Feeds

back to article 'Mainstream media' mute in SOPA piracy debate

An analysis of US television coverage has found a deafening silence among members of the pejoratively tagged "mainstream media" when it comes to coverage of SOPA, the online intellectual property legislation now under consideration in Congress. An analysis of the Lexis-Nexis database since 1 October 2011, carried out by the …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.

Page:

This is not unusual

The broadcasters here (USofA) are almost all politicized to some extent, the Occupy Wall Street protests were effectively ignored for the first 3 weeks or so, in fact the BBC coverage was being punted around US facebookers to call attention to ssomething that should have been front page and headline news. News in the USA is opinion, editorialisation, conjecture (hysterical and otherwise) and self interest. In depth analysis and objective comment have given way to airhead newsreaders and 15 second soundbytes. How else can you make sure you have working class republican voters, now there's an oxymoron.

9
1
Silver badge

'cept for bill maher :-)

1
0
Silver badge

THE BBC

Has a habit of being fairly left of centre, accused in our press of bias and in fact admitting to it on occasion. It's an organization staffed and run, just like the civil service by Guardian reading left wingers.

This is not meant as an insult, but they do have a habit of bias reporting. It was never like that years ago but political leaning has invaded them.

Some major issues disappear into the ether with them so don't believe the BBC is even handed anymore.

6
1
Anonymous Coward

Fair Use

Fair Use means if you buy the rights to use a digital works, you must use it only as allowed by copyright law, not any way you please.

Just as theft of digital cable TV signal is a crime so is theft of use of digital media if you copy or distribute.

The only good pirate is in prison as the Pirate Bay Boys have learned.

1
12
Stop

Lets take your words as entirely accurate and true for a second (bites hand at use of 'theft').

SOPA is still both bad and massively overreaching. If you knock off a copy of Snow White, that's a _civil_ matter. If Disney get your website knocked offline, without recourse to a Judge, that's potentially a freedom of speech issue.

Now imagine you hadn't actually created a knock-off copy of Snow white. You'd spent some time creating your own version, complete with your own animations. Disney claim copyright on Snow White, and under SOPA have your site knocked offline.

You haven't had the opportunity to fight this, hell you may not even be aware of it until your site becomes inaccessible. No Judge has been given the opportunity to look and say "Well actually, that's not copyright infringement".

Now imagine you are a small start-up trying to create animations for people, and had done the Snow White bit to get some attention. By the time it's all sorted, you may well have gone bankrupt.

Now do you see the issue?

Oh and as I'm feeling a little pedantic - Fair Use does not mean " if you buy the rights to use a digital works, you must use it only as allowed by copyright law". Fair Use refers to a number of exemptions not necessarily explicitly written in Law. It's up to a _court_ to decide whether or not your use is fair, not for the self-interested media companies (who have every incentive to try and make paying once, watching twice unfair).

You are quite right about the only good pirate being the one in prison, but as far as copyright infringers go I don't think prison is the answer. Prison exists (partly) to seperate the known dangerous from the rest of society, exactly what danger to society do copyright infringers pose? Are they battering people round the head with packets? Do the ones on Dial-Up have their baud-rate set so high the emissions are killing electro-sensitive (har!) people?

No, at least not that I'm aware of. Copyright infringement may harm the income of the Media companies, but from where I'm sat those same companies seem to be doing a much more efficient job of doing that.

9
0

You're wrong

http://fairuse.stanford.edu/Copyright_and_Fair_Use_Overview/chapter9/9-a.html (US)

http://www.copyrightservice.co.uk/copyright/p09_fair_use (UK)

That's all.

2
0
Vic
Silver badge

> Fair Use means if you buy the rights to use a digital works, you must

> use it only as allowed by copyright law, not any way you please.

Whilst what you say is technically correct, it makes a very false implication.

"Fair use" is very permissive under US law, under which it is enshrined. You can use stuff pretty much any way you please, so long as you don't take the piss.

UK law is somewhat more restrictive, but even here we have the right to use copyrighted material in many ways without breaching the law.

Vic.

1
0

@David

Dunno if you were talking to me, but the first link pretty much backs up what I said.

The latter deals with UK law, given SOPA is a US issue I didn't touch on Fair Dealing (which is largely specified in law).

"There are no hard-and-fast rules, only general rules and varied court decisions, because the judges and lawmakers who created the fair use exception did not want to limit its definition. Like free speech, they wanted it to have an expansive meaning that could be open to interpretation."

To me a fair interpretation of that is that what constitutes "Fair Use" is not written explicitly in law and is open to the interpretation of a judge yes?

0
0
Vic
Silver badge

> Dunno if you were talking to me

I thought he was addressing the same AC you took on.

The threading isn't all that wonderful on this forum software...

Vic.

1
0
Facepalm

It was the AC's complete misunderstanding of fair use I was going after.

