* Posts by Andrew Orlowski

1365 posts • joined 6 Sep 2006

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AI-powered dynamic pricing turns its gaze to the fuel pumps

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Also this is NOT AI

I expect you're one of these computing "experts" or "practitioners" who thinks words should mean what they mean.

Please turn yourself into the Marketing Department for reprogramming.

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Huawei Honor 8 Pro: Makes iPhone 7 Plus look a bit crap

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

I use both and disagree. Apple's is the most unreliable, Huawei's is reliable and fast.

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Bye bye MP3: You sucked the life out of music. But vinyl is just as warped

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: "... some key MP3 patents have been allowed to expire ..."

MP3 isn't now "patent-free".

MP3 IP always had two parents: Thomson/Frauenhofer, and AT&T. Frauenhofer allowed its patents to lapse and mothballed the licensing program last month. Microsoft discovered the hard way a few years ago that Alcatel had a ton too. A few are still enforceable.

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HTC's 2017 flagship U11 woos audiophiles and bundles Alexa

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: another 85 seconds of my life googling

"virtually every other site doing a phone review lists a big old list of specifications at the end."

This isn't a review. That's coming.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

MicroSD cards are so standard on Android phones I'd mention it if there wasn't one.

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DeX Station: Samsung's Windows-killer is ready for prime time

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Windows-killer

Seoul is nearer North Korea.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Nice work

Charlie :-)

I thought the Galaxy S7 got almost everything right - there was no contest in that price category. If it was a boxing match the referee would have stopped the fight.

TouchWiz is not the problem with the S8, it's Blixby and all the other slurping. And the insane position of the fingerprint sensor. But I'll post the write-up soon...

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Mozilla to Thunderbird: You can stay here and we may give you cash, but as a couple, it's over

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)
Trollface

Re: I use Thunderbird and I want to support it

Please give generously:

http://gawker.com/375910/mitchell-baker-earns-her-500000-a-year-salary

The CEO needs another Porsche.

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There be dragons? Why net neutrality groups won't go to Congress

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Congressional inaction was whole reason the FCC went the Title II route

"the "hybrid approach" was always a fantasy."

I don't understand this at all, Doug, it can't be sustained by the evidence base. The Courts had given the FCC a pretty strong roadmap for what would fly. This became the hybrid approach and many people at the FCC spent months working on it. Thune's draft bill indicated what Republicans thought was acceptable:

- no blocking lawful content and non-harmful devices

- no throttling

- no paid prioritization

- transparent network practices

So the argument that "we had no option but Title II" is not only unsupportable by the evidence (or only by discarding all the evidence like draft legislation, Court decisions, emails, etc), it's also self-serving. The Democrat netroots marched a lot of people up the hill, knowing full well they would all have to march down again. Maybe they owe those people an apology?

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Congressional inaction was whole reason the FCC went the Title II route

@DougS:

"Wheeler and Obama both tried to push congress to enact some sort of net neutrality policy, but they refused. So the FCC tried to go it alone with simple rulemaking, but that was shot down by the courts. The only card left to play was trying to pull ISPs under Title II"

This isn't what happened at all - it isn't even close. Wheeler's FCC had spent months working on a new internet order that everyone could live with (called "the hybrid approach"), but after the midterm elections, Obama pulled the rug from under him, and demanded Title II.

https://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/03/01/how_obama_captured_fcc/

more links:

https://www.hsgac.senate.gov/media/majority-media/chairman-johnson-releases-report-on-how-the-white-house-bowled-over-fcc-independence

http://www.hsgac.senate.gov/download/regulating-the-internet-how-the-white-house-bowled-over-fcc-independence (pdf)

That includes the email trail between the White House and the FCC. You'll find the timeline on p5 of the PDF.

Senate Report:

"From the timeline presented in this report, a reasonable person could conclude that the FCC would not have ultimately chosen a Title II reclassification but for the President’s support." Wheeler's "Damascus Road" moment was on December 5th.

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Don't listen to the doomsayers – DRM is headed for the historical dustbin, says Doctorow

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

"14 years" is the Godwin of copyright discussions.

The Law states that:

"As a discussion about copyright on a technology site expands, the probability of someone posting that '14 years should be enough' approaches 100 per cent".

