Saturday, June 26, 2004

Use a camcorder in a US cinema, go to your local Abu Ghraib franchise operation for 3 years.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - People who secretly videotape movies when they are shown in theaters could go to prison for up to three years under a bill approved unanimously by the U.S. Senate on Friday. [...]

Copies of hit movies frequently show up on the Internet while they're still in theaters, allowing skinflint fans to see new releases like "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" without coughing up the price of a ticket. [...]

The Justice Department would get an extra $5 million per year through 2009 for enforcement. [...]


Now. The US taxpayer has to pay for the security of cinemas in the USA, at the behest of the MPAA. Its completely absurd. Each cinema should be responsible for its own security. It is not the job of the state to police cinemas.

If they were really serious about stopping camcorders in cinemas, the MPAA would compell all cinemas that want to show their member's films to install metal detectors at the doors to filter out all camcorders berore the showing begins; no need for legislation that will brutalize people for doing something harmless. The cost of protecting cinemas falls to the people who should be paying for this "security" (and of course, retrofitting cinemas is a one off cost, not a recurring amount that has to be coughed up year on year).

Now imagine this. Someone clever organizes a boycott of cinemas to show that people will not put up with this sort of legislation being bought up and put on the books. It works. millions stay away from the movie houses. The MPAA will blame "piracy" as the cause of the massive slump in ticket sales, and furthermore, they will say that this proves their point; that draconian legislation is needed to control the "pirates"!

Interesting (and innapropriate) use of the word "Skinflint" ay?
posted by Irdial , 1:22 PM Þ 

The piece at Wired has been silently updated.
But here's where a strange story turns even odder:
Stranger and stranger indeed.

I have answered all the points contained in this update here, attached to my original announcement.
posted by Irdial , 8:34 AM Þ 
Friday, June 25, 2004
posted by Alun , 8:49 PM Þ 

Can you feel the purity?!
posted by Irdial , 8:20 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 1:59 PM Þ 

The UK nuclear weapons capability costs around 1 billion per year.

Why does the UK have nuclear weapons? I don't know. There is no more MAD, and if trrsts nuked London, who would we nuke in retaliation?

Unilateral nuclear disarmament used to be a political topic, used to be in the Labour manifesto. Now a limited nuclear capability (limited to around 41 Megatons, apparently. Quite a high limit.) seems to be acceptable. Or has slipped under the radar. Or sonar, as UK weapons are all submarine-based.

I was just thinking the other day how pointless are UK nuclear weapons, how good it would be to disarm, and what could be done with a billion quid a year.
posted by Alun , 1:51 PM Þ

Not as free with the footage as but it's a start unfortunately you'll have to register to do anything and they've flunked the whole thing by using wmv files but anyway...

The pics also have a BBC 'watermark' in the centre
posted by meau meau , 1:28 PM Þ 

It equates tuning a radio dial with artistic expression

... and John Duncan
posted by meau meau , 10:08 AM Þ 

Ken: thank you so much for that link! That is the kind of stuff I live and breathe for.
posted by Barrie , 7:30 AM Þ 
Thursday, June 24, 2004

fascinating! Archives: News - Northwest Explorer [via mefi]
posted by Ken , 10:09 PM Þ 

posted by Irdial , 7:12 PM Þ 
posted by a hymn in g to nann , 6:32 PM Þ 

Does CNN own copyright its news footage? Yes
Does CNN create the events in the footage? No.

Does Irdial create SW number station broadcasts? Not to my knowledge
Does Irdial claim copyright on the actual SW broadcasts? No
Does Irdial claim copyright on its SW footage? Yes
Will Irdial claim copyright over anyone elsess footage of SW broadcasts? No

Did Wilco take Irdial's footage without permission, and use it in a unaltered/recognisable form? Yes
Did this infringe Irdial's copyright on the footage? Yes
Did Irdial have a right to correct this? Yes

Did Irdial do something? Yes, of course.

Will those sniping do something at least half as inspired?...
posted by meau meau , 4:51 PM Þ 

A bit late off the mark, but I looked around Technorati for blogs linking to Blogdial, specifically about the whole WEA/Wilco/Conet thing.

