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March 2022
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Bungie Sues Does Over 'Destiny' DMCA Takedowns, Slams YouTube's DMCA Process

Furnished content.


In our somewhat limited discussions about video game publisher Bungie, our remarks about the company certainly haven’t always been positive. And perhaps that colored my thinking when I recently wrote about a DMCA takedown blitz occurring among the Destiny community, with all kinds of uploads from fans being on the receiving end of takedowns on […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 31-Mar-2022
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Cops Are Being 'Trained' To Use Literal Witchcraft To Find Dead Bodies

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We [waves flattened palm parallel to the floor in circular motion meant to demonstrate the encompassing nature of the rest of this sentence] the People of this United States have seen some shit. This faaaaaaaaaaarrrr surpasses anything we’ve seen before. By shit, I am referring to the gobsmackingly inane, incredibly insane garbage law enforcement passes […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 31-Mar-2022
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Copyright Is Indispensable For Artists, They Say; But For All Artists, Or Just Certain Kinds?

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One of the central justifications for copyright is that it is indispensable if creativity is to be viable. Without it, we are assured, artists would starve. This ignores the fact that artists created and thrived for thousands of years before the 1710 Statute of Anne. But leaving that historical detail aside, as well as the […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 30-Mar-2022
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Wisconsin Supreme Court Sees Nothing Wrong With Cops Acquiring Evidence A Court Had Already Suppressed

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I guess we can’t have nice things. You know, little things… like adherence to the Fourth Amendment. In Wisconsin, the state’s top court says [PDF] cops don’t need to worry too much about suppressed evidence if there’s another way to acquire it. (via Courthouse News Service) Daniel Van Linn was convicted of driving under the […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 30-Mar-2022
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Policy Building Blocks, And How We Talk About The Law

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One of the fundamental difficulties in doing policy advocacy, including, and perhaps especially tech policy advocacy, is that we are not only speaking of technology, which can often seem inscrutable and scary to non-experts, but law, which itself is an intricate and often opaque system. This complicated nature of our legal system can present challenges, […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 29-Mar-2022
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Nintendo Hates You: Scans Of 'Super Mario 64' Manual Taken Down Via Copyright Claim

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I’ll give Nintendo this much: the company certainly is an absolute master at enforcing copyright in the most extreme, pettiest manner possible. I’ve already had some fun comparing Nintendo to Disney, in that the way the company is handling shutting down older game stores and making those games no longer available in most places is […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 29-Mar-2022
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Game Jam Winner Spotlight: Dreaming The Cave

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So far, in our series of posts about the winners of the fourth annual public domain game jam, Gaming Like It's 1926, we’ve looked at Best Adaptation The Wall Across The River and Best Deep Cut The Obstruction Method. Today, it’s time for the winner of the Best Remix category: Dreaming The Cave by David […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 27-Mar-2022
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More Gaming For Good: Charity Bundles, Fortnite Team Up To Raise Millions For Ukraine

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Once again, here comes the video game industry to do good in the world. Despite being the easy villain for many, including grandstanding politicians, video games and their communities can often be seen doing good for the world. A couple of weeks back, we discussed how one itch.io game bundle was offering thousands of dollars […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 26-Mar-2022
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On Elon Musk And Free Speech

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Let’s start this off by noting that I actually think that Elon Musk sometimes receives both too much criticism from some circles and too much praise from others. I think he deserves tremendous praise for taking visions that, at the time, seemed nearly impossible, and then making them real. From electric vehicles with Tesla, to […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 26-Mar-2022
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'I Can't Breathe' Man Told Officers 12 Times In 30 Seconds Before They Sentenced Him To Death For Driving Under The Influence

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“I can’t breathe.“ Those are words universally recognized as an expression of respiratory distress. Unless you’re a cop. Then they’re perceived as, at best, non-compliance. At worst, they’re perceived as active resistance. “I can’t breathe,” many people have told the officers currently choking the life out of them. In most documented cases, these people have […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 25-Mar-2022
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Owners Of 'Gran Turismo 7' Locked Out Of Single Player Game When Online DRM Servers Go Down

