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+ - Netflix Stealthy Reduces Service, Keeps Prices the Same

Submitted by Nom du Keyboard
Nom du Keyboard (633989) writes "After seeing a drop in my DVD service from Netflix I got a customer service representative tonight to confirm that Netflix has ceased processing DVD returns on Saturdays nationwide. And that they did this without either notifying their customers, nor reducing prices to compensate for the reduced service. Given that the DVD selection still far outstrips their streaming selection, this may be news to others like myself who don't find streaming an adequate replacement for plastic discs. My experience up until recently, unlike Netflix's promise of a 1-3 day turnaround at their end which gives them lots of wiggle room to degrade service even further, had been of mailing in a DVD on day one, having them receive it and mail out my next selection on day two, and receiving it on day three. Now with them only working 5 days and many US Post Office holidays, they're still getting the same money for significantly less. Is Netflix still the good guy here?"

Comment: Re:Dissappointed (Score 1) 286

by LordLucless (#47505219) Attached to: Australia Repeals Carbon Tax

The Liberal government got in on the narrowest of margins due entirely to a series of dodgy preference deals.

Rewrite history much? The Coalition won 90 seats; Labor won 55. It wasn't only most definitively not a narrow margin, it was one of the most decisive elections in recent history. Preferences deals aren't even relevant in the lower house, which is what determines who forms government; preference deals only happen with the Senate, and all the squawking about preferences this election wasn't to do with the coalition; it was to do with the minor parties, who finally got around to exploiting the preferential system the way the major parties have for years, and won a handful of seats, such that they hold the balance of power in the Senate (as long as the Greens vote in a bloc with Labor, which so far, they have).

Above that, they didn't advertise their polices, their entire campaign was based on "hate Labor". The Libs didn't even release a fiscal policy until after the election. Thats how bad they were. Their entire campaign was based on flinging shit at Rudd... Nothing more.

They didn't even need to do that. The Labor party self-destructed - they couldn't even keep the same prime minister for a whole term during the last six years. It was the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd backstabbing powerplay that won the Coalition the election.

Please stop pretending you know anything about the current government in Australia, Australians or anything about Australia in General.

Right back at you buddy.

Comment: Re:Technology is only a small part of the problem (Score 1) 123

by Sloppy (#47500695) Attached to: Snowden Seeks To Develop Anti-Surveillance Technologies

It's a small part, but it's a part. I think Snowden has done his fair share of trying to inform laymen and stir up giving-a-fuck. If he wants to switch to working on tech, he could accomplish nothing and still come out far ahead of the rest of us. ;-)

The existence of a decent open-source router can't do much against a U.S. National Security Letter.

While we certain should care enough to force our government to stop being our adversary, there will always nevertheless be adversaries. You have to work on the tech, too. Even if you totally fixed the US government, Americans would still have to worry about other governments (and non-government parties, such as common criminals, nosey snoops, etc), where you have no vote at all. You will never, ever have a total social/civic solution which relies on, say, 4th Amendment enforcement to keep your privacy. I'm not saying your chances are slim; I'm saying they're literally 0%.

Furthermore, getting our tech more acceptable to layment acually would correct some of the problems inherent with NSLs, improving the situation even in a we-still-don't-give-a-fuck society. If you do things right, then the person they send the NSL to, is the surveillance target. The reason NSLs (coercion with silence) works is that people unnecessarily put too much trust into the wrong places.

For example, Bob sends plaintext love letters to Alice, so anyone who delivers or stores the love letters, can be coerced into giving up the contents. OTOH if they did email right, then if someone wanted to read the email Bob sent to Alice, they'd have to visit Bob or Alice. That squashes the most egregious part of NSLs, where the victim doesn't even get to know they're under attack.

That's true whether we're talking about email, or even if Bob and Alice get secure routers and VPN to each other. One of them gets the NSL ordering them to install malware on their router.

Comment: Re:New SSL root certificate authority (Score 2) 123

by Sloppy (#47500451) Attached to: Snowden Seeks To Develop Anti-Surveillance Technologies

A nice step ahead would be the establishment of a new set of root certificates...

The lesson of CA failure is that there shouldn't be root authorities. Users (or the people who set things up for them, in the case of novices) should be deciding whom they trust and how much, and certificates should be signed by many different parties, in the hopes that some of them are trusted by the person who uses it.

If you want to catch up to ~1990 tech, then you need to remove the "A" in "CA."

