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posted by Fnord666 on Tuesday March 17 2020, @11:52AM   Printer-friendly
from the sudden-impact dept.

A lot has already happened this year. SARS-CoV-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2) which can cause COVID-19 (COronaVIrus Disease 2019) has been making headlines shortly after it was first reported. The first cases were reported to WHO (World Health Organization) on 2019-12-31. The virus spread. It began as an epidemic in China . The world watched apprehensively. Reports surfaced of cases in other countries and the the apprehension grew. For many folk, it turned to fear when it was upgraded to a pandemic: WHO Director-General's opening remarks at the media briefing on COVID-19 - 11 March 2020: "We have therefore made the assessment that COVID-19 can be characterized as a pandemic."

We have seen increasing efforts to stem the spread of the disease. Efforts have run the gamut. Closing of borders. Cancellation of sporting events. Conferences cancelled. Churches and other places of worship also closed. Schools closed. Panic buying of household goods and supplies. Supply chain disruptions affecting manufacturers. Restaurant, bars, and other such establishments closed. Work-from-home policies established and enacted.

The changes have been many, widespread, and continuing.

Reading about all the ways that "other people" have been affected is one thing. It seems different, somehow, when it hits closer to home and affects us directly. With many of our usual social activities curtailed or cancelled, it is easy to begin isolating and lose perspective. SoylentNews arose from a troubled period (the SlashCott) and a community has formed from that challenging period.

How have you been affected? Have you been infected? Had a family member or friend who was? Helped neighbors who are struggling? Hunkering down and isolating? (In a basement is optional.) Are you suddenly working from home and finding it challenging to manage your time? Still working on site, but now have a faster commute due to all the other people staying home? Catching up on watching TV shows? Reading more SoylentNews? How has your life changed?

From a somewhat different perspective, how have others helped you to cope... and how have you been able to help others? One of the potential impacts of social distancing is isolation and depression. I count myself fortunate, indeed, to have served this site for over 6 years and for all the people I have gotten to know, here. For those who may not be aware, SoylentNews has its own IRC (Internet Relay Chat) server. Feel free to drop in to #Soylent and just say "Hi!"

Social distancing is permanent when you're dead. So, practice good hygiene and stay safe.

Previously (oldest first):
China Battles Coronavirus Outbreak: All the Latest Updates
2019-nCoV Coronavirus Story Roundup
Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Roundup
Coronavirus Roundup
Coronavirus Roundup (Feb. 17)
Roundup of Stories about the SARS-CoV-2 Coronavirus and COVID-19 Disease
COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2 - CoronaVirus) Roundup
CoronaVirus (SARS-CoV-2) Roundup 2020-03-12
Working from Home: Lessons Learned Over 20 Years

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  • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Friday March 20 2020, @05:08AM (7 children)

    by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Friday March 20 2020, @05:08AM (#973413) Journal

    Final reply sent by DM. There is nothing to be gained by continuing this pointless discussion.

    Starting Score:    1  point
    Karma-Bonus Modifier   +1  

    Total Score:   2  
  • (Score: 2) by barbara hudson on Friday March 20 2020, @08:57PM (6 children)

    by barbara hudson (6443) <> on Friday March 20 2020, @08:57PM (#973617) Journal

    Janrinok was too cowardly to reply here, so he instead sent this via email from a no-reply address.

    The stuff in blockquotes is him quoting me. His "rebuttals" are in plain text. My comments are in italics.


    Our discussion is filling up a thread on an entirely different topic.

    (janrinok was the one who posted a completely off-topic shot at me under one of my on-topic posts. Further on, he accuses others of going off-topic, but wasn't happy at all when I pointed out his hypocrisy. Just another example of how he's lost it.

    My final reply is here:

    Another lame attempt at misdirection, this time wth a TOTAL LIE ON YOUR PART.

    You said it was reported in the Guardian, and that I should go and search pm a search engine. But you cannot substantiate that either.

