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Comment: Correcting the crappy summary (Score 4, Insightful) 183

by mcvos (#48572497) Attached to: Google News To Shut Down In Spain On December 16th

Some big errors in the summary:

The decision of Google comes as response to new Spanish legislation that gives publishers the right to claim compensation for republishing any part of their content.

No, if this was the case, it'd just be a rehash of the German situation. No, the problem here is that it gives publishers the obligation to claim compensation. This law is specifically designed to prevent the German situation. So other newspapers can't decide they'd rather have Google's traffic anyway, and thereby undermine this boycott of Google News.

It also fixes another problem that big Spanish newspapers had: on Google News, you could just as easily find small, independent news sites that were critical of the current (conservative) government, as the sites of the major newspapers (which are mostly supportive of the government). Outside Google News, the small press is a lot harder to find. This law removes competition for the big guys as well as criticism about the government. Win-win for big corps and the government. Lose for the people and the small independent press.


This follows news of services of startup Uber being forbidden in countries like Spain as well as Germany and some city councils worldwide like Delhi, or other services like AirBnb being put under pressure to cope with local laws in other jurisdictions.

This issue has nothing to do with Uber and Airbnb not complying with local laws. There is nothing wrong with foreign companies having to obey local laws in they want to operate there. This, however, is a new law that will hurt the small Spanish press (Google won't be hurt that much, since they don't make money on Google News anyway).

By the way complaints against Uber and Airbnb (which should have been irrelevant to this story but now aren't because of the stupid summary) are not that unreasonable; they're side-stepping consumer-protection regulations that exist for good reasons. In some places they're also side-stepping monopolies or cartels, which is great of course, but some of the laws they're running afoul of are actually good laws.

As a final word, Uber are by now well known to be a bunch of thugs who need to go out of business as soon as possible.

Comment: Re:Things happen outside US!!! (Score 5, Insightful) 183

by mcvos (#48572339) Attached to: Google News To Shut Down In Spain On December 16th

It's not anti-American to recognize that countries that are not the US have laws that differ from American laws. The US has just as much history of legally protected rackets (software patents, spying on behalf of American corporations, banning Tesla from selling cars, telco monopolies, in fact, I think the US has a far worse record than Germany on this).

So why is it to anti-American to expect companies to obey the laws of the country they operate in? Maybe because American companies are used to buying laws? Guess what: that's what just happened in Spain. That mess is as American as you can get.

Yes, that Spanish law is stupid, but the summary is stupid for trying to connect it to Uber and Airbnb. Uber, by the way, are a bunch of thugs who even many Americans agree should go out of business as soon as possible.

Comment: Re: here we go (Score 1) 834

by mcvos (#48367105) Attached to: How To End Online Harassment

I definitely call bullshit on that. Men are harassed in Law (did you know that men are not considered guardians of their own legitimate offspring in England?),

That is absolutely wrong,

Children Act 1989 section 2, particularly:
(4)The rule of law that a father is the natural guardian of his legitimate child is abolished.

Source: England and Wales Statute Roll (

Stick that up your arse, naysayer.

Naysayer? I'm condemning it. I'm saying that law (if true) is wrong. If you'd bothered to read the rest of my comment before jumping to incorrect conclusions, you'd have seen that my position is that both parents should have equal responsibility for the care of the child, and nobody should jump to lazy shortcuts based on assumed gender role expectations. Look at the real situation. Of course if one parent hasn't been pulling their weight, it makes sense that in case of divorce the other parent gets main custody, but this should always be judged on a case-by-case basis, and never on lazy assumptions.

Comment: Re:Not this shit again (Score 1) 834

by mcvos (#48362709) Attached to: How To End Online Harassment

There have been multiple statistical analyses plainly proving that the "attack" and "harassment" narratives are provably false.

So I looked at the first one of those, and it doesn't at all do what you claim it does. It's sloppy at best. Why did you link it?

Par for the course in GamerGate, I'm afraid. They love sharing irrelevant links to distract from the real issue, and then claim it was always about that. I have seen the behaviour often enough that I often don't even bother clicking anymore. Every time I do click, I end up wasting my time looking for the thing they claimed was supposed to be in it.

Comment: Re:Not this shit again (Score 1) 834

by mcvos (#48362635) Attached to: How To End Online Harassment

I admit it. I can't get the story of GamerGate straight. And do you know why I can't get GamerGate's story straight? Because GamerGate themself can't get their story straight. GamerGate's story keeps changing every day. (Of course every time it has always been their story, like the war with Eastasia.)