We do office sweepstakes on it occasionally. You win today.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)
Happy

Re: This is interesting...

Indeed.

He has never forgiven me for comparing his prose to the Postscript programming language: "write-only".

https://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/10/14/blooker_prize/

And this, my favourite:

https://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/12/30/quotes_of_the_year_2010/?page=5

(Second one down).

Occasionally in life you meet people who are so lacking in self awareness, that trolling them becomes redundant, and Cory Doctorow is one of them.

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Microsoft sparks new war with Google with, er, $999+ lappies for kids

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

https://pi-top.com

Like this?

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Google pulls Hezbollah YouTube channel after we told them about the drone ads

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: The commenter needs to do some thinking

I have no doubt that Hezbollah does not need palm-sized nanodrones. It's the people who get their thrills watching Hezbollah videos who you might need to worry about.

Then there's the small matter that funding Hezbollah gets you into some very serious shit with the authorities.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/12/world/middleeast/us-hits-hezbollah-with-new-sanctions.html

I asked Google how much it had handed over already. Strangely, they don't want to tell us.

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How Apple exploded Europe's crony capitalism

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Fake History

Are you trying to set the world record for building Straw Men?

# Straw Man 1:

>> "silicon moved at a stately pace" - really? I don't remember Moore's law stalling until Apple's iphone came riding to the rescue? <<<

Mobile microprocessors got better much more quickly after the iPhone.

# Straw Man 2:

>> maybe as 0laf says in cheap TV sets but in the early 80's William Gibson had already envisaged cyberspace as virtual reality <<

Envisaged it in a work of fiction. Fiction writers are good at this sort of thing. You might almost say writing fiction is what fiction writers do best.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Fake News. So sad.

"Incidentally, GSM spun out of a European Union project"

No it didn't.

The EU didn't exist until a decade after work on GSM started. It happened anyway, without the huge bureaucrat overhead, through non-EU bodies like CEPT. And because of the multilateral agreement between four trade Ministers who endorsed the work. That's all you need to get the ball rolling.

GSM is a great example of how great things can happen without a massive bureaucrat superstate issuing top-down decrees, and generally getting in the way.

http://www.gsmhistory.com/who_created-gsm/

But I suppose that since it has so few successes of its own, the EU wants to take credit for other people's successes.

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Oracle refuses to let Java copyright battle die – another appeal filed in war against Google

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

If Google ultimately win with their "fair-use" argument (they have already conceded in court that they have broken Oracles copyright) then what other copyrights are vulnerable to the same treatment?

All of GPL licensed source code comes to mind."

Exactly, and this caused a few people to change their minds. is a lot of concern about this. GPL and Foss relies on strong copyright law and strong contracts. If you weaken copyright, you make the GPL much more vulnerable.

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Roses are red, violets are blue, HMRC confirms Verify can STFU

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Fixed headline

Except it isn't an HMRC SNAFU. Not even a little bit.

It's a very sensible step by HMRC to sidestep a huge pile of insecure and barely functional crap that was developed by the whizz kids at GDS ("redefining the relationship between citizen and state" (c) 2013) that being dumped on them by the Cabinet Office.

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Who's behind the Kodi TV streaming stick crackdown?

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Re: "Spoilt self-entitled brat"

That was very true ten years ago, and I used to read your comment everywhere ten years ago.

Since then, they've changed business model, by unbundling content from hardware, and doing OTT with cheap subscriptions.

But you're still clinging to the same comment.

Sad!

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Move over HoloLens, $30 homebrew cardboard AR is here

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Limited but not useless

It depends what you want to do. For outdoor stuff like geocaching and Pokemon Go-style games it's fine. You can do a lot with not much.

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Privacy is theft! Dave Eggers' big-screen takedown of Google and Facebook emerges

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Discombobulating grindstones

Straw man alert.

Larry has never defended strong individual property rights. They're an obstacle on the road to his frictionless utopian. Perhaps you need to put your own prejudices aside here?

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New UK copyright amendment used by Big Furniture to stifle competition

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Seems reasonable to me, Dan.

