As Senate hearings heat up, Warner calls FBI nomination ‘an effort to distract’ the public

As Senate hearings heat up, Warner calls FBI nomination ‘an effort to distract’ the publicWarner made the comments on CBS’ “This Morning” after Trump tweeted that he would be nominating former Assistant Attorney General Christopher Wray to replace James Comey as head of the bureau. The Virginia Democrat is the top Democrat on the committee that is hearing testimony from National Intelligence Director Dan Coats and National Security Agency Director Mike Rogers Wednesday, and ousted FBI Director James Comey Thursday.



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ACLU Sues Anaheim Police For Public Records On Cell Phone Surveillance

New submitter Lacey Waymire writes: The ACLU of Northern California is suing for a release of public records regarding Anaheim police’s use of cell phone surveillance devices. “We don’t think any surveillance devices, particularly these sorts of invasive cell phone surveillance devices, should ever be acquired or used without intense public debate and the adoption of safeguards to ensure they are only used in ways that follow our Constitution and laws,” attorney Matt Cagle said. (See this Boing Boing posting with a bit more on “the happiest surveillance state on earth.”)

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Uber To Integrate With TransLoc Public Transit Planning App

An anonymous reader writes: Transit tech firm TransLoc has agreed to partner with global ride-sharing giant Uber, to help public transport users plan their routes and schedule rides to reach their final destination. The set up will help users plan trips via different modes of transport and offer an end-to-end route planning service, according to the companies. The partnership will see the integration of Uber’s ride-sharing API and the TransLoc ‘Rider’ app, which provides real-time public transit tracking, arrival predictions and proximity alerts. Users will be able to simply input their destination in the Rider app and receive a tailored journey, incorporating the ‘optimal combination’ of walking, public transit options and Uber.

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Copenhagen’s New All-Electric Public Carsharing Programming

dkatana writes: Residents in Copenhagen have a new all-electric, free-floating, carsharing service. DriveNow is launching 400 brand new BMW i3 electric cars in the Danish city. The service is one-way, and metered by the minute. The big news is that residents can sign-up on the spot taking a picture of their drivers’ license and a selfie and use their public transport accounts to pay. There will be a car available every 300 meters, the same distance as bus stops. The cost will be 3.50 kroner ($ 0.52) per minute driven. If members decide to park the car for a few minutes continuing the rental, those stationary minutes are charged at 2.5 kroner ($ 0.37). The maximum charge per hour is capped at 190 kroner ($ 28.50). There is no annual fee.

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Judge Rules That Inglewood, California Cannot Copyright Public Videos

UnknowingFool writes: Recently a judge ruled in California that the city of Inglewood cannot hold copyrights of videos of public city council meetings which they published on their YouTube account and thus cannot sue individuals for copyright infringement for using them. In several YouTube videos, Joseph Teixeira, a resident of Inglewood, California, criticized the mayor, James Butts. Under the account name Dehol Truth, Teixeira took city council meetings posted on their YouTube account and edited them to make pointed criticisms about the mayor.

The city responded by registering the videos with copyrights and then suing Teixeira for copyright infringement. Many would say it was a thinly veiled attempt to silence a critic. Teixeira filed a motion to dismiss, arguing that (1) the city cannot claim copyright over public records (videos of public city council meetings) and (2) even if they could, his videos fell under Fair Use.
Unsurprisingly, a judge dismissed the city’s case, citing California law which bars the city from holding copyrights on most public records. (This case may not be over as Teixeira’s pro bono lawyer has not filed for attorney’s fees. The ruling can be found here.) What is notable is that the judge dismissed the case with prejudice, so the city cannot refile. Normally judges do not do this unless they feel that the plaintiff’s case was so weak that he feels no judge should hear the case ever again. Since the judge agreed with the defendant on the first point, he would not normally need to address Teixeira’s Fair Use defense, but he did anyway. Anticipating that the city may appeal his decision, judge ruled that Teixeira’s videos substantially met all four factors for Fair Use:
There is no evidence Teixeira used the videos for commercial gain and was transformative His work was creative by adding music and commentary to the normally boring council videos
Despite the city’s claim he used their “entire work”, it clear that he only used portions of meetings that lasted as long as four hours editing them down to a max of 15 minutes.
Teixeira did not harm the city’s market for the videos because the city is barred by state law from recouping more than direct costs of duplication. Even if the city could sell the videos (which they published themselves for free on YouTube), his short videos are not a substitute.

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Ask Slashdot: How To “Prove” a Work Is Public Domain?

New submitter eporue writes: YouTube claims that I haven’t been able to prove that I have commercial rights to this video of Superman. They are asking me to submit documentation saying “We need to verify that you are authorized to commercially use all of the visual and audio elements in your video. Please confirm your material is in the public domain.” I submitted a link to the Wikipedia page of the Superman cartoons from the 40s where it explains that the copyright expired, and to the Archive page from where I got it. And still is not enough to “prove” that I have the commercial rights. So, how do you “prove” public domain status ?

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Challenger, Columbia Wreckage On Public Display For First Time

An anonymous reader writes: A new exhibit at Kennedy Space Center is letting the public see wreckage from the Challenger and Columbia shuttles after keeping it from view for decades. Two pieces of debris from each lost shuttle and personal reminders of the astronauts killed in the flights will be on display. The AP reports: ” NASA’s intent is to show how the astronauts lived, rather than how they died. As such, there are no pictures in the ‘Forever Remembered’ exhibit of Challenger breaking apart in the Florida sky nearly 30 years ago or Columbia debris raining down on Texas 12 years ago. Since the tragic re-entry, Columbia’s scorched remains have been stashed in off-limits offices at the space center. But NASA had to pry open the underground tomb housing Challenger’s pieces — a pair of abandoned missile silos at neighboring Cape Canaveral Air Force Station — to retrieve the section of fuselage now on display.”

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