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XBox (Games)

Modded Xbox Bans Prompt EFF Warning About Terms of Service 254

Last month we discussed news that Microsoft had banned hundreds of thousands of Xbox users for using modified consoles. The Electronic Frontier Foundation has now pointed to this round of bans as a prime example of the power given to providers of online services through 'Terms of Service' and other usage agreements. "No matter how much we rely on them to get on with our everyday lives, access to online services — like email, social networking sites, and (wait for it) online gaming — can never be guaranteed. ... he who writes the TOS makes the rules, and when it comes to enforcing them, the service provider often behaves as though it is also the judge, jury and executioner. ... While the mass ban provides a useful illustration of their danger, these terms can be found in nearly all TOS agreements for all kinds of services. There have been virtually no legal challenges to these kinds of arbitrary termination clauses, but we imagine this will be a growth area for lawyers."

Comment Let them be. (Score 1) 590

They've worked for it, so they have every right to do what they want. If a teacher writes a book and sells it via a big name publisher, it's legit, but if they do it online, it's not? Some of the teachers who taught me had written material that were way better than the books that were recommended for us. If they make a living out of it, why not? Teaching is a low paying job. Might as well make money on the side. But, as the article says, if people are buying preschool lessons, then it's just lazy parents. Do you really need external lessons to teach your kid to be good at preschool?

Submission + - Google Voice anyone?

Shadow750 writes: "Today Google sent me an invite to use the new found GoogleVoice. Since I haven't seen anything about it pop up on /. I was wondering how the select few of us have been using this new service from our friendly neighborhood googs. Personally, with my new number, I'm giving it out freely to anyone since I can screen calls with the ListenIn feature. Now I'm just a lowly college student with a solitary cell line, but how are YOU using it?"

Submission + - Google OS Announced 12

shystershep writes: "Rumors have been floating around for years that Google was planning an OS to compete with Window. As of Tuesday night, it is official: "So today, we're announcing a new project that's a natural extension of Google Chrome — the Google Chrome Operating System. It's our attempt to re-think what operating systems should be. Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks. Later this year we will open-source its code, and netbooks running Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010." It is separate from the Android mobile OS, will run on both x86 and ARM processors, and is aimed primarily at web use. Other than that, details are scarce."

Submission + - Woman accused - targeting girl, 9, with Craigslist->

ae1294 writes: A Long Island, New York, social worker is facing two misdemeanor charges after allegedly posting a sexually suggestive ad on Craigslist that gave interested parties the home phone number of a 9-year-old girl. Margery Tannenbaum posted the ad to get revenge after an argument between her daughter and the girl, who attend the same school in Hauppauge, New York.

According to Suffolk County authorities, the mother of the girl intercepted calls before her daughter answered. She said she received 22 calls in one day, in all around 40 calls from various men who saw the ad, including some seeking an escort service. In one, the mother is quoted as saying, "This is her mother. Can I help you?" to which the male replied, "Oh. Hot lady lives with foxy mamma?" The caller hung up after the girl's mother told him the "hot girl" he was referring to was 9 years old.

Link to Original Source

Adobe Uses DMCA On Protocol It Promised To Open 203

An anonymous reader writes "Despite promising in January to open RTMP, Adobe has issued a DMCA take down request for an open source implementation of the protocol. The former SourceForge project page for rtmpdump now reports 'Invalid Project.' rtmpdump has been used in tools such as get_iplayer and get-flash-videos. Adobe is no stranger to the DMCA, having previously used it against Dmitry Sklyarov."

The goal of science is to build better mousetraps. The goal of nature is to build better mice.