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Inside the AP's Plan To Security-Wrap Its News Content

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the one-of-the-greatest-diagrams-ever dept.

The Media 138

suraj.sun writes with an excerpt from this story at Ars Technica that the "Associated Press, reeling from the newspaper apocalypse, has a new plan to 'wrap' and 'protect' its content though a 'digital permissions framework.' The Associated Press last week rolled out its brave new plan to 'apply protective format to news.' The AP's news registry will 'tag and track all AP content online to assure compliance with terms of use,' and it will provide a 'platform for protect, point, and pay.' That's a lot of 'p'-prefaced jargon, but it boils down to a sort of DRM for news — 'enforcement,' in AP-speak."

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fp (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28873567)

ladies, get your pussies ready!

Re:fp (3, Interesting)

Philip K Dickhead (906971) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874115)

I'll be pasting this wire service shit into my so-called "journal entries", as per usual. I can always automate OCR off of the screen. So what if hyperlinks aren't preserved? Context and reference can be established by the 1 or 2 blokes who are already actually verifying that stuff.

I'm sure that this won't stop Wired News, Cryptogon.com, Cannon Fire or any of the guys like whatreallyhappened.com - who dump a bit of everything undercovered into the mix. But it will slow them - a bit.

Instead of this crappy pseudo-technology, which has been shown to be ineffective in every other application, AP could profitably syndicate with Google, and share ad revenues. AP==content Google==delivery+revenue engine.

Instead, they want to kill the bloggers - not because of business models. Because they no longer gatekeep the message or manage how it is spun.

Great oligarchs own the megaconglomerates behind corporate news. That's not wild-eyed tinfoil hatted craziness, but simple facts from earnings reports. With incipient dictatorship in everywhere from Western Europe, the US, Iran and Israel, and a coming fiscal "crisis" designed to unify world reserve currency, there's a greater need than ever for these "overlords" - and the banks that loaned them their capital - to turn the Weird Wild Web into your 1984 telescreen.

So, they'll try. Soon, it won't be worth switching on the router - cause you'll be tracked like a migratory bird. In the meantime, we'll all still link and scrape. We'll still point out EXACTLY [globalresearch.ca] what they [blogspot.com] are up to [blogspot.com] .

Re:fp (1)

cream wobbly (1102689) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875751)

Oh goody! Links!

You mean autism is caused by aluminium-based preservatives in vaccines?

You mean prisoners have been treat badly?

You mean some people who were thought to be upstanding citizens have been exposed as criminals?

Whatever next? News?

I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (5, Informative)

devleopard (317515) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873569)

If it were, then whoever moderated this post would have read the Ars Technica story. The "wrapper" and DRM are nothing but an HTML microformat, which enables categorizing and parsing, but has zilch to do with enforcement.

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (4, Insightful)

Freetardo Jones (1574733) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873597)

You actually expect either the submitter or the editor to read the article instead of just mischaracterizing the story by just making shit up?

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (1, Flamebait)

Eevee (535658) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874605)

No, but I do expect someone complaining about the submitter or editor making shit up to actually have read the story--since what was posted on Slashdot was taken directly from the story.

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (1)

Freetardo Jones (1574733) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874627)

I did read the story which is how I know it's just making shit up. There is no DRM here or enforcement and as such the summary is a complete load of crap.

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875583)

I'm confused.

Can't they search for that embedded metadata, locate I've illegally-copied their stories to my website, and then issue a cease-and-desist notice?

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (1)

droidsURlooking4 (1543007) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875981)

I don't care about security news anyway!

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (0, Redundant)

dltaylor (7510) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873823)

The quote is "... manage and control digital use of their content, by providing detailed metrics on content consumption, payment services and enforcement support.", which is Digital Rights Management (DRM).

The word "enforcement" is in the quote, so how has this "zilch to do with enforcement"?

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (1)

Freetardo Jones (1574733) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873909)

Did you even bother to read the Ars Technica article to see what the GP was talking about?

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (4, Informative)

spun (1352) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873937)

This has zilch to do with enforcement because the proposal contains no technical method of enforcement. Nothing is encrypted and nothing is protected in any way. The 'system' is basically, AP tags news items and you are on your honor to respect those tags. That's it.

Robot Scrapers (3, Interesting)

ThrowAwaySociety (1351793) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875307)

This has zilch to do with enforcement because the proposal contains no technical method of enforcement.

Not technical, no. Their big enforcement plan is...lawyers!

See, the AP is convinced that its Public Enemy Number 1 is robot scrapers. You know them...cruddy sites that blindly copy the HTML from legitimate news sites and archive them, in the hopes that someday, when the stories have long since fallen off the CNN.com and nytimes.com headline pages, someone from a search engine will stumble across the story and click on an add, thereby generating revenue. Like the ones that copy Wikipedia articles and add advertisements.

