No... giving the movie away online by itself would not have improved ticket sales. This was not said in the article. This was not said by Mike. This was only said by you. It's a straw man argument you've built in a very misguided attempt to disprove what Mike actually said without you even understanding it. Congrats, you're a moron.
What Mike claims is that spending untold millions of dollars on anti-piracy efforts to keep the movie from coming out online is a waste of money for several reasons.
First of all it will fail. The movie was available two days after hitting the theaters.
Secondly, this did not effect ticket sales in any appreciable way. The local theater complex [that had Dark Knight] here still had all 7 of the theaters at it's main building packed a week after it came out.
Finally, and most importantly, lagging ticket sales are more because of poor box office experiences. We have two major theater complexes here, and two smaller theaters (one is a drive-in). Of those only one provides a consistent experience. The last 6 movies I've seen at the others have had issues from soda-soaked cushions, out of stock drinks and candies, failure to enforce noise control, damaged or low quality film, out of sync audio, failed equipment, wet and messy floors, etc. And of course with this increasingly poor experience has come higher ticket prices and higher prices for foods. A medium soda for 4 dollars when I can get the same thing across the street for 75 cents... and not have to worry about it being flat... AFTER paying 12 dollar for a ticket... only to have the audio play out of sync the entire movie while sitting in a chair covered by dried blobs of chewing gum and my shoes sticking to the sticky floor? And good theater has lower prices, is larger, offers stadium seating, and doesn't have these problems. If the movie companies want to do something about lagging ticket sales they should start enforcing quality controls on theaters.
If the theaters offered something other than a piss poor experience at inflated prices then yes, giving the movie away for free online would potentially increase ticket sales. While there are people who would not see the movie in the theater once they had seen it on their computer, many people who were not going to the theater whether they had seen the movie or not might change their mind. Theaters need to sell the service they provide, not the content that can be gotten for free. Currently they don't provide a service worth having and, if the movie was easier to get hold of for free then yes they would lose money because they lost their only selling point.
Think about fancy sit down restaurants. I can cook anything they can cook at home and even change it to my preferences. But I have to do the work and in the end I can't recreate the atmosphere available at a restaurant. That is what you pay extra for when you go to a restaurant. Not the food.
You're missing the part where he never bought it... because it wasn't something they were willing to sell. He never bought it, therefore it wasn't his... it was still the coffee shop's... and they have the right to do, or not do, whatever it is they choose with it. If he had bought it he would have had the option to add ice to it... since it would then have been his.
This is completely different from DRM which controls the use of a product AFTER it has been purchased. DRM would be more akin to selling the espresso and then when the guy tried to put ice into it the shop kicked him out and took the espresso away.
Actually find myself on both sides of the street with this one.
Ok... the customer is always right... unless they are going to "harm" themselves in some way. In my tutoring sessions I have had clients who insisted on doing something a certain way... a way that wasn't just different but inherently doomed to failure from the beginning. For example, one customer started by insisting that I do not use ANY computer terminology when teaching him about computer basics. This of course devolved rather quickly into convoluted descriptions such as "the thing which you place the things that contain the things that are your things" for a description of a folder.
Other clients would ask a question that could be answered a thousand different ways but in the end the answer was (of course) the same... and they refuse to accept the answer as correct telling me, the teacher, that I am wrong. I've been wrong... but when I go to tutor some one it is always on a subject I know a great deal about... and as such I am rarely wrong. When asked a question I am not very sure of the answer I look it up on the spot.
Unfortunately if I accept that the customer is right and my answer is wrong... then teaching the next concept which requires them to understand the previous concept becomes impossible. If I allow a client to be right when he insists that Java and HTML are the same thing then when I move on to showing him how to implement each one he won't be able to understand it.
So no the customer is not always right. However, If the customer wants ice in his coffee put ice in his coffee. If the client doesn't take coffee seriously then that is his own problem. You could always make a suggestion that he not drink it that way but in the end there is no logical reasons to deny a paying customer what he wants (little picture) when it does not interfere with him getting what he really wants (big picture).
Such items could be off-menu items and could cost more as a deterrent (and a way to turn a slightly higher profit from people who care less about money and more about time or routine). There are dozens of ways that you could maintain the focus on quality while still allowing individual customers the option to choose. I don't agree with the sentiment that allowing customers who don't care about coffee to get the coffee they want and providing high quality coffee to those who want it should be mutually exclusive. Besides... there may come a day when an iced espresso is considered high-class coffee. It's all a matter of opinion in the end.
