This week’s links seem to be about copyright and censorship, and it’s started me wondering whether there’s much of a difference: one stops speech for political reasons, the other for profit … but they both seem to be accomplishing much the same thing, and both seem to violate people’s rights in much the same manner. As always: if you’ve a particular area related to any of those I’m already following, do let me know and I’ll see about including some links for your particular area of interest.


  1. Letter to Twitter Executive Chairman Jack Dorsey urging him not to cooperate with censors    22 January 2012, 7:05 am
  2. Dutch Courts Join Pirate Bay Blocking Bandwagon    25 January 2012, 11:35 am
  3. A tale of new censors    26 January 2012, 12:53 pm
  4. Twitter to enable country-specific censorship    27 January 2012, 4:04 am
  5. What Does Twitter’s Country-by-Country Takedown System Mean for Freedom of Expression?    27 January 2012, 12:09 pm
  6. Twitter Censorship Move Sparks Backlash: Is It Justified?    27 January 2012, 3:01 pm
  7. Twitter users urge boycott over censorship    28 January 2012, 5:07 am
  8. Twitter Switches on the Censors    28 January 2012, 5:57 am
  9. US plummets on World Press Freedom Index, from 27th to 47th    29 January 2012, 2:18 am
  10. Twitter isn’t Censoring You. Your Government is.    29 January 2012, 2:33 am

Link 3 is particularly disturbing. The twitter Censorship – meh, don’t care that much, really, as it seems that they’re being above-board about it all, and attempting to respond to legislation appropriate to every country within which they operate. OK, yes, fine, they shouldn’t censor at all … but they already do so in the US, in response to various law-enforcement demands. Is it right? Well … no, I don’t think so. But link 3 goes into how Vodaphone-UK, T-Mobile-UK, T-Mobile-US, and O2-UK are actively censoring content, some of which (TOR) is used by people around the world to combat censorship. Why are UK and US companies working against free speech in this way? And by what right do they limit the content available to their customers? Oh, well, license agreements. Somebody really ought to examine the legality of such things.

Cloud Computing:

  1. Feds Shutter Megaupload, Arrest Executives    19 January 2012, 12:14 pm
  2. US shuts down popular file-sharing website    20 January 2012, 5:46 am
  3. Megaupload Arrests Trigger Retaliation Hacks    20 January 2012, 9:06 am
  4. Department of Justice Misdirection on Cloud Computing and Privacy    20 January 2012, 5:18 pm
  5. blocked U.S. visitors as a response to the MegaUpload takedown    22 January 2012, 5:24 am
  6. What happens to your files when a cloud service dies?    22 January 2012, 5:54 am
  7. Feds, Please Return My Personal Files Stored at MegaUpload    22 January 2012, 5:54 am
  8. Founder of file-sharing site denies piracy    22 January 2012, 11:13 pm
  9. Cyberlocker Ecosystem Shocked As Big Players Take Drastic Action    23 January 2012, 6:02 am
  10. Joint Complaint of the Affected by the Closure of MegaUpload    23 January 2012, 6:02 am
  11. Megaupload could spawn caselaw more destructive than SOPA    23 January 2012, 6:02 am
  12. MegaUpload founder denied bail in New Zealand    24 January 2012, 9:10 pm
  13. Why was MegaUpload really shut down?    26 January 2012, 12:30 pm
  14. Megaupload Takedown Questioned By Users, Lawyers    26 January 2012, 12:31 pm
  15. FileSonic disables all filesharing    26 January 2012, 1:05 pm
  16. Megaupload was our collective library Of Alexandria    29 January 2012, 2:21 am
  17. Megaupload: A Lot Less Guilty Than You Think    30 January 2012, 11:57 am

Cloud Computing, this week, is all about MegaUpload and the ripples throughout the Cloud Storage world its shutdown has created. My favorite links, here, are links 4 (in which the US DOJ basically lies about the law) and link 13 (which may have just hit the nail on the head). Cloud Computing may have to find some domain registrars who are outside of US jurisdiction, I think, and should probably be founded and owned by non-US citizens, if they want to have any hope of maintaining their clients.

