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Comment: Re:#6 means you're OK with the Chinese firewall. (Score 1) 162

by crosbie (#33230170) Attached to: EFF Reviews the Verizon-Google Net Neutrality Deal

Actually, I'm pretty sure I've missed quite a few more cases of potentially unlawful communications.

Do also bear in mind that 'legal'/'lawful' doesn't stipulate the jurisdiction - it could be 'Lowest common denominator', e.g. discussion concerning the weather and praise for the king could remain the only legal communications in all jurisdictions.

Comment: Re:Who decides what is "lawful"? (Score 1) 162

by crosbie (#33229212) Attached to: EFF Reviews the Verizon-Google Net Neutrality Deal

Believe it or not, but copyright infringement isn't illegal either (the holder of the privilege can sue to exclude, but unless they do, the infringement isn't illegal per se).

Frankly, 'packets not yet determined to be legal' is quite sufficient to route them via a network node with indefinite latency.

Copyright is already making illegal speech that should be free, so I don't know where you get your confidence that 'legal' isn't a major communications discriminator.

The best mechanism for achieving neutrality is to have MORE unregulated network providers - to prevent cartels & monopolies, etc. Given a choice between an ISP that throttled BitTorrent and another that didn't, the latter would win the custom of those who used it, and the former the custom of wealthy couch potatoes.

Comment: Re:Who decides what is "lawful"? (Score 1) 162

by crosbie (#33229032) Attached to: EFF Reviews the Verizon-Google Net Neutrality Deal

'Network neutrality' IS regulatory capture.

Anyone who thinks government can regulate communication to ensure everyone can say what they like and that no speech suffers discrimination is living in cloud cuckoo land.

All that happens is that government says "Ok, if you really, really want us to regulate your speech, we will - reluctantly".

And then you end up with a system of censorship at the infrastructure level that China would wet its knickers over.

Network neutrality is everything everyone is asking for EXCEPT what they're expecting to get, i.e. all packets may still be discriminated against for purposes of state control and commercial expediency, but all those packets that the state and infrastructure owners wouldn't really have cared to fuss over are assured equality (which they would have had anyway).

'Network neutrality' is 'Turkeys voting for Xmas' - very sad, but that's turkeys for you; brain the size of a pea.

Once the turkeys get what they wished for, the guano will hit the plucking machines and they'll all come running to the hackers for help and salvation. The Internet then gets yet another layer to route around censorship, another layer of inefficiency. And the cycle repeats itself...

Comment: Re:Who decides what is "lawful"? (Score 1) 162

by crosbie (#33228322) Attached to: EFF Reviews the Verizon-Google Net Neutrality Deal

Lawful means:
1) Unencrypted (or encrypted with TSA backdoor)
2) Not infringing copyright, or involved in facilitating/inducing infringement
3) Not unauthorised communication of military/industrial secrets
4) Not relating to terrorism, extremism, drugs, porn, anarchy/sedition, blasphemy, etc.
5) Not unauthorised communication of personal data
6) Not transmitted to/received from banned sites, organisations, persons, IP addresses, networks, etc.

Other than that, and except for network optimisation purposes, all packets will be treated equally.

Comment: Re:And nothing of value is lost (Score 1) 454

by crosbie (#32363126) Attached to: UK Newspaper Websites To Become Nearly Invisible

Have you considered the possibility that they recognise it will fail too?

It is quite possible they must first demonstrate paywall failure in order to expedite and escalate the bailout option: what we recognise as an Internet tax, but they prefer to call a compulsory license fee.

Sometimes you have to be seen to have tried and failed at every possible solution before you are rescued by the taxpayer.

Of course, the one solution the newspapers won't try is the one that cuts them out of the value chain, i.e. where the readers miss out the newspaper altogether and pay the journalists (bloggers) directly (to write - not to read).

It's already happened with software (copyleft) where the coders are paid directly, and copies can be freely made. News International aren't interested in this option and hope no-one notices it hasn't been tried. They have to hurry the introduction of an Internet tax long before anyone starts paying journos directly. That's why it's worth throwing millions away on a grand moonshot in order that the spectacular/disastrous failure sanctions popular support for a very lucrative tax. The paywall also helps establish their preferred price for news in order that they get as much of the eventual tax as possible (fighting for their share along with every other digitisable industry).

Comment: Re:You won't mind if I poop in your yard, then? (Score 1) 565

by crosbie (#32106160) Attached to: Hundred-Ton Dome To Collect Oil Spill

Laws protecting the people's rights aren't quite the same thing as regulations applying to corporations.

A corporation may well pretend it is subject to the same laws as people in order to insinuate itself as a person (to similarly enjoy the Constitution's care for people). That way it can pretend that regulations are laws, and that congress is similarly constrained in its regulation of immortal psychopaths as it is in the government of human beings.

