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December 28, 2003

CNet News’ Roundup [6:12 pm]

2003 in Review: Playing Politics - these article, plus a host of ancillary reports.

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Why Am I Not Surprised [6:05 pm]

Apparently, the US Congress continues its tradition of exempting itself from legislative restrictions: We Hate Spam, Congress Says (Except Ours)

Even as Congress was unanimously approving a law aimed at reducing the flow of junk e-mail, members were sending out hundreds of thousands of unsolicited messages to constituents.

The spasm of activity is aimed at attracting voluntary subscribers to the lawmakers’ e-mail lists, which would not be subject to House rules that normally impose a 90-day blackout before an election for taxpayer-supported Congressional mass communications.

Slashdot discussion: Congress Loves Spam — If It’s From Congress

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From the NYTimes Least Liked Music of the Year Column [6:00 pm]

Tasteful Imitations and Sagging Follow-Ups

Jon Pareles, Neil Strauss, Ben Ratliff and Kelefa Sanneh listened to a lot of bad pop music in 2003; herewith, their least fond recollections.

[...] STRAUSS My biggest letdown was watching the recording industry deal with downloaders. I just think it’s terrible p.r. I don’t see any fewer people on Kazaa. The only thing it’s encouraged people to do is to take their downloaded files and not share them. But they’re all still there trying to get music.

PARELES The recording industry keeps trying to build a wall in the ocean. They keep trying to shut down the Internet. And they think they can do it by suing 12-year-olds, when what they need is a great subscription service.

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