Pseudorandom obviously hasn't listened to much modern music.

It equates tuning a radio dial with artistic expression.
See AMM, Matthew Herbert, et al.

then anyone can record my broadcast, copyright it, and control the use of it as they see fit.
Scanner used to do this (or something very similar with analog cell phone broadcasts) did he not?

posted by alex_tea , 4:25 PM Þ 

BBC NEWS | Technology | Hotmail counters Google e-mail

Mac users are not losing out either. Spymac is offering users 1GB of storage free and starting doing on on 5 April this year.

Because Mac users can't use the web? WTF? Why do people employ journalists to write about something they clearly have no comprehension of?
posted by alex_tea , 4:05 PM Þ 
posted by Josh Carr , 2:21 PM Þ 
posted by meau meau , 1:34 PM Þ 

A software engineer working for America Online was last night charged with stealing the internet service provider's entire subscriber list and selling it to spammers, the senders of unsolicited junk emails.

Jason Smathers, 24, was arrested on conspiracy charges at his home in West Virginia, close to AOL's headquarters, where he had worked since 1999. Sean Dunaway, 21, who bought the list of 92m screen names, was arrested in Las Vegas.


No need to fill in the blanks apropos ID databases, stolen flight data, etc. as there aren't any.
posted by meau meau , 10:55 AM Þ 

A top homeland security official told Congress that five major domestic airlines turned over sensitive passenger data to the agency or its contractors in 2002 and 2003, contradicting numerous statements by airline and government officials and confirming some of the worst fears of privacy advocates.

Delta, Continental, America West, JetBlue and Frontier Airlines secretly turned over sensitive passenger data to Transportation Security Administration contractors in the spring and summer of 2002, according to the sworn statement of acting TSA chief David Stone. In addition, two of the four largest airline reservation centers, Galileo International and Sabre, also gave sensitive passenger information, including home phone numbers, credit card numbers and health data, without disclosing the transfers to travelers or asking their permission...


I need hardly tell you how useless this information is in addressing any legitimate concerns anyone may have about anybody, meanwhile in the Ashcroft article Akin posted:

Even in the fight against foreign terrorists, Mr. Ashcroft's political leanings have distorted policy. Mr. Ashcroft is very close to the gun lobby ? and these ties evidently trump public protection. After 9/11, he ordered that all government lists ? including voter registration, immigration and driver's license lists ? be checked for links to terrorists. All government lists, that is, except one: he specifically prohibited the F.B.I. from examining background checks on gun purchasers.

Presumably because 'guns don't kill people, angina kills people'.

The TSA will demand this information from European flights as well under the agreement reached earlier this month by the unaccountable heads of the European Commission.


Meanwhile those ungrateful Iraqis might be stealing food from American babies by reducing the amount of dollars they spend on reconstruction.
Ashraf Hasson of the Iraqi Linux User Group said he would actually welcome tech giants like Microsoft coming into the Iraqi market.
He grudgingly even admitted that the Windows operating system may be OK for "people who want to do basic stuff".
But he is pushing small and medium-sized businesses, and the Iraqi government, to consider running open-source software on their servers.
posted by meau meau , 10:33 AM Þ 

In April 2003, John Ashcroft's Justice Department disrupted what appears to have been a horrifying terrorist plot. In the small town of Noonday, Tex., F.B.I. agents discovered a weapons cache containing fully automatic machine guns, remote-controlled explosive devices disguised as briefcases, 60 pipe bombs and a chemical weapon ? a cyanide bomb ? big enough to kill everyone in a 30,000-square-foot building.

Strangely, though, the attorney general didn't call a press conference to announce the discovery of the weapons cache, or the arrest of William Krar, its owner. He didn't even issue a press release. This was, to say the least, out of character. Jose Padilla, the accused "dirty bomber," didn't have any bomb-making material or even a plausible way to acquire such material, yet Mr. Ashcroft put him on front pages around the world. Mr. Krar was caught with an actual chemical bomb, yet Mr. Ashcroft acted as if nothing had happened.