That said the asshole in the shop had no right to demand the shop do things his way. Yes perhaps it is absurd for the shop to try to tell a paying customer what is in their best interests... but in the end that is their right... as it is their right to lose money hand over fist if they really want to (which doesn't seem to be the case here). He could have simply said "ok, thanks anyway" with a smile and a wave and mentally noted that they didn't sell iced espressos there as he walked out. If he was in a hurry then that was his own fault. If there was no other coffee shop near where he works then it sucks to be him... life isn't always fair. Based on information provided here and at the links there was never at any time a justification for being rude. His sense of entitlement is misplaced.
I think its wonderful how, just because this article mentions a presidential candidate, the end result is political bickering that has little to do with the purpose of the blog or it's main point. Even more wonderful is how we have people here supporting dictatorial methods to what they claim (perhaps rightfully so) to be a dictatorship.
Oh and yeh, twisting what McCain says to mean something that makes him look stupid is nothing new. That's been going on since the last time he ran. You'd think people would learn how to spot it by now... of course that assumes they want to.
Politics and religion, two things you never bring up unless your ready to fight about it. Why? Cause they both make otherwise intelligent, rational people both irrationally stupid and stupidly irrational.
I have. And yes such items exists. Modded video game consoles come to mind. As do lamps and that have been painted for resale. How about manufacturer refurbished laptops, the added value being that they are as good as a new one for often hundreds of dollars less. Dell actually sells most of it's refurbished laptops this way. There are countless more examples.
I also purchased my last Creative Labs sound card from eBay... the seller was Creative Labs itself. It was brand new, still in packaging being sold for half price due to overstocking.
Yes Mike is right about added value and about not all items being leftover "junk."
I think, by law, things like going to the bathroom or stopping to get a drink of water are protected and the employer can not penalize you in any way regarding them.
Idle chatter around the water cooler or getting coffee are generally O.K. but, if paid hourly, you should clock out for 15 minutes or, if salaried, you should limit how often you do this and return to work promptly upon completing your drink. Not focusing on your work depends on the circumstances... If you're not focusing on your work because your wife called to let you know she can't pick the kid up from school and your mentally shuffling your schedule around in your mind to find time to pick him up yourself, that is acceptable. If you're not focusing on your work cause you're day dreaming about golf with Tiger Woods later or playing solitaire on your computer, then that isn't. Ignoring a phone call is never ok unless its clear that you are not expected to be working right then (like after office hours and when not on-call).
Technically it can be said that checking personal email at work technically does not profit the company and should not be done on company time. However, in the long run allowing employees to check their personal email, and other small trivial personal tasks, when kept in moderation, CAN improve company profits. Forcing employees to put their noses to the grind stone and never stop except when they take their one or two clearly defined breaks each day will serve only to wear them out and leave them incapable of being as productive as they otherwise would be. Not all people are capable of switching into one-track-mind mode. Those people need a little bit of distraction here and there just to clear their head. That way when they return to the work at hand they can focus and do it right.
Taking long breaks to call up your drinking buddies and shoot the breeze, answering all of the 15 chain emails from family and friends, updating your myspace profile, or otherwise blatantly goofing off in a manner that takes significant amounts of time away from your work is not appropriate. However, taking just a moment to see if that important email from your ebay purchase has been answered yet (but not necessarily acting on the results) shouldn't be a big deal and can be beneficial in the long run.
How is personalized watermarks really that different from say... a paypal account? Using your paypal means paypal could track online purchases. Also, to use your paypal you have to give away your email address, thus opening yourself up to spam.
Now there are obvious differences of course but how is it different in regard to privacy because from where I'm am sitting it looks like a paypal account actually does a worse job of invading your privacy.
Lets start with the most significant privacy issue: tracking by the provider of user's usage. In the case of paypal, anything you use it for it instantly and automatically recorded by paypal's servers. Who you made the purchase with and how much you paid them as well as your address and other personal info is stored with it. Paypal could easily mine their own databases for marketing info and, with a little guess work, even figure out what the purchases are.
On the other hand the suggested serial number system (which I might add was something I mentioned in a comment to one of Mike's posts probably 6 months or more ago) is not in any way trackable unless you install software on every device you use it on, your computer is inspected for such watermarked content, or you give such files away. If I was required to install software to track the usage of such files then yes I can see an issue... albeit a small one compared to other concerns such would raise. Unlike paypal, the only time you would likely have to worry about losing privacy as a result of watermarked content is when you have already lost privacy at the hands of a court order allowing the RIAA and it's cronies to look through your computer or when you actually do commit piracy by distributing such files.
Then there is the issue of what happens if some one gets access to your files. Lets start with paypal for this. Paypal is different in this respect in that it actively requires you to give away the "identifier" for you account. In fact it requires you to give away your email address. This opens you up to spam. It is worth noting however that this in and of itself does not create a major privacy concern because the people with such info will still need your password.
