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Lawrence Lessig Reviews The Social Network

CmdrTaco posted about 4 years ago | from the hey-mark-ping-me dept.

Movies 223

Hugh Pickens writes "Lawrence Lessig — author, Harvard law professor, co-founder of Creative Commons — reviews The Social Network in The New Republic. Although Lessig says the movie is an 'intelligent, beautiful, and compelling film,' he adds that as a story about Facebook, it is deeply, deeply flawed because the movie fails to even mention the real magic behind the Facebook story, and while everyone walking out out of the movie will think they understand the genius of the internet, almost none of them will have seen the real ethic of internet creativity that makes success stories like Facebook possible. 'Because the platform of the Internet is open and free, or in the language of the day, because it is a "neutral network," a billion Mark Zuckerbergs have the opportunity to invent for the platform,' writes Lessig. 'And that is tragedy because just at the moment when we celebrate the product of these two wonders — Zuckerberg and the Internet — working together, policymakers are conspiring ferociously with old world powers to remove the conditions for this success. As "network neutrality" gets bargained away — to add insult to injury, by an administration that was elected with the promise to defend it — the opportunities for the Zuckerbergs of tomorrow will shrink.' Lessig laments that the creators of the movie didn't understand the ethic of Internet creativity and thought that the real story was the invention of Facebook not the platform that made such democratic innovation possible. 'Zuckerberg is a rightful hero of our time,' concludes Lessig. 'As I looked around at the packed theater of teens and twenty-somethings, there was no doubt who was in the right, however geeky and clumsy and sad. That generation will judge this new world. If, that is, we allow that new world to continue to flourish.'"

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He's still a blowhard. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784090)

'Nuff said.

Re:He's still a blowhard. (2, Insightful)

Sockatume (732728) | about 4 years ago | (#33784420)

If nothing else he's a little bit obsessed. Not every motion picture about WWII is about the Holocaust. That doesn't make those movies crashing rhetorical failures, it just means they had a different subject.

Re:He's still a blowhard. (1)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | about 4 years ago | (#33784440)

This is why he's a Harvard law professor and not a movie reviewer. You can't expect everyone to experience a movie in the same ways that you do. Just remember it's only a movie!

Re:He's still a blowhard. (1, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | about 4 years ago | (#33784948)

Blowhard? Who modded that "insightful", someone from the BSA? rather than a "blowhard", he has passionately defended the public space, even as a lawyer before the Supreme Court (too bad he lost the case).

Blowhards have little or nothing to say. Lessig has a lot to say, all of it important. Nobody but one of his enemies would call him a "blowhard". interesting how it's an AC calling Lessig a blowhard, isn't it? Even more interesting how the AC's uninsightful and plain-assed incorrect comment was modded up?

Odd how those who are against freedom can only attack its proponents?

OK. He's a Drama Queen. Feel Better Now? (3, Insightful)

RobotRunAmok (595286) | about 4 years ago | (#33785186)

I mean, come on. It was everything I could do to keep the Star-Spangled Banner from playing spontaneously through my speakers when I read that summary. I appreciate that he is an advocate for Freedom with a capital "F" and all that good stuff, but Christ Almighty, Lessig, learn to pick your spots. It's a movie review!

"the real magic behind the Facebook story..." (5, Insightful)

Cornwallis (1188489) | about 4 years ago | (#33784116)

...is that anyone can write apps that will suck the remaining privacy we have out of us and sell it to the highest bidder.

Re:"the real magic behind the Facebook story..." (4, Insightful)

shellster_dude (1261444) | about 4 years ago | (#33784148)

or is it that some idiots are going to use this free application and then bitch about the consequences?

Re:"the real magic behind the Facebook story..." (3, Interesting)

Svartalf (2997) | about 4 years ago | (#33784404)

Truly insightful. There really isn't anything such as a free lunch. There is always a price paid for it by someone, somewhere. Most people don't realize this because they've been made to believe there is such a thing- and that they don't have to pay anything in. There are things that are worth burning a bit of your privacy on to get something in return. Sadly, many people's thresholds for that sort of thing are kind-of low because they don't know just how valuable it really is.

Re:"the real magic behind the Facebook story..." (1)

Jurily (900488) | about 4 years ago | (#33784188)

...is that anyone can write apps that will suck the remaining privacy we have out of us and sell it to the highest bidder.

Nobody wants to suck my privacy out of me :(

Re:"the real magic behind the Facebook story..." (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784328)

Have you tried wearing this [fotosearch.com] ?

Re:"the real magic behind the Facebook story..." (1)

Hitto (913085) | about 4 years ago | (#33784674)

If by "suck" you mean "nobody ever forced you to post your pictures of when you're drunk, you idiot", then yeah, I agree with you.

Re:"the real magic behind the Facebook story..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784932)

Facebook doesn't do anything, it's people who put that information in. If you have a problem with it then don't put your information in and ask those you socialise with not to include you in tags and such. It's not difficult to control what you put on the internet and if you have friends who you can't trust not to spam your pictures online then maybe you're not keeping the best company.

Has everyone forgotten... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784118)

that he stole this idea from people that hired him to develop it?

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (2, Insightful)

bsDaemon (87307) | about 4 years ago | (#33784190)

Yeah, but at Harvard Business School, I think they call that a "Free Market Economy." He must have been doing some advanced reading before dropping out to pursue a rewarding career as a douche bag.

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (1)

the_humeister (922869) | about 4 years ago | (#33784546)

Well, everyone has a price. What's yours?

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (1)

bsDaemon (87307) | about 4 years ago | (#33784574)

25 million pounds Sterling, and protection from extradition. The last part is probably more important than the actual payout.

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (-1, Flamebait)

schmidt349 (690948) | about 4 years ago | (#33784292)

You're a liar. He stole nothing. Next time why don't you post using your real name, or don't you have the stones? [penny-arcade.com] ?

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (2, Funny)

Moridineas (213502) | about 4 years ago | (#33784330)

Oh snap, you can always tell it's on when a Penny Arcade strip is referenced!

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (1)

Mister Whirly (964219) | about 4 years ago | (#33784638)

So the name your parents gave you at birth was schmidt349? You must have some strange parents. Or is there a possibility that that isn't your real name either?

