Members Of The Republican Study Committee Do Twitter Q&A, Ignore Every Single Question About Fixing Copyright

from the what-are-they-afraid-of? dept

The Republican Study Committee, which is the “conservative” caucus of Republican members of the House of Representatives — last seen here for cowardly retracting their excellent policy brief on how to fix a broken copyright system — held an open Q&A session on Twitter in which many of its members agreed to take questions from people tweeting with the hashtag #askRSC. Plenty of people, including myself, asked the members for their opinion on Derek Khanna’s excellent paper. And not a single Representative answered any question about copyright.

Whoever was tweeting for the Republican Study Committee itself did respond, blandly, to two questions — first by repeating the silly claim that the paper was pulled because it did not reflect all viewpoints, and then later arguing that it had to do with the fact that copyright was not a left or right issue. But, leaving aside the dodging by the RSC on key questions related to the study, it’s somewhat stunning that no Representative would respond to a single question about copyright in over four hours of taking questions.

It makes you wonder: why is Congress so afraid to debate our broken copyright system? Who, exactly, are they afraid of?

As discussed, and contrary to the RSC’s later claims, Khanna’s paper lays out a very compelling case for why conservatives should be leading the way to fixing copyright. It seems like a quite reasonable subject for the members of the RSC to be willing to comment on, but outside of Darrell Issa’s brief tweet in support of the paper, it appears that the over 130 members of the RSC won’t even discuss one of the more pressing issues that many of their constituents are concerned about.

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Comments on “Members Of The Republican Study Committee Do Twitter Q&A, Ignore Every Single Question About Fixing Copyright”

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215 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

The reason for their fear = money.

-People who support the broken copyright regime have lots of it, and are willing to spend lots of it on lobbyists and SuperPACs to bully congress into doing what they want.

-People who want real copyright reform and the problems fixed don’t have much money. And aren’t anywhere near as willing to spend it on lobbyists or SuperPACs.

-Most politicians aren’t willing to ruin their career in politics taking a bold stand and doing what’s right. Even in their heavily gerrymandered districts. One gay congressman for example once said that he knows for a fact that dozens of his fellow congressmen secretly support gay rights & gay marriage, but opposite it publicly for fear of losing elections if they support it. If it’s true for gay rights, it’s undoubtedly true for other issues as well.

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

-People who want real copyright reform and the problems fixed don’t have much money. And aren’t anywhere near as willing to spend it on lobbyists or SuperPACs.

or content.

Wrong – where do you think the copyright supporters got their money from?

Having said that though – if you are right then the problem will fix itself in time – since there are more of us…

Anonymous Coward says:

Ignored questions?

Let’s talk about the issue of whether copyright is property as that word is used in the Due Process Clause. I’ve asked you repeatedly to confirm that you yourself have said this. You don’t deny having said it (which is good because I have proof), but you refuse to discuss it–usually by just ignoring the question.

Can you, who writes articles complaining that those in the debate are ignoring questions, actually answer this question? No ad homs, no double-talk, just a direct and honest answer to a direct and honest question. Let’s see you not do the very thing you’re complaining others are doing. I await your answer. I’m certain that today will be the day that you don’t ignore questions. I hope so.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

“Yep, I’ve lost my cool several times.”

HA! HAHAHAHAHA! Yes, if by “lost my cool several times” you mean “flipped the fuck out and started ranting and raving and foaming at the mouth, usually with little to no provocation on the part of Mike or anyone else on this site”. Also, Mike doesn’t refuse to discuss the substance of his post. He does so regularly. However, what he does refuse to do, because of your actions time and time again, is specifically answer your loaded questions. Why? Because it gets him nowhere first off. Secondly, because who the fuck are you that he should take time out of his busy schedule to just drop everything to answer your question. And finally, it’s pointless to respond because you’ll never be content/satisfied and any response on his part just reaffirms your negative behavior and makes you want to keep doing it.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 "who the fuck are you that he should take time out of his busy schedule to just drop everything to answer your question."

I’m not presuming to speak for Mike. I’m basically repeating what he himself has stated more than once when it comes to AJ. Also, note that my writing style is in no way the same as Dark Helmet’s. Perhaps you’ve overlooked the fact that I have also on more than one occasion stated that every single person has their own unique writing style. And while it is possible to emulate someone else’s, mine in no way is similar to Dark Helmet’s. Unless you count that we both occasionally get snarky with idiots as “similar writing style”, but then again that’s neither here nor there. Nor am I coming to Mike’s “rabid defense”. It would actually be better stated that I am preemptively attempting to get AJ to just stfu already and stop spamming the comments section of this article, which he’s already doing.

Mike will not reply to him, it is pointless to do so, as has been proven time and time again. AJ will NEVER be content with any answer Mike gives regardless, because any answer he does give will either not be acceptable to AJ’s POV, or will “require” AJ to then say, “Okay, now that you answered that, how about this blah blah blah”. Thus continuing the never ending shenanigans on the part of AJ and even further derailing the comments section.

And you can stfu too. Unlike you, I actually read the articles and the comments left regarding them. Fully. And with a complete understanding. Before I even attempt to reply or discuss my own thoughts on said article or comments. Maybe you should try it sometime, rather than just making ad hom comments (which you denounce others for doing) or going on rants about things not discussed in the articles (the rich, Ivy League members, Google, etc.) You’re just as stupid as AJ, except he can be somewhat easier to understand, even if he comes off as a bit obsessive while doing so.

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Re: Re:4 "who the fuck are you that he should take time out of his busy schedule to just drop everything to answer your question."

@”Nor am I coming to Mike’s “rabid defense”. It would actually be better stated that I am preemptively attempting to get AJ to just stfu already and stop spamming the comments section of this article, which he’s already doing.”

And that’s why I’ve coined the term “virtual sock-puppet”. How about taking it as your moniker here?

Anyhoo, you may never have heard the advice “Don’t feed the trolls”, as you’re definitely only “spamming the comments” here. I certainly wouldn’t cloak myself in virtue for doing it!

Cory of PC (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

Yes because this one AC that you’re bashing is the only one spamming here. Yeah, I totally see this AC filling up this thread with nothing but spam, ad-homs and personal attacks. Good job pointing that out, Blue.

Also I don’t think you coined “virtual sock-puppet.” I think someone else came up with that idea before you did.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Mike writes an article complaining that questions are ignored. Mike himself ignores questions all the time. See the connection? I’m supplying one such question that Mike has demonstrated he has no intention of answering. It’s a simple question that he’s answered before in private, but he refuses to discuss it publicly on his blog. It’s relevant because Mike insists that copyright not be called property. Yet, he admits privately that under the law and under the Constitution, copyright is property. So let’s all encourage Mike to be open, human, and awesome, and let’s encourage Mike to discuss the answer in a productive manner.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Mike doesn’t ignore questions.

