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The Courts Bitcoin Crime The Almighty Buck

Silk Road's Ross Ulbricht's Next Court Date Set For November 77

Daniel_Stuckey writes "Ross Ulbricht, the alleged administrator behind the illegal online drug marketplace the Silk Road, will get his day in court on November 3rd, according to a blueprint laid out today in New York's Southern District Court by Judge Katherine Forrest. Ulbrict, alleged by the government to be Silk Road founder Dread Pirate Roberts, is facing four charges (PDF via Wired) related to narcotics conspiracy, running a criminal enterprise, conspiracy to commit computer hacking, and money laundering (other charges have been brought against him regarding murder for hire in Maryland). Appearing today in court—clean-shaven, in a navy blue prison uniform—he pleaded "not guilty" to all charges. Next week, on February 13th, Josh Dratel, Ulbricht's defense attorney, will be handing over hard drives sufficient to hold eight to 10 terabytes of data, which is the approximate size of the evidence which the government has said it may use against Ulbricht. By Feb. 27, two weeks later, the prosecution must return the drives with Silk Road data the FBI collected from computers in a foreign and unnamed country, as well as a drive that holds the contents of the defendant's laptop, which was seized during his dramatic arrest at a San Francisco library in October."
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Silk Road's Ross Ulbricht's Next Court Date Set For November

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  • by The Qube ( 749 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @11:42PM (#46192881)

    Obviously, I've been around the Internet and around here for a long time: started reading Chips & Dips and continued reading on a daily basis since then (overall, I don't think I missed a single story ever). I even (unknowingly) helped Rob with a Perl problem on comp.lang.perl when he was coding the original Slashdot (received a "Don't Fear the Penguins" T-Shirt when they made it into the big league - I still treasure it).

    A couple of years ago, I switched to doing most of my reading on smartphones and tablets. One of the first apps I downloaded for my iPhone was the Slashdot app (I think it was branded by the then owners and included other sister sites) - it sucked though.

    Anyway, I continued reading Slashdot daily through the RSS feeds and hardly ever logged on to the website itself. It wasn't just about the stories themselves - I got a lot of news and editorials from other tech sites as well (AllThingsDigital/Re-code, GigaOM sites etc). I loved reading the comments (trolls, shills etc included) and the RSS reader neatly provided the top 5 comments for each story which also enabled me then to drill through into parents, responses etc. Though I've always been more of a lurker, it is those comments that have made it a community that I've felt a part of for the past 17 years. I didn't mind crappy summaries, duplicate stories and other editorial failures - they were a part of Slashdot. About the only thing that I found annoying was the rampant islamophobia/xenophobia that developed over the past 10 years, supported by 1-2 editors, but it was mostly easy to ignore.

    I've tried to support Slashdot whichever way I could. I clicked on ads on Slashdot when I wanted to buy something from those regular advertisers (Rackspace, ThinkGeek etc). I didn't even find Slashvertisments annoying as a lot of those introduced me to products and companies that I didn't know about - a good example was a video for Scottevest hoodies [], which I've been buying regularly since.

    I read some rumblings about Beta in the comments recently and didn't fail to notice :-) a torrent of them over the past week or two, so I decided to check out the Beta site.

    The beta site is fundamentally broken! I appreciate where the defensive story yesterday [] came from and I know that a lot of actual technical bugs with the new site can and will be fixed. The problem though is that the idea behind the new site itself is broken, so whatever is being built is being built on wrong foundations (and feel free to replace "foundations" with "intentions", depending on your level of paranoia about Dice's ownership/plans). The commenting functionality very much feels like an add-on (and it is reflected in the UI design as well) - at which point you may as well just run a Wordpress blog with comments or a commercial web discussion plug-in. The commenting functionality needs to be the foundation that the rest of the Slashdot is built on, not the other way around.

    Based on my own experience, I know how these things go and I know that these (and others') comments will be ignored because a lot of effort would have gone into the current Beta site already. Something reasonably functional will eventually emerge, after many iterations and after a lot of effort, but by that time, a lot of users will have been needlessly turned away.

    Death by a thousand cuts is sad :-(

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by j-stroy ( 640921 )
      Respect. Nailed it:
      >The problem though is that the idea behind the new site itself is broken, so whatever is being built is being built on wrong foundations

      /please not a coffin nail
    • by DaTrueDave ( 992134 ) * on Friday February 07, 2014 @11:50PM (#46192909)

      Wonder if an editor will reply to a three digit UID?

      The solution is simple. Dump the beta and tell everyone that any proposed changes will come from the community (NOT "the audience").

      • Fuck this, I've had enough. It's clear the Slashdot has suffered massive and irreparable damage. Can someone give a list of similar sites, I'm ready to walk.
        • by Anonymous Coward

          Icanhazcheezburger looks just like beta.
          Oh you meant similar to classic.
          Nope, there are none.
          Why you think we're mad?

        • by tqk ( 413719 )

          I haven't heard a word about 4chan lately, so maybe it's become interesting and enlightening or something.

