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government

  1. Tech

    The US Government Secretly Created a “Cuban Twitter” to Stir up Political Dissent, Create “Smart Mobs”

    Somehow, the same government that can't set up a simple online signup form to save its life went full Zuckerberg and built an entire successful social media network... in Cuba. This must have been headed by the same people who made the turkey pardoning site for Thanksgiving, because that was easily the best functioning government website.

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  2. Tech

    Problems with Healthcare.gov Likely More Than Just Traffic

    Any implementation of new technology on the scale of Healthcare.gov is bound to run into problems. Unfortunately, now that some time has passed, it seems like the site's troubles may not have just been your run of the mill, version 1.0 bugs. Get out your party hats, "Big Government" haters.

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  3. Weird

    Somebody’s Filed a Freedom of Information Act Request To Find Out More about Squirrel-Related Power Outages

    America's enemies are targeting our power infrastructure and the government is hiding it from us. And no, I don't mean terrorists -- I'm clearly talking about the squirrels who keep chewing through our power lines, as the NYT reported last week. Thank god one courageous woman is ready to get to the bottom of this consquirrelacy.

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  4. Tech

    The Senate Sort of Approved Internet Sales Tax

    People still love taxes, right? That's what the Senate seems to think, because they just voted 75-to-24 in favor of a non-binding resolution that says they would support a bill introducing an Internet sales tax. Even though the resolution is non-binding, its overwhelming support could help support the bill as it School House Rocks its way to becoming a law. The Senate finally decides to get something done, and it's Internet sales tax? Great job, Senate.

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  5. Tech

    Antigua Strikes Back: Country Wants to Launch Piracy Website to Punish America

    In retaliation for the United States repeatedly blocking Antigua from hosting online gambling, the country now plans to launch a website that will sell music, movies, and software from U.S. content-makers without paying royalties to the content's U.S. copyright holders. It's not surprising that the Antinguan government denies that the site qualifies as "privacy," and it's even less surprising that the U.S. isn't happy about the site and will try to stop it.

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  6. Tech

    Anonymous Posts Petition for White House to Declare DDoS Attacks Protests, Not Crimes

    Yesterday we covered the White House's response to the petition asking them to build a working Death Star. Sometimes though, people try to use the government's We the People petition program to try to accomplish things that might be possible. Anonymous has posted a petition to the site asking that the US Government officially declare Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks to be a form of protest, and not a crime. This stands about as much of a chance as the government building a Death Star, and the response probably won't be nearly as funny.

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  7. Gaming

    Massachusetts Department of Transportation Removes Violent Games From State Rest Stops

    The United States' misinformed and eye roll-inducing war on violent video games marches ever onward in yet another show of using them as a scapegoat for violent tragedies. The Massachusetts Department of Transportation has recently pulled particular arcade game titles deemed offensive from various rest stops along the Massachusetts Turnpike in light of the horrific Sandy Hook Elementary Shooting. Well never forget the lives lost in that tragic event, but the nation's insatiable habit of holding easy targets culpable instead of identifying the real problem is getting tediously grating at this point.

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  8. Tech

    FISA Gets Thumbs Up From Senate for Five More Years of Creepy Government Eavesdropping

    Way back in September we reported that the House of Representatives gave thumbs up to the FISA Amendments Act renewal -- allowing the National Security Agency (NSA) to continue to eavesdrop on the private conversations of American citizens without a warrant, granted the person in question is at least assumed to be involved in a foreign affair that could threaten national security. Essentially, the government can do as they please sifting through our email and phone calls. This week, after days of tenuous -- and largely fruitless -- debates and the shooting down of amendments drafted to rein in the unconstitutional nature of FISA, the Senate also gave their approval to the renewal of the act for another five years shortly before it was due to expire. Given the global sociopolitical barometer, flat out ignoring civil liberties seems to be the trendy thing to do these days.

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  9. Tech

    It Just Got Real: China Sanctions Real-Name Registration Requirements for Internet Users

    Not too long ago, the Chinese government had been toying with the notion of approving a proposal requiring real-name registration for Internet users when working with service providers and similar vendors. This procured registration information would then be stored in a data system that could possibly be accessed by the authorities to monitor the online day-to-day activities of the general public. Many concerned citizens feared that this proposed controversial move would be an encroachment on the free speech online anonymity brings -- especially in a nation notorious for censorship crackdowns on those that dispense unpopular opinions against China's ruling body. It looks like those fears have been made real since the government has sanctioned the real-name registration proposal, putting the public's private affairs on shaky ground.

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  10. Weird

    Federal Worker Receives Formal Reprimand for Flatulence

    Farting while in the presence of others is an age-old tradition. Certain comedians have made a fair chunk of change off of similar comedic gestures. South Park wouldn't be what it is today without fart jokes. Still, letting one go with coworkers nearby is perhaps the worst kind of workplace sin. Nobody wants to smell what you ate, digested, and are preparing to "part" with. Federal employees are no exception. According to a letter dated December 10th, one federal worker for the Social Security Administration has been officially reprimanded for "uncontrollable flatulence." That's not the weirdest part.

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  11. Tech

    Bus Rides More Uncomfortable Than Ever Thanks to Government Surveillance Devices

    Because berserk homeless people and the combined smell of the passengers' rancid body odor didn't make riding the bus enough of a horrible experience, government officials are currently in the process of installing surveillance devices to record any and all conversations during bus rides -- and we mean from everybody on board. The plan will be put into action in a number of major city transit hubs across the nation ranging from San Francisco, California to Baltimore, Maryland. Advocates say that this system of audio surveillance will aid in law enforcement and resolving service issues, but, frankly the public would probably rather not have the government hear their thoughts on last night's episode of American Horror Story.

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  12. Tech

    Running the United Kingdom? There’s an App for That

    Being the head of any government isn't exactly an easy job. When it comes down to it, leaders have to make decisions based on the best information they have available to them at the time. If that data proves to be faulty or somehow outdated, they can get reamed for making the wrong call. Thank goodness there's apparently an app for that. David Cameron, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, has been using an app on his iPad to keep track of real-time data on stuff like housing and jobs.

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  13. Tech

    House Gives Thumbs Up to Five More Years of Broad Electronic Eavesdropping

    The FISA Amendments Act essentially allows the government to eavesdrop on Americans' email and phone calls without a warrant. There's just one stipulation: One of those involved must be "believed" to be from outside the United States. So, basically, they can conduct electronic surveillance on domestic targets so long as they suspect there might be some kind of foreign involvement. This is the act that the House of Representatives have agreed to reauthorize for five more years.

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  14. Tech

    FBI’s New Facial Recognition Program Leaves No Place to Hide

    We've been worried about the government using security cameras and other devices to track our lives for a little while now. Well, what may have started as paranoia is rapidly becoming a serious concern: The FBI has announced that they plan to spend one billion dollars to build a new type of facial recognition database that will allow the agency to identify suspects and people of interest using security footage from public cameras.

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  15. Tech

    The Government Maybe Uses Cameras to Track Your Every Move

    The government is watching you. All the time. People have been saying it for years, and now we kinda, sorta, have proof. Files on TrapWire, a government-sponsored program that allows U.S. intelligence agencies to track people's movements using surveillance cameras, have surfaced with  the latest batch of Wikileaks documents. Some are saying that's why the site has been experiencing mass DDoS attacks: To keep this thing under wraps. Conspiracy theories abound.

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