R.H.’s Techdirt Profile


About R.H.

R.H.’s Comments comment rss

  • Dec 5th, 2016 @ 6:34pm

    Re: Also interesting

    The law only allows companies that have received NSL's to talk about them in those vague ways (and they had to fight for that much). Since the Internet Archive managed to get the gag order lifted, they are able to be more specific but, most companies who get these orders get enough of them that, even if they get a few lifted, they still have to refer to the rest by the same 1-100, 101-200, etc. rules as before.

  • Nov 21st, 2016 @ 11:25am

    Re: Re: Re: Badly placed efforts, if you ask me.

    The AC above you is referring (badly) to property taxes on real estate. Which is the only type of property that his statement actually does apply to. Even then, we the people agree to property tax assessments. At least where I live, I've never seen a property tax applied without the consent of a majority of the voters.

    For everything else, your statement certainly applies.

  • Nov 16th, 2016 @ 7:50am

    Re: I doubt it

    If you'd followed the link in that line in the article, you would have seen the work that backs up that statement. Based on the research done, 38% of the right-leaning news articles shared on Facebook were mostly false or a mix of true and false information and 19% of the left-leaning articles shared on Facebook were mostly false or a mix of true and false information. Neither of these numbers is good but one is clearly worse.

  • Nov 7th, 2016 @ 10:02pm

    Re: Re:

    I'd been somewhat worried about the same outcome (although not to the extent that it had caused me to believe that end-to-end verification was a bad thing). However, I've seen a bit of information about using homomorphic encryption to allow a person to verify their vote without it also being specifically verifiable to a third party.

    The specifics of the system are quite interesting in that any member of the public is able to verify the identities of the people who voted and encrypted versions of their votes, as well as the total vote tallies but, there isn't any way to figure out who voted for whom once a voter completes the process and leaves the voting booth with their encrypted ballot copy. That is a part of the system that the video explains better than the paper does.

  • Nov 5th, 2016 @ 12:49pm

    Re: Re:

    That's what the AC is saying, though, the electors aren't required to cast their ballots the way their states (or districts) voted. Most (if not all) states have laws that say that they will be punished if they don't but, that punishment happens after the fact.

    For example, here is a link to an article about a Democratic elector who doesn't want to vote for Clinton, and another who is considering abstaining, even if she wins Washington State. Since the electors were chosen at the convention along with the candidate, there would have to be another election (before mid-December when the electors vote) to pick new ones to get rid of unfaithful electors. Our system is very broken.

  • Nov 3rd, 2016 @ 9:26am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Yeah, I don't think strikethrough is part of markdown by default. I'm pretty sure Reddit added it for their SnuDown renderer.

  • Nov 2nd, 2016 @ 4:19pm

    Re: Subversive Propaganda

    Try using markdown (it's the first checkbox below the comment box). It's pretty easy to learn (I did it for Reddit). They even have a link in the comment box options to help you out.

    I wonder if they had someone trying something fancy/malicious with HTML that was breaking the site. That'd definitely be a reason to switch to a simpler markup language.

  • Nov 1st, 2016 @ 2:38pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Now which candidate is best?

    There are about two-and-a-half months between Election Day and Inauguration Day. If the Parties simply pick their #2 vote-getters for the re-do election, we could run it in early-to-mid December with few issues as long as the Federal government was footing the bill. Some localities would struggle to run two elections that close together otherwise (elections tend to be expensive).

    Another solution would be to move Election Day to early-October and have any potential re-election be in mid-November or early-December to allow enough time for slower overseas mail-in ballots.

    While I do agree with the need to address the problems inherent to our first-past-the-post system and I also believe that instant runoff voting is a better system overall, I don't know if it would have prevented Trump's rise. If he was #1 on 45% of ballots cast, how many #2's or #3's would he have gotten? IRV tends to help people on the cusp of bursting onto the political stage rather than hurt them.

    Ok...I'm going to stop giving potential counterexamples for why we should have IRV before people forget that FPTP got us Clinton v Trump in the first place!

