ReHacked vol. 218: Do we need copyright?, High Prices Make Textbook 'Piracy' Acceptable to Most Students, Entering the Psychedelic World of Yayoi Kusama and more

It’s not about how much you use your phone. It’s about whether your phone is a needy, attention-sucking vampire. --Sim O.N.E.

ReHacked vol. 218: Do we need copyright?, High Prices Make Textbook 'Piracy' Acceptable to Most Students, Entering the Psychedelic World of Yayoi Kusama and more
Kusama in the exhibited hexagonal mirror room at "Kusamaʼs Peep Show" or "Endless Love Show," a solo exhibition at Richard Castellane Gallery, New York. 1966 © YAYOI KUSAMA

Make a donation - support Ukraine

Support the Armed Forces of Ukraine | via National Bank of Ukraine

Ukrainian Red Cross | Providing emergency aid to all those in need

Urgent Action Fund for Women’s Human Rights | Supporting women and LGBTQI+ people in and around Ukraine

Voices of Children | Helping children in Ukraine affected by conflict

Don’t forget to share if you like what you read here, subscribe (if not yet) and leave a comment. Any form of your feedback is very important to me. Thanks!

RSS feed available if you don’t want to clutter your inbox.

Do we need copyright? – Daniel Lemire's blog #copyrights

In fact, if you think about it for a minute, whenever you buy a book or a movie, you are being a patron to this project. So all work is the result of patronage. Cory Doctorow makes all his novels available for free from his web site. He happens to be one of the most successful writer of his generation. You can be confident that he is doing well financially. It works for him because people are willing to support him: his paying readers are his patrons.

Pentagon contracting with SpaceX's Starlink to provide satellite communication capabilities for Ukraine | DefenseScoop #technology #warfare

The Pentagon is buying satellite communication capabilities from SpaceX’s Starlink to aid the Ukrainian military in its war with Russia, DefenseScoop has learned.

The Pentagon has previously disclosed that “SATCOM terminals and services” have been included in U.S. security assistance packages, although it hasn’t been identifying the companies providing them.

However, on Thursday a defense official revealed that the department is contracting with Starlink.

Dennis Ritchie Home Page #history

In Memoriam

Dennis died in early October, 2011. This is a note from his sister and brothers:

As Dennis's siblings, Lynn, John, and Bill Ritchie--on behalf of the entire Ritchie family--we wanted to convey to all of you how deeply moved, astonished, and appreciative we are of the loving tributes to Dennis that we have been reading. We can confirm what we keep hearing again and again:

Dennis was an unfailingly kind, sweet, unassuming, and generous brother--and of course a complete geek. He had a hilariously dry sense of humor, and a keen appreciation for life's absurdities--though his world view was entirely devoid of cynicism or mean-spiritedness.

We are terribly sad to have lost him, but touched beyond words to realize what a mark he made on the world, and how well his gentle personality--beyond his accomplishments--seems to be understood.

Lynn, John, and Bill Ritchie

High Prices Make Textbook 'Piracy' Acceptable to Most Students * TorrentFreak #copyrights

Through several lawsuits, Danish publishers tried to send a clear message: educating oneself through pirated textbooks is illegal. This message has thus far failed to make an impact. New research published by the Rights Alliance shows that more than half of all students find it acceptable to use pirated books. Prison threats are not much of a deterrent but they are willing to change if prices drop significantly.

Studying can be a costly endeavor. Aside from the party budget, there are books and tuition fees to pay as well.

To reduce costs, some students choose to share books or buy cheaper second-hand versions. Others go a step further and venture onto the dark side, by downloading or even buying ‘pirated’ books.

Privacy (Part 1): Constantly Under Threat :: Escape Big Tech #privacy

An individual’s freedom of speech hinges significantly on their ability to communicate privately without fear of reprisal. Privacy guarantees that your speech is not eavesdropped on, and guarantees that two individuals can freely discuss ideas and ideals without fear of repercussion. This becomes especially vital in the cases of journalists, whistleblowers and political activists. By safeguarding confidential communication, the right to privacy creates a safe space for these individuals to speak truth.

Entering the Psychedelic World of Yayoi Kusama in Her Latest Exhibition | Tokyo Weekender #art

The “Yayoi Kusama’s Self-Obliteration/Psychedelic World” exhibition at The Yayoi Kusama Museum offers viewers a captivating and relevant exploration of the artist’s core philosophy. Spanning her early works in Japan, her involvement in America’s psychedelic art movement, and her later works after her return, the latest exhibition delves deep into Kusama’s central concept of self-obliteration. The exhibition blurs boundaries of existence by inviting viewers on a journey of self-discovery and universal unity through diverse mediums, including paintings, installations, films and literary pieces.

