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  • Feb 21st, 2013 @ 3:59pm

    (untitled comment)

    You know what, I probably would get the playboy app to read the articles.

    Mostly because I wouldn't buy a playboy magazine because of all the nudity, but want to read the articles BECAUSE people always joke about the articles.

    Don't get me wrong I'm no prude, I just prefer my nudity viewed via an incognito tab in the browser.

  • Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:04pm

    (untitled comment)

    What is always missing from these arguments is what happens if you allow telcos to just be carriers or dumb pipes.

    Lets say you have 3 plans on your hypothetical carrier:

    1) $20 for x minutes of calls,
    2) $20 for x GB of data,
    3) $35 for x minutes of calls + x GB of data (i.e. better deal for getting both)

    Lets say their user base is split 30%,30%,40% in terms of signups. Per 100 users that would result in revenue of $2600.

    If you allow net neutrality and everyone switches to plan #2. We all know the costs of switching calls and data round the network don't change with volume bar fractional electricity and maintenance costs - your big cost is capital outlay. Also we know VoIP traffic is inconsequential in terms of MB/GB used. So to maintain the same network & profit margin, plan pricing has to change.

    Instead of being $20pm it's now $26pm. This is inescapable. Real world numbers will vary, but the overall accounting change is the same.

    The difference is - the above oversimplifies the situation. We don't just have 1 call plan, and 1 data plan. The telco can offer varying connections at prices where calls are a differentiation in pricing. Some plans will be below the average cost to maintain the network, some above.

    If you ask them to just be a big dumb pipe - they have to price closer to the network cost. So those on low volume/use plans will be the ones that miss out. It's these plans that people normally take advantage of when going on VoIP.

  • May 15th, 2012 @ 1:07am

    I prefer Orpahn

    The reason most works are orphaned is because they aren't worth the authors time or effort to monetise. Where they get cranky is when someone else does a better job of promoting their work - and sometimes even profiting.

    The problem with the negligence test suggested - is that it would be bastardised to suit the whims of the authors and publishers. Nobody would be safe unless there was a clear government defined protocol e.g. submit open access copy of orphaned work to a copyright registry, after x years (4-7 years) if the author has not claimed the work it lapses into public domain and is recorded as such.

    During the registration period (4-7 years) the work would still be 'locked' for usage, but an open copy would now be stored on record so the content is not lost to future generations.

  • Oct 18th, 2011 @ 8:12pm

    (untitled comment) (as Blake)

    The choice against Huawei is quite likely to be more about spying than they admit.

    Not only would the US Govt be worried about China putting in back doors on their turf. The US Govt would want whichever US company that builds the network to put in their own back doors so that the US Govt can spy on it's own people.

    With Huawei involved, the US Govt wouldn't be able to keep that secret. Not that it's a huge secret with all the warrantless wiretapping going on.

  • May 11th, 2011 @ 7:34pm

    Pot / Kettle much?

    Pretty rich for someone who used to have their comic archive locked up behind a subscription paywall himself.

    I assume he doesn't now, but I know they used to be. (At work so I can't exactly check)

    I do remember though "way back" before google ads & decent cpc/cpa etc, that the paywall made sense on some sites, advertising impressions while good initially were worth close to nothing, and you couldn't make back your bandwidth costs - let alone other operating costs.

  • Apr 20th, 2011 @ 4:54am

    (untitled comment)

    I have used Grooveshark a few times before, and I can honestly say that I did not know that the source of its music was user uploads. But reading this now does explain a few things.

    Personally I use Last.FM, and while this is no way intended as a plug - here goes.

    The 2 things I though were odd about Grooveshark were firstly how on earth could they allow full custom playlists from every song out there. Other online streaming services (Last.Fm/Finetune) only let you "narrow down" your selection of tracks and let you play tracks in a "radio" style playlist.

    With Grooveshark I could put 1, 25 or 100 tracks in the exact order I wanted playback. They could be of the same artist, or from all over the place. The other "radio" services didn't let you do that.

    Secondly, I did notice a lot of Grooveshark tracks that were labeled with "Track Name -" so I thought they might have been using a "search engine" type loophole.

    Now I know why, it was user uploads from the pirate sites just to promote their junk.

    Strictly speaking as someone who is happy to pay for Last.FM (or a similar price for any other music subscription radio service) $3 a month is reasonable for radio. I would pay $5-10 a month if Last.FM did better/full playlists and offline playback (i.e. let me load up my mobile with tracks that I can play radio style).

    Stunts like Grooveshark pull only harm the streaming music "name", making it harder for legit companies to get licenses.

    An example of the ridiculous nature of the licensing agreements. In Australia not only do I have to pay $3 a month for Last.FM (no free sreaming like US/UK/Germany) I can't stream music on my Android phone like the US/UK/GER users can because apparently that is a "separate license" that Last.FM has to negotiate with the labels here.

