Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

from the mrwilson's-world dept

The voters have spoken, and to them, the most insightful comment of the week comes from Machin Shin responding to a Brit jokingly calling July 4th “Happy We-got-rid-of-a-bunch-of-useless-colonies Day.” Machin then explained the conflicting feelings of being American and many of you found it to be quite insightful:

Well, We may have been “a-bunch-of-useless-colonies” for a while. We then became the most powerful nation in the world.

Of course sadly we have now slipped back into the “useless” category. I must say, it is very conflicting being an American, I am extremely proud of what this nation once was and the principles it was built upon, but I am now disgusted when I look at what it has become and how far we have strayed from those principles.

I do wonder how many of those votes came from Americans and how many from foreigners…

Anyway, we had a rare (but not unheard of) second place tie this week for votes on “most insightful.” I’ll just post them in the order they came in. First up was MrWilson’s comment on his criticism of libertarianism:

My criticism of libertarianism has always been that they seem to attribute to the government all these bad characteristics of control and abuse and getting too large, but they’re completely blind to the fact that privately owned entities are prone to do the same thing and no amount of a mythical self-regulating free market (which requires a well educated and organized consumer base in order to function – something we’re not likely to achieve under current circumstances) is going to stop human beings from over-reaching and trying to control others regardless of whether they’re in the public or the private sector.

And, sharing the second place podium was Loki, who commented on the claim that Kim Dotcom — a person who is easy to dislike — has become a cult hero:

I don’t think this issue has turned him into a cult hero, as much as it has put into perspective just how reviled Hollywood, the RIAA, and the MPAA are. I actually heard someone last week say, “sure Dotcom is a piece of scum and a dirtbag, but at least he’s not Chris Dodd.”

And in the end, they really don’t care about Dotcom’s image one way or another. All they care about is that they delayed his efforts to bring to market a potentially viable competing service by at least two years (and scared off a lot of other potential competitors who might have considered following suit). If it keeps their businesses afloat for another couple years longer, they wouldn’t care if people thought Dotcom was the second coming of Jesus.

Since we had three comments make it into the winner’s circle on votes alone, I’m just choosing a single editor’s choice comment this week, and it’s fogbugzd discussing the ridiculous advice of some “TV analyst” suggesting that Viacom and Disney should stop putting content on Netflix because kids like it and they might want to keep using Netflix.

Wow doesn’t begin to cover how clueless this advice is. Suppose both Viacom and Disney eliminate all their on-demand offerings. That would still leave dozens of other sources of online content. It isn’t the oligopoly situation big media is used to. If one source goes away, two more will pop up in its place.

I see exactly the phenomenon described in the article happening in our family. The variety of programming gives parents plenty of choices, and there is some very good content to choose from. There are no commercials for sugared breakfast cereal or toys. The content is good enough to be the basis of a lot of family discussions.

The one thing I have noticed is the fierce brand loyalty the kids and the whole family develop to the shows they watch. There is a ton of merchandise being sold for even minor programs. If Disney wants to cut itself off from the kids market, I can’t think of a more effective method than the one that Juenger recommends.

Moving on to the funny junk. The winner this week dominated the voting… and it’s MrWilson yet again (nice week, dude) with his comment responding to the story of a judge absolutely slamming Universal Music for trying to play games with the royalties owed to Eminiem’s production company.

RIAA to pirates: “Stop stealing from artists. That’s our business model!”

If only they’d patented it as a business method patent… While second place trailed far behind first place, it had an equal distance to third place, so there seemed to be widespread agreement that Josh in CharlotteNC had the second funniest comment this week, responding to the news of ex-Righthaven CEO Steve Gibson trying to tell a court he’s really still in charge.

Gibson must be jealous of all the bad press that Carreon is getting and wants his fair share of it.

Moving on to editor’s choice, we’ll go with DannyB’s description of how Apple quite frequently copied ideas of others, but many of its fans refuse to recognize this:

(Android has multitasking.)

Jobs: Nobody needs multitasking on a phone.

iSheep: Yes, nobody needs multitasking on a phone.

(Next year at same annual event where iSheep make pilgramage to see the iMessiah)

Jobs: iPhone has multitasking

iSheep: Multitasking is great, glad Apple invented it.

(iPhone has multitasking, but significantly inferior to Android. One word: badges. Android has this nifty pull down notification bar system.)

(next year)

Jobs: iPhone now has this nifty pull down notification bar

(no mention of where that feature has been seen now for several years)

iSheep: Yes, Apple is innovating!

And, finally, my personal favorite for the week. In our post about how Charles Carreon had “stopped digging” himself deeper and deeper into his self-created hole, an Anonymous Coward pondered the reasons:

I wonder, is this pause because he thought ahead and decided to learn Mandarin, or just because he needed to change drill bits?

