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post #1 of 20 Old 01-18-2012, 12:56 PM - Thread Starter
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From what I har, and it isn't very clear, SOPA/PIPA is just one of the latest in a long line of legislative actions. From a rather one-sided web site:

Quote:


The SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) legislation has been introduced in the house, and there's another version in the Senate called Protect IP, or PIPA. These bills are backed by movie studios, music labels, and news outlets, among other organizations. Major websites are against the legislation, arguing it will give the government broad powers to shut down sites merely accused of copyright infringment.

I don't know exactly what the law is proposing, but there is widespread sentiment against it. Does this have any impact on us in the DVD recorder forum? Is it another step in the goal of devices only having digitally encoded outputs, no more analog outputs at all?

Luke

Evil is charming and beautiful. It makes you doubt yourself. It asks for one small compromise after another until it whittles you down, and it functions best when no one believes in it.-JOA
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post #2 of 20 Old 01-18-2012, 01:25 PM
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No, it doesn't affect our rapidly-dwindling realm of DVD/HDD recorders: its strictly an internet issue. Basically the latest attempt by Hollywood lobbyists to strongarm our ever-dimwitted Feds into legislating an easy out for their "internet piracy problem," so they can avoid having to actually do anything to make purchasing their wares more attractive and convenient than torrent piracy.

Apparently the House has dropped their version, but the Senate (no doubt influenced by much more Hollywood large$$e) is still plowing ahead. If anything like this passes, it would create a real mess: starting with setting a precedent allowing our gov't to restrict and control web availability using the same tools as the repressive regimes in China and the mideast. It would be Pandora's Box, snuck in simply because Hollywood can't get its act together and learn from the mistakes of the music industry.

Don't assume widespread opposition and common sense will win the day here: if the dolts we elected were capable of passing the horrendous DMCA, they're quite capable of mindlessly censoring the internet. Hollywood has a big mouth and even bigger lobbying bankroll: despite their hyper-exaggerated piracy claims being shot down repeatedly by real-world statistics, they always find another hot-button way to rephrase the debate. The latest line of BS touts "lost USA jobs," a tactic so insulting they should be tarred and feathered for having the gall to use it.
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post #3 of 20 Old 01-18-2012, 02:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks CitiBear. With all the (dare I say) hysteria in both directions, it's a little difficult to tell what really is going on. I have determined that this seems to be an internet censoring/controlling device.

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...so they can avoid having to actually do anything to make purchasing their wares more attractive and convenient than torrent piracy.

Well I certainly agree with THIS. If Hollywood would come up with a legal way of distributing their content as convenient as torrent, this would be unnecessary. They will never get it though, I fear. Piling on legislation, and restricting freedom is unlikely to be the answer. The collateral damage caused by this is could be highly oppressive.

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Evil is charming and beautiful. It makes you doubt yourself. It asks for one small compromise after another until it whittles you down, and it functions best when no one believes in it.-JOA
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post #4 of 20 Old 01-18-2012, 03:07 PM
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For a concise summary of the issue, with about as neutral a stance as I've been able to find, see this Associated Press / Earthlink article. (Amazing to discover Earthlink is still around!)
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post #5 of 20 Old 01-18-2012, 06:13 PM
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As is my opinion for just about anything of this sort these days, the existing laws are enough. If you want to "prevent" anything, just enforce those.
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post #6 of 20 Old 01-18-2012, 06:24 PM
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I don't see any difference.

In the Hollywood + Cable Cos. VS TV Users, right now we live on a SOPA/PIPA world, without Blue-ray, HDMI inputs or free HD recording.

And over the Internet issue, don't worry, the honorable congressmen won't let pass those acts (too risky). Sadly they will not return the lobby $$$ to Hollywood.
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post #7 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 02:06 AM
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You'll see the difference when your e-mail account vanishes forever, or your Internet connection gets revoked and there's not a single thing you can do to get them back.

