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posted by Cactus on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:30PM   Printer-friendly
from the making-a-list-and-checking-it-twice dept.

c0lo writes:

An Australian blogger shares his personal experience with orders put on hold by the Australian subsidiary of Element 14 (the former Farnell shop), reportedly based on a watch list maintained by US govt.

From the blog:

The counter person wasn't sure, so checked with someone else who came and wasn't 100% sure, but knew that the system does automatically flag orders based on various identifiers. It could have possibly been one of those stupid US government trade restriction things, because, you know capacitors and opamps can be used by evil terrorists and the like... (International customers have to fill out silly forms with US distributors and manufacturers saying we won't use the parts in nuclear weapons - seriously)

But they enquired further with someone else and the word came back that it wasn't the parts that had been flagged, it was my NAME that was flagged. And they said it was a US government watch list of some description. I was stunned, and it seemed like they didn't quite understand why I was so shocked at this. Because, you know, the whole world has to just sit by and let the US government dictate everything at will.

...

  So lets see if I have this straight - An Australian subsidiary, owned by a UK parent company, listed on the UK stock exchange, has an ordering system that automatically matches generic names against some secret US Government watch list, and flags those orders and puts them on hold, for parts that are already stocked in Australia, are likely not made in the US, and likely have come from the main UK warehouse. Call me stupid, but something doesn't seem right with that...

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  • (Score: -1, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:37PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:37PM (#7338)

    Sometime, when my mother isn't home, I sneak into her garden, cover myself in dirt and pretend I'm a carrot.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Thexalon on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:38PM

    by Thexalon (636) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:38PM (#7341)

    "No person shall ... be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law."

    Putting people and organizations on secret lists without trial is the essence of doing exactly that. We now effectively have 2 different government systems in the US: The open government, with laws and trials and juries and such, and the secret government, where secret organizations gather secret evidence using secret techniques that can never be seen or challenged, and use that evidence to justify government harassment and even (in a few rare cases) summary execution.

    Oh, and notice that it doesn't say "No citizen", it says "No person": The US government isn't supposed to do this to civilians of other countries either.

    --
    The only thing that stops a bad guy with a compiler is a good guy with a compiler.
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by n1 on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:56PM

      by n1 (993) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:56PM (#7353) Journal

      I have come to the conclusion, only Americans are "people". The rest of us are aliens and potential threats.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by nitehawk214 on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:09PM

        by nitehawk214 (1304) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:09PM (#7361)

        This is the reason why Guantanamo exists. The Bill of Rights is supposed to apply to everyone, American or not. These days, I think they are only applying it to members of the government itself, not the population.

        --
        "Don't you ever miss the days when you used to be nostalgic?" -Loiosh
        • (Score: 5, Insightful) by captain normal on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:12PM

          by captain normal (2205) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:12PM (#7567)

          This is the reason why Guantanamo exists. The Bill of Rights is supposed to apply to everyone, American or not. These days, I think they are only applying it to members of the government itself and top level employees of major corporations, not the population.

          TFTFY

          --
          “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Thomas Edison
        • (Score: 2, Insightful) by rufty on Thursday February 27 2014, @12:51AM

          by rufty (381) on Thursday February 27 2014, @12:51AM (#7685)

          And corporations, of course.

      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Sir Garlon on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:43PM

        by Sir Garlon (1264) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:43PM (#7398)

        And we have former president Ronald Reagan (1980-1988) to thank for that. Executive Order 12333 [archives.gov] (do not bother with the Wikipedia page, it's garbage) redefined what intelligence agencies can and cannot do. Only "US persons" have any protection from being spied on (second 2.4). I like the part where it says you can't physically tail a US citizen overseas without a warrant, unless you think it's important.

        --
        [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
        • (Score: 1) by davester666 on Wednesday February 26 2014, @06:31PM

          by davester666 (155) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @06:31PM (#7455)

          Same with the NSA listening in on calls and going through data. They can't specifically target American's, but if it's "accidental", you just say oops and keep on using the data.

