Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

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Brentai
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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Brentai » Tue Sep 03, 2019 11:08 am

This one also makes absolutely no attempt to hide the fact that it collects and sells facial recognition data to anybody with a handful of dollars, so I guess at least it's honest.
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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Mongrel » Sun Sep 08, 2019 1:26 am

So, the main story is that an MIT research centre concealed a huge pile of donations from Epstein.

But there's an "oh by the way" reveal that Bill Gates was friends with Epstein.

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Epstein’s apparent role in directing outside contributions was also elided. In October, 2014, the Media Lab received a two-million-dollar donation from Bill Gates; Ito wrote in an internal e-mail, “This is a $2M gift from Bill Gates directed by Jeffrey Epstein.” Cohen replied, “For gift recording purposes, we will not be mentioning Jeffrey’s name as the impetus for this gift.” A mandatory record of the gift filed within the university stated only that “Gates is making this gift at the recommendation of a friend of his who wishes to remain anonymous.”
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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Mongrel » Sat Sep 14, 2019 1:33 pm

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Thad » Tue Sep 17, 2019 12:25 pm

So uh Richard Stallman said a bunch of stupid shit about Epstein following the revelations of Epstein's continued support of MIT, and, following a backlash, he's resigned from both the Free Software Foundation and MIT.

I suppose it was always predictable that RMS would one day end his distinguished career by saying something deeply, deeply stupid. But Jesus fuck, of all the hills to die on.

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Brentai » Tue Sep 17, 2019 1:07 pm

From all I've heard of Stallman this is not only 100% in character but also probably not the end of the story.
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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Thad » Tue Sep 17, 2019 1:43 pm

It depends. His decision to resign indicates that he realizes that his behavior was jeopardizing the FSF, which is something he doesn't want to do; his resignation has that petulant line about "a series of misunderstandings and mischaracterizations" but leaves it at that.

Writing a long-winded blog post where he enumerates all the perceived "misunderstandings and mischaracterizations" would be in character. I could even see him writing up a blog post dissecting the semantics of rape, pedophilia, ephebophilia, etc.

I don't expect him to talk about it in interviews. He's pretty famous for keeping his interviews on message and setting preconditions (like "you have to call the operating system GNU/Linux") before he'll agree to one.

I don't know if he's still on any mailing lists where he'd consider speaking off the cuff like that (he's definitely not on Facebook or Twitter, and probably has dumb nicknames for them that he thinks are cute). But as for live events, if he still gets invited to any? I think he's a very easy man to goad. If there's a Q&A and somebody asks him about it, I don't see him having the self-control to say "I'm not here to talk about that."

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Thad » Wed Sep 18, 2019 12:07 am

Anyway here's the Medium post that eventually snowballed into Stallman resigning, and an appendix that reveals he's been harassing women for decades.

I wasn't aware of those allegations until now, but I'm not surprised by them; he's always been one of those "social conventions are stupid and I don't have to follow them; if you're offended, that's your problem, not mine" guys. Took awhile, but I guess it's his problem now.

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Blossom » Wed Sep 18, 2019 1:33 am

Yeah, was about to say. His "distinguish career" has mostly been being a gross, misogynist crank every time he gets the public eye. From the whole abortion joke mess last year, to stuff like this:
to this latest debacle. Dude's foul. Shoulda gotten the boot years ago.

Shitty men are never worth the cost, and are never as irreplaceable as they think.
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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Grath » Wed Sep 18, 2019 1:35 am

My college invited him to speak, thankfully after I'd graduated and left the area. By all reports it was terrible (because crusty old weirdo, not outright misogyny that I'm aware of) and he pissed off my favorite professor who got saddled with the burden of giving him a place to stay.


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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Mongrel » Wed Sep 18, 2019 3:33 pm

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby beatbandito » Wed Sep 18, 2019 3:52 pm

I don't understand why you need to store that much cum.
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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Thad » Thu Sep 19, 2019 1:43 pm

Grath wrote:My college invited him to speak, thankfully after I'd graduated and left the area. By all reports it was terrible (because crusty old weirdo, not outright misogyny that I'm aware of) and he pissed off my favorite professor who got saddled with the burden of giving him a place to stay.

Yeah, I've got a similar story. I saw him give a talk in September 2001; he was rude and abrasive, but didn't hit on anybody, though in hindsight that says more about the demographics of the CS department than it does about him. (I only remember one woman in the program; it's possible I'm misremembering and there were a few, but at any rate there weren't very many, and I'm not sure if any showed up for the talk. Of course, a major reason there are so few women in CS is that there are so many men like Stallman.)

I was aware that he was a smug prick -- this is a guy who *I* looked at and thought, "boy, this guy should be less condescending and not nitpick people's word choice so damn much" -- and I was aware of the abortion joke, the video of him eating something from between his toes, all that shit. That I never heard about his decades of sexual harassment says a lot about privilege: I heard about the ways he was shitty to men, but not the ways he was shitty to women.

