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Japan: Police Arrest Journalists For Selling DVD-Backup Tools

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the selective-enforcement dept.

DRM 252

Modellismo writes "Last week four journalists from Sansai Books were arrested for selling, through the company website, a copy of a magazine published last year (with a free cover mounted disc) focused on how to backup/rip DVDs. They violated Japan's Unfair Competition Prevention Law that recently has been revised to make illegal the sale of any DRM circumvention device or software. It's interesting to note that Japanese cyber police could arrest the Amazon Japan CEO, too, as the online giant is selling a lot of magazines, books and software packages for DVD copy and ripping: exactly what put Sansai Books' staff in trouble."

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thankss (-1)

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libdvdcss ilegal? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729193)

wonder how many enbedded devices produced in japan have this little piece of code in them...

Re:libdvdcss ilegal? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729225)

It's interesting to note that Japanese cyber police could arrest the Amazon Japan CEO, too

Eh... if they can slap steel handcuffs on you and drag you to a brick-and-mortar jail, they aren't cyber police. They're real meatspace police.

Re:libdvdcss ilegal? (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729271)

Not necessarily. They could have all sorts of neural implants and such. Robocop was a cyber-cop, for example.

Re:libdvdcss ilegal? (1)

Tukz (664339) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729459)

Robocop was a cyborg.
Cyber != Cyborg

"Cyber" prefix is related to internet related concepts.

Re:libdvdcss ilegal? (4, Informative)

totalg33k (970475) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729519)

Except that cyborg is short for "cybernetic organism". So yes, Robo-cop was very much a cyber cop.

Re:libdvdcss ilegal? (1)

Tukz (664339) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729565)

No, he wasn't.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet-related_prefixes [wikipedia.org]

"Cyber" doesn't mean what you think it does.
Cybernetic is something completely different.

Re:libdvdcss ilegal? (4, Informative)

tragedy (27079) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729805)

And if you click on the word "cyber" at the top of the article you linked, it takes you to wiktionary [wiktionary.org] where it says:

Etymology

From cybernetic.

Cybernetic comes from Greek meaning "steer" or rudder. It basically means the study of feedback control loops.

Re:libdvdcss ilegal? (1, Interesting)

Tukz (664339) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729899)

Yes, and has nothing to do with the current meaning of "cyber".
The cyber prefix was taken from Cybernetic, but that doesn't mean they mean the same thing.

Re:libdvdcss ilegal? (3, Insightful)

aaaaaaargh! (1150173) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730019)

"Cyber" is a short form for "cybernetics", a former science that has been surpassed/replaced by control theory and dynamics system theory.

Just because a few thousands clueless politicians use the term the wrong way doesn't mean that they successfully have redefined its meaning.

Re:libdvdcss ilegal? (1)

donaldm (919619) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729855)

This is why when you download a major distribution of Linux you will not find "libdvdcss" installed since the distributors of the distribution particularly any company such as Redhat or Novel which are based in the USA would be sued by the appropriate agencies.

What surprised me from the article was the following:

Among other things this law makes illegal all the Linux distributions which come pre-installed with libdvdcss like BackTrack, CrunchBang Linux, LinuxMCE, Linux Mint, PCLinuxOS, Puppy Linux 4.2.1, Recovery Is Possible, Slax, Super OS, Pardus, and XBMC Live.

The above distributions appear that they like to live dangerously by pre-installing "libdvdcss" when a little bit of web searching will tell the installer of the particular distribution how to install the appropriate DRM defeating libraries and software ether by "apt-get" or "yum". Of course if you are a MS Windows user you can also install the appropriate libraries and capture/ripping software from an appropriate web site.

You do realize that I can't tell you what to put in your web search string to find the appropriate read-me/how-to information pertaining to the above since that could be considered aiding people to pirate DVD's or other audio/video media. :)

Japan: (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729207)

The only country who bows lower to corporations than the US of A.

Re:Japan: (4, Funny)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729247)

Parent would be correct, or at the very least it's a tie. Mod'ing someone down for telling the truth only shows what a sack of shit the moderator is.

Re:Japan: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729309)

No. The moderator was offended. When one is offended, that gives them justification to become angry and do what they can to control (censor) others speech and behavior.

Of course, just ignoring the comment or behavior never crosses their mind. And they never consider that by being "offended" they are encouraging more of the same. As a matter of fact, an entire industry was formed to offend many people - example Talk Radio.

Re:Japan: (4, Interesting)

jrumney (197329) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729349)

Parent would be correct, or at the very least it's a tie.

