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Journal: That pesky RIAA

Journal by StringBlade
As of today I will no longer purchase CDs from any publisher represented by the RIAA.

This is very unfortunate because I like a lot of artists who may have unwittingly or through coercion signed a standard deal (i.e. your soul) with an RIAA company. Until the RIAA successfully starts sucking money out of the bands' tour money I'm forced to support them only through tours and direct donation (a check made out to John Bandmember & Co.).

I find this a ridiculous situation and hold nothing but utter disrespect for the sleazoids called the Recording Industry Association of America.

My only hope is the MPAA doesn't follow in the RIAA footsteps so much so that I have to stop buying DVDs as well -- not sure what I'd do then.

If you feel as I do, I'd love to hear some comments with your thoughts.

Cheers!

User Journal

Journal: Microsoft, Patents, Monopolies, and Linux

Journal by StringBlade
With the upcoming Palladium OS from Microsoft, the RIAA and MPAA breathing down our necks and clawing at our pockets for money that's 'rightfully' theirs, and blockheaded, anti-competitive patents, it just makes me want to crawl into a hole in the ground with Linux and a link to the open source world.

It seems now more than ever with all the emerging technology that big corporations and conglomerations are trying to use the government to secure their existence (and profitablility). It was probably a mistake from the get-go to treat corporations as an entity as a person is treated rather than a non-existant piece of property with no rights. Our laws treat corporations better than it treats our citizens. For example, corporations can be liquidated, but they cannot have claims against them for more than they're worth. Citizens can be sued for 10 times their net worth if the court chooses.

Corporations cannot be jailed for social misbehavior (improper customer/competitor treatment, socially irresponsible business practices that enganger employees, or the environment). The bigger the corporation the weaker the penalty for violating laws are. Microsoft is a great example of this. At first it looked like there still was justice in our system when Microsoft face being split into two corporations (OS and software) with only one allowed to keep the Microsoft name. But due to a lack of judgement on the judge's part and partly due to Microsoft's barrage of FUD-producing lawyers, MS gets to carry on with business as usual. Only, since the case is still pending MS has to do something to get themselves embedded in the public that makes it impossible for them to extricated should an unfavorable ruling come down.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think any monopoly is good (except the board game I suppose). TicketMaster (in the U.S. anyway) almost seems like a monopoly for live concerts and events. Most big-ticket shows are sold through TicketMaster which charges you your first-born child in service fees only to screw up your seats so that you miss part of all of the concert you paid for three times over (because of the service fees). Intel used to be another monopoly until AMD came along and gave them a run for their money. Intel is a good chip maker but they inflate their prices way too much. An equivalent chip by AMD will (on the average) cost you half as much as Intel. There's no reason for this. I believe Intel's chip-making technology is more advanced than AMD, but then again, that's partly due to patent law which prevents AMD from creating a process that is too similar to Intel's, thus what Intel can create with only 3 layers of metal on their chips, AMD uses almost 8 layers.

That's all for now...something to think about. I need to count to 10.

User Journal

Journal: The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Slash-out is over!

Journal by StringBlade
Well, it's all done! And I think we can call it a success. Throughout the week of April 22nd, 2002 the members of the Slashdot community employed their power as users of a free news/discussion board site to do whatever the hell they wanted to do.

The result of this was a noticable decrease in the number of overall postings on each new item displayed by the editors of /. This implies regular posters joining the Slashdot Black-out were actually doing something else, or refraining from commenting. Reports of the Slashdot Weevil Blackout appear to indicate a success in the dramatic reduction in weevil postings during that week as well. And finally, there have been no reports as of yet from the Slashdot Whine-out indicating the success of this effort.

In other news, my tea has gotten cold waiting for the All-In-One-Spam-Master-Filter to be developed to protect my innocent mailbox from the ravages of enlarged penile and mammory ads as well as the deluge of teenagers who appear to all want to have sex with me.

