Mike C.’s Techdirt Profile

virtualchoirboy

About Mike C.

Programmer working for a mid-sized business specializing in commercial insurance management software (policies, claims, billing, reporting, etc) and I primarily work with the claims software.



Posted on Techdirt - 6 April 2013 @ 12:00pm

Mike C's Favorite Techdirt Posts Of The Week

from the prenda,-prenda,-prenda dept

Prenda, prenda, prenda... (hat tip to Jan Brady). What... you thought I'd lead with something else? Ohhhhh, fine!

So here we are at the end of another week and what a week it was. We started off Monday with April Fool's Day and there were a couple of fools to be found. How Viacom expects the judge to keep a straight face when blatantly misconstruing the clear regulations in the DMCA is beyond me. And NATO... WTF? As a home based employee, I'm lucky if wear pants on any given day. There's no way your run of the mill "hactivist" is going to wear a uniform. Of course, the biggest tease of the day has to go to Mike's reminder of the looming appearance by Prenda Law in Judge Wright's courtroom. After that article posted, I barely got any real work done as I was scouring for other opinons. Of course, that drove me to follow Popehat on Twitter which turned out to be one of the best decisions of the week.

Tuesday started out with a hint of the logical disconnect to come with a follow-up story about Paul Hansmeier and his attempt to branch off as a professional Class Action Objector. I'm beginning to believe he's gotten to the point where he really believes the words coming out of his mouth are true - a scary proposition. Of course, we didn't have to wait too long for the extinction-level event to take place. Prenda showed up, plead the fifth and left - all in less time than it takes to get a pizza delivered. They pissed off the judge and gave me (via Ken/Popehat) my favorite phrase of the week: incandescently angry. Ken White's analysis was, to put it mildly, also a great read. We now get to wait for the delivery of what we hope to be a nuclear (but well reasoned) response. Of course, that agony ended up being tinged with anger at seeing how Congress is planning to debate CISPA behind closed doors. A government of the people, by the people and FOR the people? Not lately...

Wednesday gave us a follow up to a prank from Monday which led to my 12 year old son asking "Why are people so stupid?" Even in 6th grade, he understands enough basic chemistry to know what that is. Of course, in our panic driven environment these days (if you see something, say something), you have to wonder if it was an inevitable outcome. And speaking of outcomes, does anything think this could possibly have a good one? Of course, predictions seen on Techdirt could never come true, could they???? We also had the USPTO offering a final rejection of an Apple patent that Samsung supposedly infringed. Since the case is still rattling around the courts, who wants to bet this adds another 2-3 years to it's duration?

On Thursday, I had a combination of family and work matters intrude, but did manage to catch what turned out to be my Favorite Techdirt Comment of The Week. In a follow-up story to DMCA takedown by Prince, Mike posted a link to the video in question and an analysis of why it was Fair Use and how the takedown should have taken that into consideration. Of course, we had a few copyright trolls show up to which reader S. T. Stone gave a rather comprehensive reply, garnering a First Word. Trolls being what they are couldn't let it rest, but S. T. Stone came back with a second, just as eloquent and insightful response. Well done!

Nothing like finishing out the week with a little insanity where the EFF helpfully points out that based on public statements from the DOJ, it's illegal for a 12 year old to read the New York Times online, but perfectly fine if he reads the print version. Cue the dog with the tilted head/WTF? look on it's face. And of course, how can we have a week without the entertainment industry telling us how we're doing it wrong? Wait... I know... I've got the perfect solution to the music industry financial crisis - bands just need to sell ads to be placed in the middle of their songs!!! All they have to do is take their own advice now and we'll all be saved. Yay!!! Something tells me they're not going to listen though. Oh well - back to waiting for Judge Wright's incandescently angry order... :-)

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Posted on Techdirt - 4 February 2012 @ 12:00pm

Mike C's Favorite Techdirt Posts Of The Week

from the occasional-flashes-of-insight dept

Another week gone and another chance for everyone to see Techdirt through someone else's eyes. While I may not be as prosaic and prolific of a commenter as some of the regulars, I hope you find some common threads in what I found poignant this week on Techdirt.

We start with the new research report from Floor64, The Sky Is Rising. While regular readers here were not surprised at the results, my first thought was how to get big content business to read and, more importantly, understand the salient points put forth. As usual, the comments ran back and forth over the standard arguments, but for me, the one from Janis stood out as an indicator of things to come where creators are no longer required to be massively successful in order to earn something from their efforts. As for the rest of the day, we had some of the all too typical indicators that the major content studios are going to continue acting like spoiled toddlers. Color me surprised... NOT!.

Tuesday morning had an article from Glyn Moody that hit close to home. Until my division was spun off and sold late last year, I was a programmer for LexisNexis (LN is a subsidiary of Reed-Elsevier). Despite my desire for the company to prosper so I could continue to receive a paycheck, the Elsevier publishing division was always one I delighted seeing in decline. I firmly believe that, as a whole, mankind is better served through open and shared research. I, for one, hope this latest boycott and alternative publishing effort succeed. Of course, following that, we had more examples of clueless content owners and their overblown sense of entitlement.

Wednesday brought some stark reminders of just how broken our current system of government really is - especially that last one. Think about it - a Senator who is doing what he can to FIX some of the very serious problems in this country is being attacked for doing his job? We really need to get out of this "R vs. D" mentality and focus on the individual issues. If only we could get people to realize that you can agree with someone on one thing and disagree with them on everything else. Madness, I tell you!

Unfortunately, work intruded most severely on Thursday, but there were two standouts. First, I took great joy in seeing that Redbox is once again standing up to Warner Bros. and their ridiculous attempts to treat consumers like cattle. I often wonder if Hollywood will ever realize that people want to be entertained, but in a manner that fits their budget and time frame. All these machinations to alter how people spend their entertainment dollars isn't going to change that one bit. Of course, much like Chosen Reject, I find this fight fascinating and hope to see some updates down the road. On the flip side, it was distressing to see yet another politician ignoring his oath of office to defend the Constitution. Regardless of opinion or even how much of a potential jerk he could be, Josh Fox had a right to record the proceedings. This is another one that I will be trying to find some follow-up on.

Ahhh, Friday. End of the week for many and a day we spend looking forward to the weekend. First up is actually a comment from Suja where a minor replacement made for, in my opinion, a much more accurate set of statements. Next, we had Capitalist Lion Tamer warning reminding us just how close to a police state the US has become and that it's not likely to get better until it's too late. The portions noting the "War on Drugs" and the corresponding comments below reminded me of the first part of an anti-SOPA post on another blog I read:

The so-called war on drugs is a joke. A sick, sad, stupid joke. It didn't get rid of drugs, it didn't reduce drug use, or drug smuggling, or drug violence, or drug related deaths. It didn't, in fact, do a damned thing. All it does is keep a lot of law enforcement types employed chasing their tails.
While his language can be a bit rough around the edges, he has a rather succint way of putting things and is usually writing from personal experience. Finally, of course, what kind of a consumer would I be if I didn't at least mention the Super Bowl. It's nice to see someone speaking up about the ridiculous overreach of the NFL. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go practice my 12oz curls and 5 yard dash (to the bathroom) for Sunday's game when I watch it on a friend's 60" flat screen.

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