Ministry of Disinformation [MP3]
The Cold Archives Experiment, June 2006
Note - The CAE is a quasi-scholarly endeavor (ha!) designed to test the limits of open source audio production software. And, well, the ladies just dig information scientists with a flair for downbeat noise art.
How to Hide the Tiananmen Square Massacre from a Billion People...
Yahoo censors more online content than other search engines in China, according to one watchdog group.
According to a Reporters Without Borders report, 97 percent of search results returned from the official Yahoo China portal linked to "authorized" content.
Eighty-three percent of results returned by Google China linked to authorized content, while 78 percent of links recalled via MSN China were officially sanctioned.
The organization reportedly tested the search engines using a list of subversive words and phrases believed to be restricted by Chinese authorities.
Apple Jacked, From Sea to Encrypted Sea
Denmark Finds Something Rotten in the State of Media Players
Former PC/current Geek-Gadget giant Apple has found itself under constant attack recently, with everyone from European governments to human rights advocates questioning the company's business practices.
France and Norway launched legal attacks earlier this year on the company's iTunes Music Store.
According to a report filed earlier this week by PC Magazine's Mark Hachman, Denmark and Sweden are gearing up to help turn these attacks into a multi-national war.
Apple will, one way or the other, be racking up some major legal bills in the near future simply to protect its DRM policies and legal contracts with the music industry.
Apple's iWoes don't just stop in Europe, either.
The U.S. International Trade Commission will reportedly open an investigation into possible patent infringements involving the iPod's navigation system.
Singapore-based Creative Technology Ltd. filed the complaint with the ITC, claiming one of the patents linked to their Zen media player was violated by Apple.
Apple has reportedly filed a counter-complaint.
And the iSweatshops allegations?
Who'd a thunk it?
No Matter How Many Charity Concerts He Gives,
Bono Can't Write Songs in Dinka:
Using Literacy and Language as a Peacemaker in the Sudan
As the politics of warfare begin to cool in war-torn Sudan, the world's focus must change as well.
For years now, citizens of the world have been calling for an end to one of Sub-Saharan Africa's bloodiest conflicts.
With well-intentioned activists in the West grabbing the headlines, it's easy to overlook the ideas being produced by, well, Africans.
For instance, New Sudan Vision editor Mading de Ngor Akec de Kuai produced this utterly stellar piece that takes a holistic look at the links between the loss of indigenous identity, postcolonial Africa, language, literacy, and the rebuilding of a continent.
I'd hate to break it to a lot of Industrialized World activists, but the people of the Sudan are the only people who can truly fix the Sudan. It won't be international peacekeepers, Western-based charities and action committees, or celebrities who change the way Africans think.
Sure, putting on concerts that raise money and publishing editorials that raise awareness of African issues are meaningful acts. But it's important for Westerners (including myself) to realize that outside compassion does not equate with speaking for a continent, especially when speaking the Queen's English.
Mading's commentary is a reminder that, yes, Africans can think for themselves and, yes, the Western World helped create many of the problems in the region, through colonialism, political manipulation, and resource exploitation.
Mading is himself a member of the Sudanese diaspora, a college student living in Canada. Before anybody calls Bono, I'd recommend reading what Mading and other Africans have to say.
Africans have minds, mouths, and can speak for themselves.
* * *And on that note...
Celebrities and Africa...hmmm....
It sure was nice of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt to raise the profile of the nation of Namibia, but I'll start reading the tabloids when they quit publishing this Brangelina garbage and start talking about the Namibians who welcomed the couple with open arms.
Are you a desperately-spoiled housewife, overly obsessed with Brangelina? Well...how about dumping those subscriptions to People and Us Weekly, saving those pennies, and planning the next family vacation around a trip to the Kavango Region? While Mr. and Mrs. Pitt's child will receive nothing from your purchase, your tourist dollars could sure help out a lot of children.
Or why not skip the stupid fucking t-shirt and support distance education initiatives for Baby Shiloh's countrymen?
Have I ever mentioned that I totally fucking hate America's obsession with Infotainment?
* * *
The responsibility of any compassionate citizen of a More Developed Nation is to support the natural progress of our brothers and sisters in Less Developed Nations - and vise versa.
Progress cannot be forced; it is grown like fruit on a vine.
And that fruit always tastes better when it's homegrown, plucked fresh from one's own garden.