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  • Dec 11th, 2010 @ 7:52am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Anonymous: "To bad you could never come up with something half as intelligent as Wayfinder's post."

    Anonymous, thanks for the compliment toward me... but that was totally unwarranted toward Darryl. He was just stating his opinion just like anyone else here. He mentioned he disliked the "shoot from the hip" posts (those without thought... on the fly). I tend to agree with that; I wish more people would think before they post. But, even emotional rants serve a purpose.

    Way I see it is this: everyone has a right to state his/ her opinion. So long as it is respectful, doesn't matter if it's dumber than a box of rocks (and I'm not saying Darryl is, at all). What matters is they're voicing what they think and feel, respectfully. Sometimes even a post that's way off base (imo) can contain a gem of wisdom. So I read 'em all, good or bad, smart or goofy. Sometimes the goofy ones are good for a chuckle and brighten my day a bit. :D

  • Dec 11th, 2010 @ 7:43am

    Law as crime

    Anonymous: "Just because it's a crime doesn't mean it's wrong"

    Well, yes, agreed. There are many laws that are in themselves crimes. Or as a friend once stated, "The criminal justice system is aptly named." ;D

    However, most criminal laws are created because something has been found harmful to others... and enough people are doing it to warrant a law being passed to help curtail such.

    Let's consider DDoS as an example. The people who perpetrate such attacks look at immediate gratification, not long term results or consequences to others. They think, "Hey, we have the skillz 'cos we're leet... so let's show these guys who's boss and make a point."

    But like most criminal activities, they don't even think about consequences for actions. Excuse the "emotional ploy" here... but realistically speaking... they don't think about the mother who can't buy milk for her baby because her credit card isn't working. They don't think about the old person with a high temperature who barely made it to the pharmacy, and now can't get their medicine because the credit card systems are down.

    They don't think about the guy who's needing to go visit a sick relative but can't... because the gas pumps are compromised.

    In short, these people target an entity (in this case the big, bad corporations) and don't think about the thousands of everyday, innocent people they stab in the process. They don't think about the fact that... as far-fetched as it may seem at the outset... what they do may indeed result in someone's death. They laugh while they hide behind their computers, pat themselves on the backs for being so smart... and totally fail to be truly smart by thinking through what they're about to do. They create anarchy and chaos... which is almost always destructive in activity. (Mind you, I enjoy a little chaos in its proper place... but it needs to be well-done chaos.) :D

    That's why DDoS is a criminal act. There is no telling what repercussions such has on the innocent. That's part of the problem of being human: even when we're basically right, we can't see the huge, overall picture. We're not omniscient. Our sight is limited. And what we do may very well cause severe consequences not only on ourselves... but on people we don't even know. Our "bullet" travels the distance and kills someone we couldn't even see when we fired it.

    But as far as the difference between "criminal" and "right and wrong"... I think politicians would prove that point for you every day of the week. I can't argue with your basic statement.

    Again we get to the ancient tea party issue: dumping tea overboard to make a political point. They likely hurt an innocent merchant a great deal while protesting government policies. It's also a shame they chose to do so while trying to frame others for the crime. So when it comes to such activities, one needs to make durn well sure their stance is correct and that there will be a minimum of "casualties" from their actions... because crimes, right or wrong in motive, usually have victims.

  • Dec 10th, 2010 @ 6:36pm

    Smart Warner Brothers

    About time someone woke up. Look it's like this: I don't like the idea of piracy. But I can't honestly say I've never "pirated" anything (can any of us honestly say that? I'd bet a very, very small percentage). Anyone ever been given a music file? You pay for that? Ever copy a rental DVD? Ever downloaded a photo off a copyrighted website?

    But like the article points out, I have also bought a ton of DVDs. I have a 7 whole shelves at home lined with them. So it's not like people just steal everything we can get our hands on.

    One thing I did pirate was a music CD that the company had stopped selling. They still held their "copyright" and legally no one should copy it... but who are they to sit on MUSIC (which IMO belongs to the public the same way that the right to look at at painting in a museum is public). For some company to say "this music is OURS and you can't have it"... that is adulteration of the concept of music.

