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Citing Snowden Leaks, Russia Again Demands UN Takeover of Internet 275

Lauren Weinstein writes "In a clear demonstration that actions do have consequences, often unintended ones, 'The New York Times' reports that Russia is again demanding a UN Internet takeover of exactly the sort repressive governments around the world have long been lusting after, and using Edward Snowden's continued presence in Russia as a foundation for this new thrust. Acting as a catalyst for a crackdown against freedom of speech on the Net was certainly not Snowden's intention — quite the opposite, it's reasonable to assume." Not to worry.

Analyzing Tweets To Identify Psychopaths 266

nonprofiteer writes "Researchers presenting at Defcon next week have developed a psychopathy prediction model for Twitter. It analyzes linguistic tells to rate users' levels of narcissism, machiavellianism and other similarities to Patrick Bateman. 'The FBI could use this to flag potential wrongdoers, but I think it's much more compelling for psychologists to use to understand large communities of people,' says Chris Sumner of the Online Privacy Foundation. Some of the Twitter clues: Curse words. Angry responses to other people, including swearing and use of the word "hate." Using the word "we." Using periods. Using filler words such as 'blah' and 'I mean' and 'um.' So, um, yeah."

New Rules Bring a "Credit Rating" For Users of Chinese Social Network 89

An anonymous reader links this article describing a newly installed set of rules affecting the already put-upon Internet users of China, specifically affecting users of social network Sina Weibo: "Sina Weibo users each will now receive 80 points to begin with, and this can be boosted to a full 100 points by those who provide their official government-issued identification numbers (like Social Security numbers in the U.S.) and link to a cellphone account. Spreading falsehoods will lead to deductions in points, among other penalties. Spreading an untruth to 100 other users will result in a deduction of two points. Spreading it to 100-1,000 other users will result in a deduction of five points, as well as a week's suspension of the account. Spreading it to more than 1,000 other users will result in a deduction of 10 points, as well as a 15-day suspension of the account." The article explains (in truth, not very helpfully) the extent to which users' freedom to talk freely will be curtailed; the long list of what not to do "includes using 'nonconforming' or false images to mislead," "exaggerating events," "presenting already [resolved] events as ongoing," "efforts to incite ethnic tensions and violence and hurt ethnic unity" and "efforts to spread cultist or superstitious thinking; spreading rumors to disrupt social harmony." (And of course the catch-all: "other activities stipulated by authorities.")
Your Rights Online

Photographer Threatened With Legal Action After Asserting His Copyright 667

New submitter JamieKitson writes "Photographer Jay Lee got more than he bargained for after sending some DMCA takedown notifications out to hosts of sites using one of his pictures. One Candice Shwagger accused him of everything from conspiracy over local sheriff elections to child abuse. Since Candice is now threatening legal action, Jay has said he'll take down the post, so here's a snap shot. After reading the story, I checked for use of my own pictures and found one of them being used on a review site without even a credit."

Netherlands Cements Net Neutrality In Law 115

Fluffeh writes "A while back, Dutch Telcos started to sing the 'We are losing money due to internet services!' song and floated new plans that would make consumers pay extra for data used by apps that conflicted with their own services — apps like Skype, for example. The politicians stepped in, however, and wrote laws forbidding this. Now, the legislation has finally passed through the Senate and the Netherlands is an officially Net Neutral country, the second in the world — Chile did this a while back."
The Internet

Tech Industry Reps To Speak Before Congress About SOPA 273

Nemesisghost writes "Rep. Darrell Issa (R-California), a major opponent of the Stop Online Piracy Act has announced he plans to call a hearing where Tech industry representatives will get to speak out about how legislation like SOPA will negatively affect the internet. From the article 'Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has called a hearing that will bring more voices from the technology industry to Washington, D.C. to discuss how legislation such as the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) would affect the Internet. On Jan. 18, industry representatives that include Brad Burnham from Union Square Ventures; Lanham Napier, the CEO of Rackspace Hosting; and Alexis Ohanian, co-founder of, will testify before Congress.'"

Facebook Tells India It Won't Help Censor the Web 168

An anonymous reader writes "Indian Communications and IT minister Kapil Sibal yesterday announced a proposal to have technology companies like Microsoft, Facebook, Google, and Twitter pre-screen user generated content so that community sentiments are not hurt. Social media platforms are being asked to censor whatever politicians deem objectionable and too offensive for the Internet. Sibal called a news conference when the story broke, and following it, Facebook responded to say that it can't help in the effort."

Judge Orders Hundreds of Websites Delisted From Search Engines, Social Networks 308

An anonymous reader writes "A federal judge has ruled that a number of a websites trafficking in counterfeit Chanel goods can have their domains seized and transferred to a new registrar. Astonishingly, the judge also ordered that the sites must be de-indexed from all search engines and all social media websites. Quoting the article: 'Missing from the ruling is any discussion of the Internet's global nature; the judge shows no awareness that the domains in question might not even be registered in this country, for instance, and his ban on search engine and social media indexing apparently extends to the entire world. (And, when applied to U.S.-based companies like Twitter, apparently compels them to censor the links globally rather than only when accessed by people in the U.S.) Indeed, a cursory search through the list of offending domains turns up, a site registered in Germany. The German registrar has not yet complied with the U.S. court order, though most other domain names on the list are .com or .net names and have been seized.'"

I have a theory that it's impossible to prove anything, but I can't prove it.