Snitching in the anti-piracy world is nothing new, it’s just that we tend not to hear about it. Just how the snitches like it
Archive for 2012/07/08
Whether it’s to make money, save money, avoid lawsuits, avoid prison or execute revenge, people are prepared to inform on file-sharersPosted: 2012/07/08 in Copyright, Education / Awareness, Enforcement, Illegal File Sharing, Stats / reports
Blast From The Past: All your base are belong to Facebook. I kid you not, I spent four whole days wiping my Facebook timeline clean. And I stress from the bottom of my heart: there is no easy way of doing itPosted: 2012/07/08 in Education / Awareness, New Business Models, Stats / reports, Tech Evolution
If you have yet to switch to the new timeline, then don’t. Trust me, it will make your life far easier.
31-year-old Alexander Aan faces up to fives years in prison after he declared himself an atheist on Facebook. The Indonesian man is in protective police custody because he fears physical assault.
Blast From The Past: An anti-SOPA and anti-PIPA post was removed from Facebook earlier this week. Facebook says the deletion occurred in error and has apologized, but wouldn’t elaborate furtherPosted: 2012/07/08 in Blocking, Copyright, Education / Awareness, Enforcement, Filtering, Legislation, Public Policy, Stats / reports
Google’s Monopoly and Internet Freedom: When one company controls nearly 82% of the global search market and 98% of the mobile search market, it’s time for serious changesPosted: 2012/07/08 in Education / Awareness, Google, Stats / reports
It’s a position all business leaders would love to find themselves in—a massive IPO, dominance in the marketplace, and a blank slate from policy makers to do practically anything they please.
Google has enjoyed this unrivaled position for nearly a decade. It is the most popular search engine in the world, controlling nearly 82% of the global search market and 98% of the mobile search market. Its annual revenue is larger than the economies of the world’s 28 poorest countries combined.
Much more (Subscription required):
Google strikes back against WSJ post; defends search infrastructure. Google defends its search algorithms, reminding Internet users that if they don’t like Google’s results, they can always try a different search engine.
Governments of the world, in case you hadn’t noticed…Google is the new (world) government. And it wants you to legalize gay marriagePosted: 2012/07/08 in Education / Awareness, Google, Legislation, Public Policy, Stats / reports
Google — which has repeated expressed support for gay marriage, for example in this year’s Valentine’s video (embedded) — decided to confront politicians publicly by launching a global campaign called “Legalize Love.”
As Dot429 reports, Google announced its intention yesterday at a Global LGBT Workplace Summit in London.
Its first governmental targets are Singapore and Poland, two countries with slightly different approaches to life.
Google’s Mark Palmer-Edgecumbe reportedly told the Summit: “Singapore wants to be a global financial center and world leader and we can push them on the fact that being a global center and a world leader means you have to treat all people the same, irrespective of their sexual orientation.”
Having lived in both Singapore and Poland, I feel sure that Google’s task in each country will not be easy but perhaps for different reasons.
Google’s idea is to mobilize other companies in order to put collective pressure on governments in the countries in which they operate.
Money is power, and power can change things.
Wouldn’t it be an interesting if several large corporations’ CEOs whispered over cocktails with members of government and explained that they would move their offices out of the country unless the government legalized gay marriage?
It is difficult to convey to people who don’t routinely deal with USTR and the copyright maximalists that dominate trade negotiations just how stunning a turn around this is, given the fairly well-established limitations and exceptions in U.S. law and the fact that—as USTR acknowledged in its announcement—the three-part test for what constitutes suitable limitations and exceptions is already well-established and incorporated into international law. Indeed, given all this, the incredible thing is that this is, as USTR acknowledges, the first time USTR has included any explicit reference to limitations and exceptions. In addition, as my colleague Rashmi Rangnath points out over at the Public Knowledge blog, while this is a positive step for USTR, we have not seen the new draft TPP text, so the actual implementation of these principles in the TPP draft could still be a major step backward from existing US law.
Let me use an analogy to explain why this is, nevertheless, a big deal. For USTR to publicly embrace limitations and exceptions as “an important part of the copyright ecosystem” is the equivalent of The Pope saying: “in some cases, birth control is a good thing because it allows married couples to have sex without procreation, deepening their emotional bond with one another.”
This is not to say that people long convinced of the rightness of copyright maximalism (which rejects limitations and exceptions) will change their minds on the merits. Although this may come too, in time. But policy is not about getting people to do the right thing for the right reasons, it is about getting them to do the right thing for their own reasons. In this case, USTR has excellent reasons to shift position and bring civil society more strongly into the mix. The job for civil society is continuing to enhance the value of what we offer by keeping the pressure on for substantive language that genuinely embraces existing limitations and exceptions. MPAA/RIAA have excellent incentive for this as well, although I expect them to take much longer to recognize this.
