david allsebrook’s Techdirt Profile


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  • Feb 13th, 2015 @ 7:44am

    Expectation of privacy while driving

    Actually there is a reasonable expectation of privacy while driving or acting in public. Before surveillance technology people were free to record your license plate as the whim took them, but it is reasonable to expect that they would not, without a specific reason pertaining to you. The fact that the cost of recording bulk information has come down through technology doesn't reduce my expectation that in a free society I will not be preemptively spied upon. It is especially unreasonable for a government to be doing this.

  • Mar 22nd, 2012 @ 8:16am

    What lesson to learn from this?

    Two thoughts come to mind.

    First, the awesome power of denunciation. Most of these comments are about the book, not about whether a teacher should be suspended based upon a complaint.

    Second, literacy is a very suspicious and those who promote the literate lifestyle need to be closely watched and monitored at all times.

  • Sep 17th, 2010 @ 10:28am

    Re: It's just another form of lock or safe.

    The flaw in your analogy is that the bank security system also prevents you from getting your money when you are entitled to it.

  • Sep 10th, 2010 @ 8:05am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: RMS and copyright restrictions


    Attribution is in law a right, under the Berne convention, to which the U.S. is a party. The U.S. Senate implemented the moral rights provision by declaring that moral rights are already provided by U.S. common law.
    (Paris Text 1971)
    Article 6bis

    "(1) Independently of the author's economic rights, and even after the transfer of the said rights, the author shall have the right to claim authorship of the work and to object to any distortion, mutilation or other modification of, or other derogatory action in relation to, the said work, which would be prejudicial to his honor or reputation."

    I agree that it is a misrepresentation to change another's work without permission. Additionally, doing so without permission, even with clear qualifications, can be offensive to the artist and to others, and harmful to the artist's reputation.

    I assume all rights are reserved whether there is a notice to that effect or not. It would take an express waiver to abrogate them. In any event I would never assume that such a reservation is limited to copyright.

    In Canada at least, moral rights are not aspects of copyright although they are found in the Copyright Act. As it says in the Berne convention quoted above "independently ... of economic rights..."

    Anonymity and pseudonimity can have more purposes than privacy alone. Often one sees on the cover of books that the book is by "X" writing as "Y". Authors may use these rights, for example, to hit different markets, to have credibility when writing about new subjects, to come up with a more marketable name, etc.

    As to whether copyright is a right or a privilege, it has been treated as the former until recently in Canada. However now the Supreme Court has decided it is a bargain, that in exchange for publication the author gets copyright.

    I am dying to defend a Canadian infringement case where copy protection or restrictive license terms curtail the exceptions to copyright, to see if I can get the Court to render the copyright unenforceable. This would make copyright a contract, which authors have the privilege to accept, and make the exceptions to copyright into user rights, which it would be a breach of the contract to limit.

    Best regards

  • Sep 9th, 2010 @ 1:43pm

    Re: Re: Re: RMS and copyright restrictions

    respectfully,your comment about Lessig seems to have mixed up two kinds of moral rights. The right to attribution/anonymity/pseudonymity is not the same as the right of integrity.

  • Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 6:59am

    Can you say "1984"? (as David Allsebrook)

    I have been rereading the classic novel 1984 about the poor schloob (spelling uncertain) whose job it is to retroactively revise newspapers. The old newspapers must be retrieved, every last one, and replaced by editions in which the government forecasts what now turns out to be the case, government officials quoted then who have now disappeared are excised, etc. It is a big job. Is "1984" now an Ohio Civil servant's handbook?
    Who was the genius who said that getting content off the internet is like getting pee out of a swimming pool?

  • Jan 13th, 2010 @ 7:54am

    Role of patents

    An independent invention defense would discourage people from searching patent office records to use the technology that is published there. It would also be difficult to prove, because the invention they just made is, ex hypothesi, published in the patent office in sufficient detail to be adopted by anyone knowledgeable in the field.
    For the first time in history the pace of invention has exceeded the term of patents. So the question is: Do we need patents any more? (If we ever did). Do they really incentivise inventions?
    Maybe there is a compromise: compulsory licensing. Your patent may not get you exclusivity, it may get you cash and partial exclusivity.

  • Dec 19th, 2009 @ 8:27am

    encrypted garage door openers (as David Allsebrook)

    1) what is a 'rolling" code?
    2) Can owners sue the garage door company for trespass for excluding them from their own property the first time the remote doesn't work, or even for conspiring with each other and the dealer to do so?