      • (Score: 1) by TheGratefulNet on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:39PM

        by TheGratefulNet (659) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:39PM (#7493)

        the 'correct' new order of life forms is more like:

        1) rich elite
        2) corporations
        3) authority/power positions
        4) american citizens
        5) ROW

        and no, we don't like this. not. one. bit.

        --
        "It is now safe to switch off your computer."
      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by etherscythe on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:00PM

        by etherscythe (937) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:00PM (#7561) Journal

        That was true up until the passage of the USA PATRIOT ACT. Now we are all potential threats. And you're un-American and a traitor if you question it even the slightest bit.

        --
        "Fake News: anything reported outside of my own personally chosen echo chamber"
        • (Score: 2, Funny) by n1 on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:43PM

          by n1 (993) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:43PM (#7577) Journal

          I know what you mean. At least as an 'American' you have the possibility of arguing you have some rights (constitutionally, bill of rights). You will probably be ignored though.

          Events like these reminded of a quote from the very brilliant 'King of the Hill', "You're a foreign national who committed a criminal offense. May God have mercy on your soul."

      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by mrbluze on Wednesday February 26 2014, @10:32PM

        by mrbluze (49) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @10:32PM (#7595) Journal

        I will no longer buy from this company, but it will be difficult to find a supplier that has so much interesting stuff in one place.

        --
        Do it yourself, 'cause no one else will do it yourself.
        • (Score: 5, Interesting) by mojo chan on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:03PM

          by mojo chan (266) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:03PM (#7613)

          All the major component suppliers have the same systems in place. RS, Rapid, Mouser, Digikey... When I order samples from US semiconductor companies like Texas I have to tick a "I am not a terrorist" box on their web site. It's beyond dumb.

          --
          const int one = 65536; (Silvermoon, Texture.cs)
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by janrinok on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:39PM

    by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:39PM (#7343) Journal

    The mad panic disease that was first noted after 9-11 in the US, has now struck the UK. When I started reading TFA I expected another story for which the US would, rightly, be blamed.

    But no! This is a UK company. Is there no end to this madness?

    Nerds have been buying electronic and electrical components for many years and, as far as I can recall, not one has built a nuclear weapon! It isn't quite that easy. When will this end? It will end we we give our respective governments a sound beating with a large 'get-a-clue' stick.

    This is simply a waste of time, effort and tax-payers' money, and I somehow feel responsible for the idiots that comprise my (former) government.

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Grishnakh on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:46PM

      by Grishnakh (2831) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:46PM (#7345)

      This is a UK company complying with secret US government rules. This probably isn't anything too new; the UK has been a lapdog for the US for quite some time now, definitely since 9/11. Remember how quick Tony Blair was to be George W Bush's buddy in invading Iraq.

      • (Score: 4, Funny) by Thexalon on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:18PM

        by Thexalon (636) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:18PM (#7376)

        There's an alternate theory [youtube.com] for that phenomenon. (No, it's not a RickRoll)

        --
        The only thing that stops a bad guy with a compiler is a good guy with a compiler.
        • (Score: 2) by frojack on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:28PM

          by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:28PM (#7488) Journal

          Might as well have been a Rickroll. Would have been funnier.

          --
          No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by frojack on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:17PM

        by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:17PM (#7481) Journal

        Its an Australian company. He was buying in-stock parts, (in stock in Australia).
        So there was never a reason to check with the UK to fill the order.

        We still don't know what these innocuous parts were. Precursors to bomb components?
        We still don't know the nature of this "don't sell" list. (or if it in fact exists).
        It might be something as stupid as the UK government deciding the No fly list (another travesty) should also be used for other purposes.

        In any event, there is no such thing US "don't sell" list. (Although explosives or precursors, including some fertilizers, require some checking. You better actually own 500 acres if you order a boatload of ammonia fertilizer, but this is all done not by any government list of names, just local suppliers knowing their customers).