All in all, 2012 continues to be a landmark year for intellectual property policy. The anti-SOPA campaign has genuinely changed the way in which IP policy gets negotiated, rather than fading away as memory of the legislation recedes. No, that doesn’t mean everything is now hunky-dory and we now go home. But did anyone ever think it would? What the ACTA defeat in Europe and the pressure on USTR to shift position show is that the campaign to prevent the further erosion of free expression in the name of copyright maximalism has staying power. It now falls to all of us to ensure that we keep moving things in the right direction.
Losing sight of the value of items is one thing. Losing sight of the value of the people behind those items is something else entirelyPosted: 2012/07/08 in Education / Awareness, Future Developments?, New Business Models, Stats / reports, Tech Evolution
I sense a disconnect between how we perceive what we provide and what we consume.
Such a disconnect has two pitfalls.
The first is purely practical. As much as I would like to believe that we live in a land of rainbows and unicorns, I am forced to admit that it costs money to get things done. No matter what those things are, large or small, we have to pay to play.
The engine of society runs on monetary transactions. If we are unable or unwilling to place a realistic value on things, we become unable to effectively deal with anything that requires such an ability, which is just about everything.
The second pitfall is much more far-reaching. If we become accustomed to things having a fuzzy monetary cost or value, it can be just a short step to losing focus on the humanitarian component of things as well: where they came from, who provided them, whose lives depend on them.
While dollars may drive the engine of society, people are the ones who determine what that engine looks like and where it is going.
That is where any true value lies.
Losing sight of the value of items is one thing.
Losing sight of the value of the people behind those items is something else entirely.
Buyers are purchasing fewer games but playing them for longer – paying for extra downloaded content and online subscriptionsPosted: 2012/07/08 in Education / Awareness, New Business Models, Stats / reports, Tech Evolution
17 employees from cinemas across the UK have been presented with awards totalling over £7,000 for their efforts in preventing illegal recordings taking placePosted: 2012/07/08 in Copyright, Education / Awareness, Enforcement, Illegal File Sharing, New Business Models, Stats / reports
In throwing out the Acta bill, MEPs in the European parliament have unwittingly signed their countries up for a future in which internet piracy will lead to the decline of film, the novel, journalism and music on an industrial scalePosted: 2012/07/08 in Copyright, Education / Awareness, Enforcement, Illegal File Sharing, New Business Models, Public Policy, Stats / reports
This is not scaremongering. One need only look at the stats from the US, where during the Clinton administration the internet companies were given free rein to pillage copyright material via the rushed-through Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). According to Robert Levine, in his book Free Ride, the music industry in the US has declined by over 55% in the last decade. Film is following with its first decline in recorded history. Journalism is heading towards “free”. All because people now assume that “ripping” is the norm. If “aggregation” is OK, as the Huffington Post do it, then why should we pay for journalism? Why should we be branded pirates? This is what the European parliament has just ruled. Everything on the net, from now on, will be free.
Modern consumers don’t think of the next year – they are hooked on the short-term quick fix. They don’t understand the negative impact of piracy. Over the last year, I’ve conducted surveys of the students I’ve lectured and 90-98% of them, between the ages of 18 and 32, are involved in daily acts of piracy. They no longer pay for music or films or journalism. They have a vague idea that what they do is left wing, that it has somehow to do with freedom of speech. And I say to them, but don’t you want to make films, be journalists, make music? Where will the money come from if you don’t pay? This is a blind generation. And there is no point trying to convince them person-to-person that what they are doing is damaging their own future.
The internet is not free. It is about as free as the free market. And the companies that run the internet are all massive US corporations. When you rip material on the net, there is a cost. You are handing over you own country’s cultural content to US corporations, who will never pay a penny in return.
After Acta has died, we must go back to US legislation and overturn the DMCA. Sites like YouTube would then be deprived of 75% of their illegal content. It won’t be much fun – 75% less fun, but then maybe we will start to understand that we have to pay for culture.
After a long-running dispute with Universal Music, the English rock band Def Leppard takes advantage of a law that protects cover versions, by covering its own songsPosted: 2012/07/08 in Copyright, Education / Awareness, New Business Models, Stats / reports, Tech Evolution
As Billboard hums it, the Leppards and Universal Music aren’t fond of each other. The band believes it deserves far more for digital downloads, so it has walked away.
Frontman Joe Eilliott told Billboard:
Our contract is such that they can’t do anything with our music without our permission, not a thing. So we just sent them a letter saying, “No matter what you want, you are going to get ‘no’ as an answer, so don’t ask.” That’s the way we’ve left it.
The solution is to replace their old songs with “brand-new, exact same versions of what we did.”
In the past, Simply Red and Prince have both rerecorded songs in order to gain master tape control.
Perhaps, though, this idea might inspire artists who have made money from terrible songs to see if they might be able to rerecord them and make them sound better — and make even more money, while gaining credibility.