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Comment Re:We're not gonna miss anything (Score 2) 200

That's an easy one to answer.

The reason the good content has fled for cable and/or the Internet is because of commercial concerns. The first concern is the palette of the masses. You don't want to be too controversial or too radical or you don't get the broadest audience. Or if you go too far in the opposite direction and have too narrow of an audience. Both of those are a problem for the second concern, selling the commercial space. These programs aren't created to be entertaining, they're created to pass the time between swaths of 30-second sale pitches. Now, they can be entertaining and being entertaining helps since in theory that could get the commercials a larger audience, which is the whole point.

Now the twist is that TV execs are figuring out audience statistics better, so a show doesn't necessarily have to have the broadest of audiences to survive. An equally acceptable one is a predictable, identifiable audience. Anything which makes it easy to sell commercial time is the key. So if you have a show which has a fairly narrow but easily identifiable audience you have an easier time targeting your broadcast commercials to them.

For TV execs, the ideal choice is either Friends or Supernatural.

Comment There's an easy way to do this. (Score 5, Informative) 143

Stop fucking around with the API and stop fucking around with access to it. You need to build trust and you can't do that when you change rules willy-nilly all the time.

The reason why developers fled your platform is because you never let it stabilize long enough for people to do things with it. Then, if memory serves, you closed it. And then you sold it.

So the question becomes one of why would anyone want to invest the time to figure the API and platform out if you're just going to pull the football away without warning?

Comment Already throwing him under the bus (Score 4, Insightful) 36

And doing their lawyerly best to shield Uber from the worst of the storm that's brewing.

If you go read Ars' article on the same, you'll find that the judge is having none of Uber's bullshit and is forcing them to confront the employee who has their own lawyer and is pleading the fifth about what happened to the documents in question and when.

Uber already has enough trouble on it's plate and apparently didn't do enough due diligence when they bought this guy's company out. I'm going to guess that someone's leadership position is in severe trouble if this trial goes the wrong way for them.

Comment This is of no surprise (Score 4, Insightful) 245

Wage stagnation has taken the earnings of the middle class since the 70s. About the only thing keeping wages going up in that time has been union action and increases in the minimum wage. Since the min wage certainly has not been keeping up with inflation _and_ unions are at an all time low, none of this is a surprise.

For those of you who want the world to be better without a government acting as the means to corral all of us cats wandering around need to start showing us who think otherwise how that's going to work. Because the ideas you've espoused so far have failed. Profits as an end goal only promote avarice and greed as valued traits. This is where such thinking has lead us.

Comment Re:How about. . . no. . . (Score 1) 360

Complaining to the wrong people. You need to talk to the guys running the numbers in Hollywood these days. They're the ones setting ticket prices and how much the venues get from the ticket sales. Which, last I checked, was zero.

Yeah. Theaters get bupkis for the first three or four weeks from ticket sales If the film stays that long. So in order to have a chance at making any money, they shove advertisement everywhere now. And it's working. Go look at AMC's profit numbers.

Comment Re:Features? Look Elsewhere (Score 1) 266

There may be some edge cases for the uninformed but almost everything taken out of Chrome has an impact on the bottom line for Alphabet.

Stripped out options for not automatically running javascript, html5 video, and made it more difficult to monitor locally stored data. I'm waiting for them to get rid of extensions so we can't have our ad & tracker blockers running.

Comment It's not out of ideas, it's risk adverse (Score 5, Insightful) 542

The Hollywood business is currently driven by metrics that put incredible emphasis on the immediate payout over the long-term health of franchises and eventual returns that used to come with home video sales. Part of this has been driven by the digitization of movies and music and part of it is the marketing of instant gratification.

Much of this has to do with Wall Street's insistence for quarterly returns since this is where movie studios have to go to if they want the cash to make them. It's also why you've seen movie budgets both explode and shrink at the same time. The banks want their money at a return rate which would make most mobsters blush. If you're not going to produce a hit that will, at minimum, return triple its costs then you'll not get financed. On the other hand if you can keep the costs down in the single digit millions, then plain curiosity during opening weekend will likely see profit.

The stuff in the middle doesn't return fast enough for anyone to care about getting it made. Forty million for a movie these days? Forget it. Hollywood can't make the guarantees it can with a budget of two-hundred million. You want the movie to grow an audience through word of mouth? Forget it. Hollywood doesn't have the patience for that to happen. It needs the numbers to come up in the black inside of the next twelve weeks, not in the next two years.

Comment Re:What's this about? (Score 1) 71

Still don't know what a "Ghost rider" is or why the CIA leaks link is relevant, but that's how they're skirting regulators.

Okay. That's starting to make some sense. I missed the bit you pointed out. Given what you found + ghost rider it sounds like the app was putting fake people into cars and directing the driver elsewhere.

Now, how they knew when a sting was happening or when an assault was being planned are different questions that should also be answered. Because if they have some nifty prognostication software I'd like to look. Otherwise, they were outright spying on people, somehow.

Comment What's this about? (Score 1) 71

I went to the fine article and I still can't tell what is being argued over. What's a ghost driver? What does Greyball do, exactly and how does it thwart oversight? None of that is clear anywhere! I'm used to figuring things out given context but the context is so dense or missing I can't tell what is going on or why.

BTW: The second link is not germane to the conversation. It's bringing up the CIA leak from earlier this week, not the Uber article.

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