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* Posts by Squander Two

793 posts • joined 26 Mar 2012

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Why has the web gone to hell? Market chaos and HUMAN NATURE

Squander Two
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Tolerance

> Have you overlooked the fact that if society doesn't tolerate intolerance, it is no longer tolerant?

No, tolerance isn't just a binary on/off switch; there are degrees. For instance, saying "We'll tolerate any type of sexual behaviour, as long as the participants are all over eighteen" is not intolerant: it's simply setting a boundary within which tolerance will happen.

Also, there are two different classes of thing here: the opinions and behaviours that members of society exhibit, and the bounds within which society allows them to exhibit them. There is no logical inconsistency in allowing the airing of any views whatsoever as long as they are aired without violence, for instance.

Thatcher's policy towards the IRA is a good example: there was no censorship of Irish Republican views -- which were routinely openly espoused by the SDLP and the Labour Party -- but there was censorship of anyone who was trying to achieve their aims via terrorism and/or war crimes, on the grounds that you either join the debate in civil society or you kill people outside civil society, but you can't have the advantages of both. I know a lot of people disagreed with the policy, but my point here is not whether it was right or wrong, merely that it was not logically inconsistent and that it was clearly not intolerant of any political belief. It quashed a particular strategy, not an opinion.

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Network effects

> [The Web] contains more than a fair share of the views of people who are extreme in one form or another, because they're motivated enough to spend the time putting their views out there.

Yes, it does, but motivation is not the main reason. It's an interesting network effect to do with the size of minorities.

If you have a minority interest that is generally rejected by society at large -- the classic example being paedophilia -- until recently it was quite difficult for you to meet other people with the same interest: you wouldn't tend to come into contact with them via coincidence and you couldn't advertise. Your sphere of existence was your town or city, in which very very few people agreed with you and you couldn't find the ones who did. What the Net -- and more so the Web -- has enabled is for people with interests which are unpopular in any given region but which are widespread across a large number of regions to find each other and to organise.

It may also be the case that the very fact of being able to form communities online makes it easier for people with such views to convert new adherents: there's a world of difference between joining the village weirdo and joining a group of two hundred weirdos spread across three continents.

I still think the pros outweigh the cons, though.

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IT blokes: would you say that LEWD comment to a man? Then don't say it to a woman

Squander Two
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Denial and progress

I remember on a previous thread on this subject (months ago) that the comments filled up with the usual "Why don't women have a sense of humour?" "It's just a bit of banter." "Women do it too." I pointed out at the time that not only was the very first comment in the thread a reference to placing an object into the author's vagina but that you can guarantee that one of the first comments to any such article in IT circles will always be a reference to placing an object into the author's vagina, and that this is not true in other industries. I didn't see the first comment to this article before it was moderated away, but I'm guessing I may have been proven right again, even if only approximately. Still, the rest of the comments are way better than last time, so, you know, maybe we're progressing.

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Re: You'll Get The Respect You Deserve

h4rm0ny,

I usually agree with your posts, so can't for the life of me think why you'd usually agree with Don Jefe but disagree with him on this occasion. This post of his is a simple rewording of what he always says, with "Not being harrassed" substituted for his usual "Having oodles and oodles of money and being terribly successful and important".

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Re: Men AND women

> If you work IT in an investment bank, I'm sure a lot of the arrogant asshole banker culture rubs off on people.

I've worked IT in lots of different types of corporate environments, and have to say that investment banking has consistently been the one with the least amount of the attitude described in this article. In my experience, the treating-women-as-sex-objects attitude comes from the Net and from gaming (any woman who plays online multiplayer games can tell you how routine it is for the other players to tell her they're going to rape her), and both these things become more prevalent in workplaces with a lot of downtime, such as some IT support departments which have enough staff to handle major disasters but where major disasters don't happen most days.

I can't be bothered getting into theories as to why so many of the geeks who spent their school years being downtrodden and bullied and having zero success with women have turned into such mysogynists, but, frankly, who cares? I was one of them, and I don't do it.

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Has Europe cut the UK adrift on data protection?

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> I find that a good proportion of people around my parents age (and younger) are very anti Europe - for no logical reason other than it's inbuilt.

Rather than just assuming that anyone who disagrees with you must have no logical reason for doing so, why not try asking them?