        So this whole description sounds kind of bogus, yet another excuse to lay blame on the US, when in fact it is just as likely to be some UK or Australian rule, or more likely a company rule.

        This guy is well known. He has well over a 100,000 followers on YouTube.
        He's always building nifty things and video blogging about it. Any project he starts can cause a run on parts as all of his viewers rush out and try to buy them. It could be this stupid company they have a policy of just stocking what ever he orders in large quantity, and needed time to do so.

        But some times he gets a little too energetic: See his Youtube home page:
        https://www.youtube.com/user/EEVblog?feature=watch [youtube.com]
        Watch the first 30 seconds of that.

        In any event, I'd be looking for a different supplier if I was him.

        --
        No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
        • (Score: 2) by Grishnakh on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:32PM

          by Grishnakh (2831) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:32PM (#7542)

          We still don't know what these innocuous parts were. Precursors to bomb components?

          Quite possibly. Capacitors, resistors, and 555 timer ICs are all very useful for making bombs. So is wire.

        • (Score: 2) by mojo chan on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:07PM

          by mojo chan (266) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:07PM (#7616)

          And now David Jones everywhere are worried that the US thinks they might be terrorists. If that were my name I would't take a holiday in Disney Land this year. If there is actually some nefarious person with that name they have now been alerted to the fact that the US is aware of them and has some interest in them.

          Oh, and I like his style.

          --
          const int one = 65536; (Silvermoon, Texture.cs)
        • (Score: 1) by EvilJim on Thursday February 27 2014, @12:48AM

          by EvilJim (2501) on Thursday February 27 2014, @12:48AM (#7682) Journal
    • (Score: 4, Funny) by mhajicek on Wednesday February 26 2014, @06:38PM

      by mhajicek (51) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 26 2014, @06:38PM (#7461)

      The UK already confiscated all the clue sticks in the country, and good luck getting a permit to import one!

      --
      The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Pav on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:56PM

    by Pav (114) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @03:56PM (#7351)

    I love my conspiracy bacon as much as anyone, but I've got to hear this from somewhere else other than "some blogger" before I'll give it any credence.

    • (Score: 5, Informative) by DrMag on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:10PM

      by DrMag (1860) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:10PM (#7363)

      How about from an Element 14 representative [eevblog.com]?

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Angry Jesus on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:39PM

        by Angry Jesus (182) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:39PM (#7393)

        Jesus Christ! The guy's name is "David Jones" - the US government put one of the most generically common names on their "no-buy list."

        The Jones surname is the 5th most common surname inside the USA [wikipedia.org] and David is the 2nd most common masculine first name. [pokemyname.com] The bureaucratic waste across all the companies kowtowing to this no-buy list caused by having just this one name, never mind who knows how many thousands of others, on this list must be in the millions of dollars per year.

        • (Score: 2) by frojack on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:21PM

          by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:21PM (#7483) Journal

          There is no such thing as a "no buy" list.

          --
          No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
          • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Wednesday February 26 2014, @10:42PM

            by Angry Jesus (182) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @10:42PM (#7597)

            There is no such thing as a "no buy" list.

            You are correct, there is no such thing as "a" no buy-list. There is more than one.

            For example: Specifially Designated Nationals List (SDN) [treasury.gov]

            And there is the one that "David Jones" is on: The Denied Persons List. [doc.gov]

            • (Score: 2) by frojack on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:26PM

              by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:26PM (#7629) Journal

              No David Jones on either of those lists.

              The first is only a list of people who have had their Assets seized (usually related to terrorism or Drug smuggeling),

              The second can't EXPORT certain things out of the United States, almost all of those things are Chemicals, and almost all of those people are already in prison.

              --
              No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
              • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Angry Jesus on Thursday February 27 2014, @12:05AM

                by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday February 27 2014, @12:05AM (#7653)

                No David Jones on either of those lists.

