Different Treatment For Tech Related Law-Breaking Depending On Whether Or Not You Have Power

from the funny-how-that-works dept

Rick Falkvinge is noticing one of the bigger hypocrisies when it comes to the law and technology: these days, we hear all the time about the strongest defenders of copyright law being caught infringing. And yet, they never seem to get in much, if any, trouble for it. In fact, they often seem to think that as long as they apologize or ignore the controversy they'll be fine -- and that's how it often works out. But, heaven forbid you're a single parent facing accusations of sharing two dozen songs! The copyright holders get to go after you for many millions.

To Falkvinge, this is reminiscent of the "high court" and "low court" concepts from the Middle Ages, in which the nobility had the high court: where breaking the law had limited consequences, and you could get away with paying a fine and issuing an apology. Then there was the low court, where everyone else was dealt with, and might receive punishments such as "branding, have their hands cut off, or sometimes just thrown in jail if it was a petty offense; like killing another commoner, which was a lesser offense than stealing from merchants." The two classes and the double standard on punishment reminded him of today's digital world:
In reality, the high courts and low courts have been reintroduced in silence. When Sony BMG broke into millions of computers worldwide in 2005, rootkitting them to disable their ability to run instructions that would violate Sony’s own interpretation of its copyright monopoly, Sony was sentenced to send out marketing material for its own products and no individual executives were charged. When LulzSec members were arrested for breaking into systems in the singular, they get the low court treatment.

When a commoner is accused of violating the copyright monopoly, in some draconian countries like France, they can be sent into social exile without even getting a trial in the low court. In contrast, the noble Voddler (a video-on-demand service) violated the GPL egregiously by using free software to build its service — but without resharing the code, thus violating the copyright monopoly that GPL builds on, and for thoroughly commercial purposes. They were never prosecuted. In contrast, they are now speaking at hearings in parliaments on how successful they are.
What bugs me the most is that those who get away with doing these kinds of things never seem to realize how they're in a position of power and protected. They just brush off their own failure to abide by the law as if it's nothing -- and never realize what they're doing to the people they go after.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    BentFranklin (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 4:08pm

    Here in Pennsylvania the Department of Environmental Protection is the same way. If you own one gas station and you violate an underground storage tank regulation they are all over you. But BP and Sunoco flouted the laws for years and ended up settling in a way that gave them red carpet treatment to have their reports reviewed by DEP geologists.

     

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  2.  
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    BentFranklin (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 4:08pm

    Here in Pennsylvania the Department of Environmental Protection is the same way. If you own one gas station and you violate an underground storage tank regulation they are all over you. But BP and Sunoco flouted the laws for years and ended up settling in a way that gave them red carpet treatment to have their reports reviewed by DEP geologists.

     

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  3.  
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    Samuel Abram (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 4:19pm

    There's a Glenn Greenwald book for that coming out...

    Glenn Greenwald has a book coming out next week on this type of de facto two-tiered justice system:

    http://www.amazon.com/Liberty-Justice-Some-Equality-Powerful/dp/0805092056/ref=sr_1_1?s=b ooks&ie=UTF8&qid=1318461569&sr=1-1

     

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  4.  
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    Bill W (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 4:24pm

    "They just brush off their own failure to abide by the law as if it's nothing -- and never realize what they're doing to the people they go after."

    If there ever was a Double Standard ... but I really believe they they are NOT AWARE of what they are doing. I don't think they are scofflaws, but worse, unable to examine their own actions in the light of the law and reality. This is a terrible thing to be sure.

     

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  5.  
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    Spaceman Spiff (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 4:30pm

    Cake

    No bread in the market, then let them eat cake! Madame Guillotine had the last word during the French revolution... Sooner or later, people will stop putting up with this nonsense, and place people's heads on the block.

     

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  6.  
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    Jay (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 4:44pm

    Re: Cake

    Aren't they doing this already? And the fact remains that the reckoning of depriving so many people of their rights will cause a significant backlash.

    One reason that OWS seems to be gaining momentum is because there's no place for people to discuss the justice system and point out its flaws to their elected officials. This is among the other inherent flaws of our system. Perhaps there should be more dialogue on how to change the system before it becomes even more violent.

     

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  7.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 4:47pm

    Um, it's not just copyright violators, this is how rich people are always treated. If you're rich, you have to screw up royally before you see the inside of a prison.

