use for years and no one's in a hurry to let it go -- especially when convictions and plea deals go on the immediate bottom line. Exonerations -- if and when they happen -- are years or decades down the road. They're someone else's problem on someone else's criminal justice ledger.The sad thing is the Reid Technique was better than the interrogation technique it replaced: violent beatings. But all it did was shift the violence from the front of the house to back of the house, replacing beatings with a large number of easily-avoidable false confessions. After decades of ruined lives, a major player in law enforcement training has decided it's no longer interested in making police officers worse. That's a huge step forward.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:00am on 03-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of 2017 At Techdirt

Furnished content.


It's that time again! In lieu of the top comments of the week, we're using this last Sunday of the year to look at the comments that racked up the most funny and insightful votes in all of 2017. We'll be highlighting the top three comments in each category, and noting where they ranked in terms of combined votes as well. (For those of you who are still interested in this week's winners, here's first and second place for insightful, and first and second place for funny.)The Most Insightful Comments Of The YearIn the last week of January, we were still reeling from the inauguration and choking on the words "President Trump" when the cheeto-in-chief hit us with another gut-punch: the disgusting and transparently racist Muslim travel ban, enacted via a sloppy and ill-fated executive order. Mike, like most decent people with any kind of platform, felt compelled to speak out, and his post about "Our Humanity" became (unsurprisingly) a busy discussion which swelled to nearly 400 comments in less than a month, and yielded both of our 2017 winners on the insightful side.In first place, it's one of our most prolific commenters and frequent winners: Roger Strong. Roger got in with the first comment, and used it well to deliver a simple but highly appropriate quote:

"The way a government treats refugees is very instructive because it shows you how they would treat the rest of us if they thought they could get away with it."- Tony Benn, British Minister of Parliament for 47 years
Not only did this rocket to the top of the insightful leaderboard, it hit second place on the list for combined insightful and funny votes as well — not because it racked up any votes for comedy, but just based on the sheer weight of its insightful votes. Yup: to probably nobody's surprise, 2017 has been a year that demanded more thoughtfulness than cleverness, with the first place funny comment getting just barely more funny votes than the third place insightful comment got in its category — and staying well behind the second place winner for insightful. That winner? Mike Masnick himself, in an early reply to a critic of the travel ban post. As a general rule, we exclude staff comments from the weekly posts, but let's make an exception for the year-end round-up and for Mike's response (which also scored quite a lot of funny votes, bringing it to first place on the combined insightful-funny list) to the accusation that we were cherry-picking and making an emotional argument, and that only children are convinced by this:
Really? Because that seemed to be the basis of the entire platform of the President of the United States.
In third place, we have our only true anonymous winner this year (though the funny side is entirely pseudonymous commenters). It came in on the last day of August, in response to our post about Jeff Sessions attempting to use Hurricane Harvey as proof that the police need to be militarized. Someone claiming relevant expertise (naturally this can't be confirmed, but they sure appear to deliver on that claim with a very convincing argument!) offered a much more practical way of looking at things:
Speaking as a first responder/first responder trainer......no.What's needed instead are exactly the kinds of resources that this administration wants to strip out of FEMA: simple, basic essentials that are relatively inexpensive and save lots of lives.Let me give you a timely example. The Cajun Navy, bless their hearts, showed up in force in Houston to do whatever they could to supplement the hopelessly-overwhelmed local, state, and federal personnel. And now some of them are dead, because they didn't have lifejackets (PFDs). A minimal PFD for this kind of work costs about $100, a good one is about $250, a bulk order for several thousand would no doubt drive the price down.No, it's not very cool and sexy and oh-gosh-look-at-the-pretend-soldiers, but it's a basic tool that keeps people alive in situations where they'd otherwise die. A quarter-million dollars worth of PFDs is chump change in comparison with the overall expense -- flying helicopters is REALLY expensive -- but it would yield value far beyond its price.That's just one example. There are a lot of others, including swiftwater rescue training -- something that almost none of the Houston city personnel have had because there's no money for it. But SWR is essential for anyone trying to perform rescues in fast water, particularly in urban areas where there are all kinds of hazards under the surface. Two days of quality SWR instruction costs $250/student and is probably enough to keep them from dying while trying to keep other people from dying.Harvey. Sandy. Katrina. This is the new normal. There will be another one. Soon. And money needs to be spent on basic gear and basic training before one of these turns into a multi-thousand person casualty event. So don't buy the cops AR-15's: buy them PFDs and SWR training. Those are FAR more likely to keep them alive.
That's it for the insightful side. Now on to...The Funniest Comments Of The YearIn first place on the funny side, we have our one and only returning winner from last year's list. In 2016, A Non-Mouse got a special category all their own with an impressive outlier comment that won third place in the insightful and funny categories separately, and first place in combined votes. As noted, things are rather different this year, with the insightful side dominating the charts: the first place winner for funny only managed to squeak into the combined leaderboard at ninth place (and is the only top-three funny winner to crack that chart at all). But the comedy didn't start with the comment — it started with the operator of allofgarden.com, an Olive Garden review website, who in July responded to a frivolous legal threat with an hilarious letter that, among other things, demanded a response "in limerick form". Naturally, the limericks began rolling into the comments — and A Non-Mouse's entry won the day by purposely misreading the "brandenforcements" email address that sent the initial threat:
There once was a man Branden Forcements
who confused some reviews for endorsements
His threats that came after
caused so much laughter
that perhaps he should seek new employments
In second place on the funny side, we have what is undoubtedly the shortest winning comment in Techdirt history (possibly tied for that spot, though certainly not beaten!) In early August, after a psychiatrist filed a ridiculous lawsuit over a completely wordless one-star review, frequent pseudonymous commenter Baron von Robber swooped in with the one-character comment that had to be made:
*
Finally, for third place we head back to May, when a hacker tried to extort money out of Netflix by threatening to leak the upcoming season of Orange Is The New Black, only to discover that he had deeply misunderstood Netflix's business model and its ability to actually compete with piracy. This rendered his threats facile and futile — something that Michael, another frequent pseudonymous commenter, elegantly summed up with a brief bit of dialogue:
Hacker: "Pay me $60,000 or I am going to advertise for you!!!!"Netflix: "..."Hacker: "That's it! I'm starting my advertising campaign!"Netflix: "...umm...ok."
And that, folks, is our round-up of the winning comments for the year! Keep up the great work everyone — I'm looking forward to seeing what comes in 2018. Happy new year!