Incidentally, if Mr. Ashcroft's intention was to keep the case low-profile, the media have been highly cooperative. To this day, the Noonday conspiracy has received little national coverage.

At this point, I have the usual problem. Writing about John Ashcroft poses the same difficulties as writing about the Bush administration in general, only more so: the truth about his malfeasance is so extreme that it's hard to avoid sounding shrill.

In this case, it sounds over the top to accuse Mr. Ashcroft of trying to bury news about terrorists who don't fit his preferred story line. Yet it's hard to believe that William Krar wouldn't have become a household name if he had been a Muslim, or even a leftist. Was Mr. Ashcroft, who once gave an interview with Southern Partisan magazine in which he praised "Southern patriots" like Jefferson Davis, reluctant to publicize the case of a terrorist who happened to be a white supremacist?

More important, is Mr. Ashcroft neglecting real threats to the public because of his ideological biases? [...]

The last sentence is the sub-eureka moment. The real eureka moment will be the one where this man and all of his peers finally understand that indeed, this rogue government is the threat to their security and bountiful way of life, and that indeed, the rest of the world has been right all along.

These glaring omissions and astounding double-standards throw light upon the true nature of this rogue government; now all the sub-eurekoids have to do is extrapolate in reverse to find out that the cause of all these foreign policy problems and the mortal danger america has been artificailly put in are the fault of the us government itself.

All of these journalists need to be given a budget so that they can live in other countries three months of the year, amongst the ordinary people in different cultures. It would create a sort of immunity preventing the tripe that has been published over this whole sad and sorry affair.

Or maybe not.

Maybe Congressmen (50% of which do not even have passports) should be made to live for two years in another (non European) country before they are allowed to take their seats in the house. Either way, the world cannot be plunged again and again into chaos at the whim of a load of hicks from the sticks.

People in Europe say "surely there cant be anyone left who cannot see what this is all about? Clearly and sadly its obvious that is the case, and these peole write for newspapers of record, and they are believed, and we all have to suffer for it.
posted by Irdial , 9:13 AM Þ 

Ahh, Paul's Boutique is such a good thing to bring up as a counterpoint (this is not the right word, someone please provide me one I am tired).
A lot of people (no Blogdians of course, I am talking about the several posted articles) seem to be confusing the use of samples with the use of stolen material, and there is a funny relation here. These dudniks refuse to understand the concept that sounds can be taken and re-appropriated in an artistic manner... this is what Paul's Boutique is all about. Said dudniks think that Wilco did the same thing but, of course, anyone with a brain can see that Wilco/WEA just took the track verbatim and copied it onto their CD.
There is a difference between taking something and copying it and taking something and making something new out of it. By sampling the Beasties created new compositions, by recording Irdial created unique documentaries. Now is it not easy to see that while Irdial created, Wilco merely copied this unique recording (and then sold it, the most important factor). One could go on for hours comparing things, but that is the job of idiots!

But the soothing sounds of Aphex Twin's selected ambient works keep me calm... (hmm, sometimes not so soothing!)

Addendum: A scenario - If the dudniks (or, in friendlier terms, lazy assholes) were actually right, every photographer in the world would be broke and out of business. Challenge: construct a valid argument on how the unauthorized, unpaid publication of a photograph is different than the Irdial/Wilco case.
posted by Barrie , 6:34 AM Þ 

this seems pretty relevant at the moment:

Paul's Boutique Samples and References List (Beastie Boys Dust Brothers)

on a disgustingly related tip: ch-ch-check it out!

[all via; who also just posted info about the irdial/wilco confrontation]
posted by Ken , 4:52 AM Þ 

AT, why R107?

It's ASCII innit, for riot... It's silly now, but at the time (1997/1998) I liked it, but then I was well into Atari Teenage Riot back then.
posted by alex_tea , 1:14 AM Þ 
Wednesday, June 23, 2004

From: "Byrnes, Benjamin" <>
To: "''"
Subject: Wilco
Date: Wed, 23 Jun 2004 15:08:17 -0700
MIME-Version: 1.0
X-Mailer: Internet Mail Service (5.5.2657.72)
Content-Type: text/plain;

You have a catalog called the music philosophy. Yet you sue Wilco?

