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Comment I hadn't noticed (Score 1) 92

Since I just disabled all pop-ups entirely. Occasionally I have to turn it on for a banking site and the very rare shopping site. But defaulting it to disabled and enabling it only when needed seems a much more sensible approach than defaulting it to enabled and disabling it on a case-by-case basis.

Comment That's it? (Score 2) 21

according to new numbers released by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) Thursday. Paid and ad-supported streaming together generated 51 percent of music revenue last year, to be precise, bringing in a total of $3.9 billion.

So the RIAA's U.S. revenue for all of 2016 is just $3.9 billion / 0.51 = $7.65 billion? That's it? We're mandating DRM, incorporating it into playback media devices and transport layers, forcing ISPs and web services like YouTube to spend untold $millions to go on witch hunts and filter through the 57% of DMCA takedown requests which are fake, threatening people with loss of their Internet connection, bankruptcy, and jail time. All for less than $25 per capita, and what amounts to roundoff error for Google, Apple, and Microsoft's annual revenue?

Comment Same mistake the copyright industry always makes (Score 1) 136

Economics 101. Market rate is the intersection of the supply and demand curve. Or in this case since the supply is infinite and the price is set by the copyright holder, the intersection of the demand curve with the set price.

As you lower the price, the demand goes up. So you can't simply do what the copyright industry always does - take the demand at a price of zero, multiply it by how much you'd like to be paid, and claim that as losses. Otherwise I could just claim plays of my song are worth $1 million each, and because it's been viewed 100,000 times on YouTube without my authorization, I've "lost" $100 billion.

You need to first figure out the shape of the demand curve, then project along it to account for decreased demand as you increase the price, up until you hit the price you're selling at. That'll tell you how much you're really losing. Which in the case of YouTube I suspect is a lot less than the free publicity they get from having their work on YouTube as the background music on someone's home video before YouTube mutes it.

Comment Re:Background and the real issue (Score 0) 383

Oh bullshit.

1) they're not talking about cancelling the lifeline subsidy (which provides basic phone and 911 server) they're talking about not using it to give poor people BROADBAND.

2) if they don't have a job they CAN damn well spend plenty of time at the library, enough to get a job. It's not like they have anything else to do, nor that getting a job involves livechatting the moment a position becomes available. And let's be honest: the people who need this help aren't applying for COO or IT manager jobs...they're applying for waiter, janitor, or housecleaning positions. What you seem to miss is that broadband ISNT 'basic connectivity'. Where are they getting the computer by the way to run this?

3) The suggestion that the GOP doesn't want the "poor" to vote is a canard the Democrats have been pushing for several elections. That articles implication that Trump courted the KKK vote is just an example of how the mainstream media dispensed with any pretence of objectivity this time around. If you want to talk about historical Republican strategy, don't you find it curious that REPUBLICANS were the ones that wanted to end slavery? Or that it was Democrats that invented Gerrymandering? Maybe if people would stop pitching EVERYTHING into us vs them we'd get more done?

PS: despite seeing them consistently for the last 8 years, I can't seem to find a *single* major media article complaining about gridlock anymore? It must have ended then?

Comment Re:Scotland just announced a post-Brexit independe (Score 1) 619

I know it's asking a lot but...Maybe read the REST of my post?

The part where it says for Scotland to be admitted, the admission must be unanimous, and there's NOT A CHANCE IN HELL that the many EU countries who have their own separatist nationalist movements will invite in Scottish irredentists.

I'll even give you the link...again:

And I'm American. I don't honestly give a flying fuck what happens to Scotland.

Comment I know it's crazy but... (Score -1, Troll) 383

...some people might recognize: you know, no matter how much we try to change it, the fact is that poor people get less stuff. Shrug.

If a poor person needs to use high speed broadband (they have computers, right?) then they can go straight to the public library and use it. For free. But generally not for whacking off. Unless you're at the Minneapolis Public Library. Then it's nearly protected 'free speech'.

Comment Not precisely correct (Score 0) 226

What we have is a new generation that:
- believes they are ENTITLED to have what they want
- has never been told "no" by their parents
- believes Social Media can effect change

1 + 2 + 3 = people who believe "thumbs up"ing some petition is actually going to change anything.

Hint: nothing changes in a company unless a) you can show them how it saves money and doesn't cost anywhere else, or b) threaten their income.

Other hint: be careful with b because you're ENTIRELY REPLACEABLE and any company worth their salt can figure out who actually posted that 'call to action' on Reddit, even if you used your 'totally unbreakable' burner id.

Comment Head of Vecna (Score 5, Funny) 61

I guess this is slightly on-topic.

