Skip to main content

Full text of "Atari Online News Etc. Volume 14 Issue 45"

See other formats

Volume 14, Issue 45 Atari Online News, Etc. November 16, 2012 

Published and Copyright (c) 1999 - 2012 
All Rights Reserved 

Atari Online News, Etc. 
A-ONE Online Magazine 
Dana P. Jacobson, Publisher/Managing Editor 
Joseph Mirando, Managing Editor 
Rob Mahlert, Associate Editor 

Atari Online News, Etc. Staff 

Dana P. Jacobson -- Editor 
Joe Mirando -- "People Are Talking" 
Michael Burkley -- "Unabashed Atariophile" 
Albert Dayes -- "CC: Classic Chips" 
Rob Mahlert -- Web site 
Thomas J. Andrews -- "Keeper of the Flame" 

With Contributions by: 

Fred Horvat 

To subscribe to A-ONE, change e-mail addresses, or unsubscribe, 
log on to our website at: 
and click on "Subscriptions". 
OR subscribe to A-ONE by sending a message to: 
and your address will be added to the distribution list. 

To unsubscribe from A-ONE, send the following: Unsubscribe A-ON 
Please make sure that you include the same address that you used to 
subscribe from. 


To download A-ONE, set your browser bookmarks to one of the 
following sites: 
Now available: 

Visit the Atari Advantage Forum on Delphi! 

A-ONE #1445 11/16/12 

~ UK: Rants Can Get Jail! ~ People Are Talking! ~ SS Numbers Stolen! 
~ MS Loses Windows Chief! ~ Atari Flashback 4 Soon ~ New Leaders at MS! 
~ Apple, HTC End Lawsuits ~ Twitter "Placeholders" ~ Clean Up Your Rep! 


—* UAE 

->From the 


And you thought that the presidential 

Halo 4 Launch Numbers! 

-* Teachers Bash Obama, 
Hamas Battle on Social Media *- 
Tightens Laws on Political Web Activism *- 


Editor’s Keyboard 

TOT ae 

~ Surface Storage Suit! 

already been heating up more since 
from the upcoming inauguration. 

many are being tempered with attemp 
politics is still the name of the game. 

interesting, to 

~ Nintendo’s Wii U! 

Now Oops *- 

"Saying it like it is!" 

election was all over!? Things have 

say the least! 

Next week, 
As I’ve written 
turkey dinner. 


forward to the preparation and then the meal; 
turkey dinner and all the fixin’s once a year! 
readers that celebrate the holiday also have a terrific day with 
And, plenty of leftovers! 


family and friends. 

Until next time. 

->In This Week’s Gaming Section 

TOW TD TP Tr Or Oe Oe ae ee Oe ee oe ee oe ee ee ee ee eo 

—>A-ONE’s Game Console Industry News 


be cel 
over the years, 
As we like, 

Election Day; and we’re still two months 
Partisan challenges have been made, but 
ts of bipartisan cooperation. Truly, 

brating one of my favorite holidays, 


it will be a quiet celebration. 

Obama’s next term should prove 


will be a day of preparation of a 

I’m looking 

it usually means a terrific 
I hope that all of our 

‘Halo 4’ Launch Day Sales Top $200 Million! 
Nintendo To Shake Up Gaming Again with Wii U! 

AtGames To Launch Atari Flashback 4! 
And much more! 

The Latest Gaming News! 

TOUT Tr Wr Oe Or ee Oe ee ee ee ee ee 

"Halo 4’ 

Launch Day Sales Top $200 Million 

Microsofts Halo 4 earned a whopping $220 million in opening day sales, 
smashing previous records set by the franchise. 

The largest launch in the history of the franchise, Halo 4 has earned a 
total of $300 million in global sales since its launch last Tuesday. In 
contrast, Halo:Reach, the fourth game in the franchise, earned just $200 
million in global sales on launch day. 

Were thrilled that Halo 4 has emerged as the biggest U.S. entertainment 
launch of the year, said Phil Spencer, corporate vice president of 
Microsoft Studios in press release announcing the milestone. Thanks to 
the millions of fans worldwide who helped make this another 
record-breaking launch for the Halo franchise, Halo 4 is kicking off a 
strong holiday season and has become the must-have blockbuster experience 
of the year. 

Sales for Halo 4 put the franchise over $3.38 billion in lifetime sales, 
making the game one of the most popular entertainment franchises in the 

Nintendo Seeks To Shake Up Gaming Again with Wii U 

It can scan zombies, replace a TV remote, open a window into virtual 
worlds and shoot ninja stars across a living room. It’s the Wii U GamePad, 
the 10-by-5-inch touchscreen controller for the successor to the Wii out 
Sunday, and if you ask the brains behind the "Super Mario Bros." about it, 
they say it’s going to change the way video games are made and played. 

"You can’t manufacture buzz," said Nintendo of America president Reggie 
Fils-Aime. "You can’t manufacture word of mouth. All we can do is to 
provide the product and the games to foster some sparks that hopefully 
enable that to happen. We think we have that with Wii U." 

Much like the iPad, the curvaceous GamePad features a touchscreen that can 
be manipulated with the simple tap or swipe of a finger, but it’s 
surrounded by the kinds of buttons, bumpers, thumbsticks and triggers that 
are traditionally found on a modern-day game controller. There’s also a 
camera, stylus, microphone, headphone jack and speakers. 

While the Wii U can employ its predecessor’s motion-control remotes with 

a sensor bar that similarly detects them in front of the TV, the console’s 
focus on two-screen experiences makes it feel more like a high-definition, 
living-room rendition of the Nintendo DS and 3DS, the Japanese gaming 
giant’s dual-screen hand-held devices, than the original Wii. 

"It’s a second screen like a tablet or a cellphone, but it’s different," 
said Mark Bolas, professor of interactive media at the University of 
Southern California. "In addition to providing more information, the 
GamePad is also a second viewpoint into a virtual world. Nintendo is 
letting you turn away from the TV screen to see what’s happening with the 

[The touchscreen controller can also serve as a makeshift TV remote control 
and online video aggregator for services like Netflix and Amazon Instant 
Video. (Nintendo cheekily calls it TVii and announced Friday that it won’t 
be available until December.) Some games have the ability to flip-flop 
between the TV screen and the GamePad screen, allowing for non-gaming use 

of the TV. 

