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Cory Doctorow On For the Win, Gold Farming, and DRM

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the my-computer-says-yes dept.

Books 179

adaviel passes along a New Scientist interview with Cory Doctorow, who has been touring for his new book For the Win. The SF author and technology activist talks about DRM, gold farming, and much else besides.

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FTW. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32505916)

FTW.

Re:FTW. (1)

iamapizza (1312801) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506818)

Coming soon, the sequel - 'oh my god' and finally in 2011, 'ok, thanks, bye'

Titled misspelt (5, Funny)

slackarse (875650) | more than 4 years ago | (#32505944)

"For Teh Win."

There, fixed that for you.

Re:Titled misspelt (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506092)

I just read the article:

Jessica Griggs takes a trip to the complex frontier world of...

MMmmmmm, so we meet the interviewer, Jessica.

I don't know who she is or what she looks like, but I'm already in love with her. I imagine her in a pantsuit, projecting raw power and subtle dominance behind a disarming pair of horn-rimmed glasses. She walks out of her cubicle with a sexy but straightforward strut as she delivers her "goods" to the copy editor.

She is tactile enough to record interviews with her sexy youthful hands, free of protruding veins and tendons, writing pen-on-notepad at blinding speed like a 50's-era law student notating a Spanish lecture.

I invision her wearing a corset at times, hidden under her conservative white-linen blouse, as she carries on secret trysts with the various blue-collar building porters and custodians. She's off-limits to us nerds because nerd-dom is thirsty work for her...and so thirsty work warrants thirsty play, as she fellates an unbathed, illiterate-but-muscular laborer named Pedro in the utility closet.

...

I'm back, guys. After extensive Google searches, I paid 50 bucks for her current address and a background check. Spotless. Radiant. And she lives at 32 Garrison Street Suite# 56 in Boston's beautiful Back Bay. Mmmmm, back bay. I'm texting this as I look over the brick fence into her window. She just came back from a hard day in the office. Man, look at her without that coat, tossing her silky hair back with a single nod as she puts it into a ponytail. I would love to kiss those tired feet of hers, with their perfect red polish and the aroma of a fine Camembert...I bet her panties would also smell mustily divine right now...*Pant, Pant*...nobody smells perfect after that long a day at work...*pant*...(By the way, I'm texting this from my Blackberry). Oh, shit...she's spotted me...hold on...She just picked up her phone and pulled her blinds down.

Oh, crap, the security guard is coming...hold on....

fkla;s jdhadkuvhakdfn
aksldflsnd

Re:Titled misspelt (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506152)

Brilliant.

Re:Titled misspelt (1)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507732)

stfu nub LOL *Throws a Mohawk grenade at you, puts down a train set, and spams the chicken emote*

interesting quote from the subject of the article (5, Informative)

mogness (1697042) | more than 4 years ago | (#32505980)

Awesome quote from this guy in the article, on DRM and his work. Makes you think about who is really gaining from this whole DRM and copy protection gambit.
Hint: it's not the artist.

Obscurity, not piracy, is the biggest problem writers face. In the 21st century, if you are not making art with the intention of it being copied, you are not making contemporary art.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506288)

Doctorow is great at self-promotion. It's too bad he's shit at everything else.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (4, Insightful)

decipher_saint (72686) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506328)

Yeah, but after the obscurity, THEN artists get interested in DRM.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (1)

hoytak (1148181) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506518)

How unselfish of them, thinking of all those obscure authors they've left behind!

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (3, Insightful)

decipher_saint (72686) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506614)

The view changes dramatically when you are "on top". Protecting your IP once it has value becomes important for a lot of people.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (2, Insightful)

mcvos (645701) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507554)

The view changes dramatically when you are "on top". Protecting your IP once it has value becomes important for a lot of people.

But only after they've already profited handsomely from it.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32508926)

There's no money to be had climbing to the top. It's once you're there you can "take advantage" of your situation.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (4, Interesting)

CharlyFoxtrot (1607527) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506882)

Problem is art has never payed well except in the last half century or so and then only for a few superstars. Now shysters are trying to sell absolute control over works on the promise artist will somehow get payed more, they won't.

Here's a nice quote from a recent Mick Jagger interview [bbc.co.uk] :

"People only made money out of records for a very, very small time. When The Rolling Stones started out, we didn’t make any money out of records because record companies wouldn’t pay you! They didn’t pay anyone!

