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Microsoft Patents the Censoring of Speech

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the %$!#-!%-!%!$-##%-$@#! dept.

Patents 192

theodp writes "On Tuesday, the USPTO awarded Microsoft a patent for the Automatic Censorship of Audio Data for Broadcast, an invention that addresses 'producing censored speech that has been altered so that undesired words or phrases are either unintelligible or inaudible.' The patent describes methods for muting offensive words and replacing them with less offensive versions, and 'a third alternative provides for overwriting the undesired word with a masking sound, i.e., "bleeping" the undesired word with a tone.' After all, there's nothing worse than being subjected to offensive speech when you're shooting someone in the head."

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192 comments

Yay! (4, Insightful)

Kral_Blbec (1201285) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430923)

So now the parents of kids too young to play dont have to worry about letting them play!!

Come on, if you're old enough to play the game, you're old enough to either deal with it or tell them to stuff a sock in it. There are so many other options to work with. Why not just mute the stupid player? Or not even use the voip at all? Like the article says, its only really used for trash talk anyway. Unless I know who I'm playing with, I'm not going to try and coordinate anything.

Stupid idea.

BTW first post!

Re:Yay! (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431129)

(how does first post get modded redundant?)

Re:Yay! (3, Funny)

Sj0 (472011) | more than 5 years ago | (#25432019)

What's worse, do they bother censoring the ideas, or do they just use softer words?

Hey, you mother[LOVER] I'm going to skull[LOVE] your [LOVING] corpse and then I'm going to get you down on your knees and get your corpse to [WHISTLE] on my [SKINFLUTE]

Or would the Microsoft device just change the whole sentence to something like

[I LIKE YOU. WE SHOULD GET TOGETHER FOR AGE APPROPRIATE SOCIAL BEVERAGES.]

China (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25432061)

But it will help Google's business in China.

Re:China (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25432179)

Microsoft's?

Useless (4, Insightful)

FluffyWithTeeth (890188) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430925)

Trust me when I say you can come up with new curses faster than you can code them into an automatic censorship proram...

Nevermind all the fantastic new accents this is going to promote. And if you disagree; well quck you.

Re:Useless (5, Interesting)

4e617474 (945414) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430977)

Trust me when I say you can come up with new curses faster than you can code them into an automatic censorship proram...

Pondering this make me feel a whole lot better about the whole enterprise. I'm all in favor of protecting budding young minds from the use of profanity as a substitute for creative expression... by teaching them that profanity is the inspiration for expressing yourself creatively. Also I like the thought of someone going to their manager and saying, "I need a ruling on 'defecating masonry'. Can we let that go?"

Re:Useless (5, Funny)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431045)

Pondering this make me feel a whole lot better about the whole enterprise.

Good thinking. I often think the standard of cursing in this language tends to be woefully inadequate, consisting of the mindless and dull repetition of combinations of the same four-letter words. For once, Microsoft could be doing something positive to improve articulacy of profane expression. It might not be what they intend, but I won't lose any sleep over that. ;-)

Re:Useless (2, Insightful)

SL Baur (19540) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431293)

I'm all in favor of protecting budding young minds from the use of profanity

My parents kept tight controls over what I was allowed to see/hear. Fortunately, I learned profanity from other kids on the playground at school.

Re:Useless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431295)

defecating masonry
Just sounds so much better to me.

Re:Useless (4, Insightful)

nightfire-unique (253895) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431589)

I'm all in favor of protecting budding young minds from the use of profanity as a substitute for creative expression...

I know I speak for many of us here when I say:

Fuck you.

Keep your intellectual parenting persuits where they belong: in your home. Raise your own fucking kids, and let me raise mine without government interference. We'll let them both compete in 20 years and see who did a better job.

The moment you get your way with bad language censorship, I get my way with religious censorship.

Re:Useless (1)

nightfire-unique (253895) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431611)

I should have read your comment completely before posting... I think I misinterpreted what you were saying. Sorry about that. :)

But it still stands for the others who feel language police are an acceptable limit on society.

Re:Useless (2, Interesting)

Kral_Blbec (1201285) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431657)

I dont think you catch what he is saying. There is a difference between the use of profanity as "creative expression" and as surprised expression.

For example, the use of the word "fuck" as an adjective on every other word in a sentance is plain stupid. If you cant think of any other word to more adequately describe what you're talking about then you are a moron. However, saying the same thing because you were caught off guard and as an expression of surprise is entirely different (not that I personally do so myself).

