Today's threads (a thread).
Inside: Homebrew dongles let hospitals fix ventilators; Teddy Ruxpin and the Haunted Mansion; Dataminr helped cops spy on protesters with Twitter; Police militarization has a business-model; How Finspy protects itself from security researchers; Clamshell currency; Macron demands national database of porn preferences; and more!
Delete Postmates. Delete Uber. You aren't gonna shop your way out of late-stage capitalism, but you don't have to accellerate it either.
BTW, the DNA is selling great facemasks and I wore one on our family date night and I looked like $10^6.
"Their sweatshops make the same food for everybody and pastes whatever name on it. The restaurant isn't even a franchise at that point. It's a sticker. "
Even before the crisis, finance capital was emulsifying everything you loved and cared about. Now it's got a fucking bone-saw.
"Taking this stand is probably going to cost us a big chunk of our (small, and dwindling) weekly delivery business, but enough is enough." -JWZ
"That 'Cloud Kitchens' enterprise is a dystopian horror show, too. It means that Kalanick and the Saudi Sovereign Wealth Fund own the first part of restaurant take-out -- the menu and online ordering; they own the third part -- delivery; and now they also own the second part -- actually making the food. The 'restaurant,' at that point, is just a brand logo.
And JWZ has decided to put principle over profits - or even survival - and has pulled his business out of Postmates.
And as one club and venue after another falls - only to be snapped up by Livenation - the DNA has soldiered on, selling food and booze and serving its community.
So, in other news, Uber - which is a front for Saudi oil money and a way to launder the billions they murdered and dismembered Jamal Khashoggi to preserve - just threw $3.5B of Prince Bone Saw's money into an acquisition of Postmates.
Then came the crisis and the profiteering by the private-equity-backed, predatory, money-losing delivery companies.
This on top of the plute-funded social media platforms that slow-walk copyright takedowns unless you're Livenation, making it nearly impossible to book shows for independent globs:
(I called the fight when Wil Wheaton used a lightsaber to slay an EFF lawyer in a Barnie the Purple Dinosaur suit!)
JWZ kept the club going despite the terrible economics of running an indie venue when evil pigfuckers like Livenation monopolize everything.
Even before the crisis, the DNA was in trouble, but it was being kept alive by the people who loved it (like me).
The DNA Lounge is a San Francisco institution that I have a LOT of history with: I watched it being born through owner Jamie "JWZ" Zawinski's Livejournal in the 1990s.
(Zawinski built it with his Netscape IPO money, having created, among other things, the Unix version of Netscape and name "Mozilla").
In the years since, I've been to so many wonderful events there, particularly EFF events.
@pluralistic We say « Macron démission », or « Macron, nique ta mère » for the more petty of us.
Samarajiva reminds us that the epidemiological technical term for this is being "completely fucked."
Americans who are no longer welcome around the world, and that means Trump finally kept a campaign promise: "He built a wall around America and made the world pay for it. He just never told Americans that they’d be stuck inside."
All his life, Indi Samarajiva has endured the "post-colonial bullshit and racism [that] have made my Sri Lankan passport worthless." Now, Americans are in the same boat.
As Samarajiva says, "the point of a passport is that a sovereign power vouches for its bearer, but America can’t vouch for the health of their citizens at all."
The US is on track to 200,000 deaths and 50,000,000 infections by election day, and even when Trump loses, he'll still get to (mis)govern for another three months.
People with passports from poor nations know what it's like to be denied access to most of the world, or subjected to humiliating and expensive visa procedures just to go on holidays or attend a conference.
Americans are now in the same boat.
Right now, only two dozen countries worldwide will accept Americans (mostly small Caribbean islands); if you're willing to endure a 14-day quarantine, that number rises to 28.
Today's top sources: Fipi Lele, Naked Capitalism (https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/), Four Short Links (https://www.oreilly.com/radar/topics/four-short-links/).
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Here's today's edition: https://pluralistic.net/2020/07/10/flintstone-delano-roosevelt/
On Jul 14, my first picture book comes out! It's called Poesy the Monster Slayer and it's an epic tale of bedtime-refusal, toy-hacking and monster-hunting, illustrated by Matt Rockefeller. It's the monster book I dreamt of reading to my own daughter.
#1yrago Arbitrage nomads are stripping the carcasses of America's dying big-box stores and moving the choicest morsels into Amazon warehouses https://www.theverge.com/2019/7/10/20687434/amazon-sellers-nomad-merchants-products-malls-walmart
#1yrago Voting machine companies: the names of our parent companies are trade secrets https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20190706/17082642527/voting-machine-makers-claim-names-entities-that-own-them-are-trade-secrets.shtml
#1yrago Like Amazon, Google sends voice assistant recordings to contractors for transcription, including recordings made inadvertently https://www.vrt.be/vrtnws/en/2019/07/10/google-employees-are-eavesdropping-even-in-flemish-living-rooms/
#1yrago French politicians want to add an ag-gag rule to the country's sweeping online hate speech proposal https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20190708/09092142538/politicians-queue-up-to-make-frances-proposed-law-against-hateful-content-far-far-worse.shtml
#1yrago Cutbacks caused Brexit: austerity correlates with UKIP membership https://www.aeaweb.org/articles?id=10.1257/aer.20181164
#1yrago Fur industry paid protesters to attend California and New York hearings on a fur ban https://theintercept.com/2019/07/10/california-fur-ban-bill-opponents/
#1yrago AOC and Greta Thunberg talk tactics and hope https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jun/29/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-met-greta-thunberg-hope-contagious-climate
#1yrago Elizabeth Warren wants to force companies to warn investors about their risks from climate change https://medium.com/@teamwarren/accelerating-the-transition-to-clean-energy-46af492d8c57
By Cory Doctorow
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