Sorry I wasn't more explicit.

1
0

May be my misunderstanding, brain not quite present today!

0
0
Silver badge

I dunno, but ...

Personally, I'm prodding KTVU (channel 2) and KGO TV (channel 7) here in the San Francisco Bay area about SOPA ... The lack of comment from major news sources is ... uh ... peculiar.

0
1
Anonymous Coward

Home of the braaaaave!

And the land of the freeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee *

* or not.

2
0

Land of the Fee more like.

6
0
Devil

Bell, Book and SOPA

"We separate him, together with his accomplices and abettors, from the precious body and blood of the Link and from the society of all Websites; we exclude him from our Holy Mother Board, the PayPal in Heaven, and on earth; we declare him excommunicate and anathema; we judge him damned, with the Devil and his angels and all the reprobate, to eternal fire, hostless, censored and blacked out, until he shall recover himself from the toils of the devil and return to amendment and to penitence."

"Amen"

0
0

Self-censorship? My rear end, sir!

Of course they ain't gonna report on any dissent that might knock the SOPA bill off, as it's to their advantage. So much for fair news reporting. Big news corporation (not naming names, here) is not going to take kindly to their reporters having to cover both sides of the story, so let's not report it at all, eh?

0
0
Anonymous Coward

real music is a resource more valuable than money

they want to give you their government sanctioned music that's been touched in the most inappropriate way by all of their dirty dollar bills.

For the last decade every mainstream musical act has been designed by a team of psychiatrists and marketing execs. They pull out the DSM 4, pick out one of the diseases that they made up and write the music that those people would listen to it. When you drug them up and sell them this music it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy that they are mentally ill.

0
0
Alert

:o

0
0
Anonymous Coward

Be a HERO and Help STOP SOPA Now!! I'll tell you How! This Video that Must Be SHARED!

www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJIuYgIvKsc

1
0
Anonymous Coward

Heroism usually involves sacrifice

Not retweeting some fat idiot with an excessive sense of entitlement.

SOPA is well worth it so far just to see the freetards upset that they might have to pay for their manga pr0n.

I hope it passes.

0
7
Big Brother

An interesting (if not slightly hysterical) take on the whole SOPA shenanigans. In a strange kind of way this video all makes sense, because if you encourage everyone to pirate stuff, you can then tell Congress how terrible it all is and then legislate your way to a full or partial control of the internet. Luckily, the internet doesn't lend itself too easily to centralized control (and shouldn't, ever). Thats the only good news.

Regardless of your stand on internet piracy, any law which allows blanket and unregulated restriction of people's access to the internet is CENSORSHIP and is WRONG. If a site is bad, it should be taken down by legal means or just boycotted. There are plenty of laws out there to combat child porn, hate speech etc. on web sites. I'm OK with that because these laws at least try to stamp out evil behavior with some due process and oversight. But copyright is a CIVIL matter, NOT a CRIMINAL matter. As soon as we start filtering access to "foreign" sites that host MP3 files, we will become as bad as the Chinese. We will turn everyone into a thought (or at least listening and viewing) criminal and everyone will want to become anonymous (pun intended). THIS IS AN EXTREMELY BAD IDEA. A government that takes this dangerous step does so at its own peril.

In fact, if that bill is passed, we will all be very, very sorry, particularly the record companies. People will simply skirt the regulations in their millions. Hopefully, they will also begin boycotting the a*wipe companies who promote this insanity and now have the power to take down their favorite websites.

I don't download music or films, but the next big thing I will be watching is how people work around whatever feeble attempts are made to enforce this idiocy. If you really want to hurt the people who are promoting this transparent land-grabbing crapola, don't waste too much time writing to your "elected representative", write to the bill's sponsors and tell them you will stop buying their products and stop viewing their content. Tell your local news station really they need to look at the SOPA debate and tease out the issues if they are a free press. Tell other people to stop buying their products and their advertiser's products if they don't! I for one, am really looking forward to blackout day. I will celebrate it by leaving the television OFF and seeing how many sites GO DOWN.

2
0
Silver badge
Big Brother

One problem.

SOPA includes an anti-circumvention clause. Which means not only is it a crime to pirate, but (and here's the important part) it becomes a crime to do something which could be used to commit said crime. In other words, there is no opt-out. Skirting the regulation would itself be illegal. And since information can be passed on in all sorts of ways (not all of which are purely electronic--see QR Codes and Steganography), a slippery slope can be established before anyone realizes it. Probably the first thing that'll get criminalized is any form of encryption that the government can't already crack realtime (since, after all, ANY form of encryption can foil a deep packet inspection). That alone can put a big crimp on freedom of speech since any form of anonymity on the Internet depends on encryption in some form, and given that just about every other bitstream format is well-known and can be detected, it would be exceedingly difficult to continue to achieve anything other than quick bursts without there being SOME way of detecting it.