The law is doing what it should do, which is stimulating the creation of new designs, while remunerating successful designers. Design is a licensing business, and it's massively important to the UK. ACID pressed hard for stronger protection for designers - that's just one of many errors in this piece. (The Graun, so go figure).

Try throwing a few nuts and bolts and tyres together and selling them as a "Porsche", as see how far you get.

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Trump hires very best, greatest net neut haters to head FCC transition

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

SeeTed Dziuba 8 years ago, "Net neutrality" is an argument about capitalism masquerading as a civil rights issue:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/12/22/dziuba_net_neut/

Do have a read.

"Net Neutrality" (sic )has only ever been about one thing: who pays for infrastructure in the future. Common sense suggest that since both telcos and OTT services benefit, they should both pay for the capex, and can do so through private agreements, ie cost sharing. Silicon Valley wants to load the costs onto telcos. Telcos argue that since Google and friends capture the value, they should pay too.

So it's crony capitalism to take one side and handicap the other. Pipes need services and services need pipes. A regulatory regime that inhibits market experimentation (eg Binge On or low latency networks) or inhibits investment is probably not a good thing.

Net neutrality has one other happy consequence for Silicon Valley: they get to buy the referee. It weakens antitrust legislation. I don't think it's unreasonable if you have an oligopoly of ISPs in your area, that they should be exempt from competition law. Do you?

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And with one stroke, Trump killed the Era of Slacktivism

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: That rock and a hard place

Talk about setting your expectations low, Jason:

"He could have done more to convince Republicans but that wasn't practical"

We know the Republicans are deeply split. A politician who can't exploit the opposition's splits is letting his side (his voters) down. Maybe doing politics interrupted Obama's golf sessions. Aw.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Oh, Puh-LEEEZE!

You can do some of your research instead of flapping about and resorting to insults.

Obama was ineffective, and achieved little despite a two year window he had Congress. After that it was mostly gestures. The level of support for Sanders indicates a desire amongst Democrats for much more radical demands.

But feel free to carry on insulting and changing the subject though - it seems that's what you prefer to do.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Time to get of the fence Mr Orlowski

I heard someone describe it in an interesting way recently:

"Apple rips you off upfront and in plain sight, by selling you overpriced hardware. Google rips you off on your personal data."

As to your 1): I'm not sure how much more evidence you need of Google's influence on Government - it is extensive and very well documented.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Re: Time to get of the fence Mr Orlowski

Yes, I've heard this idea too Charlie, it's popular with conspiracy theorists.

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/10/koch-brothers-campaign-struggles-230325

"On a drizzly Monday morning in mid-September, about 200 staffers from the Koch brothers’ conservative advocacy network were summoned to the fifth floor auditorium of the Charles Koch Institute’s Arlington, Virginia, headquarters, and presented with some bleak news: their efforts to reshape American politics were faltering and were being scaled back amid concerns about lower-than-projected fundraising.

In recent years, the deep-pocketed network’s forays into federal elections and policy fights had resulted in “very little success,” the managers were told by top Koch official Mark Holden, according to three people familiar with the meeting."

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Mind your Ts & Cs

"The existing copyright laws *already* give you absolute full control over your own original works..."

But you can't enforce it. Try using the DMCA to takedown a photo. You'll quickly find out how the dice are loaded.

"given how popular Facebook is people would seem to be generally ignorant"

Keeping people ignorant of their property rights is critical. The empires are built on ignorance.

Getting people to campaign for their rights to be weakened is a bonus!

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Oh, Puh-LEEEZE!

Obama was ineffective because of a Republican conspiracy? Perhaps. I can't stop you believing in conspiracies.

But I'm told (by people who were there) that he consistently failed to seize the chance to work with Congress, and squandered the opportunities he had.

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China cites Trump to justify ‘fake news’ media clampdown. Surprised?

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

It couldn't happen here, etc.

Chinese Government is compiling a citizen trustiness score for every citizen:

>> A whole range of privileges would be denied, while people and companies breaking social trust would also be subject to expanded daily supervision and random inspections.

The ambition is to collect every scrap of information available online about China’s companies and citizens in a single place — and then assign each of them a score based on their political, commercial, social and legal “credit.”

