Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

from the extra-extra-for-the-long-weekend dept

So, it turns out the most insightful post of the week (by a long shot) was actually this comment from Marcus Carab about Turntable.fm, but since we already had Marcus turn it into a separate post all on its own, let's just move down the list.

Instead, the official winner this week is Rose M. Welch, responding to the silly story about how some reporter was trying to claim that the hilarious book Go the F**k to Sleep was somehow dangerous to children. Rose did a nice job responding to the ridiculous rhetorical question asked in the article, and clearly the community here agreed with her and gave her the votes:
Imagine if this were written about Jews, blacks, Muslims or Latinos...

I tried. It didn't make any sense, since parents are not caregivers to any of the groups he listed. In fact, since you have to imagine a position of authority over one or more of these grouping to even get to the place where Arredondo apparently is, I'd suggest that he's the one with the problem here.

For far too many kids, the obscenities found in Mansbach's book are a common, everyday household language.

Okay, you know what? Words are just words. It's now what's said, but how it's said that matters. My children aren't going to feel any different about hearing the word 'shit' than they would hearing the word 'yowza', or different about 'damnit' when I stub my toe rather than 'darnit', provided that they have the same inflection. So the words themselves aren't a problem.

However, I understand that what the writer means is that some parents verbally abuse their children as a matter of course, which is irelevant since the parents who do so aren't going to be shocked or amused by this book in the first place.

Again, the writer seems to be the one with the problem. I'm going back to listen to Samuel L. Jackson read the book again. Bye!
Nicely done. Coming in second third was an Anonymous Coward, responding to California politician Leland Yee's plan to counter the Supreme Court's declaration that his anti-violent video game law was unconstitutional by saying he was going to try again with a new law. The AC suggested there was a different law needed:
If the US Constitution is the supreme law of the land, then there need to be criminal penalties for those politicians who conspire to violate it. On the civil side, the politicians who voted for such laws should be required to reimburse the taxpayers for the legal costs. That would likely end them voting for all these obviously unconstitutional laws in the first place
As for editor's choice, I'm actually going with the next three top voted posts anyway, because they were all good. First up was E. Zachary Knight, responding to someone on that same story as Rose above, when they sided with the person claiming that GtFtS was dangerous. This commenter worried that parents would read the book and think it's okay to talk to children this way -- and EZK set them straight:
I think you miss the point. This book is not advocating parenting tips. This book is a humor book aimed at adults and specifically adults who have kids. It is humorous because it externalizes the inner monolog parents have had late at night when their kids won't sleep.

You won't find this book on the kids book shelf at the book store. You won't find this book in the self help section or the parenting section. You will find this book in the Humor section of book stores. That is what you are supposed to take it as.

If someone reads this book and decides to actually talk to their kids this way, it is a problem with the person not the book
And, finally on the insightful side, we've got two separate posts on my story noting that if photography is considered original artwork, so should pixelated artwork. First up, we had Jake Rome suggest the real problem in the Jay Maisel case (and with other copyright infringement lawsuits) was the ridiculous nature of statutory damages rates:
The fucktarded part of this whole mess is that the staturory damages are wholly out of line with reality. By all means, Maisel should be able to sue for damages, even treble damages with lawyer fees awarded. With total sales in the thousands and less than 10% of that attributable to the photo, a payment in mid hundreds would seem quite reasonable.

But no, we’ve allowed Mickey Mouse corporations to extend copyright assignments to last decades and sometimes centuries instead of 14 years. We’ve allowed them to set statutory damages at such an obscenely high level that whole business models are now built around suing for infringing registered works where the underlying works never had commercial value even approaching 1/10 that assigned by the inane copyright regime. We’ve allowed and encouraged industry cartels to band together to sue citizens for tens of thousands of dollars for listening to a $1 song without jumping through the right hoops.

We’ve allowed the corporatists to squeeze the life out of artists such that commercial productions will refuse to quote 20 words of song lyrics in a 20,000 word book without obtaining proper clearances. We’ve allowed whole genres of art to be destroyed, as rap artists and music mashers can no longer create without begging for permission first to modify music in the same way as has been done for millenniums. We’ve gone lifetimes without a single work of art entering the public domain, instead allowing 4th generation descendents to distort their great grandparents work by schilling great works to the Disney or the other high bidder such that these layabouts can profit off the work that belongs to all of society.

And the photogs supporting these laws are the most fucktarded of all, because if they don’t realize that we’re the next target for “permission based” copyright maximalists, then you haven’t been paying attention.
And, finally, we've got Rob Sheridan on the same topic of pixelated art, giving his view as an artist/photographer:
I'm a photographer, and I whole-heartedly agree with you here Mike. I commented about this back on the post about Mr. Brainwash and the Run DMC photo. It's interesting to me that most of these cases (see also the Obama/Fairey issue) seem to involve portraits of famous people where the creative contribution by the photographer has been pretty minimal. The interest and value of the photograph relies extremely heavily on its subject matter and the subject matter's cultural achievements - something the photographer had nothing to do with it. I find it incredibly egotistical that portrait photographers think they deserve such heavy control over what sometimes just amounts to a choice of how to frame a scene. That's not to say that Maisel's photograph isn't excellent - it is - but if it were the exact same photograph of a completely unknown jazz musician, would anyone care about it? Would it have any value? Would anyone want to recreate it in the first place? Of course not. Just as the pixel art recreation owes everything to the original photograph, the original photograph owes everything to Miles Davis. This is why I think celebrity portraiture (and most photography) is a transformative art in its own way, making it very hypocritical to cry lawsuit when someone transforms your transformation. And I am saying this as someone who's done a TON of this type of photography, as well as other types of photography that owe everything to the subject matter (scenery, monuments, events, etc). There is a lot of talent and skill and art involved in capturing a person or a scene - but at the end of the day you're transforming something that already exists, and you'd be wise to keep that in mind when someone transforms your transformation.
Okay. Lots of insight, but everyone always seems more interested in the funny, so let's move on. We had a first place tie (I can't remember if that's happened before), so these two comments will share first place. First up, we had Hothmonster explaining his experience with the TSA:
I wear my jeans a little oversized so without my belt they started to slide off when he started the pat down. He asked me to hold them up, so at first I did. He started in back then moved around front and went down on his knees to check my ankles and I couldn't resist, I let those suckers drop. So he is on his knees in front of me with my boxers about an inch from his head and he looks up, we make eye contact and I wink.