5 Feel-Good Anime To Watch This Spring and Summer | Tokyo Weekender #art #cinema

The warmer months of the year are a reminder of flowers, longer sunshine hours, and, of course, wholesome vibes. When it comes to anime, there is truly a theme and a topic for everyone, including the slice-of-life genre that’s all about feel-good moments. Reclaim your youth through these great anime titles:

  • Ya Boy Kongming!
  • Ouran High School Host Club
  • Kotaro Lives Alone
  • Food Wars
  • Kaguya-sama: Love is War

Paragon Graphite is a Pegasus spyware clone used in the US. - GAMINGDEPUTY #privacy

The US government banned Pegasus NSO spyware 18 months ago, but today a new report says at least one government agency is using very similar malware from a rival company: Paragon Graphite.

Graphite is reported to have the same capabilities as Pegasus and is said to be used by the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)

India cuts periodic table and evolution from school textbooks — experts are baffled #science #education #society

In India, children under 16 returning to school this month at the start of the school year will no longer be taught about evolution, the periodic table of elements or sources of energy.

The news that evolution would be cut from the curriculum for students aged 15–16 was widely reported last month, when thousands of people signed a petition in protest. But official guidance has revealed that a chapter on the periodic table will be cut, too, along with other foundational topics such as sources of energy and environmental sustainability. Younger learners will no longer be taught certain pollution- and climate-related topics, and there are cuts to biology, chemistry, geography, mathematics and physics subjects for older school students.

Overall, the changes affect some 134 million 11–18-year-olds in India’s schools. The extent of what has changed became clearer last month when the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) — the public body that develops the Indian school curriculum and textbooks — released textbooks for the new academic year that started in May.

Bitdeer to Raise $500M for Bhutan Bitcoin Mining Operations in Deal With Government #economy #blockchain

Bitcoin mining company Bitdeer (BTDR) said it will work with the Bhutan government to establish cryptocurrency mining operations in the southeast Asian country.

The Nasdaq-listed miner and the government's commercial arm, Druk Holding & Investments, will establish a $500 million fund to raise money for the venture from international investors and expect fundraising efforts to start this month, according to an emailed statement Wednesday.

How Facebook groups help with pet rescue and adoption in India #society #socialnetworks #animals

Facebook is helping stray cats and dogs find their forever homes.

Several groups on the platform have been facilitating the adoption of rescued animals in India. These groups, with tens of thousands of members, frequently coordinate fundraising for distressed animals, and actively discuss issues ranging from unethical breeding to pet abandonment.

“Facebook groups are a medium to reach more people,” said Ashwini, a 30-year-old corporate employee and the moderator of the Pet Adoption in Bangalore group. “They help with adoption, rescue, and also to create awareness on the rights of animals.”

Twitter withdraws from EU disinformation code #internet #socialnetworks

Twitter exited the voluntary European Union’s Code of Practice on Disinformation, the bloc’s Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton said.

Twitter Inc. was earlier this year the only major tech platform that didn’t send a complete report to the European Union under the code, which the company agreed to follow before it was taken over by Elon Musk in late 2022.

Its report was short of data and didn’t include commitments from the social media company that it would empower fact-checkers, the EU’s executive arm said in February.

molson on Twitter: "I criticized Amazon’s policies in a blogpost. Now, their lawyers are trying to ruin me. This is a thread on: 1. What I said about Amazon 2. How Amazon's lawyers have retaliated 3. Why it matters to Amazon customers, sellers, stockholders, and even Amazon itself" / Twitter #bigcorp

How to Stare at Your Phone Without Losing Your Soul | Sim O.N.E. (Observations, Nonsense, Exaggerations) #psychology #tech

Screen time doesn’t matter.

It’s not about how much you use your phone. It’s about whether your phone is a needy, attention-sucking vampire.

If that’s the case, the only healthy screen time is no screen time. Zero. That’s why the main metric tracked by screen time apps is deceptive: ten minutes of shooting crack cocaine intravenously are still ten minutes of shooting crack cocaine intravenously.

