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Submission + - Music streaming is killing digital downloads faster than we thought (bgr.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Even though we don’t need more proof that music streaming is the wave of the future, recent comments made by Warner Music Group CEO Stephen Cooper really underscore just how fast the transition from digital downloads to music streaming is happening.

During an earnings conference call on Monday, Cooper said that Warner Music, the third largest recording company on the planet, generated more money from streaming than they did from digital downloads, representing the first time this has ever happened at a big music label.

Submission + - US Passport Agency Contractor Stole Applicants' Data To Steal Their Identities

An anonymous reader writes: Three women from Houston, Texas, stand accusedof engaging in an identity theft scheme in which one of them, a contract employee of the Department of State Passport Agency, was in charge of stealing personally identifiable information of persons applying for a passport. The information was then used to create counterfeit identification documents, which the other two women would use to successfully impersonate the affected individuals in order to fraudulently obtain commercial lines of credit and to purchase iPhones, iPads and other electronic merchandise.

Submission + - World Health Organization wants more neutral (and blander) disease names (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: The World Health Organization (WHO) mostly works to reduce the physical toll of disease. But last week it turned to another kind of harm: the insult and stigma inflicted by diseases named for people, places, and animals. Among the existing monikers that its new guidelines “for the Naming of New Human Infectious Diseases” would discourage: Ebola, swine flu, Rift valley Fever, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, and monkey pox. Instead, WHO says researchers, health officials, and journalists should use more neutral, generic terms, such as severe respiratory disease or novel neurologic syndrome.

Submission + - Sorority Files Lawsuit After Sacred Secrets Posted on Penny Arcade Forums (seattlepi.com) 1

Limekiller42 writes: Lawyers for the Phi Sigma Sigma sorority have filed suit in Seattle's King County Superior Court against an unidentified person for "publicizing the sorority’s secret handshake, robe colors and other practices." The well-written article is by Levi Pulkkinen of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and states that the sorority is seeking a restraining order and financial compensation for damages.

Submission + - If the Programmer Won't Go To Mountain Valley, Should MV Go To the Programmer?

theodp writes: "If 95% of great programmers aren’t in the US," Matt Mullenweg advises in How Paul Graham Is Wrong (a rejoinder to Graham's Let the Other 95% of Great Programmers In), "and an even higher percentage not in the Bay Area, set up your company to take advantage of that fact as a strength, not a weakness. Use WordPress and P2, use Slack, use G+ Hangouts, use Skype, use any of the amazing technology that allows us to collaborate as effectively online as previous generations of company did offline. Let people live someplace remarkable instead of paying $2,800 a month for a mediocre one bedroom rental in San Francisco. Or don’t, and let companies like Automattic and Github hire the best and brightest and let them live and work wherever they like." Microsoft and Google — which hawk the very tools to facilitate remote work that Mullenweg cites — have shuttered remote offices filled with top talent even as they cry the talent sky is falling. So, is "being stubborn on keeping a company culture that requires people to be physically co-located," as Mullenweg puts it, a big part of tech's 'talent shortage' problem?

Submission + - Both NY and LA Times write that Silicon Valley can't find enough talent. 2

An anonymous reader writes: The New York Times has featured Zenefits in an article about the need for more H1-B visas, because they can't find enough qualified U.S. workers to fill their active positions, even after President Obama's recent Executive Actions. The Los Angeles Times has done similarly. Why are so many jobs, primarily in Silicon Valley it seems, going unfilled in 2014?

Submission + - IT Jobs Take Summer Swan Dive 1

snydeq writes: The IT job hiring bump earlier this year wasn't sustained in July and August, when numbers slumped considerably, InfoWorld reports. 'So much for the light at the end of the IT jobs tunnel. According to job data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as analyzed by Janco Associates, the IT professional job market has all but lost the head of steam it built up earlier this year. A mere 3,400 IT jobs were added in August, down from 4,600 added for July and way down from the 13,800 added in April of this year. Overall, IT hiring in 2014 got off to a weak start, then surged, only to stumble again.' Anybody out there finding the IT job market discouraging of late and care to share their experiences?