> They've become increasing insular (or it was always there but now they have an outlet with the UKIP party and can voice it)

UKIP's policy is to trade with the whole world and to allow controlled immigration from the whole world rather than the current system of giving preference to the EU and allowing the EU to enforce protectionism against the rest of the world on our behalf. How does that give an outlet to insularity?

> I think most of their stance is a mis-guided form of nostalgia, fed by the Daily Mail and all.

You think? Again, why not try actually asking them?

I'm not nostalgic and I don't read The Mail. In fact, I used to be staunchly pro-EU. I've turned against them on simple grounds of democracy: the UK, for all its imperfections, has it, and the EU doesn't.

Since I have actually seen pro-EU politicians use the fact that Italian restaurants are really nice as an argument in their favour (as if we won't have any Chinese restaurants unless we cede some of our sovereignty to China), I find it amusing when people tell me that it's my side who are illogical.

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> I don't see any growing demand to pull out

Well, the Irish did vote to pull out in a referendum, which surely constitutes some demand to pull out.

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Re: Democracy

> Whatever formulation you choose, it boils down to one thing, you drew a parallel between being outvoted and being denied the power to vote. Those are two fundamentally different things and the analogy is an offense to everyone that has ever truly been oppressed and unrepresented.

No, because, as I already explained, it is not the job of committees to vote. Their job is to discuss and negotiate.

> the Reg's source

You mean, the Information Commissioner? Why are you trying to make it sound like this is some dodgy information from a mysterious figure? Like, you keep saying that he's "unnamed". Oo, how shady. Except, of course, that it is simply established tradition that senior civil servants are not named, not to keep their identities secret, but because, unlike politicians, it is their job that matters, not them. His name's Christopher Graham, apparently. Does knowing that make his report more credible?

So the Reg's source is the official report published by a senior figure an important part of whose job is to publish such reports. And I don't know whether you know any diplomats, but they generally take these things pretty seriously, and what they report is what has been happening in negotiations, not how they feel about things.

Viviane Reding, the Commissioner responsible for the Regulation, was reported in the German press saying that discussions with Britain and Ireland were "not important"

That's an unelected Commissioner refusing to discuss legislation with elected governments prior to overruling them. I hardly think pointing that out is an offence to anyone who has ever been unrepresented.

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Squander Two
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Re: Democracy

> Try sitting on a committee, constantly disagreeing with points that everybody else agrees with, and threatening that soon you might leave altogether. See how much notice anybody takes of your views.

Two things. Firstly, you're claiming that British representatives to EU committees keep threatening to leave? But that is not the case. What is happening, rather, is that the UK as a whole -- certainly not the British Government -- is perceived to be threatening to leave, which means that what is being punished here is not some unsavoury debating tactic in committee but the fact that the populace aren't sufficiently pro-EU, the fact that the populace are actually discussing the option of leaving. It is sad that anyone might need it explained to them how bad that is, in a supposed democracy. Again, is this what the UK does to Scotland? No -- in fact, we have been doing the opposite.

Secondly, are you even reading what you write?

> constantly disagreeing with points that everybody else agrees with

God, yeah, how appalling that such a thing might happen in a democracy. You're right: democratic bodies should be composed entirely of people agreeing with each other at all times. Disagreement is so crass. We should get rid of that tiresome "Opposition" we have in Parliament, too. Did you know, they keep disagreeing with the Government! The nerve!

This isn't some ad-hoc committee for managing the sixth-form common room we're talking about, where everyone can ignore James 'cause he's such a wanker and frankly it doesn't matter. It's supposed to be part of a democracy. The other members aren't supposed to decide whether to listen to each other based on how much they like each other or whether they're annoyed at each other's opinions. They are supposed to incorporate everyone's views because each member is representing the views of an elected government of the people.

This unfortunate idea has taken hold in recent years that concensus is a good thing in government. As Tony Benn pointed out, every time two opposing political sides agree to agree with each other, what they are actually doing is taking choice away from the electorate.

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Re: Democracy

> So, you were comparing the situation where none of the rights of the UK delegation were removed with a hypothetical situation where Scottish MPs would have their voting rights removed?

I was comparing a situation in which the ability of the British representatives to influence legislation was removed to a hypothetical situation in which the ability of Scottish representatives to influence legislation would be removed.

> I'd like to make a distinction between the (objective) facts and an unnamed person's subjective opinions and impressions. ... Everything else are one unnamed person's personal (subjective) impressions, opinions and speculations.

