A Look At The Technologies & Industries Senators Leahy & Hatch Would Have Banned In The Past

from the dedicated-to-infringing-activities dept

The more I look at the "Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act," (COICA) bill proposed by Senators Patrick Leahy and Orrin Hatch (and co-sponsored by Sens. Herb Kohl, Arlen Specter, Charles Schumer, Dick Durbin, Sheldon Whitehouse, Amy Klobuchar, Evan Bayh and George Voinovich) the worse it looks. The idea behind the bill is to give the Justice Department the ability to avoid due process in shutting down or blocking access to sites deemed "dedicated to infringing activities."

With such a broad definition of offerings dedicated to infringing activities, I thought it might be worth running through a list of technologies that and services that were all deemed "dedicated to infringing activities" in their early days, to give you a sense of what these Senators would have banned in the past with such a law:
  • Hollywood itself: The history of Hollywood is that it was set up on the west coast in order to avoid Thomas Edison's attempt to control the movie making business with various patents. Hollywood was very much an entire industry dedicated to infringing activities in its early years.
  • The recording industry: The origins of modern copyright law in the US came out of fears by musicians that the concept of any kind of automatic playing or "recorded" music would destroy the market for real live musicians. The fear of the player piano was a big, big issue in the early days, with sheet music producers claiming that piano rolls were infringing. So, the early parts of the recording industry were very much "dedicated to infringing activities."
  • Radio: When radio first came about, it too was "dedicated to infringing activities." That's because it played music on the radio without paying.
  • Cable TV: The very early days of cable TV involved the cable companies offering network television without paying for -- and, even worse, they were charging customers for access to others' content. The very core of the original cable TV system was "dedicated to infringing activities." Charlton Heston denounced cable as "depriving actors of compensation."
  • Photocopying machines: When the Xerox machine came on the scene in the late 1950s, it freaked out the publishing industry who denounced it as being dedicated to infringing activities. Just as the 1909 Copyright Act was mainly a response to misguided fears of the player piano, some say the 1976 Copyright Act was in response to the Xerox machine. Some of the modern concepts around fair use came about due to lawsuits from publishers claiming that the photocopier was, in fact, dedicated to infringing activities.
  • The VCR: By this point, you should know the famous Jack Valenti quote: "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." Yup. Dedicated to infringing activity.
  • Cassette tapes: "Home taping is killing music." Need I say more?
  • The MP3 player: Remember the RIAA's lawsuit against the Diamond Rio? They declared that such a device "stymies the market for . . . works and frustrates the development of legitimate digitally downloadable music." So, that iPod? Yes, it, too, was dedicated to infringing activity.
  • The DVR: In 2001, a bunch of TV companies sued, claiming that the Replay TV DVR was an "unlawful scheme" that "attacks the fundamental economic underpinnings of free television and basic nonbroadcast services"
Notice a pattern yet? All sorts of new technologies tend to be berated and condemned as "dedicated to infringing activity," by legacy content industries when those new offerings first come along. It's only later on, when the industry learns to use those new tools of creating, recording, reproducing, performing, distributing, sharing and promoting that they realize those tools turned out to be quite useful in expanding, rather than shrinking, the industry.

Yet, here we are, with the list of Senators above, effectively looking to not allow that evolution to happen at all. They won't even give these new tools a fair trial (which, at the very least, was afforded to many of the tools in this list). Instead, they want to let the Justice Department (which, again, employs many former lawyers of the legacy industries) to simply put together a list of tools they believe infringe and to avoid due process in getting those tools effectively banned. The people making this list are not visionaries. They don't see how these tools can be quite useful to content creators. They're anti-visionaries. They only see how the new tools change the rules for the legacy industry. Do we really want anti-visionaries outlawing the next movie industry? Or the next VCR? Or the next iPod?


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 10:25am

    Heh.

    When anyone bitches about 'music piracy' my response is usually, "There is no music. Home taping killed it.'

     

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    Jay (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 10:28am

    The more you look at the bill...?

    "The more I look at the "Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act," (COICA) bill proposed by Senators Patrick Leahy and Orrin Hatch (and co-sponsored by Sens. Herb Kohl, Arlen Specter, Charles Schumer, Dick Durbin, Sheldon Whitehouse, Amy Klobuchar, Evan Bayh and George Voinovich)."

    That entire first sentence needs work...

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 10:32am

    If it was up to these people, we would still be stuck in the stone age, wondering if we should move on and invent the alphabet, or if that would be a tool for infringement.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 10:43am

    As always in congress, this act is too little, too late. Think of all the telephone switchboard operator jobs that could have been saved!

     

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    Another User, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 10:49am

    Congress: The opposite of progress.

     

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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 10:53am

    Re: Alphabits

    That's a silly question! The alphabet, and really any general education of any sort has all been used for infringement. The only way to solve this infringement problem is to start with lobotomies on all humans at birth and have all children raised as obedient slaves by well-programmed robots.

     

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    Daddy Warbucks, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:02am

    Series of Tubes

    These guys are just "out of touch" old.

     

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    Some Aussie, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:06am

    Re: Re: Alphabits

    But I bet the robot designs and programming will also have infringed by the time that becomes a reality.

    So we are doomed forever to be controlled by infringing robots, starting the mess all over again, as they too attempt to create robots to control them so they don't infringe..

     

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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:12am

    Re: Re: Re: Alphabits

    Yep. A sad, sad vicious cycle.

     

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    Rikuo (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:12am

    Re: The more you look at the bill...? @#2

    That sentence is all right. In your quote above, the sentence is grammatically incorrect, because you left out "the worse it looks", at the very end.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:22am

    Re: Re: The more you look at the bill...? @#2

    Uhh, yes, that's because the part "at the very end" was added later.

     

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    Ccomp5950 (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:23am

    Re: The more you look at the bill...?

    You are right, they should all be voted out.

    lets get started on that and remove that whole "Sens." part out of that sentance.

     

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    Berenerd (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:27am

    Add bittorrent to that...

    and any FTP program...CD burners of any kind, disk storage....I mean seriously, Pencil and paper? Thats SO OBVIOUSLY for the purpose of infringement.

     

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    Danny, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:27am

    Re:

    LOL!!

    Nice.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:28am

    To suggest this is all about banning "tools" is in my view plainly off the mark.

    Is BT a "tool"? Yes. Is a torrent site a "search engine"? Yes. Is this about banning either? Emphatically, No!

    I express no opinion on the proposed legislation itself, but having read the proposal there is nothing within its metes and bounds that bans anything one can even remotely refer to as "tools" when such "tools" are being employed in a lawful manner. BT is not being declared illegal. Torrent sites are not being declared illegal.