There are limitations to the GamePad: it won’t work after it’s been moved 
25 feet away from the Wii U console; it lasts about three to five hours 
after charging; and while its touchscreen is intuitive as those that have 
come before it, the GamePad is not quite as simple to use as the Wii 
controllers that had everyone bowling in their living rooms. 

"Is the GamePad more complex than the Wii Remote was six years ago? 
Certainly," said Fils-Aime. "On the other hand, I believe consumers will 
easily grasp the GamePad and what we’re trying to do with the varied 
experiences we’ll have not only at launch but over the next number of 
years in this system’s life." 

The abilities of the GamePad are most notably showcased by Nintendo Co. in 
the amusement park-themed mini-game collection "Nintendo Land," which 
comes with the deluxe edition of the console. "Nintendo Land" turns the 
GamePad into several different tools, such as the dashboard of a spaceship 
or the ultimate advantage in a game of hide-and-seek. 

In other titles, the controller mostly eliminates the need to pause the 
action to study a map in order to figure out where to go next or scour an 
inventory for just the right weapon. That can all be achieved 
simultaneously on the GamePad screen, which is best illustrated among the 
launch titles in Ubisoft’s survival action game "ZombiU." 

[The GamePad acts as a high-tech scanner in "ZombiU" that can analyze a 
player’s surroundings in a version of London overrun by zombies. It pumps 
up the terror by drawing players’ attention away from the horrors lurking 
around them. 

Will gamers who’ve grown up with their eyes glued to the TV and hands 
gripped on a controller adapt to glimpsing at another screen? The Wii U 
edition of "Call of Duty: Black Ops II," for example, invites players to 
customize their arsenal on the fly on the GamePad, as well as engage in 
multiplayer matches without needing to split the TV in half. 

Nintendo expects 50 games will be available for the Wii U by March 2013. 
There will be 23 games released alongside the console when it debuts 
Sunday, including the platformer "New Super Mario Bros. U," karaoke game 
"Sing Party," an "armored edition" of "Batman: Arkham City" and the Mickey 
Mouse adventure "Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two." 

"New consoles come along and nobody exploits their full capabilities for 

the first two to three years," said Warren Spector, creative director at 

"Epic Mickey 2" developer Junction Point Studios. "It’s only after you’ve 
had two or three projects that you fully understand what the hardware is 

capable of doing. We’re going to be experimenting with it more." 

Fils-Aime said he’s already envisioning ways that developers will innovate 
with future games. He pointed to some of the console’s features that 
aren’t on display in the launch line-up, such as the ability to play with 
two GamePads at once or utilize the console’s near-field communication 
technology to interact with other gadgets in the room. 

"I think that developers and consumers are ready for new experiences," said 
Fils-Aime. "More than anything else, I think that’s what is driving 
excitement for Wii U. They’ve experienced what this generation has to 
offer. They’re ready for something new." 

PS3 Worldwide Sales have Reached 70 Million 

The PlayStation 3 released November 11th 2006, and now, Sony has announced 
that PS3 sales hit sales of 70 million units on November 4th just under 
6 years. 

To put some perspective on this the PS3’s predecessor, the PlayStation 2, 
sold 100 million units in a similar time-frame. The Xbox 360, meanwhile, 
hit the 70 million mark in September of this year, despite launching a year 
before the PlayStation 3 without having to contend with the immediate 
breakout success of the Wii, which released just over a week after the 
PS3’s debut. 

Sony also announced that theyve sold 15 million PlayStation Move 
controllers, whereas Microsoft by contrast has sold over 20 million Kinect 
cameras. The PlayStation Move figure is murky of course, as many if not 
most Move wielders have purchased multiple motion controllers. 

At this rate, do you expect the PlayStation 3 to surpass the Xbox 360 
before the next generation hits? Anyone want to take a stab at guessing 
the amount of actual Move owners? Let us know in the comments. 

Sony: Play Pirated PS3 Games or Unauthorized Content, Get Banned For Life 

With the PS3 having been hacked all over again, the number of gamers who 
install custom firmware and pirate games is sure to rise. In response, 
Sony has released a Customer Alert saying that if they catch you, youll 
be permanently banned from the PSN and SEN services: 

Unauthorized software for the PlayStation 3 system was recently 
released by hackers. Use of such software violates the terms of the 
System Software License Agreement for the PlayStation 3 System and the 
Terms of Services and User Agreement for the PlayStation Network/Sony 
Entertainment Network and its Community Code of Conduct provisions. 

Violation of the System Software License Agreement for the PlayStation 
3 system invalidates the consumers right to access that system. Consumers 
running unauthorized or pirated software may have their access to the 
PlayStation Network and access to Sony Entertainment Network services 
through PlayStation 3 system terminated permanently. 

To avoid permanent termination, consumers must immediately cease using 
and delete all unauthorized or pirated software from their PlayStation 3 

Of course, an issue Sony faces is that a lot of pirates simply wont go 
online with their PS3, but considering the fact that Microsoft regularly 
bans those who pirate 360 games and still try to go online, there are 
certainly those out there that are willing to risk having their accounts 
banned just to save a little money. 

If you use CFW for homebrew apps that arent pirated games its likely 
youll also be banned as its seen as unauthorized content. While its 
hard to argue a case for allowing pirated content, CFW and homebrew is a 

matter of fierce debate. Where do you stand? And could you live with a 
permanent ban from the PSN? Remember, once they have your DNA therell be 
no chance to trick the system. 

—>A-ONE Gaming Online = Online Users Growl & Purr! 

TOW TT TP Oe re ae ee eee ee eo 

AtGames To Launch Atari Flashback 4 To Celebrate Atari’s 40th Anniversary! 

AtGames Digital Media Ltd. is launching the Atari-licensed 40th 
Anniversary Special Edition Item the Atari Flashback 4 console. This 
product recreates for gamers the original video gaming experience of the 
widely appealing Atari 2600 video game console (30 million units sold 
worldwide) from the 1980’s. 

