29 March 2018

Mainstream media supporting data collection and mass surveillance tool Uber?

Following on from Australia's mainstream media's recent attention to Facebook's data collection, it seems that the Rupert Murdoch news empire is promoting the use of Uber (deliberately) without warning users of it's massive data collection and mass surveillance capability.

Here are some of the reasons, as documented by Richard Stallman:

Reasons not to use Uber

We should not accept the promotional term "sharing economy" for companies like Uber. That is spin. A more accurate term is "piecework subcontractor economy".
Uber is a big advance in massive surveillance. Unlike a taxi, an Uber car can't be used anonymously. You can't pay cash. It also requires use of nonfree software, which mistreats the user.
Because I reject technology that mistreats me, I will never order or pay for an Uber car. Because Uber threatens to eliminate the taxis that are acceptable to use, I go beyond that: I will not let someone order an Uber car for me. How about joining me?
Users' Freedom
Abuse of Drivers
Comparison to Real Taxis


  • Uber collects data about passengers, then uses the data to profile them in various ways.
  • Uber requires passengers to identify themselves, both to order a ride and to pay. (Uber offers some users in a few places the option of paying cash, but they are still tracked and identified when ordering the ride.)
  • It also records where you get the ride and where you go with it.
  • Uber can track who has a one-night stand. In fact, it did so.
  • Uber has started tracking users' movements before and after rides. In August 2017, Uber made it possible to turn that extra tracking off, but it is still enabled by default, and most customers won't think to turn it off.
    That is only a tiny step forward.
  • people whose accounts have been stolen.
  • Uber hacked Lyft's ride-management server with phony accounts in order to identify people that were driving for Lyft.
  • Uber plans to snoop on users' locations and contacts all the time. Uber has the technical possibility to do this because its app is nonfree: it is controlled by Uber, not by the user. In addition, snooping depends on a nonfree operating system. With a free system, the user could tell the system to lie to the Uber app.
  • The US government can get those records, and any lawsuit (such as a divorce lawsuit) can subpoena them.
  • Uber gave the US government data on millions of customers.
  • Uber's clever policy of not being directly responsible for anything that goes wrong extends to harassment by drivers, and its practice of identifying passengers enables drivers to find out who the passenger is. This makes some women scared to use Uber. This problem comes directly out of the practices listed above that mistreat all users of Uber.
  • Uber executives and staff have stalked passengers in various ways. If you take an ordinary taxi and pay cash, it will generate no records associated with you — except in New York City where the government might apply face recognition to identify your photo in real time.
  • To recover our privacy and make democracy safe, we need to redesign digital systems so that they do not collect information about people in general. First step, don't help any new ones gain a foothold.

Users' Freedom

  • Uber requires customers to run a nonfree program (an app). As always, a nonfree program tramples its users' freedom. I'm not talking about the software that Uber runs in its servers; that does not directly affect customers. If some of that software is nonfree, it tramples Uber's freedom, but not the customers' freedom. The nonfree software and digital services that Uber requires its users to use attack their freedom in various ways.
  • The Uber app requires running other nonfree software (in the case of Android, Google Play).
  • Uber is trying again to force all customers to agree to arbitration of disputes — rather than lawsuits.

Abuse of Drivers


Comparison to Real Taxis

  • When taxi drivers struck to protest the troll's partial Muslim ban, Uber took the opportunity to undercut the strike.
  • Cities and even public service campaigns are outsourcing transportation to Uber, which is a form of privatization of public transit. This excludes poor people, and subjects those who do use the service to being tracked. Lyft is no better than Uber in this regard.
  • Uber has changed the regulations that cover charging passengers for making cars wait. This decision itself may not be objectionable. Taxis typically charge for making them wait. But that regulation is set by a city agency which is at least somewhat responsible to the people. Uber is a business headquartered somewhere else, which accepts no responsibility to the people of any city.
    We should not allow a company to privatize the making of the regulations that create our social order.
  • Uber plans to do away with human cab drivers. It would be easy for a non-plutocratic government to prohibit this, and that's what every country ought to do, unless/until every person gets an adequate basic income so people don't need to be employed.
  • With real taxis, you can flag one on the street or phone in any fashion; you can pay cash; you can be anonymous.
  • Beware of thinking of Uber as one more option in addition to real taxis. At the moment, that's true, but if Uber is a big success, real taxis could disappear.
    Then what will you do, if you don't want to tell Big Brother where you are going?