The plan is to basically embed some sort of web bug in the HTML, which will help AP identify the scrapers, which will allow them to file an honest lawsuit, in which the infringing scraper will show up in court, hat in hand, and beg forgiveness.

This is sad for several reasons.

1. The AP believes that these scrapers are actually a serious threat to the AP's revenue stream.
2. The AP believes that the people who run these scrapers won't be able to strip their tracking bugs out
3. The AP believes that it'll be able to find and sue the operators and make them stop, instead of just driving them into jurisdictions that don't care.
4. The AP is confusing these scrapers with legitimate aggregators, like Google News, and legitimate bloggers, and thus making lots of enemies

Re:Robot Scrapers (4, Interesting)

Bat Country (829565) | more than 5 years ago | (#28876003)

You have perhaps not considered the possibility that the plan is actually to lobby for the new DMCA exemption guidelines for this year to include language which prohibits people from circumventing their new protection. They could ask for this under the grounds that it's necessary to protect the cultural "treasure" that is the national press.

Re:Robot Scrapers (5, Insightful)

grcumb (781340) | more than 5 years ago | (#28876065)

The plan is to basically embed some sort of web bug in the HTML, which will help AP identify the scrapers, which will allow them to file an honest lawsuit, in which the infringing scraper will show up in court, hat in hand, and beg forgiveness.

This is sad for several reasons.

1. The AP believes that these scrapers are actually a serious threat to the AP's revenue stream.
2. The AP believes that the people who run these scrapers won't be able to strip their tracking bugs out
3. The AP believes that it'll be able to find and sue the operators and make them stop, instead of just driving them into jurisdictions that don't care.
4. The AP is confusing these scrapers with legitimate aggregators, like Google News, and legitimate bloggers, and thus making lots of enemies

I think you're wrong on the last count. I think they are thinking primarily of 'legitimate' aggregators. I think their entire plan is predicated on being able to coerce large search engines to comply with their rules of behaviour with regards to their material.

I agree that this is technically naive and suicidal as a business tactic. Even if the large search engines agree to whatever conditions are put on the use of the content, they'll only do so to the extent that playing nice serves their needs. The only leverage AP would have in case of non-adherence to their rules is the suicide option - cutting off access to their own content.

But vested interests the world over have demonstrated their capacity for self-inflicted damage and, more to the point, their ability to damage others on their way down.

Count on a large-scale political push to 'protect their rights' - and to enumerate those rights in the most profit-making way possible, even if that means trashing fair use entirely.

Count as well on Google, Microsoft and whoever else is running a top-tier US-based search engine to compromise themselves (and their service) in order to avoid getting kicked out of the boys' club that is the American corporate establishment.

And count on the anarcho-geeks of the world to have the entire process deconstructed, reverse-engineered and made a mockery of within about 4 days, too. They will be litigated and even prosecuted for their pains.

The net result will be that AP's demise will be delayed by a few months, and the development of a robust, gift-based online economy will be delayed by some multiple of that.

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (4, Informative)

bughunter (10093) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874063)

FTFA: You'll be forgiven if you find it difficult to square the reality of hNews with the AP's pronouncements about it. Ed Felten, the eminent Princeton computer security researcher, couldn't figure it out, either. [Felten blogs that] "hNews is a handy way of annotating news stories with information about the author, dateline, and so on. But it doesn't 'encapsulate' anything in a 'wrapper,' nor does it do much of anything to facilitate metering, monitoring, or paywalls."

IOW, zilch to do with enforcement. In fact, it sounds to me like just enough bullshit to make a DMCA circumvention claim in court, or better yet, send out a bunch of threatening letters to bloggers. (How very RIAA of them.)

Re:I thought Slashdot was filled with geeks (2, Interesting)

LandDolphin (1202876) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874825)

Yeah,

God forbid they make money of something they produced.

Link to the article (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28873601)

Associated Press [ap.org]

The Associated Press Board of Directors today directed The Associated Press to create a news registry that will tag and track all AP content online to assure compliance with terms of use. The system will register key identifying information about each piece of content that AP distributes as well as the terms of use of that content, and employ a built-in beacon to notify AP about how the content is used.

"What we are building here is a way for good journalism to survive and thrive," said Dean Singleton, chairman of the AP Board of Directors and vice chairman and CEO of MediaNews Group Inc. "The AP news registry will allow our industry to protect its content online, and will assure that we can continue to provide original, independent and authoritative journalism at a time when the world needs it more than ever."

