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Comment: Re:blowing smoke (Score 1) 157

by GameboyRMH (#47973657) Attached to: Anonymous Peer-review Comments May Spark Legal Battle

The commenters didn't file a suit against him, they just said things on the Internet, so the right to face his accusers is not applicable here.

He's suing for the business to reveal information on their customers, nothing more. He can then try to file a suit against those customers for saying mean things leading to him losing his job, but it wouldn't be smart.

Comment: Re:blowing smoke (Score 2) 157

by GameboyRMH (#47972539) Attached to: Anonymous Peer-review Comments May Spark Legal Battle

That's assuming he didn't simply fuck up as a scientist and deserve to lose his job.

If the comments came in over the phone, whether they were legitimate criticisms pointing out mistakes you made or harassing calls that lead to you being fired for stupid wouldn't sue the phone company or the callers.

Comment: Re: Trolls are bad people (Score 1) 235

by EmperorOfCanada (#47970751) Attached to: Friendly Reminder: Do Not Place Your iPhone In a Microwave
How many command lines have you copied and pasted into your machine over the years?

In the early days of my Linux fumbling I am fairly certain that I would have pasted a "rm -rf /" as root if it were embedded into other lines of code.

For that matter how many libraries have you downloaded and then run? How would you like it if the latest version of OpenCV came with something that would fry your GPU? Ha ha you were too stupid to check 20 million lines of code to see if there was a GPU frying addition by some guy who managed to get his contribution added at the last second. I hope you learned your lesson? Or is the guy who added it an asshole? (I use OpenCV generically as just some minor library that might not be rigidly managed)

Comment: Re:This can only work a little bit... (Score 1) 238

by EmperorOfCanada (#47966063) Attached to: Small Restaurant Out-Maneuvers Yelp In Reviews War
This is a very good suggestions in that it slightly filters reviewers. Except that the restaurant has a limitless supply of these codes. An alternative that I thought of was that you have to use your phone to review the restaurant while standing near it. This mostly prevents hiring shill review mills, and it somewhat limits the reviews to one per device (not terribly hard to get around but a little bit more of a barrier).

Comment: Re: Trolls are bad people (Score 4, Insightful) 235

by EmperorOfCanada (#47965979) Attached to: Friendly Reminder: Do Not Place Your iPhone In a Microwave
What if I dressed up as a doctor, had an air of gravitas, videoed from what looks like an ivy covered university and gave terrible terrible medical advice about Tylenol maximum dosages? Or if I dressed as a garage mechanic used all kinds of mechanical words and gave horrible advice such as sugar in the gas tank eliminates the squeal when you hit the brakes?

We all can't be experts in everything. Some people are really really not technical while not actually being stupid people. This sort of thing might not fool many slashdotters but which fork to use during which course during a fancy dinner with a potential investor in our tech startup might confound many of us; and end up costing us a whole lot more than a replacement phone.

Comment: Trolls are bad people (Score 2, Insightful) 235

by EmperorOfCanada (#47965595) Attached to: Friendly Reminder: Do Not Place Your iPhone In a Microwave
I think that this article is psychologically linked to the recent article about internet trolls actually being very bad people. I love a good prank but this is just wanton sadistic behaviour. My phone provides me with much joy so anyone who would take that away from me and cost me hundreds of dollars for a laugh is wired seriously wrong; I'm lucky to have enough understanding to not fall for this sort of thing but it makes it just that much meaner to prey upon those who would.

Comment: This can only work a little bit... (Score 4, Insightful) 238

by EmperorOfCanada (#47962461) Attached to: Small Restaurant Out-Maneuvers Yelp In Reviews War
This can work once or maybe in one or two places per region, but the reality is that many people will use services like yelp to narrow down their new eateries by a simple sort-by-rating.

Also this somewhat depends on people being connected to local media to be informed about this reversal. Most of my technology friends have zero interaction with local media. That is they don't listen to local radio, watch local TV, read local publications; thus they are more likely to read about this place far far away than to read about a similar even locally.

But this all raises a much larger issue and that is we almost need a yelp to rate the rating services. Especially as time goes by these crowd sourced rating services will either begin to alter their ratings for pay or they will be largely gamed by various unethical players who usually have financial motives to game the system.

For instance in my town most restaurants don't have more than a few dozen ratings at best. Thus it would not take a competitor much effort to set up a series of shill accounts and trash their overall average. "I was served beef that had 2 cooked worms and the salad had a maggot in it, the owner laughed when I pointed this out and said that he has paid off the health inspectors so go ahead an call."

Not to mention that there are professional services that will do this sort of shill voting for you. As an example when certain companies are brought up on slashdot there is an instant onslaught of comments that basically are talking points written in a style that only a PR company would use. "Those spurious allegations were never proven in court, with all court actions dropped, and the publications that conjured up that story don't even rate as tabloids. This civic minded company has given over $2,000,000 to women's shelters in the local area alone."

But as more and more companies come to realize that crowd sourced rating or communication systems can be gamed for profit then they will put more and more sophisticated efforts into gaming the system. I love the slashdot system of quazi randomly assigning moderator points but very simply if you have 1,000 slashdot accounts run by a group of interns then a huge number of points and comments could be brought to bare on any issue that is desired.

If you want to run a simple experiment. Go onto reddit, go into the appropriate area and trash talk a fortune 50 company using a classically known wrongdoing from recent history. In most cases your topic will not only be voted into oblivion it will have many comments that are the above mentioned talking points. Some issues are so powerful that it can overwhelm the mathematical capability of their PR firms if they don't get onto the issue fast enough or if reddit happens to have nullified one of their voting cadres recently.

So unless someone comes up with a mathematically sound system of voting/rating that is invulnerable to manipulation these systems will only remain viable for as long as the people running them are able to maintain their ethics and outsmart the professional and financially motivated manipulators.

Comment: Re:Why does this always happen? (Score 1) 263

by GameboyRMH (#47947685) Attached to: TrueCrypt Gets a New Life, New Name

It's not a commercial product so who cares if some PHB who thinks the name of an application is important doesn't like it?

And if they wanted to make it a commercial product, they could market it under a different name like SecureVault, or more likely Zitzzers since all the real words are no longer available.

How often I found where I should be going only by setting out for somewhere else. -- R. Buckminster Fuller