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05/11/2019 10:24:22  

Adobe, Twitter, and The New York Times Company have announced a new system for adding attribution to photos and other content. A tool will record who created a piece of content and whether it's been modified by someone else, then let other people and platforms check that data. The Verge reports: The overall project is called the Content Authenticity Initiative, and its participants will hold a summit on the system in the next few months. Based on what Adobe has announced, the attribution tool is a piece of metadata that can be attached to a file. Adobe doesn't describe precisely how it will keep the tag secure or prevent someone from copying the content in a way that strips it out. Adobe chief product officer Scott Belsky said that some technical details will be worked out at the summit. Adobe described this system as a way to verify "authenticity" online. And The New York Times Company's research and development head, Marc Lavallee, suggested it could fight misinformation by helping people discern "trusted news" on digital media platforms. But the most obvious uses include identifying a photo's source and making sure artists get credit for their work. Many photos and webcomics circulate anonymously on platforms like Twitter, and an attribution tag would help trace those images back to their creator. This depends entirely on how well the CAI system works, however. Tags wouldn't be very useful if they could be easily altered or removed, but if the system preserves security by tightly controlling how people can interact with the image, it could have the same downsides as other digital rights management or DRM systems.

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21/10/2019 23:21:23  

If you plan on streaming content from the new Disney+ streaming service on Linux devices, you'll likely be greeted with Error Code 83. Fedora Linux package maintainer Hans De Goede from the Netherlands first made the unpleasant discovery. gHacks reports: De Goede noticed that Disney+ would not work in any of the web browsers that he tried on systems running Fedora Linux. He tried Firefox and Chrome, and both times Disney+ threw the error "error code 83." Disney+ Support was not able to assist de Goede. It replied with a generic message stating that the error was known and that it happened often when customers tried to play Disney+ in web browsers or using certain devices. Support recommended to use the official applications on phones or tablets to watch the shows or movies. Other streaming services, e.g. Netflix, work fine on Linux. A user on the Dutch site Tweakers dug deeper and uncovered the response code that the site returned when a device or browser was used that could not be used to play streams. According to the information, error code 83 means that the platform verification status is incompatible with the security level. Disney uses the DRM solution Widevine to protect its streams from unauthorized activity. Widevine supports three different security levels, called 1, 2 and 3, which have certain requirements. The supported level determines the maximum stream quality and may even prevent access to a stream if the requirements are not met. It appears that Disney set Widevine to a more restrictive level than its competitors. The decision affects Disney+ on Linux devices and on other devices that don't support the selected Widevine security standard.

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12/10/2019 16:19:44  

This year's "International Day Against DRM" is highlighting user-disrespecting restrictions on educational materials. An anonymous reader quotes the Free Software Foundation's Defective By Design site: The "Netflix of textbooks" model practiced by Pearson and similar publishers is a Trojan horse for education: requiring a constant Internet connection for "authentication" purposes, severely limiting the number of pages a student can read at one time, and secretly collecting telemetric data on their reading habits. Every year, we organize the International Day Against DRM (IDAD) to mobilize protests collaboration, grassroots activism, and in-person actions against the grave threat of DRM. For IDAD 2019, we are calling on Pearson and similar companies to stop putting a lock on our learning, and demonstrate their alleged commitment to education by dropping DRM from their electronic textbooks and course materials. At the same time, it is our plan to show that a better world is possible by encouraging people to contribute to collaborative and DRM-free textbooks, and resist the stranglehold these publishers are putting on something as fundamental as one's education. To help us, join the Defective by Design (DbD) coalition as we organize local and remote hackathons on free culture educational materials, and an in-person protest of Pearson Education on Saturday, October 12th. The group is joined in this year's event by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Creative Commons, and The Document Foundation (as well as 10 other participating organizations). Here's some of the site's suggestions for ways to participate: In Boston, we'll be leading the way with our own demonstration on October 12th, 2019, at Pearson Education's corporate offices, followed by an evening hackathon on collaborative, freely licensed educational materials... We'll be providing activists around the world with support on how they can stage their own local in-person event, as well as how to join us online while we help improve the free and ethical alternatives to educational materials restricted by DRM. The easiest way to participate is to join us in going a Day Without DRM, and resolve to spend an entire day (or longer!) without Netflix, Hulu, and other restricted services to show your support of the movement. Document your experiences on social media using the tags "#idad" or "#dbd", and let us know at info@defectivebydesign.org if you have a special story you'd like us to share. Print and share our dust jacket design, which you can slip over your "dead tree" books (while you still have them) to warn others of the dangers of ebook DRM. Pass them out at coffee shops, libraries, and wherever readers congregate!

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