    • If I had mod points I would mod you up.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 08, 2014 @12:08AM (#46192989)

      Dice is lying through their teeth to the advertisers they hope to attract to Slashdot:
      Take the tour [] and you'll see how they claim the nerds will stick around and read their ads. They call Beta "newsier" and "nerdier", although they're well aware the nerd "audience" they're selling won't tolerate Beta.
      Advertisers, don't get ripped off! Demand an advertising platform that retains the demographic you want to target!

      • by wjwlsn ( 94460 )

        Interesting. I cruised around the site a little and found this bit about the "psychology" of social engagement. Maybe somebody at Slashdot is using this to try to understand us... so they can design Beta to be more "engaging". If so, I think they've got us figured all wrong. []

        Here's the little comment I left there. (It's still pending... it'll be interesting to see if they actually post it.)

        It's interesting that this includes Slashdot... mostly because any conclusions you might draw from it will be horribly wrong if you're trying to understand the Slashdot community. I think I see now where some of the design imperatives driving the Beta site are coming from, and unfortunately, they might end up driving away all the people that actually create the content.

    • by rossdee ( 243626 )

      Thankyou for your comments

      I have been a reader of slashdot, and reqular commenter for quite a while too. Back then I was online for IRC a lot, tp keep in touch with my girlfriend who was 8000 miles away. (we have been married for 11.5 years now.)
      At the moment I am on medical leave, due to go back to work on the 21th Feb, so I tend to be online more than usual. I don't read slashdot at work, that would be against company policy. (Besides which I don't have time,) I just use my phone to play music.
      For those

    • Old age, time in grade, and time in rank is a mythical way to determine competence.

      I reject this doomsayer readiing of the fate of /.

      You are repeaters of the Doom mantra. I am tired of the whining complaints.

      Do something, and try your best not to resemble the American electorate....whimpering instead of improving and complaining instead of working for effective change.

      I am pretty sure i nailed that landing but i have a bit of charmatic reserve in case i am mistaken!

    • First off I appreciate your comments, wonderful to see a thoughtful and measured response to this whole thing for a change. I've been using the new site for the past few days - at first just trying to sift through the crap, and then getting fed up and downmodding and finally replying to it out of desperation, and through all of it I never witnessed how the commenting/modding system is any more broken that it has ever been. Missing features galore, yes, but fundamentally broken?

      The *only* specific gripe I
      • by deconfliction ( 3458895 ) on Saturday February 08, 2014 @04:15AM (#46193879)

        What has been fundamentally broken in the comment system? Nobody seems to say, they just say it sucks, or is fundamentally broken, or as you say is an add-on, etc.

        I'm not the GP, but I'll answer with the 2 most critical points for me personally.

        1) the fresh user experience involves by default full expansion of 0 and -1 comments. This is pure poison. Much as I laud the side of the debate that paints us commenters as *contributors* rather than just 'audience', the fact is that there are as many poisonous comments as golden ones. Exposing new users to the site to all of those instead of hiding score:0/-1 by default and 1-lining score:1/2 will simply leave new visitors with the wrong impression of the site (IMHO)

        2) for me, the ability to direct link to comments is critical. This seems missing, and as yet I've seen no promise to implement it in beta or keep its aspect of classic around permanently. For instance, I like to share specific comment subthreads, like this one, between myself and active duty US Navy Information Warfare Officer Dave Schroeder from 8 months prior to the Snowden revelations- []

        snippets of context include-

        That's one problem with cyber (Score:5, Insightful)

        Disclaimer: I am a Navy Information Warfare Officer.

        First, it's important to note that the White House didn't confirm the suspected source. It was anonymous officials who said this appeared to originate "from China" -- take that as you will.
        " ...

        A couple of things:

        1. I thought your Google manifesto was very good (I know it's a work in progress).
        2. I think you're reading WAY too much into certain things. ... ... ...

        Back to the other issues. I'm a little disappointed you called so many of my responses straw men; they're not in any respect.

        I have not seen any serious calls for "backdoors" in secure protocols. You're completely misunderstanding what even the FBI wants: you're imagining a scenario where "the Man" has a secret backdoor to any running system, encryption, or secure protocol, anywhere. That is not only false, it actually would be gravely detrimental to our own security: we -- individuals, the civilian sector, the government, the military -- rely on the security of these protocols. It's similar to the belief among some that NSA has a "secret backdoor" ...

        • Also the extremely wide sidebars. How are you supposed to hold a decent conversation when you can only fit a handful of words per line? Your post for example would easily fill a half-dozen pages worth of text..

      • The missing features wouldn't be a big deal if this was an early preview, but they were actually planning to take this thing live.

        And if the wide margins are such an easy fix, then why haven't they fixed it? People have been complaining about this since the beta came out 5 months ago. And I don't mean just posting random comments about how it sucks - a lot of us actually took the time to give specific feedback, but this feedback was completely ignored.

