I was a long time Newegg customer and fan until my Black Friday laptop two years ago. They shipped me a DOA unit (which was a common issue in this model as comments after Black Friday revealed). They were reasonably quick to suggest a few basic troubleshooting items and issue an RMA. Then it went to hell. Long story short, they received my laptop then lost it. They lied to me repeatedly, blamed it on the carrier, refused to cooperate with the carrier (who was willing to cover it despite the obvious problems with Newegg's story), and strung out the process over several months. I eventually filed a claim with my credit card company and got my money back. I have refused to deal with them since. I don't remember being treated so poorly by any vendor in the past decade.
I fail to understand why international espionage comes as a shock to anyone.
Look at the submitter. He's also one of the most active posters in the thread. This is propaganda from 'cold fjord' - a straw man that he builds, feigning outrage about run-of-the-mill international spying in hopes of distracting you from the massive illegal surveillance of ordinary US citizens practiced by the US government.
So you can get to the front of the security line, see the x-ray machines, metal detectors, scanners, etc., you're free to turn around and leave, and the TSA cannot prevent you from leaving.
It's a fourth amendment issue only if they prevent you from voluntarily leaving after deciding that you'd feel violated.
"Once a person submits to the screening process, they can not just decide to leave that process," says Sari Koshetz, regional TSA spokesperson, based in Miami. Such passengers will be questioned "until it is determined that they don't pose a threat" to the public.
Once you are near the TSA security check points, you are not allowed to leave. The "Don't touch my junk" guy was told that he was being ejected from the airport while simultaneously being told that he would be arrested and fined $11,000 if he tried to leave. Not only was the underwear dude in San Diego arrested, another passenger who filmed the encounter on her iPhone also was arrested and had her phone confiscated for "illegally filming".
What's your position on this now?
I believe that you've misunderstood my response to the GP...
Also, your "basic economics" argument is fairly blind in that it relies on economics to solve every problem. If we depended on "basic economics" for all of our progress, the Internet would probably never have been invented in the first place. It was developed by ARPA [wikipedia.org] which, as a military research agency, is not governed or funded by "basic economics" but rather by cold war paranoia.
The GP suggested that allowing multiple carriers to build competing, redundant infrastructure would somehow solve the lack of competition. He implied that the market would magically fix everything. My argument isn't blind to other options. In fact, in another post in this thread I pointed out that a better solution is to have the government own the local infrastructure or at least require that the local utility provides transportation services to anyone who wants to use their pipes.
But if you want to beat the economics drum, consider the South Korean [cnn.com] model wherein the infrastructure is funded by the government and shared by private enterprises that rent the infrastructure and compete on service and performance aspects rather than infrastructure related ones.
Again, you're not arguing against me but the GP to which I responded. I agree. Provide the access as a government service and let private companies compete for the service.
One minor point with your post:
You have a point about companies requiring an incentive to invest, but last time I checked, margins for these enormous cable companies is about 8% -- not a bad ROI at all.
First 8% is not a strong return. I work for a regulated public utility and our maximum rate of return is capped in the 9.5% to 10% range (it varies from year to year). To investors, we are a safe and slow bet - as long as we do things right they aren't going to lose money but even 10% isn't sexy. Second, whatever the return achieved by cable companies, there's no way they are going to get that kind of return in a competitive market. They make their money in monopoly arrangements where most of their customers choose the incumbent provider or no service. My point was that the ROI isn't there for these same companies to build a network where someone else already has one and already has most of the customers.
I'm not sure why you felt it necessary to post your anti-Netflix bullshit. As pointed out in a sibling post already, Netflix hosts on AWS and your claims about Netflix randomly switching carriers doesn't even make sense.
Further, Netflix has built its own CDN hardware and network and tried very hard to work with ISPs to get this equipment in their data centers. They've deployed CDN units to hundreds of ISPs but the big boys won't play. I don't suppose it has anything to do with the fact that these ISPs also sell content and have no desire to improve Netflix's performance.
Here's the thing - that is so expensive to do, that it's not going to be a half-dozen; at any one time in may be one or two. And what is so bad about allowing that?
In my county, there is one option for Internet service - the local cable company. The franchise agreement is not exclusive. However, there is no way for a second company to show reasonable ROI on duplicating the existing infrastructure in order to compete. They are better off finding another area where they can be the exclusive provider or simply buying the other company. Basic economics makes your suggestion bad for everyone but the company who owns the only network in the neighborhood.
ever since those heady days of the first internet rush it's been only mediocrity from cable companies and DSL providers alike. So I say let whoever has the capital literally pave a path to my door.
