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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 11:47 am 
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There is wide bipartisan unity among the tech-savvy community and industry that SOPA is a very bad thing. You don't have to pick a side of the aisle.


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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 12:19 pm 
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Well, is that where these boards draw the line as far as political debate is concerned--the debate cannot spill over into partisan attacks? My personal objection is not to those who would oppose SOPA, but to the idea that:

1. Large corporations (exactly how large is large is unclear) are evil, and
2. Copyright owners have absolutely no right whatsoever to protect their property

The thing is, if I point that out, the question then becomes: How is this NOT a political debate?

Of course, this "obviously" makes me a member (or ally) of the RIAA, IFPI or some other "Big Brother"-type music industry secret police organization.


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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 1:08 pm 
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Brainiac McGee wrote:
Well, is that where these boards draw the line as far as political debate is concerned--the debate cannot spill over into partisan attacks? My personal objection is not to those who would oppose SOPA, but to the idea that:

1. Large corporations (exactly how large is large is unclear) are evil, and
2. Copyright owners have absolutely no right whatsoever to protect their property

The thing is, if I point that out, the question then becomes: How is this NOT a political debate?

Of course, this "obviously" makes me a member (or ally) of the RIAA, IFPI or some other "Big Brother"-type music industry secret police organization.


The issue is avoiding partisan politics in such a way that can be construed as arguing the beliefs of other. If you can speak in very black and white terms regarding who supports what and in ways very directly related to the entertainment industry that we focus on here, I don't think Linda will have too much of a problem with it. If it begins to become an agenda, it gets more problematic.

In general, politics are a very sensitive subject and I think most of us fully support Linda's desire to avoid political discourse whenever possible.

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 3:57 pm 
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For those unfamiliar with ZD net, they are a large pc magazine company who also has an online presence. I have never seen them get political before. There is apparently serious pushback against SOPA. And from reading this article, it sounds like us citizens may really need the pushback.

ZD Net wrote:


5 reasons why SOPA, PROTECT-IP and other legislative idiocy will never die

By David Gewirtz

There has been some small celebration over the last few days about what appears, at first glance, to be a victory of anti-SOPA activists against the legislative disaster that is the Stop Online Piracy Act:

White House releases statement against SOPA; asks for refined legislation this year — The White House stated, “We must avoid creating new cybersecurity risks or disrupting the underlying architecture of the Internet.”
DNS provision pulled from SOPA, victory for opponents — The bill’s provision to muck with the DNS infrastructure will reportedly be removed.
Geeks 1, Congress 0: Controversial anti-piracy bill SOPA ’shelved’ — Republican leaders report the bill has been put on hold until certain provisions have been changed.

So does this mean our long national nightmare is finally over? Does this mean the Internet is now safe from lawmakers and lobbyists for now and the future? Does this mean we can all rest easy, secure in the knowledge that our own legislators won’t try to destroy the future of digital free speech?

Oh. Hell. No.

Do not let your guard down. This anti-piracy idiocy is too deeply entrenched in the DNA of the entertainment industry to ever (ever!) go away. Let’s go back 30 years, to 1982. Back then the VCR was just about to hit the market.

The MPAA (yes, the very same MPAA we all know and love) fought against the VCR and went so far as to equate it to the Boston strangler in Congressional hearings. No, I’m not making that up. Here’s the statement from the then-head of the MPAA:

I say to you that the VCR is to the American film producer and the American public as the Boston strangler is to the woman home alone.

Seriously. It’s in the Congressional record, hearings before the Subcommittee on Courts, Civil Liberties and the Administration of Justice of the Committee of the Judiciary, House of Representatives, Ninety-seventh Congress, Second Session on H.R. 4783, H.R. 4794 H.R. 4808, H.R. 5250, H.R. 5488, and H.R. 5705, Serial No 97, Part I, Home Recording of Copyrighted Works, April 12, 1982. Crazy, no?

Now, as we all well know, the video rental business boomed, movie makers made tons of money, consumers got to watch movies on their own schedule, and the VCR did not strangle the film industry.

And yet, the entertainment industry is still trying to strangle us.

SOPA and PROTECT-IP are only the latest attempts, and even if the fuss we all make scares them away, mark my words, something similar will be back.

First, let’s be aware that market forces can be a bitch if you’re on the wrong end of them. If those market forces are consumer behavior, then it’s even worse. Given that, there are five factors involved that have absolutely nothing to do with our freedoms and everything to do with greed and politics.

Here then are 5 reasons why SOPA, PROTECT-IP and other legislative anti-piracy idiocy will never die:

Reason #1: You can’t actually compete against consumer behavior.

All you can do is get laws passed to force or block consumer behavior. In other words, to get your way, you have to criminalize the customers you were otherwise going to lose.

Reason #2: Fear sells.

When industry executives are afraid, they tend to fund hit men who promise to make the problem go away. In this case, the hit men are the lawyers and lobbyists in the entertainment industry.

Reason #3: There’s a lot of money to be made from fear.

