Sunday, October 13, 2013

You say toe-may-toe
I say toe-mah-toe
You say man of integrity
I say “What the hell were you thinking?”
Video: Edward Snowden wins Sam Adams award
This week Edward Snowden received the Integrity Award from the Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence. These videos from the award ceremony are the first of Mr Snowden after being granted asylum in Russia.

Amusing, but using you attorney's copyrighted photo? Priceless.
The retaliation begins: Google profiles get Schmidt-faced
… In a stunningly predictable decision, Google has decided to use your name and profile to bolster the blinding authenticity of its advertising.
Yes, without paying you. Well, this is the free economy, isn't it?
Oddly, some people seem stunned by this -- despite the fact that the program largely resembles Facebook's Sponsored Stories.
So, evidence of a small movement against Google's ploy has emerged. It involves putting naked Photoshopped pictures of Google's Larry Page, clutching a rose to his face, on everyone's profile page.

In theory, the SSAN isn't used as identification, so why the kerfuffle?
There’s a somewhat bizarre case brewing in Montrose County, Colorado, where a Montrose Memorial Hospital trustee has refused to provide his Social Security number for a background check. He claims he’s under no obligation to, but the hospital board of trustees says the hospital stands to lose its status as an eligible Medicaid and Medicare provider if he doesn’t comply with a bylaw.
Read about the dispute on The Watch.
[From the article:
Harding, in response to the request to disclose his social security number, said he believes he is under no obligation to do so, and has asked Montrose County staff to investigate whether he is required to do so. At the Sept. 16 meeting of the Montrose County Commissioners, County Manager Rick Eckert said his investigation concluded that the board of trustees has no legal basis for requiring a social security number.
Harding said on Wednesday that according to his research on the matter, the Office of Inspector General at the Department of Health and Human Services, the Joint Hospital of Accreditation Commission and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment all state he doesn’t have to provide his social security number.
… Harding went on to say that he agreed to sign a form to allow a background check, and on that form, providing a social security number was marked “optional.” He questioned the board of trustees’ distrust of him.

Yesterday over lunch my favorite Law School professor and I discussed creating a “Willie Sutton, because that's were the money is” award. Once they have all this data in one place, (collection paid for by the Feds) who else would like a copy?
WWNT Radio reports that Alabama’s state board of education has “adopted a policy that supposedly protects student privacy while it allows the collection, data-mining and sharing [Translation: selling Bob] of private, non-academic information on students without parental permission.”
Why would they do this? Follow the money and federal strings:
“ALDOE received one-half billion dollars from the 2009 Stimulus Bill in exchange for developing a state longitudinal data system. Also, when the Board applied for a waiver from No Child Left Behind, it agreed to implement the standards, aligned assessments, and data-mining; and it will receive additional multi-millions of dollars. The Board no longer has the power to protect student privacy because they’ve ‘sold’ their right to the federal government. Only the State Legislature can help us now.”
Personal data unrelated to academics will include some students’ behaviors and psychosocial attributes. Zeanah stated, “Children can be asked about their sexual preferences, drug use, political and religious beliefs, etc. Given the recent examples of how the federal government uses data to punish its political enemies and picks winners and losers, why would the Superintendent and state board (with the exception of Stephanie Bell and Betty Peters who voted against the policy) want to subject our children to this threat? The only way to protect our children is to not collect compromising information in the first place. Let’s hope the Legislature will right this wrong.”
Obviously, this is not just a problem or concern in Alabama, but a nationwide problem. EPIC’s challenge to the 2011 changes in FERPA failed for lack of standing. It is not clear whether they will try again with different plaintiffs who might meet the requirements for Article III standing. That so many parents nationwide have not risen up to organize and fight these massive databases is concerning. And as much as I don’t want to see any database leaked, I’m wondering what it will take before the public wakes up and realizes the danger of compiling so much sensitive info on children.
Wake up, people, before it’s too late for your kids.

He would not have had the same impact if he had merely said, “...because some pervert might use your photo in a seminar.”
A painful lesson on “no reasonable expectation of privacy,” but will this serve as a cautionary tale for our youth, as district personnel may have intended? I doubt it.
A judge tossed out parts of a lawsuit filed against the Fayette County School District after an administrator displayed a student’s bikini picture during a seminar on Internet safety.
“I was embarrassed. I was horrified,” Chelsea Chaney told Channel 2′s Rachel Stockman. “It never crossed my mind that this would ever, ever happen to me.”
Chaney, who is now a college sophomore at University of Georgia, said the Fayette County Schools Director of Technology used a photo taken from her Facebook profile to tell parents and students about the dangers of posting pictures on the Internet and the long-term effects. The presentation happened at a district-wide seminar.
Read more on WSB Radio.

Considering a BYOD policy? reports:
An Ohio federal court recently found that a former Verizon Wireless employee could pursue Stored Communications Act claims alleging her supervisor read her personal emails on a company-issued BlackBerry without consent, serving as a warning that employers risk liability under the criminal statute without clear policies on personal use of company devices and use of personal devices in the office, attorneys say.
Read more on (subscription required). The case is Lazette v. Kulmatycki (3:12-cv-02416), Northern Ohio.