Federal Judge Makes History in Holding That Border Searches of Cell Phones Require a Warrant | Electronic Frontier Foundation #privacy

With United States v. Smith (S.D.N.Y. May 11, 2023), a district court judge in New York made history by being the first court to rule that a warrant is required for a cell phone search at the border, “absent exigent circumstances” (although other district courts have wanted to do so).

EFF is thrilled about this decision, given that we have been advocating for a warrant for border searches of electronic devices in the courts and Congress for nearly a decade. If the case is appealed to the Second Circuit, we urge the appellate court to affirm this landmark decision.

Molly White Tracks Crypto Scams. It’s Going Just Great | WIRED UK #blockchain

As cryptocurrencies rise and fall, there’s one number that just keeps going up. Whenever somebody loses money to a crypto scam or hack, the Grift Counter on Molly White’s blog, Web3 Is Going Just Great, spins higher and higher. Recently it ticked over $12 billion.

White started the blog in December 2021 out of frustration with the mainstream coverage of crypto, which she says paid too much attention to rags-to-riches tales and not enough to its dark underbelly. Her goal was to paint a fuller picture, to chronicle the thefts and failures, debunk the marketing spiel, and underline the risks in the process.

A software engineer by trade, White coded Web3 Is Going Just Great over the span of a few weeks. It was only a side project, designed to “entertain me and me alone,” says White; she never imagined it would gain any traction. But within a few months, the blog had become a viral hit, earning White a reputation as an authoritative crypto pundit.

NASA’s Laser Link Boasts Record-Breaking 200-Gb/s Speed - IEEE Spectrum #technology

A group of researchers from NASA, MIT, and other institutions have achieved the fastest space-to-ground laser-communication link yet, doubling the record they set last year. With data rates of 200 gigabits per second, a satellite could transmit more than 2 terabytes of data—roughly as much as 1,000 high-definition movies—in a single 5-minute pass over a ground station.

“The implications are far-reaching because, put simply, more data means more discoveries,” saysJason Mitchell, an aerospace engineer at NASA’s Space Communications and Navigation program.

Why octopuses are building small “cities” off the coast of Australia | Ars Technica (2017) #nature

The first time that divers discovered a "city" of octopuses off the coast of Australia, it seemed like a fluke. Octopuses are notoriously solitary animals. Divers found a small group of them in 2009 living together in burrows built around a piece of discarded metal, and they called it "Octopolis." At the time, scientists believed it was a rarity, perhaps caused by human meddling in the environment. But, in 2016, divers found another community of octopuses living in dens built from discarded shells. And this time there was no hunk of metal that had disturbed the natural environment. Researchers now suspect octopuses have been building group habitats for a long time.

Report: ‘massive’ Tesla leak reveals data breaches, thousands of safety complaints | Tesla | The Guardian #teslaleaks

Tesla has failed to adequately protect data from customers, employees and business partners and has received thousands of customer complaints regarding the carmaker’s driver assistance system, Germany’s Handelsblatt has reported, citing 100 gigabytes of confidential data leaked by a whistleblower.

The Handelsblatt report said customer data could be found “in abundance” in a data set labelled “Tesla Files”.

The files include tables containing more than 100,000 names of former and current employees, including the social security number of the Tesla CEO, Elon Musk, along with private email addresses, phone numbers, salaries of employees, bank details of customers and secret details from production, according to Handelsblatt.

Private Spies Hired by the FBI and Corporate Firms Infiltrate Discord, Reddit, WhatsApp #privacy

U.S. intelligence agencies also have a record of coming up empty after infiltrating private, online spaces, raising the possibility that the security justifications for the current incursions are weaker than the agencies are claiming. The documents leaked by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden revealed that FBI and CIA spies had created fake personas to hunt for potential terror plots discussed in online games, such as World of Warcraft and Second Life, as well as on platforms like Xbox Live. Those initiatives fizzled after the intelligence agencies found little to no evidence of terror communications.

But the federal government and its allies in academia and the media are pushing full-speed ahead for expanded surveillance of platforms like Discord that could mirror the now-defunct programs exposed by Snowden.

If you would like to propose any interesting article for the next ReHacked issue, just hit reply or push this sexy “Leave a comment” (if not subscribed yet) button below. It’s a nice way to start a discussion.

Thanks for reading this digest and remember: we can make it better together, just leave your opinion or suggestions after pressing this button above or simply hit the reply in your e-mail and don’t forget - sharing is caring ;) Have a great week!


Subscribe to ReHacked Newsletter

Don’t miss out on the latest issues. Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only issues.