Modplan 's Techdirt Comments

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  • 'Radical' Publisher Claims Copyright On Free Collection Of Marx And Engels Works; Orders Them Taken Down

    Modplan ( profile ), 25 Apr, 2014 @ 09:24pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Delicious, delicious irony...

    Stalinism is an interpretation of Marx's works, many of which are directly counter to what Marx argued for. It is a view of how to implement communism, not communism itself.

  • Tech Companies Speak Out About NSA Encryption Breaks And They're Not Happy

    Modplan ( profile ), 09 Sep, 2013 @ 06:04am

    Re: Re:

    But they can willingly hand over the data that indicates or shows you jaywalking without telling you. I'm not sure exactly how that's better.

  • UK Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg Defends Hard Drive Destruction, But Not Miranda Detention

    Modplan ( profile ), 26 Aug, 2013 @ 07:52am

    Re: Who's information, anyway?

    I've been asking this question: what the hell does the British government have to do with the NSA that it claims that their national security and lives of their people are at risk?

    The files and information that they're so very interested in are from American government sources, not British.

    Some leaks have so far have been about GCHQ, not the NSA, which is sort of a UK equivalent to the NSA.

    It's also important to point out that the UK Government gave the choice of destroying the hard drives, or being litigated by the government and essentially stopping the ability for the Guardian to publish anything. For Clegg to argue that nothing was censored to ignore what was demanded of the Guardian, as well as the fact that destroying the hard drives is obviously intended to stop or deter the Guardian from publishing further.

  • More NSA Spying Fallout: Groklaw Shutting Down

    Modplan ( profile ), 20 Aug, 2013 @ 09:31am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Secure E-Mail

    Canonical is not a US organisation, it's based in the UK. Also, it's impossible for it to be "as suspect" as Windows or iOS considering the vast majority of code is GPL'd or similar. The most suspect parts would be the automatic routing of desktop search queries via Canonical to Amazon and various others thanks to the online search feature now default in the desktop, but this can be turned off and completely uninstalled if you wish. If you really feel that isn't enough, feel free to inspect the GPL'd source code until you are happy.

  • Massive Overblocking Hits Hundreds Of UK Sites

    Modplan ( profile ), 15 Aug, 2013 @ 02:30pm

    ORG are also trying to make the court orders that demand blocking of sites public, which can be seen over at Think for the UK, in a sense.

  • Canonical Goes Big In Attempt To Crowdfund Exclusive Ubuntu Phone

    Modplan ( profile ), 22 Jul, 2013 @ 05:49pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    In this case the idea is not that you have exactly the same UI. You have certain things that are common, certain things that are similar, and the rest is made unique to that size device and the available input. The same applies to the work being done on KDE. It's only really Windows that has tried to use almost exactly the same UI across everything.

  • Recording Of Bradley Manning's Statement In Court Leaked

    Modplan ( profile ), 13 Mar, 2013 @ 09:20pm


    There was a rushed transcript made that you can see here:

  • Derek Khanna's Favorite Techdirt Posts Of The Week

    Modplan ( profile ), 17 Feb, 2013 @ 04:21pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It's not an issue of how difficult it is to access the suppressed speech.

    By definition, censorship is about how difficult it is to access or to make certain kinds of speech. The act of censoring something is about making it more difficult to express or to see the expression of certain things.

    When a domain name is seized, the seizure is not for the purpose of suppressing speech because of the ideas being expressed.

    So you're saying every use of a DMCA notice, for example, is clearly not censorship and is justified because it is not for the purposes of suppressing certain ideas?

    All you're doing is making the argument that because we used x legal/technological tool that is about stopping copyright infringement to block access to something, then it can never be unconstitutional.

  • Derek Khanna's Favorite Techdirt Posts Of The Week

    Modplan ( profile ), 17 Feb, 2013 @ 03:15pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Censorship in the First Amendment context means suppressing speech because of the ideas being expressed.

    It can also mean the way in which they are expressed, one of those involving uses that can be classed as copyright infringement. That is after all why fair use exists, as copyright can be used to forbid speech because it is expressed a certain way, even if the use of the copyrighted work could be said to do no harm, or the harm in the speech being censored is more than then benefit. So your distinction is a false one.
    In that regard, the censorship on TD is far worse than SOPA. With SOPA, no speech is suppressed because of the ideas expressed therein, but on TD, speech is suppressed by "reporting" it by those who disagree with the ideas being expressed.

    You've convinced me, making you click on something to view a comment that is still easily visible is far worse than attempting to completely remove any access to it, as well as removing any source of funding to the person that said it.

  • China Tries To Bolster Claim To Disputed Pacific Islands By Upgrading Mobile Coverage There

    Modplan ( profile ), 12 Feb, 2013 @ 04:59am

    No doubt that another reason for providing access is that the internet will "filtered" of any site that states China does not have a claim to these lands. A helpful means of spreading propaga...err..important information to all citizens.

  • When The Creators Of Both The Internet And The Web Come Out Against The ITU, Shouldn't You Too?

