[Tl;dr – quick and dirty stream of conscious post of various news in the week]
Tuesday, June 23, 2020
This is the year of censorship. We’ve been seeing a lot of actions around the world that are noteworthy not only in that it should bring to question how information is relayed, but what is being held back.
Here are some quick bits of what’s been happening around the world:
- Tearing down & toppling of statues in regards to protests. Last week due to racial tensions around the world various groups have advocated to take down statues and what they deem as symbols of divide. However this is a slippery slope into what one generation or era deems as okay and honor as remembering what happened in history. Also being taken down are paintings and artworks in gov buildings etc. Critics have stated that if we are to learn from our past we must remember it and to take down all of those would be a form of censorship and erasure from history being taught. A lot of major history is not taught in schools including the “refreeing” with a proclamation from an army in Texas years after the Emancipation Proclamation.
- Social media section 230 mentions and Twitter vs FB stances on free speech. Apparently there’s a debate that’s going on whether some forms of censorship is good to not feed the trolls and influence young minds or if it’s better to lay it all out there for people to make up their minds? There are at least two schools of thought. One is that the ability to read all information whether hateful, conspiracy, or wrong at leasts put information into sunshine for scrutiny. The other camp is that such speech is hurtful and detrimental. Lies and misinformation can pull back and pull down from making progress and regress into cyclical unproductive thought that is not conducive to a civil and cohesive united society.
- Zoom take down of a foreign (Ch) account. This company has been in a controversial light this year due to security issues with rated R photobombing in the background of videos from random people jumping into video chats. They also have tried to rectify this by acquiring Keybase to the chagrin of others. However recently it was revealed that this company may have removed or block an account that was bad mouthing or producing content that did not jive with the foreign country and its pro-nationalist requirements. Any criticism is not welcome by the country’s PR and political rules. Thus some have wondered: “Who’s side are you on?” Seems the company can’t get out of the negative shadow of the news this year.
- Flint water briefly mentioned again. A lady who had discovered that the tainted water in Michigan after discovering rashes and hair loss in her family attempts to contact gov officials and various state reps to no avail. After contacting investigators/ reporters the story starts to gain traction. Moral: the conspiracy to hold back info on tainted water was real. She wasn’t “crazy” and you shouldn’t always trust what is told.
- Goog / Big G is known for preventing apps from being installed for “security”. Same for the “Aapl” company. They have their walled garden. Both are developing apps to track Covid-19 and follow people via geolocation but there might be a way to prevent the app from being downloaded to your phone via updates. Recently at the App keynote they noted they will be transitioning away from Intel based chips to Arm based chips similar to what a lot of cellphones an Raspberry Pi’s have. They say this is revolutionary, and it will take up to 2 years to fully transition. This is good because it allows a bit more competition from Intel and AMD and also gives alternatives due to the Spectre and Meltdown fiascos in many modern processors. It will allow “Aapl” to more fully control their product and supply chain. However those that have studied computing history know this is not the first time the company has transitioned its chips as PowerPC’s moved to Intel a long time ago to be competitive and here we’re reversing due to the power and efficiency of current ARM chips. Only time will tell if they can run similar x86 and virtualization type code that rivals current programs and optimization.
- The company ebay was in the news. The saying is no news is good news but several CEOs were found to have harassed a couple after they did a review of the company on their website or blog. Accordingly the bad reviews drew ire from top execs and they sent many disturbing packages according to the story that caused further investigation and went up the corporate chain. Apparently companies want good PR and will go so far as to censor and bother people that don’t fall in line in “kissing up” to a company.
In other news Intel will consider baking in ransomware protection into its chips to detect and stop execution of what might be malicious code or activity. This comes after Honda recently had a ransomware breach of its own. Certain techies however debate the wisdom of this decision and wonder if in theory it can “lock out” good programs with false positives or be exploited in a reversal creating some backdoor or zero day. One only has to look to the ‘aapl’ phone unlock debate to see that technology can cause ripple effects.
Still in other news some companies are deciding to render their own political decisions and throw it into the arena as well. Some companies are deciding to stop further development of facial recognition tech to identify people. They don’t want to be the ones providing powerful computer algorithms that can be used to track down its citizens and incriminate or be exploited potentially by law enforcement gone rogue. The politically charged maelstrom that is the current dividing issue worldwide on class and injustice is causing many companies to weigh in. However perhaps it’s too much? Do dating apps and restaurants need to get into the debate? Some say yes it’s better to say something than not at all, but perhaps we don’t need to think about injustice when all we want to do is jump on a hookup app to swipe right? You know what I’m saying dating app people?
Other current events: in the future unmanned AI controlled fighter pilots will go head to head against humans for training purposes.
The top news currently is still viral outbreaks,
BLM and trials? As you can see the censorship debate is heavily mentioned as a leaked national advisor book is scrutinized.
There seems to be kpop stans and two factions of digital soldiers waging digital meme wars for control over informational supremacy only. One is linked to resurrected digital hacker group and another is linked to a political party also linked to conspiratory groups that may have originated from “chan” groups.
Lastly from a Slashdot mentioned article, The Internet Archive kills free national emergency library over copyright concerns. Unfortunately another instance of information that will not be able to be reviewed by smart individuals in the current era. Currently there’s too much info out there to peruse. Make sure you are careful about what you read so you don’t waste too much time online or get information that’s just wrong. Beware who you follow and also be perceptive that fake social media accounts are out there that mimic or use real people’s pictures and also of memes and pictures that have been altered.