Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

from the stuff-you-said dept

This week, our first place winner on the insightful side is a very simple anonymous response to a lengthy complaint about Section 230:

Freedom of Speech is more important than your feelings. Period.

In second place, we've got a comment from an exchange on our post about the recent end of our long-running legal dispute. One commenter asserted that we were shown to be "de facto wrong on defamation law", to which Adam Steinbaugh pointed out the district court ruling saying otherwise. The original commenter claimed that because it cost money to mount that defense and achieve that initial ruling dismissing the case, that still somehow means we were wrong about the law, leading Matthew Cline to put forth a rebuttal:

If you defend yourself against a lawsuit and win, the fact that winning cost money doesn't make you wrong.

For editor's choice on the insightful side, we start out with a comment from Stephen T. Stone taking on the now-tired complaints about social media companies violating free speech:

Using a service such as Facebook is a societal privilege, not a legal right. If someone could legally sue that service over a ban — and have a court overturn that ban — it would upend the First Amendment’s protections for association. As for “true diversity” and ideologies and such in yuor last paragraph: (A) Prove that multiple platforms are collaborating with one another to deny specific ideologies a place on those platforms, and (B) recognize that true neutrality/“diversity” would burden a platform with hosting speech and speakers that the administrators of said platform have already chosen not to host.

Next, we've got a thorough response from James Burkhardt to the claim that disclosure of classified material is treason:

Disclosure of Classified material is not, by the constitutional definition, sufficient for the charge of Treason. For instance, a non-citizen (someone who does not owe allegiance to the US) could disclose classified material and can not, by definition, be charged with treason.

Moreover, while disclosure of classified material might fit the definition of treason, there are a number of other requirements and restrictions within the consitution and the law established by congress:

Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason...

Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.

Disclosure of classified material could be considered adhering to the enemies of the US, however proving that requires a showing of intent, and whom you disclose the information to can significantly change that analysis. Which is why we have the crime of espionage, which Courts have barred from allowing an intent analysis.

Moreover, International law (these were extraterritorial murders, after all) and the UCMJ explicitly do not allow "I was just following orders" as a defense against the killing of non-combatants and that such orders should be disobeyed. Under this principle, disobeying the commands of higher ups and exposing the continued killing of non-combatants would appear to be the right action to take. Courts do seem to have disagreed, but that ruling was not in place when the events in question occurred.

Over on the funny side, we've got a double-winner in Stephen T. Stone. In first place, it's a summary of the general desire some folks have to make platforms responsible for everything, and get anything they don't like taken down:

Ah yes, the Defamatory Intent Prevention and Sequestration of Harmful Internet Topics Act.

In second place, it's a response to the Miami plastic surgeon who sued patients for negative reviews:

It’s all in how you say it.

He went from “It’s the Boob God!” to “it’s the boob, God…” with one lawsuit.

For editor's choice on the funny side, we start out with That One Guy expressing a general sentiment about the week:

Journalist admits mistake on 230 and corrects original article...

USPTO is actually right for once...

Alright, who turned on Hell's air conditioner?

And last but not least, we've got CSI: Houston with a response to the critical question of whether apathy is better or worse than corruption and/or incompetence:

I don't know and I don't care.

That's all for this week, folks!


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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 May 2019 @ 1:22pm

    Thats how patent trolls work, pay us 50k we,ll go away, or else
    spend 500k plus in legal fees to go to court to prove you did not use our patent in your product or are patent is worthless .Just paying money to a lawyer does not show you were even partly wrong,it just means you are prepared to defend yourself .Maybe everyone is equal in the eyes of the law ,but many people cannot afford to pay large legal fees .
    So the rich will always have an advantage ,so patent trolls tend to go after
    small startups not big companys like apple or ibm.
    If the USPTO takes x no of cases its bound to be right once in a while .

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 May 2019 @ 1:44pm

    Shiva's link

    Hey Mike and the Techdirt staff, I would love to see you have fun with that link to Shiva's site and whenever somebody "onmouseover"(s) it will play the Jim Carry "You're one pathetic loser" clip.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A4gi3cppAD8

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

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 19 May 2019 @ 2:39pm

      No need

      The articles highlight just how baseless him claim regarding email is, and if, as I understand it, that's pretty much his only 'accomplishment'(other than perhaps losing in a political race to an absolutely staggering degree), once you get rid of that he's got nothing left.

      A mocking clip at that point wouldn't be beating a dead horse, it would be beating a glue factory.

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

    • identicon
      Pixelation, 19 May 2019 @ 2:50pm

      Re: Shiva's link

      I think the links should go to Goatse.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 May 2019 @ 6:43pm

    Once again the top insightfuls go to responses to Techdirt's collection of idiot trolls. The amount of "not caring" given by Jhon Smith, aka horse with no name/MyNameHere/Just Sayin'/Whatever/Herrick is staggering.