    • by unitron ( 5733 )

      Sir, and/or madam,

      I applaud your comment and would greatly appreciate your consideration of this []

      along with an upvote out of Firehose purgatory if quite convenient.

    • by aliquis ( 678370 )


      They run Slashdot.

      Yet they still haven't figured out we don't even read the summaries.

      Slashdot is all about getting others opinions, wider and more information.

    • This guy wants to start altSlashdot: [] - check his latest comments

      I hope it will have UTF-8 support as well as mathjax - the math rendering engine used on stackexchange []. Imagine how wonderful comments and posts could look like, if people could embed formulas easily!

      Our wiki now collects all the most important ideas: []

      Also you are welcome on IRC ##altslashdot on freenode

      BTW, I haven't changed my sig since 2002, and it will be the sa
  • verdict: GUILTY OF SUCKING

  • by perpetual lurker ( 3529599 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @11:47PM (#46192893)

    I've been reading slashdot for around a decade and have never bothered to create an account let alone comment / moderate, but I did today in order to add one more voice to the chorus of lamentations over the design changes.

    Since finishing my schooling, slashdot has been the place that I come to continue to learn. Slashdot has taught me a history of the internet from the perspective of the people who actually developed it. Slashdot introduced me to linux which I now run exclusively in my house. And it has influenced my thinking on non-technical subjects like civics and law. I visit daily because, despite all the flamewars and occasional shill, uniquely knowledgeable people always have some insights to share.

    Since this site is now facing an identity crisis that threatens to drive away the community that makes it worthwhile I want to share one tidbit that I learned here:

    grok: (verb) to understand so thoroughly that the observer becomes a part of the observed—to merge, blend, intermarry, lose identity in group experience

    I have grokked slashdot. The people pushing the awful beta design clearly have not.

    • If /. were a familiar lover instead of my substitute for one (heh heh),

      I would have sex with her on the back of an angry bear.

      I will not stand idly by and watch her self-induced destruction without intervening.

      I will love her even if she's Dice's whore.

  • by melikamp ( 631205 ) on Friday February 07, 2014 @11:48PM (#46192899) Homepage Journal

    Please post this to new articles if it hasn't been posted yet. (Copy-paste the html from here [] so links don't get mangled!)

    On February 5, 2014, Slashdot announced through a javascript popup that they are starting to "move in to" the new Slashdot Beta design. Slashdot Beta is a trend-following attempt to give Slashdot a fresh look, an approach that has led to less space for text and an abandonment of the traditional Slashdot look. Much worse than that, Slashdot Beta fundamentally breaks the classic Slashdot discussion and moderation system.

    If you haven't seen Slashdot Beta already, open this [] in a new tab. After seeing that, click here [] to return to classic Slashdot.

    We should boycott stories and only discuss the abomination that is Slashdot Beta until Dice abandons the project.
    We should boycott slashdot entirely during the week of Feb 10 to Feb 17 as part of the wider slashcott []

    Moderators - only spend mod points on comments that discuss Beta
    Commentors - only discuss Beta [] - Vote up the Fuck Beta stories

    Keep this up for a few days and we may finally get the PHBs attention.

    -----=====##### LINKS #####=====-----

    Discussion of Beta: []
    Discussion of where to go if Beta goes live: []
    Alternative Slashdot: [] (thanks Okian Warrior (537106) [])

    • by Xacid ( 560407 )

      "Keep this up for a few days and we may finally get the PHBs attention." ...we already got their attention. Why is everyone still beating the dead horse after our concerned have been acknowledged. I'm fairly certain the point has been made - and clearly. Now it's the people doing all the "fuckbeta" nonsense continuously that's pushing me away from this site - not beta itself.

  • by zidium ( 2550286 )

    I have been an active and paying member of Slashdot for the better part of 15 years. I am already mourning its demise, as I view it is on its deathbed in terminal condition.

    Please, please don't make the beta live for everyone, even if there is a (let's face it) temporary classic mode ;(

    This reminds me too much of FastMail's UI disaster of October 31st 2012 :(

  • by Antique Geekmeister ( 740220 ) on Saturday February 08, 2014 @12:13AM (#46193005)

    The unnecessarily complex and excessively indented layout interferes with text->speech tools, and actually reduces legibility for people who heavily expand their screens due to visual problems. The current clean, well ordered, linear layout is easy to use, intuitive, and doesn't insert painful, confusing, or unnecessary complexity. The slashdot readers, and contributors, are here for the stories, not for the exciting newness of the GUI.

    Does anyone know who actually _wrote_, or demanded, the Slashddot Beta? I'd like their names so we can warn our clients and colleagues _against_ their work.

    • by b1ng0 ( 7449 )

      Yes, it was []

  • I didn't rtfa becase....

    beta sucks. Clueless MBAs in tech companies suck. Clueless marketing and sales drones in tech companies suck.

    Get a clue.

    Boycott /. from the 10th to the 17th

Competence, like truth, beauty, and contact lenses, is in the eye of the beholder. -- Dr. Laurence J. Peter