Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

from the the-observer-effect dept

As the back-and-forth over Aereo's status grows more fascinatingly insane, so too do the comments about it grow more insightful, funny and popular, with three of this week's four winners coming from our post about Aereo embracing its new status as a de facto duck. First up is vegetaman, who topped the voting on the insightful side with his version of the agenda of Aereo's opponents:

"Your honor, we'd only like Aereo to be treated like a cable company when it suits us, and then not treated like one when it doesn't. Much like how Verizon wants to be under Title II for subsidies. But not for anything else. See, we've got precendent!"

In second place on the insightful side, we've got a comment from Violynne that racked up lots of funny votes as well, responding to the DHS requiring travelers to hand over their cellphones, powered up:

FAA: Turn off all devices.

DHS: Turn on all devices.

Our wonderful government is so screwed up, they can't even give the same instructions to its people.

For editor's choice on the insightful side, we start by going back to last week's comments post, where a discussion about the Mayday PAC led to this excellent anonymous comment on the dangers (and inefficacy) of political factionalism:

I really think there's a big problem with titles like Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, Conservative, Right-Wing, Left-Wing, Tea Party, etc etc.
It gives people a side to rally under even if all of the opinions of the title don't necessarily align with your own and forces people to give up on certain issues.
It gives people a side to attack, to demonize, to dismiss whenever someone has a difference in opinion, similar to discrimination. Honestly, the way they're being used in a negative, attacking way in recent years makes me see them more and more as slurs.
Depending on who you ask on which issue I'm either far-right or far-left. If I'm both, then I'm neither. It's just a fallacy to dismiss my opinion because it differs. And it's getting worse. It's become acceptable to just be against someone because of their side and for no other reason.
We need to be about the issues, not sides. We need to vote for people who are about fixing the issues we are concerned about, not voting down party lines.
We need to be about voting the people best suited for the job, not voting against the other side. There shouldn't be Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, Conservatives. There should just be people with concerns on issues they want to fix.

Next, we've got a comment from sehlat that clarifies something which should always be kept in mind when we talk about the growing obsolescence of large publishers (and it applies just as well to record labels and other gatekeepers) — nobody's saying that they do nothing of value, just that the terms on which those things happen are going to change:

The people who WORK at publishers aren't parasites. Editors, copyeditors, proofreaders, typesetters all contribute to the product.

The people who RUN the publishers are lawyers, accountants, and investors. Lawyers ask "Who can we hurt so they don't hurt us?" and the latter two ask "How you going to make money with that?" Product? Quality? Who cares?

There is NO major publisher that is run by book lovers, and it shows.

(As some commenters pointed out, Baen bucks this trend, and sehlat noted that he wasn't considering them a part of the "Big Five Cabal".)

Over on the funny side, it's back to Aereo. A whole lot of people cooked up quantum physics jokes in response to Aereo's undetermined legal status, and the first place winner was Gwiz — but his comment was actually in response to the second-place winner, which was anonymous. So I'm going to take the rare step of presenting both comments together in chronological order, which is the reverse of vote ranking (hey, it's about quantum physics, so I might as well make it confusing):

AC: Summarizing, we have a quantum duck that's both a duck and not a duck.

Gwiz: Schrödinger's CATV.

For editor's choice on the funny side, we head to the revelation (which came as a surprise to nobody) that Keurig's new "interactive" brewer features offer a lot in the way of blocking unapproved coffee pods and very little in the way of compelling interactivity. Just as the Aereo situation called for quantum comedy, the Keurig situation apparently called for riffs on classic sci-fi quotes — and much like the Aereo post, we've got one from Gwiz and one from an anonymous commenter. First up, Gwiz hitches a ride on a timeless Douglas Adams line:

Every time I've used a Keurig machine (a relative owns one) all I end up with is a cup filled with a liquid that is almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.

And last but not least, a proposed replacement for "Oops!":

I'm sorry, Dave, I can't let you brew that.

(I feel there's a "red-eye" joke to be made here, but I leave it to you to flesh it out.)

That's all for this week, folks!


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Vel the Enigmatic, Jul 13th, 2014 @ 12:35pm

    Rats! Here I thought my comment would be featured this week!

    Congrats to the ones who got featured though!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    Paul Renault (profile), Jul 13th, 2014 @ 12:58pm

    re. chronological order...

    Leigh, Feynman diagrams work in both time-directions, so your reverse ranking/chrono is perfectly sensible.

     

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  3.  
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    Andrew Norton (profile), Jul 13th, 2014 @ 7:02pm

    "The people who WORK at publishers aren't parasites. Editors, copyeditors, proofreaders, typesetters all contribute to the product. "

    Er, a lot of the time now, this has been exported. My wife used to work for a company that was literally a 'pre-press' company. They got the raw documents, typeset, did the graphics, then preflighted and proofed.
    In newspapers, almost all central Georgia ones have got rid of their own presses now, and most are printed in LaGrange.