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When someone asks me what DRM is, my answer is very simple: it’s anti-piracy software that generally doesn’t stop pirates at all, and, instead, mostly only annoys legitimate buyers. Well, then why do software and video game companies use it at all? Couldn’t tell you. Businesses really want to annoy their own customers? Apparently, yes. […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 25-Mar-2022
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Qualified Immunity Denied To Officer Who Tased Man In The Genitals

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A Glendale (AZ) police officer (now former police officer… more on that in a bit) isn’t going to be able to walk away from a civil rights lawsuit stemming from excessive force he deployed during a routine traffic stop. An Arizona federal court says there’s enough in dispute that Officer Matt Schneider will have to […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 24-Mar-2022
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Destiny Community Plagued By Copyright Takedowns, Bungie Insists It Isn't Them

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We’ve been making the point for years that the way copyright is currently enforced in online platforms is wide open for abuse and error. Between all the collateral damage created by automated copyright bots and all of the chicanery used to silence critics or to baselessly collect revenue on the work of others, there is […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 24-Mar-2022
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Taxpayers Shell Out $900k To Cover For Cops Who Charged 64 People With Possessing 1 Oz. Of Weed

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You’ve presumably read the headline. Let’s take a look at how we got there. On Dec. 31, 2017, Nija Guider finished her waitressing shift and headed to a friend's 21st birthday party in Cartersville, Georgia. She had been at the party for less than an hour when, suddenly, the police arrived. Without a warrant or permission, […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 23-Mar-2022
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Tesla Fires Employee For Posting Critical Footage To YouTube

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It’s always difficult for me to land on an overall opinion of Elon Musk’s Tesla company. On the one hand, sure, the company has been instrumental in pushing the auto industry forward on electric vehicles. Whether Tesla will dominate that space in the future is an open question, but there can’t be too much doubt […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 23-Mar-2022
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Announcing Techdirt's March Madness: Get Your Bracket For The Most Misunderstood Legal Concept

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It’s that time of year — March Madness — when tons of people have filled out brackets and are watching college basketball. Way back in 2020 I had jokingly suggested on Twitter that we should set up a bracket for the most frequently misunderstood legal concepts, and people seemed to really like the idea. Of […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 22-Mar-2022
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And Here Comes The Backlash To Netflix Trying To Play Password Police

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Karl Bode recently wrote about Netflix’s new password sharing policy, which mostly amounts to test-running an upcharge should Netflix discover that passwords are being used “outside the home” of the subscriber. While this pilot program is only going to be run in Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru, Netflix’s announcement was completely silent on how it’s […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 22-Mar-2022
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Game Jam Winner Spotlight: The Obstruction Method

Furnished content.


Last week, to kick off our series of posts about the winners of the fourth annual public domain game jam, Gaming Like It’s 1926, we took a look at Best Adaptation winner The Wall Across The River. Today, we move on to the winner of the Best Deep Cut category: The Obstruction Method by Jason […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 20-Mar-2022
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Clearview's World Tour Continues With A $21 Million Fine From The Italian Government

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Clearview AI has been disinvited from yet another country. This unrolling of the unwelcome mat also includes a hefty exit fee. (h/t Michael Vario) The Italian privacy guarantor (GPDP) has imposed a fine of 20,000,000 on Clearview AI for implementing a biometric monitoring network in Italy without acquiring people's consent. This decision resulted from a […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 19-Mar-2022
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Ukrainian Soldier Moves To Trademark 'Russian Warship, Go Fuck Yourself Because Of Course

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Thanks to Vladimir Putin and his one-man show designed to educate the world on just what can happen when a murderous dictator decides to throw a fit, the news is chock full of Ukraine. This has included Techdirt’s pages, which really shouldn’t be that big of a surprise. Still, I will admit that I didn’t […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 19-Mar-2022
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Re-Funding The Police: Taxpayers On The Hook For Billions of Dollars Of Law Enforcement Lawsuit Settlements