I assure you, this is absolutely the first time I've heard anyone from GamerGate even claim that they have addressed corruption around Shadows of Morder. When I addressed this in a conversation with a GamerGater a few weeks ago, he said exactly that it was okay, because it was a good game, and that it was the terrible corruption around Depression Quest that was the real reason for GamerGate. I've heard other GamerGaters explain that it wasn't really corruption because it was marketing and surely a company should be free to do that sort of thing? I have never seen this addressed in the name of GamerGate, I have never seen anyone claiming affiliation with GamerGate address this. And you are the first person I've met who claims that GamerGaters have addressed this. But maybe they have. Still, they're not giving remotely as much attention to it as they're giving to Depression Quest.

As for slurs, you claim that all the slurs come from the anti-GG side, and yet all the slurs I've seen first-hand, have come from people defending GamerGate. A post about random racists on the internet (props to the person who addressed that, by the way) recognizing an image apparently related to GamerGate (I admit I wouldn't have recognized it as such) doesn't exactly prove that they are representative for people opposing GamerGate. Everybody I know who has criticized GamerGate (and of all the gamers I know, nobody supports it) is quite the opposite of that.

I'm not claiming that all critics of GamerGate are perfect. Every random group of internet people has its fair share of bastards, but the bastards don't dominate as much as they seem to dominate in GamerGate. There's a very good reason why GamerGate has such a terrible reputation. That didn't come from nothing; it is exactly because of the behaviour associated with GamerGate. Read Ken White of Popehat has to say about it. The only people who claim to have a positive impression of GamerGate are the GamerGaters themselves. And their story is honestly not very credible considering the chat logs where they discuss how to sell their story to the outside world, and what stuff they shouldn't be doing anymore. The end result is that by now, their story sounds quite reasonable to anyone not familiar with the history. But most people have a better memory than GamerGaters realize.

University of Utah confirmed that threat was completely un-credible and there was no credible threat to the students or anyone else.

Are you aware that they have a website? Read it. They confirm the threat, and they increased the security, but they also say that, according to Utah law, they can't ban weapons.

Comment: Re: here we go (Score 2) 834

by mcvos (#48359009) Attached to: How To End Online Harassment

I definitely call bullshit on that. Men are harassed in Law (did you know that men are not considered guardians of their own legitimate offspring in England?),

That is absolutely wrong, but that is just as much a feminist issue as women who want to work. Men being regarded as unsuitable as parent is because of traditional gender roles: women take care of children, men make money. Men should of course have equal rights to guardianship of children as women, and if they don't, that's just as much a sign that feminism isn't done yet as the fact that women make less money than men.

men are harassed in the workplace (some jobs you can't get if you have a penis - simply because you have a penis),

I'm not aware of any job where men are actively being kept out (though I don't doubt they exist), but I know a lot of jobs where women are actively kept out of. Of course both are problems, and both need to be solved, and they are in fact both the same problem. But you are delluding yourself if you think this issue is worse for men than for women.

men are harassed constantly, and IT IS WORSE if you're white and straight because that makes you a legitimate target for militant feminists.

I'm a straight white man, and I'm certainly not being harassed constantly. Have you ever really taken a good look at the kind of harassment that almost every woman faces on an almost daily basis? What we face is really truly nothing compared to that.

But I'm not denying that there are idiots on the feminist side. Particularly bizarre are the "all sex is rape" people, but they are widely recognized as idiots, and when necessary, criticized appropriately. But I've also had some guy turn me into a bigotry strawman, putting words in my mouth, and finishing off with advice that was actually worse than anything he falsely accused me of. Those things do happen, I am well aware of that. And if you find that hurtful, you should really take another look at all the crap that's often directed at women, because really, you've got to be blind if you don't see what an order of magnitude that's worse than what we face.

Comment: Two sides (Score 1) 231

by mcvos (#48358689) Attached to: Canadian Police Recommend Ending Anonymity On the Internet

I can certainly understand the desire to do away with anonymity, particularly in light of crime, but also harassment, threats and doxxing that are plaguing some communities. But as usual, there's two sides to these kind of things. Not every government is equally benevolent, and dissidents and whistleblowers also need anonymity to be able to leak the information necessary to address the abuses by the powerful.

Never keep up with the Joneses. Drag them down to your level. -- Quentin Crisp