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Comment Re: Just another mindless attack (Score 1) 497

You'd be surprised at what can be done by careful selection of camera angles and framing.

I doubt it. It's what I do for a living.

You're right that the camera lies in important ways. It lies in what it omits.

But that is the point. The journalist omits a shit-tonne of irrelevant detail every single time s/he writes a story. And a photojournalist removes a shit-tonne of detail every time s/he frames a shot. That's actually part of the job: highlighting the thing that makes this particular story newsworthy.

The fact that it's often done inadequately shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone. Here on Slashdot, for example, we all know how much of source code is absolute shit. And familiarity breeds contempt.

But somehow we still manage to find enough software to build a platform on which to perform our everyday online tasks. Which is kind of remarkable when we consider the shit sandwich we're resting our work on. And yet, we find a way.

I'd recommend you take the same approach to the news. Yes, there is a really thick and juicy shit sandwich out there, and a lot of reporting is made up of the moist middle bit. But not all of it is. Not every reporter does things perfectly every time, but with a little patience and perseverance, you can build a stable of go-to commentators who can be relied on to be honest, fair and to follow the facts. They won't always be right, but they will never attempt to deceive. There are more of them out there than you may know.

There's a years-long discussion on the back side of this point, about how to engage with your audience when telling an honest story, but the bottom line is this: 'The media' doesn't exist as a single, monolithic thing. It's a broad and wildly diverse landscape. Bias is unavoidable, and contrary to popular opinion, it's not the death of journalism.

Comment Re: Just another mindless attack (Score 1) 497

The problem is I consider ALL the media news to be propaganda, and don't really believe any of it. I'm even dubious about the things that are agreed upon by both the left an right sides of the political spectrum.

What's ironic is that you learned to distrust 'the media' because of a rhetorical line promulgated in 'the media' against 'the media'. Maybe, just maybe, 'the media' isn't monolithic. Maybe it comprises a huge variety of perspectives and motivations and capabilities. And maybe some sources are more reliable than others.

Maybe... the media sources that spend their time discrediting other media sources are not so credible themselves? Maybe it's complicated.

Pretty fucked up, huh?

Comment Re:Why trust in the media is at an all time low (Score 2) 905

That was the first PewDiePie I've watched, and it's interesting to see the media do to him what they've done to Trump, Farage, Wilders, Le Pen, Orban, etc.

So, for the record, you consider Donald Trump, Nigel Farage, Geert Wilders, the le Pen family and Viktor Orban to be genuinely upstanding public servants who have been unfairly portrayed as not-nice people?

Why, in your opinion, do you think these particular people—and not, for example, Justin Trudeau or Angela Merkel—have been so victimised?

Comment Re:What about data and txt costs? and can they rem (Score 1) 75

What about data and txt costs?

How much do you pay for bluetooth and WiFi on your phone?

This is fascinating, intended for third world use. Do we imagine that the density of cell phones in the third world is really sufficient to meet the 200' range? Maybe in the city, on the streets. Anywhere else, huh?

Hello from the developing world. Yes, most people, even in remote areas, tend to live in clusters. These clusters increase in concentration during natural disasters. This kind of tech would allow news to propagate within population clusters, leaving disaster response people to focus more on hopping between concentrations of people. All in all, probably a useful addition to the disaster-response toolkit.

BUT... Android-based mesh network tech that uses a mobile's wifi has been around for years. I test drove one FOSS project back in 2011-12. And it's never proven practical because of the high traffic management overheads, and the fact that always-on wifi can eat a fully charged battery in hours. I've been through two cyclones out here, and I can tell you from experience that getting access to power is a huge challenge for most people. Unless they find a way to address power consumption, this will be a nice idea, to be tossed into the Nice Ideas drawer and forgotten.

Comment Re:Let's be clear on what we mean by election hack (Score 1) 250

No, I was pointing out actual lying and cheating by the people running the DNC. That you and millions of others want to pretend to consider that to be merely theater is exactly why the Democrats have lost nearly a thousand state legislative seats, most of the governorships, both houses of congress, the White House, and the Supreme Court. Looking forward to more condescending tut-tutting, smug lefty sneering, and shrill phony outrage in advance of the upcoming legislative elections, when the non-stop losing pattern on the part of the Dems will continue, costing them even more of their dwindling minority in congress. Thanks in advance for your hard work in keeping that streak alive!

Comment Re:Let's be clear on what we mean by election hack (Score 2) 250

You're right. The RNC establishment's non-stop catering to Trump's every need during the election was such a spectacle. Oh, right ... that didn't happen. The party and the media were utterly hostile to him, as opposed to, say, slipping him debate questions in advance, courtesy of the woman who is STILL running the DNC machinery.