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (1)

base698 (1372877) | about 4 years ago | (#33784596)

I tend to agree with this: Mark Zuckerberg: I think if your clients want to sit on my shoulders and call themselves tall, they have the right to give it a try - but there's no requirement that I enjoy sitting here listening to people lie. You have part of my attention - you have the minimum amount. The rest of my attention is back at the offices of Facebook, where my colleagues and I are doing things that no one in this room, including and especially your clients, are intellectually or creatively capable of doing. If he really said that it was FTW.

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (4, Insightful)

JustinOpinion (1246824) | about 4 years ago | (#33784658)

Lessig touches on this:

Did Zuckerberg breach his contract? Maybe, for which the damages are more like $650, not $65 million. Did he steal a trade secret? Absolutely not. Did he steal any other “property”? Absolutely not—the code for Facebook was his, and the “idea” of a social network is not a patent.

and:

In response to the twins’ lawsuit, [Zuckerberg] asks, does “a guy who makes a really good chair owe money to anyone who ever made a chair?”

I don't know the particulars (if the code was part of a work for hire, then Zuckerberg would be guilty of copyright infringement for his subsequent use of it... but that doesn't appear to be what is alleged), but assuming Lessig's account of the facts is correct, then Zuckerberg didn't "steal" anything. At least, he didn't break any laws. He may have appropriated other's ideas without credit, but plagiarism itself isn't illegal.

However I do disagree with Lessig's suggestion that we should admire Zuckerberg. It seems to me that, even if he stayed within the bounds of the law, he built-up Facebook by being mean, cut-throat, and ruthless. That makes him a bad person, regardless of the grand things he has was able to legally deploy with his tactics.

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (1)

omglolbah (731566) | about 4 years ago | (#33784672)

I thought that was the American Dream 2.0 ? :p

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (1)

Idiomatick (976696) | about 4 years ago | (#33784866)

He stole it almost from multiple people. He got paid to make it (signed docs and all). And then he stole it from others. So he failed to deliver a product he stole.

That and he is seriously a complete douchebag and has no feelings of pity or regret over his actions. You can read some of his logs. Hell the guy apparently used his powers of running facebook to break into individual accounts. Scary dude.

Re:Has everyone forgotten... (1)

rxan (1424721) | about 4 years ago | (#33785038)

I don't get this championing of Zuckerburg, either. For every product that makes it big there are a million other products that weren't as lucky. Just having the most popular product doesn't make you a hero.

The flaw is .... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784134)

that there exist people that want to see the movie in the first place....

Narcissism (1, Interesting)

Shivetya (243324) | about 4 years ago | (#33784150)

never under estimate how many went to that movie and "saw" bits of themselves in the various characters, trying to justify their behavior to themselves. From the beyond college student dialog to their dress and the speed it appears they act. Oh yeah, I can see where they found people to go see the film

Re:Narcissism (4, Insightful)

Americano (920576) | about 4 years ago | (#33784248)

Since when is it "narcissism" to "see" bits of ourselves in characters we read about, or see in film?

Audience identification with characters in artistic works is as old as the media those artistic works have been presented in. Those works with the most timeless, universal themes are generally considered to be some of the best, most durable & long-lasting works - in other words, the ones which MANY people can "see" bits of themselves in.

Empathetic characters are nothing to be scared of or ashamed of. Do you really want films & books about nothing but outsized caricatures of humanity as characters, or filled with people who we are so utterly incapable of identifying with that they might as well be aliens from a civilization antithetical to our own? Because those types of stories might be fun one-trick ponies, but the thought of them doesn't hold much appeal for me.

Re:Narcissism (4, Insightful)

Moridineas (213502) | about 4 years ago | (#33784348)

Do you really want films & books about nothing but outsized caricatures of humanity as characters, or filled with people who we are so utterly incapable of identifying with that they might as well be aliens from a civilization antithetical to our own?

We call that Atlas Shrugged.

Re:Narcissism (1)

Americano (920576) | about 4 years ago | (#33784426)

And what's the general consensus on the quality of Atlas Shrugged around here again? :)

Re:Narcissism (2, Interesting)

Moridineas (213502) | about 4 years ago | (#33784834)

Oddly enough given my comment (what's life without some self deprectation?) I actually quite enjoyed some of Ayn Rand's work. Take out the 80-page soliloquy at the end of Atlas and I thought it was a pretty solid book.

The characters are rather outsized and undersized though! Interestingly enough, I read that Rand had intended to include a priest character--a sympathetic character, somebody who was on the side of good, yet sided with the "looters" for misguided reasons. Rand apparently felt the character wasn't believable!

Re:Narcissism (2, Funny)

bsDaemon (87307) | about 4 years ago | (#33784472)

how can you tell the difference between a library and a bathroom? the bathroom is where the ayn rand books are located.

Re:The flaw is .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784162)

You're right.

And the great irony is that the point Mr. Lessig makes, needs to be made precisely because the vast number of these people who exist.

The free market will decide (-1, Troll)

elrous0 (869638) | about 4 years ago | (#33784154)

The internet will still be neutral. Everyone will have an equal right to pay the big ISP's to prioritize their content and downgrade their competitor's content. If you can't afford that, you need to concentrate more on making profits and less on complaining like some poor-ass pussy.

Re:The free market will decide (1)

icebraining (1313345) | about 4 years ago | (#33784380)

How can you make profits to pay it, if your traffic can't even reach the consumers because your already established competitors have paid the ISPs?

If all the companies started at the same time, that would be true - the better wins. But after that, the already established company will always win over the startups even if it's worse, simply because it already has money.

In EU law, at least, it's prohibited

all agreements between undertakings, decisions by associations of undertakings and concerted practices which may affect trade between member states and which have as their object or effect the prevention, restriction or distortion of competition within the common market.

I think this is a fine example of a restrition of competition.

Re:The free market will decide (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784728)

I don't agree with the parent post either, but that doesn't make him a Troll. Learn how to use the mod system.
-- Posted anonymously to protect Karma from aforementioned idiot.

Right.. (5, Insightful)

irid77 (1539905) | about 4 years ago | (#33784158)

Of course! Every movie having anything to do with the internet should be an op-ed piece supporting net neutrality. That'll work.

My concerns about network neutrality. (-1)

Notquitecajun (1073646) | about 4 years ago | (#33784166)

As a non-hard techie with only a cursory understanding of the issue, here's my concern about network neutrality (or lack thereof).