Copyright / Patent:

  1. The Internet at its Best    18 January 2012, 10:36 am
  2. The Internet Spoke and, Finally, Congress Listened!    20 January 2012, 9:40 am
  3. Apple’s mind-bogglingly greedy and evil license agreement    22 January 2012, 5:24 am
  4. Copyright fight contributes to media industry decline    22 January 2012, 5:25 am
  5. Australia: US Copyright Colony or Just a Good Friend?    22 January 2012, 5:27 am
  6. The Copyright Lobby Absolutely Loves Child Pornography    22 January 2012, 8:39 am
  7. Dear Rupert Murdoch: Let’s Talk Piracy & “The Simpsons”    23 January 2012, 1:20 am
  8. Supreme Court Gets It Wrong in Golan v. Holder, Public Domain Mourns    23 January 2012, 11:39 am
  9. Photographers face copyright threat after shock ruling    25 January 2012, 2:16 am
  10. The Freedom to Be Free: Battle Lines Drawn in Global Copyright Confrontation    25 January 2012, 3:00 am
  11. How Apple is sabotaging an open standard for digital books    26 January 2012, 12:52 am
  12. Similar image found to breach copyright in the UK    26 January 2012, 5:12 am
  13. Copyright Industry Calls For Broad Search Engine Censorship    29 January 2012, 2:22 am
  14. Professional Photographer’s Association as out of touch as MPAA and RIAA    29 January 2012, 2:29 am
  15. Twitter uncloaks a year’s worth of DMCA takedown notices, 4,410 in all    29 January 2012, 2:29 am
  16. How a 1979 Supreme Court hammered book publishing    30 January 2012, 11:58 am

Several of these could have gone into the SOPA / PIPA / ACTA section, but I must draw your attention to links 9 and 12, which are truly about copyright, and truly frightening. Truly, truly frightening to anybody who takes pictures.


  1. How often do scientists fabricate data?    22 January 2012, 1:49 pm
  2. The Cost of Knowledge: Researchers taking a stand against Elsevier.    23 January 2012, 11:30 am
  3. Locked in the Ivory Tower: Why JSTOR Imprisons Academic Research    26 January 2012, 6:17 am
  4. Making universities obsolete    26 January 2012, 12:30 pm
  5. Udacity and the future of online universities    26 January 2012, 12:57 pm
  6. Pentagon drafts today’s kids to build tomorrow’s aerial killers    26 January 2012, 1:06 pm
  7. Scientific Community to Elsevier: Drop Dead    29 January 2012, 2:06 am

It seems that (finally!) academics and scientists are beginning to wonder why their research should be locked away by the likes of JStor (link 3) and Elsevier (links 2 and 7). Links 4 and 5 question the existence of universities and their purpose today. Link 6 is … well, there, I guess, because the current educational model used by a large part of the world was invented by Henry Ford, to provide labor for assembly lines – why shouldn’t the Pentagon want to train the next generation of labor, hmm?


  1. Anonymous Tricks Bystanders Into Attacking Justice Department    20 January 2012, 12:41 pm
  2. ACLU & EFF to Appeal Secrecy Ruling in Twitter/WikiLeaks Case    20 January 2012, 1:58 pm
  3. Crowd-sourced political lobby    22 January 2012, 5:25 am
  4. Anonymous Goes After World Governments in Wake of Anti-SOPA Protests    25 January 2012, 3:17 pm
  5. WikiLeaks Cable: NASDAQ Folded to Chinese Regime’s Pressure    26 January 2012, 12:49 am
  6. Eight Reasons Anonymous Should Welcome Glenn Beck With Open Arms    26 January 2012, 2:12 pm
  7. Anonymous exposes “identities of Officers of the Oakland Police”    30 January 2012, 11:58 am

I really didn’t know what to make of link 6. I mean, anybody who’s even briefly been exposed to Glenn Beck knows the man’s in need of some serious psychopharmaceutical help … but now he wants to join Anonymous? Really? Umm … OK. Sure. Link 5 is a bit more serious and interesting, from a political standpoint.


