Dan J.’s Techdirt Profile


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Dan J.’s Comments comment rss

  • Jan 11th, 2013 @ 10:49am

    Re: Re: Re: Defend to the Death App

    I don't care if apps are allowed/removed, but the more people who "object" to "racism", the more likely those rights to express such a statement is lost.

    I'm confused. Isn't the answer to hate speech not censorship but MORE speech which denounces the hate speech and points out why it's wrong? Isn't the right response to racist speech to stand up and object, not to the publication of the idea, but to the holding of the idea in the first place?
  • Jan 7th, 2013 @ 12:29pm

    Re: Free Speech places no obligation on others.

    As far as I am concerned, if there are restrictions placed on free speech by anyone but yourself, then we cannot call it free.

    No restriction is even being contemplated to be placed on the speech. What's being requested is that Google refuse to publish. If I send a letter to the editor of the local paper and they decline to publish it, are my rights being denied?

    I have the right to free speech. I can spew the vilest, most horrendous, most bigoted stream of bile and hatred that I care to produce. That's what free speech means. But you have freedom of association and you have the freedom to use your owned resources as you like. My right of free speech doesn't obligate you in any way to help me to spread my word. And Google is under no obligation to publish the speech of the app writer. They have chosen to do so, and may very well continue to do so. I have no issue with that. But if they change their minds, it is not a restriction on free speech and it does not violate anyone's rights.
  • Apr 10th, 2012 @ 9:14am

    That's how we felt...

    "And the questions they asked showed they had not the slightest clue as to what a political campaign is all about and the role of money that it plays in political campaigns. And I remember when Russ and I walked out of there, I said, Russ, we're going to lose and it's because they are clueless."

    Yeah, that's pretty much how we feel every time we see the latest Internet bill you're proposing.
  • Nov 23rd, 2011 @ 9:15am


    “Whatever content we distribute we want to be in control of that,” he said. “I think obviously, any company wants to be responsible for the information that gets distributed.”

    Whatever content my Adroid devices distribute I want to be in control of that. I think obviously, any individual wants to be responsible for the information that gets distributed.

    I'll make a deal with you. You give me back my phone and I'll give you back your manuals.
  • Nov 15th, 2011 @ 1:22pm


    You mean a tool who's primary purpose is to allow people to communicate is being used to communicate?

    Psst, I hear gangs have also discovered cars, which allow them to broaden their range considerably; GPS units, which allow them to easily find locations to terrorize; and hotels, which allows them to range further afield from their home territories.
  • Aug 2nd, 2010 @ 11:07am

    Re: Re:

    Hmm, I'm not sure the statement can actually be said to support a falsehood, since it made no explicit claim as to the accuracy of the estimate. However, I fully agree that part of a reporter's job is to verify the accuracy of what he/she reports, and to note when there is substantial question as to the veracity of the claim being reported. For example, if a reporter were to note that the moon landings have been claimed to be a hoax, that would be a true statement. A responsible reporter, however, would make sure that he/she also reported that the claims are generally considered to be unreliable and have few or no mainstream backers.
  • Aug 2nd, 2010 @ 10:38am

    (untitled comment)

    So, Stephanie Clifford, reporter for the NY Times, can you give any evidence whatsoever to support the claim that you made in your article this past weekend that counterfeiting "costs American businesses an estimated $200 billion a year?" I don't think that Clifford can, because that number has been thoroughly debunked time and time again.

    Actually, Clifford can provide support for her claim. All she has to do is link to the report in question. Clifford didn't claim that there were $200 billion in losses. Rather, she truthfully reported the fact that losses have been estimated to be $200 billion.

    Mr. Pedantic

    (PS - if the signature wasn't enough of a hint, tongue firmly planted in cheek on this post.)
  • Apr 30th, 2010 @ 1:34pm


    To expand further on why Universal's argument that enforcement is hard also applies to Veoh, Veoh would have to police all uploads for not only Universal's copyrights but any copyright owned by anyone anywhere in the world. This is just as big a Whack-A-Mole game for Veoh as policing all the websites is for Universal.
  • Apr 8th, 2010 @ 1:49pm


    I've never been to Newser before (and, after seeing their hideous front page, won't go back again) so I'm not sure if it's a new practice or not, but I clicked on a couple of stories and they all had direct links back to the source. Something like "blah blah blah," SourceWebsite said, where SourceWebsite is the name of the actual site and a direct link back to the original article.
  • Oct 1st, 2009 @ 12:57pm


