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by Mike Masnick

Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

from the judge-harvey-edition dept

The two comments voted "most insightful" this week both come from the same post, wondering why New Zealand judge David Harvey stepped down from the Megaupload case for expressing a reasonable position (that the US was pressuring New Zealand on a totally different copyright issue, and that the US's position was not a good one), while judges who expressed strongly pro-copyright views were still able to hear related cases. The top voted comment came from That Anonymous Coward who noted how this was representative of the high court/low court double standard system we've discussed in the past:
I think he saw the writing on the wall. They would use these statements out of context, like they did, and try to declare that he was biased.
Rather than hand them the ability to make doubt appear, he stepped up and did the "right" thing.

When you're biased in favor of the cartels, it's not a conflict.
When you're in favor of the law, not the cartels, making the decisions it will be a huge conflict.

This is more evidence of the high court, low court methodology sweeping the globe. There are special rules for cartel members, because the world would come screeching to a halt without the next beiber single.
This is the result of money corrupting the government and bleeding into the judicial system, they are demanding huge penalties from regular people but when a cartel member lies on a legal document... oh well no harm no foul.
The second comment from an Anonymous Coward (rather than "The Anonymous Coward") and expressed the reason why Judge Harvey stepped down and the others didn't quite succinctly:
It's very simple. The ones that step down are the honest ones.
Believe it or not, a bunch of the other comments on that same article were really good and got a lot of votes as well, so for this week's editors choices, I'll pick two more from the same thread. First up, jupiterkansas making a point not really related to Judge Harvey, but rather the actual target of his ire: silly region locks on DVDs.
Region locks are not copy protection. They are piracy inducers.

They are a private industry's feeble attempt to control a world market, and should have no legal standing at all, period, anywhere in the world.
And, then we've got DannyB's rant that highlights how ridiculous things are driven by copyright maximalists:
I think the climate is changing. The vast excesses of the IP maximalists are beginning to be recognized worldwide.

A mechanic can't play the radio in his garage because public performance.

A collection society threatens lawsuit unless you pay extortion fee -- even though you don't play any music represented by that collection society.

Music and movies that are wildly successful yet strangely never profitable.

Music licensing for radio is at one rate. Music licensing for internet radio is designed to destroy internet radio. Then there is satellite radio.

You can't buy a DVD across the border and bring it home and watch YOUR disk in YOUR player. Or on YOUR computer if it runs a Free operating system.

Can't have DVD jukeboxes because that would bring the convenience of on-demand right into your home. Copyright law requires some special kind of free for the convenience of on-demand. In fact it requires a special fee for anything new, useful or just plain desirable.

The maximalists still, in the 21st century, believe that copying your own music CD's to your own mp3 player is or should be a crime punishable by ruining your life and future. It's that convenience thing again. A solid state player that is tiny is something that copyright law requires you pay an extra fee for -- if you can get it at all. After all, copyright requires carving up music into a hundred different "rights" like a special "solid state device mechanical performance" right or something.

The music and movie industry need absolute control of the internet. They must be able to shut down anything at will. No due process. No recourse. All expenses to be paid by ISPs. And they assure us this would never be abused. (Didn't we hear that when the DMCA was being negotiated?)

These people are against any concept of fair use. No such thing as fair use. The only use is paid use -- and that is per pair of ears listening.

The maximalists cannot determine whether something online is infringing or not, yet expect Google to be able to do so. (Example: copyright owner taking down their own promotional videos or their own artists' music.)

The internet enables mass communication about whatever anyone wants to talk about, what interests people. This is in a way that one-to-many broadcast media owned by concentrated wealth could never enable. That is why the world is waking up to the excesses of IP.

The sooner IP is dead the better.

Then I could get started on the patent system. Or twisted concepts of what trademark is thought to mean instead of simply protecting consumers from fraud.
For the funny, we leave Judge Harvey, and move over to the Olympics. Yes, comments on Olympics stories (there were a few this week) dominated the funny list. Coming in first was Tunnen, commenting on the fact that the Olympics couldn't hire enough actual security agents, but has a special brand police scanning London for any non-sponsor products that might, possibly be seen by anyone:
This bombing was brought to you by al-Qaeda, the official terrorist of 2012 Olympic Games... =P
Coming in second, was Vidiot's comment on the story of the Olympics forcing a restaurant called Olympic Gyro -- which had been called that for three decades -- to changes its name. Vidiot responded to someone asking "where are Zeus and his lightening bolts when you need them," to which Vidiot explained the answer:
He's still up on Mount [REDACTED].
For editor's choice, DannyB gets a second nod, this time in response to the couple arrested for dancing on a NYC subway platform. DannyB wondered about the IP issues:
Did the couple have authorization and license to be performing the specific dance they were doing?

Were they licensed to be listening to the music they were hearing?

Perhaps the particular style of dance was a trademark of some other famous dancer, and this was infringement?

Think of the children! Kids present might have seen the couple dancing and might bet ideas -- like that life can be enjoyed by them and their comrades, er, um... I meant citizens.
And, finally, an Anonymous Coward, responding to the news in the UK that Apple had to put a note on its website admitting that Samsung hadn't copied the iPad with its own tablet, the Galaxy Tab. This AC noted how this might lead to innovation:
I believe this ruling may lead Apple to invent the smallest legible font known to mankind.
I'm sure there's a series of top secret teams hard at work on different parts of it as we speak...

Reader Comments

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  1. icon
    drew (profile), 23 Jul 2012 @ 6:46am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Do you think that, in gang infested neighborhoods, that "right and wrong" comes into play when they say "snitches get stitches"?"

    Absolutely, it might not be your idea of right and wrong but it's the established one in that community.

    "Right or wrong? Are you really sure the public is able to make that choice correctly at all times?"

    If not the public, then who?

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