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Comment The assumption (Score 1) 85

So, you assumed that, since China's population is 1/5th of the world's population, that if you posted an article about a Chinese cultural thing, there'd be at least a 20% chance that a reader would know what you were talking about. Now, not that I don't see why you'd THINK that...

Comment Not unthinkable (Score 1) 928

Of course SW's reaction shouldn't have been what it was (full-out spiteful), but the thought of calling someone out by name on the internet makes me cringe. To me--though I concede I might have spent too much time on a certain imageboard--you should only post somebody's full name or any other personal information if you're prepared to see that person burn in digital fire. We shouldn't underestimate how harmful it can be to have something critical said about someone on the internet. While Mr. Duff's complaint was valid and the reaction by the airline was wrong, I don't think he went through the proper channels to file a personal grievance. Employees have supervisors and managers for just this reason. I'm fine with complaining about whole companies online, or but sniping individuals can be incredibly injurious to their careers and lives. It's just not something I'd do, maybe I'm in the wrong.

Comment What does it mean to us? (Score 2) 347

It means we can't trust people on the internet. This should come as no surprise. Experienced internet users already know not to take things at face value, not to feed trolls, and not to take anyone's "word for it". In civil, learned communities (like Slashdot, for example) a "shill" is fighting an uphill battle when trying to spread disinformation--anything that's posted here will be carefully examined. Even in volatile, less-learned sites (4chan's /b/, for example), they'll still have to trudge through a hundred miles of skepticism and snark to convince any sizable demographic of any one thing. I'm not saying "shills" can't be effective on the internet. I'm just saying I'm glad I don't have their job.

Comment Merriam-Webster (Score 1) 488

The problem is that the court uses the dictionary definition of hacker: "computers : a person who secretly gets access to a computer system in order to get information, cause damage, etc. : a person who hacks into a computer system". Online (or at least in sites like Slashdot) we use the informal definition; "Someone who is good at programming." Apparently, this second definition does not appear in a Merriam-Webster dictionary. Dictionaries do, however, offer a secondary definition of the word: ": a person who plays a sport badly" To escape legal persecution, everyone on Slashdot should be prepared to testify that they're really bad at baseball.

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