I'm puzzled by the discussion around Elon's licensing his patents. As I understand it, a license (as applied to software and/or patents) is an agreement about the conditions underwhich that product can be utilized. In this case, there is no agreement involved; Elon has simply said that anyone that wants to use this patent can do so without fear of repercussion (read "litigation"). Does that qualify as a "license"?
While this comment is totally off topic (and I apologize for that), you've made such a good point that I think it needs mentioned. There should be a way that the "public at large" can force a law to be repealed if the majority believe it's unjust or just plain wrong.
There are so many things wrong with their arguements that it's hard to know where to start .... The only data I "voluntarily" share with the phone company is the number of the person I want to call. I am aware that there is more data sent from my phone, but I was never given a choice about that, so the term "voluntary" doesn't apply. Even so, why should I **not** have an expectation that the phone company will respect my privacy? Phone meta-data is not "shared with the world" ... I'd have a difficult time even getting my OWN from the phone company (other than call info), let alone anyone elses. So much for "sharing with the world"! Next, we have "who do I (in)voluntarily share data with?" Easy - the phone company, via their towers. At no point do I agree to connect to any other transceiver (such as a Stingray). Those are not cell towers, and there is absolutely NO agreement to connect to them. Even the "pen register" stuff - I have less issue with pen-register searches if they were done as originally intended. They only returned data on when and what number was called - absolutely NOTHING else.
I think that the IP would be more the equivelent of the license plate of a car - a person's drivers license would be more or less the equivelent of a MAC address ... which can be spoofed, just as a license number can be forged.
The real idiocy here is that as soon as you censor the ideas of a particular group, people – who already distrust “all things government” - begin to wonder what it is that “they” [government] doesn't want the people to know, so they go looking for answers. Instead of decreasing exposure, they risk increasing it - from curiosity. The only workable response to “terrorist propaganda” is well reasoned (as in, “average people” will understand it) counter propaganda. Do objective, critical analysis of their propaganda and – dispassionately! - point out the errors and consequences of their instructions and suggestions, basing those on obvious FACTS, not on “touchy-feely” appeals that look more like emotional attacks than anything else. That said, quite frankly, the US (and the other “Five Eyes”) have very little in the way of moral high-ground from which to criticize what extremist groups do. What, exactly, do the extremists do that our governments don't? Execute people? look into “extra-judicial killings”. Torture? remember the CIA torture report? Kidnapping? investigate the governments detention policies. Expropriation? how about “asset forfeiture” (as now practised by LEO in the US)? Maybe the best answer is to prove – by example – that the way of life in the “free countries” really is better by setting an example of BEING better. Stop doing all this stupid-ass crap and go back to what the Fore-Fathers envisioned our countries to be. Extremist groups use violence as an answer to their perceived grievances; I can understand that because it's the same behaviour you see in children, too immature to make reasoned choices. The western countries are supposed to be more mature – so why aren't they behaving more maturely? When you lower yourself to the level of a bully you simply become another bully yourself. Stop making people feel “disenfranchised” and you'll have less radicalization. /rant
With banks (and other financial institutions), they are one of the endpoints of the encryption, and, therefore, have a key. They don't have to make a "back door". (Why, however, do I feel "less protected" knowing that there is another copy of that key "out there somewhere"?) With phone encryption, the manufacturer is not and endpoint of the communication, so they - properly! - do not have a key. The way it's supposed to work: if LEO show up with a warrent, banks either produce the information or loose their charter; with people, they produce the information or go to jail (for contempt and obstruction). I fail to see the actual problem here. And, using the "banks do it" example, the same avenue already exists for "private communications"!
This won't only be a tool to "silence free speech" and "punish innovation" - it will be a tool to rewrite history. What stops articles about Tiananmen Square or the Holocaust from being removed in the name of the "Right To Be Forgotten"? When we manage to do that (forget history), it's certain that we will repeat it.
Wouldn't getting the manufacturer to unlock a device to prevent 5th ammendment problems be sorta like when a home owner won't grant permission for a warrentless search, they go get a locksmith to open the house door and invite them in?
The current (and growig) levels of hostility toward LEOs isn't from the video/photos people are taking - people are taking the video/photos because of the hostility. The hostility is a predictable response to decades of abuse by LEOs.
Often, after reading a post, there are items in it that I'm unclear about, don't understand or don't agree with. My first step is to read the comments. Most of the time, whatever I was having an issue with is already there; I don't tend to bring it up again. Sometimes I just have a quip of my own to toss in - and sometimes I get things wrong, only to then to be corrected by other commenters - something I appreciate very much; they clarify my confusion in an incidental way. I even look forward to comments from the not-so-friendly troll with a hate-on for Mike - I want to see if he's managed a new level of idiocy (spoiler: usually... yes, todays was a head-scratcher of a let down). Sometimes - no offence to the writers here at TechDirt - the comments are the best part of the post!
I can't say how often I've found the comments to an article to be more entertaining and informitive than the article itself was! Yes, trolls are annoying. They distract and redirect the comment stream into irrelevancy. But .. we don't have to feed trolls.
For those that claim to be Christian, I'd like to point out that God didn't create clothes. (See Genesis 3:7-11). But, God DID create sexuality - and did not give "Adam and Eve" **any** "rules" about it. Somewhere around the beginning of their teen years, children go though puberty. In the ensuing flood of hormones, sexuality becomes an overwhelming priority; trying to prevent this is like "spitting into the wind" - it isn't going to work. You might as well legislate against tides. Legislation didn't work for Prohibition, and drinking isn't biologically driven. The young people will find a way to satisfy their totally natural (chemically induced) curiosity. "Pornography" would seem to be a preferable alternative to them finding out directly from each other. At the very least, it's less dangerous to them. It's still a bad alternative, but the choice would seem to be between "bad" and "worse". And why? Because our modern society has decreed that that this normal, natural drive is "wrong" (until you're 18 years old - then it's ok). (View a consensual picture of a nude adult at the age of 17 years, 364 days, 23 hours and 59 minutes? that's a crime! One minute later, it's not! How does THIS make sense?) I believe that we'd be better served as a society trying to find a better way to allow young people to satisfy their (from a biological perspective) normal, natural curiosity safely, especially since they are going to find a way to do it anyway, no matter what the law says.
The talk of withdrawing from France (as has already happened in Spain) is playing right into the hands of what the EU politicians want. They can't honestly compete and they can't just tell Google to go away without major public backlash; they CAN, however, spin-doctor it to look like a public service and get Google to withdraw. That way, the tech industry in the EU - that has never honestly tried to compete - gets a free hand up and the politicians (think they) look like heros.
"An ebook is easier to copy and digital copies are identical clones of the original work meaning that second-hand goods are largely indistinguishable from the original; they can be reproduced indefinitely without any loss of quality."
So why, then, do they cost so much? Frequently, I can get a physical book - and have it shipped to me - for less than an ebook. Price them reasonably (and actually make them, you know, like .... available) and piracy goes away.
Peter Beckett? Never heard of him. The band "Player"? never heard of them. The song "Baby, Come Back"? vaguely rings a bell ... but since that's all it does, it was obviously not a favorite. Keith Urban? I've heard of hime(although I don't think I've heard any of his work) - he's the lead act in a western music festival near here in a couple weeks. Nicole Kidman? Heard of her - an actress, I think. Can't name a single production she was in though. Marriage between Urban and Kidman? Didn't know - don't care. American Idol judge? Didn't know - don't care - have never watched it. The term "Player"? In relation to music, all that comes to mind is the Player Piano!