Black Lives Matter Plaza NW, Aerial View

I hadn't seen the top-down view yet!

In case you missed it, the Mayor of DC had city workers paint this on what is essentially the White House driveway. A+ use of Public Works for trolling.

The painting is not on Google Maps, but the street is already properly labelled. (Street names are partially crowdsourced, so don't give Google any credit here for taking a stand.)

Previously, previously, previously.

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One riot-gear load can buy 55 front-line care workers full PPE


I've been seeing a lot of tweets of people noting how kitted out police are vs care workers & I actually did a quick break down of the cost of gear to kit out an officer vs how much it costs to kit out a care worker in PPE. [...]

Front line workers who have to try and fight the #COVID19 pandemic WE ARE STILL IN. How many police were in riot gear in downtown Seattle? Multiply each one by at least 27 & think about how we are fighting a pandemic & our front line workers are wearing fucking trash bags.

They're cutting out plastic sheets to make face shields so they don't add another body in hospital that's already full to the brim waiting for tests that maybe sorta don't work while there seems to be NO shortage in teargas and rubber bullets.

The system chose to buy artillery to defend a blatant murder of an innocent man instead of buying supplies to help try and end an already disastrously handled quagmire of a pandemic.

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Zoom won't encrypt calls so they can sell you out to the cops

Direct from CEO Eric Yuan. Today. He said this today.

Corporate clients will get access to Zoom's end-to-end encryption service now being developed, but Yuan said free users won't enjoy that level of privacy, which makes it impossible for third parties to decipher communications.

"Free users for sure we don't want to give that because we also want to work together with FBI, with local law enforcement in case some people use Zoom for a bad purpose," Yuan said on the call.

Based on their track record, it's not like they could ensure the privacy of your calls even if they wanted to. But it's good to know up front that they absolutely do not want to.

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Everyone at Facebook is qwhite complicit

Violet Blue:

New York Times tech columnist Kevin Roose spotted that the "top 10 stories on Facebook over the past 24 hours" were all from Fox News, "Blue Lives Matter," and similar sources.

Meaning: the slant of all stories in FB's "top 10" (surfaced to the masses) were pro-police and Trump's agenda. Roose documented that FB's daily specials were "about Trump declaring antifa a terrorist group," he wrote. "One is a feel-good story about a trucker cleaning up after vandals, another is about an officer calmly listening to protesters, one is about violence against law enforcement," tweeted Roose. "If Facebook was your sole news source," he correctly noted, "and you saw only the most popular links on the platform, you'd think that what happened this weekend was a violent, unprovoked attack on law enforcement by a left-wing terror group."

While Roose documented that, other news outlets repeated the message of a new NYT piece called "Facebook Employees Stage Virtual Walkout to Protest Trump Posts."

This turned into the false depiction that employees walked out because they disagreed with Zuck over this one policy decision.

They did not.

Let's be clear: the average salary for Facebook employees is between $120K and $155K, average among those I still know who work there is $250K. The so-called protesting employees requested a day off and put an auto-response on their emails. This is no "last straw" situation that actually means anything, as press reports are depicting, like these ghouls deserve a cookie for suddenly inserting a "conscience" chip into their emotion emulators. This is a risk-free gesture. Meaningless. But making Facebook seem like a house divided serves Facebook's PR perfectly, like when a president puts children in cages and his wife makes a benign comment about the importance of child safety, and press goes "oooh look there are two sides in this."

There are not. Every single system within and around Facebook and every person working there, past and present, have blood on their hands today. They know all the reasons why. Even worse that it would be this one thing that made these soul eaters take a cutesy day off from their (ahem) white-collar jobs.

They're still keeping the machine running while Mark Zuckerberg tells them we will be greeted as liberators.

For many years, I've been saying the following:

If you work for Facebook, quit.

It is morally indefensible for you to use your skills to make that company more powerful. By working there, you are making the world an objectively worse place. I'm sure you can find a job working for a company that you don't have to apologize for all the time.

You can do it. I believe in you.

But as the world literally burns, it's time to go farther:

If you work for Facebook, you are a white supremacist.

If you have a "friend" who works at Facebook, cut them out of your life, like you would your racist cousin.

You can do it. I believe in you.