Watermarked content is, once again, better still from a privacy stand point. There is no need to give out the serial from the watermark... thus reducing exposure. If the serial number becomes available it can do you no harm on it's own (other than being used to frame you for piracy and if we wanna go there then it's tinfoil hat time). Based on the implementation suggested here the serial number could not be used to access your personal info without some other special access... in this case access to the database containing your information. Is it possible for such a database to be hacked? yes... but the same can be said for Paypal's database.
POINT: Yes it would do more to protect privacy if the files were not watermarked. It would also be easier to not get in a car accident if you don't ever get into a car. In the case of watermarked content files using serial numbers and a closed-access database the risk to ones privacy is significantly less that by say... using paypal... or ebay... or newegg. If you look at it in the context of how severely your privacy is being threatened by these watermarks when compared to other day to day activities the answer inevitably ends up being: not really. I threaten my privacy more just by sending an email, thus giving out my email address as part of the process, which could then be used (with the password) to gain access to my email, which could then be used to gain access to my financial information and track my spending habits as well as pinpointing things like where I live and what car I drive.
And it is a given that the content industries are going to do SOMETHING to protect their media. The morality of that is itself an entirely separate issue. However, of the options presented so far watermarking files is by far the least harmful to users and while retaining the required level of protection to the content producers. Would it be better if there was no protection on the files? Of course it would. Is it, however, necessary to take it that far? No, not really.
or AT&T... Despite all the BS whining about AT&T wireless the reality is that they do not do this kind of thing. They have been offering an unlimited data plan for over 4 years now and guess what? The only thing that has changed is the price has gone down.
My guess is they looked at this new os as possible competition for Vista and... considering likely lower profit margins for this low-cost os... decided to try to limit it to machines Vista would be a mistake for.
Whether this is a good idea or not is a question beyond my knowledge... but I can see why it might be a bad idea to offer a low-cost version of Windows with the current popularity (or lack there of) of their flagship product. Even worse if it claims to have less overhead than their current flagship (considering this is a common complaint regarding Vista).
I'm pretty sure the comparison that was being made was between USING unsafe payment handling methods and USING possibly harmful drugs.
Though selling was mentioned the point there was that it would be irresponsible to allow the sale of something that when USED would be harmful.
Thus, for once Mike, I have to disagree with your assessment of the issue. "but, clearly, there's a bit of a difference between using a non-PayPal electronic payments solution and dealing heroin" While technically true this is irrelevant. "How much of a difference is there between using an unsafe payment system and using heroin" and "Is it really irresponsible to allow others to choose a potentially unsafe course of action" would be more reasonable lines of questioning.
The real questions to me, however, are "Is PayPal really safer than other options (what with their alleged propensity for seizing the money of honest sellers over unfounded claims)" and "Is it really a good move for a company such as ebay to restrict the options of their clients in a way many of them will find very troubling."
So what you're saying is that if you pay for a car wash it would some how wrong for me to charge you for detailing and vacuuming the inside. Charging for both of those services is some how unfair just because its the same company providing both services?
Ebay offers listing auctions. PayPal offers to payment handling. It's not unreasonable to pay for both services even though both are provided by the same company.
Perhaps I should just show up at peoples houses that have messy yard and clean those yards up complete with cut back the bushes, cut the grass, edge and blow off the drive ways... then go to the front door, ring the doorbell, and whine that I'm being exploited because they aren't paying me.
It is the exact same difference. No one made any one do anything. It was offered on a volunteer basis. If they wanted to get paid for it then they should have refused to do it till face book offered to pay them what they wanted to be paid. This is called haggling and is supposed to be done BEFORE services are rendered... not after.
If you do the work without agreeing to the fee then don't be surprised when the person you performed the service for suddenly doesn't think its worth anything. I mean after all its not like you can undo it. So they have gotten the service completed for free. Expecting them to pay after the fact with no prior agreement is... absurd in the extreme. It's hard to find words that describe just how utterly ridiculous and retarded that is. The English language just isn't equipped for such extremes.
I imagine these are the same people who think the world owes them a free ride. The same people who think taxes are theft and that if they do put forth the slightest degree of extra effort beyond what their job requires they should get a raise (IE they emptied the trash can when it got full).
*sigh* I only hate stupid people... the problem is people are stupid.
Since we are asking rhetorical questions here is one for you. Have you ever considered that maybe mike reads more articles than he makes post regarding? Have you ever thought that maybe he agrees with some that favor the content producer but doesn't post about them?
Besides, in this case the content producer has no legs to stand on, just as all the submitters to Digg and Slashdot have no leg to stand on when they want payment. The terms of service for both sites are very clear. If you want to get paid become a professional blogger. If you agree to give away your content for free stick to the deal. Trying to change the deal later is just plain dishonest. The same holds true when the "freeloaders" try to change the deal... which seems to be very rare.