  1. When the Holocaust Was Planned: Germany Marks Anniversary of Wannsee Conference    20 January 2012, 8:53 am


  1. Death sentence for Iranian web programmer    19 January 2012, 12:09 pm
  2. Programmer Sentenced To Death In Iran For Upload Software    22 January 2012, 5:43 am
  3. Analysis: Judging the European Court of Human Rights    30 January 2012, 4:38 am

Links 1 and 2 are the same story, with different details about the case. Long story short: a guy makes some uploading software, it gets stolen & used by pornographers, and he gets sentenced to death. Link 3 is in there for a bit of balance: the UK has had 4 out of 6 cases ruled against the UK judicial system in the EU Court of Human Rights. So, don’t go thinkin’ it’s all happy times, I guess.

Medical Technology:

  1. Robots for Brain Surgery? EU Project Shows How    22 January 2012, 4:59 am
  2. Stems Cells Improve Vision in Two Blind Patients    24 January 2012, 8:01 am
  3. Profit vs. Principle: The Neurobiology of Integrity    24 January 2012, 3:30 am
  4. Human Nature and the Neurobiology of Conflict    26 January 2012, 3:31 am

Links 3 and 4 are somewhat related (they refer to one another, and there is some overlap). Overall, though, they’re quite interesting, detailing a possible connection between certain personality traits / beliefs and neurobiology. Of course, they don’t indicate causation, merely correlation.


  1. Bureau Recommends: Mapping the products of modern-day slavery    20 January 2012, 5:44 am
  2. River of blood exposed by Dallas Drone    24 January 2012, 7:34 am
  3. Working Overtime Doubles the Risk of Depression    26 January 2012, 12:08 pm
  4. Want to feel like an Apple factory boss? Strategy game lets you run a sweatshop    29 January 2012, 2:48 am
  5. The Power of Introverts: A Manifesto for Quiet Brilliance    30 January 2012, 1:04 am
  6. Four Difficult Questions Regarding Bullying and Youth Suicide    30 January 2012, 5:14 am

Link 1 … is not fun, but it’s worth knowing where you get your products, I guess. Link 2 was pulled on the day it was put out, and I’m sorry that I didn’t save the content of the post – it was quite an interesting post, detailing the runoff from a slaughterhouse being poured into a small river by a slaughterhouse, and how it was discovered by a drone flying overhead. It’s gone, and hasn’t come back, and I don’t know why. The rest … well, speak for themselves, I guess – but link 6 asks some really good questions about the effect of the media and efforts to help teens not to suicide.

Open Source / Open Access:

  1. Cracking Open the Scientific Process    22 January 2012, 4:58 am
  2. UK government plans to mandate free access to publicly funded research ASAP    26 January 2012, 5:14 am
  3. Under Obama, the Freedom of Information Act is Still in Shackles    26 January 2012, 6:15 pm
  4. NASA on GitHub – open.NASA    29 January 2012, 2:32 am
  5. Oxford, Harvard Scientists Lead Data-Sharing Effort    30 January 2012, 11:52 am
  6. Using Wikileaks To Figure Out What The Government ‘Redacts’    30 January 2012, 11:57 am

The Open Source / Open Access movements are continuing to move forward (see also some good links in the Education section). Link 6 is rather entertaining – I don’t really know what the point is, frankly, but it’s truly funny that a Freedom of Information Request would bother to redact something which had already hit the Internet.


  1. French senate passes ‘Armenian genocide’ bill    23 January 2012, 10:21 pm
  2. France – Parliamentarians urged to refer genocide denial law to Constitutional Council    26 January 2012, 3:31 am
  3. How Swedes and Norwegians Broke the Power of the ‘1 Percent’    27 January 2012, 3:26 am