The registry will initially cover all AP text content online, and be extended to AP member content in early 2010. Eventually, it will be expanded to cover photos and video as well. AP will fund development and operation of the registry through 2010, until it becomes self-sustaining.

The board announced in April, at its annual meeting, that the Cooperative would launch an industry initiative to protect news content from unauthorized use online. At its meeting today, at AP headquarters, the board voted to approve creation of a news registry that will serve as the foundation of that initiative.

The registry will employ a microformat for news developed by AP and which was endorsed two weeks ago by the Media Standards Trust, a London-based nonprofit research and development organization that has called on news organizations to adopt consistent news formats for online content. The microformat will essentially encapsulate AP and member content in an informational âoewrapperâ that includes a digital permissions framework that lets publishers specify how their content is to be used online and which also supplies the critical information needed to track and monitor its usage.

The registry also will enable content owners and publishers to more effectively manage and control digital use of their content, by providing detailed metrics on content consumption, payment services and enforcement support. It will support a variety of payment models, including pay walls.

In other action, the AP Board also voted to approve rate assessment reductions for broadcast members of the Cooperative. Under the plan, AP will reduce local TV members' basic text assessments by 10 percent in 2010. The amount of rate reduction per station varies depending on the level of services received. At its annual meeting in April, The Associated Press announced assessment reductions for member newspapers, the second year rates were reduced. AP member radio rates were adjusted several years ago to include added discounts, day-part service options and barter pricing.

About The AP
The Associated Press is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world to all media platforms and formats. Founded in 1846, AP today is the largest and most trusted source of independent news and information. On any given day, more than half the worldâ(TM)s population sees news from AP.

Re:Link to the article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28873721)

Ha Ha ... sorry, can't stop laughing ... they call it Journalism! It is not Journalism. Where is the investigation? All they do is repeat what they are told. They are repeaters, not journalists.

Re:Link to the article (3, Funny)

spun (1352) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874025)

In other news today, anonymous sources at the popular nerd news aggregator Slashdot claim that AP are not journalists because they do not investigate and simply repeat what they are told.

Re:Link to the article (1)

gomezfreak (1128013) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874403)

This is essentially what they do. What is sad, is that the fact that it's true, and that is what makes it so damn funny.

Re:Link to the article (1)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875707)

Yes! Yes, we are all journalists!

I'm not.

Re:Link to the article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28874517)

If you had access to the wires (subscription to the AP is required, and costs money), you'd see a length article. News outlets often edit them down to fit their format/ organization - blame them.

Re:Link to the article (1)

Mr. Firewall (578517) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873923)

About The AP The Associated Press is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news...

Mod +1 Funny.

AP unbiased? (1, Interesting)

Radical Moderate (563286) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875125)

"About The AP The Associated Press is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world ....

Written by AP no doubt. Someone should show this to their editors, AP has been carrying Republican water [mediamatters.org] for years.

does this also mean they are gonna go back (3, Interesting)

wardk (3037) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873607)

to being real journalists? are they just trying to protect the nonsense half-ass poorly written claptrap they currently pawn off as news?

Re:does this also mean they are gonna go back (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 5 years ago | (#28876017)

Gawd, that's funny!

Your services are no longer needed (2, Insightful)

Absolut187 (816431) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873653)

Sorry AP,

In an age when everyone carries an internet-enabled phone with a camera, you just aren't needed.

We're not sure who your replacement will be. But it won't be you.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (1)

PeanutButterBreath (1224570) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873853)

Sorry AP,

In an age when everyone carries an internet-enabled phone with a camera, you just aren't needed.

We're not sure who your replacement will be. But it won't be you.

It sure as hell won't be everyone and their internet-enabled phone.

Ugh. You just made paying for news much more appealing.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (4, Insightful)

Absolut187 (816431) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874091)

Really?

Remember the plane that crashed into the Hudson?
http://www.editorsweblog.org/multimedia/2009/01/twitter_first_off_the_mark_with_hudson_p.php [editorsweblog.org]

Who broke that story?
The AP?
Nope. They were merely stealing the report from the guy with the camera-phone.

Did you hear about the ISS near-miss?
http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2009/03/12/thoughts-on-breaking-news-and-twitter/ [discovermagazine.com]

Water ice on Mars?
http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2008/06/mars-phoenix-tw/ [wired.com]

Shooting in DC? Explosions in Jakarta?
http://www.twitterjournalism.com/2009/07/19/mainstream-media-losing-its-edge-in-breaking-news/ [twitterjournalism.com]

Getting the point yet?
Yes, we need people to do fact-checking and create a reputable source for news.
But that entity is not going to look like the AP of today.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (1)

PeanutButterBreath (1224570) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874707)

Breaking a story and reporting are not the same thing. Obviously, the vast majority of news stories are "broken" by eyewitnesses who are rarely journalists. That's not reporting.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (0)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875033)

>>>That's not reporting.