  • Oct 27th, 2016 @ 9:24pm

    Re: This system is asinine and stupid

    In order to avoid being accused of censorship, the "Right to be Forgotten" system works by just removing links from search engines (generally Google, I don't know if Bing or Yahoo have gotten many requests). To put it simply, the requesters can't ask the actual website to remove truthful information. I still call it censorship since it's government forcing a private entity to stifle their speech (even if that speech is just, "Go there to see what those people said about that person you asked me about.") but, that's just me.

  • Oct 20th, 2016 @ 10:28am

    Broadband Duopoly

    When I first saw the duopoly forming, I thought that we'd see cable providers using improving DOCSIS standards to provide faster internet service and telecoms moving from DSL to fiber-to-the-building/home (as Verizon started to do) or at least fiber-to-the-node as they discovered that using copper all the way just couldn't compete anymore but, that's clearly not what happened.

    Instead, we got cable providers who are slowly (if at all) improving their speeds while also adding caps and raising prices and telecoms who seem to be trying to get out of the business of providing fixed line internet service altogether.

  • Oct 18th, 2016 @ 7:53am

    Re: Re:

    Well, now she gets to feel like it's her fault that her father is on the sex offender registry for the rest of his life so, there's that little guilt trip.

  • Oct 18th, 2016 @ 7:50am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Most child porn laws have a cut-out for law enforcement and prosecutors actively working a case.

  • Oct 14th, 2016 @ 8:46am

    How Could This Get Any Better?

    The only way I see this getting any better is if this guy was purposely choosing Trump in these surveys just for the laughs without realizing what he was doing to polling at large.

    On the topic of the USC/LAT pollsters math, I wonder what their polls would look like if they reduced the weighting (or simply used a weight of 1) for all the "voted in previous election" questions for people who would be under 22 years old as of election day. For Presidential elections, (for off-year federal elections use 20 years old) that should fix the, "he/she couldn't possibly have voted in the last election" problem.

  • Sep 30th, 2016 @ 11:13am

    Re: Well

    My state has a similar law but, rather than criminalizing the person, it invalidates the ballot itself. I wonder if the state of New Hampshire will be nice enough to attempt another appeal before November to get this settled one way or another.

  • Sep 30th, 2016 @ 11:03am


    400 members‽ Your state has about 3000 people per representative. Mine (Michigan) has about 90,000. That's either a very responsive government or a horrible one that doesn't get anything useful done due to pandering to the electorate.

    Sometimes, though, I wonder what would happen if our federal House of Representatives was a bit larger and more granular. Even the United Kingdom has a 650 member House of Commons for 64 million residents compared to our 435 for 324 million people.

  • Sep 1st, 2016 @ 8:07am


    We have a form of that in Michigan but, it doesn't always turn out as expected. We had a referendum to remove a law a couple years ago. Our state legislature modified it slightly and passed it again the next year.

    There was another referendum on the ballot to change our minimum wage. After the signatures were collected and verified to place it on the ballot, the legislature repealed and replaced the law that the referendum would be modifying causing the referendum to be considered invalid.

    It's far too expensive to keep doing signature drives to get citizen referendums on the ballot every time our legislature decides to override us.

  • Sep 1st, 2016 @ 7:59am


    The interstate commerce clause. The internet tends to not be limited to one state. That's the in for the federal government.

  • Aug 15th, 2016 @ 7:48am


    That's easy, Apple isn't a monopoly. The iPhone controls less than half of the smartphone market. As long as consumers have somewhere else to go, it's not a monopoly. Google (just over 50%) and Apple (just over 40%) have effectively split the smartphone market in half with Google coming out slightly ahead.

  • Aug 11th, 2016 @ 12:08pm


    You'll notice that the penalty for failing to report in-custody deaths in a timely manner is a 10% reduction in federal funding. My guess is that enough American police departments do receive some level of federal funding to make this penalty work for the majority of them.

  • Aug 11th, 2016 @ 12:02pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    If I want to carry a concealed firearm in Michigan I also need a license. If I want to buy a handgun here I need a separate purchase license. I don't seem to understand your argument.

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