Stephen Fry: It’s now very common to hear people say, “I’m rather offended by that”, as if that gives them certain rights


He said: ‘It’s now very common to hear people say, “I’m rather offended by that”, as if that gives them certain rights. It’s no more than a whine. It has no meaning, it has no purpose, it has no reason to be respected as a phrase. “I’m offended by that.” Well, so fucking what?’

via I saw hate in a graveyard – Stephen Fry | UK news | The Observer.

PyCon Dongle Drama Denouement! #pycon #donglegate

Regards this story, see

Effective immediately, SendGrid has terminated the employment of Adria Richards. While we generally are sensitive and confidential with respect to employee matters, the situation has taken on a public nature. We have taken action that we believe is in the overall best interests of SendGrid, its employees, and our customers. As we continue to process the vast amount of information, we will post something more comprehensive.


#PyCon attendee fired from job for being overheard making ‘dongle’ jokes

Without comment:

Screen Shot 2013-03-21 at 10.17.52


What I will share with you here is the backstory that led to this –

The guy behind me to the far left was saying he didn’t find much value from the logging session that day. I agreed with him so I turned around and said so.  He then went onto say that an earlier session he’d been to where the speaker was talking about images and visualization with Python was really good, even if it seemed to him the speaker wasn’t really an expert on images. He said he would be interested in forking the repo and continuing development.

That would have been fine until the guy next to him…

began making sexual forking jokes

I was going to let it go. It had been a long week. A long month. I’d been on the road since mid February attending and speaking at conferences.  PyCon was my 5th and final conference before heading home.

I know it’s important to pick my battles.

I know I don’t have to be a hero in every situation.

Sometimes I just want to go to a conference and be a geek.


like Popeye, I couldn’t “stands it no more” because of what happened –

Jesse Noller was up on stage thanking the sponsors. The guys behind me (one off to the right) said, “You can thank me, you can thank me”. That told me they were a sponsoring company of Pycon and from the photos I took, his badge had an add-on that said, “Sponsor”.

My company was a Gold sponsor as well.

They started talking about “big” dongles. I could feel my face getting flustered.

Was this really happening?
How many times do I have to deal with this?
Can they not hear what Jesse is saying?

The stuff about the dongles wasn’t even logical and as a self professed nerd, that bothered me. Dongles are intended to be small and unobtrusive. They’re intended for network connectivity and to service as physical licence keys for software. I’d consulted in the past with an automotive shop that needed data recovery and technical support. I know what PCMCIA dongles look like.

I was telling myself if they made one more sexual joke, I’d say something.

The it happened….The trigger.

Jesse was on the main stage with thousands of people sitting in the audience. He was talking about helping the next generation learn to program and how happy PyCon was with the Young Coders workshop (which I volunteered at). He was mentioning that the PyLadies auction had raised $10,000 in a single night and the funds would be used the funds for their initiatives.

I saw a photo on main stage of a little girl who had been in the Young Coders workshop.

I realized I had to do something or she would never have the chance to learn and love programming because the ass clowns behind me would make it impossible for her to do so.


Spot the BoingBoing effect

Screen Shot 2013-03-21 at 09.30.35

“I’m from the Internet and I’m here to help” – an explanation for those who lack context

This is a clear political philosophy; just extrapolate a bit…

Part I:

Part II:

madebypxi • PXi Ventures is hiring a CEO for #Vinepeek

madebypxi • PXi Ventures is hiring a CEO for Vinepeek ← this

Stoya on the Pitfalls of Heteronormativity and Monogamy | VICE United States #MUSTREAD

I’ve never read anything by Stoya that is not literate, intelligent, well thought-out, well balanced and worth reading; this one in particular for anyone struggling to deal with the diversity of others; I’d also go so far as to call this one “almost work safe”:

Stoya on the Pitfalls of Heteronormativity and Monogamy | VICE United States.

See also her definitely NSFW Tumblr Blog.


HT Owen Blacker.