Then, there was a small period from 1970 to 1997, where people did get paid, and they got paid very handsomely and everyone made money. But now that period has gone.

So if you look at the history of recorded music from 1900 to now, there was a 25 year period where artists did very well, but the rest of the time they didn’t."

Same goes for authors. There's a reason "starving author" is such a well known concept.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (3, Informative)

walshy007 (906710) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507636)

Hate to be a spelling nazi but it's "paid" not "payed"

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (3, Insightful)

Ragzouken (943900) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507862)

Don't lie, you fucking love it.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508114)

Spelling nazis should be punished by grammatical hangman.

FUCK this SHIT (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506698)

FUCK Cory Doctorow. Where is the latest story on the new iPhone? COME ON, guys...

Re:FUCK this SHIT (1)

Low Ranked Craig (1327799) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506762)

Pabst Blue Ribbon?

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (4, Interesting)

brit74 (831798) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506766)

"Obscurity, not piracy, is the biggest problem writers face. In the 21st century, if you are not making art with the intention of it being copied, you are not making contemporary art."

Interesting fact: Cory Doctorow rips his ideas from other people. The original quote was from Tim O'Reilly. If you watch the internet closely, you'll see him copy other people's quotes and ideas all the time without giving them credit. A few months ago, I saw him regurgitate one author's comment that piracy is like masterbation. Of course, Cory never gives them credit - he's too busy wanting people to believe "his great ideas" aren't directly cribbed from other people. No wonder Cory is such a big fan of piracy - that's how he gets famous - by taking other people's ideas and regurgitating them as if they were his own.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (2, Insightful)

javilon (99157) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507350)

that's how he gets famous - by taking other people's ideas and regurgitating them as if they were his own.

Like everybody else. Writers are not philosophers or physicists. They are not supposed to come up with new ideas, but to express the old ideas in interesting ways.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (4, Insightful)

radtea (464814) | more than 4 years ago | (#32509008)

Writers are not philosophers or physicists

As a physicist and philospher who is currently developing his writing career, I don't agree with this. It's true that some writers are just what you describe. They aren't artists, they aren't original thinkers. They are what used to be known as "hacks".

Writers, however, are expected to come up with their own ideas, and in the case in point, with their own words--at least some of the time. While it's true that "mediocrity borrows, genius steals", it takes more than theft to make a genius: it takes intelligent transmutation of the stolen material into an original and interesting form. Insofar as a writer does that, they are not a hack, but that is a requirement, not just "expressing old ideas in interesting ways."

And the best writers, of course, express new ideas in interesting ways. Melville wasn't just regurgitating facts about whales (although he was doing that too...)

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (1)

TheLink (130905) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507440)

Lots of people who share their ideas publicly actually want them adopted.

So to them it's perfectly fine for someone else to help spread them around. Now if someone dishonestly/negligently claims he/she is the original source when that's not true then it's plagiarism.

Most pirates don't plagiarize when they copy stuff- they don't claim they are the original authors of the work.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (2, Insightful)

selven (1556643) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507828)

And how often do you casually repeat insightful/witty statements made by other people in conversation without bothering to give a citation? Everyone does it, sometimes without even realizing it.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (2, Insightful)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507968)

Every artist is a cannibal, every poet is a thief. All kill their inspiration and sing about their grief

U2, The Fly [songmeanings.net]

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (4, Funny)

NickFortune (613926) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508124)

Interesting fact: Cory Doctorow rips his ideas from other people. The original quote was from Tim O'Reilly. If you watch the internet closely, you'll see him copy other people's quotes and ideas all the time without giving them credit

I was going to halp propagate your anti-Cory meme, but I've already forgotten who you are, and therefore I find myself ethicially unable to propagate your ideas.

Sorry about that.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (2, Insightful)

Dracker (1323355) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508656)

I think it's natural for someone who hates DRM as much as Cory Doctorow not to give credit for quotes. After all, credit for quotes are is another form of Intellectual Property.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (3, Insightful)

radtea (464814) | more than 4 years ago | (#32509046)

I think it's natural for someone who hates DRM as much as Cory Doctorow not to give credit for quotes.

I think it's weird that you can't distinguish between broken tech like DRM and a perfectly legitimate desire for an artist to be recognized and compenstated for their work. The latter is expressed by a variety of intellectual property law, which Doctorow is not absolutely against.

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32508758)

This is commonly called "culture" (evolution of culture [wikipedia.org] ). It's why you and me post on Slashdot and expect other people to be willing to understand our verbal diarrhoea. Or am I misunderstanding what you mean?

