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Comment: Re:ad blocker? (Score 1) 358 358

Why is the ethical responsibility on the end user? Does YouTube not benefit from the hard work of "content creators?" Keep in mind, there are plenty who YouTube doesn't compensate at all, who don't even have the option to display ads. There are a few ways they could level the playing field.

  1. Display ads on every video and give every channel the option to collect a portion of the total revenue based on how many views they generate. This way, YouTube partners who call their ad-blocking viewers "unethical, freeloading scumbags" won't feel like hypocritical assholes when they enjoy non-partner content on YouTube.
  2. Make the site paid-only and give every channel the option to collect a portion of the total revenue based on how many views they generate. This also eliminates the "unethical freeloading scumbag" problem. Of course, YouTube wouldn't do this because it would interfere with their oh-so-ethical data-mining operation.

It appears that YouTube has chosen a combination of these options with ad-free subscriptions. So now, they get my money, partners get a portion, and the non-partners I watch with my paid subscription continue to get absolutely nothing. Now that's what I call ethical!

Comment: Re:Thats Fair (Score 0) 158 158

Let me get this straight.

Backbone providers want to be paid for proper peering arrangements to allow for the heavy bandwidth time-sensitive transmission of video data for Netflix (let's be honest, this is all anyone on the internet cares about) and everyone loses their fucking minds and wants the FCC to take control of the internet.

Netflix wants to be paid more for giving you much higher quality video at much higher data rates to go over those lines and "aw, gosh guys, that's totally reasonable".

Comment: Re:Perspective (Score 1, Interesting) 135 135

Personally, I like how everyone has completely lost their shit over Ebola overseas and oh my god we have to do something about it and blah blah blah blah.

But as soon as there's a case of it state-side, these same people are all "oh, this could never become an issue here and more people die from sneezing themselves to death each year in this country than have died of Ebola blah blah blah".

I mean, pick your concern and try to be consistent about it.

Besides, the same could be said about all of these global cooling^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hwarming^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hclimate change idiots. I mean, not idiots on the face of it, but just idiots because they spread idiotic bullshit like "it's too late, nothing we can do now will help because we're doomed to die by 2030 because of global-whatever-the-fuck-we're-calling-it-today!".

As for why Ebola is so newsworthy and strikes such fear in people -- is it really a mystery to you? Where have you been the last thirty years, when it was portrayed as a catalyst for the potential end to all of humanity in hundreds of films? It is terrifying in the same way that plane crashes are terrifying. Statistically, people should be more afraid of crossing the street or the prostate cancer 100% of men will eventually get, but the idea of contracting something from beyond your own control (especially when hearing reports of system failures across the board that seem not to take things seriously where Ebola is concerned) that will basically liquefy you into blood "overnight" is far more /terrifying/.

Kind of the same way everyone has been able to capitalize on terrorism. A couple buildings got knocked down and for the next hundred year's, we're afraid of people boarding airplanes with tennis shoes, underwear, and smarmy slogans on tee-shirts. Logic has little to do with it.

Comment: Re:Don't avoid them (Score 3, Interesting) 210 210

Wait... what?

Okay, I get how Google makes our lives easier (as far as searching and maps go). I get how CamelCamelCamel telling us where the cheapest thing to buy is and when makes our lives easier. I get how that little thing that helps you find the cheapest local gas station makes our lives easier. I totally get how email does. But Facebook? In what possible way does it even remotely offer any service that makes people's lives easier?!

Comment: No Google (Score 1) 210 210

"No Google" from the guy who does seemingly every interview over Google Hangouts (and, yet, supposedly, we remain absolutely clueless of his whereabouts - oh my!).

The simple fact is that there is no security and there is no privacy. At best, we can take what we think are the wisest and most conservative precautions, but once something leaves our head or our mouth, there is no guarantee. There are only protocols and services and mechanisms which we do not yet know are compromised. If the last two years have taught us anything, it's that anything we rely on probably *actually is* compromised.

Hell, even anything in our head isn't confirmed safe, anymore. Not in a world where we have observation systems that determine your intention by your gait or your facial expression or your body's thermal signature. Not in a world where we're just starting to be able to visually represent actual thoughts from a brain, onto a screen. And not in a world where conclusions are drawn from assumptions of your collective data where you have far less control over it -- from borrowed library books to your database of grocery purchases to your Amazon shopping history and Netflix viewing history.

Worse, I don't see any indication that any truly guaranteed modes of encryption and security and privacy would not simply be outlawed. It is amazingly simple to coerce the American people into accepting any desired infringement upon their rights. If they're not willing to give them up "just because", then tell them that it'll help us protect ISIL from cutting off your head in your living room or will help protect your children from getting Ebola at school. Maybe get a few religious leaders on-board to help spread the propaganda that it's the "Christian/whatever thing to do".

Comment: Re:Journalists? (Score 2) 165 165

There would seem to be few benefits to bothering with actual investigative journalism, anymore and a lot of negatives.

One problem is that it is simply easier *not to*.

If you watch media closely enough you will see countless "news stories" that are not only covering the same topic and doing so from the same perspective, but using the same catch phrases and identical story titles and blurbs. There are so many places out there (the government not the least of which) who will gladly provide you with free pre-packaged content that you just attach yourself to the by-line of and your job is done. Not only is your job done, but you've earned a kudo from the homeland.

Then there are pre-packaged pieces from pharmaceutical companies and various political organizations or activist groups. And there are plenty of pieces that are pre-packaged and then you're paid to run the pieces as if they were actual news (these are usually very easy to spot and seem like a daily part of the national morning shows on the big three networks as well as local evening news).

Not to mention the time involved. We live in a world where being wrong fifty times is better than being late fifty times. In the time you took to come up with an idea, investigate it, properly source it, write it, have it edited, and then published it -- everyone else has put up a hundred new pieces of news. They're more productive than you. They generated more content. They served more eyeballs. Those eyeballs looked at more ads.

It's better to just copy someone else's work (either through the packages I mentioned, talking points being issued out -- remember that what's his name at NewsCorp is famous for setting the company news-reporting party-line, or just through outright jotting down a story based on all the other news stories and blog posts you've read that morning). You don't even have to give attribution or source it.

As a result, we live in a world where you can say anything, push any biased lines, push any paid agendas (or push agendas simply because it's easier than producing your own content), and you never have to say that you're sorry when you're wrong. No matter the consequences. And nobody is ever held accountable for what they *don't* report, anymore. And "people familiar with the matter" and "sources say" and "it was reported" are now considered "sources". Who can doubt what you *do* report with vetted sources, like that? (Or the nasty trick we like to pull where we, as a government, plant an article in the Zimbabwe Evening Journal and then count that as a source when we go to report on whatever bullshit we're spinning, locally).

By the way, your comment seems to imply a bit of "hey, excuse the journalists - it's not their fault" in it. While I agree that there is more to lose by doing investigative journalism than by just going along with the miserable degradation of it, let's not forget that the ranks are now filling with a whole generation of the people that tell us they would rather spend on-the-clock time on facebook, twitter, and instagram and expect to be the EIC of the WSJ by the time they've had time to frame their degree, lest they feel they've been cheated, somehow.

Having had the fortune to know a great many journalists (some of them truly legitimate journalists and some of them from the old-school vanguard that held their responsibility in high esteem), I think it is safe to ultimately conclude that it is a mix of the two. It is one part completely corrupted and failed system at every level and one part non-principled copy-and-pasters more interested in putting on romantic airs of the journalist gig than putting in the work and taking the risk of it.

I'd be lying if I said I had a god damn clue how to fix any of it.

Nature always sides with the hidden flaw.