    The government would much rather the rich just pay a heavy fine (because they can) and fill the government coffers. Poor people just go to jail because the government can't get any money out of them (and the irony is the government spends money taking care of the prisoner).

    Unfortunately, that heavy fine sets a precedence and suddenly poor people have to pay thousand or millions for minor things like sharing a dozen songs. Obviously the fine amounts for copyright infringement were set with big companies in mind, and now it's being applied to individuals.

     

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  8.  
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    Mike42 (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 4:47pm

    Re: Cake

    Strange, how history repeats itself. I get the feeling that every copyright defender AC views himself or herself as a "Lord", and the rest of us are serf scum.

    Oh, well. My dad always said we came from "sturdy peasant stock," and my last name apparently means "chaff" (as in "separate the wheat from the")

     

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  9.  
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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 4:55pm

    Sony got hacked.
    Sony decided to not attend the Congressional Hearing into the matter.
    Sony used a text file to try and shift the blame to a 3rd party not involved the the data theft.
    Sony was not using anything remotely close to established security procedures.
    Sony was aware for a very long time their systems were insecure, and these were posts made publicly.
    Do we have new data protection laws on the books?
    Do we have an overreaching law telling you you at minimum need to do x?
    We we instead offered extensions of data retention by ISPs, filters, and laws to get "the bad people" as defined by corporations.

    We have ISPs entering into agreements with media corporations to create a 6 strikes system to take people off the internet on the accusations of the corps, which have been shown to be false in the past. They took away any defensible positions in their system for the user and treat the allegation as pure truth.
    Do any members of our representative Government have a problem with this? Nope.
    The ISPs all complain about how much infrastructure and suchs costs, and have been given access to every yard free of charge.
    If they want to become a private police force, why do we allow them to still have monopolies and why do we not make them negotiate for every freaking pole and easement?

    Our "Government" exists solely to benefit corporations at this point. Lets stop pretending democrat or republican or tea party matters, they all jump when the pile of cash is dropped at their feet.

    The White House officially called the protesters mobs that worried him. When exactly did we forget that the people in that mob have a right to do that? That dissension is not unpatriotic? That they are supposed to be working for us, the people stupid enough to have elected them hoping for change.

    There are more of us in the low court, maybe it is time to remind those who get the high court that the law in this country is supposed to be even. We will have our pound of flesh, we will vote the incumbents out, we will stop getting distracted by "issues" meant to keep us divided against one another, and we will turn our gaze on our leaders and in a single voice demand change and get it.

     

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  10.  
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    Jay (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:07pm

    Re:

    Don't forget that now, the DoJ wants to make people go to prison or placate them for streaming links that they decide are bad. So now there's a chance they'll try to put people in jail for copyright infringement.

     

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  11.  
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    DOlz (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:08pm

    Re:

    Viva La Revolución!

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:08pm

    Re: Re: Cake

    And the fact remains that the reckoning of depriving so many people of their rights will cause a significant backlash.

    Agreed.

    I suspect one sign of this backlash happening might happen in the courts: A defending lawyer will point out these inequalities...and use it to successfully defend their client.

    After that, this strategy gets copied...

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:19pm

    People in power believe the only thing others are born to is to serve them.
    http://mimiandeunice.com/2011/10/07/why-are-we-here/

    They use force to subjugate others and complain when things turn violent.
    http://mimiandeunice.com/2011/10/05/peaceful/

     

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  14.  
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    rallen (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:27pm

    Class warfare

    This is part of the reason the few remaining middle class, and most all the upper class, wonder why the rest of us hate them so much. They seem to think that people are poor, because they are stupid and/or lazy, when often it's because they lost everything they worked their whole life for to circumstances beyond their control.

    I suppose I could be rich, if I used their morals. I'd just kidnap a bus-load of rich kids, and throw their decapitated heads out a window until I got what I wanted. It's "free market economics" in all it's brutal glory. I'd have something they want, and they'd have to trade with me to get it. If I'm sufficiently ruthless, and have a good enough plan, I'll get away with it. Thus proving that I'd be "worthy" of being one of them.

    Gads. Just thinking like that makes me feel dirty, like a lawyer for the IRS.

