* Posts by Christoph

2652 posts • joined 24 Dec 2007

Australia joins the 'decrypt it or we'll legislate' club

Christoph
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"they will soon expect their access to the online world to be clean and free from bugs and threats, in particular in relation to the online safety of their children”.

We are going to bring in draconian laws, and if anybody objects we will scream "But think of the Children!"

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Christoph
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Re: Sauce for the goose...

"My reference to circuit switched networks is that you know more about how one's traffic gets from A to B and exactly who the intervening switches belong to."

Yes. They belong to NSA and GCHQ.

The Snowden revelations exposed the fact that Google's own internal network was being tapped. That Cisco network boxes were being intercepted during delivery and compromised. Yet you want everyone to trust all the switches and all the connections in networks they have no control over?

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Christoph
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"we should hold these companies responsible when their service is used to plan or facilitate unlawful activity

Sure. As long as you also hold the post responsible for the contents of all letters, the phone company responsible for the content of all phone calls, publicans responsible for all conversations in their pubs, etc. etc. etc.

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Reinforcement learning woes, robot doggos, Amazon's homegrown AI chips, and more

Christoph
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The first use is always porn

"After the pixels associated with the bodies have been mapped, various skins and outfits are superimposed onto them."

One of the first uses of this in the wild will of course be to produce 'naked' videos of celebrities.

However it will be extremely useful for CGI films - Andy Serkis will no longer need to wear a special motion capture suit to play Gollum, you can as shown motion capture a whole crowd at once with no extra special equipment at all.

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Iran: We have defeated evil nuclear-sensing Western lizards!

Christoph
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Ah, those loony foreigners, eh?

They're obviously much sillier than the wonderful USA, which merely bans entire countries.

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Sorry, Elon, your Tesla roadster won't orbit for billions of years

Christoph
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Not a problem

As it approaches Venus, a Little Green Man will pop up and say "You can't park that there, mate".

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Roses are red, Ajit Pai is tickled. Broadband from SpaceX gets him out of a pickle

Christoph
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If a single company doubles the number of satellites, and presumably has them all in similar orbits, what does that do to the chance of triggering Kessler syndrome?

And what compensation will other countries be able to claim when that company has made a whole range of orbits unusable for thousands of years?

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UK Home Sec Amber Rudd unveils extremism blocking tool

Christoph
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So she just waves her magic wand

And says "Daesha Kedavra!" and all that nasty content just vanishes.

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Getty load of this: Google to kill off 'View image' button in search

Christoph
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You can no longer just view the image and then save it, you get the Getty copyright page instead. So what happens if instead you elect to visit the page where the image is hosted and download the image from there?

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Yorkshire cops have begun using on-the-spot fingerprint scanners

Christoph
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Don't worry

"These are quite OK. The data will be deleted after the scan. It will only be used where there is already suspicion, and never ever to check people guilty of walking while black.

So it's quite safe and OK. There's no need to protest."

Very shortly after they have become widespread: "We've just made these teeny, tiny changes in the conditions of use. And we have really good reasons for needing this."

A few months later: "Ah, just one slight extra adjustment to when we use them. Oh, and just in case of terrorism, we really do need to retain all the data".

Etcetera. Etcetera. Etcetera.

Once they have these, there is no limit on what they will want to do with them and will demand the right to do.

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Military techie mangled minicomputer under nose of scary sergeant

Christoph
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The mainframe room had a big red emergency power button on the outside wall in the open office, so you could hit it after abandoning the room for instance for a halon dump. So normal blank office wall with prominent protruding red button in the middle.

Not just "I wonder what this does?" but possible to bump into it by accident.

Later they fitted a box over it.

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Due to Oracle being Oracle, Eclipse holds poll to rename Java EE (No, it won't be Java McJava Face)

Christoph
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Jakarta EE?

As ISIRTA put it many years ago:

My wife went to the West Indies!

Jamaica?

Oh, is that in the West Indies?

Yes.

Then I must have meant the East Indies.

Jakarta?

No, she went by train.

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Wow, MIND-BLOWING: Florida Man gets an earful from 'exploding Apple AirPod' bud

Christoph
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'Jason Colon'?