  • Uber investigated a lawyer handling a lawsuit against Uber's policy of surge pricing, using methods that may reach the domain of illegality.
  • Guber programmed its system for special treatment of people that might be investigating accusations of violating municipal regulations. The special treatment was that the system would say a car was coming, but no car would ever arrive.
    Uber has the ability to do this because it forces all its clients to identify themselves — which is fundamentally unjust.
  • Uber's autonomous cars frequently violate traffic laws.
    Uber tries to put the blame on human safety monitors, who could in principle intervene to stop this.
    That's the general Uber attitude: profits to the company, burdens to the drivers.
    I would guess that the safety monitors would be hard-pressed to react fast enough to prevent these maneuvers — which would mean that they are an excuse and a scapegoat, not a real safety system.
  • Uber operated a team to spy on competitors and to "impede, obstruct or influence" legal investigations, according to an ex-manager who was involved with the team.
  • Uber blames state governments for eliminating cities' power to regulate such companies.
  • Uber imposes arbitration on customers for all complaints, including rape by drivers, and this covers up the prevalence of the problem.
    No company should be allowed to require its customers or its workers (whether labeled "employee" or "independent contractors") to use arbitration instead of going to court.


Copyright (c) 2014-2016 Richard Stallman Verbatim copying and redistribution of this entire page are permitted provided this notice is preserved.

Australian TV Ancestry DNA

Australian TV is truly the epitome of the term idiot box, where there is very little there that is truly for your benefit.

The Australian air waves are currently rife with pollution telling to take an action in commerce with a company from the United States called ancestry.com

Just another way of getting the herd population to pay for themselves to be catalogued.

What people do not realise is that information can (and will) be used against you as described in article from 7 Jun 2017 by techdirt.com of the headline:

Cheap DNA Testing Is Giving Some Insurers Even More Ways To Deny Coverage [UPDATED]

from the yet-another-third-party-records-repository dept

[Update: after this post was published, Eric Heath of AncestryDNA emailed us with concerns about the post's content, considering the recent update to the site's terms of service. As Heath points out in a post at Ancestry's blog, the terms have been rewritten to make it explicit what Ancesty does and does not do with customers' submitted DNA:
First, we very clearly state that AncestryDNA does not “claim ownership rights in the DNA that is submitted for testing.” You own your DNA; this sentence helps make it clear that nothing we do takes, or has ever taken, that ownership from you.
Second, we’re clear that because you are owner of your DNA, we need you to grant us a license to your data so that we can provide our products and services to you and our other users, as well as develop new products and services. You can revoke this right at any time by requesting we delete your data or your account.
Third, we explicitly state that we will not share your genetic data with employers, insurance providers or third party marketers without first getting your consent. We already follow this procedure, but this language makes our commitment to you explicit.
The whole blog post and Ancestry's response to comments are worth reading. It appears the language restricting legal action to arbitration remains, but on the whole, it appears Ancestry is addressing the issues raised by Joel Winston's post.]

Joel Winston -- current consumer protection lawyer and former New Jersey attorney general -- is offering up the periodic reminder that terms of service are rarely written with the user's best interests in mind. Winston highlights the demands Ancestry.com makes in exchange for using its paid service. Two-thirds of those highlighted are standard operating procedure for far too many services. [h/t War on Privacy]

