Ben S 's Techdirt Comments

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  • Comcast Loses 500k Video Customers, Fails To Add Broadband Users For First Time In History

    Ben S ( profile ), 04 Aug, 2022 @ 07:44pm

    Kind of funny then, that their customer service is more highly rated then the rest of the ISP industry then. I mean, if you can't talk to a human, and STILL have higher customer satisfaction then everybody else, that's saying something.

  • Comcast Loses 500k Video Customers, Fails To Add Broadband Users For First Time In History

    Ben S ( profile ), 29 Jul, 2022 @ 08:39pm

    Lost Customer

    Funny, I'm one of those lost customers. Google Fiber came into the neighborhood, and now my internet doesn't routinely go down every night at around the same time. This also means less calls to an automated system that tells me to "restart" the modem, and refuses to give me the option to talk to anyone. In fact, haven't had to call in yet. Even if Google's customer service is some how worse than what I dealt with while I was with Comcast, it'll probably still be worth it by virtue of how rare an outage has become. The rare outage thing is kind of nice.

  • Sega DMCAs SteamDB Despite That Site Not Hosting Any Pirated Material

    Ben S ( profile ), 02 Apr, 2021 @ 02:14pm

    SteamDB has a lot more than just statistics, it holds a lot of backend data. A couple months back, a game I have had an update that broke the game for anyone not on Windows 10. I was able to get Steam to download an older version of the game, one that still worked, by getting the Depot ID and Manifest ID from SteamDB, then accessing the Steam command line and using the download_depot command to download that update. I then shared this with other users who had the game so they could play until the devs fixed the issue with the next update.

    I likely would not have been able to downgrade with out SteamDB. I would hate to see that go down because of bogus DMCA notices.

  • Twitch Marketing Promo Over Golden Emoji Goes Horribly Wrong After DMCA Nuclear Strike

    Ben S ( profile ), 29 Oct, 2020 @ 10:45pm

    Re: sp

    I was wondering if anyone else had spotted that. That said, it helps if you cite the error to help the author find it. Others once again wondered allowed if Twitch was the right platform on which to stream.

  • Congress To Consider National Right To Repair Law For First Time

    Ben S ( profile ), 09 Aug, 2020 @ 01:26am


    You're close, but the act doesn't actually state anything about being able to void a warranty based on proving a third party caused the damage or defect. Of course, it doesn't really need to. If you make something, and sell it with a warranty, then work by a third party breaks the device and you can prove it, then you've also proven there was no manufacturer's defect, and as a result, the warranty wouldn't apply anyway. The point when a manufacturer can get a warranty to require specific parts or parties for repair is when they can prove that other parts or parties doing the work would cause the product or service to not function properly and that such a requirement would serve the public interest. I quoted the relevant law above, if you want to see the exact wording.

  • Congress To Consider National Right To Repair Law For First Time

    Ben S ( profile ), 09 Aug, 2020 @ 01:03am

    Re: Re: Magnuson Moss anyone?

    Did some searching to get the exact text, if you're curious.
    (c) Prohibition on conditions for written or implied warranty; waiver by Commission. No warrantor of a consumer product may condition his written or implied warranty of such product on the consumer’s using, in connection with such product, any article or service (other than article or service provided without charge under the terms of the warranty) which is identified by brand, trade, or corporate name; except that the prohibition of this subsection may be waived by the Commission if– (1) the warrantor satisfies the Commission that the warranted product will function properly only if the article or service so identified is used in connection with the warranted product, and (2) the Commission finds that such a waiver is in the public interest. The Commission shall identify in the Federal Register, and permit public comment on, all applications for waiver of the prohibition of this subsection, and shall publish in the Federal Register its disposition of any such application, including the reasons therefor.

  • Congress To Consider National Right To Repair Law For First Time

    Ben S ( profile ), 09 Aug, 2020 @ 12:56am

    Re: Magnuson Moss anyone?