You've probably already seen the propaganda ads. The ones that "warn" you about suspicious "foreign" powers that are out to steal your life's work. It looks a lot like it's an anti-terrorism measure. The thing is that the US government doesn't have any authority in other countries. So by process of elimination it's obvious that the foreign/terrorist that they're urging you to support killing is really you.

This is the kind of censorship that we have previously associated with totalitarian regimes like Communist China and radical Muslim theocracies. It's one more giant leap towards making "Idiocracy" more than just a movie but a prophesy that makes "1984" look quaint in comparison. That's not hysteria; that's what the politicians who promise less government/more liberty have really been doing for over 30 years now.

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post #8 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 11:52 AM
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There is a lot of organized protest activity against SOPA/PIPA on the web. You may have noticed that yesterday Google, Wikipedia, and a number of other prominent web sites "went dark" to draw attention to and protest SOPA/PIPA.

This morning on the network news they indicated that most of the supporters of SOPA/PIPA in congress have backed away due to the very public pressure of the protests. They indicated this means the bills are effectively dead -- for now.

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post #9 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

There is a lot of organized protest activity against SOPA/PIPA on the web. You may have noticed that yesterday Google, Wikipedia, and a number of other prominent web sites "went dark" to draw attention to and protest SOPA/PIPA.

This morning on the network news they indicated that most of the supporters of SOPA/PIPA in congress have backed away due to the very public pressure of the protests. They indicated this means the bills are effectively dead -- for now.

Which probably just means re-worded and inserted clandestinely into other legislation down the road...
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post #10 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 01:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

There is a lot of organized protest activity against SOPA/PIPA on the web. You may have noticed that yesterday Google, Wikipedia, and a number of other prominent web sites "went dark" to draw attention to and protest SOPA/PIPA.

This morning on the network news they indicated that most of the supporters of SOPA/PIPA in congress have backed away due to the very public pressure of the protests. They indicated this means the bills are effectively dead -- for now.

Google is the driving force behind the anti-Sopa/Pipa campaign. They've really been playing up the "worst case scenario" in order to get their way on this. It's hardly a grassroots movement by the folks.

I posted this in the DVD forum here:

Quote:


I have a friend who is an IP/music lawyer in Washington (read; he's read these bills and it's his job to know everything about it.) He says there's a lot of "chicken littling" on both sides, and that a lot of what people are railing about in these two bills has already been removed. Now that's not to say there isn't legit beefs to contend with, but there's a ton of misinformation being repeated in the twitbookblogsphere.

What ISN'T being said is (and I mentioned it briefly earlier) is how much Google has into this. They don't like ANY type of even potential restriction on exactly how they can serve their customers and so they trot out the very worst-case scenario as the likely scenario, to gin up support for their opposition. They don't even want to debate about it, they're just going to go in and kill it. The grassroots movement against SOPA and PIPA? Yeah, that's cute. But it's the tech companies that are doing the heavy slugging on the House and Senate floors.

Regardless of your stand on this, it's going to be very interesting to see how much of a Washington player Google and the other tech companies are going to be after this.

I'm kind of neutral on this because a lot of stuff being bandied about by both sides just isn't true.

Don't believe everything on the Interwebz! A duck's quack DOES echo!
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post #11 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 03:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

There is a lot of organized protest activity against SOPA/PIPA on the web. You may have noticed that yesterday Google, Wikipedia, and a number of other prominent web sites "went dark" to draw attention to and protest SOPA/PIPA.

This morning on the network news they indicated that most of the supporters of SOPA/PIPA in congress have backed away due to the very public pressure of the protests. They indicated this means the bills are effectively dead -- for now.

It was that organized protest (Google and Wikipedia) that caused me to start this thread. I wanted some real information, not just the hysterical hype that I was hearing/reading about.

I feel much better informed on ths subject now. I don't really feel better about the legislation, but better informed. I fell that enforcement of current laws would be sufficient to accomplish the goals of the sponsors. Furhter, more Draconian laws are really not the answer. Limiting freedoms is a bad choice all around!

