Ben S 's Techdirt Comments

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  • Nintendo Hates You: Massive Takedowns Of YouTube Videos Featuring Mario Bros. Fan-Created Levels

    Ben S ( profile ), 16 Sep, 2015 @ 10:29am

    Re: Re: Who gives a...

    I too had been considering making the purchase...

  • Microsoft Retrofitting Windows 7, 8.1 With Windows 10's Privacy-Invading 'Features'

    Ben S ( profile ), 03 Sep, 2015 @ 12:24am


    Just wanted to thank you for that info and the link. I found one of those installed on my system. When I have a day off I'm going to looking at my Mom's computer to see which, if any, of those are installed on hers. She also has updates set to automatically install, so I'll be changing that as well.

  • Walmart Not Horsing Around With Parody Domain Site

    Ben S ( profile ), 11 Mar, 2015 @ 10:15pm


    Indeed. I didn't expect him to do something like this, but I am amused. His comic (Questionable Content) has WWW.QUESTIONABLECONTENT.HORSE as the comment on his most recent comic. The link took me by surprise. He has an unusual sense of humor.

  • For 10 Years Everyone's Been Using 'The Streisand Effect' Without Paying; Now I'm Going To Start Issuing Takedowns

    Ben S ( profile ), 08 Jan, 2015 @ 12:23pm


    The Streisand Effect doesn't necessarily cause something to go viral, though it often can. It does, how ever, increase awareness of the thing one is attempting to censor.

    Viral only describes how well known/popular a thing has become, but doesn't touch reasoning. Hearing that it's gone viral sounds like "this is the new cool thing that everyone is talking about". The Streisand Effect on the other hand makes clear that some one out there doesn't want you to know about it.

    I don't think "viral" is a good choice for the description, as the meaning is incomplete, it's not always accurate, and implies something that isn't necessarily true.

  • Revealed: How To Get The IFPI To Issue Bogus DMCA Takedowns On Just About Anything, With No Questions Asked And No Review

    Ben S ( profile ), 25 Sep, 2014 @ 09:27pm

    Re: The bleeding obvious...

    The smart thing? Get a list of all the IFPI's clients, then list any and all web pages those clients use to promote their content, and claim they are infringing links.

  • Dutch Court Says Pirate Bay Block Is Disproportionate, Ineffective And Harming Entrepreneurial Freedom

    Ben S ( profile ), 28 Jan, 2014 @ 10:21am

    Re: Re:

    I doubt it. Being overlooked for such a title would make them quite pleased.

  • Secret Audit Of Baltimore's Speed Cams Says Up To 70,000 Tickets Were Issued In Error In 2012 Alone

    Ben S ( profile ), 27 Jan, 2014 @ 07:35am

    Re: Re: Not suprised

    I don't have access to any documentation really, and none of it that I've seen is incriminating. Also, screwing up computer systems (and badly) isn't illegal. Disturbing, definitely, incompetent, absolutely, but legal.

  • Secret Audit Of Baltimore's Speed Cams Says Up To 70,000 Tickets Were Issued In Error In 2012 Alone

    Ben S ( profile ), 27 Jan, 2014 @ 07:21am

    Not suprised

    As an employee of ACS, faulty computer software causing serious problems is sadly not a surprise. Although, I wasn't in the company around the time of most of the other issues in the article (loss of personal information or credit cards), I have been witness to some very serious computer issues. At one point it was occuring nearly twice a week, and serious enough to bring the entire set of systems we work with to a halt.

  • Glenn Greenwald Says NSA, GCHQ Dismayed They Don't Have Access To In-Flight Internet Communication

    Ben S ( profile ), 30 Dec, 2013 @ 11:49am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Communism isn't about removing the rights of the citizens, and could theoretically be achieved with out doing that. Communism is supposed to be about preventing the regular masses from being exploited by the rich. A government with supreme power is the method used for this, because it makes it harder for a business to try and influence it. It was great in theory, but failed in practice. Yes, the communist governments that formed did remove all ideas of privacy, but that isn't actually a part of what communism is about.

  • Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

    Ben S ( profile ), 24 Nov, 2013 @ 09:13pm

    My favorite part about that cancer comment is how spot on it is. The cancer will eventually kill the patient if left unchecked.

  • Missed Opportunity: Beastie Boys Should Have Supported Viral Parody 'Girls' Song, Rather Than Claiming Infringement

    Ben S ( profile ), 23 Nov, 2013 @ 06:16am

    Perhaps the aim isn't what it seems

    After reading the article, I noticed Masnick mention that the Beastie Boyz have been trying to shy away from the song. Perhaps this is yet another foolish attempt to try and hide something that they feel causes embarrassment. Get rid of the Girls parody, make people once again forget about the original. But, as we all know, that pretty much always fails.

