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Stallman Attacked by Ninjas 524

vivIsel writes "When RMS took the stage to address the Yale Political Union, Yale's venerable parliamentary debate society, it was already an unusual speech: instead of the jacket and tie customary there, he sported a T shirt, and no shoes. But then he was attacked by ninjas. Apparently some students took it into their head to duplicate an XKCD webcomic before a live audience — luckily, though, Stallman didn't resort to violence. Instead, he delivered an excellent speech about DRM."
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Stallman Attacked by Ninjas

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  • Wow (Score:5, Funny)

    by Naelok ( 1162515 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @03:29AM (#21061085)
    This is perhaps the greatest thing anyone has ever done, ever. Though it would've been better if they'd come down from the ceiling.
  • Well (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 21, 2007 @03:36AM (#21061103)
    If Richard Stallman wants everything to be free, maybe he should create a whole bunch of decent stuff and give it away. Without license. Without license. Without license.
    • Re: Well (Score:4, Funny)

      by Dolda2000 ( 759023 ) <fredrik@dol d a 2 0 0 0 . c om> on Sunday October 21, 2007 @09:56AM (#21062635) Homepage

      Without license. Without license. Without license.
      Ballmer? Is that you?
  • Ninjas... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Tuoqui ( 1091447 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @03:36AM (#21061109) Journal
    But where were the pirates? Clearly someone has to defend RMS against the ninjas...
  • by colourmyeyes ( 1028804 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @03:41AM (#21061135)
    Apparently no one told web designers at Yale how to resize photos so they don't have to use a full size, 1.6 Meg picture that's scaled down in the HTML.
  • by udippel ( 562132 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @03:54AM (#21061185)
    If you ever go to the link pointed out (I know, we are in /., and RTFS is for weaklings only) ...
    Instead, he delivered an excellent speech about DRM
    you'll find a beautiful Minutes of the Debate [] in WORD.

    Richard, your message was lost !
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by onion2k ( 203094 )
      As horrible as Word's proprietary format is, there isn't any DRM involved in it. A closed format* that lets you do what the heck you like with it contains no DRM; it's plain irritating for people who prefer openness but it exerts no control over the data contained within. It would be preferable for Yale to release the minutes in plain text, or nicely formated HTML, or something.

      DRM is much more evil. DRM tries to control how you use your data. Or, if you believe the vitriol spewed forth from Microsoft, Sony
    • by Neoncow ( 802085 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @04:57AM (#21061445) Journal

      Open in Microsoft Word.


      "Could not open 'Steve:Applications:Microsoft Office 2004:Templates:My Templates:ypu'."

      Pure fucking genius. WTG Steve.
    • by Firehed ( 942385 )
      Well technically speaking, not using open standards isn't a DRM issue (especially seeing that non-MS software such as OpenOffice and Pages can open most Word docs fine), but I share your sentiment.
  • Irony... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by CaPn Corelian ( 575148 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @04:00AM (#21061205)
    Because the minutes of the debate are in .DOC format.
  • I just sent in this note to the author (using the Contact the author form; who knows if that gets bitbucketed or what):

    Possible mistakes in article

    At [] , the photo caption reads, 'Political activist Richard Stallman spoke against the resolution "Digital Restrictions Management should be illegal" at a Yale Political Union debate Wednesday night.'

    Yet from reading [] , it appears that he spoke in *favor* of the resolution.

    Also, you w

  • by beders ( 245558 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @04:46AM (#21061405) Homepage
    Please tell me that wasn't all that he was wearing
  • The concept (Score:2, Informative)

    by Cosmic AC ( 1094985 )
    This sounds like something that's a lot funnier when you're reading xkcd and imagining it in a marijuana-induced state than when you're actually carrying it out. Even the photos look awkward ("We're attacking you, Stallman, get it?"). And the ninja suits, sheesh.
  • by threaded ( 89367 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @05:19AM (#21061559) Homepage
    Blooming bearded hippie ought to get a job. ;-)
  • by IchBinEinPenguin ( 589252 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @05:47AM (#21061665)
    They're NEXT!
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by passion ( 84900 )
      Ummm, ESR has guns and uses them. I wouldn't break into his house dressed as a ninja.
  • by spleen_blender ( 949762 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @05:47AM (#21061669)
    Left wing liberal software communist gets attacked by terrorist extremists. O'Reily celebrates. More at 9'.
  • by Cheesey ( 70139 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @06:58AM (#21061889)
    Unless you want to get killed.