In the Flashback 4, timeless Atari titles such as Asteroids, Missile 
Command, Centipede, as well as other video classics such as Space Invaders 
and Jungle Hunt plus 70 other games promise to give hours of the purest 
video gaming entertainment for the whole family. 

With styling based on the original Atari 2600, the Flashback 4 is 
completed with two wireless retro joysticks, also based on the original 
Atari designs. The retro console allows gamers to go back in time and 
experience how it all started, and evidences why retro gamers still say 
that the Atari games are as playable now as it was then. 

The Atari Flashback 4 is an easy to use plug and play device that you use 
with your TV that provides an affordable piece of video gaming nostalgia 
suitable for the whole family. 

The two wireless controllers afford gamers the freedom of playing games 

"Atari is a legendary brand that goes beyond borders and time. We are 
delighted to be Atari’s partner in celebrating Atari’s 40th Anniversary", 
says Dr. Ping-Kang Hsiung, CEO of AtGames Digital Media Ltd. 

The Atari Flashback 4 will be available in October 2012 for the price of 


Design based on original Atari 2600 

Two user friendly wireless retro joysticks with extra menu button 
75 preloaded games 

Plug and play into your TV 

Classic limited edition Atari Asteroidsfi poster included 

Games List: 

* 3D Tic-Tac-Toe * Adventure * Adventure II * Air+-Sea Battle * Aquaventure* 

Asteroids * Backgammon * Basketball * Battlezone * Black Jack * Bowling * 
Breakout * Canyon Bomber * Centipede * Championship Soccer * Circus Atari 
* Combat Two * Combat * Crystal Castles * Demons to Diamonds * Desert 
Falcon * Dodge ’Em * Double Dunk * Fatal Run * Flag Capture * Football * 
Frog Pond * Front Line * Fun with Numbers * Golf * Grand Prix * Gravitar 
* Hangman * Haunted House * Home Run * Human Cannonball * Jungle Hunt * 
Maze Craze * Miniature Golf * Missile Command * Night Driver * Off The 
Wall * Outlaw * Polaris * Realsports Baseball * Realsports Basketball * 
Realsports Soccer * Realsports Volleyball * Return to Haunted House * 
Saboteur * Save Mary * Sky Diver * Slot Machine * Slot Racers * Solaris 

* Space Invaders * Space War * Sprintmaster * Star Ship * Steeplechase * 
Stellar Track * Street Racer * Submarine Commander * Super Baseball * 
Super Breakout * Super Football * Surround * Tempest * Video Checkers * 
Video Chess * Video Olympics * Video Pinball * Warlords * Wizard * Yars’ 

A-ONE’s Headline News 
The Latest in Computer Technology News 
Compiled by: Dana P. Jacobson 

UAE Tightens Laws on Political Activism on Web 

The United Arab Emirates set stricter Internet monitoring and enforcement 
codes Tuesday that include giving authorities wider leeway to crack down 
on Web activists for offenses such as mocking the country’s rulers or 
calling for demonstrations. 

The measures are another sign of tougher cyber-policing efforts by 
Western-backed leaders across the Gulf amid growing concerns over 
perceived political or security threats since the Arab Spring uprisings. 

The Web clampdowns, however, have brought outcry from rights groups and 
media freedom advocates that claim Gulf authorities are increasingly 
muzzling free expression in the name of preserving the powers of the ruling 
clans from Kuwait to Oman. 

The new UAE codes posted on the official news agency WAM also raise 
questions about potential new red lines for the country’s huge expatriate 
work force in which parodies and pointed criticism of the UAE are common 
fodder on websites. It’s unclear, too, whether the codes could put a chill 
on media coverage of sensitive issues such as the rising profile of 

Islamist factions. 

The UAE has not faced any street protests during the Arab Spring 
upheavals, but authorities have stepped up arrests and pressure on groups 
including an Islamist organization, Al Islah, that official claim seeks to 
undermine the country’s ruling system. In September, Dubai’s police chief, 
Lt. Gen. Dahi Khalfan Tamim, warned of an "international plot" to 
overthrow the Gulf governments by Islamists inspired by the rise to power 
of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. 

Many of the codes in UAE’s updated Internet law focus on issues such as 
online fraud, privacy protection and efforts to combat prostitution. 

But a major section spells out sweeping limits and possible prison terms 
for any posts "to deride or to damage the reputation or the stature of the 
state or any of its institutions," including the rulers and high officials 
across the UAE a federation of seven semiautonomous emirates. 

It also outlaws "information, news, caricatures or any other kind of 
pictures" that authorities believe could threaten security or "public 
order." These include Web posts calling for public protests or "disobeying 
the laws and regulations of the state." 

The decree, issued by the UA 
came just hours after the UA 
Human Rights Council. 

President Sheik Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, 
was elected to a three-year seat on the U.N. 

In an apparent response to the worldwide chaos touched off in September 
over a video clip denigrating the Prophet Muhammad, the new codes said 
jail terms are possible for any Internet posts that "display contempt" for 
Islam or any other faith. 

Across the Gulf, other authorities have stepped up prosecutions against 
online activists and others. Earlier this month, a Bahraini man was 
sentenced to six months in prison on charges of insulting the Gulf 
nation’s king in Twitter posts. In September, a journalist-blogger in Oman 
received a one-year prison term for alleged anti-government writings. 

Israel and Hamas Battle on Social Media as Well 

he hostilities between Israel and Hamas have found a new battleground: 
social media. 

The Israeli Defense Forces and Hamas militants have exchanged fiery tweets 
throughout the fighting in a separate war to influence public opinion. 

Shortly after it launched its campaign Wednesday by killing Hamas’ top 
military commander Ahmed Jabari, the Israeli military’s media office 
announced a "widespread campaign on terror sites & operatives in the 
(hash)Gaza Strip" on its Twitter account. 

It then posted a 10-second black-and-white video of the airstrike on its 
official YouTube page. Google Inc., which owns YouTube, removed the video 
for a time early Thursday, but reconsidered and restored it. 

A tweet from (at)idfspokesperson said: "We recommend that no Hamas 
operatives, whether low level or senior leaders, show their faces above 
ground in the days ahead." 

