Tag Archives: PIPA

Lieberman-Collins “Cybersecurity Act of 2012” is the Same as CISPA. It’s Not an Alternative.

Courtesy ABC News

Susan Collins may want to join Joe Lieberman in retirement if this bill passes

Although the White House has indicated that they don’t support CISPA, they’ve been agreeable to the Lieberman-Collins “Cybersecurity Act of 2012” which has practically the very same internet privacy killing language.  Senator Harry Reid has signaled he favors this.

Contact your Senators and tell them to kill CISPA. This is a completely unnecessary bill that will do more harm to the internet than good and you won’t be any safer.

SOPA Author Gets Lovely Billboard Right Outside His Office

Greetings, Lamar!

Two billboards, crowd-funded in part by a Reddit co-founder, showed up in the district of the original author of SOPA legislation, GOP Rep. Lamar Smith of TX. One of them is apparently right outside his office. I love it! This is exactly what’s needed. Constituents who care about the internet being free from interference need to make sure they let their elected officials know, because contacting them does work.  Fight for the Future is doing great work informing the public on these web destroyers and Breadpig has t-shirts available you can buy to help get the word out and support Fight for the Future and The Internet Defense League.

Requirement: MPAA Bosses Should Know the History of the Birth of Hollywood

Every time Chris Dodd tries to slam movie piracy, he seems to put his foot in it. Here’s the latest example discovered by the great site TorrentFreak:

The truth is that neither the content nor the technology industries could survive without strong protections for intellectual property.

Many of you are familiar with how the name Hollywood became synonymous with the birth of the American film industry. It was in Jacob Stern’s horse barn, at the corner of Hollywood and Vine, the story goes, that Cecil B. DeMille screened the first full length feature film 100 years ago.

Well, when it comes to the tech sector, replace “Jacob Stern’s horse barn” with “Mark Zuckerberg’s dorm room” at Harvard, and you have almost the same story with the birth of Facebook.

In these and countless other examples throughout our history, the ability to give birth to an idea and convert it into economic success, whether it is the content of a film or the technology of the internet, depends on copyright and patent protection

He spoke these words at CinemaCon, which touts itself as the Official Convention of The National Association of Theatre Owners.  I honestly have to believe that there were owners out there in the audience who know Hollywood’s early history better than Chris Dodd does.

Somebody there had to know that William “20th Century” Fox and others got their starts far away from The Motion Picture Patents Company, which was created by hypocrite Thomas Edison to protect his movies from piracy. The best way to avoid Edison’s grip was to move to Hollywood and start operations there. These “pirates”, which we now refer to as studio heads, got some help from district courts unwilling to enforce patents laws in their districts.

Of course, Chris Dodd is going to perpetuate the lie as best he can given that his resume has not one ounce of experience in the motion picture industry before he took over as head of the MPAA. SOPA, PIPA , ACTA and CISPA are all being crapped on as overreaches, and now the big fish, Kim Dotcom, may never even go to trial. At this point, his disastrous leadership may be the best thing that ever happened to piracy.

For Your Inconsideration: Why Oscar Lost Me (and It Hasn’t Anything to Do with the Nominees)

F**k the Oscars!

Once again, it’s time for that yearly ritual in which film fans root for the movies and actors that won’t win their expected awards. Parties will be held with fans who’ll argue/commiserate about botched voting and even worse presentations, speeches, fashions, music numbers and lousy jokes. We fans have lived through these year in and year out and still come back for more.

There’s a complicity we have with the film industry. We love the spectacle, so we’ll put up with yearly self-congratulatory nonsense because we care about the art of filmmaking. Make no mistake about it: the Oscars are all about giving the industry golden pleasure. The Academy, in service to the industry, infuriates many by not taking major chances while at the same time soothing us with montages of great films and figures of years past. Tugging at our sense of the nostalgic times we at least perceived films to have been better always gets us and makes us hope that next year will be different.

But I’ve had it with this deceitful  game. Why? Because in this past year, the film industry became especially aggressive with MPAA head Chris Dodd going on the warpath against “piracy, ” just short of claiming it was causing the whole film world to come crashing down.

All we have to do to appease Chris Dodd and the film studios are to:

1.  Censor and break the internet

The MPAA thought it was going to be a piece of cake to get SOPA and PIPA passed through a paid-off Congress and a sleeping public. Thankfully, Dodd got his ass kicked when web-wide sign off filled the pants and panties of former legislative supporters. Oh, and keep in mind–this legislation Dodd wants is modeled after China’s model of censorship, which he longs for.

2.   Accept his lies about how film industries have been destroyed or at least suffering badly

Dodd embarrassed himself when he publicly stated that the film industries of Spain, Egypt and Sweden are gone.  Sweden, of course, released two of the most popular foreign films in years: Let the Right One In and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.  If Spain were hurting, the film world would be abuzz with the unemployment of Pedro Almodovar and Alex De La Iglesia.  Dodd can’t even lie convincingly with Egypt, which just went through a revolution.

Revenues for movie studios have almost doubled between 1998 and 2010. So much for the horrible toll piracy has on making money. Perhaps it’s a money management/distribution problem. Would you like the government to handle those for the movie studios, Mr. Dodd?

3. Turn over your personal property to authorities

Picture this: you live in an apartment building. Your landlord is on another floor. The FBI believes your landlord is a major thief, so they raid and confiscate all his property and all the legally owned belongings of yours and your neighbors. Then, the authorities decide to destroy everything.

That, in a nutshell, is kinda what happened when authorities seized and shut down Megaupload recently. Oh, the film industry was so happy about finally getting Kim Dotcom arrested and forcing Megaupload out of business.  From the news coverage, you would have thought a major drug bust was made. However, the dicks went limp for these roosters when it was learned that millions of legal files owned by various consumers were seized and threatened with destruction. Now there’s a call for a class action lawsuit against the FBI.

4.  Accept his bribes and do his bidding

Just watch. 30 years as a Senator taught him well:

Or read.

There’s more, but I think you get the idea. The film studios are not satisfied with the stringent piracy laws already in place, so they would rather lazily have the US government get involved, using cash they could be using on innovation they ignore.  Meanwhile, talented indie producers/directors can’t get decent deals that pay them properly for their work, leading them to realize that sending their films via torrents would actually, in the long run, give them better exposure than through traditional channels. Just ask Heather Ferreira.

So screw the Oscars! I don’t want to celebrate the accomplishments of an industry that has its greedy head up its ass. Stars or no stars.