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This VPN lets you block hackers and bypass censors on up to 5 devices

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25 February[ —]

Surfing on public Wi-Fi is convenient, but it's far from safe. Whether you're at a cafe or hotel, connecting to an unsecured network exposes you—and your personal information—to a host of hazards, including hackers, government spies, and trackers. Private Internet Access helps you navigate past these risks and tap into a safer, restriction-free internet, and plans are on sale starting at $34.95 in the Boing Boing Store.

Boasting high-level encryption and IP cloaking, Private Internet Access lets you surf the web without forfeiting your browsing location or movements online, on up to five devices at once. You can bypass censorship filters, like the geo-restrictions placed on streaming sites, and block ads, trackers, and malware with the new MACE feature. Plus, Private Internet Access includes a traffic kill switch that engages if the VPN connection is unexpectedly terminated, keeping your data secure.

You can see Private Internet Access' security features for yourself by checking out available plans in the Boing Boing Store, now on sale starting at $34.95.


A cybersecurity style guide

25 February[ —]

Information security firm Bishop Fox's "Cybersecurity Style Guide" is 92 pages' worth of usage notes from the confusing world of technical jargon, a combination of glossary, pronunciation guide and style manual (in the manner of the jargon file), and includes the notation that "cyber-" is an ill-advised prefix. (more…)

GOP lawmakers attempt to define gay marriage as 'parody'

24 February[ —]

GOP bigots in South Carolina and Wyoming have decided to try and weasel around the U.S. Supreme Court decision that allowed "legal" marriage to everyone.

I can not begin to understand the religious babble these 'lawmakers' enter into, trying to describe how two people committing to share their lives is anything wrong. Jeff March, the president of South Carolina Pride, commented “Pure prejudice is what that is. Pure outright prejudice."

Via PinkNews:

Republicans in South Carolina and Wyoming are pushing new bills to segregate same-sex weddings and legally redefine them as a “parody” of marriage.

Six GOP lawmakers unveiled the ‘Marriage and Constitution Restoration Act’ bill to the South Carolina House last week. 

The bill appears to be an attempt to segregate same-sex marriage from heterosexual unions in the wake of the 2015 Supreme Court decision that brought equal marriage to all 50 states.

The proposed law seeks to define “any form of marriage that does not involve one man and one woman” as a “parody marriage”.

The lawmakers claim that ” the State of South Carolina’s decision to respect, endorse, and recognize parody marriages and sexual orientation policies has excessively entangled the government with the religion of Secular Humanism, failed to accomplish its intended purpose, and created an indefensible legal weapon against nonobservers”.

There's a semi-secret Burning Man calendar that you can (shockingly) buy

24 February[ —]

While some can only think of the Burning Man as a party in the desert, diehard Burners, its citizens, will tell you that it's much more than it. They'll tell you that it's a year-round community whose leadership is, amongst other things, determined to protect their unique culture from commodification. People looking to exploit the culture with "commercial sponsorships, transactions, or advertising" will promptly be shutdown. Amazingly, besides some coffee and ice, nothing at the annual Burning Man desert event is for sale.

In fact, decommodification is so important to them that they've made it one of their 10 Principles.

Now, I've been in the Burning Man community since 1995 and I've just learned this week that the Project does actually have one product for sale: a calendar. You can buy it online, like I just did.

Through a recent blog post on her site, I discovered that my pal Arin Fishkin has been the calendar's designer since its beginning in 2004. In the post, she not only shares the calendar's history -- highlighted by lovely sample pages of each year's edition -- but also tells why an organization that protects itself from commodification is selling it to begin with. She writes:

The funds from the purchase price go to producing the calendar which is primarily gifted to staff, volunteers, visiting dignitaries, politicians and….mayors. As I understand it, having items available for purchase is one way to claim and protect their trademark. So we make this beautiful thing, that is mostly given away, and mostly kept secret. Burning Man doesn’t tell their (my) community it’s out there, or how to find it...

I get it, advertising a product for sale is against what Burning Man stands for, the community of passionate citizens would have a dramatic and pyrotechnic response – and they’d be right. But I imagine they’d be psyched to have something to gift to friends who love the event, and especially those that will never step foot in Black Rock City.

