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Uber Suspends Australian Transport Inspector Accounts To Block Stings

Sabriel Re:Extradition? (299 comments)

The difference is that Uber is doing it for the money.

Is your friend paying you more than the cost to you of providing the ride? Are you participating in a scheme that arranges rides for money (whether the money goes to you or someone else)? Would your vehicle's insurer consider it to be commercial use of the vehicle? If the answer to any of these questions is "yes", what you are doing could well be illegal without registering as a commercial operation.

You want anything more technical or accurate than that, ask a lawyer. I am not a lawyer, and this is not legal advice.

about two weeks ago
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Michael Mann: Swiftboating Comes To Science

Sabriel Re:Stop trying to win this politically (786 comments)

Okay, let's go back a bit. What exactly do you mean by "validated climate model" and why is it necessary to have it to be pro/anti-AGW?

about two weeks ago
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Happy Public Domain Day: Works That Copyright Extension Stole From Us In 2015

Sabriel Re:i vote with my wallet (328 comments)

Here's the thing: if one truly believes in a system of justice and the rule of law, then one must refuse to recognize the validity of any contract that is not of equitable nature (be it equally fair or equally unfair).

You have a false premise. There are lots of laws that I disagree with -- even the current length of copyright -- but I don't go around breaking every law I disagree with just because I disagree with it. If everyone did that, it would be anarchy, not to mention, why have laws in the first place (since you're going to do whatever you damn will want anyway).

... I'm not seeing my false premise. As I pointed out later in my post, my position on copyright doesn't mean I'm going to go out and copy all the movies. Society is a mesh of overlapping obligations and responsibilities. So while I think "copyright" is an inferior and even fundamentally flawed mechanism, "Don't be a douche" (as Noah put it in his reply to me) remains a tenet I agree with.

By the way, your seriously deluding yourself if you think we've ever had a system of justice. We have a system of laws (such as it is). Justice is a mythical creature that only exists in theory. One person's justice is another person's injustice.

I know. Doesn't mean we shouldn't try, at least a little. The alternative, as you said yourself, is anarchy.

about a month ago
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Happy Public Domain Day: Works That Copyright Extension Stole From Us In 2015

Sabriel Re:i vote with my wallet (328 comments)

... No, I think you don't agree with him - or if you do, you're conflicted on the issue, and you're laboring under at least one false apprehension.

Here's the thing: if one truly believes in a system of justice and the rule of law, then one must refuse to recognize the validity of any contract that is not of equitable nature (be it equally fair or equally unfair).

So if you truly agree that copyright is no longer equitable, then (given the above) you must agree that _neither_ party is required to abide by its terms as-is. You don't get to call it theft, because in the absence of copyright the information that comprises a work _is neither tangible nor property_: stealing a "Harry Potter" DVD does not steal the concept of "Harry Potter" itself.

This is why I generally consider any attempt to "copy-protect" a work, via a method that does not allow for the "limited times" clause of copyright law, to be either an act of fraud or a disavowal of the creator's rights to protection of that work under copyright law - because to deliberately attempt to make your work un-copyable while claiming the protections of copyright law would be tortious misconduct.

Which doesn't mean I go around copying DRM'd movies on principle - there's more than enough free/cheap legal media for me to spend the rest of my life watching if I wanted to be a couch hermit - it just means that I recognize contracts (are supposed to) go both ways.

about a month ago
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Federal Court Nixes Weeks of Warrantless Video Surveillance

Sabriel Re:What? (440 comments)

If we only built security devices that were 100% secure, could we build any at all?

about a month and a half ago
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Federal Court Nixes Weeks of Warrantless Video Surveillance

Sabriel Re:What? (440 comments)

You're quite right - and still missing the GP's point. GP was calling out a bullshit statement. GP never asserted whether being able to secure the border was a good or bad thing to do, just pointing out that it was entirely doable from an engineering perspective.

about a month and a half ago
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Apparent Islamic Terrorism Strikes Sydney

Sabriel Re:Meh. (880 comments)

It also helped that it was across the street from a Channel Seven studio; all they had to do for live coverage was turn the cameras.

about a month and a half ago
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As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines

Sabriel Re:Here we go again (496 comments)

Some managers don't want to hire women because they worry that they will go on maternity leave or quit completely if they get pregnant. That one is harder to deal with, but does again exclude good candidates and diversity from the company.

