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Comment: Re:Oooh ... formally promised ... (Score 2) 164

by Mr. Slippery (#48216199) Attached to: Ello Formally Promises To Remain Ad-Free, Raises $5.5M

So, this is a voluntary thing, doesn't involve any certification, has no actual enforcement, and only exist in about half the US states or slightly less.

You're confusing certification with the status of a benefit corporation. Certification has no legal enforcement power other than revoking certification; OTOH, under the model legislation it just takes 2% of stockholders to initiate a benefit enforcement proceeding against a benefit corporation and have court enforce the public benefit provisions of its charter. (Your state may vary -- it looks like in NJ any stockholder can bring such action.)

So long as it exists in the state where Ello is incorporated (which is apparently does), it doesn't matter that not all states yet have benefit corporation legislation.

Yes, benefit corporations are new. If I was going to bet my life on questions of how courts will treat them I might be wary. But as a general matter they seem like they could be a useful way to reign in privacy violations by tech companies by providing a legally enforceable guarantee of behavior.

Comment: men more likely to be harassed and threatened on-l (Score 2) 540

by Mr. Slippery (#48212345) Attached to: The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll
Sayth the fine summary:

In a Pew Research Center survey of 2,849 Internet users, one out of every four women between 18 years old and 24 years old reports having been stalked or sexually harassed online.

But if one actually follows the link, one reads that "Overall, men are somewhat more likely than women to experience at least one of the elements of online harassment, 44% vs. 37%. In terms of specific experiences, men are more likely than women to encounter name-calling, embarrassment, and physical threats." [emphasis added]

That blows are rather large hole in the thesis which the poster and many others seem to be implying, that internet harassment is primarily rooted in misogyny.

This is not to in any way justify the harassment of women. But if you want to know why there's a backlash, part of the cause (not a justification, a cause) may be the ongoing distortion of the facts about violence and harassment.

Comment: Re: Semantics (Score 5, Insightful) 540

by Mr. Slippery (#48211999) Attached to: The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

Because what the world truly needs is you telling women how they are and are not allowed to dress.

GP poster did not say anything about restricting how women are allowed to dress. He spoke about looking at women.

How about this: women (and men) get to wear whatever they like. And men (and women) are allowed to look at each other (in public, not talking about peeping toms here) as much as they like. It's your body, you get to put what you want on it. They're my eyeballs, I get to point them whatever direction I want. Autonomy and agency for all, hurrah.

If you think that the way a random woman is dressing in public means she wants to have sex with you, you're an idiot. If you think the way a random man is pointing his eyeballs in public means he wants to rape you, you're an idiot.

Comment: Re:What future? (Score 1) 130

by Mr. Slippery (#48201217) Attached to: The Future of Stamps

How much mail do you really send that you are still buying stamps?

Outside of a dozen or two holiday cards, maybe three or four pieces a year.

I realize lots of businesses still send things out usps, but they are probably printing their own postage at this point anyway and not using actual stamps.

I've yet to see a solution suitable for home users.

Comment: Re:Can we stop trying to come up with a reason? (Score 1) 765

by Mr. Slippery (#48199027) Attached to: NPR: '80s Ads Are Responsible For the Lack of Women Coders

It is a waste of precious resources to turn a woman into a computer programmer when she's a lot more valuable as a mother.

Ha ha! What a great satire of a shitheaded sexist troll you've done here. I especially like the bit about how any distraction, disruption or stress could cause a miscarriage. My doctor, a black belt in karate who trained up until her 8th month, would get a real belly laugh out of that. And my sensei, the EE, would surely get a chuckle out of the implication that she wasted her life by not being a baby machine. Keep polishing the satire and you could have a real career here.

(Assuming, of course, you're not serious. Because no one that stupid could survive.)

Comment: Re:Good, it should be that way! (Score 1) 329

by Mr. Slippery (#48196999) Attached to: 3D-Printed Gun Earns Man Two Years In Japanese Prison

The government has no right to a monopoly on any weapon.

