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Comment Echo chamber, not "fake news" (Score 1) 232

It's not so much a direct result of the viral news & posts that get passed around social media, but the echo chamber people find themselves in.

Was it Facebook 'wot won it'?

Now you could say the same filtering has always applied - liberal people tended to read liberal newspapers, conservatives got their views reflected back in what they read.

The difference was that most editors have tried to do two things - present at least some alternative views and make sure that the facts in any story stand up to scrutiny.

Neither applies on Facebook. The News Feed algorithm serves you up whatever it thinks you and your friends want to believe and it certainly does not do any fact-checking.

Stories that accused the Clintons of murder or maintained that Barack Obama was a Muslim will have cropped up in the feeds of millions of people inclined to support Mr Trump.

This cuts both ways - a made-up quote from Mr Trump saying in 1998 that he might one day run as a Republican because "they're the dumbest group of voters in the country" is still being widely shared on social media by his opponents.

Both the Democrats and Republicans have long made ample use of Facebook - indeed it was the Obama campaign of 2008 that pioneered the use of social media in elections.

But for a Trump campaign that saw much of the mainstream media as hostile and biased, both Facebook and Twitter offered a powerful way of getting its message direct to voters unchallenged by any pesky journalists.

Comment Re:POWAR TO THE PEOPLE! (Score 1) 609

I was of a similar mindset until a couple of weeks ago. My inner ethics stood by it being a democratic vote and in this one, we lost.
However looking at past precedent, when a popular vote comes down to less than a 2% balance, especially on such an all-impacting decision as this, a second vote/run-off is traditionally called.
The margin of the 2014 Scottish referendum was 5 times that of the EU referendum, but the surge in support for the SNP in the following elections put the wind in the sales for calling a second vote. I'm now starting to lean a similar way with regards to the EU vote - make it a party issue & take it to the ballot box.

Comment Re:Please explain... (Score 1) 310

That's not lost on me, however my gripe is that far too many people (geeks particularly) justify their unrestrained copying of digital content because it's just 1s & 0s. They conveniently overlook the fact that there are still *some* costs involved. This behaviour is especially damaging for indie producers where every single sale counts.

If you developed a piece of software for the market, you wouldn't then try to sell each copy at cost it took to develop. Now fine, someone copying your content isn't necessarily going to incur you any *extra* costs, but it also doesn't provide any return on your risks & investment.
I dunno, I think I've just become a bit jaded by the hypocrisy & entitlement that seems to be rife in Slashdot's community today.

You also completely skipped over the key point I tried to make about the elephant in the room, that if people refuse to pay for their content, and they also refuse to accept the advertising that otherwise pays for their consumption, then the only option content producers will have left will be to make the ads the product in the form of product placement, paid content & sponsored branding.

Comment Re:Please explain... (Score 2) 310

Problem not solved - you expect the money to pay those artists is just conjured out of thin air? Those artists get their pay out of the revenue generated by advertisers paying the platform to spread their brand. As a consumer, you're given a choice as to how to pay for your content - purchase it, subscribe to it, or have a third party pay for it in exchange for you seeing their ads.

Circumventing the site to get the content without paying is akin to shoplifting. The argument that stealing virtual media is different to physical media doesn't wash - someone still had to pay to produce & broadcast that media, and a good majority of the people on this site owe their livelihoods to being able to sell products based on their own virtual media (code).

I fully get the argument of certain types of ads being completely shitty, so I block anything flash & avoid the sites with abusive ads. But unless people start to accept that they either have to pay for the content directly, or indirectly via ad revenue, then we'll soon end up in a world where the product *is* the ad, and I personally think that's far far worse.

Comment Re:Please explain... (Score 1) 310

I'll play into that daft question...The hits aren't recorded, so the artist misses out on popularity rankings & ad revenue.

If you're using ad-blocking software to avoid YT's ads, then the hits are still recorded, but you're undermining the entire business model that's allowing you to consume the content in the first place. An analogy about eating cake comes to mind...

Comment Re:"faulty cables and cooling fans" (Score 1) 103

Whilst I agree in principal, in practice, we know that the 5* service offered by a budget provider will not be equal to the 5* service offered by a reputed provider.
A decent datacenter wouldn't be taken down by shoddy cables & ventilation.

There's no problem with choosing a low-cost datacenter...as long as you factor that into your infrastructure design and put the saved money into redundancy. Done right, spreading your risk over several low-cost options can provide a stronger service than putting all of your eggs into an expensive quality service with little contingency. But cutting costs on both infrastructure and redundancy is a fools game.

Comment Re:Clickbait troll much? (Score 1) 629

I sympathise, although that's also kind of the attitude that got you guys into this binary party problem in the first place. Even if the candidate has little chance of winning this time around, and even if you don't align with their politics, the more votes the third option gets each election, the more confidence voters will have in the viability of voting outside of the two default choices. Fixing your binary party system won't happen overnight.

There're even a number of vote matching sites now which pair up rebel Rep & Dem voters, & try to reduce yet more tactical binary voting.
eg. http://www.burnmyvote.org/

Comment Re:Clickbait troll much? (Score 1) 629

I don't think you need too worry much about going insane, he's already as off the wall as they come. The question comes down to whether you feel you'd be in safer hands with Trump, who whilst an unpredictable baboon, would probably struggle to maintain the bilateral political support needed to run a functioning government (as he saw it), or Clinton, who whilst being as trustworthy as a snake, is very efficient at what she does - good or bad, she'll get it done.

If it weren't for the big red nuclear button, Trump might almost be the better option. I'm not a 'murican, so I don't know much about his vice - how's he in comparison to Clinton? Because in the case of Trump managing to pull it off, I don't see it lasting long before he got impeached, so a vote for him would probably end up being a vote for his vice...

Comment Re:Clickbait troll much? (Score 3, Insightful) 629

That's the thing about Trump, I'm not so sure he's as much a liar as a fantasist. He's so enveloped in his own idolatry, he really believes in what he says - even if it's completely contradictory to whatever he said 5 minutes previous. He's got his own Ministry of Truth constantly churning away in his head.

Comment Re:It's Hillary time! (Score 4, Insightful) 271

When you say "the West", I'm guessing you really mean "the US". Because they could cause a lot of hurt to all of the "Western" countries that aren't the US (ie. Western Europe).
They've got a strong military & a whole lot of man power. Let's not forget that it was basically Russia who won WWII - if it weren't for them, we'd be living in a very different world today.

Comment Re:The losing side must automatically pay (Score 1) 242

But if it loses, which is an unfortunately likely event in such David v Goliath cases, it'll be in far less trouble than if it also got saddled with the other side's A* legal team's fees.
With loser pays, the little guy would only take on the risk if they were absolutely certain they'd win. Few cases have such certainty.

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