Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

from the anonymity-reigns dept

Our top comment on the insightful side this week comes all the way from last week’s comments post, where the question of who gets the benefit of the doubt between Kim Dotcom and the government was tossed around. Lots of you agreed with one anonymous commenter who outlined what they saw as a critical distinction:

But only one side has been consistently caught outright lying about things regarding the case. And that is the side that is supposed to uphold the rule of law.

And when those who are supposed to uphold the rule of law ignore it, then they’re criminals.

For second place, we head to our post that was not about GamerGate, where node was one of several people who dropped in to pay us a kind compliment for our coverage:

For an article that’s *not* about GamerGate, it’s actually one of the better articles written on the subject.

For editor’s choice on the insightful side, we start out with Alien Rebel, who saw our post criticizing the Copyright Alliance’s Sandra Aistars and decided to provide a few more details:

Introducing Sandra Aistars at these conferences as simply the “Executive Director of the Copyright Alliance” doesn’t cut it. Her title should include considerably more pedigree. When you know her past, having Sandra Aistars speak about copyright is like having a BP exec talk about environmental safety.

Her Bio / Intro should be more along these lines:

Sandra Aistars, formerly a lawyer and registered lobbyist at Wiel, Gotshal & Manges, where she represented legacy IP interests; former Vice President and Associate General Counsel at Time Warner Inc.; cleared advisor to the USTR on ACTA, while Time Warner VP; currently reigning Executive Director of the Copyright Alliance, a tumor on the backside of the Nickles Group LLC, a lobbying firm serving COMCAST, Intellectual Ventures, Koch Industries, and various other fossil fuel industry clients.

And next, we’ve got an anonymous response to a snide comment that suggested stifling derivative works like The Wind Done Gone is all about protecting artists:

Margaret Mitchell has been dead for 65 years. How do you protect a dead person?

Over on the funny side, for first place we return to the non-GamerGate post, where another anonymous commenter played off our pre-emptive defence against hypocrisy accusations:

What a bunch of hypocrites.

(Now off to read the article).

And for second place we’ve got yet another anonymous comment, this time on China’s maturation into a huge patent troll:

Damn those Chinese for copying our trolling techniques!

For editor’s choice on the funny side, we start out with a response to the departing EU Digital Commissioner who commented that “These are two Europes that rarely talk to each other. Two Europes that hold back all of Europe because they are not in sync.” Michael knew just why that might be the case:

…because the sync license was too f***ing expensive.

And finally, since the anonymous commenters were in top form this week, we’ll end with one more — a simple but appropriate thought about the absurdist legal comedy du jour:

Roca is filling the hole that Prenda left in my life.

That’s all for this week, folks!

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

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antidirt (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Does TD feel all better now that it has again posted something negative about the individual from the Copyright Alliance? Of course, this does nothing to correct the errors contained in the original article.

It was never about getting it right. It was about sensationalizing events to make copyright proponents look bad. It’s funny to note that the article Mike referenced but didn’t link to, which was posted on Bloomberg, didn’t even support Mike’s version of what Aistars said. Moreover, the Bloomberg piece has since been taken down (as has Lemley’s comments on Facebook). I had assumed that Mike didn’t bother to link to it because he hadn’t actually read it, and now that I’ve read the piece, I think that’s correct. But, of course, since it’s been taken down, he couldn’t link to it he wanted to–not that he ever wanted to. I appreciate the fact that Mike updated the post, but his updates are just as ridiculous as what he originally said. And the irony of it all is how Mike complains that the other side can’t engage in “real discussion” about copyright, when the reality is that Mike has no intention of ever engaging in any real discussion about copyright. His intentions, which he has made clear repeatedly as he made clear in that post, is that he only wants to attack the other side personally. Just think about Swartz/Snowden/SOPA/PIPA/TPP/ACTA/etc. Mike will never engage in any real discussion on any of those issues. He’ll run away every time.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

His intentions, which he has made clear repeatedly as he made clear in that post, is that he only wants to attack the other side personally.

