Khaim’s Techdirt Profile


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  • Apr 9th, 2014 @ 9:31am

    Redacted Blog is crap and you're bad for reposting it

    Not because of anything they wrote. I wouldn't know; I haven't bothered to read any of it. They might be tireless freedom fighters for all that is right and good, for all I know.

    But nothing - nothing - excuses them from publishing a graph whose y-axis doesn't start at 0.

    Humans are visual creatures. Anyone looking at that graph gets the idea that exemptions have more than doubled from 2011 to 2012. Of course the actual numbers show only a 40% increase - still bad, but not quite as frothing-at-the-mouth-rage-inducing as implied.

    I expect better from you, TechDirt.

  • Apr 1st, 2014 @ 7:00am

    Re: Ellipses?

    Mike omitted the legal reference to the contempt motion. Although it does give a bit of dramatic flair.

  • Mar 31st, 2014 @ 1:36pm

    "Tucker Decl."?

    I'm rather curious to read the declaration by the YouTube engineer, referenced repeatedly as "Tucker Decl." in Google's motion. Anyone have a link to that, or know where I could find it?

  • Mar 28th, 2014 @ 10:36am

    Re: Incidental audio

    On the one hand, yes. But there's no algorithmic way to establish fair use. (As far as I know - if you have a way to do so, please tell me.) And in many cases, the uploaders don't actually care about the incidental audio. So arguing fair use to keep it in just isn't worth the trouble.

    If I understand this correctly, YouTube is providing a simple tool to remove minor portions of audio. Uploaders can use this tool when they decide it's easier than fighting over the 2 seconds of some pop song in the background.

    And ultimately, this will lead to the removal of ContentID audio from all kinds of videos. Where before musicians had free advertising, and had people expressing their cultural tastes, now there will just be quiet. The few who are smart enough to not monetize or takedown will be the real winners.

  • Feb 28th, 2014 @ 3:25pm

    Re: DMCA

    Not exactly; there are a few subtle legal differences. (I agree that the DMCA process is bad, but there are levels of bad.)

    The DMCA involves immunity from liability. If a content provider (like YouTube) receives a DMCA takedown notice, they are free to ignore it. This does not violate any laws. All it does is allow the copyright owner to sue them - and the content provider could still win the lawsuit and suffer no penalty (aside from legal fees).

    In contrast, a court issuing a mandatory injunction is a legally binding order. If YouTube ignored it, they are guilty of breaking the law. Not accused; guilty. If this happens the judges can throw people in jail and levy all sorts of fines, completely at whim, without any right to trial or any real chance of appeal. And they will, because judges do not like being played.

    When a judge tells you to do something, you do it. If you think it's wrong, you file a protest and then you do it anyways. YouTube is huge, wealthy company with very good lawyers, and this is what they did. That should tell you something. Next to that, the DMCA is nothing more than a polite suggestion.

  • Feb 28th, 2014 @ 2:47pm

    Re: Harm

    I think she has received death threats over her appearance in this video. That counts as "harm". (Unless you want to claim that she's not harmed until someone actually murders her, but that seems to not fit with current law. Plus it's kind of cruel.)

  • Feb 28th, 2014 @ 2:06pm

    Re: First Amendment

    "Copyright issue" and "first amendment issue" are hardly mutually exclusive. Just because you assert that you have a copyright claim doesn't mean you actually do. You might be lying, mistaken (contract law is tricky), or I might have a valid Fair Use argument.

    Consider what happens when the courts issue a mandatory injunction order that I take down the allegedly offending material, before ruling on the copyright issue. If I later prevail in the case, then I get to repost the material - and the courts will have stifled my completely legal speech. That's exactly what the First Amendment is supposed to protect against.

    There's a very good reason why precedent from the 9th Circuit (and several others) gives a very high bar for this kind of injunction. Precedent that last week's order completely ignored. I can't see it not being overturned; even if Google ultimately loses the case, the order is wrong on so many levels it's hard to even comprehend.

    I mean, we haven't even gotten to the part where this was only an appeal, and should have been remanded back to the district court...