    I don't think it's so much making things up as it is making logical errors. In this case, I think Techdirt's response is missing the point of the article. The intended claim is that IF the manufacturer had implemented IP protection and not allowed other manufacturers to copy the design, they'd now be the only authorized manufacturer of one of the most popular weapons in the world and thus have a cash cow that would have prevented their current profitability issues. The problem with this line of reasoning is that one of the reasons that the AK-47 is so popular is that it was so widely manufactured and thus so easily available. If the design had been locked up behind IP walls, it's quite likely that it would never have achieved its current popularity and may even be a footnote in the pages of weapons history by now.
  • Sep 9th, 2009 @ 9:03am

    Re: Technobabble

    It is just technobabble. I saw this yesterday and am just as confused.
    No need to be confused. You simply need to realize that the wrong question is being asked. The question being asked is "How can we ignore all of this new technology and roll things back so that our outdated business model still works?" So the proposed solution is to make digital copies somehow work like physical copies. If you look at things through Clueless-Music-Executive goggles, it makes sense. Of course, those goggles hide all sorts of realities that doom the attempt to failure, but no one's ever accused CMEs of being particularly bright or perceptive when it comes to dealing with the realities of the market.
  • Aug 27th, 2009 @ 8:27am

    Re: Legal

    That depends in part on what you mean by "law" and "crime." Downloading music and similar activities is prohibited by DoD policy on DoD computers. Violation of that by military members is essentially failure to obey a direct order, which certainly does open up the member to prosecution. It's doubtful (though not impossible) that the member would go to a Court's Martial, but members have received Non-Judicial Punishment for violating IT policy. Non-military personnel, such as civilian employees or contractors, would probably not face legal prosecution, but could face consequences, including loss of their job.

    So it's arguable that the information provided is factually correct. However, it's extremely misleading in that it seems to imply that the act of downloading music is always in and of itself illegal/immoral. The training should distinguish between illegal downloading, and legal downloading that violates DoD policy.

    (I'm retired Navy now working as a Network Engineer on a DoD network. I haven't had to take this training yet but I probably will in the near future.)
  • Jul 30th, 2009 @ 6:32pm


    Not without getting the video owner's permission, they shouldn't.

    And if using an executive's picture on a wanted poster is fair use due to it's transformative nature, why isn't this fair use of the song?
  • Jul 30th, 2009 @ 9:00am

    Apple's arguments

    Let me start by saying that I don't buy Apple's arguments for a second. It's lame and obviously a scare tactic that Apple is hoping with influence the non-technical members of the committee. That beings said, I think their argument is being somewhat mischaracterized above. Their argument isn't that the DMCA will prevent terrorists from jailbreaking the iPhone. Their argument is that the DMCA will prevent or at least slow down the proliferation of tools that would allow the terrorist to jailbreak iPhones.

    This is pretty silly, since there are already plenty of tools out there to do so, but at least there's a thread of attempted logic there. They aren't claiming that a terrorist is going to say "Gee, I'd like to jailbreak this iPhone and attack a cell tower but the DMCA says I can't, so I guess I won't." They're saying that adding an exemption would make it easier for a terrorist to find the tools to do the jailbreak.
  • Jun 3rd, 2009 @ 1:39pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    IANAL but it sounds to me that if I purchase a product and give it to you, you must pay taxes on the purchase price but if the product was originally free, there is no tax. I wonder if this is intended to thwart you sending your out of state buddy the money, having him download the file and send it to you.
  • Jun 3rd, 2009 @ 12:46pm

    Re: Re: Free codes

    To correct myself, the Q&A does make this clear. You just have to read down a ways:

    Digital products given away for free

    There is a use tax exemption for the recipient of digital products given away for free. (See 606). There is also a sales and use tax exemption for the person purchasing digital products, digital codes, or remote access software to give it away for free. The purchaser must provide an exemption certificate. (See sections 503(1)(b) and 603(2) of the digital products bill).

    Note that the Q&A talks about products "...given away for free..." but the bill itself actually says "...obtained by the end user free of charge..." The Q&A sounds like it would not apply to illegal downloads, since they arguable weren't "given away" but rather were "stolen." ("Stolen" in quotes because I'm well aware of the difference in copyright infringement and theft but I'm not sure that legal officials would be.) However, a literal reading of the bill makes no such distinction, and I'm not sure how that would play out in court.
  • Jun 3rd, 2009 @ 12:37pm


    Take a look at the bill itself, particularly section 606. The PDF is available here.
  • Jun 3rd, 2009 @ 12:22pm

    Re: Free codes

    The Q&A doesn't make it clear but section 606 of the bill itself says:

    The provisions of this chapter do not apply in respect to the use of digital products or digital codes obtained by the end user free of charge.

    Not sure if that would apply to illegal downloads or not, but it seems like it should cover both the Xbox title and open source software such as Linux or Openoffice.

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