How to kill a website with one email

From the Register

A Dutch advocacy group, Bits of Freedom, signed up with 10 ISPs and used the websites to host text by an author who died in 1887. They then sent a ‘complaint’ demanding via a Hotmail account that ‘copyright infringing’ content be pulled by the 10 ISPs.

Seven of the ten providers (ISPs Tiscali, Wanadoo, Demon Internet and Planet Internet; hosting firms Yourhosting, iFast and Active24) pulled the content without either scrutinising the ‘offending’ website or demonstrating a basic understanding of copyright law.

Bits of Freedom said its test show a worrying willingness to comply with complaints without question. “It only takes a Hotmail account to bring a website down and freedom of speech stands no chance against Texan-style private ISP justice,” it concludes.

And with everything we say online being scrutinised via Echelon, everyone’s just a bit too jumpy. Doesn’t anyone have a healthy disrespect for authority anymore??

Israel ‘worried over world image’

From BBC NEWS
“A secret Israeli report warns Israel’s world image could fall as low as South Africa’s during the apartheid era in the next decade, local media report.”

Ha! I can’t even begin to explain how funny this is.

UK ID cards to be issued with first biometric passports

From the Register
“What’s left of the ‘voluntary’ figleaf to the UK’s ID scheme will erode in the next few months, when Home Secretary David Blunkett introduces legislation that will allow implementation of the scheme and include provision for a rolling programme to issue ID cards along with passport renewals.”

I’m a bit disgusted about this. It’s a useless technology which will serve merely as an expenditure device in order to garner more income for the government by selling information, all at the cost of our privacy and our tax money. But it’s all in the name of security, so that’s alright. Wankers.

Learning extra languages ‘boosts brain’

From BBC NEWS
“Learning a second language ‘boosts’ brain-power, scientists believe.
They found learning other languages altered grey matter – the area of the brain which processes information – in the same way exercise builds muscles.”

This is something so simple and yet so revelatory. I believe it must be a similar thing which leads to creative artists branching into different genres.

UK ID cards to be issued with first biometric passports

From the Register

“What’s left of the ‘voluntary’ figleaf to the UK’s ID scheme will erode in the next few months, when Home Secretary David Blunkett introduces legislation that will allow implementation of the scheme and include provision for a rolling programme to issue ID cards along with passport renewals.”

I’m a bit disgusted about this. It’s a useless technology which will serve merely as an expenditure device in order to garner more income for the government by selling information, all at the cost of our privacy and our tax money. But it’s all in the name of security, so that’s alright. Wankers.

Learning extra languages ‘boosts brain’

From BBC NEWS

“Learning a second language ‘boosts’ brain-power, scientists believe.

They found learning other languages altered grey matter – the area of the brain which processes information – in the same way exercise builds muscles.”

This is something so simple and yet so revelatory. I believe it must be a similar thing which leads to creative artists branching into different genres.