    It doesn't. Previously, the free market gave you the right to repair anywhere you wanted, including with third parties. No laws were needed. The Magnuson Moss Act was a set of disclosure laws associated with warrantees, that if a manufacturer warrantied something, they had to disclose certain details on the warranty and how it would work. Things such as what specifically was warrantied, duration, limitations on the warranty, and things like that. What you're likely thinking of is the "tie-in clause", which states that a manufacturer can not tie the warranty to repairs by certain parties or with certain parts.

  • Anti-Vaxxer Sues Facebook, In The Middle Of A Pandemic, For 'In Excess' Of $5 Billion For Shutting Down His Account

    Ben S ( profile ), 27 Mar, 2020 @ 10:23pm

    Re: Re: Ad-Hoc Regulation Versus Systematic Regulation

    You know, there are sites like that. You just don't hear much about them. I recall a rather racist group (very anti-muslim group that opposed people fleeing persecution in the middle east being allowed to immigrate into Europe) that had their subreddit taken down, and they moved to voat, which is basically another reddit. They tout "no censorship" on their platform. I tried to check it today, but it seems you can't even view the site now unless you login. Then there was the replacement for 4chan (I can't recall if it was 8chan or 2chan) for those who felt the rather mild moderation of 4chan was too much. Those alternatives are out there, you just don't hear about them because the mainstream services get all the attention.

  • Anti-Vaxxer Sues Facebook, In The Middle Of A Pandemic, For 'In Excess' Of $5 Billion For Shutting Down His Account

    Ben S ( profile ), 27 Mar, 2020 @ 10:27pm

    Another typo

    Masnick, are you tired today or something?

    Also, Nick, Mark Zuckerberg didn't personally decide to censor your to "deflect attention" from Facebook scandals, even if your lawsuit claims that's what's going on

  • Apple Shutting Down Stores In East Texas To Avoid Patent Trolling Cases In The Troll's Favorite Docket

    Ben S ( profile ), 25 Feb, 2019 @ 02:57pm


    It was the servers iirc. They had servers in Nevada I believe, and used that to claim a US presence to justify extradition.

  • Steam Responds To Epic's Competition By Weaponizing The Steam Community

    Ben S ( profile ), 08 Feb, 2019 @ 03:12am

    Re: Re: Not competition

    There was a video I saw on YouTube that pointed out why exclusivity as a form of competition is bad, and explained it very effectively. Paying for exclusivity isn't paying to make your product better, it's paying to make every one else's product worse. The anime streaming market does exclusive licenses a lot, here is what happened. More and more money is spent acquiring enough exclusive licenses to keep people coming to the streaming services of each competitor, which means less is available to spend on innovation, in fact, innovation is a wasted expenditure because the exclusive license is a better way to get more people to your service. It gets worse. The price of these services has gone up in order to fund the purchasing of these exclusive licenses, meanwhile the number of anime available on any given service went down. On top of this, since the price of buying these exclusive license drove up the cost of entering the market, it made it impossible for new entrants, without some serious cash backing them, to even enter the market. It gets worse still. These services no longer even really compete with each other, because each of them has products the others aren't allowed to sell. You can't go and buy a generic brand of what ever the hot new anime of the season is, and get similar quality at a better price, or with a better service. You have no choice but to go to the competitor that carries the anime you want. When this happens, it's no longer a healthy competitive marketplace. A Valve monopoly is by far preferable to the gaming scene becoming comparable to the above. If we are to have competition in this space, it should not be by means of exclusive licenses. That just makes things worse for everybody.

  • Google Threatens To Shut Down Google News In Europe Over Article 11 As Publishers Whine About 'Publicity Stunt'

    Ben S ( profile ), 25 Jan, 2019 @ 12:27am

    Re: Google would rather lose-lose if not TOTAL control.

    I have a question for you. If Google not linking to the news sites is harmful to them, how can anyone argue that the news sites are not getting a significant and worthwhile return from Google? This seems a pretty obvious case of these news sites wanting to double dip. Get paid because Google sends them free traffic which is then monetized with advertising, then get paid again by Alphabet Inc. because it sent them this revenue source. Personally, I would love to see Alphabet Inc just charge for the service of being on Google News. Charge enough to cover the cost of the new licensing fee, plus a bit more. It's only fair, isn't it? If some one offers you a service to help you make more money, shouldn't the person or group providing the service be compensated for it?

