Just to clarify, my example is made up just to demonstrate the uselessness of measuring which individual companies generate the most robocalls. If you look at the actual stats (follow the link in the article), scammers and telemarketers make up 55% of robocalls overall. Scammers alone, make up 32% of the robocalls, the LARGEST segment, not the minority.
scammers continued to make up the minority of overall robocalls
I seriously doubt this, and the list doesn't support this. Consider this scenario: 50 legit companies each make 1 million robocalls, and 1 million scammers each make 100,000 robocolls. Which is the majority? The legit companies with 50 million calls or the scammers with 100 BILLION?
You can't compare individual companies - you have to aggregate the numbers to compare legit with scammer/spammers.
If the government is unwilling to participate for reasons of secrecy, then a summary judgment should be issued in favor of the plaintiff. That would maintain the secrecy and eliminate the inherent conflict-of-interest that allows the government to violate the Constitution while preventing any action against them.
Many of these new proposals (from both parties) are starting to sound a lot like the systems in place in North Korea, China, and the USSR (while it existed). Even the justifications for restricting speech sound the same.
I'm not sure if this is some sort of troll-bot or what.
I'm just another mostly quiet reader of Techdirt that happened to see an article discussing an issue that I have thought about a bit in the past (I was peripherally involved in the Roxio/Gracenote/CDDB patent dispute). I had an idea that hadn't been discussed before, so I decided to share it and contribute to the conversation.
BTW, I have never even exchanged an email with Mike Masnick and don't know him at all beyond his bylines here on Techdirt (and I didn't even look at the byline on this article).
I had a similar idea, although the logistics may be tricky. Before granting a patent, present the problem being solved to a group of PHOSITAs, let them brainstorm as many solutions to the problem as possible. Anything they come up with should be considered obvious and not patentable.
I think the easiest way to eliminate bad patents is with a "non-obvious" test. A patent is supposed to be a non-obvious (to those "skilled in the art") solution to a problem. When someone files a patent, the underlying problem could be presented to a group of experts. If anyone in that group comes up with the same solution, then the patent should not be granted.
...regulations requiring them to be fair and honest...
Well, there's your fundamental misunderstanding. There are no regulations requiring speech to be fair and honest, and the First Amendment prohibits such regulations.
That study about targeted advertising is probably true in the general case with fairly mainstream products. It doesn't work so well with niche products. If I'm trying to sell oscilloscopes, there's no value in advertising to 99.9% of the public. This is true of any product that only targets a small percentage of the public.
That doesn't make sense. They claim they are always limiting videos to 480p, but are only throttling once you exceed your transfer limit (e.g., 20 GB). You're suggesting they are ALWAYS throttling to limit the videos to 480p, then throttling MORE after the limit.
How are the telcos deciding what is a video? Does is have to use one of the streaming protocols or do they spy on/look at the content of every connection? What if the video is in a format they don't recognize, or includes embedded streams in addition to the standard audio and video streams? What if it's just a secure HTTPS connection?
Also, can't the video sites sue the telcos for copyright infringement for modifying their stream?
Another point that keeps getting glossed over is that Eric Lundgren never sold any discs. He had them made at the request of Bob Wolff who, after receiving them, didn't want them and stored them in his garage. There they sat until, in a sting operation, an undercover government agent purchased discs from Wolff.
Net Neutrality isn't about the Internet. It's about the connection to the Internet.
The problem with the juries chosen for these types of cases is that they aren't really "peers" of the accused. In this case, the accused is a major, multinational consumer electronics firm. The only jurists who could be considered peers would be employees/representatives of similar firms. Using a group of consumers with just a few days of "training" on the issues to judge a corporation that spent thousands of man-hours on the issue is almost meaningless.
To offer an alternative to your fourth bullet point:
It should be a simple matter to put together a pool of individuals "skilled in the art" and present them with the problem that a patent perports to solve (without actually presenting the "solution). You then ask them to come up with possible solutions to the problem (brainstorming is encouraged). Any ideas that this group comes up (in a reasonable amount of time) with are "obvious" (obviously!) and shouldn't be patentable.
Just because something hasn't been patented doesn't mean it isn't obvious, it just may mean that no one else has been presented with the same problem to solve.