The tech press mostly seems to be reporting the story as "Stallman resigns after saying gross stuff about rape". Which is a shame -- I'd be totally fine with throwing him out on his ass just for what he said on the work listserv(!), but it's a pretty incomplete representation of what's actually happened, which is that he said gross things about rape and then those comments called attention to decades of harassing women.

On a similar topic: danah boyd (no relation) gave a good speech last week, Facing the Great Reckoning Head-On, where she discussed being harassed by shitty men at MIT and elsewhere (notably including the late Marvin Minsky, the rapist and Epstein associate who Stallman was defending) but also benefiting from knowing those men and being a part of the culture that allowed them to thrive.

It's a lot to chew on. I'm glad some kind of reckoning is finally occurring, but it sure took a long time, and very few shitty men have actually faced any serious consequences. At least resigning from MIT and the FSF hits Stallman where it hurts -- his ego -- and maybe it'll do some damage to his cash-only pocketbook, too. I remember during his spiel in '01 that he recalled asking himself, back in 1984, what he'd do if he couldn't make a living selling software that people could get for free. He said he thought, "well, I guess I could always try waiting tables." I'd like to think now he'll get a chance to try (and see how well his approach to social interactions works in a customer service job). But who knows; maybe he'll still be able to make a living on speaking fees. The Slashdot crowd who hated him a week ago seem to have suddenly decided he's a fucking free speech martyr. Shitty men mostly seem to land on their feet.

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Büge » Fri Sep 27, 2019 7:54 pm

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Thad » Sat Sep 28, 2019 2:24 pm

Thad wrote:It's a lot to chew on. I'm glad some kind of reckoning is finally occurring, but it sure took a long time, and very few shitty men have actually faced any serious consequences. At least resigning from MIT and the FSF hits Stallman where it hurts -- his ego -- and maybe it'll do some damage to his cash-only pocketbook, too. I remember during his spiel in '01 that he recalled asking himself, back in 1984, what he'd do if he couldn't make a living selling software that people could get for free. He said he thought, "well, I guess I could always try waiting tables." I'd like to think now he'll get a chance to try (and see how well his approach to social interactions works in a customer service job). But who knows; maybe he'll still be able to make a living on speaking fees. The Slashdot crowd who hated him a week ago seem to have suddenly decided he's a fucking free speech martyr. Shitty men mostly seem to land on their feet.

So, funny story: Stallman only resigned from the FSF, not the GNU Project, which is funded by the FSF. Can't say as I'm surprised, just disappointed.

I'm sure there's no mechanism for removing the "Benevolent Dictator for Life" from the GNU Project if he doesn't wanna go. But if the remaining FSF leadership isn't willing to pull funding, then they haven't really cut ties with Stallman; they've just played Musical Chairs.

Not that I think any of us were planning to donate to the FSF anyway, but just in case you were, might I recommend the Software Freedom Conservancy instead? They've been a lot less ambiguous in distancing themselves from Stallman.

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Upthorn » Sat Sep 28, 2019 7:30 pm

So, about an hour ago, this statment of resignation from the GNU project appeared on Richard Stallman's personal website.

stallman.org wrote:28 September 2019 (GNU Project)
I hereby step down as head of the GNU Project, effective immediately.

Richard Stallman
How fleeting are all human passions compared with the massive continuity of ducks.

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Thad » Sat Sep 28, 2019 8:30 pm

Good, though given that he's already pulled a fast one on resigning-but-not-really, I'm inclined to parse his words carefully.

If he's saying he's resigned as the president of the FSF, and from its board of directors, and as the head of the GNU Project...what isn't he saying?

He hasn't actually said he's resigned entirely from either organization. Until either he or official representatives of the orgs say that, clearly and unambiguously, I'm going to assume this is just more Musical Chairs and he's still on payroll.

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Blossom » Sun Sep 29, 2019 6:51 am

Aaaand the statement is gone already. Speculation that the site was hacked and vandalized. Astonishing it took this long to correct, really.

Did anyone really think Stallman would voluntarily hand something over?
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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Thad » Thu Oct 03, 2019 3:04 pm

Jacob Wohl's latest silliness: Elizabeth Warren had a "long-term sexual relationship" with a 24-year-old Marine, which "began several months ago".



I'm not gonna lie: I'm kinda gonna miss this doofus when he winds up in prison.

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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Joxam » Thu Oct 03, 2019 3:55 pm

Also apperently it was BDSM stuff and Liz is a Dom so she gets my vote.
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Re: Bogus, batshit, banal, bizarre, or bicubic: Assorted News

Postby Thad » Thu Oct 03, 2019 4:15 pm





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