Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re: Separate Marginal Tax Rates for IP (Score 1) 116

by rickb928 (#48642221) Attached to: The Beatles, Bob Dylan and the 50-Year Copyright Itch

Well. I was born in the 50s, and only witnessed the birth and growth of those born 10-20 years after me.

And they had substantial opportunity for college. The GI Bill still afforded veterans great opportunities. College enrollment rays among high school graduates grew steadily between 1978-1988, which doesn't make lot of sense if opportunity

BTW, being anonymous leaves you with less credibility than if you had a name. But you're probably either too lazy to register, or too afraid of losing karma, to fess up. Stay anonymous. Comments from the unknown are assumed to be just as valid as from those who choose not to hide their identity.

Comment: Re: Simple answer... (Score 0) 463

by rickb928 (#48633953) Attached to: Colorado Sued By Neighboring States Over Legal Pot

1. Taxing marijuana so far has been problematic. Taxing medicine is risky, and resistance to that might cause more problems. Recreational use, of course, has an excellent taxation model in alcohol.

2. Beware of taxing stuff. If they want to, they can kill you if they think you aren't paying those years the way they think you should.

Comment: What remedies at law exist? (Score 1) 378

by rickb928 (#48617989) Attached to: Sony Leaks Reveal Hollywood Is Trying To Break DNS

For other types of distribution, what remedies at law exist?

For instance, if I start mailing pirated Blu-Ray disc all over the world, do they instruct the various shipping agents, postal agencies, and so forth to refuse to accept anything from me, and also to refuse to deliver to me? Can they do this without informing me? Do I have recourse if this also denies me lawful services?

If I merely pack and ship these discs for someone else, is there a fix in law to also deny me access to shipping methods?

Do they put me/us in jail? Do they have the right to go wherever I am in the world, arrest me, and imprison me for this? Would I be denied even the mail from the court informing me of this?

This seems to be another example of technology being used to accomplish what could not be otherwise done. Removing a domain from DNS sure does eliminate their ability to distribute illegally-derived content, but doing so surreptitiously seems to be nasty business.

Is this an expansion of enforcement actions that may not itself be legal?

Comment: Re:The US Internet Shutdown Switch (Score 4, Insightful) 378

by rickb928 (#48617915) Attached to: Sony Leaks Reveal Hollywood Is Trying To Break DNS

I don't prefer to ignore this. I instead am thankful.

You don't want the UN involved. And you'll have to recommend a better nation or group of nations to oversee DNS. Or another corporation.

This arrangement has worked very well for a long time. There is nothing to fix, and everything to defend.

Comment: Re:Unless it has support for Bitcoin... (Score 2) 156

by rickb928 (#48602955) Attached to: Small Bank In Kansas Creates the Bank Account of the Future

No, you had it right.

I'm having a tiff with my tap-to-pay, prepaid card, and credit union all unable to offer me the services they each still advertise.

My tap-to-pay app is linked to a prepaid card. This can be loaded by ACH, debit card, credit card, or cash. All of which worked until this fall.

I noticed my automatic debit loads were failing, and asked my credit union. It took some time, and they initially pointed me to the prepaid card provider. Who claimed it was being declined, despite funds available. I checked, and eventually found that my debit card, from Visa, no longer permitted this 'merchant' to use a transaction code that is described as a 'Visa Money transaction'. The credit union says their hands are tied.

The prepaid provider claims they were forced to recode these transactions as 'Visa Money', by, yes, Visa. Why? No answer but I have a theory:

- Visa Money transactions earn discount and interchange fees like any debit transaction.
- But debiting my account this way does earn the prepaid provider a discount fee when I withdraw the funds from there. (No interchange, so you know who this is)
- However, if I were to load my prepaid card with a credit card, this becomes a cash advance. Which earns a higher interest rate in most cases. and is paid LAST by most banks if I pay off my balance. Actually, since I may never pay off the balance, these cash advances will forever be charging interest at that higher rate. Forever. Unless I do pay the balance to zero. I have to pay off the lower interest rate transactions FIRST before I can pay off the higher rate ones. Sharp practice.
- So I cannot any more load from my debit card. Visa rejects the 'Visa Money' transaction for my debit card.

Well, my prepaid provider is unwilling to change anything of this, my credit union is unwilling, possibly unable to, and I'm stubborn enough to cling to the prepaid despite the inconvenience of cash loads.

ACH, you say?

ACH takes 5 days to clear. It just does. This is mostly my prepaid provider's fault, I know, from research. No apologies. It just does. They use the float.

Now, how does all this actually work out good for me?

- I get promotional rebates for using tap-to-pay, which will expire. Then I will reassess the situation.
- I also get promotional rebates from the prepaid card, those also will expire.
- I get fees waived on the prepaid card, which I do not expect to expire any time soon. Free so far.
- And cash loads are fee-free for now also.

But the fees make the systems work. So fees it is. All the way down.

Those of you who pay attention to the payments industry know the names of all the entities I;'d rather not expose explicitly. There are similar problems for every other, EVERY OTHER, institution. Fees drive the industry, and revenue is necessary to keep the servers on to do all this. I get it.

But it's cheap to advertise you can, and then you won't. And to hide behind disclaimers and contractual language that clearly serves you, not your customers. that is the game, and I know it.

"Bureaucracy is the enemy of innovation." -- Mark Shepherd, former President and CEO of Texas Instruments