It's not a tie. While a few very high profile sites like Pandora and NetFlix geoblock consumers from outside the US, most internet radio from the US is available worldwide. But try finding a Japanese internet radio station that plays music and is not blocked from outside Japan. Also, if you ever get the chance to watch the news on NHK Worldwide, witness how the entire sports segment of the news has the video replaced by a graphic stating "Due to rights issues, the video for this item is not available outside Japan", even though most of the sports being shown are local Japanese events that do not have rights holders outside of Japan to complain, and any other news channel is fine with showing short snippets of non-live sport, under fair use news reporting exceptions to whatever exclusive broadcast rights are in place for the sport.

Re:Japan: (1)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729427)

I'll take that under advisement, but I'll raise you one Fukushima. Now, who was NOT bowing to whom to set up that cluster fsck?

Re:Japan: (5, Insightful)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729451)

It's like you believe Korea does not even exist!

Corporations are an extension of government - it should not surprise anyone when they work together.

not in the USA (4, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729589)

in the USA, government is an extension of Corporations

Re:not in the USA (1, Troll)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729811)

I think the guy was talking about the Government-issued corporate license, which makes corporations an extension of the government with special govt-granted privileges (like immunity for the owners). Of course the corporations return the favor by giving politicians campaign donations. Quoting from the article:

>>>"Japanese cyber police could arrest the Amazon Japan CEO..... exactly what put Sansai Books' staff in trouble."

No because Amazon has bribed the politicians not to bother them, and instead go after competitors. The law is an effective way to kill off any potential new business from challenging the top dogs. Ditto regulations which hurt new small businesses more than large businesses. Contrary to popular believe Megacorps LOVE regulations, especially those written in their favor.

Re:not in the USA (2, Informative)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729923)

yes, and on the subject of the far east, it is pretty much worse than the USA, it is practically social, political, and cultural foundation of the society:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chaebol [wikipedia.org]

these guys can do no wrong. it's like the british monarchy also ran apple, ibm, microsoft, google, ge, and gm. this is way beyond special treatments and regulations in your favor. it's not even corporatocracy. it's more like corporate monarchy

someone: what's the term for this insane level of assimilation between political, corporate, and aristocratic power?

Re:not in the USA (3, Insightful)

Lisias (447563) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730005)

someone: what's the term for this insane level of assimilation between political, corporate, and aristocratic power?

Idiocracy.

i really hate the word "idiocracy" (2)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730083)

it doesn't mean anything. i've come to the conclusion the only people who like that word are, themselves, idiots

society has problems. do you want to fix it? or just go "it's all stupid" and walk away thinking you've said something valuable and important?

Re:not in the USA (2)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730013)

it's like the british monarchy also ran apple, ibm, microsoft, google, ge, and gm

A better historical example: The East India Company [wikipedia.org] .

Re:not in the USA (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730095)

luckily that's historical, because that's even worse: that's chaebol, PLUS the racist imperial subjugation and theft of other people in their own lands

Re:Japan: (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730037)

Corporations are an extension of government...

Not on this 'Soviet' planet where it's the other way around.

Re:Japan: (5, Informative)

AmiMoJo (196126) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729593)

Have you actually read one of these magazines? I have a few of them here and they are quite incredible from a westerner's point of view.

I have a couple that are all about downloading, one focused on BitTorrent and the other on Share and Winny. They have huge lists of web sites that index warez, films, TV shows and porn, each one rated for you. They explain how to download and set up emulators, how to burn Playstation 2 games to DVD and chip your console, how to use a Nintendo DS flash card and so forth. On the first page there is a tiny warning about not breaking copyright laws, then 90 pages of how to break copyright laws.

That is the real story here. The fact that the police picked this particular bit of software as their way of prosecuting these guys is just an aside. Personally I love those mags but I can understand why the police were under pressure to find a way of taking action.

Re:Japan: (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729987)

Reminds me of a story from the Amiga days in UK.

Back then you had magazines like Amiga Power, and in the back were page on page of classifieds.

Among those were kids advertising copy services. These involved mailing them a stack of diskettes of games and programs accompanied with a list of what you wanted in return.

One guy that told about his experience running such a service found himself so swamped with diskettes that he spent whole weekends on the task, and had to get himself one of those multi-drive addons just to keep up.

Insane. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729213)

Just insane.

Journalists? (3, Interesting)

tomhath (637240) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729219)

Two warnings were issued to Sansai Books by three industry organizations, including the Japan Video Software Association, protesting the sale of the guidebook, but the publisher continued to offer the product.

There are ways to dispute a law you disagree with. Disobeying it is usually not a good way.

Obey. (4, Insightful)

neoshroom (324937) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729321)

There are ways to dispute a law you disagree with. Disobeying it is usually not a good way.