  1. Police Want ‘Drive-By’ Friskings    18 January 2012, 12:44 pm
  2. Stallman: Facebook is Mass Surveillance    23 January 2012, 1:20 am
  3. Europe to issue tough new data-protection rules soon    23 January 2012, 4:55 am
  4. Supreme Court Court Rejects Willy-Nilly GPS Tracking    23 January 2012, 7:17 am
  5. Homeland Security Wants to Spy on 4 Square Miles at Once    23 January 2012, 3:05 pm
  6. Judge Orders Defendant to Decrypt Laptop    23 January 2012, 4:33 pm
  7. Disappointing Ruling in Compelled Laptop Decryption Case    23 January 2012, 8:47 pm
  8. Why the Jones Supreme Court Ruling on GPS Tracking Is Worse Than It Sounds    24 January 2012, 12:32 am
  9. Judge: Americans can be forced to decrypt their laptops    24 January 2012, 12:36 am
  10. Google+ and Pseudonyms: A Step in the Right Direction, Not the End of the Road    24 January 2012, 3:29 pm
  11. International Privacy Day: Fighting Data Retention Mandates Around the World    24 January 2012, 11:54 pm
  12. Google to track users across its sites, whether they like it or not    25 January 2012, 2:15 am
  13. Legality of Mobile Phone Tracking Still Unclear Despite Supreme Court GPS Decision    25 January 2012, 11:24 am
  14. International Privacy Day: Threats to Personal Data and the People Who Fight Them    25 January 2012, 11:11 pm
  15. Europe Weighs Tough Law on Online Privacy    26 January 2012, 12:27 am
  16. ‘Big Brother’ concerns over Google changes    26 January 2012, 3:06 am
  17. Face-off – 4 Ways to De-personalize Google    26 January 2012, 5:12 am
  18. Hawaii may keep track of all Web sites visited    26 January 2012, 12:04 pm
  19. An open letter to Google with respect to their new privacy policy and SPYW    26 January 2012, 12:13 pm
  20. Hawaiian Data Retention Bill Would Force Internet Companies to Spy on Users’ Browsing Habits    26 January 2012, 2:19 pm
  21. The Right to Anonymity is a Matter of Privacy    28 January 2012, 8:57 am
  22. International Privacy Day: Top Concerns of Activists and Data Protection Authorities    28 January 2012, 9:56 am
  23. Tim O’Reilly: Really, Google is evil now? Let’s Get Real. How About Apple?    30 January 2012, 1:08 am
  24. What Your Online Friends Reveal About Where You Are    30 January 2012, 11:52 am

Link 3! Whee! Finally, somebody recognizes that we should have the right to be forgotten by those pesky corporations who happened to do business with a business which went broke years and years ago but which sold on our personal data. We’ll see whether it goes through, though. Why the glum outlook? Read the rest of the links in this section.


  1. Hoping to Teach a Lesson, Researchers Release Exploits for Critical Infrastructure Software    19 January 2012, 4:23 pm
  2. Killed by Code: Software Transparency in Implantable Medical Devices    23 January 2012, 4:40 am
  3. Breaking CAPTCHA with automated humans    23 January 2012, 4:54 am
  4. I Spy Your Company’s Boardroom    23 January 2012, 11:39 am
  5. 10K Reasons to Worry About Critical Infrastructure    24 January 2012, 3:30 am
  6. Symantec: We Didn’t Know in 2006 Source Code Was Stolen    26 January 2012, 2:16 pm

Link 2 … well, I put it into Security rather than into Medical Technology, because, really, this is more where it belongs. But it’s disturbing. Links 1, 4, and 5 are just sad: people should know better, but just don’t seem to be able to think clearly. And link 3 is downright depressing: you can now outsource CAPTCHA-cracking for very low rates. I’m guessing there are sweatshops attached to the other end.

Social Media:

  1. Facebook Ploy to Criminalize Add-On Service Hurts Users and Innovation    18 January 2012, 1:02 pm
  2. Social network analysis used to convict slumlords    19 January 2012, 12:27 am
  3. ‘If I Die’ App Updates Your Final Status    19 January 2012, 7:24 am
  4. Stallman: Facebook is Mass Surveillance    23 January 2012, 1:20 am
  5. DOJ Wants to Know Who’s Rejecting Your Friend Requests    24 January 2012, 4:59 pm
  6. Comedian Tom Green hurls audience at TomGreen to get Twitter handle    26 January 2012, 12:52 am
  7. Google Thinks I’m a Middle-Aged Man. What About You?    26 January 2012, 12:06 pm
  8. FBI Wants To Monitor Social Networks    27 January 2012, 6:46 am
  9. US bars friends over Twitter joke    30 January 2012, 5:02 am

Link 2 is just awesome. Link 3 … well, I find it very creepy. Link 4 is a no-brainer, but a good rant and a good read. Link 6 is rather an interesting battle between two men named “Tom Green,” one of whom is a celebrity, the other of whom has the Twitter account. Link 9 sounds like a load of manure, frankly – we’ll have to see whether it turns out to be anything of quality, or just an ordinary tabloid (Daily Mail) winding up the gullible.