The first is the perpetual license users grant Ancestry.com for exploitation of their DNA data. Again, this sort of thing can be found at many services heavily-reliant on users' contributions. And many of those not only want your money, but the opportunity to sell off data as well.
Specifically, by submitting DNA to AncestryDNA, you agree to “grant AncestryDNA and the Ancestry Group Companies a perpetual, royalty-free, world-wide, transferable license to use your DNA, and any DNA you submit for any person from whom you obtained legal authorization as described in this Agreement, and to use, host, sublicense and distribute the resulting analysis to the extent and in the form or context we deem appropriate on or through any media or medium and with any technology or devices now known or hereafter developed or discovered.”
It's not particularly heinous. (Yes, I'm damning it with faint damnation.) But it's no better than countless other services, and this one deals with DNA, which is arguably more personal than, say, tweets... or coarse demographic info. It would be nice to know this up front. Ancestry.com can claim it does inform users of this, but it's part of a lengthy Terms and Conditions which contains enough dense language and boilerplate legalese to deter all but the most detail-oriented from reading it all the way through.

Opting out is, of course, much more difficult. As Winston notes, several hoops must be jumped through to pull your DNA out of this broad "agreement." It also takes the company 30 days to handle users' requests, and it doesn't affect any studies, etc. the company has already supplied with your DNA data. It also may involve phone calls, which is super fun in the age of digital communications that leave a better, more easily-verifiable paper trail.

On top of that, there's the arbitration clause, which will ensure users have as little leverage as possible should they be unhappy with Ancestry's services or handling of DNA data. This, too, is sadly a part of too many terms of service agreements. Arbitration forces users to play on the company's playground, rather than the more neutral field created by filing a civil complaint. This sucks, but once again, it's nothing that's unique to Ancestry.com.

What's most disturbing about Ancestry's growing DNA collection is something Glyn Moody highlighted here a couple of years ago.
According to an article on Fusion.net, Ancestry now has over 800,000 samples, while 23andMe has a million customers (Ancestry says that a more up-to-date figure is 1.2 million members in its database). Those are significant holdings, and it's only natural that the police would try to use them to solve crimes; both companies confirm that they will turn over information from their databases to law enforcement agencies if served with a suitable court order.
Customers' DNA info -- processed by Ancestry.com -- becomes nothing more than a third-party record. The company says it only complies with court orders, but there's a lack of specificity in that statement. A court order may be nothing more than a subpoena, rather than a search warrant. Third-party records have a lowered expectation of privacy, which means warrants aren't a necessity.
What makes this even more problematic is the company's willingness to hand over "familial" DNA -- in other words, DNA that isn't necessarily yours but comes from the same gene pool. Mixing this together raises the chance of false positives, which is never a good thing when someone's freedom is on the line.

And it's not just limited to police snooping. Ancestry is making this information available to private parties (see the perpetual license above), which could have adverse effects on people who've never used the service.
Buried in the “Informed Consent” section, which is incorporated into the Terms of Service, Ancestry.com warns customers, “it is possible that information about you or a genetic relative could be revealed, such as that you or a relative are carriers of a particular disease. That information could be used by insurers to deny you insurance coverage, by law enforcement agencies to identify you or your relatives, and in some places, the data could be used by employers to deny employment.”
This is a massive red flag. The data “you or a genetic relative” give to AncestryDNA could be used against “you or a genetic relative” by employers, insurers, and law enforcement.
The damage being done isn't theoretical. Glyn Moody's piece dealt with a man who became a suspect in a 20-year-old murder thanks to his father's DNA data (obtained by law enforcement from privately-held genetic databases). Winston's piece also covers the law enforcement aspects of Ancestry's license/sharing. But as the terms warn, insurers and employers could decide they want nothing to do with you, thanks to your familial DNA.
For example, a young woman named Theresa Morelli applied for individual disability insurance, consented to release of her medical records through the Medical Information Bureau (a credit reporting agency for medical history), and was approved for coverage. One month later, Ms. Morelli’s coverage was cancelled and premiums refunded when the insurer learned her father had Huntington’s disease, a genetic illness.
Startlingly, the Medical Information Bureau (MIB) used Morelli’s broad consent to query her father’s physician, a doctor with whom she had no prior patient relationship. More importantly, the applicant herself wasn’t diagnosed with Huntington’s carrier status, but she suffered exclusion on the basis of a genetic predisposition in her family.
Health care insurers are forbidden by federal law from using DNA data to deny coverage, but as Winston points out, nothing prohibits other insurers (life, long-term disability, etc.) from using this to decline coverage. And there's nothing at all in the law preventing employers from using DNA data to screen out potential employees who might be a net loss on company-provided insurance plans.

