The Free Speech Episode

The internet does it’s best this week to prove that “STOOPID” reigns supreme online as armchair activists drop their Cheetos, remove the wedgie from their tighty whities, and grab their keyboards to spew forth their vitriol and ignorance in support of Phil Robertson from A&E’s “reality” show “Duck Dynasty”.

As Paul, Steven and Daniel gently toss their ZZ Top beards into the discussions which revolve around freedom of speech and the 1st Amendment of the United States, Satanists raise money for their monument on Indiegogo, a mom gets arrested when a topless picture of her and her 14 year old daughter ends up on SnapChat, and the UK decides that adults are too stupid to decide what they want to view online.

Stories mentioned in this episode of the Nothing Serious Podcast include:

Now That The World Wide Web Is Truly Global…

World Wibe Web Truly Global

Now that the World Wide Web is truly global lets start treating it as such. I’ve said it for years, and will continue to do so – It’s time to stop treating the web as a U.S. , and U.S. centric, entity. Everyone needs to be dealing on a global level and realize that the internet and policies that may affect it, extend far beyond our own national borders.

Also, it is well worth noting that as North America (Sorry Steven, I know they lumped Canada in with the U.S.) is almost completely saturated in terms of broadband penetration, the U.S. portion of the pie is going to decline drastically over the coming years and decades.

Via Mashable. Chart by Statista.

I Refuse To Call It A JJ

From genius strip club marketing to technological idiocy, we run the gamut from self-incriminating porn viewers  to Russia trying to ban swearing on the internet. While the Pope acknowledges gay priests and overweight people get chucked out of New Zealand, we launch into a serious PSA and attempt to educate you about how to catch your cheating male significant other.

Stories mentioned in this episode of the Nothing Serious Podcast include:

So You Deleted Your Comment… #TrueStory

Reddit captionIt really gets my goat when I write an amazingly witty retort to a comment on Reddit, only to find the comment I’m replying too has already been deleted by the time I hit “save”.

The world will never be able to appreciate the sheer genius of those replies. They simply don’t have the same impact when read out of context.

All those moments will be lost in time… like tears in rain…

#TrueStory #FirstWorldProblems

The Coming War On General Computation – Cory Doctorow

The copyright was was just the beginning. – Recorded at the 28th Chaos Communication Congress.

The last 20 years of Internet policy have been dominated by the copyright war, but the war turns out only to have been a skirmish. The coming century will be dominated by war against the general purpose computer, and the stakes are the freedom, fortune and privacy of the entire human race.

The problem is twofold: first, there is no known general-purpose computer that can execute all the programs we can think of except the naughty ones; second, general-purpose computers have replaced every other device in our world. There are no airplanes, only computers that fly. There are no cars, only computers we sit in. There are no hearing aids, only computers we put in our ears. There are no 3D printers, only computers that drive peripherals. There are no radios, only computers with fast ADCs and DACs and phased-array antennas. Consequently anything you do to “secure” anything with a computer in it ends up undermining the capabilities and security of every other corner of modern human society.

And general purpose computers can cause harm — whether it’s printing out AR15 components, causing mid-air collisions, or snarling traffic. So the number of parties with legitimate grievances against computers are going to continue to multiply, as will the cries to regulate PCs.

The primary regulatory impulse is to use combinations of code-signing and other “trust” mechanisms to create computers that run programs that users can’t inspect or terminate, that run without users’ consent or knowledge, and that run even when users don’t want them to.

The upshot: a world of ubiquitous malware, where everything we do to make things better only makes it worse, where the tools of liberation become tools of oppression.

Our duty and challenge is to devise systems for mitigating the harm of general purpose computing without recourse to spyware, first to keep ourselves safe, and second to keep computers safe from the regulatory impulse.

The Google+ Badge Is Horrendous

It’s well known that I’ve already surrendered to my Google overlords and fervently chase each new product they offer with the enthusiasm of a horny teenage boy trying to catch his first glimpse of a real pair of boobs, so when I choose to put fingers to keyboard to complain about something, you’d better believe that I’ve got a serious gripe to get off my chest.

About two weeks ago we set up Google+ pages for all of the Scrw Media sites but have yet to actually start posting content to them for two reasons:

  1. There’s no workable means to automate the posting process. We’re a small operation and unless I plan on staying up 24 hours a day and am committed to posting to Google+ every hour on the hour, I don’t yet see a reasonable way to get all the content from all of our sites on to the network in a timely manner.
  2. The badge which allows people to add your site/page to their circle is horrible. Not horrible – horrendous. It’s a mega f-ugly.