Re:interesting quote from the subject of the artic (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#32509074)

That's almost word for word from Little Brother IIRC. Which, BTW, I thought was an excellent book.

Someone has to say it (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32505992)

Cory Doctorow is a drama queen and a troll. His anti-DRM stance is largely a business decision to carve out a niche in the anti-DRM crowd. Most of his scifi is bunch of superficial, topical junk and very little in a way of deep prose.

Not a fan. And his anti-DRM schtick is getting old.

What a tool (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506020)

It's sad that a lot of people will read this clueless turd's drivel and actually think they are "In the know."

Re:What a tool (1, Interesting)

ynohoo (234463) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506100)

As a geek a decade older than this particular fruit-bat, I can assure you he's right on the monkey.

Fuck off back to Digg where you belong.

Re:What a tool (1)

funwithBSD (245349) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506208)

Is monkey COBOL for money?

Or a Freudian slip?

Re:What a tool (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506236)

No, no. The monkey is his girlfriend. Sure, she's a bit hairy but at least he's getting some.

its mikey geists mouth piece (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506032)

HEY how are ya
AND is mike still in favor of TPM ? as in technological protection measures.

GOTO the cbc website and see how that debunked , goto groklaw.net and try and say it isn't DRM
and why JUST DRM in the current law is not the only problem.
SEEMS lawyer types are focusing on that, when they should include it all in a whack the mole.

BoingBoing (3, Informative)

Alejandros (1626215) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506068)

For those who don't know, Cory Doctorow also co-edits BoingBoing [boingboing.net] , a popular tech/culture group blog that's worth checking out.

Re:BoingBoing (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506212)

a popular tech/culture group blog that's worth checking out.

Sure, if you're an idiot.

Re:BoingBoing (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506322)

And doing a fucking circle jerk to the latest Apple product is worth checking out?

Wow. Slashdot really has fallen since chips'n'dips.

Re:BoingBoing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506336)

And doing a fucking circle jerk to the latest Apple product is worth checking out?

False dichotomy and no.

Wow. Slashdot really has fallen since chips'n'dips.

Yep, and you epitomize it with such inane and fallacious attempts at an argument.

Re:BoingBoing (1)

Alejandros (1626215) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506406)

I'm sorry my opinion on what qualifies as interesting is different from yours. I thought these flying robot drones [boingboing.net] posted today, were pretty neat. Of course not all of it suits my tastes, but then, neither do all slashdot articles. And while I disagree with Xeni's review of the iPad, it doesn't mean that the whole blog is garbage by association.

Re:BoingBoing (1)

FatAlb3rt (533682) | more than 4 years ago | (#32509100)

Make sure you don't comment on how you disagree with her review, unless you don't mind being banned.

Re:BoingBoing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32508010)

Re:BoingBoing (1, Insightful)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508554)

Belay that order; Cory Doctorow is the John Katz of the Internet 2.0. Avoid at all costs.
 
Most of the other posts in this thread will agree with me. Lots of "anonymous cowards" who seem to disagree with the regular posters on slashdot who seem to dislike Doctorow's shameless self promotion. Hmm...

Re:BoingBoing (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32508814)

For those who don't know, Cory Doctorow is a cunt.

Indeed, he is a tool. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506086)

Cory Doctorow is the biggest, most shameless self-promoter on the internet. He's also kind of a tool. He's already hijacked one website to promote his writing. Its called 'boingboing', perhaps you've heard of it?

boingboing hijacked? [citation needed] (5, Informative)

wygit (696674) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506252)

Boing Boing became a Web site in 1995 and later relaunched as a weblog on January 21, 2000, described as a "directory of wonderful things." Over time, Frauenfelder was joined by three co-editors: Cory Doctorow, David Pescovitz, and Xeni Jardin. All four Boing Boing contributors are, or have been, contributing writers for Wired magazine.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boing_Boing [wikipedia.org]

Self-promotion, on the internet? say it ain't so!

Cory, Xeni, Dave and Marc ARE boingboing. Cory's also a writer who stands behind his opinions on copyright, licensing the electronic versions of his books via Creative Commons, with free downloads in non DRM formats.

disclaimer: I also happen to like his writing. I Loved "Little Brother", and liked Down & Out in the Magic Kingdom, Content, Makers, and am halfway through FTW

Re:boingboing hijacked? [citation needed] (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32507850)

Doctorow is not good, but at least he's prolific. Matter of factly I don't read much, so I basically only read his novells, because I can download them on the go on my iphone, gratis.