I will be badmouthing you that any chance possible.

Thank a cases

A hate mail! We have arrived!
posted by Irdial , 11:28 PM Þ 

Wrong word choice.

Highlights again the power of blog semantics.

I don't think I've ever known anyone (on- or offline) who would 'try' to get in the news. Is that normal?

AT, why R107?
posted by Alun , 10:57 PM Þ 
posted by Ken , 9:48 PM Þ 

PS: Also: NB: I wasn't "trying" anything. It just happened, and I foolishly boasted about it. But it's over now.
posted by alex_tea , 9:44 PM Þ 

wow. really immature, but really funny.

Natural Sciences Faculty


this guy's an organist, to boot!
posted by Ken , 8:01 PM Þ 

beer money

In Berlin a 500ml bottle of Berliner Pils costs €0.80 from a corner shop. Therefore you could buy 2.5 bottles (1.25 litres) of beer per track. Mmmm...
posted by alex_tea , 6:17 PM Þ 

If Michael Moore had had his way, Slobodan Milosevic would still be the big man in a starved and tyrannical Serbia. Bosnia and Kosovo would have been cleansed and annexed. If Michael Moore had been listened to, Afghanistan would still be under Taliban rule, and Kuwait would have remained part of Iraq. And Iraq itself would still be the personal property of a psychopathic crime family, bargaining covertly with the slave state of North Korea for WMD. You might hope that a retrospective awareness of this kind would induce a little modesty. To the contrary, it is employed to pump air into one of the great sagging blimps of our sorry, mediocre, celeb-rotten culture. Rock the vote, indeed.
posted by Josh Carr , 6:17 PM Þ 

Dear Fellow Blogdialians:

Just a reminder that this weekend is the submission deadline for the next issue of Subsystence. I know it is late notice, but I would love it if those of you who have music, photos, writing, etc., laying around and unloved (I know you are out there), would consider passing them along for public consumption. Volume 2: Foundation is coming together nicely and will be released as planned on July 1st, but we could always use more interesting and diverse submissions. Our sincere thanks go to all those who have already sent their work in for review!

We look forward to seeing new submissions arrive throughout the week. Feel free to email me at [jkmeier at uchicago dot edu] with any questions, or links to work. Attachments are OK. Thank you!
posted by Ken , 6:00 PM Þ 

?2 per track
cool ... beer money in the post ?
posted by a hymn in g to nann , 5:33 PM Þ 

I know Alex was trying to get there... or has someone else made it?

I did back in February, but it's gone now.

Berlin was awesome, meanwhile London isn't.
posted by alex_tea , 5:00 PM Þ 
posted by Ken , 4:28 PM Þ 

Excellent. This is as I expected.
posted by captain davros , 3:59 PM Þ 

How do I get permission to make my own Irdial mix album

You simply email us. Many people have done so in the past, and normally, we give on the spot permission. We like to keep a copy of the work for our archives, and we ask for attribution.

This is precisely what David Gedges "Cinerama" group did, and of course, we charged him nothing, as is true of everyone else who has asked permission to use TCP in their project.

As you know Dav, Irdial is not a money centric label, but the option remains open to us to charge money for using our works as it is with any other label, no matter what the size.

We just licenced Anthony Mannings works to an Italian label for an advance of €2 per track. We know that they could not afford real licence fees, and its more important to us that these tracks are out there in different territories working for us, rather than trying to squeeze money out of labels that are just like us, and trying to spread good music into the world.
posted by Irdial , 3:40 PM Þ 

How do I get permission to make my own Irdial mix album

You simply email us. Many people have done so in the past, and normally, we give on the spot permission. We like to keep a copy of the work for our archives, and we ask for attribution.

This is precisely what David Gedges "Cinerama" group did, and of course, we charged him nothing, as is true of everyone else who has asked permission to use TCP in their project.