Luke

Evil is charming and beautiful. It makes you doubt yourself. It asks for one small compromise after another until it whittles you down, and it functions best when no one believes in it.-JOA
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post #12 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 03:34 PM
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I'm kind of neutral as well. I also believe that both sides are spewing off a bunch of crap buried between the truths. But I'm mostly neutral because I see this battle from both sides.

On one hand speaking as a fellow hobby archivist I don't think any of the hobbyist archivists are doing anything wrong recording programs from regular TV and archiving the shows for their personal use. Although I do believe that archiving from PPV is a gray area and archiving from sites like pirate bay is outright stealing.

On the other hand as someone who has worked directly for content providers from the US and Canada, I understand their frustration. I don't work for the blockbuster type Hollywood movies but I worked on many TV reality type shows, TV documentaries and TV news. And although to produce a mid-end TV documentary only costs a fraction of the price of a Hollywood blockbuster - it is still very expensive to make and involves paying many folks. I'm talking thousands of dollars a day. When you count up all the equipment costs, insurance costs, legal costs, transportation costs, labor costs, etc - you're' up at tens of thousands of dollars per day to produce a mid-end documentary that airs on Discover, History, National Geographic or PBS. I'm talking cheaper productions than network shows like Survivor which itself costs a fraction of the cost of making a Hollywood blockbuster.

Hollywood dictating to few US legislatures to try and ban foreign websites via US ISPs is a joke. All one has to do is run a proxy server from another country and you're in. I'm afraid any real answer is a little more complicated than that. I also think that Hollywood has to accept a certain percentage of lost revenue due to theft. That's a part of business and every other business encounters theft and passes it on to the consumers. Wal-Mart and Safeway and all other retailers charge consumers a little extra due to theft and I'm sure Hollywood does the same thing with ticket prices.
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post #13 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 04:51 PM
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Is it the majority opinion here that free piracy should be legitimized? If not, then what is your answer to protect patent and copyright property?

I can remember when back in the 1960's IBM offered four types of programs in their Catalog of Programs. #1 was the Operating System programs; I don't remember whether these were free or not. Type #2 was IBM-written Applications; type #3 was programs written by IBM employees, and type #4 were programs submitted by customers. At least types 3 and 4 could be ordered for free; IBM was merely the distributor for the programs. I remember ordering a few, and submitting a couple, I think 4. We didn't worry about protecting "intellectual property".
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post #14 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 05:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardT View Post

IBM was merely the distributor for the programs. I remember ordering a few, and submitting a couple, I think 4. We didn't worry about protecting "intellectual property".

Did any of that software run on anything other than IBM hardware? If not, I can see why IBM wasn't so quick to protect it if you needed to buy their stuff anyway to run it.

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post #15 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 07:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardT View Post

Is it the majority opinion here that free piracy should be legitimized?

Not necessarily.

But I'm sure as heck not going to support something being pushed by the RIAA and MPAA, considering their record.

I remember the RIAA describing audio cassette decks as being a dagger in the heart of the music business. And the MPAA comparing the VCR with Jack the Ripper. And how they successfully managed to cripple DAT and Audio CD recorders, as well as keeping dual deck VCRs off the market.

Anytime an innovation comes along, these guys scream bloody murder that it will destroy their business. And yet, somehow, they not only survive, but they mostly thrive.

The reality is that piracy will never be completely eliminated. But if they want to minimize it, they might try treating their customers with respect, instead of treating us like the enemy, for a change. They might be surprised to discover that offering their products in a form that is useful to the customer at a fair price might actually work -- as the successful sale of billions of songs through iTunes, Amazon and others has demonstrated.

But I'll note that legal song downloads were only able to succeed *after* getting rid of the useless and draconian DRM that the record labels had been insisting on for years.