Of course he does. He’s been ignoring my questions for years. Where is Mike’s answer to the question about whether he admits that copyright is property under the Due Process Clause? Link please.

And honestly, guys, I don’t want another thread where we talk about talking about it. Just answer the question, Mike. Stop ignoring it.

How many years did it take me to get Mike to answer the question about exactly why he thinks “piracy is not OK”? Two years. That’s how long to answer one simple question.

How many years am I going to keep asking this question? We’ll see.

silverscarcat says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Copyright isn’t property.

It’s IP, Intellectual/Imaginary Property.

Note the key part there, Intellectual/Imaginary property.

Let me ask you something.

Do you know the legend of King Arthur, Sigfried and Achilles?

If you do, you’d also know that all 3 legends are very similar to each other, so similar in the case of Sigfried and Arthur that if copyright existed back then, one of those two stories would not exist now.

Willton says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Copyright isn’t property.

It’s IP, Intellectual/Imaginary Property.

Note the key part there, Intellectual/Imaginary property.

Perhaps you are failing to note the common term “property”. Using the term “intellectual” or even your pejorative “imaginary” does not change the character of copyright: a bundle of rights to exclude associated with a particular thing.

Willton says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

Can you own an idea?

You do, until you tell someone the idea.

Then it’s no longer your idea exclusively.

Thus, you no longer own it.

Thus, treating copyright the same as property fails.

Ideas are not the subject of copyright. Please stop pretending that they are.

My guess is that you don’t understand the definition of “property.” Property is a bundle of rights attached to a specific thing, whether that thing is a parcel of land, a chattel, a share in a business organization, an invention, or an artistic expression affixed to a medium. Those rights typically include a right to exclude others from the enjoyment of the specific thing. That’s the common thread between all forms of property: a right to exclude.

A copyright may not be the same as real property or personal property, but it is still property, no matter how much you may pretend that it is not.

The Infamous Joe (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

Property is a bundle of rights attached to a specific thing, whether that thing is a parcel of land, a chattel, a share in a business organization, an invention, or an artistic expression affixed to a medium.

You’re making that up. No where is a “bundle of rights” referred to as property. Copyright is a government granted *right* (not property) to prevent people from doing something with a creative work that they physically have the ability to do. (Make copies, etc.)

I have the right (not property) to resell a pencil. Those two things are permanently linked– I cannot just sell off the right to sell the pencil, while keeping the pencil. I also cannot sell off the pencil while keeping the right to resell it. If it were property, as you so desparately wish it to be, then it could be divorced from the medium it is connected to.

There is property, there are rights; hell, there are even property rights, but property isn’t rights.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

You’re making that up. No where is a “bundle of rights” referred to as property.

You so obviously have never formally studied the theory of property, so why chime in and insist that you know what you’re talking about? It’s counterproductive.

But just to prove you wrong, here’s Black’s Law Dictionary:

property. (14c) The right to possess, use, and enjoy a determinate thing ? Also termed bundle of rights.

Property means a person’s rights in a thing, i.e., their bundle of rights in a thing. That thing can be tangible (as in a car or house) or intangible (as in a copyright or an encumbrance). You clearly haven’t even spent five minutes studying property. So please stop wasting our time by demanding you know what it means.

The Infamous Joe (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Re:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bundle_of_rights

Hm.. sneaky.

Property isn’t a bundle of rights, property is easily explained as a bundle of rights.

And, “property. (14c) 1. The right to possess, use, and enjoy a determinate thing (either a tract of land or a chattel); the right of ownership . ? Also termed bundle of rights. [Cases: Constitutional Law ​277; Property ​ 1.] 2. Any external thing over which the rights of possession, use, and enjoyment are exercised . [Cases: Property ​ 1.]”

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

My guess is that you don’t understand the definition of “property.” Property is a bundle of rights attached to a specific thing, whether that thing is a parcel of land, a chattel, a share in a business organization, an invention, or an artistic expression affixed to a medium. Those rights typically include a right to exclude others from the enjoyment of the specific thing. That’s the common thread between all forms of property: a right to exclude.

That’s right. Property simply means a person’s rights in a thing. That thing may be tangible or intangible. Mike seems to imply that this legal meaning somehow misses the fact that copyright is naturally nonrivalrous and nonexcludable. But the law doesn’t miss those things at all. He just doesn’t want people to call it property because he wants to take the focus off of the fact that infringement is the violation of a proprietary right. Sure, we can discuss policy in economic terms (and we all know that even economists bicker amongst themselves about which model is right), but that doesn’t change the fact that the rights involved are legally considered to be property and that under the Constitution copyright is property. It’s quite telling that Mike refuses to discuss these things publicly even though he admits them in private.

DigitalDao (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8

There’s a common usage of Property that is what everyone here except you is talking about. You even acknowledge that you’re aware that’s what’s going on. The response of anyone but a total dick (or a lawyer, I guess) would be to stop trying to reframe the discussion.

Why haven’t you acknowledged that as a practical matter, to own property requires both the right and the ability to exclude?

JEDIDIAH says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Spin so hard it goes flying off.

Except fixating on the “property” aspect of copyright muddles the very meaningful distinctions between different types of “intellectual property”. It also tries to hide the fact that the entire construct is intended to benefit the public rather than individuals.

It is not a natural right. It is not located in the same place as other natural rights.

Even the term “intellectual property” is a bit of a fiction.

It’s Copyrights, Patents, and Trademarks.

Willton says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Spin so hard it goes flying off.

All of which are forms of intellectual property. There’s nothing wrong with grouping patents, copyrights and trademarks under a single heading. They each share common elements that are distinct from real property and personal property. Intellectual property is no more a fiction than real or personal property is.

As for “natural rights,” since when was ownership of land a “natural right”? Matter of fact, why are you even raising the question of “natural rights”? Who defines what these “natural rights” are? You?

Regarding the public benefit aspect, patents and copyrights are considered private rights that are given to inventors and authors in exchange for their disclosure of their inventions and works of authorship, which indeed benefits the public. However, their purpose of benefiting the public does not change their character as private rights.

Josh in CharlotteNC (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Spin so hard it goes flying off.

There’s nothing wrong with grouping patents, copyrights and trademarks under a single heading.