That's interesting, because I was just reacting to what was in the article. You want to make confident assertions that you know what's really going on and that you, who weren't there, have more insight into the proceedings than someone who was -- and that this is you rejecting impressions, opinions, and speculations.

> Their trail of thoughts is, apparently...

Wow. You're even, in your stand against subjective opinion and speculation, telling us what someone else's train of thought was. Impressive.

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Re: Little Englander syndrome

> if we were the first country to leave the EU they'd no doubt make an example of us

You're making my point for me. Does anyone think that's what the English will do to Scotland after they vote Yes? Punish them for it? Refuse to trade with them in the hope that their economy will suffer? Of course not.

If that really is what the EU are like, that is a reason to leave, not to stay.

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Re: Democracy

> N.I. no longer has a Democratic Government.

What ill-informed bollocks.

NI has a democratic government in which the democracy is constrained by certain constitutional limits that arose as a result of horse-trading by democratically elected representatives with the aim of guaranteeing safeguards from the tyranny of the majority. Much like, say, every democratic state on the planet. I may not like all those constitutional limits, and I certainly may not like the idea of making a murderer Minister for Education, but it is still democratic.

> It's an example of a place where Democracy doesn't work.

No, it's an example of a place where a majority exercised tyranny and have been prevented from doing so again.

In this place where democracy can't work, the people chucked out a party leader from his supposedly safe seat and my own MP, Lady Hermon, quite rightly left her party and thrashed them in the subsequent election as an independent.

Even if you were right, the problems Northern Ireland faced were basically the ridiculously long-drawn-out tail-end of the English Civil War. If problems caused by that war make an area unsuitable for democracy, that area would be the entirety of the British Isles.

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Squander Two
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Re: Democracy

> Except that no one is stripping UK of their voting rights.

And I didn't claim they were. I was making a comparison. Since the EU's decisions are not made by voting (the EU "Parliament" exists in a merely advisory role to the unelected EC), I thought it was a reasonable analogy: voting is the way British MPs affect legislation, and wrangling in working groups and committees is the way representatives to the EU affect legislation.

> Guess what, no single nation's opinion has enough weight to change EU policy when that one nation's opinion is contrary to everyone else's.

That will come as news to the nations who want EU economic policy to favour their collapsing economies more than Germany's.

However, that's not what the article said. See my other comment above: the UK is not being ignored because of the substance of its arguments but because it might at some point in the future leave the EU.

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Re: Democracy

> What part of democracy do you not understand? We are in a minority of one: in a democracy, that means we lose.

Looks like I understand it a bit better than you. Democracy is the system whereby we choose our representatives and leaders. Once we have done so, they are supposed to discuss things. The whole point of committees is that they look into things and gather lots of information, not that they just count how many members they have and have the biggest faction make a decision.

Meanwhile, here's what the actual article says (maybe you should read it):

At the Information Commissioner’s press conference to launch his latest Annual Report (15 July), he reported that in the Working Party 29, it was difficult to get the British pragmatic view across – irrespective of the arguments. This was not because the UK was speaking in runes and riddles, it was down to the presumption that the UK could easily leave the European Union and therefore what it had to say carried little weight.

The claim is absolutely not that the UK is being outvoted because it's in a minority; the claim is that the views of the UK's representatives are being wholly ignored not on their merit but simply because the UK's population are not sufficiently pro-EU. Again, can we imagine doing that to Scots MPs? No, because to do so would be appalling and undemocratic. Hey, even Sinn Fein have elected MPs, who may appear and vote in the House if they wish (that they choose not to is another matter). They're in a tiny minority, yet Parliament, quite rightly, takes their views into account.

> our government is doing everything it can to engineer that exit

If that were true, UKIP's last election performance would have been mediocre at best.

> so from a purely pragmatic point of view: why waste time on us?

Pragmatism? Well, from a purely pragmatic point of view, why bother with all that tiresome voting at all? It's expensive and inefficient. Everyone knows the most effective way to run a country is to have one guy at the top who makes all the decisions.

Honestly, it's almost as if we have democracy and freedom for principled reasons, not pragmatic ones.

> Particularly when we're esssentially just another lobbyist for business interests with zero concern for our citizens' interests?

What, you mean to a greater extent than other EU members? Are you on crack?

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Re: Little Englander syndrome

> Here we are in an ever increasingly connected world that gets smaller and smaller by the day. Travelling and connecting to places that were a pipe dream forty years ago are now easily achievable and greater integration makes sense because of that.

