Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

from the recurring-characters-and-crossover-hits dept

Another short week, but this time no shortage of votes! We’ve got lots of high-scoring comments that racked up points in both categories, starting with a clear winner that took first place in both the Funny and Insightful categories. The comment comes from our post about Sony’s new plan to combat used game sales (and, potentially, piracy) with RFID chips. In response to the claim that “if piracy was not a big problem this much effort would not have been put into reducing it”, an anonymous commenter served up a delicious allegory:

If giants were not a big problem, Don Quixote would not have put that much effort into fighting them.

That’s so apt that someone should derive an adjective from it…

In second place on the Insightful side, and also scoring reasonably well on the Funny charts, we’ve got another anonymous commenter on the same post. This AC took a line from the post and rewrote the second half to be more accurate:

“Sony seems to have found a way to prevent secondhand sales without having to” … resort to things like adding value to their product(s).

This is Sony we’re talking about, after all.

For Editor’s Choice, we’ll start with a comment on our post about Megaupload’s assertion that the DOJ deliberately misled the courts. Fogbugzd reminded us of the disheartening truth:

If anyone at the DOJ losses their jobs over this they can take comfort in knowing that they will have a cushie job waiting for them at an MPAA affiliated company.

Not to mention at the MPAA itself…

For the second Editor’s Choice, we go all the way back to last Sunday’s comments post, where I enlisted the help of our readers in finding more details on the UK’s home recording laws. That Anonymous Coward succeeded, and dug up the relevant statute:

28 day limit in UK. casts-and-cable-programmes/enacted

68. Incidental recording for purposes of broadcast or cable programme 3. That licence is subject to the condition that the recording, film, photograph or copy in question— b. shall be destroyed within 28 days of being first used for broadcasting the work or, as the case may be, including it in a cable programme service.

But then there is section 70

70. Recording for purposes of time-shifting The making for private and domestic use of a recording of a broadcast or cable programme solely for the purpose of enabling it to be viewed or listened to at a more convenient time does not infringe any copyright in the broadcast or cable programme or in any work included in it.

And they even have laws covering PHOTOGRAPHS taken of broadcasts… *boggle*

That’s the act as it was originally passed. As far as I can tell from the most recent amendments, that particular text has, mercifully, been removed—though it still serves as an excellent example of the nutty ways people react to technology.

On the Funny side of things, we’ve already had the first place winner, so we’ll go straight to second place. Upon learning that the fiscal cliff deal included tax breaks for hollywood, Aria Company inferred a pretty clear message:

Dear tax payers,

Feel free to copy those movies and TV shows.

You helped paid for it.


Sure won’t hold up in court, but we can add it to the looooong list of reasons that a lot of people understandably don’t feel all that guilty about piracy.

I’ve mentioned before that I enjoy the way intellectual property abuse has developed its own dramatis personae of notorious figures, and for Editor’s Choice we’ve got two cross-referencing comments typifying that very trend. Friday morning, on our post about the ongoing fiasco surrounding Prenda Law, S. T. Stone delivered a devastating quip:

Even Charles Carreon pities these guys.

Then on Friday afternoon, when we posted about Carreon’s latest legal woes, Glen figured that maybe it was envy rather than pity:

Apparently Carreon was bitter that Prenda Law was getting all the press.

Lawyer jokes used to involve bus crashes and ammunition shortages—but these buffoons have managed to turn themselves into the legal world’s most popular punchlines. Now that’s a legacy.

That’s all for this week—see you tomorrow!

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

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Anonymous Coward says:

the tax that the entertainment industries SHOULD be paying, based on the record breaking sales they keep having year on year, could solve the nations debt crisis all by itself. considering the amount of tax they manage to avoid paying (Hollywood Accounting!), they shouldn’t be much, if any, better off anyway, but it is still a huge piss-take, considering ordinary people are still going to be paying their taxes. the problem is, will they expect to continue paying this new, lower rate of tax, when the ‘break’ expires?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Of course they will expect tax breaks to continue, it helps them make money. The 1% invest in guaranteed income, and expect the tax payer and poorer investor to cover the more risky investments. While the ultra rich may have gained their original fortune from taking some risks, once they have their fortune they do not want to take risks with it.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

One of the issues with Hollywood, and Los Angeles in general, is that there are a lot of accountants looking for work. So in order to obtain proper licensing rights, you basically have to make sure the accountants recieve payment as well.

The challenge however, is that many actors and actresses have to hire these accountants as well, who often reccomend placing money in offshore bank accounts, to save money, and prevent taxes being paid.

Some big name players also create non-profit foundations that sometimes are used as shelters for their money.

It’s a shell game, and basically because the finished product, is protected under USPTO and Copyright law, you have to negotiate the entire deal, usually through a hollywood attorney.

There’s nothing wrong with that, most hollywood attorneys are regular people, sometimes they come from wealthy families, who put them through college, and/or racked up $250,000 in student debt. But however, when the total cost of the work involved, requires attorneys and accountants, to obtain an invoice for a sale, it’s difficult to negotiate such a deal when the product these days is intangible.

In the past there were a bunch of lawyer jokes, but these days, we should start making jokes related to the amount of tacked-on fees, and overhead costs involved with properly licensing content.

Also, if the property is to receive US Protection, and royalties are paid, and questions relating to infringement use the US Courts, I think ALL US TAXES should be paid, otherwise, I think there’s a question of ethics involved with lobbying congress for ACTA, SOPA, PIPA, and other laws… Which… Let’s face it… Provide protection for a sale that occurs overseas.

See what I did there?

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

I’m still a Google Ninja 🙂 All is right in the world.

I was having fun crisscrossing different government websites to find the law as passed, while they might have fixed things later people wanted the source of the 28 day limit.

If only the US made it as easy to troll through all of the bills, amendments, and changes over time to things… but then we’d sharpening the pitchforks and lighting the torches.

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