                You are right. I made a leap of logic from the Element 14 representative referring to a "denied parties list" and assumed they meant the "denied persons list." Still doesn't invalidate the point that these lists exist.

                The first is only a list of people who have had their Assets seized (usually related to terrorism or Drug smuggeling),

                From the SDN link "U.S. persons are generally prohibited from dealing with them"

                The second can't EXPORT certain things out of the United States

                True but in a deliberately misleading way. They can't export certain things themselves, nor can exporters sell to them.

        • (Score: 2, Insightful) by forsythe on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:33PM

          by forsythe (831) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:33PM (#7544)

          That's probably why it's on there. I'll bet John Smith is on there as well. If I wanted to build my own nuclear weapons, I'd probably set up a fake name as well, and if I were to pick a fake name, I'd try and pick one that would be so common that it would be hard for anyone looking it up to realize it wasn't attached to a real person.

          • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Wednesday February 26 2014, @10:44PM

            by Angry Jesus (182) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @10:44PM (#7601)

            With that kind of brilliant logic the only thing to do is to put every possible name on the list.

            • (Score: 1) by forsythe on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:01PM

              by forsythe (831) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:01PM (#7611)

              Agreed. Critics may point out that some guy called Cantor claims to have proven that no such list exists. That's just defeatist talk, coming from a guy with "can't" in his name.

              • (Score: 2) by Koen on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:24PM

                by Koen (427) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:24PM (#7627)

                some guy called Cantor claims to have proven that no such list exists

                You make me wonder: how many persons have a name of infinite length?

                --
                /. refugees on Usenet: comp.misc [comp.misc]
          • (Score: 2) by mojo chan on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:09PM

            by mojo chan (266) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:09PM (#7617)

            Ronald McDonald and Mickey Mouse are fucked.

            --
            const int one = 65536; (Silvermoon, Texture.cs)
        • (Score: 3, Informative) by Popeidol on Thursday February 27 2014, @12:42AM

          by Popeidol (35) on Thursday February 27 2014, @12:42AM (#7675) Journal
          Better yet, In Australia there's a national chain of department stores called 'David Jones' [davidjones.com.au]. The US government must spend a lot of time delaying their deliveries.
    • (Score: 5, Informative) by Pav on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:15PM

      by Pav (114) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:15PM (#7372)

      Ooops... I should have checked TFA first - I believe he's the real deal. EEVBlog - I watched videos this guy did years ago during a brief stint looking at electronics after I put together a 3d printer. He's basically the Steve Erwin of electrical engineering. ;)

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by elf on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:40PM

      by elf (64) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:40PM (#7394)

      I suspect we aren't getting the whole story. My theory is that it is a requirement from US Customs that if you export goods from the US for resale to another country you have to flag to them who the end user is. Other countries probably have similar rules.

      The fact he got his goods so quickly after being flagged shows he isn't getting unfairly persecuted he just has a name that needs to be cleared.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:13PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:13PM (#7408)
        From the OP:

        So lets see if I have this straight - An Australian subsidiary, owned by a UK parent company, listed on the UK stock exchange, has an ordering system that automatically matches generic names against some secret US Government watch list, and flags those orders and puts them on hold, for parts that are already stocked in Australia, are likely not made in the US, and likely have come from the main UK warehouse. Call me stupid, but something doesn't seem right with that...
      • (Score: 2) by mojo chan on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:13PM

        by mojo chan (266) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:13PM (#7621)

        It's not standard practice. I have ordered some stuff from Element 14 for work before, both from their UK stock and from US stock. Never had any issues like this, and neither has Dave in the past. He has built quite a lot of hardware using parts from E14 without issue before. At some point his name was flagged and this happened.

