Richard Bennett’s Techdirt Profile


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  • Apr 29th, 2020 @ 11:37am

    Masnick misunderstands law

    Masnick tries to make the word "Official" in the title of Georgia's Official Annotated Code do more work than it can do. The Georgia codes themselves have always been devoid of copyright protection, as they should be.

    But a book of annotated codes is very different from a book of codes because the annotations contain opinions, summaries, and interpretations of legal cases that are no more "official" than the sources they draw upon. As the Supreme Court notes: "Georgia and JUSTICE GINSBURG emphasize that the annotations do not purport to provide authoritative explanationsof the law and largely summarize other materials, such as judicial decisions and law review articles."

    Works of this nature are copyright protected regardless of who pays for them to be created. Hence, the 4 dissenting justices (Thomas, Alito, Ginsburg, and Breyer) are right and the majority is wrong. The authorship standard is the only possible leg the majorty opinion has to stand on.

  • Apr 29th, 2020 @ 11:25am

    This is a deployment report, not a happiness report.

    Critics of the FCC Broadband Deployment Report don't seem to understand its purpose. Congress ordered the FCC to issue regular reports on the deployment of advanced networks, not on their use or on the nature of the broadband market or how much subscriptions cost or how many homes have computers or any number of other fascinating questions.

    Hence, the question the FCC has been asked by Congress is quite different from the one that Bodey and Rosenworcel wish it had been asked.

    Is broadband being extended into unserved areas at a reasonable and timely rate, yes or no?

    Are existing networks being regularly upgraded to higher speeds, yes or no?

    The answer to the relevant questions is yes, and has been yes for decades.

    The questions that come up relative to subscription rates is whether Congress should fund programs to increase the Lifeline subsidy or other programs along the lines of Comcast's Internet Essentials. If encouraging more people to buy Internet subscriptions is something Congress cares about, all it has to do is say so and write some checks. I don't think any ISP in America would be disinterested in signing up more subscribers to subsidized plans.

  • Apr 27th, 2020 @ 6:44pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Fake comment

    What relevance does the construct "people with a functioning brain" have for a Bodey comment thread?

    [This is gonna be choice.]

  • Apr 22nd, 2020 @ 10:21am

    Fake comment

    I didn't write that, Bode did.

  • Apr 17th, 2020 @ 11:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: More fake news from Bodey McBodeface

    You said what you said.

  • Apr 16th, 2020 @ 1:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: More fake news from Bodey McBodeface

    When people say things like "my anecdote trumps your data" offering more data is fruitless. This isn't my first visit to TD.

  • Apr 16th, 2020 @ 9:52am

    Re: Re: More fake news from Bodey McBodeface

    My anecdotal experience tell me you're full of shit

    Classic TechDirt reader reaction.

  • Apr 15th, 2020 @ 5:22pm

    More fake news from Bodey McBodeface

    Another day, another fake news post from TechDirt's resident hypochondriac.

    American broadband is excellent compared to the rest of the world, as every credible study and report from Speedtest by Ookla and Akamai has shown for at least the past decade.

    Getting wired broadband to rural areas is a global problem that we don't do any worse than anybody else does. Rural broadband isn't a competition problem, it's a subsidy problem. If it were easy to solve, Tom Wheeler and Julius Genachowski would have fixed it in their 8 years heading the Obama FCC.

    Chairman Pai has addressed this issue much more aggressively than his predecessors, and he deserves some praise for that.

    McBodeface is a fool.

  • Apr 2nd, 2020 @ 6:32pm

    Derangement zone

    This post is more deranged than the typical Bodey McBodeface post, quite an achievement.

    Nobody takes BroadbandNow seriously as a data source, of course.

  • Feb 27th, 2020 @ 9:36am

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

    I stand by my statement, regardless of how many times you insist that I try again.

  • Feb 27th, 2020 @ 9:00am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I will note that HTF does not accept anonymous comments.

  • Feb 27th, 2020 @ 8:59am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    This is not the appropriate venue for discussing any issues you or anyone else may have regarding other blogs. My invitation stands to discuss HTF on HTF.

  • Feb 27th, 2020 @ 7:38am

    Re: Re:

    You're welcome to leave comments on my blog regarding any information you believe to be incorrect. I give such criticism due weight and routinely correct any errors I may make.

    My point is that Techdirt would do well to uphold the high standards of journalistic integrity we practice at High Tech Forum.