My real concern is that the proponents of network neutrality just want to be able to have unabated access to download music and movies and porn without paying for them - that there's no real "freedom" issues at hand; it's just people wanting free stuff.

Maybe someone can address this without modding me as a troll, but I honestly WANT some of those people to have more restricted access.

I guess the affect for someone like me is that most of my internet viewing is something like youtube, netflix, hulu, etc, and whether or not the cost of streaming media should be passed on to me as the end user.

Or I could just be wrong across the board.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784228)

I guess the affect for someone like me

I guess the effect for someone like me
FTFY

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (5, Informative)

Enderwiggin13 (734997) | about 4 years ago | (#33784268)

Network neutrality isn't about unabated access to download copyrighted content, it's about keeping the Internet a level playing field. Without network neutrality, big companies like Microsoft, Google and Apple can pay ISPs to put their sites on the premium tier so that you get fast access to them, while poor startups and normal people with brilliant ideas will be relegated to the slower tier. I've even seen concern about ISPs one day offering packages a la cable TV - you can get Google, Yahoo and MSN with the basic package but then you'd have to add a sports/tech/music/etc. package to access those sites. It's not even limited to websites. ISPs could grant you HTTP access with the basic package and then you'd have to add FTP, NNTP, VOIP and other "value add" services". I realize that's hyperbole and possibly FUD but it's not the type of Internet I'd like to use. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Network_neutrality [wikipedia.org]

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (2, Informative)

Moridineas (213502) | about 4 years ago | (#33784358)

You mean like ESPN360 / ESPN3, or whatever they're calling it now?

So the solution is to doom everyone to the slower? (-1, Flamebait)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 4 years ago | (#33784796)

Without network neutrality, big companies like Microsoft, Google and Apple can pay ISPs to put their sites on the premium tier so that you get fast access to them, while poor startups and normal people with brilliant ideas will be relegated to the slower tier.

So in other words Network Neutrality is about making the network suck for all traffic instead of allowing some producers of content to pay for higher speed pipes for some content, allowing the user in turn to have some higher quality services.

Thanks for dooming us to be a technological backwater.

It's not even limited to websites. ISPs could grant you HTTP access with the basic package and then you'd have to add FTP, NNTP, VOIP and other "value add" services"

I do that already, I get Comcast Gold Tier so I get better uplink speeds. I LIKE being able to pay more for better access, just as I'm sure a customer who doesn't work with a lot of photographs LIKES not having to pay an arm and a leg for internet access that has speeds way beyond what they need.

In your world of network neutrality, forget the cheapest possible plans that might even include some subsidization by content providers. No, instead everyone has to pay at least a higher base level because you wouldn't let the market create a cheaper plan that more people could use.

So poor people out there? If you can't afford an internet connection, take it up with Enderwiggin13 here. He really is your unlucky number...

Complete and utter nonsense. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33785178)

Without network neutrality, big companies like Microsoft, Google and Apple can pay ISPs to put their sites on the premium tier so that you get fast access to them, while poor startups and normal people with brilliant ideas will be relegated to the slower tier.

So in other words Network Neutrality is about making the network suck for all traffic instead of allowing some producers of content to pay for higher speed pipes for some content, allowing the user in turn to have some higher quality services.

How did you get that meaning from those words? Enderwiggen13's post said the exact opposite of what you interpreted it to be.

Thanks for dooming us to be a technological backwater.

Seriously, are you brain damaged or just mentally ill? I had no idea that the current situation could be considered a technological backwater. Net neutrality is about not letting content providers tamper with the flow of information across the Internet - just like they can't do right now.

It's not even limited to websites. ISPs could grant you HTTP access with the basic package and then you'd have to add FTP, NNTP, VOIP and other "value add" services"

I do that already, I get Comcast Gold Tier so I get better uplink speeds. I LIKE being able to pay more for better access, just as I'm sure a customer who doesn't work with a lot of photographs LIKES not having to pay an arm and a leg for internet access that has speeds way beyond what they need.

Um, no, you're paying for higher speed for all the sites you access, not just for some tier of them. The Comcast service you are paying for is advertised as a net-neutral service.

In your world of network neutrality, forget the cheapest possible plans that might even include some subsidization by content providers. No, instead everyone has to pay at least a higher base level because you wouldn't let the market create a cheaper plan that more people could use.

So poor people out there? If you can't afford an internet connection, take it up with Enderwiggin13 here. He really is your unlucky number...

This is the biggest pile of crap I've read in a Slashdot comment yet.

Internet access is already cheap. It could be cheaper, nobody would argue with that. The problem would be that if there were no rules preventing content providers from paying off ISPs to effectively reduce the performance of their competitors' websites and Internet services, you can be pretty sure that's what would happen across the board.

Unregulated industry is always bad for consumers. Overregulation is bad, but under-regulation has always led to consumer ripoffs and paying too much for shoddy services.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784282)

No, this is part of the problem with the network neutrality debate. It actually got started after CEO of some big American telco whose name I forget said things like "Why should Google make money by using my pipes? I paid for those pipes, they should share the costs", ignoring the fact that he was already being paid by his customers. ISPs charging companies for priority access to customers purely on the basis of wanting more profit would clearly be both new and bad, thus network neutrality was born.

Somewhere along the way the debate seems to have got hijacked by those you describe, aka "people wanting free stuff", and somehow bandwidth shaping got lumped in too (sometimes). ISPs controlling how their customers use limited, overcommitted bandwidth isn't new nor particularly alarming, as you point out it can even be seen as a feature by others who aren't sitting on BitTorrent 24/7 and want fast access. Also, anyone can buy dedicated, non-overcommitted bandwidth if they want it by renting a leased line from various providers, so it's not even a matter of lacking choice.

The result is quite a mess. The original principles are sound but what the debate morphed into no longer bears much resemblence to them.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | about 4 years ago | (#33785278)

The result is quite a mess. The original principles are sound but what the debate morphed into no longer bears much resemblence to them.

Kind of like every political movement ever.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784302)

As a non-hard techie...