Personally attacking Mike all the time will not get the answer you want.
Beside which the individual did misrepresent file lockers, where often the majority of the files stored on them are private files for back-up purposes, or limited sharing for project co-operation and co-ordination. Neither of those activities are illegal, and bring the majority of the income of the sight. It is the copyright lobby that sensationalizes, and misrepresents things far more than Mike ever does.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Not sure what blog you’ve been reading, but this one has hundreds of posts seriously discussing all those topics at length…

Your little game of trying to frame everything in one incredibly narrow, limiting, specific way — and then insisting that not engaging under your chosen parameters equals not engaging the issue at all or “running away” — is extremely transparent. No wonder Mike isn’t taking the bait. Only a total moron would.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

“It was never about getting it right.”

Oh, because if someone disagrees with you they can’t be about getting it right.

If you’re so smart and right about everything why not start your own blog? Oh, because no one cares what you have to say and so no one will come to your blog to see your opinion. Everyone else is wrong and you’re the only one that’s right. I see. So you must impose yourself here and flood us with your conspiracy nonsense.

“It was about sensationalizing events to make copyright proponents look bad. “

IP proponents make themselves look bad all on their own. They don’t need anyone’s help. You’re a perfect example of this.

“I had assumed that Mike didn’t bother to link to it because he hadn’t actually read it, and now that I’ve read the piece, I think that’s correct. But, of course, since it’s been taken down, he couldn’t link to it he wanted to–not that he ever wanted to.”

You argued against Mike’s accuracy before the video came out and when the video did come out it turned out that what Mike said was very close to accurate and what was said in the video was, in many ways, even more extreme than what Mike posted.

You’re starting to sound like a crazy deluded conspiracy theorist and it’s not working out for you.

“I appreciate the fact that Mike updated the post, but his updates are just as ridiculous as what he originally said.”

What was actually said in the video was, in many ways, more ridiculous than what Mike posted. and the updates include the transcript so I don’t see how it’s ‘ridiculous’ when it allows anyone to see what was actually said. Unless you’re arguing that what was actually said is ridiculous to which I agree.

“And the irony of it all is how Mike complains that the other side can’t engage in “real discussion” about copyright, when the reality is that Mike has no intention of ever engaging in any real discussion about copyright.”

Lets engage in real discussion. Copy protection lengths kept getting expanded and retroactively extended due to the lobbying efforts of Disney and other major corporations. The extreme nature of these laws is mostly due to their efforts and not due to the democratic process. Elected and appointed government officials conduct secretive negotiations over IP laws and treaties with industry interests invited (and not the public).

and the revolving door favor mess behind all this is equally as ridiculous.

This is supposed to be a democracy and yet a hand full of people have managed to extend and expand IP laws well beyond reason by subverting the democratic process through politician buying.

and here is another example of Mike having a real discussion over copy protection laws

All of these are examples of Mike having real discussions over these issues. and in all of these real discussions you are nowhere to be found.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

It was not at all close to accurate, immediately getting off on the wrong foot with a headline that was not true. It is not that the author deliberately wrote something false, but that he jumped the gun writing a story that was not vetted for accuracy, and then when the error became apparent sought to make several excuses to try and justify somewhat shoddy research.

Frankly, I am troubled with what appears to be a somewhat change in direction here concerning how articles are sourced. It used to be that both sides of an issue were solicited. Now it seems that just one side is deemed satisfactory, which significantly degrades the persuasive force of this site’s opinions.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

So instead of having any real discussions you simply decided to continue with your false assertion that Mike was completely wrong while ignoring the facts that he was simply reporting on what his sources said, what he reported was substantially right, and you are simply unsuccessfully nit picking on exact words while avoiding any real discussions. Nice to know.

Beech says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

the whole “get both sides” style of journalism is really kind of ridiculous. Look at global warming. 99% of all scientists on the planet agree that the climate is changing, but whenever they bring it up on the news, they feel like they need to include a denier just for “balance.” Why does a clearly wrong decision deserve equal treatment?

See also: EA and the Sim City launch debacle. EA released Sim City claiming that needed to be connected online to play. They said it was integral tothe programming that some of the “calculations” to run the game were done on their servers. A simple hack proved them wrong. When confronted by this they simply stopped responding for weeks, and the game mags felt guilty trying to print up a story with only “one side,” so they dropped the story prematurely.