Maybe Nobby Nobbs messed it up trying to nick it?

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US states accused of skimming cash from 911 emergency call dosh

Christoph
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I thought the US emergency services were largely self-funding? The Ambulances charge you a few thousand dollars to drive you a hundred yards down the road, and the Police rob passing drivers with 'civil forfeiture'.

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BT backs down from charging millions in phone book listing fees

Christoph
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I may still have somewhere a set of 4 phone books that covered all of London. (Divided alphabetically.)

These days the slim volume that gets delivered and promptly recycled covers about as far as the range you could get with two tin cans and some string.

They used to be of some use, in finding addresses. But then they removed the postcode area/town name from the address, so you only got the street name and house number.

Not as bad as the yellow pages though. The (again much smaller) book is now a long list of category names nearly all of which redirect to other category names. Scattered in there are a very few adverts and a very few actual entries. Presumably they are mostly online now. Possibly they have long term contracts to put entries in the physical edition and so must still produce it and distribute it even though it's of effectively no use whatever?

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UK worker who sold customers' data to nuisance callers must cough up £1k

Christoph
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"However, he declined to identify who he had sold the data to"

"Welcome to the cell you'll be occupying until you name your accomplices."

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MPs: Lack of technical skills for Brexit could create 'damaging, unmanageable muddle'

Christoph
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Facepalm

"MPs have also warned of the "catastrophic" scenario of the taxmen failing to have a backup system in place if its Customs Declaration Service programme is not ready in time for Brexit."

One tiny little problem here. To develop the backup system you first have to design the backup system. To design the backup system you first need to know the requirements for the backup system. To know the requirements for the backup system you first have to substantially complete the negotiations to define our future trading relationship with the EU.

They've hardly even started! The government has spent so long holding a vanity election, demanding concessions that they know are impossible, and bragging about blue passports, that we're very rapidly running out of time to get those negotiations sorted. Do they think they can finish doing that the week before B-Day and then flick a switch to put the new programs in place?

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A Hughes failure: Flat Earther rocketeer can't get it up yet again

Christoph
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Why repeat the experiment?

Sending up a steam-driven rocket to check whether the Earth is flat? This was already tried many decades ago and described by the BBC in the report "Wings Over Dagenham" first broadcast on 10 January 1957.

Flat Earth Society member: Er, could you slow down just a bit here, I want to take that photograph of the Earth.

Eccles: Oh here. I just saw the Earth through the clouds.

Flat Earth Society member: Did it look round?

Eccles: Yeah, but I don't think it saw me.

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Super Cali's unrealistic net neutrality process – even though the sound of it is something quite... ferocious

Christoph
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There's often complaints about people regarding everything on the net as free. With the end of net neutrality that will soon change - Americans will find that for everything on the net they have to pay through the nose.

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Are you taking the peacock? United Airlines deny flight to 'emotional support' bird

Christoph
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Maybe take an emotional support Skunk with you on the plane?

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On yer bike! Boffins teach AI drone to fly itself using cams on bicycles, self-driving car

Christoph
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FAIL

Ye gods. Are they really considering this? They cannot possibly have a zero failure rate of avoiding obstacles. This gadget could cause serious injury, especially to a small child.

If a Tesla can fail to notice a lorry, this could easily fail to notice a toddler.

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Unlocked: The hidden love note on the grave of America's first crypto power-couple

Christoph
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Joke

That picture with people facing in different directions reminds me of the cryptographic encoding of the William Tell Overture.

Eight women, facing towards the camera, away from the camera, towards, away, towards, away, away, away.

Titty bum, titty bum, titty bum bum bum.

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Twitter breaks bad news to 677,775 twits: You were duped by Russia

Christoph
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"we are emailing notifications to 677,775 people in the United States "

Cue massive wave of spam saying "This is Twitter. Russians may have compromised your computer. Please log in here for details of how to deal with this. ACT NOW or it may be to late!"

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In Soviet California, pedestrian hits you! Bloke throws himself in front of self-driving car

Christoph
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Re: It's San Francisco

"it's been that way for at least 60 years that I recall."