The upside is a $99 DNA test, something that used to be prohibitively expensive. The downside… well, it's pretty much everything else. In exchange for cheap testing, customers have to give up nearly everything. They can't easily stop the sharing of data, have limited ability to challenge information demands by law enforcement, and zero chance to fully control the use of data you've handed over to Ancestry.com. Information about how your DNA data is being used isn't easily obtained and anything insurers and employers are doing with this information is almost completely opaque. And, if you don't like it -- or feel Ancestry has managed to overstep the broad powers granted to it by its users -- you're stuck with arbitration as your only recourse.

Trust police - Senior cop charged with rape

From the article on 26 Mar 2018 by new.com.au of the headline:

Senior NSW police constable charged with rape

POLICE have revealed that a senior officer has been charged with “sexual intercourse without consent” and “assault with an act of indecency”.

The officer has been suspended. Picture: Troy Snook/News Corp Australia. Source:News Corp Australia

A SENIOR police constable has been charged with rape following an alleged attack at a NSW home.

NSW Police will allege that the off-duty officer attended a home in Tamworth about 3am on January 22, where two assaults occurred.

“The incidents were reported to officers attached to Oxley Police District on January 25, and an investigation immediately commenced,” a spokesman for the force said.

“After extensive inquiries, a 27-year-old man was arrested at a property in the Canobolas Shire, following the execution of a search warrant.”

The man was taken to Dubbo Police Station where he was charged with sexual intercourse without consent and assault with act of indecency.

He has been granted conditional bail and is due to appear at Dubbo Local Court on April 18.
The officer has been suspended.

Fines Victoria How to pay your fine

You have probably reached this page as a result of searching how to pay your fine in Victoria, Australia.

Please follow the instructions on how to do this, in the graphic below:

27 March 2018

Police and media lies regarding mobile phone surveillance on you

(Israel's Cellebrite system can extract data from a variety of phones.)

In an article by the Rupert Murdoch media on a seemingly innocuous ex Auburn deputy major Mr. Salim Mehajer, the propaganda machine is out in full force.

From the screen capture above, paying attention to the following two sentences:

He revealed the police weren’t even aware of where Ms Learmonth was and their communication with her was via email or telephone.

“We don’t know where she is and she won’t tell police where she is,” he said.

Very briefly:

If you have your mobile phone on your 'person', then the police do know where your are.

The information of where you are located can be obtained in a number of ways.

If you are using the older style phones which are not smartphones, which only have voice and SMS capabilities, the GSM technology they use already has approximated location technology built in via the GSM protocols in conjunction with mobile phone tower triangulation.

If you are using a smart phone then your location is more precisely known via 'back doors' to the smart phone.

This information is obtained from the telcos by police without warrants. 

The statement that police do not know your whereabouts is a blatant lie.

See article (text only version) from 18 Feb 2012 by smh.com.au of the headline:

Police spy on web, phone usage with no warrants

LAW enforcement and government departments are accessing vast quantities of phone and internet usage data without warrants, prompting warnings from the Greens of a growing ''surveillance state'' and calls by privacy groups for tighter controls.Figures released by the federal Attorney-General's Department show that federal and state government agencies accessed telecommunications data and internet logs more than 250,000 times during criminal and revenue investigations in 2010-11.

The Greens senator Scott Ludlam highlighted the statistics while calling for tighter controls on access to mobile device location information.

''There should be a higher standard of proof, or a higher standard of cause needing to be shown, to track down your every location through your life than there is for reading your email,'' he said at a recent conference on internet privacy.

''We've already taken some pretty dangerous steps in this country towards the surveillance state, and not that many of us are either interested or aware that it's going on, including people like me who should know better.''