Perhaps explain to those managers that while, yes, women are indeed statistically more likely to leave/quit due to having children, men are statistically more likely to leave/quit due to serious injuries? Furthermore, a pregnancy usually allows at least a few months to arrange a replacement; a serious injury is rarely so respectful.

about 2 months ago
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Can the US Actually Cultivate Local Competition in Broadband?

Sabriel Re:Uh... no (135 comments)

There's a reason we gave out cable monopolies. It was too expensive to build out the infrastructure w/o a guaranteed profit and we're too frightened of the gov't to just make it a public works project. It's either monopolies or figuring out how to counteract 50+ years of cold war propaganda about the evils of socialism...

Bullshit. "We" gave out cable monopolies because even 50+ years ago "our" politicians were bought and paid for by the cable companies, they just cared more about hiding it back then.

If the government really believed in capitalism, and no corporation was willing to build it without a 'guaranteed' profit (read: not having to worry about competition), it should've said "well too bloody bad then, we're not going to do it for you unless we make a 'guaranteed' profit too!" and held a referendum on whether to create its own for-profit company specifically to build the infrastructure, with itself as the majority investor (anyone else willing to invest being welcome) and lease capacity to anyone willing to pay.

about 2 months ago
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MARS, Inc: We Are Running Out of Chocolate

Sabriel Re:The Fix: Buy good Chocolate! (323 comments)

Maybe you were just trying for a Funny, but that just makes it even more depressing that someone modded you Insightful.

Because GP, as a chocolate maker, was saying that _cocoa_ should be more expensive. Does that mean the average price of chocolate would rise? Yes. Does that mean the GP's wholesale and retail price would rise? Maybe, maybe not, because they're already paying the farmers well above the typical rates.

Regardless; when one of the "middlemen" between you and the farmers, tells you that the farmers are getting stiffed by the global system that supposedly exists to protect those farmers, you should pay more attention.

about 2 months ago
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Computer Scientists Ask Supreme Court To Rule APIs Can't Be Copyrighted

Sabriel Re:Name the type, or statement is meaningless (260 comments)

While indeed the current trend is to abuse copyright via absurd lengths, "modern" copyright law originated much earlier than the USA's founding - in Europe, where it was used as a means to ensure that only words agreeable to the Crown and the Church were distributed, as the technology of the printing press began to spread in the 15th and 16th centuries. Note that the first privileges of monopoly were given to the printers, not the authors; e.g. in Britain the latter were not "protected" by the Law until the Copyright Act of 1709.

Modern patents have a similarly sordid origin; it's not a coincidence that the system arose at a time when the ability to record and distribute information began to grow in tandem with the need for more workers (all potential leaks) to meet product demand, and many patents were to manufacturers and middlemen, not necessarily the inventors. Also, while the granting of patents became systematic around 1450 in Venice, formally publishing the descriptions of patented inventions was not introduced until 1555 by King Henry II of France (and that concept spread very slowly). Basically? Patents were still "viciously protected" trade secrets, it was just that the privilege of breaking your kneecaps for tattling was enforced by the crown.

TL,DR: copyrights and patents originated as self-serving plutocratic legislation; as social and economic systems grew increasingly tangled and interdependent, what appears to be a "modern" system built on mutual respect is the result of enough varied selfish interests pulling taut the legal fabric as to give only the semblance of a level playing field.

about 3 months ago
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Computer Scientists Ask Supreme Court To Rule APIs Can't Be Copyrighted

Sabriel Re:Name the type, or statement is meaningless (260 comments)

The laws governing copyright, patents, trademarks and every other legal concept commonly lumped under the banner of "Intellectual Property" are all entirely different, and in most cases they are mutually exclusive. This makes using them in the aggregate as "Intellectual Property" legally meaningless if one is trying to state something concrete.

I disagree. The term "intellectual property" is a useful super-set for the group of sets "copyright", "patent", etcetera, that all result from different legislative approaches to the same goal: monopolising wealth by artificially restricting the use of information.