Many of his more famous works were written in the conservative dominated 50s. The period was dominated by a sense that women were not leadership material or that their place was in the home. Clark rose above this in many of his works. He depicted women in positions of power and authority.
"2001: a Space Odyssey" and "2010: The year We Make Contact" both had women with jobs that at the time those books were written women were not expected to have. In 2001 a woman was a high ranking member of an intelligence agency aboard a space station and in 2010 a woman was the commanding officer aboard the Russian space craft that carried them to the location of the Discovery.
He was wrong in his predictions of how far women would go in the 50 years following his books but there is no indication that it was because he was sexists. Quite the contrary in fact.
The album is relevant in that it isn't relevant... or at least not as relevant as the RIAA thinks. That's the point.
It's relevant to the discussion of whether or not albums are important for artists to be popular or to get exposure. If an artist can have this much exposure when the album hsn't even been made available yet, then the relevant question is "how important (relevant) can the album really be to an artist's success?"
A post above mentions that it is easy to say some one can be addicted to anything. Perhaps there is a reason it is so easy to say that. Perhaps it's easy because it makes sense.
I have an addictive personality. I once played Need for Speed: Most Wanted for 2 weeks straight from sun up to sun down. I was playing it on XBox and used the right trigger for throttle. Halfway through the second week my right index finger started going numb. It stayed that way for almost a month before sensation fully returned to it. I also can drink 4 liters of soda in one sitting. I can eat enough food for four people at one time and be back for more in 30 minutes. I can spend 18 hours a day on the internet and not be phased by it.
Anything that can give me even the slightest high is something I am capable of being addicted to. You see that is the key to understanding addiction. Addiction is chemical in nature. In the case of internet addiction, work addiction, etc your brain is releasing chemicals that make you feel good as a reward for accomplishing something. Is it possible to be addicted to the internet? Yes. The internet allows one to feel as though he has accomplished a great deal without expending very much energy.
Should Internet Addiction be an official, separate, addiction? No. Work addiction has the exact same root cause. So does sexual addiction. So does addiction to video games. So does all of the addictions that don't involve putting chemicals into your body from an outside source. Thus it stands to reason that they are the same disease appearing in different ways. Would you give an entirely different diagnosis for dry skin based on where on the body it appears? That makes no sense and nether does separate diagnoses for endorphin-addiction.
To quote Jaqenn above: "Someone mentioned that different types of addictions (i.e. food, sex, gambling, whatever) usually have *very different* treatments."
Food... maybe. Sex... maybe. Those are specialized circumstances (survival) that our bodies react differently to. In the end however it still boils down to the release of endorphins used to train us to enjoy such activities. Gambling, Internet, Gaming, etc... There is no difference in the cause. Why should there be differences in the treatment? I'll tell you why. It's more profitable that way.
Escaping from your bad home life by getting on the internet isn't even addiction. That's something else entirely.
You think they aren't? Look... Scientology is over flowing with kooks but there is demonstrable evidence that psychologists in the US prefer to prescribe medicine that requires frequent checkups. Just because Scientology happens to agree with something doesn't make it wrong.
There are countless diseases and disorders out there who's symptoms overlap with the symptoms of others. Half of the disorders out there now are really just vitamin deficiencies or the result of some other problem with a persons diet.
For example, I've been developing a case of insomnia. At first I thought about sleep pills but after some research I found out that low amounts of melatonin can cause insomnia. Should I treat the symptom or the problem? Most doctors want you to treat the symptom. That way they can prescribe you a powerful sleep med that also requires refills... and thus return visits. They make a lot less money off of telling you to get out of your damned house and get some sun.
The real scary part is that most of these doctors don't even know they are doing this. Many honestly would never make the connection between too much time spent indoors and loss of sleep. Those that do would very likely convince themselves sleep aids are a more reliable "solution." They have been trained throughout med school by their teachers, their peers, and the doctors they interned with to think this way, and they think nothing of it. The doctors, teachers, and peers that taught them to think this way didn't realize they were teaching anything out of the norm ether. It's no conspiracy. It's just Americans being Americans... sheep being sheep.
I've been diagnosed with acid reflux disease twice now. Both times the doctors drew their diagnosis from completely different symptoms and both conflicted with each other. Both gave me different meds both of which they needed to see me every month to write a new prescription for and both of which had to be taken for life. Both meds had side effects I didn't care for and both didn't help the problems I actually went to the doctors for help with. Did some research and guess what? Turns out I had been eating a lot of food with garlic in it without realizing, too much in fact. Changed my diet and both symptoms disappeared.
Two doctors, independent of each other, misdiagnosing me in favor of the latest big disorder, for conflicting reasons, unwilling to agree with me that the meds weren't helping, and both unaware of a much simpler, less expensive, and more permanent solution I found on the internet.
Yes, doctors are diagnosing people in such a way that benefits them financially.