However, my neighbor storing atomic weapons in his garage is a reasonable threat to my safety and so should be heavily regulated. If he can meet the same safety standards as the government (maybe some billionaire collector could do this), the state has no legitimate authority to have nukes of its own while denying him one. Or, ya know, maybe nukes are an inherent threat to people and no one, state or otherwise, U.S. or Iran, can have them. But "we can have them, you can't" is not a logically defensible argument.

My neighbor storing machine guns or a typical shooter's supply of ammo in his garage (again, subject to safe storage requirements, no storing a loaded machine gun pointed at my house) is no more a threat to my safety than him having the usual home hardware and chemicals in there. (

Even a tank is not threat -- and indeed, for just $1175 you can spend a day driving one around.)

Comment: Re:Much as I despise trolls (Score 5, Informative) 487

by Mr. Slippery (#48184089) Attached to: In UK, Internet Trolls Could Face Two Years In Jail

Where does the freedom to "say what I don't like" end and harassment begin?

In terms of content, you can say whatever the fuck you like about me. In terms of place and time and manner, you can't say whatever the fuck you like on my front lawn, because that's trespassing. You can't say whatever the fuck you like about me in my living room, because if you break into my house I will engage in legitimate self-defense and you will be quickly be unconscious or dead.

You can say whatever the fuck you like about me when we're in public, but if you continually follow me around at some point you are expressing a threat and committing assault. That has nothing to do with what you're saying, though, it applies even if you're silent -- it's the physical presence that's a threat.

You can say whatever the fuck you like about me on the internet or on TV or in a letter or on the phone or whatever. Unless you make a specific threat, and can be reasonably believed to have the means to carry it out, it's not assault. "I'm going to drop a nuclear bomb on Tom's house!" is not a threat, unless you command a nuclear arsenal. "Somebody ought to shoot Tom!" is offensive, but I don't have a right to not be offended, and unless someone is pointing a gun at me at that moment it's not assault or encouraging assault.

A nation with an interest in freedom could handle these cases without any new laws against trolling, using the same legal principles that have existed since the first idiot was prosecuted for mailing a threatening letter. But a moral panic about the 'net is fertile ground for authoritarians.

Comment: Reality distortion field (Score 2) 369

by Mr. Slippery (#48180417) Attached to: Apple Doesn't Design For Yesterday

In spite of the grumblings of many, Karjaluoto doesn't recall many such changes that we didn't later look upon as the right choice.

Or rather, the famous reality distortion field later convinced Apple customer's that Apple must have been right all along. Because otherwise they'd have to admit that they'd been had, and no one wants to do that.

People who have paid a high price to enter a group tend to value that group, and people who are part of a group tend to conform to that group's judgments. It's terrible tech and terrible design, but it's great marketing.

Comment: Re:Awesome quote (Score 1) 232

What we should be against is any subsidization, special treatment, or monopolistic practices, always rooted in government.

Subsidies such as allowing Comcast access to public rights-of-way to string their wires? Monopolistic practices such as allowing Comcast to buy up rights-of-way and exclude others from using them?

Comcast is not making widgets out of parts distilled from thin air. It is stringing wires over land, and then using them to send data over which it claims to have a "copyright".

Land is turned into property only via government action. All "intellectual property" is created entirely by state fiat. "Get government out of managing property!" is a cry that can only arise from fundamental confusion about the nature of property.

In the US, capital is not a barrier to entry...

Perhaps some day you will join us in the reality based community.

Comment: Re:A government picking the winners and losers? (Score 1) 232

If we made every "terrible company" stop doing business . . .

...then we would be returning to the original idea behind a corporate charter, where a corporation was permitted the privilege to exist only so long as it served the public interest.

Sounds like an excellent idea. Indeed, take it further: put a time limit -- say, ten years -- on every corporate charter by default. Only renew (for another limited time) those corporations who demonstrate that their continued existence will be of benefit.

Comcast, of course, would be among the first against the wall.

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