    Sure, I've paid for music, and would have bought that CD gladly. I tried to. I searched for it. Even went to Ebay. No soap; the people who had it were hanging on to it. Finally a really nice guy left his computer on all night so I could load it across a very slow feed. Bless him for keeping that music alive.

    AVATAR. Let's talk about Avatar. Great movie. Flipping rip-off DVD marketing campaign. No extras? Then a few months later they release the disc they should have released in the first place. Those people are just BEGGING to be pirated. They can EXPECT to be pirated. Why? Because they ticked off the public, that's why.

    Which is possibly what Warner Bros is finally realizing.

    When someone produces a Blu-Ray on a cheap piece of plastic and charges $24.95 for a single movie... when they release a cheap DVD of a movie for $19.95... seems to me the industry is just a little too full of itself.

    Don't even get me STARTED on Micro$oft Windoze. What makes them think any Operating System is worth $300 PER COMPUTER? I'm a professional business consultant. I know ways Windows could be marketed for very, very reasonable fees while still earning Micro$oft billions of dollars. They just don't get it. Because they don't get it... people have strongly resisted moving from XP to W7. Who can afford $1000 to bring 3 computers up to date? No wonder hackers target Windows for piracy.

    Micro$oft, you want to stop the piracy? Re-think your marketing plan. Make it so that people buy Windows because they can't resist what they get for the money. WAKE UP CORPORATE AMERICA.

    Okay, done with my soapboxing. How many years we been telling these people these things?

  • Dec 10th, 2010 @ 12:38pm

    (untitled comment)

    Rose Welsh: "Yes, because the riots in Birmingham were peaceful. Yeah. Right."

    If they were RIOTS Rose, they weren't "sit-ins". Sit-ins means SITTING. If people choose to adulterate that concept and throw in violence... they go beyond the concept to open revolt.

    "Rather than? You mean, because legal options have failed, right? Since that's the actual situation."

    What legal options were tried and failed Rose? I'm not aware that this group actually tried legal options before imposing their opinion by force.

    Rose: "Good to know that your opinion is so idiotic."

    Right back atcha Rose. Honestly, all I see in your post is a lot of attitude and heated ranting rather than offering solutions to a problem-- or even factual observations. You're entitled to disagree with any post here. When you stoop to insulting others for their opinions... All such a post indicates is a lack of emotional maturity; it surely does not convince me your opinion is trustworthy or even worth reading.


    Bruce: "Keep fighting, and may the fascists keep martyrizing us."

    Anonymous: "Unfortunately, given the network we currently have, we can't tolerate all that many DoS attacks."

    Anonymous makes a very good point here... a lead in to a point I felt might be worth making today.

    I'm seeing all kind of emotional statements in these matters, and freely-thrown-about labeling of "fascist", "martyr" etc etc. I don't see any martyrs here (anyone hear a report of someone dying over this issue?).

    "Godwin's Law" is where you try to win an argument by comparing your opponent to hitler or nazis or whatever negative term will gain public sympathy. Someone disagrees with you: he's a Nazi. Someone's viewpoint is conservative: he's a Fascist. Such claims bring neither respect for the poster nor validity to the post.

    It's easy to try to propagandize a situation by openly used negative terms. It's another to present viable observations... or even possible solutions.

    There are many rights and wrongs on all sides of this issue. However, using DDoS to enforce one's opinion is not a proper solution. It IS a criminal act. It is indeed ALSO an act of protest, but that does not decriminalize the action.

    Which brings us to Anonymous post. As he rightly points out, such attacks affect more than just the target. They affect those who use credit cards. They affect the Internet itself. They don't care about who is hurt by such actions... or how seriously they're hurt. The perpetrators simply strike out vigilante-style at their chosen target.

    Does it serve the purpose? Obviously; it caught the public eye. How many times do we think that trick can be used before the public gets tired of it and starts insisting such perpetrators be found and jailed? As is ALREADY apparent, this action has had as many negative effects as positive... perhaps moreso.