The bus driver said to Rosa Parks.

Re:Obey. (2)

tomhath (637240) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729495)

That's why I qualified it with "usually". There are extreme situations.

Re:Obey. (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729735)

Exactly.

Imagine if the bus driver didn't like driving on the right hand side of the road and all the sudden started driving on the left. It may not have matter where Ms Parks sat.

Re:Obey. (1)

neoshroom (324937) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729771)

Usually, laws are just. This is the extreme situation.

Re:Obey. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40730099)

There are too many of them for that to be true.

Re:Obey. (4, Insightful)

91degrees (207121) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729775)

She didn't just disobey it. She flagrantly disobeyed it, in full knowledge that the NAACP branch she was secretary of would support her. This is one of those exceptions where disobeying is a good idea.

If these guys have decided to disobey the law in order to challenge it in the courts then that's cool, and I look forward to seeing their well prepared legal battle.

Re:Obey. (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730109)

The bus driver said to Rosa Parks.

Rosa Parks accepted the risks and the consequences of being arrested.

She did not know nor could she have known that the NAACP would chose her as their test case. There were other candidates.

Think about that for a moment. The ones who were left on their own.

Although widely honored in later years, she also suffered for her act; she was fired from her job as a seamstress in a local department store. Eventually, she moved to Detroit, Michigan, where she briefly found similar work.

Rosa Parks [wikipedia.org]

Re:Journalists? (4, Interesting)

AngryDeuce (2205124) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729363)

There are ways to dispute a law you disagree with. Disobeying it is usually not a good way.

I disagree. Civil disobedience, historically speaking, is a very effective method to bring about political change. The founding of the U.S. itself is steeped in civil disobedience. [wikipedia.org]

The simple fact is, most people don't give a shit about injustice until it effects them personally. Civil disobedience brings it to their doorstep and forces them to acknowledge it. It took people occupying segregated lunch counters in the South before civil rights were really addressed 50 years ago, just as it took people occupying lower Manhattan to get wealth inequality really addressed today. Whether you agree with the protesters or not is irrelevant (and I'm really not interested in a bunch of ranting responses about the Occupy movement one way or the other, honestly); it forced those issues into the limelight. Mission: Accomplished.

Re:Journalists? (1)

Stormthirst (66538) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729387)

Whilst this used to be the case, Occupy seems to have done very little to address the wealth inequality. Frank Dodd for example has been gutted, and completely ineffective. Why? Because it's all about the money. Civil rights 50 years ago wasn't about money, it was (and racism is still) about irrational and unfounded hate.

Re:Journalists? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729623)

They were too busy being run off by the police. Its hard to get any momentum when the police are allowed to arrest hundreds at a time for no real reason.

Re:Journalists? (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729699)

civil rights was not about money. in the US, it had a chance of winning (and over years, it did win).

'occupy' is about money.

in the US, this won't be resolved. it *will* need a revolution, likely a violent one, to fix this.

I do not wish this but I see it as something that will come down the pike.

what's clear is that what we have now is not sustainable and once the shit finally hits the fan (bad enough), pitchforks and fires will be the norm.

again, its not what I want to see but I see no other way to gut the financially elite. and its OBVIOUS they don't plan to change their ways voluntarily. the system does not show any signs of softening up, either, on this 'money is holy' bullshit view we have in this country.

Re:Journalists? (1)

Shark (78448) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729867)

I assure you that it was no less about the money back then too. The major difference between then and now is people's willingness to stand for what they believe and lack of fear for the consequences of doing so. Most have it way too easy nowadays to consider the kind of rebelion and associated consequences required to change things. Plus, for the most part, principles are lacking to make an eventual rebelion more than an angry mob. All that established power needs to do to quell any genuine uprising is insert a few agents provocateurs and the protesters' case falls appart.

On Frank Dodd... Large corporations aren't afraid of regulations and rules, they write pretty much all of those. What they're afraid of is competition. Thankfully for them, the regulatory costs in industries that matter is way to high to let any of that happen.

Re:Journalists? (2)

LocalH (28506) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729399)

"wealth inequality"

So nobody should ever have more money than anyone else?