    Is that too much to ask?

  • Feb 26th, 2020 @ 12:16pm


    I'd like to see The Dirt reject anonymous comments. This would set an example for the FCC to follow.

  • Feb 26th, 2020 @ 12:12pm

    Where's the correction?

    When is The Dirt going to admit that Brode's claim that AT&T "played a starring role in killing both the FCC's 2010 and 2015 net neutrality rules" is false?

    Anyone can make a mistake, especially when they're expressing opinions on issues they don't understand. But it's cowardly not to admit to errors and correct them.

  • Feb 14th, 2020 @ 4:00pm

    The concept of proof seems to escape this one...

    Let's rewind to the first principle of argument. When you make a claim, you're obligated to provide evidence that your claim is true. Simply repeating the claim and asserting "it's true because I say so" doesn't cut it. Repeating the claim several times without evidence doesn't cut it. Saying the truth of the claim is "is irrelevant [because switching]" also doesn't cut it

    The ISP's ultimate power is to cut you off. Short of that, any attempt by an ISP to redirect, modify, or shape your user experience is limited for several reasons:

    • Every interference can be circumvented through various kinds of encryption, up to and including VPNs.

    • Every interference can be circumvented through various alternate providers of DNS and other services.

    • Any such attempt is limited by the fact that no ISP can operate without paying customers.

    • Any such attempt is limited by the fact that our ultimate power is to refuse to use the Internet at home.

    • Any such attempt is limited by truth-in-adversing statutes enforced by the FTC, the DOJ, and state laws.

    The efficacy of these protections is proved by the fact that no ISP has ever redirected an Internet user to an alternate destination, an outcome you posit as realistic in the absence of Title II net neutrality.

    I see that you're not technical enough to appreciate the information I've shared with you, so let me offer an analysis that you should be able to understand: if ISPs can do the things you're worried about, why haven't they? If this were a serious discussion, you would be able to cite specific examples, and such examples would be fairly widespread.

    Free Press has tried to show examples of ISP misbehavior that includes Madison River and a number of things that either didn't happen or which had nothing to do with an ISP, such as Apple blocking certain dodgy apps from its app store or Netflix contracting with a transit provider that lacked the capacity to carry its traffic.

    That's all I've got for you, so feel free to go on saying "this is true because I say so" a dozen or more times. So I'll just sit back and giggle.

  • Feb 14th, 2020 @ 1:41pm

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

    You made the claim that ISPs can do things to interfere with the user experience of the Internet that Google can't do. I've showed several things that Google can do that ISPs can't in search, browsers, applications, and operating systems. I've also shown that Google has the power to affect an audience three orders of magnitude larger than the audience of any one ISP. And many of the abuses you claim ISPs can commit are impossible on encrypted HTTPS and DoH streams.

    Rather than admitting that my claims are true, you resort to name-calling and goalpost shifting about the costs of switching to alternative service providers. This is quite rich given that the cost of switching from an Android phone to an iPhone is higher than switching from AT&T to Comcast or T-Mobile. TM will pay you to switch. Switching from a Mac to a PC is much more dear, yet people do it every day.

    But the key fact about ISP switching is that we all do it several times day: when we go to work, when we use our mobile devices, and when we connect in public spaces. Very, very few people are locked into one ISP all the time.

    Antitrust regulators are no longer impressed by the switching cost argument. Leaving Google search has severe consequences for users because the ability to provide search is governed in part by the number of users the search service has. Each user helps Google refine its algorithms by choosing which results they will follow and how much time they'll spend on them. Duck Duck Go can't overcome this advantage.

    The entire argument for NN is about what the service providers can do. Your mistaken suppositions about how users might react to these imaginary abuses don't conform to the observed behavior of real people interacting with genuinely biased services such as Google and Facebook.

    Bode needs to admit he made false claims in his post, and you should simply consider what I've shown you without trying to weasel your way out of your errors.

  • Feb 14th, 2020 @ 11:41am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:


  • Feb 14th, 2020 @ 10:36am


    There's that good old-fashioned TechDirt charm.

  • Feb 14th, 2020 @ 10:27am

    Re: Re:

    It wouldn't be The Dirt without a conspiracy theory. If the commenter is impersonating Jim Cicconi, he or she is doing a pretty good job. You can verify the accuracy of points the comment makes.

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