Right. We need reporters to take the eyewitness newsgatherings, chop them into little bits so they can be distorted, and then explain why this event requires yet another layer of bureacracy added to our government.

If you don't know what I mean, watch Babylon 5's "The Illusion of Truth" where a reporter manages to take the stars of the show, and twist-around events to make them look like an out-of-control mob needing government to fix the mess.

Anyway.....

Megacorporate reporters, for whatever reason, are biased towards more-and-more government. The idea that we need LESS government is never proposed on the evening news. I say we take-away their power to present only this slanted viewpoint, and give reporting back to the common man via websites. At least that way we can hear both sides of the story.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (0, Flamebait)

PeanutButterBreath (1224570) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875327)

I got skeptical with the anti-government rant and quit when you cited a fictional sci-fi television show for "evidence". Note in my original comment that I mentioned applying my own filter even to professionally gathered news.

All human communication is vulnerable to bias. As a mature adult, I recognize this and make the appropriate adjustments to my credulity. Professional news is, in a sense, the devil we know. We know it is biased towards the governmental and corporate status quo. That is an easy bias to correct for when reading the news.

Eyewitnesses about whom we know nothing WRT their agenda or credibility are hardly a more reliable source.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (3, Interesting)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873875)

Yea right after we get the paperless office.
Hey I am all for blogging and the idea of the citizen reporter but they supplement not replace professionals.
Of course at least on TV I don't think the professionals are what they used to be but then I might just being an old fuddy duddy and seeing the past in rose colored glasses.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28874081)

Ugh, please do not clump print journalists with tv "news" personalities, where half their job is applying makeup.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874155)

I was thinking of Walter Cronkite and Harry Reasoner both of which I feel where true journalists.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (1)

blueskies (525815) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874219)

You make the assumption that there are any professionals to replace.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874555)

Professionals? Clearly you've not paid attention to the news industry. Yellow Journalism is a requirement now.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875073)

Yea it pretty much sucks but it is still better than most of what you find on the Internet. The problem with the Internet is that most people will find some website that will reinforce their view of the world. They will then think that it is unbiased because for most people they assume anything they don't agree with is unbiased because they are very sure that they are fair and even handed.
Take a look at what gets posted in Slashdot for goodness sake.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28875193)

You're absolutely right, the same is that Journalism has gotten WAAAAY lazy. what passes for journalism these days is hardly better than amateur blogging. its rare to find real investigative in depth _unsensationalized_ journalism anymore. the closest you get on the radio is NPR and for as much as i like it, NPR can be pretty biased at times. on the TV you have Dateline going around Punking Pedophiles but thats largely sensationalized and then theres the Daily Show, which isnt so much journalism as exposing hypocrisy in the media and politics. its a damn shame. for the most part the stupp i see from the AP often trying to hard to be first its just flat wrong. Anecdotally, i have the APs iPhone app (i'm a news junkie) and as a "feature" it will text you any major breaking news. i got a message yesterday saying "Judge Sonya Sotomayer Confirmed as US First Hispanic Justice" yeah... either they employ prophets or are smokin peyote.

Re:Your services are no longer needed (1)

kheldan (1460303) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873911)

..so you mean that we should all start crusing YouTube for our news content?

Re:Your services are no longer needed (2, Interesting)

Absolut187 (816431) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873955)

Actually, CNN is doing that for us.

Have you watched cable news lately?
They are literally just putting the camera up to a computer monitor and showing things they found online.

That sound you just heard (0)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873661)

Was the sound of them becoming irrelevant and being left behind.

Re:That sound you just heard (1)

PeanutButterBreath (1224570) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874133)

There is a difference between being out in the cold from a technological perspective and being irrelevant. Professional news gathering is very relevant to me, even if I have to apply my own filters to it. What are the alternatives? Blogging? "Social Media"? Please.

Or are you implying that information about current events itself is no longer relevant? If so, I would say that process started when syndicated sit-com re-runs started competing with network evening news broadcasts, giving people who would rather be entertained than informed more and more options.

Re:That sound you just heard (2, Insightful)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874353)

AP hasn't been a "professional news gathering service" for a long time. They turned into a bunch of biased 'editorialists' decades ago.

And now they want to restrict access to their drivel? Cya..