The issue is with people, kids or adults, thinking that just slapping a 4 letter word on as a pointless adjective makes them mature and cool, and that being the extent of their ability to express themselves. Bottom line, if you going to do it, then do it right at least.

Re:Useless (1)

nightfire-unique (253895) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431935)

I dont think you catch what he is saying. There is a difference between the use of profanity as "creative expression" and as surprised expression.

For example, the use of the word "fuck" as an adjective on every other word in a sentance is plain stupid. If you cant think of any other word to more adequately describe what you're talking about then you are a moron. However, saying the same thing because you were caught off guard and as an expression of surprise is entirely different (not that I personally do so myself).

The issue is with people, kids or adults, thinking that just slapping a 4 letter word on as a pointless adjective makes them mature and cool, and that being the extent of their ability to express themselves. Bottom line, if you going to do it, then do it right at least.

Yeah, I misinterpreted in my quick reading and was a little too quick on the trigger. :$

I would like to say though - the significance of swearing varies greatly around the world. Where I live, people really do swear all the time for no particular reason. An example of trying to remember something:

(muttered) Fuck um ... what was it called... fuck.

It's a bilingual area, so people quickly recognize that swear words are defined by social groups, and are not universal, and so they do not carry much weight (positively or negatively).

It is also not uncommon to find words which mean something inoffensive in one language and are vulgar in another.

A level of maturity is not found in abstaining from swearing, it's in recognizing that they're only words (in one language) and nothing to become tittilated or offended by. The content of the message, on the other hand...

Re:Useless (3, Funny)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430991)

And if you disagree; well quck you.

Dude, don't disrespect your fellow Slashdot posters. That's crunked up.

I'm sceptical (2, Insightful)

TheLink (130905) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431217)

I'm sceptical that it'll work that well. I do think it'll be more interesting than listening to people using fuck as punctuation - which is to me is dismally boring.

Question: how will it cope with people using stuff like "Jesus/G-d" as an expletive? That sort of thing is offensive to many people too.

Imagine if people started using Muhammad as an expletive. You can't just censor every mention of Muhammad because that will get you in big trouble too ;).

It'll be interesting if the system can tell from the context.

How would it deal with "I helped my uncle jack off his horse" vs "I helped my Uncle Jack off his horse?" ;).

Re:Useless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431479)

Or just start using a certain software development company's name as a new curse word.

"Shut the microsoft up".

"Lick my microsofts."

"Eat microsoft."

"Microsoft the microsofter!"

"Holy microsofts... they're going to flank our microsofts!"

"Haha, I smote that microsofter like a microsofting microsoft."

"My macrohard is way bigger than your microsoft."

Re:Useless (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431559)

And what about foreign languages where normal words are pronounced like curses in English.

And other funny effects like in France where the Toyota MR2 will become the Toyota <bleep>. (MR2 will be pronounced like the french curse "Merde").

Re:Useless (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431703)

Yeah, but it could be a great tool for radio and TV stations. Even if it doesn't get rid of the manual bleep-out guy, it might make his job a lot easier. It's not entirely worthless because it doesn't solve the problem 100%... that's like saying we should never make gasoline engines more fuel-efficient unless we can skip all the way to zero emissions in one step.

Hackable! :) :) :) (1)

ErkDemon (1202789) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431875)

Just think of the fun you could have with this if they really did start using it for live broadcasts, and you substituted the list of "naughty" words and their replacements so that it worked backwards.

Like news. Or election debates.

"Americans are hungry! Hungry for [pie]! Hungry for [pie] they can believe in!"

paraphrase (1)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431981)

Calling somebody a "copulating vagina" is arguably even more effective than the usual phrase. Other politenesses, such as alleging that a person is "capital fecal matter" can probably be used also.

Any sound-parsing censor is also liable to generate false positives. What would it do to different voices s and accents rendering "for King", "forking", "a sole", "ash it", and phrases involving the word "country".

and while we're on the subject (1)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 5 years ago | (#25432017)

Sing along for the censor (I may heve mis-spelled the first words in each line to assist with pronunciation):

asshole, asshole, a soldier I shall be
to piss, to piss, two pistols by my side
fucking, fucking, for king and queen we'll fight
this cunt, this cunt, this country I'll defend

Add more lines as you think of them...

How original (1, Insightful)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430945)

Wow, it's just a regular cavalcade of innovation over there in Redmond. First Bob, then Clippy, UAC, aero, and now this -- Woooot!

