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  • Nov 26th, 2015 @ 2:16am

    Re: Re:

    An opinion is an opinion. A direct statement of "fact" isn't an opinion at all. The headline is direct and without any qualifiers or suggestion that it's anything other than a proven fact. No "appears" or "might" or "we think" about it, just a straight statement of fact.

    Techdirt is an opinion blog, accept when it's not an opinion blog - and it's hard to determine when that happens.

  • Nov 25th, 2015 @ 3:09pm

    (untitled comment)

    I do love how Techdirt can say with absolute certainty that "The Anonymous Assault On ISIS Is Hurting More Than It's Helping". I was trying to spot the empirical data, but I was not able to find the link measuring harm.

    WTG Team!

  • Nov 23rd, 2015 @ 6:30pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "All you've done is whack yet another mole no?"

    Nope. Something like this would go well beyond a meaningless gesture, as it would make torrenting significantly more difficult, slow, and expensive. How much would people be willing to spend to avoid spending for content?

    Torrents work when there is a critical mass of peers to work from. If you remove a big chunk of users from the torrent world (because they are unwilling or unable to pay for a proxy), and if you make the overall delivery speeds significantly lower (because using a proxy generally reduces download and upload speeds)... you make using torrents to share way less desirable.

    If it's whacking a mole, it's whacking the queen mole.

  • Nov 22nd, 2015 @ 10:52am

    Re: Re:


    ISPs have the ability to remove the offending content from the net, and as such, the DMCA should clearly apply to them. Ignoring the notices (or even more so, getting all agro about them) puts them legally in the position of accepting responsibility for the clients they choose to provide connectivity for.

    The legal action has merit (way more merit than say arguing copyright is a violation of the 1st amendment) and may be a significant game changer. When users can no longer hide being the ISP and finger their noses at rights holders, you can expect torrenting to end pretty shortly after.

  • Nov 22nd, 2015 @ 10:47am

    Re: Re:

    I always love the "people you paid" or "your bosses who paid you to post" or "shill for money" crap. Honestly, You add nothing if that is all you have to say.

    As for "Which is how torrenting works.", well DUH! It's the point of the whole exercise, which is that if you value your internet connection (ie you need it for work) perhaps you should refrain from also using your precious work tool as a download station.

    " If you idiots weren't such luddites"

    What can I say? Personal attacks, insults... classic!

  • Nov 22nd, 2015 @ 10:42am

    Re: Re:

    Dear Techdirt,

    The Accuser has filed a false DMCA notice. Please support me as I move to have his intentionally false DMCA claim prosecuted to it's fullest.

    Thank You.

  • Nov 21st, 2015 @ 9:16pm

    Re: Re:

    It seems mostly about being childish and not being able to mount a proper campaign against something. Instead, they force an innocent worker type to have to deal with their stupid movie to try to make a point. The only point they seem to make is that they know what a meaningless gesture is.

    Apparently this person has no problem paying thousands of pounds to bore an employee. Seems they doth protest too much.

  • Nov 21st, 2015 @ 10:26am

    (untitled comment)

    You have to love it when a judge sees through all the bullshit and calls out a major ISP for being, well, arrogant.

    First and foremost, Cox really should have a repeat infringer policy. They also not clear that they are forwarding DMCA notice to their customers or taking action to end reported infringement on their network. The DMCA law is pretty clear that a hosting company or other can and should take action where possible to stop reported infringement, or potentially become liable for it. Without a proper repeat infringer policy (and application of this policy) they seem to be out of compliance with the law, with potentially costs them any safe harbor they might have.

    The judge clearly realizes there is a problem, when an ISP can essentially ignore a DMCA notice,not deal with the infringement in any meaningful way, and obstruct all efforts to be able to legally serve the infringing directly. It seems that the law should (and potentially does0 not allow them to have it both ways.

    Moreover, I think the judge is correct. Internet access is nice, but much like a license to drive a car it's not a right, it's a privilege. It's always very common for courts to order people not to do certain things that they have problems with, such as make phone calls, visit certain places, or enter a given geographical area. Restricting their access to the internet by allowing an ISP to disconnect repeat offenders isn't outrageous, it's actually a pretty normal concept.

    Oh, and for what it's worth, they are not being removed on "accusations alone". Failure to answer a DMCA complaint is in itself an admission of being in violation. If someone is getting multiple DMCA notices that are not valid and doing nothing about it, it's really not different any other legal notice that you may receive. The lack of a response is and admission that the content of the notice is correct, and it would take multiple such notices for an ISP to have to act. If you wanted to protect your connection at home to "work" (aka watch porn and chat on twitter), then you may want to consider turning off the torrent client and not seeding stuff - remember, this isn't about downloading, it's about seeding / sharing.

