That One Guy’s Techdirt Profile


About That One GuyTechdirt Insider

That One Guy’s Comments comment rss

  • Jan 13th, 2018 @ 5:40pm


    Yes and no I imagine. Companies being forced to remove stuff on the flimsiest accusation to avoid ruinous fines? Yeah, pretty sure that was intended.

    High-profile cases coming so soon after the law is put into place, bringing attention to it and opposition given who is being targeted? That I imagine they would rather not have happened.

  • Jan 12th, 2018 @ 6:26pm

    That would do it

    The move came after Twitter deleted a post by Heiko Maas dating back to 2010 before he was appointed justice minister, in which he called a fellow politician "an idiot".

    It was all fun and games until they realized that oh yeah, it can be used against them, and now suddenly they care.

    Ideally they'd scrap the entire thing, but I can't help but suspect the 'six month review' is, like Jeffrey Nonken notes, a hope that no more high profile(read: famous person and/or politician) cases will draw attention to how bad it is so that it can stay on the books.

  • Jan 12th, 2018 @ 6:17pm

    That's not irony

    If it is the same person 'ironic' would not be the correct word, 'hypocritical' would be. 'I'm allowed to insult you all, but insults by other people should be a bannable offense!'

  • Jan 12th, 2018 @ 4:59am

    Re: Re: With 'friends' like these...

    Except that it wouldn't do even that.

    Ah, but you see that's where the distinction between 'job' and 'desire' comes into play, and it's why I used the latter rather than the former. Crippling encryption would make their desire to be able to access any device simply by issuing a demand for access vastly easier, however it would make their jobs much harder by causing an absolute explosion of crime thanks to said crippled encryption.

    Their desires are in conflict with their jobs, but they are aligned with the desires of enormous amounts of criminals who have got to be positively salivating over the idea of millions of people forced to use broken encryption.

  • Jan 12th, 2018 @ 4:09am

    With 'friends' like these...

    The Federal Bureau of Investigation was unable to access data from nearly 7,800 devices in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30 with technical tools despite possessing proper legal authority to pry them open, a growing figure that impacts every area of the agency's work, Wray said during a speech at a cyber security conference in New York.

    Meanwhile I feel very safe in assuming that effective, working encryption has protected vastly more than 7,800 devices from various criminals, protecting people from having personal and/or valuable information stolen in addition to having their property stolen, but of course the FBI would rather overlook that little tidbit.

    The FBI has been unable to access data in more than half of the devices that it tried to unlock due to encryption, Wray added.

    Which completely killed the relevant cases, because the only evidence they had was located on the devices, right? The only thing standing between them and a conviction was access to a particular device, rather than say it possibly making the cases/investigations easier?

    "This is an urgent public safety issue," Wray added, while saying that a solution is "not so clear cut."

    He's partially correct, but not in the way he means. Having the FBI and other government agencies attacking a critical security feature that millions depend on is most certainly an 'urgent public safety issue', however it's not caused by the tech companies, but rather by him and others like him.

    As for the second half the solution is in fact very 'clear cut', and is extremely simple:

    Stop attacking the security millions depend on to protect themselves.

    Stop trying to vilify an extremely important security measure simply because you don't like the fact that you can't get access to everything simply by demanding it.

    Stop trying to hand the public to criminals country-wide by making their personal devices vastly less secure.

    In short: Stop trying to make the 'job' of criminals easier just because it would make fulfilling your desires easier too.

  • Jan 11th, 2018 @ 5:16pm

    'They aren't responsible with the tools they already have, lets give them even more!'

    As for the other oddity: some of Trump's biggest critics in Congress -- Adam Schiff and Nancy Pelosi -- just helped to give Trump much greater surveillance powers on Americans without a warrant... despite regularly complaining that he has abused his powers.

    ... making it crystal clear that all their whining about how Trump was abusing his power was nothing more than empty words, or at the very least they consider the damage he will do acceptable in exchange for granting the NSA even more power to spy on people.

    You don't complain that someone is irresponsible with what they already have and then give them even more to misuse unless you want to completely torpedo your credibility when it comes to raising objections in the future.

    Congrats Schiff and Pelosi, you gave the NSA and president even more power to spy on the people you supposedly represent, and all it cost you was any chance to be taken seriously when you raise objections to what Trump does in the future. I'd say I hope you like the trade, but I've more in the mood for a bit of schadenfreude, so instead I'll say I hope you realize just how badly you just screwed yourselves.