So of course you believe that the USA, Canada, and Mexico should be amalgamated into a single nation-state. And that China should merge with Mongolia. And that the USSR should be reformed. And that Scotland should not be allowed to leave the UK. Come to that, we should probably take back Ireland.

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Democracy

Looks like yet more evidence of how undemocratic and tyrannical the EU is. Can we imagine stripping Scottish MPs of their voting rights and disallowing them from joining parliamentary committees because Scotland is going to have a referendum on UK membership? Although it's even worse than that, as there is still no EU membership referendum: can we imagine stripping Scottish MPs of their voting rights for the last thirty-odd years simply because Scots nationalism existed and was quite popular? To ask the question is to ridicule it.

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Microsoft's Brit kid Cortana lands on UK WinPhone 8.1, but China's is the real cutie

Squander Two
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Re: Which WinPhones will get 8.1?

Oh, my skin's plenty thick. But I still like to point out tongue-dragging fuckwittery when I see it.

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Re: Which WinPhones will get 8.1?

I know some people round here just HATE Microsoft, but seriously: a downvote for saying "If you want the update, here's a way of getting it"? It's psychotic.

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Cortana aside....

As well as the Cortana updates, the Windows Phone package is going to include the ability to group apps into Live Folders on the Start Screen, improvements to the Xbox Music app and SMS merging.

It had fucking better have improvements to the Xbox Music app. I'm a big fan of Windows Phone in general, and 8.1 is broadly excellent, but the move from Music to Xbox Music is an unmitigated disaster.

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Re: Which WinPhones will get 8.1?

Just sign up for the "developer preview". You don't have to be a dev and it's free, and it's not a beta. The rumour is that Microsoft implemented it because they were pissed off with carriers being so damn slow to roll out updates so created a way for users to bypass the carriers. Regardless of whether that's true about their reasons, the result is that they have created a way for users to bypass the carriers. So yay.

I've had 8.1 on my 1020 for months now. A couple of downsides, but mostly up. The Swype-like typing and the predictive text are both astoundingly good.

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YES, iPhones ARE getting slower with each new release of iOS

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Re: Bricking Old Hardware

Sorry, are we discussing the Apple who claimed they could fix an antenna design problem with a software update?

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Re: Somewhat missing the point

> An iPad 2 will quite happily run iOS7 without crashing.

Yes, it will, The iPad 2's user, on the other hand, might get a tad pissed off at the UTTERLY FUCKING HORRIBLE INTERFACE. AAAARRRGH!

Sorry.

Calm... calm....

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Re: Upgrades to software, other platforms.

> you take ONE MASSIVE HIT in time just trying to work out WTF to do with it

I am not a genius. It took me about a minute.

I can't understand why so many people who work in IT are so keen to boast about their total inability to learn how to use a new interface.

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British Lords: Euro 'right to be forgotten' ruling 'unreasonable and unworkable'

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Re: Smaller search engines???

Sorry, I realise I went off at a tangent there. The really important point -- regardless of what you think of the law in question -- is that the ruling states unequivocally that it doesn't apply to small uninfluential search engines yet our Lords & Masters have stated unequivocally that the ruling is unworkable because of how it affects smaller search engines -- which means they haven't bloody read it. Always nice to have competent people in charge.

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Re: have I got this right?

> Upon discussing an individual it is surely entirely natural to mention ...

Whatever may or may not be natural, I think we can all agree that Google isn't, and there's no particular reason its search results should be regarded like a casual human conversation.

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Re: Smaller search engines???

Well, quite. And furthermore, the ruling specifically stated that it didn't apply to smaller search engines. I can't be arsed going and looking up the exact wording right now, but what it said was that Google have succeeded in putting themselves in a position where they are generally regarded by the public at large as the ultimate arbiter of information -- which, of course, they have. The ruling said that, where a company has managed to get itself into that position, they get more responsibility for their results than some small search engine does. Which seems fair enough: it's about influence: the results Google return attain the status of "truth" in a way that Yahoo's (currently) don't. Since Google worked very, very hard to achieve that position and influence, it does seem odd that they're complaining about it.

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Re: have I got this right?

> I believe that if you went around constantly saying "That big_D guy was arrested for murder", big_D would have a pretty good claim for defamation

Exactly.

