Our Elected Officials Never Learn: Ask Biden To Get Russia To Increase Censorship Via Copyright

from the not-understanding dept

Vice President Biden went to Russia this week, and though I'm sure he needs no urging whatsoever to present Hollywood's misguided message on intellectual property, a group of our elected officials in Congress -- including Senators Orrin Hatch and Sheldon Whitehouse, along with Congressional Reps. Bob Goodlatte and Adam Schiff (from the LA area, of course) -- have sent him a letter asking him to push Russia to pick up the pace on its "anti-piracy" efforts. It's really quite stunning how shortsighted this request is. After all, we've seen over and over again that when the US pushes other countries to increase their anti-piracy activities, it inevitably results in them using greater "enforcement" against US interests. And Russia is a particularly interesting case. After all, the Kremlin has just indicated it wants to increase internet censorship, and the government also has a long history of using "anti-piracy" claims to censor political critics.

I'm sure Russian politicians are having a good chuckle over this. Basically, these US politicians are giving them all the tools they need to censor anyone they don't like. They just get to call it "anti-piracy" and they can even brag about it and have the US government cheer them on.

In the meantime, is anyone a constituent of any of those four elected officials, who apparently make up the "Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus" (don't laugh -- perhaps they're just uninformed)? If so, can you please send them a copy of the new research report on piracy in emerging economies from the Social Science Research Council? We can hope that maybe (just maybe) they'll realize they're not helping.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 9th, 2011 @ 2:02pm

    What I always find interesting is that you always find a way to make any attempts to actually apply copyright law as some sort of censorship. You always managed to twist the two together. Amazing, really. It isn't true, but your amazing method to put the two together in almost every case is impressive. FUDdy of you :)

     

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

  2.  
    icon
    :Lobo Santo (profile), Mar 9th, 2011 @ 2:08pm

    Re:

    I find your insistence on maintaining delusional opinions very interesting. Perhaps you need some counseling... tell me about your mother.

     

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  3.  
    icon
    Richard (profile), Mar 9th, 2011 @ 2:09pm

    Re:

    What I always find interesting is that you always find a way to make any attempts to actually apply copyright law as some sort of censorship. You always managed to twist the two together.

    The reason is simple. They are the same. Only the willfully blind can't see it.

    Copyright's origins were in the charter of the stationers company in the 1550's which functioned as a censorship provision. It was true then, is now and probably always will be.

     

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  4.  
    icon
    Chosen Reject (profile), Mar 9th, 2011 @ 2:27pm

    Re: Re:

    Tis truth. Copyright has always been about censorship. Originally it was very blatant about this. Now it's masqueraded as only censoring you from saying something exactly the same as someone else, but that's still censorship and since it's the government doing it, it is the worst kind of censorship.

    And then you have Russia's reputation for using copyright infringement as a front for censorship.

    You can agree or disagree that copyright is a good thing, but to say it has nothing to do with censorship just shows ignorance of why it was created, what it is, and what it is used for.

     

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  5.  
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    A Dan (profile), Mar 9th, 2011 @ 2:38pm

    Re:

    Read the link named "censor political critics".

     

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

  6.  
    icon
    A Dan (profile), Mar 9th, 2011 @ 2:40pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Microsoft wasn't a fan, either.

    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2369144,00.asp

    "Microsoft Offers Free NGO Licenses Amidst Russian Raids"

     

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  7.  
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    Joseph K (profile), Mar 9th, 2011 @ 2:49pm

    Perhaps they know what they're doing

    You say they don't learn, but perhaps these politicians recognize the problems and just consider it a matter of priority: namely, copyrights are more important than free speech. Copyright protection is an issue supported by well supported special interests. Russian freedom of speech, not so much. One can only hope that the Russian people realize what's going on and start pushing back.

     

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  8.  
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    ltlw0lf (profile), Mar 9th, 2011 @ 4:14pm

    In the meantime, is anyone a constituent of any of those four elected officials, who apparently make up the "Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus" (don't laugh -- perhaps they're just uninformed)?

    I'm glad someone is doing something about the Somali pirates. It wasn't long ago that the pirates killed 4 people on board a Yacht near Somalia. Maybe someone will push for more patrols and maybe even armed incursions into Somalia to take out suspected pirate strongholds.

    Oh, wrong piracy. Sorry.

     

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

  9.  
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    Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile), Mar 9th, 2011 @ 5:21pm

    Re:

    What I always find banal is that you always find a way to make any attempts to actually comprehend the situation as some sort of assault on your chosen business model. You always managed to bleat out the same thing. Irritating, really. It isn't true, but your ridiculous method to put the two together and end up with 7.7 in almost every case is asinine. Passive-aggressive of you :D

     

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  10.  
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    Atkray (profile), Mar 9th, 2011 @ 9:28pm

    Embarrassed again

    I apologize for voting for Hatch.

    I'm trying to be better informed now.

     

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

  11.  
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    PaulT (profile), Mar 10th, 2011 @ 9:05am

    Re:

    Let's examine your logic here. Say Mike claimed to have found a copyright violation in your post, and he could point to a law that said that he had to remove the post immediately. Say, he ran it through an automated tool that suggested plagiarism. If he did that, it wouldn't be censorship by your logic. Does that make any sense to you?

    No, any law that requires material to be edited or removed is de facto censorship, regardless of whether or not that was the stated aim of the law. Any law that allows or requires material to be blocked or taken down can be misused to censor political speech. You have to be rather silly not to recognise that.

     

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


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