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+ - Countries don't own their Internet domains, ICANN says->

Submitted by angry tapir
angry tapir (1463043) writes "The Internet domain name for a country doesn't belong to that country — nor to anyone, according to ICANN. Plaintiffs who successfully sued Iran, Syria and North Korea as sponsors of terrorism want to seize the three countries' ccTLDs (country code top-level domains) as part of financial judgments against them. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, which oversees the Internet, says they can't do that because ccTLDs aren't even property."
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+ - Bar Exam Fails Law Grads->

Submitted by BobandMax
BobandMax (95054) writes "ExamSoft, the management platform software that handles digital bar exam submissions for multiple states, experienced a severe technical meltdown on Tuesday, leaving many graduates temporarily unable to complete the exams needed to practice law. The snafu also left bar associations from nearly 20 states with no choice but to extend their submission deadlines."
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Comment: Re:theres no money in procedural rigour. (Score 2) 163

by sjames (#47571249) Attached to: The Problems With Drug Testing

Not really. They need only prove to be slightly better than placebo in a flawed study.

For example, in the SSRI studies, the side effects of the drugs effectively unblinded all of them.

That's why we see expensive new drugs get to the market when less expensive drugs with equal or better effectiveness and a better history of safety already exist.

+ - DEVELOPERS WANTED: Android IMSI-Catcher Detector->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Hello, everyone! Do you have a smartphone? Probably. Did you notice that Spying and Wiretapping on phones keeps increasing? For all of you that are sick of getting spied on through IMSI-Catchers, Silent SMS and alike and want to do something about it, here's a great project you should check out: "The Android-IMSI-Catcher-Detector" (AIMSICD). It is an Android open-source based project to detect and (hopefully one day) avoid fake base stations (IMSI-Catchers) or other base-stations (mobile antennas) with poor/no encryption. Wondering what "AIMSICD" is about?

This project aims to warn users if the ciphering is turned off and also enables several other protection-mechanisms. Since it is under constant development, they are constantly searching for testers and security-enthusiastic developers with balls. Don't be shy, feel free to contribute, in any way you can on GitHub: https://github.com/SecUpwN/And..."

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+ - Comcast Confessions->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "We heard a couple weeks ago about an incredibly pushy Comcast customer service representative who turned a quick cancellation into an ordeal you wouldn't wish on your enemies. To try and find out what could cause such behavior, The Verge reached out to Comcast employees, hoping a few of them would explain training practices and management directives. They got more than they bargained for — over 100 employees responded, and they paint a picture of a corporation overrun by the neverending quest for greater profit. From the article: 'These employees told us the same stories over and over again: customer service has been replaced by an obsession with sales, technicians are understaffed and tech support is poorly trained, and the massive company is hobbled by internal fragmentation. ... Brian Van Horn, a billing specialist who worked at Comcast for 10 years, says the sales pitch gradually got more aggressive. "They were starting off with, ‘just ask," he says. "Then instead of ‘just ask,’ it was ‘just ask again,’ then ‘engage the customer in a conversation,’ then ‘overcome their objections.’" He was even pressured to pitch new services to a customer who was 55 days late on her bill, he says.'"
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Comment: Re: Smokers (Score 1) 155

by sjames (#47563699) Attached to: Smoking Mothers May Alter the DNA of Their Children

The tax on cigarettes already makes up the majority of the retail price. Meanwhile, since smokers tend to die before needing long term medical care, they are actually less expensive than non-smokers. Especially when you consider that they also spend less time eligible for social security.

Of course, those taxes are spent on just about anything but medical care for smokers but you can't blame the smokers for that.

+ - 35% of (American) Adults Have Debt "In Collections" 1

Submitted by meeotch
meeotch (524339) writes "According to a new study by the Urban Institute, 35% of U.S. adults with a credit history (91% of the adult population of the U.S.) have debt "in collections" — a status generally not acquired until payments are at least 180 days past due. Debt problems seem to be worse in the South, with states hovering in the 40%+ range, while the Northeast has it better, at less than 30%. The study's authors claim their findings actually underrepresent low-income consumers, because "adults without a credit file are more likely to be financially disadvantaged."

Oddly, only 5% of adults have debt 30-180 days past due. This latter fact is partially accounted for by the fact that a broader range of debt can enter "in collections" status than "past due" status (e.g. parking tickets)... But also perhaps demonstrates that as one falls far enough along the debt spiral, escape becomes impossible. Particularly in the case of high-interest debt such as credit cards — the issuers of which cluster in states such as South Dakota, following a 1978 Supreme Court ruling that found that states' usury laws did not apply to banks headquartered in other states.

Even taking into account the folks to lost a parking ticket under their passenger seat, 35% is a pretty shocking number. Anyone have other theories why this number is so much higher than the 5% of people who are just "late"? How about some napkin math on the debt spiral? (And unfortunately, cue the inevitable geek snobbery about how people in debt must be "idiots".)"

The number of arguments is unimportant unless some of them are correct. -- Ralph Hartley

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