They make pills for that now.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784346)

The assumption is just wrong. Most all vendors are switching to torrent downloads. Like World of Warcraft updates for example.... it's more efficient not less efficient. It actually speeds up the internet.
If Comcast can throttle Netflix or Hulu to the point where the streams are horrible just to force you to watch their Cable on demand channels there is a problem.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784366)

I gotta do this as AC because I already modded.
FYI warning, you're close to flamebait, but I'll at least be American and say you're innocent of that until proven otherwise!
I think you're seriously scrambling Net Neutrality with price of content.
Want to buy an episode of House? Pay Hulu/iTunes/someone $89.95. (Being facetious). Somewhere in that price is their paying for their outbound line.
You're paying ____ for your inbound line to download it from. But that's paying for content. If you have to have it in 12 seconds flat, pay your ISP $150 for a T3 backbone or some such.
If that's too much for a line, we can discuss the Market Condition of line pricing.
But once you've got your line plan chosen, the ISP better not dare capriciously screw with the bitflow.

Hard not to mod you as a troll (5, Insightful)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | about 4 years ago | (#33784382)

Good one, claim you are not a troll when trolling.

Guns are only wanted by criminals.

Cars are only wanted by speeders.

The article links net neutrality to Facebook. You link it to copyright infringement, completly ignoring the case of Lessig.

Net neutrality means ANYONE, no matter their status has the same access to the web. That means that if I start a website tomorrow, it will be transported around the web with the same speed as Facebook, the ISP's own home page, Apples iTunes, CNN or someone's homepage.

This means I get the same breaks. This is REVOLUTIONARY about the web. BEFORE the web, the only way to be published big was to publish big. ONLY the largest newspapers could afford to distribute cross country, nevermind distribute globally. With the internet, MY website can be accessed ANYWHERE!

This allows me to compete. Imagine if Myspace had simply been able to buy special access. If ISP's could demand of every website a fee to be distributed like with Cable TV. Can't pay the fee? Then you don't get on their network. How was Facebook to startup then? How can you start a new tv network without millions in backing and the lockin that brings?

How CAN I start a new news network that broadcasts to every home independent of the powers that be if I need the powers that be to pay for the access?

If you don't get this, if you think it is about copyright infringement then you are the person who wanted presses banned because it allowed books to be owned by poor people. Either you are too stupid to get freedom, or you hate freedom.

There is no middle ground in this. You can't put restrictions on who can access a media and expect everyone to be able to use it. Unless of course you think only those with enough money should have a voice.

What the press did for political freedom, the internet is doing a thousand times over. But then, if you take your freedom for granted, or worse are willing to sell it, then I suppose none of this means anything.

Perhaps you are not a troll after all. There are worse things then trolls. People who do not value freedom. A willing slave.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784386)

Net neutrality is not about restricting types of content. Without net neutrality firms like ISPs can charge their users for access to the internet and then turn around and say to companies that unless they pay up the ISP will throttle triffic to and from their site. Net neutrality is about companies double dipping, which goes against the point of the internet.

Considering the amount of money many porn sites make, this won't have any effect on them but may shut down other businesses who don't want to pay every single ISP out there for fair access.

And don't be fooled, once it starts becoming common practice businesses will have to pay every ISP.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (4, Insightful)

Skreems (598317) | about 4 years ago | (#33784414)

The problem with a non-neutral network is that it quickly becomes a tool to increase lock-in. If youtube and hulu start paying major ISPs to prioritize their traffic, then the barrier to entry becomes that much higher for the next product which, on a level playing field, could have competed with them.

Mind you, there's another aspect to this as well, which is the whole "double dipping" problem. Because what I, you, and every other ISP subscriber out there are paying for is (at least used to be) a connection that would deliver whatever we requested at the speed we paid for. We're still doing that, but the providers are trying to take a cut from the people on the other side of the connection as well, and that's where we get into problems. See, if I want to go to "watchingpaintdry.com" and stream it 24 hours a day, I should be able to use just as much bandwidth as if I were watching Hulu. Because I paid for it. Because it's good for competition. Because if my ISP limits watchingpaintdry.com to a lower bandwidth in an attempt to extort them into paying them off, they degrade the utility and quality of the service I paid for.

Like Lessig said, the beauty of the platform is its openness. All the ISPs have to do is route bits to your home at the rate you paid for. And because those bits can come from anybody, the platform is incredibly useful as a multi-purpose tool. Except if all they're doing is routing bits, they lose all those money-making goodies like advertisements and service add-ons, and they don't want that. It's greed, pure and simple.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (1)

Culture20 (968837) | about 4 years ago | (#33784460)

As a non-hard techie with only a cursory understanding of the issue

I'm glad you voiced you ignorance first. It puts me in "educator mode" instead of "hostile reader".

My real concern is that the proponents of network neutrality just want to be able to have unabated access to download music and movies and porn without paying for them - that there's no real "freedom" issues at hand; it's just people wanting free stuff.

This is an assumption stemming from your ignorance. I don't listen to music except via radio or Pandora (usually only once a week at most). I do own one music CD I bought from a local band, but I don't know where it is. I enjoy playing music, but listening is a take-it-or-leave-it proposition. I pay to watch movies, or watch them on TV. I'm not interested in unabated access to download music and movies and porn without paying for them. I am interested in being able to ping things from home, or use traceroute to map my network path to something, SSH somewhere, and use bittorrent for legit purposes. My ISP, which has a monopoly where I live (except satellite), originally prevented SSH when I first signed up until I complained and explained I use it for work. They were also blocking my VPN connection. After a network outage within the last year where I used traceroute and ping to help them diagnose the issue, they disabled ICMP (traceroute and ping). They haven't disabled BT yet, but they probably will at some point. They should just be moving bits between me and the recipients, but they're using the fact that I can't really choose different service to strongarm me in to service that doesn't meet my needs.

Freedom of speech means putting up with soapbox preachers. They're chatty, but at least you can walk down the sidewalk. ISPs without Network Neutrality are like the police blocking off the sidewalk to prevent soapbox preachers from using the sidewalk (along with everyone else).

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784826)

I do own one music CD I bought from a local band, but I don't know where it is. However, I am not a lawyer nor do I understand the telco business, and am thus totally ignorant in most matters (except setting up SSH), but like any Slashdot poster, feel I can wing it and contribute to the intelligence of this discussion.

I'm glad you're honest, and you're a real programmer and know how to use traceroute and setup a VPN, that's really awesome. So obviously you know what you are talking about when it comes to net neutrality - because you are like a "network" expert?

I'm not interested in unabated access to download music and movies and porn without paying for them. ...They haven't disabled BT yet,

You pay for movies, so you're not downloading porn and music, but you're worried about them disabling BT? In best Beavis impression : "Liar...liar...liar..."