From Steve Jackson Games website....

Many years ago (back when we all were still playing D & D), I ran a game where I pitted two groups against each other.

Several members of Group One came up with the idea of luring Group Two into a trap. You remember the Hand of Vecna and the Eye of Vecna that were artifacts in the old D&D world where if you cut off your hand (or your eye) and replaced it with the Hand of Vecna (or the Eye) you'd get new awesome powers? Well, Group One thought up The Head of Vecna.

Group One spread rumors all over the countryside (even paying Bards to spread the word about this artifact rumored to exist nearby). They even went so far as to get a real head and place it under some weak traps to help with the illusion. Unfortunately, they forgot to let ALL the members of their group in on the secret plan (I suspect it was because they didn't want the Druid to get caught and tell the enemy about this trap of theirs, or maybe because they didn't want him messing with things).

The Druid in group One heard about this new artifact and went off in search of it himself (I believe to help prove himself to the party members...) Well, after much trial and tribulation, he found it; deactivated (or set off) all the traps; and took his "prize" off into the woods for examination. He discovered that it did not radiate magic (a well known trait of artifacts) and smiled gleefully.

I wasn't really worried since he was alone and I knew that there was no way he could CUT HIS OWN HEAD OFF. Alas I was mistaken as the Druid promptly summoned some carnivorous apes and instructed them to use his own scimitar and cut his head off (and of course quickly replacing it with the Head of Vecna...)

Some time later, Group one decided to find the Druid and to check on the trap. They found the headless body (and the two heads) and realized that they had erred in their plan (besides laughing at the character who had played the Druid)...The Head of Vecna still had BOTH eyes! They corrected this mistake and reset their traps and the Head for it's real intended victims...

Group Two, by this time, had heard of the powerful artifact and decided that it bore investigating since, if true, they could use it to destroy Group One. After much trial and tribulation, they found the resting place of The Head of Vecna! The were particularly impressed with the cunning traps surrounding the site (one almost missed his save against the weakest poison known to man). They recovered the Head and made off to a safe area.

Group Two actually CAME TO BLOWS (several rounds of fighting) against each other argueing over WHO WOULD GET THEIR HEAD CUT OFF! Several greedy players had to be hurt and restrained before it was decided who would be the recipient of the great powers bestowed by the Head... The magician was selected and one of them promptly cut his head off. As the player was lifting The Head of Vecna to emplace it on it's new body, another argument broke out and they spent several minutes shouting and yelling. Then, finally, they put the Head onto the character.

Well, of course, the Head simply fell off the lifeless body. All members of Group Two began yelling and screaming at each other (and at me) and then, on their own, decided that they had let too much time pass between cutting off the head of a hopeful recipient and put the Head of Vecna onto the body.

SO THEY DID IT AGAIN!... [killing another PC]

In closing, it should be said that I never even cracked a smile as all this was going on. After the second PC was slaughtered, I had to give in (my side was hurting)...

And Group Two blamed ME for all of that...

Comment Re:Scotland just announced a post-Brexit independe (Score 1) 619

Of COURSE the Scots want another swing at independence, they weren't happy at the first result and only grudgingly accepted it in the first place.

The fact is that Scotland is a proto-Socialist state with exceedingly generous programs and benefits NOT supported by their own industry or tax base. Their fanciful extrapolations of a post-Scotcession world are sheer fiction, pre-supposing every possible advantage (Scotland gets to keep every drop the North Seas oil at no cost to themselves; Scotland gets to keep using the GBP; more or less free access to the EU) and hand-waving the rest. In fact, the economic picture now is even MORE bleak than it was then with oil at half the price it was. Their golden goose is laying eggs distinctly non-golden today.

OF COURSE they want to stay in the EU. They need to make sure whatever udder they're latched onto is on the healthiest possible cow.

But be clear:NOBODY will accept them into the EU. There are so many nascent disaffected minorities from the Basques to the Bretons to the Flemish that NO major state will want to validate the quixotic secessionist movement by granting it the recognition of admission to the EU.

Comment Re:Didn't they opt themselves out? (Score 1) 322

That's standard. Pretty much every law that's passed has a clause at the end exempting Congress from having to obey the law.

This is a bit different though. The browsing history of Congresscritters while in Congress may be exempted. But their home Internet connection falls under a local ISP's purvey, so their history could be harvested under the new law.

Comment Re:How? (Score 1) 322

The problem is most ISPs in the U.S. are government-granted monopolies. So there is no competition, no alternative ISP for people to switch to if they're upset that their ISP has decided to sell their browsing history. And without the pressure of outraged customers switching to a competitor, there's no reason other than principle for a company not to sell the data.

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