Hamas, under its (at)AlQassamBrigade English-language account, which is 
largely considered to be the official Twitter account for its military 
wing, fired back: "Our blessed hands will reach your leaders and soldiers 
wherever they are (You Opened Hell Gates on Yourselves) ." 

The Israeli military’s media office Twitter account, which gained more 
than 50,000 followers in just 24 hours, is just one of various online 
platforms used to relay real-time information to the public, sometimes 

even before it is conveyed to reporters. 

The IDF news desk’s email signature reads like a catalog for new media 
platforms, including links to its YouTube channel, Facebook page and 

Flickr photo albums. The military also just opened a Tumblr account in 
English and plans to launch one in Spanish. 

Following the assassination, the military tweeted a graphically designed 
photograph of Jabari, with a red backdrop and capitalized block letters 
reading "ELIMINATED," drawing both celebration and fierce criticism from a 
range of users. Throughout the operation, the military and its supporters 
have tweeted with the hashtag "IsraelUnderFire," while many Palestinians 
have tweeted with a separate hashtag "GazaUnderAttack." 

The operation, launched after days of rocket fire from Gaza into southern 
Israel, marks the most intense round of violence since Israel and Hamas 
waged a three-week war four years ago. 

Palestinian militants fired more rockets into Israel on Thursday, killing 
three people and striking the outskirts of Tel Aviv. Israeli strikes have 
killed 15 Palestinians. 

Military spokeswoman Lt. Col. Avital Leibovich said that in the four years 
since Israel and Hamas last dueled, an "additional war zone" developed on 
the internet. 

"I’m sort of addicted to Twitter, you can say. It’s a great tool to release 
information without the touch of editors’ hands," she said. "Militaries are 
usually closed operations, but we’re doing the opposite." 

Leibovich is also the head of a two-month-old "Interactive Media" branch 
of the IDF, staffed with around 30 soldiers trained in writing and 
graphic-design skills. As an indicator of the significance of the 
department to the military, Leibovich said she'll be leaving her current 
spokeswoman’s post in February to focus solely on running the interactive 

The Hamas media wing has dramatically improved its outreach from the days 
when their loyalists used to scrawl graffiti on walls in the Gaza Strip. 

Hamas’ militant wing keeps a frequently updated Facebook page and a 
multilanguage website. They tend to update reporters of rocket fire 
through an SMS distribution list. 

Nader Elkhuzundar, a prolific 25-year-old Twitter user from Gaza, said the 
recent social media barrage reached "a new level of psychological war." 

"Twitter gives us a voice, but there’s also a lot of misinformation at the 
same time. It’s a tool you need to be careful using because there’s a lot 
of noise out there," he said. 

Although there were tweets directed at the IDF’s Twitter account claiming 
that the Israeli government and military websites were hacked and taken 
down Thursday, the Israeli military denied it. 

"The IDF blog was down for a very short period, less than hour in the 
afternoon, only due to heavy traffic," according to Eytan Buchman, an 
Israeli military spokesman. 

Israel’s ministry of public diplomacy also started a "Special Operations 

Center," a virtual situation room of sorts, working with Israeli bloggers 
and volunteers to "get Israeli’s message out to the world virtually, to 
Arabs as well, through social media and other web platforms," said 
spokesman Gal Ilan. 

Tamir Sheafer, chair of the political communication program at Hebrew 
University, said the embrace of social media by both sides indicates 
recognition that "you don’t win conflicts like this one on the ground; you 
win it through public opinion." 

But the use of social media for public diplomacy is also a double-edged 
sword, says Natan Sachs, a fellow at the Brookings Institute in 

"On the one hand, Israel has gotten better in conveying their messages to 
the public, but on the flip side, we’re seeing flippant remarks. Twitter 
accounts can be used carelessly and there’s a danger of overplaying things, 
which they might be doing," he said. 

"They also might be falling into the trap of thinking they have their 
public relations covered, but really, it’s their policy and not their 
tweets that matters at the end of the day," Sachs added. 

YouTube had removed the Hamas assassination video after concluding the clip 
violated its terms of service. The site’s reviewers later reconsidered that 
decision and restored the video Thursday. 

"With the massive volume of videos on our site, sometimes we make the wrong 
call," YouTube said in a statement. 

Buchman, the Israeli military spokesman, said there was no official 
comment, except that "we’re glad they reconsidered that decision." 

Google tries to ensure that the clips on YouTube obey disparate laws around 
the world and adhere to standards of decorum while also protecting the 
principles of free speech. It’s a mind-boggling task, given more than 
100,000 hours of video is sent to YouTube every day. 

YouTube routinely blocks video in specific countries if it violates local 
laws. It also removes video deemed to violate standards primarily designed 
to weed out videos that infringe copyrights, show pornography or contain 
"hate speech." 

Given that YouTube isn’t regulated by the government, Google is within its 
legal rights to make its own decisions about video. Nevertheless, some 
people believe Google should always fall on the side of free expression 
because YouTube has become such an important forum for opinion, commentary 
and news. 

A video showing an assassination arguably falls in a gray area of whether 
it is a news event or a gratuitous act of violence. 

This isn’t the only assassination that can be watched on YouTube. Numerous 
clips on YouTube replay the fatal shooting of U.S. President John F. 
Kennedy in 1963, including his gruesome head wound. 

Google doesn’t share details about how its video reviews are conducted, 
but it employs an unknown number of reviewers who regularly scan the site 
for violations of local laws and the company’s guidelines. 

Google discussed its approach to Internet content in a November 2007 blog 
post that came about a year after buying YouTube for $1.76 billion. 

"We have a bias in favor of people’s right to free expression in everything 
we do," wrote Rachel Whetstone, Google’s director of global communications 
and public affairs, "We are driven by a belief that more information 
generally means more choice, more freedom and ultimately more power for the 
individual. But we also recognize that freedom of expression can’t be and 
shouldn’t be without some limits. The difficulty is in deciding where 
those boundaries are drawn." 