…and then there’s SATAN

Walshman writes:

…and he’s quite right:


  • “It’s like randomly mailing automatic rifles to 5,000 addresses. I hope some crazy teen doesn’t get a hold of one.” (Oakland tribune.)
  • “SATAN is like a gun, and this is like handing a gun to a 12-year-old.” (LA times.)
  • “It’s like distributing high-powered rocket launchers throughout the world, free of charge, available at your local library or school, and inviting people to try them out by shooting at somebody.” (San jose mercury.)
  • “It discovers vulnerabilities for which we have no solutions.” (The New York Times.)
  • …people could die.” ( (VikR))


  • “…there is no obscuring its presence. It announces itself like a rock concert to the scanned machine’s log file.” (Nick Christenson,

Somewhere between sanity and impotence: US Gov’t realises private sector software can’t be CNI #cyber #foss


Telecommunications companies want President Barack Obama’s administration to rethink a decision that may exempt Google Inc. (GOOG)’s Gmail, Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s iPhone software and Microsoft Corp.’s Windows from an executive order on cybersecurity.

Obama’s Feb. 12 order says the government can’t designate “commercial information technology products or consumer information technology services” as critical U.S. infrastructure targeted for voluntary computer security standards.

“If e-mail went away this afternoon, we would all come to a stop,” said Marcus Sachs, vice president of national security policy at Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ), the second-largest U.S. phone company. “Hell yeah, e-mail is critical.”

Technologies used in personal computers, software and the Internet “are the lifeblood of cyberspace,” Sachs said. “If you exclude that right up front, you take off the table the very people who are creating the products and services that are vulnerable.”

Obama’s order is aimed at areas such as power grids, telecommunications and pipelines. The goal is to protect “systems and assets whose incapacitation from a cyber incident would have catastrophic national security and economic consequences,” White House spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said in an e-mail. “It is not about Netflix, Twitter, Facebook, and Snapchat.”

Cybersecurity and CNI / Critical National Infrastructure is all about government projects and regulatory power-grabs, and what’s worse is that there is bucket-of-crabs thinking amongst the industry:

Telecommunications and cable companies don’t want to face regulatory burdens and costs that aren’t shared by technology companies, David Kaut, a Washington-based analyst with Stifel Nicolaus & Co., said in an interview.

“The telecom community is concerned the tech industry is going to get a free pass here,” Kaut said. “You have an ecosystem and only the network guys are going to get submitted to government scrutiny.”

“Cybersecurity” of non-state-owned infrastructure should be devolved to the responsible organisations in terms of a service-level agreement, or it should be entirely abandoned as a state responsibility; I somewhat agree with the boys at Veracode when they write:

there’s a role for government oversight of issues like software security (maybe we should start calling it “software safety”) that doesn’t extend to having the government tell Microsoft how to build its operating system – or even how to secure it. The Federal Aviation Administration doesn’t tell Boeing how to build jetliners. It does set stringent standards for how those jet liners have to perform in both typical and adverse circumstances. The result: incidents of equipment malfunction stemming from poor design or deployment are extremely rare. Serious accidents stemming from such failures are even more rare.

…but I believe that comparing software lifecycles to aircraft engineering will only lead discussion astray; at some levels of computing today is about trying to put reliable service atop unreliable hardware and although there are odd failures I’d suggest that by and large we’re successful when we’re at scale. Comparably the aircraft industry is not about launching three aircraft at a destination and expecting at least one to turn up.

Just wait, though; someone will try to get it back on the agenda. Probably a major software vendor who wants to stop Government agencies adopting open source.

James Deen on Condoms in Porn. And observations on Guardian CiF video editing.

So, this, from December:

03:47 James Deen: … but in actuality condoms are intended for someone to have sex for about 10 to 12 minutes with an average size penis in a regular fashion; not a above-average size penis…


Screen Shot 2013-03-07 at 09.31.10

…in these crazy sexual stunts, if you will… these crazy sexual stunts with an above average size penis, for anywhere from 30 minutes up to 3 or 4 hours…


Screen Shot 2013-03-07 at 09.33.51

Whoever did the editing for this recent Grauniad video piece – must have been wetting themselves laughing.

The smile.