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“UNC Dildo-Boy” accosts homophobic preacher, releases anti-technology declaration

1 Mar

Protestor heckles Pit Preacher

 

 

By Danny Nett
Protester's self publicized picture on Facebook account.

Protester’s self publicized picture on Facebook account.

 

An unidentified man who went head-to-head with the controversial Pit Preacher Gary Birdsong faced a warning from the Department of Public Safety’s penal system Tuesday.

 

The shirtless individual – whose student status could not be confirmed — had a homosexual slur painted on his chest and a dildo sticking out of his pants. He approached Birdsong and simulated masturbation while waving the sex toy at the preacher.

 

When someone reported the incident to the Student Union, the demonstrator was taken into the Union. Student employees stood with him until DPS arrived to trespass him from campus.

 

“I think normally we would say, ‘Okay, you’re both going to exercise your right to free speech,’ until such time that somebody seems to think something is out of control,” said Joe Singer, senior associate director of events management at the Student Union.

 

“Our office is supposed to be content-neutral. Our role is to provide the space to speak.”

 

Posting on Facebook under the name “Unc DildoBoy,” the demonstrator stated his actions were not made as an attack on Birdsong or anti-gay sentiments, but on a technologically driven, post-industrial civilization. The individual did not give a real name to be interviewed.

 

While he refused to speak on the record, he posted a letter explaining his actions on the Facebook page.

 

“Because of the total penetration of mass media, humans on YouTube or Facebook, or people who are TV stars or politicians are put in a situation we humans are simply incapable of dealing with,” he wrote.

 

DPS spokesman Randy Young said if a person on campus is engaged in a situation or activity that could be considered provocative, results in harm to anyone or interferes with operations of the University or another person’s free speech, DPS may get involved. It is then at the discretion of the responding officers whether the disruptive individual is removed from a specific area like the Pit or from campus entirely, he said.

 

Cathy Packer, a professor who specializes in media law, said legally the Pit falls under what is considered a dedicated or limited forum. That means UNC, as a public university, can limit the forum for certain topics or speakers as long as it does not favor one viewpoint over another.

 

Packer said although she wholeheartedly disagrees with what the demonstrator did, she supports his First Amendment rights. She said his actions would not fall under a judicial definition of obscenity, but that it is irrelevant if he was removed for trespassing.

 

“My view about all of that is that the reason people come to Carolina is to see and hear things they didn’t hear at home,” Packer said.

 

“You go to Carolina and see some of what the rest of the world looks like and all the opinions other people have that your parents didn’t have.”

 

university@dailytarheel.com

Explanations of the Actions of Dildo Boy

Spark of Wildness Website

Facebook Account

Activist Group Black Fish Using Drones to Defend the Ocean from Driftnets

26 Aug

by Alex Chitty / Vice

The Black Fish’s founder Wietse van der Werf. Photo by Chris Grodotzki.

The Black Fish’s founder Wietse van der Werf. Photo by Chris Grodotzki.

On a warm night in July 2012, off the island of Ugljan in the Croatian Adriatic, two activists slipped into the water near a line of huge fish farms. Security boats patrolled the perimeter of the vast circular nets, as guards stationed on a nearby hill kept watch through the night. And for good reason: the thousands of bluefin tuna in the farms, destined for the tables of Japanese sushi restaurants, are worth millions. Individual fish routinely sell for more than $1,500 at wholesale markets in Tokyo and closer to home. The Croatian tuna had been caught as juveniles under a loophole in international law, and were being “fattened up” before heading to market.

Wearing tactical diving gear, the divers arrived at the first net, slicing three-quarters of its length and sending bluefin streaming out. The divers swam to another net, repeating the process, and then headed home. The security teams circling above were none the wiser until the following day. The activists, from a group known as the Black Fish, were long gone. The raid was similar to a previous attack in September 2010, when Black Fish divers freed dolphins from holding pens near Taiji, Japan.