Apostrophe Overload (1)

iamapizza (1312801) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873691)

Just in case anyone's not interested, that post contains '18' single quotes, possibly a new record. I keep envisioning an imaginary hand lifting to do the quotes gesture everytime I see one of those, and TFP disturbed me quite a lot. I feel that a lot of it could have been said without the excessive single quotes around every other word, especially when it came to p-prefaced, which could have been written as-is. Thank you.

Re:Apostrophe Overload (1)

shawn(at)fsu (447153) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873843)

Just for you
Unnecessary Quotations [unnecessaryquotes.com]
Enjoy

Re:Apostrophe Overload (1)

Anonymous CowHardon (1605679) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874325)

When I read "'wrap' and 'protect' its content" I assumed it had something to do with condoms.

Re:Apostrophe Overload (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875005)

They weren't just single quotes. It was a secretly embedded message from Woodstock.

From the Article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28873763)

>> In what way does this scheme "wrap" and "protect" the news? It doesn't; it simply marks it up, and adding tags expressing a content creator's wishes on reuse has no bearing on someone's rights under US copyright law.

Misleading summary

Pointless (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873767)

No, Bridis replied. "What I'm talking about, and what has really riled up our internal copyright folks, are the bloggers who take, just paste an entire 800 word story into their blog. They don't even comment on it. And it happens way more than most people realize."

If that happens way more than people realize, then people are unaware of these sites. If people are unaware of these sites, then they don't visit them, in which case they cannot be competition to the AP.

Re:Pointless (1)

johnsonav (1098915) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873873)

If that happens way more than people realize, then people are unaware of these sites.

Do you have some magical "spider-sense" which allows you to determine that what you are reading hasn't been copy-pasted from an AP story?

It's almost as if the guy was implying that most people don't have such a super-power...

Re:Pointless (1)

blueskies (525815) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874257)

Are you telling me supergrrl actually wasn't over in Iraq writing about her personal experience with the latest road side bomb? Damn, you're right. You do need a super-power to realize it!!!

Re:Pointless (1)

johnsonav (1098915) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874425)

Are you telling me supergrrl actually wasn't over in Iraq writing about her personal experience with the latest road side bomb? Damn, you're right. You do need a super-power to realize it!!!

See, there's your problem. Supergirl was DC. Everybody knows only Marvel super heroes really exist.

Re:Pointless (1)

Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873935)

Bridis just described exactly how the network news channels work too! Only in the case of CNN and Fox News they have ass-kicking graphics with Dolby 5.1.

Re:Pointless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28874321)

and big shiny touch screens.. don't forget those!...

oh, and guys with beards.... guys with beards are Awesome!...

Re:Pointless (2, Insightful)

InverseParadox (189133) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874433)

If that happens way more than people realize, then people are unaware of these sites. If people are unaware of these sites, then they don't visit them, in which case they cannot be competition to the AP.

Not necessarily.

In order for someone to realize that that has happened, they need to both see the story on the blog and see the story attributed to the AP. I don't find it particularly implausible that many or most people reading such a blog might not read the AP directly; I'm not positive I've ever read a story directly from the AP, as opposed to a citation of an AP story by someone else. (A case where their prominence works against them; many people (and more news organizations) cite AP reports in their own stories, but few people - other than those doing the citing - seem to feel the need to read the originals.)

If most people see the story in only one place, then most people won't realize that the story is being copied wholesale. If the one place where they see the story is the AP and they don't visit the blogs, that's fine; if the one place where they see the story is the blog and they don't visit the AP, then that's not so fine. The argument would be that the latter is what is happening.

Re:Pointless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28874865)

Dude, I bet you can make diamonds by putting charcoal in your butt.
Yes, logically it's a fallacy, but he's just saying whatever ("more than you realize") amount happens in excess of "realization" has no impact.
However, I suspect you are one of those who scurry around finding the exception to the rule to prove yourself correct.
Just some advice ... get a life. Geez.

Not again (1, Redundant)

jerep (794296) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873867)

When will money-hungry people get a clue and realise more protection wont save your content from being copied. You dont lose money if your content is copied, as most people will still pay if they feel its worth the price for they want original quality content. Its not like we're stealing a car, because the content is still yours. You cant complain about losing viewers either, as if your content was good enough in the first place, people would stay with you, and your extra protection schemes just make a lot of people go to other sources for equivalent free content.

Information is meant to be free, if you think money is incentive for creating it, then what about the entire open source community and millions of free webpages? Why do these companies need big marketing and protection to get their content through, cant they let the product speak on its own?

The more control you try to get, and the less you end up with. I bet this new security wrapper will be hacked in minutes.

Re:Not again (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28874351)

First people bitched about newspapers becoming redundant because it's all 'recycled stuff from the AP'. Well, what happens when the AP is gone? I guess we'll be left with talking heads regurgitating the news.

