Archive for category Intellectual Property

A Post Worth Repeating

I wish the creativity were mine, but it’s not.

Walt Disney was a blatant capitalist, but – I hope – he NEVER would have approved of Glenn Beck.

I have to think he, and Walter Lance, would have approved of these videos:


Remove United States District Attorney Carmen Ortiz From Office

Via Glenn Greenwald:

Massachusetts’ U.S. attorney Carmen Ortiz and assistant U.S. attorney Stephen Heymann are under fire for their office’s abusive conduct in the two-year prosecution of Aaron Swartz, a 26-year-old Internet activist who killed himself last Friday. Just before his death, prosecutors rejected a plea offer and threatened to take Swartz to trial on 15 trumped-up felony counts, carrying a maximum penalty of 50 years in federal prison. What did he do? He was accused of retrieving over four million academic journal articles from the JSTOR database (he was allowed to access JSTOR, but not to perform a bulk download). That doesn’t even meet the definition of computer hacking – it was a terms of service violation at most.

Swartz’s girlfriend, Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman, told the WSJ that the case had drained all of his money and he could not afford to pay for a trial. At Swartz’s funeral in Chicago on Tuesday, his father flatly stated that his son “was killed by the government.”

…A petition on the White House’s website to fire Ortiz quickly exceeded the 25,000 signatures needed to compel a reply, and a similar petition aimed at Heymann has also attracted thousands of signatures, and is likely to gather steam in the wake of revelations that another young hacker committed suicide in 2008 in response to Heymann’s pursuit of him (You can [and I hope will] sign both petitions by clicking on those links; the Heymann petition in particular needs more signatures).

…This is not just prosecutorial abuse. It’s broader than that. It’s all part and parcel of the exploitation of law and the justice system to entrench those in power and shield themselves from meaningful dissent and challenge by making everyone petrified of the consequences of doing anything other than meekly submitting to the status quo.

Please go to the White House website and sign the petitions to remove Carmen Ortiz and Stephen Heymann from office for prosecutorial abuse.

More info:
Prosecutor in Aaron Swartz ‘hacking’ case comes under fire
Petition To Remove Carmen Ortiz, Aaron Swartz Prosecutor, Reaches Threshold For White House Response

Aaron Swartz’s Suicide Triggers Response from Top U.S. Lawmakers

In a bill called “Aaron’s Law,” Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) aims to amend the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), which Massachusetts prosecutors used to charge Swartz… In a statement on Reddit, Rep. Lofgren said she wants to reform the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) in order to “prevent what happened to Aaron from happening to other Internet users.” Lofgren, who represents Silicon Valley, is an outspoken voice on technology issues in the U.S. Congress.

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Rick Santorum Calls For Regulating the Internet and Believes Freedom Should be Limited

GOP Presidential candidate Rick Santorum has a freedom problem. He says there is too much freedom on the Internet and it should be regulated. He was the only candidate that did not take a strong stand against SOPA and PIPA and called for regulating the Internet and said freedom should be limited. He called those that want limited government “radical individualism”. Rick Santorum is no conservative. Don’t be fooled by this authoritarian masquerading as a conservative.

“They have this idea that people should be left alone, be able to do whatever they want to do, government should keep our taxes down and keep our regulations low, that we shouldn’t get involved in the bedroom, we shouldn’t get involved in cultural issues.

That is not how traditional conservatives view the world. There is no such society that I’m aware of, where we’ve had radical individualism and that it succeeds as a culture.”

– Rick Santorum

See also Rick Santorum is tired of you people wanting the government to leave you alone on Hot Air.

Freedom is limited and Internet should be regulated

Santorum defends SOPA

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Internet Community Can Never Again Ignore Politics.

A question every politician should be asked at every opportunity is, “Do you understand the Internet and do you regularly use it?”. If the answer is no they are unfit for office period. It is no longer acceptable for Congress who seeks to regulate the Internet to not understand what they are proposing to legislate.
In turn it is no longer acceptable for the Internet community to ignore politics and allow interests such as Hollywood and the Music Industry that have admitted they do not understand or even like the Internet to set the agenda. The Internet community cannot just come out and oppose a couple of bills and say the battle is won. Those that want to control and censor the Internet will not stop and will find ways to get their agenda through. The Internet community must stop them at every turn which means we all need to stay informed of what is happening in Washington and around the world. If it isn’t bills the anti-Internet forces are pushing it is hiding rules deep inside International agreements. These are the most dangerous because they are negotiated in secret and signed quickly so there is little time to mobilize opposition.

This week in Hollywood unknown and un-elected negotiators will be horse-trading your rights under the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) that is being  held in secret. While Hollywood will be well represented, the public, Internet and Tech Industries, and civil liberties groups are shut out of talks. Hollywood will fight hard to get their agenda passed buried deep inside any agreements especially now they have lost SOPA/PIPA.

Call your Congressman and demand that all international agreements be open to public scrutiny especially on issues that effect the public so fundamentally as our free speech rights as well as our rights to access information and knowledge.

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Present Law Works; Just Not Well Enough I Guess

A young man asked me how I was doing today and I said I was OK, but mad at the government. He said he was too and asked if I ever used the internet. :)

He said the government had just shut down a website called Megaupload. I have never heard of this site, but – sure enough – when I got home I typed in the URL and saw this screen which has been reproduced at Wikipedia along with an article about the Megaupload site:

Apparently the site, originally based in Hong Kong was taken down one day after the recent internet blackout protest meant to sway congressmen from voting for the SOPA/PIPA bills.

I am against internet piracy for the sake of profiting off other artists and if this was done for that sake, I have no problem with the shutdown.

My question is this:

If they already have tools to go after copyright theft in other countries, why the new bills? Is the government getting tired of going through the regular legal channels?


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