Submission + - Privacy Vulnerabilities in Coursera, Including Student Email Addresses

An anonymous reader writes: Coursera, the online education platform with over 9 million students, appears to have some serious privacy shortcomings. According to one of Stanford's instructors, 'any teacher can dump the entire user database, including over nine million names and email addresses.' Also, 'if you are logged into your Coursera account, any website that you visit can list your course enrollments.' The attack even has a working proof of concept. A week after the problems were reported, Coursera still hasn't fixed them.

Submission + - When Reporting On Piracy Becomes Ethically Irresponsible, If Not Illegal (celluloidjunkie.com)

sperlingreich writes: The leak of "Expendables 3" more than three weeks before its theatrical release made me question whether reporting on the news was the right thing to do.

Freedom of the press laws may "allow" media outlets and journalists to report on pirated titles without becoming financially culpable for a producer's losses, though doesn't such activity actually publicize the availability of specific content, thus increasing illegal downloading and ultimately the economic damage it causes?

Submission + - Google protects undersea cables against potential shark attacks (theweathernetwork.com)

brunes69 writes: When you plan for the costs to span the entire Pacific Ocean with fibre optic communication cable, you need to account for a lot of different factors to ensure that cable will remain protected and intact. Google, for one, is apparently taking no chances with its cables, even going so far as to protect them against shark attack.

Submission + - Comcast Customer Service Rep Just Won't Take No For An Answer

RevWaldo writes: The Verge and other sources post how AOL's Ryan Block ultimately succeeded in cancelling his Comcast account over the phone, but not before the customer service representative pressed him for eight solid minutes (audio) to explain his reasoning for leaving "the number one provider of TV and internet service in the country" in a manner that would cause a character in Glengarry Glen Ross to blanch. Comcast has as of now issued an apology.

Submission + - Apple's Spotty Record Of Giving Back To The Tech Industry (itworld.com)

chicksdaddy writes: One of the meta-stories to come out of the Heartbleed (http://heartbleed.com/) debacle is the degree to which large and wealthy companies have come to rely on third party code (http://blog.veracode.com/2014/04/heartbleed-and-the-curse-of-third-party-code/) — specifically, open source software maintained by volunteers on a shoestring budget. Adding insult to injury is the phenomenon of large, incredibly wealthy companies that gladly pick the fruit of open source software, but refusing to peel off a tiny fraction of their profits to financially support those same groups.

Exhibit 1: Apple Computer. On Friday, IT World ran a story that looks at Apple's long history of not giving back to the technology and open source community. The article cites three glaring examples: Apple's non-support of the Apache Software Foundation (despite bundling Apache with OS X), as well as its non-support of OASIS and refusal to participate in the Trusted Computing Group (despite leveraging TCG-inspired concepts, like AMDs Secure Enclave in iPhone 5s).

Given Apple's status as the world's most valuable company and its enormous cash hoard, the refusal to offer even meager support to open source and industry groups is puzzling. From the article:

"Apple bundles software from the Apache Software Foundation with its OS X operating system, but does not financially support the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) in any way. That is in contrast to Google and Microsoft, Apple's two chief competitors, which are both Platinum sponsors of ASF — signifying a contribution of $100,000 annually to the Foundation. Sponsorships range as low as $5,000 a year (Bronze), said Sally Khudairi, ASF's Director of Marketing and Public Relations. The ASF is vendor-neutral and all code contributions to the Foundation are done on an individual basis. Apple employees are frequent, individual contributors to Apache. However, their employer is not, Khudairi noted.

The company has been a sponsor of ApacheCon, a for-profit conference that runs separately from the Foundation — but not in the last 10 years. "We were told they didn't have the budget," she said of efforts to get Apple's support for ApacheCon in 2004, a year in which the company reported net income of $276 million on revenue of $8.28 billion."

Carol Geyer at OASIS is quoted saying her organization has done "lots of outreach" to Apple and other firms over the years, and regularly contacts Apple about becoming a member. "Whenever we're spinning up a new working group where we think they could contribute we will reach out and encourage them to join," she said. But those communications always go in one direction, Geyer said, with Apple declining the entreaties.

Today, the company has no presence on any of the Organization's 100-odd active committees, which are developing cross-industry technology standards such as The Key Management Interoperability Protocol (KMIP) and the Public-Key Cryptography Standard (PKCS).

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