Ralph-J 's Techdirt Comments

Latest Comments (31) comment rss

  • 'Quantum Copyright:' At What Point Does A Legal Copy Become Infringement?

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 17 Jan, 2013 @ 03:58am

    What about travelling with copies?

    What if I make the copy in Australia and then take my laptop, or ereader to the US?

    What if a business made 1 million copies on USB sticks in Australia and physically took them to the US to sell?

    The copying would not have taken place in the US.

  • Court Rules Yellow Pages Are Protected Speech

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 19 Oct, 2012 @ 12:47pm

    Free speech does not mean that we all have to listen

    In discussions around free speech and censorship you often hear that free speech does not include the right to be listened to.

    Someone exercising their free speech rights does not have the right to airtime on their desired radio/TV shows, to text placements in the publication of their choice, to a hall full of listening people.

    Applying this principle here would seem to suggest that they should be allowed to produce as many yellow pages as they want, but may face lawful restrictions in distributing them door-to-door, and this wouldn't hurt their freedom of speech.

  • Court Rules Yellow Pages Are Protected Speech

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 19 Oct, 2012 @ 12:45pm

    Free speech does not mean that we all have to listen

    In discussions around free speech and censorship you often hear that free speech does not include the right to be listened to.

    Someone exercising their free speech rights does not have the right to airtime on their desired radio/TV shows, to text placements in the publication of their choice, to a hall full of listening people.

    Applying this principle here would seem to suggest that they should be allowed to produce as many yellow pages as they want, but may face lawful restrictions in distributing them door-to-door, and this wouldn't hurt their freedom of speech.

  • German Consumer Group Not Happy With Diablo 3 Internet Requirements

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 26 Jul, 2012 @ 05:28am

    Their main concern is revenue from auctions

    Yes, they could disconnect the single-player mode completely, so you can't sell cheat-supported items and have an advantage over honest players.

    However, since they plan on allowing auction sales using real money, they'd be cutting off a significant part of potential future revenue as well.

  • FAA Warns Guy Who Filmed Birds Striking Plane Engine

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 08 May, 2012 @ 05:47am

    New hardware found: Boeing 737

    Locate and install driver software?

  • Guy Loses Probation Because Court Decides That Facebook & MySpace Are 'Electronic Bulletin Boards'

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 06 Apr, 2012 @ 03:55am

    Facebook and BBSs may have overlapping features, but are not the same

    While there are overlapping features, neither has all the features of the other.

    In some EU law systems, there is the concept of a "prohibition of analogies". It basically means that someone cannot said to have violated a law if the act was just very similar (analoguous) to what that law says, but not exactly the same. I wonder whether similar principles exist in US law? Obviously it wasn't really a law here, but a probation restriction.

  • UK Publishers Moan About Content Mining's Possible Problems; Dismiss Other Countries' Actual Experience

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 22 Nov, 2011 @ 01:11am

    They don't want a meritocracy

    If works could be freely analyzed, and potential customers can find the works that are really interesting to them, publishers lose the control over the marketability of their works.

    To them, there is a risk that previously lesser known artists are going to be more successful than the ones they were hoping to earn big money with, and which they are supporting with big marketing efforts and investments.

  • Company Sues Ex-Employee Because He Kept His Personal Twitter Account & Followers

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 15 Nov, 2011 @ 05:18am

    Just give them the password that was used during the employment (but change it first)

    If a password itself can be considered a "trade secret", why not change it and then reveal the password that was used during the employment? You could even have the judge present to verify the old one being entered (under secrecy).

    And what about the Terms and Conditions of Twitter? Did he sign up under his company's credentials, or private ones?

  • The Massive Complexity Of Copyright Demonstrated In A Simple Question: Can Don Draper Make A Cameo In My Novel?

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 17 May, 2011 @ 02:18am

    What about a story about an author that wrote a book...

    What about a story about an author that wrote a book with Don Draper as a cameo?

  • Police Claim That Allowing People To Film Them In Public Creates 'Chilling Effects'

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 17 May, 2011 @ 02:10am

    Re:

    "if you're not doing anything wrong, you shouldn't have any objection to being tracked/filmed/recorded/etc"

    There is no inconsistency in allowing the filming of police officers. Phrases like "nothing to hide - nothing to fear" are about protecting privacy against abuses by those in power. This does not apply here: police officers are doing public work in a public space. The people filming are not "in power".

  • Google Wins Lawsuit In France Over Censoring Autocomplete On File Sharing Terms… But Still Does It Anyway

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 11 May, 2011 @ 01:26am

    Obligations create risk

    What would happen if they had not fought the lawsuit and accepted the obligation to censor search suggestions the way the entertainment industry demands?

