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Submission + - Hasbro Buckles Down on Copyright Infringement, Pony Fans in Outrage (equestriadaily.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Back in 2011 there was a Slashdot story submitted about Hasbro's lenient copyright enforcement policies with regards to the then-new My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic reboot. Hasbro did not protest when older fans created parodies and derivative works (and they even turned a blind eye when full episodes of the show were uploaded to YouTube) as they saw this activity as helpful to growing the brand. This was largely successful: the "brony" fanbase has swelled to the millions (their news site Equestria Daily is actually capable of Slashdotting other websites), and My Little Pony--a franchise previously known for being of interest only to little girls--has made its mark in pop culture. Now, Hasbro's tune has changed. Parodies and other works have been taken down, leaving fans upset and very worried. It looks like the cease-and-desist recently sent out to the fan-made game "Fighting is Magic" has become the straw that broke the camel's back, sending the fanbase into a total furor. (The linked article has so far attracted 1000 comments in just over two hours.) Also, it's worth noting that Hasbro originally was fine with this game being created, and this reversal means the cease-and-desist came after months of development.

Yes, it's true that this is (or was originally) just a show for little girls. However, My Little Pony became huge among grown men (!) in part because Hasbro was lenient on copyright enforcement--they basically allowed their content to be pirated, seeing it as free advertising. Now that they've reversed their policy, what will this mean for the fans? And what will it mean for the franchise?


Submission + - In 2011, Fracking Was #2 in Causing Greenhouse Gas in US (businessweek.com)

eldavojohn writes: According to Bloomberg, drilling and fracking results in greenhouse gases second only to coal power plants in the United States. From the article, 'Emissions from drilling, including fracking, and leaks from transmission pipes totaled 225 million metric tons of carbon-dioxide equivalents during 2011, second only to power plants, which emitted about 10 times that amount.' According to Mother Jones, we now have more giant methane fireballs than any other country in the world and we can now see once dim North Dakota at night from space.
Open Source

Submission + - Ubuntu for Smartphones Will Be Released in a Few Weeks (technologyreview.com)

moon_unit2 writes: Canonical says it will release a version of its OS for smartphones, along with a tool for installing it on Galaxy Nexus handsets in the next few weeks. Pat McGowan, director of engineering at Canonical, demonstrated the software at MIT last week, and said that carriers and hardware makers have shown a “very strong, good reaction” because they are so concerned about the amount of power Google has in mobile computing.
The Internet

Submission + - The Return of CISPA (thehill.com)

Presto Vivace writes: "House panel to reintroduce controversial cyber bill, setting up White House fight

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) and ranking member Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.) said Friday that they plan to re-introduce the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) next week during a speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. The bill is aimed at improving information-sharing about cyber threats between government and industry so cyberattacks can be thwarted in real time.


Submission + - Texas school board searching for another theory besides evolution (arstechnica.com)

An anonymous reader writes: [Ars Technica] recently reviewed the documentary The Revisionaries, which chronicles the actions of the Texas state school board as it attempted to rewrite the science and history standards that had been prepared by experts in education and the relevant subjects. For biology, the board's revisions meant that textbook publishers were instructed to help teachers and students "analyze all sides of scientific information" about evolution. Given that ideas only reach the status of theory if they have overwhelming evidence supporting them, it isn't at all clear what "all sides" would involve.

Submission + - CISPA Coming Back: Cybersecurity Bill May Change Everything (hypervocal.com)

overmoderated writes: Yesterday, U.S. congressmen Mike Rogers (R-MI) and Dutch Ruppersberger (D-MD) announced before the House that they are planning to revive the controversial Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protect Act (CISPA) and work closely with the White House to ensure its passage sometime later this year.

The unpopular legislative attempt at ramping up cybersecurity regulations was tabled indefinitely last year in August after it was shot down in a Senate vote, but some had raised the possibility that it could've been delayed by the lawmakers to avoid having to make a decision right before the elections.


Submission + - ACTA and SOPA make a return via TAFTA (techdirt.com)

poetmatt writes: Techdirt notes that a new trade agreement is being released which will reintroduce the same IP maximalist issues from ACTA, SOPA and TPP previously, this time named TAFTA.

