_ _ _____ _ __ <*the* weekly high-tech sarcastic update for the uk>
| \ | |_ _| |/ / _ __ __2002-04-26_ o join! mail an empty message to
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|_| \_| |_| |_|\_\|_| |_|\___/ \_/\_/ o http://www.ntk.net/ "The whole point about the internet is that it can be tracked
to the last detail and there's nothing like that offline..."
- Mark Wilding, Intellitracker, reveals the net's "whole point"
...and, more to the point, astute and insightful
comments like these will now hang around for all eternity
>> HARD NEWS <<
defying that EU
Theoretically there are all kinds of ways which you could
oppose the EUROPEAN UNION COPYRIGHT DIRECTIVE, but one which
won't currently land you in jail is attending next Monday's
CAMPAIGN FOR DIGITAL RIGHTS MINICONFERENCE (6.30pm, Mon 2002-
04-29, City University, London EC1, free). Previously
described by us as a "poorly localised version" of the ever-
popular US Digital Millennium Copyright Act, the EUCD is of
course a similarly stealthy attack on fair use (and/or casual
piracy) of digital content, implemented by - among other
things - giving greater legal protection to any "technical
protection measures" which the rights-holder puts in place.
Which, we like to think, is like trying to stamp out
trespassing by making it illegal to climb any kind of fence.
Linux second-in-command ALAN COX will be predicting the
"Effects Of The EUCD On Open Source Software Development, The
Software Industry And Disabled Access", the Campaign For
Digital Rights' MARTIN KEEGAN will be dishing out legal advice
and, on the basis of previous get-togethers, they'd especially
like to hear from librarians, lawyers, open source advocates,
musicians, authors and other rights-holders, and, last but not
least, anyone who's always wanted to be dressed up as William
Shakespeare and paraded around the UK's shopping centres in a
cage. (Presumably as part of some symbolic anti-EUCD protest,
though make sure you get that element in writing beforehand.)
- with ACM-approved refreshments from Costcutter, Sainsbury's
- nothing to see here (yet). Please move along.
As if that weren't enough for the lawyers to look forward to,
there's another new takedown procedure stalking the websites
of this fair country. This time, it's someone who wants his
own postings removed from the archive of Nigel Metheringham's
exim-user mailing list; the legal axe being wielded is the
Data Protection Act - and the motive? Who knows? Especially as
Mr Deleted's exim-user postings were hardly controversial. A
bit naive, perhaps, but really nothing compared to the deluded
rantings most of us have in the indestructible archives of our
online pasts. So why go to such trouble to get them removed?
If Captain Scribble is trying to prevent spam-harvesting of
his email address: well, sending nasty letters to public
mailing lists you actually subscribed to seems a bit of a
heavyhanded way of tackling the problem. And what about all
his posts to Debian mailing lists where his address also
appears? We can't imagine the internationalist, freedom-
loving, legally-rigorous Debianites will keel over so easily.
The other possibility, we suppose, is that it's a bold attempt
to prevent even the smallest hint of public fallibility from
being detected online. Well, that certainly did the trick.
But as the Data Protection Act taketh with one hand, so it
also gives with the other. Just to highlight our ambivalence,
the sinister-but-sometimes-sweet Office of the Information
Commissioner has indirectly provided us all with the sweetest
of old skool gifts: a new phone system pheature. In one of its
talmudic judgements, the OIC has decided that the number you
leave on other people's caller-ID records should be, as
personal data should always be, deleteable. From last month,
dialling 1475 will remove the last recorded incoming number on
a phone, in such a way that dialling 1471 afterwards on the
same device will just hit "Number Withheld". Reactions, where
they exist, are mixed. The outraged NTK subscriber who spotted
this in the latest BT brochure claims, in a beautifully Daily
Mail-ian coinage, that it's "a Philanderer's Charter". We just
thought it was another interesting trick to impress your mates
at the local 2600 meet. After the fourth or fifth Happy Meal,
- ALL HAIL THE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER
- all very well, but when are we going to get downloadable ringtones?
