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Offsite Article: Does anyone know what their Facebook address is anyway?...

Link Here27th December 2016
US authorities introduce policy to ask visitors to reveal their social media accounts

See article from theguardian.com



If you have nothing to hide then you have nothing to fear...

Your online purchases, maybe sex toys or holidays to Pattaya, will now be reported to US state governments

Link Here 16th December 2016
Online retailers in America will soon be required by law to disclose to state governments what purchases their customers have made.

The law seems to have been made up in US courts during a long-running legal case based around the jurisdiction of sales tax. An appeals court decision now requires out-of-state retailers to report to the Colorado state government the details of all purchases, including what that purchase was and who bought it.

The US Supreme Court has refused to hear the case so the appeal court decision stands.

Colorado is not the only state pushing the requirement. Vermont will also make the same requirement three months after Colorado starts imposing the law. And other states including Alabama, South Dakota, Tennessee and Wyoming have approved similar rules.

The exec director of the American Catalog Mailers Association (ACMA), Hamilton Davison, is extremely concerned He said:

Consumers, particularly those who buy from catalogs and e-commerce merchants, put considerable trust in the businesses from which they make the most personal of purchases, he noted. This decision undermines this trust by requiring remote sellers to report to state tax collectors on the buying habits of their customers, including health care products, apparel or other sensitive items.



Loaded Questions...

EU Advocate General advises that selling fully loaded Kodi boxes is illegal

Link Here10th December 2016
Selling media players with pirate add-ons violates EU law, according to a recommendation from Advocate General Campos S31nchez-Bordona.

He issued the advice in a landmark case over the legality of pre-loaded XBMC/Kodi devices, which are widely sold across Europe. Whether users of these players also liable depends on whether they know that the content is infringing. While Kodi itself is a neutral platform, there are lots of add-ons available that turn it into a pirate's heaven.

In Europe, the European Court of Justice is currently handling a landmark case that should provide more clarity on the legality of set-top boxes that are sold with links to infringing content.

The issue was raised in a case between Dutch anti-piracy group BREIN and the Filmspeler.nl store, which sells piracy configured media players. While these devices don't host any infringing content, they ship with add-ons that make it very easy to watch infringing content.

The Dutch District Court referred the case to the EU Court of Justice, and the Advocate General (AG) Campos S31nchez-Bordona issued his recommendation to the Court. The AG concluded that selling a media player with the knowledge that it links to infringing material, constitutes a communication to the public, which makes it copyright infringing.

Whether the users of these devices are also acting unlawfully is a different question. According to the AG it would be logical to conclude that, when offering devices with pirate add-ons is illegal, using them would be too:

In my opinion, if the key factor, in the case of a person who inserts a hyperlink without pursuing a profit, is knowledge [206] that the protected work is available on the internet unlawfully, it would be difficult not to extend that criterion to a person who merely makes use of that hyperlink, also without pursuing a profit.

The Advocate General's advice is often crucial, but not binding. It is expected that the EU Court of Justice will issue its final verdict in this case early next year.



The Red Pill...

19th November 2016. UK premiere of documentary that Feminists campaign to ban over its sympathies to the men's rights movement

Link Here17th November 2016
The Red Pill is a 2016 USA documentary by Cassie Jaye.
Starring Marc Angelucci, Jack Barnes and Richard Cassalata. IMDb

The Red Pill chronicles filmmaker Cassie Jaye's journey following the mysterious and polarizing Men's Rights Movement. The Red Pill explores today's gender war and asks the question "what is the future of gender equality?"

The Red Pill, a new documentary film about men's rights activists (or MRAs), is out in limited release across the United States. It is also showing is in Melbourne, Australia, where tickets have completely sold out ahead of its November 5th premiere.

The film's producer, Cassie Jaye, has inevitably met with backlash from feminist campaigners for taking a balanced approach toward the subject of men's rights activism.

A petition has been started by Australian feminists urging Kino Cinema to censor the screening of the film whilst describing the movie in misleading terms. The petition reads:

Film-maker Cassie Jaye follows members of online hate-group 'The Red Pill,' known to most as the sexist cesspit of the internet, begins the complaint. The general plotline goes something like this: 'feminist' Jaye decides to investigate rape-culture, opens the first hit on Google (Red Pill) and before she knows it, she has seen the light and converted to 'meninism.'

Please do not associate your cinema with the kind of people who teach men how to violate women physically and emotionally. Please stand with the women everywhere, and do not promote misogynistic hate.

