A Look Back In Techdirt History
from the learning-from-history dept
Five years ago:
Once again, there were some similar stories to what we see in the news today -- including China blocking YouTube (and, yes, exactly five years later, Turkey has decided to do the same). And back then, the USTR was promising to review its transparency policies after complaints about secrecy concerning ACTA. Tragically, the USTR still remains entirely secretive. We also had media giants demanding the right to edit Google's search results (something the company eventually gave in to, somewhat) and the story of the UK's PRS threatening a woman for playing music to a horse without paying a licensing fee. But my favorite may have been a post on how remixing is creative and original, using the wonderful example of Kutiman -- still one of my absolute favorite examples of the power of remixing. If you've never seen the video below, watch it now. If you have seen it, watch it again.
Ten Years Ago:
This was the week ten years ago that the MPAA's Jack Valenti announced he was retiring. We had hoped that his replacement might be more forward looking, but ten years and two MPAA bosses later, we're still waiting. Meanwhile, it was still the early days of the RIAA's disastrous attempt at suing fans for file sharing. On the broadband side, this was the week that the Supreme Court came to an unfortunate decision in Missouri Municipal League v. Nixon, which confirmed that bans on municipal broadband were legal. This is very much top of mind these days, as many people have been noting that such bans may be a key feature in the demise of net neutrality -- and getting rid of them could help drive competition. This same week, then President Bush talked up why he hoped for universal, affordable broadband access by 2007. That didn't happen. Of course, it might have been a lot closer if there weren't so many municipal broadband bans. And finally, on the absurdist tip, we had a story about a company that claimed a patent on subdomains and a spammer who insisted that anti-spam law CAN SPAM required people to accept his spam rather than filter it out. That lawsuit didn't go very far.
Fifteen Years Ago:
This was the week that the Cluetrain manifesto came out. I actually wasn't that impressed at the time. However, realizing that it's now fifteen years old just makes me feel... old. People were just starting to figure out security online, as it was realized that you could look up the social security numbers of the wealthy via the SEC's EDGAR database. In 1999 airlines just started realizing that it probably made sense to let people buy tickets off their own websites. And... we have our first sighting of the RIAA blaming MP3s for the decline and fall of the music business. Some things never change.