Re:How original (5, Funny)

Kifoth (980005) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430971)

You don't have to use Microsoft products, just switch to ###########

Re:How original (3, Interesting)

Tei (520358) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431167)

How fun. This as already ben done in spain for some organization alike the RIAA called SGAE [escolar.net].

note: humm... Linux is betwen moron and fucking here. I will make it bold.

Here is the code:

palabras="mafiosos, ladrones, hijos de puta, hijo putas, chorizos, chupopteros, chupópteros, sangrantes, sangrais, sangráis, gilipoyas, por el culo, joderos, que os jodan, chaqueteros, mierda, agilipollao, alamierda, bujarra, bujarrilla, bujarron, bujarrón, cabron, cabrón, cabrona, cabronas, cabroncete, cabrones, cago en, cagoen, calentorra, calentorro, capulla, capullas, cazurra, cazurro, cenutrio, ceporra, ceporro, chingar, chocho, cipote, cipoton, cipotón, cojon, cojón, cojones, cojonudo, coño, cretino, cuesco, encular, estupida, estupido, folla, follada, folladas, follado, folladoras, folladores, follados, follamos, follando, follao, follar, follarse, follo, gilipolla, gilipollas, gilipuertas, hijadeputa, hijaputa, hijasdeputa, hijasputa, hijodeputa, hijoputa, hijoputa, hijoputas, hijosdeputa, hijosputa, hostia, idiota, idiotas, imbecil, imbécil, jilipolla, jilipollas, jilipuertas, joder, joderos, jodete, jódete, jodida, jodidas, jodido, jodidos, jodienda, linux, mamon, mamón, mamones, marica, maricas, maricon, maricona, mariconas, mariconazo, maricones, mentecata, mentecato, moña, ostia, pendeja, pendejo, picha, polla, pollas, porro, pringado, pringao, puta, putas, puto, putos, ramera, subnormal, subnormales, tarugo, tortillera, truño, zangana, zopenco, zurullo,";

function pasapalabra(cadena){
cadena=cadena.toLowerCase();
arPal=palabras.split(',');
i=0;encontrada=false;
while(i if(cadena.indexOf(arPal[i])!=-1){
encontrada=true;
document.formito.initialState.value=257;
}
i++;
}
}

Re:How original (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25432507)

Well maybe I don't want to use RedHatLinux!

You can go RedHatLinux my RedHatLinux-ing RedHatLinux you RedHatLinux!!1!

Re:How original (0, Flamebait)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431137)

At least they didn't copy something from Apple for once.

Re:How original (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431607)

I really wish people would stop calling Apple innovative, they're not. Most of it is highly formulaic and in many cases is a blatent rip off of somebody else's work.

Kind of reminds me of the big 3 auto makers when they just lower and longer as a strategy.

Re:How original (1)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431669)

Yes, but the pattern is that Apple steals the idea and claims it for their own first, then Microsoft steals it from Apple. So Apple maintains a slightly more effective illusion of innovation.

Re:How original (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25432057)

I've often said, Apple is rarely the first company to do something... ...but they're often the first company to do it RIGHT.

Yay! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25430949)

Maybe Microsoft will charge arsetons of money for this and we won't have to deal with censored speech anymore!

Also, can I have a pony?

I'm intrigued. (2, Interesting)

Night Goat (18437) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430959)

Naturally, I didn't read the article, but I have to say I'm intrigued by this. It would come in extremely handy for radio stations if they no longer needed to have a delay on their live broadcasts. It would especially benefit college radio stations because they often have to limit what they can allow on air since they cannot afford the equipment that is required to have a delay. Although this technology might be very expensive as well, so who knows. I guess I ought to swallow my pride and read the article!

You've been asleep (0)

twitter (104583) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431321)

It's called the Vchip [wikipedia.org] and it's been around for more than ten years. Censorship has been around before apes could talk.

Delay loops, by the way, are no more expensive than a tape recorder. The technology has been in use since they were invented. All radio stations have them and can still use them for this purpose while a $300 PC does the actual audio recording.

Re:I'm intrigued. (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431723)

It would come in extremely handy for radio stations if they no longer needed to have a delay on their live broadcasts
.

That the "live mike" is dangerous is a lesson broadcasters have had to learn and re-learn since KDKA went on the air in 1920.

Self-Censorship is intelligent and responsible:

There will always be some damn fool on the line waiting for his chance to say that "The President has been shot!"

Re:I'm intrigued. (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 5 years ago | (#25432481)

There's still going to have to be a delay. You don't know what the word is until he's finished saying it, and you have to start your bleeper before he starts saying it.