The legal equivalent of crying “Wolf!”
UK Report Challenges copyright Claims Against Online File Sharing
Copyright & Creation – A Case for Promoting Inclusive Online Sharing, Bart Cammaerts; Robin Mansell; Bingchun Meng. The London School of Economics and Political Science Department of Media and Communications.
“The implementation of the Digital Economy Act (DEA) 2010 is not expected before 2015, a lengthy delay. The September 2013 report of the House of Commons Culture Media and Sport Committee fervently advocates quick implementation, despite evidence of controversy. This policy brief contributes to debate about the DEA’s measures for copyright enforcement by examining evidence on the way a changing digital culture is affecting the creative industries and on the potential impact of the DEA’s copyright enforcement measures. The DEA introduced a graduated response to online copyright infringement, i.e. Internet ServiceProviders send warning notices to individuals who are suspected of infringing and pass annonymous lists of suspected infringers to the rights holders. The rights holders can go to court to request the identities of infringers in order to take action against citizens. If this approach is ineffective in suppressing online infringement, technical measures could be used such as limiting internet access. We published a policy brief on Creative Destruction and Copyright Protection: Regulatory Responses to File-Sharing – in 2011 that examined online copyright infringement, practices of file sharing and its consequences for the music industry. Our key observations were:
1. Data provided by the music industry were misleading; contrary to what lobbying organisations were claiming, the music industry was doing reasonably well.
2. Declining sales of recorded music (mainly CDs) could also be explained by factors such as a squeeze on household expenditure on leisure goods and changing patterns of music consumption.
3. Declining sales of recorded music were offset by increasing revenue from live performances and growing digital revenues, including streaming services.
4. Intervention to enforce copyright infringement legislation on individual file sharers risks stifling innovation and criminalises a thriving online participatory culture. This policy brief provides additional evidence that counters claims that the creative industries are suffering overall revenue decline. We show that new business models are enabling the industry to gain advantage by building on a digital culture based on sharing and co-creating. We find that the experience of France and countries that have started to implement graduated response measures targeting citizens is mixed. We conclude the DEA should not be implemented and that the measures should be reconsidered based on an independent assessment of the social, cultural, and political impact of punitive measures against citizens, and the risk that incentives for innovation and growth will be weakened.”

For faculty and students. Now do you see why I want my students to write their own textbooks?
AAUP – Intellectual Property: An Education & Action Toolkit
Intellectual property (IP) at colleges and universities refers most importantly to the products of faculty, staff, and student research and scholarship. IP falls into two groups—work covered by patent law and work covered by copyright law. Both categories have undergone significant change over the last generation. In response, university policies have either evolved or been radically revised. The most troubling changes have occurred in university patent policies, with major research universities leading the way in limiting or eliminating faculty members’ traditional rights to decide what happens to their discoveries or inventions. Many campus copyright policies remain good, but they are being undermined by the online course revolution, including the wave of interest in MOOCS, since many institutions have sought to deny faculty members their traditional rights to the instructional materials they author. Campus patent policies, however, have taken a radical turn for the worse, with a number of campuses revising them to mandate automatic institutional ownership of the fruits of scholarly work. We provide recommended language both for patent and online instruction policies. The AAUP believes it is now appropriate to issue a warning: your intellectual property is in danger. In trying to reassert the principles inherent in the US Constitution, two centuries of patent law, and a landmark 2011 US Supreme Court decision, the first task is educational. Everyone on campus needs to learn more about the law, the issues at stake, and the rights they can assert through collective action. This AAUP IP web section has been assembled to help you with the information you need to participate in informed discussion and organize for better campus policies. We are launching a national campaign in fall 2013 to publicize the website and inform people about the issues at stake.”

Every week Audrey give me articles to giggle over.
… the military has stopped financial aid payments for active-duty service members. Several universities, including Southern New Hampshire University, say they’ll cover the tab.
Newsela, a startup that rewrites news articles for different reading levels, has raised a $1.2 million round of seed funding. [Dumbing down the news rather than teaching new words. Wonderful. Bob] More on the startup, which certainly is marketing itself to meet the new Common Core standards that push for students to read more “informational texts,” via Edsurge.
… The Houston-area Fort Bend School district has scrapped its $16 million iPad initiative.
… The Corvallis School District in Oregon will delay its iPad rollout, as it addresses concerns about students being able to bypass security software.
… LAUSD is still dealing with the fallout from its iPad fiasco. The school board says they're going to review the project. (Um, didn't they do this before deciding to spend $1 billion on it?!)
… Schools in Guilford County, North Carolina are putting their (Amplify) tablet initiative on pause after hardware and safety issues, including overheating chargers and easily broken screens. “Teachers will continue delivering instruction in other formats,” reports a local paper. PHEW!
… Faculty at Rutgers have voted to block the university’s plans to partner with Pearson to provide online degree programs. More details via Inside Higher Ed.
… The Kapor Center for Social Impact has released a report (PDF) and a database on CS education programs.

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