But mostly, its bad reading. He reminds me of bad-fantasy writers who write books like D&D bestiaries. Except he sticks to his opinions on copyright, going so far as to include a 100% unrelated plot-line in "Someone comes to town", wich would have been decent otherwise. "Little Brother" is boring but I as far as I know it is supposed to be a teenager book so that might be the reason. Down & Out is ok, and I really wanted to love "Easter standards tribes" but it turned out to be not much fun.

Re:Indeed, he is a tool. (4, Funny)

divisionbyzero (300681) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506300)

Cory Doctorow is the biggest, most shameless self-promoter on the internet. He's also kind of a tool. He's already hijacked one website to promote his writing. Its called 'boingboing', perhaps you've heard of it?

Wait! I thought Nicholas Negroponte was the most shameless self-promoter on the internet! I demand a face-off!

Face Off (1)

sconeu (64226) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506454)

Sorry. Hollywood wants you to pay for it [imdb.com] .

Re:Indeed, he is a tool. (1)

bruthasj (175228) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507738)

Who?

Re:Indeed, he is a tool. (2, Insightful)

shadowbearer (554144) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506312)

  Who, exactly, is Doctorow a tool of? Independent free thinkers?

  In addition, given that he gives away his work in addition to publishing it, how exactly do you consider him a "shameless self-promoter"?

  Sounds like some jealousy is at work here, mister AC Troll.

  SB

Re:Indeed, he is a tool. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506456)

He is a tool because he parrots EXACTLY what the community wants to hear, and if they start complaining about something loud enough, he will have a sudden "epiphany" and do whatever his community asks him to do because he wants to continue selling his shitty ass "writing".

He is also one of the worst writers I have EVER read. I tried reading one of his books once and was turned off by the second paragraph. All he does is browbeat you continuously with his ideology without really defending it and making up the flimsiest of premises to browbeat you with it even more. If I want that much ideology shoved down my throat I'll go to the Sarah Palin website, at least it's less pretentious.

Re:Indeed, he is a tool. (1)

shadowbearer (554144) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506800)

  Gaining insight to the minds of idiots is often illuminating. Thank you for contributing to my insight.

  You don't cite any of his work, any of the reasons why you think he does what you say he does, you just go on and on with baseless insults, and then a totally irrelevant comparison. Your comment is worth exactly as much as my reply to it is.

  I could almost feel sorry for you, but I have many more important things to feel bad about.

  Go live in your little world, child. It'll bite you someday.

SB

Re:Indeed, he is a tool. (0, Flamebait)

Deadguy2322 (761832) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507140)

You call him an idiot, yet you are the one who can't seem to figure out where a signature is supposed to go. You are a fucking moron.

Re:Indeed, he is a tool. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32507506)

In addition, given that he gives away his work in addition to publishing it, how exactly do you consider him a "shameless self-promoter"?

Could you explain how giving his work away in any way lessens or negates the possibility of him being a shameless self-promoter? From what I've seen, in fact, his giving his work away is actually his biggest self-promotional gimmick -- as an author, he's essentially a marketing personality built on the kind of fad promotion that was seen when NIN or Radiohead or a handful or other artists got huge amounts of press due to the unsustainable novelty of them putting their work on the web. Without him being such a proponent of that kind of distribution, and making such a huge stink about how he's a proponent of it, he'd just be another mediocre writer living in obscurity.

Re:Indeed, he is a tool. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32508518)

To be fair, Doctorow wouldn't seem like like such an epic tool if he's just get rid of those "do I look like a smart outcast yet" glasses.

Speaking of farming... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506128)

Why is it that wetbacks pay for several hundred dollars of groceries in several smaller purchases, using only $1 bills? Seriously, WTF???

Re:Speaking of farming... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506428)

Because that's how they get paid?

Gold Farming History (5, Informative)

Tauto (1742564) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506142)

"When did gold farming start? First reports were in Central America and Mexico in about 2003." I remember gold farming in Asheron's Call in early 2000. Here's a link to a blurb about Sony's problems with EverQuest in April 2000. http://news.cnet.com/2100-1017_3-239052.html [cnet.com]

Re:Gold Farming History (3, Insightful)

wmbetts (1306001) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506196)

Not to mention that, but the reason people hate gold farmers isn't about racism. It has 0 to do with race and everything to do with the fact they get their "lot" by stealing from people.

