MrTroy’s Techdirt Profile


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  • Aug 26th, 2016 @ 1:01am

    Re: Re:

    So, by extra cost to yourself you can improve a terrible experience to merely mediocre? Sounds awesome!

    The free-to-air coverage in Australia was actually pretty good, I thought.

  • Aug 26th, 2016 @ 12:55am

    Re: Not all bad news

    Create a tool utilising malicious code to try to help people against their will? What could possibly go wrong?

  • Aug 25th, 2016 @ 10:57pm


    Sounds like we'd all benefit from a simplified "Is it RICO?" flowchart, along the lines of this one for meteorites...

  • Jul 24th, 2016 @ 8:26pm


    "The C-S Programming Language Bundle" just doesn't have the same ring to it...

  • Jul 17th, 2016 @ 11:30pm

    Re: Re: The whole industry is corrupt and needs reformed

    I think I heard about that. The allergic reaction isn't actually fatal, but the dose of irony is too much for most people to handle.

  • Jul 14th, 2016 @ 7:57pm

    Re: Re: Will none of you liberals have the courage...

    I take this the other way. Every time someone tries to blame radical Islam for the evils in the world, I'll think they're talking about this guy!

  • Jul 12th, 2016 @ 7:30pm

    Everything is relative

    Terrorist attacks are a real problem.

    Yeah, but are they really? It seems to me that the reaction to terrorist attacks and the threat of terrorist attacks is a much bigger problem than the attacks themselves.

    If most of the time and resources that are currently allocated to "stopping terrorism" were instead redirected to bringing everyone to a living wage and basic education (globally, if possible)... then not only would it be more effective at reducing terrorism (IMO), but it is also likely to reduce pedestrian crime... and just be kinda nice.

    But I won't hold my breath.

  • Jun 30th, 2016 @ 10:45pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You're using the term free market, but it doesn't really count unless you understand what the words mean and use them appropriately.

    A free market means that there are no restrictions on who can buy and sell an item. The competition between buyers and between sellers allows the market to set the value of the item based on an equillibrium of supply and demand.

    I am very keen on a free market - including the freedom to choose when and where to sell or market a product.

    You're confusing free market with global/local market concepts. You can have a free local market (which isn't actually free because copyright and lack of second sale, but whatever, that's a compromise we currently live with) and a non-free global market. And localised release windows are only possible with a non-free global market, kind of by definition.

    If people don't like they choice, they don't have to enjoy the product. They could create their own and distribute them in any manner they see fit. That's the beauty of a free market.

    I make these lovely tables, but I only sell them to Scottish people who have lived for less than three years in the British isles, and they have to sign a contract affirming that they may never sell the table to anyone else or else ownership reverts to me. But I'm not forcing anyone to buy these tables, they're free to create their own and distribute them in any manner they see fit. Free market, yay! Yeah, no.

    The stepped release concept is in some part to release a film or whatever in the best paying market first, so that they can (like all good business should) extract as much profit as possible for their shareholders and owners. Releasing a product into lower dollar markets first would just support the natural flow from low cost to high cost centers, handing (diminished) profits to others.

    And that made sense in the '80s. Why not just release it TO THE WORLD at the higher price, then step the price down as you'd normally release to wider, lower cost, markets? You know, live in the 21st century and reap all the same benefits as your legacy business model with all the same advantages of a global marketplace? I mean, really?

  • Jun 23rd, 2016 @ 12:02am


    Those threats, regardless of how many of them are empty, in total ruin lives and I can't find a good reason to protect them.

    Granted that we're talking about Australia here and not America, so protected speech isn't even a thing... on the internet, how can you tell that a threat is empty? Does that imply that all threats on the internet should be prosecuted as if they were real and imminent? What if the person^H^H^H^H^H^Hdickhead posting the threat lives in another city? Another country?

    And if it's the totality of the threats that causes harm, where none of them is actionable by itself... then how do you possibly handle that within the scope of the law? Every poster has to spend their share of the 3 year total jail term in jail*?

    I am aware, that it's a difficult subject and we probably won't see a nuanced or narrow law from any legislation on this planet, but wouldn't it be great if we did?

    Actually, I don't believe it would even be good. It has been shown uncountable times through history that it is nearly impossible to change society through enacting laws, so it really doesn't matter how well written the law is - it won't fix society. It could *possibly* fix the problem if you manage to incarcerate the entire population of potential offenders, but that really just swaps in a whole different problem.

    If you want to change society, you have to change society. There are no shortcuts or ways around dealing with the root of this problem. If you want to live in a society in which it is unacceptable to treat women (or anyone) in this way, then make it unacceptable.

    * - That would actually be pretty funny.

  • Jun 22nd, 2016 @ 8:19pm


    So if this person had walked up to another person and said the same thing, would it just be "trolling", or would it be more serious?

    Why does the law mention venue at all? And why doesn't it define "serious offense"? I stand by my declaration that this law is the equivalent to an "on the internet" patent, and is about as useful to polite society.

    I do concede the point that this law's existence is a useful foil to people asking for more bad internet-related laws, but it's akin to saying that we don't need a bear to patrol our home, because a mountain lion is already doing the job.

    I'm also Australian, but I don't think that a law has to apply to you before you're qualified to comment on its quality, particularly since this law contains exactly zero cultural nuance.

  • Jun 22nd, 2016 @ 5:32pm

    Re: Re:

    Not to mention, this sounds like a pile-on law - making it illegal to do illegal stuff "on the internet".

    If it's already illegal face-to-face, then you don't need the internet law. If it's not illegal face-to-face, then why is it illegal on the internet? If these laws end up pushing abuse off the internet and into face-to-face encounters... have we actually improved anything?