I'm all for net neutrality, but I'm against people sucking up the bandwidth downloading their "music". Personally, I think there should be a usage fee. If you want to pull down movies, I'm fine with that, but pay for it. Otherwise there will be trouble. As soon as net neutrality hits, all innovation on the web will be crushed, and we will be at a standstill, like what happened with the railroad and auto industry once these were monopolies.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (1)

theghost (156240) | about 4 years ago | (#33784510)

You are wrong across the board.

The people who just want free stuff aren't generally aware enough to know about the network neutrality issue. The proponents of network neutrality are concerned about censorship and about companies colluding to harm consumers and stifle innovation in order to defend their own slice of the market.

And also: wtf are you doing on slashdot with internet habits like those? Smells like astroturf.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (2, Insightful)

Svartalf (2997) | about 4 years ago | (#33784534)

Oh, you've just not heard from Google and others...

Net Neutrality is about not dinking with traffic- just deliver it.

Net Neutrality is about not interfering with bittorrent traffic- I don't pirate, I get Linux distributions and other things that're a LEGITIMATE use of that protocol.

Net Neutrality is about not interfering with SIP traffic from a competing telecom interest so that the ISP can sell their own SIP or h.323 service.

Net Neutrality is about not interfering with HTTP traffic going to/from Google and all of those others you mention.

It's all of that. And it DOES affect you. You're wrong like you surmise at the end of your post.

The fact that Obama and the Dems promised something along these lines, haven't done much WITH it, and what they've done is much like what they did with Healthcare "Reform", makes for interesting discussion- but that's not really germane to the thread you started here and would just merely start up a flamefest from the liberal and conservative crowd on /. :-D

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (2, Interesting)

icebraining (1313345) | about 4 years ago | (#33784556)

You mean illegal downloads, not "free stuff". Youtube is free last time I checked. Net neutrality has little to do with copyright violations, and everything to do with normal websites.

Imagine that now a new (completely legal) Netflix competitor appears that you actually prefer over Netflix. It has more features, or a better selection of certain movies, or cheaper prices.

Yet, if you try to use it your experience will be shitty (slow streaming, high latency) because Netflix has an established player has the money to pay the ISPs' bribes and prioritize itself over their competitors.

This is lead to a huge barrier on entry for new competitors on established sites, and a general lack of innovation, which is the thing that makes the Internet so great.

What if Yahoo could have paid to keep Google unusable? What if Microsoft could have paid to prioritize traffic from IIS servers over Apache servers? What if Apple could pay to squash great services like Spotify for the iTunes service?

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (3, Insightful)

melikamp (631205) | about 4 years ago | (#33784564)

Network neutrality is not about "free stuff" at all, it's about no discrimination based on source and destination. If a cartel of major ISPs is paid to promote YouTube, say, at the expense of everyone else's video site, small businesses everywhere will feel the sting. And the other big thing here is censorship. Without network neutrality, a Christian lobby, for example, may be able to block or throttle down A LOT of stuff. And, considering how much money they have, you can be sure that the network content will become more similar to the day-time cable.

Your point about wanting to access movies and music without paying for it is without merit. We are all paying for data transfer, and without network neutrality in place, even the free-as-in-freedom content which artists created with the intention of sharing freely will be marginalized, because it will compete with a handful of extremely well-funded commercial offerings.

A car analogy really works here, I think. The internet is kind of like the road system: it is designed from the ground up so that any host can communicate with any other host, as long as they pay for data transfer. Just like the roads are designed so that anyone in the USA can travel anywhere in the USA, as long as they have a car or can afford a bus. Imagine that almost all good roads in the USA are private and that there is no law which amounts to "road neutrality". The road barons would be able to isolate whole states and prevent the workforce from moving to a place with better employment opportunities. In this context, your opposition is similar to saying that we don't need road neutrality because some people would use it to drive to a titty bar. Who cares, there is much, much more at stake: our freedom to express ourselves, to educate ourselves, and our economic freedom.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (4, Insightful)

LanMan04 (790429) | about 4 years ago | (#33784572)

My real concern is that the proponents of network neutrality just want to be able to have unabated access to download music and movies and porn without paying for them - that there's no real "freedom" issues at hand; it's just people wanting free stuff.

The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all. (H. L. Mencken)

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (1)

Scooter's_dad (833628) | about 4 years ago | (#33785292)

That's a wonderful quotation; thanks for bringing it to my attention. Wish I had mod points!

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (2, Informative)

sorak (246725) | about 4 years ago | (#33784614)

I guess the affect for someone like me is that most of my internet viewing is something like youtube, netflix, hulu, etc, and whether or not the cost of streaming media should be passed on to me as the end user.

For me the big deal is that my local monopoly is comcast. I can go on hulu and watch a show for free, or I can pay 99 cents to get it on demand. I have a vonage phone that I pay $15 a month for, or I can pay comcast $40 per month for their VOIP phone. I can pay 8.95 per month for netflix, and be able to stream movies and shows on my terms, or I can pay comcast $LARGE_AMOUNT for slightly better TV service ($45 for digital, plus $6 for DVR/HD, plus extra for premium channels).

So, the question is, with all these online services cutting into their profits, is it unreasonable to have a concern that they will use throttling/prioritization to give themselves an unfair advantage over all their competitors?

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (1)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | about 4 years ago | (#33784692)

Net neutrality means a lot of things to different people. To the consumer it means being able to use the service they pay for in any way that the want. If somebody pays for unlimited use of a connection with x speed up and y speed down, and then the ISP tries to impose arbitrary limits or downshifts speeds on some or all traffic based on the individual user or the type of content, that is unethical. The ISP is then failing to render the service it has been paid to provide within the parameters it advertised.

You of course have some personal problem with "piracy", but you see that cannot be enforced without the wholesale compromise of privacy. If you want to limit or eliminate bittorrents for example because of their evil file sharing potential, you then also limit or eliminate one of the primary distribution methods for Linux distributions' install disk images. Should I not be able to download Linux just so you can feel better that somebody can't download copyrighted content? Should all content transmitted be 'inspected' by some internet Gestapo to make sure that the content isn't copyrighted?