The lawyers and lobbyists have the potential to make a ton of money off of fearful entertainment industry executives. Plus, if they can show these same executives how they can become potentially self-sustaining, they can make even more money. This is why the RIAA has spent years suing grandmothers and college students for downloading music off the Internet. It was a profit center.

Since using digital media has such an impact on all aspects of the entertainment industry, lawyers and lobbyists have a never-ending gig filing lawsuits and trying to convince politicians to betray their constituencies (and the Constitution). These lobbying gigs pay very, very well, ranging from a few hundred thousand dollars a year, up to tens of millions of dollars.

Reason #4: Politicians need lobbyists.

Politicians need to get re-elected. To do so costs a huge amount of money. Back in 2007, Senator Dick Durban wrote that the average spent on a given high-profile Senate race was $34 million. That’s a lot of money.

Where do politicians get their money? Donations. And donations come from lots of interests, large and small. Hillary Clinton raised $41 million when she ran for Senate.

As you might imagine, when lobbyists represent huge collections of interests, and those interests have a truckload of potential contributions, politicians listen to lobbyists.

Reason #5: Lobbyists have a disproportionate influence on politicians.

Where do old politicians go to die? Some teach. Some just hide from public life. But many, many of them go to lobbying firms, and then turn back around and pitch their old buddies on whatever issue they’re currently hawking.

That’s what Chris Dodd is doing. As I discussed a few weeks ago, former Senator Chris Dodd (who swore he’d never take money from lobbyists) is now the CEO of the MPAA. He’s selling out America for a $1.5 million base salary and a $100 million lobbying budget. You can influence a lot of politicians with a $100 million lobbying budget.

See also: Everything that’s wrong about politics: latest SOPA and PROTECT-IP outrage
http://www.zdnet.com/blog/government/ev ... rage/11041

See also: SOPA: So how much does it cost to buy off America’s Internet freedom?
http://www.zdnet.com/blog/government/ev ... rage/11041

So, between the money and influence coming in the door via lobbying firms, and the fact that many of their friends are working for lobbyists, politicians tend to do what lobbyists want them to do.

Add it up

That’s why I contend that this legislative anti-piracy idiocy will never die. The motivators are virtually unstoppable:

You can’t really compete against consumer behavior.
Fear sells.
There’s a lot of money to be made from fear.
Politicians need lobbyists.
Lobbyists have a disproportionate influence on politicians.

So there you go. No matter how many times we push back on legislative heinousness, it will come back and it will keep coming back.

That doesn’t mean we should all give up and give in. But what it does mean is you can’t give up and you can’t let your guard down.

As soon — as soon — as we take our eye off the ball, these suckers are going to be in there, doing their absolute best to take our freedoms away and sell us out to a bunch of short-sighted lawyers and former politicians hell-bent on lining their pockets with the shredded remains of our cherished Constitution.

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 4:03 pm 
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Sans wrote:
--White House Opposes DNS Manipulation Provisions in SOPA and PIPA;
SOPA Now Stalled
(January 14, 2012)
The Obama administration has spoken out against certain provisions in
the anti-piracy bills that are currently generating controversy in the
House and Senate. The White House said that "proposed laws must not
tamper with the technical architecture of the Internet through
manipulation of the Domain Name System (DNS)." The White House did not
touch on other issues raised in the bills, such as granting the US
government the authority to bring lawsuits against websites and obtain
court orders requiring search engines to exclude links to the offending
websites in their results. Representative Lamar Smith (R-Texas), chief
sponsor of SOPA, has removed the DNS altering provision from that bill.
Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) has removed a similar provision from
PIPA.
http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/0 ... ing-bills/
http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/0 ... provision/
Late breaking news: SOPA appears to be stalled in the US House of
Representatives. Representative Darrell Issa (R-California), an opponent
of the proposed legislation, said that House Majority Leader Eric Cantor
(R-Virginia) has said that he will not bring SOPA to the floor without
a consensus.
http://www.pcworld.com/article/248240/o ... gress.html
http://www.zdnet.com/blog/networking/sopa-derailed/1897
http://www.siliconrepublic.com/new-medi ... sopa-gets/
The link to the Whitehouse statement is at;

https://wwws.whitehouse.gov/petition-to ... e-internet

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 4:16 pm 
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Quote:
"Let’s go back 30 years, to 1982. Back then the VCR was just about to hit the market."

Oh. Hell. No. Betamax hit the US market in 1975, VHS shortly after. What else did this article get wrong?

More to the point--for all of it's decades of lobbying, exactly what does the MPAA and RIAA have to show for its efforts? Oh, that's right--the FBI warning at the beginning of every home video. My bad. Those are some Gestapo tactics right there.

Quote:
There’s a lot of money to be made from fear

No shit. You think that there aren't lawyers out there making the big bucks fighting SOPA--funded by people and companies whipped into a frenzy by this whole Chicken Little routine?


