VPNs have become a huge market in recent years, with all of them offering essentially the same service but branded differently.
I've talked about VPNs before and how you likely don't need one if all you care about is "privacy". Otherwise it has some usecases for like downloading torrents or accessing geo-blocked content but that's about it.
To synthesize, the VPN owners can see what you do instead of your ISP when you use a VPN. You better trust that they don't keep logs and encrypt your traffic.
Who do you trust more, some VPN company, or your ISP? That's a personal question only you can answer.
Privacy and "security" is what VPNs advertise heavily on. Security is nonsense from their part; there is no additional security to using a VPN. NordVPN for example likes to talk about the evil hackers in starbucks that will hack your wifi, but that literally never happens (not never never but not enough to justify paying them money for it).
In any case, all VPN rankings omit one very important fact: fed involvement. **that's** security 101.
The CIA controlled an encryption company for decades (established after WW2): Crypto AG. They sold encryption machines to embassies around the world under this name, and it was only found out they were CIA in the 2010s.
We've known since Snowden about backdoors in Windows that allow the NSA to bypass encryption and spy on anyone they want.
And it's a very glaring issue. Look at any of those rankings and they'll talk about privacy and encryption protocols, and never once mention potential fed involvement or other causes for concern.
Even worse, if they do talk about it, they often talk about "Chinese" involvement. How the fuck did the discourse get so bad in just 10 years? They don't even have anything to back it up. Meanwhile we have evidence of NSA and CIA involvement in encryption and surveillance.
NordVPN especially is strange. They advertise a LOT and always sell at a discount (which makes the VPN cheaper than most competition). ProtonVPN too, I don't trust anything Proton ever since they surrendered info to the feds about one of their clients (an eco-activist). Secondly they are a "Swiss" company like Crypto AG, but were not founded by Swiss people.
So again, who do you trust more? Some VPN company trying to sell you a product under false pretences, or your local ISP company?
Some months ago I tried to make posts that link to Lemmygrad; but Reddit removed them because it got counted as "spam". (Most posts got removed by mods.)
Sometime later, I also remember trying to post a link to https://join-lemmy.org; but Reddit removed *that* link too.
I sense that Reddit is *trying* to censor Lemmy.
Now, it has come to my attention over the years, that youtube has very specific designs that make political propaganda more effective, I want to create a master list of functions that are omitted and functions that are included to make it less useable, less functional and less open/free as it could be/should be.
just to note the most basic:
ALGORYTHMIC SUPPRESSION OF ANTIWAR/LEFTIST/HISTORY CONTENT
Search function that does not allow proper setting of specifics
Search results filled with non-search related videos
Video suggestions being pushed constantly, specifically rightwing content (Jordan Peterson, Peter Molyneux, Ben Shapiro, Tim Pool, Joe Rogan(not himself rightwing but 99% of his guests)
300.000 bot accounts that autofill new think tank financed influencers likes to amp them to the search suggestion feed
comment replies are not forwarded to you, so the last answer to a pinned comment can be overridden by whataboutist bots to be invisible to the next user
No option to BLOCK content properly, I cannot create a term based filter-list as in ANY email application in existence. NOT POSSIBLE ON YOUTUBE ON PURPOSE
Now: fill me in on your experiences
Sci-Hub: Researchers File Intervention Application To Fight ISP Blocking
Last December, academic publishers Elsevier, Wiley, and American Chemical Society filed a lawsuit demanding that Indian ISPs block access to Sci-Hub and Libgen for copyright infringement. The ongoing case now includes an intervention application from a group of social science researchers who say that blocking the platforms would result in a great societal loss to the country.
Assisted and represented by the Delhi-based Internet Freedom Foundation (IFF), a group of social science researchers affiliated with universities across Delhi has now filed an intervention application that aims to educate the High Court on the negative implications of ordering local ISPs to block the platforms.
“They have submitted that they cannot access countless essays/books/articles because of the exorbitant rates the publishers charge for them and that these publishers own more than 50% of the total output in social science research. The only way in which they can access these resources is by relying upon LibGen and Sci-Hub. Moreover, LibGen and Sci-Hub offer access to up-to-date research which is unavailable elsewhere.”
“The Applicants’ reliance on [Sci-Hub and Libgen] has incomparably increased during the pandemic where, on account of the indefinite closure of university premises, they lost access to library resources and, in many cases, also to the institutional access to research databases,” the intervention application reads.
“[L]ib-Gen, being a free digital library, has democratized access to knowledge resources not only by eliminating paywalls but also providing access from any physical location as long as the person has access to the internet,” they add.
Blocking Would be Against The Law
After highlighting the risks to society should the Court authorize blocking, the researchers turn to the legality of doing so. They believe that while the publishers own the copyrights to the articles, the use of those articles is allowed under India’s Copyright Act, at least under certain conditions.
They note that the publishers are not seeking the removal of specific infringing content but the blocking of entire websites in perpetuity. They argue that there are less restrictive measures available and these should have been sought first, rather than going directly for complete blocking of Sci-Hub and Libgen.
Before issuing any blocking order, they also ask the court to consider Article 19(1) that recognizes the fundamental right to access information.
In the very few times I've been on Facebook, I've gotten ads from Raël twice now.
Rael is a sex cult and sect founded in 1974 by some French guy to make a shit ton of money and r*pe his female followers.
And apparently for Facebook, it's perfectly fine to promote an ad claiming aliens invented humanity and rael (yes he named himself after his cult) is their humble messenger. They don't recruit you just yet into the cult, this comes after you download their ebook (which I didn't do, I gave them enough information about me after I clicked on the link) I guess.
This is on French-language Facebook, so I have no idea how to kick up a witch hunt over this. Twitter maybe, but I have a tiny account with no followers (burner account I made some 10 years ago lol).
I did report the ads and the page but facebook is notoriously ineffective and careless about their moderation, so I doubt they'll see anything wrong with letting a literal cult recruit on their platform. Zuckerberg gotta make that money!
And this comes after claims that they want to stop fake news lmao.
The silver lining is it's a page for my country and it's apparently really new. 89 followers only since they started, earlier this year. Maybe I can email some government agency and ask them the status of this cult with a link to the page on facebook.
It's also worth noting the (French) Wikipedia article about the cult is incredibly... cautious. They present them in a very good light, and discussions have been ongoing since 2009 (in the discussion page) with someone who gets their edits exposing rael as what they are reverted, because they somehow don't conform to wikipedia standards (you have to include sources in a certain way and original research is not allowed, so if someone leaves rael and makes a witness statement, you can't use that).
This is so fucking infuriating. Delete the fucking bourgeoisie, and delete cult grifters from the face of the earth. If they want to join their aliens so bad, who are we to deny them?
For years Facebook has been used to give voice to far-right groups, and this was never really addressed. The reason they are now combatting "extremism" can only be attributed to the fact that radical leftist discourse is becoming more and more common