The other level of network neutrality is that of content providers themselves and their relationships with bandwidth providers (ISPs). Within this there is the division of a 'positive' traffic agreement such as paying to give a certain type of traffic the highest priority vs. a 'negative' traffic agreement where the payment is for reducing traffic of a certain type to the lowest priority or eliminating it altogether. Conceivably, for example, hulu could pay AT&T to prioritize its traffic above others to reduce the effects its users would feel during peak congestion hours on networks. As a consequence all non-hulu traffic would have higher latency (though probably not too much). Or Vimeo could pay Verizon to downgrade Veoh's traffic, or even to block all their traffic, as a bid to undermine their competition, which could lead to a bidding war between the two companies and Verizon to disrupt/eliminate each other's traffic from that ISP to the detriment of all consumers involved.

You'll note that where network neutrality applies to content providers, file sharing is not involved at all. It's also not about defraying/'passing on' costs. It's about paying for 'premium' treatment or paying to kneecap your competition. Both of which are detrimental to some degree to the broader interests of internet users.

All of that being said, I think you're a dick, a moralist asshole who wants to support a corrupt system of middlemen enforcing an obsolete paradigm of false scarcity. Funny thing is, I'm not even a leftist, I'm a minarcho-capitalist, but intellectual property has no place in a truly free market. A truly free market would allow for people to use their resources in whatever way they can, and if one person can produce another person's idea cheaper and better, the second person should not be able to go crying to the government to make the first person stop. People should be paid to work, not paid 'residuals' or 'royalties' for years based on something they did in a few hours.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (1)

zeropointburn (975618) | about 4 years ago | (#33784858)

As for filesharing, that will happen whether or not net neutrality is allowed. Destroying the open internet in an attempt to reduce filesharing is dangerously naive.

  The group of people supporting network neutrality and the group of scumbag leechers you referred to may overlap a little, but they are by no means the same.
  How would you feel if your ISP decides to restrict or entirely block Google in favor of Bing? Now how would you feel if part of that deal was to filter out search results having anything to do with wrongdoing by Microsoft and by your ISP? What if Blockbuster pays more than Netflix, and you have to pay your ISP for a premium package just to get access to a service that you already pay for?
  What about news sites? Suppose Wikileaks (or insert your favorite troublemaking info site here) gets classified as a news source which then has to pay the ISP's to allow access. Now suppose that the big players are paying enough in access fees that the small sites can't afford to compete. Suddenly all those little sources of interesting information either dry up or start charging.
  Now let's consider social media like Facebook and Twitter. Heavy usage, heavy access fees. Would you use Myspace or Facebook if you had to pay for it? (I don't use either and would be amused to see the sites die, but not at the hands of net neutrality violation)

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (2, Insightful)

hey (83763) | about 4 years ago | (#33785016)

This post is wrong but useful. Since it shows what many "non-techies" (including politicians) think net neutrality is.

Re:My concerns about network neutrality. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33785322)

My real concern is that the proponents of network neutrality just want to be able to have unabated access to download music and movies and porn without paying for them - that there's no real "freedom" issues at hand; it's just people wanting free stuff.

There's nothing wrong with wanting VoIP (and IM, for people who are into that) for free.

I honestly WANT some of those people [pirates] to have more restricted access.

That's understandable, but inhibiting non-pirate commercial use of the net is a terrible price to pay, just to inconvenience pirates. Net-neutrality debate isn't about whether or not people pay for content; it's about whether or not they pay extra for all content, whether it's pirated or not. If you want to set up a situation where pirates end up paying an extra dollar per n gigabytes of pirated content, you're going also going to cost non-pirates an extra dollar when they download n gigabytes of non-pirate content. Nobody against net neutrality has proposed a way to keep this from happening. Just how badly do you want to restrict access?

Car analogy time: some people speed. They go 85 MPH when you would prefer they not exceed 55 MPH. So you pass a law that prevents engines from being able to move cars faster than 25 MPH. You have solved the problem, but you've done it in a horrifically destructive way. Just how bad do you want this, that so much collateral damage is acceptable?

Deluded, solipsistic saddoes... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784184)

"As I looked around at the packed theater of teens and twenty-somethings, there was no doubt who was in the right, however geeky and clumsy and sad."

Oh please. Get a life.

"Zuckerberg is a rightful hero of our time" (1)

Culture20 (968837) | about 4 years ago | (#33784214)

A trickster hero at best: One who stole fire from the gods, threw golden apples to distract Atalanta, hid under the bellies of sheep, and displayed Medusa's head a a present. There are some cultures who praise quick wit over morality. In the U.S., morality is praised over quick wit. He is not our hero. Let him go to Greece.

Re:"Zuckerberg is a rightful hero of our time" (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784352)

"In the U.S., morality is praised over quick wit."

You new here or something?

Re:"Zuckerberg is a rightful hero of our time" (2, Insightful)

schmidt349 (690948) | about 4 years ago | (#33784412)

It's ironic that you chose Prometheus as the dubious divinity because he's been adopted by our culture as the patron saint of progress. You'll find his image everywhere that human ingenuity is celebrated, from the famous statue in the Rockefeller Center to Ayn Rand's paean to Prometheus in Atlas Shrugged. As a god he celebrates the best part in all of us, the cleverness that separates us from the animals.

In the U.S., morality is praised over quick wit.

Nothing gets a Monday started like a great joke. Thanks man!

Re:"Zuckerberg is a rightful hero of our time" (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | about 4 years ago | (#33784430)

In the U.S., morality is praised over quick wit [citation needed]

Actually, does Zuckerburg care whether he's praised or not? He can always stuff a few million $$$ in his ears to drown out the sound of the angry, wheezing nerd-mob.

Summary (1)

slasho81 (455509) | about 4 years ago | (#33784218)

I didn't RTFA, but the summary is a mess.

Re:Summary (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | about 4 years ago | (#33784372)

You should see the website of what the movie is about.

Facebook is a lame site (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784254)

There are so many better sites, and better ways of accomplishing social networking. It's just that there are so many lamers who just use the easiest, most popular crap without ever knowing, or caring, that there is far better.

Re:Facebook is a lame site (3, Insightful)

icebraining (1313345) | about 4 years ago | (#33784644)

most popular

Yes, I wonder why someone would use popularity as a guide to choose a social network.