  • Feb 28th, 2014 @ 1:52pm


    Google is saying that actors, actresses and artists don't have the right to order takedowns of the content they either appear in

    That is entirely the point. If you star in a movie, and later wish you hadn't, tough luck. You don't get to go around ordering people scrub the bad movie from existence.

    Google has said nothing about "retain the ownership or copyright to", because it doesn't think those cases apply. Garcia clearly doesn't "own" the movie, and her copyright claim is absurdly far-fetched. And even if it wasn't, she still has to prove that claim before demanding a takedown; you generally don't get a mandatory injunction just by filing a claim.

  • Jan 16th, 2014 @ 6:40am

    Re: The (unfortunate) big difference between public and private employment

    And who makes that decision? Whoever it is now has the power to fire whoever he wants. I'm all for firing public employees when they deserve it, but there needs to be enough checks and balances to make sure it's actually deserved, and not just office politics or a personal vendetta.

    Note that anti-discrimination laws do apply in the private sector; you can't appeal, but you can sue. It would be nice if we could apply the full protections to private employment, but that gets a little more tricky, both morally and practically. The key difference is that the public sector is "us", and we as a whole get to decide how it works; this doesn't hold for private business.

  • Oct 30th, 2013 @ 2:56pm

    Re: Other services

    This kind of network attack only really affects major players like Google. Sites like Slashdot or Dailykos or Harvard are either single-homed (all in one datacenter), or communicate through known insecure lines.

    The reason this attack was so effective against Google is that Google owns the fiber connecting its major datacenters. So Google assumed those links were inherently secure, and didn't encrypt the traffic. Clearly this was wrong. To Google's credit, they started encrypting these links earlier this year.

  • Oct 23rd, 2013 @ 1:25pm

    Re: Re: Re: Blatantly incorrect filings

    It's pointless if they end up causing a big PR mess, losing the case, and having to pay fees and damages to Mr. Thuen. If the lawyers knew the code was already on GitHub, they would not have filed for the restraining order; they'd have gone straight to the jury trial. That's where the real pain is anyway.

  • Oct 23rd, 2013 @ 1:19pm

    Re: Re: Re: 4th Amendment

    You're claiming the guy's house was on an international border?

    No, I was giving a well-known example of an exception to the 4th Amendment. I apologize for not being clear about that.

    You don't think “being detained” is anything serious.

    I'm sorry if I gave that impression, because that is not at all true. I think being detained is a very serious thing. I just don't think illegal detention plays a part in this story.

    Full disclosure: I am one of the people who submitted this story. (I suspect someone else did a better write-up, since I sent in the link with this account.) I know Andreas Schou, and I have access to other information from his perspective. (beyond what is publicly posted).

    So with that said, no one involved in the story is claiming that the judge acted unconstitutionally, or that the order was in any way illegal. It was wrong, it was based on misleading and/or false information, and I very much hope that Corey Thuen is justly compensated for his trouble. But it was not illegal.

    As for how the judge is going to play it, I'll defer to the original G+ thread:
    Andreas Schou Oct 17, 2013

    I've known Judge Winmill since I was a kid; his daughter was in the class right below mine. And I've never heard anyone in the Idaho bar say a negative word about him.

    I think he may have just got rolled here on a technical issue (and a term of art, 'hacker,' which has negative implications to laypeople) which was not adequately explained to him.

  • Oct 23rd, 2013 @ 12:17pm

    Re: Blatantly incorrect filings

    My understanding is that you usually have to show subjective bad faith to get someone for perjury in cases like this. That's basically impossible unless you can find documents that show the lawyers discussing how they're going to lie to the court. I'm sure there's also a possibility to show complete gross incompetence, but that's probably even harder to stick.

    IANAL, but I suspect that the "information and belief" line sets a low bar for how accurate the claims have to be. That is, if the lawyers can keep a straight face while claiming that they didn't realize the source code was on GitHub, they might be able to avoid misconduct charges. (It's entirely possible that they really didn't realize this; I'm more inclined to believe incompetence on their part than pointless malice.)

