rangda’s Techdirt Profile


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  • Aug 12th, 2019 @ 10:41am


    Why? The contract has done exactly what was intended. Wealth has been shifted from the taxpayers/state to the corporation and politicians. You didn't think this was actually supposed to benefit the peons did you? Let them eat cake.

  • Apr 30th, 2019 @ 9:35am

    Re: Devil's Advocate

    "Please remember also, that the CA voters accepted the Verizon dependency by their election choices."

    This is most likely untrue. It depends on several assumptions that aren't necessarily accurate:

    1. That the decision was made or overseen by an elected official rather than an unelected government employee.

    2. That any public official would campaign on this particular topic and then actually follow through with whatever they said when in office. (The system is setup with incentives for this desired result to not happen.)

    3. That in the absence of #2 there would be a viable way for voters to elect someone who would tackle this issue in the desired way. I have no idea if CA state law allows write-ins for elections but even if it does, everyone would have to get together and agree to pick the same someone to write-in. And that someone would then have to have sufficient moral fiber to not cave in to the inevitable pressures and temptations. That sounds an awful lot like a political party and we have evidence of how well such a process is likely to turn out.

    The reality is that we have setup a system where getting elected requires giant bags of money. Since it's always better to spend someone else's giant bags of money than your own (assuming you have said giant bags at all) it pretty much means candidates are required to accept bribes (err, campaign contributions) to get elected. This naturally incentives the morally bankrupt to run for office and discourages the morally strong from doing so. Even if the odd morally strong person does get elected, it all but ensures that the level of corruption is high in aggregate and is "just the way things get done". Until this reality changes then the kind of government we see now is unlikely to change.

  • Apr 30th, 2019 @ 9:20am


    "Perhaps Verizon would have felt differently had it been their assets in peril."

    Having first responders sit and watch while Verizon corporate offices burned to the ground because their data connection was throttled would generate immense levels of Schadenfreude.

  • Apr 29th, 2019 @ 7:55am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "I suspect the definition of incitement is going to expand as more and more cases arise where things like this happen."

    If by that you mean members of the government are going to "expand" laws to try to exert control over and chilling effects on the populace to stifle protest then yes I agree with you.

    I don't understand why they don't just make "disagreeing with a government employee" a crime punishable by instant death and then just shoot anyone that annoys them. I mean it works for Judge Dred so clearly it would be great for 'Murica right?

  • Apr 25th, 2019 @ 9:36pm

    Re: Lifetime

    if you aren't using it why should you be able to stop others

    It's the same logic as piracy. Every pirated copy is a lost sale, and every user playing a game that isn't one of your current games is also a lost sale. In effect they are competing with their old shut down game. The temptation is to use copyright to put a competitor out of business.

  • Apr 23rd, 2019 @ 2:33pm

    Re: "Don't fly."

    While I have taken a similar approach (haven't been on a plane since 2007) that won't get you away from facial recognition as the technology moves forward.

  • Apr 23rd, 2019 @ 2:31pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    When you said "tackled" you really meant "shot repeatedly by the arresting officer's service weapon" right?

  • Apr 1st, 2019 @ 6:54am

    (untitled comment)

    "ensuring the zero-privacy status quo will live on for at least a few more years"

    If by "few more years" you mean "as long as the US government exists", then yes I agree with you.

  • Mar 27th, 2019 @ 9:34pm

    (untitled comment)

    Presumably this law only extends protections if said journalists are assaulted by members of the public. I assume that law enforcement will be free to continue their assault on journalists as (allegedly) occurred in Ferguson.

  • Mar 19th, 2019 @ 3:13pm

    (untitled comment)

    It's getting to the point where you have to assume that any interaction with law enforcement is going to result in your death, and that you should take appropriate action based on that assumption.

  • Feb 21st, 2019 @ 11:10am

    Re: Music Industry revenues and trends tell the real story

    "In the 90s mid level acts could make a lot of money selling CDs and touring, but that is not the case today"

    Citation needed. I was involved in the music industry in the late 80's and early 90's (as a DJ) and I can tell you that most (but not all) mid level acts did NOT make money from vinyl/CD sales. Contracts from the major labels were designed to eat your profit from the first 4 albums, and most mid-level acts weren't good for many more profitable albums than that. In order to make money you had to hit it big and survive for a second contract where you had more leverage or be smart and/or lucky to not sign bad contracts to lose the touring money. A couple of our monthly record pool meetings were to go over exactly these kinds of contracts and what to beware of if you decided to make music.

