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ChiefOfficers.Net

Some months ago, we produced a series of our views of some of the ways that Formula One could be improved to avoid it becoming a high-speed procession around circuits that are, often, not very interesting from a spectators' point of view. One of those was a system where the fastest drivers were rewarded for being fastest but started at the back. In the past few races, without the incentives, that's what we've seen and yesterday's German Grand Prix demonstrated why it's such an excellent concept, even when the stewards act to spoil it.

Bryan Edwards
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When Drupal 8 was first announced, I installed it and within a couple of hours had given up with it. It was clunky, many of the modules I relied on were not available and may never be but, most of all, it was clear that if I wanted it to do what I wanted it to do I was going to have to relearn programming - which is exactly why we moved to Drupal: I can make Drupal 7 do what I want with minimal digging around under the covers. Three years and many releases later, as the threat of Drupal 7 reaching end of life becomes real, and in the light of some big complex sites we are building, it was time to review D8's progress. I don't just...

Nigel Morris-Co...
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There's bound to be some head-scratching going on after the announcement of a cartel case relating to blood and body tissue. Before the "yuk" factor makes you turn the page, we should explain: it's all about stem cell preservation.

Editorial Staff
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The UK's Information Commissioner's Office has ordered Facebook to pay a penalty (it's not a fine because there has been no criminal prosecution and only the Crown, via the Criminal Courts, can levy fines) of GBP500,000. The amount will not trouble Facebook - it's less than the annual tax the company doesn't pay the UK as a result of its cross-border arrangements. But the principle should send shock waves through the raft of American companies that operate in Europe and think they can do as they please. Four letters are at the heart of the grenade that the ICO just sent across the pond: GDPR. The next fine will hurt - and it will...

Editorial Staff
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Ironically, the new-found press freedoms (which have not been backed by changes in legislation) have demonstrated a problem. The media, which has long had oppressive control foisted on it has learned self-censorship drawn far inside boundaries in countries with greater press freedom. Now the problem is this: domestically trained journos don't know where boundaries should be. So when an application was granted for restrictions on reporting matters subject to charges against former PM Najib Razak, there's mistaken outrage.

Editorial Staff
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Legal professional privilege used to be simple: if a document or thing came to the attention of a lawyer in the course of, or in during preparation for, litigation it was privileged. That was it. Simple, clear and everyone knew where they stood. Then some twit decided to invent "legal advice privilege" which tends to the view that anything said between a lawyer and his client is privileged. Then no one knew where they stood because, in England and Wales and therefore in other jurisdictions following that, behind all of this lay two fundamental principles: a solicitor is an officer of the Court and must not mislead the Court and legal...

Nigel Morris-Co...
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When Australia took action against an internet scammer for sending out notices relating to domains (see here) the effect on those committing similar frauds was... zero.

CoNet Administrator
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One can say many things about the EU but here are two: one it really, really does not understand the internet and how companies operate within it and two it really, really likes simplistic and brutal solutions to complex problems. Perhaps the two things are the same. Article 11 of the Copyright Directive, which a European Committee (the usual handful of grey men in grey suits that were so much a reason for Brexit) has just passed is a perfect example of both. The grey men in grey suits are different depending on the topic. The result is the same: they set law which is rarely subjected to effective review later in the legislative...

Nigel Morris-Co...
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E-mail inboxes have long been plagued with dubious offers to renew domain names or to buy similar names to prevent cybersquatters taking control of them or even for entries into some kind of directory. It's a nuisance but, so far, the perpetrators of the actions have avoided prosecution by a range of sneaky tactics. Australia's Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has obtained orders (not convictions) against two companies and a disqualification order against their principle officer.

Editorial Staff
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In the wider world of financial services, there's a tendency to forget that there are regulators for other areas of commerce, too. In the UK, in accounting, the last stop for action relating to accounting and audit misconduct is the Financial Reporting Council. It's one of those bodies that replaces gravitas with slogans on its website (which is "flashy" but doesn't work properly) but when it gets its teeth into a case, it acts as a proper regulator. It levies only small fines but it's paying more and more attention to the big boys.

Editorial Staff
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