Much of the enmity toward The Red Pill comes from how it features men's activist Paul Elam, who writes incendiary remarks and articles about women online. While there's no defending much of what he has says, the film itself neither promotes his most offensive opinions, nor does it vilify women the way some feminists do to men. It merely presents MRAs in a (partly) sympathetic light.

Update: Banned

31st October 2016. See article from vice.com

The Red Pill was due to have its Australian premiere in Melbourne next month, which has since been cancelled by Palace Cinemas. The move comes after a campaign labelled it misogynistic propaganda.

In a letter to Men's Rights Melbourne, who have the exclusive distribution rights to the film after donating to its Kickstarter campaign, Palace Cinemas explained:

We have come to a decision based on the overwhelmingly negative response we have received from our valued customers. We cannot proceed with the booking.

The cinema chain also referred directly to a Change.org petition protesting the premiere of The Red Pill at Palace Kino in Melbourne, which received 2,370 signatures. The overwhelming number of responses, many from regular Kino customers, has really resonated with us, Palace Cinemas told Men's Rights Melbourne.

Update: UK premiere 19th November in Soho, London

1st November 2016. See  article from heatst.com
See event details from eventbrite.com

The Red Pill is coming to the UK. Heat Street reports that the movie's UK distributor says that its British premiere is planned for November 19th -- International Men's Day -- at London's Soho Hotel.

This comes after three other London venues pulled the plug on The Red Pill after venue owners got cold feet about feminist opposition.

A UK preview went ahead without event at the invite-only National Men's Rights Working Forum in Bath. Distributor Richard Elliott said:

It's revolutionary. People were crying one minute, then giving a standing ovation the next. It's going to ruffle a few feathers.

Update: BBFC 15 rated

17th November 2016.

The BBFC has now passed The Red Pill 15 uncut for strong language for 2016 cinema release.



Nanny Nudger's Fudge Delight...

British government suggests a website to name and shame restaurants that offer small portions

Link Here3rd October 2016
Jeremy Hunt, the UK's Health Secretary, told food companies that as eating out is no longer a treat they needed to be part of reforms to reduce the nation's waistline.

He wants to encourage food outlets, such as big chain restaurants, takeaways and fast food retailers, to cut sugar and reduce the size of desserts, cakes and pastries.

Consumers will be able to check the companies' efforts on a website,

Duncan Selbie, Chief nanny of Public Health England, said that the new measures were needed to improve nutrition across the board:

We need a level playing field - if the food and drink bought in cafes, coffee shops and restaurants does not also get reformulated and portions rethought then it will remain often significantly higher in sugar and bigger in portion than those being sold in supermarkets and convenience shops.



Smart Arses...

New Zealand schools ludicrously asks Thai students to rethink their nicknames, Pee, Poo, and Porn. What's the betting the centre's boss is nicknamed Dick?

Link Here25th September 2016
Some Thai students are being asked to consider changing their nicknames for smoother cultural integration in New Zealand.

The 'Smart' NZ Education Centre said six out of 10 students who applied through the agency had been advised to rethink their nicknames. Chonnanit Na Songkhla (no doubt aptly nicknamed Nit), an agent at the centre, spouted:

Some nicknames may contain unfavourable pronunciation like 'poo', 'pee', 'chit', which resemble 'shit' or 'porn'. There are nicknames that you know will result with the student getting harassed if nothing is done.

Most Thais are given nicknames at birth, a tradition rooted in the belief that a second name will confuse evil spirits intent on snatching a newborn.



Updated: The threadbare Fabric of British nightlife...

Britain is suffocating its nightclubs with impossibly onerous regulations

Link Here8th September 2016
One of Britain's best known nightclubs, Fabric, has been forced to close permanently after its licence was revoked by the council at the request of the police.

The Metropolitan police had asked the council to shut down the 2,500-capacity nightclub after the deaths of two teenagers in the space of nine weeks. One died after collapsing outside the club in August, while another died in late June.

At a meeting to consider the police request, Islington Borough Council decided that searches by security staff at the London venue had been:

Inadequate and in breach of the licence. People entering the club were inadequately searched.

It added that covert police operations suggested people were openly buying and taking illegal drugs on the premises and that staff should have been aware of it.

Leading figures who played at the venue, one of the most important for fans of electronic music, joined regulars in expressing their sorrow at the decision. A Change.org petition to halt the closure of the club had reached almost 150,000 signatures. Jacob Husley, who initiated the petition and has worked at the club's Sunday night party for the past eight years, said of the decision:

We are in shock. I am feeling a mixture of disbelief and anger and sadness ... It would be a devastating blow for London and culture, and clubs across the UK. It sets a precedent.