    What the poposed legislation does attempt to do is to identify certain sites that exist for no realistic purpose other than to actively facilitate the intentional infringement of works protected under copyright law.

    The casual use of words and phrases like "censorship" and "due process" miss the point. It is not censorship or the denial of due process to utilize a legislative approach such as this to hold accountable those who choose to directly or indirectly infringe copyrights.

    In rem actions have long been established as a legitimate means by which to facilitate compliance with our laws, so the proposed approach is hardly unprecedented.

    There are many who post articles and comments on this site who proclaim that they do not support the illegal download and upload of works preserved by copyright law. If what they proclaim is truly heartfelt, then it seems to me that they should be engaged in a discussion about how to stop the "bad actors" who give BT and torrent sites a bad name, while at the same time encouraging the use of these "tools" such that their potential to do good is realized.

     

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    Hulser (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:56am

    Re:

    What the poposed legislation does attempt to do is to identify certain sites that exist for no realistic purpose other than to actively facilitate the intentional infringement of works protected under copyright law.

    The (huge) problem with this statement is that the definition of this "realistic purpose" is subjective and would be left in the hands of people who have a history of abusing power. The simplest way to prevent government from abusing power isn't to ensure proper safeguards, but to not give them the power in the first place.

    There are many who post articles and comments on this site who proclaim that they do not support the illegal download and upload of works preserved by copyright law. If what they proclaim is truly heartfelt, then it seems to me that they should be engaged in a discussion about how to stop the "bad actors"

    You're missing the point. This is not a discussion that is totally within the realms of copyright infringement. It also encompasses freedom of speech and censorship which (by far) trumps any IP issues.

     

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    CommonSense (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:57am

    Re:

    "What the proposed legislation does attempt to do is to identify certain sites that exist for no realistic purpose other than to actively facilitate the intentional infringement of works protected under copyright law."

    Nice try, but I think you're pretty transparent...

    It's been made clear that this legislation isn't about identifying anything, but about creating a vague, broad, general definition that can be bent at will to apply in a very large number of cases to be determined at the necessary time, depending on how much money is coming in from where.

    The Pirate Bay fits both your definitions of a torrent search site that is legitimate, as well as the illegal infringing site, depending on who you ask. Which answer is right?? To me, it is a search site that is perfectly legitimate. To Hollywood, it's the epitome of evil. To the government, Hollywood is right because they have more money than me.

    You are naive and/or ignorant if you don't think this act is a huge step in the wrong direction.

     

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    jupiterkansas (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:58am

    tip of the iceberg?

    A nice list of technologies that succeeded DESPITE efforts to stop them in their infancy. Makes you wonder what technologies have actually been stifled by litigation, legislation, and patents.

     

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    cm6029 (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:00pm

    Re:

    ...or buggy whip manufacturers. Lets just get rid of cars and bring back the horse. Surely the car has caused massive disruption to some 'special' segment that needs protection.

    Infact, lets just outlaw progress and invention itself.

     

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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:02pm

    Re:

    For some reason, after reading this AC the main thing to come to mind is the little old lady in Hot Fuzz saying "Fascist".

    You can take your government surveillance wants and shove them up your rear. I prefer my America to be free and fair and balanced. I know people like you are working constantly to destroy what America was founded for, but I will continue to fight you every step of the way.

     

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    Michael Rohde, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:05pm

    Re:

    "Torrent sites are not being declared illegal."

    Didn't the owners for the torrent site , "The Pirate Bay", go under a lot of lawsuits in the last few years?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:09pm

    Re:

    What the poposed legislation does attempt to do is to identify certain sites that exist for no realistic purpose other than to actively facilitate the intentional infringement of works protected under copyright law.

    Like Wikileaks?

     

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    Jay (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:09pm

    Re: tip of the iceberg?

    By that same token, look at the "innovations" that were destroyed because the industry got a hold of them (Sony's mini-disk player)

     

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    cm6029 (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:11pm

    Along with the announcement today of the Obama administration's plans to force a massive change on the core fabric of the internet itself (mandating a 'back door' in all web based communications) this is yet another indication where we are all headed. I was at first concerned when Dubai and Saudi Arabia announced plans to block Blackberry traffic unless they were given a way of eavesdropping on every email. Sure, you would expect that from regimes where individual liberties are subjective at best. But now, it looks like this is the new norm for all of us. Depressing.

     

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    Hulser (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:11pm

    Re: Re:

    If what they proclaim is truly heartfelt, then it seems to me that they should be engaged in a discussion about how to stop the "bad actors"

    Oh, and BTW, you don't have to read TechDirt more than a few days to see that one of the common themes is that if you're asking how to "stop the bad actors", you're not asking the right question. That misguided mindset is the very foundation of the disconnect between the big media companies and the technical and economic realities of today. You...can't...stop...piracy. No matter what you do. So, instead of spending all of your time trying to "stop the bad actors", you should be trying to figure out how to make money given that there's this thing called "The Internet" which isn't going away any time soon.

     

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    Michael Schweighardt, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:13pm

    Digital Audio Tape

    In your list, don't forget Digital Audio Tape. In this case, they succeeded, in that they were able to enforce a crippling of the technology, and it never took off in the United States.

     

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    Fernando, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:16pm

    bs re Hollywood

    The movie industry moved to Hollywood, not to distance themselves from Edison but to go where the daylight was three times as strong as in the northeast. That let them use faster shutter speeds.

     

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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:16pm

    Re:

    Zip up your fly! Your logical fallacies are showing.
    "...when such "tools" are being employed in a lawful manner."
    Thus, whichever body gets to make ad-hoc, biased judgments about which tools are meritorious has supreme power over who can and cannot use any "tool."

    (And I mean 'tool' as in 'you're a tool' because ad hominem fallacies are fun, and anybody named anonymous coward is worthy of ridicule.)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:20pm

    Re: Re:

    Under the terms of the proposed legislation the responsibility for defining terms would ultimately rest with the federal judiciary, and not the Department of Justice.

     

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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:26pm

    Re: bs re Hollywood

    In 1908, Edison started the Motion Picture Patents Company, which was a conglomerate of nine major film studios (commonly known as the Edison Trust). Thomas Edison was the first honorary fellow of the Acoustical Society of America, which was founded in 1929.

    Many independent filmmakers, who controlled from one-quarter to one-third of the domestic marketplace, responded to the creation of the MPPC by moving their operations to Hollywood, whose distance from Edison's home base of New Jersey made it more difficult for the MPPC to enforce its patents.[6] The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which is headquartered in San Francisco, California, and covers the area, was averse to enforcing patent claims.[citation needed] Southern California was also chosen because of its beautiful year-round weather and varied countryside, which could stand in for deserts, jungles and great mountains.
    --Source: Wikipedia.
    Kindly do at least the barest hint of research before opening your ignorant pie-hole.