    1. They would have set themselves up for fines and more lawsuits if any violations were found in the future.
    2. They would have had to invest more resources into implementing and maintaining the system demanded by SNEP. Their own voluntary implementation is probably much simpler and cheaper in detail and still prevents future lawsuits.

  • EU Tried To Get US To Force ICANN To Delay .xxx Domain

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 06 May, 2011 @ 06:37am

    National-level TLD blocking threatens internet stability?

    I don't mean to defend ICANN's money grab, but where is the evidence for Kroes's claims?

    And those parents that know how to "filter .xxx domain names", will more than likely know about the other naughty sources as well.

  • DailyDirt: Placing Bets On Alternative Energy Technologies…

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 06 May, 2011 @ 02:13am

    Landscape Pollution

    Ironically, many people in the Netherlands call the energy-harnessing type of wind mills "landscape pollution". In one area in the South, where they are already particularly numerous, citizens actively protest against every new planning permission.

    Leaving the efficiency debate aside, does anyone here think that this should be a valid criticism?

  • Trying To Limit Net Access, Dutch Telcos Accidentally Force Government To Speak Out On Net Neutrality

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 03 May, 2011 @ 08:56am

    Net Neutrality also protects website operators

    Would you trust your Internet provider(s) to "approve" just the right websites and services for you? Can you be certain that your favorite website will still be available in a couple of months, even if the ISP had just discovered that the bandwidth to that website had increased?

    What might be a nuisance to end users (some websites becoming unavailable), is at the same time a serious threat to website operators. While Google may be able to pay big ISPs for the right to be included in their bandwidth bundles, smaller websites and services may not.

    Every new website or internet start-up has to secure funding, build up a user base etc. Just imagine if they also had to negotiate with hundreds of Internet service providers and mobile carriers around the world, just for the "right" to provide its services to end users...

  • Why Won't Copyright Holders Run Studies On The Actual Impact Of Piracy?

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 15 Jan, 2011 @ 03:02am

    Moral Highground

    It's because they believe that they have the moral highground: "If I create something, then I should be able to dictate that no one can copy it, regardless of whether there might be benefits in it for me."

    Also, many people simply cannot ignore the urge to create an analogy between imaginary property and real tangible property. The copying = stealing fallacy. Who would do research into letting people steal their property?

  • Ad Firm Pays Up To Studios, Promises Not To Work With 'Pirate' Sites Any More

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 22 Oct, 2010 @ 03:41am

    Users on those sites are potential legal customers!

    They are always looking to convert illegal downloaders to legitimate customers, but when there's a genuine opportunity, they throw out the baby with the bath water.

    What they fail to see, is that people visiting those sites are really interested in their products, and might easily "convert" to legal customers, if tempted in the right way (e.g. with great prices, or extras that don't come with the illegal downloads). Those are business opportunities!

  • Authors Guild Worried About iPad Ebook File Sharing… But Focused On The Wrong Thing

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 18 May, 2010 @ 01:14am

    Agism is well and alive

    Hi Mike, I get your sentiment, and I agree with your points, but the "60+ year old" argument is just plain agism. This kind of thinking is why people like my dad have a hell of a hard time to find another job in the current economy. I suggest that next time, you reword your phrases, at least to make your real opinion less obvious. Just talk about lack of experience in current technologies or something.

  • Viacom Still Not Getting It — Files Bogus Takedown And Kills Some Free Transformers Buzz

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 15 May, 2010 @ 03:30am

    Copyrights applicable to film sets?

    Don't film makers have copyrights over the film sets they create?

    Otherwise, what would prevent low-budget film crews from following other crews around, in order to use their explosions, scenes etc. for their own purposes?

    I was once in a film park that offers create-your-own-film afternoons for birthdays. They wouldn't let us shoot films on official film sets that were used in films, because these sets were copyrighted. Might have been contractual issues though...

  • Can You Copyright Blank Forms Used To File Papers With The SEC… And Then Block Selling The Filled Out Forms?

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 12 May, 2010 @ 02:22am

    The solution: layers

    Keep the forms and the entered data apart and only sell a layer containing the data.

    You'd then either need a tool to later merge the data with an "officially provided" form, or print empty forms and data on the same paper.

  • If A Site Uses Third-Party Moderators Who Do Something Bad, Does The Site Lose Safe Harbors?

    Ralph-J ( profile ), 06 May, 2010 @ 12:45am

    Are these moderators just upgraded users, or more like employees?

    Many websites allow very active users to get some extra "powers", but they're still only users. Section 230 should apply.

    On the other hand, if these 3rd-party moderators are at a comparable level to employees, for instance temp contractors from a job agency, they are fully acting on behalf of the site (by contract), and so the site should also take blame for their mess-ups.