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Genetically modified seeds or local seed exchange? The women of Zaheerabad take on Monsanto

Genetically modified seeds or local seed exchange? The women of Zaheerabad take on Monsanto | Networked Society | Scoop.it

Unless we have a powerful groundswell of movement, grass roots movement of consumers and farmers, we can't take on the paid agents in the Governmnt of India to save us and protect our health from th neo-liberal onslaught on our survival as a nation. The women of Zaheerabad showed one way of doing it.


Via Arun Shrivastava
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Uncovering the "Stealthy Wealthy" — | Assets-vs.-Income

Uncovering the "Stealthy Wealthy" — | Assets-vs.-Income | Networked Society | Scoop.it

Wealth has been so successfully kept out of the political debate until recently that there wasn’t even an agreed-upon definition of what constitutes rich. And by that I don’t mean how much wealth, but rather what kind: assets or income? Though related, there’s a crucial, often overlooked distinction between the two, a gap in which stagnant wealth can easily hide.

 

But there are wealthy taxpayers who are never included in such debates, whose contribution to the public coffers is never increased by higher rates on income. It’s not loopholes or high-priced tax lawyers that spare them—it’s the form of their wealth. They have a lot of assets but relatively modest income.

 

I know because I’m one of them. Call us the “stealthy wealthy.” ...

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Counties with thriving small businesses have healthier residents, researchers find

Counties with thriving small businesses have healthier residents, researchers find | Networked Society | Scoop.it
Counties and parishes with a greater concentration of small, locally-owned businesses have healthier populations — with lower rates of mortality, obesity and diabetes — than do those that rely on large companies with 'absentee' owners, according to...

 

"What stands out about this research is that we often think of the economic benefits and job growth that small business generates, but we don't think of the social benefits to small communities," said Troy C. Blanchard, Ph.D., lead author and associate professor of sociology at LSU. "This study highlights not only the economic benefits of small business, but its contributions to health and well-being."

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Will Internet pirates be winning the war on SOPA with "Tribler" ?

Will Internet pirates be winning the war on SOPA with "Tribler" ? | Networked Society | Scoop.it
The never-ending war between copyright holders and online pirates just entered a new phase. However, this time hackers are armed with the ultimate weapon that may grant them victory.

 

Tribler will be entirely decentralized, leaving the control in the hands of the users.


“Individuals can rename files, flag phony downloads or viruses, create ‘channels’ of verified downloads, and act as nodes that distribute lists of peers across the network.”

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The internet should be a demilitarised zone

The internet should be a demilitarised zone | Networked Society | Scoop.it
Christopher Williams assesses security chief, Eugene Kaspersky's global
campaign for the internet to become a 'military-free zone'.

 

According to Mr Kaspersky, all-out digital conflict can be avoided by enacting arms control laws similar to the international agreements meant to prevent the proliferation of nuclear bombs. Speaking at a cyber security conference in Mexico this week, he argued for a treaty would create a cyber equivalent to the International Atomic Energy Authority, also reporting to the UN and with similar powers of inspection.


"It would not eliminate cyber weapons completely, but it would improve the current situation a lot," he said.

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Caring for the commons

Caring for the commons | Networked Society | Scoop.it

With this new campaign we aim to learn how to build a common pool of resources and use them well. What are the ways to grow the commons? How can citizens be granted open, equitable access to common resources? What’s the needed infrastructure to access the commons, and how can it be built and paid for? What’s the role of states in these areas? Perhaps even harder: how do we deal with commons that are global in nature – air, water, radio frequencies, the Internet, biodiversity – given that there is no global government?

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Crop Mobs - Starting One of Our Own

Crop Mobs - Starting One of Our Own | Networked Society | Scoop.it
By Sean Keller

 

The Media Timebank is about to try something entirely new, something that has, at least to my knowledge, never been done before. This spring, we are planning to start a Crop Mob and coordinate it with the Timebank.

 

A Crop Mob is a group of people – whether experienced or inexperienced in the field of farming – who travel to a local, sustainable farm on a given day, and lend a hand wherever they are needed. The first Crop Mob, which took place in North Carolina in 2008, involved 19 people, and managed to harvest 1,600 sweet potatoes in less than 3 hours. A Crop Mob can comprise any number of people, large or small, and any task is fair game – whether harvesting crops, planting, building fences, or moving a greenhouse, the beauty of a Crop Mob is that it lets one enthusiastic and fresh group of volunteers do in one day what might otherwise entail weeks of labor for a farm’s full-time workers. Sometimes, a meal is shared between volunteers.