    "Welcome to the digital age"? You must be joking. Yes, digital media has changed the way we do business. Yes, special laws need passed-- realistic laws-- to take that into account. But laws exist for a purpose: so that people are not hurt by other people. When people ignore and break laws just because they "can"... they harm others. Now perhaps they don't care. Perhaps they feel "might makes right". Perhaps they feel there will be no consequences. Perhaps the laws themselves are bad laws in the first place.

    But don't tell us these people are peaceful "sit in" protesters and that their actions are not criminal. If their actions aren't criminal, then tell ya what: Let them go down to the nearest FBI office and brag that they were a major player in the DDoS attack.

    Right or wrong aside, good or bad aside, warranted or unwarranted aside... this is NOT a "sit in" protest. This was a cybercrime-- using computers to vandalize data systems. Any twisting of concepts to state otherwise is imo, pure propaganda and rationalization.

  • Dec 9th, 2010 @ 2:14pm

    (untitled comment)

    Anonymous, seems to me you do more name-calling and ranting than actually making a point. Stopped taking the meds, did ya? ; )

  • Dec 9th, 2010 @ 2:01pm

    Not a sit-in... Vigilante tactics

    There is a big difference between sit-ins and DDOS attacks.

    Sit-ins were peaceful protests, conducted by people willing to stand (or rather sit) for their convictions. They courageously looked their enemy in the face and said "What you are doing is wrong." Yes, the sometimes blocked access (that is still done today in strikes). Yes, they inconvenienced businesses. They didn't shut the business down. They simply made their voice heard.

    Those who chained themselves to doors were not "sit in protesters". They were a bit more-- forceful. Sit ins were peaceful demonstrations of objecting to unethical behavior through simple statement to catch the attention of the public. They did not try to offend onlookers; their goal was to obtain sympathy... and action. They served a purpose.

    Internet attacks are done anonymously. They hide behind their keyboards, showing neither courage nor conviction for their beliefs. They take malicious and premeditated action against a chosen target. As such, they become vigilantes. Rather than assuming the role of peaceful protesters, they take the role of vandals.

    DDOS attacks are neither peaceful nor legal. It is an act of vandalism, intentionally harmful to others. It is a breach of Federal law. That is not the solution to making a legal point.

    These are malicious attacks... cybercrimes. No matter how much in the "right" the perpetrators think they are... they become un-right the moment they cross the legal line. They use anarchy and chaos as their tools rather than offering constructive solutions. They choose the easy, fast, forced solution rather than trying to gain sympathy and a permanent, beneficial solution.

    Some may consider this rebellion. Some may consider this "tea party" activity. And in that they may be correct. Sometimes the only solution to a problem is to pull out the big stick. But make no mistake: this is by no means a "sit in". That analogy is bogus.

    These DDOS hackers are neither peaceful, nor courageous, nor do they make any point other than "We have the power to impose our will on the public." In that... they perhaps become no different-- and no better-- than the companies they attack.

  • Dec 3rd, 2010 @ 12:46pm

    (untitled comment)

    Jeffrey: "
    I will teach my children that if they do not want to be touched or to be seen naked by ANYONE, doctor, security agent, police, babysitter, etc to say NO. Period. Anything after that is assault."

    I could not agree more.

    Anonymous Coward: "The scans aren't harmless, Mr. Apologist."... "And get fired. Great solution there, Mr. Fascist."

    In my experience Anonymous, when any user has to resort to labeling and calling names... it's because his viewpoint doesn't stand on its own merit. People are entitled to opinions different than yours. That's what freedom of speech is all about. It entitles you to speak your mind; it does not entitle you to harass others. Seriously guy, a little more maturity here. You can surely state your opinion without insulting others for stating theirs.


    Uncle Fester: "I'm in total agreement with your statement. The problem is that scanners don't eliminate the chance of someone sneaking a bomb aboard the plane. This merely forces a change in tactics on those planning to do violence, and the whole thing continues to escalate from there."