As you know Dav, Irdial is not a money centric label, but the option remains open to us to charge money for using our works as it is with any other label, no matter what the size.
posted by Irdial , 3:40 PM Þ 

Where are the flowers?
Where are the bees?
Where is the blossom that grows on the trees?
Fruits of the summer ain?t as ripe as they ought to be
The grass in the park just ain?t as green

Where are the people in sandals and shorts
Eating al fresco at Sanchez D?Amour?
Look at the clouds: they are black as the night
Sack the weatherman, ?cause he didn?t get it right

In summer it?s raining
posted by meau meau , 2:57 PM Þ 

Simply pressing the record button on your radio receiver hardly qualifies to me.

Well what does qualify? Playing guitar (simply hitting the strings with a plectrum)? If there was no sitting in front of the radio making tapes of broadcasts, then there'd be no Conet Project, no samples, a different sounding song and no album title. Making a tape is a creative act as far as I can see.

The question of permission is interesting me though. How do I get permission to make my own Irdial mix album (e.g. Thee Electric Mimi Manning Enigma Project)? Does the permission differ if I adopt the free music philosophy for my means of distribution, or if I decide to release the album on a big label?
posted by captain davros , 2:31 PM Þ 

Noah Shachtman adds to his Wired article, with the tasty line, ...
"he provides some insights into how he ultimately checkmated Warner/Electric/Atlantic, Wilco's label, into a deal."

Checkmated. I Like it!® I cant take full responsibility for it however. We have the best lawyers in England; all credit to them for the sterling work they did on our behalf, and for the forbearance they showed with the bills!
posted by Irdial , 1:53 PM Þ 

Is this the first Blogdialian GoogleNews event?

I know Alex was trying to get there... or has someone else made it?
posted by Alun , 1:12 PM Þ 

Wired have a piece on the infringement settlement:

"They're playing in and reinforcing this legal regime that's limiting creativity," said Nicholas Reville, the head of the activist group Downhill Battle, which recently organized protests when the label EMI clamped down on a DJ for blending together albums by Jay-Z and the Beatles. "Will the next Wilco even consider using a sample like this after seeing what happened here?"

Is how the piece ends.

Nicholas Reville is of course taking the incorrect view. "The next Wilco" can make whatever use it likes of works that are out there, but they absolutely cannot expect to sell those works to one of the big 5 labels without paying for use of the samples they copy.

If ineed it is the case that copyright law is broken, then the broken-ness of it should apply equally to everyone, RIAA record label or small independent. It is simply unreasonable to expect the independents to accept infringement to satisfy some sort of absurd "unwritten code of the underground" that says "you must be trampled upon". If anyone ever believed that Irdial followed this code, then they are sorely mistaken.

The idea that we are in some vague way "reinforcing this legal regime" is nonsense. If a law is incorrect, you need to mount a legal challenge to correct it, or, put your money where your mouth is, as we have done, by releasing all of our works for free under a generous licence.

Obviously WEA is not going to fight a case to diminish its own ability to protect its intellectual property; in other words, if we had lost the case it would have been a most unwelcome outcome for them and all of thier shell labels.

Anyone could have pointed to the created caselaw to defend the copying of recordings from CDs where the source signal was not copyrightable or not owned outright by the recordist, making all the nature discs, CDs of primitive musics, and other audio exotica put out by labels copletely up for grabs by the sample manipulators.

There is no reason why we should not have brought this case. In fact, it would have been completely wrong of us to knowingly let this infringement go unchallenged, and in one respect, Nicholas is correct; now, no one will ever again question wether The Conet Project is protected by copyright or not. It is absolutely protected by copyright, and this case firmly establishes this.

I am far more concerned about the huge corporations that have copyright law tailor made for them, closing off the ability of people to use music in ways that they see fit. By "use" I mean play on any device, copy for their friends, known and unknown, and so on. I am more concerned about the lawsuits being brought against completely innocent file sharers the effect of which is to damage the networks that we use daily to share our works.