There’s quite a bit wrong with that approach, since two of those things are unlike the other – that is, patents and copyrights are similar in many respects, whereas trademarks are very different. Lumping them all together only adds to the general confusion of what those things are designed to accomplish.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Intellectual property exists for the good of the people. It’s those whom abuse the system and skew it to their agenda (aka the MPAA and RIAA) that are the problem. Without it, I could claim that I wrote Einstein’s Theory of Relativity and get grants off of “my” written works in that regard. It does not regulate how people are sold products or license patents. It’s simply abused and needs reform to stifle abuse, not abolish the concept completely.

Willton says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

A scaling back of copyright probably won’t work as the same vested interest would continue to abuse the law, and lobby for more copyright. Abolition is probably the only safe answer to the current problems.

Right, because when one gets dermatitis on one’s arm, the only solution must be to cut the arm off.

Dave Xanatos (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

Without it, I could claim that I wrote Einstein’s Theory of Relativity and get grants off of “my” written works in that regard.

You’re confusing copyright and plagiarism. Communities have their own ways of discouraging plagiarism. I can legally republish Adam Smith’s “The Wealth of Nations” under my own name, but I’d be called out on it pretty quick.

velox (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

Wally:
You are conflating plagiarism with copyright infringement. They are not the same issue. Plagiarism of public domain works continues to be unacceptable, even though it is legal.
Copyright isn’t primarily concerned with plagiarism. It is simply a publishing monopoly.
Plagiarism, on the other hand, is a reputation and trust issue, not a monopoly issue. The ability to get grants as a professional is very much about trust. If you have caused people to mistrust you by committing plagiarism, then those who evaluate grants will have doubt about whether they should trust you with the money they are dispensing.
Copyright isn’t even the best way to protect against plagiarism. The best way to protect against plagiarism is to have easy access to the original for side by side comparison. If plagiarism is obvious, then you don’t need the law to protect you as an author, the market will do it for you. If you don’t think so, consider if you found two books named Treasure Island which appeared to be identical in every respect except for the name of the author, one has Robert Lewis Stevenson and the other has my name as the author. Which one would you buy to read to your 10 year old son? I am quite certain you would choose the version with the correct author attribution, even though my version would be just as entertaining to him, and it would not be illegal to for me to do this.

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Re: Re:2 "Mike doesn't ignore questions."

No, he just declines to answer. It’s a subtle distinction that may be lost on some.

For instance, I’ve been nagging for some time about mistaken premises in his “can’t compete” feature piece. In that (should be link on sidebar), about halfway down in the numerous comments, Mike promises to explain how “sunk (or fixed) costs” can always be recovered (search for the word, IIRC), but we’ve been waiting FIVE years now and he hasn’t.

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Re: Re:4 "Mike doesn't ignore questions."

Get the facts right. It was MIKE who promised someone else five years ago. Way before I happened to get here.

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20070215/002923/saying-you-cant-compete-with-free-is-saying-you-cant-compete-period.shtml#c603

[emphasis added]

53.

Mike (profile), Feb 16th, 2007 @ 11:22am

Re: Re: Re: sorry again. I don’t agree that with this statement — if it were true it would have very resounding policing implications. I think this is a calculation that needs to made and determines entry into the market. I can imagine extremely high fixed costs that cannot be recouped by the secondary market. Perhaps the classic example, National Defense.

I disagree. I hope that soon I’ll be able to show why there will always be the opportunity to recover the fixed costs (though, it still depends on execution, which doesn’t always happen).

I think it’s even true with National Defense, though there are many other (more important) policy reasons for supporting government-backed national defense. However, if you did want to make it a for profit business, I believe you absolutely could. It would just have other consequences that most people probably would not appreciate.

—– end snip

FIVE YEARS, NO ACTION ON MIKE’S PART.

Yeah, this is diverging, but who cares? Mike’s piece here is quite dull.

Cory of PC (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 "Mike doesn't ignore questions."

OK, so I got something wrong, big whoop. Still, point is you’re waiting on something that’s five years old for an answer that you can find on your own instead of waiting around for someone to hand you that magical slip telling you how to fix things.

Again, maybe if you get off your behind and do something instead of sitting around and waiting for the answer to drop in your hands, then maybe you will get your answer.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 "Mike doesn't ignore questions."

He’s glued to the **AA business model, so he’s only used to ‘yelling’ at other people…

“Hey, you kids… get off my lawn.”

Much like the **AA’s he’s not capable of actually DOING work, only profiting or acting as a parasite on others work.

It’s sad, but we have a whole generation of luddites like this who are only capable of ranting and raving… unfortunately some of them have lots of money and it’s amazing what ranting and raving at politicians can do when you are also showering them with cash….

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

I see your asking Mike questions as a form of a personal attack. I am sure, having read this blog for a few years now, that Mike can deal with you accordingly but, I really don’t understand what your goal is here?
Are you trying to get Mike to commit to a legal position?
You need Mike to paint himself in a corner for you to berate later?

I find this blog insightful and educational on issues I had not really thought about before. I now feel I better understand the ramifications of how the current copyright model affects the productivity and educational resources of the US and the world.

While I personally don’t think Mike is the final word on this and other topics, I do see him as having the most reasonable voice in wanting to have a meaningful discussion about it.

I have also learned that no matter what benefit can come from any changes to copyright, those that are getting an income from the current implementation of copyright are dead set against any change, no matter the possible benefits to the US economy or the world at large.

I have also come to be depressed about the obvious state of double dealing the US politicians (And worldwide?) have with the multiple facets of the entertainment industry.

So, to summarize my rambling thought here, what is the point of trying to degrade one of the few reasonable dissenting voices in the copyright issue? Is there no value in having an reasonable discussion on a topic that affects nearly every single aspect of society? Keeping the current incarnation of copyright does not seem to me to be in the best interests of the US at large.

And yes, I buy far too many of those shiny discs. My wife absolutely hates me buying movies and music due to the number of them I already have.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

I like this blog too and I think Mike is very intelligent and insightful. I value his opinions and have learned much from him. But I’m still frustrated by the fact that he ignores even the most basic challenges and refuses to address even the most simple criticisms. This blog could be so much more productive if Mike set a better example and led interesting discussions in the comments.

Dave Xanatos (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

But I’m still frustrated by the fact that he ignores even the most basic challenges and refuses to address even the most simple criticisms.

I don’t think you’re reading the same site I am. I see Mike answering basic challenges and simple criticisms all the time. Certainly a lot more than he needs to.

I wish that the troll’s focus was less about Mike and more about the arguments he makes. The current trend of the trolls’ is really lame and doesn’t contribute anything. This post and your post included.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

I don’t agree with everything I read here, but I think that is all the more reason to keep reading. It makes me question my position and reassess where I am on things. Even if in the end I still don’t agree I do get to walk away with a broader understanding of some issues.