    You may stop waving your arms now.

  • Nov 19th, 2015 @ 4:26pm

    (untitled comment)

    All this, yet you have to remember that in the week following this tragedy, the police in France and other countries have been able to use the collected data and information to quickly put together a list of known associates and locations, and to swoop in and pick a whole bunch of them up.

    In some of those cases, the people were well armed and already working on their next attack.

    You guys go on and on here about "innocent until proven guilty", yet you mock police and law enforcement for not picking up potential terrorists before something happens. Remember, some of these guys (and girls) were born and raised in France, Belgium, and other EU countries. Do you wish to deny them their rights "because terrorism"?

  • Nov 19th, 2015 @ 5:53am

    (untitled comment)

    The lawyers here are hoping the use of "hushed tones" will be found to be roughly equivalent to shutting a phone booth door.

    I think that this may be trying a little too hard to stretch the Supreme Court's closed door ruling. Speaking in hushed tones suggests a desire for privacy, yet the location says otherwise. It's a very thin piece of logic to work from.

  • Nov 17th, 2015 @ 5:40pm

    (untitled comment)

    You may feel right (and you may be right) but in the face of more terror attacks and more innocent people dying, the governments of the world will do whatever they think will (a) help them catch the baddies, preferably before the action happens, and (b) calm the public and make them believe things are getting better.

    Quite simply, the governments are not going to stick their collective heads in the sad and say "we can't do anything". They will keep working trying to make surveillance and monitoring work.

    It's a sad fact of modern life, but it's not going away. Waving your arms frantically and making a fuss (how many articles today) won't change it, unless you have some seriously better ideas, not just air.

  • Nov 14th, 2015 @ 9:13am

    Re: Missed a few lines there

    Yet, do you not think that this is still in the people's best interest? IN a civil case, you could move for seizure before judgement, with the exact intent of avoiding having the assets liquidated before the judgement happens.

    Moreover, the key question is this: If Luis has spent her own money instead of the millions sucked off the medicare teat, would she in fact have any assets to start with? She apparently stiffed the government for 45 million, but has less than that in assets. She literally applying "spent the stolen money first" defense against the seizure, and SCOTUS ain't buying it.

    Essentially, she has funds for a defense that she should not have under normal circumstances. Thus, the seizure is valid.

    Remember, the law allows for a defense, but it doesn't extend to having an unlimited supply of money to do so. The legal minimum requirement is what you get when you have a public defender. Everything above that is a luxury. Leaving a defendant with a ton of money because they were busy spending out the stolen money first would encourage people to do the same - and to employ a defense that entirely depletes you assets an hour before judgement is read.

  • Nov 14th, 2015 @ 3:12am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Sorry, but I don't troll. I do often (a) provide an alternate conclusion based on the story, and (b) point out that the author often has their own issues in how they relate to the story.

    I don't think it's unreasonable to ask an author to express their personal views on a topic, and to see how those views may harm the way the topic is presented.

    What is unpleasant here is a few people who feel the need to troll every comment made. That the community tolerates it is sad.

    "I'd say that if you cultivate your community,"

    The most ciltivated community is one that has nobody to disagree with it. From the Rush Limbaugh Dittoheads and on forwards, we see that when you circle the wagons tightly and preach to a very receptive choir, you can effectively shut out or shout down any dissent, even if it has merit. It's very satisfying to deal with people who just nod their heads and agree and tell you how smart you are, but it generally doesn't make you smarter for it.

  • Nov 14th, 2015 @ 3:05am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Yes, they do. Matt Drudge just happens to be a high profile and potentially first mover on the concept of burying stories you don't like in comments, flames, and attacks that make the site in question less enjoyable for it's readers.

    HuffPro is johnny come lately on this stuff.

  • Nov 14th, 2015 @ 2:00am


    Innocent until proven guilty applies to the person, not to the asset.

    Let's consider a simple case: Man robs the bank and take $10,000 dollars. He is arrested. Should he be allowed to keep the $10,000 and use it for legal fees, or does it get seized as basically "what was stolen"? The answer is generally simple, almost everyone can agree that the money needs to get seized.

    Slightly harder: Con man convinces people to give him money to "invest" and then doesn't do as he says. He is charged with fraud. Should the money they have given him be seized or should he be allowed to spend it to defend himself? Again, most people would agree the money needs to get locked up.