    It's not that he'll shoot you if you dress as a ninja and try to sneak up on him. It's just that his speech might exceed the bullshit threshold that you can tolerate.
  • by andi75 ( 84413 ) on Sunday October 21, 2007 @09:19AM (#21062493) Homepage
    I'm surprised noone has mentioned it yet, but: ...That's all the airport security left him with.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 21, 2007 @10:10AM (#21062713)
    Posted anonymously to avoid Karma Whoring. Not sure if someone has already done this, but I wasn't able to find anything on first glance through the threads.

    October 17, 2007

    The Floor Meeting of the Yale Political Union held on October 17, 2007 was called to order at 7:42 p.m. in LC 102 with the Speaker, Noah Mamis, presiding.

    The chairmen report the results of their last debates and announce their upcoming debates and events.

    The President of the Union, Miss April Lawson, welcomes the body to the debate and introduces Richard Stallman, founder and leader of the free software movement. She summarizes a few of the terms involved in the debate.

    The President moves the topic "Resolved: Digital Restrictions Management should be illegal."

    Mr. Stallman believes that all software should be free, but he is instead here to argue for something less extensive: that software should not be designed to restrict their users under the control of companies. He defines Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) as the practice of making products to restrict their users. DVDs are an example: they are designed by a conspiracy of companies to restrict the users. Any company that wants to make a DVD player has to agree to restrict users in the same way; this is a matter of public record. Free software is illegal in the US, because the conspiracy won't allow it. It is legal to copy all or part of a book for some purposes; you can borrow it, sell it to a used bookstore, lend it to a friend, buy it anonymously, or keep it and use it as much as you'd like. Publishers want to take these rights away with DRM. No one could pass a law taking these freedoms away, but e-book formats prevent you from doing this, and publishers want to encourage consumers to use e-books instead of traditional books. Companies want more power over their consumers.

    DRM appears in a wide range of products from a wide range of companies: Apple uses DRM as part of iTunes, Google uses DRM in the Google Earth client. Mr. Stallman does not believe we ought to force any company to make a certain product with a certain feature, but he does not want companies to deny us access to technology to prevent us from doing things they don't want us to do. Companies are using laws to deny our rights, but there is no reason to use the laws in these particular ways. Anti-trust laws prevented companies from having too much power over the marketplace, but they didn't go far enough. An oligopoly can be almost as bad as a monopoly. However, high prices are not the only problem. Now, companies want power, which is even worse. Mr. Stallman thinks we should use democracy to defend the interests of the many against the interests of the rich few. (At the body's response, Mr. Stallman asks, "Is there a doctor in the house? I think we need to perform a hiss-terectomy.")

    The first part of this solution is to remove those parts of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act that do not deal with copyright. The US government is under the thumb of the corporate conspiracy. Software that can, for instance, play a DVD, is illegal: the distributors face prosecution. The censorship system must be abolished. Corporations are extremely powerful. AACS (the follow-up to DVD technology) is used in HD-DVD and in Blu-Ray to restrict the users; the conspiracy wants to outlaw analog video outputs, which cannot be sufficiently controlled.

    The "perpetrators" of this conspiracy typically argue that the consumers have agreed to buy these products, and so shouldn't complain, but this argument has been used to justify exploitative practices like low pay, long hours, and unsafe working conditions. These regulations are extremely important, because they prevent businesses from trampling us. The richest and most powerful people win politically and in the marketplace. No one can find a better product - all the DVD players on the market restrict the user.

    The many should be able to work together to limi

System checkpoint complete.