So, do we need a legislative solution for piracy? No, because it's already illegal. What's needed is for the so-called "creative industries" to fix their business models.
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post #16 of 20 Old 01-19-2012, 08:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tulpa View Post

Did any of that software run on anything other than IBM hardware? If not, I can see why IBM wasn't so quick to protect it if you needed to buy their stuff anyway to run it.

Good point. Much of the early stuff was quite hardware specific, Autocoder for the 1401 generation, Assembler for the 360 and subsequent. Programs for the 1401 would not run on the 360 without hardware (Emulator) assist. Later generations did not have the Emulator feature, so we resorted to a Type 4 "Simulator" program which I had obtained and had operational, and we had some of these 1401 programs still functioning 25 years after the 1401 was replaced.

As time went on, we started programming in compiler languages, Fortran and Cobol, probably 97% was in Cobol and was pretty much specific to our company. I don't think we submitted much in later years to the IBM library, though we did on occasion obtain programs from universities that, written in Fortran, were readily converted from running on a Univac to an IBM machine.

Back to your quote, maybe the library was used as a selling point!
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post #17 of 20 Old 01-20-2012, 05:35 AM
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Not necessarily.

But I'm sure as heck not going to support something being pushed by the RIAA and MPAA, considering their record.

I remember the RIAA describing audio cassette decks as being a dagger in the heart of the music business. And the MPAA comparing the VCR with Jack the Ripper. And how they successfully managed to cripple DAT and Audio CD recorders, as well as keeping dual deck VCRs off the market.

Anytime an innovation comes along, these guys scream bloody murder that it will destroy their business. And yet, somehow, they not only survive, but they mostly thrive.

The reality is that piracy will never be completely eliminated. But if they want to minimize it, they might try treating their customers with respect, instead of treating us like the enemy, for a change. They might be surprised to discover that offering their products in a form that is useful to the customer at a fair price might actually work -- as the successful sale of billions of songs through iTunes, Amazon and others has demonstrated.

But I'll note that legal song downloads were only able to succeed *after* getting rid of the useless and draconian DRM that the record labels had been insisting on for years.

So, do we need a legislative solution for piracy? No, because it's already illegal. What's needed is for the so-called "creative industries" to fix their business models.

Well said. The fact that some in congress sponsoring the bill ( that they most likely didnt read or understand ) had flagrant infringements on their own web sites and Twitter accounts (eg photos used w/o permission as background art behind their Twitter stream) was an indication of the complexity and absurdity of the situation. How about respecting and enforcing existing copyright laws instead of these draconian measures?
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post #18 of 20 Old 01-20-2012, 07:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardT View Post

Is it the majority opinion here that free piracy should be legitimized? If not, then what is your answer to protect patent and copyright property?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas Desmond View Post

Not necessarily.

But I'm sure as heck not going to support something being pushed by the RIAA and MPAA, considering their record.

I think the DMCA is the shining example of what you get when you let special interest groups write the law and serves as a rallying point for opposition to future attempts. The lawyers working for the industry are far, far smarter (and more highly paid) than the buffoons who populate the halls of congress. The DMCA was written intentionally vague and broad with the intent that the statutes would be clarified and defined in the courts to provide fair balance between the special interest and the rights of The People. These court decisions would provide the case-law to guide future interpretation and application of the law -- congress does this a lot, frees up more time for golf and fund-raising. That is the brilliance of their lawyers. The cost of litigation is so high that the accused would rather settle out of court for significant penalty than risk bankruptcy fighting the accusations. I'm not sure more than a couple MPAA lawsuits ever made it to court, hence there is no case-law to narrow the statutes and curb their abuse of power. People know this. People remember. People are determined to not let this happen again.