  • Jun 22nd, 2016 @ 5:30pm

    Re: being drunk is not an excuse to do whatever you want.

    Sometimes I think I'd like to see it go the other way around, myself. If being drunk was a multiplier on any sentence, rather than a mitigator, then I like to think we'd see people doing less stupid stuff while drunk...

    Of course, I could write pages about why it's actually a terrible idea, so I leave it at occasional daydreams.

  • Jun 20th, 2016 @ 9:10pm


    Your all arguing about whether he is right or not. It simply doesnt matter.

    You may be correct that it doesn't matter, though that's a symptom of a much larger systematic failure... but who is arguing about Brennan being right?

    As for "everyone scrambl[ing] to prove him wrong", that's not happening. Everyone is merely pointing out that Brennan has ALREADY been proven wrong. The work was done months ago, because everyone knew that this kind of lie was inevitable and wanted to have the data ready to prove it.

    Do you have any suggestions for how better to fight against Congress pushing bad mandates other than pushing back on invalid assertions?

  • Jun 20th, 2016 @ 8:49pm

    Re: Re: Re: Idiot or liar

    You mean it's been working for every administration for at least 50 years?

  • Jun 20th, 2016 @ 8:44pm

    Pictures of earth, from space

    Real-time pictures aren't as useful as you might expect, unless you're taking pictures from a geo-synchronous sattelite. At 34 degrees north, I'm not sure how feasible it is to get real-time satellite images that are clear enough to identify a small boat.

    See also

  • Jun 16th, 2016 @ 7:04pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Behavior vs. Identity


    we can't judge groups or ideologies or institutions based on single actors, or even the more obvious subsets.

    But we can judge them on the recorded content of the ideology and the behaviour of the founders.

    Now, it's entirely possible that you're not making that judgement in accordance to your faith, but then it's unclear whether you think we should be judging you based on your faith as recorded by the founders of the faith (as opposed to the modern tenets of the faith?), or based on your own personal actions and expression.

    If you should only ever judge someone based on the original tenets of their faith, then how can you possibly account for bad actors in a good faith? Or good actors in a bad faith. Now, I'm not entirely certain that a bad faith even exists, except in the minds of people who are misinterpreting other peoples' faiths, but even if you accept their existence, it seems impossible to actually apply your ideology to the real world without an unacceptably high failure rate.

  • Jun 16th, 2016 @ 5:58pm

    Re: Re:

    That only makes sense if he was notified that he'd been removed from the watchlist, and that doesn't sound like any watchlist behaviour that I've ever heard of...

  • Jun 15th, 2016 @ 1:00am

    Re: So what if the terrorist was born here? His terrorist parents immigrated.

    Why stop there? Native Americans should really be banning those European terrorist immigrants, too. Given how many wars the descendants of those immigrants have started, I'm amazed they were allowed in at all.

  • May 31st, 2016 @ 6:38pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Notwithstanding, using trademark to make a point about a copyright case is disingenuous at best.

    Nobody is claiming that Oracle has a trademark on the Java API. I'm pretty sure it's not eligible for trademark protection. It's possible that Oracle could hold patents on the implementation of Java, and there's certainly history for patent-encumbered standards... but that was never a point made in the case, so would be irrelevant even if true.

    Do you also think that IBM, Microsoft, GNU and others are creating *direct* clones of C99 because they've brazenly copied the interface/specification in their C compilers, despite that they are implemented independently and differently? What about all the LISP dialects? Where does it end?

  • May 24th, 2016 @ 6:17pm

    Re: Music Industry

    Many of my artist/composer clients have made hit records that are staples of the dance music scene nationwide, and they make almost nothing---it is really unfair and ridiculous. Unless you are famous (Lady Gaga or Beyonce), you won't make enough money from royalties, license fees, and record sales to continue your music career.

    I'm not sure how to reconcile these two sentences. What's the difference between being a staple of the dance music scene nationwide, and being famous? Is it the number of plays, or the name recognition?

    Surely royalties should be based on the number of plays, and not the name recognition? Unless Lady Gaga and Beyonce have managed to leverage their name recognition to negotiate better royalty schedules, but that has nothing to do with the services playing the music, and everything to do with the labels.

    Of course, if we required Spotify and other services to pay adequate royalties to compensate artist and composers in a manner comparable to amounts paid in the old system, these services would fail financially.

    Yes, if they are forced to pay more, then they will disappear, and the thousands of artists who were making money from these services will no longer be able to make money. The labels will once again become the only way to secure distribution, and society will benefit... how?

    I think we can agree that the purpose of copyright law is to provide incentives for talented artists and writers to devote their careers to their work.

    Nope. The purpose of copyright law is to provide incentives for talented artists and writers to create works. And untalented ones, too. Whether they are able to devote a career to it or not is completely orthogonal to the law, though it does happen to provide a mechanism to do so - but as has been discussed on this site at length, that is just the implementation of the law, not the intent.

    You do raise good points, and I tend to agree with you that just because Spotify and Pandora are paying most of their revenue in licensing doesn't necessarily prove that they're paying enough... but all of the figures that get thrown around seem to indicate that these services actually are paying fair rates, but that money simply isn't making it to the artists, instead getting lost in the collection agencies and labels. It seems like your anger should be at the labels for paying poor royalties, rather than the services for not paying the labels enough.

    I'm curious if you have any visibility over musicians that don't rely on royalties for income - those who work on music for movies, games and tv shows, or playing live music exclusively, and what those artists think of modern music services?

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