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Apparently, it’s not enough that we pay their salaries and buy their uniforms, vehicles, and weapons. We’re also expected to foot the bill when law enforcement officers fuck up so badly they can’t even avail themselves of qualified immunity, a Supreme Court-created legal doctrine that has been watered down for decades, allowing all but the […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 18-Mar-2022
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Netflix Starts Cracking Down Harder On Password Sharing

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Back when Netflix was a pesky upstart trying to claw subscribers away from entrenched cable providers, the company had a pretty lax approach to users who shared streaming passwords. At one point CEO Reed Hastings went so far as to say he loved password sharing, seeing it as akin to free advertising. The idea was that as […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 18-Mar-2022
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With Truth Social Having Trouble Attracting Users, Will Trump/Nunes Realize That There's More To Managing A Social Media Site Than Grievances?

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It appears that Donald Trump’s social network, at least in its initial form, is following the pattern of many of Donald Trump’s other business ventures: lots of hype, but little in the way of an actual business. As Politico has detailed, even the MAGA world isn’t exactly rushing to make Truth Social the Trumpist paradise […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 17-Mar-2022
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Appeals Court Tosses Evidence Illegally Obtained By Opportunistic Cops Who Couldn't Take 'Nah' For An Answer

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It rarely seems obvious, but you can just walk away from (some) unwanted interactions with law enforcement. People with badges and guns often make this option seem untenable, what with their badges and guns and often profane shouting. But law enforcement officers need a certain amount of reasonable suspicion to detain people. But the less […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 17-Mar-2022
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New York Times Begins The 'Wordle' IP Purge, Gets 'Wordle Archive' Taken Down

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There are lots of reasons to have fallen in love with Wordle. The simple nature of the game. The ability to post spoiler-friendly brags for how you did on any given puzzle. The clean design. But here at Techdirt, we obviously became smitten with how Wordle’s creator, Josh Wardle, professed no interest in the ongoing […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 16-Mar-2022
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Beneficiary Of First Amendment Protections Says Fourth Amendment Shouldn't Be Respected By Cops, Courts

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The New York Post editorial team has apparently decided some rights are more important than others. The Post has the First Amendment right to publish its opinion on other rights, even when it’s clearly in the wrong. And it’s willing to do so because it has long enjoyed an unhealthy relationship with the city’s police […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 16-Mar-2022
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LAPD Police Commission Enrages Police Union By Enacting Minor Changes To Pretextual Stops

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Pretextual stops are law enforcement at its most shameless. The laws and the courts have blessed this activity, which involves cops claiming stops are justified for one reason while using the stop to go fishing for evidence or info related to a completely different criminal act. The Supreme Court curbed these stops a bit, preventing […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 15-Mar-2022
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(Corporate) Information Wants To Be Free

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Private companies have a lot of people to answer to. When you ask them, they’ll claim its either shareholders or customers that they owe their ultimate duty to. Ask them a couple of more times and they may admit they’re only accountable to their shareholders. But there’s more to it than this. The term “private” […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 15-Mar-2022
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Game Jam Winner Spotlight: The Wall Across The River

Furnished content.


This week, we announced the winners in all six categories of the fourth annual public domain game jam, Gaming Like It’s 1926. For the next few weeks, we’ll be taking a closer look at each of the winning games (in no particular order). Today, the spotlight is on the winner of the Best Adaptation category: […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 13-Mar-2022
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Devin Nunes Loses Appeal Of SLAPP Suit Against Liz Mair

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By now you surely know that former Congressman and current satirical cow censor Devin Nunes has become quite well known for his series of SLAPP suits against people who made him feel bad. It started with his lawsuit against the satirical parody cow Twitter account, but that lawsuit also included political consultant Liz Mair, who […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 12-Mar-2022
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Video Games For Good: Itch.io Releases Bundle For Ukraine, Raises Millions Of Dollars

Furnished content.