Usually, the decisions are dictated by the law in the more than 100 
different countries where Google’s services are offered. The laws in some 
countries prohibit material that would seem tame in other countries. For 
instance, Brazil prohibits video ridiculing political candidates in the 
three months leading up to an election, while Germany outlaws content 
featuring Nazi paraphernalia. 

In the first half of this year alone, Google said it received more than 
1,700 court orders and other requests from government agencies around the 
world to remove more than 17,700 different pieces of content from its 

The company rejects many of these demands. For instance, Google says it 
complied with less than half of the U.S. court orders and government 
orders take down nearly 4,200 pieces of content from January through 

Hackers Just Stole Over 3 Million Social Security Numbers 

If you’ve filed tax returns in South Carolina sometime since 1998, you 
might be in a little bit of hot water. An unidentified, foreign hacker has 
gotten into the state’s Department of Revenue, pilfering around 3.6 
million social security numbers, and 387,000 credit and debit card 
numbers. In other words, no small haul. 

It’s a pretty devastating, wide-reaching hack. South Carolina Governor 
Nikki Haley described the situation this way: 

The number of records breached requires an unprecedented, large-scale 
response by the Department of Revenue, the State of South Carolina and 
all our citizens. 

In the wake of the attack, Haley has assured citizens that the exploited 
security holes have been patched, and steps will be taken to ensure that 
this kind of break does not happen again. It’s a good move, but you might 
say it’s too little too late. As for the person who pulled off this theft? 
Haley "[{wants] this person slammed against the wall." Efforts are 
currently underway to find this personwho authorities are certain is 
located outside the the FBI and the U.S. Secret Service. You can 
bet cyber-security will be a bigger issue from here on out. 

Anyone who believes their social security number is at risk should call 
1-866-578-5422. If you’re an (un)lucky winner, you’ll be eligable fora 
free year of identity theft protection via Experian’s ProtectMyID service. 
No one can get your Social Security number back though. 


IconInteresting news in the middle of the night: 
announced they’ve settled all 
all running lawsuits between 
ten-year cross-licensing deal. 
Android hasn’t been going particularly well, 

a surprise. 

HTC Sign Cross-licensing Agreement, 

End Lawsuits 

Apple and HTC have 

their patent disputes, bringing an end to 
the two companies. The companies signed a 
Considering Apple’s legal assault on 

this really shouldn’t come as 

The two companies sent out a press release during the night to announce the 

cross-licensing agreement. 

"HTC and Apple have reached a global settlement 

that includes the dismissal of all current lawsuits and a ten-year license 

agreement," the two state, 
patents held by both parties. 


Apple started its legal crusade against HTC well 

"The license extends to current and future 
The terms of the settlement are 

over two years ago, and 

HTC obviously couldn’t do anything else but reply in the form of 


Since then, 
due to Samsung’s meteoric rise in popularity, 

the lawsuits have been flying back and forth, but 
Apple shifted most of its 

focus to Samsung instead since it represents more of a threat to Apple’s 

business than HTC does. 

Both companies also added a short statement. 
resolved its dispute with Apple, 
said Peter 
are glad to have reached a settlement with HTC. We will 


"HTC is pleased to have 

so HTC can focus on innovation instead of 
C’s CEO. Apple CEO Tim Cook added that "we 
continue to stay 

Chou, Hi 

laser focused on product innovation." 

What’s interesting here 
HTC has told The Verge 

is that we’re looking at 

and not a mere sack of money going from HTC to Apple. 
that HTC "does not expect this license agreement 

a cross-licensing 

to have any adverse material impact on the financials of the company", 

meaning it didn’t cost HTC a whole lot of money. 

This seems to indicate 

that the actual cross-licensing was of more import than HTC licensing 

Apple’s patents; 

matter is that from Apple’s point of view, 
sense to start bringing 

le this licensing agreement may come as a surprise, 
it just makes good business 
an end to its legal assault on Android. 

i.e., that HTC’s patents were anything but worthless. 

the fact of the 

n th 

few years of patent aggression by Apple hav 
little to nothing - the UK, The Netherlands, 
didn’t win anything substantial anywhere, 
the company’s name. Nobody wants to be known for 


The only potentially meaningful 

while the lawsuits did tarnish 

win Apple has scored so far 
but even that win is on shaky ground as judge Lucy Koh has 


Australia; Apple 


In fact, 

These past 

rtino company 

is in the US, 
recently agreed 

to consider Samsung’s evidence of juror misconduct. While the legal 
outcome might obviously be different - Samsung is really shooting for the 
stars here - it’s pretty clear to any impartial observer that the jury in 

this case, especially the foreman, 

In other words - it 
legal assault simply isn’t going too well. 
companies settling, 


looks like to me Apple is sett] 

I would’ve much rather seen all 
with a judge slapping all of these whiny multi-billion dollar 

has acted very questionably. 

I applaud the two 

crybabies on the wrist for wasting public resources on what are 

ling here because its 

this come to a massive 

essentially the corporate equivalent of several douchebags comparing penis 

Public School Teachers in Hot Water After Bashing Obama on Facebook 

Two public school teachers have found themselves in hot water at work 
after posting messages critical of President Barack Obama to their 
personal Facebook pages. 

After last Tuesdays election, according to ABC affiliate WSOC-TV, South 
Carolina-based eighth-grade math teacher Sharon Aceta updated her status 
on Facebook with this sarcastic message: Congrats Obama. As one of my 
students sang down the hallway, We get to keep our food stamps which I 
pay for because they cant budget their money and really, neither can 

A spokesperson for Rawlinson Road Middle School, Acetas employer, said 
that multiple people had contacted the school with complaints. 

The teacher has admitted that poor judgment was used in this case, and she 
is very apologetic, said the spokesperson, Elaine Baker, according to 

The school suspended Aceta for one day, on Friday. She reportedly spent 
that day apologizing for her actions. She also swiftly deleted the post 
from Facebook. 

Aceta probably wont face any additional disciplinary action, according to 

Meanwhile, in Ohio, a teacher at Linden McKinley High School posted an even 
more caustic message on her Facebook page, according to CBS affiliate 

Congrats to those dependent on government, homosexuals, potheads, JAY-Z 
fans, non Christians, non taxpayers, illegals, communists, Muslims, 
planned murder clinics, enemies of America, Satan You WON! 