As long as that is true I will keep coming back for more.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Ah AJ, so lovely to see you here demanding answers to loaded questions again. I, much like everyone else, was under the impression that when Mike apologized to you, which he did, you would no longer visit this site/insult Mike/spam article after article with demanding he answer your loaded questions. It appears that we were all misled by you, not that it matters because you said you’d stop completely but you were doing all those things within a day.

Also, Mike is just Mike. He has an opinion on things, but his is hardly the opinion that makes laws and has a far reaching ability to drastically make laws and effect changes that will literally affect everyone using the internet. As opposed to say the opinion and thoughts of I don’t know… members of a Republican committee who can directly influence laws with studies drafted and posted by them online.

I’m certain, today will be the day, where even if Mike answers your “direct and honest question”, you will still find a way to alter the question once you’ve gotten an answer to it, in a manner that could be construed by some as “leading”. Meaning, it starts with Mike answering that one question, and because he answered it at all, and caved in to your spam/bullshit, you’ll deem it as giving you the okay to ask more loaded questions, with each progressively getting more and more hostile and your comments doing the same until you reach that point where Mike and everyone get tired of you and tell you to fuck off/behave, at which point you’ll spaz out like you always do and proceed to further spam article after article.

And it’s cute that you mention ad homs and double talk. Because, AJ, you’ve never done both those things on this site. Never ever. /s Fucking hypocrite. Get lost already.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Congratulations. By your public admission, you’ve just signed away the rest of your anonymity, average_joe. Not to say that any of it worked. You probably take the same lessons as darryl and hurricane head up his ass as to masking your online identity. (This is the part where you scream, “Oh noes! Now everyone knows EXACTLY who I am and where I live!”)

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

I don’t think of it as empowering. I’d rather see it as the proof that Techdirt clearly doesn’t censor anything or block anyone, contrary to the shills and trolls who insist that contrary views are blocked. By all means, they’re welcome to dig themselves even deeper and paint themselves as completely unreasonable.

A bit of a shame, I suppose, that it sometimes means derailing, but any shot taken at copyright maximists is a shot well taken.

E. Zachary Knight (profile) says:

Re: Re:

So what exactly is your complaint? Are you claiming that changing copyright violates the 5th and 14th amendments? That doesn’t make any sense at all. The Due Process Clause is all about the government confiscating personal property without proper judicial review in which the person whose property is being seized gets to contest the charges brought against them. If anything, the site seizures that have been reported on recently are clear violations of those clauses.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

The Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment Due Process Clauses say that we can’t be deprived of “property” without due process of law. Mike has admitted that copyright is “property” as that word is used in those clauses. For a guy that insists that copyright is not property, that’s a significant fact that he leaves out of the discussion.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

If you read the article in question properly he actually said (repeatedly to you and in the article itself) that copyright has both property and non property like aspects.

And that assumes that if the thing is intangible, then it is not property-like. To arrive at that assumption, he insisted that we use Hume’s definition of property from three centuries ago. He gave no good reason for ignoring three centuries of gloss on the term that developed in the interim. Nor has he given any good argument for why it’s proper to cherry-pick meanings of words, ignoring other, more dominant meanings that are in use today. That’s fine if he wants to argue that copyright is not property. But let’s back that up and have that discussion. It’s a recurring theme on TD. Let’s dig in and look at it from different angles.

Moreover, that’s a different issue than this one. Mike insists that we use Hume’s definition of property (which he has never actually cited, by the way), but he refuses to discuss other meanings of the word. I’d love a discussion where we consider the differing definitions. I’d love to explore why Hume is the be all end all of definitions. To that end, it’s quite relevant that Mike admits that copyright is property in private while demanding that it’s not in public. And I don’t mean “property-like.” I mean property. The fact that refuses to address the point directly tells me that he’s hiding something. If he actually hadn’t admitted before that copyright is property, then he would deny it when I bring it up. But he doesn’t deny it, ergo, you can deduce that it’s true. So if we all know it’s true, why won’t he just say it?

Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

“In that article where Mike said copyright has both property-like and non-property like aspects, he never once even mentioned the word Hume. So hasn’t_got_a_clue is pulling things out of his ass again.”

No, actually, Mike has mentioned Hume before (I know exactly what comment AJ is referring to), but at no point did Mike, or anyone else at Techdirt, “insist” that we have to use Hume’s definition. In fact, it’s been repeated by all of us here at Techdirt that appeals to authority are poor forms of argument. In fact, Mike made that same point in the comment to which AJ is referring to.

This, specifically, is a wonderful example of how AJ takes portions of comments out of context, cherry-picked from long ago to attempt to smear another person because he doesn’t have a valid argument or point to make. It’d be disgusting if I thought anyone here was stupid enough to fall for it….

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

My mistake! My eyes must have somehow glossed over the word Hume when Mike mentioned it, because when Ootb mentioned it here in this article, I simply could not remember having read it before, and its not a name I’m familiar with.

Hey, Out_of_the_blue! In case you’re reading this, for this one thing, at least you’re not pulling things out of your ass. I apologize, I admit, I got it wrong.

Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

“Hey, Out_of_the_blue! In case you’re reading this, for this one thing, at least you’re not pulling things out of your ass. I apologize, I admit, I got it wrong.”

Not to pile on, but it was AJ hiding as an AC that brought Hume up, not OOTB, who I’d imagine has no idea whom Hume is to begin with….

Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Re:

“Ootb, you’re still an asshole. AJ, it is you who is not an ashhole in this aspect.”

Again, I disagree. The entire purpose and method by which AJ brought Hume up (and has since run off to hide somewhere) was misleading at best. He’s attempting to say Mike referenced Hume in a way he never did (again, I know exactly what comment he’s referring to). In other words, he’s an asshole and a liar…

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Re:

I haven’t run off to hide. I’m waiting for Mike to come into the comments and have a substantive discussion on the merits. Fighting you and the sockpuppets gets us nowhere. It’s Mike’s blog, Mike’s post, Mike’s claims. I want to discuss them with Mike more than I want to talk about talking about it with others. You aren’t adding a thing to the discussion with posts like this. Where is Mike? Why does he write articles complaining that people are ignoring questions when Mike ignores questions all the time himself? Seriously, the irony is awesome.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:12 Re:

Because this site isn’t ArsTechnica. The reason why TechDirt does not have a ban system is that Mike feels we all have the right to express our opinions here. No matter how hair-brained, cockeyed, misinformed, or stupid they all may seem to one another.

@out_of_the_blue:
The point is that we are allowed to say what we want and that is Mike’s biggest conveyance of respect towards ALL of us. If you are going to call him out, call him a dick, and badger him on things from past unanswered questions, then maybe you don’t deserve the respect you think you do from the community. Try being respectful grateful that you are still allowed to post nonsense comments as much as the next person is.