  • Jan 11th, 2018 @ 5:08pm

    (untitled comment)

    Wendy and others: There are just way too many pages, this thing is absolutely insane! 400 pages?! Come on, that's ridiculous!

    It's actually just 8, the rest are explanations, the dissents, stuff like that. The size of the thing isn't a good metric for how bad it is.

    Wendy and others: 400 pages!


    Fight for the Future: This thing is 539 pages! This is ridiculous!

    Wendy: Well you see, most of that is legally required stuff, and really, basing outrage on page count? What kind of buffoon does that?

    Funny how that works, though it does make his glaring hypocrisy crystal clear.

  • Jan 10th, 2018 @ 5:10pm

    Re: Re:

    Pretty sure you'd be dead of alcohol poisoning withing a day if such a game existed, so probably not a good idea.

  • Jan 10th, 2018 @ 5:06pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Wow!

    I don't know, really. There's plenty of stories of crimes for less, and with decades of propaganda telling those heirs that the rights are naturally worth millions without having to do any extra work, I can see some of them being dumb enough to try it.

    Anyone stupid enough to murder another person over a non-exclusive right is stupid enough that just about anything would get them to kill, and tailoring a law around extreme hypothetical outliers like that seems a rather poor idea.

    It would be one thing if they owned the rights after the act, such that they could possibly justify the act to themselves by thinking about all the wealth they can now make, but a work entering the public domain means that everyone owns it(or no-one, I don't think that one was ever really nailed down), such that sure they can try to make a profit with it... alongside everyone else in the country, none of which are required to give them so much as a cent for it.

    (Funnily enough, now that I think about it using that argument copyright would be better off ending at the moment of death, because if a hypothetical heir is willing to kill for copyright and it lasts after death, then the sooner the creator shuffles off the mortal coil the sooner the heirs gain control over it. As such making it so that the death of the copyright owner meant the death of the copyright would be a way to prevent murder, as there would be no financial incentive to kill off the copyright owner.)

  • Jan 10th, 2018 @ 4:53pm

    Re: Re: 28 years plus reduced protection for second 28

    $1000 may be a bit high, but I would agree that there should be some fee, just to make the copyright owner think before simply applying for the extension. If they're not willing to pay at least something for a work to stay under copyright then it's clear they don't think it's valuable enough to them to keep it locked up.

  • Jan 10th, 2018 @ 4:37pm

    What do you mean 'actions have consequences?!'

    And then immediately whines that they had "no valid business reason" for banning him.

    Even assuming that was true before he sued them, it certainly isn't true after. There is absolutely a valid business reason to avoid offering service to someone that's sued your company, namely to avoid them doing it again because of yet another tantrum about how they're being treated.

    His own actions give them all the reason they could possibly need to kick him off their platform, and he has only himself to blame if they decide to do so.

  • Jan 10th, 2018 @ 7:17am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Could use some fine-tuning(going back to a requirement for registration for one, such that there is a guaranteed copy available for once the copyright is up), but I agree with the general concept of base duration plus the same amount again if you care enough to get it.

    With that a work that was less financially successful would enter the public domain quicker, while if a creator felt that the work was valuable enough they'd get to keep the rights to it for a little longer.

    As for what to set the initial duration as that's a tricky one to really nail down, though I'd likewise lean towards a shorter duration, given the article I mentioned above about how works are mainly profitable in the first few years, such that a shorter duration would likely result in a great many works only covered by the initial term before hitting the public domain.

  • Jan 10th, 2018 @ 7:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Wow!

    If it is 20 years or life, it could easily create an incentive to make sure the copyright holders life is shorter than intended, if you know what I mean...

    This one again?

    No, murder is already very illegal, the idea that people would be willing to risk going to jail for a non-exclusive right to use a work is beyond absurd, and it is well past the time it is laid to rest. People can make other arguments as to why the copyright timer shouldn't end at life, but 'if we make it based upon lifespan people might be tempted to kill creators' just hurts their case and makes it harder to take them seriously.

    The theoretical point for avoiding such an incentive is around life + 15 years according to studies.

    I'd be curious as to what studies you are talking about, because they would certainly be news to me.

  • Jan 10th, 2018 @ 5:27am


    Here is a wacky idea - the term is the creators life + 5.