Psstz Ogf says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Second try at response.

Look at global warming. 99% of all scientists on the planet agree that the climate is changing

You need a lesson in clarity.

Firstly, you start off with global warming and then push to changing climate. Climate change can be warming, cooling, reversals or even going stable.

Secondly, much of the argument is about whether or not it is human caused.


Question 1 is – What proportion of any climate change experienced is anthropogenic and what proportion is naturally occurring?

Question 2 is – Irrespective of what may be causing the climate change, is there any effective methods for changing the existing trends or dealing with the consequences of the change?

From my own perspective, neither of the questions has been adequately answered. I see much political correctness and less actual unbiased research going on. It is interesting that many of the models are good at modelling the past but are unable to model future events.

There is also interesting research coming out about various effects arising from small changes in currently unmodelled aspects of the global environment.

There is a growing number of researchers who are questioning the current direction and policies being undertaken by the various governments in relation to this matter.

Personal observation has led me to see human folly as the major reason why various climate events have caused major financial problems in property damage and infrastructure damage.

Areas that were once flood prone, are now being built up due to extended drought or dry periods. Desalination plants that were constructed because of extended drought or dry periods are now of little use because the rainfall has increased significantly. Yet the areas that would have benefited from the desalination plants (due to the normal low yearly rainfall) still have no secure water supplies.

Areas that have had historically been prone to hurricanes, monsoons and cyclones have been allowed to be built up due to an extended period of little monsoonal activity.

Infrastructure construction (bridges, dams, power distribution, roads, railways, etc) has become of lower quality due to cost savings and increased profits required. We see reports of this occurring in the USA on a regular basic as well as in many third world countries. There is a growing trend worldwide to build only what is currently adequate and not build to standards that are set for the peak events know for an area. Of course, this does mean an initial increase in outlay.

We also see a increasing lack of maintenance on behalf of infrastructure owners (private or government) due to budgetary cuts or increasing profits required. This in and of itself means that infrastructure will fail so much sooner.

The whole aspect of climate change and how we deal with it is not a simple matter. I am greatly concerned about the extreme predictions being made as they are essentially no different to the extreme predictions that go on about terrorism.

It only creates a panic mindset which lessens the ability to have a thoughtful and reasoned discussion about the things that matter or at least should matter. It also lessons the ability to determine appropriate courses of action that will result is a better mode of existence for the human race.

YMMV, but this is my 30 seconds worth of adding to the discussion.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

No, because, once again, there are some things in which ‘both sides’ is abrogating your ethical responsibilities. For example, anti-vaccination campaigns are actively harmful to the general populace (as vaccination campaigns work primarily through herd immunity mechanisms).

And in the original article, it was noted at the very beginning that the thing was about hearsay that was corroborated by someone actually present. That means that someone said something close to it.

This isn’t Breitbart maliciously editing footage to show people he doesn’t like in the worst possible light; this is someone who heard something, reported based on that, and when shown evidence to the contrary (by someone who Mike disagrees with vociferously at times) updated the post quickly and efficiently. I’d want that in any journalistic endeavour I’d like.

I fear that your being troubled by this means that you’ve been indoctrinated by the falsehoods of the American ‘News’ cycle.

Lawrence D’Oliveiro says:

On Another Note ...

… are you folks in the US taking care of your Afghan interpreters yet? All the countries who sent troops to Afghanistan have needed local interpreters to help them out with language issues, and as a result all these local helpers have been marked for death by the Taliban (seen as “collaborating with the enemy”, I guess).

So when the troops pull out, it seems only fair to offer their Afghan colleagues a chance for a new life in the home country, free from the threat of being kidnapped or killed just for doing your job.

John Oliver has some choice words to say about this.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: On Another Note ...

You vastly underestimate the USG’s propensity for burning bridges ahead of time.

I mean sure, leaving people who’ve helped save american troops behind to be killed just because the barely functioning system put in place to get them visas to leave is a complete clusterfuck might seem heartless, but hey, I’m sure no-one will remember that the next time US forces need help in foreign countries, right?

No one could possible come away from that mess with the idea that helping the US is a good way to get yourself, and your family killed, because they won’t return the favor when you need help.


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