<<

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/chinas-plan-to-organize-its-whole-society-around-big-data-a-rating-for-everyone/2016/10/20/1cd0dd9c-9516-11e6-ae9d-0030ac1899cd_story.html

Of course it couldn't happen here.

That's Unthinkable!

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Kotkin: Why Trump won

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Labels, labels, labels . .

"I'm sorry, since when are minorities an elite? Did I miss a meeting?"

A few, by the sound of it.

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BlackBerry DTEK60: An elegant flagship for grown-ups

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)
Headmaster

Rewilding

http://www.rewildingbritain.org.uk

I am "rewilding it". Soon it will be a safe habitat for bears, wolves (who are unfairly demonised and are very good with children), and possibly a bison.

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Is this the worst Blockchain idea you've ever heard?

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: No.

I've been saying this for years. Cancelled all my streaming subs bar one, a family sub that I only use for discovery. Then I buy the CD or MP3. Amazon Rip FTW.

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Four reasons Pixel turns flagship Android mobe makers into roadkill

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Lots of conjectures

Not so much "conjecture": there are four things about the Pixel model that are different from the old Nexus model - all I do is list 'em.

"Fear the Google by Andrew (tm)"

But I don't see anything to "fear" from Pixel. The price ensures it will have next to no impact. Samsung's all round package is far superior - especially the imaging. And given how little value Google's home tat adds to a home, I can't see that having a big impact either.

Otherwise, totally spot on. (No I am not being sarcastic - you pack in points other people missed).

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EU's YouTube filter plan was revised '37 times'

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

"I mean how many of us have received a cheque from a job we quit 10 years ago?"

You do sound bitter. Creators are paid by usage. 40 and 50 year old music is making a lot of money for radio stations - some play nothing else. It seems only reasonable that the people who make those profits possible get something too. If an old book sells and everyone gets paid except the author, how is that less crazy? It is certainly less fair.

If someone's work is still being used 10 years later and they feel ripped off, then either they were ripped off, or they're a lousy negotiator.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

You're running ahead of yourself, AC.

If you want to dismantle a society, a good place to start is might be by creating a supreme court that doesn't have to justify its opinions, and that can redefine right and wrong every few weeks, no matter how much contradiction and confusion this causes. For example:

>>

Firstly, any court at any level in any of the 28 EU member states can bounce an issue up to the ECJ. This means that a judge can wake up one day and “request clarification”. And increasingly they do. Secondly, the CJEU has engaged in an activist role, making law rather than interpreting it. It’s openly fed up with the lack of political progress in Brussels, in areas such as the single market. The combination of these two aspects – stupidity and ambition – creates a fertile ground for mischief. In the area of copyright, the CJEU has demonstrated this by developing a non-standard legal doctrine that’s not in the Berne Convention on copyright, but is one very much of its own devising. One that’s very likely based on a mistranslation, as we explained here. [ http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/06/14/eu_court_stripping_copyright_protections_new_public_theory/ ]

According to the man who wrote the WIPO book on copyright and is the Continent’s leading copyright scholar, Dr Mihály J. Ficsor, the CJEU has seriously fucked up by putting the Berne words in a different order to derive a new meaning. Rather than decide whether a possible infringement is at first “a new communication to the public” – which is the starting point world+dog uses –the CJEU now starts by mulling whether an act is a “communication to a new public”. And it’s tried to pin this down over several rulings, with bewildering results.

<< http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/09/08/eu_latest_copyright_ruling_hyperlinks_to_pirated_material/

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Oracle loses (again) in battle to get Google Java case retried (again)

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: A Comedy of Errors

Not at all. Oracle is confident it will win on appeal. And the appeal won't be in front of Alsup, but three judges who take IP seriously.

Here we had Alsup marking his own homework (again), so a retrial was never likely.

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EU court: Linking to pirated stuff doesn't breach copyright... except when it does

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

In theory but not in practice.

You would need to use tort law to obtain an injunction against an infringing site, because the right to communicate would triumph. There would be no recourse to copyright law, therefore "copyright protection" ceases.

Read carefully - you will be less confused.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Umm

What you're describing is secondary liability theory.

