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Comment: Re:Stupid-Tax (Score 1) 358

by martas (#49443471) Attached to: Google To Offer Ad-Free YouTube - At a Price

I request, they serve. I can do whatever I want with their data on my machine. There's not even a contract here.

You seem to be confusing legality and technical feasibility with ethics.

"Unspoken understanding" in the context of a multi-million dollar faceless corporation. That actually made me chuckle. They're the first ones to break the unspoken understanding of paying proper taxes for example and I'm supposed to let them infest my machine with bullshit? GTFO.

I don't see what one has to do with the other.

Comment: Re:Stupid-Tax (Score 1) 358

by martas (#49441389) Attached to: Google To Offer Ad-Free YouTube - At a Price
But the server is their machine. They serve you data under the unspoken understanding that you see their ads. By breaking that, you become the farmer whose cattle graze on public land (so am I, by the way, because fuck ads).

stop freeloading on the open protocols we already have

It's semantically impossible to freeload on an open protocol.

Comment: Re:No astronauts are getting their asses to Mars (Score 1) 160

by martas (#49428753) Attached to: NASA's Chief Scientist Predicts Evidence For Life Beyond Earth By 2025
If the argument for putting humans on Mars is that they can break rocks that robots can't, then they should instead invest the $10B dollars and 10 years it would take to get a human to Mars (conservative estimates) on robotics research, which would be enough to develop something that would have better rock-breaking capabilities than humans, without any of the downsides. The only remotely reasonable argument for putting people on Mars in the foreseeable future is PR.

Comment: Re:Cost of making the entire world 'safe'? (Score 1) 498

by martas (#49225241) Attached to: Mental Health Experts Seek To Block the Paths To Suicide
I must have missed the part where anyone in the article (or in the entire history of mankind, for that matter) suggested that we should try to change "every last bridge, high area, train track, city sidewalk, etc. into 'hampster' style fenced off tunnels". Could you point where that proposal was made? I feel so silly, here I was thinking that they were just proposing trying to address a few of the easiest and most common ways people commit suicide. But no, I suppose when they put a fence on the sides of a bridge just down the street from the campus of one of the most stressful universities in the country, that was just the first step to locking us all into hamster tubes.

Comment: Re:Crayons and safety scissors for everyone! (Score 1) 498

by martas (#49225151) Attached to: Mental Health Experts Seek To Block the Paths To Suicide
Yeah, putting a net under a bridge is just a few steps away from taking away all kitchen knives and "nerfing the whole world", right? If I didn't know any better, I'd think you were doing a caricature of bad slippery slope arguments. And apparently we aren't even reading summaries anymore, because if you had, there's no possible way you could have missed the part about how a significant portion of suicides are highly impulsive. Or the fact that all speculation aside, there is actual empirical evidence that "reducing the availability of highly lethal and commonly used suicide methods has been associated with declines in suicide rates of as much as 30%–50% in other countries".

Comment: Re:what conflict? (Score 1) 448

by martas (#49180041) Attached to: How One Climate-Change Skeptic Has Profited From Corporate Interests
Posts in this thread have explained several times how any why funding information is of legitimate interest. You seem to have your own notions about what scientific discourse and peer review mean. Where you get those ideas from I don't know, but I believe the academic community at large does not share them, nor should they, I think.

Comment: Re:what conflict? (Score 1) 448

by martas (#49163789) Attached to: How One Climate-Change Skeptic Has Profited From Corporate Interests
There may be vested interests, which does not mean their influence is equal or equivalent. Also, said vested interests do not affect individual researchers differently, which is a further potential source of bias. Finally, research typically is considered on its merit. As a matter of routine, no research is dismissed simply due to the source of its funding in the academic world. This researcher's work is no exception, as it has been argued against based on tangible scientific evidence. However, disclosure of funding sources is still one of the most basic safeguards against systematic corruption of published work. This has happened in the past, and it will always remain a possibility because science does not and cannot work according to whatever idealized model of incontrovertible proof and fully verifiable evidence you have in your mind. In the real world, there will always be subtle biases.

Comment: Re:what conflict? (Score 1) 448

by martas (#49136511) Attached to: How One Climate-Change Skeptic Has Profited From Corporate Interests
Again, there are ways of funding research anonymously, but the ethical way to do so is for the source of funding to remain hidden from the researchers as well. As for your ideas about research being considered "on its merit" -- that might work in a more ideal world, but it is a naive simple-minded claim which ignores the basics of human nature as well as overwhelming historical precedent.

Comment: Re:what conflict? (Score 1) 448

by martas (#49136481) Attached to: How One Climate-Change Skeptic Has Profited From Corporate Interests
If donors wish to remain anonymous, they are free to do so, but they must also be anonymous from the researchers. And you can play semantics all you want, but it won't change the fact that the journals requested information they are entitled to request which the researcher failed to provide, which is a serious breach of ethics (not to mention contract).

Comment: Re:what conflict? (Score 1) 448

by martas (#49109063) Attached to: How One Climate-Change Skeptic Has Profited From Corporate Interests

Receiving money to conduct research is conflict of interest if the funds come from parties with vested interest in findings' results?

Yes. It is a conflict of interest that must be disclosed. It is routine procedure in, for instance, medical papers funded by pharmaceutical companies. The summary is sensationalized bullshit, but that part is true.

The trouble with the rat-race is that even if you win, you're still a rat. -- Lily Tomlin

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