  • In-N-Out Sends Punny Cease And Desist Over Fairly Clear Trademark Infringement

    Ben S ( profile ), 19 Aug, 2018 @ 02:23pm

    Re: FWIW

    I'm west of both, we have a few In'n'Out locations. They aren't the most common, but believe me I visit every once in a while for the animal fries.

  • Steam Yanks Another Developer's Games Over Fake Reviews Posted By Employee

    Ben S ( profile ), 13 May, 2018 @ 02:59pm

    Re: question

    With all the things Digital Homicide did, it's hard to keep track of it all. I think I remember something about it at some point, but I could easily be misremembering. The thing that got them kicked off of the Steam platform wasn't fake reviews though. It was filing a lawsuit against steam customers for posting negative reviews of their games.

    I love going back to the Jim Sterling videos about them though, since Digital Homicide really targeted him, getting a quick review of one of the greatest internet tantrums I've ever born witness to, followed by the dev being forced to shut down, then having the only remaining lawsuit dismissed with prejudice. The schadenfreud is glorious.

  • Germany's Supreme Court Confirms That Adblocking Is Legal, In Sixth Consecutive Defeat For Publishers

    Ben S ( profile ), 01 May, 2018 @ 06:20pm

    Re: Re:

    I decided to check the site myself. I have uBlock Origin, but not NoScript. I can still view the site, so it seems that uBlock Origin defeats their anti-adblocker script even with out NoScript.

  • More Than Half Of U.S. States Now Pushing Their Own Net Neutrality Rules

    Ben S ( profile ), 21 Feb, 2018 @ 09:31pm

    Re: Re: SO? About half of US states once advocated and made laws holding people in chattel slavery!

    You know, some one went and found the various bad actions taken by ISP's from 2004 through 2016, and made a timeline out of it. I uploaded a copy, just in case some one is interested.

  • Why SESTA Is Such A Bad Bill

    Ben S ( profile ), 20 Sep, 2017 @ 10:45am

    Re: Re: Re:

    If I had to take a guess, I'd say it's because they represent a very wide range of businesses that would be harmed by this. My money is on this being crafted by an AG, or maybe several, that have wanted to be able to go after various sites for sex trafficking but couldn't because of section 320.

  • Samsung's 'Airtight' Iris Scanning Technology For The S8 Defeated With A Camera, Printer, And Contact Lens

    Ben S ( profile ), 27 May, 2017 @ 01:58am

    Re: Re: Re: Technical question about phone security

    Can't say for every implementation, but usually there's an encrypted decryption key on a keyring. Change your password, and the encrypted key gets rewritten, but that's it. This makes changing your password a fairly simple thing, update the file/database entry for your password, and rewrite the decryption key to be encrypted (and decrypted) with your password.

  • Copyright Trolls Overplay Their Hand In Finland, Bringing A Government Microscope To Their Practices

    Ben S ( profile ), 27 Jan, 2017 @ 10:47am

    Re: FTFY

    My understanding, coming from conversations with Fins, is that the government is, for the most part, pretty good at doing what's right for the public. For example, I remember explaining to one girl that in the US, we aren't given a mandatory paid vacation every year at Christmas time by law, and her being rather surprised.

  • Germany Finally Dumps Law That Says It's A Crime To Insult Foreign Leaders

    Ben S ( profile ), 27 Jan, 2017 @ 10:28am

    Re: ahhh... well hey...

    There were rumblings about this law getting repealed back when Erdogan decided to use this law to go after German citizens. I have a friend who lives in Germany, we chat via Skype, and he was actually skeptical as to whether this would happen. The law may have been repealed a bit sooner than they were aiming for, since it was supposed to be in time to stop a specific lawsuit that was reported here, and that lawsuit was scheduled for later this year. I forget who it was that was being sued by Erdogan, but with the law repealed, that lawsuit is pretty much toast. I'm sure Merkel will absolutely reap the benefits of repealing the law, but this was started before Trump becoming President was even starting to look likely.

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