Data available to police, security and other government agencies under federal law includes phone and internet account information, outward and inward call details, phone and internet access location data, and details of IP addresses visited, though not the content of communications.

Access is authorised by senior police officers or officials rather than by judicial warrant.

Federal agencies making use of telecommunications data include the Australian Federal Police, Australian Crime Commission and Australian Taxation Office, departments including Defence, Immigration and Citizenship, and Health and Ageing, and Medicare and Australia Post.

Data is also accessed by state police and anti-corruption bodies, government departments and revenue offices, and many other official bodies.

The largest user of telecommunications data in 2010-11 was Victoria Police with 65,703 authorisations. It has reported an increase of more than 50 per cent in authorisations over two years ''as investigator knowledge becomes more widely known, technology changes and auto processing have simplified the process''.

NSW Police reported 43,416 authorisations over the same period.

No statistics have been released for telecommunications data access by the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation.

The scale of telecommunications data mining by police and security agencies has also been illustrated by the release under freedom-of-information laws of a ''highly protected'' report on a single AFP-Defence Department leak investigation conducted from 1999 to 2001.

In an effort to identify the source of leaks of secret intelligence reports on East Timor, the federal police and Defence security investigators accessed phone call records of nearly 14,000 phone services totalling more than 77,000 phone calls.

In a recent policy statement the Australian Privacy Foundation noted that it was now easy to track smartphones and tablets ''in real time, or retrospectively''.

''Where any form of handling of location data is authorised by law, the authority must be specific, justified, proportionate and controlled,'' it said.

CLOUD Act why it needs to be stopped Oops it just got passed in secret

A new bill in Congress has dangerous reach—it threatens the data privacy of you and people around the world, letting law enforcement sneak past the rules we have in place that help protect our lives online. Tell your representative today to reject the CLOUD Act.

Your data moves everywhere. Your social media posts could pass through servers in Sweden. Your Internet search history could be stored in data centers in Berkeley or Belgium. Your text messages and ride hailing records might rely on servers around the world.

When police want access to data beyond their country's borders, they often have to comply not just with their own data protection laws, but also with the data protection laws where the data is stored. That's a good thing. It ensures that when data crosses borders, people don't suffer a reduction of privacy.

But the privacy protections in this global system have aggravated law enforcement for years, and a new bill in Congress aims to appease those frustrations. The new bill would allow foreign police to demand data directly from U.S. companies and, along the way, predictably capture our emails, chat logs, online photos, and videos.

This bill is the CLOUD Act (S. 2383 and H.R. 4943) and it presents an enormous overreach.
The CLOUD Act would:
  • Enable foreign police to collect and wiretap people's communications from U.S. companies, without obtaining a U.S. warrant.
  • Allow foreign nations to demand personal data stored in the United States, without prior review by a judge.
  • Allow the U.S. president to enter "executive agreements" that empower police in foreign nations that have weaker privacy laws than the United States to seize data in the United States while ignoring U.S. privacy laws.
  • Allow foreign police to collect someone's data without notifying them about it.
  • Empower U.S. police to grab any data, regardless if it's a U.S. person's or not, no matter where it is stored.
Here's how the CLOUD Act could work in practice:

London investigators want the private Slack messages of a Londoner they suspect of bank fraud. The London police could go directly to Slack, a U.S. company, to request and collect those messages. The London police would receive no prior judicial review for this request. The London police could avoid notifying U.S. law enforcement about this request. The London police would not need a probable cause warrant for this collection.

Predictably, in this request, the London police might also collect Slack messages written by U.S. persons communicating with the Londoner suspected of bank fraud. Those messages could be read, stored, and potentially shared, all without the U.S. person knowing about it. Those messages could be used to criminally charge the U.S. person with potentially unrelated crimes, too.

Under the CLOUD Act, this type of data collection could happen, so long as the president agrees to it.

All of this is wrong. Tell your representative today to protect privacy by rejecting the CLOUD Act.

