Mock The Movie: .COM For Murder

This movie was easily one of the best worst movies we’ve seen and targeted for Mock The Movie, and not just because of our tech-savvy participants. This movie took itself so seriously, and tried so hard, and yet it failed so miserably at everything it did. Every character was inept, even the supposedly hyper-adept evil hacker. Every action taken was ludicrous, and there were dozens and dozens of ways to short-circuit the evil hacker’s plans. It was ripe for the picking, and boy did we pick.

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What Thunderf00t did, and how.

By now, I’m certain you’ve read Phil Mason’s, AKA Thunderf00t’s, confession about how he’s done exactly what people have accused him of: accessing the back channel after being kicked off the blog.

He spins himself as a whistleblower about vast conspiracies within Freethought Blogs, how we’re looking to destroy people’s careers every time we commiserate with one another about someone who’s aggrieved us. How this back channel operates like a “clique” where achievements are lauded, messages amplified, and disagreements mocked mercilessly. In other words, it’s a social club for people who choose to participate, to help spread collegiality amongst our bloggers and support one another when under attack. As such, considering that many of these private thoughts are not fights we wish to pick publicly and how Thunderf00t now controls what fights we have with whom because of misplaced trust in what happened to be a compromised listserv, Thunderf00t now gets to control much of the dialog of this blog network.

How very conspiratorial.
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Gamers Against Bigotry hacked repeatedly by computer-savvy bigots

Example #645,257,329 of why one must always sanitize every piece of user input that your code has to process. Doesn’t matter how foolproof or dead simple you think the action will be, or how safe or sane your users — someone will try to buffer overrun, break out of the current SQL statement and inject their own code, or just generally find any way imaginable to deface or destroy your work. Especially if your work is a direct confrontation of a particularly entrenched bit of misogyny amongst a terribly entitled and relatively tech-savvy audience, and that audience is inclined toward trollishness to begin with.

A group of social justice advocates in the video gaming community put together a pledge website called Gamers Against Bigotry (WARNING: Chrome reports malware!), asking people to sign onto the following statement:

As a gamer, I realize I contribute to an incredibly diverse social network of gamers around the world, and that my actions have the ability to impact others. In effort to make a positive impact, and to create a community that is welcoming to all, I pledge to not use bigoted language while gaming, online and otherwise.

Bigoted language includes, but is not limited to, slurs based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, and disability.

Read more about the pledge, including what is and isn’t included, and the overall purpose here.

Read why you shouldn’t use the word “rape” casually here.

All in all, it’s a simple statement, and a rather unobjectionable one at that. The only way one can end bigotry within a community is to “be the change you want to see” — to never engage in bigoted behaviour, and to challenge it when one is able.

The response, however, was in no way proportionate to the pledge, especially given its entirely voluntary nature.
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NDP leadership election marred by DDoS

So, something pretty big happened in Canadian politics yesterday.

For you Yankees, the short-form of Canadian politics is: we have multiple political parties, not just two. We have the right-wing Conservatives, who are like (in so many ways) your Republicans; we have the centrist Liberals, who are like your Democrats; and we have the NDP, who are a left-wing party unlike anything you’ve seen in America for forty years. We also have the Greens, and several far-left, far-right and far-loon parties, depending on where you are. Each of them elects a party leader, and if that party gets the most seats in the House of Commons, their party leader is made Prime Minister. The party leader of the next biggest party is the Leader of the Loyal Opposition.

Canada lost a great statesman in the long-time leader of the NDP, Jack Layton, when he succumbed to cancer. The NDP just held the election for the new leader, doing it for the very first time entirely online through Spanish company Scytl, who evidently have a sterling record for security in electronic elections.

It turns out, though, that distributing the load for the four tiers of the ballot… well, less so.
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