Michael Avery’s Techdirt Profile


About Michael Avery

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  • Oct 13th, 2016 @ 11:19am

    Big numbers are difficult

    Isn't 9 million nano-pirates really equal to only 0.009 pirates?

    Tell them to come back when they've found at least 1 pirate, then we'll talk.
  • Nov 27th, 2013 @ 12:59am

    Re: Basically irrelevant


    Gholson Lyon (article's author) should have focused on the reasoning behind the FDA's intervention and not the repercussions of genetic data collection and sharing being stymied.

    Also, the last time that I checked, the FDA is a regulatory body charged with minimizing risks and increasing safety for consumers, whilst the NSA is an apparently un-regulated body incapable of mitigating risks and not doing much to increase safety for anybody.
  • Jun 4th, 2012 @ 8:47pm


    I find it remarkable that Mollett thinks that publishers are somehow "ahead of the piracy curve" when it comes to 'protecting' books.

    "I do no think the impact of copyright infringement on published works is gonna be as great as it has been and continues to be on music and film ..."

    And that he thinks that all people with Kindles probably downloaded their reading material from the Kindle Store is laughable and naive.

    A quick search will show most published ebooks available in one format or another. Another search will provide software capable of making an ebook compatible with any reading device.

    The point here is that obviously copyright has not done what Mollett thinks it does, and that the supposedly stronger measures used to protect ebooks are a joke. That, and every classic on my Kindle has come from the likes of Project Gutenberg, and I'm sure there are many others like myself. There are many reasons that Amazon has allowed the Kindle to be officially unlocked.
  • Jan 19th, 2012 @ 8:39am

    Re: About time Congressmen listen

    I wrote to both Rubio and Nelson about a month ago, but it looks like Rubio is the first to respond publicly. To his credit, he also sent an auto-response that said to "please expect my response in the near future" back on the 12/20, something that Nelson's bots failed to do.

    And I must say, Rubio's announcement is the best response to a complaint that I've ever gotten from a congressman (besides the thoughtful letter I once received from my local supervisor of elections). Nelson on the other hand, I wouldn't hold my breath. Too bad another Dem isn't stepping up to his incumbency.
  • Jan 6th, 2012 @ 9:53pm

    Removed video

    Here's part of the first half of the original clip that was removed: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jK7fYy3wwHY
  • May 28th, 2011 @ 8:42pm

    Re: Re: Definition of Terrorism

    The official Roll Call, for those who care:
    Yea: 41 Rep, 30 Dem
    Nay: 4 Rep, 18 Dem
    Non: 2 Rep, 3 Dem
    Yea's less (Nay's and Non's): Republicans: 35, Democrats: 7

    Just look at all those rats voting Yea! A Senate held by the Republicans would likely have meant a different "leader" introducing the legislation, sure, but probably also even fewer Democrats voting in the affirmative (that we deserve less rights).

    Look! I can do it, too: REpubLICan.
  • Apr 18th, 2011 @ 10:31pm

    Re: Detecting microphone usage, lighting up an LED

    So is the superposition of the app when it's "off" both listening and not?
  • Mar 31st, 2011 @ 8:47pm


    "in the long run, the paywall is just a giant ploy to get their print subscriber numbers up."

    You nailed it, Mike, and there is nothing crazy in the NYTimes' logic.

    In Dan Ariely's book, "Predictably Irrational", in the first chapter entitled "The Truth About Relativity", nearly the exact same situation is used to illustrate the industry's "sleight of hand" technique (his real world example was taken from an actual Economist.com subscription scheme). Its purpose is to set up a situation where the act of comparing prices from a given set will adjust the perceived value of the products in the set. The trap is set when a person is not rational enough to step outside of the price scheme to think about the real value of the products in question (I imagine that most readers/writers here are rational enough, or we'd not be having this discussion).

    Those who peruse the new price scheme that the NYTimes has set up are induced to believe that the best subscription plan is going to deliver the most savings. Most interestingly, the set we're given by nytimes.com doesn't even mention the route of print+online that is being discussed here. Instead, what you see there are three choices: online+smartphone, online+tablet, all digital access. According to Ariely, an extra choice added to the mix (particularly a third) will function as a "decoy" by adding perceived value to one or more of the others. Nytimes.com helps us out by pointing to the all digital access plan as the one with the "BEST VALUE", in gold lettering.

    If the NYTimes had added the fourth choice of print at this point, they may have sweetened the milk by adding a choice which, in that particular set, would have been perceived as having the most value. And there isn't so much value for the NYTimes if it purposefully sets itself up to spend more by offering print. However, in the long run, they will probably have no other choice than to openly add the fourth choice to the mix as a less profitable way to bolster the paywall, as enticement to new customers and incentive for old.

    Except I disagree with Mike's statement that "everyone is having a hard time figuring out exactly what they hope to accomplish". I think their hopes are obvious: that the old models continue to work. That anyone would do the work to compare print price to digital, NYTimes probably had hoped wouldn't happen, but we've still played into their game of comparing a set of prices and then noting that one of them screams "$100 savings". And I'm willing to bet that quite a few have decided to cash in on that. But the NYTimes' continued belief that the old models will continue working, that people are going to fall into the well at all, does seem a penny wish wasted.

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