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How foolish can the city councils in Toronto and Mississauga become?

In the last couple of days, the Cities of Mississauga and Toronto have passed by-laws banning the sale, possession and consumption of products containing shark fins. While the motivation to do something against the practices of obtaining these shark fins might be understandable, nevertheless, the behavior of the councillors passing such by laws can only be described as anti-democratic and childish.

Mastercard Taking on Functions of Courts?

According to an article on the MyCE (My Consumer Electronics) Website, the RIAA ( Recording Industry Association of America) and the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America) have recruited Mastercard to "govern" the Internet.

According to the article, Mastercard will in essence stop payments made to websites who the RIAA and MPAA claim to violate their copyrights. While technically this can all be done according to the law, it seems to be a big issue of anti-trust and at least violation of due process.

Only 4% of People Think Patents Drive Innovation

The Inquirer has currently, due to Nokia's patent suit against Apple, an Internet poll asking people about their opinion about patents.

Wikileaks is Changing Justice Systems

Interestingly, Wikileaks might have already changed one aspect of the justice system, and this seemingly inadvertently.

While District Judge Howard Riddle in the bail hearing at magistrates court for Julian Assange allowed the public to tweet the proceedings of the court live to all the interested public on the Internet, Justice Ouseley during the appeal in the high court did not allow the same.

Are Open Source Contributors in Risk of Being Prosecuted for Providing Support of Terrorist Organisations?

US Representative (and incoming chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee) Peter King has requested the US State Department to classify Wikileaks as a terrorist organization. While the topic of this article is not a discussion of the merits of this request, which is reported about by cnet ,
nevertheless, this request raises some interesting questions, that should be asked in a broader scope.

Google sues Government for violating requirement to obtain full and open competition in tenders

Filed on 29 October 2010, Google has sued the US Government (in particular the Department of Interior), for violating the requirement to allow a full and open competition in the tendering process.

The action is against the support by the Department of Interior is supporting a "Limited Source Justification" in requiring the solution for a "single hosted email and collaboration services solution" being based on "Microsoft Business Productivity Online Suite".

Ubuntu Canada monthly IRC meeting on October 17, 2010 - 8pm Eastern Time

The monthly IRC meeting for Ubuntu Canada in October will be held on Sunday, October 17, 2010, 8pm Eastern Time.

More information is available in the LoCo directory.

The effects of criminal proscecution in the area of copyright law on FLOSS

Copyright violations are in general always civil matters, i.e. the damaged parties must fight for their remedy themselves, the only penalty can be damages (even in some legislation these damages can be increased for intentional violations).

Everybody who dissents is a terrorist

It had to come this way. The Labour government has pushed the anti-terrorism laws further and further and asked everybody to trust them. The Minister should make the decision if someone would be put under house arrest without even consulting a judge. Now they want to be able to detain someone for 3 month without a judge.

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