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Submission + - EFF needs your help to stop Congress dismantling Internet privacy protections! (eff.org)

Peter Eckersley writes: Last year the FCC passed rules forbidding ISPs (both mobile and landline) from using your personal data without your consent for purposes other than providing you Internet access. In other words, the rules prevent ISPs from turning your browsing history into a revenue stream to sell to marketers and advertisers. Unfortunately, members of Congress are scheming to dismantle those protections as early as this week. If they succeed, ISPs would be free to resume selling users' browsing histories, pre-loading phones with spyware, and generally doing all sorts of creepy things to your traffic.

The good news is, we can stop them. We especially need folks in the key states of Alaska, Colorado, Maine, Montana, Nevada, Ohio, and Pennsylvania to call their senators this week and tell them not to kill the FCC's Broadband Privacy Rules.

Together, we can stop Congress from undermining these crucial privacy protections.

Comment Re:Not so hard (Score 1) 171

What if there is no negligence? What if the manufacturers of two self crashing cars both exercised due care in their development? Even so, a crash is inevitable sooner or later.

Accidents can be due to the same things that could cause a human to have an accident. Sensors are degraded. (dirty windshield wiper, etc) Road conditions are degraded and couldn't stop before the stop sign. What about a simple mechanical failure that is nobody's fault? (Even in a human driven car, my brakes didn't work!)

Comment Re:AI is just software (Score 1) 171

Even the best professional certifications and best practices will not prevent accidents. They are inevitable. The question remains. Who is liable? Especially in the more interesting case of a collision of two self crashing cars. What if the developers of both cars were sufficiently careful and not negligent?

The case of a car and pedestrian is less interesting because it is obvious that the liability would probably be assigned to the car manufacturer. But what if the auto maker exercised due care in the development of its statistical classifier that mis-classified that pedestrian? No negligence. Sort of like a person "oh, I didn't see that baby buggy soonfully enough".

Self driving cars are eventually inevitable. And they will be safer than humans -- because they drive like your grandmother. No hustle. No sense of urgency to get you to your destination.

Comment Re:Easy, the programmer of course. (Score 1) 171

The programmer may simply build the software 'machine'. Who may be responsible is actually the group who trains the AI machine with data. It's all a bunch of statistical classifiers. An accident is when a statistical classifier mis-classifies a pedestrian and runs it over. In this case, the liability is probably going to be with the manufacturer. Not with any individuals or developers employed by the manufacturer.

A more interesting case is a collision between two moving self driving vehicles. In this case, one or both vehicles are probably going to have far more data available than any human collision ever had. Cameras, lidar, radar and other sensors. It would probably have to go to court. The fault may be found to be one or both of the manufacturers.

What if neither manufacturer of a two car collision is negligent? This is not like an amusement park ride where the maintenance folks didn't replace a tie bar in a roller coaster because management PHBs said that it cannot be replaced if it has not failed. Maybe both car makers exercised due care in the development of their self crashing cars. Maybe it is nothing more than a terrible tragedy with nobody to blame. Is that a possible outcome? What if a sinkhole ate your car while you were driving down the road? What if lightning struck you?

I have to throw in the obligatory: what if the government removes burdensome safety regulations on poor struggling self driving car manufacturers?

Comment Re: "Could We Eliminate Spam With DMARC?" (Score 1) 124

If DMARC were mandatory for all email, we'd still see plenty of spam. All snowshoe spam, for example, uses DMARC in order to look like a legitimate marketer and get the free passes that ... no anti-spam system awards.

All DMARC does is prevent spoofing of the From header's domain. You can still set up your own "marketing" domain and spew spam. You can still register bankofamerica-customersupport.com or create an account for "bank0famerca@yahoo.com" or hack into "anonymous_coward@gmail.com" and change the friendly-from to "Bank of America Customer Support" and not worry about the email address since software like Apple iOS's Mail app will only show the friendly-from. Solving that kind of forgery is much harder. Trust me, it's part of my job.

Businesses

Microsoft Just Showed Off Exactly What Salesforce Was Worried About (cnbc.com) 71

Microsoft just took a direct swipe at Salesforce with a new enterprise-ready version of LinkedIn's customer relationship management product called Sales Navigator. From a report on CNBC: "Today's announcements take Sales Navigator to the next level," Doug Camplejohn, LinkedIn sales solutions head of product, said in a blog. The new product steps up competition with arch rival Salesforce. Microsoft beat out Salesforce to acquire Linkedin for $26.2 billion -- by far the company's largest acquisition to date -- in June. Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff was so concerned, he accused the company of "anti-competitive behavior" and urged regulators to investigate. Flash-forward less than a year and Microsoft's new Sales Navigator Enterprise Edition incorporates many features aimed at turning LinkedIn into a must-have tool for sales teams at big companies.

Submission + - How the Internet Gave Mail-Order Brides the Power (backchannel.com)

mirandakatz writes: For decades, the mail-order bride system in the Philippines went something like this: Western men picked Filipinas out of catalogues, and the women had little to no information about the men they were agreeing to marry. The internet has changed all of that. As Meredith Talusan reports at Backchannel, technology has empowered Filipinas to be choosy about the Western men they pursue—and indeed, when it comes to online dating, they now hold much of the power. As Talusan writes, "in one sense, the leveling of dating power between Filipinas and Westerners is the fulfillment of the global internet’s promise to equalize relations between disparate places and people. Yet even as Filipinas and Westerners face off as equals online, the world of dating exposes the ultimate limitations of the web."
Businesses

GitHub Now Lets Its Workers Keep the IP When They Use Company Resources For Personal Projects (qz.com) 74

If it's on company time, it's the company's dime. That's the usual rule in the tech industry -- that if employees use company resources to work on projects unrelated to their jobs, their employer can claim ownership of any intellectual property (IP) they create. But GitHub is throwing that out the window. From a report on Quartz: Today the code-sharing platform announced a new policy, the Balanced Employee IP Agreement (BEIPA). This allows its employees to use company equipment to work on personal projects in their free time, which can occur during work hours, without fear of being sued for the IP. As long as the work isn't related to GitHub's own "existing or prospective" products and services, the employee owns it. Like all things related to tech IP, employee agreements are a contentious issue. In some US states, it's not uncommon for contracts to give companies full ownership of all work employees produce during their tenure, and sometimes even before and after their tenure, regardless of when or how they produce it. These restrictions have led to several horror stories, like the case of Alcatel vs. Evan Brown.

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