John85851’s Techdirt Profile


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  • Mar 20th, 2018 @ 10:03am

    News from 100 years ago

    This just in: an automobile has killed a pedestrian. How can we let automobiles on the road when horse-drawn carriages are so much safer? A horse knows when a person is crossing the street and can stop, but those "horseless carriages" can not.

    I just don't trust this new technology. Won't someone please stop Mr Ford before his "automobile company" gets too much bigger?

  • Mar 20th, 2018 @ 9:58am

    Re: Sokath, his eyes open!

    Have researchers finished their study on whether violent movies cause violence?

    How about the research into whether reading comic books corrupts children? Actually, never mind, this issue has been settled since so many comic books are aimed at adults instead of kids. ;)

  • Mar 19th, 2018 @ 11:46am

    Not a data breach in the legal term

    The article sort-of answers it's own question:
    "But, regardless of where you come down on all of this, Facebook threatening defamation against the Guardian for calling this a data breach is ludicrous... "

    The answer:
    "There are legal reasons why Facebook is so concerned about whether or not this is a "breach"..."

    So the point is that Facebook is suing to prevent the legal term "data breach" from spreading too much further because the word "breach" means (or implies) data was stolen or server were hacked. But in this case, the data was freely given... sure, the data was misused, but it wasn't stolen.

  • Mar 14th, 2018 @ 10:51am

    So what

    At the risk of sounding cynical, so what if Trump and his team do this?

    The Trump supporters will ignore this because they think he's making America great again.
    The Trump haters will see that as yet another example of his bad character.
    Congress will do nothing.

    And the media will focus on Trump's gossip and drama instead of real stories like the firing of Tillerson and how the House's Russian-collusion investigation was a sham.

  • Mar 10th, 2018 @ 3:10pm

    Re: We have the solution!

    And all of this leads to:
    Censor the web > no more finding information > keep the population stupid > no more speaking up against the government because people don't know any better.

  • Mar 10th, 2018 @ 10:31am

    The end result of "I just know"

    And now we see the end result of a society that thinks "I just know" is more important that scientific data.
    Did Hillary Clinton run a child-trafficing ring out of a pizza parlor in Washington? "I just know it's true" despite any evidence.
    Did Hillary do something illegal by using a private e-mail server? "I just know it's true" despite numerous investigations by the FBI that didn't find anything.
    Was Obama really born in Kenya? "I just know it's true" despite the fact that he showed his birth certificate over and over.
    Has there been any proof that the government is going to take away people's guns, including the fact that the assault weapons ban was repealed? "I just know it's true".

    And since our Dear Leader seems to be the master of "I just know it's true", of course video games cause violence.

  • Mar 7th, 2018 @ 12:10pm

    I think there should be a meeting

    I think there should be a meeting between Trump and the leaders of the video game industry (whoever that turns out to be). And I think the meeting should be televised and "on the record".

    Then I think the video game industry's suggestions about how to stop real-world violence should be:
    1) Better gun control.
    2) Better access to mental medical care.
    3) Affordable access to mental health care.
    4) Reinstating the ban on assault rifles.
    5) Better gun licensing requirements.
    9999999) Video games don't cause real-world gun violence.

  • Mar 7th, 2018 @ 11:40am

    Two points

    First, I hope everyone can agree that the results of any survey should be prefixed with "Out of all the people who saw the ad and who clicked on it and who filled it out completely, our results show..." But this assumes surveys even reveal how many people took it, rather than simply saying "A lot of people took it and we'll apply our findings to all of the US or the world"

    Second, let's replace question #1 with anything else besides "on a computer":
    1. There is growing evidence that the major automakers are being used for purposes that may violate U.S. laws. Should the major automakers take responsibility for these uses of their cars?
    1. There is growing evidence that the major gun-makers are being used for purposes that may violate U.S. laws. Should the major gun-makers take responsibility for these uses of their guns?

  • Mar 7th, 2018 @ 10:09am

    Give them what they want

    I say that Rhode Island should let their bill pass and be the testing ground for whatever follows.

    Imagine you're AT&T or Comcast and have 1 million customers in the state. Now imagine each customer has 3 devices, so let's say there's 3 million devices. Now imagine each device comes with a $500 liability if someone finds adult content.

    These companies are looking at billions (or tens of billions) of dollars of risk. How long would it take to decide it's safer not to do business in the state rather than face this possibility?
    Then how long would it take for EVERY provider to not provide service in the state?

    You can talk all day along about how the market will provide for itself and there will always be a company willing to give service of some kind, but this seems like the perfect example of government making it too expensive to do business in the state.

  • Mar 7th, 2018 @ 9:57am

    I'm not a lawyer, but...

    1) To the claim that Twitter is somehow the greatest political forum in the world and to get kicked off it is the worst thing in the world: I don't use Twitter and I've never even created an account. Yet somehow, I find plenty of places to talk about politics.
    So if at least 1 person doesn't need Twitter to be politically connected, then Twitter isn't a "requirement" for a political discussion.

    2) If we assume the guy has a novel approach to his case, let's apply his argument to the real world.
    If I went into a NAACP meeting and started ranting about "white power", would they violate my civil rights for kicking me out? If not, then how is that any different than Twitter kicking people off its service?

    So what about the civil rights of the people being offended and who don't want the person ranting?

  • Mar 6th, 2018 @ 10:10am

    What is terrorist content?

    Classifying something as "terrorist content" sounds like classifying any adult image as "porn": sure, there's the obvious stuff, but what about the not-so-obvious stuff? Who sets the rules?