A lot longer than that. This coming 4th February is the best estimate for the 200th birthday of Norton I, Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico.

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US senators vow to filibuster FBI, er, NSA's domestic, errr, foreign mass spying program

Christoph
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"This program has gathered information on innocent Americans and is ripe for future abuse," warned Daines. "We must do our due diligence."

"This program has been turned into a backdoor," complained Warren. "We need reforms for better protections for Americans' privacy."

"Section 702 as it is written allows the government to spy on us," noted Leahy. "We have a right to privacy."

And tough luck on innocent foreigners who have no protection for their privacy and no right to privacy.

If the Yanks don't like it up 'em then don't do it to everyone else.

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Facebook settles landmark revenge porn case with UK teen for undisclosed sum

Christoph
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There is supposed to be a massive database of details of known child porn images so they can be automatically detected. A nude picture of a 14 year old is (other than some *very* restricted cases) clearly child porn. Why was this image not detected in this way after the first complaints?

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Hawaiian fake nukes alert caused by fat-fingered fumble of garbage GUI

Christoph
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Re: Oh my GUI

"If my wife denies my conjugal rights, or the morning milk is sour

From eight to nine in the morning, you're in for a nasty hour

The button being so terribly close, it's really a dreadful joke

Just a bump with my arse as I go past, and you'll all end up in smoke"

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Dear US taxpayers, 4.5 BEEELLION of your dollars were blown on unapproved IT projects

Christoph
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"in many cases the dosh was blown on updates or modifications to existing contracts – and staff did not think they needed approval for the changes"

You can't just spend that extra million dollars on the modifications to meet the changed specs - you need to get approval first! It will only delay the project by about six months and add 10 million to the cost.

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Boffins closer to solving what causes weird radio bursts from space

Christoph
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Re: Easily understandable quantities

How do they work out the total power? Are they assuming it's spraying power in all directions?

If it's actually a narrow beam then the power could be much less.

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UK Data Protection Bill tweaked to protect security researchers

Christoph
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Re: So essentially..

Yes, you 'probably' don't get prosecuted and jailed. As long as you haven't made the slightest slip up that a malicious prosecutor can seize on and blow up out of all proportion.

And this is for professional security researchers. What happens if someone else notices by chance that due to someone's oversight, some data can be trivially de-anonymised? Do you know exactly what procedure to follow and who to notify, having never thought about this before? Can you find that out with certainty, within 72 hours of first going "Oh, that's odd"? Or would you do better to keep quiet and let the information leak out, rather than risk jail for trying to warn people?

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FBI says it can't unlock 8,000 encrypted devices, demands backdoors for America's 'public safety'

Christoph
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Facepalm

Whose law enforcement?

"backdoors in encryption exclusively for law enforcement."

Will this be securely held within US law enforcement? So every other country in the world will be expected to let the US read all their private data at whim?

Or will it be shared with law enforcement in other countries - so that they can then read US private data?

Or shared only with the Five Eyes countries, assuming that they won't read US data (ha!) - but that still expects other countries to let the US read all their data.

Or do they seriously expect that they can make all US citizens (including criminals) use their broken encryption while the rest of the world uses secure encryption that the US can't break? But change to broken encryption when they travel to the US?

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MPs sceptical of plan for IT to save the day after UK quits customs union

Christoph
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Re: There are no specs because the UK's trade agreement hasn't been negotiated with the EU yet

But of course we can develop a full featured solution ready for Brexit despite having no idea what it will need to do until a few instants before Brexit. And all the companies which will use it will be able to make all their own systems compatible with it in the same amount of time.

After all, our wonderful government has stated that it will happen, so that proves it.

Don't listen to all that carping about the 'real world' - a Minister's casual comment overrides mere physical reality. Good grief, next you'll be saying that the NHS is in crisis merely because there's people dying on trolleys waiting for treatment, despite the prime minister clearly stating that there isn't a problem.

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UK.gov admits porn age checks could harm small ISPs and encourage risky online behaviour

Christoph
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They have history of this. The Internet Witch Hunt Watch Foundation once caused major problems on the entire Wikipedia site over a single photo.

