JohnJac's Favorite Posts Of The Weeks

from the bad-gov't,-bad dept

Last week JohnJac totally dominated the favorite comments, so we figured we might as well let him do the favorite posts of the week this week.

I really, really, wanted this post to be funny and optimistic. However as I read Techdirt, it became clear this week had a theme: governments over-reacting to technology.  This point was driven home when Egypt shut their people off from the Internet: I've snickered in the past at other governments' attempts to block skype or to block all of YouTube over a single video.  If you had asked me last week, would a government go so far as to shut all internet access down, I would have told you no way.

While we're on the subject, check out this post over at Marginal Revolution, talking about how this move is likely to backfire for the Egyptian government.

Other governments are not immune from over-reaction, but thankfully not to the extent Egypt has gone. I love to hear some comments below on how 'we the people' can help our governments understand and not fear technology.  Half my professional career was spent working for a state government in a technical roll, and I'm still at a loss as to how this can change.

But all hope isn't lost: On the lighter side, there is hope that people are using all the tools available to them to create something new.  The standout story here is Pomplamoose.  I just love what they are doing. My Favorite Comment of the week goes to John B.  On Mike's story about Lee Harvey Oswald's coffin, John B. said this:  "This post isn't about tech, but it's about dirt, so there's that."

Many thanks to Mike and the Techdirt Community for letting me share my thoughts.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    cc (profile), Jan 29th, 2011 @ 12:16pm

    "I love to hear some comments below on how 'we the people' can help our governments understand and not fear technology."

    The cynic's answer is to wait. Seeing that many politicians are >60, it's somewhat difficult to expect them all to be able to learn new tricks and to understand modern technology. For instance, they are used to a world where copyrights and patents are the norm, and they see the software and the internet as a hindrance/interference.

    So, let's be patient. Like the dinosaurs, in a few years they'll be extinct.

    And after they're gone we'll be the new dinosaurs...

     

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

  2.  
    icon
    cc (profile), Jan 29th, 2011 @ 12:17pm

    Re:

    */the software

     

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

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2011 @ 12:34pm

    Free koolaid and cookies now that you are done.

     

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

  4.  
    icon
    harbingerofdoom (profile), Jan 29th, 2011 @ 2:01pm

    Re:

    thanks, im feeling a bit peckish right now so they will come in quite handy...

    and im still wondering why exactly anyone would want to buy a used coffin.. im thinking thats really got to violate several state and federal laws


    .....at least i sure hope it would....

     

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

  5.  
    icon
    AR (profile), Jan 29th, 2011 @ 2:16pm

    Re: Re:

    What, you haven't you heard about the new mandatory recycling program?

    Their slogan:

    "In with the old.
    Out with the new,
    We have a greener way to plant you."

     

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

  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2011 @ 3:11pm

    "However as I read Techdirt, it became clear this week had a theme: governments over-reacting to technology."

    That's the theme of every week.

     

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

  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2011 @ 3:12pm

    Re:

    (which just shows how often governments overreact).

     

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

  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2011 @ 3:16pm

    Re:

    By the time younger people become older politicians some new technology will come out that will scare them to death as well :)

     

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

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2011 @ 4:41pm

    Re: Re:

    By the time younger people become older politicians some new technology will come out that will scare them to death as well :)

    "The old wheel turns, and the same spoke comes up. It's all been done before, and will be again."
    -Sherlock Holmes (The Valley of Fear)

     

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

  10.  
    icon
    Paul Hobbs (profile), Jan 29th, 2011 @ 6:50pm

    However as I read Techdirt, it became clear this week had a theme: governments over-reacting to technology.

    I've snickered in the past at other governments' attempts to block skype or to block all of YouTube over a single video. If you had asked me last week, would a government go so far as to shut all internet access down, I would have told you no way.


    The objective of any government is to remain in power - no government is ever happy about losing power. It's been this way since Adam. The means by which they achieve this has changed and will continue to change in the future (although there are common themes - eg: control access to information; restrict basic "freedoms" like speech, assembly, etc).