     

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    Dilbert, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:27pm

    Re: Re: Alphabits

    That robot programming code is pirated!

     

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    Bob Bobberstein, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:29pm

    Re:

    the alphabet was a tool for infringement. It allowed someone to take the verbal communications of a person and place them done in a manner that others could read those ideas/stories/figures without paying someone to tell it to them in person.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:29pm

    Re: Re:

    To suggest that TPB is a search site that is perfectly legitimate is to fail to distinguish between what it could be doing and what it is doing.

    It is a "tool" that is suitable for a substantial non-infringing use. Unfortunately, it chooses to use that "tool" otherwise.

     

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    jupiterkansas (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:32pm

    Re: bs re Hollywood

    That but mainly avoid Edison's patents: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motion_Picture_Patents_Company#Backlash_and_Decline

    It's also interesting to note that the budding film industry was about the same age as the internet is now, if you consider that today's mainstream internet started around 1996.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:36pm

    Re: Re:

    And the "fairness" associated with the unauthorized taking of an author's work is....?

    BTW, I have never heard of a country named "America". I presume you meant to say "United States of America".

     

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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:38pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Every link on TPB is posted by its users--not those persons who run the site.

    Are you saying non-United States based websites should be bereft of the Section 230 DMCA protections that US based websites get?

    In case you're unfamiliar with Section 230, it goes something like this: If some idiot puts an add for illegal services in the newspapers, prosecute the idiot, not the newspaper.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:39pm

    Re: Re:

    Actually, I can think of no reasonable construction of the proposed legislation that would subject Wikileaks to its terms. I can think of other federal laws that may be relevant, but if this legislation passed it would not be pertinent to that site.

     

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    Mike Masnick (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:40pm

    Re:

    To suggest this is all about banning "tools" is in my view plainly off the mark.


    To suggest that this is not about banning tools is in my view plainly off the mark.

    Is BT a "tool"? Yes. Is a torrent site a "search engine"? Yes. Is this about banning either? Emphatically, No!


    Based on what? It seems quite clear that this is very much about banning such tools?

    I express no opinion on the proposed legislation itself,

    Other than that you did.

    but having read the proposal there is nothing within its metes and bounds that bans anything one can even remotely refer to as "tools" when such "tools" are being employed in a lawful manner.

    Again, all of the tools above were deemed as not being employed in a lawful manner. Were you in favor of baning them all?

    What the poposed legislation does attempt to do is to identify certain sites that exist for no realistic purpose other than to actively facilitate the intentional infringement of works protected under copyright law.

    Right. Like Hollywood, radio, cable television, the photocopier, the Diamond Rio, YouTube and countless others. My point exactly.

    The casual use of words and phrases like "censorship" and "due process" miss the point.

    The use of those words is not casual at all. I don't trot them out lightly. But when US officials propose laws to censor the internet without due process, it does seem worth pointing that out.

    It is not censorship or the denial of due process to utilize a legislative approach such as this to hold accountable those who choose to directly or indirectly infringe copyrights.

    Yes, like the makers of photocopiers. And the makers of the iPod. Right?

    And, yes, it is both censorship (blocking websites from access is absolutely censorship) and it is denial of due process in that no trial is held. It's worse with the secondary list from the Justice Dept that requires no judicial oversight despite your comments. Why would you ignore that? I have no idea.

    In rem actions have long been established as a legitimate means by which to facilitate compliance with our laws, so the proposed approach is hardly unprecedented.

    And would you have approved of them to block cable television? I'm assuming that you have no cable television, have never used a photocopier, don't have an MP3 player and have never listened to the radio. Right? Otherwise, you're supporting these technologies you think should have been banned.

    There are many who post articles and comments on this site who proclaim that they do not support the illegal download and upload of works preserved by copyright law. If what they proclaim is truly heartfelt, then it seems to me that they should be engaged in a discussion about how to stop the "bad actors" who give BT and torrent sites a bad name, while at the same time encouraging the use of these "tools" such that their potential to do good is realized.

    You know how you "stop bad actors"? You start realizing they're not "bad actors." Notice the key theme of all the tools listed above? Once it was figured out how to use those tools well, they became integral parts of the industry.

     

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    Hulser (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:42pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Under the terms of the proposed legislation the responsibility for defining terms would ultimately rest with the federal judiciary, and not the Department of Justice.

    You misunderstand me. By "people who have a history of abusing power", I didn't mean the DoJ, or even the legislative branch, but any arm of government. The DoJ doesn't have a monopoly of twisting laws to suit their own needs. The government shouldn't have the power to censor a web site, a book, or a person standing on a soap box in the town square. Of course there are rare cases where speech is restricted, but protecting a business model falls way short of these cases.

     

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    JEDIDIAH, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:42pm

    It's not just a good idea, it's the law.

    > The casual use of words and phrases like "censorship" and
    > "due process" miss the point. It is not censorship or the
    > denial of due process to utilize a legislative approach
    > such as this to hold accountable those who choose to
    > directly or indirectly infringe copyrights.

    It's really quite simple. Either there is some due process involved in depriving me of my rights or not. The former is clearly tyranny as defined by the US founding fathers.

    Eroding due process erodes the rule of law.

    Concepts that serve to limit the power of government and protect the rights of individuals aren't just subversive liberal ideas meant to coddle criminals. They are in fact the law. They are no less the law than the statutes against burglary and murder.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:45pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    There is no aspect of potential human conduct that any law can ever prevent. All the law can do is no more than impose sanctions for such conduct.

     

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    Hulser (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:55pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    And the "fairness" associated with the unauthorized taking of an author's work is....?

    As my mother used to say, "Who said life was fair?" The purpose of copyright law is to "promote the progress", not to gaurantee riches to an author. If, in trying to guarantee fairness for content creators, free speech is trampled on, free speech wins every time.

    BTW, I have never heard of a country named "America". I presume you meant to say "United States of America".

    Oh, please. Maybe there are other countries in the Americas who actually have the word "America" in their name, but I can't think of any. We don't say "America" because we think we're awesome or that we don't know there are geographic regions with the word "America" in them; we say America for the simple reason that it's shorter than saying "United States of America". Lighten up, Francis.

     

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    Karl (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:55pm

    Re: Tool

    Not that you're anything but a troll, but I'll bite...

    Is BT a "tool"? Yes. Is a torrent site a "search engine"? Yes. Is this about banning either? Emphatically, No!

    Since nobody suggested that the bill would outlaw the technology itself, this would be what is called a "straw man."

    What the poposed legislation does attempt to do is to identify certain sites that exist for no realistic purpose other than to actively facilitate the intentional infringement of works protected under copyright law.