Thank you for joining me in this Slash-out. It's been fun. We should do it again sometime.

User Journal

Journal: The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Slash-out 2

Journal by StringBlade
We're all pretty much aware of The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Blackout and many are also aware of The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Whine-out . If you find either one of the above two silly, you're likely to find this even sillier.

Just to set you straight, brief descriptions of each of the above are recapped for you here:

  • The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Whine-out.

    Whining about trivial things by the ignorant is more dangerous than a gun in the hand of a child.
    [...]
    This whining about being "underappreciated" is offensive. Thus, I propose a small revolt: The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Whine-out.

    T(H)GSW will be during the week of April 21 through April 27. Easy to remember, because it corresponds with the blackout (completely worthless information: the full moon in April falls on the 27th). During that time, I will be posting completely whine-free posts, and further will be smacking anyone down (through posts, of course) who whines about Slashdot. I will become Malda's idea of the ideal Slashdot reader. I will provide insightful content -- completely whine free.

...and the original "-out" that started it all:

  • [Rob Malda's] easy dismissal of the value of the only providers of interesting and insightful content on Slashdot is offensive. Thus, I propose a small revolt. The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Blackout.

    T(H)GSB will be during the week of April 21 through April 27. Easy to remember, the full moon in April falls on the 27th. During that time, I will not be posting, nor will I click through to read the comments from the home page. I will become as Malda's idea of the typical Slashdot reader. I will provide no new content (neither comments, nor story submissions--although I'm not much of a story submitter).

    During that week, I'd like to see if Malda sees Slashdot become a better place, or if it becomes the Hallowed Shrine of Troll.

As a compromise to all this silliness I propose The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Slash-out wherein each visitor chooses to simply read the articles without clicking through or scan through all the postings and beat whiners over the head with a post berating the whiny post.

I have no strong feelings either way as far as either of these other 'revolts' are concerned. I do think T(H)GSB is an interesting experiment to find out how many fewer posts are made during that week by people who might otherwise post comments. I also find T(H)GSW interesting insofar as promoting whine-free posting for a week. But in both cases, the 'revolts' or whatever you want to call them are quite silly and I think they would best be rolled into a single silly event instead of splitting our beloved Slashdot into camps of "black-outers" and "whine-outers". At least T(H)GSS has an acronym that can be vocalized to sound a little like "thugs".

...finally the usual disclaimer and how to join info:

  • To spread the word, I'm changing my sig to link to this journal entry. If you would like to help, you can link to this journal from your own sig, or you can simply resolve to enter into a voluntary one-week Slash-out. Pass the word. This will only work if an ungodly number of comment posters participate.

    To summarize, if you wish to participate, during the week of April 21 through April 27 do one set of the following exclusively:

    • Do not click through from the home page to the comment page
      Do not post any comments to stories
      Do not submit new stories
    • OR

    • Do click through as many stories as possible to check for whining
      Post as many comments as possible without whining (e.g., "They don't appreciate me", "Malda can't spell", "This story is redundant", etc)
      Drop the hammer on anyone caught whining with a big fat "No whining this week!" post.

    Here are some useful HTML links to other T(H)G?? journal entries:

    • T(H)GSS
      Join <a href= "http://slashdot.org/~StringBlade/journal/6536" >The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Slash-Out</a> (April 21-27, 2002)
    • T(H)GSB
      <a href="http://slashdot.org/~rho/journal/5872" >The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Black-out</a> Apr 21-27
    • T(H)GSW
      Join <a href= "http://slashdot.org/~Reality+Master+101/journal/6131">The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Whine-Out</a> Apr 21-27
    • T(H)GSWB
      Join <a href= "http://slashdot.org/~cjpez/journal/6146">The (Hopefully) Great Slashdot Weevil Blackout</a > Apr 21-27

Let's make it a great Slash-out shall we?

Mirrors should reflect a little before throwing back images. -- Jean Cocteau

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