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Comment Re:You wouldn't know it was declining here.... (Score 1) 191

You'd not know it was not he decline here in New Orleans. Geez, the other night, driving through City Park about 3:30am on a Friday night, the place was packed with people slowly cruising around in cars with their Pokemon playing on their phones.

That wasn't Pokemon. That was Grindr.

Comment Re:How much for a de-gorped phone? (Score 1) 198

As of 2016, how easy is it for someone who's not super technical to buy an Android phone without carrier branding that works well on Verizon or Sprint? Even if hardcore users of Slashdot have a lot of time to learn to do their own research, our non-technical friends and family may not.

As of March 2016, I brought a Nexus 6p to the Verizon company store and told them to transfer my phone number to it. They knew to look up the ESN/IMEI, poke it into a Verizon support website (on their own support tablet) to validate that it's compatible with their network, go get a nano-sim and put it into the phone, and transfer the account and phone number to it. Half an hour, no drama.

I didn't have to know, do, or tell them anything. I am a super technical guy, so I was watching like a hawk, ready to manspain anything they didn't get right, but it wasn't necessary.

It can work, if you get someone competent at the support site. Such a thing isn't guaranteed, but it's not impossible either.

Comment Re:WELL NO DOUBT ITS THANKS TO SLASHDOT FBI (Score 2) 73

The allegations about murder-for-hire were never proven in the court or even charged iirc. He was basically convicted for being in a criminal enterprise by running the marketplace. There are plenty of violent criminals who got far lighter sentences than Ulbricht for basically acting as an online middleman for illegal transactions.
IMHO, you could probably imprison the CEO of Ebay for being the biggest fence of stolen goods under the same theory.

Comment Re:Seagate's post-Maxtor acquisition reputation (Score 2) 162

You have to appreciate the thoroughness of the engineering, to incorporate the electronics necessary to simulate the sounds of mechanical failure in a solid-state, no-moving-parts storage system.

The only improvement would be including a pyro squib and a small smoke source for the complete effect.

Businesses

Comcast Wants To Charge Broadband Users More For Privacy (dslreports.com) 182

Comcast believes it should be able to charge its broadband users who want to protect their privacy. FCC, on other hand, has indicated that such practices should not be there. In a new filing with the FCC, Comcast says that charging consumers more money to opt out of "snoopvertising" should be considered a perfectly acceptable business model (PDF). DSLReports: "A bargained-for exchange of information for service is a perfectly acceptable and widely used model throughout the U.S. economy, including the Internet ecosystem, and is consistent with decades of legal precedent and policy goals related to consumer protection and privacy," Comcast said in the filing. The company proceeds to claim that banning such options "would harm consumers by, among other things, depriving them of lower-priced offerings." In short, Comcast is arguing that protecting your own privacy should be a paid luxury option, and stopping them from doing so would raise broadband rates. But as we've noted for years it's the lack of competition that keeps broadband prices high. It's also the lack of competition that prevents users upset with broadband privacy practices from switching to another ISP. That's why the FCC thinks some basic privacy rules of the road might be a good idea.

Comment Re:The intent of Copyright (Score 2) 216

The intent of Copyright Has historically little to do with the artists.

Your statement reflects a common-sense but inaccurate understanding of the word "artists" in this context.

"Artist" is short for "Con artist", who tricks creators of cultural artifacts into surrendering their copyrights for pennies and then tricks users of those cultural artifacts into paying to access them. See also "rent seeker", "grifter" and "bridge seller".

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