    Alas, I guess this is one of those instances where the more things change, the more they stay the same.

     

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

  11.  
    identicon
    Pixelation, Jan 29th, 2011 @ 8:33pm

    "Artist Facing 15 Years In Jail For The Crime Of Videotaping His Own Arrest"

    Reminds me of Tiananmen Square.

     

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

  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 29th, 2011 @ 9:58pm

    Re:

    I believe you are missing something very important, it doesn't matter the age of the politicians, they will do the same things and conclude the same things because they are immersed in the same environment the people they have succeeded.

    Like every company have its "corporate culture" so do any other administrative entity, until that culture changes nothing will change, it is not politicians who change things most people learn how to do things one way and will oppose any changes to that routine, politicians are not different, young or old they all will learn how to do something with others and will fallow those paths, sometimes consciously but mostly unconsciously.

    Culture change doesn't happen in a decade it takes decades for change to take hold, so you are partially right that the old power not the old people will be changed by the new people who will bring a new culture to it, if they can bypass the unforgiving political environment that forges a politico today, if they cannot brake that, they will not change anything, culture can last 1000's of years, just look at religion to see it at work.

     

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

  13.  
    identicon
    Ilfar, Jan 29th, 2011 @ 11:53pm

    Re: Re:

    And how often we have weeks!

     

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

  14.  
    icon
    Pjerky (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 12:01am

    Its like you WANT to engage with your community.

    Jeez Techdirt, seeing posts like this makes me think you WANT to connect and engage with your community of dedicated readers. WHY would you want to do a silly thing like that? You need to monetize these sheeple like the New York Times and put up a pay wall.

    I mean come on, people don't want to be connected to. They just want you to tell them how to think so that they can go about their day doing whatever mindless operation they do every day.

    This way they can leave the thinking to the people who think they are important, like politicians and executives in multinational corporations. You know, the people that are willing to SACRIFICE your rights for you to think you feel safer.

    It really makes you think, these are great times that we live in when we can rely on those with more power and influence than us to think for us and make decisions for us that they tell us will make our lives better. And isn't that what progress is all about?

    Sincerely,
    -Pjerky

     

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

  15.  
    icon
    Hephaestus (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 12:42am

    Kudos on doing so well in your post. This is such a horrible week to do a favorites of the week on.

    The question for governments is. How do you cope when you are an idiot and do stupid things?

    The simplest thing to do when you screw up is to blame someone or something other than yourself. To crack down on who or what you are blaming. In Egypt the cause of all this unrest is "COMMUNICATIONS". Twitter, facebook, cell phones, blogs, web sites, they all need to be shut down. The reason is they are causing this unrest ... until you take a step back.

    Looking at it from a distance. You see simple things. A government that doesn't listen to its constituents. You see poor management of resources, no foresight, and no view of the future.


    You see, the government follows the lead of business. They extract every cent they can from the population and give nothing back.

     

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

  16.  
    icon
    mike allen (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 2:30am

    we should invent a new internet governments cant touch. Was a comment i saw on El Reg the question to that is it possible?

     

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

  17.  
    icon
    The eejit (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 3:57am

    Re:

    "If you streal lots of money from greedy people, you're either the government or a hero."
    -Sir Terry Pratchett, Going Postal.

     

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

  18.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 8:11am

    Must be almost fun to be a citizen of Egypt atm. I can't think of the last time I've such a pure reason to be outraged at government.

     

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

  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 8:46am

    cwf+rtb

    techdirt... fostering fanboys that pay since 1997

     

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

  20.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 9:37pm

    Re: cwf+rtb

    Good to know Techdirt is bucking the trend. Most industries have been doing the exact opposite for at least that long.

     

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

  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 9:03am

    Re: Re: cwf+rtb

    Right, the echoes in the echo chamber are nearly in sync. Soon everyone here will just be repeating what Mike said and there will be only one voice. Its so exciting that I'm leaving.

     

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


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This