    Yeah Fester, that's the primary issue in all of this. Where does "reasonable security" turn into terrorism all of its own? At what point does our need for security violate our rights as individuals and citizens of a supposedly "free" country? When does reasonable become unreasonable?

    Or more accurately and importantly in this case... when does security cross the line and itself become unacceptably abusive? It seems to me that a lot of these things being implemented go way beyond the need for "security" and into areas of gross propagandistic paranoia. We've seen such activities in past history... when a government went from being open and "free" to an abusive police state.

    When people can legally-- by grant of the government-- fondle children and call it a "game"... or even do so without calling it a game... it is obvious this method of "security" is anything but.

    I am sure that security official, in making his "game" statement, did not intend it to come across as it did. I am also fairly sure he needs to be transferred to a less potentially harmful position for being that totally clueless.

  • Dec 3rd, 2010 @ 12:45pm

    (untitled comment)

    Jeffrey: "
    I will teach my children that if they do not want to be touched or to be seen naked by ANYONE, doctor, security agent, police, babysitter, etc to say NO. Period. Anything after that is assault."

    I could not agree more.

    Anonymous Coward: "The scans aren't harmless, Mr. Apologist."... "And get fired. Great solution there, Mr. Fascist."

    In my experience Anonymous, when any user has to resort to labeling and calling names... it's because his viewpoint doesn't stand on its own merit. People are entitled to opinions different than yours. That's what freedom of speech is all about. It entitles you to speak your mind; it does not entitle you to harass others. Seriously guy, a little more maturity here. You can surely state your opinion without insulting others for stating theirs.


    Uncle Fester: "I'm in total agreement with your statement. The problem is that scanners don't eliminate the chance of someone sneaking a bomb aboard the plane. This merely forces a change in tactics on those planning to do violence, and the whole thing continues to escalate from there."

    Yeah Fester, that's the primary issue in all of this. Where does "reasonable security" turn into terrorism all of its own? At what point does our need for security violate our rights as individuals and citizens of a supposedly "free" country? When does reasonable become unreasonable?

    Or more accurately and importantly in this case... when does security cross the line and itself become unacceptably abusive? It seems to me that a lot of these things being implemented go way beyond the need for "security" and into areas of gross propagandistic paranoia. We've seen such activities in past history... when a government went from being open and "free" to an abusive police state.

    When people can legally-- by grant of the government-- fondle children and call it a "game"... or even do so without calling it a game... it is obvious this method of "security" is anything but.

    I am sure that security official, in making his "game" statement, did not intend it to come across as it did. I am also fairly sure he needs to be transferred to a less potentially harmful position for being that totally clueless.

  • Dec 3rd, 2010 @ 11:09am

    (untitled comment)

    Jeffrey: "People can choose a doctor".

    True, and valid point. But we don't object to an unknown emergency room doctor do we?

    Anonymous: "A doctor is a trained professional"

    And if the TSA is going to employ these devices... so should be ALL security personnel. They should go through intensive training, not only in use of these devices, but in ethics as well. They should go through aberrant personality tests to insure they are relatively stable individuals to start with. If that is NOT being done... then that is a problem, to be sure.

    "Security or freedom folks; we can't have both." "Why not?"

    Because this is a well-known situation. The more security a society insists upon, the more personal freedoms it must be willing to abandon to obtain that security. Since airplane security is bordering at this point on obsessive... the loss of personal freedoms are going to be proportional. If we don't like this... then Americans need to stand up and make it known that too many freedoms are being impacted-- and then be willing to accept lessened security. We have to choose. We can't have total security with no loss of freedom. We can't have total freedom without loss of some security. Myself, I opt for reasonable security, and reasonable freedom. It's a matter of balance.

    Jilocasin: "That simple sentence sums up the entire reasoning behind these _over_the_top_ 'pat downs'."