The school, which received complaints about the post, has not yet issued 
an official reprimand of the teacher. 

Microsoft Just Lost Its Windows Chief 

Microsoft has announced that Windows president Steven Sinofsky is leaving 
the company, effective immediately. 

No reason was given for the sudden resignation, which the company was 
presenting as a mutual decision. Coming a couple of weeks after the 
official launch of Windows 8, however, it clearly wasn’t the best timing. 

"I am grateful for the many years of work that Steven has contributed to 
the company, CEO Steve Ballmer said in a statement. "To continue this 
success it is imperative that we continue to drive alignment across all 
Microsoft teams, and have more integrated and rapid development cycles for 

our offerings." 

Sinofsky, above, who in looks and style bears more than a passing 
resemblance to Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, was formerly one of the most 
trusted members of Ballmer’s inner circle. When the Microsoft Surface 
Tablet was unveiled at a press event in June, it was Sinofsky who led the 
charge (and who was an unfortunate victim of a tech glitch where the 
tablet crashed, as captured in this video). 

Ballmer admitted this weekend that early sales of the Surface tablet were 

According to AllThingsD, sources inside Microsoft are comparing Sinofsky’s 
departure to that of Scott Forstall from Apple. Both, apparently, were 
strong-willed executives who didn’t get on well with their teams. 

In Sinofsky’s case, Ballmer’s statement suggests that this was holding 
back the speed of Windows’ development. Indeed, he'll be succeeded by not 
one but two executives: Julie Larson-Green on the engineering side of 
Windows, and Tami Reller, formerly the division CFO, on the business 

A former engineer who rose through the ranks of the Office team at 
Microsoft, Sinofsky has been heading up the Windows division since 2009. 
He headed up development of both Windows 7 and 8 after the disaster that 
was Vista. 

Microsoft Announces Leadership Changes to Drive Next Wave of Products 

Microsoft Corp. today announced that Windows and Windows Live President 
Steven Sinofsky will be leaving the company and that Julie Larson-Green 
will be promoted to lead all Windows software and hardware engineering. 
Tami Reller retains her roles as chief financial officer and chief 
marketing officer and will assume responsibility for the business of 
Windows. Both executives will report directly to Microsoft CEO Steve 

These changes ar ffective immediately. 

I am grateful for the many years of work that Steven has contributed to 
the company, Ballmer said. The products and services we have delivered 
to the market in the past few months mark the launch of a new era at 
Microsoft. Weve built an incredible foundation with new releases of 
Microsoft Office, Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, Microsoft Surface, Windows 
Server 2012 and Halo 4, and great integration of services such as Bing, 
Skype and Xbox across all our products. To continue this success it is 
imperative that we continue to drive alignment across all Microsoft 
teams, and have more integrated and rapid development cycles for our 

Julie Larson-Green 

It is impossible to count the blessings I have received over my years at 
Microsoft. I am humbled by the professionalism and generosity of everyone 
I have had the good fortune to work with at this awesome company, 
Sinofsky said. 

Since 1993, Larson-Green has worked on and led some of the most successful 
products for Microsoft, including the user experiences for early versions 
of Internet Explorer, and helped drive the thinking behind the refresh of 
the user experience for Microsoft Office. For Windows 7 and Windows 8 she 
was responsible for program management, user interface design and 
research, as well as development of all international releases. She has a 
master’s degree in software engineering from Seattle University anda 
bachelor’s degree in business administration from Western Washington 
University. In her new role she will be responsible for all future Windows 
product development in addition to future hardware opportunities. 

Tami Reller 

Leading Windows engineering is an incredible challenge and opportunity, 
and as I looked at the technical and business skills required to continue 
our Windows trajectory great communication skills, a proven ability to 
work across product groups, strong design, deep technical expertise, anda 
history of anticipating and meeting customer needs it was clear to me 
that Julie is the best possible person for this job, and Im excited to 
have her in this role, Ballmer said. 

Reller joined Windows in 2007 from the Microsoft Dynamics Division where 
she held a number of leadership positions. She began her career in 
technology at Great Plains Software in 1984 while still in college, and 

was the companys chief financial officer at the time the company was 
acquired by Microsoft in 2001. She has a bachelors degree in mathematics 
from Minnesota State University Moorhead and an MBA from St. Mary’s College 
in Moraga, Calif. In her expanded role she will assume the lead in driving 
business and marketing strategy for Windows devices, including Surface and 
partner devices, in addition to her current marketing and finance 

Twitter Leaves Placeholder Message for Copyright Violations 

Under a new policy, Twitter will leave a placeholder message when it 
removes content resulting from a complaint by a copyright holder. 

Previously, the content was removed entirely, making it more difficult for 
people to figure out why it disappeared. 

"In an effort to be as transparent as possible regarding the removal or 
restriction of access to user-posted content, we clearly mark withheld 

Tweets and media to indicate to viewers when content has been withheld," 
according to its information page dealing with copyright and Digital 
Millennium Copyright Act issues. 

Twitter will remove content such as profile photos and other photos as 
well as links to infringing material if it determines a complainant is the 
rightful copyright owner and the material has been used without 

Twitter attempts to contact the affected account holder and provide the 
person with a copy of the takedown notice and instructions for how to 
contest the removal. 

Those DMCA notifications are also provided by Twitter to Chilling Effects 
minus any personal information, Twitter said. The website tracks copyright 

and DMCA issues. 

When a tweet has been scrubbed, the entry will still appear with the title 
"Tweet withheld" followed by: "This Tweet from @Username has been withheld 
in response to a report from the copyright holder. Learn more." A similar 
message is displayed when other media content has been removed. 

Twitter will suspend accounts that have had repeated copyright violations, 
and in some cases, terminate accounts. 

In UK, Twitter, Facebook Rants Land Some in Jail 

One teenager made offensive comments about a murdered child on Twitter. 
Another young man wrote on Facebook that British soldiers should "go to 
hell." A third posted a picture of a burning paper poppy, symbol of 
remembrance of war dead. 

