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$860 Million In Fines Handed Out For LCD Price-Fixing 151

eldavojohn writes "Six companies have pleaded guilty to worldwide price fixing of Thin-Film Transistor Liquid Crystal Displays from Sept. 14, 2001, to Dec. 1, 2006. For violating the Sherman Act, the companies have agreed to pay criminal fines of over $860 Million. In addition, nine executives have been charged in the scandal. The pricing scam affected some of the largest companies at the time, including Apple, HP and Dell. (If you bought a TFT-LCD from them in that time frame, you may be one of the victimized consumers.) From the DOJ release, 'According to the charge, Chi Mei carried out the conspiracy by agreeing during meetings, conversations and communications to charge prices of TFT-LCD panels at certain pre-determined levels and issuing price quotations in accordance with the agreements reached. As a part of the conspiracy, Chi Mei exchanged information on sales of TFT-LCD panels for the purpose of monitoring and enforcing adherence to the agreed-upon prices.'"

Comment Re:never happen (Score 1) 290

Hard to say what companies will do when money is on the line, although I'd like to believe they wouldn't also.

I would think Google cares whether an industry is not coming up in their search results. That said, there surely is a way to get standard feeds like you said.

People around here and probably across the US care about local news A LOT. Old saying "all new is local". However, I don't think searching Google is the way for people to get a lot of this local news. I think they go to their city's news website and read the headlines or favorite sections. I think the contradiction is when there is breaking news, and people search key terms. But then again, most breaking news can be found by going directly to the front page of these websites. That said, it seems like a moot point. Besides, Bing can't pay everyone. On a side note, I've seen people search their wesite instead of using the address bar for whatever reason, but the top domain will still come up.

Comment Re:Free market (Score 1) 555

I like your comment. Free market principals should do exactly that. Unfortunately, the wireless phone industry is one of those situations where there are few competitive options as indicated by their pricing plan. ATT is probably comparable with the iphone and such, and one commenter indicated blackberry was the same. On the other hand, these services are relatively new and a luxury for most, so perhaps it's the cost of bringing them to the market that is reflected in the plan. personally, i'm not totally convinced. it would be nice if a few other large competitors remained like cingular.

Comment Re:Alternatives (Score 1) 284

not from my point of view. your comment indicates if it can be proven then it's ok. i don't think the crime fits the punishment whether you are guilty or not. while i think an ISP should be able to reserve the right to disconnect someone, I don't think there should be a blacklist law. heres my attempt at not laming it up: legitimately caught uploading an infringing mp3, youtube video and too much of another authors text on your personal website. three counts of infringement. outcome- from home, you can no longer work over vpn or run an internet based business, call relatives over skype or chat on facebook including those international and possibly in the military, shop in the largest common marketplaces, use blackboard for school, access phone records outside of the city-issued phone book, etc. seem fair? What if the law is extended to your place of business (you're fired), your school (bye) and public access cafes (now you're totally cut off). There are already services only available over the internet, and I assume that trend will grow. Hell food delivery may go that way some day. The punishment is so harsh because it's meant to be a deterrent, like cutting your hand off you get caught stealing, or fining you a million bucks for uploading a couple cds, or sending you to jail for years because you sold a rock of crack or got caught drinking and driving. In other words, it would fall into the category of areas that already need reform or have been reformed .. ya know, for humanitarian reasons. Some of those aren't corporate interests, but they are still special interest (madd, sheriffs unions). i say if this law passes, copywrited works should instantly lose their copy write status if the holder or through proxy wrongly accuses three times, and it has to be the same standard, so whether proven or by accusation.

Comment Re:What a bad idea (Score 1) 191

I partially agree with you, although some people on the go may demand a compromise between usb storage convenience and security. More to your point though- this tool, solution, toy, -pick your reason- is not perfect. I am not an expert at anything, but I've learned over time that as long as there is a unique challenge and the barriers aren't too high, enthusiastic hackers around the world will take it on. The more services, conveniences what-have-yous built into this stick ,; the more touted it is for being secure by the company "the world's most secure flash drive; the only level 3 FIPS 140-2 flash drive"; the more security professionals say they use it and how cool it is; the more likely someone will find a vulnerability with it, one of its dependencies, or one of its features and break it. period.

Comment Re:Yeah right (Score 1) 857

my friends can't do anything besides plug a router in. creating, exporting and archiving logs?? haha ok. i guess they think the average american is really on top of things what with the 20 million computer zombies out there. on a side note
"While the Internet has generated many positive changes in the way we communicate and do business, its limitless nature offers anonymity that has opened the door to criminals looking to harm innocent children,"
won't someone please think of the children? gawd! more likely individuals looking to use up your bandwidth watching porn and downloading mp3s

Comment Re:Lame (Score 2, Insightful) 717

well, he was right about the NSA wiretapping scandal wasn't he? actually, he wasnt just right, he helped break the damn story. another thing is, if you get a really bright analyst in a situation where things arent adding up, subterfuge if you will, it shouldnt be a surprise when they figure out whats really going on, or at least the jist of it.

on the other hand, he worked for the nsa, so hes probably a liar. btw, i am a low-level analyst also, and management underestimates me all time. they usually find out soon or later.

Comment Re:Customer information sharing (Score 1) 526

"which will decrease the number of companies that know your name, your address, your buying patterns, and in some cases, even your Social Security number." yeah, that doesn't sound right. take that article with a grain, it sounds too extreme. you can sue a company for invation of privacy once we start talking real personally identifiable info like a social.

Comment Re:Prior use? (Score 1) 526

was thinking the same thing, that it probably has something to do with previously being a customer online or something where they obtained your address like filling out a warrenty or something. imagine the phone call from bestbuy to the bank- "hi i am trying to obtain the address of one of your customers." "what? why?" "to send them a product update" it just doesnt sound right

Comment the customers responsibility (Score 1) 299

the customer has the responsibility to maintain their own records. an offer of online statements is not the same thing as an archive solution. the company should make the bills available as an easy to download solution, like a zip of PDFs by year, and leave it at that. it's the same thing as a paper bill. if you lose the files, they may be able to reproduce them for a time. after all, they still get disputes after customers leave.

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