    First of all, it's not about "identifying" them, it's about banning them.

    And I would like you to identify even one website that says "We only host infringing material - legitimate content is not welcome!"

    The casual use of words and phrases like "censorship" and "due process" miss the point. It is not censorship or the denial of due process to utilize a legislative approach such as this to hold accountable those who choose to directly or indirectly infringe copyrights.

    Phrases like "censorship" and "due process" are entirely the point. If your website is banned nationwide, merely becuase the Justice Department says it's "infringing" - without requiring any proof, or even evidence - then it's a violation of due process. And there have been a number of stories on Techdirt recently about "rights holders" using copyright law to enact outright censorship.

    it seems to me that they should be engaged in a discussion about how to stop the "bad actors" who give BT and torrent sites a bad name, while at the same time encouraging the use of these "tools" such that their potential to do good is realized.

    The entire problem is that in order to do the former, you'll have to do away with the latter.

    Here is the basic truth that you are not getting: There is no such thing as a "pirate" website.

    Every single website that can be used for infringement, is also a tool that artists and content creators can use legitimately. There have been numerous stories here about bands who have released their albums on The Pirate Bay, for instance. And one of the sites that was recently prosecuted by Homeland Security was in the process of "crowdsourcing" funding for indie films.

    This may not be about banning P2P technology outright; but it absolutely is about banning tools that can be employed in a lawful manner.

     

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  44.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 12:57pm

    Re: Re: tip of the iceberg?

    DAT tape is another good example of this.

     

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  45.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:01pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There is nothing within the metes and bounds of copyright law that provides a rights holder with anything other than an opportunity to be renumerated. The same can be said with equal force of patent law.

     

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  46.  
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    Hulser (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:06pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There is no aspect of potential human conduct that any law can ever prevent. All the law can do is no more than impose sanctions for such conduct.

    Your post appears to acknowledge the inherent conflict between human nature and law, yet overlooks that this is the very reason to be concerned over an abridgement of free speech to save a business model.

     

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  47.  
    identicon
    Darmuk, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:10pm

    ALL PROGRESS INFRINGES ON PREVIOUS WORKS...

    And I think it is proper to use this quote...
    "If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."
    Isaac Newton, Letter to Robert Hooke, February 5, 1675

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:10pm

    The problem is the cost of media.

    Assuming a 5MB filesize for the average MP3, roughly 200 per GB (depending on binary/decimal giga). That means the 32GB SD card in my droid, which I paid like $80 for, would cost $6000 to fill up with music at current "legal" rates. This is music I listen to while exercising, walk around town, and toss on as background noise when I have company over or am doing things at home.

    I have NO desire to really just "listen" to an album. I want to hit shuffle and not hear the same stuff played again for a long, long time.

    Also I want to watch shows, which are (for the most part) broadcast on the air freely. I don't want to dick around with an antenna, constantly turning it since I live downtown with lots of multi-path. I don't want to put my life on hold to watch a show I like at the hour some media bigwig decides. I'm not paying $1-2 per hour to watch a show that had already been "given" to me freely, over the public broadcast system.

    I would be happy to pay $20 a month for unlimited TV and music, if such a thing existed. At my current rates of consumption and current pricing, I'd end up spending $1,000 a month or more just to have "background" crap on and watch the occasional show. Assuming half the households in the U.S. paid $20 a month, the entertainment industry would take in 1 BILLION a month...That doesn't include whatever revenue could be had from any other means, box set sales, broadcast tv ads, etc etc.

    It's your basic Robin Hood mentality, and it will stay that way until prices reflect the value people actually get from the product.

     

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  49.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:10pm

    Re: Re: Tool

    "Not that you're anything but a troll, but I'll bite..."

    One is not a "troll" merely because an opinion is expressed with which you may happen to disagree.

    Importantly, I am not expressing any opinion on the wisdom or lack thereof concerning the proposal before the Senate.

     

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  50.  
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    Adelie, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:10pm

    Re: tip of the iceberg?

    One reason the battery technology in today's electric vehicles suck is because Texaco (an oil company) bought the patent for the sole purpose that no one else can make them. So for now we buy more oil.

     

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  51.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:12pm

    Re:

    Thanks for clearing that up Orrin.

     

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  52.  
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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:16pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Well said, in both parts of the response.

    The whole American vs USA part did seem very petty, even for an AC.

     

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  53.  
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    Hulser (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:17pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Actually, I can think of no reasonable construction of the proposed legislation

    Gah! Don't you get it? We're not talking about reason here. We're talking about a law that could unreasonably subject web sites, like Wikileaks, to its terms. Is it "reasonable" that the DMCA is being used to prevent third-party companies from refilling ink cartiges? Are all the other inumerable abuses of IP laws chronicled here at TechDirt "reasonable"? Of course not. That's one of the reasons that TechDirt exists, to decry the abuse of existing IP laws. We already have enough bad IP laws. There's no need to add another one.

     

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  54.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Tool

    "Importantly, I am not expressing any opinion on the wisdom or lack thereof concerning the proposal before the Senate."

    It's amusing how obviously you lie.

     

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  55.  
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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:20pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Fair involves the court systems. That is what makes me think of you as a fascist. You want to remove due process because a couple people break the law and you are too damn lazy to actually track them down. Fucking deal with it and use the technology at hand. Just because some people break the laws gives you zero right to trample on the public's freedoms and tools that many artists use for good and to their advantage.

    Then again, that is mostly what this is really about isn't it? Preventing startups and competition that will make you actually have to work for a living. Sounds like fascism with where this is heading.

     

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  56.  
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    Darrin, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:27pm

    Your list is a little odd

    There are a few things on the list that don't quite fit with the rest of the article. For example, initially, radio was infringing on artists' IP. Their songs were being broadcast without compensation. Eventually, the solution turned out to be licensing. But they were absolutely correct that their rights were being infringed. It's the same with sites that post illegal copies of movies and songs. There is a legitimate complaint that artists (and other types of IP creators) need some protection from the more blatant violators.

    That's a completely different argument than "technology X causes infringement and has no legitimate uses." But you seem to be conflating the 2 in this article. There's plenty you can do with radio, the internet, and even DVD copying hardware that isn't infringing. But that doesn't mean that we should just let it go unchecked and not come up with fair solutions for people who's work would be infringed upon.

     

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  57.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:31pm

    Total control

    Some people want absolute control, they are not willing to accept nothing less than total and absolute control over what they claim it is theirs, those people should be locked away in a mental institution because not even in physics total control can be achieved, the more you try and coerce something into submission the more it becomes unpredictable(this for particles).

    http://imgs.sfgate.com/c/pictures/2010/09/26/in-copyrights_futures.jpg

    In real life real protests are dealt with without trying to control everything the police knows if they corner protesters people will get really hurt or die.