The chair of the Night Time Industries Association, Alan Miller, said he would start a grassroots fund to help save the club.

Fabric's campaign to stay open had been backed by the London mayor, Sadiq Khan who said:

London's iconic clubs are an essential part of our cultural landscape ... My team have spoken to all involved in the current situation and I am urging them to find a common sense solution that ensures the club remains open while protecting the safety of those who want to enjoy London's clubbing scene.

The MP for Islington, Emily Thornberry, also wrote on Facebook that she believed Fabric should stay open.

Update: What next for the UK's club scene?

8th September 2016. See  article from bbc.com

The BBC has weighed in with a surprisingly damning indictment of the police and local authorities:

Fabric, one of Britain's best-known nightclubs, has been shut after the deaths of two clubbers. But fans, DJs and venue owners have decried the decision, saying it will not solve the drug problem but will have a chilling effect on the clubbing scene.

Our culture has been torn apart, tweeted dance act Chase & Status , noting that almost all of London's iconic dance venues have now closed their doors.

Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh said the decision marked the beginning of the end of our cities as cultural centres .

And a host of other artists and DJs, from Fatboy Slim and the Chemical Brothers to Radio 1's Annie Mac and Nick Grimshaw, also expressed their dismay.

Singer Roisin Murphy told the BBC: For London it is a sign of things going downhill, in terms of being a fun place. I think people have seen the same thing happen in New York.

...Read the full article from bbc.com



Don't use WhatsApp to call your mistress or toy boy...

Lest Facebook use your phone log to suggest them as friends to your partner

Link Here27th August 2016
The UK's data protection agency has announced it is looking into Facebook's plans to use WhatsApp phone numbers and customer data to generate leads and for personalised advertisng on Facebook.

Privacy fears were raised earlier this week when a change in WhatsApp privacy policy revealed it users' phone numbers would be passed to the parent company to inform ads and for providing friend suggestions.

Mirroring the concerns of many Brits, the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has said it will monitor how WhatsApp data is shared with the Facebook. Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham said in a statement :

We've been informed of the changes. Organisations do not need to get prior approval from the ICO to change their approaches, but they do need to stay within data protection laws. We are looking into this.

Denham said ICO planned to pull back the curtain and ensure both Facebook and WhatsApp were providing users with the requisite transparency.

Plenty of users have objected to the plans, with many choosing to opt out and not to share the details with Facebook.



Offsite Article: The War on Cash...

Link Here27th August 2016
Banks, governments, credit card companies and tech evangelists all want us to believe a cashless future is inevitable and good. But this isn't a frictionless utopia, and it's time to fight back. By Brett Scott.

See article from countercurrents.org



USA proposes to ask all foreign visitors to provide their social media ID...

I don't know about you, but my profiles contains stuff that I'd rather the authorities didn't see.

Link Here 28th June 2016
The US authorities are set to add questions to immigration arrivals forms asking for IDs used on social media such as Facebook and Twitter. Reports suggest that it is supposedly voluntary to provide such information, but it wouldn't be difficult to drop a few hints, that those not providing such info may not be granted entry, to make it more or less mandatory.

A Notice by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) on 06/23/2016 detailed the new question:

CBP Forms I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record) and I-94W (Nonimmigrant Visa Waiver Arrival/Departure Record) are used to document a traveler's admission into the United States. These forms are filled out by aliens and are used to collect information on citizenship, residency, passport, and contact information. The data elements collected on these forms enable the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to perform its mission related to the screening of alien visitors for potential risks to national security and the determination of admissibility to the United States.

Proposed Changes

DHS proposes to add the following question to ESTA and to Form I-94W:

Please enter information associated with your online presence -- Provider/Platform -- Social media identifier.

It will be an optional data field to request social media identifiers to be used for vetting purposes, as well as applicant contact information. Collecting social media data will enhance the existing investigative process and provide DHS greater clarity and visibility to possible nefarious activity and connections by providing an additional tool set which analysts and investigators may use to better analyze and investigate the case.




Contradictory PC bullies are just as demanding about the 'correct' body image as the commercial world they are trying to protect people from

Link Here28th June 2016

Not fat enough!

Coronation Street star Catherine Tyldesley has hit out over an 'outrageous' Calvin Klein advert featuring a supposedly plus-size model.

The Salford actress tweeted two images of svelte-looking underwear model Myla Dalbesio - reportedly a US size 10/UK 14 - and exclaimed:

Tell me this is a joke??