    Mistaking the guardian for slashdot??? I'm half blind, and I don't make that mistake. I never said that the Uber thing was on the Guardian. Ever. I have always been quite clear that it was in comments on a slashdot article. I also think it's a lie when he claims that his scraping 3 years of headlines from slashdot in the sentence immediately after claiming that he never goes to slashdot to avoid plagerism claims, is somehow not visiting a site. Whether it's a web browser or a script, it's still visiting the site.

    Also, kind of pointless to scrape 3 years of headlines when I've repeatedly said it was in the comments. This is far beyond disingenuous.

    I've made it a point lately to tell other people to do their own research; don't take my word or janrinok's word, or anyone else's word, or link, as the final authority. This is the internet, FFS. I'll say it again - do your own research. If you can't find something, that's not my problem.

    Search engines don't make the vast majority of the data they scrape off the Internet available for free. If you can't find it via a search engine, it just means that you can't find it via a search engine. It doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

    You claimed that you avoid the site completely to avoid any claims of plagiarism

    I am trying to get to the bottom your your claim - if you have a better solution then I would have been pleased to hear it. If it is true then it is probably worth a story on its own right.

    Seriously? Trying to justify a lie by claiming to do detective work on defunct software? Hey, keep an eye out, there might be some more Atari carts buried in the desert! You're not the "internet police.: Get over yourself already.

    -if you have a better solution than I would be pleased to hear it.

    ( And another lie - I proposed an extremely simple solution - he can post evidence of what Uber was using at the time they did their first round of software engineers. But he doesn't, because his motivation is not to settle the question, but something a bit more sinister.

    I say that IF IT MATTERS ALL THAT MUCH TO YOU, do your own research. It's not my problem, and I'm not about to go all OCD like janrinok searching for near-worthless shit, doing it on a site he claims he will never visit, and searching in the wrong place - the story titles, not the comments. It's the fucking internet, ffs. Get some perspective. It's obsolete information. But if you think it's relevant, why not tell us what they were using at the time instead of scraping slashdot titles that you never visit.

    I can see it now - guy claims he didn't access aa website with KP because he scraped it instead of using a web browser ... nobody will buy it.

    It's the same as criticism that I didn't post a link to the guardian about COVID-19. I made my reason quite clear when I was again criticized by Mr Intenet Cop. Any link would be out of date within minutes, since they are doing almost continuous updates, so just visit the site for the latest and best news.

    But no, that is somehow "wrong." He has continually ragged on me not posting links to everything. And I've been clear - show me the RFC that requires it, or STFU.

    I stopped posting links to everything one evening when I tried to, and everything in my field of view went completely unreadable. That was at the beginning of the month, when my "better" eye bled, ruining the work I had put in to training my vision to work despite the diseased retinas, the holes and edemas in the retinas, the distortions, the cataracts that may be too risky to operate on ... I said to myself "There has to be a better way." And there is:

    1. Every time you choose to cite a link, you can't help but have it reflect your internal biases. The site you got it from and the content can't help but reflect your biases. I'll cite the CBC and the Guardian, others will cite LGF (Little Green Footballs - are they still around?) and The Daily Stormer. Obviously this reflects two different world views.

    2. So why not encourage people, if it matters so much to them, to do their own research free of any bias from me, and let them make their own decisions, same is we do in the real world.

    Real-world example: I claim that bananas are on sale. If someone asks me for a link, I'm not going to go home and take a picture of the store flyer to "prove" it. Either take my word for it and pick up some bananas on sale, like normal people do, or miss out on the sale because I won't provide "proof" (and obviously not everything on the internet is true, so again, you have to use YOUR judgment).

    So if someone goes all medieval and says I have to provide a link, I'll point out "No, I don't."

    I still provide links when I can, when they are relevant, and when it's something interesting. Nobody normal is interested in Uber's defunct self-driving car software - they've laid off the devs and moved on. And it's not that important to me whether Janrinok or anyone else believes that Uber originally tried to do it in Javascript. It's only important to someone with an ulterior agenda.

    And emailing me with more bullshit, instead of posting it in the thread, where his statements can be judged in context, is the act of a coward who knows he's been caught out multiple times.

    Seriously, WTF is your problem, dude?