Oh come on..... (4, Insightful)

LibertineR (591918) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430967)

Is the heading not a TAD over the top here?

Broadcasters can be, and have been fined thousands of dollars PER EVENT, through violations of FCC rules. One slip of the tongue should not be the basis for fining a program out of existance.

A tool to help in that regards DOES NOT equal sensorship, and the title is a ridiculous assertion that hurts credibility around here.

Hate Microsoft if you want, but Christ, why be stupid about it?

What is next? "Microsoft wants to eat your babies"?

As supposedly logic-driven geeks, can we not do better?

Re:Oh come on..... (5, Funny)

4e617474 (945414) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430997)

What is next? "Microsoft wants to eat your babies"?

No, no, no. "Microsoft Sues Baby Eaters for Copyright Infringement". Pay attention.

Re:Oh come on..... (3, Funny)

Throtex (708974) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431007)

You must be new here.

IAAPL (I am a Patent Lawyer) ... as an engineer, I loved Slashdot. As a lawyer, I now know better and just come on here for laughs. It's like watching Sarah Palin discuss patent law.

Re:Oh come on..... (-1, Troll)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431223)

IAAPL (I am a Patent Lawyer) ... as an engineer, I loved Slashdot. As a lawyer, I now know better and just come on here for laughs. It's like watching Sarah Palin discuss patent law.

Keep laughing. One day, someone like me is going to string you up in a tree by your neck.

Re:Oh come on..... (3, Funny)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431289)

Keep laughing. One day, someone like me is going to string you up in a tree by your neck.

Careful, we're talking about lawyers here. By now, someone has probably patented "a method whereby a human is elevated off the ground be means of large vegetable structures for the purposes of punishment".

Try it and you'll be in a world of hurt.

Re:Oh come on..... (1)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 5 years ago | (#25432147)

Careful, we're talking about lawyers here. By now, someone has probably patented "a method whereby a human is elevated off the ground be means of large vegetable structures for the purposes of punishment".

Try it and you'll be in a world of hurt.


Oh well, gas chambers might be more efficient anyways...

Re:Oh come on..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431283)

IAAPL (I am a Patent Lawyer)...

I'm glad you explained. At first, I went up to Yahoo! Finance looking for Apple's new stock issue. That's what I get for skimming over comments.

Re:Oh come on..... (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431629)

I'd much prefer that, do you suppose we could take up a collection and procure her services? I'd far rather think of her saying the idiotic stuff than some pale geek that doesn't actually know anything about it.

Re:Oh come on..... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431029)

What exactly is inaccurate about the headline? That's what their program does -- it censors speech.

Broadcasters can be, and have been fined thousands of dollars PER EVENT, through violations of FCC rules. One slip of the tongue should not be the basis for fining a program out of existance.

Actually, I agree with you. The FCC and the constant state of moral panic over words and god forbid naked people is absurd.

A tool to help in that regards DOES NOT equal sensorship, and the title is a ridiculous assertion that hurts credibility around here.

It certainly is harmful; let's say that broadcasters were to start using such software and accidents no longer happened. That means that there's even less likely a chance that somebody will challenge FCC fines in court. Look at nipple gate -- it took five years, but eventually the fines were overturned as it was ruled that the broadcasters cannot be held liable for the actions of the two performers on stage. Had similar software existed and been use in time for video, this ruling would not have happned.

What exactly do you suggest such a tool be called? It certainly isn't government censorship, but it
certainly does prevent certain utterances.

Hate Microsoft if you want, but Christ, why be stupid about it?

I'm seeing nothing here about that (yet, it's still early). The most that the article blurb does is point out the absurdity of bleeping out certain words while brutally killing people. Perhaps your humor detector requires a reboot, but this isn't really "Microsoft hate" nor is anyone here being stupid about this but you. You're ranting about a perfectly accurate choice of words to describe a technology that many here find silly and/or stupid.

What is next? "Microsoft wants to eat your babies"?

There aren't sufficient HTML tags for this, so I'll warn you here and now : the following is meant as a joke. It is a snarky comment and should not be construed as fact.

"I think they already filed that paperwork years ago.

Feeble joke over.

As supposedly logic-driven geeks, can we not do better?

You haven't managed to point out any actual logical problems here. So far as I can tell, you've managed to complain about the word "censorship" being used and dropped in a little concern trolling about Slashdot's credibility and the character of the posters here. That part of your post actually makes me wonder if you're just making a strange attempt at a joke, like Andy Kaufman -- it's funny to you, but nobody else is aware that there's a joke or even gives a damn.