  • Feb 21st, 2019 @ 11:02am

    Re: Distributor or marketer?

    Think of them as the equivalent of a personal assistant. They do all the minutia and handle the details freeing you up to do stuff like make music and interact with your fans.

  • Feb 21st, 2019 @ 7:40am

    Re: yeah but...

    This is the elephant in the room that everyone seems to ignore when they cheer cord cutting on. Instead of paying $250 / month for internet/cable/phone you'll pay $250 / month for internet and maybe get free cable/phone. And as streaming proliferates every broadcaster/studio will end up being a separate stream that will cost you $10-$15/month on top of that.

  • Feb 19th, 2019 @ 6:34am

    Re: anyone's guess

    You forgot to mention that "They are, in many cases, criminals, drug dealers, rapists, etc.”

  • Feb 14th, 2019 @ 7:00am

    Re: Fair use

    Stopping comments wouldn't be good enough. Even with view only access it's entirely possible that someone outside the EU posts copyrighted content which could then be viewed in the EU. Lacking a magic copyright filter which cannot exist, the choices for someone like twitter appear to be:

    1) Leave everything as is and roll the dice that you won't get fined. Funnel some cash to appropriate parties to help ensure this outcome. 2) Block any IP from the EU from viewing any and all content that has not been approved by a content filter. For this to have any real shot you have to have a pretty high confidence level in the filter. 3) Block EU IP's from accessing your site entirely. 4) If you're really paranoid, block all EU IP's from accessing your site. Block any link where the IP is in the EU. Completely shut down all EU operations. Executives avoid ever entering an EU country.

    The problem is that #3 doesn't even fully solve the problem, non-EU users could post EU content and even though you aren't showing it you could be found to be infringing and be penalized (assuming you still have any EU operations and thus the EU has a way to get at you). For example, google has a data center in Ireland, even if they just block all EU IP's from google news, what happens if an EU link gets through the cracks and gets posted? The EU could still hit them with fines even though no EU user can see it, and since they have a business in the EU (even though it's unrelated) that gives the EU a way to get at them. The only way to really avoid fines is to go full nuclear and use #4 and totally and completely abandon the EU.

    As for what would happen, I expect major services that already have pretty good content filters (like youtube) would go with option #2. Just block the content until it passes the filter. The problem is that they may just decide to do that for everybody instead of just for EU IP's since that would be easier. I think small sites like enthusiast/hobby forums would go with #1 counting on the fact that they aren't the target of the law and nobody would bother with them. For a major site that lacks good content filtering like twitter I'm not sure what they would do.

  • Jan 7th, 2019 @ 7:13am

    Re: Depends...

    "I haven't read the Shutterstock contract at all"

    "This one strikes me as a possible misuse of royalty free stock photography"

    The level of cognitive dissonance that goes into putting the above two sentences in the same paragraph is frankly astonishing.

    If you are interested in commenting on whether this was a possible misuse, perhaps you should read the terms before commenting. Here, I'll help you out:


  • Oct 31st, 2018 @ 4:47pm

    (untitled comment)

    The lesson here is that next time Officer Gasparino should empty his service weapon into the sign holder and claim they were resisting arrest. Dead people don't get to tell their side of the story.

  • Oct 31st, 2018 @ 8:30am

    Working as intended

    Where is the problem. This is working exactly as intended. The corporation gets giant bags of money. The politicians get small bags of money and the ability to point to this so they can win at buzzword bingo come election time. A few of them will probably get cushy private sector jobs from this when they finally get voted out of office.

    The taxpayers of Wisconsin get screwed but do you really think anybody involved cares about that? That is part of the plan. Let them eat cake.

    We've created a political system which encourages the morally strong to avoid politics and the morally bankrupt to run for office. We are getting exactly the government we asked for. (Note that humans are very, very good at screwing other humans so you'd probably get a similar government no matter what you asked for.)

  • Oct 4th, 2018 @ 8:07am

    The Perfect Balance

    Clearly New Zealand should just execute everyone that attempts to enter the country. After all, anyone entering could be a nefarious criminal, so if you just kill everyone then zero criminals will enter the country.

  • Jul 31st, 2018 @ 6:52am

    Re: 'Do better, or you'll join the last company who had the job'

    It's an empty threat. Who else besides Charter/Comcast is there to choose? There are so few players in the space there is nowhere to go. Except perhaps for the state to take a crack at providing the service itself. Given the competency of government run programs I can only imagine how well that would go.

    And Charter knows this which is why they can be so belligerent.

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