Aaron Wolf 's Techdirt Comments

Latest Comments (74) comment rss

  • If You're Complaining About COVID-19 Misinformation Online AND About Section 230, You're Doing It Wrong

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 01 May, 2020 @ 04:52pm

    Re: forcing politics

    It seems far more likely to me that the anti-230 folks are just ignorantly grasping at the idea of regulation. They may have their political views, but they are not so thoughtful about forcing their politics and hiding their actions etc. Rather, they just want magic. It's like that classic YouTube skit about "the expert". The anti-230 folks are just non-experts asking the experts to do magic.

  • Bob Murray Demands John Oliver Be Silenced… While HBO Moves Case To Federal Court

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 06 Jul, 2017 @ 11:30am

    "viewed 1.9 million times more"???

    Wow, so like trillions of views? The most viewed video of all time??

    Bad grammar changes additive to multiplicative, w00t

  • Malcolm Gladwell's Ridiculous Attack On Ed Snowden Based On Weird Prejudice About How A Whistleblower Should Look

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 03 Jan, 2017 @ 08:12pm

    He's bad here, but the 10,000 hours thing, well…

    This characterization of Snowden is unfair and unhelpful and Gladwell has made errors before…

    But the 10,000 hours thing he gets right — because he DOESN'T claim the stuff this article claims. Just check out http://freakonomics.com/podcast/malcolm-gladwell/ for a clear, unambiguous interview where Gladwell emphasizes that hours of practice must be *quality* practice and *still* some people have talents and potential that others lack. In other words, he doesn't at ALL believe the nonsense attributed to him here in trying to discredit him overall.

    (I'm not defending anything he said in the Snowden article though)

  • The Five Technologies That Are Now — And Will Be — In Your Home

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 13 Aug, 2016 @ 02:55pm

    63 percent is so much less than two thirds!

    "While only 63 percent of U.S. households own their own home, two-thirds own a smartphone…" Yeah, that's a remarkable stat there. Such different magnitudes. /s

    Incidentally, smart phones are owned by individuals, not by households, so your stat is really confusing.

  • Dweezil Zappa Renames His Tour Again: Dweezil Zappa Plays Whatever The F@%k He Wants; The Cease & Desist Tour

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 25 Jun, 2016 @ 08:26pm

    Re: Re: Frank Zappa would be pleased

    Dweezil isn't a bad name at all, and he turned out just fine. Frank always said that if his kids got shit, it would be for their last name (and associations with him, being that some aspects of his career, politically and satirically, were controversial and also "weird" by various norms)

  • Dave Chappelle Thinks A Sock And A Dream Will Keep People From Using Phones At Shows

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 15 Dec, 2015 @ 09:00am

    Learn some history rather than speculating

    For example: http://www.vox.com/2015/1/15/7551873/jaywalking-history

    Your post can literally be read as "Remember X from history? I don't, because I wasn't alive then. We can and should ignore all history and any lessons it offers and instead judge everything only by personal experience."

    The truth is that there were complaints about cars and they were correct and cars have had hugely negative impacts on society in all sorts of disruptive ways, mostly enabling the break-down of human-centered urban planning etc

  • Techdirt Reading List: Larry Lessig's Republic, Lost

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 08 Sep, 2015 @ 08:07am

    Re: Re: the best systems.

    We don't live in a pure capitalist system. Everyone continually confuses capitalism and markets. Markets and competition have great value. Capitalism isn't about whether there are markets, much less free markets. The definition of capitalism is whether the basic capital, the means of production, are privately owned. That's it. Socially owned enterprises and public commons of all sorts are not capitalism. Every single successful anything that doesn't have private owners is not capitalism.

    You can have markets and competition without private ownership of basic resources. And we can have completely dysfunctional market failure and monopolies while having everything be privately owned, i.e. capitalism.

  • Larry Lessig Goes Even Bigger: May Run For President On The Single Issue Of Money In Politics

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 11 Aug, 2015 @ 03:11pm


    That's totally irrelevant. Lessig is saying that if he runs, it would be on some sort of incontrovertible promise that he will take nearly zero action on anything other than achieving a rebalance of our democracy and then step down.

    So, I'd guess he'd want to get Sanders to be his VP, so he could just turn things over to Sanders later, I dunno.

    It's a nutty but interesting idea. Put simply: Lessig is worried that if everyone even elected Sanders somehow that people would say "they elected him for health care, for education, for civil rights…" and so it wouldn't be an absolute mandate specifically for overturning Citizens United…

    But Sanders has made Citizens United a key focus, with his whole emphasis on refusing PAC money. I think Lessig isn't giving Sanders enough credit for really emphasizing this.

  • Quicken Loans Founder Dan Gilbert Follows Google Fiber's Lead, Brings $70 Gigabit Fiber To Detroit

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 17 Jul, 2015 @ 04:37pm

    Re: He did NOT found Quicken

    Yeah totally separate companies today. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quicken_Loans

    They were owned by Intuit for like 2 years only. Used to be Rock Financial. Quicken isn't a company, it's just some software made by Intuit. Quicken Loans is a company now.

  • House Caves On Fast Track, Issues Moves Back To The Senate

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 18 Jun, 2015 @ 09:52pm

    Re: Re: Obama's motivation?