  • UK Foreign Secretary Says Merely 'Speculating' About Intelligence Capabilities Is Damaging To The Country

    Ben S ( profile ), 11 Nov, 2013 @ 10:04am

    Just a wild guess

    I'm guessing Hague has seen some speculation regarding intelligence capabilities that are accurate, but not yet revealed. He's likely just trying to cover up what ever speculation he saw, which leaves one to guess what speculation it was.

  • Why The NSA Must Be Reined In — For Democracy's Sake

    Ben S ( profile ), 13 Sep, 2013 @ 10:18am

    Title makes me think "For the democracy!"

  • FLYING PIG: The NSA Is Running Man In The Middle Attacks Imitating Google's Servers

    Ben S ( profile ), 11 Sep, 2013 @ 09:03am


    If "an outsider" did something like this, I would expect the NSA to create talking points about terrorists hacking us, and using it as an excuse to demand more power and funding, than it already has right now.

  • For An Intelligence Agency, The NSA Doesn't Seem To Have Much Idea What's Going On Inside Its Own Walls

    Ben S ( profile ), 03 Sep, 2013 @ 10:26am


    You know, there's a reason some feel government intelligence is an oxymoron.

  • The CIA Says Many Of Its Applicants Have Ties To Terrorist Organizations — And That's Just The Ones The Vetting Process Catches

    Ben S ( profile ), 03 Sep, 2013 @ 10:05am

    Re: Re:

    The point being made is 20% of applicants, as a whole, is most likely inaccurate. For example, if out of all the applicants they interview, only 20% raise flags, and 20% of those have the terrorist ties, you're sitting at 4% of all applicants having terrorist ties is all, not the 20% as per the title.

    Also worth noting, since they don't specify what counts as a terrorist tie, that number might also be inaccurate. Imagine that NSA feels a chance encounter while shopping at a store with some one the NSA suspects counts as a "tie", or your mother's ex-husband's second cousin twice removed is suspected as a terrorist. Once again, the tie is not one that you can really see as realistic. The numbers here just aren't all that informative. Far more worrying is the history of the whole interviewing process that was described, including "contractors being caught interviewing dead people" and falsifying background checks.

  • Banker Pleads Guilty To Using Bailout Money To Buy Himself A Luxury Condo

    Ben S ( profile ), 28 Aug, 2013 @ 08:25am

    Part of the reason the DoJ isn't concerned with the way these bankers uses these funds is they are going to have to pay the money back, with interest, eventually. Some of the banks are constantly paying interest back to the government as well, so this is a bit of a cash cow for them. Would you care if you "bailed" some one out with your money, while constantly having them pay you back interest over the course of several years, knowing eventually you'll get back everything you spent and more, and the person you bailed out misused the money?

  • More NSA Spying Fallout: Groklaw Shutting Down

    Ben S ( profile ), 20 Aug, 2013 @ 09:07am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Geeks already have been. BitMessage is one such example. Functions like email, except your "address" in this instance is actually a public encryption key, with a private key locally saved. Data transmitted between computers/servers on the way to destinations do not have the ultimate source or destination IP addresses, only the current computer's IP address, and the next computer in line to receive the data. When you connect, you simply download a copy of all the encrypted data, filter for anything with your public key, unencrypt and store in your Inbox, and forward anything that's not yours received further down the line. The result is that any message you send out, goes to literally everyone connected to the system, yet only the recipient can read it. Anyone snooping on your connection won't be able to distinguish between which messages are yours, vs some one else's.

    It's still in testing, and looking for independent security experts to audit the encryption system to confirm the level of security they're after, but they have had some people examining the encryption and trying to break it already, then reporting their results. It's a work in progress, but already it's functioning quite well.

  • More NSA Spying Fallout: Groklaw Shutting Down

    Ben S ( profile ), 20 Aug, 2013 @ 08:58am

    Re: ...Yada! ...Yada!

    That's a false equivalency you propose. Assuming one would find it funny to catch some one in the act (I personally wouldn't), walking in at the wrong time is not the same as setting up cameras in the room so one can keep a record of each and every time it happens.

    I'm not sure what you're referring to with your "bought credentials", you referring to a diploma? With any decent school, that's not something you simply buy, but something you must work for, and earn. You not only need to know the information being presented, but must be able to demonstrate the ability to use it. Even so, I'm not sure what this has to do with the mass surveillance state.

    Not turning down information about a competitor, once again, isn't the actively looking for the information, or worse, following them, and copying down their every activity.

    The things you describe aren't even remotely similar to the spying going on, so I'm not sure why you thought to compare coming across information to actively seeking to remove privacy in order to obtain it.

  • More NSA Spying Fallout: Groklaw Shutting Down

    Ben S ( profile ), 20 Aug, 2013 @ 08:20am

    Re: Re: Re: "psychological impact"? -- Mike, they've built concentration camps!

    That's why I use Ghostery to block stuff like that.

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