Re:Journalists? (5, Interesting)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729615)

the point is, those without money should still get quality education, healthcare, and a chance at advancing themselves

but current tax laws in the USA and American social policies advanced by the right are stratifying society, permanently

meaning, if you are poor or middle class, you get inferior education, healthcare, and no chance to advance socioeconomically

the point of life should be to better yourself. not to slave your entire life for someone who already has a lot of money, always will have a lot of money, never suffers for their crimes in the same way as the poor, and lives in a system rigged so that they, their children, and their grandchildren, can never possibly be poor. while those are poor, their children, and their grandchildren, are in such a rigged system they can never possibly be rich

that's wealth inequality. a class society. that's where the USA is headed with the right wing republican political agenda

the USA should be a MERITOCRACY. this is not what we have. what we have are country club boys complaining that the poor don't understand hard work, while they get a cushy job where they hardly exert any effort, just for chumming with the dad of their friend. meanwhile, the poor and middle class bust their ass, sometimes in two jobs, and live paycheck to paycheck, where the smallest of accidents or healthcare emergencies can ruin their entire lives

THAT'S wealth inequality, and it is not a free society

Re:Journalists? (2)

noh8rz6 (2689737) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729949)

the point is, those without money should still get quality education, healthcare, and a chance at advancing themselves

umm, are you from the US? We have universal public schooling and very cheap public universities. I'm in CA, where several of our UCs are in the top universities nationwide. some public schools suck, but many are really good. healthcare? even before obamacare, the people that got the best healthcare were blue collar union employees, government clerks, and anybody at any large company. In fact, it's ILLEGAL for a company to offer one health plan to executives and another health plan to secretaries. upward mobility? that's why we have a 50% death tax, so the advantages earned by one generation aren't unduly passed on to future generations. you know, to even the playing field. I await your reply.

Re:Journalists? (4, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730061)

yes, i agree with everything you said, and i celebrate these facts

now: what is the republican agenda in regards to what you have cited?

Re:Journalists? (1)

Shark (78448) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729995)

I used to think exactly like you, but then I started pondering this: Who's going to be the grand equalizer? What sort of incorruptible angel is going to come in and make everything fair again? Who is going to decide how much money this guy deserves versus this guy?

There are only two approaches, either you make becoming wealthy illegal and completely ignore the consequences of that (who's going to bother going the extra mile if that doesn't mean more for them?) or you appoint some sort of super-human committee that decides who's allowed to get rich and whose wealth gets shipped back down to the needy, which is pretty much what is happening now except that (surprize surprize) they aren't super-human and therefore have a strong tendency to favour their friends or pet causes.

Giving more power to an arbitrator is a sure-fire way to rig the game unless you can be 100% certain that the arbitrator will be entirely selfless and immune to all forms of bias, ie: not human.

Do the mental exercise yourself (if you're fairly decent at economics) and picture yourself grandmaster king of the US. You'll either run out of wealth to distribute or end up oppressing your people: They might not go sick or hungry but they won't be willing to work unless you force them to because they'll gain nothing from it. You can try to cheat and print money rather than rely on local production and exports, but that's been tried before too. Study what happened in the Weimar republic.

it's perfectly ok to be richer than someone else (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730075)

what is wrong is that being poor or middle class dooms you to poor education, poor healthcare, and no chance to become rich. i want people to work for their dream. i don't want people to work from some rich guy who can never become poor, and the workers can never become rich. then what's the motivation to work? if you have no chance at your dream, why get out of bed in the morning? but the republicans in the usa advance social policies that pretty much lock the poor into poverty, the middle class into lower middle class, and the rich as permanently rich

i don't want to redistribute wealth. i want to say the guy born to the poor person has just as much chance to become wealthy as the guy born to a rich person. then you have a real meritocracy

but when you have rich kids getting cushy jobs through connections and then saying the poor don't know how to work hard to get rich (irony!) then we have a problem in society

Re:it's perfectly ok to be richer than someone els (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40730167)

What you fail to understand is that poor people are just as greedy as rich people, nature being what it is. Otherwise the poor wouldn't so casually and eagerly enable the rich. But they do, because they want a piece of the pie, just like anyone else. And just like everyone else, they're not too good about sharing, especially as they acquire more riches. Hoarding and gluttony cross all economic boundaries the same way pollution from a single country spreads throughout the world. Real change will require eons of evolution... or a global epiphany. To say only the rich are evil is like saying only Italians and Germans are fascist. Without the support of your '99%' they will go nowhere.

Re:Journalists? (4, Insightful)

Cwix (1671282) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729653)

No, people shouldn't be allowed to have many, many orders of magnitude more then the average person.

When the CEO makes 200 million and the employees make minimum wage, then something is wrong. When someone can watch people who live on the streets suffer from menatl and physical ailments and they feel nothing, then something is wrong. When someone makes more money the the GDP for some small countries, then something is very very wrong. Then when you grant personhood to a corp, something is so wrong its not even comical anymore.

Just having more does not make wealth inequality except in the strictest of definitions. Its when you have more money then a very large swath of the population put together that you get wealth inequality.