    No president goes on to a regular job. No president is later someone's employee. Presidents can do speaking gigs or writing or whatever if they care to be insanely rich. Otherwise, they get some sort of pension so they are set for life anyway.

    The best assumption is that Obama is actually politically supportive of this garbage, like he really believes in it. Ugh.

  • Uber Having A Tough Week Overseas: France And South Korea Crack Down

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 19 Mar, 2015 @ 12:26pm


    "When the internet (blogs, discussion boards) says it values freedom, it's just a load of bullshit"


  • Uber Having A Tough Week Overseas: France And South Korea Crack Down

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 19 Mar, 2015 @ 12:25pm

    Governments aren't this particular guy you don't like

    An entire government isn't a person. It doesn't say things. People in governments and people on behalf of various government agencies say things.

    Your ideology that thinks of government as this singular thing is so far removed from reality, it's pernicious.

    When people representing a public university (that's a type of government institution even) say they care about innovation or a fire dept (government!) says they cares about public safety or a parks dept says they care about recreational opportunities, it's not bullshit just because some executive in another part of government has other views.

  • Once More With Feeling: Patent Reform Introduced, And This Time The Trial Lawyers May Not Be Able To Kill It

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 07 Feb, 2015 @ 12:09am

    Re: Re:

    Where do you get that interpretation?? There's nothing clear about the constitution in terms of which law refers to which part of the Progress clause…

  • Once More With Feeling: Patent Reform Introduced, And This Time The Trial Lawyers May Not Be Able To Kill It

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 07 Feb, 2015 @ 12:08am

    Re: Re: Patent Abolition

    Patent Abolition would not require a constitutional amendment. The constitution does not mandate that we have patent law, it merely permits congress to enact it. It's not required. So it could be abolished with a simple law.

  • YouTube's Offer To Musicians Isn't As Bad As Some Believe, But YouTube Should Still Change Its Policies

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 27 Jan, 2015 @ 07:15pm

    Re: The is a cultural problem

    I'm basically with you all the way.

    One detail: "This is partly what copyright is designed to achieve: Control for the artist." is only true with the qualification that the control is for the purpose of promoting artistic development for the public benefit. Copyright by the U.S. Constitution does not serve the purpose of artistic control as an end in itself.

  • It's Move Your Domain Day: Join The AMA, Help Support EFF

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 27 Jan, 2015 @ 07:06pm

    Not clear why here, besides EFF support

    I understand the original issue was about GoDaddy, but there's a lack of clarity here about whether any other registrars are a problem and about which are the most ethical options etc. Well, what do you expect from a "sponsored" post that is really an ad. I certainly still appreciate the direction of rejecting bad companies and supporting EFF.

  • Ferguson Grand Jury Member Sues For The Right To Talk About The Case… With A Filing That Talks About The Case

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 06 Jan, 2015 @ 10:12pm

    Regulatory capture doesn't mean anarchy will work

    You can spout libertarian jargon all you like, but there is no such thing as "freedom to contract" that isn't totally tied to states and laws. Your mythology has little connection to reality.

    Anyone who has the "freedom to contract" without any system to enforce that contract also has the freedom to break the contract.

    And the premise that contracts are fair fundamentally because people agree to them is grossly naive. Rare are the contracts that have both parties coming to them with equal standing and complete knowledge of all the subtleties.

    Contracts are often war-games. And they have no standing without some mechanism to enforce them which fundamentally comes from some threat of something.

  • Maryland Politician Says Local Paper Can't Use His Name Without Permission

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 06 Jan, 2015 @ 10:00pm

    Sentence makes no sense

    "He apparently believes that he holds the power to decide whether his name appears in print, rather than the other way around"

    WHA?? The other way around? His name in print holds the power to decide whether he himself appears? I'm totally confused by this sentence.

  • If You're Going To Complain About Spotify Payments, At Least Understand A Little Economics First

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 19 Dec, 2014 @ 04:15pm

    Re: Re: Re: Stop calling sharing "piracy"

    The sharing between two willing parties isn't the "rights" holder and someone, it's the person who has a file on their computer who shares it with their friend or neighbor or other fellow citizen. That is two willing parties sharing together.

  • Senator Ron Wyden Calls 'Baloney' On Claim That Title II Will Increase Taxes On Your Internet Bill: 'I Wrote The Law'

    Aaron Wolf ( profile ), 19 Dec, 2014 @ 04:06pm

    Adam is a [insert offensive term relating to lacking intelligence]

    Gosh, I don't like being an aggressive asshole. I feel like being one though.

    Article: propagandists make lots of lies to scare people, but Senator calls them on their bullshit

    Adam: thus we need a flat tax! (oh, and throw in implication that Senator above is childish)

    Can you say non sequitur? No, I need some more aggressive rejecting term for Adam's comment. It's um, so, you see, there's evil propagandists and then there's someone calling them out. Ok? Calling that a childish argument is, well, so, it's like an intentional desire to destroy normal intellectual thought.

    Person A: The Sun goes down in the east and after that, it dries up until morning when it gets colorful again and rises out of the sea.

    Person B: That's wrong in so many ways, it's total horse shit.

    Adam: Lookit Person A and Person B, grown men arguing like children. This obviously calls for a flat tax!

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