In short, you're spewing nonsense, something else that "hurts credibility around here."

--Summer Glau

Re:Oh come on..... (2, Insightful)

SteelFist (734281) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431181)

A while back I was watching Saving Private Ryan on TV, and I actually thought it was kind of funny that they would show people stopping to pick up missing limbs, people holding innards in, etc, but when they were just walking through a field they censored out the curse words. Kind of doesn't make sense to me...

More wardrobe malfunctions please! (1)

SL Baur (19540) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431463)

Actually, I agree with you. The FCC and the constant state of moral panic over words and god forbid naked people is absurd.

The world did not end when Janet Jackson flashed a boob at half time in the Superbowl.

I find it very disturbing that there was so much outrage over that incident, but no one seems to care about the amount of violence on TV. Bare breast bad, gun shot through the head good. Sigh.

I miss Japanese TV. Tokyo channel 13 had this great show they played on late Friday night called Mini Skirt Police. Among other things, you could see young ladies crumpling beer cans with their breasts. Another memorable segment was when they had young ladies dressed in long dresses and tied the ends of the dresses to model rockets and fired the rockets off. Then played back the results in slow motion several times. (They were wearing panties :-( ).

I can't think of a more perfect company to hold a patent like this. And for the record, shit piss fuck cunt cocksucker motherfucker tits (RIP George Carlin).

Re:More wardrobe malfunctions please! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431731)

I can't think of a more perfect company to hold a patent like this. And for the record, shit piss fuck cunt cocksucker motherfucker tits (RIP George Carlin).

BARBARA STREISAND!

Re:Oh come on..... (1)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431175)

Broadcasters can be, and have been fined thousands of dollars PER EVENT, through violations of FCC rules.

That would be an example of ... wait a minute ... the word's on the tip of my tongue here ... oh right! ... censorship.

Re:Oh come on..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431231)

It would be better, though, to go work on the FCC and convince them that hearing the word "fuck" on the radio is not going to warp the minds of any young children who hear the word a hundred times a day on the playground.

free as in beer? (1)

Potor (658520) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431299)

I think the problem here, within the paradigm you establish, is that MS is playing to the ridiculous system in which the moral police threaten free speech.

These financial sanctions of which you speak are precisely what block free speech.

Your argument is that this permits free speech because it permits them to say what they want. But in so doing, it stops them from saying what they want.

The MS system here simply reinforces the paradigm, and makes money off of it too. It in no way permits or encourages free speech. Unless you mean free as in beer, because their speech no longer costs them fines.

Microsoft muting patent (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25430973)

I have just submitted a patent to mute Microsoft, as method of muting "unintelligible or offensive" software, OS, business practices.

So if you are a time traveler, this is perfect! (1)

ejp (18891) | more than 5 years ago | (#25430979)

Ok, I know it sounds TOTALLY NUTS, but many years ago I did have an out of body experience and ended up only for a few seconds in a future city (I know nuts, right?), and I had a conversation with one of the residents (he was TOTALLY STUNNED that I was able to connect with him, SHOCKED) - and EVERY TIME the conversation headed in a direction where I would pick up something that could change the past (my history), a few selected words turned into a "white noise" sound.

He seemed perplexed for a second, and then said, "well of course, if I say something that could change the past, the COMPUTER will detect that and substitute white noise." It was just a few seconds, and never happened again.

Sorry to say I never got the lotto numbers, and it's just one of those strange things from my past that to this day I recall clear as a bell.

go figure?

censorship, evesdropping all the rage now (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25430987)

that, along with secret police, concentration camps, torture etc... remind us of yet another dark time in history.

greed, fear & ego are unprecedented evile's primary weapons. those, along with deception & coercion, helps most of us remain (unwittingly?) dependent on its' life0cidal hired goons' agenda. most of yOUR dwindling resources are being squandered on the 'wars', & continuation of the billionerrors stock markup FraUD/pyramid schemes. nobody ever mentions the real long term costs of those debacles in both life & any notion of prosperity for us, or our children, not to mention the abuse of the consciences of those of us who still have one. see you on the other side of it. the lights are coming up all over now. conspiracy theorists are being vindicated. some might choose a tin umbrella to go with their hats. the fairytail is winding down now. let your conscience be yOUR guide. you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. there are still some choices. if they do not suit you, consider the likely results of continuing to follow the corepirate nazi hypenosys story LIEn, whereas anything of relevance is replaced almost instantly with pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking propaganda or 'celebrity' trivia 'foam'. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on yOUR brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.