FTA: "More details are starting to come out as the main EU negotiator for ACTA, Karel de Gucht, came to DC to see about getting things kicked off, on an agreement that's being called TAFTA — the Trans Atlantic "Free Trade" Agreement. Of course, instead of recognizing the lessons from previous failed efforts to push for broken maximalist policies, it appears that the plan is to try, try again.

Submission + - House Intelligence Committee Plans To Re-introduce CISPA (muktware.com)

sfcrazy writes: The ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, Dutch Ruppersberger, stated that he plans to re-introduce CISPA (Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act) along with Mike Rogers, the current Intelligence Chairman this year.

So will this bill get through the White House this time and threat yet again our Internet freedom, or this time will really be a good thing, making the share of cyber threats been done with more ease, while keeping the privacy of the normal user? In my opinion, a bill like this always has "collateral damage" and will only make the privacy invasion just less obvious, so I think this time it will pass, if people won't be aware of this in good time.


Submission + - Ubuntu Smartphone Shipping in October (wsj.com)

wehe writes: "The Wallstreet Journal writes: "Smartphones running the open source Ubuntu operating system will be available to customers beginning in October 2013, according to Mark Shuttleworth, founder and CEO of Canonical Ltd. Canonical provides services for corporate customers using Ubuntu open source software. Application developers will have access to the smaartphone operating system, which is optimized for the Galaxy Nexus handset manufactured by Samsung Electronics Co. , in late February.""

Submission + - Games Workshop bullies author over use of the words "space marine" (boingboing.net)

jzoetewey writes: "An author I know (MCA Hogarth) recently had her book "Spots the Space Marine" taken off Amazon because Games Workshop claimed it violated their trademark. The interesting thing? Their trademark doesn't include ebooks or novels. Unfortunately, she doesn't have the money to fight them.

Plus the idea of a space marine was around long before they were.

Anyway, Cory Doctorow at Boing Boing has written something about it:"


Submission + - Everybody gets to design Ubuntu phones—see the best "fan-made" mockups (arstechnica.com)

jbrodkin writes: "How would you like to create a smartphone operating system? If you get involved in Canonical's Ubuntu phone project you can, in a way. Canonical is taking community input on what the core applications (e-mail, calendar, clock/alarm, weather, file manager, document viewer, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter) should look like. The best aspects of community proposals will hopefully make it into Ubuntu phones when they finally hit the market sometime toward the end of 2013 or beginning of 2014. Take a look at the best designs Canonical has received so far."

Submission + - Munich finds Linux migration cost less than HP's analysis claims (h-online.com)

Ja'Achan writes: Microsoft asked HP to analyse Munich's Linux migration, and HP found that the migration to Linux cost €60.6M, where if they had remained with Microsoft, it had only cost €17M. Now, Munich's City Council has objected against this analysis, which, among other assumed that Linux and Windows systems have "roughly the same hardware requirements". They found that the cost of migration was €23M, where if they had stayed with Microsoft, it would have cost them €34M.

Submission + - Ubuntu to Build Own Display Server, Not Go With Wayland (omgubuntu.co.uk)

An anonymous reader writes: Ubuntu Community Manager Jono Bacon has dropped several hints that Ubuntu may 'roll' with a custom display server for Unity across its desktop, phone, tv and tablet devices. His most telling response was in a reply to a question on Wayland adoption, saying: “X doesn’t meet [our] needs, Wayland doesn’t meet [our] needs”.

Submission + - Russian eBookseller LitRes Gets Competing eBook Apps Booted from Google Play (the-digital-reader.com)

Nate the greatest writes: The developer of the popular Android app Moon+ Reader was surprised to discover this weekend that he is a filthy stinking pirate. Google informed him via an automated email that Moon+ Reader had been removed from Google Play because the app had switched to using pirate sites as the main sources of ebooks. Or at least, that's what LitRes claims, but when they complained to Google LitRes didn't tell the whole truth. What was really happening is that users of the app are enabling piracy, not the app itself. Thanks to the way Moon+ Reader is designed to let users share links to ebook sources some of the sources are indeed pirate sites (less than your average Google Search). In reality the app was no more a source of pirated content than your average web browser. What do you say when an ebook distributor's anti-piracy plan involves going after app developers rather than pirate sites? Something printable, IMO.

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