Comment Re:Let's be clear on what we mean by election hack (Score 1) 250

Except, note that you are quick to say the Russians had "something" to do with the election, but aren't saying that they actually changed your mind about who to vote for. If they didn't change your vote, how DID they impact the election? By allowing people to see that the DNC, behind the scenes, are a bunch of hypocritical, lying manipulators who are quick to trot out the occasional racist remark and cheat during debates? Sure. But everyone already knew that sort of thing about them. Did those revelations change your vote? No? I see.

Comment Re:Yawn... (Score 2) 626

This guy works on image analysis for telescopes in other words spy satellites which just happen to be large telescopes pointed downwards.

The NRO runs the spy satellites and the Air Force launches them. NASA has nothing to do with them besides providing rockets and launch platforms.

You're right, but there's still a decidedly non-zero chance that the hi-res optics he has access to see a lot of classified things.

Comment Re:Russian hackers = the best (Score 2) 102

So based on your "I grew up in the cold war" anecdotes about SO MANY -(Citation needed) journalists being spies...

Spies is a strong word to use, but yes, it was more or less assumed that journalists from behind the Iron Curtain were intelligence operatives and were expected to gather information and data about much more than they wrote about. Likewise, there were more than a few writers and reporters who knowingly (and sometimes unknowingly) provided the CIA with intelligence from their areas of expertise.

This doesn't imply cloak-and-dagger stuff, or breaking into offices late at night (let's leave the Nixon White House out of this, shall we?). For the most part, it would take the form of one or more journalists hanging out after work and trading scuttlebutt—interesting and useful information that was either not newsworthy or not well-enough sourced to report on. There would frequently be a CIA intelligence operative present during the conversation, and they didn't always try very hard to hide it.

Let it be known that this channel never entirely dried up. I've had several conversations with 'embassy staff' who were clearly trying to pump me for information. And I'm happy to share with them what I'd share with anyone else. If that helps them get a better understanding of a sensitive situation, then I've done my job as a journalist and a responsible citizen.

To take a slightly more controversial example, consider Gloria Steinem's famous escapades as a 'recruiter' for CIA propaganda operations. She willingly accepted payment for identifying people to speak at international conferences who would tout the government line about freedom and democracy. The CIA considered this a necessary tactic to thwart the flood of communist and socialist messaging that was flowing in from Soviet-funded sources. Ms Steinem had no qualms about taking cash for it, and although I would baulk at accepting payment for something done out of principle, I can't say for certain I wouldn't have done the same thing as she did.

nobody should believe anything reported about state sponsored hacks, because the reporters themselves might be "in" on it?

No, all he's saying is that context matters. Attempts to spy on reporters, overtly and covertly, have been ongoing since reporters first existed. And reporters are—or should be—aware of it, too. It really does come with the territory.

Please continue dancing around while you mention feminism for no reason.

Yeah, the anti-feminism jab was gratuitous and out of line. You've got a solid point there. But just because he can act like a dick doesn't mean he's entirely wrong.

Comment Re:An insanely clever solution, Microsoft-style. (Score 1) 236

Your idea would be easy to implement, a perfect solution to the problem and most of all it would work. We can't have that at MS.

I laughed, too. But it has to be admitted that this phenomenon is not unique to Microsoft.

I haven't used RPM in years, so I don't know if the problem persist, but it used to be that Redhat upgrade mechanism sorted packages alphabetically, which meant that this you'd frequently get cases where upgrade candidates sorted like this:

package-name-9.8.7.6-alpha.rpm
package-name-9.8.7.6-beta.rpm
package-name-5.4.3.2.rpm
package-name-10.12.13.14.rpm
package-name-1.2.3.4.rpm

And because your packages came from hundreds of different sources, everybody had their own way of coping with the problem. The company I worked for managed a special-purpose server distro, and our builds were constantly beset with a day or two spent disambiguating package names.

Comment Re:SpaceX plans to waste tons of fucking money (Score 1) 104

Every place but Africa and India is wired pretty good with fiber

That's hilarious. Spoken like a true Coastal.

Try driving, say, 45 minutes away from your nearest three-coffee-shops intersection, into any even slightly rural area in the US, and then get back to us with a re-evaluation of that comment. No, everyone outside of your apartment building isn't a redneck. Many of them make plenty of money, and can't buy broadband at twice what you're paying. Or ten times what you're paying. Because stringing fiber down a twenty mile road that's home to five houses is financially foolish for the ISPs. Which you know, but you're pretending not to, so you can act like this is all about that part of Africa you're sure isn't a market.

Comment Re: SpaceX plans to waste tons of fucking money (Score 1) 104

You mean, those places where a middle class family makes less than Americans living below the poverty line?

Yes, them. Where the cost of living is a fraction of what it is in the US. Which you know, but are pretending you don't so you can have a nice little OMG INEQUALITY! rant inside your bubble. Have fun with that.

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