Re:Journalists? (1)

donaldm (919619) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729933)

When the CEO makes 200 million and the employees make minimum wage, then something is wrong.

You are ideally right. However the CEO of a company is more interested in having the company he/she represents make money since most companies are responsible to their shareholders and shareholders like to see a return on their investment otherwise they will invest elsewhere. Yes this may not be nice for the employees particularly those on a minimum wage when the CEO is making a huge amount of money in salary, shares and other benefits but that is how capitalism works.

You could go the other way and have a collective/communist system but you still have people at the top earning massive benefits while those at the bottom earn (if they are lucky) a minimum wage. At least with capitalism a worker has a better chance to leave his employment and take up employment elsewhere if they are dissatisfied with their pay. Of course that may be easier said than done.

Re:Journalists? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729999)

Or we could, you know, change the rules of the game a bit so that corporations are held accountable for the externalities they cause, and make profit their SECOND legal mandate after ethical behavior. We can emulate other countries where employees are required to have seats on boards of directors (Germany, for example) and where CEO pay is not out of control. We could change financial reporting rules to favor long term investment over short term gain, or at least to acknowledge that it has a place. We could even return to the practices of the US in past centuries where corporations could only exist for a limited time and were required to serve a public purpose.

We could do all those things, and the people in power do NOT want people talking about that. They'd rather we try band aid regulations, as if trying to get a sociopath to behave is ever going to work.

We need structural change, big time. It may be that violence caused by collapsing society becomes the only way to get it, but if we can get it without violence it would be better. This is why the Supreme Court is so damned wrong about corporate personhood. Corporations are creations of law. They would not exist without laws authorizing them to. They can damned well do as they're told.

Re:Journalists? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40730181)

You'd only be stopping corporations from forming. They'd just stay as individually owned entities whose owners get [b]all[/b] the money the company earns and then disperses a portion back to the workers. Granted it would be more difficult for them to amass the money required for quick expansion, but once they do expand literally [b]everything[/b] else would be just the same except that the owners of those previously corporate entities would be making billions of dollars instead of merely tens of millions.

Trying to ban/limit corporations is a band-aid solution because there are more methods of running a business than corporations. That just happens to be the most efficient form.

No, it's better to target the activities that businesses abuse: High-speed trading, lobbying, and corporate/political conflicts of interest (ex: CEO of a company becomes a politician or vice versa) being three major ones.

Re:Journalists? (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730045)

Just having more does not make wealth inequality except in the strictest of definitions.

Actually in the most common definitions, that's exactly what it does. There's absolute poverty which has been in sharp decline, then there's relative relative poverty which is defined by earning under a certain percentage of the average - usually 50 or 60%. So all other things being equal, if your neighbor can afford another bottle of Dom Perignon then the average goes up and the number of "poor" people increase, even though they're actually no worse off. Talking to my parents or other old people on the conditions they grew up in you realize that even the poorest child growing up here in Norway today is probably far better off than the average child 50 years ago and that's probably true most places in the world. Not that it's a tall hurdle to pass but sometimes when you read about it they make it sound like child abuse to let children grow up in "poverty".

Don't get me wrong, it could be a bit humiliating being the poor kid and maybe get teased and things like that, but not keeping up with the Joneses doesn't exactly qualify as any serious case of childhood trauma. We're not talking like they miss anything really important, only expensive clothes, status symbols like iPhones, expensive vacations and expensive social activities. There's nobody starving or freezing or that have diseases because they can't afford doing anything about it, then it's down to neglect or abuse. If it was up to me I'd pull some money out of general welfare and over into healthcare, police, child protection services and others to reduce the number of "worst cases" that really do have a childhood worth complaining over.

Re:Journalists? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40730103)

Corporations are not legally the same as people in the US. At all. The only similarity is that they both have a type of tax ID and you can sue them, but even that is not the same.

Re:Journalists? (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729707)

600:1 ratio?

no, that's never healthy. and yes, I used the extreme word 'never'. its NEVER good to have that imbalance. you think otherwise?? ceo's really deserve that kind of pay-level? and the lower classes should continue to 'just pray; you'll get your heaven when its time, little man!' ??

Re:Journalists? (1)

noh8rz6 (2689737) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729985)

600:1 ratio?

no, that's never healthy. and yes, I used the extreme word 'never'. its NEVER good to have that imbalance. you think otherwise?? ceo's really deserve that kind of pay-level? and the lower classes should continue to 'just pray; you'll get your heaven when its time, little man!' ??

I'll tell you wrong - I deserve that kind of pay level! The only problem is, I don't get it :(

Re:Journalists? (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729783)

Ideally, that would be the case. Practically this isn't going to work in a largely capitalist economy that uses wealth as an inventive, but we can still keep the incentive in place at a reduced level without substantial harm.