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ConocoPhillips to Use Drones in Alaska

26 Aug

by Ryan Koronowski / Think Progress

Credit: (AP Photo/University of Alaska Geophysical Institute, David Giessel)

Credit: (AP Photo/University of Alaska Geophysical Institute, David Giessel)

The FAA issued an approval in July that paved the way for a “major energy company” to fly unmanned drones in U.S. airspace. Yesterday it became clear which corporation would be using drones to aid its Alaskan oil drilling efforts: ConocoPhillips.

This marks the first time a private company has received permission to fly “unmanned aircraft systems,” UAS — or drones — in America for non-experimental purposes.

“Until now, obtaining an experimental airworthiness certificate — which specifically excludes commercial operations — was the only way the private sector could operate UAS in the nation’s airspace,” the FAA announced last month. FAA hailed the move as “a milestone that will lead to the first approved commercial UAS operations later this summer.”

“A major energy company plans to fly the ScanEagle off the Alaska coast in international waters starting in August.”

That “major energy company” is ConocoPhillips, as reported by Petroleum News.

AeroVironment, one of the two companies that manufacture the drones approved for use by ConocoPhillips, hailed the approval at the time: “This marks the first time the FAA has approved a hand-launched unmanned aircraft system for commercial missions.”

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NSA to Fire 90% of System Administrators to Eliminate Future Leaks

9 Aug

from Business Insider

nsa-35The National Security Agency, hit by disclosures of classified data by former contractor Edward Snowden, said Thursday it intends to eliminate about 90 percent of its system administrators to reduce the number of people with access to secret information.

Keith Alexander, the director of the NSA, the U.S. spy agency charged with monitoring foreign electronic communications, told a cybersecurity conference in New York City that automating much of the work would improve security.

“What we’re in the process of doing – not fast enough – is reducing our system administrators by about 90 percent,” he said.

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How Technology has Stopped Evolution and is Destroying the World

3 Aug

Doug Tompkins, founder of The North Face, on battles with Steve Jobs and why we need to dismantle our techno-industrial society

by Jo Confino / The Guardian

Doug Tompkins, founder of North Face and Esprit, has been instrumental in creating two huge nature reserves in Patagonia. Photograph: Aaron Black/Getty Images

Doug Tompkins, founder of North Face and Esprit, has been instrumental in creating two huge nature reserves in Patagonia. Photograph: Aaron Black/Getty Images

It has become something of a mantra within the sustainability movement that innovations in technology can save the world. But rather than liberating us, Doug Tompkins, the cofounder of retail brands The North Face and Esprit, believes technology has enslaved us and is destroying the very health of the planet on which all species depend.

Tompkins, 70 has used his enormous wealth from selling both companies to preserve more land than any other individual in history, spending more than £200m buying over two million acres of wilderness in Argentina and Chile.

He challenges the view that technology is extending democracy, arguing that it is concentrating even more power in the hands of a tiny elite. What troubles him the most is that the very social and environmental movements that should be challenging the destructive nature of mega-technologies, have instead fallen under their spell.

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FBI Can Remotely Activate Cell Phones, Laptop Microphones and More

3 Aug

from Banoosh

glow_wide-3030f55360f18b169b838ab50c71356d56c8ccb3A new report reveals that the FBI directly employs multiple hackers who create custom surveillance software for the bureau, some of which is capable of remotely activating the microphones on cell phones and laptops, among other features.

The FBI is known for using technology shrouded in secrecy, some of which is based on legal grounds which have been questioned by critics with some maintaining that the FBI deceived judges in deploying it.

Malicious software, or malware, aimed at enabling government surveillance has also been heavily marketed directly to the US government.

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Feds Pressure Web Firms for Encryption Keys

27 Jul

keys2by Declan McCullagh / Cnet

The U.S. government has attempted to obtain the master encryption keys that Internet companies use to shield millions of users’ private Web communications from eavesdropping.

These demands for master encryption keys, which have not been disclosed previously, represent a technological escalation in the clandestine methods that the FBI and the National Security Agency employ when conducting electronic surveillance against Internet users.

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