It seems as though the Brock Turner case was the thing that finally forced the US Federal government to look more closely at the problem of sexual assault, particularly as it affects college campuses. Yesterday, the House of Representatives voted unanimously for legislation to be included in a Sexual Assault Survivors’ Bill of Rights.
Now you not only have to worry about what your use of emojis (or lack thereof) is conveying to your significant other - you also have to keep in mind what they might mean to a jury.
Over the weekend it was revealed that Facebook engaged in "psychological experiments" on hundreds of thousands of its users. Not everyone is as outraged by the news, but it seems pretty clear that those people are in the minority and that most of us would kiiiinda like to be asked first. Well, joke's on Facebook, because despite their weasel-y excuses, they might have still broken the law anyway.
All the people in jail for pinball offenses are going to be pissed.
Hey, youth of the 1970s! Your favorite, oft-demonized recreational activity that doesn't actually hurt anyone is finally going to lose its ridiculous illegal status so that you can go about your business in peace: Oakland is lifting its ban on pinball! ...You knew I meant pinball, right?
May I make a suggestion? TAKE TO THE SEA! Three miles out, and it's a free-for-all!
After the news came out that Goldieblox actually sued the Beastie Boys first (which we'll admit we initially got wrong), things for the start-up have been getting progressively hairier. Now someone's found an unusual clause in their Terms of Service, which has some preposterous claims about who can and can't link to their site. Yikes.
Today in Boobs
There's a lot here in this story. There's a couple of fifteen year old girls who were barred from handing out breast cancer awareness bracelets by their school district. There's the much debated trend in breast cancer awareness campaigns to skew to a focus on the sexual appeal of breasts rather than the saving of lives as the motivating factor. There's the parents who thought that this was a violation of their daughters' First Amendment rights that was worth taking it all the way to a federal appeals court.
But mostly, there's the undeniably delightful idea that a Supreme Court justice of America might say the word "boobies" on the record during a session.
Yeah. So that happened.
The verdict for the Bradley Manning trial has finally been delivered down from Colonel Denise Lind in Fort Meade, Maryland. As to be expected, it's a mixed bag of results, but most importantly, Manning has been found not guilty of aiding the enemy -- a charge that would have landed him life in prison.
Things We Saw Today
Entertainment Weekly is here to let us know that The Walking Dead
's Chandler Riggs
has successfully navigated himself further through the treacherous shoals of puberty. (io9)
I will make it legal!
, a California citizen who was attempting to defraud $2 million from the California State Department of Transportation, has lightened his sentence by relinquishing a number of his possessions to the state. Among these possessions is $10,000 worth of Star Wars
merchandise, which, apparently, now belongs to the state of California.
Today In Obvious
Why do people think they can get away with crowdfunding something that doesn't belong to them?
Today in Depressing
is a sixteen-year-old student with good grades and a "perfect" behavior record. Or at least she was
. She has been expelled from her Florida school after creating a small chemical reaction that caused no damage or harm, and additionally been arrested and charged with possession and discharge of a weapon on school grounds and discharging a destructive device. According to the Miami New Times
, she will be tried as an adult.
The Boob Tube
The Federal Communications Commission wants a piece of our minds. I suggest you keep your use of profanity to the minimum.
Things We Saw Today
According to Jezebel's translation
, these young ladies are charging $2.50 for easy cases, $6.25 for medium, and $12.50 for hard, but they won't work on their own birthdays. I'd say that's a good deal.
Inside of a dog it's too dark to read
The new and growing market for eBooks has allowed companies to call into question some of the basic and universal characteristics of reading and owning books. That you can loan them to your friends, for example, or that by purchasing a book you're also purchasing the ability to read it whenever you want, wherever you want, until you lose it, donate it, give it away, or wear through its well-loved spine.
eBook publishers have, to put it mildly, established that these are qualities of a book that they do not intend to carry over to the new format, which is to a certain extent fine, so long as consumers know what they're getting into. But the eBook market also has other problems, namely accusations of price fixing
, and, due to the combination of software that limits the kind of device a given eBook can be read on and the dominance of the Kindle over the eReader market, bullying tactics
. A new lawsuit filed by three independent bookstores is looking to strike at the heart of the problem: the insistance of eReader makers that their books should not be readable on other devices.
Aaron Swartz's suicide last week was just the beginning. The public outcry from the tech community has been massive, with a petition to remove the prosecuting attorney for Aaron's case, one Carmen Ortiz, from office hitting the required number of signatures for an official White House response relatively quickly. In large part, a majority of these complaints center around the opinion that the prosecution was overzealous at best. Ortiz, for her part, has remained mum on the subject. Until last night, that is. Her office has released an official statement on the matter of Swartz's prosecution and, uh, it's... definitely something.
Things We Saw Today
As the daughter of an attorney, I feel compelled to say that this is something
you can always work out with a loved one beforehand, in writing. (CubicleBot)
No. No no no no no no no. no.
Seriously, Finland? We understand that Internet piracy is a problem, but this is just too much. Police raided the home of a nine-year-old girl and confiscated her laptop — her Winnie the Pooh laptop – because she was accused of downloading one song off The Pirate Bay. That really happened. We all live in this world now.
Back in the spring of this year, the parents of the little girl were told their Internet connection had been used in an act of online piracy. Their daughter had come across a song she was searching for on The Pirate Bay and downloaded it. She later bought the album. The family was told to pay 600 euros for the incident and sign a non-disclosure agreement, but they refused at the time. On Tuesday, things got real when Finnish police showed up at their door with a search warrant, and took their daughter’s Winnie the Pooh
Read more of this story at Geekosystem.com
the internet is serious business
made sure that her name echoed loudly through the hallowed halls of the internet (did you know we have halls? Yeah, like tons
of halls. Acres. With pillars and junk.) a year ago during the SOPA/PIPA debates in congress, by loudly opposing it, and even engaging in a Reddit AMA, hoping to drum up some attention to the pretty alarming powers
the bill gave to rights holders and the pretty alarming requirements it made of internet service providers. While I won't say she brought the issue to Reddit's attention in the first place, her engagement with a large and influential internet community became part of a temporary internet revolution that culminated in Wikipedia, Tumblr, Reddit, Google, and a host of other websites
going completely dark or otherwise completely devoting a day to raising awareness of the bill.
She has returned to Reddit recently,
at the turn of the tide
to perform a rather interesting experiment:
As you may recall, Minnesota took a bold stance against free online education last week. The gist of the situation was that the state wanted to somehow curtail free online education outlets because they hadn't been given permission to operate within Minnesota's borders. This reasoning traced back to a decades-old law that was meant to apply to degree-granting institutions. After a day worth of Internet backlash, Minnesota's Office of Higher Education performed a quick 180 and now supports the use of websites like Coursera.