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Comment Re:NSA? (Score 1) 183

I... might agree with you on something else, but this is the difference between forcing someone to do something and forcing someone not to do something. That's not a minor difference, that's a big deal. To my knowledge it hasn't been tested in court, so you may be right there, but a judge would have to bend pretty far backwards in order to make that work.

Comment Re:NSA? (Score 1) 183

I would like to read those laws. I'm familiar with gag orders, but not with anything that can require you to say something you don't want to say. That would invalidate that whole warrent canary thing that a lot of privacy-minded groups are doing.

Can you tell me where I might find the text of these laws? Or maybe just a name so I can find it for myself?

Comment Re:The enemy of my enemy (Score 1) 191

The specific limitations of commentary platforms encourage certain types of communication. Twitter's 140 character limit allows for no nuance and seems to only support only the kind of jingoism which leads to extreme positions online, coming out in the form of endless flame wars, and I can certainly see how it could play some role in promoting extreme positions offline as well.

I blame Twitter for a large share of Gamergate, for example.

Comment Re:Thank you judge (Score 1) 155

Well I didn't read all your links, but I did read the first one: the senator is drawing a parallel between the RICO lawsuit which was successfully filed against the tobacco companies, showing that they deceived the public and compromised public health in pursuit of greater profits, and the oil companies who are doing the same thing today. This is a perfectly reasonable comparison to make.

Despite what you say, the senator is not calling for anyone to be imprisoned. He is suggesting the filing of a civil lawsuit.

I hope that the rest of your links are less deceitful, it can't be that hard to find some nut who's saying something outrageous.

Comment Re:NY, NJ, ILL (Score 1) 97

NY, NJ, and ILL do not have the most corrupt politicians in the country, they're just populous enough that you hear about it when their politicians go bad. Mining companies essentially own Idaho and Montana, so much that Montana had a law specifically trying to reign that in (removed by the Citizens United decision).

Really, if you accept corruption as a given, the fact that people still hear about it and get up in arms over it in some places should be a little encouraging - those people aren't so beaten down yet that they just shrug and move on when they hear about one of their politicians doing something bad.

Comment Re: Microphone access. (Score 1) 223

Amazon's app asks every time it wants to access something? That's not how apps work on my phone - they just ask for blanket permissions once at install and then they do whatever they want after that. If you don't grant them permission to do whatever they want then they don't install. Here, I downloaded the Amazon Appstore App just to see what you're talking about. Thought maybe I had misjudged it for a second there. This is from the AndroidManifest. I see it demands your location, ability to send SMS, network access (this is expected, but is notable when combined with reading your location), and the ominous COLLECT_METRICS, but I don't know exactly what that one means:

permission android:name="com.amazon.mShop.android.permission.C2D_MESSAGE" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mShop.android.permission.C2D_MESSAGE"/
uses-permission android:name="com.android.launcher.permission.INSTALL_SHORTCUT"/
uses-permission android:name="com.android.launcher.permission.READ_SETTINGS"/
uses-permission android:name="amazon.permission.COLLECT_METRICS"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.READ_CONTACTS"/
uses-feature android:glEsVersion="0x20000" android:required="true"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.settings.provider.CONTENT_PROVIDER_ACCESS" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.SEND_SMS"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.INSTALL_PACKAGES"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.DELETE_PACKAGES"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.GLOBAL_BROADCAST_com.amazon.mShop.android" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.android.launcher.permission.UNINSTALL_SHORTCUT"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.GLOBAL_BROADCAST_com.amazon.mShop.android"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.settings.SETTING_CHANGE_BROADCAST_PERMISSION" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.settings.SETTING_CHANGE_BROADCAST_PERMISSION"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.dcp.settings.permission.READ_SETTINGS" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.dcp.sso.permission.account.changed"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.download.CONTENT_PROVIDER_WRITE_com.amazon.mShop.android" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.INTERNET"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.WRITE_EXTERNAL_STORAGE"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.ACCESS_NETWORK_STATE"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.WAKE_LOCK"/
uses-permission android:name="com.android.amazon.dcp.ota.permission.INSTALL_PACKAGES"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.install.INSTALL_com.amazon.mShop.android" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.install.INSTALL_com.amazon.mShop.android"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.install.CONTENT_PROVIDER_WRITE_com.amazon.mShop.android" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.install.CONTENT_PROVIDER_WRITE_com.amazon.mShop.android"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.install.KICKOFF_INSTALL_com.amazon.mShop.android" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.install.KICKOFF_INSTALL_com.amazon.mShop.android"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.install.RECEIVE_INSTALL_STATE_com.amazon.mShop.android" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.install.RECEIVE_INSTALL_STATE_com.amazon.mShop.android"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.CONTENT_PROVIDER_READ_com.amazon.mShop.android" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.CONTENT_PROVIDER_READ_com.amazon.mShop.android"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.authentication.permission.DEREGISTRATION_BROADCAST_PERMISSION_com.amazon.mShop.android" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.authentication.permission.DEREGISTRATION_BROADCAST_PERMISSION_com.amazon.mShop.android"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.malware.blockedapp.BLOCKED_APP_PROVIDER_WRITE_com.amazon.mShop.android" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.malware.blockedapp.BLOCKED_APP_PROVIDER_WRITE_com.amazon.mShop.android"/
permission android:description="@string/permission_purchasing_notify_description" android:label="@string/permission_purchasing_notify" android:name="com.amazon.inapp.purchasing.Permission.NOTIFY" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
permission android:description="@string/permission_physical_purchasing_notify_description" android:label="@string/permission_physical_purchasing_notify" android:name="com.amazon.device.iap.physical.Permission.NOTIFY" android:protectionLevel="signature"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.inapp.purchasing.Permission.NOTIFY"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.device.iap.physical.Permission.NOTIFY"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.settings.provider.CONTENT_PROVIDER_ACCESS"/
android:uses-permission android:maxSdkVersion="18" android:name="android.permission.READ_EXTERNAL_STORAGE"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.ACCESS_WIFI_STATE"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.ACCESS_COARSE_LOCATION"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.ACCESS_FINE_LOCATION"/
uses-permission android:name="com.amazon.mas.client.CONTENT_PROVIDER_READ"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.apps_unlocked.READ_STATUS" android:protectionLevel="normal"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.REAL_GET_TASKS"/
uses-permission android:name="android.permission.PACKAGE_USAGE_STATS"/
permission android:name="com.amazon.CONTENT_PROVIDER_ACCESS" android:protectionLevel="signature"/

Comment Re: Microphone access. (Score 1) 223

Google's not okay, but Amazon is just fine? I'm not sure I follow that. I just firewall my phone and don't let anything through except the web browser and the Humble Bundle app (for games). Games that I get through the Humble Bundle are ostensibly DRM-free (they're not doing as well with this as they used to) so it's not a problem that none of them have network access.

Comment Re:Review Baratz all you want (Score 2) 351

He's constantly befuddled by how hard it is to deal with people that have hundreds upon hundreds of years of war and bloodshed between them with a sizable percentage that only know hatred for everyone who isn't one of them.

This kind of language is counter-productive. There has been discontent in the middle east for a long time, but the current groups have been in open conflict only since 1945 and have been hostile for less than one hundred years. A peaceful resolution is certainly possible, given some significant changes in leadership. Those changes are coming - the people maintaining this conflict are primarily the old guard, the same people who started this conflict.

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