    Your judgment has been superseded by your need to have a certain order - that the internet must work a certain way, that people HAVE to provide links, and you threw a wobbly when I said No, it's not my job."

    Dude, do you think it's normal for you scrape 3 years worth of headlines off slashdot to try to "prove" something, a task that you should have realized was doomed to failure since I repeatedly said it was in the comments, not the story? Or did you somehow "manage" to forget that it's in the comments, despite my repeating it multiple times?

    What makes this interesting to me is the human aspect - that someone can be so desperate to preserve "the order", including the imaginary requirement that people have to post links, that they mis-remember things that don't fit into their narrative of the world, and go to extremes like scraping slashdot for 3 years of headlines.

    Most sites would consider that rude behaviour. Some would make it an outright ToS violation. And for what, exactly???

    emailing me at 2 in the morning instead of replying in the thread ON SUCH A USELESS TOPIC is nuts and cowardly. You've been caught out in multiple lies. Not my problem. Just stop trying to prove I'm the liar.

    I've gotten used to people acting weird wrt me. This is far from the worst, but it's definitely a strange reaction. Check your motivations.

    SoylentNews is social media. Says so right in the slogan. Soylentnews is people, not tech.
    • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Saturday March 21 2020, @07:36AM (5 children)

      by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 21 2020, @07:36AM (#973758) Journal

      janrinok was too cowardly to reply here, so he instead sent this via email from a no-reply address.

      You are now trolling:

      Read the last line of that message - it is my email address. You are still trying to recover from digging yourself into a hole. But, in case you claim you cannot now find it - my email as everyone here probably knows is janrinok (at) soylentnews (dot) org.

      I am NOT going to clutter up this thread by responding to your trolling, whinging and complaining. I do not believe anything you now say because you cannot/will not substantiate the claims that you have made. I will respond to you via email. You could have prevented all of this by simply providing the source of your claim.

      • (Score: 2) by barbara hudson on Sunday March 22 2020, @12:52AM (3 children)

        by barbara hudson (6443) <> on Sunday March 22 2020, @12:52AM (#973978) Journal

        First, when you scraped slashdot, you violated their robots.txt policy, which can be found here [] since you want links so much. I've bolded the applicable lines:

        User-agent: *
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /
        Disallow: /palm
        Disallow: /

        There's more to the file, but the bold parts are the relevant parts.

        What you did was called "unauthorized access to a protected computer." The computer was protected from script robots by the robots.txt file (aka the robots exclusionary standard). Your access was illegal under Title 8 of the Patriot Act, as well as being a real dick move.

        As for your email, you sent it from And you did it again today. Sedriously, WTF is wrong with you? Or are you going to deny that you sent it from a noreply address, because people look at the sender, since that's the canonical address for the sender, unless it's been spoofed.

        But that's okay, anything from is now flagged as junk. And checking my junk folder, your latest message has only

        To add insult to injury, you sent an .odt file. Why would I want to carry around an app to read ODT files? My email app does plain text just fine (doesn't even do html, but at least I can still read the content).

        I can picture this latest stupidity:

        Me: I don't do odt. I don't do doc or docx. I don't do wp, pdf, swf, xls, or whatever.

        You: But everyone does ODT.

        Me: So? I'm not everyone. Text only.

        You: But what if someone wants to send you something important?

        Me: From a noreply address? Can't be that important, at least not to me. Tons of spam from noreply addresses. And certainly I don't expect anything important from you, just more lies and stupidity. You started this in public and off-topic, it's going to continue in public until you stop, because your behaviour is off the wall.

        What a dope. Are you going senile? You mistake the guardian for slashdot, you illegally scrape slashdot headlines and not the comments even though I was quite clear it was in the comments, you now want any further discussion out of the public eye ...

        Now THAT is a story! Maybe I should submit it .... but nah, you just keep playing internet cop - it'll keep you off the streets, and with Covid-19 and France on lock-down, the french would probably consider it a public service :-)

        Try not to step in it any more, mkay?

        SoylentNews is social media. Says so right in the slogan. Soylentnews is people, not tech.
        • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Sunday March 22 2020, @08:10AM (2 children)

          by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Sunday March 22 2020, @08:10AM (#974057) Journal

          To add insult to injury, you sent an .odt file.