Copyright law is not going to change overnight, and it is not going to change simply by asking for it to be changed. The only way to change the way the the law works is by, as I say, releasing your works for free, making it possible for anyone to share your creative output, and dragging copyright law kicking and screaming into the present. It would be ver difficult indeed to cripple future devices or create anti file sharing legislation if there were millions of files explicitly freed for indifidual use floating around the internet. Doing this gives you a real voice, because we are stakeholders in the filesharing idea by making our works available in this way. We can go to our MP and say; we want people to share our music, and oppose any law stopping people from making free use of our files. If there were thousands of labels and individuals doing this, we become a lobbying group.

You have to DO something to make things change, and that is precisely what we have done, inour own small way; whining to Congress or your Governent representative will do nothing. All of the changes the music industry, that ancient, creaking smelly vampiric carcass that refuses do die have been forced upon them by file sharing. They cannot, and will not be allowed to suck our blood to the tune of a million CDs.

And there are no two ways about that.
posted by Irdial , 12:45 PM Þ 

ThinkCycle is an academic, non-profit initiative engaged in supporting distributed collaboration towards design challenges facing underserved communities and the environment. ThinkCycle seeks to create a culture of open source design innovation, with ongoing collaboration among individuals, communities and organizations around the world.

As an academic and non-profit initiative, the goal is to foster a culture of ?Open Collaborative Design? among students, industry and organizations worldwide while providing meaningful awareness, resources and design solutions to problems in critical domains. The goals, approaches and policies of ThinkCycle will continue to evolve, shaped by the participants involved and the nature of projects and problem domains tackled over time.
posted by meau meau , 12:35 PM Þ 

A query... why did Wilco (rather than WEA, who have no exuse other than greed) not contact you? I just don't understand why, musically*, they never got in touch, why they never asked you about Conet? Did they ever comment?

My guess would be advice from WEA. Which sucks at both ends - that it was given and taken**.

Let's witness that hypothetical discussion:

"Hey, don't bother clearing the sample, our legal guys say it'll be fine..."

Translates as:
"Hey, if we clear the sample now, our paymasters might have to cough up a few bucks. But if we leave it till later, it's Wilco's financial responsibility! Neat legal trick***, huh? Wait till I don't tell the guys in the band about this one!"

*There's a 15 minute minimalist piece on the new Wilco album which sounds
inspired by 'the airwaves', the ether, the strange sounds in your head that invade the silence at 3 in the morning... Not groundbreaking, I know, but indicative of a continuing awareness of these influences on Jeff Tweedy, mainly. Something to do with the migraines, perhaps?

**Still does not explain why a musician didn't contact a like-minded musician, even just out of curiosity. Maybe more WEA advice "... and for fuck's sake don't fucking contact fucking Irdium, OK"?

***Trick: that 'post-partum' copyright settlements come out of the artist's cut, and not the label's. I'll leave it to Someone Clever to explain in full.

Disclaimer: I could be wrong.
posted by Alun , 12:16 PM Þ 

I feel so drugged, but why? probably not having any alcohol for three days in a row. or mild food poisoning.


Choice & empowerment for the individual citizen, free to decide their affairs in relation to the State, but only when you're Ill. Choice & empowerment to be left alone by the state when you don't need it doesn't seem to be on the agenda.

This choice will be provided by private companies whose operatives will eventually have access to a large amount of ID information, it may be that these companies outsource their IT contract to some unvetted supplier in India, etc... as the chain grows each link becomes weaker, and the same for your bank details, and it becomes much more worthwhile if all your details can be nabbed and related to a single ID entry.
posted by meau meau , 11:12 AM Þ 

posted by Alun , 11:03 AM Þ 

"Irdium sued ..... the spook who recited the words Yankee Hotel Foxtrot into his mic over and over again..."

His mike?

Is this from the Grauniad?
Do these people know the meaning of basic fact-checking?

Did Geodaddi also have a/some Conet sample(s)? I have the record but after listening once I haven't felt drawn back.

THE FUTURE: To despair, or not despair? That is the question.
Doublemeau, I'll buy you a pint because it seems like we both need one.
As for Irdium...

give me a reason not to despair for the future.
You are in it.