All were arrested, two convicted, and one jailed and they’re not the 
only ones. In Britain, hundreds of people are prosecuted each year for 
posts, tweets, texts and emails deemed menacing, indecent, offensive or 
obscene, and the number is growing as our online lives expand. 

Lawyers say the mounting tally shows the problems of a legal system trying 
to regulate 21st century communications with 20th century laws. Civil 
libertarians say it is a threat to free speech in an age when the Internet 
gives everyone the power to be heard around the world. 

"Fifty years ago someone would have made a really offensive comment in a 
public space and it would have been heard by relatively few people," said 
Mike Harris of free-speech group Index on Censorship. "Now someone posts a 
picture of a burning poppy on Facebook and potentially hundreds of 
thousands of people can see it. 

"People take it upon themselves to report this offensive material to 
police, and suddenly you’ve got the criminalization of offensive speech." 

Figures obtained by The Associated Press through a freedom of information 
request show a steadily rising tally of prosecutions in Britain for 
electronic communications phone calls, emails and social media posts 
that are "grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing 
character from 1,263 in 2009 to 1,843 in 2011. The number of convictions 
grew from 873 in 2009 to 1,286 last year. 

Behind the figures are people mostly young, many teenagers who find 
that a glib online remark can have life-altering consequences. 

No one knows this better than Paul Chambers, who in January 2010, worried 
that snow would stop him catching a flight to visit his girlfriend, 
tweeted: "Crap! Robin Hood airport is closed. You’ve got a week and a bit 
to get your (expletive) together otherwise I’m blowing the airport sky 

A week later, anti-terrorist police showed up at the office where he 
worked as a financial supervisor. 

Chambers was arrested, questioned for eight hours, charged, tried, 
convicted and fined. He lost his job, amassed thousands of pounds (dollars) 

in legal costs and was, he says, "essentially unemployable" because of his 
criminal record. 

But Chambers, now 28, was lucky. His case garnered attention online, 
generating its own hashtag (hash)twitterjoketrial and bringing 
high-profile Twitter users, including actor and comedian Stephen Fry, to 
his defense. 

In July, two and half years after Chambers’ arrest, the High Court 
overturned his conviction. Justice Igor Judge said in his judgment that 
the law should not prevent "satirical or iconoclastic or rude comment, the 
expression of unpopular or unfashionable opinion about serious or trivial 
matters, banter or humor, even if distasteful to some or painful to those 
subjected to it." 

But the cases are coming thick and fast. Last month, 19-year-old Matthew 
Woods was sentenced to 12 weeks in jail for making offensive tweets about 
a missing 5-year-old girl, April Jones. 

The same month Azhar Ahmed, 20, was sentenced to 240 hours of community 
service for writing on Facebook that soldiers "should die and go to hell" 
after six British troops were killed in Afghanistan. Ahmed had quickly 
deleted the post, which he said was written in anger, but was convicted 

On Sunday Remembrance Day a 19-year-old man was arrested in southern 
England after police received a complaint about a photo on Facebook 
showing the burning of a paper poppy. He was held for 24 hours before 
being released on bail and could face charges. 

For civil libertarians, this was the most painfully ironic arrest of all. 
Poppies are traditionally worn to commemorate the sacrifice of those who 
died for Britain and its freedoms. 

"What was the point of winning either World War if, in 2012, someone can be 
casually arrested by Kent Police for burning a poppy?" tweeted David Allen 
Green, a lawyer with London firm Preiskel who worked on the Paul Chambers 

Critics of the existing laws say they are both inadequate and inconsistent. 

Many of the charges come under a section of the 2003 Electronic 
Communications Act, an update of a 1930s statute intended to protect 
telephone operators from harassment. The law was drafted before Facebook 
and Twitter were born, and some lawyers say is not suited to policing 
social media, where users often have little control over who reads their 

It and related laws were intended to deal with hate mail or menacing phone 
calls to individuals, but they are being used to prosecute in cases where 
there seems to be no individual victim and often no direct threat. 

And the Internet is so vast that policing it even if desirable is a 
hit-and-miss affair. For every offensive remark that draws attention, 
hundreds are ignored. Conversely, comments that people thought were made 
only to their Facebook friends or Twitter followers can flash around the 

While the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that First Amendment protections of 
freedom of speech apply to the Internet, restrictions on online expression 

in other Western democracies vary widely. 

In Germany, where it is an offense to deny the Holocaust, a neo-Nazi group 
has had its Twitter account blocked. Twitter has said it also could agree 
to block content in other countries at the request of their authorities. 

There’s no doubt many people in Britain have genuinely felt offended or 
even threatened by online messages. The Sun tabloid has launched a campaign 
calling for tougher penalties for online "trolls" who bully people on the 
Web. But others in a country with a cherished image as a bastion of free 
speech are sensitive to signs of a clampdown. 

In September Britain’s chief prosecutor, Keir Starmer, announced plans to 
draw up new guidelines for social media prosecutions. Starmer said he 
recognized that too many prosecutions "will have a chilling effect on free 

"I think the threshold for prosecution has to be high," he told the BBC. 

Starmer is due to publish the new guidelines in the next few weeks. But 
Chambers reluctant poster boy of online free speech is worried nothing 
will change. 

"For a couple of weeks after the appeal, we got word of judges actually 
quoting the case in similar instances and the charges being dropped," said 
Chambers, who today works for his brother’s warehouse company. "We 
thought, ’Fantastic! That’s exactly what we fought for.’ But since then 
we’ve had cases in the opposite direction. So I don’t know if lessons have 
been learned, really." 

How To Clean Up Your Online Reputation 

The Internet knows a lot about you, maybe too much. So how do you clean up 
your online reputation and get control of your image to reflect who you 
are now or how you want a prospective employer to perceive you? 

A study from Microsoft Research indicates that 70% of online recruiters 
have nixed candidates because of search results that come up around their 
names. So your identity online is vital. We’ll start with the tried and 
true ways to clean your rep and then move on to my sneakier methods. 