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Poland freezes anti-piracy pact ratification

Poland freezes anti-piracy pact ratification | Networked Society | Scoop.it
Poland's prime minister said Friday that Warsaw would put on ice plans to ratify a controversial international online anti-piracy accord after massive off-and-online protests in his country.

 

"I consider that the arguments for a halt to the ratification process are justified," Donald Tusk told reporters.


"The issue of signing of the ACTA accord did not involve sufficient consultation with everyone who is part of the process," Tusk said, adding that he would hold broad talks on what to do next.


"The ACTA ratification process will be frozen as long as we haven't overcome all the doubts. This will probably require a review of Polish law. We can't rule out that, at the end of the day, this accord will not be approved."

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Occupy the Future - The Austin Chronicle

Occupy the Future - The Austin Chronicle | Networked Society | Scoop.it
Corporations are not people...

 

"I'll believe corporations are people when Texas executes one."


The person who created that sign in Zuccotti Park put her or his anonymous finger on the heartbeat of the Occupy movement.


Many wonder what Occupy stands for and why Occupy has not made specific demands – as though it's not enough that, in Occupy's brief existence, its participants have emblazoned the difference between the 1% and the 99% upon the consciousness of America. As my longtime colleague Ginger Varney said, "They've changed the conversation."

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[Video] Divers find large, unexplained object at bottom of Baltic Sea

[Video] Divers find large, unexplained object at bottom of Baltic Sea | Networked Society | Scoop.it

A team of salvage divers has discovered an unexplained object resting at the bottom of the Baltic Sea near Sweden.


"This thing turned up. My first reaction was to tell the guys that we have a UFO here on the bottom," said Peter Lindberg, the leader of the amateur treasure hunters.


Sonar readings show that the mysterious object is about 60 meters across, or, about the size of a jumbo jet. And it's not alone. Nearby on the sea floor is another, smaller object with a similar shape. Even more fascinating, both objects have "drag marks" behind them on the sea floor, stretching back more than 400 feet.

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Shareable: Speedroommating Takes New York! [VIDEO]

Shareable: Speedroommating Takes New York! [VIDEO] | Networked Society | Scoop.it

Finding a good match is always a tough row to hoe, whether it's for a romantic mate or a roommate. Some creative thinkers in New York City borrowed a strategy from the former and applied it to the latter. Et voila! Speedroommating.

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BitTorrent’s New P2P Protocol Could Fix the Internet’s Shoddy Streaming Video Quality

BitTorrent’s New P2P Protocol Could Fix the Internet’s Shoddy Streaming Video Quality | Networked Society | Scoop.it

Conventional video streaming—through, say, YouTube or Netflix—eats up network resources because each user is pulling in their own individual feed. The live peer-to-peer streaming protocol created by BitTorrent founder and chief scientist Bram Cohen, instead works much like BitTorrent itself does. Everybody that requests a certain video stream shares the feed between themselves, rather than just leeching the content. This reportedly reduces lag drastically, network load and increases video quality for those watching. And, just like when torrenting, the more people that sign on to a stream, the better it looks for everybody.

 

Thanks to Franco Iacomella for the heads up!

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Wikipedia Controlled by Special Interest Groups?

Wikipedia Controlled by Special Interest Groups? | Networked Society | Scoop.it

"With regard to my attempts to make corrections to articles dealing with health issues, on two occasions I experienced particularly notable rejections. One was an inaccurate and pro-pharmaceutical industry article on the subject of naturopathy; the other article concerned a physician – Dr. Matthias Rath – who was characterized as ‘controversial’ and, regarding whom, ’questionable lawsuits’ were alluded to. In both of these articles, I noted that there was scarcely anything reported that was meaningful.

 

Not only were my attempts to make changes to these two articles unsuccessful, it was stated that my edits were blocked on the grounds that they amounted to ‘vandalism’. Prior to this, I had never heard the term ‘vandalism’ used in this context. On Wikipedia, however, it is clearly a term used to justify censorship."

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2 Billion Jobs to Disappear by 2030 | World Future Society

2 Billion Jobs to Disappear by 2030 | World Future Society | Networked Society | Scoop.it

Yesterday I was honored to be one of the featured speakers at the TEDxReset Conference in Istanbul, Turkey where I predicted that over 2 billion jobs will disappear by 2030. Since my 18-minute talk was about the rapidly shifting nature of colleges and higher education, I didn’t have time to explain how and why so many jobs would be going away. Because of all of the questions I received afterwards, I will do that here.

