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Movies

+ - Disney presents: Fair use and copyrights

Submitted by
jdavidb
jdavidb writes "Eric Faden of Stanford University's Fair Use Project "stole" thousands of tiny clips from dozens of Disney films to create an educational film explaining copyright and fair use. Right out of the mouths of characters from Disney, the chief advocate behind the most recent ex post facto extension of copyright, you can learn how copyright terms have been extended, how important it is for works to pass into the public domain in something resembling a reasonable period of time, and what exceptions are granted by the principle of fair use."
Censorship

+ - SCO Chairman Fights to Ban Open Wireless Networks

Submitted by
cachedout
cachedout writes "SCO's Ralph Yarro had the floor yesterday at the Utah Technology Commission meeting in front of Utah lawmakers. Yarro proposed that free wireless sites and subscribers should be held responsible should any porn be delivered to minors because hotspots are apparently where kids go to watch porn all day long. Yarro told lawmakers that open wireless access points should be made a crime because we have an Internet out of control."
Space

+ - Lyrid meteors no moon this weekend

Submitted by
mdsolar
mdsolar writes "If you want to take a chance on the Lyrid Meteor Shower you should be looking this weekend. This shower is usually a quiet one but can result is spactacular displays from time to time. Sky and Telescope http://skytonight.com/observing/objects/meteors/33 05866.html has this to say:

In 1982 the rate unexpectedly reached 90 for a single hour, and 180 to 300 for a few minutes. A brief outburst of 100 per hour was also seen in 1922. And on April 20, 1803, residents of Richmond, Virginia, upon being rousted out of bed by a fire bell, were startled to see great numbers of meteors in all parts of the sky.
http://www.earthsky.org/article/49561/who-should-w atch-the-lyrid-meteor-shower gives viewing times as the very early hours of Sunday and Monday morning. The Moon will have set by then."
Businesses

+ - DRM will cost over $9 billion the 5 coming years

Submitted by
DRM coward
DRM coward writes "According to a recent report, companies will spend over 9 billion dollars on DRM technology, hardware and software, over the 5 coming years. At the end of 2007 over 1 billion dollars will have been spent on trying to prevent copyrighted material from spreading without control. The study, which was published by Insight Research, states that the industry is not moving to a more userfriendly nature, but actually on the contrary. More and more, companies will be working on creating tougher and tougher protections with less and less care for the end-users."
Media

+ - YouTube Video Awards, a legal defence?

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "ZDNet reports that later today YouTube will launch its 'YouTube Video Awards' for 2006. Nominees (which include big hitters such as Lonelygirl15 and Ask a Ninja) will be invited to upload new content over the next five days to promote themselves and canvas for votes. After which, we can expect a round of acceptance speeches. However, Don Dodge (an ex-VP of Product Development at Napster, during its good old P2P days) says the awards are a tactic by YouTube designed to deflect from their legal woes. The idea, he says, is to show the courts that there is "substantial non-infringing use" of the service."
Privacy

+ - DHS reveals more on Real ID

Submitted by
sharon fisher
sharon fisher writes "http://www.newwest.net/index.php/main/article/stat es_get_five_year_extension_on_real_id/

The good news is that states now don't have to comply with Real ID regulations until 2013. The bad news is that states will still have to do all the same things that has made more than 30 of them — including Idaho — pass or submit legislation protesting the act, which is intended to produce a uniform standard for driver's licenses.

The new deadline was revealed in a 162-page document issued today by the Department of Homeland Security.

States have been protesting a number of the components of the Real ID act, passed a year ago and originally intended to go into effect in May, 2008. Most notably, they are concerned about the $11 billion cost of implementing the program, but civil liberties issues are also a factor. Even Governor Butch Otter, one of the cosponsors of the bill in Congress, is repudiating it.

In fact, DHS said it had received comments from 48 jurisdictions — 46 states, plus American Samoa and the District of Columbia.

In addition to extending the deadline — though people whose licenses expire are supposed to get Real ID-compliant licenses before then — DHS said states should adopt an exception policy for people who, through no fault of their own, didn't have the appropriate documentation — particularly people born before 1935 — and that automatic renewal through venues such as the Internet continue to be allowed, if images of the original documents are kept.

While states no longer have to comply with the Act by May, 2008, they are supposed to submit their certification package by February, 2008 — 90 days before the May 2008 deadline — and in addition are supposed to "communicate their intent to certify compliance or request an extension" by October, 2007. However, such extensions are only intended to last until December, 2009.

As far as the privacy concerns that some people, such as the American Civil Liberties Union, have expressed, DHS essentially said that people shouldn't be concerned because such information is all collected by the government anyway. "[N]either the Real ID Act nor these proposed regulations gives the Federal Government any greater access to information than it had before."

Indeed, much of the security requirements appear to be pushed back down to the states. "Each State will be required to prepare a comprehensive security plan for its DMV offices and driver's license storage and production facilities, databases, and systems utilized for collecting, disseminating or storing information used in the issuance of REAL ID licenses. As part of this requirement, DHS will require that each State include in its annual certification information as to how the State will protect the privacy of the data collected, used, and maintained in connection with REAL ID, including all the source documents."

However, DHS has determined that the information should be stored on the back of the card in an unencrypted bar code, which DHS admitted is a security hole. "For example, a bar could scan the 2D barcode to verify that the individual presenting the driver's license or identification card was 21 or over, and at the same time could conceivably obtain the person's name and address off the barcode and compile a list of names and addresses of its patrons, which it could subsequently sell or use," the report explained. "DHS...invites comment on how to provide this access and the protection of the information at the same time."

DHS also gives its own figures and a breakdown of what it expects costs to be, which is $23 billion. States will incur more than 60% of these costs, DHS said.

Much of the rest of the voluminous report is a painstaking description of the documents that will — and will not — be suitable for identification for a Real ID.

DHS is actively seeking comments on the document. Comments can be faxed to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Attention: DHS-TSA Desk Officer, at (202) 395-5806.

The Real ID, which is being opposed by more than 30 states, including Montana, defines a number of requirements for driver's licenses, including a digital photo, various features intended to keep it from being duplicated, and could potentially include a radio frequency ID chip. In addition, it requires states to link their record-keeping systems to national databases. People who live in states that do not comply with the act will not be able to use their driver's licenses for boarding an airplane, entering a federal building, or opening some bank accounts."
Software

+ - FLICKR downtime caused havoc in bloggerworld

Submitted by
petercasier
petercasier writes "Recent FLICKR server problems caused havoc in the blogger world and beyond. Most users saw their pictures being replaced by others. This caused funny, obscene, frustrating, obscure, incredible,.. results. The FLICKR forum went nuts with people going nuts. A funny snapshot of the problems cause, you can read in: How a 30,000 Ton Ice Breaker was Replaced by a Flowerpot"

Do not simplify the design of a program if a way can be found to make it complex and wonderful.

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