Re:Gold Farming History (1)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506522)

Then why are most gold farmers known as "Chinese gold farmers"?

At least, that's the term I always seem to hear in WoW... usually with a perjorative attached.

Re:Gold Farming History (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506632)

Umm... because (allegedly, if you believe the reports) that's where the most commercial gold farming is done?

Re:Gold Farming History (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32507480)

In that case, the "Chinese" part is superfluous anyway, since simply saying "Gold farmers" would be enough to indicate their likely origin. The only reason to add the Chinese prefix is either to bolster an incorrect assumption, or to piggyback on some perceived existing bad feeling towards the Chinese and to divert that bad feeling towards gold farmers. It might not be the worst case of racism, but either way it's certainly not meant as a positive association.

Re:Gold Farming History (1)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506668)

Is it really racism? First, "Chinese" is kind of entangled in whether it refers to the nation or the "race" (this is thanks as much to their xenophobia, as ours). More importantly, if the majority of gold farmers were from Phooistan, they'd be called "Phooie gold farmers." Doesn't racism need, on some level, an implicit (negative) claim about the race? This is more like an economic (foremost), and cultural resentment.

I guess it's sort of post hoc racism at most.

Re:Gold Farming History (2, Interesting)

ildon (413912) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506722)

It's not a racist term, it's an accurate term. China is one of the few countries with the right mix of technology and a large poor labor force that can actually make gold farming profitable. At least without using bots. Even when your entire inventory is from stealing accounts, you need warm bodies to process (that is, remove everything of value from the characters on) those accounts and then transfer the gold to the buyers.

And the pejorative modifies "gold farmer" not "Chinese".

Re:Gold Farming History (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506220)

Dude, I remember gold farming in the Bard's Tale.

Ok, so it was my little brother, and I paid him in candy...

Way before that. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506254)

I remember a guy who worked the desk at the computer lab who'd gold farm Everquest while on the clock.

Re:Gold Farming History (4, Insightful)

DeadboltX (751907) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506402)

I could be wrong, but I think he was referring to organized businesses hiring employees for the purpose of farming gold, and then reselling it, and that was the business model.

It seems to me that all the early gold selling (AC, EQ) was individuals selling stuff on ebay, and not some sort of organized business.

Re:Gold Farming History (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506530)

I remember EQ in 2000-2001 having whole guilds set up to farm platinum and items, as well as "fatten" up characters for eBay. One of the worst mistakes Verant/SOE made at the time was in Velious and the Sleeper event which denied people the ability to obtain what was the highest end weapons after the Sleeper was awoken.

What happened was that guilds would farm the zone, then once their characters has a set of primals, would release the Sleeper, then everyone in the guild would ebay their chars, knowing that they had items that were unobtainable.

This was before the Chinese and Koreans hopped on and made currency farming a science.

Re:Gold Farming History (0, Offtopic)

FrankDrebin (238464) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506702)

Gold farming is a lot older than that. All the gold currently in the earth was buried there 6000 years ago by a massive flood. In fact, many of todays biggest-producing gold mines were once trendy "pharm" nightclubs, fully of debauchery and bling (natch), and surprisingly well attended despite the poor weather.

Re:Gold Farming History (1)

sponga (739683) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506986)

I remember it in Ultima Online, scripting was pretty easy back than.
Although not logging into your account for almost a year and coming back to realize everything you had built up was expired and decayed(disappeared). That was the last time I invested so much time into a game and realized the outcome, but than I found out you could dupe items through the black hole bug and made millions on my comeback.

Thulsa Doom speaks! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506144)

My child, you have come to me my son. For who now is your father if it is not me? I am the well spring, from which you flow. When I am gone, you will have never been. What would your world be, without me? My son.
-Thulsa Doom

Get down on your fucking knees and pray for the mercy and sweet salvation of Thulsa Doom! You undeserving peasants are fortunate enough to be graced with his words let alone to enjoy his mercy. What have you done to be privileged enough to be considered as one of Thulsa Doom's children? Nothing.

Only Thulsa Doom can give you a purpose in this life. Only Thulsa Doom can give you meaning to your every breath. Without His existence you'd be like a slug: A useless life with no real meaning.

Infidel Defilers. They shall all drown in lakes of blood.
-Thulsa Doom


You deserve damnation. You deserve pain. Still Thulsa Doom may grace you and bring you into the light of lights and show you the way. Be joyous if he does but if he doesn't do not act like you deserve better. Your mortal life is as useless as dog shit to Thulsa Doom and you know this is the truth of life and of nature.

who's cory doctorow? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506210)

this is the guy who runs 4chan, or...?