PLUS size?!?! Congrats on giving another generation of girls eating disorders/insecurities.

The image is from an advertising campaign back in 2014, in which plus-size Myla starred alongside supermodels Jourdan Dunn and Lara Stone.

Too fat!

The depiction of a Polynesian character in a Disney film has prompted 'outrage' across the Pacific islands, with one New Zealand MP saying the portrayal of the god Maui as obese was not acceptable .

Jenny Salesa, who is of Tongan heritage, shared a picture on her Facebook account which said Disney's rendering of Maui in the film Moana resembled a creature that was half pig, half hippo :

When we look at photos of Polynesian men & women from the last 100-200 years, most of our people were not overweight and this negative stereotype of Maui is just not acceptable - No thanks to Disney.

Will Ilolahia, from the Pacific Island Media Association, told Waatea News that Disney's version of Maui did not fit with his heroic endeavours in Pacific creation myths:

He is depicted in the stories that's been handed down, especially in my culture, as a person of strength, a person of magnitude and a person of a godly nature. This depiction of Maui being obese is typical American stereotyping. Obesity is a new phenomena because of the first world food that's been stuffed down our throat.



Music changes the taste of beer...

High-pitched car alarm music found to turn drinks sour while deep bass hip hop sounds make beer bitter.

Link Here17th June 2016
Scientist have found that soundtracks can influence how drinks and food taste, and even alter alcoholic strength. Drinkers who were served three different types of beer rated them sweeter or sourer according to the music playing at the time.

The Belgium study, led by Dr Felipe Carvalho, of Vrije Universiteit Brussel, said:

Participants rated the beer as significantly sweeter when listening to the sweet soundtrack than when listening to the bitter soundtrack.

And volunteers rated the beer as significantly stronger while listening to the bitter soundtrack Scientists have found soundtracks influence how food and drinks taste, and can even alter alcoholic strength

Volunteers at the Music Instruments Museum in Brussels, Belgium, were asked to taste a beer, and rated the experience, each time under the influence of a different sound stimulus. Participants were not informed that they were, in fact, tasting the same beer each time.

Three type of ambient background music were used ; a Disney-style track - for sweet; a dis-chordant high-pitched notes - for sour; and a deep bass rumbling sound - for bitter.

The researchers concluded:

The results demonstrate that soundtracks that had been specially developed to evoke a specific taste can effectively be used in order to influence the participants beer tasting experience.

However the researchers did not consider whether music selection had any similar effect on drinkers perception of the attractiveness of GoGo dancers.



Offsite Article: How a Cashless Society Could Embolden Big Brother...

Link Here11th April 2016
When money becomes information, it can inform on you. By Sarah Jeong

See article from theatlantic.com



Miserable Canada...

Ontario PC extremists whinge about sexy uniforms at Hooters

Link Here11th March 2016
Political correctness enforcers in Ontario are calling for an end to sexy uniforms used to allure customers to the likes of Hooters or the Tilted Kilt restaurants.

Ontario's bizarrely named 'Human Rights' Commission claims that sexualized dress codes they believe discriminates against female and transgender workers.

Chief PC Enforcer Renu Mandhane says employers must make sure their dress codes don't reinforce sexist stereotypes. Mandhane claims policies requiring women to wear low-cut tops, short skirts or high heels could violate the 'Human Rights' code, and they send a message than an employees' worth is tied to how they look.

The PC extremists spouted about sexualised dress requirements in a policy position paper:

This treatment is often visible in bars, restaurants and other services that require women to dress in high heels, tight dresses, low-cut tops and short skirts. These dress codes persist across the restaurant industry, despite human rights decisions that have found them to be discriminatory. They may make employees more vulnerable to sexual harassment, contribute to discriminatory work environments and exclude people based on sex, gender identity...or creed.



Is your browser safe against tracking?...

EFF checks out your browser and add-ons for protection against tracking

Link Here22nd January 2016
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has launched version 2.0 of its tracking and fingerprinting detection tool, Panopticlick .

This version brings new tests to our existing tool, such as canvas and touch-capability fingerprinting, updating its ability to uniquely identify browsers with current techniques.

In addition, it adds a brand new suite of tests that detect how well your browser and extensions are protecting you from:

  1. tracking by ads;
  2. from tracking by invisible beacons; and also
  3. whether they encourage compliance with the Do Not Track policy , which EFF and a coalition of allies launched earlier this year.