First the basics: Delete questionable posts on all social networks 
Twitter, old-school Myspace entries, and of course Facebook. And about 
Facebook get your privacy settings locked down. To access the settings, 
click the drop down arrow in the top-right corner of your main Facebook 
page, then click Privacy Settings. At minimum, make sure your posts are 
only shared with friends. Then scroll down through all the settings and 
make sure what you watch, read, and listen to aren’t publically 
searchable. If you've been tagged in anyone else's dicey pictures untag, 
untag, untag. Click the picture, choose options and click "I want to 
untag myself." 

That’s all the stuff you can control, but what if there’s info sprayed 
across the Internet that you can’t remove, maybe you were busted for 
graffiti back in high school and it made the town paper? Or worse, what if 
someone went on a rant about you and it shows up when your name is entered 
into a search? There are certainly advocates who say you should write 

letters asking individuals or organizations to remove those postings, but 
in real life it’s pretty useless. Instead, take solace from the fact that 
97% of searchers never look beyond the first 3 pages of search results. 
If you can push the negative results down by posting positive or neutral 
information that’s more current or has more appeal to search engines, 
you’ll win the battle 97% of the time. 

To create material that search engines will find, the first step is 
putting your name out there on high-traffic sites: 

Google: Google ranks its own sites higher than others, so create a 
Google Plus account, use the Google Dashboard to manage your profile, and 
create a Youtube channel all using your real name. 

LinkedIn: Create a LinkedIn profile, this is one of the most powerful 
tools you have in establishing your work reputation. LinkedIn is the de 
facto resume and job networking site for professionals these days. This is the big one: buy the domain name for your 
real name. Then start a blog using one of the simple blog tools like 
WordPress or Blogger. You can either host your blog at that URL or build 
an independent site. I own, and I have a site that 
reflects my current work, links to my social media pages, and houses my 
resume. I used Squarespace to build the site and it took me about a day to 
get it looking the way I wanted it to. 

[weak your name. Any chance you can apply for a job using a slightly 
different form of your name? If you are Bob Smith with a slightly murky 
online reputation, applying for jobs as Robert Smith and representing 
yourself online as Robert going forward could help you distance yourself 
from that rascal "Bob." 

Flood social sites. Go over to, type in your real name (or your 
new professional name) and sign up for every social site you can, all those 
sites will boost the appearance of your name in search sites. 

Use images to your advantage. Start a Flickr photo sharing site and write 
your name on all the (appropriate) pictures you post. Do the same with 
Instagram, Tumblr and photobucket. 

Don’t forget about the real world. Everything you do these days is archived 
online volunteering for charities, PTA boards, 5K runs, seminars you 
attend. If your college or high school has class notes, submit info. Write 
a well thought out letter to the editor, do an online genealogy for your 
family, attend county meetings where the names of attendants are published 
online. All these well-established sites get lots of search engine love. 

Link Link Link. Once any of the above listings of your name appear online, 
link to them from your blog or website. It’s the interlinking that gives 
you real search engine power. 

You can of course hire a reputation service to do all of this for you, but 
if you have the time and want to save a few thousand dollars, these 
techniques can really help. 

If you have successful tips about how you’ve sculpted your online 
reputation, head over to our Facebook page and share your ideas. 

Lawyer Sues Microsoft Over Surface Storage Space 

A California-based lawyer is suing Microsoft for not providing the 
advertised amount of storage space on its Surface tablet. 

Andrew Sokolowski filed suit in Los Angeles Superior Court after 
discovering that his 32GB Surface tablet did not actually allow users to 
load 32GB worth of content. About half of the tablet’s storage is consumed 
by pre-loaded apps. 

"Mr. Sokolowski’s lawsuit against Microsoft is about protecting consumers 
as we head into the holiday shopping season," Sokolowski’s attorney, Rhett 
Francisco, said in a statement. "Microsoft is misrepresenting the storage 
capacity and capabilities of its Surface tablet, and consumers should know 
about it." 

Francisco said Sokolowski is not asking for damages. "We have only asked 
that Microsoft correct its unlawful practices by providing consumers with 
notice of the true characteristics of the Surface tablets and that 
Microsoft refund profits from sales it obtained as a result of 
misrepresenting the characteristics of its Surface tablets," he said. 

According to his LinkedIn profile, Sokolowski has a solo practice in Los 
Angeles that focuses on "protecting consumers’ and employees’ rights." 

A Microsoft spokeswoman said "this lawsuit is without merit." 

"Customers understand the operating system and pre-installed applications 
reside on the device’s internal storage thereby reducing the total free 
space," she said. "Surface with Windows RT customers benefit from the 
ability to attach additional storage via the integrated microSD slot or 
full-size USB port." 

Francisco, however, said that is deceptive. "The consumer is going to be 
forced to upgrade the Surface tablet by buying a peripheral device that 
expands the Surface’s memory to what the consumer initially thought he or 
she purchased in the first place. That’s simply unfair to consumers, 
that’s a violation of the law, and Microsoft knows it." 

Tech-savvy shoppers are likely aware of the storage constraints on their 
modern-day gadgets. If you buy a new 16GB iPhone, for example, you won’t 
get all 16GB for your apps and music. My 16GB iPhone 5 is currently using 
9.2GB of storage, but I only have 4.2GB of available space, or 13.4GB in 
total. The same applies to other smartphones, tablets, and PCs on the 
market today. 

Microsoft has an FAQ on its website about the Surface storage space, but 
Francisco said it is not easily accessible. "The alleged notice is 
actually intentionally buried by Microsoft deep within their website, 
under the ’support’ section," he said. 

Atari Online News, Etc. is a weekly publication covering the entire 
Atari community. Reprint permission is granted, unless otherwise noted 
at the beginning of any article, to Atari user groups and not for 

profit publications only under the following terms: articles must 
remain unedited and include the issue number and author at the top of 
each article reprinted. Other reprints granted upon approval of 
request. Send requests to: 

No issue of Atari Online News, Etc. may be included on any commercial 
media, nor uploaded or transmitted to any commercial online service or 
internet site, in whole or in part, by any agent or means, without 

the expressed consent or permission from the Publisher or Editor of 

Atari Online News, Etc. 

Opinions presented herein are those of the individual authors and do 
not necessarily reflect those of the staff, or of the publishers. All 
material herein is believed to be accurate at the time of publishing.