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:02am on 01-Jan-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



January 2018
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
 
     







RSS (site)  RSS (path)

ATOM (site)  ATOM (path)

Categories
 - blog home

 - Announcements  (2)
 - Annoyances  (0)
 - Career_Advice  (1)
 - Domains  (0)
 - Downloads  (4)
 - Ecommerce  (2369)
 - Fitness  (0)
 - Home_and_Garden  (0)
     - Cooking  (0)
     - Tools  (0)
 - Humor  (1)
 - Notices  (0)
 - Observations  (1)
 - Oddities  (2)
 - Online_Marketing  (3420)
     - Affiliates  (1)
     - Merchants  (1)
 - Policy  (827)
 - Programming  (0)
     - Browsers  (1)
     - DHTML  (0)
     - Javascript  (536)
     - PHP  (0)
     - PayPal  (1)
     - Perl  (37)
          - blosxom  (0)
     - Unidata_Universe  (14)
 - Random_Advice  (1)
 - Reading  (0)
     - Books  (0)
     - Ebooks  (1)
     - Magazines  (0)
     - Online_Articles  (4)
 - Resume_or_CV  (1)
 - Reviews  (1)
 - Rhode_Island_USA  (0)
     - Providence  (1)
 - Shop  (0)
 - Sports  (0)
     - Football  (1)
          - Cowboys  (0)
          - Patriots  (0)
     - Futbol  (1)
          - The_Rest  (0)
          - USA  (1)
 - Woodworking  (1)


Archives
 -2018  June  (38)
 -2018  May  (49)
 -2018  April  (69)
 -2018  March  (79)
 -2018  February  (65)
 -2018  January  (79)
 -2017  December  (75)
 -2017  November  (59)
 -2017  October  (65)
 -2017  September  (71)
 -2017  August  (76)
 -2017  July  (66)


My Sites

 - Millennium3Publishing.com

 - SponsorWorks.net

 - ListBug.com

 - TextEx.net

 - FindAdsHere.com

 - VisitLater.com