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Nebula spotted with more super-sized bodies than a gym on Jan 2nd

Christoph
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Re: LIGO/VIRGO

As I understand it, it's not stereo vision - because with only one detector you can't tell which direction the waves come from at all. Stereo vision works by measuring the difference between directions as measured at two different points.

It's done (again as I understand it) by measuring the difference in timing at the different detectors. With modern ludicrously accurate clocks you can work out the extra time-of-flight at light speed where one detector is further away from the source than another. Then you work back from that to possible positions of the source. With three detectors you can get a pretty good fix.

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If you won't use your brain our machine will use it for you, Nissan tells drivers

Christoph
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Re: Rosy future

"You wouldn't like me, I'm rather slow. "

But wait for my big brother to come along ...

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Military alliance NATO adopts official hymn

Christoph
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Re: To be fair...

the "Halls of Montesuma" which is set to a major key and is supposed to "motivate" you to fight.

That tune is originally the "Gendarmes' Duet"! Hardly a motivation to fight :-)

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US Homeland Security breach compromised personal info of 200,000+ staff

Christoph
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"That information could include name, social security number, address, phone number and date of birth."

And the entire contents of your smartphone, that they copied off when you went through immigration.

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Brazil says it has bagged Royal Navy flagship HMS Ocean for £84m

Christoph
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Re: Whats in a name

"Big Chaz", shirley?

Big Ears

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Christoph
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Re: Whats in a name

Troutbridge

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Now that's sticker shock: Sticky labels make image-recog AI go bananas for toasters

Christoph
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The new SWATing

Create "This is really a gun" sticker.

Stick it on someone's back.

Wait for police to zoom in and shoot them.

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Christoph
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Re: Still no laughing matter

"pass them for the wetware to examine with more care."

Pass them to the wetware for them to fulfil their required quota of rejected claims.

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UK security chief: How 'bout a tax for tech firms that are 'uncooperative' on terror content?

Christoph
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Re: Tax Laws

"The UK is the fifth largest economy in the world. It is a hub of commerce, finance and law, of business services,"

And it's about to flush all that down the toilet on March 29 next year.

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Christoph
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"They've likely caused vastly more economic damage than ISIS ever could....

They've cause 120,000 excess deaths through austerity. Far far more than all the terrorists put together.

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Astroboffins say our Solar System could have – wait, stop, what... the US govt found UFOs?

Christoph
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Of course there's Aliens!

It's obvious. Just look at the evidence. The closer you examine it all, the less actual evidence there is. The more detail you look at, the less there's any sign of them.

So that Proves they exist!!!! Haven't you heard of Homeopathy????

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Weed wish you a merry Christmas: Pot-toting OAPs tell cops 30kg stash is for pressies

Christoph
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Joke

They should have lit the stash when they saw they were being followed, so the cops would have been driving through the smoke cloud.

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CSS and Javascript on GOV.UK page take early Christmas holiday

Christoph
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Re: "we have nothing further to add"

They need Javascript to do the addition.

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What's taking so long? UK.gov pressed over continued delays to biometrics strategy

Christoph
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Re: Why...

Mr Firearms: Because the magazine only holds 12 bullets.

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US senators rail against effort to sneak through creepy mass spying bill

Christoph
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Flame

"Paul noted that "the information on foreigners is gathered in a less-than-Constitutional manner – and most of us are okay with that"

There are several thousand million people who are NOT okay with that.

European laws protect people and their rights, whatever country they happen to be citizens of. US laws protect only US citizens and regard non-citizens as not real people and having no rights.

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HMS Queen Elizabeth has sprung a leak and everyone's all a-tizzy

Christoph
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Aren't those fighters going to get a bit dated?

"new aircraft carriers, which are set to become Britain’s flagships for the next half-century or more"

"flight trials with the new F-35B fighters that will fly from her during her British service life. "

Does anyone know of any first-class military aircraft which have remained operational and first-class for over half a century?

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Ey-up, mardy Rochdale council has dropped plans for ban on swearing. Thank f$ck!

Christoph
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The response to this is well known

If they were to bring in this rule then people will simply use alternate swear words. The usual response is to use the names of the councillors as the required obscenities.

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