* Posts by John Lilburne

1004 posts • joined 3 Dec 2009


OK, Google? Probably not! EU settles on wording for copyright reform legislation

John Lilburne Silver badge

I'm pretty sure that the film maker could easily have replaced the 4-6 seconds with silence, or noise of passing traffic. As for the rest of that NYT article the film "Eyes on the Prize" can be obtained from Amazon.

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Fair dealing/use

"Google's content ID is the closest thing that presently exists to an upload filter, and it sucks. It cost millions to build and still can't handle fair-dealing properly. It's regularly abused by haters and extortionists (some of whom are the large studios themselves)."

It isn't meant to and shouldn't do either. 'regularly abused' is a push as according to Google less than 1% of DMCA complaints are wrongly formed and even less fraudulent. If someone wants to reuse some content and believes they have a fair-use or fair-dealing claim, then they should be willing to make that claim. Fair-use is a complex determination and can't be decided by some algorithm.

John Lilburne Silver badge

"this wouldn't be such a problematic thing."

Yes it would. People don't generally upload 25yo music to YT, they are uploading last week's music.

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Re: Odd

"highly likely to suppress legitimate speech and data sharing."

Legitimate speech and data sharing is not accomplished by copying wholesale the work of another. In deed the act is a suppression of freedom of speech as a speaker has a right to speak and an equal right not to speak. The wholesale copiers deny the creator that right. Suppose A decides that their work should not appear in the Daily Mail what right does B have to put A's work on the Daily Mail? Suppose C decides they don't want their music on YouTube, what right does D have to put C's music on YouTube. What right does YouTube have to say but it was D's doing that we now profit from C's work?

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: "This tactic doesn't play well in the EU"

"Do you really believe the EU when they dismiss ..."

Clue 1: Most of the stuff was sent to the EU in the early hours of the morning 2-3am, when EU citizens were a bed.

Clue 2: Most of it came from US IP addresses.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Wishful thinking.

Google, and other tech companies, is nothing without the unlicensed content of others. Example of what Google really looks like:


Contrast with Bing:


Object-recognition AI – the dumb program's idea of a smart program: How neural nets are really just looking at textures

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Re: Wrong priorities

On flickr they attempt to tag images with what they think the image shows. A photo of an insect on leaf has the leaf tagged as grass, the insect as a lizard, a butterfly becomes a bird. This even when you've given it hints such as "Gonocerus acuteangulatus" or "Iphiclides podalirius". Also they have dataset of a billion or more images.

OK, Google. Music in 2019 isn't what it was, but Play nice, will ya?

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: All the best music was written before 1988 anyway

OTOH Jon Balke's Siwan, and Brahem's Astounding Eyes of Rita were 2009.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Out of curiosity ...

Oddly I have had no issues with any of the CDs I've bought. They all rip properly, they all play over PLEX, off the ipod or whatever other device I upload them to. IOW not a music issue but a googleplex crap issue. You'd have been better off with a Phonograph.

Facebook didn't care if your kids ran up gigantic credit card bills – lawsuit

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Re: Yuk

The issue here is that the internet, as developed, is inherently monopolistic. As such T&C don't really matter if all your mates and family are on the thing and you don't want to be the Cassandra on the side warning about the dangers, or trying to convince people that don't give a shit even when they acknowledge the dangers. So everyone one uses FB, Google, Amazon, Twitter etc, and the wife gets a WhatsApp account, because her daughter puts photos of the Grandkids and other relations respond to the answer "Don't have a FB account" with "How do you get in touch with people then?" because they have all forgotten how to work email.

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To my eternal chagrin

I got suckered into a PAYGO game tribez it was, and spen a large amount on it probably £50 or so, but more importantly hrs of wasted time. Then one purchase errored out, nothing would get WETF I've bought to show up. No contact possible other than going round and round. So I reinstalled the damn thing and suddenly I was back to square one. Lesson learnt.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Is there a scammier corporation

Find one that isn't scammy! Tech companies are mostly immune from laws of the offline world and what laws there are subject to they flout for as long as possible. Then when legislators come along to reign them in they declare "the end of the world" and get useful idiots to shill for them.

El Reg eyes up Article 13 draft leak: Will new Euro law give Silicon Valley more power? Some lawyers think so

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Re: Copyright's a good idea *if* it's easily enforcable by individuals

You do know that Disney had nothing to do with the US copyright extension don't you? That came about to bring the US into line with other countries and had nothing to do with Disney at all, rather it was that the USA wanted international protection for the works of its creators and to do so they needed to adopt the Berne Treaty.