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post #19 of 20 Old 01-20-2012, 09:26 AM
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Background: Instead of a narrow focus on SOPA, look at the big picture. Since 1980, the USA has turned into a real police state where laws are passed not to protect individual rights but to generate jobs in the criminal justice system. In 1980, about 400,000 people in the USA were in prisons; today the total is about 2,500,000. California's 3 strikes law requiring a life sentence after a person's third felony conviction, got passed because the union representing prison guards there bought off enough politicians. In NYC, Mayor Bloomberg is serving an illegal third term with no problem but football player Plaxico Buress got a mandatory 2 year prison sentence for illegally carrying a handgun (after he accidentally shot himself in the thigh with it). There have been tens of thousands of arrests for marijuana possession in NYC under Bloomberg's stop and frisk program, almost all illegal since the NYPD arresting officers put down the reason as public display of pot after they force the friskees to empty out their pockets. Any pot seen, an arrest and the cops earn credit for an arrest and can get overtime - "collars for dollars."
---
If SOPA passed, some Internet downloaders of questionable material would find themselves facing criminal charges. Just look at what is happening to Megaupload, where the site's owners in New Zealand got picked up on an international arrest warrant the USDOJ sent law enforcement authorities there. Incidentally, the same Justice Department officials who have yet to indict one Wall Street insider for the real estate meltdown that has cost U.S. taxpayers upfront $700 billion in TARP money.

On the network evening news shows, there is no discussion of how SOPA could be used by law enforcement to arrest violators of the law. "By age 23, up to 41 percent of American adolescents and young adults have been arrested at least once for something other than a minor traffic violation, according to a new study published today in the journal Pediatrics."(http://abcnews.go.com/Health/arrests...ry?id=15180222) So, under SOPA, if you are downloading copyright material that someone in law enforcement does not consider fair use, you can have the potential of an arrest warrant being issued for you. That couldn't happen, right, just like in New York City, there couldn't be over 100,000 arrests for pot possession generated by perjured arrest reports from the police to criminalize conduct, possession of small amounts of marijuana, that is a violation, not a crime. In NYC, neither the DAs who handle these pot arrests or the arraignment judges who sometimes get the cases have uttered word one in public one criticizing the false pot arrests.

So this discussion about SOPA should be of more than academic interest to anyone who downloads bit torrents of stuff like the latest episode of "Supernatural." If you are the only one who has access to a computer connected to the Internet and your IP address shows up in a sweep of a download site, you could be subject to a charge of criminal copyright infringement. In the Bell, California municipal corruption case, police there targeted Hispanics for traffic stops, figuring many were undocumented and could not get driver's licenses. The unlicensed drivers had their cars seized, they were hit with hefty fines and some of their cars were even auctioned off, all to raise money to pay the bloated salaries of crooked city officials. But that sort of thing only happened in Bell, law enforcement elsewhere is pure as the driven snow.

In Counterpunch (http://www.counterpunch.org/2011/11/...fficking-gang/), Nancy Scheper-Hughes wrote of her inability for years to get anyone in law enforcement to investigate bio-piracy involving the illegal sale of kidneys in the USA. If not for the fact that the ringleader of one kidney transplant gang getting caught up in a massive political corruption scandal in New Jersey (is there any other kind), the gang would have continued their operations: selling kidneys, defrauding Medicare and getting payoffs from the kidney transplant surgeons. That illegal kidney transplant gang was committing real crimes. Naturally, law enforcement officials at the USDOJ ignored Ms. Scheper-Hughes, she had no connections, an outsider.

That is all.
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post #20 of 20 Old 02-22-2012, 08:01 AM
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well it seems that SOPA did not pass but now there is this ACTA treaty which seems to be threatening internet freedom..I don't think this one will pass either, the claims are absurd..but either way, people will manage to find ways to get around it..just the other day I was hearing about this Audials Anywhere thing which is somehow related to file sharing and they were saying it's supposed to be a safe way to share your file over the internet..This is all I know about it though..and it kind of reminds me about pcAnywhere but anyway, I don't think we should worry too much about this kind of stuff..there are too many of us who are against it. I am not saying piracy is ok, but these ACTA SOPA PIPA are ridiculous..What happened to Megaupload was unfortunate but those guys did go a little bit too far and from I read about it, this is not even their 1st conviction..
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