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Recent Movies and TV

  • Invisible Man (2020) -- This movie was bullshit in 30 different ways. Let's start with hack filmmaking: a jump-scare sound effect is not what passes for suspense. The plot, such as it is: a woman's being stalked and gaslit by a jerk in a scramble-suit, who apparently has some mad commando skills and Jason Vorhees levels of stealth despite being Science Nerd. So if you want to see someone crying and not being believed while being smacked around for two hours, this is the movie for you. Maybe I'm late to this, but I have finally come to realize that anything with "Blumhouse" on it is garbage with a topping of vomit. Like, a Michael Bay level of both contempt for the audience, and misogyny.

  • Onward: This is just OK. It really didn't grab me at first, because it's so "family drama", but it got funnier towards the middle. I did enjoy the fact that, much like the merman in Cabin in the Woods, they keep mentioning gelatinous cubes, and so you know that you're gonna see one. And when you do, it delivers. I also liked the feral unicorns. More like raccoonicorns.

  • 24 Hour Party People: I hadn't watched this in years, and it really holds up. I liked it much more this time around. When I first saw it, I couldn't really get past the fact that I absolutely despise The Happy Mondays, but this time around I enjoyed hating them rather than just being annoyed by them. It's such a weird movie. How did this even get made? The licensing alone... I always want to recommend it but it comes with such a long list of footnotes. Like, if you don't already know all about these people, it's probably best to watch this movie with me sitting next to you on the couch, yelling.

  • Snatchers: This may be the greatest monster movie since Night of the Creeps. Excellent and snappy dialog, great comedic timing, hilarious gore. Chef kiss.

  • Underwater: Not bad. The claustrophobia of it makes it be more The Descent than The Abyss. Obvious plot is obvious, but the suspense and effects are good.

  • Vivarium: What if Cube but suburbia. A couple checks out a house and can't escape. Extremely nightmarish and well done.

  • She Never Died: A loose sequel to He Never Died. It's kind of the same movie again with a different cast, but it's enjoyable.

  • Tales from the Loop: This was absolutely fantastic. A series of interconnected stories based on the artwork and short stories by Simon Stålenhag, who is amazing. It's so different than almost any other scifi I've seen. It has a bit of a Twilight Zone feel, but mostly there aren't any villains, and the whole thing is just very calm. Calm and sad.

  • Beforeigners: I will make an exception to my ban on police procedurals when some of those police are time traveling vikings. Ok, fine. You got me. It's pretty good.

  • Siren: Season 1 was really fun, but season 2 went all relationships and babies and feeeeelings and I wasn't really there for it. But season 3 really picked up: they went full World War Mermaid.

  • Homecoming: Season 2 is a lot better than season 1! And season 1 was pretty good.

  • Motherland: Fort Salem: "What if the US Army was made up of pretty teen girls who are also witches" sounds like a completely idiotic plot for some Young Adult Paranormal Romance nonsense, but it's actually kind of ok. The worldbuilding and backstory really had me scratching my head, but they didn't dive deeply enough into it to lose me yet.

  • Charlie's Angels (2019) This was more entertaining than I expected. Much punchy, so fashion. It had kind of a Spice World feel to it, very 90s Girl Power.

  • Gretel & Hansel: It was fine, but I find that I've already forgotten it.

  • Jumanji: The Next Level: I laughed, but I've already forgotten it.

  • Penny Dreadful: City of Angels: This is absoutely fantastic. You may recall that Penny Dreadful season 1 was amazing, season 2 was OK, and season 3 was really pretty bad. Well fortunately, this show is not season 4 of Penny Dreadful: rather, it is season 3 of Carnivàle! And that's a really good choice.

  • Upload: This is kind of a sequel to "The Singularity Ruined by Lawers", and it's pretty funny. It strays into an unresolved murder mystery at some point, which is less interesting. The core achievement here is ridiculing social media trying to monetize your dreams.

  • Scoob: It's a "reboot" and it's 3D-modelled, so it's obviously inferior, but it does have some good gags. I laughed. I was enjoying it well enough until about 15 minutes from the end, when it seems like an entirely new writer took over, which is probably what happened. How do you fuck up the ending on Scooby Doo? By leaving out all of the jokes and filling it with saccharine nonsense and sequel-bait instead. Dude, we know there's going to be a sequel. This series is like a thousand years old. Also it just feels wrong to me that Shaggy isn't voiced by Matthew Lillard. (Greets to Cereal Killer!)

  • Blood Machines: Sooooo Carpenter Brut made a movie that's like.... Farscape fanfic or something? It's very pretty, but the plot, such as it is... it's straight out of an 80s issue of Heavy Metal, where all the men are creeps and all the women are naked, and that's pretty much the single defining characteristic of each. As a music video it would have been excellent, but there wasn't enough music and people kept talking.

