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Submission + - It Will Soon Be Illegal To Punish Customers Who Criticize Businesses Online (arstechnica.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Congress has passed a law protecting the right of U.S. consumers to post negative online reviews without fear of retaliation from companies. The bipartisan Consumer Review Fairness Act was passed by unanimous consent in the US Senate yesterday, a Senate Commerce Committee announcement said. The bill, introduced in 2014, was already approved by the House of Representatives and now awaits President Obama's signature. The Consumer Review Fairness Act—full text available here—voids any provision in a form contract that prohibits or restricts customers from posting reviews about the goods, services, or conduct of the company providing the product or service. It also voids provisions that impose penalties or fees on customers for posting online reviews as well as those that require customers to give up the intellectual property rights related to such reviews. The legislation empowers the Federal Trade Commission to enforce the new law and impose penalties when necessary. The bill also protects reviews that aren't available via the Internet.

Submission + - What's the best Linux Laptop?

sconeu writes: This came up in the "Which laptop could replace a Macbook Pro?" story. It was rightfully marked off-topic there, but I thought it might make an interesting discussion.

I'm currently looking into replacing my 10 year old Toshiba Satellite with a newer laptop. I'm looking to run some flavor of Linux (probably KDE based UI, but not mandatory) while using a VM to run Win 7 (for stuff needed for work).

For me, personally, battery life and weight are more important than raw power. I'm not going to be running games on this.

I've been considering an XPS 13 Developer Edition, or something from System76, ZaReason or Emperor Linux.

What laptop do you use? Do you have any suggestions?

Submission + - China passes law requiring full access to customer data (deepdotweb.com) 1

AnonymousCube writes: As if there wasn't enough reason to want tech companies to stay out of China, the Chinese government has passed a new cybersecurity law requiring companies to give them full access to customer information.

Companies are also required to give government investigators complete access to their data if there is suspected wrong-doing, and Internet operators must cooperate in any national security or crime-related investigation.

Note that China has an extremely flexible definition of "national security".
Additionally computer equipment will need to undergo mandatory certification, that could involve giving up source code, encryption keys, or even proprietary intellectual data, as Microsoft has been doing for some time.

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