    So if I use my web browser on my mobile I can listen. But Last.FM can't allow their official app to do the same or they will get the pants sued off them. Sigh...

  • Apr 20th, 2011 @ 1:14am

    (untitled comment)

    I remember when I was online dating. Almost every girl asked if I was a "serial killer or something".

    I only ever answered with "Technically not, the bodies were never found." or something similar. I couldn't believe how trusting some of the girls were of a complete stranger.

    I can't believe one of them even let me take her up on a mountain drive, for champagne in the woods at midnight. All on a first date!

    If I was a bad person, there is no way they would have found the body...

    Awesome night though ;)

  • Oct 4th, 2010 @ 11:17pm

    Help me understand these.

    Lets say Alfred owns a house, and sells to Bert - who down the track sells to Charlie.

    Alfred places a clause in the sale of the property to Bert saying when Bert Sells a % of the price gets paid to Alfred.

    That "should" be legal, as long as its in writing in the contract signed etc (real property, not consumer goods / eula junk). Bert knows this when he bought and would have paid a lower price.

    Bert sells the property to Charlie and has to pay his dues.

    IF Bert does include a clause in his contract saying that Charlie has to pay % to Alfred - again it should be allowed, its in the contract as signed. Charlie knows this and would have paid a lower price.

    Now if Bert does NOT include a clause in the sale contract with Charlie: Charlie should never be able to get sued over Alfred loosing money. Charlie's only contract is with Bert - and as long as there were mortgages on the property registered by Alfred then Charlie is in the clear (IANAL).

    If Alfred wants to get trigger happy with the lawyers he could go after Bert - but thats as far as it should go. No legislation required.

  • Oct 4th, 2010 @ 11:11pm

    Help me understand these.

  • Sep 28th, 2010 @ 2:02pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    I don't know why they have it so backwards here in Australia.

    I mean 20 years ago a USD$50 game being sold for A$100 here was acceptable. Limited market, increased distribution costs, increased publishing costs (PAL vs NTSC etc). And the exchange rate was worse.

    Now take Steam - it used to be great for getting games, they all used to be just charged at the standard US$ prices. Now they bump the price just for Australian consumers. If I setup a new USA Steam A/c then I would pay ~US$50 still, but if I use my current AU A/c I pay ~US$80.

    No extra service only a bumped price so they can artificially maintain "retail" pricing in physical stores.

  • Sep 27th, 2010 @ 9:00pm

    Types of pirates (as )

    Businesses would do themselves a world of good if they tried to look into the reason people are pirating.

    There are essentially 3 types of pirates:

    1. Those that will pirate no matter what and will never buy.
    2. Those that can't afford what you are selling, or don't like the price.
    3. Those that don't like your method of selling, or some other qualities of the product.

    Group 1: will still pirate your product even if you offered it for free (Google the Humble Indie Bundle)

    Group 2: you can attract in the long tail. They might pirate your game/dvd when it's full price, but once your $100 game or $30 dvd is on sale (a few years after it was first out) for $10 will happily buy it.

    Group 3: you can win over just by giving them what they want.

    For years I ONLY pirated PC games firstly because I couldn't afford them in Highschool, but then because of nasty DRM that was forced onto so many games. I would however buy dozens of console games a year once I started working (still not spending on PC). Sure I could have modded my console or got a DS flash card. But I had the money to buy games, the product was what I wanted so I did. Heck I've got dozens of games that I've never even played out of a library of 300+.

    For PC games what got me back into spending was Steam and Steam having new games, at good prices, free re-downloading and easy access. DRM is there but non invasive. Gog on the other hand is DRM free. And I've purchased a small fortune worth of games there. I have even re-purchased games I own for the CONVENIENCE! I've got the CD sitting right next to me in my bookshelves - but I'm happy to pay the $10 again just so I don't have to fiddle with it getting it working.

  • Aug 25th, 2010 @ 11:05pm


    You buy a book, you don't get the copyright on the story. You buy negatives, you don't get the copyright on the photos. Agreed on Buy a book, don't own the story. I would also agree on Buy a photo (print), don't own the "picture". But the post by Ted.E raises a point - what if there was a contract (oral or written) by Adams passing along the copyright with the negatives. I know that if I give someone source code, master files, negatives or another "raw" medium it is with implied that they would be able to make copies. This doesn't have a legal base, but the purpose of negatives is to make copies. If you gave or sold someone the right to make copies you would as part of the transaction give them the negatives too.

  • Aug 2nd, 2010 @ 9:38pm

    Real Journalism

    I very much like the idea. Too much these days is news full of random stories that look promising but without a post action follow up are just disappointing.