 

When I brought up the idea of 2 billion jobs disappearing (roughly 50% of all the jobs on the planet) it wasn’t intended as a doom and gloom outlook. Rather, it was intended as a wakeup call, letting the world know how quickly things are about to change, and letting academia know that much of the battle ahead will be taking place at their doorstep.

 

Here is a brief overview of five industries – where the jobs will be going away and the jobs that will likely replace at least some of them – over the coming decades...

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The Hero and the Internet: Exploring the Emergence of the Cyberhero Archetype

The Hero and the Internet: Exploring the Emergence of the Cyberhero Archetype | Networked Society | Scoop.it
Media Psychology Review: Research on Internet Hero Archetypes...

 

ABSTRACT:

Although the bulk of psychological research continues to focus on the negative uses of the Internet, i.e., cyberbullying and the cyberbully, the total number of people engaging in acts of digital altruism and other forms of pro-social digital activism exceeds 100 million (Klisanin, 2011). Who are these people? While there has been little investigation in this area, Klisanin (2010a) theorized that the most dedicated among them represent the first incarnation of a new archetype: the cyberhero. Embodying a transpersonal sense of identity, as ideal forms, the cyberhero represents individuals motivated to act on behalf of other people, animals, and the environment using the Internet and digital technologies in the peaceful service of achieving humanity’s highest ideals and aspirations, e.g., world peace, social justice, environmental protection, and planetary stewardship. To investigate this theory, a self-report questionnaire was designed and distributed on-line to individuals engaging in digital altruism, a form of digital activism considered to result in benefit to others. The results support earlier theory, suggesting that the cyberhero is a viable embodied archetype worthy of further investigation.

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Robin Good's comment, February 11, 2012 9:08 AM
Fascinating!
Sepp Hasslberger's comment, February 11, 2012 9:50 AM
Indeed! - I thought you'd like that one...
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Czech Republic and Slovakia freeze ACTA anti-piracy pact

Czech Republic and Slovakia freeze ACTA anti-piracy pact | Networked Society | Scoop.it
Czech Prime Minister Petr Necas said Monday his country would freeze plans to ratify a controversial international online anti-piracy accord after mounting off-and-online protests.

 

"The cabinet cannot accept a situation in which the bedrock of liberty and free access to information is endangered," Necas was quoted as saying by the Czech news agency CTK.


He said the government would undertake a thorough review of the "real world" impact of ratifying the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).

 

Later Monday, neighbouring Slovakia also suspended its ratification process, with Economy Minister Juraj Miskov saying a wide public debate needed to be initiated before the process could continue.


"I will not support a treaty that could limit human rights and freedoms," Miskov said in a statement.


The decision by the Czech and Slovaks government comes in the wake of a move last week by Poland, which also froze its ratification process.

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Act Now Against ACTA!

Act Now Against ACTA! | Networked Society | Scoop.it
The EU is poised to take up ACTA, a new int'l treaty that will affect all of us and fundamentally destroy the openness of the internet around the world. The EU is our only hope to stop it!

 

If you thought SOPA and PIPA were bad, let us introduce you to their Big Brother, ACTA.

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, which has already been signed by several countries, poses a dangerous threat to the inherent freedom and openess of the Internet. Under ACTA, ISPs and websites will be given more power to track what we do online, while forcing them to turn over our information and reporting our activity to the authorities -- all in the name of copyright protection! While we respect the rights of creators, ACTA's ill-conceived provisions will have chilling effects on free speech everywhere.

 

The European Parliament still has to approve ACTA for it to go into effect around the world. If they vote NO, then ACTA will be effectively dismantled -- even in countries that have already signed it. We helped bring down SOPA and PIPA, now let's turn the fight to ACTA. Call on the EU Parliament to take a stand and vote “NO” on ACTA!

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My TEDxRainier Talk on The Soulful Company

My TEDxRainier Talk on The Soulful Company | Networked Society | Scoop.it
Watch the TEDxRainier talk on 'The Soulful Company' -- a new generation of firms that won't just tap the soul, but feed it too.

 

A wonderful talk about companies and how they could evolve into something we might have never imagined...

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Occupy the Truth: Whistleblowers Conference, February 17-19 at UC Berkeley

Occupy the Truth: Whistleblowers Conference, February 17-19 at UC Berkeley | Networked Society | Scoop.it
UPDATED FEB 6, 2012

Countdown: 11 days till we kickoff our Occupy the Truth: Whistleblowers Conference!

 

Transparency needs your brain. Whistleblowers need your protection. Fresh Juice Party invites you to bring your ideas.