2
0
Anonymous Coward

It's quite simple, lobbyists simply wish to keep SOPA hidden from as many citizens as possible so it can be pushed through Congress with minimal resistance. The support of the people is unnecessary to pass SOPA; however, resistance to SOPA can be detrimental to that end.

Reporting on SOPA in the traditional media would expose it to tens of millions of citizens who would otherwise be ignorant of its existence. If portrayed positively this may bring in some unneeded support, but more importantly, many individuals may be compelled to independently research the topic - potentially resulting in thousands or tens of thousands of anti-SOPA letters being sent to senators from across the nation.

Should Google and other major internet sites carry out their "internet blackout" threat, this may at least force the media to cover the issue. I suppose the question is whether or not they will attempt to vilify these sites as some sort of economic terrorists out to bully congress into legalizing pirating.

1
0

Give them more rope

Yes this will have repercussions abroad, but I keep hoping that if the Yanks f*ck up enough, maybe they will wake up and see whats going wrong. I guess I am an optimist. Let them have their SOPA, hopefully its ripples will make people stop and think. Its a pity english is my 1st language, I suspect many non english speakers will be less impacted by this.

1
0

What big media wants

What big media wants is that you and I do not actually own anything hard or soft, and that we operate on a pay-per-view or play-per-play basis. What do you think the Cloud concept is for ?

We are sleepwalking into a horrible controlled future. Five seconds later there will be subliminals in the feed. Then what.

1
0
Anonymous Coward

Hysteria over nothing really

It's funny how some folks dream up the most absurd scenarios to rationalize their beliefs. Either they have some mighty fine meds or they need a lot of professional help.

SOPA is not the end of the universe ferchrissakes. If the 5% of unscrupulous people in society had any moral fiber society would not need to continuously make new laws to punish these criminals. Instead they falsely believe they are entitled. Wrong answer. Time for a gut check folks.

0
0
Vic
Silver badge

> It's funny how some folks dream up the most absurd scenarios to rationalize their beliefs

Sadly, those scenarios are entirely possible within the proposed law.

If they are so absurd, why is this possible? Doe it not smack of an ill-framed piece of legislation?

> SOPA is not the end of the universe ferchrissakes.

It is, however, a ridiculously dangerous law. It sparks the end of due process. That, of itself, is grounds to get worked up.

> society would not need to continuously make new laws to punish these criminals

Society *does not* need to make up new laws. It already has laws that punish wrongdoing. Copyright infringement is unlawful just about everywhere in the world, and can be criminal in certain jurisdictions (such as the UK, under s.107 of CDPA88).

SOPA is all about removing the need to prove a case before punishing the defendant. And that is wrong.

Vic.

3
0
Mushroom

sigh

first they set up an underclass by rounding up africans and bringing them over as slaves. the people who werent african didnt mind, in fact they enjoyed all the inexpensive merchandise that resulted.

then they wiped out the indigineous population. the people who werent native didnt mind, in fact they enjoyed all the lebensraum.

then, since slavery had since been outlawed, to keep the underclass vigorous they brought in chinese and treated them like pack animals. people who werent chines didnt mind, in fact they rather enjoyed getting their railroads built and laundry done for peanuts.

then they made drugs illegal and rounded up (and are still rounding up) anyone who chooses anything besides the bibles own family&society enhealthening alcohol. alcoholics and people who get high on life werent bothered.

then they rounded up the japanese and sent them to camps. people who werent japanese didnt mind, in fact they enjoyed the fire sale prices on their property.

then they rounded up the communists and destroyed their lives. people who werent communist didnt mind, in fact denouncing the competition was an easy way to get ahead in the rat race.

then they beat and even opened fire on people against the war in vietnam. people who werent against the war couldnt care less.

then they came for the muslims, the copyright infringers, the people who like raw milk, the people who like alternative medicine, the people against the wars in the middle east, the earth firsters, the animal rights activists, the occupy protesters, etc etc etc, giving themselves more and more overreaching powers at each step. the people who werent any of those just kept watching the superbowl and survivor and generally being good little consumers figuring it could never happen to them.

and then one day, when joe the plumbers favourite web forum (model railroading, stamp collecting, whatever) was all of a sudden not available because of something to do with copyright violation, he went ahead and looked into it and found out there was a way around it, and regained himself access. which according to sopa is illegal immoral job killing and downright devilish, and so they finally got around to coming for him too.

and the people who werent him, like the original poster above, cheered and said job well done.

0
1
Silver badge

Only one thing.

"and the people who werent him, like the original poster above, cheered and said job well done."

Thing was, by the time they got to Joe Plumber, there was no one left to cheer for the job well done. Everyone else with more technical expertise had been grabbed ahead of time (after all, there will be SOME guilty pleasure they'll block that we'll try to get around, human nature and all).

0
0

Page:

This topic is closed for new posts.