AP is a news gathering service. Sometimes they swindle regular Joe for a free photo/ video/ article, but most AP submitters are freelancers working to gather news full-time. As a former news-gatherer (didn't make enough money to cover my business insurance) - I'll gather stuff for free once my bills and housing become free too. If I had a cushy CS job during the day and did news-gathering at night, yea, I'd give AP my stuff for free.

Hell, even getting a copy of court transcripts require a small fee; a FOIA request, etc. Information shouldn't be censored, but I don't think charging $0.75 cents is unreasonably prohibitive that it could be considered 'elitist' or censorship.

Information, in my opinion, has always been out there for "free," but the problem you see, who wants to take their time to get them? Who wants to spend the hours between 9:30a-5:30p every Tue and Thur in city hall listening to council people debate? Journalists are there to distill information, and with the help of the editor decide what's relevant to people. Unfortunately what people "demand" these days often overrule the editor - i.e. Michael Jackson's death 'conspiracy.'

I think in the end whatever the AP bigwigs decide, or what the netizen thinks what should be "free," the people in the frontlines gathering news will still be fucked.

Re:Not again (1)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 5 years ago | (#28876045)

When will money-hungry people get a clue and realise more protection wont save your content from being copied. You dont lose money if your content is copied, as most people will still pay if they feel its worth the price for they want original quality content.

Huh? People aren't paying in droves. If something is available for free, it is free as in nobody will ever pay again unless they are uninformed. Uninformed people are keeping the music and movie business going today.

Free will always win out in the end.

P-prefaced jargon you say...? (0)

comm2k (961394) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873871)

That's a lot of 'p'-prefaced jargon

I can only imagine how it went at AP HQ:
AP CEO: Now, before we adjourn, gentlemen, I have one last matter of utmost importance. I need to protect this precious piece of news from the perils of the interwebs or else our business model from the past will fail - anyone who wants it absolutely, positively _has_ to properly pay per line for it!

Re:P-prefaced jargon you say...? (4, Funny)

An Onerous Coward (222037) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874499)

Perhaps they're paranoid that the profits of the past will be plundered by pilferous and plagiarizing pirates.

As a former newspaper IT guy... (3, Interesting)

Vandil X (636030) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873927)

...I find this move interesting and sad.

AP's wire stories used to be delivered using arcane satellite-to-modem-to-serial solutions that functioned pretty faithfully unless you got snow/ice on your satellite dish on the roof.

Then the AP switched to a web-based delivery method which was a hardware improvement, but a Sarbanes-Oxley nightmare along with website/Internet outage issues and other new hijinks that were all new issues that made this web-based solution worse than the arcane solution it replaced.

Now they've gone further down the dark path with DRM.... just sounds like more fun for newspaper IT guys.

Has DRM in any form ever actually worked? (3, Insightful)

electricprof (1410233) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874015)

I recall the early days of development, sales and distribution for PC software. A bunch of different anti-piracy methods were pursued, we all heard about the enormous amounts of money being lost to piracy, etc. In the end all these approaches really did was piss off the legitimate users and make the software less attractive. It's not exactly clear to me if the software industry really has any effective DRM system now, although they seem to have some things that look they are trying to protect themselves. I suspect the media industry will go through a similar evolution ... kicking, screaming and whining all the way.

Re:Has DRM in any form ever actually worked? (1)

Freetardo Jones (1574733) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874229)

This isn't DRM. It's some html tags that do all of jack and shit.

Re:Has DRM in any form ever actually worked? (1)

electricprof (1410233) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874697)

I agree. I do realize that this isn't DRM, but it's also clear that the media providers, music, video, news, etc. are trying to find some kind of DRM solution. My musing is mainly about whether the history of the software industry shows us that DRM and it's variations simply don't work.

Re:Has DRM in any form ever actually worked? (2, Funny)

jerep (794296) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874761)

It was successful in pissing the hell out of me.

The AP Has No Clue What They're Doing (4, Insightful)

vertigoCiel (1070374) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874079)

So, if you can't be bothered to RTFA, the AP obviously has no idea what they're talking about. Some snake oil salesman came along and told them that Microformats are magic digital beans that will protect their content with some sort of "tracking beacon" that will phone home and prevent infringement.

This is so cluelessly ridiculous that I can't decide if it's hilarious or just sad.

Re:The AP Has No Clue What They're Doing (5, Insightful)

wytcld (179112) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874347)

That's why it's so important that our access to AP content must continue unrestricted. Where else can be get so many articles by so many writers who have no idea what they're talking about?