For all the posts we’ve done on the impact of video games on society, I have found myself typically either beating back the notion that gaming is a terrible thing responsible for all the world’s problems or talking about common IP conflicts. On the topic of the internet generally, well, it’s mostly the same. But […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 12-Mar-2022
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Academics, Civil Society, Internet Companies All Explain Just How Ridiculously Dangerous SHOP SAFE Is

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Last fall we had a whole series of blog posts explaining just how dangerous Rep. Jerry Nadler’s SHOP SAFE bill would be. It’s one of those bills that if you just hear what it’s about — stopping the sale of counterfeit goods online — sounds good. But only if you don’t understand how basically anything […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 11-Mar-2022
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Another Acquisition: Epic May Be Moving Beyond Just Gaming By Acquiring Bandcamp

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We’ve been talking quite a bit lately about consolidation within the video game industry. As is often the case in times of economic strife, the pandemic has led to large entities in the gaming industry gobbling up smaller entities. Microsoft acquired Zenimax. Then Microsoft acquired Activision Blizzard King for a wild amount of money. Soon […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 11-Mar-2022
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Russia Is Considering 'Legalizing' Software Piracy Due To The World Punishing It Over Ukraine Aggression

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A decade ago, we discussed how the pressure brought against Russia to more greatly enforce copyright laws was a mistake. A mistake mostly because of how Russia would choose to enforce those laws, namely by applying them only against critics of the state or undesirables, whether actual infringement was occurring or not. While Russia’s misuse […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 10-Mar-2022
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Court (Correctly) Says Germany's Social Media Censorship Law Goes Too Far

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Remember NetzDG? This is the German content moderation law that has been a complete disaster from day one. It puts all sorts of requirements on social media companies to remove undesirable content in a very short period of time. Other countries, like Turkey, have used it as inspiration to pass their own laws to censor […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 10-Mar-2022
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World's 'First NFT Vending Machine' Didn't Work And Neither Did The NFTs

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It’s difficult to overstate the amount of scammy bullshit that permeates the NFT space at the moment. On any given day my inbox is absolutely inundated with PR pitches for NFT-related products that are either pushing something that isn’t really new, don’t actually work, aren’t actually innovative if you eliminate the NFTs (the world’s first […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 09-Mar-2022
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The Video Game Blockade Against Russia Begins With Volunteer Companies

Furnished content.


When it comes to Russia’s aggressive war in Ukraine and the world’s response to it, timelines obviously get quite compressed. I’ll admit to being somewhat surprised at how much relative unity there has been in the West’s response to Putin’s attempt to destroy European peace with its invasion of a neighboring country. This isn’t to […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 09-Mar-2022
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Good News: Bill To Study The Impact Of FOSTA Reintroduced

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Back in 2019, Reps. Ro Khanna and Barbara Lee along with Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ron Wyden introduced a bill to study the actual impact of FOSTA on sex workers. While that bill unfortunately went nowhere, the same group is now back and have reintroduced the SAFE SEX Workers Study Act (SSWSA). This is an […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 08-Mar-2022
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Another Step Towards The Russian Splinternet

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Over the last few weeks, as Russia invaded Ukraine, you’ve probably heard some version of the story about how carefully Putin prepared for economic sanctions against the country. Whether or not those preparations actually have helped protect Russia is another story, but it wasn’t just the economics part of the equation that Russia was preparing […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 08-Mar-2022
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Some Known Issues With The New Techdirt

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Well, that’s a wrap on our first week with Techdirt running on WordPress. Overall things have been working pretty well, but as expected there have also been several issues and some things that need improvement. We’ve been tracking user feedback in the comments and via the contact form, and I want to assure everyone that […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 07-Mar-2022
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This Week In Techdirt History: February 27th - March 5th