JEDIDIAH says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

Why moan about a 300 year old definition of property? If the notion of intellectual property has any kind of legitimacy at all, such a new definition of property should not be a problem. People are fixated in this modernist view of the world that discounts anything that is out of style. They like to assume that they are special and their circumstances are special and that they are unlike anything that ever came before.

It’s simple narcissism.

Books go back thousands of years as do inventions. Brad Pitt recently starred in a 3500 year old story committed to film. I have another 75 year old film that’s about a 2000 year old story.

The first steam engine was invented 2000 years ago. The ancient Greeks could bore through a mountain from both sides and meet in the middle. Modern steel dates back more than 1000 years.

300 years really isn’t such a big thing.

The shiny shiny of technological distractions really don’t change the underlying nature of things and media moguls aren’t the only people that have property rights involved here.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

The 300 year old concept of property rights is not at hand here. The copyright system is fine for what it is, it just needs to be reworked to conform to modern standards. The problem we have is that people like to abuse the system and that is what makes it look so bad.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

Who cares about the exact definition of property?

I view copyright sort of like a concert ticket. Sure, it’s property. If I have a ticket, and somebody steals that ticket, that’s illegal. If they make a counterfeit copy of a ticket and take my seat, that’s also illegal. Unless otherwise stated in the fine print, if the band cancels the concert, I should get a refund of the ticket price.

But if the ticket was FREE (and some concerts do issue free tickets), and the concert is cancelled, the band does not have to pay the ticket holders. It doesn’t matter if there was a secondary market for the tickets and some people paid money for them, or if they drove all day for nothing.

Copyright on a work is currently free and automatic.

I do believe the government, having issued the metaphorical concert tickets in the first place, can “cancel the concert” by shortening the copyright term, and the holders can only claim what they paid the government for the metaphorical tickets. That is, nothing. (I suppose the exact metaphor would be akin the shortening the concert rather than cancelling, but if they can cancel it they surely can shorten it.)

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

Who cares about the exact definition of property?

Who cares? Mike does. Very much so. He’s written numerous articles claiming that copyright is not property. Yet, in private, he admits that it is. And when asked to explain in public, as I am asking here again, he’s nowhere to be found.

He might come into these comments, though I suspect after his complete freak out session yesterday he will not. And if he does, I can practically guarantee you that it won’t be to provide an answer to the question. The irony, given the substance of this article wherein he complains that people are dodging questions, is hilarious. I know of no other person who refuses to answer questions more than Mike.

Leigh Beadon (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

A copyright, as in your legal rights over a work, has property-like aspects.

The rights over a creation that a copyright confers do not equate to property rights.

You can “own” the copyright to a song — you can sell it, transfer it, auction it off. The copyright itself is a form if intangible legal property. But the rights it grants you over the song itself are not property rights — you don’t “own” the song, you have a set of enumerated temporary rights over it that do not equate to property.

There is a distinction between “a copyright as property” and “copyright as a property right”. It’s occasionally hard to keep these two concepts semantically clear — so perhaps you are genuinely confused. I hope this clears it up.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

You can also own the rights to drill for oil on somebody’s land. But if the government institutes a drilling moratorium, then your rights have become worthless, and the government does not have to reimburse you even though they’ve essentially “taken away” your rights.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

Why yes, they are. But that has nothing to do with anything. Nothing is being made retroactively illegal. The government can’t fine you for any oil you pumped out before the moratorium. But they can still stop you from pumping out any MORE oil, even though you bought those now worthless oil-pumping rights.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:14 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

If the “property” ceases to exist because of changes in the law, eminent domain doesn’t apply, which was my point. The government does not have to pay the person when they make those oil rights worthless due to new laws. And they don’t have to pay the copyright holder when they change the term of copyright. They certainly were not required to give loads of cash to alcohol distributors when they passed Prohibition, to compensate them for their now-illegal property.

Leigh Beadon (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:9 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

That’s a nice little legal tidbit and all, but I don’t see what bearing it has on this. There are lots of specific circumstances under which the government has the ability to do things like that — oil and mineral regulations are apparently one of them. I’m not sure how that has anything to do with my point…

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:10 Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

If you’re replying to the post I think you’re replying to, I was trying to say that even if copyright IS a property right, that doesn’t mean that the government has to pay trillions of dollars to copyright holders for their lost property if they reduce copyright (which seems to be what another poster was driving at.) The government does not have to pay you for your lost “property” when they pass a law which affects it (which in the case of copyright was actually given to you for free by the government in the first place.)

Perhaps I need to make an analogy that uses a different kind of speech, instead of oil rights. How about this: In exchange for cash, I give you the exclusive, transferrable right to make a particular defamatory statement against me. For you, this becomes a sort of “property” – at least as much as copyright is. Congress then passes a law which makes the statement in question no longer defamatory. Congress does not have to compensate you for essentially taking away your property by making what used to be your “exclusive rights” something anybody can now do.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

I think the term that springs to mind is hypocrite.

“Nor has he given any good argument for why it’s proper to cherry-pick meanings of words, ignoring other…”

Is exactly what you do in every argument you make.

This is a blog and as such is based opinion articles. Mike has stated his opinion to you and it conflicts with yours, that’s no reason to say he hasn’t answered your question as he clearly has.

If you don’t like Mikes opinion so much why don’t you piss off and lurk somewhere else?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

The point is that the right itself is property but the goods it relates too are not.

Mike insists that Hume’s meaning of the word controls, despite centuries of gloss in the meantime. Mike admits privately that copyright is property as the Constitution uses the word “property.” If the Constitution itself doesn’t limit the meaning of the word property to the meaning that Hume supposedly gave it, that’s significant. If Mike admits that much in private but refuses to admit it on his blog, that’s significant.

I’m really tired of talking about talking about it. When is Mike just going to have a discussion on the merits? No ad homs, no wishy-washy nonsense. Just a direct and honest answer.

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Mike insists that Hume’s meaning of the word controls, despite centuries of gloss in the meantime.

Why sweat over the meanings of words and avoid the substance.

You’ve never done proper Maths or philosophy have you?

The point is that because something has enough of the right characteristics to be given a name that makes it seem similar to a familiar object you cannot infer that it has all of the characteristics of the familiar thing.

So in maths the vector product axb is similar enough to ordinary multiplication to be called a product – but if you deduced from that that therefore

axb=bxa

and (axb)xc=ax(bxc)

you would be wrong.