        --
        const int one = 65536; (Silvermoon, Texture.cs)
  • (Score: 2, Funny) by nitehawk214 on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:06PM

    by nitehawk214 (1304) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:06PM (#7358)

    The blogger's name is Dave Jones. What, are The Monkees on the no-fly list? (and besides Davy Jones died in 2012)

    --
    "Don't you ever miss the days when you used to be nostalgic?" -Loiosh
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:26PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:26PM (#7383)

      Ahh, that's just it!
      "Dave Jones, but he's been dead for years! This guy's a terr'ist impostor!"

    • (Score: 4, Funny) by Nerdfest on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:32PM

      by Nerdfest (80) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:32PM (#7387)

      These people should know that there aren't actually any flying monkeys. It's just an expression.

    • (Score: 5, Funny) by paddym on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:40PM

      by paddym (196) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:40PM (#7395)

      Davey Jones? Why last week I was watching Pirates of the Caribbean with my friend, Dave Cameron http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20140131/09523326 059/david-cameron-says-snoopers-charter-is-necessa ry-because-fictional-crime-dramas-he-watches-prove -it.shtml [techdirt.com] , and he and I noticed that immortal squid-like thing that could unleash the Kraken on the East Indies Trade Company whenever he wanted. The Kraken! I'm not saying the Kraken exists, but should we really wait for the entire trans-oceanic trade to be destroyed before we simply blacklist every Davey-Jones-pirate-wannabee that might unleash the horrible bogeyman that may or may not exist? Not on my watch!

    • (Score: 2) by nobbis on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:20PM

      by nobbis (62) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:20PM (#7411) Homepage Journal
      Maybe they've calculated that x% of the population are called David Jones and they need to fill their quota of x% people persecuted ... y'know just like Uncle Joe's lads [wikipedia.org] did back in the day.

      To all the people who may be thinking of working for any 3 letter agencies - please don't go to the dark side.

      --
      It's easy to look up when your mind's in the gutter
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Koen on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:28PM

      by Koen (427) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @11:28PM (#7631)

      David Bowie's real name is David Jones, he has chosen the stage name Bowie to not be confused with the singer of The Monkeys. Just to illustrate how common the name is indeed.

      --
      /. refugees on Usenet: comp.misc [comp.misc]
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by useless on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:07PM

    by useless (426) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:07PM (#7359)

    It would be nice if the summery said what element 14 is.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by chebucto on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:09PM

      by chebucto (36) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:09PM (#7362) Journal

      Obviously, it is the former Farnell shop.

      Now, if I only knew what the former Farnell shop was...

      • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Wednesday February 26 2014, @10:42PM

        by c0lo (156) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @10:42PM (#7598) Journal

        Now, if I only knew what the former Farnell shop was...

        What???!

        Trivia question for nerds: what were the two distributors the Raspberry Pi used at launch?

        BTW: does anyone recall the birthdate of the Raspberry Pi retail version?

        --
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
      • (Score: 3, Funny) by unitron on Thursday February 27 2014, @07:18AM

        by unitron (70) on Thursday February 27 2014, @07:18AM (#7834) Journal

        "Obviously, it is the former Farnell shop.

        Now, if I only knew what the former Farnell shop was..."

        It was the place we had to go to get all our Farnells worked on, of course.

        --
        something something Slashcott something something Beta something something
    • (Score: 5, Informative) by DrMag on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:12PM

      by DrMag (1860) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:12PM (#7367)

      Element 14 is a well-known electronics (as in components, not consumer items) distributor, akin to Digi-Key or Mouser.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by mcgrew on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:37PM

        by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:37PM (#7491) Homepage Journal

        Well known in Australia, but not anywhere else, and Google is useless for finding the store. I never heard of Digi-Key or Mouser, either, and it looks like Digi-Key is based in North America.

        If you're submitting a story, don't assume everyone knows about the stores in your area, because they may not be in mine. Kind of like "spell out acronyms".