Again, you miss the realities of simple business economics. What is the motivation for someone else to build an expensive network where there already are incumbent providers? They have to convince you to leave your current company or bring something so new and exciting that they create new customers, and in such quantities to show sufficient returns on the capital invested.
I work for a public utility. We are regulated by the state PUC and are capped at 9.5% - 10% profit (it varies from year to year). We primarily distribute natural gas but the state also requires that we offer transportation services for anyone who wants it. A customer can go to any producer or interstate transporter with connections to our pipe network, buy their own gas, and have it delivered via our pipes. While this could work, the customer contracts are complex and billing is complicated.
It seems much simpler to make the local network a government-owned facility to which any number of carriers can connect at defined delivery points. This eliminates your problem of multiple carriers digging up the street for their own last mile and there is no need for another regulated utility.
Actually, isn't this the guy who was a director of something at AOL during their years of rot and a director of user experience at the shithole known as Yahoo?
But that's still a failure on the part of the so-called parent. If you can't outwit a 5 year old, you have no business trying to raise one.
Another counter-point would be that I eat meat and in our society meat (and food in general) is more entertainment than nourishment, but that's stretching it.
I hope that all of your meat, eggs, milk, and other animal-based products come from small farms where you can verify the treatment of the animals. Otherwise, you're simply outsourcing your animal torture to ADM and Cargill.
The things that produce honey are not toys, we shouldn't control them to make our delicious honey?
Those "things" are called bees. And they are not toys. They are livestock, raised for their output just like dairy cows and chickens.
You are clearly no beekeeper, or have even read much about the hobby/profession.
I am a beekeeper and your statement remains meaningless. I might disagree with "requires almost no interaction with the bees" but the GP's basic point remains.
I don't assume, I read a number of descriptions of what happened.
Then you should keep reading because you've obviously missed some details.
The lawyers you engage in step 3 would be happy to explain why trying to "creatively" make bad-faith efforts is not a smart approach.
The fact that they essentially thumbed their noses at the FBI, NSA, and federal courts without legal ramification tells a thinking man that their attorneys were very much engaged in making sure they toed the line without crossing it. Believe it or not, there are actual attorneys out there who are willing to operate on the edges of a broken system in the fight for what's right.
I don't think so. There's a big difference between the legal firepower available to a small service provider like Lavabit and someone like Yahoo or Google...
Then you should think again. The difference is the willingness of a small company to stand up for their values versus a large company's desire to continue making money. Yahoo! challenged the so-called "Protect America Act" in 2008, arguing that the broad, warrantless Internet surveillance (in which they were required to participate) was unconstitutional. The case was sent to the FISA Court, which rejected their arguments. They were allowed to appeal to the FISA Court of Review (one of only two meetings of the court in 33 years), where they also lost. The ruling included this gem: "...efforts to protect national security should not be frustrated by the courts."
...and handing over the ability to read everything is definitely not something that a simple warrant can legally require.
Wrong again. A good deal of the data collected and stored by the NSA's PRISM program didn't even require a warrant. Other items were obtained with overly broad and legally unsound "warrants". For example, Verizon has been providing detailed telephone records to the NSA on every call in its systems for months.
The FISA courts were created by Congress, the same as any other Federal court besides the Supreme Court. The FISA court is accountable to both its appeal court and the Supreme Court like other Federal Courts, and the Judges can be removed by Congress as can other Judges. In fact, the Judges on the FISA court are ordinary Federal judges that rotate through the FISA court from other Federal courts.
The FISA Court is accountable to no one. The FISA Court meets in secret and only one side is represented, so there is no possibility of appeal for those whose rights are trampled. The FISA Court has denied only 11 of 33,942 requests in its 33 years of operation and the FISA Court of Review has met a total of twice in that time period. The design and operation of the FISA Court provides no path for accountability to the Supreme Court. Even if the telecom companies that were required to provide customer data to the government wanted to appeal, there is no requirement that their arguments are considered (the FISA Court allowed Yahoo! to appeal in 2008 so that the law in question could be ruled okay and a heavily redacted ruling released to make sure no one else bothers to try). No FISA-related case has ever gone to the Supreme Court and it isn't clear how one could.
Congress has no oversight of the judges. Each judge is appointed by the Supreme Court Chief Justice with no oversight or confirmation by anyone else, including Congress. In the 33 years of FISA, we've had three chief justices, all conservative Republicans. John Roberts appointed every single FISA Court judge currently serving.
Your dishonesty regarding FISA is troubling. Either you are ignorant of something you strongly support or you are lying in hopes of deceiving others.