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Comment Re:Search engine rankings for legitimate sites (Score 1) 175

I think you just clarified a lot of similar but muddy thoughts for me.

I was thinking I just romanticized the past of the internet where I was hitting new and unheard of domain names every day to find awesome in-depth websites on whatever subject I was searching for, but I don't think I'm doing so to excess.

Much of the internet's information has been centralized on these monolithic info clearinghouses, but it's just so... sterile, and Google is obviously to blame by putting far more emphasis on the generic popular website than the specialized and relatively unknown one.

The question is how does anyone, even Google, fix this? I have no clue myself.

Perhaps we need a... oh God I hate myself for using this word... a crowdsourced sort of Google. Make every indexed page taggable and votable. Except that just skyrocketed the value of botnets. Yeah I got nothing.

Comment Transparent Agenda (Score 4, Insightful) 176

Disclaimer: I'm just a paranoid stoner.

As someone involved with that habit and lifestyle, it's easy to notice the government's quite profitable agenda of socially marginalizing and exploiting parts of the population. Incentivize "proper" social conduct with the various perks of society with tools like credit scores and background checks, using jail as the stick when carrots fail to sufficiently motivate.

The x-strike laws strike me as a particularly transparent attempt to maintain this status quo. The internet has lead to the creation of online communities for just about every "unsavory" hobby, habit, or problem you could think of. The "wrong" people are no longer socially isolated; Legalization movements are making record progress; Government is losing control.

Somewhere at the top, someone finally realized the decentralized nature of the internet means standard models of exercising authority fall short. How to reassert control? Convince society of the necessity of elevating the internet to the level of the "gated community home, SUV, and health insurance," you know, out of the hands of those filthy subhumans who live outside the walls.

Copyright makes sense as the first step. Everyone already agrees on the vital role companies like the RIAA play in our economy, so we must take the privilege of internet from those who dare jeopardize its profits. Then, once it's socially acceptable to deny someone "the internet" for copyright violations, the floodgates are opened to deny it to anyone who displeases the powers that be. Internet privilege denial will become as standard a punishment as revoking a teen's driver's license is for almost any infraction these days.

"But Spazntwich," you say,"The internet is ubiquitous! You can't possibly prevent someone from getting on the internet!"
Of course you can't. Just like the government can't even keep drugs out of its own prisons. Ineffectiveness of a law has never been a reason to overturn one.

The internet's universal nature plays right into their hands. Any infraction, intentional or otherwise (remember citizen, ignorance is never an excuse!), will be a violation of probation/parole and place one back at the mercy of the authorities. Right where they want you.

Comment Re:I abstain (Score 1) 794

That's a great technical argument, and I won't disagree that the dominant language is subject to change, but it does seem silly or unnecessarily contrarian to be motivated enough to demand participation in a country's political process without making even a cursory effort to learn the language in which all of its politics are conducted.

Comment Re:Techie price greater than luser price (Score 3, Interesting) 321

I've noticed this as well, and just consider it the price I have to pay to avoid losing my nerd credentials along with my tiny bank balance.

But it is becoming more prevalent, and I'm not sure what the solution is. Part of me worries this is one of the setup steps in someone's grand scheme to make the internet "dangerous" enough that the "only solution" is to grant absolute internet authority to agency x. You know. To protect the children from all the sexual predators hiding kiddie porn in bit.ly links.

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