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http://www.cnn.com/2008/SHOWBIZ/books/10/07/atwood.debt/index.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/01/opinion/01dowd.html?em&ex=1212638400&en=744b7cebc86723e5&ei=5087%0A
http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/06/05/senate.iraq/index.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/17/washington/17contractor.html?hp
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/03/world/middleeast/03kurdistan.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin
http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/080708/cheney_climate.html
http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/20080805/pl_politico/12308;_ylt=A0wNcxTPdJhILAYAVQms0NUE
http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/09/18/voting.problems/index.html
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080903/ts_nm/environment_arctic_dc;_ylt=A0wNcwhhcb5It3EBoy2s0NUE
(talk about cowardlly race fixing/bad theater/fiction?) http://money.cnn.com/2008/09/19/news/economy/sec_short_selling/index.htm?cnn=yes
http://us.lrd.yahoo.com/_ylt=ApTbxRfLnscxaGGuCocWlwq7YWsA/SIG=11qicue6l/**http%3A//biz.yahoo.com/ap/081006/meltdown_kashkari.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/04/opinion/04sat1.html?_r=1&oref=slogin
(the teaching of hate as a way of 'life' synonymous with failed dictatorships) http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081004/ap_on_re_us/newspapers_islam_dvd;_ylt=A0wNcwWdfudITHkACAus0NUE
(some yoga & yogurt makes killing/getting killed less stressful) http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081007/ap_on_re_us/warrior_mind;_ylt=A0wNcw9iXutIPkMBwzGs0NUE
(the old bait & switch...you're share of the resulting 'product' is a fairytail nightmare?)
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081011/ap_on_bi_ge/where_s_the_money;_ylt=A0wNcwJGwvFIZAQAE6ms0NUE

is it time to get real yet? A LOT of energy is being squandered in attempts to keep US in the dark. in the end (give or take a few 1000 years), the creators will prevail (world without end, etc...), as it has always been. the process of gaining yOUR release from the current hostage situation may not be what you might think it is. butt of course, most of US don't know, or care what a precarious/fatal situation we're in. for example; the insidious attempts by the felonious corepirate nazi execrable to block the suns' light, interfering with a requirement (sunlight) for us to stay healthy/alive. it's likely not good for yOUR health/memories 'else they'd be bragging about it? we're intending for the whoreabully deceptive (they'll do ANYTHING for a bit more monIE/power) felons to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather', as well as a # of other things/events.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=weather+manipulation&btnG=Search
http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=video+cloud+spraying

'The current rate of extinction is around 10 to 100 times the usual background level, and has been elevated above the background level since the Pleistocene. The current extinction rate is more rapid than in any other extinction event in earth history, and 50% of species could be extinct by the end of this century. While the role of humans is unclear in the longer-term extinction pattern, it is clear that factors such as deforestation, habitat destruction, hunting, the introduction of non-native species, pollution and climate change have reduced biodiversity profoundly.' (wiki)

"I think the bottom line is, what kind of a world do you want to leave for your children," Andrew Smith, a professor in the Arizona State University School of Life Sciences, said in a telephone interview. "How impoverished we would be if we lost 25 percent of the world's mammals," said Smith, one of more than 100 co-authors of the report. "Within our lifetime hundreds of species could be lost as a result of our own actions, a frightening sign of what is happening to the ecosystems where they live," added Julia Marton-Lefevre, IUCN director general. "We must now set clear targets for the future to reverse this trend to ensure that our enduring legacy is not to wipe out many of our closest relatives."

"The wealth of the universe is for me. Every thing is explicable and practical for me .... I am defeated all the time; yet to victory I am born." --emerson
consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

Maybe This Is a Good Thing (0)

LuYu (519260) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431033)

I disagree with the concept of software patents, but maybe if governments and other organizations had to pay for the privelege of censoring speech, there would be fewer of them doing so. Also, this means that anyone developing Free Software that provides censoring features will think twice about it. Then again, Free Software that does not respect Free Speech can hardly be called "Free", can it?

Re:Maybe This Is a Good Thing (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431069)

My dear friend, please tell me what part of this patent is software per se. These are basic method and system claims, not Beauregard claims. Surely it covers software that performs the claimed methods, or a computer running software that enables it to behave as the claimed system, but it also covers someone doing the same thing with a mechanical system (if you can imagine such a thing, with gears and pulleys everywhere!). What makes software so special, other than it is central to your sheltered world view?

