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Submission + - Twitter Appears to Censor Wikileaks-Related Trends (studentactivism.net)

Sheep writes: This past week I found it weird that none of the words #wikileaks, #cablegate, #cables, #Assange, etc. were actually "trending" on Twitter. Today, my fears of some secret censorship going on, are slowly coming true. It appears that Twitter is censoring all these keywords, essentially trying to minimize the effect Wikileaks can have on the world through Twitter's democratized popularization of information. It's ironic that last year Twitter suspended their own scheduled server maintenance in order to not interrupt its users from tweeting on Iran's revolution, and now it appears to censor, and manipulate public opinion as it sees fit!
Idle

Submission + - In China, kids attach condoms to their phones (cnet.com)

An anonymous reader writes: In what's apparently a move to display the message "I play safe," some Chinese kids are attaching condoms to their cell phones. Instead of keeping their jimmy hats in their pockets or wallets like us puritan Westerners, the young and hip of the Far East are just putting it out there, saying, "Look, I use condoms." Good for you, proactive Chinese teens!
The phone charms are called "Interesting Imported Condoms," and the wrappers feature zodiac signs or popular cartoon characters such as Astroboy. This, it seems, helps the phone charms appeal to teens, a demographic for whom condoms can be important.
We're not saying, though, that these "Interesting Imported Condoms" should be brought over here. In fact, InventorSpot notes that the condoms are generic, with no manufacturer, type, or expiration date shown. This writer wouldn't trust his health, or the next 18 years of his life, to a mystery like that. He thinks that instead he'll stick with the dispensers in his local dive bar.
Then again, maybe these condoms aren't meant to be used but rather just to say, "Seriously, I'm careful, you should be too." If so, there's nothing wrong with that.

Read more:
http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-20024626-1.html#ixzz17FU3MMf8
http://www.chinahush.com/2010/10/31/condom-cell-phone-chain-for-emergency-use/

Internet Explorer

IE8 Update Forces IE As Default Browser 311

We discussed Microsoft making IE8 a critical update a while back; but then the indication was that the update gave users a chance to choose whether or not to install it. Now I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes in with word that the update not only does not ask, but it makes IE the default browser. "Microsoft has a new tactic in the browser wars. They're having the 'critical' IE8 update make IE the default browser without asking. Yes, you can change it back, but it doesn't ask you if you want IE8 or if you want it as the default browser, it makes the decisions for you. Opera might have a few more complaints to make to the EU antitrust board after this, but Microsoft will probably be able to drag out the proceedings for years, only to end up paying a small fine. If you have anyone you've set up with a more secure alternative browser, you might want to help check their settings after this."
The Internet

Time Warner Cable Won't Compete, Seeks Legislation 621

narramissic writes "The good people of Wilson, NC pay $99/month for 10/10 Mbps internet service, 81 TV channels and telephone service. How'd they manage that, you ask? Well, the city-owned and operated cable service called Greenlight came into being when the City of Wilson approached TWC and local DSL provider Embarq and requested faster service for the area. 'TWC refused the request. And so Greenlight was born,' says blogger Peter Smith. 'Now Time Warner Cable and Embarq are upset that they've got competition, and rather than try to go head to head with Greenlight on price and service, they've instead been lobbying the state government of NC to pass laws to put Greenlight out of business. Apparently they're having some success, as the NC State Senate has proposed bills that would do TWC's bidding.'"
PC Games (Games)

Valve Claims New Steamworks Update "Makes DRM Obsolete" 731

Lulfas writes "Steam is implementing a new anti-piracy solution that, according to them, removes all DRM. Called Computer Executable Generation (CEG), this system creates a unique copy of the game when it is purchased through Steam, essentially using a 100% unique keygen system. It will be installable on any system, but only playable by one person at a time (hooked into the correct Steam account, of course). Will this be enough to satisfy anti-DRM players while at the same time giving the publishing companies what they require?"
The Courts

Taxpayers Fund AIG Lawsuit Against US 784

AIG, now infamous for their executive bonuses, has decided that the $200 billion they received from the government is not nearly enough and is suing the government for the return of $306 million in tax payments. "AIG is effectively suing its majority owner, the government, which has an 80 percent stake and has poured nearly $200 billion into the insurer in a bid to avert its collapse and avoid troubling the global financial markets. The company is in effect asking for even more money, in the form of tax refunds. The suit also suggests that AIG. is spending taxpayer money to pursue its case, something it is legally entitled to do. Its initial claim was denied by the Internal Revenue Service last year."
Windows

Draconian DRM Revealed In Windows 7 1127

TechForensics writes "A few days' testing of Windows 7 has already disclosed some draconian DRM, some of it unrelated to media files. A legitimate copy of Photoshop CS4 stopped functioning after we clobbered a nagging registration screen by replacing a DLL with a hacked version. With regard to media files, the days of capturing an audio program on your PC seem to be over (if the program originated on that PC). The inputs of your sound card are severely degraded in software if the card is also playing an audio program (tested here with Grooveshark). This may be the tip of the iceberg. Being in bed with the RIAA is bad enough, but locking your own files away from you is a tactic so outrageous it may kill the OS for many persons. Many users will not want to experiment with a second sound card or computer just to record from online sources, or boot up under a Linux that supports ntfs-3g just to control their files." Read on for more details of this user's findings.
Government

RIAA and BSA's Lawyers Taking Top Justice Posts 377

An anonymous reader writes "Following the appointment of RIAA's champion Donald Verrilli as associate deputy attorney general, here's a complete roundup of all the RIAA and BSA-linked lawyers comfortably seated at top posts at the Department of Justice by the new government. Not strange, since US VP Joe Biden is well known for pushing the copyright warmongers' agenda in Washington. Just in case you don't know, Verrilli is the nice man who sued the pants off Jammie Thomas."
The Internet

CNN Uses P2P Video & Adds Terrible EULA 254

Futurepower(R) writes "CNN's use of software called Octoshape presents an incredibly abusive EULA. If you agree to the EULA, you agree that CNN can use your bandwidth, and that you will pay any costs. Also, you lose the right to monitor your own network traffic. You can't even use information collected by your own firewall. Quoting the EULA: 'You may not collect any information about communication in the network of computers that are operating the Software or about the other users of the Software by monitoring, interdicting or intercepting any process of the Software. Octoshape recognizes that firewalls and anti-virus applications can collect such information, in which case you not are allowed to use or distribute such information.' "
Security

Data-Breach Costs Rising, Study Finds 67

BobB-nw writes to tell us that a recent study of 43 companies that suffered from data breaches last year showed the total cost of dealing with the breach to have risen to $6.6 million per incident. The cost is about $202 per record compromised for first timers, while the repeat offenders seem to have their mojo down and only suffer about $192 per record. With 88% of all data loss cases for 2008 being traced back to insider negligence it's a wonder that a little upfront money isn't being directed at prevention; guess as soon as they idiot-proof it someone will build a better idiot.

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