So the same is true of copyright. The right (although not the good) is similar enough to ordinary physical property to be called property (as a convenience) – but it is erroneous to infer anything else from that without further work or evidence.

and btw – my logic is as good as Mike’s. Losing to me is no different from losing to him.

Anonymous Coward says:

“why is Congress so afraid to debate our broken copyright system”

Possibly because copyright is the tool of choice when it comes to web censorship, without it they might have to address why certain sites or posts have been censored. Using copyright, they simply send a take down notice which apparently requires no evidence or review. The result is the same whether the claim is legitimate or not – no questions asked, basically a win – win for the censors.

Anonymous Coward says:

‘why is Congress so afraid to debate our broken copyright system? Who, exactly, are they afraid of?’

they are afraid of the entertainment/copyright industries themselves, they are afraid of the head honcho and they are afraid, most definitely, of losing some or all of the monies thrown out in lobbying and ‘encouragement’. simples, really!

davnel (profile) says:

“It makes you wonder: why is Congress so afraid to debate our broken copyright system? Who, exactly, are they afraid of?”

Congress has one major disadvantage in this political climate. They are bound by ethics rules and judicial review. The MAFIAA has no such limits. If you want to keep getting paid, and continue to live (as you are) you play ball, exactly as they say. No exceptions.

Dante (profile) says:

AC's being AC's

I don’t know if you AC’s who are ranting about Mike not answering questions have noticed or not, but Techdirt has grown…Mike is no longer the only one writing posts.

You seem to have an infatuation with asking him questions that are loaded in your favor, then harping on him when he doesn’t answer them. Personally, if I was writing a blog about issues in society, and someone came on my comments and tried to get me into a corner, I’d avoid them too.

Mike is writing these articles because they speak to him, not necessarily so that he can speak to you…He doesn’t have the time to go into every article he writes, browse the comments, and find your individual questions. Except that’s what you want him to do, so he’s failing you by being too busy to handle your inane bullshit…

Wally (profile) says:

Wait what???

Mike Mansick,
I respect you and the article you’ve written. But the claim by the RSC about being fair to everyone involved is not entirely a bad thing. Piracy is a tad bit of a problem that does need to be addressed, but at the same time the way of truly balanced enforcement of copyright law is also needed. The RSC’s job is to use the scientific method in research to come to its conclusion, which is often completely ignored by congress.

My point is that it is not right to claim which side the RSC has taken. This is because the matter the matter at hand requires more research. They have to ballence out the wishes of both sides in order to reach a compromise.

I have no problem with copyright enforcement to some level, but the way the MPAA and RIAA have gone about it is excessive and abusive in nature. The RSC has to take both sides into consideration to be legitimate research.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Wait what???

You have very skewed view. In order to do a correlation study, you need as much data as possible to back up the data no matter how accurate or inaccurate. So part of the reason they may have pulled it is that they are having to evaluate any new data that they come across.

Don’t forget that they called for a reform in the copyright laws in the US regarding heftier punishments for those who are more heavy handed in settlements. Of course with an MPAA bought out congress, they get ignored when it doesn’t show to Hollywood’s favor.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Wait what???

It’s like I said, the data has to be evaluated before it’s included…don’t forget that the DOJ handled the stacked Subcomittee panel regarding SOPA. The RSC does research for the sake of research and usually gets data where it can so it can do a comprehensive study. It is comprised of congressional staff members and not Congress itself.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Wait what???

If you are talking about my comment regarding the DOJ, I have one word for you….”MegaUpload”.

However, if you are referring to the RSC, they were conveniently created after the outcries against SOPA and the Takedown of MegaUpload. Don’t forget the RSC was the organization grilling the DOJ and ICE over the shutdown of DeJazz1’s website for well over a year after he one his case.

Dave Xanatos (profile) says:

Re: Wait what???

the claim by the RSC about being fair to everyone involved is not entirely a bad thing.

It wouldn’t be a bad thing if that was the actual reason the report was pulled. It wasn’t. It’s a thinly veiled excuse and unconvincing spin on “we didn’t want to lose campaign contributions from Hollywood”. If they ever re-post the report with the additional viewpoints added, I’ll eat these words. But I feel pretty safe that they won’t.

Dave Xanatos (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Wait what???

Of course not. See thinly veiled excuse and unconvincing spin.

The reason you won’t see the report re-posted with the other viewpoints added it the other viewpoints will look trite and insubstantial next to the original. I know this, because the best papers around that support the current regime are all trite and insubstantial. Am I spelling tripe wrong?

JEDIDIAH says:

Re: Wait what???

> Piracy is a tad bit of a problem that does need to be addressed

That is highly disputable.

Piracy mainly inflates the perceived value of intellectual property. It preys on the ignorance of people that fear math and thus fail to understand it. It feeds the egos of media executives.

If they actually had to pay property taxes on that stuff, they would sing a far different tune.

…like rich people in a Credence song.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Wait what???

No, it’s not what I’m saying. A “tad bit of a problem” means it’s a minor problem. The problem is that the enforcement of it is currently very heavy handed and very abusive. When I say “piracy” it’s not in the same context as the MPAA or RIAA. What I’m saying is there are some people who pirate content without the intention of buying it later if they like it. If they don’t, they delete said content and all is fine.

It’s one thing to download music on BitTorrent just to sample music and pay for it legally on iTunes , Amazon (etc) later on because you like what you hear. It becomes a whole new ball game when you don’t pay a cent for the content and have no intentions of paying for it in the future after you’ve downloaded it and decided to keep it.

nasch (profile) says:

Re: Wait what???

They have to ballence out the wishes of both sides in order to reach a compromise.

Why? Wouldn’t it be better to do what the data says would have the most benefit? Or are you saying with the unfortunate political constraints they’re operating under, the best they can hope to do is arrive at a compromise somewhere between the two sides? I’m not even sure which two sides you’re talking about though, since neither party wants to reform copyright.

out_of_the_blue says:

Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

“It makes you wonder: why is Congress so afraid to debate our broken copyright system? Who, exactly, are they afraid of?” — Those in Congress are NOT afraid, that’s a symptom of the problem. They’re totally owned by The Rich and pretty much guaranteed to become multi-millionaires even if they arrive in DC without a nickel. The few who don’t play along are irrelevant and will be targeted by the system, one way or another. Airplane crashes are remarkably frequent among opponents of the system: JFK jr, Mel Hancock, Wellstone…

The only new development here is the plethora of AC’s and virtual sock-puppets above arguing over Mike’s credibility — cause it’s all about Mike.

Take the link to hear Melancholy Mike cover a Springsteen tune reminiscing his one big quip and nothing since:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streisand_effect
Glory days well they’ll pass you by
Glory days in the wink of a young girl’s eye
Glory days, glory days
“Glory Days” (Bruce Springsteen)

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Re: Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

Yes, that one wandered a bit. Made the mistake of getting interested in ACs versus virtual sock-puppets above.