     

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  15.  
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    Jay (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:33pm

    Re:

    Sony got hacked.
    Sony decided to not attend the Congressional Hearing into the matter.
    Sony used a text file to try and shift the blame to a 3rd party not involved the the data theft.
    Sony was not using anything remotely close to established security procedures.
    Sony was aware for a very long time their systems were insecure, and these were posts made publicly.
    Do we have new data protection laws on the books?
    Do we have an overreaching law telling you you at minimum need to do x?
    We we instead offered extensions of data retention by ISPs, filters, and laws to get "the bad people" as defined by corporations.


    There is one glaring reason why Sony was able to softball the privacy issue from their PS3.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:41pm

    Well, that's what limited liability really is. It's a 'high court' treatment whereby those that break the law get lesser punishments (and in fact, the stockholders are the ones punished, not the decision makers). It's how Bayer gets to get away with knowingly selling aids tainted blood without having a single executive personally punished. If you or I did that, the punishments against us personally would be dire. but they are under the law of the high court, which punishes them less. It's how Pfizer gets a lesser punishment for breaking laws that normally impose a greater punishment. The pharmaceutical cartel gets the high court treatment. This isn't anything new, Techdirt has example after example of this. America does indeed have double standards and two sets of punishments, one for the elite and one for the rest of us.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:42pm

    Well, that's what limited liability really is. It's a 'high court' treatment whereby those that break the law get lesser punishments (and in fact, the stockholders are the ones punished, not the decision makers). It's how Bayer gets to get away with knowingly selling aids tainted blood without having a single executive personally punished. If you or I did that, the punishments against us personally would be dire. but they are under the law of the high court, which punishes them less. It's how Pfizer gets a lesser punishment for breaking laws that normally impose a greater punishment. The pharmaceutical cartel gets the high court treatment. This isn't anything new, Techdirt has example after example of this. America does indeed have double standards and two sets of punishments, one for the elite and one for the rest of us.

     

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

  18.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:42pm

    Well, that's what limited liability really is. It's a 'high court' treatment whereby those that break the law get lesser punishments (and in fact, the stockholders are the ones punished, not the decision makers). It's how Bayer gets to get away with knowingly selling aids tainted blood without having a single executive personally punished. If you or I did that, the punishments against us personally would be dire. but they are under the law of the high court, which punishes them less. It's how Pfizer gets a lesser punishment for breaking laws that normally impose a greater punishment. The pharmaceutical cartel gets the high court treatment. This isn't anything new, Techdirt has example after example of this. America does indeed have double standards and two sets of punishments, one for the elite and one for the rest of us.

    Uhm ... why does this post need to be reviewed?

     

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

  19.  
    identicon
    Internet Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:44pm

    Well, that's what limited liability really is. It's a 'high court' treatment whereby those that break the law get lesser punishments (and in fact, the stockholders are the ones punished, not the decision makers). It's how Bayer gets to get away with knowingly selling aids tainted blood without having a single executive personally punished. If you or I did that, the punishments against us personally would be dire. but they are under the law of the high court, which punishes them less. It's how Pfizer gets a lesser punishment for breaking laws that normally impose a greater punishment. The pharmaceutical cartel gets the high court treatment. This isn't anything new, Techdirt has example after example of this. America does indeed have double standards and two sets of punishments, one for the elite and one for the rest of us.

    Uhm ... why does this post need to be reviewed?

     

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

  20.  
    identicon
    Internet Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:44pm

    Well, that's what limited liability really is. It's a 'high court' treatment whereby those that break the law get lesser punishments (and in fact, the stockholders are the ones punished, not the decision makers). It's how Bayer gets to get away with knowingly selling aids tainted blood without having a single executive personally punished. If you or I did that, the punishments against us personally would be dire. but they are under the law of the high court, which punishes them less.

    It's how Pfizer gets a lesser punishment for breaking laws that normally impose a greater punishment. The pharmaceutical cartel gets the high court treatment. This isn't anything new, Techdirt has example after example of this. America does indeed have double standards and two sets of punishments, one for the elite and one for the rest of us.

    Uhm ... why does this post need to be reviewed?

     

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

  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:45pm

    Why all of a sudden my posts need to be reviewed by staff before posting?

     

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  22.  
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    Bergman (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:48pm

    Re:

    There's an old saying about that sort of thing, that seems to apply:

    "If you owe the bank $100, the bank owns you. If you owe the bank $100,000,000 you own the bank."

     

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  23.  
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    Bergman (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 5:52pm

    Re:

    Try logging in instead of posting as an Anonymous Coward.

