Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Year At Techdirt
from the it's-been-quite-a-year dept
Coming in first in the most insightful category, by an amazingly wide margin, is a comment from Chris Rhodes from back in July, on a story about a woman being arrested for not letting the TSA grope her daughter. Chris was responding to one of our usual critics who tried to downplay the story by saying, "Once again, if there is molesting and groping going on, why don't they call the police? Oh wait, it's a valid and legal search. Stop whining already." This is, of course, a classical logical fallacy, and Chris demonstrated that wonderfully, and it seems you guys agreed (strongly):
"Once again, if denying women the vote is wrong, then why don't they call the police? Oh wait, it's valid and legal to stop women from voting.Thanks Chris! And, yes, in case you're wondering, that comment also got a ton of "funny" votes -- enough to come in 7th on the year... just out of the top 5.
Stop whining already."
That's a very good point you make.
"Once again, if making black people sit at the back of the bus is wrong, then why don't they call the police? Oh wait, it's valid and legal to make black people sit at the back of the bus.
Stop whining already."
Can't argue with that line of thinking at all.
"Once again, if rounding up Jews is wrong, then why don't they call the police? Oh wait, it's valid and legal to round up Jews.
Stop whining already."
You've certainly backed me into a logical corner there. I don't see any way to assail your iron-clad premise. Kudos to you, sir!
Second place on the year goes to Marcus Carab with a very short comment, way down a thread, on the story of how Viacom's General Counsel, Michael Friklas, was insisting that it's easy to know what sites are rogue. Someone in the comments pointed out (of course) the unfortunate (for Mr. Fricklas) fact that he's leading the big lawsuit against YouTube for supposedly encouraging infringement... a case in which Viacom listed a ton of videos as infringing that it, itself, had uploaded. Someone shot back that this didn't excuse the other infringement on the site, to which Marcus replied simply:
No, but it sort of shatters every single argument about how SOPA will only target illegal content, doesn't it?Indeed it does. Not that SOPA's supporters still won't cling to those arguments.
Coming in third on the insightful side of the ledger, we've got el_segfaulto commenting on a story from back in July, about Spotify being sued for patent infringement soon after entering the US market. El_segfaulto highlighted the clear chilling effects to innovation:
As a developer, there is a reason why I do not release code anymore and am reluctant to even help others out on message boards. I'm a decent developer, I've never been great on prettiness but when it comes to security fuggedaboutit. I've been threatened with patent litigation before and it is not a pleasant process. When I was in grad school I had the resources of a major U.S. university to help. Their pack of rabid lawyers outmatched the trolls', but the sad reality is that the amount of money, time, and energy expended was wayyyy more than was warranted for the little piss-ant project that I was working on.In fourth, we have a short comment from Brent Ashley in response to the story of Congress attacking Google for being big. Brent figured if "big" was bad, perhaps Congress had the wrong target:
If you give a group of engineers a problem and each one of them comes up with a similar solution guess what...it's not that damned novel! Creators (artistic and technological) need to realize that they are not special little snowflakes and not every idea that comes out of their minds is unique and amazing.
Congress should expand their search for systems that need dismantling or breaking up due to bigness. Take their own two political parties for instance. Not enough competition. If one goes out of business all you'll have is the other one.And, coming in fifth (and, I have to say that comments three, four and five were super close in voting to each other, is a short comment from Ken with a statement that is simple, but true:
Just like the saying goes "you have tyranny when the people fear their government and you have freedom when government fears the people."There were, obviously, tons of other wonderful and insightful comments, but that's what you voted on the most this year.
Moving over to funny, the winner (by far, receiving the most votes by nearly 2x of any other comment, insightful or funny) over the course of the year was from an Anonymous Coward (who says anonymous comments are bad?), responding to a story of the police in Philly threatening to shoot a man who was legally carrying a gun, and then charging him with disorderly conduct for daring to record the interaction. This AC decided to go Fresh Prince of Bel Air on us:
In West Philadelphia born and raisedComing in second place is (once again) el_segfaulto, explaining why it actually is right to say that infringement is just like theft:
On the playground is where I spent most of my days
Chillin' out maxin' relaxin' all cool
And all shootin' some B-Ball outside of school
When a couple of cops, who were up to no good, started makin trouble in my neighboorhood
I recorded one little fight and the cops got scared, had the D.A. trump up some charges that weren't really fair
I hate agreeing with ACs but I have a story that will help. A few days ago I was hiking in my beloved Sierra Nevada mountains outside of Lake Tahoe. I saw a beautiful snow-capped peak just to my left. I harmlessly thought that I'd take a picture of it. Well I snapped my photo and wouldn't you know it, the entire damned thing disappeared!Third place goes to Chronno S. Trigger from September, responding to a story of a printer error screwing up some DRM, by doing a callback to another story, from August, about Gamestop removing coupons from games in its stores. Chronno wondered if the two might be related:
A park ranger came up to me demanding to know what had happened. I told him that I had taken a picture of the mountain. No sooner had I uttered those words than a fleet of black helicopters descended on our location. An engineer jumped out of the first one, grabbed my camera, and proceeded to pull out all of the bytes one at a time with a very tiny set of tweezers.
It took most of the weekend, but the mountain is now back to where it was (along with a couple of families camping in the mountains and a very confused black bear). The moral of the story is copying things, or even remembering them can be critically damaging to our planet, and thus our children.
And won't somebody please think of the children?
We sure it was a printing error and not Game Stop taking out the extra 6 characters?Coming in fourth we have an amusing comment from Brendan, responding to a story of someone else (not us) trying to claim copyright on Techdirt's articles (which are public domain). Brendan had a suggestion for us:
Hey Mike,And, finally, we've got another comment from Marcus Carab, and it's another "callback" comment. In responding to a story in June about police in Miami holding a man at gun point and trying to destroy the video evidence the guy took of them shooting a different man in another car, Marcus reminded us of another story of police overreacting: the story of Washington DC police bodyslamming some peaceful protestors who were silently dancing at the Jefferson Memorial:
I'm not sure if you've heard of them, but I've been reading about this great outfit called "Righthaven." They seem to be exactly the kind of service you need in order to deal with Evans appropriately.
According to their press releases, they're really having great luck in the various courts -- the judges are even helping them to iron out some minor issues with their paperwork, making their cases even more bullet-proof.
Remember, squeeze the balls until his wallet falls out of his pants.
Ridiculous - he wasn't even dancing!And... there you have it. The top five most insightful and funniest comments of the year according to your votes... I can't wait to see what you guys come up with in 2012.