    For example, if someone says "Death to all Christians", then that could probably be a terrorist threat.
    But if someone says "Death to all Muslims", then they're repeating what so many other people (and politicians) are thinking.
    Yet saying "death to anyone" should be treated the same.

  • Mar 3rd, 2018 @ 10:49am

    But movies are okay

    The judge ordered the kid not to play violent video games, but violent movies are just fine. Watch all the James Bond or gangster or military movies you want.
    Oh, and the kid shouldn't listen to "violent" songs also.
    And just to be safe, the kid shouldn't read violent comic books either. Let's not give the kid any ideas from reading a Batman comic book.

  • Mar 1st, 2018 @ 10:17am

    Two thoughts:

    1) Why do so many politicians seem to do their job for short-term benefits? I'm sure the guy knows the law he's proposing will be shot down in court... but in the mean time, he can grandstand about how he "did something".
    AND he can make sure waste tax-payers' dollars for this law to go up the court system and be struck down.

    2) Here's a nifty way to keep adult games of out kids' hands: parents should look at the rating and not buy these games for their kids.
    But you say this is too simplistic of a solution? It seems to me that this is a better solution than saying "video games cause violence so let's ban them all".

  • Feb 28th, 2018 @ 10:14am

    Shouldn't Mercedes know better?

    I'm going to play the devil's advocate here...

    Mercedes-Benz is a huge multi-national corporation which I assume has legal departments that are well-versed in protocol and international cultures.

    So why did anyone think it was a good idea to run an ad with a quote from the Dalai Lama? Did they not know or not understand that it could offend people in China and that those same people could be customers?

    Or if we're cynical: did they do something to offend Chinese people, but they did it on Instagram because it's blocked in China, for the simple reason that it gets more attention. Look- we're now even talking about the story!

  • Feb 27th, 2018 @ 10:45am

    Re: Re: Re: Not liking money....

    I think you found the correct reason.

    Sure, companies can make money with the older version of the game, but they can make even more money with the newer version which includes microtransactions and loot boxes.
    "You mean I can play World of Warcraft and find the Wind Frost Gem armor without having to pay $19.99 for it?"

  • Feb 27th, 2018 @ 10:40am

    No punishment so no reason not to do it

    One of the best ways to deter crime is to quickly catch the offender and punish him. On the other hand, if people learn that they can get away with things that are immoral, unethical, and wrong, BUT don't get punished, then they'll keep on doing it.

    We can debate the finer points about whether the musket was a gift or if it never left the building and so on, but the point is that all of these people (from the president on down) have learned that there won't be any punishment for anything they do. It's not like the FCC boss is elected so he'll stay in office as long as he pleases Trump.
    Plus, there's still no guarantee that *any* issue will cause *any* Republican to be voted out of office.

  • Feb 25th, 2018 @ 10:40am

    Re: So stupid

    "The plaintiffs are stupid, greedy, and or grieving, and shysters are taking full advantage. These lawyers need to be sanctioned... at the very least."
    So if you and I know that, and we're not judges, then why can't judges start doing this? How many lawsuits against social media does it take for the court system to realize there's no case and that the lawyers filing these cases are taking advantage of the victims?

    At the very least, the lawyers should sent back to law school to learn "just because Google/ Facebook/ Twitter have a lot of money, it doesn't mean you can sue them for anything you can think of".

  • Feb 25th, 2018 @ 10:30am

    Re: You would think that, but no

    I agree that they'll do just fine. There will be some outrage and they may lose some customers in the short-term, their their look-term outlook is as good as EA's.

    The bottom line is this company (like EA) makes content that people think is high quality that can't be found anywhere else, by any other company, and the customers are willing to pay for. I'm not accusing any gamers of being "stupid" or anything like that, but when a company like this is the only one making high-quality aircraft sim models, then the customers will overlook and forget issues like this.

  • Feb 22nd, 2018 @ 10:27am

    I know the facts don't matter, but...

    Two things to consider:

    1) Years ago (maybe 10 years) Penn & Teller's "Bullsh*t" show had an episode on gun violence. As a probably inhumane and unethical experiment, they found an 11 year-old who was an expert in the latest first-person-shooter and gave him a real machine.
    After the kid fired a few rounds, he was a crying mess because he couldn't stand to shoot a real weapon.
    Granted, this was one kid and it was hardly a scientific experiment, but the fact was that this kid was an expert in video games and it didn't translate into shooting a real gun.

    2) I know the facts don't matter to people like the governor, but it would interesting if the video game industry itself put out some statistics to finally debunk the "let's blame video games" idiocy.
    For example, how many millions of people have played Doom? Yet some people think it was the cause of the Columbine shooting because the shooters made a map of their high school within the game.

    How many people have played Quake or Call of Duty or even Warcraft or Starcraft?

    Yet some mass shooters maybe played a video game at some point, so the entire industry should be blamed? Really?

  • Feb 21st, 2018 @ 1:33pm

    Zero tolerance for "bug"

    With all this talk about zero tolerance for different things, is it time to have zero tolerance for "bugs" on sites such as Facebook?
    After all, Facebook literally has billions of users. Isn't it safe to assume they have all manner of testing, QA, beta testing, and alpha testing before any feature goes live?
    Then who approved the idea to spam people using their two-factor authentication number? And then who approved posting their reply to their wall? I can easily see a programmer coming up with the idea, but team leads and managers are supposed to not allow these things. And where are the testers saying this isn't a good idea?

    Or is this "bug" actually a feature passed down from higher management as yet another way to spy and track people?

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