With blogs, we generally visit those where we already know the level of "idea what they're talking about" from past reading or reputation. But the AP is an outfit that slaps its trademark across writing of such uneven levels of "idea what they're talking about" that reading them becomes a constantly-entertaining puzzle for each article: "Can you spot everything that's wrong with this picture?"

PNGs and GIFs Anyone? (1)

Maltheus (248271) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874105)

If it's even worth linking too, people can just convert the stories to images. Let the workaround games begin!

Re:PNGs and GIFs Anyone? (1)

Fastolfe (1470) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875117)

Or, you could just ignore it, which is what browsers and search engines do anyway with unrecognized markup.

Get this whining to stop. (1, Troll)

migla (1099771) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874253)

Let's just get together and buy AP and fund them, and as their new owners, let the news be free. Like for example BBC is financed, but with all rich countries peoples that have an interest in journalists running around the world finding stuff out and reporting on it.

Re:Get this whining to stop. (1)

b4dc0d3r (1268512) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874617)

So, maybe we aren't all rich, should I just send them a small check every time I read their story? And since they are doing a good job and the only thing I want to change is making the news free, I won't replace any current management. In fact no personnel changes are to be done, we will just give them money and they will be happy giving things to us for free.

Is this what you had in mind?

Why is this tagged "republican" (5, Insightful)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874281)

Republicans are farmers, miners and oil drillers and then small business owners at the core. There are plenty of rank and file Republicans who would just as soon let IP laws fall by the wayside because liberals are so concentrated in businesses that benefit from copyright laws.

Re:Why is this tagged "republican" (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874693)

Sorry, whatever the whole of their base is, both parties cater to copyright cartels.

Don't tell me that Republicans aren't involved with catering to copyright cartels. Have you heard of the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act? Sonny Bono was a Republican and it was named after him. It passed when there was a Republican majority in both houses. The DMCA was passed when by the same Congress, again, when Republicans ran both houses of Congress. If the Republican party didn't want it, they wouldn't have passed it.

I'm not letting the Democratic party off this one (Pres. Clinton signed both bills), otherwise probably the subject of a different post some other day, I just couldn't let you pretend that Republicans have nothing to do with the copyright mess.

Re:Why is this tagged "republican" (1)

FlyingBishop (1293238) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875505)

Well, yes. On the other hand, the only publications that are actually behind paywalls are Conservative mainstays like the Wall Street Journal.

Are there any counterexamples?

Wishful Thinking (4, Informative)

daemonburrito (1026186) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875511)

You've got to be kidding. Was that just a gut feeling? Have you ever heard a Republican say anything of the sort?

Maybe you should email members of your delegation and ask. I did, and I can assure you that Republicans from my state are wholly dedicated to "Protecting America's Intellectual Property and Competitiveness(tm)". The ranking member and former chair of the House committee charged with overseeing IP (the Judiciary Committee), Lamar Smith [wikipedia.org] , is one of the strongest allies the IP cartels have ever known. Additionally, in his position he's protected the corrupt the Eastern District of Texas.

The IP debate is still far too esoteric for members of either party to be shamed into saying "no" to the cartels.

Oh, and this is interesting: do a whois for 143.231.249.141 and look at this: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Lamar_S._Smith&action=history [wikipedia.org] . Self-editing from a House.gov network. Stay classy, Lamar.

Wikinews (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28874299)

I guess Wikinews [wikinews.org] is about to get a lot more popular. Maybe it could be an eventual replacement for AP?

I wonder what AP's replacement will look like? (1)

kawabago (551139) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874307)

Will it be everyone everywhere reporting everything they see all the time? That would give an interesting bent to coverage.

Re:I wonder what AP's replacement will look like? (1)

bertoelcon (1557907) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875279)

See: Twitter

Yay (1)

alexborges (313924) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874415)

Great way to disapear AP. I, for one, Im glad that youve taken this step towards the future where we, the digicrowd, control de shebang.

Re:Yay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28875141)

Hey! First of all, I thought of writing "Yay" first. You have stolen my intellectual property, and I am wronged. Send me $10 and we'll call it even.
--------
Two: In general, it is ironic and funny to think that an organization whose job it is to deliver information to people is now working against their own core purpose.

I actually want something like this -- but for PII (3, Interesting)

schwaang (667808) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874477)

I know it sounds nuts, but I actually want a system like this for personally identifiable information (PII).

If a business has my PII in their records, I want them to tag it with meta-data on how it was collected and what rights *they* have to use/share it. It's not any more enforceable than any other DRM scheme, but it would help to implement privacy policies, which is good for the consumer. And it would help to limit secondary uses of PII which is also good for the businesses that make money by collecting PII.

I'm wanting meta-data with terms like "this was collected with NO permission to re-distribute", or "this was collected with a promise to delete after 6 months", etc.