    The good thing is that, there is no choice for the industry and their pals, they will need to learn to live with it in one way or another, the bad thing is that many bad laws will be passed before they give up and they will at some point.

     

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  58.  
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    Karl (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Tool

    One is not a "troll" merely because an opinion is expressed with which you may happen to disagree.

    Truthfully, I didn't expect you to even reply.

    Thanks for coming back, and answering the many criticisms that... Oh, wait, you didn't. Never mind.

    Importantly, I am not expressing any opinion on the wisdom or lack thereof concerning the proposal before the Senate.

    No, just presenting it in a lopsided, inaccurate, and uncritical way, which makes it apparent what your opinion is. If we've all misread you, feel free to enlighten us.

     

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  59.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:39pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Haha, you think the United States government is reasonable.

     

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  60.  
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    Anon, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:43pm

    Re:

    "...it seems to me that they should be engaged in a discussion about how to stop the "bad actors" who give BT and torrent sites a bad name..."

    Why? Why should they have to defend BT? I call BS.

     

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  61.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 1:50pm

    Re: Your list is a little odd

    You see IP is a set of rights given to someone, define the rights and you define the infringement part. You can make almost anything infringe in something else in theory, now I want to see they enforce that theory in real life.

    Any lunatic thinking they will get more money making more ridiculous claims of what his rights are, is just plain brain damaged.

    Will those laws make me buy anything?
    Nope. I hold the money, I hold the power, the last word will always be mine LoL

     

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  62.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:02pm

    Re: Re:

    I prefer my America free too, that's why I think WikiLeaks is doing a good job.

     

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  63.  
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    R. Miles (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:30pm

    Video killed the radio star...

    ...and newspapers
    ...and magazines
    ...and books
    ...and Blockbuster
    ...and the CD
    ...and the DVD

    I would have thrown in the player piano, but I don't think these things exist anymore, do they?

    At any rate... maybe Senator Leahy should take a cue from the song which DIDN'T kill the radio star.

    Shit. The Buggles song is copyright. Don't play it in your head or Leahy (et al) will shut down your brain for infringement.

     

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  64.  
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    agent_47, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:31pm

    Re:

    This is the "No good Scotsman..." logical fallacy. Anyone that agrees with you about x must also agree with you about y, in this case.

     

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  65.  
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    vivaelamor (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "There is nothing within the metes and bounds of copyright law that provides a rights holder with anything other than an opportunity to be renumerated."

    It allows them to be recounted? Funny typo, I'm sure you meant remunerated.

    Paying someone for services rendered is already adequately served by property and contract law. Why do the 'creative' industries get special treatment?

    Nothing stops artists being remunerated for their work just as well as any other person. Copyright is the treat that seems to have caused some to lose the ability to compete in the real world.

     

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  66.  
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    vivaelamor (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:36pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Actually, I can think of no reasonable construction of the proposed legislation that would subject Wikileaks to its terms."

    You mean, apart from it being a site dedicated to releasing unauthorised copies of other peoples content; otherwise called copyright infringement?

     

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  67.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:38pm

    Re:

    What we are really talking about here is prior restraint. Generally not ok where speech is concerned.

     

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  68.  
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    vivaelamor (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:46pm

    Re: Re: bs re Hollywood

    To be fair, that Wikipedia article is poorly sourced. I found a nice Google Books excerpt instead from American Media History.

     

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  69.  
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    Zac (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:50pm

    When you think about it...

    When you think about it, everyone is guilty of copyright infringement in some form. Every time you directly quote someone without giving them credit BAM! you're guilty. Every time you are talking with your friends mimicking a funny TV show you saw last night BAM! guilty again...

    I think the government is trying to get too involved with our everyday lives, bring on the ID cards and security forces! They need to "step-off" and work on some actual problems with the nation rather than digging trying to create new ones.

    All that will happen if they get this to pass will be another government "task force" that will go around trying to police citizens. The government has no reason to get involved with this.

     

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  70.  
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    vivaelamor (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:50pm

    Re: Re: Re: bs re Hollywood

    Nevermind, I just clicked on the wrong sources on the Wikipedia page. Most of them are fine.

     

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  71.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 2:52pm

    The content distribution companies could adopt BT to lower their distribution costs

    I currently live in a 3rd-world country. There are very few legitimate media distribution companies (1 music shop in a city of millions, including hundreds of thousands of rich European, American and other expatriates). There are thousands of "businessmen" distributing counterfeit media. The only legitimate way of watching content is by satellite TV (which is monopolised by one operator, another operator hos lost a lot of channels due to not actually paying license fees for content they had already broadcast). The shows I want to watch are aired 6 months to 2 years later than in the U.S. No U.S.-based video-on-demand sites (Hulu, Amazon), allow access from here.

    Surely, the media distribution companies can see that there are markets they can better serve by commercial online distribution. BT allows them to do it for drastically lower costs.

    I would pay reasonable (e.g. Hulu-type pricing) for authenticated access to a BT tracker run by commercial distribution company, if there was sufficient proof that the money was going to the rights holders.

    Instead, since they aren't prepared to adopt any other technologies, my options are:
    -go without
    -pay for satellite TV ($70/month) and wait months or years until the shows air, out of context by then
    -pay for satellite TV ($50/month) and not see the shows, and know that none of the subscription actually goes to paying royalties etc. for content
    -buy counterfeit versions from the local "businessmen"
    -wait for DVD release in other countries I travel to, and try and find time to visit real media shops in real countries (factor in some portion of travel costs), and again watch the show a year or more after it has aired, spoilers have been discussed, jokes are no longer relevant
    -download via BT with good quality the day after the show airs for the first time internationally, and try and compensate some content owners later by buying DVD.

    So far, I go with the last option (and have a few DVDs which I have never watched, having actually watched the episodes before I could buy the DVD).

     

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  72.  
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    vivaelamor (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 3:00pm

    Re: Your list is a little odd

    "For example, initially, radio was infringing on artists' IP. Their songs were being broadcast without compensation."

    One word: payola.

     

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  73.  
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    Jared, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 3:10pm

    Sorry for my Senator (Hatch) guys. I'm hoping he gets tossed out this election. He makes the wrong call every time when it comes to copywrite issues.

     

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  74.  
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    vivaelamor (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 3:12pm

    Re: The content distribution companies could adopt BT to lower their distribution costs

    "I currently live in a 3rd-world country."

    I live in the UK and have enough trouble accessing legitimate media distribution.

