In all seriousness, I don't see why they shouldn't get a jury made up of magicians. You're supposed to have a jury of your peers, and if the argument is between two magicians, involving a dispute over a magic trick, then who better to understand the ins and outs of the case than people familiar with the concepts involved?
Exactly. And if it weren't for the DMCA, that would be the case. Without the DMCA legitimizing DRM technology, it would be regarded exactly the same as any other act that forcibly takes control of a computer away from its owner, against the owner's will and against their interests.
In any other context, we call that hacking, and it's illegal. But the DMCA turns law and common sense on their heads. Now the hackers have a legal right to hack you, but if you exercise your natural right to control over your own property, you are violating the law.
If copyright abuse is ever to be reined in, as opposed to simply playing a neverending game of whack-a-mole with new attempts to make things worse, it will have to begin by repealing the DMCA.
Re: Re: "Without that free labor..." -- Well, Apple wouldn't have an OS.
That depends on whether you're talking about written language (a set of symbolic images) or spoken language (a set of symbolic sounds). Spoken language actually is natural, as evidenced by the fact that a "speech center" exists in the brain, whose entire purpose is learning to speak. It atrophies sometime in the second decade of life, which is why learning a second language later in life is so much more difficult than picking up your first one.
There is, however, no equivalent "reading center". That's purely an invented concept.
They exist specifically because this "assume everyone will play nice" approach failed. It failed very quickly. It only took one jerk to take advantage and create a commercial derivative.
After that, the original contributors screamed bloody murder and the GPL was born.
...proving once again that people are stupid. "Oh, look at this horrible extreme thing that's causing harm. We need to reject this and fight against its harmful effects. I know! Let's set up a new system that's just as extremist as the problematic idea we're trying to reject, and push it as The Only True Way now. What a brilliant idea!"
The GPL is not about getting more people to use (and to contribute to) your code; it's about pushing a strict anti-proprietary-software ideology on everyone in the name of "freedom". And it's given the entire concept of open source software a black eye because a lot of people equate open source with the GPL and all of its ugly restrictions. No one has done more harm to the essentially good ideas behind open source than Richard Stallman and the FSF.
In other words, it's betting that despite blocking its own trademark application, the Yankees won't now go on to sue over Evil Empire's continued usage. That seems like a pretty big risk.
And that is the real problem here, that people should be addressing but aren't. The ultimate chilling effect: "do you wanna get sued?"
When being involved in a lawsuit is so expensive as to be debilitating even when you are clearly in the right, something is clearly, fundamentally wrong with the entire system. No one should ever fear a lawsuit unless they actually think they're likely to lose. On the contrary, they should feel happy to have their chance to have their day in court, and prove that they have done nothing wrong. That's the way it used to be, in fact. But the way things have changed since then, preventing innocent people from defending themselves--or from even doing things in the first place that they would certainly have been vindicated for doing--have violated more people's rights than bad rulings ever have.
It's good to see politicians finally beginning to realize blatantly obvious stuff like this. I've been saying for about 5 years now that Internet access needs to be regarded by law as a public utility. Let's see if we can't actually get some momentum behind the concept.
Well, for starters, just about every single horrible, evil, abusive thing you've heard of happening in the last few decades in the name of "capitalism" can be laid at her feet.
Adam Smith, the father of capitalism, was actually a moralist first and an economist second. His work was heavily concerned with not only finding efficient ways to manage an economy, but also with ensuring that they were good ways, in the moral sense. Read his work sometime, look carefully at the ideas he espouses, and ask yourself, "would a person promoting this policy today be accused of being pro-communism by modern 'capitalists'?" and you'll be surprised how often the answer is yes.
What changed? Ayn Rand got published. She took what's essentially The Philosophy of the Two-Year-Old and wrapped it in a bunch of eloquent, romantic words to make it look like a worthwhile moral compass. (Seriously. Look at how much of her philosophy can, without exaggeration or hyperbole, be summed up in the words "I don't want to and you can't make me!") And the heroic ideal that she held up as a model, an ideal path to be followed, was drawn heavily from the character of a sociopathic murderer who she idolized. (See http://michaelprescott.freeservers.com/romancing-the-stone-cold.html for details, since actual links posted in comments tend to get caught in the spam trap here.)
If you want to see why capitalism changed from the moral system proposed by Smith to the ugly, cruel monster we see today that remains capitalism in name only, where narcissism is the highest virtue and the system rewards and encourages people to act like sociopaths, you need look no further than Ayn Rand's influence. It's rather telling that the Library of Congress's study on the most influential books on American thought found the Bible in #1, and Atlas Shrugged a close second.
It's hard to think of another person in American history who has caused more harm, more damage, and more outright evil, in America and throughout the world, than her.
Very interesting. I've always been a bit uneasy with the stuff I hear about Uber and their business model. Seeing that it's run by an Ayn Rand-worshipper brings a lot of clarity to that. It's hard to think of another person in American history who has caused more harm, more damage, and more outright evil, in America and throughout the world, than her.
Agreed, except I would take it further. Why's it "a cheap shot" to show absurdly high CEO salaries in the first place?
A highly skilled, experienced worker, working full-time, can expect to make a little under $100,000 with the right skillset, and that's pretty high-end. When you have people in charge who are making 1 to 2 orders of magnitude beyond what they're paying the most skilled of their employees--the ones who are actually generating the revenue--is it not fair to ask what they're doing to deserve such compensation?
Are they working harder? I'd expect to pay someone 10x as much if they're working 10x as hard... but I don't see any CEOs working 400--4000 hours a week, seeing as how there are only 168 hours available to choose from.
So then, why should it be considered "a cheap shot" to call attention to such absurdities?
Add things up on a 20 year copyright term extension, and we're talking about a rather massive monopoly rent (tax) from the public directed to the heirs of certain creators.
No, no, you see, you've got it all wrong.
A tax is when money is taken from the public and given to the government, where it can be used to fund public works projects that benefits everyone. This is clearly a horrible thing, and if you're in favor of it in any way, you are obviously a dirty commie.
When money gets taken from the public and given to private corporations, to line the executives' pockets, that's the natural order of things! That's the way it's supposed to work, and that's not an evil, insidious tax at all. How dare you even suggest such a thing?
1. That argument could be expanded to making it illegal to DRM software, videos, and games, which has less of a chance of passing than fat cat through the eye of a needle.
I don't know about that. Illegalizing DRM is something that we definitely do need to have happen if we're ever going to get our stolen rights back, and if enough people get up in arms about it, it will happen.
Remember the SOPA protests, and the lesson we (re-)learned from that delightful bit of true democracy: votes trump money every time.
If we can get the message out, and explain to enough people that DRM is nothing but a hacking tool used by copyright owners to take away your control over your property and stomp on your rights, people will start pushing back. But if the people who understand the situation believe that it will never happen... that becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.