The difference between the internet and real life here should be obvious. The link is not merely Information, a signpost, as you suggest. To some extent, the link is helping deliver the infringing material into someone's possession. It's part of a new distribution chain too. So it's both.

So, your analogy that the link is "only information" collapses here. Secondary liability theory has to evolve along with common sense.

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Larry Page snuffs out ‘too expensive’ Google Fiber project

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Actually an argument for a public utility to own the last mile

Please show your sums.

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Google quietly takes gag off Mississippi AG after wrecking ads probe

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: You missed...

"Copyright terror"

The MPAA angle was a conspiracy theory that Google generated so you took your eyes off the ball. Some people are easily distracted. Copyfighter view everything as a conspiracy, and the most easily distracted of all.

The fact is that 75 pages of the 79 page subpoena are about not about Google's copyright behaviour, and 4 pages are. Maybe Hood should be doing more to protect musicians, given Mississippi's rich musical history? But that's not what you're saying.

We do provide the link to the subpoena in every story, so intelligent readers can make their own minds up.

Watch the pea not the cup.

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Spotify, YouTube pay musicians with ever-shrinking buttons

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Re: This is where the party ends

It's that shit sandwich again.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Re: This is where the party ends

Music is certainly providing riches for some people today, but they're just not in the music industry.

The old models of the recent past supported a "middle class" of creators for 40 years, who never actually recouped. They were redistributive.

The idea that everyone who actually makes the music now has to be poor from now on is very self-serving. You're really just saying that a gigantic shit sandwich isn't so bad if you think about it enough.

It's still a gigantic shit sandwich.

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The Great Brain Scan Scandal: It isn’t just boffins who should be ashamed

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Given how this intelligentsia reacts to criticism,

I'm referring to the appetite for behaviourist explanations from the political class. This demand creates the supply (and even funds it). The demand is the incentive to cut corners, and pump out impressive-sounding rubbish. Scientists (even trick cyclists in psychology) don't operate in a vacuum.

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Wealthy youngsters more likely to be freetards than anyone else – study

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Re: Someone forgot a Golden Rule

Rumbled.

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Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Following this argument

That is a classic troll. 10/10

I love the internets.

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Happy Mappiversary, Ordnance Survey

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: The London map is already up for sale

Maybe it's not quite finished - like Slartibartfast, they're working on the crinkly bits.

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Three non-obvious reasons to Vote Leave on the 23rd

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: I'm In

@rmason

This isn't right:

"As Andrew mentioned his dad in the article never meeting a single person who voted the other way"

That wasn't written or even implied. Most people he met were pro-Common Market. Most of our neighbours and his colleagues were pro-Common Market. He wasn't, and the Doctor wasn't.

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This is how the EU's supreme court is stripping EU citizens of copyright protections

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: I don't fully understand...

"A hyperlink is purely a direction towards material. How can hyperlinking to content which is in violation of copyright itself be a violation of copyright?"

Uh. Because it's the internet, and the principles have to apply. You're talking about secondary liability. A bunch of hyperlinks giving a user direct access to all the content in the world, that isn't licensed, doesn't have a physical analogy. Physical analogies don't really apply, principles do. So the courts have to grope their way towards a just theory of secondary liability.

Your argument (possibly made more in hope than expectation) is "Not illegal. Because internet."

That ship sailed a long time ago.

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Why Oracle will win its Java copyright case – and why you'll be glad when it does

Andrew Orlowski
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Re: According to Mr. Orlowski

I'm glad you raised the SCO story, because people should remember what happened. The SCO story fundamentally undermines the argument that the "copyrightability of APIs" will have any new chilling effect on software. SCO tried it and was blown up.

You say you want more truth and less misinformation, but then start going on about clean rooms and I'm not sure why. Patents were not part of the 2016 case. Google didn't even attempt to mount a clean room defense, because Rubin knew exactly what Google was doing:

"My reasoning is that either a) we'll partner with Sun as contemplated in our recent discussions or b) we'll take a license. I think a clean-room implementation is unlikely because of the teams prior knowledge."

- Andy Rubin.

Like I explained, you don't need to copy someone's copyrighted work, you can create your own. Or use something else. But if you do copy a copyrighted work, you need a license. Google decided to copy but not get a license, and has bluffed its way along ever since.

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