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Onnie Phuthe's comment, February 7, 2012 11:03 AM
Whistleblowers are people who have seen the truth swept under the rug and everyone walk over, while the sweeper, stands tall and proud that they know nothing. Today the world has changed the people now lead the leaders and it will actually take killing the whole world to keep the truth covered.
Sepp Hasslberger's comment, February 7, 2012 12:48 PM
Thanks Onnie,
you're the poet now!
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Hacking For Privacy: 2 days for amateur hacker to hack smart meter, fake readings

Hacking For Privacy: 2 days for amateur hacker to hack smart meter, fake readings
Detailed smart meter data can show what TV shows you watch, scan for copyright-protected DVD movies you watch, and...
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Diaspora* grows up.

Diaspora* grows up. | Networked Society | Scoop.it

We have been learning a lot by watching the Diaspora* develop and grow. Diaspora* has evolved into a social community unlike any other, where free thinkers from around the world interact. It provides a vehicle for all sorts of different kinds of people to share ideas and form new relationships. This is what’s happening on Diaspora* right now. It is what makes it unique, and it is what the core team is trying to optimize for.

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Ukraine shuts down leading file-sharing site

Ukraine shuts down leading file-sharing site | Networked Society | Scoop.it
Ukrainian authorities have shut down a popular file-sharing website saying it violates copyright laws, officials said Wednesday.

 

Interior Ministry Spokesman Volodymyr Polishchuk said that Ex.ua was closed Tuesday after complaints from Microsoft, Adobe and other companies. The ministry said it has confiscated 200 servers that were used to support the website and law enforcement agents were questioning 16 of its employees.


The Recording Industry Association of America has named Ex.ua among the world's worst Internet piracy sites.


Shortly after Ex.ua went down Tuesday, the Interior Ministry's own website became inoperable. Polishchuk said this was likely a work of hackers.

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YaCy - The Peer to Peer Search Engine: Web Search by the people, for the people

YaCy - The Peer to Peer Search Engine: Web Search by the people, for the people | Networked Society | Scoop.it
A Peer to Peer Web Search Engine...

 

YaCy is a free search engine that anyone can use to build a search portal for their intranet or to help search the public internet. When contributing to the world-wide peer network, the scale of YaCy is limited only by the number of users in the world and can index billions of web pages. It is fully decentralized, all users of the search engine network are equal, the network does not store user search requests and it is not possible for anyone to censor the content of the shared index. We want to achieve freedom of information through a free, distributed web search which is powered by the world's users.

 

- - - 

 

Someone asked me the other day what would be an alternative to Google. Well, ideally the alternative would be something like YaCy, a fully distributed search engine, where results cannot be censored or slanted by anyone. Of course this will work only if enough people participate, i.e. install the program and run the engine while they are on line. There's a cost to freedom...

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UN panel says retool world economy for sustainability

UN panel says retool world economy for sustainability | Networked Society | Scoop.it
The world can no longer afford to ignore the environmental cost of economic growth and must redefine the very concept of national wealth, a UN panel of heads of state and environment ministers said Monday.

 

Led by Finnish President Tarja Halonen and South African President Jacob Zuma, the 22-member panel said a new blueprint for growth and low-carbon prosperity must be "mainstreamed" into economic policy as quickly as possible.


Social and environmental costs must be factored into how the world prices and measures economic activity, and into a revised measure of wealth that goes beyond the narrow calculus of gross domestic product (GDP), it said.


"Our report makes clear that sustainable development is more important than ever given the multiple crises now enveloping the world," Zuma said in a statement.

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SOPA Was a Sideshow, Hiding ACTA, the Real Sellout of Internet Freedom – But Here’s How to Stop It

SOPA Was a Sideshow, Hiding ACTA, the Real Sellout of Internet Freedom – But Here’s How to Stop It | Networked Society | Scoop.it
Share Tweet ACTA, worse than SOPA, says that we the people will be denied the right to use tools simply because someone might perhaps may could possibly misuse them. The prez signed, but it isn’t a done deal.

 

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) is an international treaty that does an end-run around national sovereignty. Its misleading title gives the impression its purpose is to stop the international sale of ersatz goods. It is, though, a Trojan horse, hiding the sinister purpose of destroying the internet as we know it and handing it over to multinational corporations.

 

ACTA would allow any claim from any party in any nation to force the closure and seizing of any website. No proof would be required. As anyone who pays attention knows, the right to make such a claim won’t be genuinely available to just anyone. It’ll take money and power to bring a claim. For those who have such wealth, the claim itself will suffice. The rest of us are left with no option but to anticipate complaints and act as self-censors.

 

The act requires severe penalties for the owner of a site on which users might have illegally transferred files. These penalties must include asset forfeiture, severe fines, and prison.

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