IGN recently fired an editor that covered Nintendo platforms and software, Filip Miucin, when it was discovered that he had plagiarized a review for Dead Cells from another video review.
This situation was awful enough, but IGN’s managers did a good job of resolving it quickly, and I thought it could be an opportunity for the journalist who plagiarized to grow and learn a valuable lesson. That isn’t at all what happened, he posted a video apology to YouTube and it is just completely insincere garbage that I won’t embed or link to. ResetEra has a transcript.
Portions are excerpted in this retort from another writer that Miucin plagiarized, Chris Scullion:
Drew met Brazil’s game players, developers, and the people who sell them.
Cloth Map’s Drew Scanlon tours the world with a video gaming bent. He’s been to a Ukrainian nuclear missile base, Chernobyl and Eurovision, and now, Brazil.
Touring Brazil’s graymarket game stores:
Meeting the people who play games:
As well as people who make them:
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Yesterday, Gizmodo reported that Uber had been granted an entitlement for their iOS app that allowed them to capture an image of an iPhone’s screen at any time, even when the Uber app was not the active app on the phone. This is a big deal, because users don’t typically expect than an iPhone app that is not active might have the ability to eavesdrop on anything they are doing.
I have long felt that the sandboxing infrastructure on both iOS and Mac should be used to more accurately convey to users specifically what the apps they install are capable of doing. Currently the sandboxing system is used primarily to identify to Apple what a specific app’s privileges are. The requested entitlements are used to inform Apple’s decision to approve or reject an app, but the specific list of entitlements is not easily available to users, whose security is actually on the line.
This is absolutely fucking ridiculous. Fuck Uber. Apple should be ashamed for working with them at any level. Allowing an app to covertly record your screen without any prompting is exactly the kind of thing that Apple’s iOS app review process should prevent.
Uber claims they didn’t do anything wrong with this ability, the security researchers told Gizmodo that they didn’t detect anything going on with this code.
There are companies that are less trustworthy than Uber, but few have the opportunity to be as evil on such a large scale. Enabling them to do anything more than operate at a basic level on your platform is a mistake. At this point Apple should block them entirely and attempt to help the Taxi industry to reform and compete with Uber. Not that Apple would ever would, but still that would be the best thing to come out of this. The next best thing would be the improvements to the entitlement system that Jalkut suggests.
I wouldn’t even bother to wonder what Uber are doing on Android, where security is a fucking joke and carriers are still selling devices running ancient versions of that operating system that are affected by dozens of security vulnerabilities. This is especially true for pay-as-you-go phones sold cheaply at places like Walmart, Target, and so on. Those carriers and stores are endangering their customers by continuing to sell these devices.
This is an amazing article by Rachel Aviv for the New Yorker about elderly people in Nevada being tossed out of their homes and having their possessions taken by a genuinely evil system of guardianship that was supposed to take care of them.
There is too much to quote in the article, but the main through-line is about Rennie and Rudy North who were abducted by their state-appointed guardian and everything they own was either sold or trashed. The most ridiculous part is that there’s a company named “Caring Transitions” that was supposed to help them move at one point and, well:
Belshe rescued the art work, in 2013, after Caring Transitions placed the Norths’ belongings in trash bags at the edge of their driveway.
What a caring company.
Sarah Jeong (now of The Verge) contributed this article to Vice’s Motherboard. It’s about the continuing legal struggle for PETA to represent the monkey that took a selfie in PETA’s suit against a photographer who has my surname and gain copyright protection for works created by animals. It may also help animals, and people, in other fields:
Well, it’s not really about monkey copyrights, actually. It’s about Cetacean and about making precedent that will let PETA sue on behalf of animals in more serious matters. And in PETA’s defense, the relevant case law is kind of not great. One of the cases that the judges mentioned during oral argument is a case about a “coalition of clergy, lawyers, and professors” trying to bring a lawsuit on behalf of Guantanamo detainees. It’s not all monkeys and selfies here, there really are larger ramifications to the principles that are being hammered out