Sony's got balls...

wtf?, SIMS, San Francisco
an image of a bunch of colored bouncy balls pooring down a sidewalk

Check out this Sony commercial where they unleashed a ton o' balls on an SF hill. Or as Sean put it:

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Forbes barfs on blogging

blogging, copyright, SCO, wtf?, chilling effects, policy, legal, threats

So, Forbes has a series of ridiculous pieces that make up it's cover story for the November 14 issue. The first ("Attack of the Blogs") is a piece that generalizes about "attack blogs" using one lengthy example and a bunch of crap sprinkled in here and there.

However, I find the sidebars to be the most interesting and ridiculous to the point of amazement. The first side bar ("Who is Pamela Jones?") is essentially a hit-job on Pamela Jones of Groklaw. In case you have your head up your ass like Daniel Lyons (the author of this cover piece), you'd know that Pamela Jones has cultivated her credibility after many hard years of biting legal analysis in the SCO v. IBM case (which is a load of baseless hooey as it is, anyway)

But the second sidebar ("Fighting Back") left me speechless. I just now recovered and realized I should probably vocalize some of my amazement. First, this sidebar tries to give readers advice about what they can do to "fight" bloggers. Many of the recommendations could be considered "social engineering" types of attacks where the corporation is told to attempt to give the bloggers a bit of their own medicine. Like this piece of advice:

START YOUR OWN BLOG. Hire a blogger to do a company blog or encourage your employees to write their own, adding your voice to the mix.

Oh yeah, might Forbes want to mention that company blogs have zero credibility and further that the last thing you might want to do is to encourage your employees to talk about how much their jobs suck or to give away something you might end up later referring to "proprietary" or "inappropriate" information when you have to reprimand these employees?

However, Matt Zimmerman (my man!) from the EFF pointed out an even more glaring part of this piece. The quote:

ATTACK THE HOST. Find some copyrighted text that a blogger has lifted from your Web site and threaten to sue his Internet service provider under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. That may prompt the ISP to shut him down. Or threaten to drag the host into a defamation suit against the blogger. The host isn't liable but may skip the hassle and cut off the blogger's access anyway. Also: Subpoena the host company, demanding the blogger's name or Internet address.

Oh, that's really smart. In fact, Diebold Election Systems, Inc. (DESI) tried to do just that a while back. It launched my career in voting systems research when I received a C&D. More over, it ended up in a ruling that required DESI to pay the EFF $125,000 in damages for misusing copyright under section 512(f) of the DMCA.

Yeah. Read Forbes. It'll either make you laugh or a lot dumber. You might as well just give EFF your money now (instead of paying your attorneys first).

UPDATE [2005-10-29 09:28:44]: It's funny, when Forbes employees visit this page they leave referrers like this:

Where "JDoe" is the employee's first initial and last name and "subject" is the subject of (presumably) the email they received that links to this blog post.

Also, see EFF's Kurt Opsahl's piece: "Attack of the Printing Press!".

recent shows... the Gossip, Bauhaus


Saw We Are Wolves, Erase Errata (or what's left of it after their guitarist, Sarah, left the band) and the Gossip at the Bottom of the Hill on Saturday. It was a great show and We Are Wolves were especially neat... they're French... possibly Quebequois (sp?)... and have a sound that's a cross between the Numbers and !!!.

Going to see Bauhaus reunited tonight at the Fillmore... those bastards added a Halloween show after we had purchased these tickets. How the hell are we supposed to know these things... especially when Filmore shows sell out so damn fast! Anyway, we don't know what we're doing for Halloween, but it might involve the Melvins...

Update [2005-10-26 07:07:34]: Wow. Bauhaus was amazing. 3 encores... Daniel Ash was amazing and had a high-polish guitar that twinkled brightly with the complicated lighting system they used. And, to really drive their bad-assishness home, they played Bowie's Ziggy Stardust in their second encore... better than any version I've heard.

Electronic Voting in Brazil and Argentina

elections, news, politics, SIMS, berkeley, friends, research, policy

If you're interested in electronic voting issues in other countries, here are two great posts about Brazil and Argentina, respectively:

More coverage on GAO report...

elections, reform, standards, news, open source, politics, problems, friends, research, policy

Kim and I are quoted in a story today ("Report finds e-vote promise, problems") about the GAO report in the Oakland Tribune by Ian Hoffman.

Man, my first quote makes me sound like a high school girl... the second one is pretty good, though.

Check out the quotes below the fold (or click through to the Trib above):

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