Is it just me that feels we're sometimes losing perspective and nuance here at TechDirt?
Moss even comes to the right conclusion himself at the end of the blog post, which is kind of disingenuous leave out don't you think?!
While we can’t always choose where we live, we can determine what we look at, and how we see it. Otherwise, we’re just walking around like zombies.
I don't see a call to censor anything or ban TWD, the guy is just airing his thoughts about how an obsession has affected him (and I consider myself borderline obsessed with TWD) and how that has caused him to reconsider his views on an issue.
Guys, reconsidering your views is not a change in stance, or politics, or a signal to start a revolution - it's merely a signal that you're giving more thought to an issue and checking our own bias.
Changing libel law in the UK is going be as difficult as repealing the 2nd amendment in the US.
Much like the US constitution is built upon a culture of personal freedoms, UK libel law has grown out of a culture based upon status and pomp.
It is vastly more important in the average English mindset to be seen to right/upstanding/moral, than to be right/upstanding/moral. That goes for middle-class housewives all the way up to the Royal Family (although some would argue Prince Harry is doing his best to countermine that).
English people are worshipful - they love to worship. Where this used to be concentrated on religion, since the enlightenment this has gradually shifted towards worship of D-list celebrities, footballers and the like - who've basically become modern day royalty. Whereas the modern day royalty are treated more and more like their celebrity counterparts.
This causes an odd sort of backlash if you dare to criticize a celebrity for wanting to be like a "normal" person despite their whole status built upon standing out and being different. There are people who will defend the Queen and royal family as hard-working and deserving of having normal lives and privacy - despite their very special status.
Ask a typical English man on the street if people should be allowed to say something critical about the UK and be allowed to live in the UK and still claim benefits and the answer will be a flat out "No". The free-speech stuff doesn't even come up.
British newspapers - particularly The Sun and The Daily Mail - have actually brought this on themselves as they will usually be the first to decry the "free speech" of undesirable people like Abu Hamza.
Few in the UK will be outraged at someone being extradited for preaching hate. They will applaud it and ask why it took so long. No one considers this is a free-speech issue.
It's the same reason football fans attacked Imogen Thomas for her part in an affair with a famous married footballer - who used a super-injunction to silence her. No outrage over the super-injunction - instead outrage over the fact she might damage his career.
Most English people don't care about free speech. They see it as a novel American concept. They care more about not hurting peoples feelings, and if people have to be silenced in order not to hurt peoples feelings then by golly we should silence them.
"According to Jeff Cusson, HBO’s senior vice president of corporate affairs, “We think the key to combating piracy is to make content like Game of Thrones available worldwide within the smallest window possible…to 176 territories within the week of the U.S. premiere."
If only there was some kind of technology that could do that today, one that was fast, efficient and possibly peer-to-peer so it didn't tax the bandwidth on their own servers.
Imagine the possibilities if that kind of technology existed?
That said, the whole situation highlights (yet again) the nuttiness that is the end result of an "ownership society." Evil empire is a simple phrase that references Star Wars. The idea that it alone should be controlled by the New York Yankees seems preposterous.
He attends a public meeting and thinks he's "being ambushed"...
No, I used that term, based on my own speculation.
All we know for sure is that this reporter consistently asks for quotes and he has emailed the reporter in question and stated that he dislikes the reporter from asking for quotes after meetings.
Seems reasonable to me. I don't think it helps genuine free speech causes and issues to be conflating them with this kind of incident which is more a case of a politician not wanting to talk to a publication.
It's not even a freedom of information issue. The reporters just trying to get a quick and easy "quote" he can use rather than to figure out a way of summarizing the meeting himself. There's nothing being hidden or repressed here.
What if this was David Cameron and Rupert Murdoch? Would you be backing Murdoch and calling it a free-speech issue then?
The source article doesn't state he dislikes being quoted, the journalist's tweet actually states,
"Amused after @chrishawtree sends me email saying he dislikes he asking him for quotes after meetings. Is that not a job of a local cllr?"
So it seems Tim has followed the Grauniad into the trap of Tabloid truth twisting. He's not asking not to be quoted, he just doesn't want to provide quotes to the Argus and wants the reporter to stop ambushing him after meetings.
Now as to his public record I have no idea if he is a good councillor or not, but one thing I can say is a councillors job is NOT feeding quotes to newspapers in order to increase/maintain their PR - it's to represent his community to the council and government.
I'm sure the Argus are free to quote-mine him from other public speeches, including his Twitter feed, which it seems they do.
Is it a smart move to engage a newspaper this way? Probably not, but I don't see this as a freedom of speech issue - more of a freedom not to speak issue.
Some days, I just really wish we could split the internet up.
One internet for all the politicians, rights-holders and other sinkholes of humanity to argue over...
...and the other internet for the rest of us, ordinary folk who don't want to sue/monitise/censor/destroy each other, who just want to get on with the common-wealth sharing of information and pictures of cats.
All Americans should be proud of their Pooper Hole.
It's such a shame I am not in the US even though I was aiming for it, I'm going to miss the Pooper Hole.
I gather there is nothing quite like getting together with several burly men, to celebrate and watch a Pooper Hole.
I know Americans get very excited about their Pooper Hole, is very important to them and they like the idea of sharing their Pooper Hole with all their friends and family.
I understand that a lot of people put a lot of things into the Pooper Hole in order to make it wide and accessible to a large audience. A lot of money is also put in the Pooper Hole. Let's hope all that cash doesn't make it a dirty Pooper Hole game.
Since the DMCA process itself is usually pretty automated, what's to stop an ISP or video hosting service automating an opt-in DMCA counter-claim for their users?
It would have to be opt-in, because otherwise it would expose every user to a lawsuit automatically. But if you're a creator and are confident that every video you post will be fair use, or your own work - you should be able to automatically set up a DMCA counter notice that your service provider can automatically respond with and keep your content up.
When it comes to unfair contract terms... I've had plenty of success by writing a formal letter to a company trying to make a financial claim on a contract I have signed, stating exactly that their contact terms are unfair and therefore unlawful and I do not intend to continue.
I've also backed it up with examples and willingness to test my assertion by stating they should cease and desist from contracting me unless it is via a court summons. I have not yet been taken to court, my guess is the other parties in each case were unwilling to see their claims of a fair contract tested.
I get the feeling that people telling me this is not possible don't have much experience in business or in negotiation. It's always a 2 sided affair and usually the big mean company will have something to lose. It just takes a while for someone with a big picture mentality inside the company to work out what's about to happen.
Nice try Kryton... but it's cynicism like that which stops people from appealing to the courts as their last line of defense in a democracy.
My experience with magistrates in general is they tend to be pragmatic and fair. Even with a corrupt magistrate, you have the chance of appeal - or you break the law and become a prisoner of conscience.
If the law is wrong, it's the duty of every citizen to disobey that law.
In this case though the worst you're looking at is bankruptcy if the legal costs are high - and either way, a company like Machinima would face a PR nightmare - I would argue they have more to lose as you would be endangering their future existence.
And what magistrate is going to make a rule that "Yes, Machinima owns everything you do in future", making you pay their legal costs to the point of bankruptcy and then ruling that even after bankruptcy you are still owned by them - there's just zero chance of this happening.
Based on my reasoning above, I think those who are saying that it's not worth the trouble fighting something like this are contributing in spreading the FUD that these companies are all-powerful and cannot be stopped. It's just bullshit and people need to take a stand.