    Agreed... and let me re-state my actual intention. I am *personally* willing to go through a scanner, period, if it means it will eliminate the chance of someone sneaking a bomb aboard a plane. I don't see a scanner as being that intrusive. I think the pat-downs are inexcusable any way you look at it. An alternative: if you don't want a scan... you don't fly. Too many people want to have their cake and eat it to. There is very seldom any perfect solution.

    I do agree, 100%, that the TSA seems to have some kind of God-complex and is so out of touch with reality it's inexcusable. But then, that describes government in general, world wide. I didn't mean to imply that I am willing to undergo a scan instead of a virtual rape (although that is certainly the case). I mean I don't personally find a scan all that unreasonable. (Someone mentioned potential health problems. I know nothing about that-- have these things been thoroughly tested?)

    I seriously have to question this whole concept of "we have a solution and it's going to be implemented nation wide, right now, and the American Public has no say in it whatsoever. LOL. When did we become a military state, anyway?

    A friend of mine mentioned something else interesting: So okay, a guy doesn't sneak into a plane with a bomb on his belt. Instead, he walks into a much more crowded airport and takes out 1000 people instead of 200. Or he walks into a mall at Christmas rush hour. Or he detonates in a crowded hospital waiting room or... or.. or...

    What are we going to have next, checkpoints at local grocery stores? Just how far does "security" go... and how much are we empowering people that really do not need to be empowered any more than they already are?

    Just because a person is in charge doesn't mean he's sane.

  • Dec 3rd, 2010 @ 9:25am

    Groping children is insanity--and itself terrorism

    Are these people totally insane? What we are seeing here is uber-paranoia at its worst. It has gotten to the point that the TSA itself has become the terrorists.

    I am as much for airport security as anyone else... but there is NOTHING about this current situation that is logical, sensible or right. This is wrong in so many ways, we have to wonder who is making $$$$ off this airport scanner deal.

    One would have to believe there is a way to scan people quickly and efficiently without their picture potentially winding up on the internet or being drooled over by a perv security guard. Someone here is absolutely not thinking.

    That said however, it should be realized that security scanner guards... after seeing thousands of such scans every day... would become extremely jaded to these things. We don't complain when a doctor sees us naked. So why are people so extremely vehement about this issue?

    It seems there is lack of common sense, and over-reaction, on all sides of this issue. Myself, I will be willing to step through a simple scanner check and avoid the entire patdown process. And if a picture of me appears anywhere, I will sue the airport involved to the last available dime. If they're willing to take that risk... then I feel they're confident enough in the scanner system and how it works.

    Anyone out there want to tell their doctor he can't see them naked? Maybe the TSA needs to wise up (as in get a grain of sanity people)... and maybe the general public needs to stop going drama queen over what is an apparently necessary step IF they want actual security.

    Security or freedom folks; we can't have both. We've screamed about terrorism and planes (probably to paranoia pitch) and have empowered the government to take what is in truth probably ridiculously excessive steps. So we need to either remove that empowerment (which frankly is probably not going to happen)... or live with the consequences. When push comes to shove... most likely a harmless scan is not all that major an issue.

    Not my call and frankly, I don't care. I *do* care that groping children would be referred to as a game. The person who came up with that concept needs to be removed from his position... now. He obviously is not capable of rational judgment.

  • Sep 20th, 2010 @ 2:57pm

    Goats are trademarkable?

    There is one primary thing that this person fails to understand: he did not create goats, so he cannot trademark them. He can trademark a specific representation of goats. He can trademark the use of goats in a specific name. He cannot trademark goats, on a roof or otherwise. He did not invent goats. He did not invent roofs. His goats were not the first to ever climb on a roof. Goats on a roof are pretty much public domain, meaning imo he cannot claim Trademark.

    What I would like to see is the first time he tries to enforce his trademark... and learns a little bit about countersuit law for harassing lawsuits. He's not the only person who can wield a legal hammer. ; )

  • Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 8:02pm

    Ubisoft DRM excess

    I'm all for a company reasonably protecting a game. There's a lot that goes into games and people pirating them just drives the price up higher for the legit buyers.

