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Comment: The article and summary a bit misleading (Score 4, Informative) 166

by DMNT (#44359813) Attached to: Crowdsourced Finnish Copyright Initiative Meets Signature Requirement

The political process is not as straightforward as the article suggests: It will first be passed on to a committee which will listen for various experts and interested parties, including copyright holders' associations. The committee will then be free to make amendments and changes to the proposal, even though the proposal is already written in a form of law text. After the committee it will probably be subjected to other various committees for review, for example the constitutional committee to check if it is in alignment with the constitution. At the end of this long committee process is the public vote in the Parliament, which is most often just a formality.

Therefore it is not guaranteed at all that the intended changes will pass even if the law will be changed in the parliament.

Comment: Re:Name Change (Score 1, Redundant) 151

by DMNT (#32540492) Attached to: Finland To Legalize Use of Unsecured Wi-Fi

The finnish legislation standard used to be (until 2000's where they passed some questionable laws) to lay down technologically neutral laws, where the technology used played no important role but the actual action by the person did no matter what the tool used. This proposed legislation is just an exception to be amended to the current law, which regulates the use of other people's property, which you currently are not allowed to use without a prior permission. Currently some of the facilities offer free WiFi without informing you of such and this behaviour would be illegal by the law even when it's not easy to detect or to prosecute. So they are for the sake of clarity, going to make an exception because it is often hard to find out whether you're allowed to use the open network or not.

The human translation for newstext:

Joining a wireless accesspoint to be legalized

The ministry of justice is forming a law to allow use of unprotected WiFi access points. By the current law the unauthorized use of open networks has been illegal.

The exception is rationalized by for example, the lack of harm done, impossibility of oversight and the relative easiness of protecting the network. For the end user it is also often difficult to find out when the network is meant for public use and when it is not.

The statements received by the ministry of justice (which includes EFFI, Electronic Frontier Finland, by transl.) remind that the avilability of free WiFi access has increased in public space such as parks and air fields and they don't always inform the end user of the free availability.

According to the ministry of justice, there has been only one sentence for the use of unsecured WiFi by the district court. Higher court upheld the decision and it never went to the supreme court.

Most of the statements were for the legalization. However, many of them held it in high value that the owner of the access point should be held innocent in case of the illegal use of the access point.

Experts' opinion is that a lot of the WiFi access points are unsecured and the unauthorized use of them is common. Securing of the access point is usually easy when following the manuals of the access point.

The unauthorized use of the access point might slow the network down but it is hard to note unless there's a lot of file transfers compared to the bandwidth available.

Comment: Re:Name Change (Score 5, Informative) 151

by DMNT (#32540462) Attached to: Finland To Legalize Use of Unsecured Wi-Fi

The finnish legislation standard used to be (until 2000's where they passed some questionable laws) to lay down technologically neutral laws, where the technology used played no important role but the action did. This proposed legislation is just an exception to be amended to the current law, which regulates the use of other people's property, which you currently are not allowed to use without a prior permission. Currently some of the facilities offer free WiFi without informing you of such and this behaviour would be illegal by the law even when it's not easy to detect or to prosecute. So they are for the sake of clarity, going to make an exception because it is often hard to find out whether you're allowed to use the open network or not.

The human translation for newstext:

Joining a wireless accesspoint to be legalized

The ministry of justice is forming a law to allow use of unprotected WiFi access points. By the current law the unauthorized use of open networks has been illegal.

The exception is rationalized by for example, the lack of harm done, impossibility of oversight and the relative easiness of protecting the network. For the end user it is also often difficult to find out when the network is meant for public use and when it is not.

The statements received by the ministry of justice (which includes EFFI, Electronic Frontier Finland, by transl.) remind that the avilability of free WiFi access has increased in public space such as parks and air fields and they don't always inform the end user of the free availability.

According to the ministry of justice, there has been only one sentence for the use of unsecured WiFi by the district court. Higher court upheld the decision and it never went to the supreme court.

Most of the statements were for the legalization. However, many of them held it in high value that the owner of the access point should be held innocent in case of the illegal use of the access point.

Experts' opinion is that a lot of the WiFi access points are unsecured and the unauthorized use of them is common. Securing of the access point is usually easy when following the manuals of the access point.

The unauthorized use of the access point might slow the network down but it is hard to note unless there's a lot of file transfers compared to the bandwidth available.

Comment: Re:Banking doesn't usually require anonymity (Score 2, Informative) 114

by DMNT (#27547333) Attached to: Finnish Court Dismisses E-Voting Result

I'm also a Finn and I was counting the votes at the municipal elections in Helsinki late last year. The system is even more tamper proof than described previously. First of all, the ballot box is checked at the casting of the first vote that there's no extra votes within the box. The first vote is stamped (like the rest will be) and put in to the box. The parties have a right to set an observer for the whole time until the votes have been counted. The next day the votes are recounted (which is where I was part of):

All districts are dealt out randomly to counting groups. The groups then count the votes and if they agree on the number of votes with the first count - and don't disqualified any votes accepted previously due to certain criteria - then the result is accepted. The votes can be disqualified for multiple reasons: The vote paper might be completely unmarked and it is counted separately as an official form of protesting against every party. The other reasons are ambiguous number (usually trouble separating 1 from 7 and 6 from 0 or numbers that look different upside down, like 188 vs. 881 when a single vertical bar is used for number 1.), additional non-clarifying markings in the vote that could be used to link the person to the vote (to prevent vote buying & selling), lack of stamping (to prevent people slipping in multiple votes within the true vote) or using other than official voting paper in voting. Lot of votes disqualified contain all kinds of messages to the government, from a friendly "F U government!" to cryptic messages to God or Bavarian Illuminati.