    Modplan ( profile ), 10 Dec, 2012 @ 10:24am

    There's an interesting counter point at Technollama that suggests much of this is overblown, and is more to do with maintaining the status quo rather than legitimate fears:

    Berners-Lee seems to end up playing precisely into this with the quoted part:

    "I think it's important that these existing structures continue to be used without any attempt to bypass them," he said.

  • First Amendment Concerns About Internet Radio Bill Not Just Overblown But Completely Backwards

    Modplan ( profile ), 03 Dec, 2012 @ 06:53pm


    Except it is very clear that to interpret this bill as banning blog posts about doing direct deals you'd have to be an idiot. It is like saying a ban on a harmful substance is also a ban on any information about it.

  • Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

    Modplan ( profile ), 27 Sep, 2012 @ 03:37pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Cheers for the informative reply (and the laugh).

  • Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

    Modplan ( profile ), 26 Sep, 2012 @ 04:14pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    A wild Modplan appeared!

    This is because it is immoral to exploit other people for profit.

    I take issue with this definition. The reason is that I feel it fails to distinguish between the output of the labour and the individual. Under your definition of exploitation, selling a copy of a book or song you had written to friend is exploitation as I am making money off of your work without your permission.

    Perhaps exploitation was a poor word choice. The point is, when you talk of commercial gain as immoral, it fails to distinguish between the character of that use. I doubt you'd truly agree that commercial gain in all circumstances is wrong, but what exactly makes a particular commercial use a form of exploitation in comparison to the above example? Exploitation implies you being taken for granted. Labels exploit artists by relying on naivety and positive public image of being a signed musician for example. If I had printed copies of your song on CD's, provided full attribution to you, linked to your website and made no claim to copyright, would you maintain that this was exploitation? The only difference between the first example and the last is the scale of the operation. I may have received your song from a friend for free who didn't want it any more, sold it on and made a profit - yet this is protected by first sale, and I'd imagine you wouldn't argue this in itself was wrong. Exploitation implies a difference in the nature of what I was doing, but here the only difference is the scale.

    Is Nina Paley being exploited by theatres that show her film? Now you 'll say that she gave permission, so no, but remove the permission question. If nothing else but permission makes it exploitation, then we are back at square one - it is immoral for me to sell a single copy of your song to a friend without your permission. To me at least, your use of exploitation implied a sort of trading on name or reputation, or a form of fraud, and conflated this with any selling of works.

    Your example comparing Megaupload and the Pirate Bay doesn't make much sense to me either. Both are indiscriminate. The Pirate Bay makes money from advertising without regard to the content. Megaupload paid users without regard to the content. Both are indiscriminate services.

    You could argue that an individual who benefited from that service and did so knowing what they uploaded was illegal to do so was being exploitative, but it's hard to extend that to Megaupload without running into a problem with Pirate Bay. Neither Pirate Bay nor Megaupload know the contents of everything uploaded without using something akin to contentID, and we know that isn't 100% trustworthy, nor can they ever hope to provide an environment of perfect enforcement. The only difference is the arrangement of the business model. Both benefited from having large amounts of copyrighted work available for download, both make money from having more users. Megaupload just paid people to upload (which also gave a way for artists to make money by making their work available on Megaupload).

  • The Legacy Entertainment Industry's Business Model: Charge A Ridiculous Markup On The 'Copy File' Command

    Modplan ( profile ), 05 Sep, 2012 @ 12:55pm

    Re: Re: Re: WRONG-- property itself is a government granted monopoly

    Creation of something knew is something scarce and something you can sell. Once created and released, it can be copied easily, cheaply and quickly. Also Bob, asking people to kick in their fair share is a donation. Pretending the modern PC doesn't exist as you use it to download the film and suing people who don't conform to your delusion is called IP maximalism.

    And no Bob, the ability cite, quote, remix or parody are not benefited by IP maximalism. In fact, fair use is the exact opposite of that, y'know, being exceptions to a copyright holders control an' all.

  • Oops: After Seizing & Censoring Rojadirecta For 18 Months, Feds Give Up & Drop Case

    Modplan ( profile ), 30 Aug, 2012 @ 08:36am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Prior restraints are content-based restrictions; copyright laws are content-neutral. You just don't have the same First Amendment concerns. With obscenity, there is a possibility that the work at issue will turn out to not be obscene, i.e., will turn out to be constitutionally-protected speech. There's no similar concern with copyright.

    This alone as the premise of your argument makes no sense. You are basically stating fair use doesn't exist (even as you attempt to acknowledge it later). That with a claim of copyright infringement, there is never the possibility of a fair use ruling and so it turns out to be protected speech. That is after all the entire basis of fair use - that there are certain kinds of infringement that are actually protected speech, exempted from the copyright holders normal control over how a work may be used. This ability for certain kinds of infringement to be considered fair use is somehow not akin to finding certain obscene materials to be protected speech?