    Sure the response on its own might not be newsworthy - but how many times have you read a news article then a week or a month later just wondered "hmm I wondered what happened with xyz issue" then looked around for ages only to find out of dozens of people covering the original issue nobody followed through to the outcome.

    All the news agencies seem to want is headline news that causes people to either rage or get happy. All instant gratification with no substance.

  • May 19th, 2010 @ 9:25pm

    Re: (as Blake)

    I think its a valid point. People are paying "relatively" small amounts for these games compared to what they could have sold for otherwise.

    But with things like this, there are dozens of factors that skew the results.

    For example in my case, I already own World of Goo & Gish. If I didn't I would have "paid" more for the bundle. Secondly at the time I bought it I was just thinking of the windows side (and registered my preference accordingly).

    Since then, quite literally the weekend after I bought the pack, I was stuck out in the country with my macbook for a day, with only my mobile as a modem. Wanting to play some games all I had installed was Spore which I played to death and WoW (which would have sucked being rural and on mobile).

    So I downloaded a couple of the titles for the Mac. If I had thought of this before I bought them I would have definitely paid more. Hindsight is unfortunate.

    On a similar note I often buy sale titles on Steam or GoG. Steam in particular there are dozens of titles I've bought just because they were on sale - that I've never played (particularly from last Christmas when there were dozens of daily sales). The marginal cost for sending me these games is very small, but they got HUNDREDS of dollars out of me.

  • May 12th, 2010 @ 9:01pm

    (untitled comment) (as Blake)

    Ok if a establishment is selling me dinner tickets it better do the following:

    1) Make sure my table is available
    2) Make sure my meal is ready in a reasonable time (20-30min tops)
    3) Stop slugging me with hidden extras like surcharges, corkage, cakeage etc.

    I'm tired of making reservations only to turn up then still have to wait half an hour just to get seated, then another hour+ for my food.

    You've got your reservation, you know exactly how many people you will be catering for at minimum - staff accordingly. Don't give my 7:30 table away to a couple who got there at 6:30 and you hoped would be gone before I got here. If your menu only has 3 mains on it, make sure you have all the ingredients! (yes one place was that bad) If when I make the reservation for a 7pm table and tell you I want meals x&y ready for 7pm as we have an 8pm show to attend - have them ready.

  • May 10th, 2010 @ 3:59pm

    (untitled comment) (as Blake)

    I already have World of Goo & Gish. So I only contributed a minimal amount. Mostly to try out the underwater one. Got it the first day or two after it came out :p

    It was only on the weekend when I took my mac laptop out on a road-trip and was looking for some games to play with no net access. (Normally I'd just play some flash games or WoW on the mac) So I installed these on the mac and its awesome.

    I wish I had donated more, infact there are still a few hours left on the clock so I might do it again but flag it as a Mac purchase :D

  • Apr 28th, 2010 @ 4:45pm

    (untitled comment)

    The real proof is whether or not the majority of people buying these limited edition products won't actually listen to the music on them. Are they being bought as collectors items? or are they being bought to actually listen to?

    I do know that a lot of people are actually listening to vinyl music again, but I'm also sure there are a lot of collectors out there too.

  • Mar 30th, 2010 @ 5:21am

    Makes sense

    Ok so while I do agree with Mike that the "fair" market price was just whatever was agreed to at the time, before the show was known to be successful.

    However my guess at the anti-trust argument is that because the "content creators" aka the studios are essentially the same as the "content distributors" aka the networks - there is no free market for getting at TV show you produce out there. Its not like you can just start up a TV network even if you had the money. There are spectrum issues for OTA, and the networks own/are the cable companies so they don't leave a level playing field.

    The real question is - if the market was really at arms length - would a content producer be able to include a contract term that says they get a share of gross/net revenue the TV network brings in from its show. The answer is for many 'big name' shows (which arguably a superman show would count) would be able to.

    Now did the Smallville creators ever ask WB for a revenue share. If they did was it not granted or was it just not "enough". If they didn't was it because they were desperate for any offer or was it because the show concept was too risky.

  • Oct 15th, 2009 @ 6:08pm

    Re: Yes but... (as )

    Also expanding my above post:

    "So while it's all well and good for the managing director to say "we'll continue to be free" thats alot easier when there are laws in place to ensure you are getting paid."

    The point of this argument is that, as long as somebody reports the news for free (at least from the consumers point of view) then how can Murdoch charge a fee.

    It doesn't just apply to ABC but to any one of thousands of news sites worldwide that will still happily report free news to the public.

  • Oct 15th, 2009 @ 6:06pm

    Re: Yes but... (as )

    Not only do they manage to do a damn good job of reporting objectively on the goverment. They do some nice reporting on the media in general too.

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