  • Star Trek: Picard: This is... boring. How did they manage to make it so boring? I wish the show was about Picard doddering around the mansion with his Romulan housekeepers instead of whatever nonsense it was actually about. Which was mostly, "Data: is he a Real Boy??"


    Ok, first of all, why does Star Trek have synths at all? The only reason to build them is to have a slave caste, and A) you're a post-scarcity society, so why, and B) you've got a whole galaxy full of people with funny noses who can all inter-breed, so you've got options there too, if you're feelin' all slavey. So they spend dozens of episodes whinging over "BUT IS IT A PERSON" in a way they never do over Ferengi or Mexicans.

    There was a little movie called Blade Runner, it closed the book on this. Why do you keep reminding me of a better movie I could be watching instead?

    The way Peter Watts tore apart Humans is highly applicable here: "What a pleasant 101-level introduction to AI for anyone who's never thought about AI before, who's unlikely to think about AI again, and who doesn't like thinking very hard about much of anything."

    In the hundreds or thousands of episodes of the various Star Trek shows that exist, it's hard to pick a Most Irritating Character -- it's a target-rich environment -- but Data has always been the character I despised most. Not just because of the terrible, hackneyed "beep beep boop" writing, but because stories around him make no sense.

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Primary CV-Dazzle Failure Mode: Looking like a goofball.

Russian artists wear anti-facial recognition make-up... and get arrested

Thick black and red lines criss-cross the faces of young Russian men and women in a number of photos published on Facebook and Telegram. They've joined the 'Sledui' campaign, Russian for 'follow'. [...]

"We don't want to be caught in the lenses of video surveillance cameras without our consent. We don't want these new technologies to take over. We use make-up to shield ourselves from surveillance and facial recognition for a few minutes, turning this make-up into a symbol of disobedience," Nenasheva explains on her Facebook page. [...]

On February 9, Ekaterina Nenasheva published a new series of photos of herself wearing the distorting make-up -- but this time she's in the back of a police car. "They arrested us yesterday for wearing this make-up, and now they are accusing us of having taken part in a non-authorised event -- just for wearing it," the artist wrote on her Facebook page.

I've seen a lot of armchair pundits saying, "Pfffff, everybody knows that CV-Dazzle doesn't work", but it's very much all [citation needed] because I've seen anecdata on both sides. Have there been any rigorous attempts, or just performance art projects like this?

Though the dazzle that these people are wearing looks very ineffective.

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When Was Elmo Radicalized?

Matt Rourke:

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DNA Lounge: Wherein we've got face masks

Ride out the pandemic with DNA Lounge on your face! Elastic polyester face masks with adjustable ear straps, and including a disposable 3-layer filtration mask pad. $15 each.

If these sell well, we will probably do some different designs in the future, so if you know of a good vendor who can do custom mask printing, let me know. It was surprisingly hard to find one that actually specified the printable area and wasn't all "call for quote".

Relatedly, the DNA Lounge store now has a "hold for pick-up" option at checkout, so you can avoid the shipping fees by picking up your merch in person at DNA Pizza.


Today in "Landfill Capitalism" News

Truckloads of JUMP Bikes Are Being Destroyed During a Nationwide Shortage

JUMP, a bike-and-scooter share startup sold to Uber in 2018, operates in 37 cities around the world, including 18 in the U.S., according to the company's website. Under pressure to pursue profitability, Uber dumped JUMP onto Lime, another micromobility company with operations in 114 cities around the world, in a complicated deal earlier this month that resulted in Uber taking a larger share in Lime. The fate of JUMP and its distinctive red bikes and scooters was unclear until the videos of the crushers began to surface. [...]

An Uber spokesperson said,"We explored donating the remaining, older-model bikes, but [ we decided that we just didn't give a shit. ]"

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Fact Check!

"Social media should not fact check posts" says child molester Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has today hit out at Twitter owner Jack Dorsey following blowback from the White House on twitter's plans to factcheck tweets. "Social media companies should not be acting as factcheckers and arbiters of the truth," announced Zuckerberg this afternoon, "also by the way I like to spread peanut butter on the wall and lick it off while naked."

The billionaire social media mogul, who spends his free time taking candy from children, instead suggested that social media companies should allow all speech on their platforms, and only intervene if there was a threat of imminent harm to someone's life, like the woman he keeps chained in his basement.

"On the other hand, I just really like the taste of goat urine," explained Zuckerberg thoughtfully, "can't get enough."

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