>> ANTI-NEWS <<
berating the obvious
http://www.justlegit.com/ maybe not what you thought, despite
design, enticing-sounding domain name... you're next, Ron:
... mishearing instructions to "just put 'any name' in front
of the @ sign": http://www.ntk.net/2002/04/26/dohany.gif ...
another old favourite - inappropriate ad on an anorexia page:
http://www.ntk.net/2002/04/26/dohyahoo.gif ... there's a small
clue in every rollover URL: http://www.roadcodetest.com/nz/
... http://research.microsoft.com/labs/cam.asp welcomes "hard
copies of your c.v. in ASCII text or Microsoft Word format" -
trained sniffer dogs can smell the taint Star Office leaves on
the page... reassuring evidence that they know what they're
talking about: http://www.ntk.net/2002/04/26/dohgif.gif - and
that BARCLAYS thoroughly tested their online banking service:
http://www.ntk.net/2002/04/26/dohbarc.gif ... and finally, for
the small minority of readers who didn't send us it this week:
- no caption competition required...
>> EVENT QUEUE <<
goto's considered non-harmful
BRUMCON II (from 12noon, next Sat 2002-05-04, Britannia Hotel,
Birmingam, suggested donation UKP3-5) is described by our
correspondent as a "combined security con, blackhat thinktank
and party" - though they've already spoiled one "spot the fed"
competition by announcing that they're expecting a delegation
from the Metropolitan Police Computer Crimes Unit (possibly
the guy who "busted the 8lgm"), who'll be taking questions
from the floor and generally "gathering information" during
the event. It won't be hard to show more clue than some of the
whitehats at this week's INFOSEC EUROPE, where an NTK reader
spotted someone jotting down the names of the reformed haxxors
in a discussion panel, and apparently mishearing "Coldfire" as
- with his l33t friends "Economy 7" and "Gas Central Heating"
- unless you're already in custody after May Day festivities
- to the barricades, mes amis! Give us New Media Freelancing or give us death!
>> TRACKING <<
sufficiently advanced technology : the gathering
A couple of weeks ago we linked to Michael Greene's Grammy
speech "The Insidious Virus of Illegal Music Downloading",
wondering if, as source material for sampling enthusiasts, it
might just live up to its name. DJ C0ntaX, of the KPMG Jungle
massive, is our first audioshopper of the file, with his
suitably spooky remix of Greene's "Death of The Music Industry
Foodchain" rap, encoded in the popular MP3 protocol, as used
on your pervasive, out-of-control, and oh-so-criminal file-
sharing networks. In the next couple of weeks, we confidently
predict we'll be outshone by another activist group's
multimedia announcement, but in the meantime there's still an
opening for a Chris Morris-style cutup of the original to say
something a bit more, shall we say, "revealing" about the
- send links to your remixes to firstname.lastname@example.org
- plus transcript: http://grammy.aol.com/features/speech.html >> MEMEPOOL <<
ceci n'est pas une http://www.gagpipe.com/ AUDIOGALAXY knows what the folk fans are really searching for:
http://www.audiogalaxy.com/articles?&a=237 ... TLC's famed
choosiness over expensive transport vindicated in the end:
http://www.michaelkelly.fsnet.co.uk/TLC.htm ... no JUNIOR
COMMUNION WAFERS?: http://www.christiancandy.com/estore/ ...
not technically a "fag", but they seem to hate her anyway:
... for printing out and sticking in fast-food restaurants:
Greeks seduced by English hobby that dare not speak its name:
... is "cod Japanese poetry" a form of protected free speech?:
auto MCSWEENEYS generator: http://pfrh.com/flash/muse7b.swf
... "off the map" this week - MENWITH HILL listening station:
... http://www.nra.org/ launch their own ISP, in "effort to
create a high quality Internet Service that helps promote and
protect Second Amendment rights"... two words - COUNTERSTRIKE
COSPLAY: http://home.kimo.com.tw/cos00001/cs-22.htm ...