Anyway, we’re off to change drill bits ourselves. We’ll be back with more posts tomorrow, assuming some news happens (which seems like a pretty good bet).

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Comments on “Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt”

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jakerome (profile) says:

Those damn iSheep...

Of course, webOS did both better first! I have an iPhone 4S now, and I think iOS 5 was the first time they had decent notifications. I still find myself using webOS gestures to conduct tasks.

Hopefully Android continues to steal the best bits and maybe even bring back the Creepy Palm Lady as the Google Now spokeswoman.

AdamBv1 (profile) says:

Re: Those damn iSheep...

There are a lot of times I miss my old Palm Pre, it was a fantastic little device and in many ways it was well ahead of its time.

I’m also am very glad that some of the Palm guys went to work at Google and brought along things like swipe to dismiss notifications and closing apps from the recent list. Still, that gesture area was magic and its kind of a shame that will never come to Android.

Also, if you really miss the ability to pull up from the gesture area to quick launch apps somebody did make that for Android. I used Wave Launcher for almost a year before I finally didn’t feel a need for it anymore and fully transitioned to the Android workflow.

Chris Rhodes (profile) says:


I’ve often said that there’s only two things you need to know about us libertarians:

1. We’re a lunatic, fringe group with no real influence and no real power.
2. We’re responsible for every ill that befalls society.

Pick the one that best suits your current argument. Bonus points if you can get them back-to-back inside a paragraph.

Jay (profile) says:

Re: Remember

We’re a lunatic, fringe group with no real influence and no real power.

Uhm… Dunno about that since Kennedy is still a Supreme Court justice and had far more influence on legislation than Sandra Day O’Connor as the deciding vote.

We’re responsible for every ill that befalls society.

I dunno about that… You would have to look into the Lochnear or Gilded era for people that truly hated democracy.

Chargone (profile) says:

Re: Remember

i’d hardly call ‘self interested humans with either no idea what they’re doing/on about or an evil plan’ a Fringe group. it pretty much describes the vast majority of politicians and corporate leadership… and more than a few of everyone else too. *ponders* which Would make them responsible for at least Most ills that befall society… though libertarian’s are really only a subset of that.

i have no idea if that meets your challenge for bonus points or not, especially given the angle i came at it from 😛 … but it does fit my usual style, so all good.

Anonymous Coward says:

The problem with that ‘critique’ of libertarianism is that libertarians actively acknowledge that large entities are prone to behave that way and prefer the result of free-market forces, which are hardly mythical so stop with the grandstanding bullshit, to the result of government intervention. To wit, most of the things people are most annoyed with right now are a directly result of investing power with the federal government and having that power slowly captured by corporate interests. There is no power to regulate without the power for regulatory capture and regulatory capture is, to a libertarian, the worst possible result.

A Guy (profile) says:

Libertarianism Is Misunderstood

Libertarianism is the opposite of fascism. There are right, left and center libertarians, just like there are right left and center fascists.

For some reason, people seem to believe that all libertarians believe in the republican party. Perhaps that’s due to Ron Paul being the most prominent one politically currently. When Ralph Nader was the most prominent libertarian, we were all tree hugging liberals.

Libertarianism is about HOW things get done, not what gets done.

Wally (profile) says:


“I do wonder how many of those votes came from Americans and how many from foreigners… “

You may be on to something. The US has some of the loosed immigration laws around. We are known to grant visas’ and green cards on a whim. If you have a green card and have a job (say for instance being a teacher) that requires nearly year round residency, you can vote. The irony is, it’s significantly tougher to become a full-blown citizen through immigration.

Niall (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Voting

It’s blatantly about voting for the ‘Insightfulness’ of the comment. Mike was suggesting that quite a few people voting that the US has lost its way and superiority might be non-Americans – I know I voted for it, and he was replying to my own ironic comment about getting rid of ‘useless’ colonies. So please re-read and get off your conservative hobby-horse.

Sad Mac says:


“I do wonder how many of those votes came from Americans and how many from foreigners… “

A lot foreigners that usually vote are not used to voting, or haven’t been a full citizen long enough to wittness our silly season. They just try to fit in by voting on who is most popular according to what they see in the media. Some don’t realize most campaighn ads are almost always some sort of FUD or muckraking.
I’ve seen one thing over the years. Politicians that promise an immediate turnaround to a current problem have always failed. We here in the United States have learned that since Richard Nixon.

Aaeru (profile) says:

criticism of libertarianism

“My criticism of libertarianism has always been…but they’re completely blind to the fact that privately owned entities are prone to do the same thing” [/quote]

therefore it comes to pass that the best way to solve the problem of small government or big government must be to look thoroughly through the whole of history to find out what worked best? Do we agree on that?

There is not a mistake left under the sun that humans have not already committed. The answers are already there. You can theorize all day, but theory alone will not arrive at the answer. What do you think?

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