August 2, 2007

Dorkman Heard From [3:34 pm]

Sorry, but I have to assume that Sir Elton was on some sort of mind-altering drug at the time he gave this interview to The Sun — actually, isn’t that the only circumstance under which any nominally rational person would give them one? Why we must close the netpdf

POP legend Sir Elton John wants the internet CLOSED DOWN.

Never one to keep his opinions to himself, the Rocket Man has waded into cyberspace with all guns blazing.

He claims it is destroying good music, saying: “The internet has stopped people from going out and being with each other, creating stuff.

“Instead they sit at home and make their own records, which is sometimes OK but it doesn’t bode well for long-term artistic vision.

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More YouTube Complaints [9:27 am]

YouTube blasted over copyright issuespdf

A coalition of Japanese television, music and film companies slammed YouTube Thursday, saying the online video sharing service was not doing enough to rid the site of cartoons and other clips that infringe copyright.

[...] YouTube has been immensely popular in Japan, trumping rival Japanese video sharing sites. It launched a Japanese language version of the site in June in a bid to win further viewers — and to post clear warnings against uploading copyrighted materials in Japanese.

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The New Yorker on Spam [9:25 am]

A little history, and some scary statistics: Damn Spam

[...] “The amount of harm done by any of the cited ‘unfair’ things the net has been used for is clearly very small,’’ the Internet pioneer Richard Stallman wrote a few days after the DEC e-mail. Stallman opposed any action that would interfere with the aggressive openness that came to define the Web. And he still does. In his message about the DEC spam, Stallman pointed out—three decades before the appearance of Craigs-list and Monster.com—that the network provided a unique opportunity to advertise jobs and an entirely new way to sell products. He went even further: “Would a dating service on the net be ‘frowned upon’ . . . ? I hope not. But even if it is, don’t let that stop you from notifying me via net mail if you start one.”

I have no idea whether anyone on the Arpanet tried to help Stallman find a date, but thousands of people have tried to help me. [...]

[...] [Microsoft's John] Scarrow told me that of the four billion e-mails processed by Hotmail every day, they deliver only six hundred million. The rest are spam.

[...] “But I wanted to fix the problem and return to the bliss that existed before spam,’’ he said. “Often the fight is fun, like a game. But last year there were some low points. We started getting these image spams, and the spammer would adapt to anything we did. He would write software that cut the image into little pieces that reassembled by the time you opened your mail. When we figured out how to deal with that, he started making text that waved around and curved in odd ways. So we figured that out. Then he started with random images.’’ [Google's Brad] Taylor laughed. “This went on for a while. But, finally, he just gave up. And that’s our hope. It’s kind of like war. One side eventually gets tired. And we just can’t let it be us.”

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More on the CCIA Complaint [7:43 am]

Content Makers Are Accused of Exaggerating Copyright

In a complaint to the Federal Trade Commission, the group, the Computer and Communications Industry Association, said that the National Football League, Major League Baseball, NBC and Universal Studios, DreamWorks, Harcourt and Penguin Group display copyright warnings that are a “systematic misrepresentation of consumers’ rights to use legally acquired content.”

The complaint alleges that the warnings may intimidate consumers from making legal use of copyrighted material, like photocopying a page from a book to use in class.

[...] Louis M. Solomon, a partner at the Proskauer Rose law firm in New York, is representing several companies that have joined Viacom in the suit. He said the announcement on Wednesday was nothing more than an effort by Google to deflect attention from copyright infringement on “hundreds of thousands” of video clips on sites like YouTube.

“The fundamental problem with Google and YouTube is not fair use but their desire for free use,” Mr. Solomon said.

See also yesterday’s post: Expanding The Scope of Copyright Claims (updated)

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