    John Smith once said you'd have to kill him to get him to stop posting.

    I posit that he's not nearly worth it for all the benefits he brings.

    I invite you to keep shitposting here, John, and keep calling Mike's kids "shitstains" and his wife a "hooker", because it's an accurate portrayal of those who support copyright.

    And besides... your tears are fucking delicious.

    There's plenty of Article 17 votes to go around when you pop by, purty boy!

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

  • icon
    sumgai (profile), 19 May 2019 @ 6:49pm

    the UCMJ explicitly do not allow "I was just following orders" as a defense against the killing of non-combatants and that such orders should be disobeyed. Under this principle, disobeying the commands of higher ups and exposing the continued killing of non-combatants would appear to be the right action to take. Courts do seem to have disagreed, but that ruling was not in place when the events in question occurred.

    You must have slept through history class that day, when they told you about Lt. William Calley, and what has now been termed "the My Lai Defense". I was in the Army in the early 60s, and it was in our General Orders even then (and likely for a long time prior) - You must not obey an order you know to be unlawful.

    In essence, you had to take your lumps at that time for disobeying a direct order, but you could be cleared of all wrong doing later on. And have the satisfaction of seeing your superior officer getting his due.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 May 2019 @ 1:26am

    Shiva Ayyadurai didn't invent email.

    Suck it, John Smith.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 20 May 2019 @ 4:01am

      Re:

      Now now, that's not being completely fair.

      John Smith is going to have to wait for Richard Bennett to be finished with his turn first.

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

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Siniffa Spole, 20 May 2019 @ 10:02am

    DE FACTO wrong on defamation law

    Sheesh. After two years (specific to the suit) of telling us that even being sued would "chill" speech, now you kids won't even admit that FACT when I state it!

    DE FACTO means "not by law" but actualities.

    It's FACT that Masnick has been circumspect on Ayyadurai since served papers. He's been chilled. -- Rightly so in my opinion, but FACTUALLY.

    Unntil Masnick runs another hit piece on Ayyaddurai and proves that he's NOT chilled, then I'm incontrovertibly right. -- Meanwhile, it's a hoot that you object to my stating the FACT.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 20 May 2019 @ 12:10pm

      Re: DE FACTLY can’t even get being wrong right

      Shut up blue. Go run with scissors you man-child.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 20 May 2019 @ 5:53pm

      Re:

      Unntil Masnick runs another hit piece on Ayyaddurai and proves that he's NOT chilled

      This makes no damn sense.

      Just because I don't talk about Nazis all the time doesn't mean World War 2 didn't happen.

      But if it means that much to you, blue, I can start replying to you with "Shiva Ayyadurai didn't invent email" every time you shitpost. I'm sure you'll find that acceptable.

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

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 20 May 2019 @ 6:53pm

      FYI: You come off as someone rooting for Mike by pointing out how Ayyadurai’s lawsuit chilled Mike’s speech about Ayyadurai.

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

  • icon
    ECA (profile), 20 May 2019 @ 2:45pm

    demand on social media.

    Every social media site/group Iv belonged has has a few basic restrictions.

    1 stick to the topic.

    And generally they dont allow others to Open NEW topics in a section.
    FB. is interesting, but also Stupid. Anyone can have the ability to ADVERT. Spread any non-sense, they wish. Create your OWN section/site on FB, and discuss post anything you wish, IN YOUR SECTION. Problem I have is those that SPREAD the BS..and I have even Caught my friends doing it, and I go out and show Proof of it being WRONG.

    The Internet has become Stupid, in the past their were Anti Data groups, that would distribute any type of Data a group wished, Even Naming Themselves as PRO-drug/MJ/../.. Locations..and it was/is all BS..The internet has made this Sooo bad, you dont know IF' what you are reading is BAd propaganda/ JUST BS/ a stupid person not thinking/ Or something to REALLY think about..

    Idaho is thinking of Allowing MJ in the state. A state that UsED to Blame Farmers for MJ in their fields from irrigation. It would allow 1/2 those in jail for minor drug crimes OUT.. But Sites have been popping up about DRUGS in Idaho. And allot of it I Avoid because it TOTAL BS..
    1 Site mentioned that the Teen drugs went up over 70% in Colorado...And you go look it up, and it was 2 More teens admitted using MJ.. which is stupid asking them WHO uses drugs as a teen, and that 2 were willing to answer YES, and I KNOW the number is allot higher, EVEN when I was in school in the 70's..

    With the idea that the INTERNET IS PUBLIC, and trying to Basically control Speech, ITS NOT EASY.

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


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