     

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  24.  
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    InternetCoward (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:05pm

    Re: Re:

    Even after logging in, I still get the same message.

     

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  25.  
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    abc gum, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:08pm

    Re:

    Any examples of this "heavy fine " to which you refer ?

    In the many cases I've read about there was no acknowledgement of misdeeds nor any repercussions, I'm sure these people feel free to repeat their transgressions.

     

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  26.  
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    blaktron (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:09pm

    Re: Re:

    What would you say about the US government then that the fed loaned out 16 000 000 000 000 dollars to the banks and foreign governments? Not that I disagree...

     

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  27.  
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    InternetCoward (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:15pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    That's what limited liability really is. It's a 'high court' treatment whereby those that break the law get lesser punishments (and in fact, the stockholders are the ones punished, not the decision makers). It's how B a y e r gets away with knowingly selling a ids taint ed blood without having a single executive personally punished. If you or I did that, the punishments against us personally would be dire. but they are under the law of the high court, which punishes them less.

     

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

  28.  
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    InternetCoward (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:16pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Testing, 123, testing. Bayer, something something, does this need a filter. Bayer. Is Bayer the word that makes the spam filter go nuts? Maybe it is. If I took that word out, will I get past the silly spam filter that doesn't know spam for non-spam? Is Bayer a common spam word?

     

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  29.  
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    InternetCoward (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:19pm

    Ok, I think I identified the problem word. Let me re-try the post again.

    That's what limited liability really is. It's a 'high court' treatment whereby those that break the law get lesser punishments (and in fact, the stockholders are the ones punished, not the decision makers). It's how Bayer gets away with knowingly selling A id s tainted blood without having a single executive personally punished. If you or I did that, the punishments against us personally would be dire. but they are under the law of the high court, which punishes them less.

    It's how Pfizer gets a lesser punishment for breaking laws that normally impose a greater punishment. The pharmaceutical cartel gets the high court treatment. This isn't anything new, Techdirt has example after example of this. America does indeed have double standards and two sets of punishments, one for the elite and one for the rest of us.

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100402/1844298860.shtml

     

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  30.  
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    InternetCoward (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:21pm

    Re:

    (The word A id s should have no spaces. It's one word, A I D S).

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:45pm

    Re: Class warfare

    A monopolistic market is not a capitalistic market.

    IP laws guarantee that you are not in a free market true capitalistic system.

     

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  32.  
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    InternetCoward (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:47pm

    Re: Re:

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:54pm

    Re: Re: Class warfare

    I like "Occupy WallStreet" and they can even turn into a new Tea Party kind of thing that has the power to put people in some places.

    What is missing from that is the what people want, instead of electing people to make laws for us we need to make our own laws so we put people there to enact them.

    Step 1. Develop an argument map.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argument_map

    See what people agree most on and put that into words.

    Step 2. Map the laws that we already have.

    Step 3. Modify or write new laws that we need.

    Step 4. Put it to a public vote.

    Step 5. Put the people necessary to accomplish that task into the places they need to be. This means looking at the whole of the government not only congress, there are government institutions that are part of it that are the responsible ones for crafting regulations and advising for issues.

    http://www.truthmapping.com/

    This one bellow, the US government has been said to look at it, from time to time.

    http://debategraph.org/home

     

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  34.  
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    Rekrul, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 6:55pm

    Re: Re: Cake

    One reason that OWS seems to be gaining momentum is because there's no place for people to discuss the justice system and point out its flaws to their elected officials.

    Do you really think that that's just an oversight? The elected officials don't want to held to the same laws as the common man, so why would they ever want commoners to have any significant input into how the justice system works? They like it the way it is.

     

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  35.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 7:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: Cake

    Of course they don't and they never will, it is against their survival insticts that is why people really, really need to take that discussion to a place where those people don't hold power over it and that is the public space.

    People didn't realize it yet, but they have all the tools they need to make it happen and really change the system.

     

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  36.  
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    Rekrul, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 7:00pm

    Re:

    We will have our pound of flesh, we will vote the incumbents out...

    Anyone we elect will just lie to us until they get into office and then they'll just abuse their position. Just like Obama...

     

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  37.  
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    InternetCoward (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 7:02pm

    Re:

    Here is another example of that

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BART_Police_shooting_of_Oscar_Grant

    A cop gets only two years in jail for murder.