  1. SOPA, Internet Regulation and the Economics of Piracy    18 January 2012, 2:28 pm
  2. LOLing Our Way to Internet Freedom    18 January 2012, 3:13 pm
  3. Internet SOPA/PIPA Revolt: Don’t Declare Victory Yet    18 January 2012, 3:50 pm
  4. Thank You, Internet! And the Fight Continues    18 January 2012, 4:39 pm
  5. PIPA support collapses, with 13 new Senators opposed    19 January 2012, 4:59 am
  6. Internet Blackout Day Fires Up Digital Rights Activism Around the World    19 January 2012, 10:28 am
  7. After Historic Protest, Members of Congress Abandon PIPA and SOPA in Droves    19 January 2012, 12:14 pm
  8. SOPA Getting a Face-Lift: How Evil Will It Be?    19 January 2012, 4:12 pm
  9. No more back room deals — Users must have a voice in governing the Internet    20 January 2012, 10:22 am
  10. US legislators halt anti-piracy bills    20 January 2012, 1:31 pm
  11. Public Outcry Over Antipiracy Bills Began as Grass-Roots Grumbling    22 January 2012, 4:57 am
  12. Defending Privacy at the U.S. Border: A Guide for Travelers Digital Devices    22 January 2012, 5:21 am
  13. ACTA will force border searches of laptops, smartphones for pirated content    22 January 2012, 5:24 am
  14. MPAA Publicly Threatens to Stop Writing Checks    22 January 2012, 5:47 am
  15. SOPA sponsors return: “think of the children”    22 January 2012, 6:25 am
  16. How to act against ACTA    22 January 2012, 8:39 am
  17. Music, film industries lobby for the Philippines version of SOPA    22 January 2012, 1:51 pm
  18. After SOPA/PIPA in the US, ACTA Makes Its Way to the EU Parliament    23 January 2012, 1:20 am
  19. Boycotting Hollywood    23 January 2012, 1:21 am
  20. Best evidence showing we need SOPA based on ‘govt studies’ that never existed    23 January 2012, 1:21 am
  21. SOPA, PIPA Stalled: Meet the OPEN Act    23 January 2012, 8:49 am
  22. Next Battle Over Net Ramps Up Worldwide    23 January 2012, 12:35 pm
  23. Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales: MPAA chairman Christopher Dodd should be fired    24 January 2012, 4:59 am
  24. Kill Hollywood? Let’s fix politics instead: kill lobbying.    24 January 2012, 5:01 am
  25. Say No to Ireland’s SOPA    24 January 2012, 6:21 am
  26. Furious freetards blitz the wrong SOPA    24 January 2012, 6:22 am
  27. MPAA’s Chris Dodd Calls SOPA Defeat a ‘Watershed Event’    24 January 2012, 6:24 am
  28. ACTA is being signed right now in the EU    26 January 2012, 5:14 am
  29. Wil Wheaton Says MPAA Accounting Creates More Losses Than Piracy    26 January 2012, 5:41 am
  30. Lying: The Truth About Opposing SOPA/PIPA    26 January 2012, 6:16 am
  31. Petition Asks White House To Submit ACTA To The Senate For Ratification    26 January 2012, 6:16 am
  32. Poles Take anti-ACTA Protests to the Streets    26 January 2012, 7:15 am
  33. 22 EU states sign the ACTA ‘Internet censorship’ treaty    26 January 2012, 12:01 pm
  34. Paradox CEO Calls DRM a ‘Waste of Money’    26 January 2012, 12:15 pm
  35. The EU signs up to ACTA, but French MEP quits in protest    27 January 2012, 3:25 am
  36. We Have Every Right to Be Furious About ACTA    27 January 2012, 8:55 am
  37. Canada Is About To Pass Sopa’s Evil Little Brother. Politely    29 January 2012, 2:16 am
  38. It’s Not Silicon Valley Versus Hollywood – It’s Greed Versus Greed    29 January 2012, 2:18 am

