July 14, 2004

Speaking of Creativity [10:10 pm]

Lou Reed Reveling In Remixes

“I’ve been getting all these great mixes sent to me out of the U.K. for years and years,” he [Reed] told Attitude magazine, “and I just started saying to the record company, ‘Look, I really, really love what they are doing.’ I think that my record company was a little taken aback but, genuinely, if I could make that type of music then I would. If I could master the equipment then I would love to. Maybe I will now that I’ve got my own studio set up.”

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Writing Their Congressmen [10:08 pm]

P2Pnet reports on the RIAA’s letter writing campaign: RIAA to US Senate …

Dear Senator:

It is no secret that the intellectual property assets of our nation are under assault, as never before. That is why we support S. 2560, an effective, bipartisan bill drafted by Senators Hatch and Leahy and introduced two weeks ago. The bill is aimed at ensuring the vibrancy of both our creative community and our technology community.

[...] Therefore, when you hear criticisms of this bill, I’d encourage you to ask a simple question: Is the criticism about the core purpose - getting at bad actors that are destroying the funding of new creativity - or is the criticism about definition? If it’s about who gets caught in the net, then I’d suggest the response to the critics should be to seek their suggestions for improving the definition.

[...] I’m available if you have any questions.

Sincerely,

Mitch Bainwol

Well, if you put it that way, then if I were to talk about “getting at bad actors that are destroying the funding of new creativity,” I’m almost certainly sure that P2P wouldn’t even be on my radar. In fact, when I consider who exactly comes up with things like “American Idol,” Britney Spears, Lindsey Lohan, and every boy band/hair band/etc., the parties responsible for the loss of funding for new creativity are not that hard to identify, IMHO.

Later (although Ernest posted earlier — I’ve got to get myself fully moved over to this new machine — I’m missing too much!): Ernest Miller deconstructs the letter, line by line: The Excessively Annotated RIAA Letter on the INDUCE Act (IICA); Later: Slashdot, with more links — RIAA Sends Letter to Senate Supporting INDUCE Act

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Talk About A Verbose Hearing Title [9:27 pm]

Competition and Consumer Choice in the MVPD Marketplace — Including an Examination of Proposals to Expand Consumer Choice, Such as A La Carte and Themed-Tiered Offerings (Note, no testimony has yet been published online). The Wired News article at least tells you what it’s really all about: Cable a la Carte Still Half-Baked (followup: Cable Debate Generates Static )

It’s one of the most perplexing questions ever to face humankind: Why can’t you buy just the cable channels you actually watch?

At a hearing of the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet on Wednesday, a diverse panel of witnesses representing cable operators, cable channels, consumer advocates and religious broadcasters will jockey for position in the debate.

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A Working Business Model [9:21 pm]

iTunes selling Mac hardware? Macs, Music Boost Apple’s Profits

Apple Computer posted stronger-than-expected third-quarter profit and revenues Wednesday on heavy sales of its computers and portable music players.

For the three months ended June 26, Apple said it earned $61 million, or 16 cents per share, compared with $19 million, or 5 cents per share, in the same period last year. Revenues increased 30 percent to $2.01 billion.

Apple’s press release: Apple Reports Third Quarter Results

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Well, Well, Well [9:19 pm]

Glad to see I’m not the only one complaining: Searching for The New York Times

Two years ago, Martin Nisenholtz, chief executive of New York Times Digital, bet $1,000 that nytimes.com would outrank all blogs on Google by 2007, based on a search of five keywords on a topical news issue. Unless Google and the Times work on their relationship — Nisenholtz says they’re talking, although they haven’t come up with any answers yet — there may be a day when The New York Times doesn’t show up at all on the Net’s most popular search engine. Ultimately, this could be a direct threat to the Times’ legacy.

[...] Perhaps an even more impenetrable barrier is the Times’ paid archive. Because it stows material more than a week old behind an archive wall, you have to cough up $3 per article. Since few are willing to pay for content they can get free elsewhere, search engines, which often base results on relevancy (read: popularity), will continue to dis the Times — as well as other media sites that make you register or pay for old news (The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal).

Although, it is nice to discover the New York Times Link Generator

Later: Slashdot — Searching for The New York Times

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We’ll See [7:14 pm]

Some kind of balance? Or not? Move agreed on legal DVD copying

Film fans would be allowed to make legal copies of DVDs for use on portable players, under a plan agreed by US media and technology giants.

The move, involving companies such as Disney, IBM, Microsoft and Warner Bros, marks a shift in the movie industry’s stance on online movie piracy.

Slashdot: Industry Group Would Permit (Some) DVD Copying; CNet News: Tech, studio giants team on new DVD locks Nd Tech, Hollywood heavyweights create content coalition; p2pnet: Hollywood DVD copying scheme

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Patel Denies Napster Dismissal [6:22 pm]

Judge Denies Motion to Dismiss Napster Case (the opinion: UMG Recordings Inc et al v. Hummer Winblad Venture Partners et al (and related actions))

In her ruling on Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Marilyn Patel, who issued an injunction against the original Napster in 2000, permitted the case to proceed through its discovery phase, saying the plaintiffs, including music publishers, songwriters and record labels, had the right to try to prove their allegations.

[...] In addition to the Bertelsmann case, Vivendi Universal’s Universal Music and EMI Group Plc also sued Hummer Winblad, claiming the venture capital firm’s $15 million investment and installation of a chief executive at Napster in 2000 also promoted piracy.

“Plaintiffs’ allegations that defendants exercised full operational control over Napster during periods in which Napster remained a conduit for infringing activity may be wholly unfounded. … Regardless, such questions must be left for resolution upon motions for summary judgment or at trial,” Patel wrote in her 14-page ruling.

In response, Bruce Rich, a lawyer for Bertelsmann, said, “Our position remains that those allegations are not factually true and will be disproven through the discovery process.

Wired News: Suit Against Napster Backers OK; CNet News: Case against Napster backers gets green light; The Register: Judge will not dismiss ‘Napster investor’ suit

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OT: Sloganator Foolishness, Redux [3:06 pm]

I’ve been jamming on a proposal and recovering from a thumb injury, so the weblog has suffered a bit. My sister circulated an e-mail today, recapping the Sloganator stuff that was so au courant a couple of months ago. When we spoke on the phone she told me something weird.

The poster site is still up, but not running so well. My sister tried to make a "Massachusetts" poster, and she got the message "Please change your entry."

Note that all other attempts, using other states or group names, returns “NONE” without the instruction to change the entry.

Do you suppose what they really mean is move out of Massachusetts?

Update: It appears that FireFox doesn’t work right with the site — when I use another browser, I get a state poster — except I still get the error message for Massachusetts!

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