    Another example of differential treatment is that the potential punishment for assaulting a police officer is worse than the potential punishment for assaulting another citizen. If anything, the reverse should be true, cops willingly take on a duty with a higher risk of being attacked and it is the cops duty to be able to protect unable citizens from being attacked.

     

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  38.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 7:06pm

    Re: Re: Re: Cake

    There is a place where dual party rules have no meaning, there is a place where lobbies will be hard pressed to function.

    It is called public space, people don't need to care about what others think, just what the issues are, that destroy party lines. In the public space lobbies would have to give money to a great number of people to make a dent in public opinion that alone functions as a natural barrier to entry for those people.

    People need to take the discussion to the public sphere, they need to take the rule making to the streets where every joe and jane has in theory equal status.

    When people start doing that they can "shellac" the government, lobbies and special interests decade after decade.

    People have only one weapon and that is their numbers.

     

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  39.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 7:09pm

    Re: Re:

    That is true, it is also true that people can change that.

    Don't vote for politicians vote for issues and politicians matter no more.

    What do we need to make the system fair?

    What are the laws if any that need to be changed, who needs to be replaced, where are the problems that we can see and fix?

     

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  40.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 7:19pm

    Re: Re:

    And another example, in Canada, is the CRIA.

     

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  41.  
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    Steve R. (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 7:30pm

    Corporatism

    We are witnessing the emergence of Corporatism as our economic and legal system. The government one could say is being reduced to a corporate subsidiary. A government of, by, and for the corporations.

    As part of this process, we are witnessing the end of due process. Look at what what Amazon.com did when it unilaterally and without permission removed Orwell books from the Kindle.

    Through the use of TOSs and EULAs, I will even conjecture that corporations are now making "law" a privilege that used to be reserved to the government. I have seem some posts on other forums referring to violations of TOSs or EULAs as being illegal activities. It used to be that when you violated a contract it was a civil matter, now it seems to increasingly beccoming a legal matter that could result in a criminal conviction.

    Of course virtually every TOS and EULA seems to diminish the purchasers rights and enhance those of the seller - the ultimate insult of these so-called contracts is that they are contracts of adhesion that can be changed at will be the seller and where the purchaser is deprived of any right to even negotiate the terms.

     

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  42.  
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    VMax, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 7:53pm

    Re:

    I think most people don't say to themselves "That is so wrong, we've got to fix it." They say "I need to find a way to be that rich.".

     

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  43.  
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    NullOp, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 7:56pm

    Vultures

    The vultures always go for the weak ones, those that can't defend themselves. We've created a legal system based on one's ability to pay for justice and if you have enough money, you can almost do anything you want! There are cures for such ailments but America will never stand for it as we are still the land of the Almighty Dollar!

     

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  44.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 8:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It seems like the word A I D S is the offending word. Now why would a spam filter filter such a word?

     

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  45.  
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    abc gum, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 8:23pm

    Re: Corporatism

    And soon you will be a criminal for voicing your disapproval unless - of course - you are the 1%, then you will be allowed to spread lies and innuendo at will.

     

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  46.  
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    Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 8:55pm

    Re: Re: Cake

    I get the feeling that every copyright defender AC views himself or herself as a "Lord", and the rest of us are serf scum.

    Of course they do. Many of them are lawyers (even if they really have some other job, like a lobbyist, they're still lawyers). And what's pretty much the only socio-economic class title still in use in the US? Esquire. Used by lawyers.

     

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  47.  
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    Jay (profile), Oct 12th, 2011 @ 10:55pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Cake

    This actually reminds me of the philosophical debates any of the great Greek/Roman philosophers. You had a common area where men of different stations could come to discuss the various governances of the day. From Socrates, we understand the issues of ethics and sophistry in how he came quested for one truth. But one thing understood in the the times of these philosophers was the fact that they had areas of dialogue for all involved. Now think about how sectioned off we have most of the United States and the massive disconnects of people.

    I really think there should be a place for people to go and physically BE in the same area to discuss these topics. Topics of how the law works, how there are quasi government officials such as the FBI or CIA, places for the common man to actually meet these mysterious judges instead of holding them to some type of special status.

    Don't get me wrong, the internet is great. But we section off parts of it based on our needs. The thought of an amphitheater where everyone is allowed to discuss their concerns in civilized discourse, their background taking a backseat to the debate at hand.

    Would it work? Dunno, but it's similar to the public space that you bring forth.