Re:I actually want something like this -- but for (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28874887)

"this was collected with a promise to delete after 6 months"

We'll keep it for now and check back later... We'll keep it for now and check back later...

Re:I actually want something like this -- but for (1)

MeatBag PussRocket (1475317) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875303)

Holy crap, thats ingeious! its like a EULA for your own work! i want mine to say by reading this content the boss has consented to an anual 30% raise and a binding labor agreement requiring no more than 20 hours of work and permitting no more than 50. nobody reads the EULA.hell... it should also stipulate a week in vegas with the bosses daughter, just for good measure... assuming shes hot.

Re:I actually want something like this -- but for (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28875329)

the functionality already exists
its called P3P from the w3c, it is specified in your headers on every request and specifies what the company who is setting the cookie does with your information
http://www.w3.org/P3P/ [w3.org]

in IE8 > safety > web page privacy policy

Firefox supports P3P policies but its a convoluted setup and is well hidden from the user (why?)
http://mozilla.gunnars.net/firefox_help_firefox_cookie_tutorial.html#Advanced_Cookie_options [gunnars.net]

great. (2, Interesting)

Nerrd (1094283) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874537)

Now we'll only be able to read the news through a DRM-114 Confabulator.

Re:great. (1)

MeatBag PussRocket (1475317) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875315)

hopefully they dont send us attack plan R

  nice Kubrick reference there... nice indeed.

something like scribd? (2, Interesting)

solweil (1168955) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874607)

It's going to be at least as annoying as scribd, isn't it? Some sort of annoying flash thing that keeps people from copying text? Maybe the efforts of those captcha hackers can be redirected.

This is more worrying (3, Insightful)

Obispus (803786) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874781)

From the Ars Technica article:

Down the road, of course, the AP might go to Congress and ask that whatever tracking and rights system it settles on be given the force of law. It's not as crazy as it sounds; European publishers already hope to get a law enforcing the Automated Content Access Protocol.

If content providers get the ability to enforce moronic schemes like this one, many people may find themselves in the receiving end of lawsuits--even some who just followed older fair-use provisions.

AP wants free money "because I'm worth it" (4, Insightful)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874849)

AP has asked the Government to examine Google News and other content aggregators, claiming they contribute insufficiently to their income [today.com] .

"The newspapers put their content up on the web for free and then Google, the freeloading bastards, tell people where to find it. We told them to pay up or stop using our stuff, and they said OK, they'd stop using our stuff! We need the Government to bring back balance, 'balance' defined as being able to make them give us money because we want it. You'd think the Internet wasn't invented to give news publishers and record companies free money!"

The AP argues that traffic from search engines does not make up the cost of producing the content. "Ad revenue has collapsed, so search engine traffic doesn't bring in enough views to pay for itself. Our inability to sell ads is clearly Google's problem."

The AP suggests the exploration of new models that "require fair acknowledgement of the value that our content creates, both on our own site through DRM and lawsuits and 'at the edges' in the world of search and aggregation. Basically, they should just give us money because we want it. And the music industry too. How about a bailout? Go on, gi's it."

Great plan there AP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28875043)

Seriously, your own XML schema constitutes a solid DRM system? Reminds me of a clip from Family Guy:

Brian (at the Quahog county trailer park): You're really going to take back donated presents on Christmas Eve?
Peter: Yep, now here's the plan: You'll enter through the air contitioning duct here. Now there'll be an invisible laser grid three inches from the floor, so you'll have to compress your body to the size of an ordinary household sponge and slide underneath like some kind of weird amphibious dolphin.
Brian: Can I buy some pot from you?

DRM (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875171)

protect, point, and pray...Might work. Reading screen shots really sucks

Can this be used to... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28875449)

filter out AP articles more easily. I typically do a search using google news such as "site:wsj.com -AP" in order to filter out all the crap AP articles. I hope they succeed in restricting their "news" as that's just less filtering I have to do to read the real news.

BS

"a lot of 'p'-prefaced jargon", appropriately (1)

ChipMonk (711367) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875543)

By repeating their string of P-terms, they can spit in the face of their would-be readers.

Critical analysis, which would normally fall under "fair use"? P on that!

Note to Self: (1)

KwKSilver (857599) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875599)

Add www.ap.org and hosted.ap.org to hosts file.

They'll send out different versions of the text. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28875719)

It's called a canary trap [wikipedia.org] . Post even a snippet to your favorite BBS or blog and you're busted.

So what. (1)

pubwvj (1045960) | more than 5 years ago | (#28876067)

In real news the consumer's don't even care or notice. AP, having hidden their news, goes unnoticed.
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