Google-Plus-Badge
Seriously Google, what were you thinking when you can up with this ugly ass badge? It’s inflexible – you can’t change the height, you can’t change the width. You can’t change anything.

You have a choice of 5 terrible badges (6 if you count the text link), 3 of which are just icons and the standard badge and the small badge are the same damn width. 300 inflexible pixels that many a website won’t be able to easily incorporate into their design.

* Conspiracy Theory Warning * Unless of course that’s what Google wants, as many of the sites using G+ will also run Adsense and this will force them to increase the width of their sidebar and as such they’ll probably upgrade to the more lucrative 300 pixel wide ads – *End of conspiracy theory*

It’s obvious that Google does not want to be considered a Facebook knock-off, but when it comes to the Facebook “like buttons”, “like boxes” and other site add-ons, Google could do a lot for themselves by “borrowing” a little bit of inspiration.  Yes there are lots of issues with Facebook’s implementations but aren’t we supposed to be learning from and improving upon the competition?

Seriously America? “You Mad Bro?” Is Racial Intimidation?

U Mad BroBABY BOOMERS. Y U NO UNDERSTAND INTERNET?!?

I’ve facepalmed (if you don’t understand “facepalm” then don’t even bother reading this rant… it will go right over your head) at least 20 times while trying to put the words together to express the level of idiocy being displayed by the NAACP and Fox 8 News who ran this as a legitimate story!

I would like to say that we expect better of Fox… but I can’t honestly say that and keep a straight face.

On the other hand we have the NAACP who pride themselves on being America’s oldest and largest civil rights organization, and appear to be doing everything they can to ensure they never get taken seriously when a real race issue does arise.

It’s bad enough that NAACP members shamed Hallmark into discontinuing and pulling a card because they refuse to get their hearing aids repaired, but now students are being investigated because people are incapable of doing a Google search for “U mad bro?“.

“At the conclusion of the game, some of their students and parents put up a sign that we believe was racial intimidation, ethnic intimidation,” said Roderick Coffee, president of the Lake County chapter of the NAACP, who was also at the game.”

Okay, lets clear this up – “U mad bro?” is simply something you say online when you want to kick someone when their down. For example, lets say you prove somebody wrong in a forum discussion and they go off on a mad loon rant. Instead of responding in kind, you just respond with “U mad bro?” and watch the fireworks.

Works in gaming too. Snipe somebody repeatedly and watch their twelve year old, XBox Live mentality freak out and start accusing you of being a sheep shagging camper while graphically informing you how many people have slept with your mother (which apparently is a lot… like the entire population of the world – twice).

Switch on your microphone long enough to drop a little “U mad bro?” and they’ll either rage quit (quit out of the game because they are seriously sore losers) or they’ll suffer an epic Angry German Kid style mental explosion that makes instant YouTube stars.

While I’m at it, is the Painesville Harvey football team exclusively black and even if it is, since when did “bro” become an exclusively black term? Somebody forgot to send me the memo about that…

Seriously, do bromances only happen between colored people now? If so, then I’ve got bad news for Gabe… We’ve got to split up bro… Oh shit.. I can’t say that… We’ve got to split up mate…

And America? C’mon bro! Is this really what you want to get annoyed about? Since when did you guys become a bunch of pussies who get offended at the drop of a hat and need to “launch investigations” and have greeting cards banned because the nanny state doesn’t protect you from your own ignorance, or the differing opinions of others?

I thought this was the land of the free, with free speech (yeah I know that’s bollocks)…

This is a prime example of people who believe they have the right “not to be offended” (which they don’t) trampling on the rights of those that have the right “to offend” (which they do) because they are too ignorant and lazy to do a simple Google search.

Americans used to have the reputation of being the bad asses of the world. A place where anything goes as long as you have a dream and freedom of speech was paramount…

These days, the America that is portrayed in American media coverage is one of a whining, moaning, over sensitive populace that wants the nanny state to do everything from raise their kids, think for them and defend them from the “dangerous” ideas of the less igorant.

The demise of the American dream to protect peoples fragile, ignorance fuelled sensibilities is what’s really fucking insulting here.

U mad bro?