          You included bold, italics and other formatting. What format would you prefer people to use?

          Your access was illegal under Title 8 of the Patriot Act,

          Fortunately, that is a US law. I will await the extradition request, but ....

          ... I didn't access any of the the links you provided in the robots.txt. I accessed only [] Wherever they subsequently redirect anything is not anything I can control. Most of those links are to Perl files/directories which I most certainly wouldn't want. Selenium creates a virtual browser and accesses a site like any other user could but with the ability to enter data into fields or press buttons etc.

          Other recipients of that email had my email address as the sender - janrinok (at) soylentnews (dot) org, (that is obfuscated here of course, but I'm sure you know that). I would check your email settings.

          • (Score: 2) by barbara hudson on Sunday March 22 2020, @07:37PM (1 child)

            by barbara hudson (6443) <> on Sunday March 22 2020, @07:37PM (#974215) Journal

            So you admit that you purposefully didn't even try to look at any comments, even though I was quite specific that it was in the comments. You're losing it mentally. Same as for some reason you claimed I said it was in the Guardian newspaper, when I've never in my life seen a copy of that newspaper, and haven't been able to read newspapers for years.

            I've already offered to send a copy to TMB of your email. It displays as But nice to know you were sending it to others as well - so now you can't even accuse me of some sort of unfairness for posting the contents. And thanks for also confirming that you were in fact the sender, and not someone pretending to be you.

            SoylentNews is social media. Says so right in the slogan. Soylentnews is people, not tech.
            • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Monday March 23 2020, @08:39AM

              by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Monday March 23 2020, @08:39AM (#974364) Journal

              So you admit that you purposefully didn't even try to look at any comment

              Because there are thousands if not millions of comments on /. - without a clue which story to look at I would have to scrape and read everyone of them. All because you are unable to provide any source to support your claim.

              There's plenty of reports on the guardian []

              You wrote that - you know this because it was in the email that I sent and I know that you received it because you are quoting from it. Then you say "when I've never in my life seen a copy of that newspaper, and haven't been able to read newspapers for years". Two of us took you at your word - which you are now denying you even said. But you have the temerity to call me a liar or suffering from a mental defect. It is there in the link. You seem to be having no problem reading the comments here - I suggest that you could easily use the same method to read the Guardian.

              But nice to know you were sending it to others as well - so now you can't even accuse me of some sort of unfairness for posting the contents.

              You have accused me of being a liar. I am not. Why send it to TMB - he has nothing to do with my editorial role? If you want to go the senior person currently available on site address it to Deucalion / Juggs. The Editor-in-Chief is Martyb. I will send my emails to whomever I like as we often do. We depend on communication because we are all widely dispersed over every continent. The emails received by other staff here have the correct sender address. The problem appears to be at your end, but I will ask the email specialists at SN to investigate further.

              Yet despite me giving you my email address multiple times (janrinok (at) soylentnews (dot) org) you still seem to want to come on here accusing others of being liars and trying to score points rather than communicating directly. We have been asked to stop this discussion in this thread. You have lost this argument in the opinion of many although you will undoubtedly have your own supporters. Your word cannot be trusted, as even the links in this comment demonstrate.

              If you wish to continue to protest - send me an email or put something in your journal. Please leave this thread for the story under discussion.

      • (Score: 2) by barbara hudson on Sunday March 22 2020, @01:01AM

        by barbara hudson (6443) <> on Sunday March 22 2020, @01:01AM (#973982) Journal
        BTW, you asked in you first email if I could propose a simple solution, and I had already done so, several times, even before that - tell us what Uber was using before their first round of engineer layoffs. Substantiate YOU claim of STFU, you lying hypocrite.

        Nobody else is making such a fuss that I don't always post links. You have OCD or what?

        Or you can show me the RFC that states that I have to post links. Too bad there isn't one.

        Or the site policy saying that I have to post links for comments. I don't see one, not here, not anywhere else.

        Bloody internet nazi.

        SoylentNews is social media. Says so right in the slogan. Soylentnews is people, not tech.