    I don't see how third world governments can justify any sort of Intellectual Property when it is guaranteed to hold them back (after all, the US was built on ignoring UK IP law). If you weighed up the advantage of being truly competitive without strong IP against bowing to international pressure then short of disproportional threats I would still say ditch IP.

     

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  75.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 3:34pm

    Why do people vote for these industry shills in the first place?

     

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  76.  
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    paleoflatus, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 5:16pm

    Media Patents

    Once upon a time, musicians had to play and actors had to tread the boards in order to get paid.
    Surely, recordings popularize artistic works are an excellent advertisement for live performances.
    To be paid extra for copies of live performances is a recently-added and largely undeserved bonanza, usually contributing to an obscene life-style and drug habits..

     

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  77.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 5:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Tool

    In all candor, I did not answer your many "criticisms" in part because most, if not all, of them were either based upon an inaccurate understanding of existing law and the contents of the proposed legislation or merely cumulative to comments you have previously made in other threads.

    If I may make a suggestion. Take a quick trip around the internet using the search term "in rem" to better understand what the proposed legislation actually involves. Perhaps then you will better understand some of the reasons underlying my comments.

     

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  78.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 5:25pm

    Re: The content distribution companies could adopt BT to lower their distribution costs

    "I would pay ...if there was sufficient proof that the money was going to the rights holders."

    I do not believe this is what you really intended to say.

     

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  79.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 5:31pm

    Re: Re: The content distribution companies could adopt BT to lower their distribution costs

     

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  80.  
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    \r (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 5:33pm

    In Rem

    You're not joking are you? I think you're underestimating the size of the park you're playing in.

    Let's see.. Look! That store sells hammers - hammers are used to bash folks over the head - we have to shut the store down and take it.

    Yah, we need more laws - specifically more "law" based on "in rem" - take it! Fuckers. I don't want it - the racket protection laws nor their makers.


    Provide and you shall be provided for.

    Bend the tool - Not the law - and stop wasting our political time on your unearned undeserved paycheck

    Oh and surely the intent is to have an actual member of the judiciary render these judgments yes?

    OK, I feel better. Thanks.

     

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  81.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 5:40pm

    Re: When you think about it...

    "BAM! you're guilty"
    no

     

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  82.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 5:51pm

    Re: Re: bs re Hollywood

    you just used wikipedia as a legitimate source LMAO

     

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  83.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 5:51pm

    Re: Re: bs re Hollywood

    you just used wikipedia as a legitimate source LMAO

     

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  84.  
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    \r (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 6:02pm

    reHatch

    A little time - a different hammer - same affect - same nailers.

    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/930731/posts

    You're spend-ing a-lot of time and money on this fu-tile venture - that's time and money poorly spent imo. You could have tapped this hotty a long-ass time ago. tick-tock muther#u@%er$. TMOAISTI\r

     

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  85.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 6:11pm

    Re: Re: Re: bs re Hollywood

    Hollywood was definitely settled by people who wanted to make films without Edison interfering, and the government broke up Edison's monopoly a few years later. It's likely they stayed in Hollywood because of the sunshine, but it was the wild west back then.

    Then please offer a legitimate source to the contrary? I was trying to support my statement, and Wikipedia is convenient (and more often than not accurate).

    Wiki's full of references if you disagree with any of it:

    1. ^ Edison v. American Mutoscope & Biograph Co., 151 F. 767, 81 C.C.A. 391 (March 5, 1907).
    2. ^ U.S. v. Motion Picture Patents Co., 225 F. 800 (D.C. Pa. 1915).
    3. ^ Bach, Steven. Final Cut. Newmarket Press, 1999. p. 30.
    4. ^ Projection speeds ranged from 16 to 20 frames per second.
    5. ^ For example, the four-reelers From the Manger to the Cross (Kalem, 1913), The Battle of Shiloh (Lubin, 1913), and The Third Degree (Lubin, 1913).
    6. ^ Peter Edidin, "La-La Land: The Origins", The New York Times, August 21, 2005, p. 4.2. "Los Angeles's distance from New York was also comforting to independent film producers, making it easier for them to avoid being harassed or sued by the Motion Picture Patents Company, a k a the Trust, which Thomas Edison helped create in 1909."
    7. ^ Per the American Film Institute Catalog of Motion Pictures, 8 American features were released in 1912, 61 in 1913, and 354 in 1914.
    8. ^ U.S. v. Motion Picture Patents Co., 225 F. 800 (D.C. Pa. 1915).

     

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  86.  
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    max (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 6:28pm

    VERY good points about negative early reactions to new ideas that eventually became winners. We the people are the best possible filter process and that's because the truth is - we're ALL works in progress!

     

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  87.  
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    Bruce Ediger (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 6:46pm

    Re:

    You have education as a lawyer, and you've worked as a lawyer, haven't you?

    I think you should just declare yourself by name, as a lot of the rest of us have. The highfalutin' language coming from "Anonymous Coward" realy causes some cognitive dissonance that I think you should avoid.

     

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  88.  
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    Bruce Ediger (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 6:47pm

    Re: Re: tip of the iceberg?

    Got a citation for this?

    This has the gestank of conspiracy theory around it.

     

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  89.  
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    Bruce Ediger (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 6:52pm

    Re: Your list is a little odd

    Radio did *not* originally infringe on "Intellectual Property". People who thought that got laws passed, resulting in that blanket broadcast license, and the people that ASCAP and BMI pay to listen to statistically significant samples of taped radio shows. The sampling determines how to divvy up the blanket license revenue amongst the artists.

    Until the laws passed, infringement did not exist.

     

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  90.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 6:59pm

    Hey, I paid good money for that Congressman!

     

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  91.  
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    nikolai, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 7:12pm

    so

    you're saying bittorrent may one-day become the enemy? Noooeessss!

     

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  92.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 7:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Tool

    Oh look, someone who cannot defend his points resorts to "I'm right because you're wrong!!!!" with no facts whatsoever backing him up.

    Great lawyer you must be.

     

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  93.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 7:33pm

    Re:

    "To suggest this is all about banning "tools" is in my view plainly off the mark."

    To suggest otherwise is naive.

    We already have laws that impose overly excessive punishment for infringement, infringing is already illegal, misplacing liability onto a third party or making it "more illegal" to infringe doesn't contribute anything good to society.

    The laws we already have are already overly protective. Copy privilege law itself is already too restrictive and imposes a huge burden to society without providing society much back in return. For instance, it lasts entirely too long making works go out of print and die in history before entering the public domain and by then the privileges get extended. Works will be created perfectly well without these laws.

    There is no good reason to add more restrictive copy protection laws. Having copy protections is a privilege, not a right, and to allow someone with a privilege the ability to cause any more burden to a system that's already way too burdened by such privileges just to make it more convenient for some publisher to benefit from an unowed privilege is unacceptable, at least until Congress does something about the already overly burdensome nature of the existing laws (ie: excessive length, excessive fines for infringement, relatively low fines for claiming to have privileged control over works that one doesn't have control over, etc...).

