Headlines July 15, 2008

Viacom backs off YouTube demand

The bad news:
On July 3rd, Google had been ordered to provide personal details of millions of YouTube users to help Viacom (which owns MTV and Paramount Pictures) prepare its case on alleged copyright infringement ($1 bn). Viacom stated that it had identified about 160,000 unauthorized clips of its programs on the website, which had been viewed more than 1.5 billion times.
Steps in digital rights group the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) which called the US court ruling a “set-back to privacy rights”. The viewing log, which will be handed to Viacom, contains the log-in ID of users, the computer IP address (online identifier) and video clip details.
How wonderful is that… NOT!! Effing you Viacom along with your MTV and Paramount Pictures… is it not you guys rejecting the artists’ request to be paid royalties from web-content? Talking about double standards.
The good news:
Viacom has backed off and now Google (owners of YouTube) will hand over the database but without data that could identify users.
Still…. Effing you Viacom!

Andrey Melnickenko’s super-yacht

While most of the people are worried about fuel and food cost increase and see their cost of living skyrocketing, Roman Abramovich’s yacht has been overshadowed by his rival’s super-yacht.
Andrey Melnichenko’s futuristic yacht dubbed ‘A’ and evaluated at over $400 million, took its maiden voyage to Norway to pick up three Monet paintings.

Two best friends: China and Sudan

While some people are in a pissing contest over the size of their yachts or the number of paintings or modern art purchased from Christi’s auctions, other are worried over the crushing stock market and others decided to attacked the International Criminal Court prosecutor’s decision to seek an arrest warrant for Sudan’s president on charges of genocide in the Darfur region. According to the United Nations, more than 300,000 people have died and over 2. 5 million have been driven from their homes.
The BBC has found the first evidence that China is currently helping Sudan’s government militarily in Darfur. The BBC has found the first evidence that China is currently helping Sudan’s government militarily in Darfur because it believes that what Sudan needs is good business partners, help with development and a solid peace process in Darfur, instead of confrontation and sanctions from the West.
How do they achieve all of that (especially the solid peace process)?
First of all by buying two-thirds of Sudan’s petroleum exports, then by providing Fantan jets and training pilots to help the military interventions of the government , writing off million of dollars worth of debt and giving interest free loans.
How nice it is to see such good friends loving and respecting each other. Mostly… deserving each other.

Russia is sending warships to patrol Arctic waters

For the first time since the break-up of the Soviet Unions, Russia is sending warships- A submarine destroyer and a missile cruiser- to patrol Arctic waters. This is the latest move to increase Russia’s global military presence.
According to Navy spokesman, Igor Dygalo, one aim of the patrols is to protect the Russian fishermen which are blocked from seas around the island of Spitsbergen because of the Norway’s claims of exclusive fishing rights.

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