Praise Thulsa Doom! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506266)

Whoever mods down comments about Thulsa Doom is not only an infidel but also a sack of shit.

EXCELLENT interview! (2, Insightful)

King_TJ (85913) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506330)

I've recently become a big Cory Doctorow fan, reading several of his sci-fi books in electronic format. (I'm reading through "Down and out in the Magic Kingdom" right now on my iPad.)

This interview just further impressed me with him... Great, insightful comments on both DRM and on "piracy" vs. "publicity"!

I'll admit that as much as I like science-fiction, I'm not exactly an "avid reader" - so maybe some of Doctorow's work is just a "re-hash" of ideas already used before. But I found lots of very interesting and unique (at least to me) concepts in his writing. I particularly like his premise in "Down and Out..." that the world has solved its energy problems, which led to sort of a new "enlightenment" era of rapid advances in technology - with one of them being the ability to "reboot" a dead person from recent backups of the knowledge in their head that were taken at regular intervals. People measure their age in how many lifetimes + years old they are. Of course, this leads to massive overpopulation, but the masses accept it because they're confident that problem can also be resolved somehow. And in the meantime, many people opt to "deadhead" for X number of hundred years - voluntarily putting themselves in a suspended state, when they feel they've done everything they really want to do and see everything they want to see. This just seems a few steps beyond the material you typically find in science fiction in the movies or on TV, not to mention in other books I've read so far!

Re:EXCELLENT interview! (1)

Rectal Prolapse (32159) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506450)

And in the meantime, many people opt to "deadhead" for X number of hundred years - voluntarily putting themselves in a suspended state, when they feel they've done everything they really want to do and see everything they want to see. This just seems a few steps beyond the material you typically find in science fiction in the movies or on TV, not to mention in other books I've read so far!

Iain Banks did this in his Culture books, back in the early 1990s. :)

Re:EXCELLENT interview! (1)

Falconhell (1289630) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506500)

So did Hotblack Desiato. He spent a year dead for tax reasons.

Re:EXCELLENT interview! (2, Funny)

Fex303 (557896) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506776)

Iain Banks did this in his Culture books, back in the early 1990s. :)

And again in the late 2650's. ;)

Re:EXCELLENT interview! (1)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507722)

And still is. Matter was released in 2008, with Surface Detail coming later this year.

Oh, and it's Iain M. Banks when he's writing Sci-Fi ;)

Re:EXCELLENT interview! (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508056)

John Varley did it in the 1970s

Re:EXCELLENT interview! (1)

radtea (464814) | more than 4 years ago | (#32509094)

And Heinlein in the '50's (Door Into Summer).

Re:EXCELLENT interview! (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508158)

Woody Allen did it in 1973 [imdb.com] . Roll on the Orgasmatron.

Re:EXCELLENT interview! (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32506786)

Indeed it is a rehash, it didn't seem all that original when John Boorman & Sean Connery did a version in movie form (the surreally bad Zardoz) in the '70s. Doctorow's take is admittedly much better--Zardoz set a really low bar. I liked the "adhocracy" concept, and the name was inspired. But overall, a short-story of an idea stretched out to book length, without a stunning plot, memorable characters or inventive energy. YMMV.

Cory Doctorow is IMHO at best a mediocre science fiction writer. But he has carved out a niche primarily by pandering to internet posters, who then hold him up as an example of an artist who is successful "because" he eschews copyright and promises them more free stuff. Which is sort of true, but is not a scalable business model: if everyone did what Doctorow did, he wouldn't be noteworthy, and he'd fall deeper into the midlist if not total obscurity. When a "science fiction author" is most famous for blogging and his opinions about copyright, it does say something about his accomplishments in actually writing science fiction.

I'm maybe being a little unfair, but I like reading novels. When Doctorow talks about overcoming "obscurity," based on gimmicks unrelated to quality of his fiction ("A band recorded 'Little Brother' songs"!) I get depressed. Many of my favorite authors are pretty obscure (well, pretty dead, but my next favorites are just obscure), but can get by. The last thing I want is them trying to work in product placements and mini-games to try and go viral one way or another.

