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News Briefs

Bassett lecture postponed due to illness

The John Spencer Bassett Lecture scheduled for Dec. 4 has been postponed until the spring semester because the scheduled speaker, law professor William Van Alstyne, has the flu. A makeup date has not yet been set. The event is part of the University's centennial celebration of the Bassett Affair--a landmark of academic freedom.

Diebold backs down from legal action

Diebold Inc., a company that makes electronic voting machines, has withdrawn threats to take legal action against students who posted internal company memoranda on their colleges' Web servers. The students, among whom is Duke fifth-year computer science graduate student Justin Moore, said the posted documents reveal security weaknesses in Diebold's voting system.

Last week, Diebold decided against pursuing copyright-infringement claims under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. A spokesperson for the company declined to say why the company decided to withdraw its threats, although the company noted in court documents filed last month that pursuing legal action would be "cost prohibitive" and "futile."

Aycock wins Eco-Olympics

The second annual Eco-Olympics--a month-long competition amongst East Campus dormitories to reduce their waste, water usage and energy usage--ended Sunday night. Aycock Dorm won this year's competition with high participation rates in all the Eco-Olympics events and a 38 percent reduction in energy usage in November.

Eco-Olympics organizers said this year's competition was a huge success, with dorms reducing their energy usage by 15 percent and saving $4,320 in utility costs on average. They also reported that 70 percent of East Campus residents participated in at least one Eco-Olympics event.

Menorah ceremony set for Dec. 9

The Hanukkah Menorah Kindling Ceremony will be held in front of the West Campus bus stop at 6:45 p.m. Dec. 9. The event, a project of Chabad of Duke, will feature the lighting of the city's largest Menorah, in addition to music, latkes, gifts and non-sectarian holiday greetings.

Rabbi Zalman Bluming said he hopes for a large crowd at the event, as "the Chanukah holiday is a celebration of religious freedom, and the Menorah is the first beacon against the forces of religious bigotry and persecution."

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