SOPA / PIPA seem to have been shelved for awhile, but ACTA is still going, being signed into law all over the world, and amounts to just about the same thing. This really bothers me. (Link 26 … well, seems kinda funny, but is just silly – enjoy). There seems to be a lot of movement in this arena, because something people regard as rather fundamental to their lifestyles is being threatened: access to content (online, so far as SOPA / PIPA are concerned, everywhere, so far as ACTA is concerned). I really hope that some coherent movement can be forged out of all of the random activism, as I’d like to see this direct democracy lead to something. I’m afraid of the intermediate steps (for more on this, download Cory Doctorow’s book For The Win – it’s free to download, and Cory’s the creator of the Creative Commons, so of course it is, as are all his others – and many good reads they are). The outcry over SOPA / PIPA was enough to stop the politicians, temporarily, but it remains to be seen whether any real change can be made in political systems which are essentially bought and sold by large copyright-holders.


  1. Kuala Lumpur Mandates WiFi for All Restaurants    19 January 2012, 11:33 am
  2. Rare Pictures From the Dawn of NASA Spaceflight    23 January 2012, 12:05 pm
  3. DNS got you down? Share ip addresses with freedom.txt    24 January 2012, 5:11 am
  4. Printed Sensors Could Help Save You From Spoiled Food    25 January 2012, 5:00 am
  5. Help Protect Gadget Jailbreakers and Video Artists from Legal Threats    25 January 2012, 12:01 pm
  6. Jailbreaking Is Not A Crime    26 January 2012, 12:56 am
  7. The Pirate Bay Wants You To Really Download A Car    26 January 2012, 12:26 pm
  8. How to Deploy Your Drogue from a DIY Space Capsule    27 January 2012, 2:09 pm
  9. How Much Is an Astronaut’s Life Worth?    29 January 2012, 2:42 am
  10. CNET asks: Is Facebook run by sociopaths?    30 January 2012, 1:04 am
  11. German hackers plan DIY space program    30 January 2012, 1:10 am

I must say that I’ve been following the guys from link 8 (Copenhagen Suborbitals) since they got going, and I find them just a never-ending breath of fresh air. These are guys with welding equipment, angle-grinders, and … well, hand tools. And they’re going to space. Really. Link 11 … OK, sure, they’re talking about it, and there’s some good stuff there as well. But Copenhagen Suborbitals is actually building the craft, testing rockets, and has a solid plan to go forward with it. And, when you think about it, that shouldn’t be strange: there were no computer-designed plans, advanced materials, or even calculators when the first men went to the moon. So … I really hope these guys get there, if only to bring some hope to the rest of the world who knows that there’s no chance they’ll ever make it onto a space-craft funded by a government, nor onto one which requires millions of dollars of cash. Link 9 goes into the whole thing in a bit more detail, and is a rather interesting (if slightly … well, distasteful) perspective.


2 Replies to “Links”

  1. I read the one about Bullying and Youth Suicide. Some important questions there. She did well at tying in the personal experience with some societal failures – our lack of funding social services really will result in deepening issues. I never thought about the link between kids getting pumped up for a cause, then when life goes on as normal, they crash. But now I see the truth in it, not just for kids questioning sexual identity, etc, but also oftentimes for religion. I suppose for all sorts of things.
    PS I think that is one of the few articles from your Links posts I’ve ever read – the sheer number of articles you list intimidates me. I find it astonishing that you are capable of reading so many articles in one week! (Plus tech-related things aren’t really down my alley)

    1. YES. I have seen that religious thing in action, and I think that young adults pumped up for a cause or a campaign and then left behind happens there more often than not. Much like the argument goes in many churches, we have to be behind people and not programs; programs are only a framework that people fill in.

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