Zuckerberg hasn't built a free/open platform (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784272)

Facebook may be the next Windows -- a dominant, proprietary platform on which everyone else's apps run. Add the absence of end-user control of the applications and data (including privacy), and it's antithetical to the free, open, and end-user controlled Internet on which it's built. How will the next Zuckerberg build his application? Not so easily, since he'll be dependent on the closed, proprietary systems and data of Facebook, doing only the things that they permit and only when, where, and how they want it.

Mozilla helped save us from a closed, proprietary web browser (one reason Facebook could blossom). With that battle won and a proliferation of browsers and Microsoft adopting open standards, they are struggling a bit to find a mission. I wish they would turn to their attention to the next issue of the open Internet, a free and open social network.

Re:Zuckerberg hasn't built a free/open platform (1)

js3 (319268) | about 4 years ago | (#33784536)

Facebook may be the next Windows -- a dominant, proprietary platform on which everyone else's apps run. Add the absence of end-user control of the applications and data (including privacy), and it's antithetical to the free, open, and end-user controlled Internet on which it's built. How will the next Zuckerberg build his application? Not so easily, since he'll be dependent on the closed, proprietary systems and data of Facebook, doing only the things that they permit and only when, where, and how they want it.

Mozilla helped save us from a closed, proprietary web browser (one reason Facebook could blossom). With that battle won and a proliferation of browsers and Microsoft adopting open standards, they are struggling a bit to find a mission. I wish they would turn to their attention to the next issue of the open Internet, a free and open social network.

Ugh, they said the same thing about google and apple and they co-exist with windows just fine. Netscape used to be the only proprietary browser until IE came along (unless you liked lynx). I expect facebook to become yesterdays news in a couple of year when the next big thing comes rolling along.

Re:Zuckerberg hasn't built a free/open platform (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784896)

they said the same thing about google and apple and they co-exist with windows just fine.

Google co-exists with (or works on top of) the Windows platform because the Internet and web are free, open, and standards-based. You don't need ActiveX or other proprietary Microsoft browser technologies to use web apps, which was a serious risk when IE had 95% of the market and Microsoft's strategy was 'embrace, extend, and extinguish'. Apple was restricted to a very small market share for most of its history. Now it co-exists in great part because users spend so much of their time in web browsers, and again, because the web is free and open, any web browser on any OS platform will do the job. For 8 years my business has used a web app, built in the proprietary IE days, that only ran on IE and thus only on Windows (the vendor finally became browser neutral last year).

Netscape used to be the only proprietary browser until IE came along (unless you liked lynx).

Or unless you liked Mosaic or many other options, though Netscape certainly was the leader. Regardless, it was a small, rapidly growing market and Netscape didn't have monopoly power. Microsoft did, and Facebook does. I also want to say that Netscape promoted open standards, but I'm not 100% sure I remember correctly.

Re:Zuckerberg hasn't built a free/open platform (1)

dominion (3153) | about 4 years ago | (#33784780)

I wish they would turn to their attention to the next issue of the open Internet, a free and open social network.

Here you go:

http://opensource.appleseedproject.org/ [appleseedproject.org]

Re:Zuckerberg hasn't built a free/open platform (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33785004)

They have already turned their attention to the next issue of the open Internet, you're just bad at identifying the next issue.

Facebook is not the next Windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33785046)

No. Facebook is the next AOL. As much as I dislike Microsoft, I think to compare them to Microsoft is undeserved flattery.

What's the big deal? (1)

js3 (319268) | about 4 years ago | (#33784276)

Granted I havent paid much attention to this movie but what's the big deal about yet another rags to richers internet story? Bill Gates? The napster guy? Mark Cuban? Google founders? Many people have become billionaires from internet ideas.. what's so special about this one?

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

bsDaemon (87307) | about 4 years ago | (#33784446)

You know Bill Gates was a trust fund baby from Ivy League, lawyer parents and grand parents and wasn't going to be poor even if MS didn't take off, right? His is more of a story of 1000-thread-count linen to most-expensive-silk-from-China.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

walterbyrd (182728) | about 4 years ago | (#33785138)

As I understand it, Zuckenberg did not exactly come from "rags" either.

Zuckerberg made a walled garden (5, Insightful)

hey (83763) | about 4 years ago | (#33784280)

He used the open internet and tools to make a walled garden. Not exactly a triumph of openness.

Re:Zuckerberg made a walled garden (1)

hex0D (1890162) | about 4 years ago | (#33785290)

yes it is. In the exact same way that free speech triumphs when people have the freedom to speak out against it, as well as for it. The openness is still out there for you to make a community pea patch or whatever the hell else you would like to do with it, you don't have to use his walled garden and it is in no way stopping you from constructing your own.

For better or worse, people find the consistency of proprietary platforms preferable to the confusion that can come with open platforms. Part of 'openness' is letting the option of using both remain. Don't get all pissy if the majority of people out there have different priorities than you.

It's a movie. (2, Informative)

jlf278 (1022347) | about 4 years ago | (#33784288)

Since when do entertainment and profitabilty make for a deeply flawed movie? Focusing on net neutrality and packet priority would have bored the audience and interfered with the arch of the story. Just because something is ethically (and socio-economically) compelling, does not make it good theater.

Was Zuckenberg's portrayal supposed to flattering? (5, Interesting)

walterbyrd (182728) | about 4 years ago | (#33784316)

Zuckenberg was portrayed as a "hero" ?

When I left the movie, I had the impression that Zunkenberg was portrayed as a thieving, condescending, misogynistic, little twerp. He stole everybody else's ideas, idolized a child molesting drug abuser, and betrayed his best (only?) friend. His only redeeming value is that he was a talented programmer.

Not my idea of a hero, but then, I don't idolize Bill Gates either.

Re:Was Zuckenberg's portrayal supposed to flatteri (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784584)

Zuckenberg was portrayed as a "hero"? ... He stole everybody else's ideas, idolized a child molesting drug abuser ... Not my idea of a hero, but then, I don't idolize Bill Gates either.

Wait, Bill Gates is a child molesting drug user? Whoa!

Re:Was Zuckenberg's portrayal supposed to flatteri (1)

Nadaka (224565) | about 4 years ago | (#33784640)

Gates has gained a few redeeming qualities in his later years. Zuckerberg is still little more than a skillful, lucky douche bag.

Re:Was Zuckenberg's portrayal supposed to flatteri (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784646)

No. Zuckenberg is a dick. Did you think he actually wanted to donate 100M dollars to schools? I say he's just trying to take attention away from the movie.

