the_ghost_of_nettimes_past | 1 Apr 09:32 2015

Franco 'Bifo' Berardi: In the cockpit

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In the cockpit

March 30, 2015

by Franco 'Bifo' Berardi

They say that the young co-pilot Andreas Lubitz suffered from
depression and had kept his mental condition hidden from the
company he worked for, Lufthansa. The doctors advised him to take
a leave of absence from work. That is not surprising at all:
contemporary turbo-capitalism detests those who ask for sick
leave, and it ferociously hates every reference to depression.
Me, depressed? Don't talk about it. I'm doing fine, I'm perfectly
efficient, cheerful, dynamic, energetic, and above all
competitive. I jog every morning, and I'm always willing to do
overtime. Isn't this the philosophy of low cost?

Don't they make announcements when the plane takes off and lands?
Aren't we surrounded by the uninterrupted commentaries of
competitive efficiency? Aren't we forced to measure our daily
mood against the aggressive cheerfulness of the faces in
commercials? Don't we run the risk of being fired if we are sick
too often?

Now the newspapers -- the same ones that for years have been
calling us lazy and singing the praises of cutting off the
inefficient -- say we should pay more attention to recruiting.
(Continue reading)

David Mandl | 31 Mar 14:17 2015

Amazon Requires Badly-Paid Warehouse Temps to Sign 18-Month Non-Competes

This borders on sadism. Amazon using a policy that was created for
specialized, elite managers to prevent their low-level warehouse workers
from getting jobs anywhere else.


Amazon Requires Badly-Paid Warehouse Temps to Sign 18-Month Non-Competes

Posted on March 30, 2015 by Yves Smith

The Verge has broken an important story on how far Amazon has gone in
its relentless efforts to crush workers. Despite its glitzy Internet
image, Amazon's operations depend heavily on manual labor to assemble,
pack, and ship orders. Its warehouses are sweatshops, with workers
monitored constantly and pressed to meet physically daunting
productivity goals. Indeed, many of its warehouses were literally
sweatshops, reaching as much as 100 degrees in the summer until bad
press embarrassed the giant retailer into installing air conditioners.
In Germany, a documentary exposed that Amazon hired neo-Nazi security
guards to intimidate foreign, often illegal, hires it had recruited and
was housing in crowded company-organized housing. Amazon also fought and
won a Supreme Court case to escape compensating its poorly-paid
warehouse workers for time they spend in line at the end of shift,
waiting for security checks.

Amazon's latest "keep workers down" practice is to make temps sign
non-competes. Yes, if you are so desperate and foolish as to take a
short-term gig with Amazon, you will be barred from working for
(Continue reading)

Brian Holmes | 30 Mar 15:45 2015

Lee Kuan Yew Is Finally Dead!

Make this video go viral! It's spot on and it's HILARIOUS. The 
Singaporean kid who made it - call him Youth in Asia after the Hong Kong 
Movement - has already been arrested:

agent humble | 30 Mar 04:48 2015

"The Taming of Tech Criticism", by Evgeny Morozov

The Glass Cage: Automation and Us, by Nicholas Carr, W. W. Norton,

What does it mean to be a technology critic in today’s America? And what
can technology criticism accomplish? The first question seems easy: to
be a technology critic in America now is to oppose that bastion of
vulgar disruption, Silicon Valley. By itself, however, this opposition
says nothing about the critic’s politics—an omission that makes it all
the more difficult to answer the second question.

Why all the political diffidence? A critical or oppositional attitude
toward Silicon Valley is no guarantee of the critic’s progressive
agenda; modern technology criticism, going back to its roots in Germany
at the turn of the twentieth century, has often embraced conservative
causes. It also doesn’t help that technology critics, for the most part,
make a point of shunning political categories. Instead of the usual
left/right distinction, they are more comfortable with the
humanist/anti-humanist one. “What if the cost of machines that think is
people who don’t?”—a clever rhetorical question posed by the technology
author George Dyson a few years ago—nicely captures these sorts of
concerns. The “machines” in question are typically reduced to mere
embodiments of absurd, dehumanizing ideas that hijack the minds of
poorly educated technologists; the “humans,” in turn, are treated as
abstract, ahistorical émigrés to the global village, rather than
citizen-subjects of the neoliberal empire.

Most contemporary American critics of technology—from Jaron Lanier to
(Continue reading)

daniel rubinstein | 28 Mar 00:48 2015

Photography and repetiion

For a long time I used to go to bed with a camera. But the writing is on the wall: the days of the framed print on
the mantelpiece, of the yellowing snapshot with the handwritten inscription, of the shoebox in the
attic, of the heroic explorer of slums with his Nikon and of the flaneur with his Leica are over. To-day,
what the photograph is a replica of seems much less important than what it is linked to. Other questions are
being put forward that overshadow the connection between that which was in-front of the camera lens and
the picture that one is holding in the hand. How many times was it liked, shared and re-twited? What is the
political power peculiar to an algorithm, a power that is not limited to images but also inhabits
politics, art and language. What all these new questions have
  in common is that they address  repetition, self-replication, dissemination over questions that pertain
to the content of the image, to what the content represents and what this says about the real