    BTW, I'd include Tor in with Baen.

     

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  4.  
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    Jake, Jul 14th, 2014 @ 3:34am

    Baen?

    No publisher that willingly employs Tom Kratman should ever be held up as an example to emulate.

     

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    Ninja (profile), Jul 14th, 2014 @ 4:34am

    The last funny quote along with the parenthesis overloaded the funny meter. Comedy drums, please!

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2014 @ 4:46am

    Right out of the liberal playbook

    It gives people a side to attack, to demonize, to dismiss whenever someone has a difference in opinion, similar to discrimination

    This is funny as I was at the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis last week and had this same thought. Seeing the history of slavery and later discrimination laid out was eye opening. The sad part is, a president who should know better, is very guilty of "discrimination" today. He does everything he can to demonize and marginalize the right. The sad part is that it plays well with his party.

     

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  7.  
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    John Fenderson (profile), Jul 14th, 2014 @ 7:51am

    Re: Right out of the liberal playbook

    Ignoring the fact the Democrat and liberal are two independent things, by implying that this sort of discrimination is only something that Democrats and/or liberals do you are, in fact, engaging in the exact same kind of demonization that you are decrying.

     

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  8.  
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    Jeff Green (profile), Jul 14th, 2014 @ 8:35am

    Do quantum ducks quark?

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2014 @ 10:55am

    Re: Re: Right out of the liberal playbook

    Pointing out a tactic and demonizing are 2 very different things. And yes, this is a tactic of the left. The right, for the most part, talks issues but the left resorts to personal attacks.

     

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  10.  
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    Leigh Beadon (profile), Jul 14th, 2014 @ 11:10am

    Re: Re: Re: Right out of the liberal playbook

    The right, for the most part, talks issues but the left resorts to personal attacks.

    Hahahaha. No. You're doing exactly what we're talking about here -- choosing a "team" and seeing everything through that lens.

    Both sides talk about issues, and both sides make personal attacks. But when you have a particular stance on an issue, especially one based on core values, then it's easy to see any discussion of that issue as a personal attack.

    When you say Obama is guilty of discrimination, you believe you are talking about issues, whereas democrats are likely to see it as a personal attack. Conversely, when people criticized Romney for being a wealthy elitist, they considered that a discussion of a real issue, whereas republicans saw it as a personal attack.

    Neither side wants to actually address what the other side is saying, so they seek out ways to simply invalidate it with one fell swoop, so they can walk away feeling good about themselves. "Oh that's a personal attack, I don't have to respond." It's not a "tactic" of either side -- it's a psychological weakness and a flaw of everyone involved. It's precisely the kind of partisan pitfall the original comment was talking about, and you marched yourself right into it.

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 15th, 2014 @ 4:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Right out of the liberal playbook

    It's precisely the kind of partisan pitfall the original comment was talking about, and you marched yourself right into it

    No, no I didn't. It is nearly impossible to talk to the left about issues without the false cry of racism, war on women, etc being shouted from the mountain tops. You don't see that kind of stuff from the right like you do the left. No criticism can be made of Obama w/o someone saying you are a racist. This is not talking issues, this is a personal attack meant to distract from the issues. It is a well known tactic of the left, it is just that simple.

     

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    John Fenderson (profile), Jul 15th, 2014 @ 8:25am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Right out of the liberal playbook

    "You don't see that kind of stuff from the right like you do the left."

    No, the right has a whole different set of false insults they use instead. The right has exactly zero moral high ground here -- they engaging in issue-free personal attacks just as much as the left does.

    I can tell that you're a true believer, and therefore you likely cannot see the sins of your own "side", but it's plain to everyone else. There are no saints on either side of the aisle.

    In fact, the whole division between left and right is artificial and intentionally designed to keep us fighting with each other instead of addressing the real problems with our government. That's the greater problem with these partisan spitting matches.

     

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    Leigh Beadon (profile), Jul 15th, 2014 @ 11:20am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Right out of the liberal playbook

    Still just digging yourself deeper in the hole, I'm afraid.

    Shall I quote Limbaugh and other pundits saying how "you can't discuss things with democrats because they are not rational"? Or shall I quote you right now saying you can't talk to the left because of their "false cries" meant to "distract from the issues"?

    Those are personal attacks too. Excellent analogues to people who try to derail discussions with accusations of racism or sexism. Meanwhile, at the same time, irrationality and distraction tactics are potentially real issues -- just as racism and sexism are potentially real issues. It's all a matter of perspective, and you are engaging in exactly the behaviour you are trying to condemn, in the same breath as condemning it. I'm glad you showed up really, because nothing could have demonstrated my point better.

    No criticism can be made of Obama w/o someone saying you are a racist.

    Um, really? I've criticized Obama plenty of times and never been called racist. We've also written articles critical of Obama here on Techdirt and I can't recall a single comment accusing us of racism. So either you're imagining that, or you're only talking to really stupid people.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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