>> GEEK MEDIA <<
blimey, there's a new http://www.tvgohome.com/ TV>> The Shamen's Mr C comes clean about "Ebeneezer Goode" in
the acid house episode of techno music history PUMP UP THE
VOLUME (2.55am, Fri, C4)... Chris Morris, Michael Barrymore
and Janet Street-Porter are among C4's TOP TEN TV REBELS
(10.30pm, Sat, C4)... leading into a unconventional batch of
Saturday movies which includes THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER
(10.20pm, Sat, BBC1), THE BOYS FROM BRAZIL (1.10am, Sat, C4),
THE FRENCH CONNECTION II (11pm, Sat, BBC2) and WEEKEND AT
BERNIE'S II (1.30am, Sat, ITV): "Bernie's back - and he's
still dead!"... Will Self imitates Mark Thomas in ADDICTED TO
ARMS - A WILL SELF INVESTIGATION (6.45pm, Sun, BBC2)... Sunday
night's somewhat more brutal film selection features THE
TAKING OF PELHAM 123 (11.15pm, Sun, BBC1), THE HITCHER (10pm,
Sun, C4), and Jerry Bruckheimer-produced shuttle thriller MAX
Q (9pm, Sun, C5) - referring to the moment of maximum
aerodynamic pressure (when the Challenger came apart), rather
than being a prequel to current cinema release "John Q", for
instance... new early-morning programme RI:SE (6.55am, Mon-
Fri, C4) appears to be "The Big Breakfast" presented by the
original lineup of BBC1's "The Saturday Show", or something...
ITV bravely gives airtime to a minority which, up until now,
have been shamefully ignored by broadcasters - the YOUNG,
LOADED, AND POSH (9pm, Mon, ITV)... the schedules look more
and more like TVGoHome in the form of harrowing Belgian
serial-killer mockumentary MAN BITES DOG (11.35pm, Mon, C4),
confrontational new reality gameshow DIET OR DIE (10.35pm,
Tue, BBC1), and Omid "The Mummy" Djalili's lifestyle swap AT
HOME WITH THE CRACKHEADS (11.05pm, Tue, C4) - all scarier than
John Carpenter's substandard John Wyndham remake VILLAGE OF
THE DAMNED (11.35pm, Tue, BBC1)... the ubiquitous Rutger Hauer
returns in Karen "Raiders of the Lost Ark" Allen "Dead Calm"-
alike VOYAGE (11.45pm, Thu, BBC1)... it's the bearded, good
Robin Williams giving Robert De Niro shock doses of L-DOPA in
neuro-drama AWAKENINGS (8pm, Wed, C5)... as PANIC MECHANICS
(8pm, Thu, BBC2) welds together bits of its "Scrapheap
Challenge" and "Salvage Squad" predecessors, right down to
bald-headed presenter Trevor Nelson instead of Lee Hurst...
FILM>> it's Leelee "Elijah Wood's girlfriend in Deep Impact"
Sobieski, Paul "the Keanu Reeves soundalike from The Fast And
The Furious", Steve "Reality Bites" Zahn, and John "director
of The Last Seduction" Dahl - together at last! - in teens-on-
the-run renamed re-shot ending "Duel" thriller remake ROADKILL
( http://www.cndb.com/movie.html?title=Joy+Ride+%282001%29 :
Leelee does not appear nude in this movie, although there are
several scenes of note; well worth the wait to catch the
tanned and muscular backside of the adorable Paul Walker; an
instant classic in cinematic male nudity)... for his part,
Denzel Washington remakes hostage negotiation classic "Dog Day
Afternoon", but with more criticism of the US's poor standard
of public healthcare provision, in heavy-handed hospital hold-
up JOHN Q ( http://www.capalert.com/capreports/johnq.htm :
beating; fighting; irresponsibility with a firearm; marital
argumentation; prostitution and yielding to it; suggesting a
traffic fatality was an act of God; Yin yang on tee shirt)...
while Hugh Grant reprises his usual idiotic role, cheerfully
mugging through yet another bloody Nick Hornby adaptation as
he looks after a satanic child from the planet Vulcan in ABOUT
A BOY ( http://www.bbfc.co.uk/ : rated '12' for infrequent
>> SMALL PRINT <<
Need to Know is a useful and interesting UK digest of things that
happened last week or might happen next week. You can read it
on Friday afternoon or print it out then take it home if you have
nothing better to do. It is compiled by NTK from stuff they get sent.
Registered at the Post Office as
"How we sound - to dogs"
NEED TO KNOW
THEY STOLE OUR REVOLUTION. NOW WE'RE STEALING IT BACK.
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