Re:Journalists? (2)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729831)

> "wealth inequality"
>
> So nobody should ever have more money than anyone else?

Not so much that it causes the French Revolution. Some things are a bad idea just as a matter of public policy. The idea that there should not be too much imbalance of wealth is an idea that the likes of Jefferson would have very much agreed with.

It's not that he was some sort of anarchist or communist. He just acknowledged what that kind of imbalance tends to lead to.

Re:Journalists? (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730067)

In an ideal world, everyone would have everything that they want. That's not possible at our current level of social and technological development, so some form of rationing is required. We use tokens known as money to implement the rationing system, with the basic idea that people who create things or offer services that are perceived to have value should be able to get these tokens in return. If someone does something that is very valuable, or moderately valuable to a lot of people, then they get more of the tokens and can, in turn, buy more goods or services with them. This serves as a motivation.

There are two problems. The first is the ratio and the second is how the value is determined. It's easy to look around and see that some people are contributing more to society than others by one order of magnitude. Look a bit more, and you can probably find a differential of two orders of magnitude. Someone in the USA on minimum wage makes around $20K. A CEO of a loss-making bank or hedge fund management company in the last few years probably made $20M in a single year. It's hard to argue that the bank CEO made a more positive contribution to society than, say, a toilet cleaner. It's even harder to justify that their contributions were a thousand times more beneficial.

And that's not even going near the super rich. The three richest people in the world, between them, control more wealth than the 48 poorest countries. When one person is effectively able to buy 16 countries then there's a problem. You began with a strawman, so I'll end with one: the extreme case of wealth inequality is one person being able to own another.

Re:Journalists? (1)

tomhath (637240) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729553)

There are examples of civil disobedience bringing about change. Women's suffrage and civil rights are good examples. But many, many more changes have been brought about by working within the system than by working against it.

Compare the Tea Party movement to Occupy. I'm not saying one movement is good and the other is evil, just that they both raised awareness of their adherents' respective positions.

Re:Journalists? (2)

Troed (102527) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729819)

There are examples of civil disobedience bringing about change. Women's suffrage and civil rights are good examples. But many, many more changes have been brought about by working within the system than by working against it.

Have you actually verified that? The only way to progress a society is to break existing laws. If no one ever does, the society becomes static. Behavior changes first, laws describing the changed behavior comes afterwards.

Re:Journalists? (3, Insightful)

AmiMoJo (196126) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729617)

The simple fact is, most people don't give a shit about injustice until it effects them personally.

Not true. 2 million people protested against invading Iraq in the UK. The problem is that they are powerless. We invaded Iraq anyway. Come election time when we could have thrown the government out we also had to consider things like the economy and the fact that the other lot were tossers and would probably have done the same.

Re:Journalists? (0)

Yaa 101 (664725) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729959)

Didn't the UK have 58 million people?

So 2 million is 0.03 percent of the population.

So most people don't care. like the grandparent says.

Re:Journalists? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40730141)

That's more like 3 percent of the population.

Re:Journalists? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729913)

The simple fact is, most people don't give a shit about injustice until it effects them personally.

Well, if injustice brought you about, that's an accomplishment you must be proud of!

IOW, "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

Re:Journalists? (2)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729389)

Right, because I forgot about how much change has happened against unjust laws by people following them and just writing letters to their congressman. I forgot all the monumental change that has happened because of that.

Oh wait, that never happened and it will never happen. I remember back during the early days of the DMCA I wrote in a letter to my congressman urging him to oppose it. A few days later I get a letter back assuring me that he was -supporting- it.

Civil disobedience is really the only way to protest effectively and get real change.

Re:Journalists? (1)

StillAnonymous (595680) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729909)

As long as it's financially beneficial for them to ignore you and pander to corporations, they will continue to do so.

The money needs to be taken out of politics. "Politician" should be a temporary job, not a career.

Re:Journalists? (2)

Seumas (6865) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729395)

Not only a good way, but perhaps the best. Disobeying a law often results in the government responding in clearly disproportionate and unfair ways that the public can then see (especially if you garner any press), which then draws public support to something they weren't too concerned about before or may not even have been aware of, before. It is the cornerstone of civil disobedience and civil rights movements of all kinds. Kindly obeying and quietly petitioning for change will almost never accomplish what forcing government or business into over-reacting before the eyes of the public will.

Re:Journalists? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729685)

There are ways to dispute a law you disagree with. Disobeying it is usually not a good way.

It's not good or bad per se, but don't disobey unless you're willing to take the consequences..