I was once trained in the fine art of job interviewing, and one thing that was stressed to us very heavily was that, if someone has a big gaping hole in the timeline on their CV, we absolutely must not ask about it. The reason for this is that it could be prison time. If their conviction is considered spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, they are not obliged to declare it to employers, and employers, if they find out about it, are not allowed to hold it against them. If we ask about the gap in their CV and they either tell us they were in prison or they lie or avoid the question, then, if they then don't get the job, they have an extremely strong case for a tribunal against us, because, regardless of our actual reason for not hiring them, it's going to look pretty bloody obvious to everyone that it was the jail time. So far better, legally, to avoid finding out.

If other companies, due to the law, are making efforts to avoid finding out certain things about people, why should Google ignore those same laws? Which is, after all, all the EU court judgement said.

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Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart

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Talking of brainless....

8%! Fucking moron.

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Statistics

Point out that Adam Afriyie has a brain: 22 upvotes.

Suggest that maybe he might be PM material: 2 downvotes.

9% of Register readers demand brainless Prime Ministers.

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Re: I'm astounded

Yes, that sentence just leapt out at me as well. From an MP? Unbelievable.

I had not heard of Mr Afriyie until a few minutes ago. I am now willing to believe that maybe he should be Prime Minister.

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Google's Pankhurst doodle doo-doo shows the perils of using Google to find stuff out

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Re: Sources

> It was remarkable that it was either identical or out by 1 day. One of the explanations was that parents often make innocent mistakes when notifying various official or semi-official agencies of the birth of a new child.

From my own experience, I know that one reason for this is that a lot of babies are born in the small hours. If your baby is born at, say, 3am on the 18th after a 20-hour labour, you think of it as late on the 17th. Plus, of course, if your baby's born around midnight, there can be legitimate differences of opinion about what date it is, given that (a) there isn't really a precise moment of birth and (b) everyone's clocks don't always agree with each other.

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Re: Sources

> I can't see the parents getting it wrong.

I can see the bureaucrat writing it down wrong, I can see the bureaucrat writing it down correctly but it then being copied incorrectly by another bureaucrat (seriously, is this something we're classing as unlikely these days?), and I can see the parents lying in order to comply with a time-limit dictat.

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Sources

It's odd to see so many people here putting so much faith in paperwork. That's just the 19th-Century equivalent of "If the computer says it, it must be true." I'd hope IT people would be a bit more cynical about that, but apparently not.

Pankhurst, of course, did not misread her own birth certificate. She got her birthday from her parents, who one should assume might have had an inkling. Who you going to believe: the woman who actually gave birth or a piece of paper written on by a bureaucrat some days or weeks later?

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Google policy wonk patronises Brits over EU search biz probe

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Re: Google in a nutshell.

> [Citation needed]

Maybe you're such a geek that you're not familiar with the concept, but this thing here is called "a conversation". No-one's writing a reference book here. I have this thing called a "memory", which I use in my day-to-day life and in the course of "conversations". I don't take a photo of every single thing I read next to a copy of that day's newspaper, so cannot provide references for everything I say. And neither can you. But a lot of them are facts regardless.

Anyway, Google were most certainly doing this with share prices, sites such as FT quite rightly complained, and Google have now stopped doing it with share prices. I believe (I did say "unless my memory is playing tricks") that the same thing happened with weather forecasts.

Regardless, as someone else pointed out above, we have a Google VP here claiming that weather forecasts aren't even a product and don't belong to anyone. If you think that comment is an unthinking fuck-up rather than Google policy and part of their usual drip-drip-drip of attitude-manipulating propaganda, historical evidence is against you. If you want a citation for that, it's the Register article you're currently commenting on.

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Re: Over the top?

> What is Google? A website which expresses an opinion about what it found on the Internet.

... and builds driverless cars, and takes photos of every street in the world, and provides a free video service, and denies the free video service to musicians who won't do what the fuck they're told, and provides a blogging platform, and provides online office software, and provides a free email service, and scans every email that goes through the free email service to sell the data to advertisers, and grabs encrypted wifi data from people's houses, and lobbies governments to change copyright law, and scans millions of copyright books and puts the text on the Web ....

There's some good in there and some bad, but they're definitely not just a search engine. Are you living in 1998?

> Why do people use it? Because they choose to. Of. Their. Own. Free. Will.

See, that only worked as long as they were only a search engine. No-one chose to have their wifi data slurped; no-one chose to have their house photographed; authors and publishers did not choose to have their books scanned -- quite the opposite: they fought Google to try and stop it; and no-one voted for the Google ideologues in the Intellectual Property Office who are trying to change copyright law in Google's favour.