    Harder still: The same con man has used the money to buy a fancy home, cars, and expensive jewelry, having paid himself a salary that took all the money out of the company. Those assets are "personal", ie not company owned but bought by the individual with the funds collected by his fraudulent company. Should he be allowed to keep the assets, and perhaps sell some to fund a legal defense? Again, most people would say no, the assets should be seized.

    Now, the really hard one. The con man pays himself a huge salary, takes all the money to Vegas and bets it all on red on the roulette table and wins. He then takes the original amount and bets again and loses. He has broken even on roulette, but the money he kept isn't the original money, but money he won - he lost the original amount on the second bet. He then uses his winnings to buy the fancy house car, and jewels. Should those assets be allowed to be seized?

    Again, it's important to note that nobody is decided innocence of guilt, only assuring that the ill gotten gains are not used to finance a (failed) defense to the point where the is no longer an asset to deal with to satisfy a judgement. Allowing him to do so would essentially create a legal benefit for thieves and fraud artists, and encourage them to continue legal challenges and appeals to the very end, knowing that even in a losing battle, it's really someone else paying the tab.

    It's effectively what Kim Dotcom has been trying to do. A guy so concerned about his legal defense that he hasn't cut back on his lifestyle or any other expensive part of his life to fight the charges, and instead funded (a massive failure) of a political campaign. Yet he complains and wants more access to more funds for "defense". His goal appears to arrive in the US for trial at the point where he no longer has any funds left and the judgement would be moot. A win for the prosecution and a win for the civil litigants would be a hollow victory if he is allowed to spend everything he earned from Mega (and all that came from investing the Mega funds) disappears up a lawyers ass.

    The Surpreme Court is getting this one VERY right. The legal system is about a fair trial, allowing defendants to use the assets that they obtained by crime to fight prosecution wouldn't be at all fair.

  • Nov 12th, 2015 @ 8:53pm

    Re: This could turn out very badly for researchers

    It would be true if the was a "human subject" project in the sense that actual humans were used for testing. It was not. it is instead a test of the data created by humans, like hand writing tests or studying graffiti to try to spot the creators.

    It can't any other way, otherwise universities wouldn't be allowed to study pollution, traffic, queuing theory on subways, or a whole to of other things where humans are remotely involved. Human testing rules are more about tests done specifically on individuals, like drug tests, psychological testing, sleep studies, and so on. There are no human subjects in any of this, just the data created by humans.

    Put another way, "no humans were harmed in this project".

  • Nov 12th, 2015 @ 7:55pm


    You have hit one of the reasons. Another is the "drudging" of sites, where Matt Drudge posts up a derisive link and the consevative chickenheads all descend on a site and literally comment it to death, both by posting tons of negative / attack comments, but also by attacking and baiting regular readers of a site into flame wars.

    CNN took the step to pretty much turn off comments on anything that might be controversial or attract these sorts of mass attacks.

    Yes, it ends discourse, but honestly, there isn't much discourse when the discussions are all flames and political rhetoric.

  • Nov 12th, 2015 @ 6:48pm


    The problem is simple: If they have a mod that does X, how long before they also have a mod that does Y, where Y hurts the playing experience of other players?

    The story says it clearly, the mod author is pretty sure they have checked out his code, and they likely came to the conclusion that it's a tiny thing that makes it easy for people to add gameplay hacks. Since there is no way to be sure, and since the playing experience of other users is at stake, they are prefect right and very correct to ban them.

    It's not hard to understand, no matter how much arm waving is going on. Mod your software, and you are not welcome to play on the official servers.

  • Nov 12th, 2015 @ 6:12pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    How nice of you to add your thoughts. Too bad you have none. Too bad you are also incredibly wrong. You get to join PaulT in the trolling pile, I guess.

    Next time don't log in, you give yourself away.

  • Nov 12th, 2015 @ 10:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: OMFG you guys are funny!

    Sorry John, but you lose out on this one. Burlington Vermot has about a 20% "poverty" rate. Yet with a relatively high poverty rate, there don't have a high crime rate, they don't have random protests in the streets, they don't have people getting magically shot by police...

    it would be strange if there wasn't something entirely obvious, which is that most of the citizens are white or Asian. It's entirely racist to suggest poverty is only a black thing (it sure ain't) but it's incredibly ignorant to try to explain away the obvious facts:

    Burlington Vermont is not only as white as it gets, all of the surrounding areas for probably 100 miles in any direction are also equally as white. They don't have the crime rate, they don't have ghettos, they don't have the problems that come with it all. They don't need the 1033 funds and equipment because... the people are generally well behaved and respectful of the law and law enforcement.

    If you want to consider the reasons for the militarization of police, just use Burlington as your polar opposite, and look for what other places have or don't have that makes it a pretty need.

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