Re:EXCELLENT interview! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32507578)

I was pretty excited by Little Brother, a book by an author who shared some of my views on IP, so much so that I supported the author by buying it after the tidal wave of good publicity it got online and from some of my other favourite authors. I have to say I share your opinion, there were some good ideas in there but they weren't very well developed because Doctorow was too busy over-egging the oppressive regime pudding. I kind of think the stuff the existing regimes get up to is evil enough, I don't need exagerration and invention to paint them even more so, if anything that detracts from his point because people read this book and come away saying, "well, at least the government isn't really that bad". He threw up one strawman after another so he could heroically demolish it with a six page rant on his views, that's borderline okay on an internet forum, I don't expect to be subjected to it in a novel I've paid for. Some of his other books have similarly interesting premises, but on the strength of his writing here I won't waste my time even if I don't have to waste my money. I applaud his championing of the causes surrounding IP abuse, but he's no author, cribbing together your blog posts of other people's ideas into a tenuous storyline does not a great author make. Ironically I think I read his book on the back of Charles Stross singing his praises. Stross shares many of the views (but is much more pragmatic about having to change things from inside the system) but stands head and shoulders above him as an author.

Delete this article. (-1, Troll)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506916)

Really K Dawson? a Doctorow plug on /.? His enormous ego doesnt need to be stroked any more; BoingBoing's DRM articles are pretty bad already. Dont encourage them further by giving any sort of association with Slashdot. Let me rephrase that, poorly written, poorly researched and sensationalized for pageviews "blog". Promoting Doctorow and by association his blog BoingBoing is doing nothing more than legitimizing one of the worst "techie" (and I use that term loosely) tabloids on the net.

Re:Delete this article. (0, Troll)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508254)

Regarding my downmod "-1, Troll" -- I'm not trolling, BoingBoing has a really terrible, sensationalist slant on all of their DRM stories. What used to be an interesting blog "a collection of wonderful things" has turned into Doctorow's personal platform for pushing his own personal DRM agenda in an attempt to gain notoriety to sell more books. Many of their articles are reactionary, sensationalist garbage you would expect to see in a supermarket tabloid, tailored to suit their slightly above average readership. There's no reason to plug him or his site. Him and his site should be buried under a heap of bad reviews, not promoted. What's worse is that they're occasionally featured on google news' "fast flip" feature, giving their sensationalist headlines and "analysis" added weight, when they lack any sort of editorial review beyond Doctorow's lazy "delete" button. Internet journalism has been going downhill and someone has to stand up and point out the merely mediocre from the bad and biased. If you don't agree with my opinion, fine, move on and keep reading but don't label me a troll.

Re:Delete this article. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32508976)

Many of their articles are reactionary, sensationalist garbage you would expect to see in a supermarket tabloid, tailored to suit their slightly above average readership.

If that's your opinion of the BoingBoing blog, I wonder what you'd say of the Reg (or non-tech pseudo-highbrow publications like the WSJ)... Unless you give specific examples in your empty rants, I will continue to believe that you're a troll, or on a personal vendetta.

Re:Delete this article. (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 4 years ago | (#32509068)

Lots of anonymous cowards white knighting BoingBoing this morning I see! No personal vendetta, no trolling. Look around at the (registered!) netizens here and you'll see my opinion is shared by many. I'd be happy to list examples if someone with a name wishes to ask for them. You don't have to dig very hard to find them.

Filtering (-1, Troll)

retech (1228598) | more than 4 years ago | (#32506970)

I accidentally turned off my Doctorow filter. Now my internets are flooded with one gigantic ego.

Having actually READ the novel (4, Informative)

silentcoder (1241496) | more than 4 years ago | (#32507508)

A few points of import. The goldfarmers in the novel never steal accounts. They just play the game, and build up large banks of gold to sell. While all WoW players know that a significant part of the banks that the goldsellers sell were acquired through account-theft, these are not the people that FTW is about.

I don't think you can call playing the game 18 hours a day a crime. The fact that they subsequently sell the gold - well that's only a crime in the concept of breaking a EULA... which is not something I have EVER heard a /. poster speaking AGAINST.

Furthermore, the world in the book is a bit different, it's set a few years in the future - and the games are no longer MEANT to be a closed economy there. There are official channels of gold trade, where real stockbrokers invest in game gold much as they would invest in any other currency. The goldfarmers in the book use black-markets though because they are excluded from these official channels of trade (which is in fact the game-companies' largest source of income).

