Wires Crossed # 99 – September 7

Golfer Embarrassed As Private Tweet Goes Viral

Golfer Embarrassed As Private Tweet Goes Viral
Golfer Luke Donald has been left red-faced after accidently tweeting a comment that he thought was private. English professional Donald publically admonished golf course designer Gin Hanse via a tweet, over a change that had been made to the 18th hole at the TPC Boston where Donald was playing. To make matters worse, he also published his mobile phone number, and had to switch his phone off with all the calls he was receiving. Donald apologised to Hanse, who was gracious about the ‘mistake’, but it does look like a new phone number will be needed.

Hungary PM Gives IMF The Bird – Via Facebook
For some reason this story tickled our funny bone. It seems that on Wednesday everything was going fine between Hungary and the International Monetary Fund over a bailout plan to help the country’s stretched economy. A lot can happen in 24 hours and it seems that Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orban, changed his mind about accepting the deal that was on the table. So did he call the head of the IMF and argue about his concerns? No. Did he call a meeting of his people and their people? No. Send a memo asking for amendments to the agreement? No again. He did the ultimate 21st century brush-off, he unfriended the IMF on his Facebook page. That really showed them, Prime Minister!

Bruce Willis And His i-Tunes Account
There is a story going around the Internet at the moment about Hollywood action star Bruce Willis taking on Apple over its T&Cs when downloading songs for the iTunes store. His wife, Emma, has tweeted that the story – about what his rights are when leaving his iTunes collection to his daughters after he passes away – is not true. Even so, it does raise an interesting question. Apparently amongst all the gobbledegook in Apple’s T&Cs is one stating that users do not own the tunes, only the right to play them. One expert has argued in favour of the conditions by stating that even when you buy a book you do not own the rights to the content of the book, just the right to read it in the format you have bought it. True. But I’m old enough to have a record and CD collection. Does that mean they get destroyed when I die?

Chinese Dissident Convicted On Yahoo Evidence Freed
Wang Xiaoning, who was recently freed from prison after serving 10 years, made headlines back in 2002 after he was imprisoned for sending out pro-democracy emails and writing on forums criticising the Chinese government. But what made his case such a cause celebre was not that he had been arrested, but how it came about. Wang had been posting and emailing anonymously, and the only reason he got caught was because Yahoo gave information to the Communist authorities, which lead to his detainment. Since then  – whether due to guilt or a change in operating policy –  Yahoo has supported the likes of the Global Network Initiative, which promotes free expression and privacy on the internet. A lesson learned?

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