AVS Forum banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
160 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just came back from a public golf course. To my surprise , I was golfing with one of the congressmen from Illinois. He was very polite and did not put on any "airs". It may have not been an appropriate time but, I did'nt think I would ever again have the opportunity to ask questions face to face. I asked him how he felt about the MPAA and HDCP. He said he had never heard of them. How informed a vote could he cast? He then shrugged me off said he was there to play golf. I fear that popular perception that "money talks and bull$hit walks" is fact. Can this really be the America I learned in High School.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,803 Posts
The government has always been staffed by idiots and we've done pretty well as a country in spite of it. Maybe because of it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,103 Posts
I share your pain, but I'm not sure it's realistic to expect every rep to know every thing about every subject. He will most likely vote on these matters as directed by his leadership of his party, who in turn are informed by their members on the committees involved, so the importance of our effort to influence those directly involved at the committee level is magnified. Or not. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,129 Posts
It's a shame that you can't time travel, go back, start over with something like "Can you believe those whining copyright infringing, thieving constituents? BTW, did you get my check?", and then note how he really feels. He probably smelled you coming before you even left your car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
463 Posts
Be realistic folks. The average congressperson gets up to speed on issues only before a bill comes up for a vote. Each member of the House and Senate have full-time legislative staffers who are the primary people that will inform the representative or senator about the issues before vote time. This may not be your ideal of the way a representative ought to work, but given the constant stream of potential legislation and their workload in general, it's the way things happen.


Asking your Congressman from Illinois about HDCP given that there is no pending vote on the issue is about as fair as the Congressman asking you what you think about keeping XYZ Airforce base in Nevada open next year. You wouldn't know a thing about it because it's not something on the top of your agenda.


The real way to have handled this encounter would have been something like the following:


Q: "Are you involved much in DTV issues before Congress?"


A: "Not a whole lot - we sure do want to auction the spectrum off, though."


Q: "Well, there are a lot of copy protection issues out there that could adversely affect consumers. I hope that before you vote on any bill you will have your staffers research the effects of a bill on consumers, particularly those of us who have already purchased HDTV equipment - and who are likely to vote in the next election. Your drive on this hole."


John C.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,129 Posts
John, You must golf a lot ;) Seriously though, do you really think that there is a member of Congress that has not heard of Jack Valenti, let alone the MPAA and what they push year after year? They practically share toothbrushes with Congress. True though, HDCP is too techie to use in striking up a conversation, but I'll bet that the words "Copyright Infringement", "Piracy", "Copyright Protection", or "Intellectual Property Rights" would be very familiar... and dear to their re-election.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,047 Posts
Point made but Jack Valenti might not be the best example to use. As a former special counsel to the President he's likely to be remembered for that, as much or more, than his current position.
 

·
Registered
LG 55" C9 OLED, Yamaha RX-A660, Monoprice 5.1.2 Speakers, WMC HTPC, TiVo Bolt, X1
Joined
·
45,616 Posts
Quote:
Originally posted by spwace
By people in their 80's.
Thanks, but not quite.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,803 Posts
A slight exaggeration, but Valenti was special council to President Johnson who left office in 1969, and yes I'm old enough to remember it well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,574 Posts
I remember Mr. Valenti in his role as advisor to LBJ.


Mr. Valenti's defining moment, much parodied on college campuses, was when he said: "I sleep more soundly at night because Lyndon Johnson is my president."


Now known as "Boom Boom Valenti," he has never lost his ability to make absurd statements.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,260 Posts
Cut the guy some slack. I hang out here and have occasionally engaged in the copy protection, and I don't know what HDCP is. I assume it has something to do with the copy protection DVI/1394 alphabet & number soup hubub, since it is being mentioned in context with the MPAA. While it would be nice if he was completely familiar with the ins and outs to an acronym level of the plight of the HDTV owners, it's pretty much unrealistic. I mean talk about something that is SO far off the general radar screen. Send his office a short written summary, let him be briefed on what exactly is going on, and then ask his opinions.


Whoever was talking about the importance of committee level influence is spot-on. The whole point of committee is that not all members of congress need to be intimately acquainted with the specifics of various issues. If that weren't the case, congress would have absolutely NO say in anything the MPAA does, because they wouldn't have time to deal with relatively trivial topics like consumer electronics.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
160 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I think it might not be so trivial when jp6's cell phone suddenly goes dead because he happens to be walking past a store playing copyrighted material. Or, they discover that every eposode of their favorite sit-com costs a dollar and can only be viewed at the broadcasters discretion.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top