...I read this and despaired! Which means my inner pessimist interpreted it not as a reason, but as being 'in the shitty despairable future already'. So that's another beer for me.

...Then my inner optimist yawned, half-opened a sleepy eye, growled 'FOOL', and fell back to sleep. Thank you, Irdium, that's my round then.
posted by Alun , 10:12 AM Þ 

The RIAA is sueing another 482 people for sharing music, which is their right.

Sharing an MP3 music file, or a cassette tape of music without charge.
This is LEGAL unless your doing this as part of a business plan or promotion. You can have a website full of MP3's as long as it is not a business site, you are not selling ad space etc. If you can afford it, have fun.

Now. The people at BoingBoing have the most basic facts of the case totally wrong. I quote:

"Irdium sued WEA for copyright infringement -- in other words, they claimed that they owned the mysterious voices that float in the ether all around us at every hour of the day and night. They claimed that they, and not the spook who recited the words Yankee Hotel Foxtrot into his mic over and over again, were somehow the creators of the mysterious broadcast. "

This is totally false.

We have never ever claimed that we own the voices, or that we were the creators of the original transmissions or the owners of the copyright of the original transmission; that would be totally absurd, taking into account what Numbers Stations are.

What we claim, and what we absolutely own, is the copyright in the recordings that we made, and the copyright in the discs that we release. This is beyond question.

The recording that we made is no different to a hydrophone recording of whalesong, or a birdwatchers recording of birdsong. The legal position on this is clear, and WEA international would never have settled with us had this not been the case.

As Christopher says on BoingBoing, we release all of our music for free to the public, under a licence that forbids making money from our works. We are not about to allow a billion dollar corporation to copy from one of our works and then sell close to a million copys of that infringing work, without so much as a word.

Its interesting that, on the one hand, people rail against the sueing of people by the RIAA who are going about their lawful business, sharing music, but when a member of that same, monstrous organization flagrantly infringes the copyright of an independent label, somehow the independent deserves to get this treatment:

WEA settled instead of countersuing Irdium into a smoking heap of slag for proffering this notion that absolutely offends reason.

This "notion" in no way offends reason. In fact it is totally reasonable in its entirety. We own the copyright in our recordings and the discs we manufacture. No one can make use of these without our permission. There are no two ways about this, and our works are protected by the same copyright law that RIAA labels are protected by.

What actually offends reason, is that someone would think that because we are a small independent record label, that copyright law should not be applicable to our works. Copyright law applies to all works equally, and we have an absolute right to persue and be compensated for cases where infringement takes place.

The makers of Vanilla Sky understood this. They asked for permission to use The Conet Project as have many other independent labels, artists and organizations. All of these people also had the courtesy to attribute us in the works where they made use of The Conet Project.

This flagrant and outrageous copyright infringement could not be allowed to stand, and we did not let it stand. We researched the matter very carefully before proceeding, and took consultations from some of the best copyright lawyers in the UK. Taking a large company to the highest court in the UK is not something to be done lightly, and we would never have persued it if we didnt know absoultey that we would win.

And we did prevail.
posted by Irdial , 8:57 AM Þ 
Tuesday, June 22, 2004
posted by Ken , 9:50 PM Þ 

pan american is going to release his excellent new album/dvd with us.
posted by Ken , 9:27 PM Þ 

posted by Irdial , 7:37 PM Þ 

me a reason not to despair for the future.

You are in it.
posted by Irdial , 5:51 PM Þ 


Dread Rico...Feelin irie!
posted by Ken , 5:35 PM Þ 

Arnold Dreyblatt is a composer and visual artist. He studied with Pauline Oliveros, La Monte Young, and Alvin Lucier.
His compositions are based on harmonics, and thus just intonation, played either through a bowing technique he developed for his modified bass, a toy piano he specially tuned, or conventional instruments. He originally used only a steady pulse provided by the bowing motion on his bass, but he eventually added many more instruments and more rhythmic variety.
(Fact Index entry)
posted by meau meau , 3:14 PM Þ 

Just think Alun, your generation's skills will be needed until the very day you die, no more ageism in the workplace as the old will have been the only ones who - will you pay attention at the back - listened, unfortunately after the Oil Skirmishes and consequent implosion of the ever-so-farsighted US/EU economies you'll NEED to be working until then.


