Wednesday News: Independent Bookstore Day, NSA backdoor, stealthing, and The Outsiders turns 50
Independent Book Store Day: Community is key for these local book sellers – So Saturday, April 29th, is Independent Book Day, because apparently we need a Day for everything. Is this a U.S. trend? In any case, a day dedicated to reading and to books is a good day, so check out your local booksellers to see if they are holding any special events this weekend. It’s not just the big book chains that compete with independent stores, but the entire galaxy of entertainment, and the myriad ways we have to consume stories.
Independent bookstores have had to adapt in an age when there is a “competition for eyeballs,” said Carrie Obry, executive director of the Midwest Independent Bookstore Association. “It’s hard to break through the noise and other entertainment options that you can hold in your hands, which is usually where books used to go.” . . .
Independent Bookstore Day conveys two important messages. One is for community support. “For these bastions of literacy, community and individuality to survive, it can’t be just one day,” Aleksy says. “We need each other every day.”
And the other is gratitude. “We are still here because people shop here,” Albrecht says. “We have survived for more than 30 years and that is because of this community.” – Chicago Tribune
NSA backdoor detected on >55,000 Windows boxes can now be remotely removed – Despite Microsoft’s unsupported assertion that anywhere from 30K to 100K Windows machines are infected with DoublePulsar (according to multiple scans), a March update from the company apparently contains a patch for the malware. Countercept has also come up with a way to disinfect machines remotely. And apparently it can also be removed by rebooting the machine, although that does not defeat ongoing vulnerability. There is a lot of good info here, as well as a link to the March Windows software update, in case you missed it.
After Microsoft officials dismissed evidence that more than 10,000 Windows machines on the Internet were infected by a highly advanced National Security Agency backdoor, private researchers are stepping in to fill the void. The latest example of this open source self-help came on Tuesday with the release of a tool that can remotely uninstall the DoublePulsar implant. . . .
On Tuesday, security firm Countercept released an update to the DoublePulsar detection script it published last week. It now allows people anywhere on the Internet to remotely uninstall the implant from any infected machine. Researcher Kevin Beaumont told Ars that detecting DoublePulsar involves sending a series of SMB—short for server message block—queries to Internet-facing computers. By modifying two bytes of the query, the same person can remove the infection from any computers that test positive. The script isn’t the only way to clean compromised devices. As Ars reported last week, the ultra-stealthy DoublePulsar writes no files to the hard drives of computers it infects, a feature that causes it to be removed as soon as the computer restarts. – Ars Technica
Stealthing: Inside the world of men who remove condoms during sex without consent – Recent Yale Law School graduate Alexandra Brodsky has published a new paper in the Columbia Journal of Gender and Law on the phenomenon of “stealthing,” in which men – primarily with female sexual partners – remove condoms during sex. Because there’s always a new way to sexually violate someone. Did you even know this was a thing? For some reason it got me thinking about Susan Elizabeth Phillips’s Nobody’s Baby But Mine, a book that so massively pissed me off I can still barely talk about it without sputtering, and I can only hope that stealthing isn’t going to be romanticized in the genre as a sign of twu wuv.
For most men, the reason they remove condoms – often when changing positions so their partner doesn’t notice – is because they prefer the feel of sex without wearing one. But some also do so to exert power over their partners. . . .
Brodsky says she decided to undertake the research when she was in law school in 2013 and realized how many of her friends were “struggling with forms of mistreatment by sexual partners that weren’t considered part of the recognized repertoire of gender based violence – but that seemed rooted in the same misogyny and lack of respect.” – Yahoo/The Independent
Happy 50th Anniversary To ‘The Outsiders,’ The Book That Created A Genre – I had no idea that S.E. Hinton had The Outsiders published when she was only 18. Which was 50 years ago (that’s 1967 for those of us who haven’t had our coffee yet). So the argument is that YA was created in 1957 with The Outsiders? Hmmm, that sounds more like the opening assertion of a debate, although clearly the novel has had a huge impact on books, films, television, and even stereotypes of USian teen life.
Hinton was only 15 when she started writing the book, which was later turned into a film, and 18 when it was published. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, she said, “There was nothing realistic being written for teens at that time. It was all, like, Mary Jane Goes to the Prom. And I’d been to a few proms, and that was not what was happening. I really wanted to read a book that dealt realistically with teenage life as I was seeing it.”
So, instead of penning what was essentially an instruction manual for how teens ought to behave, Hinton took a critical look at how kids did behave, where she lived in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The Outsiders examines class, and the role it can play not only in how students interact, but in their ability to put their best foot forward in school. – Huffington Post