    BUT... Ubisoft goes beyond reasonable. I bought AVATAR and on the way out of the store, happened to read their DRM on the back which basically said, "You have to be connected to the internet to register the game, and you can only register it a limited number of times before your registration ability ceases."

    I turned right around and took it back into the store. When I consider how many times Windows has crashed, I've had to reinstall Windows, how many times I've updated my computer system over the past 10 years... no thank you. There are other things to do in life than mess with Ubisoft paranoia.

    I would have bought AVATAR, but took it back and got a refund before even opening the game. I don't buy Ubisoft games any more just because of the DRM.

  • Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 2:55pm

    Makes sense to me

    In this current age, we are in a position that peer-to-peer sharing is largely illegal... and largely unstoppable. Business 101 concept: an unenforceable policy is a useless policy.

    This places performers between a rock and a hard place: either have their music ripped off against their will... or have it ripped off with their blessings. So, it makes sense to have music ripped with blessings.

    This band seems to have their head on straight. While at this time I know of no good overall solution to this situation, I think that online music companies have proved that people ARE willing to pay for easily-accessible, downloadable music. They will also "trade" easily copyable music. So... it pays for bands to realize what they can't control, they can use for advertising.

    Music goes beyond the "this is mine and gimme money for it" category. Music is universal... and unstoppable. Anyone who can hum a tune can "swipe" music in a manner of speaking. The major recording studios turned music from personally-performed to pre-recorded... and wrongly believe because they know how to use a recording system that entitles them to ownership of the music. This is a pox on our society. For thousands of years musicians were paid for PERFORMANCES, not some ethereal concept of "intellectual property rights".

    I'm not saying that musicians don't deserve their wage. But instead of trying to pull that wage from the end-party who is simply listening to the music, perhaps those fees should instead come from the same source they have come from for centuries: live performances and work-for-hire (for example, if a business uses a piece of music for advertising). Perhaps the idea should be to use CDs and MP3s as "advertising" to get people to concerts.

    As a musician, I've been on both sides of the issue. After years and years I've come to recognize this: my music belongs to those who enjoy it. Yes, it's my property. But like a painting that hangs on a wall for everyone to freely view... my music is there for people to listen to. I don't care whether they've paid to listen or not. If I want to make a living from my music, I can do so via live performances or work for hire. This whole concept of "copyrighted so you have to pay to listen" seems to be totally out of whack.

    That doesn't mean I can't sell my CDs to whomever is willing to buy them. That's totally legitimate. It doesn't mean some other clown should rip me off by selling my music. It does mean I'm not going to send someone to jail because they downloaded a song of mine from a friend. If they like it that much, well... that's why I wrote it in the first place. ;)

    Kudos to the bands that understand reality.

  • May 4th, 2009 @ 3:39pm

    Not a valid point made that I could see.. (as Wayfinder Wishbringer)

    "Putting [copyrights] into a world where there is no scarcity at all on those goods is backwards, and only leads to massive problems. "

    Why does the author believe this? What evidence does he have of such and what foundation for such claim? Copyrights have to do with intellectual property. They don't involve scarcity (or prevalence) of goods in any way that I'm aware of.

    "just posting a screenshot from within Second Life may violate many different copyrights"

    Not by any law that I know of. "Kleenex" is a trademark and copyright of the Kleenex copmany... but there are no copyrights broken by taking a photo of a kleenex (or a box of such) and posting it on one's website-- especially if it's a minor part of a much larger picture. At that point, the photo itself becomes copyrightable. While there may be some isolated incidents where a "screenshot" might infringe on copyright, I'd have to believe those few and far between... and possibly even non-existent.

    IMO, the author could have spent his time on much more valid subjects... such as the increasing abuse of copyrights on SL via the copybot program (those thousands and thousands of "freebies" aren't being released by their creators, guaranteed). That Linden Lab still allows the use of such a "safecracking" device is to me, unconscionable and indicates their total lack of empathy for content ownership or security.