     

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

  48.  
    identicon
    chris, Oct 12th, 2011 @ 11:49pm

    Great topic. I'm glad more people are talking about this. To let Sony get away with that, while targeting individuals for much less, erodes people's confidence in the justice system and pushes them towards vigilantism.

     

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

  49.  
    icon
    Mike Masnick (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 1:26am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Please do not repost a million of the same comments. We review the comments caught in the spam filter and release them if they're not spam. Posting a bunch of the same comment is annoying.

     

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

  50.  
    icon
    Mike Masnick (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 1:28am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It seems like the word A I D S is the offending word. Now why would a spam filter filter such a word?

    Email me and I'll explain. It's a long story. But it involves a persistent troll.

     

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

  51.  
    icon
    mike allen (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 2:12am

    only one comment it is the same the world over. not just USA.

     

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  52.  
    icon
    Mike42 (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 4:34am

    Re: Re:

    Been there, done that.
    We went from an 80% cluster f**k to 100%.
    Vote Democrat this time. They at least PRETEND to care.

    (People who make over $1 million in a year aren't rich? WTF?)

     

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

  53.  
    icon
    harbingerofdoom (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 5:21am

    Re: Re: Re:

    im sorry but just......no.

    pretending to care to me is a bigger slap in the face than at least coming outright and saying "im a big fat lying bastard and im going to screw you the first chance i get".

    at least thats honest.

     

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  54.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 13th, 2011 @ 6:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Ok, sorry about that. I figure what you should/would do is simply not release some of the duplicate posts. Seems like a simple enough solution.

     

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

  55.  
    icon
    The eejit (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 6:12am

    Re:

    You posted five times. That kind of sets off some flags. Still, you're not a lawbreaker...like the RIAA, Congress and the President.

     

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

  56.  
    icon
    Tech42 (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 8:12am

    Re: Re:

    Exactly. More than 2 centuries of voting has resulted in what?

    More corruption after each election until the current state of affairs was reached.

    Why does anyone think that voting again will change this?

     

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

  57.  
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    Seegras (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 8:17am

    High and Low Courts

    This explanation is absolutely bogus.

    High and Low courts differentiate not between their clients, but what they have done and who may speak Justice.

    The High court can sentence someone to death or have a hand taken off, the low court may not; the low court may only adminster fines and things like beatings.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High,_middle_and_low_justice

     

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

  58.  
    identicon
    hothmonster, Oct 13th, 2011 @ 8:42am

    Re:

    its because your last comment repeated 5 times, the system flagged you as a spammer

     

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

  59.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 13th, 2011 @ 8:43am

    Re: Re:

    or i should read the whole thread before i ass u me

     

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

  60.  
    icon
    Hephaestus (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 9:02am

    Re: Re: Re:

    We should create a new party, along the lines of the pirate party with expanded goals. It worked for the Tea party so you never know it might again. Lets see what do we want?

    Smaller government.
    Lower Taxes.
    Less regulation.
    Changes to copyright, shorter copyright, with the need to register all copyrighted works.
    Changes to the patent system to allow anyone to manufacture anything with pre set rates.
    Tort Reform.
    Monopoly reduction.
    ....

     

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

  61.  
    identicon
    S, Oct 13th, 2011 @ 9:38am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Oh, you silly children:

    This is not a representative democracy, as you stubbornly insist on believing, it's a pseudo-representative republic. Have none of you recited the pledge of allegiance recently? ". . . and the republic for which it stands . . ."

    The electoral college is not legally or constitutionally obligated to follow the popular vote.

    Nixon was given 301 electoral votes while Humphrey was given 191 -- but the popular vote was divided 49.5%/51.5%.

    It's entirely arguable that Bush actually lost the popular vote (shenanigans not withstanding), and still got an electoral majority.

    This is not representative. It's also completely legal.

    Stop deluding yourselves.

     

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  62.  
    identicon
    S, Oct 13th, 2011 @ 9:45am

    A friend of mine, one who has been intimately involved with the "club" for about 30 years -- the kind of friends who call up the president (they're interchangeable at this level) to invite themselves for dinner on a whim -- remarked to me once that the upcoming future for America would be a corporate oligarchy.

    And nothing I see, hear, or read from any other source has yet to credibly dispute them.