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Re: Google in a nutshell.

> In the case of the UK (where me be) the best forecasts tend to come from the Met office

Very funny.

> I have paid for those forecasts with my taxes, I expect to find them as simply and clearly as possible.

You are thinking of the Public Weather Service, which is one thing the Met Office does. But see here, for example:

http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/about-us/advertise

> Although I guess you could post some links where Google has published the entirety of someone's copyrighted work without permission

What, you mean like Google's project to scan every book in existence and put the text on the Web, which prompted legal action from various quarters? Would that count?

You may of course point out that they have permission, to which I will counter that they did what they always do: started the massive and obviously illegal project first, without permission, and eventually negotiated permission and terms after being dragged through the courts by their victims, fighting every step of the way. I think their argument at the time was "Knowledge wants to be free" -- which is classic Google: sounds like a grand philosophical position, but is in fact a business plan that involves taking other people's work without paying them.

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Re: Google in a nutshell.

> You seem to imply that Google in effect steals its weather data from around the web… However, a bit of searching reveals that Google gets its data from Weather Underground

Oh, they do now. But, unless my memory is playing tricks, their original scheme was to nick the data and they were pushed to change when various site's owners made exactly the point I'm making.

> The issue is, should Google show data on top of the page, or should it have the user click on one of the result links? The first is easier for the user, and the second is better for competition.

It is slightly more complicated, since, for some firms, the income that allows them to generate the content in the first place comes from page-clicks, so Google's giving the data directly to the user can only work short-term; long-term, it destroys the source of the information.

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Google in a nutshell.

"I think if it's just the weather, it's the weather, it's not particularly our product or anyone else's product. It's a fact."

That is an incredibly good summary of their attitude to other people's work. No, it's not the weather, it's a weather forecast, which is a preposterously expensive thing to do well, involving the launch of satellites, supercomputers, legions of PhDs, etc -- and yes, that most certainly is someone's product. But hey, claim it's just public property and then you can take the forecasts other people have spent a fortune on, stick them in your search results, and claim there's no problem when people don't then go and visit the sites of the actual forecasters and maybe cast their eyeballs over some of their ads and products.

Google's lask of distinction between "weather" and "weather forecast" is much the same as their attitude to "language" and "novels", or "sound" and "songs".

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REVEALED: Google's proposed indie music-killing contract terms

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Can't you read or something? What I've pointed out, repeatedly and correctly, is that Google lobbied hard for the DMCA to be worded the way it is, and that the DMCA makes life very easy for copyright infringers and much harder for copyright owners.

> Are you trying to say that an author having to send an email with details of the infringement is far to onerous a task for them to do?

The onerosity of the task is surely something to be judged by the author. However, what you have repeatedly claimed is that there has been no change, that the principle of copyright law is exactly the same as it's always been. The fact is, MMS didn't have to do this before, and now he does. And so do other authors. That is what we in the reality trade call a "change".

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> Google makes it easier for the author to publish their works and get it distributed. This ease of use also means the author might have to do more work in protecting his work.

What complete bollocks. Here's a description of the process by the great Michael Marshall Smith. I started reading his books before Google were invented, so I hardly think they've made it easier for him to get published.

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> It has always been the case (even pre-internet) that it is up to the rights holders to enforce their rights. Even in the case of books.

I suggest you talk to an author. They will be able to describe to you the massive pain in their arse that is now a regular feature of their life and barely existed pre-Google.

> Will the police arrest you or the owner of the market that you are using to sell the magazines?

Er, firstly, you do know OK Computer isn't a magazine, right?

That aside, it depends. If the market is a known den of illegal goods and the police come to suspect that the market owner knows about all the illegal activity and is not taking any measures to try to discourage it, or is even encouraging it, then yes, they will try to build a case against them and arrest them.

Oh, look! Google's business plan is built on monetizing illegal content, and they know that, and they pour resources into resisting attempts to get them to discourage it.

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> So you seriously believe that google should watch and listen to every video before its published?

No, I believe that how Google identify copyright infringement should be Google's problem. Companies develop tech with legal problems all the time. Solving the legal problems is their responsibility. It's a shame when some small business gets screwed by excessive red tape, but this is the opposite: a case of one of the world's biggest businesses foisting their red tape onto much smaller businesses.

> They obey the law. If they are notified of copyright infringement they take it down.

They obey the law that they successfully lobbied governments to write. Which is my point.

