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Comment Re:Data ownership (Score 1) 183

The author of the article here.

The author of this article is basically saying that Facebook is vulnerable to failure because the mass of people might leave and join another service. The reason for that happening would be to join a free and open network, but as I stated before (without evidence) most users don't care about a company owning their data anyway - so it's not going to happen.

I am saying the first part. I am not saying that users will necessarily leave because they want to join a free network. If you read my post (or even the little bit quoted above) you will see that I suggest that folks might also leave for a sexier proprietary service.

I care deeply about free and open networks and I'm actively engaged in advocacy to encourage other people to care about this also. I think, to differing degrees, many people do care about these fundmental issues. But I also think the real political implications of using particular technologies are pretty opaque to many users.

This particular essay was just trying to argue that suggest that people are being unimaginative if they throw their hands at the idea of Facebook's network effects. I hope it's eventual replacement is more free and more fair. But I don't think it has to be. It might very well be worse.

GNU is Not Unix

Submission + - FSF Announces New Statement on Web Services (

mako writes: "The FSF just announced the results of a meeting it held on software freedom and network services. They have announced the creation of a new group called to follow up on these issues and the publication of the Franklin Street Statement on Freedom and Network Services" which lays out a set of recommendations and guidelines for protecting freedom for software as a service."

Submission + - Seth Raphael Wins James Randi $1m Challenge (

makohill writes: "Recent MIT Media Lab graduate and "High Tech Magician" Seth Raphael today took up James Randi's million dollar challengeg to demonstrate paranormal or psychic abilities in front of a packed crowd at MIT. And Seth did it! Randi wrote over a check for $10,000. The rest of the $1,000,000 will be transfered upon verification. I saw it this morning with my own eyes and the video was just posted by Seth's old research group.

For those that won't watch the whole video. It's a great high-tech magic show and, after the check is handed over, Seth and Randi reveal it was a elaborate April fools joke."


Submission + - Call Printer Makers To Turn off Tracking Dots (

makohill writes: "The EFF has been talking about tracking dots in printers for some time now. What we didn't know until now is that when people have asked the manufacturers of their printers to turn off the spy dots, they were ratted out by their printer makers and subsequently paid a visit by the secret service.

In response, the Computing Culture group at the MIT Media Lab is organizing folks to call in to their printer manufacturers to complain about the dots and to demand that they are turned off. If we all stand up together, the secret service can't visit us all. The whole story and information on how to call in is online at Seeing Yellow."

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"There is nothing new under the sun, but there are lots of old things we don't know yet." -Ambrose Bierce