    To call someone exercising their natural right to copy others a "bad player" itself is bad. If anything, those who exercise their privileges to violate my right to copy whatever I please are the bad players. The social contract is that society allows these privilege holders to impose an evil on the world and exercise their privileges only to the extent that it promotes the progress. The current laws do no such thing.

     

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  94.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 7:36pm

    Re: Re:

    ... doesn't contribute anything good to society and it doesn't do much to stop infringement that our current laws don't already do. If these laws do anything they will most likely only serve to restrict our rights and hinder progress in a way that only serve a bunch of people that already benefit from bad laws that unfairly favor them.

     

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  95.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 7:55pm

    You forgot the 8-Track in your list of tech that woulda been banned.

     

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  96.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 8:46pm

    Re: Re:

    If I may ask, what do you mean by "promotes the progress"?

     

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  97.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 9:17pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Tool

    What ever good intentions this law has. It has vast potential to be abused. It may protect some America rights but at the cost of others rights and it has the potential to hold back innovation.

    I think most would agree, that as a whole, we are better off without such a law.

     

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  98.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 9:32pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    The same thing that the founding fathers meant, and what the constitution says it means, the promotion of the progress of the science and the arts.

    Don't act like anyone besides you interpret it any differently. Your inability to properly interpret something so obvious only makes your position more suspect.

     

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  99.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 9:35pm

    Re: Re: Re: tip of the iceberg?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  100.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 10:20pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Question asked but not answered.

    The introductory clause of the first US Copyright Act of 1790 stated that it was "An Act for the encouragement of learning", which introductory clause was identical to that used in England's Statute of Anne.

    My question, again, is how do you personally interpret the meaning of the phrase "promote the progress"? Stated another way, do you accept the premise that the purpose of copyright law at the time of its adoption was the dissemination of information for educational purposes?

    This is not a trick question with a "gotcha" lurking in the background. It is merely my attempt to ascertain if "promote the progress" is viewed in the same vein today.

    While admittedly overly simplistic, constitutional interpretation is divided between two schools of thought, so-called "originalism" and so called "living and breathing", the latter being generally associated with the US Constitution comprising a document where the meaning of its terms changes over time.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  101.  
    icon
    Karl (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 10:52pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Tool

    In all candor, I did not answer your many "criticisms" in part because most, if not all, of them were either based upon an inaccurate understanding of existing law and the contents of the proposed legislation or merely cumulative to comments you have previously made in other threads.

    Says you. I notice you still haven't offered anything to back that up.

    If a criticism is "cumulative to comments" I made in other threads, then so what? That doesn't prove (or even suggest) that my criticism is invalid.

    Take a quick trip around the internet using the search term "in rem" to better understand what the proposed legislation actually involves.

    From what I could find, "in rem" vs. "in personam" is a question of jurisdiction (jurisdiction over property vs. jurisdiction over people). "In rem" is usually used in cases where ownership of physical objects (derelict ships, casks of wine, kegs of Coca-Cola) is unknown, and in divorce cases.

    I have no idea how this is relevant to a law that allows the Justice Department to censor websites without due process.

     

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  102.  
    icon
    ltlw0lf (profile), Sep 27th, 2010 @ 10:57pm

    Re: Re: The content distribution companies could adopt BT to lower their distribution costs

    Looks fine to me, based on the context of what he said outside of the small section you quoted.

    It appears to me that he has a morality problem because of a political problem caused by the very industry fails to provide him with the same level of effort they provide others elsewhere. Same reason why region coding and DRM fails in the real world (as in it only screws the customers that play by the rules, and those that don't have no problem bypassing the restrictions.) In order to do the right thing, he has to go without, which doesn't seem right at all. Here is a customer, willing to go out of his way and travel to a foreign country to get the content, and the industry still screws him because he lives in a 3rd world country they don't care to provide to.

    I like English Comedy, and love watching BBC Comedy shows. I buy DVDs, but like him, I get the shows two to three years after the fact (because I live in the US.) Sure, if I had the money to rent a satellite and get the channels beamed into my home, that would be great, but I cannot afford that. So I go without, because I play by the rules. Yet someone I speak to online regularly knows that I like English Comedy, and has offered to send me non-DRM and non-region encoded copies of BBC Comedy shows pulled off the air in England and sent to me via DVD for the cost of the DVD.

    As far as I am concerned, AC is quite accurate in his dilemma, and instead of dismissing his comment off-hand with a flippant remark, the industry could instead look into his complaint and come up with some sort of paid-Hulu system (the pay needs to be reasonable,) and they'd go a long way to fixing the problem that most of the good guys out here have with their current business models.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  103.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It's "To promote the progress of science and useful arts."

    "While admittedly overly simplistic, constitutional interpretation is divided between two schools of thought, so-called "originalism" and so called "living and breathing", the latter being generally associated with the US Constitution comprising a document where the meaning of its terms changes over time."

    If the meaning of the terms in the constitution can arbitrarily change to mean whatever anyone wants them to mean then that negates the purpose of having a constitution. Then, as someone else pointed out, I can simply and correctly interpret copyright law to mean that it was designed to save dinosaurs and since dinosaurs are extinct that means we must need stricter copyright laws.

    The constitution is supposed to be a general guideline and what falls within that general guideline depends on the specific situations. It's also meant to be adaptable to changing times, which is why it's amendable. That's very different from saying that the meaning of various terms can change. The meaning of "to promote the progress of the science and the arts" doesn't change, but that's a general guideline that says that all actions of copyright must fall within that guideline. An act that does not is unconstitutional. What needs to be determined on a case by case basis is what exactly does promote the progress of the science and the arts in various different circumstances. Our current system does little to promote the progress.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  104.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:01pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Question asked but not answered. "

    Question answered but answer ignored.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  105.  
    identicon
    Steven Collins, Sep 27th, 2010 @ 11:34pm

    Oh dear...

    I live in China, and have seen firsthand the effects of internet censorship... This is bad, very bad. While it looks okay on the surface - an attempt to protect copyright laws - ultimately this will be used to end free speech as we know it... Anything not agreed with will be blocked in the name of security... This gives congress too much power.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  106.  
    icon
    mike allen (profile), Sep 28th, 2010 @ 12:09am

    "In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one
    useless man is a shame, two is a law firm and three or
    more is a congress."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  107.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 28th, 2010 @ 2:06am

    Re: Digital Audio Tape

    Digital Audio Tape didn't die because of unpopularity, or getting shelved because of infringement issues - it died because it was a god-awful technology. Essentially a VCR mechanism reduced in size to fit inside a walkman, and then only capable of playing audio. I'm glad it's dead.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  108.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 28th, 2010 @ 2:08am

    Re: bs re Hollywood

    That let them use faster shutter speeds.
    I think you meant to say slower shutter speeds.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  109.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 28th, 2010 @ 2:17am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    The government shouldn't have the power to censor a web site, a book, or a person standing on a soap box in the town square.