OK so Disney was part of the lobbying for ratification of the Berne Treaty and they did make some donations to political campaigns around that time. The maximum they gave was $6,000 to Trent Lott, the average was $1,000. Now hands up all those that think that US politicians can be bought for $1K.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Most works are ephemeral and have no economic value well before copyright expires. Few publishers are gagging to be able to reprint most of the books from the 1920s. Not many are wanting to re-release many of the recordings of the 30s or 40s. Most of the films haven't weather the years well either. OTOH a number of the works that people want to consume they didn't at the time they were first published. Sometimes it takes years before a published work becomes popular, in other cases it takes years before technology reaches a point where the work can be adequately performed (LOTR being a prime example).

Suppose an author dies the day after a work is published, why should the authors heirs have the same expectation of inheriting the copyright as those of an author that dies 50 years after publication.

Wow, fancy that. Web ad giant Google to block ad-blockers in Chrome. For safety, apparently

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Re: Google are cunts

The problem with FF is that FF57 broke the extensions I use. So I'm remaining with FF56 for the rest of time.

Sticking with one mobile provider gets you... Oh. Price rises, big exit fees, and lovely, lovely lock-in

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: And another thing.....

15 years ago I moved from an orange contract to an orange PAYGO. They sent just me the new SIM with the old number, replace and SIM carried on.

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Re: Hmm...

Hmmm. Recently went through this sort of nonsense with 3 my wife wanted a PAK code becuase she had changed her phone which came with an EE sim. Phoning 3 to get one resulted in someone talking about different options with 3 and her saying I want a PAK code not your bullshit. Eventually she handed the phone to me, and the 3 person says "I can't talk to you, I have to talk to her". Me "She no longer wants to talk to you, she wants a PAK code nothing else, none of your scripted nonsense just a PAK code." Eventually a supervisor sorted it out, but it shouldn't have been that hard.

Dixons Carphone smarting from £440m loss as it writes down goodwill on mobile biz

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I have a old Nokia that is some 15 yo that still works and a 5 yo Samsung that is on its last legs because most of the apps don't work anymore, and google keeps wanting to update something amd crashes it. I expect this to become the new way to get people to upgrade: trash their apps, keep crashing their device, and bullshit that a 5 yo device is obsolete. Arseholes.

In 2018, Facebook is the villain and Microsoft the shining light, according to techies

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Re: MS is a shining light?

Back in the mid 1980s MS were the heros fighting against the EVUL Apple Corps regarding look&feel of WIMP interfaces.


Having earlier sued DRI's GEM interface only to have Atari stick two fingers up with the 520ST. MS following suite was considered a good thing. I gather that later on when Apple got into financial trouble MS bailed them out.

LG's beer-making bot singlehandedly sucks all fun, boffinry from home brewing

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Jeffrey Bernard Is Unwell

"breakfast ale", which required a key ingredient in the form of muesli.

Whiskey is made from grain and thus equivalent to muesli. Just open up a bottle of Glenfiddich and cut out all the crap.

YouTube fight gets dirty: Kids urged to pester parents over Article 13

John Lilburne Silver badge

"So you did that instead of showing you children the tonnes of educational content that is on Youtube or showing them how they can use youtube to learn how to do new stuff."

There is a library with lots of educational material but to get there you have to walk past the drug dealers, hookers, and step over the dog shit. Do you really want your kid going there?

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Isn't it bad?

"Intellectual property is a "right" only insofar as the law says it is."

Real property is also a "right" only iIntellectual property is a "right" only insofar as the law says it is.

While it is a moot question whether the origin of any kind of property is derived from Nature at all ... it is considered by those who have seriously considered the subject, that no one has, of natural right, a separate property in an acre of land ... Stable ownership is the gift of social law, and is given late in the progress of society.

Thomas Jefferson

All property, indeed, except the savage's temporary cabin, his bow, his matchcoat and other little Acquisitions absolutely necessary for his Subsistence, seems to me to be the creature of public Convention. Hence, the public has the rights of regulating Descents, and all other Conveyances of Property, and even of limiting the quantity and uses of it. All the property that is necessary to a man is his natural Right, which none may justly deprive him of, but all Property superfluous to such Purposes is the property of the Public who, by their Laws have created it and who may, by other Laws dispose of it.

Benjamin Franklin

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Isn't it bad?

"What woudl the knock on effect be if the averager user uploaded a video and it took 5 minutes or 50 minutes for the system to "validate" it?"

It wouldn't they can detect stuff within seconds, and in many cases it can be detected as it is being uploaded.


There are edge cases where classical music gets wrongly tagged but the world ain't going to end if it takes a day or so to fix the glitch of a Bach fugue played by some one being rejected because it is reminiscent of some prior recording.

There are also cases where some usage is indeed fair-use but those are few and far between. It wouldn't actually take much to sort them out.

A little phishing knowledge may be a dangerous thing

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: How Can You Tell Without Opening it?

"it's really easy to spoof the sender field."