     

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

  63.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 13th, 2011 @ 10:14am

    Re:

    some links and words trigger the spam filter

     

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

  64.  
    icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 1:38pm

    Re: Re:

    Yet we still have people voting for those caught in scandals.
    If we start throwing out the incumbents, who are do nothing corporate lap dogs, and keep doing so we avoid some of the problems we have today. We also put the fear of the people back into them.

    Political dynasties are what we currently have.
    The person appoint to be in charge of laws about the internet believed it was a "series of tubes". He was also about as corrupt as they come. And people kept voting for him because he brought home the money for his state. While the people of his state thought they would actually benefit, umm yeah not so much.

    We need to make Congress be bound by the laws that bind us.
    We need to end their health care and benefits for life.

    If the people voted out the old, and made a point of this is not a party decision this is getting rid of the corrupt it might take a while but soon we might find them listening to the people as we keep their damage limited by not letting them stay in office for far to long.

    I'm not saying it will be easy, simple, or fast.
    But to throw ones hands up and pretend we can not make any progress by demanding change means we have lost already.
    It is far better to try and fail a hundred times, than to sit on the couch and bitch about how they are ruining the country.

     

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

  65.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 1:50pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    But in the course of pretending to care, some minimal amount of "caring" (as in good legislation) must be accomplished. If you aren't even pretending, then exactly nothing good will be accomplished. I don't give two hoots about whether a party is insulting me or giving me a slap in the face. I care about what they actually accomplish.

    And between the two, the Republican party has shown time and time again that it will only do those things that will benefit the very top of the income scale regardless of how much damage is caused to everyone else. The Democratic party also benefits the very top on the income scale but does, occasionally, do something that helps everyone else too.

    I would rather have a mealy-mouthed politician that occasionally helps the nation than an honest one that works tirelessly for its destruction. The lesser of two evils is still less evil.

     

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

  66.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Oct 13th, 2011 @ 1:52pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    less regulation


    Sorry, you lost me there. I think much of our current problems are because regulation was backed off too much. I'm in favor of more of it, so long as it's effective and proper.

     

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

  67.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 13th, 2011 @ 2:08pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    actually the regulation has been increasing over the years, but its the wrong kind of regulation. it is regulation payed for by companies for them to maintain a monopoly position.

     

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

  68.  
    identicon
    abc gum, Oct 13th, 2011 @ 5:54pm

    Re: High and Low Courts

    Your literal interpretation missed the point, but I assume that was intended.

     

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

  69.  
    identicon
    Rekrul, Oct 14th, 2011 @ 11:28am

    Re: Re: Re:

    That is true, it is also true that people can change that.

    That's a myth. In any given election, both candidates are usually equally corrupt. Sure, there may be more than two candidates, but anyone outside of the two major ones never get elected.

    If by some miracle, a politician isn't corrupt, they will be by the time they get into office.

    And even if the people somehow manage to elect an honest politician who puts the interests of the people ahead of the corporations, they will be outvoted by all the corrupt politicians.

    What do we need to make the system fair?

    What are the laws if any that need to be changed, who needs to be replaced, where are the problems that we can see and fix?


    The only ones who can fix the laws to make the system fair are the ones who are benefiting from it being corrupt. It's like asking the fox what changes need to be made to make the henhouse more secure.

     

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

  70.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Oct 14th, 2011 @ 4:23pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    That's not regulation, though, no matter what the corporations call it. Actual regulation has been dramatically reduced over the last 20 years or so.

    ...except for ordinary citizens. For them, regulation of the bad sort has been increasing.

     

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

  71.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Oct 18th, 2011 @ 6:21am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    We should create a new party, along the lines of the pirate party with expanded goals.

    That's not going anywhere with a two party system. Remember all those "tea party" representatives ran as Republicans. I think it would be great to get rid of the two party system, but you can imagine the liklihood of getting that Constitutional amendment passed.

     

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

  72.  
    identicon
    DCX2, Feb 15th, 2013 @ 11:22am

    Re: Re:

    Goldman Sachs and Abacus 2007-AC1. Goldman Sachs, with the assistance of the hedge fund Paulson & Co. Inc., designed and sold this Abacus CDO to investors, while Paulson bet on its failure. The investors lost over a billion dollars when the CDO went sour. The fine was $550 million, no one was found guilty, no one was labeled a felon, no one was imprisoned. Goldman merely admitted "yeah, maybe our information was incomplete..." $250 million from the fine went to the defrauded investors.

     

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


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