    You're absolutely right - the government shouldn't, but they do. The governments of many countries around the world, including the United States of America, censor books, movies, television programs and computer games on a daily basis, as approved of by the people who voted them in (or at least the minorities wanting to protect their "delicate sensibilities").

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  110.  
    identicon
    darryl, Sep 28th, 2010 @ 3:30am

    Its not the technologies fault, why blame the tech ?

    Its not the tool that is in question, its how you use the technologies available to you.

    You can not simply try to list things that people do, and claim its the fault of the technology in some way responsible for any perceived problems.

    When radio first came out, for entertainment, it was not 'to break the rules'. Or whatevery you call it

    ""dedicated to infringing activities."

    That is just wrong, and none of the technologies are "dedicated to infringing activities". You can and often DO use those tech's for NON-INFRINGING activities. If they were "DEDICATED - for infinging, then you would NOT be able to do ANYTHING ELSE WITH that technology.

    DO you see how your 'argument' makes exactly zero logic ?
    (I guess not).

    I will not argue for a second that most things can be used for infringing purposes, if you drive a car over the speed limit its using a car for an infringing purpose, but it does not put the blame for that infringement on the car.

    NO, it puts the GUILT of the infringement of the person operating that technology in an infringing manner.

    (get it yet?)..

    What technologies can you LIST Mike that CANNOT be used in some way in an infringing manner ?

    I cannot think of any, so making a list of what can be used as infringing technology, and then forming a big discussion on that basis is a NO-BRAINER.. I guess that is what you get.. :)

    What about the printing press? a technology that has helpd advance manking knowledge for that probably anything else. It was seen as putting power into the hands of common people.

    Or the pen ? you can do an awful lot with a pen and paper that in infringing purposes.. Lets ban all pens.. what a stupid pointless article..

    the equipment is not dedicated to infringement, that if it was used for non-infringing purposes then there would not be a problem

    If a common technology is used for infringing purposes, then those that use that technology for that infringment are to blame.

    If BT did not have copyright infringing data on it, it would not be seen as a problem. It is a problem because many people are using that technology to break the law.

    After all, that is what you are complaining about is your ability to break the law is being erroded.

    But if you cant be trusted with a technology, to use that technology in a "proper" manner than like anything else. The law has the right to punish you for your illegal activies..

    Saying the DVD made me do it wont work..

    (honestly officer, I was not speeding in my car, it was the car !!)..

    What a joke... must be a slow news week :)

     

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  111.  
    icon
    The eejit (profile), Sep 28th, 2010 @ 5:48am

    Re: Its not the technologies fault, why blame the tech ?

    I take it you failed your comprehension check.

    1) The bill proposed bypasses due process. Sites will get shut down on ACCUSATION, not CONVICTION. Do you see how this works?

    2) The vast majority of those Senators' major contributors are; Time Warner, Disney, NBC Universal, and Sony BMG. See how this works?

    3) Bittorrent is a distribution system. It's a tool, and a powerful one. A large percentage of Linux distributions are online and distributed using the Bittorrent protocol.

    4) Never attribute to malice what can be explained by stupidity.

    5) Money talks and bullshit walks in the Halls of Congress. And seeing as how most Americans have no money...well, you can see where this is going.

    6) Have you never heard of copyfraud?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  112.  
    icon
    jc (profile), Sep 28th, 2010 @ 6:00am

    Re: Re: Re:

    No one can be this stupid. Are you some type of MPAA or RIAA commenting robot.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  113.  
    icon
    Killer_Tofu (profile), Sep 28th, 2010 @ 6:19am

    Re: Re: Re:

    True that. Wikileaks is very important in a society like today's where things are going downhill towards the nanny state full of cloak and dagger.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  114.  
    identicon
    Rung Hee, Sep 28th, 2010 @ 6:53am

    Nice

    I neve really thought about it that way before.

    www.web-privacy.it.tc

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  115.  
    icon
    Bruce Ediger (profile), Sep 28th, 2010 @ 6:53am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: tip of the iceberg?

    Anecdotal evidence, at best. Got anything better?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  116.  
    icon
    Jardinero1 (profile), Sep 28th, 2010 @ 7:05am

    Re:

    Criminal law outlaws behavior not persons, whether living or legal. To outlaw living or legal persons would be a Bill of Attainder. There is a prohibition against Bills of Attainder which is what this would be if, in fact, the bill "does attempt to identify certain sites that exist for no realistic purpose...". I don't know if the bill actually does that, as you claim. But, if it did, that would be one way of nullifying it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  117.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 28th, 2010 @ 7:57am

    Re: Re: Re:

    That is a very poor choice of criticism. Copyright removes freedoms from everyone to give a privilege to the author. You might try to argue that is economically pragmatic, but the essential purpose certainly has nothing to do with fairness, it is instead the complete opposite.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  118.  
    identicon
    bob, Sep 28th, 2010 @ 12:19pm

    change

    I thought we were supposed to be past this now that hopey-changey took over the White House... Oh wait, DMCA was passed with a Dem in the White House...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  119.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 29th, 2010 @ 9:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    They also miss the point that what TPB does is perfectly legal where they do it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  120.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 29th, 2010 @ 10:11pm

    Re: Video killed the radio star...

    Player pianos are alive and kicking, thanks. They're actually regaining a bit of popularity.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  121.  
    identicon
    anon, Sep 30th, 2010 @ 11:38am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    what they would consider infringing in their opinion is not defined from what i've seen. of course this second list will be voluntary however they will put pressure on the various companies involved in order to facilitate the implementation of this policy without coming into conflict with the first amendment by making it voluntarily mandatory.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  122.  
    identicon
    pyrestriker, Sep 30th, 2010 @ 4:01pm

    Re: tip of the iceberg?

    Oh yeah. Any form of a "perpetual machine" cannot be copywritten or patented. This prevents any fuel-less motor design completely un-profitable.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  123.  
    identicon
    Sger, Sep 30th, 2010 @ 8:30pm

    Re: The more you look at the bill...?

    You, sir, are spot on.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  124.  
    identicon
    Buy Tramadol, Nov 25th, 2010 @ 8:23am

    This is the "No good Scotsman..." logical fallacy. Anyone that agrees with you about x must also agree with you about y, in this case. Buy Tramadol

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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