Cat's out of the bag now. If you want to buy the only officially-branded Burning Man product out there, head over to Arin's site to learn how to get your hands on one (or more). Keep in mind that it's "Burn-to-Burn," so it's the 2017-2018 version that's available now.

Previously: Eat Fuck Kill, the legend of the playa's first meme

Thanks, Marnee!

Watch cute babies try winter Olympic sports

24 February[ —]

I give all of these babies a gold medal!

Flowers look way more beautiful if you're a bug

24 February[ —]

The world looks a lot cooler if you're a bug, as Craig P. Burrows demonstrates in his striking series of flowers shot in ultraviolet-induced visible fluorescence. (more…)

Amnesty International warns that Trump's hatemongering sets "a dangerous precedent for other governments to follow."

24 February[ —]

If you've had the sneaking suspicion over the past year that the world is going to hell, you're not alone. Amnesty International's 2017-2018 State of the World's Human Rights Annual Report says that in many countries, the politics of hate and fear are quickly becoming the norm.

The report, which covers the activities of 159 countries paints a troubling picture of the conditions that many people are forced to endure on an alarmingly more regular basis. For those who keep track of human rights issues, this is old hat--the world can be a shitty place, full of shitty people doing shitty things to folks that don't deserve it. What's new this year, although it's likely news to no one, is that America is one of a small group of countries at the forefront of Amnesty International's concerns. In a press release for the report, the Secretary General of Amnesty International, Salil Shetty, states:

"The specters of hatred and fear now loom large in world affairs, and we have few governments standing up for human rights in these disturbing times. Instead, leaders such as al-Sisi, Duterte, Maduro, Putin, Trump and Xi are callously undermining the rights of millions."

The report goes on call out the Trump administration's attempted rollback of women's rights and to block the entry of visitors and immigrants from Muslim countries, as particularly troubling and that Trump's "...backward steps on human rights are setting a dangerous precedent for other governments to follow."

The whole text of the annual report is available for download, here. It's a lengthy, depressing read. But in a world where hate, fear and the creeping loss of the institutions that have safeguarded our rights are a fact of life, it's required reading for anyone that wants to raise an informed protest against all that's awful in our world.

Image courtesy of Wikipedia


This tool helps your site beat the SEO scramble

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24 February[ —]

The web is vast, and while there's room for everyone, competition is stiff when it comes to landing on that first page of a Google search. That's why developers aren't afraid to spend exorbitant amounts of time and money on search engine optimization (SEO) to ensure their sites rank higher than others. However, not all of us have these resources, especially when we're just starting out. That's where SEOPop comes in. This tool helps you visualize your site's SEO performance and gives you tips on how to improve it, all for $9.99.

SEOPop analyzes a website to generate an SEO report card based off of an extensive list of factors and then creates an in-depth audit of the URL being examined. From there, you can look at your site's report card, identify problems, and see how it stacks up against the competition. You'll get insights on your site's speed and loading times, plus you'll also receive breakdowns of your social signal impact in SEO, including Facebook and Twitter page analysis.

SEOPop gives you the means to improve your site's exposure while keeping tabs on your competition, and it's on sale for a limited time. Normally retailing for $149.99, lifetime subscriptions are available for $9.99 in the Boing Boing Store.

A Fresh Voice for San Francisco

24 February[ —]

Editor's note: I've known Shahid Buttar for years, in his capacity as an activist organizer, drawing on his background as a constitutional lawyer and his deep commitment to a just world to help start effective grassroots groups across America; now Shahid has taken leave from EFF to challenge Nancy Pelosi -- a consistent force for more surveillance and profits over people -- for the Democratic nomination to Congress in San Francisco's 12th District. I'm proud to endorse his candidacy. -Cory (more…)

Trump and the weird attention economy of Facebook

24 February[ —]

When you try to buy online ads from Facebook's self-serve ad-auctioning platform, merely being the highest bidder isn't enough to guarantee that your ads will get through: Facebook multiplies your bid by a software-generated prediction about how responsive the audience will be to it, so the clickbaitier your ad is, the less it costs to place it. (more…)

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