Now I am not a insecure guy to begin with and in the state I was in at the time I wouldnt have been embarrassed if he asked me to wear my cock like a wristwatch but this guy was not a happy camper. I made a few snide remarks as well and in retrospect I feel a little bad because I know this guy did not want to do this. But I definitely think that my lack of embarrassment in these situations means I should push the issue a bit. This guy didn't want to grope me to begin with and a few comments insinuating he is gay/i'm enjoying it certainly don't make him feel any better about what he is asked to do to make a living. Eventually maybe enough employees will complain/quit/strike that they can't fill these spots. Or they will fill them with guys who like touching balls which might get some conservative/religious/republican groups a little more involved in this issue.

Imagine some uptight senator getting patted down by a guy in a pink shirt with a rainbow belt, a lisp, purple gloves with a unicorn logo and frosted tips who lifts his balls and says something like "Im not sure you can carry that package on, we might have to store it in the rear.
And, equally as funny according to the voters, was a short comment from Hulser concerning the US government's desire to seize the trademark on the logo of the Mongols motorcycle gang:
This is outrageous! I mean, how am I supposed to know if the guy I'm buying crystal meth from is an actual Mongols member if I don't see their trademarked logo on his jacket?
Coming in second third was Dark Helmet, with his ideas on how to sniff out terrorist within the TSA using the same methods the TSA uses to sniff out terrorists among the rest of us:
Oooooh, imagine what a threat THAT shit would be! It seems like there's only one solution to make sure that Al Qaeda is not infiltrating the TSA.

Now announcing the TSASA (Pronounced Sah-sah, to make it fun). Yes, the Transportation Saftey Administration Safety Administration will carry out its duty (ha ha, I said duty) to proactively screen, monitor, and scrotum-twist TSA employees on a random basis.

Step one of this procedure is a pre-employment screening and background check. Once passed, the candidate will be hired on an interim basis, during which he/she is subject to random searches, nudie-scans, and beatings. After three months of this interim employment, the candidate is then considered a vetted employee and may forgoe these checks in favor super-painful ongoing testicle scans (SPOTS, like on puppies, you fools!) and random anal cavity exams (RACE, but this won't be fast, bitch).

With the TSASA (SAH-SAH!!!), you can rest assured that the TSA will be free from Al Qaeda terrorists and octegarian grandmothers wearing diapers (you ever sat next to one of those stink bomb ladies? They're the real terrorists, I can assure you).

But wait, what if Al Qaeda infiltrates the TSASA....
For editor's choice we've got some extras which I think are really fantastic to hopefully tide you over for the long weekend... First up, we've got Marcus Carab explaining how the "internal review" of the police officers who harassed a woman for filming them will go. He explains that there will be consequences:
Consequences? Oh, you better believe there are consequences. First, they face the harrowing experience of an internal review, where highly sympathetic investigators give them total benefit of the doubt. Their fellow officers will each be rigorously interviewed, and their denials that they saw anything will only be accepted after the third or fourth repetition. Then it is entirely possible they will be smacked with the staggering punishment of paid suspension, or a transfer to an administrative job. The truly egregious offenders may end up in court, where their charges will be whittled down to the most meaningless of scraps until they are released and sent back to work where the rest of the force will be waiting with cake.

Not only are their consequences - it's practically inhumane!
Next, we have an Anonymous Coward proving, mathematically how it's entirely possible that two wrongs can make a right:
Two wrongs can certainly make a right.

Example: the math problem is 1 + 5 but you make two mistakes when writing it down

1) you use 11 instead of 1
2) you use a (-) instead of a (+)

The result is 6, which is right despite your two wrongs
Can't refute that, now can you?

Nick Dynice got me to laugh by responding to the post about two people drawing stick figures and using the phrase "it's crazy" and questions of whether or not that's copying, but adding his own imagery to the mix:
And, finally, we have an Anonymous Coward, who has now given my all-time, absolute favorite response to someone posting in our comments making absolutely no sense at all:
Please, use the doll to show the court where the Internet touched you.
Anyway, we're off tomorrow for the 4th of July holiday, so go enjoy some fireworks and barbecue, and we'll be back on Tuesday.

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Jul 2011 @ 10:59pm

    Marcus having the most insightful comment (on what is pretty much a freetard wet dream) pretty much sums up how this place goes. I don't know if it's sad or funny, but it is certainly a double facepalm sort of thing.

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