K9 Copy Worked for Me! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40730193)

Disobedience is the best way to fight unjust laws and rules.

Start by dumping Windows and MacOS - or are people just paying lip service to the idea of freedom?

Next, back up your own media with K9 Copy. If the copyright police come knocking, you are within your rights to make an archival backup. IANAL and that's not legal advice.

Finally, boycott corporations that push for unjust laws. Stop purchasing music and going to theaters. Rent movies from the library.

Is it too much to ask for people to practice self discipline?

Interesting (3, Interesting)

ausrob (864993) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729221)

It's a wonder that the publishing company (Sansai Books) weren't issued some kind of ceast and desist letter first, considering the company did not break the law when the magazine was published *last year* (presumably well before the law was ammended). It sounds like they were probably selling back issues and may not have fully appreciated the situation.

this is good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729229)

in a few years about a decade japanese people will be more stupid then anyone else on earth GO GO GO do more.....NOW only if americans did this....

Re:this is good (2)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729257)

They are.

Two things come to mind (5, Insightful)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729231)

Unfair Competition Prevention Law

Most people would think that this law is designed to prevent unfair competition. What it really means is it's an unfair law to prevent competition.

Also, getting governments to step on other people for you is apparently NOT unfair competition...

Re:Two things come to mind (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729285)

Without any sort of punctuation in the English translation of this law's name, you're actually correct, it is a prevention law, it is a competition law, and it is an unfair law, not an Unfair-Competition-Prevention Law. I don't know what the rules of grammar would be like in Japanese of course.

Re:Two things come to mind (2)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729403)

Yep, but that's how it is with most laws. Consider the Bank Secrecy Act of 1970, reading the title you think it would require the bank to obtain less personal information, not to disclose its information and generally be more privacy friendly. Nope, instead it does the opposite, creating less bank secrecy and whole heck of a lot less privacy.

All laws are newspeak.

Re:Two things come to mind (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729605)

Unfair (Competition Prevention) Law.

It does exactly what it says on the tin. Unfairly prevents competition.

Tyranny (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729299)

When the written word become illegal for any reason - tyranny is the ruler.

Re:Tyranny (2)

v1 (525388) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729561)

When the written word become illegal for any reason - tyranny is the ruler.

Free speech needs to have some limits. Bomb threats and yelling FIRE in a theatre are the most popular counter-examples. Slander, exposure of trade secrets, and insider-trading are just a handful of other arguable candidates.

It IS possible for someone to clearly violate someone else's obvious rights under the guise of "freedom of speech". It can't just blindly be labeled "tyranny".

Re:Tyranny (1)

tragedy (27079) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729891)

Yelling "Fire!" in a crowded theatre has always been a bit of a gray area from a legal point of view. Not really the concrete example of prohibited speech that most people seem to think. Bomb threats are less of a gray area since they're a form of threat and threats of violence are pretty clearly beyond the pale. I'm not going to go into slander except to say that I understand why the concept exists, but I'm not entirely comfortable with the concept. I find it disturbing that exposure of trade secrets would be anything more than a civil matter, and, of course, it should only be prohibited for those who have obtained them by being entrusted with them and agreeing not to reveal them or those who have obtained them through some sort of burglary or infiltration. As for insider trading, that's not a matter of speech. Rather it's the specific action of making trades based on insider knowledge that's a problem.

Re:Tyranny (1)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730047)

> Free speech needs to have some limits ... yelling FIRE in a theatre are the most popular counter-examples

For the umpteen time, you along with the majority are conflating Free Speech with Property Rights and missing the point that "Laws are Relative" IN context.

Most theaters are PRIVATE property that are OPEN to the public. Let's go over the 2 scenarios:

1) Theater really IS on fire.
Yelling "Fire!" is a way to help the owner protect his property AND more importantly, help others from coming to harm and to prevent injury caused by said fire.

2) Theater is NOT on fire.
Yelling "Fire!" you may be causing unwarranted destructing to the property by creating panic along with implicitly causing people to get hurt.

"FIRE!" in a Theater" is NOT free speech UNLESS the theater itself is owned by the public.

Are there Jews in Japan? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729331)

Must be, for this to happen. Can't have 'God's chosen people' actually doing manual labour, can we?

Anime fansubs (1)

k(wi)r(kipedia) (2648849) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729367)

If the news is true, then it should end all doubt that the Japanese authorities are somehow tolerant of the unlicensed distribution of media, including Japan's number one entertainment export, anime. Even if it might be argued that Japanese copyright law doesn't apply outside Japan (or that Japan wouldn't dare to conduct a Megaupload-style enforcement action), this does raise the question of how anime can be fansubbed at all if the episodes can't be recorded and shared [wikipedia.org] with the "outside world."