Games

Why Are There No Popular Ultima Online-Like MMOs? 480

Posted by Soulskill
from the risk-is-not-our-business dept.
eldavojohn writes "I have a slightly older friend who played through the glory days of Ultima Online. Yes, their servers are still up and running, but he often waxes nostalgic about certain gameplay functions of UO that he misses. I must say that these aspects make me smile and wonder what it would be like to play in such a world — things like housing, thieving and looting that you don't see in the most popular massively multiplayer online games like World of Warcraft. So, I've followed him through a few games, including Darkfall and now Mortal Online. And these (seemingly European developed) games are constantly fading into obscurity and never catching hold. We constantly move from one to the next. Does anyone know of a popular three-dimensional game that has UO-like rules and gameplay? Perhaps one that UO players gravitated to after leaving UO? If you think that the very things that have been removed (housing and thieving would be two good topics) caused WoW to become the most popular MMO, why is that? Do UO rules not translate well to a true 3D environment? Are people incapable of planning for corpse looting? Are players really that inept that developers don't want to leave us in control of risk analysis? I'm familiar with the Bartle Test but if anyone could point me to more resources as to why Killer-oriented games have faded out of popularity, I'd be interested."

Comment: Re:butchery (Score 1) 380

by crosbie (#29978822) Attached to: Anti-Counterfeiting Deal Aims For Global DMCA

A constitution empowers a government to secure the natural rights of its human citizens (which should not be confused with immortal entities legally recognised as persons, such as corporations).

A corrupt legislature grants privileges (which are termed as legal rights these days, or simply 'rights', usually in order to claim that the monopoly of copyright is a legal right to exclude others from making copies of your published works, or 'exclusive right' for short).

However, your (natural) right to exclude others from your writings and designs is of course perfectly natural (you lock your house, car and briefcase to achieve this), and should indeed be additionally secured by the government.

However, you do not have a natural right to exclude others from making copies of their own possessions, e.g. the books or bread slicers you have sold them. For that you need the privilege of a monopoly.

Jefferson recognised the ills of monopolies and that's why he proposed (to Madison) adding monopolies in literary and technological works to the bill of rights (so they'd at least be recognised as such, and could be abolished when people people finally realised that monopolies weren't something the constitution was supposed to be able to sanction). Unfortunately, his ploy didn't work. Copyright and patent were simply legislated without fuss.

And now that the people have the means to copy books and build bread slicers, they now discover their liberty to do so was suspended (in 1790, 3 years after the Constitution empowered congress to protect people's liberty).

Comment: Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

by crosbie (#27643651) Attached to: Pirate Bay Trial Ends In Jail Sentences

Your 'problem' still exhibits the misguided principle that copyright is the natural law, and that its infringement is theft. It is actually the other way around. Copying is the natural law (speech/communication) and its prohibition is an unethical constraint (suspension of liberty).

Copyright was unethically and even unconstitutionally legislated because it was expeditious: lucrative to press owners, and attractive to states who would gladly have legislation that effectively controlled the press.

If you stop thinking of selling copies (in spite of the fact no-one needs to buy them) for a minute, and focus instead on selling intellectual work, you'll see that the producer's customers are interested in purchasing their work (rather than copies of it). So it's not a question of selling a copy. It's a question of selling the work to those who want to buy it. That means communicating with the buyers and making a deal. Or conversely, that means the buyers need to communicate with the seller and make a deal. It's more a paradigm inversion than a shift.

Or do you really want to tell me that an artist on one side and an audience of a thousand or even a million on the other can stare across a chasm and refuse to do a simple deal: Art for money, money for art?

It's a new or unfamiliar kind of deal certainly, probably inconceivable to many, but it's not an impossible one. The deal everyone's used to is 'a copy for money, money for a copy', but this only worked whilst a) only a few people had copying/printing machines, and b) there was a monopoly that kept the price up.

Now that an artist can communicate with their audience en masse, we can look forward to them doing a deal with their audience, i.e. an exchange of intellectual work for money. Moreover, such artists will realise that the first thing they should do is to emancipate their audience from the completely unhelpful shackles of copyright. That way their audience (and a secondary market) covers the cost of manufacturing copies (books/CDs etc.), distributing them (file-sharing), and promoting the artist.

Unfortunately, those still wedded to the anachronistic monopoly of copyright don't fancy this new way of doing things - it's a revolutionary upheaval of everything they've come to believe in.

If you really must insist on concrete evidence of how these new deals will be enabled well, I'm working on that with the http://contingencymarket.com/. You can check out my site http//digitalproductions.co.uk for further discussion and links to many others exploring non-copyright based business models and revenue mechanisms.

A continuing flow of paper is sufficient to continue the flow of paper. -- Dyer

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