Re:Was Zuckenberg's portrayal supposed to flatteri (1)

royallthefourth (1564389) | about 4 years ago | (#33784980)

...and really, $100M for schools is not an incredibly nice thing for a billionaire to do. It's enough to make him look good, but it's pocket change to him.

Talented? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784662)

His only redeeming value is that he was a talented programmer.

Sorry if I missed it but what in developing Facebook was, say, "hard" on the level of systems supporting engineering, embedded systems, mathematical computing or search?
Those domains contain the talent.
Hell, even his "idea" was preceded by Friendster, MySpace, etc.

All he really did was cobble together a collection of ideas in a manner that beat the market and did it in a way which showed Wall Street style Ethos (see character attributes in parent post).
And anyone want to see a movie about this?

I saw him as neither a hero nor a saint (2, Interesting)

hellfire (86129) | about 4 years ago | (#33785056)

That's the great thing about this movie as a work of art. The characters were complex and no one was a perfect hero or perfect villain. They were real people, real people with real personality issues and real quirks and real greed. I think that's the key thing here.

Mark Zuckerberg - dick, computer geek, had some vision to make something cool
Eric Parker - dick, computer geek, thinks he's awesome but when confronted he scampers like a scared mouse and then uses paranoid delusions to explain what went wrong without owning up to his own mistakes.
Winklevoss twins and that other guy - all dicks, guys with money who think they deserve a hoard of cash because they are good looking, come from money and have high GPAs. And yet their vision was limited basically to a Facebook limited to Harvard and had no real vision for the features to add to it.
Eduardo - not really much of a dick, nice guy, wanted to help, wanted to help run the business, and in the end got screwed despite being the original funder, but compared to everyone else had no real vision, he was just trying to do as he was taught. Nice guy but if he had had his way, Facebook would probably not be nearly as big as it is.

I loved the characters as characters, but the only character I actually liked as a person was Mark's ex-gf. Everyone else was foolish or a dick. And that's what happened here, a bunch of dicks met at one point, soap opera ensues, and because this was such an explosively good idea everyone thinks they deserve a chunk of money. If you think that any of these characters other than the ex-gf is portrayed as a 100% hero or villain, you have a seriously warped and false sense of black and white and you don't belong in the discourse of this movie.

Lawrence Lessig on a soapbox (3, Insightful)

L3370 (1421413) | about 4 years ago | (#33784400)

It's a movie...based off a an actual event but injected with LOTS of fiction and creative juicy bits to make the story interesting and dramatic. The movie isn't flawed because it fails to mention the "magic behind the facebook story," as most people watching the movie don't give a shit about that stuff! It would be nonsense that distracts from the movie.

The openness and magical qualities of the internet was not the plot of the story. The [fictional] movie was about friendship, betrayal, and the abrasive personality of Mark Zuckerberg. Rating the film down because it was lacking an explaination of the internet is stupid, and it seems more like an opportunity to talk about something Lessig cares about.

It was an interesting movie btw. After watching it I went home and Google'd Sean Parker info because I didn't know he had a hand in facebook. I also wanted to find out whether he was as big a douchebag as they played him out to be on the movie.

Re:Lawrence Lessig on a soapbox (4, Interesting)

Animats (122034) | about 4 years ago | (#33785000)

It's a movie...based off a an actual event but injected with LOTS of fiction and creative juicy bits to make the story interesting and dramatic. The movie isn't flawed because it fails to mention the "magic behind the facebook story," as most people watching the movie don't give a shit about that stuff! It would be nonsense that distracts from the movie.

Yes, it's Hollywood. Don't expect realism. For those of us here in Silicon Valley, the amazing thing was Zuckerman finding, on a low budget, a house in Palo Alto a few blocks from the Stanford campus, with a pool.

There is, after all, plenty of "geek" stuff in the film. The sequence where Zuckerman writes screen scrapers to get all the Harvard house face books into his system even has valid Perl code shown on screen. Lessig has a point, though. It's getting harder to launch something like that as "the Internet" is divided into a series of walled gardens, run by Facebook, Comcast, Apple, and Google. It's not impossible. But there are more "gatekeepers" now.

I looked at Zuckerman's page on Facebook to see if he liked the movie, but he hasn't posted anything yet.

Re:Lawrence Lessig on a soapbox (4, Insightful)

FoolishOwl (1698506) | about 4 years ago | (#33785130)

I admire Lessig, appreciate his political arguments, and recommend his books to others frequently. However, I've got to say, this seems like an instance of Lessig using a topical event to talk about what he wants to talk about, which is almost completely unrelated to the initial topic.

Also, I can't see the point of praising Zuckerberg so strongly. He designed a social media site that was slightly less crappy than the other competing social media sites that existed when he introduced it. Most of the work of promoting social media sites is done by their users; in the case of Facebook, there's also the constant spam from crappy games by the egregiously manipulative Zynga. There are lots of smart, hard-working, but unscrupulous and greedy entrepreneurs; Zuckerberg is simply luckier than most of them. I don't see how Zuckerberg deserves any praise.

It seems to me it weakens Lessig's message to praise Zuckerberg.

Oh no! (4, Funny)

sunking2 (521698) | about 4 years ago | (#33784494)

I just had a Jon Katz flashback! Does he have a new identity now? All the summary needed was a post columbine reference.

Genius overblown, evil underrepresented (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784898)

Since about 1995, it's not a big deal to score 1600 on the SAT--a good fraction of 1% of test-takers manages this. In prior years, with different scoring adjustments in place, only a handful in a million would score so high.

None of the programming Zuckerberg was portrayed as having done in the movie required great ability, except perhaps to do it while drunk. The programming required to produce facemash was minimal, however.

The movie omits other Zuckerberg evil antics.
http://www.businessinsider.com/mark-zuckerbergs-and-privacy-crimes-2010-3

Erm (3, Interesting)

argStyopa (232550) | about 4 years ago | (#33784940)

"...(they) thought that the real story was the invention of Facebook..."
Perhaps the makers of the movie knew what their "real story" was, while some internet talking head (hey! I'm "internet famous!") is simply flogging his personal dead horse?

disappointed with lessig (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33784960)

I expected better from Lessig. I thought he cared about ethics and privacy. Instead we get hero worship and excuses.

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