Indeed back in Uni someone had written a bunch of utils one of which would send a logout command to a terminal. Each year groups of students learnt of the script and would spend an afternoon logging out there buddies, etc and then move on to random users. Whilst they knew of the script they didn't know that it also logged the miscreant, the terminal that they were sat at, and the terminal they were logging off. Another script located the room and location of the terminal. So having been subjected to a bout of logging off an email was constructed using telnet from the 'Head of Computer Services" threatening to report them to their course supervisor etc.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: How Can You Tell Without Opening it?

Is the email from someone/someorg you know? Does the addressee correspond with the email address that you gave that person/org? For example if I get an email from this site it should be sent to xxxx@my.email.account.com if it is from the bank then it should be sent to yyyy@my.email.account.com, if from amazon then it should be addressed to zzzz@my.subsidary.account.com etc, etc.emails get filtered based on who they are from and addressed too. The remainder are random spam or scam.

Just a little heads up: Google is still trying to convince everyone that web apps don't suck

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Web app? No thanks.

Leaving aside the issues of throughput, downtime etc. The main problem with web apps is that they tend to assume some form of cloud storage and push towards subscriptions. Surrendering your data to some organization that may or may not support your data/workflow in a few years time is suicidal.

The web is ephemeral and so are its apps. How many web based systems have gone? How many change their fundamental agreement between the user and app? There is no guarantee that any web app will be there next week, or won't have changed such that it no longer supports your workflow

You are far better long term relying on an app that you can download, that runs on your own hardware, and where you retain control of your data. Use the web for communication, and offsite storage.

Memo to Mark Sedwill: Here's how to reboot government IT

John Lilburne Silver badge

Agilators are full of crap

Let them agilate a front end to a back end database. Anything else keep them well aware unless you are expecting to abandon the thing within a year, and go do something completely different.

The problem with 'Move fast and break things' is that the thing that they are breaking isn't a stupid website but something that is fuxoring with people's lives. Perhaps the benefit claimant can 'come back next week, when the thing is fixed', but meanwhile their rent is unpaid or they have no money for food or heating. Perhaps that operation can be put off for a few more weeks, or those test results can wait another month or so.

Manchester man fined £1,440 after neighbours couldn't open windows for stench of dog toffee

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Seems the court has just rubbed his nose in it.

Watchdog sceptical UK.gov's Universal Credit can handle 8.5m benefits claimants

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Why bring in a political party?

"without someone, somewhere being negatively impacted."

Its not someone ,somewhere. Its a shed load everywhere.

The system is in disarray, has a lack of staff, and has an IT system that is mostly TITSUP* every day.

From today, it's OK in the US to thwart DRM to repair your stuff – if you keep the tools a secret

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Re: You can already get arrested for having a screwdriver

"Gene, if that were true I'd have been shot decades ago."

Hey I've had a metal comb described as an offensive weapon by some cop. My response was "Leave it out mate its a fucking comb", his response "what are them prongs on the end for then", his partner "Oh those are for frizzing up a perm thing", me "well you learn something every day from the most surprising of sources."

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: But how are...

"If the modifications DO impact the safety of the truck, isn't this all covered in other sections of the law any way"

When there are similar issues with OEM components the things get recalled and fixed and there is large company behind the failure. With a Bubba and Cletus mod good luck with getting compo out of Bubba/Cletus.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: But how are...

Yay Wicked! Now we can have Bubba's engine management system modded truck scudding down the highway, with cousin Cletus's modded braking system in place. What could go wrong?

Your RSS is grass: Mozilla euthanizes feed reader, Atom code in Firefox browser, claims it's old and unloved

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: re: I read this news first from the RSS feed

Same here too. It was FF breaking my RSS reader in FF 56+ that caused me to no longer update the damn thing. OK so FF whines that "You Firefox is critically out of date ... blah blah blah" but they can fuck right off.

UK.gov withdraws life support from flagship digital identity system

John Lilburne Silver badge

Couldn't roll out ...

... a gov version of OAUTH, after 7 years, but will be 100% certain to get an import and export tax system up and running within 6 months.

Surprising no one, Google to appeal against European Commission's €4.34bn Android fine

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: "Google may reportedly pay Apple $9bn to ensure it is the default search engine in the iPhone"

Hey if the Google search engine was that much better than the rest they wouldn't need to be paying $9 billion to have it set as the default.

Google now minus Google Plus: Social mini-network faces axe in data leak bug drama

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Another One Bites The Dust

I normally get voted down for this but ... the internet is ephemeral and you are unwise to buy into any web based service as it could be gone tomorrow. For individual users that isn't to much of a probelm exceptfor the time wasted on the service, bitter experience says that user forums and the data put on them get trashed every day.

Systems that you build a workflow around are particularly sucky. Mozilla changed the way that addins have to be built and relied upon addins were trashed (no updates of firefox despite the daily nagging). Website content management systems change and render a bunch of modules useless, I've still not got my drupal 6 site fully working with drupal 7 as modules weren't updated. God knows how much will break with D8. Is it any wonder that people don't update web sites? As an aside they broke the Date module so that it no longer works with dates < 1000CE.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Whoops.