> Complete bollocks as an analogy as the BBC can broadcast, at most, 24 hours worth any given day whereas google can have hundreds of thousands of hours worth uploaded.

Since the BBC have a website and media player, I'm not convinced that's true. But that wasn't my point anyway. My point is that a broadcaster, when developing new technologies and business plans, will incorporate the question "How do we obey the law?" into their planning. Google instead ask "The law is inconvenient to our business plan. How do we get it changed?" There's been quite a lot of coverage on El Reg of their ideological infiltration of the Intellectual Property Office. Have you not read it?

> google can have hundreds of thousands of hours worth uploaded. Vetting 24 hours worth is trivial.

Again, if Google's business plan is inconvenient to them, that is Google's problem. But I don't think you're following your own logic here. If it's impossible for Google to police Youtube, it is also impossible for any other firm to do it. And, in fact, thanks to Google's lobbying, copyright owners aren't just expected to police Youtube but to police the entire Internet. Your argument is that Google shouldn't be required to do something because it's too difficult, but you're simultaneously arguing that everyone else should therefore be required to do something even more difficult. All that boils down to is "Google's business plan trumps everyone else's." Why should it?

> Broadcast content also comes under different rules and regulations to internet content and this alone would prevent the BBC from doing this.

What? You're saying the BBC wouldn't do certain things even if they could due to their understanding that the law trumps their business plan? Why, yes, you're right. Are you even listening to yourself?

> Google will also make their content identification system available to them

Which is it? Is it technologically impossible for Google to vet content or do they have a content identification system?

Hey, even if they don't, they could buy Shazam. Identifying songs automatically isn't even new tech any more.

> Why should they refuse it? There are numerous videos on google with "Rolling in the Deep" in the title that are parodies of Adele's version. Why should google block these artists from publishing their own work just because it is a parody of Adele's song? Why should Adele get priority over these artists?

The example I gave didn't just have "Rolling in the Deep" somewhere in the title; it was clearly titled to imply that it's the real original song. How about a pop-up message saying "The title you have provided is that of a copyright work owned by someone else. If your video is a parody, please start its title with the words "Parody of"."? Since "ROLLING IN THE DEEP BY ADELE" generates far more ad revenue than "PARODY OF ROLLING IN THE DEEP WITH ADDED SQUIRRELS" and no-one clicks on the latter hoping for the former, that would pretty much solve the problem.

> Google are not required by law to hunt down copyright infringement and block it, it is up to the copyright holders to protect their copyrights.

Look, this all started with the books. Before Google did it, it was unequivocally illegal for you to scan a copy of Consider Phlebas and put it online. Neither Iain Banks nor his publishers were obliged to police the entire Internet and track you down and ask you to stop. Google then decided to scan every book they could get their hands on just because they could. This wasn't a case of third-party users uploading books to a Google server; Google were doing it themselves. They could have opted to spend a bit of money on checking the copyright status of each book -- hey, it's easy: it's printed on page one. But that was inconvenient to them, not because it was prohibitively difficult, but because they didn't want to acknowledge that they knew full well that their plan was plainly illegal. This was the point at which they announced their lovely scheme of "Hey, don't worry: if you see that we're breaking the law, just tell us, and we'll stop. But only if you tell us. In writing. Don't be evil, now!" It is sad that they successfully persuaded government and law enforcement to go along with this farce, and it's sad that they've now persuaded people like you that that's the way it's always been. And now they've persuaded you that it has to be that way because policing Youtube is difficult.

Here's a thing. If I make a load of knock-off copies of OK Computer and sell them down the market, is it Radiohead's responsibility to find me and ask me to stop, or will the police arrest me if they see me?

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> A publisher like Harper Collins will have at least one person read a book before it is published. Google do not have that luxury

Luxury? What are you on about? It's not a luxury; it's a choice. All this boils down to is "Oo, it's very inconvenient for us to obey the law because Internet, so you need to let us off." One of the reasons Google is swimming in money is that they figured out that, where other companies were having to spend lots of money on all that tedious obeying-the-law crap, it was far cheaper to run a massive propaganda campaign to persuade people that obeying laws wasn't necessary for Google. They like to portray themselves as being in this unfortunate situation of it just being so damn difficult to follow the same laws and regulations as other companies because how can you possibly police gazillions of users, but, in fact, that should be their problem, not anyone else's. Imagine, for instance, that the BBC were to set up a system where you could upload your own videos and they'd be broadcast automatically on BBC3 (hey, anything would be an improvement). Would they just leave it unpoliced, wait for the shit to hit the fan, and then claim that the various broadcasting anti-obscenity laws didn't apply to them on this occasion because they can't possibly police users? No, obviously not: they would simply be expected by the law to police their users and would be punished if they didn't.

