Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt
from the double-funny dept
This week, the recording industry called on Donald Trump to protect and enhance their beloved copyright, and in response came both of our winning comments on the insightful side. In first place, we’ve got Jeremy Lyman responding to their talk about “rights guaranteed in the Constitution to those who, with the genius of their mind, form the cultural identity of our great nation”:
Careful, that’s dangerously close to spilling the beans about copyright’s actual goal of populating the Public Domain!
When you guys want to have a serious conversation about rolling back the length of copyrights and how to actually get some works to enter the Public Domain, I’ll agree to start talking about how to ensure your farce of a “culture producing” monopoly is actually respected. Hint: they’re related.
In second place, we’ve got PaulT expanding on Mike’s comment in the post that whining about not getting fair compensation is just complaining about the price set by the market:
It’s worth being even clearer before the usual gaggle of fools comes in and whines about piracy not being part of the fair market.
There are numerous strands of pricing that the actual free market has set. These range from a fairly high level for limited edition physical goods, to an extremely low per-play level for streaming access. These are the things that are being talked about, they just happen to compete with piracy, as has every format since recorded media could be made by the general public.
What the record companies are whining about is that the free market means that they cannot charge a price that’s too high. You can’t charge the same for a bog standard CD or album download as you can for a special edition vinyl. You can’t charge the same for a digital single as you would for a CD single. You can’t charge the same for a single stream as you would for a purchase.
The other factor is that the market trends toward the lower priced items, as with anything that’s become a commodity (and yes, pop music is essentially a commodity). So, as the market naturally trends away from people buying numerous albums over and over in different formats and toward people paying to rent single tracks from any device at any time, so the profit margins have disappeared. They want to charge $20 for an album of songs, but the average consumer is only willing to pay $10/month for a Spotify subscription, if that.
“Fair compensation” means to them that you pay what some would have paid in the 90s when they controlled virtually all of the production, distribution and marketing channels, and they want that to return. Piracy’s just a good excuse.
For editor’s choice on the insightful side, we’ll go ahead and look at two other great comments on that post. First, it’s Mitch Stoltz dutifully underlining the flaw in the constitutional claims:
Every time the entertainment cartel says that copyright is “guaranteed in the Constitution” or somesuch, let’s remind them that the Constitution gives Congress the authority to pass copyright laws, which is not the same thing. The Constitution also gives Congress the authority to grant letters of marque, but that doesn’t guarantee me the right to be a privateer.
Next, we’ve got an anonymous commenter honing in on yet another piece of the industry’s language — its demands for a free market via… the market restriction of copyright:
Free market? On music? One of the few things where there is a strictly enforced monopoly? ‘Free Market Government Enforced Monopoly’: oxymoron of the decade.
Over on the funny side, we’ve got a double winner, with Roger Strong taking both first and second place! We start out on the story of PwC responding to some researchers who found a security vulnerability with a legal threat and a tone-deaf statement about how “unlikely” the “hypothetical” exploit was, where he took first place by expertly parodying their statement by changing a few key words:
The “Rebel Alliance” did not receive authorized access or a license to use the Death Star plans. The plans are not publicly available and are only properly accessed by those with licenses, such as Empire military staff working with trained Empire engineers,” said the spokesperson. “The bulletin describes a hypothetical and unlikely scenario regarding a two-meter thermal exhaust port — we are not aware of any situation in which it has materialized,” the spokespersons said.
Then, we head to the story of Verizon’s short-lived assertion that it would not push out a new update designed to brick faulty Galaxy Note 7 phones, because they didn’t want “to make it impossible to contact family, first responders or medical professionals in an emergency situation” in the holiday travel season. Roger was in fine form here as well:
Or any other vital assistance.
(Note 7 bursts into flames)
“The beacons are lit! Gondor calls for aid!”
For editor’s choice on the funny side, we start out on our story about the UK’s new and ridiculous anti-porn laws that can be used to kill social media accounts, where one anonymous commenter served up a sublimely childish and amusing jab:
Block internet access to the parliament; it’s full of dicks and boobs.
And finally, we’ve got Donnicton taking a moment to celebrate Team Prenda finally getting their comeuppance just in time for the holidays:
I’m going to be telling my family to return all of the Christmas presents they’ve bought for me, because this is already the best Christmas I’ve ever had.
That’s all for this week, folks!