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Five Years Ago This week in 2017, new FCC boss Ajit Pai was getting down to work: moving to kill broadband privacy protections, falsely claiming benefits from his attacks on net neutrality (which he also called a mistake), and scaling back rules that forced ISPs to be clear about usage caps and hidden fees. On […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 06-Mar-2022
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Russia's Social Media Propaganda Campaign Is Backfiring, So It's Banning Facebook In Russia

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Over the last five to six years, The NarrativeTM has been that Russia has built up such powerful propaganda and social media disinformation peddlers that it could effectively drive its own narrative and convince entire populations to go along with its preferred version of reality (i.e., not reality). There have always been reasons to question […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 05-Mar-2022
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Ukraine Calls For Video Game Blockade Against Russia To Motivate Its Citizenry

Furnished content.


I’ve banged on for quite a while about how video games have long not gotten the recognition they deserve as a major and growing part of the cultural landscape throughout the world. While there is no doubt that there has been a shift in this as time has gone on, it’s still the case that […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 05-Mar-2022
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Unfortunate, But Not Surprising: Court Blocks Maryland's Library eBook Law

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Back in December, we wrote about how the major book publishers had teamed up to sue the state of Maryland over a fairly tame law concerning ebooks and libraries. As we’ve been detailing, over the last few years, the big book publishers have been working overtime to abuse copyright law to destroy libraries. Whereas, historically, […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 04-Mar-2022
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What MLB May Need To Do After It Stops Its Player Lockout Bullshit

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If you’re not a sports fan, or not an American, you may not be aware that there is currently an owner’s lockout occurring in Major League Baseball. We’ve talked a bit in the past about some of the bullshit MLB is pulling with all of this, namely its decision to strip out all references to […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 04-Mar-2022
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Cities Are Turning To Automation To Enforce Vehicle Noise Ordinances

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Automated enforcement may ease the burden on law enforcement agencies and direct more officers towards serious crime, but nearly every device given that job has tended to perform poorly. Red light and speed enforcement cameras often get things wrong while simultaneously depriving falsely accused drivers of the opportunity to confront their accusers. And, because cities […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 03-Mar-2022
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DirecTV, Roku Give RT The Boot

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DirecTV has announced that the company will be removing Russian government-backed news outlet RT from the company’s satellite TV lineup in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. According to a company statement, DirecTV was already contemplating ditching RT and other channels from the company’s lineup in a bid to lower costs, and simply […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 03-Mar-2022
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More Video Game Footage Substituting For War Footage As Russia Invades Ukraine

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It’s nothing new that video games are getting realistic enough at this point that some out there will use it and pass that footage off as things happening in real life. A rather innocuous example of this would be a real estate developer using images from a city-building game in a brochure, for instance. On […]

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posted at: 12:01am on 02-Mar-2022
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The State Of The World, And Why We Need Section 230

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I have heard rumors from multiple quarters that President Biden might mention Section 230 in tonight’s State of the Union speech, and I cannot think of any reason he should, unless it is to venerate it. Because it is only through the existence of Section 230 that we, or the world, stand a chance against […]

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posted at: 12:01am on 02-Mar-2022
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Seventh Circuit: No Immunity For Chicago Cop Who Lied To A Judge Before Accidentally Raiding The Right Apartment

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There’s a good reason we have strict standards for warrant requests — ones that requires plenty of probable cause and factual statements. Because if we didn’t have that, people would literally die when officers raid the wrong house or point guns at the wrong person. Innocent people would end up in jail and people’s rights […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 01-Mar-2022
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Another Victim Of The GDPR & CCPA: Security Researchers No Longer Can Get Anonymous Access To Internet Attack Data

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We’ve pointed out before that we’re generally bad at regulating privacy because we don’t understand privacy. All of the regulations around privacy seem to treat a set of information as “special” that must be locked up and hidden. However, as we’ve pointed out over and over again, privacy is actually a set of trade-offs, and […]

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posted at: 12:00am on 01-Mar-2022
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