        --
        Older than dirt? Kid, I was a BETA TESTER for dirt! We never did get all the bugs out.
        • (Score: 2, Informative) by weilawei on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:07PM

          by weilawei (109) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:07PM (#7520)
          Well-known in the US too, since they were one of the suppliers of the Raspberry Pi.
        • (Score: 1) by captain normal on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:26PM

          by captain normal (2205) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:26PM (#7572)

          Comes up on top of results in DDG.

          --
          “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Thomas Edison
      • (Score: 1) by berrance on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:02PM

        by berrance (1229) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:02PM (#7518)

        I believe http://cpc.farnell.com/ [farnell.com] is also part of Farnell. http://uk.farnell.com/ [farnell.com] is the UK website for element14 which is the same as the CPC one except for colours.

        They are both Farnell but CPC has free shipping so I use them for my cap's and what not.

        --
        Just my two lentils worth...
    • (Score: 2, Informative) by nitehawk214 on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:15PM

      by nitehawk214 (1304) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:15PM (#7373)

      Silicon?

      Actually I was confused too. I thought "What, do they sell microchips or something?"

      Clicked on link... yes... yes they do. Though I am kind of confused if it is a store that has community pages, or a forum that is supported by a store. Is it an American company or an Australian one? (if it's American this would explain why it was using an American watch list... even if it is a stupid one that blocks by name with no overrides)

      au.element14.com [element14.com] is a store.
      Where www.element14.com [element14.com] redirects to http://www.element14.com/community/welcome [element14.com] and does not appear to be a store.

      Some info would be helpful.

      --
      "Don't you ever miss the days when you used to be nostalgic?" -Loiosh
      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by VLM on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:29PM

        by VLM (445) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:29PM (#7386)

        "Though I am kind of confused if it is a store that has community pages, or a forum that is supported by a store."

        So is everyone else, including people who've been involved for a couple decades. Over the past ten years or so, as a value add to encourage sales, distributors have been adding more forums / wikis / download sites every year, while communities have been adding stores to generate revenue. Both from the bottom up with startups expanding, and from the top down with giant multinational distributors trying to generate PR community buzz. Widely varying levels of success, of course.

        There really aren't any pure electronic hardware distributors left. Even Digikey and Mouser have vast download archives of datasheets and CAD drawings to convince you to shop there. And on the other side there are still plenty of communities without stores, but cafepress and amazon affiliate links make it less and less likely.

        There seems to be a stereotype that mfgr websites still offer datasheets but want to hide them behind various ways to develop a "sales relationship" with big customers. Like mandatory creation of logins, weird organization behind industry categorizations, stuff like that. On the other hand the distributors will give away free datasheets to anyone who looks up the product, of course they may or may not be entirely up to date and often if there's 9 manuals you'll only get one datasheet. Meanwhile SEO spammers are trying to adword or driveby install or spam you to death if you try to search for various product datasheets. Sometimes its almost impossible to find the actual mfgr because they're so buried under SEO spammers.

        So yeah its a weird and quickly changing market.

      • (Score: 1) by tomp on Wednesday February 26 2014, @06:15PM

        by tomp (996) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @06:15PM (#7441)

        I've always known them as Newark as in http://www.newark.com/ [newark.com]

    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:13PM

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:13PM (#7478) Homepage Journal

      It would be nice if the summery said what element 14 is.

      Yeah, not being Australian I thought it had something to do with silicon (the element, i.e., sand). I was going to bash your spelling (actually your relying on a spell checker) but it is rather summery in Australia right now, good pun there!

      --
      Older than dirt? Kid, I was a BETA TESTER for dirt! We never did get all the bugs out.
      • (Score: 1) by weilawei on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:10PM

        by weilawei (109) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:10PM (#7522)
        It's in quotes. It's clearly not referring to silicon. Also, you claim to never have heard of Mouser or Digi-Key. So, you haven't heard of most of the largest electronics stores online--you might as well as them to provide an explanation of what WalMart is.
        • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:38PM

          by mhajicek (51) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:38PM (#7550)

          I'm familiar with Mouser, Digi-Key, and Newark, but never before heard of this Element 14.

