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Comment: Re:Security keeps increasing... (Score 1) 301

by Large_Hippo (#31028424) Attached to: Police Want Fast Track To Get At Your Private Data
You are right, Portugal's violent crime rates have been rising recently. But if you look at the world, there's really no correlation between an increase in invasive security presence and an increase in violent crime. http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/cri_mur_percap-crime-murders-per-capita That doesn't mean that invasive security is a good thing--it has all sorts of negative consequences and potential for abuse--but it can be effective at stopping crime. .

Comment: Re:Terrorism is nothing compared to this threat. (Score 2, Interesting) 169

by Large_Hippo (#30920836) Attached to: Unpacking the Secrets of ACTA
Hmmmm... everyone on here seems to think the secrecy must be because the government is worried about "the public" finding out about horrific terms. That seems unlikely--remember, IP law doesn't even make the top ten of most US voters' important issues. War, health care, income taxes, education, research, crime, terrorism, etc... all trump IP law. So a politician's concern over public negotiations isn't likely to be that it may trigger some vague public discontent. The politician's main concern is that a corporation that cares *immensely* about copyright law will find out that something proposed in the treaty isn't to their liking, and then spend a ton of money to remove that politician from office before the treaty is finalized. Different wealthy corporations have different goals for copyright law (think Google vs. Publishers) and balancing them is probably impossible without making many very mad.

The treaty might be good, might be bad, and there are lots of reasons to be against secret negotiations (remember, the final treaty has to be presented and voted in public). But assuming that secrecy means the end product MUST be bad seems unfounded. Think of it this way: if you were in charge of the negotiations, and wanted to write the most Slashdot-friendly IP treaty possible, you would HAVE to keep negotiations secret. Otherwise the RIAA et al. would spearhead a $10B campaign calling you soft on crime, mean to elderly people, etc, etc..., removing you from office before the treaty could ever be passed.

Comment: Re:Hostile to small business? (Score 1) 168

by Large_Hippo (#16157671) Attached to: EU Software Patent War Ignites Again
He didn't just look at startup numbers--you missed the concentration measures, which are based on total market share.
But you're right that you really can't draw any ironclad conclusions from this paper. The best summary I'd give would be to say that everyone predicted gloom and doom with software patents, and then it turned out patents likely impacted the software industry the same way they affected every other industry. Which is, on the whole, not that much except to shift some money away from larger businesses and into the hands of some combination of innovators and trolls. (They may also have helped some large companies squish smaller ones, but given the expense of litigation, large companies usually have far better means of squishing smaller ones)

I took a fish head to the movies and I didn't have to pay. -- Fish Heads, Saturday Night Live, 1977.

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