Anyhoo, Congress isn’t afraid of being un-elected so long as they serve The Rich. Public opinion has NO influence on them. Not answering questions doesn’t show fear, but arrogance. They don’t have to respond to public query.

However, I did wander into REAL reasons why Congress fears. There’s strong correlation between those who meet untimely deaths and opposition to The Establishment. Add Sonny Bono and even recently Giffords, both were beginning to be a nuisances. If the system can’t bribe them — which nearly always works — then real fear begins. But that’s clearly not what Lightweight Mike means here.

Cory of PC (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

Uh, public opinion does have an influence. Sure it’s not noticeable, but hey at least someone is listening in Congress.

However, I did wander into REAL reasons why Congress fears.

“Wander?” Do you mean “wonder?” And… what?

… Wait, I’m talking to Blue here. Forget I even commented.

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

@”Cory of PC”: “Wander?” Do you mean “wonder?” And… what?

No, silly boy, I meant w-A-n-d-e-r. With an “A”, first letter of the alphabet.

Your remarks are quintessential Techdirt! Not only wrong at attempting to point out MY spelling error, but show amazing ignorance, then totally wAnder from any point into sheer ad hom! Well done! You’ve earned an extra Insider Point.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

Man alive you just don’t give up do you? When I question Mike Mansick’s articles, I don’t act like a dick and go ranting about his “followers” or “sheep” as you do. I tend to try to clearly and respectfully explain why I think what he said in some parts of the article may be wrong.

Take a good look at what I’ve said about my views on the article OOTB, and then compare them to mine. Big difference there in terms of respect…

“It makes you wonder: why is Congress so afraid to debate our broken copyright system? Who, exactly, are they afraid of?” — Those in Congress are NOT afraid, that’s a symptom of the problem. They’re totally owned by The Rich and pretty much guaranteed to become multi-millionaires even if they arrive in DC without a nickel. The few who don’t play along are irrelevant and will be targeted by the system, one way or another. Airplane crashes are remarkably frequent among opponents of the system: JFK jr, Mel Hancock, Wellstone…

The only new development here is the plethora of AC’s and virtual sock-puppets above arguing over Mike’s credibility — cause it’s all about Mike.

Take the link to hear Melancholy Mike cover a Springsteen tune reminiscing his one big quip and nothing since:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streisand_effect
Glory days well they’ll pass you by
Glory days in the wink of a young girl’s eye
Glory days, glory days
‘Glory Days’ (Bruce Springsteen)”
-out_of_the_blue

Maybe you should stop with that bullshit of a comment and actually use logic and reasoning instead of trolling as your argument.

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Re: Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

@ Wally
Well, you’re free to adopt your own style. Mine has evolved after countless attempts to get Mike to respond on substance have failed — actually, I don’t expect responses — BECAUSE I go after his premises, and he can’t answer or the whole schmear falls apart.

Look, READ his “can’t compete” — as I did — and ask how he can just wave away a $100M of “sunk (or fixed) costs” for a movie by artificially setting conditions that are never found in reality. Only way he can make that notion work is if marginal costs are the only relevant points. Now, that’s REAL and substantive disagreement on HOW movies can get their costs back, but he ain’t gonna touch it. See above where I linked to Mike’s promise to ‘splain that FIVE years ago, and he still hasn’t.

So, no, I DON’T respect Mike. Not required to. He tosses in personal items that reveal his Ivy League 1% background, repugnant to me — otherwise I wouldn’t know or care — so I take cheaps shots as whim strikes me, but it’s MAINLY that I DON’T AGREE WITH HIS NOTIONS. Economics is just opinion about who gets to be born in excessive leisure and who has to labor like an animal for their daily bread. Labor is the source of all wealth. Mike has no more authority in the area than I do, but I do think my Populist notions are better than his (apparent; he never gets very explicit) elitist “capitalist” notions.

Anyhoo, Mike himself invites me in to this public forum and rewards me EVERY post by saying it’s “great!”

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

So, when are you going to declare yourself the winner by default again? Also, I thought you didn’t read the articles or the comments? So why are you replying? Or is this proof you’ve lied to us in the past?

If you’re going to answer questions, try these
1) Why are you spending $100 million on a movie? Can’t you trim the budget a little?
2) The people who watch movies, whether legally or illegally DO NOT CARE about the $100 million budgets you keep harping on about. Why should they care?
3) Why are you still waiting on an answer to a question you asked five years ago? Why is it you don’t realize that that makes YOU look the fool, for hanging on with bated breath for five years?
4) If Mike is so repugnant to you, why do you keep coming back here day after day? I’ve been on other websites myself, and found myself hating the webmaster there. Guess what I did? I stopped going to those sites. I didn’t give them the courtesy of my time and presence.
5) Since when has Mike invited you into these forums? I can’t count the number of times he’s asked for you to leave.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

Oh I think OOTB has a lot of SELF respect alright πŸ˜‰ He just lacks the concept of respect towards others a lot. OOTB would make a much better argument if he held the basic concept of respect and not call Mike a dick for not answering a question asked 5 years ago.

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

I have to disagree with you here, Wally. I think Blue has very nearly no self respect at all. He’s nothing but a bully. People like that tend to be self-loathing and try to convince themselves that although they’re lacking, everyone else is even more lacking so it’s OK.

It is impossible to deal respectfully with people when you lack respect for yourself, especially people with whom you disagree.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

I learned long ago that with myself at least, I try to be kind as possible to a fault…though sometimes not entirely possible, I try πŸ™‚ John Fenderson my good friend, at the same time I do agree with you. I’ve subsequently lost my respect OOTB as I read on…but I also still try hard to be kind to keep the beast inside of me at bay πŸ™‚ I missed these chats with you πŸ™‚

Ruben says:

Re: Re: Re: Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

Your ‘true scotsman’ fallacy is a weak excuse for not engaging others here.

You get repeatedly owned in the comments here and have neither the balls nor the intellect to refute those that reply to your weak excuses for witty discourse. Your arguments are circular, tangential and often incoherent. Besides, many of those that respond to you make the same arguments that Mike would.

Not that this is surprising in any way to me.

Then there’s this.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

“Well, you’re free to adopt your own style. Mine has evolved after countless attempts to get Mike to respond on substance have failed — actually, I don’t expect responses — BECAUSE I go after his premises, and he can’t answer or the whole schmear falls apart.”