We've also redesigned the site look and feel, including friendlier layout on mobile devices. If your browser lacks protections, Panopticlick 2.0 will recommend installing tools that are available on your platform, such as Privacy Badger , Disconnect or AdBlock , in order to get better protections as you navigate the Web.



Stick with your local rubbish!...

Netflix demands that users must not use VPNs and proxies to reach the content that they actually want to see (and pay for)

Link Here15th January 2016
For those utilizing VPNs, proxies and unblocking tools to access geo-restricted content on Netflix, the party may soon be over. According to an announcement by the company's Vice President of Content Delivery Architecture, people using such services will face new roadblocks in the coming weeks.

While increasing numbers of people are becoming tuned in to the joys of Netflix, growing numbers of subscribers are discovering a whole new world of content beyond what the service offers them as standard.

Netflix serves healthy libraries of content to many regions, but users in countries such as the United States get access to far more content than those located elsewhere. Likewise, not all European countries are served equally, with citizens of Italy falling short on content offered in the UK, for example.

As a result more and more customers of Netflix are bypassing restrictions designed to limit subscribers to content designated to their home countries. This is usually achieved by using a generic VPN or proxy service but some companies offer dedicated products to unlock Netflix on a global basis.

Even though Netflix admits it takes measures to try and limit the use of its service in this manner, the situation has traditionally seemed of minor interest to the company. However, in recent months Netflix has addressed the issue several times in the media and today has given the clearest sign yet that a crackdown is imminent.

In a post to Netflix's blog today, Vice President of Content Delivery Architecture David Fullagar said that while the company would continue to break down borders in order to offer content to the broadest possible audience, measures will be taken to ensure that content licensing agreements are respected.

That means that circumvention devices -- VPNs, proxies and similar tools -- will fall further under the company's spotlight.

Some members use proxies or 'unblockers' to access titles available outside their territory. To address this, we employ the same or similar measures other firms do, Fullagar says.

This technology continues to evolve and we are evolving with it. That means in coming weeks, those using proxies and unblockers will only be able to access the service in the country where they currently are.

The news will come as a blow to those enjoying the best possible Netflix experience, especially those in countries where the local library is limited compared to that of the United States, for example.

Note: While VPNs were not mentioned in the announcement, Netflix confirmed to TorrentFreak that these services will be targeted as well.



PC bullies whinge at a generic name for a style of pillowcase named 'housewife'...

And Wiki joins in the fun describing the style as: 'Housewife is essentially a bag, with a flap in the open end to fuck', or near enough

Link Here 9th January 2016
Ludicrous PC extremists have gotten all 'offended' by a picture of a pillowcase from Sainsbury's.

The pillowcase in question, from their own value brand, was offered in the style of housewife .

Cyber bullies took great delight on Twitter, claiming it to be sexist and an example of everyday sexism .

Sainsbury's responded to the tweet, saying:

 Hi there, this is the generic name for this style. Chris.

Sainsbury's isn't the only store to use the name housewife for pillowcases- it has been recognised as a style since the 1990s.

It's a good job the whingers didn't check out the definition on Wikipedia. This is amusingly defined with an open invitation to get a letter wrong:

Housewife is ... essentially a bag, with a flap in the open end to tuck the pillowcase behind to keep it in [place]...

Surely more than a coincidence.



Just when you thought PC whinges couldn't get any more inane...

Hands up all those who are not a bit sexist, homophobic, racist and especially ageist when it comes to selecting sexual partners

Link Here 9th January 2016
The dating site Where White People Meet, launched in late 2015, for white people who want to date other white people.

At first sight it may seem a little un-PC but there are plenty of websites specialising in very specific gender, racial, religion, age dating that exist without PC extremists throwing a wobbler. Eg  jdate.com for Jewish people or ourtime.com for those older than 50.

But of course this doesn't please PC extremists. According to a recent study out of Australia on online dating apps, claims that people who display a marked romantic preference for one race are more likely to be racist. Researchers found that 64% of the gay men they studied said it was acceptable to state a racial preference on these apps, and 70% believe it is totally fine to list racial preferences. Apparently the researchers claimed a correlation between racial discrimination and those who had high levels of racial preference.

The Guardian PC expert writing the article wailed:

To deny a person based solely on racial and ethnic identity without even getting to know them, instead of giving their numerous non melanin-related aspects a chance, is racism -- both on- and offline. I

I bet even the Guardian PC extremists would draw a line at demanding people ignore ageism when selecting sexual partners. And as for expecting religious women to not consider cultural identity when selecting their men....let's not go there.

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