(of the "big three", I find trademarks the least offensive in this regard - the idea of a "maker's mark" at least began as an honest attempt to provide something useful to the citizenry, whilst copyrights and patents are rooted in their origins of censorship and extortion respectively)

about 3 months ago
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Skilled Foreign Workers Treated as Indentured Servants

Sabriel Re:Was pretty obvious (284 comments)

What's more important, the claims of one sock-puppet or the actions of the person wearing both sock-puppets?

about 3 months ago
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Law Lets IRS Seize Accounts On Suspicion, No Crime Required

Sabriel Re:Time for a revolution (424 comments)

Completely untraceable transactions, physically divorced from the participants? Now where have I seen that before... oh.

GIFT.

What do you think criminals would do with completely untraceable transactions? What do you think organised crime would do? You might want to study the consequences of driving transactions underground during the Prohibition era.

I'd give it a year, tops, before our already-vaguely-representative government would be replaced by completely un-representative, un-traceable overlords.

about 3 months ago
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CHP Officers Steal, Forward Nude Pictures From Arrestee Smartphones

Sabriel Re:No need for ACLU (275 comments)

Hmm. What's really more terrifying, some foreign wackos that could've been stopped by locking and reinforcing a door, or our own police force preying on the very people whom they swore an oath to protect and serve?

about 3 months ago
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CHP Officers Steal, Forward Nude Pictures From Arrestee Smartphones

Sabriel Re:Prison time (275 comments)

What? It was a _no-knock_ warrant, how would they have known there were any officers to impede?

about 3 months ago
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Assange: Google Is Not What It Seems

Sabriel Re:Goolge is helping... (289 comments)

... hmm. It occurs to me that the GP can be completely wrong about there being some grand conspiracy and yet still accurately describe/predict what happens.

Enough people, acting independently towards coincidentally similar goals, can look remarkably like a conspiracy from the outside.

And unfortunately cause the same problems.

Best to amend the system so that the effect is prevented/fixed regardless of the cause.

about 3 months ago
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Michigan About To Ban Tesla Sales

Sabriel Re:You could at least tell us when TFA is paywalle (294 comments)

Editors: You could at least warn us that we won't be able to participate in constructive discussion of the featured article without paying.

Oh, the irony. Congratulations, you now have an idea of how the Michigan public were treated.

about 3 months ago
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Lockheed Claims Breakthrough On Fusion Energy Project

Sabriel Re:credibility of article is doubtful (571 comments)

Uh, either way your "quickly try to estimate" idea still means you are staring into an atomic explosion. You should instead take cover immediately, thus covering both bases.

about 3 months ago

Submissions

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Google fined for someone else's graffiti

Sabriel Sabriel writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Sabriel (134364) writes "Google's appeal against a 2008 defamatory anonymous posting on Orkut has been denied in Brazil, and Google fined $US8500 ($9100) for the crime of being vandalised. In the words of the judge, Alvimar de Avila, "By making space available on virtual networking sites, in which users can post any type of message without any checks beforehand, with offensive and injurious content, and, in many cases, of unknown origin, [Google] assumes the risk of causing damage [to other people],".

I'd submit a more blunt opinion of this farce, but it might be considered offensive and injurious content... I wonder if he's related to the judge in Italy?"

Link to Original Source
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South Australia outlaws anonymous political speech

Sabriel Sabriel writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Sabriel (134364) writes "If you're online in South Australia and want to comment about the upcoming state election, be prepared to hand over your real name and postcode first — because this month it becomes illegal to do so anonymously (even under a pseudonym). Media organisations must keep your details on file for six months and face "fines of $5000 if they do not hand over this information to the Electoral Commissioner". This abomination was passed with the support of both major parties (Labour and Liberal), and to quote its sponsor, Attorney-General Michael Atkinson, "There is no impinging on freedom of speech, people are free to say what they wish as themselves, not as somebody else." Apparently incapable of targetting a few imposters without resorting to "nuke it from orbit" legislative tactics, it seems he's forgotten that protecting anonymity is important to the democratic process; hopefully both major parties will get a reminder come the polls on March 20."

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