    That said, Battelle probably isn't getting their bond money back and may end up owing Southfork/Thuen attorney's fees, if not actual damages.

  • Oct 23rd, 2013 @ 12:09pm

    Re: ECA

    To the Honorable Mr. ECA,

    I am pleased to see that you share a common viewpoint with myself, and indeed with the editors of this site and the majority of its readers. It is always pleasant to have another voice in the fight against overreaching copyright law and innovation-stifling legal threats.

    That said, you appear to be BATSHIT CRAZY and need to CHILL OUT.

    Among the signs of your complete mental breakdown:
    - Uncontrollable use of EMPHASIS by CAPSLOCK.
    - Unusual and (inconsistent) punctuation..
    - Forming complete sentences or paragraphs. FAILURE.
    - Inability to express a coherent idea.
    - Repeated top-level posts within 10 minutes.
    - Rampant mispelings.

    Please seek help. If a licensed therapist or English teacher is not available, there are many online resources that may also be of assistance.

    I look forward to reading (and understanding) your posts at a later date.
    - Khaim

  • Oct 23rd, 2013 @ 11:54am

    Re: 4th Amendment

    You realize there are already tons of exceptions to the 4th Amendment? I mean, try crossing a border some time. (Note that being within 100 miles of a border counts.)

    Also, the judge did not authorize taking prisoners. It's unclear exactly what "held" means in this context, but if you bother to read the order there is no mention of imprisoning anyone. Nor was Thuen's property permanently seized; the order was for them to take his computer, copy it, and then immediately give it back. And despite Andreas' language, I don't think they actually broke down his door. (I could be wrong about that, I should ask him.)

    The order was bad, and both the judge and lawyers are (hopefully) going to be held responsible. But don't try to make up evils; if you start lying about what happened, you're no better than the idiot lawyers who started this whole mess.

  • Oct 23rd, 2013 @ 10:53am

    Re: Re: Re: The Point

    Do you really think the judge is going to give two snaps about taking the guy's wife prisoner on her own front lawn?


    It is bad form to assume the judge is evil because he issued a bad order. Judges follow specific rules about the facts presented to them. In this case, the judge's order was not completely out of line, if you accept the "national security" arguments. And again, we know that those are bullshit, but he did not and cannot assume bad faith.

    However, lawyers have an ethical obligation to be truthful (for a certain value of truthful). That's what allows the whole system to work. If a lawyer starts lying to a judge, the judge has incredible powers to make him pay for it.

  • Oct 23rd, 2013 @ 10:45am

    Re: Judges

    It's not really a judge's job to be an expert in everything. I mean, do you also insist that a judge must be a doctor before hearing health-related cases? They have to take the evidence that's presented to them.

    Andreas Schou (who is incidentally a lawyer in Idaho) said that he has a good opinion of this judge, overall. It's just that the lawyers from Battelle misled him about technical details, and also presented "facts" that were not actually true.

    Lawyers being misleading is not exactly news. This is supposed to be solved by having two sides to the case, so if one side tries to go full bullshit the other can call them out. Of course this was an ex parte order, which means there was only one side, which means it's open season.

    The other issue is factual misrepresentations. Judges do not like being lied to. The lawyers here might get a little slack by claiming "we had no way to know it was already on GitHub", but they also might run afoul of willful blindness or some other bad-faith charge. For example, did they even try to contact Southfork/Thuen before petitioning the court? If so, why wasn't that communication submitted with the complaint?

  • Oct 23rd, 2013 @ 10:28am

    Re: The Point

    Battelle didn't bother to actually look for the code, and didn't realize that it was already on GitHub.

    I suspect the judge is going to be less than happy that they convinced him to issue an invasive ex parte restraining order to stop something that had already happened.

  • Oct 9th, 2013 @ 12:15pm

    EasyDNS full response

    I think you forgot a link to the EasyDNS post:

  • Sep 18th, 2013 @ 10:55am

    Re: Certification mark

    The industry players will be pleased to know that their solution has already been proposed, back in April 2003.

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