"Art is just like everything else, except it’s more off-putting."

UNiversal values

'In a follow-up to the Millennium Development Goals, the United Nations is currently drafting a new set of development goals with the aim of eradicating poverty by 2030. The Open Working Group (OWG) that was given the job of drafting the new goals will hold its 13th and final session from 14 to 18 July.

Goal 16, on the media and information, is the subject of heated discussion and opposition from certain OWG members such as Russia, Cuba and China. Protection of the right to information is in danger of being weakened or disappearing altogether, to be replaced a vague reference to freedom of expression.

- Reporters Without Borders: Access to media and information could be dropped from UN development goals

from red lips to white noise

codes & conducts

Whenever Thai internet users attempt to access a web page that has been censored (such as the Human Rights Watch site or the independent news site Prachatai), they are rerouted to a page controlled by the government’s Technology Crime Suppression DivisionThat page has two blue buttons—one reading “close” and the other offering to “login with Facebook”—that both lead to a page asking users to hand over access to their profile information.

The ultimate consequences of the junta’s Facebook maneuvers may take a while to play outNorwegian telecom operator Telenor is in the regime’s doghouse for acknowledging that its DTAC subsidiary was forced to briefly block Facebook in late MayNow the Thai junta is threatening to lock DTAC out of the country’s upcoming 4G mobile spectrum auctions, saying it “showed no respect for the difficult situation in Thailand.’

- The Thai junta’s latest crackdown on dissent is a bogus Facebook login button

Unrelated: Deutsche Telekom, Hungarian government collude to silence independent media

TEN$ION

'In its effort to align with Chinese government content restrictions, LinkedIn has accidentally censored Hong Kong users’ mentions of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre.

Users in Hong Kong couldn’t share stories about the 1989 massacre, but the social network is only supposed to censor stories in mainland China.’

- LinkedIn Accidently Censors Tiananmen Square Content

for the record

Iranian spies appear to be engaged in their most elaborate and persistent effort yet to dupe lawmakers, journalists and defense contractors into revealing email addresses, network logins and other information that could be used to collect intelligence. A three-year espionage campaign, believed to have originated in Iran, has used an elaborate scheme involving a fabricated news agency, fake social media accounts and bogus journalist identities to trick victims in the United States, Israel and elsewhere, according to iSight Partners, the company that uncovered the campaign. Using fake accounts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Google+, the attackers have built an elaborate universe of fake personas bolstered by secondary accounts all for the purpose of garnering the trust of their targets, according to a report issued by the company.

[…]

The spies also created a fake news organization, NewsOnAir.org, owned and operated by a fake media mogul named Joseph Nillson, whom they illustrated using a photo of Alexander McCall Smith, author of The No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency.’

- Iranian Spies Pose as Reporters to Target Lawmakers, Defense Contractors

first charm offensive

AI is a field of study

'… the board, they lied to the delegates about their stance on guarantees of no-extradition for Assange. In the previous discussions they affirmed that a guarantee against extradition it would constitute a breach of the Constitution, “a crime against the Constitution” (“brott mot grundlagen“). That was a a strong argument, and a false argument, that convinced many  delegates for not support our proposal on behalf of the human rights of  Assange. But now the board is taking distance from that statement, and affirm that what they really meant it was, “it could be hypothetically that way”.’

- Swedish Amnesty International voted to reject human-rights actions on cases Assange, Snowden, and tortured Palestinian children

to all my killers and my hundred dollar billers

'What if someone had already figured out the answers to the world's most pressing policy problems, but those solutions were buried deep in a PDF, somewhere nobody will ever read them?

According to a recent report by the World Bank, that scenario is not so far-fetched. The bank is one of those high-minded organizations — Washington is full of them — that release hundreds, maybe thousands, of reports a year on policy issues big and small. Many of these reports are long and highly technical, and just about all of them get released to the world as a PDF report posted to the organization’s Web site.

The World Bank recently decided to ask an important question: Is anyone actually reading these things? They dug into their Web site traffic data and came to the following conclusions: Nearly one-third of their PDF reports had never been downloaded, not even once. Another 40 percent of their reports had been downloaded fewer than 100 times. Only 13 percent had seen more than 250 downloads in their lifetimes. Since most World Bank reports have a stated objective of informing public debate or government policy, this seems like a pretty lousy track record.’

- The solutions to all our problems may be buried in PDFs that nobody reads

very advanced chinese kitsch

filter fuck

'The Federal Communications Commission will propose new rules that allow Internet service providers to offer a faster lane through which to send video and other content to consumers, as long as a content company is willing to pay for it, according to people briefed on the proposals.

The proposed rules are a complete turnaround for the F.C.C. on the subject of so-called net neutrality, the principle that Internet users should have equal ability to see any content they choose, and that no content providers should be discriminated against in providing their offerings to consumers.’

- F.C.C., in Net Neutrality Turnaround, Plans to Allow Fast Lane

(pro)testing power

'Six activists have been detained near the Kremlin in Moscow for holding "invisible posters" and calling for the release of other protesters detained earlier, it appears. The group was detained on Sunday in Manezhnaya Square and were holding out their hands as if they were carrying invisible signs.’

- Russia: Activists held over ‘invisible posters’