Source: eff.org

OOPS !!! It just got passed in secret

From 26 Mar 2018 by coingape.com of the headline:

CLOUD Act: Crypto Community In Dread Over Increased Govt. Access To Online Info

The CLOUD Act got passed amid the trillion dollars federal spending bill, almost in secret. An extension to the international law enforcement power pertaining to online activity, the act allows the law enforcement agencies to gain access to online information from around the world which has the crypto community in fear over privacy.

CLOUD Act passes: Endangers privacy

The Clarifying Law Overseas Use of Data (CLOUD) Act introduced by the Republican Senator, Orrin Hatch, has been passed with the support of both Democratic and Republican Senators. This act will provide the law enforcement agencies with an easier access to the electronic data of the users that comprise of messages, files, and emails. These details aren’t only indigenous but also include that is stored in the foreign servers.  

Additionally, this act also provides the US lawmakers with a framework to send the information on a case-by-case basis, from the US servers to other countries. The President Pro Tempore of the US Senate, Orrin hatch detailed:
“The CLOUD Act bridges the divide that sometimes exists between law enforcement and the tech sector by giving law enforcement the tools it needs to access data throughout the world while at the same time creating a commonsense framework to encourage international cooperation to resolve conflicts of law.”
Also, read: What is KYC and AML? Why it’s so Important in Cryptocurrencies?

Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Apple all in for CLOUD Act

The 2,232 pages document is basically a combined initiative of the big players viz. Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Apple, and Yahoo. A joint statement from these companies read:
“The new Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data (CLOUD) Act reflects a growing consensus in favor of protecting Internet users around the world and provides a logical solution for governing cross-border access to data. Introduction of this bipartisan legislation is an important step toward enhancing and protecting individual privacy rights, reducing international conflicts of law and keeping us all safer.”
However, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is not in support of this act as it believes that this act evades the Fourth Amendment that requires a cause to start an investigation. While the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) stated that it “provides an alarming level of discretion to the executive branch at the expense of congressional authority.”

Crypto community concerned

With incidents like whistleblower Edward Snowden revealing that the US government has been tracking the activities of bitcoin users, this act gives the government more power to invade and monitor the online privacy.

Andreas Anthopoulos, the bitcoin advocate showed his feelings with the tweet:
“The CLOUD Act passed. It destroys privacy globally, so it had to be snuck into the $1.3 trillion omnibus without debate. Encrypt. Encrypt. Encrypt. Go Dark. When privacy is criminalized, only criminals have privacy. We got sold out, again.”
The presented content may include the personal opinion of the author and is subject to market condition. Do your market research before investing in cryptocurrencies. The author or the publication does not hold any responsibility for your personal financial loss.

Trust police - They will leave you for dead literally

And this is only from a report that the general population are allowed to know about / read.

There is plenty more that is sealed and not available for the serfs to know about. 

How can one trust police when their actions are not isolated to one Corinna Horvath (pictured below) case.

You might as well throw the manual (as seen below) out the door ESPECIALLY the part:

protect life and property

See the two page report (84KB - really good for NBN speeds) the mainstream media did not link to:

From article on 27 Mar 2018 by news.com.au of the headline:

Action urged for Vic Police 'deficiencies'

Human rights considerations are among a raft of areas needing immediate improvement in Victoria Police's internal investigations, the corruption watchdog says.

Human rights issues were overlooked by Victorian police in more than half of their investigations into serious incidents involving officers which left members of the public dead or injured.

A damning report by the state's corruption watchdog released on Tuesday highlighted numerous deficiencies including a failure to adequately manage conflicts of interests and examine relevant evidence.

The Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission audit comes after the examination of 142 cases closed in 2015/16.

"The audit identified concerning deficiencies in Victoria Police's oversight, which require immediate attention," IBAC commissioner Robert Redlich QC said.

"Victoria Police's oversight of these serious incidents must be thorough and impartial so that the community can be confident the police actions were appropriate and to identify how to prevent similar incidents from occurring in future."

The audit is the first of its kind in Victoria and found the force needs to improve how it identifies, records and manages conflicts of interest.