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IMWAN Mod
 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 4:24 pm 
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Wikipedia and Reddit - two of the heaviest traffic sites online - both plan to go dark for a day in protest of SOPA. It's a very big deal. Acting as if the poor put upon RIAA/MPAA are some sort of victim is a bit silly. Their heavy-handed approach to alienating their customer base in fruitless efforts to combat piracy is nuts. And now they are attempting to make the US the world police of piracy. SOPA doesn't just affect those of us in the US. Instead of bashing the detractors of SOPA as leftists, how about actually looking into it?


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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 4:31 pm 
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AMW, did some steal the copyright on one of your books at one time? You seem to have very intense feelings about this.

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 5:08 pm 
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I have intense feelings? All of these blogs and all of this high drama about this epic battle between good and evil going on in the halls of Congress trying to whip everybody in his brother up into a frenzy and I'm the one with intense feelings? I have intense feelings of annoyance at anybody who tries to sway me intellectually with all of this incredibly neurotict drama in the name of--pointing fingers at the MPAA and RIAA and accusing them of overwrought hyperpole.

I simply ask the same question that I've been asking when this was all being blamed on the right-wing: Exactly what do you expect the MPAA and the RIAA to do? Because I have a hunch the answer is: They're evil and they have enough money and they have no right to protect their property because they're evil and they have enough money.


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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:37 pm 
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Thanks for helping my point.

And it's only very recently (THIS WEEK) that people started blaming it more on the right pols. Until recently, many pols on the left were just as guilty (and they still are).

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 7:22 pm 
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Geff R. wrote:
Thanks for helping my point.

And it's only very recently (THIS WEEK) that people started blaming it more on the right pols. Until recently, many pols on the left were just as guilty (and they still are).

How did I help your point?


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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 9:12 pm 
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Quote:
MPAA slams SOPA Wednesday protests

As a number of major web sites and even some online games plan to shut down operations for at least part of the day on Wednesday to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act, their actions drawing some heavy criticism from Chris Todd, the current chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America (and a former US Senator). He issued a statement today that called the protests mere "stunts," saying:

Quote:
Only days after the White House and chief sponsors of the legislation responded to the major concern expressed by opponents and then called for all parties to work cooperatively together, some technology business interests are resorting to stunts that punish their users or turn them into their corporate pawns, rather than coming to the table to find solutions to a problem that all now seem to agree is very real and damaging.

It is an irresponsible response and a disservice to people who rely on them for information and use their services. It is also an abuse of power given the freedoms these companies enjoy in the marketplace today. It’s a dangerous and troubling development when the platforms that serve as gateways to information intentionally skew the facts to incite their users in order to further their corporate interests.

A so-called “blackout” is yet another gimmick, albeit a dangerous one, designed to punish elected and administration officials who are working diligently to protect American jobs from foreign criminals. It is our hope that the White House and the Congress will call on those who intend to stage this “blackout” to stop the hyperbole and PR stunts and engage in meaningful efforts to combat piracy.

Web sites such as Reddit, Wikipedia, Minecraft.net and many others have pledged to shut down their sites on Wednesday. Another popular PC gaming news site, Rock Paper Shotgun, announced today their own plans to shut down their site on Wednesday. Other companies such as Google also plan to join the protest in some way but won't actually be shutting off their sites.

http://www.neowin.net/news/mpaa-slams-s ... y-protests

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 9:36 pm 
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Google would lose too much money. Too bad. Them shutting down for 1 day would really be noticed.

BTW, that's Christopher Dodd, not Todd!

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 11:28 pm 
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Ground zero for Wednesday's anti Sopa blackout:

http://americancensorship.org/?action_c ... yP_ezD_-gY

My website has partially joined. As I just released a new newsletter, I don't feel I can totally black out the site at this time.

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 9:23 am 
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Google has a petition and awareness page up.

https://www.google.com/landing/takeaction/


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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 7:57 pm 
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Turns out Wikipedia did kind of a lame job. If you are using Firefox with No Script, Wiki's blackout only works if you allow java script through No Script..........

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 5:07 pm 
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Interesting timing, coming the day after the SOPA/PIPA protests.

Feds Shutter Megaupload, Arrest Executives

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 5:19 pm 
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Wow. They are apparently getting serious.

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 5:34 pm 
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Wow indeed. Especially since there are a lot of perfectly legit files on megaupload. You'd think they just caught a massive child slavery ring. What should have happened is cease and desist letters, and files violating copyright should have been taken down on a case by case basis.

(Hyperbole alert!) If this sort of thing keeps up, they'll manage to kill innovation and the internet as a whole without bothering with SOPA or PIPA. Google returns search results for illegal materials? Arrest them!


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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 5:42 pm 
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And we supposedly have a "liberal" gvt in power. Yeah, right.

Sounds like SOPA is a 2 headed monster: shut down all the US sites, & then block dns to the off shore.

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 5:47 pm 
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Yep, and all the execs were arrested outside of the US apparently.

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 Post subject: Copyright legal issues in the news
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 6:01 pm 
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So basically, this shows that they really don't need SOPA or PIPA to enforce piracy laws....they can just do whatever they want, in any country they want?


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