Harry Enfield... (3, Interesting)

gringer (252588) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431043)

Reminds me of this clip from Harry Enfield:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmRTUNh1vPo [youtube.com]

[For those hard of flashing, it's a parody of a short gangster conversation in which the bad words have been taped over with better words]

Re:Harry Enfield... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431745)

sssdf

Mother smiling gumdrops! (3, Funny)

KingTank (631646) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431049)

Mother smiling gumdrops! I think that's a bunch of bull smurfs! That sparkle pony happy hole, Bill Gates and his piece of rainbow company, Microsoft, can go flower themselves with a sunshine until they bleed out their bunnies!

This is a great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431053)

Cursing causes blindness, penis shrinkage, and homorsexuality. Thank you Jesus for making this possible. Next would you please smite that guy next door and his stupid loud dog, he is probably an infidal and I am trying to play my X Box. Yours Truly, Robert.

Re:This is a great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431157)

I thought you wrote "humorsexuality" for a moment. Those that get turned on by laughter?

Do you think this is funny? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431279)

We are talking about the fat of your eternal soul. Your joshing is bad in Heaven where GOD remembers that you laughed at HIM. So please vote for OBOMA or McKain who are Christians and love Jesus. In the event of unconshus cursing or fole laguange, wash your hands with soap and remember to smile politeley at people even if they are probably devil people or other bad people. Also, monkeys should not have computers or video games because they are not Christians and could use an internet to blasfeme without even nowing it. Yours Tryly, Robert

Why stop there? Make it knowledge. (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431073)

If you have 'forbidden knowledge' in a document, it goes poof with no recourse on your part..

Oh, and it notifies the local authorities.

Great news! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431075)

At least if Microsoft patents censorship, noone will pony up the cash to do it!

WIll We Ever Know What He Really Said (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431091)

Envision extention of this to politics...

Coool a way to keep a secret.... (1)

3seas (184403) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431161)

... just curse your ass off when you tell it...

And I'm sure this will work wonders for actors and other celebrities against the paparatzies...

IRL horror scene (1)

dvh.tosomja (1235032) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431183)

Far far away, in a distant future, in some TV cooking program:

    "Best way to eat spagetti is with spoon and f***. No I said f***. What the f***. Spoon and F***. F***. F***.
    F*** this, I'm going home, back to Neapol."

Censorship patents = less censorship (1)

bigtrike (904535) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431187)

When censorship is expensive, companies will be less likely to implement it.

Re:Censorship patents = less censorship (1)

HalAtWork (926717) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431257)

Yeah but with Microsoft, they'll just say it's a feature of another product, and other products will cost more if they include it, or they won't have it at all, in which case it will look like the competition has less features and costs more.

TO ANYONE WHO SUPPORTS CENSORSHIP (1)

trum4n (982031) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431191)

Kill yourself. You are NOT WELCOME in America!

this is one of the few issues that really get me mad.
i try to be a mild mannered guy...

Re:TO ANYONE WHO SUPPORTS CENSORSHIP (1)

Pigskin-Referee (1389181) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431429)

Sorry, but you are way over the top here. You do not have a constitutional right in the United States to yell "FIRE" in a theater any more than you can write an article advocating the assassination of a political figure.

The use of software to remove objectionable material from broadcasts is no different than the use of the 'V-chip' in modern televisions. The FCC has rules many times on this issue. Just check out Howard Stern if you need further proof.

This is not a censorship issue. This is an editing issue.

Re:TO ANYONE WHO SUPPORTS CENSORSHIP (1)

itlurksbeneath (952654) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431921)

The use of software to remove objectionable material from broadcasts is no different than the use of the 'V-chip' in modern televisions. The FCC has rules many times on this issue. Just check out Howard Stern if you need further proof.

No.. It's actually VERY different. I decide whether or not I use the V-chip. I have no say in censorship from a radio or TV station. The only choice I have (which, by the way, most Americans seem to have forgotten about) is that if I find something offensive or not appropriate for myself or family, I have the right to change the channel.

I agree with GP that censorship is evil, but too many slack-jawed Americans seem to want somebody else to make those decisions for them rather than having an opinion and deciding for themselves. Use your brain people. Make a choice. Have an opinion. But don't try and shove your opinions down other people's throats

oh good grief, if offended, don't listen, m'kay? (1)

omz13 (882548) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431263)

I think we're living in a nanny state where there is far to much of somebody else telling people what they should or should not listen to or watch. Now what would be more useful would be an option to have the bleeping/muting/whatever done by your set top box rather than in the broadcast audio... that way, you can simply have an option to hear the original audio, or have the censored version for those with delicate ears. FWIW, I hate it when broadcasters censor words out... watching something as innocent as 2 and-a-half-men is a right pain when even things like "ass" as muted... that god they don't try it with South Park.