    Also regarding Arcara, see the previous lengthy debates. Arcara only worked because the case was not about copyright at all, or even about the content of what was being sold at the store and as the court argued, meant they didn't have to consider first amendment protections, issues like fair use, etc. Arcara only works if the case isn't about copyright or content at all. And again, as regularly pointed out in those debates, Arcara still recognised situations where similar means could be found to be prior restraint if the target of the remedy placed undue burden on protected speech.
    Yet we have not traditionally subjected every criminal and civil sanction imposed through legal process to "least restrictive means" scrutiny simply because each particular remedy will have some effect on the First Amendment activities of those subject to sanction. Rather, we have subjected such restrictions to scrutiny only where it was conduct with a significant expressive element that drew the legal remedy in the first place, as in O'Brien, 3 or where a statute based on a [478 U.S. 697, 707] nonexpressive activity has the inevitable effect of singling out those engaged in expressive activity, as in Minneapolis Star. This case involves neither situation, and we conclude the First Amendment is not implicated by the enforcement of a public health regulation of general application against the physical premises in which respondents happen to sell books.

    I really don't get how you can keep claiming that Arcara states it's OK to seize anything relating to copyrighted works, or that copyright is somehow immune to First Amendment consideration.

    We recognize that the D. C. Circuit spoke too broadly when it declared copyrights "categorically immune from challenges under the First Amendment."

    Eldred v Ashcroft

    The entire basis of your post also ignores the fact that the aim of the government seizure was to limit the distribution of certain materials. These materials were claimed to be copyright infringing. To state that this is akin to Arcara is to completely misread it, which is something you're fond of doing apparently.

    Saying that seizing the domain name is simply seizing the instrument is the same as saying seizing the printers you use to produce your newspaper is simply seizing the instrument. What we care about are to what ends are they seizing the instrument. Are they seizing it because of a health and safety issue as in Arcara, or because they wanted to stop the dissemination of certain materials they presume to be illegal?

    In which case we come back to your attempt at dissecting the obscenity analogy.
    But, as Techdirt likes to point out, determination of fair use is simple and objective. Not like obscenity.

    For someone who claims to read Techdirt avidly, you really like claiming exactly the obvious of what they state.

  • The Inevitable Crowdfunding Backlash When People Realize Projects Fail & Change

    Modplan ( profile ), 29 Aug, 2012 @ 06:55am

    I'm really not sure how the project has failed.

    They've built a decentralised social network. It works. Not every individual aspect of that goal has been met yet, but the project has been going for 2 years already.

    The founders moving on hasn't shut down the project, nor has it meant the money they got 2 years ago has been put elsewhere. They've also stated previously that some of may go back into Diaspora.

  • Apparently The Purpose Of Copyright: Keeping Our Ancestors' Promise To Noah Webster

    Modplan ( profile ), 25 Aug, 2012 @ 08:42am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The nature of copyright

    Copyright law is fundamentally based on the assumption of high costs of production combined with less powerful authors, artists etc. who want to get their works printed in significant numbers.

    I'm not sure how copyright guarantees the creation of works "regardless of what the free market has to say", seeing as it only allows for you to stop others copying and selling the work, allowing you to both maintain higher prices and at least attempt to capture more money from those who want to use it or produce it. At some level it is still subject to the free market in that there has to be someone willing to pay that price, it is merely distorted so that only the copyright holder is allowed to copy and sell work even as it is widely available.

    It is also fundamentally a right granted to promote the creation and dissemination of works, though not the only one and in some (perhaps many) cases not even the most significant. It also does not ensure artists get paid fairly - a goal that doesn't make a lot of sense. Does someone who gets paid $1,000,000 for a single song fair compared to someone who gets paid a comparative pittance despite consistently recording and performing their works? Here you see that regardless of copyright or not, the market always has something to say, "fairness" be damned.

    We should therefore try to find a happy medium between outright piracy and strict adherence to the m?urs of copyright law.

    Which will never happen without a severely locked down society where every device you own has spyware on it that checks you are authorised to listen or to watch or to play. Piracy is rampant and has been for some time. That hasn't stopped artists earning a living doing their craft, nor can it be said that is has decreased the artists earning a living doing their craft. It can't even have been said to have significantly damaged the established industries.

  • EU To Open Up Secret Clinical Trial Data; TPP Looking Even More Retrogressive

    Modplan ( profile ), 19 Jul, 2012 @ 04:59am

    I remember a story a long time ago about a trade agreement between the EU and South Korea:

    It stated that such data cannot be used, with no distinction between public or private data, so I wander how that'll be affected. Only reason I remember is because I wrote about it /selfpromotion.

  • EU Commissioner Reveals He Will Simply Ignore Any Rejection Of ACTA By European Parliament Next Week

    Modplan ( profile ), 26 Jun, 2012 @ 11:08am

    Re: Re: Re: The Mighty Buzzard

    Nowhere did Glyn say it was illegal, only that De Gucht, quite accurately, stated that he would try again to get ACTA passed by resubmitting it even after it has been rejected.

    How that was non-factual at all I don't know, nor did it even have to heave to heavily rely on inferring anything - what was stated was perfectly clear.

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