Comment: Lame article (Score 1) 170

by Sloppy (#47500367) Attached to: The Almost Forgotten Story of the Amiga 2000

Clicked (thought submitter screwed up the link and linked to a page that links to the article, rather than linking to the article), expecting to find a story about a forgotten A2000: maybe someone walked into an office in 2014 and saw that one was in use. Or someone knocked down a wall in 2014 and found one bricked up but still powered up. Instead, found a page telling everyone what A2000s are. Duh. Where's the "forgotten" part? All that I can tell that was forgotten, is that the writer forgot his elementary school spelling and punctuation lessons.

Comment: Re:He was anti GMO (Score 4, Informative) 71

by ChromeAeonium (#47496811) Attached to: Exhibit On Real Johnny Appleseed To Hit the Road

That's close, but not entirely true. Some apple trees are triploid, like Gravenstein and Jonagold, but most are diploid, so not really polyploid. Apple seeds will grow just fine, but the reason they are grafted is because they are very heterozygous, and as such, any seedlings will not have the same genetic characteristics as the original parent apples, and in all likelihood will be inferior. When people breed apple trees, they can go through thousands of seedlings only to find one tree with superior fruit. By grafting, you keep the superior genetics of an exceptional fruit, like Honeycrisp. Most fruit crops are reproduced asexually in some way for this reason, with the exception of cantaloupe, watermelon, and papaya, which have much shorter lifespans, and as such are much easier to work with. Trees are also grafted because, by using mature plant material, the tree will come to bearing faster, and you can select rootstock that offers dwarfing and disease resistance traits, which are useful.

You are right that he was against grafting though, proclaiming that it was wicked, damaging, and against the will of God. Unfortunately, judging by the modern opposition to GMOs, humanity did not learn anything from his silliness. Today, we have opposition to the Arctic apples, which hopefully will be released soon, which have the relatively simple trait of non-browning. Anti-GMO people claim they are worried that GMO apples will cross pollinate other apples, despite the simple fact that apples are asexually propagated. That's right, these folks don't know the first, most basic things about apple biology, but damn it they're going to pound in their stupid point anyway no matter how wrong they are. Ridiculous.

Comment: Re:Crazy (Score 1) 743

by LordLucless (#47496623) Attached to: States That Raised Minimum Wage See No Slow-Down In Job Growth

No, minimum wage is setting a floor on living standards.

No it doesn't. If you're unemployed, or not employed full-time, you will be living below the "standard" of people on the minimum wage, all other factors being equal. Also, if you have an unemployed wife or children, your standard of living will be lower than that of people who can spend their entire minimum wage on themselves.

You could say the minimum wage sets a floor on living standards for full-time workers with no dependents, but that's not as catchy.

Comment: Re:Local testing works? (Score 1) 743

by LordLucless (#47496591) Attached to: States That Raised Minimum Wage See No Slow-Down In Job Growth

The idea that economics is a zero sum game where one person can only get rich if they make others poor is a Marxist viewpoint, not a conservative viewpoint. Economic conservatives recognize that the surest way to increase the wealth of as many individuals as possible is to promote wealth creation by maximizing economic freedom through low taxes, low regulation and strong protection of private property rights.

I have no idea why he targeted conservatives, but zero-sum economics is not just a Marxist viewpoint anymore - it's a popular viewpoint for many who don't understand economics, because they can intuitively understand it.

Comment: Re:Local testing works? (Score 1) 743

by LordLucless (#47496547) Attached to: States That Raised Minimum Wage See No Slow-Down In Job Growth

Are you suggesting that there's a huge amount of US workers just waiting to pick fruit and plant pine trees? And the only thing holding them back is that the minimum wage is too high?

Yes. He's saying that because the minimum wage is too high, jobs are not going to those who expect the minimum wage (i.e. US workers). It's like any sort of market manipulation - screw with the market, create a black market. Frequently, the black market turns out to be worse than the market would be without the manipulation (e.g. because the workers are illegal anyway, they can also be abused without them going to the authorities).

Comment: Nope (Score 2, Interesting) 142

by countach (#47493219) Attached to: Can the Multiverse Be Tested Scientifically?

I doubt that there is any possibility to observationally test such a thing, and even if some weird experiment can be devised, I doubt it would really do more than hint at, rather than prove other universes. After all, by definition these other universes are not part of ours, so we can't get at them.

But let's just assume for a minute what is likely, that it can never be proven... Will the pointy headed boffins admit that it is not science, its... well.... something akin to religion really. About as scientific as any religious belief. In which case, shouldn't we really stop the whining between the scientific and religious factions? The scientists must admit that certain things could well be true that they can't prove, and that such things are worth talking about in the same breath as "real science", i.e. the things that pretty much everyone admits is true because it is science.

Next time some pseudo intellectual proclaims "that's not science", just remember... neither is a lot of stuff that gets published under the name of science, and which nobody seems to complain about.

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (1) Gee, I wish we hadn't backed down on 'noalias'.