Training on human rights must be provided, along with improved supervision of oversight investigations.

And the professional standards command should oversee investigations involving Special Operations Group, with improved reporting to IBAC.

Victoria Police has accepted all recommendations and will provide an interim report on its implementation of recommendations by September, and final report by March 2019.

Human rights issues were overlooked by Victorian police in more than half of their investigations into serious incidents involving officers which left members of the public dead or injured.

A damning report by the state's corruption watchdog released on Tuesday highlighted numerous deficiencies including a failure to adequately manage conflicts of interests and examine relevant evidence.

The Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission audit comes after the examination of 142 cases closed in 2015/16.

"The audit identified concerning deficiencies in Victoria Police's oversight, which require immediate attention," IBAC commissioner Robert Redlich QC said.

"Victoria Police's oversight of these serious incidents must be thorough and impartial so that the community can be confident the police actions were appropriate and to identify how to prevent similar incidents from occurring in future."

The audit is the first of its kind in Victoria and found the force needs to improve how it identifies, records and manages conflicts of interest.

Training on human rights must be provided, along with improved supervision of oversight investigations.

And the professional standards command should oversee investigations involving Special Operations Group, with improved reporting to IBAC.

Victoria Police has accepted all recommendations and will provide an interim report on its implementation of recommendations by September, and final report by March 2019.

26 March 2018

The Reject Shop Worker Training Fraud

The Reject Shop, along with other companies in Australia,  is involved in a wage fraud involving their workers, with regards to training them.

In Australia companies that employ workers must train them on company time.

What companies like The Reject Shop are doing is compiling hours and hours of training videos for the employees to be trained with, in the employee's own time.

The problem with that is that many of those defrauded employees (either school leavers or long term unemployed), who are desperate for employment, stay silent for the fear of being blacklisted in the work force, by their employer.

Once again another action enforcing the slave status of the children of the general population.

25 March 2018

Piracy is not copying software

Words get reused from the past to describe a particular action,  event or description from the present, sometimes being grossly inaccurate.

In the legal sphere the term 'freeman' today does not have the same meaning as used in the days of the Magna Carta, where many people erroneously try to shove that word into today's legal jargon.

The term piracy was used to describe an action involving people sailing on ships with the intent to commit criminal activity, specifically; stealing other people's possessions, murdering and kidnapping.

Piracy is illegal in Australia, as described in a law from Queensland from 1899, under the Criminal Code 1899, from Section 79;

act of piracy
(1) A person does an
"act of piracy" if the person, in relation to a ship travelling at sea, unlawfully—

In Victoria a law called the Crimes Act from 1958 under Section 70A describes piracy as;

Piracy with violence Any person who with intent to commit or at the time of or immediately before or immediately after committing the offence of piracy in respect of any vessel—

(illustration of a 'pirate' from the 18th century)

On the 28th day of April 1770, James Cook landed on the southern shore of today's suburb Kurnell in Botany Bay together with Joseph Banks and Dr. Daniel Solander.

Together they took 'possession' in the name of the crown under King George the Third of a land that already had inhabitants on it, without any 'compensation' or treaty with those people, an act of 'piracy'.

Conversely the indigenous people of New Zealand had a treaty with the crown of England irrespective of reports of how dodgy it may been written.

Today similarly the inhabitants of Australia are being shafted by the people in power with regards to the modern take on the word piracy.

Laws created in Australia are for the financial benefit and prosperity of corporations at the expense of the general population.

Ever since the commercialisation of the government resource called the Internet the actions of corporations have worked against the people in a fascist like manner.

This has been supported by disclosure of top secret government documentation by Edward Snowden.

The modern meaning of pirate equates to a person copying software illegally implying treacherous, murderous connotations with the word of yesteryear.

For Australians the terms legally / illegally and lawfully / unlawfully are under scrutiny where this is another convoluted topic not within the scope of this post.

Since Australians are being limited to what websites they can access by corporations, therefore Australia is a country where the government bans its people from accessing certain websites, you know like a mini China, i.e. state controlled access.