    I'd actually honestly say that that is a wacky idea, or at least one I'd need more evidence to support. Why not roll it back to 14+14? Or 28+28 at the high end?

    If memory serves there was an article a few years back that pointed out that the financial value of a work is found in the first few years(years mind you, not decades), such that if the method of achieving the goal of copyright is to provide a financial incentive to create, then that incentive is likely to be almost completely tapped out in a matter of years.

    Once it reaches the point where the financial gain is down to a trickle why not give the public their half of the deal and let the cycle begin again, so that the next batch of creators can get their chance. If the ultimate goal is to serve the public by giving them new works to work with, then the focus should be finding the shortest amount of time that still provides an incentive to most creators, rather than just starting from the position of copyright lasting for life and then seeing how few years you can tack on from there.

  • Jan 10th, 2018 @ 4:10am


    But hey on the upside the Chief can no longer claim that he's never heard the tests can lead to false positives.

    Ideally(or even sanely) yes. In practice... well, I wouldn't get your hopes up. If expecting them to be able to read is too much to ask, I imagine expecting them to have any sort of memory is probably also 'setting the bar unrealistically high.'

  • Jan 10th, 2018 @ 3:26am

    Makes sense

    The verdict is not very surprising, since the only claim the Hartes were allowed to pursue required them to show that Johnson County sheriff's deputies lied about the results of the tests.

    I mean it's not like anything else that happened could possibly compare to an impossibly-to-prove thing like 'they knew the tests were faulty and based the raid on it anyway', so clearly if they can't demonstrate that then they really have no case at all.

    And honestly, expecting police to have any idea whatsoever as to the accuracy of the tools they use? To expect them to read the warning labels? What kind of insane bars are we setting to think that those kinds of requirements even begin to make sense when it comes to police-work? What next, punishing them for not knowing the laws they are tasked with upholding? Expecting them to act in a professional manner and admit it when they screw up? I feel safe in saying that it should be crystal clear to all that down that path lies madness and pure anarchy.

  • Jan 9th, 2018 @ 11:10pm


    Pretty sure that if he's thought about it at all, he would a) not for so much as a moment imagine why anything he says could get him sued(because simply telling the (alternative) truth isn't grounds for being sued, obviously), b) believes (right or wrong, not sure offhand) that being president means you're immune from lawsuits, and/or c), he has enough money to simply outspend anyone who might try.

    This of course assumes that he has actually thought about the possible consequences, which I doubt, and a more likely scenario is he's simply whining about how people are saying mean things about him, he wishes he could shut them up, and he's upset that that blasted 'law' thing is making it more difficult than he wishes it was.

  • Jan 9th, 2018 @ 3:34pm

    'Bow to my demands, or I'll send you more angry letters!'

    That's the thing about bluffs and empty threats, when your target knows you won't follow through they're about as effective as shaking your fist at them.

    He doesn't dare sue, they know it, he knows it, so the best he can do is whine about how mean they're being and issue angry statements about how unspecific things that they said aren't true(without, of course, stating what specifically they got wrong)

    All he's really doing is giving the publisher and book the kind of PR boost money simply cannot buy, such that he would have been much better off keeping his mouth shut and just ignoring it. Since he's incapable of doing that however, free PR it is.

  • Jan 9th, 2018 @ 3:26pm

    Nothing but empty words

    Until I see something(a lot of somethings in fact) enter the public domain and stay there, I don't for so much as a second believe that they wouldn't back yet another retroactive extension, even if they aren't directly the ones pushing for it.

    Yes trying to sneak yet another retroactive extension would likely face some hefty backlash, but we're not talking about groups that have shown even the slightest bit of restraint in the past when it came to screwing over members of the public, so until I see something more than empty words, I'll assume that they have not in fact had a miraculous change of heart.

  • Jan 8th, 2018 @ 11:14pm


    I was thinking that same thing. Did they not realize that 'fire' was a thing? A bonfire or 'accidental' building fire would have cleared the whole thing up real quick, yet they spent I don't even want to think how much time manually ripping up pages of highly flammable paper.

    The Stasi: Great at collecting evidence, idiots when it comes to destroying it.

    Still, I suppose people should be glad they were stupid in that way, as there's at least a chance to reconstruct ripped up pages, a possibility that doesn't work so well when it comes to ashes.

More comments from That One Guy >>