I won't spoil the ending, but suffice to say - this is not a a novel about thieves who live of other people's hard work. It's a novel about hard workers being exploited and demanding a better life. It uses the MMORPG world as a millieu but it's really a book about economics and a scathing attack on the world of sweatshop workers - in all it's forms.
It includes solid chapters on economic fundamentals, inflation (and how the kind of hyperinflation in Zimbabwe came to be) how it works, and how often it doesn't.

In short, it's a very, very good book. As SIFI I wouldn't call it groundbreaking, it writes about technology that's every day life NOW. There are some minor practical changes to the games concept in the time of the book but nothing that all gamers aren't expecting now. It's not science fiction, it's a much more a kind of social activism fiction, which happens to use a technological mileu.
Mind you, I didn't consider Little-Brother to be science fiction either, 99% of the technologies in THAT novel are things that you can download right this second. What it was, was an excellent novel that happens to also teach the fundamentals of crypto, privacy and security systems.

So in short, I really LIKE Doctorow's niche, he uses his fields of expertise, to set novels with a much wider social message - that's to me what good writing is all about.

Re:Having actually READ the novel (1)

Larryish (1215510) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508036)

As SIFI I wouldn't call it groundbreaking

Don't you mean "SYFY"?

Re:Having actually READ the novel (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508040)

SF thanks.

Re:Having actually READ the novel (1)

silentcoder (1241496) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508070)

Personally, I've always prefered scifi myself, but seriously - we all knew what I meant :P and I didn't even use my OWN favorite term.

Re:Having actually READ the novel (1)

TBBle (72184) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508586)

Actually, I had no idea what "SIFI" meant until I read the replies.

I did enjoy the rest of your comment, and considered it informative. What a day to not have mod points. >_

Re:Having actually READ the novel (1)

Permutation Citizen (1306083) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508662)

SF means science-fiction.

sci-fi is a pejorative term. It is used for stories that only use science-fiction as a decor.

As I can see from article, "For the win" is science-fiction, not sci-fi.

Re:Having actually READ the novel (1)

silentcoder (1241496) | more than 4 years ago | (#32508798)

>SF means science-fiction.
>sci-fi is a pejorative term. It is used for stories that only use science-fiction as a decor.
>As I can see from article, "For the win" is science-fiction, not sci-fi.

Who the hell decided that? You DO realize this is a VERY recent development, well I've been reading (and writing) Science Fiction for close on 3 decades now... and I've ALWAYS prefered "sci-fi" for no other reason than this: it's MUCH nicer to SAY. It's pronounceable, a word. SF sounds like you got a lisp and a stutter and are trying to say "yes".
In the end, I usually say science fiction - and I usually abbreviate that as "sci-fi" and know for a fact that both Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke did the same so frankly your snobbery does not impress me much cos I got bigger snobs on my side.

Re:Having actually READ the novel (1)

Permutation Citizen (1306083) | more than 4 years ago | (#32509120)

Of course meaning of words change. Maybe Sci-fi was not pejorative in the 60's but now it is. And I'm quite sure it has been like that for at least 20 years.

Please use the term you like, but people may not understand what you intended.

Re:Having actually READ the novel (1)

silentcoder (1241496) | more than 4 years ago | (#32509226)

The real irony is this.
Forgetting the pejorative claim - you description of what sci-fi SHOULD be used for... is EXACTLY what I described FTW as BEING.

I said specifically it's NOT science fiction, there is nothing fictional about the science there - no technology or ideas that aren't already reality right now.
The book isn't ABOUT science, it's not even using science to create a setting per se... it's a book about economics, quite a socialist one at that. About sweatshops, investors and unions.
Maybe 3 paragraphs in the entire book actually happen inside games. Everything else, every single event in there is set in the slums of India and China - and is about players OUTSIDE the game.
It's no more science fiction than "The guild" is.

Re:Having actually READ the novel (1)

radtea (464814) | more than 4 years ago | (#32509162)

It includes solid chapters on economic fundamentals, inflation (and how the kind of hyperinflation in Zimbabwe came to be) how it works, and how often it doesn't.

I find this frankly implausible. I've never seen any description of economic fundamentals in a fictional context that I'd consider "solid". Novelists are unfortunately, like economists, good at spinning plausible bullshit, but you shouldn't mistake "plausible" for "solid".

If you want an adequate introduction to some reasonably solid economic thinking for laypeople, try Joseph Heath's "Filthy Lucre: economics for people who hate capitalism." It's not without flaws, but it generally gives a clear analysis of the common economic errors seen on both the left and right.

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