          --
          The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
        • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:50PM

          by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:50PM (#7555) Homepage Journal

          If I were submitting a story that WalMart was central to I would certainly tell the reader what WalMart was.

          --
          Older than dirt? Kid, I was a BETA TESTER for dirt! We never did get all the bugs out.
        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by janrinok on Thursday February 27 2014, @08:28AM

          by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 27 2014, @08:28AM (#7850) Journal

          Strange as it may seem - I've never heard of Mouser or Digi-Key either. Where in Europe do they trade from?

    • (Score: 1) by captain normal on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:24PM

      by captain normal (2205) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @09:24PM (#7570)

      RTFA Or are mixed up and think you're still on /(that other place which should be on some government watch list).

      --
      “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Thomas Edison
  • (Score: 5, Funny) by elf on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:43PM

    by elf (64) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @04:43PM (#7397)

    who thought this was a science story to begin with :)

    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:50PM

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:50PM (#7505) Homepage Journal

      I wasn't sure if it was science, but it looked like a story about sand. Of course, giving its number in teh periodic table certainly made it look like a science story.

      --
      Older than dirt? Kid, I was a BETA TESTER for dirt! We never did get all the bugs out.
      • (Score: 1) by weilawei on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:12PM

        by weilawei (109) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:12PM (#7526)

        Reading comprehension fail. See quotes around "Element 14". Do you always confuse Tesla the car company with the unit for magnetic field strength?

        • (Score: 3, Funny) by mcgrew on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:53PM

          by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday February 26 2014, @08:53PM (#7558) Homepage Journal

          No, I confuse the car with the guy the unit for magnetic field strength was named after.

          --
          Older than dirt? Kid, I was a BETA TESTER for dirt! We never did get all the bugs out.
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by boinker on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:04PM

    by boinker (2434) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:04PM (#7405)

    These Ed notes telling us the meaning of life on Soylent are really annoying. In bold no less. I mean, seriously, don't you think we have our own brains and can figure stuff out ourselves? Let the data speak for itself and spare us your personal interpretation.

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by quitte on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:07PM

      by quitte (306) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:07PM (#7407) Journal

      It's copy pasta. Especially the boldness.

    • (Score: 0) by FuckBeta on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:30PM

      by FuckBeta (1504) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:30PM (#7414) Homepage

      fuck....fuck ed notes?

      --
      Quit Slashdot...because Fuck Beta!
    • (Score: 1) by DrMag on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:48PM

      by DrMag (1860) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @05:48PM (#7423)

      The bold section isn't an editors note--it's a continuation of the quote.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by weilawei on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:59PM

      by weilawei (109) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:59PM (#7512)
      I realize that it's not an editor note, but the way it's placed in there sure makes it look like one. No more editorializing in TFS please. Save it for the comments.
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by That_Dude on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:59PM

    by That_Dude (2503) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @07:59PM (#7513)

    Living in Alaska, I often deal with the same issue and have been bitching about it for much longer. Nice to see somebody else gives a damn though!

  • (Score: 1) by alioth on Thursday February 27 2014, @11:07AM

    by alioth (3279) on Thursday February 27 2014, @11:07AM (#7890)

    David Jones (the author) mentions he noticed orders taking a day or two longer than they used to, and the Element14 rep said that this was the reason.

    My surname is Smith (a pretty damn common name). I use Farnell (the parent company in the UK) quite a lot for my electronic supplies. They've always given good service but I've noted in the last year or so that orders that used to show up the next morning now usually take 4 or 5 days to arrive. I guess I can deduce that my name is now also on some US watch list.

    Seriously, how retarded is it to base a watch list on just the name of a person which is hardly unique? Especially if you're a Smith (most common surname in the English speaking world) or Jones (probably the 2nd most common surname). The watch list is worse than useless due to the amount of false positives it generates - the real positive will actually get lost in a sea of useless noise!