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 Post subject: We Live in Punkish Times
PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 2:48 pm 
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So hrm. Whether you feel Megaupload deserved to be taken down or not I'd say yesterday was designed to send a pretty clear message; You can have all the litle blackout protests you want, but we can still boot you in the face whenever we feel like it.

I don't want to discuss file-sharing or risks that x or y site will be next on a hit list. I'm afraid it'd just start flaming all the way 'round.

Hate to say it Rob but you were right. The web is getting transitioned into a more passive experience where we can either view content or buy things. This is merely the transitional period.

As unworkeable the plan to [u=http://www.theverge.com/2011/12/31/2671890/ccc-hackerspace-global-grid-satellites]Put Satilites In Orbit[/] is I have to say it's starting to look like a halfway decent fallback idea after the transition is over. Then again I'm a pessimist here in that once all the publicity dies down over the latest censuring tools.


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 Post subject: Re: We Live in Punkish Times
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 8:48 pm 
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After spending 10 years in the industry, here are my (personal) conclusions.

The most money is being made by people who steal and exploit other people's work (piracy, content, etc). And while at it, they do a great job in convincing all of you that they offer you freedom, and free stuff and whatnot.

It's very easy to talk about "freedom", when you are no longer "free" to steal other people's work and make a ton of money while at it. And also get to look good.

I don't look good. I charge you for my games.
They will give you my games for free. They offer you true freedom. Except they will probably charge you for bandwidth, put up ads, etc.

---
Let me give you a more specific example.

I break into your house and steal your $299 XBox.
I then sell it for $19 to some guy along with a message: "Hey, I am giving you dirt cheap consoles".
When "legislation is being passed" and I can no longer earn my $19, then I start lobbying around about freedom and whatnot.

----
What freedom are you being denied?
You can always come to this forums (and countless more) and post your opinion on anything and discuss with fellow forum members.
They only case where I or someone else will intervene against you, is when you break a law.

----

Why MegaUpload was shutdown?
Let me tell you something.

I pay $5 / month to be able to use 30Gb of unrestricted and advertisement free online storage space.
I can do backups, sync data among my devices or even send you a link to download a 30Gb file I want to share with you as long as it's legal.

----

The difference between online theft and reallife theft is that online, you won't see anything "missing" from your "home" :)

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 Post subject: Re: We Live in Punkish Times
PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2012 4:20 pm 
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There was a big huge post I had started to write but it hit me; I'm arguing with the guy that both owns the forum I'm on and has actually been pretty great about customer support and service instead of some ranting random yahoo on boingboing.

Megaupload is a very unsympathetic defendant here. While I've gotten some legitimate use out of the place that's mostly been from pre youtube or pre drop-box days where it'd be too big to put as an email attachment. However more often than not links posted in public would be for warez, some movie, an album collection, or the like. Your getting pissed at the fact Mega was making money off of that is understandable. The thing that pretty much scares me isn't that megaupload got canon'd out of existential but that the arguments being put forward tend to involve no-matter-what-you-do-you-aren't-complying type arguments (have a way of searching your content? you're a dirty download directory of communist piracy. Don't provide a way to search content and you're in a conspiracy to hide something) that could later then be applied to legitimate non-infringing services that the old content industry happens to not like and wants to kill off. )

I say let's find some middle ground here. You're a good example of where I'd want things to go honestly. Your software, so far as I've seen, hasn't ever had DRM dropped in to punish customers by making people that paid good money jump through hoops or degrade machine performance for something pirates will bypass and get the better experience out of.

Here you're offering the better service than the likes of Activism or EA. This is where I'd like most of the content industry to go as normal practice. Treat the customers less like probable criminals and more like people wanting to pay you to entertain them and you get a better reaction. I'd say you are walking proof that treating your customers as people is the better business practice.

Naturally there's always going to be greedy <can't think of non-explicit language here> that'll take advantage of good will and steal from the system. The thing I've picked up on, at least from the RIAA/MPAA, is that accusing your customers en mass and punishing everyone just drives people away. Does that mean I want no security and everything has to be free?

Hell no.

While I'm a hobbyist as opposed to your Professional Rob I do now and again make content and try peddling it out. I'd like to get paid for my efforts where said content is actually put up for sale rather than see it up on an archive of download links. The problem is those same 'profit off the sweat of others' sites also demonstrate either a distribution method or some other technology that could be put to legal ends (Drop Box's legal services since that seems to be the best analog to Megaupload.) No sense in shutting down the possibility of using a thing just because somebody else is going to use it to be selfish.

Edit: Wait. $50 gets you thirty gig of storage space? Then again dropbox offers 50 get for $10 so I guess no big deal there.


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 Post subject: Re: We Live in Punkish Times
PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2012 6:48 pm 
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$5 gets me 30Gb. NOT $50. As long as the content is legit.