Orsan | 28 Mar 01:05 2015

Antisystemic Movements and the Future of Capitalism", by Immanuel Wallerstein

nettime little_birdie | 28 Mar 08:04 2015

Why Baidu Has Been Hijacked to Attack Github


Why Baidu Has Been Hijacked to Attack Github


By: Larry Salibra

Baidu's content data network (CDN), the computers that serve Baidu
analytics and Baidu ads has been hijacked and is being used to launch a
distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack on popular developer tool

The China Twitterverse has been buzzing today[1] with reports of weird
javascript errors[2] on sites linking to Baidu assets (like Baidu 
analytics) when accessed outside of the Great Firewall.


equests to Baidu's content data network are being intercepted and
sending back some javascript code instead of the original requested
file. The javascript code instructs visitors browsers to request the
Github pages of anti-censorship group Greatfire[3] and the Chinese
language edition of the New York Times.[4] These groups turned to a
developer source code control tool to host their information with the
knowledge that China was unable to block Github because of the huge cost
to its technology industry.

(Continue reading)

Daniël de Zeeuw | 27 Mar 14:53 2015

Krisis *Call for papers* Perspectives for the New University

   The occupation and appropriation of university buildings in Amsterdam
   and the protests of students and staff there and at other universities
   in the Netherlands triggered a wide-ranging debate about the future of
   higher education and research. Krisis, journal for contemporary
   philosophy ( aims at bringing together challenging
   perspectives from, on and for what during the protests has been coined
   the new university. We invite contributions and short essays (max.
   3000 words) that reflect on what is happening, how to move forward and
   envision alternative educational institutes. We specifically also
   invite contributions by students and non-academics for this
   interdisciplinary publication aimed at supporting debates on the future
   of knowledge institutions.

   Krisis is also looking for artistic and visual contribution that
   envision the new university.

   The special issue will initially appear open-access in pdf-format and,
   possibly, in print at a later stage.

   Deadline: April 15.
   Please send ideas, contributions, questions etc. to:

David Mandl | 27 Mar 03:35 2015

The Shut-In Economy

Living the dream: avoiding contact with other people, being able to work every minute of the day.


The Shut-In Economy
By Lauren Smiley

Angel the concierge stands behind a lobby desk at a luxe apartment
building in downtown San Francisco, and describes the residents of
this imperial, 37-story tower. "Ubers, Squares, a few Twitters," she
says. "A lot of work-from-homers."

And by late afternoon on a Tuesday, they're striding into the lobby at
a just-get-me-home-goddammit clip, some with laptop bags slung over
their shoulders, others carrying swank leather satchels. At the same
time a second, temporary population streams into the building: the
app-based meal delivery people hoisting thermal carrier bags and
sacks. Green means Sprig. A huge M means Munchery. Down in the
basement, Amazon Prime delivery people check in packages with the
porter. The Instacart groceries are plunked straight into a walk-in

This is a familiar scene. Five months ago I moved into a spartan
apartment a few blocks away, where dozens of startups and thousands of
tech workers live. Outside my building there's always a phalanx of
befuddled delivery guys who seem relieved when you walk out, so they
can get in. Inside, the place is stuffed with the goodies they bring:
Amazon Prime boxes sitting outside doors, evidence of the tangible,
(Continue reading)

Orsan | 26 Mar 17:47 2015
Picon, a global little school pre-launch: mapping of the disciplinary knowledge production in corporate university and exchange on ' how to occupy'

   Dear friends,

   This week several important events are taking place in Tunis.

   One is World Social Forum, which has lost long time ago its fame as the
   world' unique gathering space for progressive, horizontal, democratic,
   left social movements; a movement of movements or network of networks.
   It has become a carnival or fair for well funded and coopted NGOs, or
   touristic activity for the NGO cadre and hence subjected to criticisms
   from many social movement activists or advocacy groups that are engaged
   in real struggles on the ground. In the absence of similar space, for
   the world-gathering of people's grassroots struggles, two years ago, in
   2013 the WSF was organized in Tunis for the first time; since Tunis has
   become a symbol of the new wave of mass uprisings started in 2011. This
   year as the second time WSF planned to take place in Tunis, and its
   opening March was two days ago (24/3).

   In 2013 version of Tunis WSF, some people who involved in 15M uprising
   (Indignados) in Spain in 2011, as well as in the Occupy Wall Street (in
   US) and the assembles and networks spread globally named Occupy
   movement, we did initiate a friendly occupation by creating open spaces
   and assemblies for self-organization within the official WSF and Tunis
   city centre. Which aimed at opening participation to the Tunisian
   citizens who could not afford to buy tickets for the forum organized
   far from city centre, in the El Manar university campus. This
   initiative called Global Square, or OccupyWSF, is taking place in Tunis
   WSF this year as well.

   Another important event, again taking place within the WSF, is a new
   initiative that was emerged very recently and called Internet Social
(Continue reading)

Geert Lovink | 26 Mar 23:06 2015

Robin Hood at the Max Keiser Report

Dear nettimers, a real breakthrough for the Finnish Deleuzian investment fund called Robin Hood!

It is out on Facebook:
And it has been tweeted:

In Max Keiser Report today: the black sheep of the activist hedge funds!

Robin Hood Asset Management Cooperative
(starting at 11min 45 sec)

Welcome to the wild side of finance: