minerat's Techdirt Profile


About minerat

minerat's Comments comment rss

  • Jul 29, 2013 @ 08:27pm

    Re: No immoral equivalence

    I see where you're coming from, but I don't think he made a moral equivalence. He was just paring down his argument to the most objective (or lease objectionable) level to show how strong it still is even if you discount everything an opponent might disagree with.

    You're well known in the industry and have a huge predisposition to Susan's argument and advocate for many of the things she's saying. You didn't misrepresent yourself at all, and that's not why your review was discounted. It was simply to remove reviews with any possible perception of bias. Your review is honest and forthright, but it's not unbiased. As it is, I happen to agree with you and support the Free Press, and this is still how I saw the whole point.

  • Jan 15, 2013 @ 07:39am

    Arstechnica made a really good point about CBS's decision and CNET's disclosure. The disclosure really doesn't make it better because it doesn't just affect reviews of the products from companies with which CBS is involved in litigation, it affects reviews of all products in the same category because they won't be compared to all possible alternatives (and this probably won't be disclosed in every gadget review where a competing product has been blacklisted). It undermines their credibility far more than it superficially appears.

  • Aug 10, 2012 @ 08:56pm

    Incubus has understood the realities for a while

    Incubus really has understood the changing music landscape for a while now. It's not surprising, they're all a bunch smart and well spoken guys (Brandon here, Mike, the guitarist, just finished a music degree at harvard, etc) and they've been doing cool stuff for a while - live bootlegs in 04, direct management engagement with fans through unofficial fan forums (which helped push for a wildly successful south american tour in 2005), and direct individual band member engagement with fans for years all the way back to early myspace.

    The were at the SF MusicTech Summit last year (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUiBb9ZVCTA) and when asked specifically about the leak of their new album they said:

    "It was like, for about a day, where it felt like someone had broken into your house and had taken something you were making... kick in the balls a little bit. But a day later I realized that it took away the fear that people don't want music any more. That really reinforces that they really want it - they want to take it before you're even done with it.... we're in this weird middle zone, we don't get paid per record sold, out job is to make music and play concerts... we realized we're not the ones in control of it anymore... I'm just thrilled that people are not only enthusiastic about music, but love our music so much that they want to steal it".

    It'll be interesting to see what they do.

  • Jun 19, 2012 @ 01:37pm


    A big part of why this Kickstarter campaign worked is because of Matthew's AMA on reddit ( http://ww.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/uc94p/im_matthew_lillard_stu_from_scream_shaggy_in/ ) - he was open and honest and really engaged with the community. People LIKED him and connected with the project, so they supported it.

    He raised $39k of that goal in the day he did the AMA -

  • Jun 15, 2012 @ 07:59pm

    The Oatmeal's Legal Response

    The actual response from The Oatmeal's lawyer is pretty good (courtesy of a comment at Ars) http://www.scribd.com/doc/96850920/FunnyJunk-The-Oatmeal-Response

    His attorney provides a solid background and thoroughly dismantles each of FunnyJunk's original claims, and suggests that FunnyJunk hasn't registered their DMCA agent with the copyright office. That oversight could negate their Safe Harbor defense regarding The Oatmeal's content being posted by FunnyJunk's users.

  • Feb 27, 2012 @ 09:37am

    The CEO of Rumblefish has gone on Reddit to answer questions. The response has been mixed.


  • Feb 17, 2012 @ 04:30pm


    I'm a huge defender of privacy; I use browser plug-ins to block tracking cookies and I would be the first to criticize anyone who violates privacy, but didn't this bypass allow them to do exactly what's automatically allowed on every other browser? From what I read, no one selected these settings - it's just the default, abnormal behavior of Safari. Working around it only affects people signed into Google services - allowing them to do things like +1 ads. If I've misunderstood the situation, I'd definitely like to know.

  • Feb 16, 2012 @ 07:53am


    Without proof of who is actually uploading, it's a pretty good assumption that the uploads come from someone involved in the company. There is no proof to the contrary.
    Right, but the company is supposed to be presumed innocent until proven guilty. Hell, all the investigating agency had to do was, you know, investigate the site to see that they have hundreds of thousands of users and are proactive in combating phishing. Then do something crazy like contacting the owners to see if they respond / can provide useful information about the problem form(s).

  • Feb 16, 2012 @ 07:50am

    Wow, and here's the super helpful response from the investigating agency.


    Founder of JotForm here. I?d like to thank you all for your sympathy.

    JotForm.com has been suspended by Godaddy for more than 24 hours now. They have disabled the DNS without any prior notice or request. They have told us the domain name was suspended as part of an ongoing law enforcement investigation. In order to resolve the issue, they asked us to contact the officer in charge at U. S. Secret Service.

    When I contacted the Secret Service, the agent told me she is busy and she asked for my phone number, and told me they will get back to me within this week. I told them we are a web service with hundreds of thousands of users, so this is a matter of urgency, and we are ready to cooperate fully. I was ready to shutdown any form they request and provide any information we have about the user. Unfortunately, she told me she needs to look at the case which she can do in a few days. I called her many times again to check about the case, but she seems to be getting irritated with me. At this point, we are waiting for them to look into our case.

    Our guess is that this is probably about a phishing form. We take phishing very seriously. Our Bayesian phishing filter has suspended 65.000 accounts last year. We have been training it for many years, so it can detect phishing forms with great accuracy. We also take any reports about phishing very seriously and quickly suspend the accounts and let the other party know about it. By the way, we are also very serious about false positives. If we suspend an account accidentally, we will quickly resolve the issue, and apologize.

    I believe this can happen to anybody who allows users to create content on the web. So, if you have such business, my recommendation would be to make sure that you can contact your most active users quickly if your domain is disabled. Many of our users are shocked and angry at us. But, many also thanked us for quickly letting them know about the issue by email and providing instructions to continue operating their forms. Since DNS propagation takes some time, many active users were able to switch their forms to the new domain before it went down. We still have not contacted all users, we are sending emails most active users first.

  • Sep 28, 2011 @ 11:30am

    Re: This post should be taken down, Techdirt is being manipulated.

    That's an interesting legal theory. Is there *any* precedent for it, specifically interacting with a publicly accessible service in an unapproved manner being ruled making a derivative of the original? That really sounds like a load of crap, as the application never includes or accesses craigslist code, and the only infringement is redisplaying public elements of the site in in a different window.

  • Sep 27, 2011 @ 07:05am

    I only mentioned the gun because it's a center city Philadelphia theater and there was a double shooting there last year (http://abclocal.go.com/wpvi/story?section=news/local&id=7221808). I hadn't been to the theater in a while and assumed the metal detecting wand was part of their response to that incident. It was only after we saw two other people bagging up phones that we realized we had the metal detector was only being used to enforce the no phones rule. It seemed totally ridiculous given the context.

    In response to a couple other comments:

    The guard didn't care about the gun - I don't think my friend showed his license (as others pointed out, only law enforcement can require you to do so) and I'm not even sure he showed it to the guard - when the wand beeped I think he just said it was his legally registered and licensed firearm and that was it.

    I never downloaded the movie, so I don't know for certain if the xvid screener posted to a.b.movies 3 months ago is legit, but it wasn't tagged as password protected like many other crap posts, so I assumed it was good. If not, it doesn't detract from the ridiculousness of all this effort for a movie that was publicly released 2 hours after the viewing and highly likely to be leaked via screener anyway (just like most other Oscar contenders).

  • Jul 14, 2011 @ 02:23pm

    Incubus the band and their manager reach out, communicate and engage their fans through web chats, twitter/fb, special events, tons of concerts and value add there. They seem to get the change in the industry. I don't know where the game came from.

    If you watch the video of them from the SF MusicTech Summit (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUiBb9ZVCTA), they DO get it. They talk about self promotion and the change in the industry in the past decade.

    Specifically about the leak they said, "It was like, for about a day, where it felt like someone had broken into your house and had taken something you were making... kick in the balls a little bit. But a day later I realized that it took away the fear that people don't want music any more. That really reinforces that they really want it - they want to take it before you're even done with it.... we're in this weird middle zone, we don't get paid per record sold, out job is to make music and play concerts... we realized we're not the ones in control of it anymore... I'm just thrilled that people are not only enthusiastic about music, but love our music so much that they want to steal it".

  • Dec 13, 2010 @ 10:15am

    ...not all that surprising

    So far, most of the reaction from various politicians and diplomats concerning the actual content of the documents was that some of it might be slightly embarrassing, but there's been nothing all that surprising.
    I agree with the title of this post - that the US reaction to the leak is doing far more harm than the actual content of the leaks, but the notion that we haven't learned anything all that surprising is used in an odd dichotomy by wikileaks' detractors along with bemoaning the damage to national security.

    It's unfortunate to see this false notion perpetuated - it speaks to the failing of the mainstream media to examine the real issues exposed by the cables. The fact is, we've learned a lot. Glenn Greenwald breaks it down pretty well.

    (1) the U.S. military formally adopted a policy of turning a blind eye to systematic, pervasive torture and other abuses by Iraqi forces;

    (2)?the?State Department threatened Germany not to criminally investigate the CIA's kidnapping of one of its citizens who turned out to be completely innocent;

    (3) the State?Department under Bush and?Obama applied continuous pressure on the Spanish Government to suppress investigations of the CIA's torture of its citizens and the 2003 killing of a Spanish photojournalist when the U.S. military fired on the Palestine Hotel in Baghdad (see The?Philadelphia Inquirer's Will?Bunch today about this:?"The day Barack?Obama Lied to me");?

    (4) the British Government privately promised to shield Bush officials from embarrassment as part of its Iraq War "investigation";?

    (5) there were at least 15,000 people killed in Iraq that were previously uncounted;

    (6) "American leaders lied, knowingly, to the American public, to American troops, and to the world" about the Iraq war as it was prosecuted, a conclusion the Post's own former Baghdad Bureau Chief wrote was proven by the?WikiLeaks documents;

    (7)?the U.S.'s own Ambassador concluded that the July, 2009 removal of the Honduran President was illegal -- a coup -- but the State?Department did not want to conclude that and thus ignored it until it was too late to matter;

    (8) U.S. and British officials colluded to allow the?U.S. to keep cluster bombs on British soil even though Britain had signed the treaty banning such weapons, and,

    (9)?Hillary Clinton's State Department ordered diplomats to collect passwords, emails, and biometric data on U.N. and other foreign officials, almost certainly in violation of the Vienna Treaty of 1961.?

  • Jun 03, 2009 @ 10:59am

    Marked Up Tickets

    Some musicians do one better and give the fans a real reason to buy higher priced tickets.

    The band Incubus puts together VIP packages, where fans can do a meet and greet with the band before a show and get front row/pit tickets. All of the packages for each city are put up on ebay, fans pay as much as they're willing to pay, and all the proceeds go to the charity the band runs (www.makeyourselffoundation.org)

  • Feb 09, 2009 @ 11:33am

    Re: Open CRS

    please - nothing new?

    Of the 6,731 reports we sent to OpenCRS, 6,284 were new to the OpenCRS collection.

    Many CRS reports focus on long-term issues, such as the United States relationship with other countries, or key legislation. These reports keep the same report number over decades of editions. Of the 6,284 reports not in OpenCRS, 4,079 were new editions and 2,205 were completely new.

    Doesn't look that way to me.

  • Dec 10, 2007 @ 09:52pm


    By default IE does - AutoDetect proxy is enabled. IE will query DNS for a wpad entry - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_Proxy_Autodiscovery_Protocol - If firefox is set to autdetect settings for this network it will as well. Easy way to tell when the vast majority of people have opened their browser.