I can see it now: (1)

sabernet (751826) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431369)

For anyone who ever tried to have fun choosing a hotmail name:

"[censored] [censored] threw a chair because he hated Google."

or

"[censored] [censored] resigned as CEO of Microsoft."

Or of course, anyone who's heard voice chat during a Halo match:

[censored] [censored] [censored] [censored] you [censored] [censored] [censored] [censored] [censored] in the [censored] [censored] [censored] with [censored] spoonfuls [censored] Lucky Charms [censored] [censored] [censored] [censored] [censored] with a [censored] crammed diagonally [censored] [censored] [censored] [censored] [censored]"

or

"I hate it when the coffee shop leaves the [censored] in the cup, I never know where to put it and its too soggy to just leave on the table."

Not non-obvious. (1)

MeanSquare (572322) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431439)

It seems to me that any use of voice recognition to replace the human ear in speech processing tasks is obvious. I wouldn't have thought of using voice recognition for this particular purpose, but I bet anybody in the broadcasting industry would have. I suspect that this would already have been done if voice recognition software was robust enough for radio stations to trust it. That is, no one is doing this yet, not because it is innovative or non-obvious, but because it's not quite implementable yet.

This sort of patent spamming irks me. It obviously does precisely the opposite of what a patent is supposed to do. It is not rewarding innovations or making a costly investment feasible (given a sufficiently advanced voice recognition system I suspect a lone coder could write a program to do this in a day or two). It's just walling off potential innovations. It's giving away profits to Microsoft at the expense of everyone else in the US.

Not that I blame Microsoft. Any company with its act together ought to be doing the same thing. It's the patent office that's to blame.

I don't know how they handle patent applications, but I have a suggestion. For every patent there should be a knowledgeable 'state's advocate' appointed who's job it is to try to get the patent rejected. I know it sound like it would be costly and more complicated, but the potential savings (in terms of monopoly profits not granted and innovation not cut off) to the American people would almost certainly be worth it.

Re:Not non-obvious. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431511)

For every patent there should be a knowledgeable 'state's advocate' appointed who's job it is to try to get the patent rejected.

We have those. They're called patent examiners. But even they have to operate within the bounds of the law.

Re:Not non-obvious. (1)

MeanSquare (572322) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431613)

I don't think that patent examiners fulfill the role I'm looking for. Rather than a neutral processor or clerk, I'm suggesting there should be an active opponent to the patent. A "The People of the US vs Patent X" sort of thing.

I don't know. Maybe it's not a good idea. But I do feel like the system as it is should somehow be improved.

So Penny Arcade has become reality then? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431529)

http://www.penny-arcade.com/images/2008/20080811.jpg

Does that mean there will be a "Rainbow Mode" as well?

Bad title (1)

jrothwell97 (968062) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431547)

The title seems to imply that the Borg has patented censorship of speech. It's merely a method which uses speech recognition in a particular way to spot expletives and replace them automatically.

I can see it now... (1)

genw3st (1373507) | more than 5 years ago | (#25431647)

"What words are we going to put into the database for our alpha version?"

...

"Well, lets start with words like linux, open source, $%#@, #$%#@, @#$%, and @#$@# ... how about monopoly too?"

Barry Ween Chip FTW (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25431869)

When they invent a Barry Ween chip [wikia.com], let me know. Everything else is a half-measure.

I don't think there's anything wrong with this (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 5 years ago | (#25432013)

I can't see the problem with this. I can see problems with how this might be applied; but as others have pointed out there might be useful applications as well.

The first thing I thought of was how a friend of mine swears once every two or three words sometimes, especially when he gets excited. This gets a touch tiresome after a while. If someone was playing an online game with him (I'm not a gamer), and didn't want to hear that for hours on end - an end-user device that applied this tech would be just the ticket.

Now it's quite possible the constant beeping would become even more annoying; but they'd have a choice.

Forget Censorship, This is Comedic Gold (1)

ChangelingJane (1042436) | more than 5 years ago | (#25432015)

Can I choose which words replace which swear words? Because that'd be funny as [the Mormon Tabernacle Choir].

How much you wanna bet... (1)

RogueWarrior65 (678876) | more than 5 years ago | (#25432141)

That this technology will be part of a renewed Fairness Doctrine to suppress any descent of liberal government. Feh.

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