As for MegaUpload, here is something for you to read:
http://venturebeat.com/2012/01/21/kim-d ... warfare-3/

That guy made a fortune of $170 million dollars!
Over what? A cheap PHP script to a run a file sharing site and renting some servers?
Sure. He gave you a lot of freedom and stuff. Let's defend him.
What the FUCK was his contribution to making the world a better place and advancing mankind?
He made that kind of money and that kind of "success" specifically because they endorsed piracy.

I can receive up to 4Gb in mail attachments.

Give me one reasonable example of content YOU have created that exceeds 1Gb unless it's some pirated stuff. If it's over 1Gb, then it's something important and I can always give you a FTP account where you can upload 100 Gb, or mail me a DVD or whatnot.

I just ran a check on my Hacker Evolution Duality development folder.
It is 10.4 Gb and includes tens of builds of the same game, archived version, and everything related to the game.
I managed to transfer a lot of content from me to 3rd parties and backwards without ever needing MegaUpload.

P.S: Feel free to argue with me :) You know better than everyone else that I am not an asshole who bans people or deletes post just because our opinions diverge :)

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 Post subject: Re: We Live in Punkish Times
PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2012 11:37 pm 
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OK the $50 is a typo.

Have I mentioned I'm not trying to defend Megaupload? I only bring them up because of the methods used seem... squirrly. This is the sum of my concerns, that what is used here will be used elsewhere for business that actually makes money by offering honest services as more than a cover. I'm guessing that article isn't more finger pointy due to not wanting mr whatsface suing them if he manages to not go to prison.

Same reason I opposed SOPA (and PIPA.) It isn't the 'we must stop illegal file-sharing' that's bad. It's how broadly things were worded and doing away with due process (the whole process, if enacted, would leave the burden of proof on the site owner AFTER it got de-listed and payments to them frozen. So if, say, you got hit with an accusation your site would get taken down and you couldn't generate any income from web based sales till everything got straightened out. I know you've said you could survive comfortably without the web, but still, it'd be pretty chilling when it comes to people investing in web-based startups) Didn't help that at every turn tech companies had either been ignored, or the whole thing was treated by congress as Google vs Entertainment.

See. I react poorly when companies that abuse current laws then threatens them with no more campaign money for not voting the way they paid 'em to ask for more power with less oversight. It isn't that i wouldn't trust you personally Rob, but there's lots of folk out there I wouldn't trust further than I could throw 'em.


Also that article you linked to; they found the absolute best picture for making the guy look like a goof (really c'mon. That's just awesome.) That's hilarious.


As for anything that goes over one gig of space? No. However i have had stuff that's gone over the ten meg limit in pretty much every mail service I've used.

Last time I used them was as a filedump when I didn't have anything else to back up my photo album on while I re-installed windows. This was years ago and I didn't give them a dime for the business. Valuable content? Hardly if you measure by stuff that's going to get sold or used (though to be fair some of it could've been sold off as stock photos if I'd really considered the idea.) Also wouldn't trust them with company information either, but the material was important enough I didn't want the whole thing wiped out when had to re-install everything (anything else I'd been up to were simple text files which fit easily in the attachment size limit.

Now? Now I have a dropbox account, and Google covers most of my personal needs quite well. However my backup problem was before Dropbox existed and Gmail was still invite only.

And yes i know you arn't free with the banhammer, but just as a matter of politeness people don't go running around pissing off the site owner for the sake of a few giggles, especially if said irritated nature is due to misunderstood stances.


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 Post subject: Re: We Live in Punkish Times
PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2012 11:53 pm 
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Will,

You are in no way irritating me.
I am adept of constructive conversation.
Feel free to express your oppinion.

But I couldn't notice the fact that the only "victims" of new legislation, are (almost) exclusively companies that facilitate the use of pirated content of any kind (software, media, etc).

My entire life depends on my ability to sell my IP. If any laws would affect that, I would be on the first line of defense.

Without going into specific details, I accidentally infringed a GPL license of a big company.
So big that they could have vaporized me in days.
Guess what? I got a notification email, which was simple and to the point. I appologized and immediately corrected the issue. They wished me best of luck and we parted in friendly terms.

Nobody vaporizes anyone for one incident. But if you make a habit and business out of it, they will eventually do it.

I agree that SOPA could use some polishing, but the itself is not bad.
What I would change is put a limit after which those measures can be applied.

Let's assume that some big company uses SOPA and shuts me down for no reason.
I go to court and prove they are wrong. The amount of money I could earn in a settlement will be hundreds of times more than I will ever make. So, I can't wait for it to happen.
I bet you didn't know that this thing also works the other way around.
However, this wouldn't be the case for MegaUpload and others.

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