These contracts, though, put the lie to even Google's pretence: it's clear that they love monetizing their own refusal to police their users:

Under the terms of the published version of the contract, indies must promise not only to never sue Google - under a “Covenant Not To Sue” - but give immunity to punters who continue to upload the label's own material to YouTube's massively popular video service.

That's not "Oh dear, if only we could police our users"; that's "We will do whatever we can to stop even you policing our users for us."

Besides, as I said above, I have some sympathy for the genuinely difficult-to-enforce cases. Music videos aren't one of them. It would be a piece of piss to let every record label or artist have a unique login and refuse to allow any videos labelled "NEW ROLLING IN THE DEEP VIDEO WITH LYRICS" to be uploaded by anyone other than adelepavements1. But Google refuse to do so.

Finally, let's remember that Google did not build Youtube; they bought it, knowing full well that this very thing was a problem, as lots of people pointed out to them at the time. They have not ended up in this situation through misfortune; they have deliberately manoeuvred their way into it. Fuck 'em.

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> Completely different. Casino Royale is a well known work so Harper Collins wont publish it.

> Try instead digging out an obscure book that sold ten copies and ask Harper Collins to publish it.

Yes, there are cases where it is difficult for a publisher to detect copyright infringement, and I for one don't expect Google to somehow know whether the amusing cat video uploaded by Barry from Wolverhampton is really his to upload or was in fact nicked by Barry off his brother-in-law Dave's phone. However, you might have noticed that one of the indie artists involved in this spat is Adele. That's Adele, one of the biggest selling artists on the planet, who's done a Bond theme, whose face would be recognised by at least a billion people. So can you explain why you think her output is "completely different" from "well known work"?

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> It has always been the case that it is up to the rights holders to enforce their rights, not a third party.

It's impressive the job Google have done of persuading people of this -- and, indeed, of persuading people to regard them as a third party. As I pointed out in another thread, try asking Harper Collins to publish Casino Royale under your name and see how far you get. They won't just go ahead and publish it and wait till Ian Fleming's estate ask them to stop; they will assume that the onus is on them not to breach copyright. Because it is.

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Re: Author retains copyright

Would the relevant comparison be to a publisher or to a broadcaster, though?

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> Amazingly, this is exactly Big Music's old argument of "Imma being robbed blind by the Interwebs" from the 90s, just with different actors.

Not quite. The music establishment refused to acknowledge that their technological monopoly had ended, and so did not only fight illegal downloads but also fiercely resisted any suggestion that they themselves might create legal downloads, on the grounds that a legal download was too easy to copy and distribute illegally. So they unwittingly actively helped create the market for illegal downloads by refusing to provide a legal alternative -- until Apple came along.

In today's argument, the only thing the labels are doing that helps create the illegal market is charging anything at all for their products. They're not trying to restrict the types of media which their product may be released; they're just asking to be paid.

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Amazon sues former employee who took Google cloud job

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Re: Hold On

> I dealt with that during the year I spent in London. Commercial interests long ago argued, successfully ...

The EU ruled on this very recently -- in the last two years, I think (though time flies by so fast these days I lose track). So any long ago argument has probably been superceded.

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Re: Can't see the gray area here

The EU ruled a while ago that non-competes are a restriction on the free movement of labour, and thus unenforceable in the EU. Free movement of labour trumps most things here.

Since Google are a multinational, they could have avoided this by just relocating the guy to the EU for the duration of the non-compete clause.

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YouTube in shock indie music nuke: We all feel a little less worthy today

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Re: @skelband

> That's always been the case.

No, it most certainly has not. And, in most cases, it still isn't.

Try approaching Harper Collins with a copy of Casino Royale and asking them to publish it under your name and see how far you get. They won't decide to print a couple of thousand because they can probably sell them before Ian Fleming's estate notice and tell them to stop; they will assume, rightly, that the onus is on them not to breach copyright.

Google have managed via extensive lobbying to persuade governments that the onus is on everyone else to ensure Google don't breach people's rights. You might approve of this change for whatever reason, but to claim that it's not a change is simply wrong.

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