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Comment: Re:It's still illegal in Illinois (Score 1) 215

by gzearfoss (#33302844) Attached to: Court OKs Covert iPhone Audio Recording

What's notable about this case is that Connecticut (where the incident took place) is a 'two-party consent' state, at least for recording phone calls. This incident took place face-to-face, which prevented the state laws from coming in to play.

A question for those with more knowledge of the legal system: Can this be used as precedent against two-party consent laws for call recording?

Comment: Re:What is a "paid Tweet"? (Score 2, Insightful) 83

by gzearfoss (#32329144) Attached to: Twitter To Block Third-Party Paid Tweets

Other 'flavors' of paid Tweets could include:
  - A celebrity that hires a publicity company to manage their Twitter feed.
  - A company that uses a Twitter feed to announce new products, contests, feedback.
  - A famous Twitterer who gets a kickback for mentioning a specific product
  - A person who really likes a specific brand of cookie / restaurant / etc

Do they have a plan to separate out that fourth person from the previous three?

Comment: *Surprisingly* unconvincing? (Score 3, Insightful) 165

by gzearfoss (#30785228) Attached to: Adding Up the Explanations For ACTA's "Shameful Secret"

From the summary...

[MPAA/RIAA Champion Steven] Metalitz took on three other panelists and a moderator, all of whom were less than sympathetic to his positions, and he made the lengthiest case for both ACTA and its secrecy that we have ever heard. It was also surprisingly unconvincing.

I'd find it more surprising if he could make a convincing argument for all the secrecy.

Comment: Characters, not words... (Score 1) 262

by gzearfoss (#30537008) Attached to: Typing With Your Brain

Though it's great for people with no other means of communication, there are two main obstacles I see for everyday use: Speed, and words.
Speed: "I've seen people do up to eight characters per minute," Wilson says. Nothing else needs to be said.
Words: When I type, I don't think about typing individual letters, so much as I think about typing the words in the sentence. I'm no neuroscientist, but I would wager that this doesn't trigger the part of the brain that they're reading the letters from - or if it does, it triggers them too quickly to be read.

In other words, it's a great step in technology, and it's wonderful for those who need to use it, but I don't see it becoming practical for everyday use in the near future.

Comment: Re:Health reform for the stupid (Score 1) 85

by gzearfoss (#30408438) Attached to: Virtual Money For Real Lobbying

"You cannot reason people out of a position that they did not reason themselves into." - Ben Goldacre.

Besides those with financial interests in the status quo, the majority of those fighting reform rely on appeals to emotions or snazzy catchphrases (death panels, anybody?), not appeals to reason. Though insightful, I doubt stories like this have much of an impact on the opinions of those already convinced.

Comment: Re:Definitions so broad as to be pointless (Score 1) 245

by gzearfoss (#30379762) Attached to: Each American Consumed 34 Gigabytes Per Day In '08

Well, it's not cars, but consider the humble radio. When I am studying, I like to have the radio on in the background. I also have a favorite radio show that, when it comes on, I try to drop everything and listen to.
According to the measurement system used in the study, I am 'consuming' both the background noise and the radio show equally, in terms of time spent and in content consumed. I think that what I draw from what I am exposed to should be measured as content consumed - because otherwise I use as much sound content from the radio show as I do from the air conditioning system at work.

Comment: Re:Definitions so broad as to be pointless (Score 1) 245

by gzearfoss (#30378720) Attached to: Each American Consumed 34 Gigabytes Per Day In '08

You hit this on the head. It's easy to get gigantic numbers when everything coming in counts as data.

In addition, they count all 'data streams' received as being consumed, despite the chances of occurring at the same time. It's like saying that a hydroelectric dam consumes all water that passes it - whether it passes through the turbines or over the causeway.

There may be some interest in comparing the change in this number as a percent, but the fact "34 Gigabytes consumed per day" by itself means next to nothing.

Comment: Re:Wait a minute here (Score 1) 1364

by gzearfoss (#29807897) Attached to: Legal War For WA State Sunshine Law

Stupid trigger-happy moderation system, I was scrolling to something else, but accidentally selected off-topic - hence a reply to cancel the moderation.

That being said, I agree with what you said - by taking an active role in opposing gay marriage, they are "hating on" gays. I agree that most don't fit the stereotype the grandparent post describes, but simply because a person doesn't meet that stereotype does not mean that they can't hate on gays.

Comment: Re:Free speech (Score 1) 451

by gzearfoss (#28857281) Attached to: Real-World Consequences of Social Networking Posts

"We're a sue first, ask questions later kind of an organization," he said, noting that the company manages 1,500 apartments in Chicago and has a good reputation it wants to preserve.[italics mine]

Everyone has bad clients; that's part of doing business, and everything seen online should be taken with a grain of salt. Finding a bad comment or two about a company online is expected, and doesn't really impact their reputation.
However, suing your customers to silence them really shoots a whole in trying to 'preserve a good reputation'. PR: They're doing it wrong.

Comment: Re:Test for Money or No Test at All? (Score 3, Interesting) 205

by gzearfoss (#28773179) Attached to: Doctors Fight Patent On Medical Knowledge

That's the way it's supposed to work, but how it's more likely to work is:
1) Another clever person takes your idea, and uses it to make a better/faster/cheaper test
2) You hire lawyers to take the clever person to court, and tie up their product in so much litigation it looks like the world's largest ball of twine.
3) You either end up buying out the clever person, litigate them into bankruptcy, or delay them until you've extended the patent and your extended patent expires.
4) You then make a minor change to the process, repatent the idea, and repeat the process from step one.

Comment: Czechoslovakia? Try closer to home, right now. (Score 1) 179

by gzearfoss (#28732689) Attached to: Facebook Violates Canadian Privacy Law

Facebook is already letting ads use your face in them. See this blog post. I certainly don't qualify as hot or as single, thus I don't want my face showing up in these - especially without remuneration.

The short form of how to turn this off is to go to this page, and change the entry to "No one".

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve immortality through not dying. -- Woody Allen

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