"they have to get over a woman being the new Dr.Who."

But will they ever get over her being from Yorkshire?


Top Euro court: No, you can't steal images from other websites (too bad a school had to be sued to confirm this little fact)

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: New internet standard...

"Given that we're only talking about a handful of bytes here, I can't see any legitimate reason for stripping EXIF copyright data. It is an evil practice."

True. However, some people insert 100s of KB in the EXIF and IPTC data. Still one could strip most of the stuff and leave behind the copyright, author, photographer, and owner fields.

Not only is it evil it is also a violation of DRM.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: New internet standard...

"What can be done and should be made illegal to remove, is placing that information into the EXIF"

It is already illegal it falls under the prohibition against the removal of digital rights information under the DRM and is separate from circumventing copy protection:


Penalties for this in the US for registered works are $2,500 to $25,000 per infringement.

Google was guilty of this, so is flickr, and of course wikipedia actively strips and clones out watermarks. It just needs someone with deep pockets to screw them over.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: That old legal 'stealing' chesnut

You may have your dates a decade or so off. TWOC was part of section 12 of the 1968 Theft Act. There is case law going back to the mid 1960s.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: New internet standard...

"Why should the onus be on a website to put countermeasures inplace?"

I agree it shouldn't. Suppose I license an images under a creative commons license the website is obliged to to add any technological measures to stop the copying. If a website can't employ tech measures to ensure it isn't misused by some one not adding attribution etc then what becomes of the legal bases of CC?

Anyway we should be suing the W3C over the IMG tag.

John Lilburne Silver badge

That old legal 'stealing' chesnut

Theft has many definitions that don't necessarily require 'permanently depriving someone of their property'. For example if I take a car from outside someone's house and drive it from Lincoln to Grantham and abandon it outside Grantham police station, there is no intent of "permanently depriving" the owner can always collect it from the cops. However, I could be arrested for Taking Without the Owner's Consent which is part of the UK theft act.


John Lilburne Silver badge

The City of Cordoba

Didn't create the image with a specific viewpoint in mind, nor arrange for the specific weather/lighting to occur at the precise time that the photog was there, they didn't organize the post-processing of the image, and besides most of the objects in the image where created 100s of years ago.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Not a joke

Finding out the photographer of an image that was taken in recent time isn't hard. If the photog is a professional the contact data is bound to be in the EXIF. Otherwise locating other sites that use the image will almost certainly give you information wrt the photographer, you may even find the photogs website. Requesting a license isn't expensive it involves an email in most cases. If you can't get permission for the specific image, or the payment required is too much then there are almost certainly alternatives that are under a CC license.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Prepare for...

"Well, I'm sure every school in the world will be able to afford ..."

Its not that hard. If the attribution wasn't on the original site, they could have a) asked the site for contact data, b) looked at the DRM in the image, c) used tineye or something similar, d) got an alternative image from wikipedia commons, or searched flickr for a CC licensed one

Facebook: Up to 90 million addicts' accounts slurped by hackers, no thanks to crappy code

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Has anyone been informed by FB?

"I had to relogin this morning ..."

And you did? That was your opportunity to dump.


Tech to solve post-Brexit customs woes doesn't exist yet, peers say

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: Technology that doesn't exist

Just more of the Unicorns that BoJo, Fox, Mogg, and IDS have come to believe in. Though this one seems to be part of May's Dogma and Disarray as well.

Article 13 pits Big Tech and bots against European creatives

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: As usual Andrew hates Google

Google lost. Guess they'll have to get a new business model that is adequate for the modern world, alternatively they can just fuck off.

John Lilburne Silver badge

Re: takedowns

Ah yes 1 billion correct take downs are out weighed by a 100,000 possible over reaches.

By your logic one would never take an aspirin, for rear of sudden death.

Boss regrets pointing finger at chilled out techie who finished upgrade early

John Lilburne Silver badge

In another time ...

... I was working in the night shit production control in a chemical factory and senior trade unionist I'd been called in early as the afternoon shift was ill so I'd been there since about 9pm. At about 0745 I was shattered and part dozing on a stool, and waiting for my relief to come in at 0800.In walks the deputy works manager, whose first words were "I thought you said you were really busy." Cheeky bastard is going to pay I thought. Shrugs shoulders and said "Oh I'm glad your here I've got something to show you." Walks into other office and show him some floor tiles that are coming loose. "Those need attention before they become a trip hazard." So he's down on his knees pulling them up, and I'm standing over him smiling and thinking: I may be dog tired but I can still get you on your hands and knees like the bitch you are. He looks up sees the smile realizes what has happened and mutters bastard.


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