About 15 years ago it was phone cards. (1, Interesting)

mark_reh (2015546) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729383)

Some guys got arrested for dealing in counterfeit phone cards- they figured out how to duplicate them and started doing so en masse, selling them on the streets and train platforms around Tokyo. Ultimately a judge ruled that it was not a violation of law to duplicate or even sell the cards. It was only illegal to use them. Shortly thereafter you could see guys standing in front of police boxes, selling the cards to anyone walking by. Shortly after that NTT got rid of the phones that used those cards.

Japan has some weird laws. Someone once told me, and I don't know if it is true, that Japanese laws don't say what you can't do, they say what you can do. If there isn't a law specifically allowing something, then you can't legally do whatever it is.

Re:About 15 years ago it was phone cards. (1, Interesting)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729457)

Japan is a weird place. On one hand it is very much into collectivism. On the other hand, it also has a strong amount of individualism in its culture due to the influence of the west. So often you see the two basic philosophies clash.

Re:About 15 years ago it was phone cards. (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729723)

the whole East is based on NOT showing individualism! are we both on the same planet, here??

asia is about following rules, don't question authority, don't make waves. or, am I the one on the 'other earth', here?

Re:About 15 years ago it was phone cards. (1)

Rakshasa-sensei (533725) | more than 2 years ago | (#40730029)

That's kinda what I thought too before writing my masters paper on a subject related to privacy here in Japan.

Basically it isn't really as much individualism as we understand it, rather it is about being invisible to the government so that they can't spot what they think is a nail that sticks out.

Re:About 15 years ago it was phone cards. (1)

Tukz (664339) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729473)

Someone once told me, and I don't know if it is true, that Japanese laws don't say what you can't do, they say what you can do. If there isn't a law specifically allowing something, then you can't legally do whatever it is.

Would make sense if the amout of stuff you CAN'T do, is higher than the amount of stuff you CAN do.
Shortest path and all that.

Re:About 15 years ago it was phone cards. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729837)

Plenty of interesting comments from an American Japanese-naturalized lawyer debito.org [debito.org] .

Re:About 15 years ago it was phone cards. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729839)

Are you thinking of Singapore [wikipedia.org] ?

I hope they die before this disease hits Europe... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729513)

I hope japanese and ameritards die before this disease hits Europe...

Re:I hope they die before this disease hits Europe (1)

next_ghost (1868792) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729635)

The disease already hit Europe, we just had success fighting back up until now.

Re:I hope they die before this disease hits Europe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40730007)

Please, GEMA and BREIN are every bit as bad or worse than the RIAA.

so loading linux can get to you jail in japan? (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729767)

so loading linux can get you to jail in japan? even more so if it's a new pc with UEFI? or even loading windows 7 on a system with windows 8?

tentacle linux (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40730009)

"The Hardware is crippled for the sake of Microsoft. Period.

Secure boot is Microsoft's attempt to maintain computer OS market share as their influences is being stripped away by the likes of Google (Android) and Apple (iOS). With HTML5 on the way, we will have WEB based applications that rival desktop versions, and run on ANY device. The OS is just a layer to get to where the real work gets done, information exchange.

AND the worst part is, secure boot doesn't actually fix the problem it pretends it solves. It can't. This is the whole DRM of DVD's and BluRay all over again. Look at how well that is working out.

DRM is broken by design."

- http://linux.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2985953&cid=40681007 [slashdot.org]

"Richard Stallman has finally spoken out on this subject. He notes that 'if the user doesn't control the keys, then it's a kind of shackle, and that would be true no matter what system it is.' He says, 'Microsoft demands that ARM computers sold for Windows 8 be set up so that the user cannot change the keys; in other words, turn it into restricted boot.' Stallman adds that 'this is not a security feature. This is abuse of the users. I think it ought to be illegal.'""

- http://linux.slashdot.org/story/12/07/17/2326253/richard-stallman-speaks-about-uefi [slashdot.org]

It's also worth noting....... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729885)

.......that Japanese DVD ripping tool coverdiscs have been appearing in Archive.org's "Shareware archive" lately.

Unfair Competition Prevention Law (1)

n6kuy (172098) | more than 2 years ago | (#40729903)

How Orwellian.

Re:Unfair Competition Prevention Law (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729947)

I think it's time to act and hang these traitors in the government.

Pirate Party Japan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40729961)

And there we go: facebook page for the Pirate Party of Japan [facebook.com] , of course not to be confused with the WiiWare game of almost the same name [wikipedia.org] .

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