If the result is in any way different from the previous count then it is dealt randomly to another counting group which will verify the result. All the disqualified votes go to the jurisdiction to give a final verdict on the votes and if possible decide the candidate the ambiguous vote is for.

All this counting is done in a group supervised by political parties, though in current stable political environment the supervision is only superficial. Being a member of this counting process has only increased my trust in paper voting and distrust in e-voting.

Microsoft

+ - Microsoft Plans To Offer Three dollar Windows

Submitted by
TheCybernator
TheCybernator writes "Thursday, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates said that the company is planning to release a 3 dollar software suite for students in developing countries. The announcement marked the US software giant's most ambitious attempt to date to bridge the digital divide between technologically advanced and developing countries. The Student Innovation Suite was announced as Microsoft faces increased challenges from open source operating systems like Linux and free web-based applications like those offered by Google, both of which target the company's dominance in personal computer software. http://www.playfuls.com/news_07054_Microsoft_Plans _To_Offer_Three_dollar_Windows.html"
The Almighty Buck

Monkey Business and Freakonomics 182

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the cashing-out-in-banana-chips dept.
marct22 writes "Stephen J Dubner, co-writer of 'Freakonomics' said there will be a second Freakonomics book. One of the items that will be covered is capuchin monkeys' use of washers as money, buying sweets, budgeting for favored treats over lesser treats. He mentioned that one of the experiments had similar outcomes as a study of day traders. And lastly, he watched capuchin prostitution!"
Privacy

Major UK Child Porn Investigation Flawed 372

Posted by kdawson
from the ruining-innocent-lives dept.
Oxygen99 writes "The Guardian (UK) is carrying a story on Operation Ore, a major police investigation aimed at catching online pedophiles. This has resulted in several high-profile arrests, such as those of Pete Townshend and Robert Del Naja (both falsely accused), while attracting significant press attention. Yet, the reality of the investigation is one of stolen credit cards, wrongful accusations, and ignorance leading to a significant number of the 7,292 people on the list being wrongfully accused of a very emotionally charged crime. There have been 39 suicides and a number of other people on the list will probably never be investigated. It seems to me this case highlights flaws inherent in the way law enforcement agencies handle evidence that only a small minority of front-line officers fully understand."
GNU is Not Unix

+ - FSF releases 3rd draft of GPLv3

Submitted by
johnsu01
johnsu01 writes "The Free Software Foundation has announced publication of the third discussion draft of the GNU General Public License Version 3. Because quite a few changes have been made since the previous draft and important new issues have surfaced, the drafting process has been extended and revised to encourage more feedback. The most significant changes in this draft include refinements in the "tivoization" provisions to eliminate unwanted side effects, revision of the patent provisions to prevent end-runs around the license, and further steps toward compatibility with other free software licenses. The FSF has also explicitly asked the community whether the new patent provisions should apply retroactively to the Microsoft-Novell deal."
The Media

Leaked Microsoft Dossier on Journalist 165

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the i-see-you-have-bad-grammar-mr-bond dept.
Ludvig A. Norin writes "Wired journalist Fred Vogelstein blogs about how he accidentally got hold of a dossier on himself produced by Microsoft's PR firm, Waggener Edstrom. While it's not unusual for PR people to create background files on journalists, it's notable that this one leaked, and got commented by Waggener Edstrom's Frank Shaw and Wired Magazine editor in chief Chris Anderson. Makes for an interesting read — there's lots to learn from the inner workings of the Microsoft PR machinery." Someone please send me mine? I bet it's really friendly!
The Courts

+ - Warrantless wiretaps replaced with secret courts

Submitted by Nate
Nate (666) writes "President Bush has decided to do away with warrantless wiretaps, and instead require the approval of a secret court before monitoring can take place. While it is not clear why the judges making up the court must be secret, the move has been hailed by many opponents of the wiretaps as a step in the right direction. The Bush administration has expressed satisfaction with the new scheme as well, with press secretary Tony Snow stating "The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court has put together its guidelines and its rules and those have met administration concerns about speed and agility when it comes to responding to bits of intelligence where we may to be able to save American lives". Will this move ease concerns about the motives behind Bush's wiretaps, or simply ease the pressure on the Bush administration?"
Communications

Will Telecommuting Kill a Career? 247

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the face-to-cheek-time dept.
coondoggie writes to mention that Network World has a piece taking a look at the effects of the telecommute on advancement within your career. From the article: "Over 60% of 1,320 global executives surveyed by executive search firm Korn/Ferry International said they believe that telecommuters are less likely to advance in their careers in comparison to employees working in traditional office settings. Company executives want face time with their employees, the study said."
Games

Germany Wants EU to Ban Violent Games 122

Posted by Zonk
from the they'll-getcha dept.
FredDC writes "Germany is seeking support among other European countries to ban violent videogames during its EU Presidency, according to Infoworld. In an initiative led by Franco Frattini, the European Justice commissioner, Germany is pushing for restrictions on the sale of games with violent content of any kind, from Half-Life to Star Trek . In the eyes of the EU, gaming and real-world violence is 'linked', and steps should be taken to prevent the purchase of these games by younger people. From the article: 'The German government said it will conduct a study of all the different national rules concerning video games, with a view to setting Union-wide norms. Its initiative makes the prospect of a ban much more likely. Video game violence became a hot political issue in Germany at the end of last year when 18-year-old Sebastian Bosse shot up a high school in Emsdetten, Germany, injuring 37 before fatally turning the gun on himself. Police said Bosse spent most of his waking hours playing Counter-Strike.'" This, just days after two Final Fantasy VII fans were arrested in connection with a series of killings.

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