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Comment Re:minidisc is where its happening! (Score 1) 562

But copy protection for cassettes was actually inherent. Each generational copy got worse and worse, so digital media actually CAUSED the DRM revolution... Sort of.

Oh come now, most of us figured out that mastering was critical pretty quickly. You just had to know who bought the original of each tape you wanted and get the copy from them. Even 3rd generation mastering was not "too" bad if you had good recording gear.

Comment Re:Agree with IMDb (Score 1) 217

Did the actress herself have a page that displayed the data, and/or was a Wikipage available for her? Legitimately asking, I don't know. Even C/D/E/F list celebrities tend to have as much information as possible, because that is how they get jobs. Their resume is name recognition, not technical projects and tenures at various establishments.

If IMDb is simply sourcing other data, sucks to be her. You want to be in showbiz, there is a price for fame (and the quest for such).

Comment Agree with IMDb (Score 1) 217

I'm not that into following actors and actresses, and not much of a movie goer. That said, every time I have looked someone up they have a Wiki page which displays their birth date. Often with accompanying stories of childhood, family, and other personal notes. If the information is already available, why is it only IMDb that can't display it or calculate today-birth date = current age?

Going a bit further, acting already discriminates on all kinds of issues. Casting requires it. How popular would Buffy the Vampire Hunter been if the actress was 45 years old? How about the 40 year old virgin played by Sean Connery in his 70s? Like a whole lot of political issues coming out of CA, I question the sanity of this one.

Comment Re:Leave. (Score 1) 427

I don't know about law in any of the US, but in the UK: a private letter is considered to be "published", for libel purposes, the moment it is opened (by someone other than the party being libelled, or someone acting as their agent and with their express permission to open it)

Yes. It is roughly the same in the U.S. See HERE, in the section headed "Publication".

Comment Re:Leave. (Score 1) 427

With the intent to cause damage. Look it up. They damaged party has to prove intent. Which is why there are almost never successful; libel or slander cases in the US.

This is not true. At least in most states, intent to harm is not required.

What IS usually required is to show that the accused knew, or reasonably should have known, that the statement was false.

That is not quite the same thing.

Comment Re:This. Libel need not be public, but must be unt (Score 1) 427

It's amazing to me how many people don't get the difference between stating an opinion and stating something as fact. I am thinking of a certain Slashdot frequenter who fits that profile.

There is a great deal of legal precedent in that regard. For example, calling someone "an ass" or similar is pretty definitely an opinion, even if it's stated as though it were fact: "You're an ass."

In college law classes there is a rather famous case study from, I think, the 17th century.

A guest at an inn told the innkeeper: "My horse can pisse better ale than you serve here."

The innkeeper sued the customer for slander. The judge ruled: "The accused did not slander the innkeeper. He complimented his horse."

So, while there are lines as to what is acceptable speech and what is not, it pays to be cognizant of where those lines are. And many people have no clue.

Comment Re:Leave. (Score 4, Informative) 427

This is quite incorrect. I would say dangerously incorrect. At least in most of the U.S.

In general, actionable defamation (of which libel and slander are particular examples) only requires that you express untrue, damaging things to someone other than the party you are referring to. There is NO specific requirement that it be public.

And "damage" is used loosely here. Damage could mean damage to their career, or damage to their public reputation, or even just damage to a single friend's opinion of them.

If you wrote untrue, damaging things in a document to your HR department, that could definitely be considered libel, and would likely be actionable. Specific cases vary, but again in general.

Of course, truth is (again in general... most U.S. states) an absolute defense. So if what you wrote is true and you can demonstrate that it is, by a preponderance of evidence, then you're probably safe. But you'd better have that evidence.

In addition, most corporations have as part of their employment conditions that you can't sue the company or other employees as a result of negative opinions expressed as part of "official" company communications, such as an employee review or exit interview.

Again in the U.S., that is simply not true. "Most" corporations do NOT have such a clause in their contract, and there is a very strong push to stop that practice in those states where it is still allowed. Because in some states such clauses are specifically prohibited by law, and the list of those states is growing.

Comment Re:Leave. (Score 1) 427

It is perfectly reasonable to write the complaint for public review without naming the person. People inside the company interested will know who the message is about if there is a history of that sort of thing. The exit interview is the place to name the specifics.

The company taking a hit because of bad reputation is not something they can sue for without specific conditions. E.G. Article states that the company policy dictated that type of behavior, management encourage that sort of behavior, etc... Even then, it's a difficult case for the company to make.

Comment Realistically (Score 1) 732

All you need to provide at the polling station is a name and address. It is illegal to ask people for ID in California, and I know of several polling stations (publicized on 870AM LA morning show) who chastised people who volunteered ID.

This is why it's so hard to prove voter fraud, especially in places that refuse to implement a requirement for ID at polling stations.

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