The whole 'piracy' issue is led by corporations such as the United States' MPAA, where apparently Australians are criminals for viewing content on websites.

Very briefly:

In order for Australians to omit the above discriminatory message, one must change the DNS addresses to overseas servers and not Australian based ones.

To do this on computers running Microsoft's spyware called the 'Windows' operating system, inside the Network Properties of the Internet connection, there is a tab called Networking, where the last selection is Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4).

The properties within, can be changed to the DNS values of the illustration below:

With regards to the erroneous description of the word pirate, here's where the fun begins:

The text from the above site is as follows:

Leading up to the trial, Hotfile has scored several significant wins against the MPAA. The Florida federal court ruled on several motions this week, and many went in favor of the file-hosting service. 

Most prominently, Judge Kathleen Williams decided that the movie studios and its witnesses are not allowed to use “pejorative” terms including “piracy,” “theft” and “stealing” during the upcoming proceedings.

piracy-crimeThe ongoing legal battle between Hotfile and the MPAA is nearing its climax.

In August the movie studios won summary judgment on the issues of DMCA defense and vicarious liability, while the file-hosting site was cleared of direct copyright infringement. The remaining issues, including the damages amount, will be decided during a trial early next month.

In preparation for the trial both parties have submitted motions to the court in recent weeks. Hotfile, for example, asked the court to prevent the MPAA from using “pejorative” terms including piracy, theft and stealing as these could misguide the jury.

District Court Judge Kathleen Williams has now ruled on these motions, with the file-hosting service scoring several important victories.

The Judge granted Hotfile’s “pejorative” terms motion, which means that the movie studios and its witnesses are not allowed to use words including “piracy,” “theft” and “stealing” during the trial.

“Defendants’ Motion in Limine to Preclude Use of Pejorative Terms is GRANTED IN PART. The parties may not use pejorative terms but may use terms of art,” the order reads.

The file-hosting service previously argued that since piracy and theft-related terms are derogatory, their use could mislead the jury and possibly influence their judgment. According to Hotfile there is no ground to substantiate the use of such terms.

“In the present case, there is no evidence that the Defendants (or Hotfile’s founders) are ‘pirates’ or ‘thieves,’ nor is there evidence that they were ‘stealing’ or engaged in ‘piracy’ or ‘theft.’ Even if the Defendants had been found to have directly infringed on the Plaintiffs’ copyrights, such derogatory terms would add nothing to the Plaintiffs’ case, but would serve to improperly inflame the jury.”

The MPAA countered that there is absolutely no reason to exclude words that are commonly used in cases related to copyright infringement. Banning the terms would make it hard for MPAA’s lawyers and the witnesses to describe the events that took place, according to the movie studios.

“Terms like ‘piracy’ and ‘theft’ are commonplace terms often used in court decisions, statutes, and everyday speech to describe the conduct in which Hotfile and its users engaged, and for which the Court has already found Defendants liable,” MPAA’s legal team wrote.

With her ruling Judge Williams clearly sides with Hotfile’s argument that the jury could be misled by piracy and theft-related descriptions. This is a clear win for the file-hosting service, but it also leads to the awkward situation that several witnesses can’t name their job titles, such as Warner’s head of Global Corporate Anti-Piracy.

Additionally, the MPAA can no longer quote Vice President Joe Biden’s famous comment: “Piracy is theft, clean and simple.”

The full list of motions Judge Williams ruled on includes more good news for Hotfile. For example, with regard to Hotfile’s countersuit over alleged DMCA abuse by the movie studio, Warner’s motions to exclude the term “perjury” and the studio’s audit of its anti-piracy system from trial were both denied.

On the downside, Hotfile’s request to prevent the MPAA from bringing up the criminal indictment against “Megaupload” was denied. This means that in describing the Megaupload case the movie studios can’t quote passages that reference piracy or theft.

It will be interesting to see how the MPAA tackles Hotfile now that they are restricted in the language they can use. It probably means that the term “copyright infringement” will be used more often than they had hoped.

To be continued.