You cannot rebuttal against any article without first understanding any premise conveyed by the author. You fail to do so because you seem to ask him the same questions no matter what the subject of Mike’s articles are. All you’ve done this entire time was carbon copy your questions to fill into the subject article without any real substance or evidence of change. I sometimes disagree with the authors, and admittedly will argue with them on their point of view….but at least I keep my arguments to one article at a time while keeping up on subject.

In some cases I have been wrong, and in other cases I have been right. My end goal at all times is to seek a common ground so that we all can understand each other better. Why is that so hard for you to understand OOTB?

silverscarcat says:

Re: Re: Re: Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

“Economics is just opinion about who gets to be born in excessive leisure and who has to labor like an animal for their daily bread.”

…Wow, just wow… That… That…

Urgh, I’ve got the flu and I’m dealing with your horse shit.

BTW, if you don’t know what Economics is, the study of economic trends using actual data and moving markets, then don’t act like you do.

out_of_the_blue says:

"who the fuck are you that he should take time out of his busy schedule to just drop everything to answer your question."

@”Dark Helmet”: I didn’t address you, why are you responding?

Will you go on record here under penalty of perjury that you never reply to my posts except visibly and under your Dark Helmet account?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: "who the fuck are you that he should take time out of his busy schedule to just drop everything to answer your question."

“@”Dark Helmet”: I didn’t address you, why are you responding?”

Probably because of your comment that was basically addressed at him. If it helps jog your obviously not quite functioning memory, here it is: “And who is the virtual sock-puppet presuming to speak for Mike? The writing style and rabid defense suggests Dick_Helmet.”

YOU basically said I was him, based on the “writing style and rabid defense”. So Dark Helmet felt the need to point out that I was indeed not him, nor he me, as well as point out your hypocrisy in whining about others use of ad homs, while also pointing out your constant use of the term “Dick_Helmet” in order to refer to him. (Which you do constantly. Almost as if you have some kind of animosity towards Dark_Helmet personally, for some perceived slight or something.)

Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Re: "who the fuck are you that he should take time out of his busy schedule to just drop everything to answer your question."

“@”Dark Helmet”: I didn’t address you, why are you responding?”

Dick_Helmet was an obvious reference to me. Why are you pretending otherwise? It was an obvious ad-hom when you constantly decry them. Hypocrisy defined.

“Will you go on record here under penalty of perjury that you never reply to my posts except visibly and under your Dark Helmet account?”

Yes, I absolutely will. On the off chance that you think there was a case when an AC was indeed me, or any other account for that matter, tell me where it was and I’ll happily confirm, under penalties of perjury, each specific instance. I do not post here except under my account. End of story, full stop.

Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Re: "who the fuck are you that he should take time out of his busy schedule to just drop everything to answer your question."

Why are you not responding on this point, Blue? I’ve specifically called out your hypocrisy and your tapdancing attempt to pretend like you didn’t ad-hom me specifically. Your refusal to respond, or apologize for your un-instigated attack is quite telling, I’m afraid.

In fact, I think I’ll make this comment a First Word, just to make sure you have all the best opportunities to see it….

sidelinesniper (profile) says:

What does it cost to buy a pol?

Just how cheaply can the **AAs maintain their loyal following of pols willing to make laws for them? As public disgust with the broken copyright system grows, shouldn’t pols become more demanding? Might the cost of keeping the pols loyal to the maximalist cause eventually become too burdensome for the **AAs? Or are the pols too clueless to know their value?

Anonymous Coward says:

“cowardly retracting”, “excellent policy brief”, “broken copyright system”, “excellent paper”

Not sure why retraction was cowardly, brief/paper was excellent, and system is broken. I would have said “retraction was prudent”, “brief/paper was partisan, and not objective”, and “system is not broken, but like any system of law may benefit from targeted amendments”.

Then again, this is just me…

Anonymous Coward says:

Getting back to the heart of the article…

Obviously, SOME of these Republicans do want to do something about copyright (the paper was written, after all) but not enough of them to “officially” issue the paper. People, if you care about the issue, you need to find out which group your representative is in, and vote accordingly. Or you can write or call them to try to persuade them, if they’re the type that’s willing to change their views.

It seems like the entire issue is more suited for the Republicans, since the Democrats are so powerful in Hollywood. But you can’t just vote based on the R or D by the name. Not when the parties themselves say it’s not a right or left thing.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re:

The RSC actually does non-biased studies though. It doesn’t matter what political side of the fense you’re on, they’re the only ones doing any reliable research for congress (of course it’s like Cassandra Syndrome….nobody in congress really listens to them at all…which explains a lot). Republicans that were Non-members of the RSC and Democrats alike supported SOPA.

Rekrul says:

It seems like a quite reasonable subject for the members of the RSC to be willing to comment on, but outside of Darrell Issa’s brief tweet in support of the paper, it appears that the over 130 members of the RSC won’t even discuss one of the more pressing issues that many of their constituents are concerned about.

Employees have to do what their bosses tell them to, or risk losing their jobs.

Leigh Beadon (profile) says:

Moral relativism and other similar nonsense.

If you’re replying to the post I think you’re replying to, I was trying to say that even if copyright IS a property right, that doesn’t mean that the government has to pay trillions of dollars to copyright holders for their lost property if they reduce copyright (which seems to be what another poster was driving at.

I dunno, somewhere something in the reply chain got muddled i think, because i didn’t see whoever was driving at that. Or at least that wasn’t the point I was responding to.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

Whether it is a property right under the 4th amendment or not, it can be reduced or eliminated without compensation provided congress uses a 2-step process. If they first make the part of copyright they wish to eliminate worthless by punitive taxation on revenues ascribable to that aspect of copyright, there is no compensation which needs to be paid to the holder.

Loki says:

It seems like a quite reasonable subject for the members of the RSC to be willing to comment on

They won’t comment, because they don’t want to fix the system as the system works for them. The system, currently, is about maintaining the current legislative and corporate status quo as much as possible. Altering the system from where it is currently headed risks changing the corporate power structure by increasing the likelihood of new players into the game, thus risking that those new players might desire different representation and have the funding to promote those individuals.

nasch says:

Mike's questions so consistently wrong, it's gotta be by intent.

ootb and darryl are fairly similar in style, but darryl generally writes paragraphs consisting of one sentence and capitalizes words for emphasis. His screeds are often more vitriolic also, and he seems to have a poorer command of the language. Sometimes ootb has good points to make; darryl never does (maybe once or twice in his history). He is a pure troll. bob I’m not really sure. a_j is totally different. His writing is completely coherent if sometimes disdainful. It’s also in a very scholarly, legalistic style.

I would say it’s possible though not likely that darryl, ootb, and bob are the same person. a_j is clearly someone else.

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