... and The Indian Intellectual Superpower will become a reality as Western societies continue to candify their brains. Unless we get there first!
posted by meau meau , 1:23 PM Þ 

Famous figures demand smacking ban

The education secretary, Charles Clarke, today faced new demands to ban smacking in an open letter from dozens of prominent figures.

1. Should the government be responsible for how we [educate/discipline/nurture] our children? Or should it be argued that all our behaviour is modified to comply with governmental (therefore societal) rules, that it is hypocritical to argue against one further rule (commonly know as the 'halfway-up-your-ass' hypothesis? (From this, one could argue that kids' TV watching, food consumption, exercise, exposure to [bad things]... should be legally regulated.)

2. Should physical punishment be allowed to act as a small-scale deterrent to aid teachers etc.? (Anyone reading the recent Teachers Diary in Private Eye may argue yes. Does the root of the problem of misbehaviour, both on the streets and in the schools come from the home, or does it lie in the very protection now afforded to children in the education environment?) If not, then;

3. How is discipline to be enforced, respect to be learnt, by children? (I look at the behaviour of the kids on our street towards each other and towards their elders in horror, shock and bewilderment some times. A recent example; Some youngsters abuse the bus staff and are asked to get off the bus. They then shout about the conductor 'giving them no respect'. This does not mean that the conductor should be allowed to hit them, but that the kids should be made to understand how wrong is their behaviour and how misguided their protestations). ('Respect' itself has become bastardized in common usage, and is now a parody of it's true meaning, devoid of any courtesy or honour and stemming principally from physical and/or mental bullying, or from the brazen display of material wealth).
(This relates to the source of the problem, as in Q2. Is there an embedded lackadaisical attitude to childcare and education amongst enough parents {or, at least, among enough parents within defined geographical and social areas} which results in this behaviour, and is it too widespread to erase?)

4. Is it wrong to blame the parents?
5. Is it always wrong to blame the child?

Hmm. I must be feeling very old today. One pint of Timothy Taylor's Landlord beer to anyone reading the Teacher's Diary who can give me a reason not to despair for the future.
posted by Alun , 11:44 AM Þ 

Zoomed up to the Rollright Stones this evening to watch the sunset. These photos were taken at 9.30pm!

And now I need to go to bed...
posted by captain davros , 1:11 AM Þ 

Well, no one is saying Paul Morley didn't have a lot to do with the AON, but if you love the AON for existing as anything other than an idea then the musicians should not be discounted.

To single out any one member over the other is to miss their legacy - AON represent teamwork as much as they represent innovation. The way they worked as a team in music was radical; this was never the tired old rock-pig or the new-romantic bambi of a "band", and you could hear it in the sounds without even knowing what went on in the studio.

They were patchy throughout their career as far as I can hear, be that during the PM phase or after, and I'm willing to forgive them that for being lairy enough to throw the sampler right into the studio and tape what happened.

AON, if they had formend at all, would have been just another set of idots with Fairlights, producing Paul Hardcastle-esque tracks related to the dreadful "19" over and over -

Paul Morley was in the Art of Noise - we can't change that and I wouldn't want to. Why speculate?
posted by captain davros , 1:07 AM Þ 
Monday, June 21, 2004

Very Poor.
Must try harder.

Ha! 8700
posted by Alun , 9:40 PM Þ 


P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center announces the launch of WPS1 (, the world?s first internet art radio station. Sponsored by Bloomberg L.P., WPS1 provides an extraordinary lineup of music and talk shows broadcasting 24 hours a day.

The station's programs combine talk and music shows hosted by contemporary writers, artists and musicians with rare historic material that includes the entire audio archive of the Museum of Modern Art. WPS1 will stream to listeners on the Internet only. Its presence on the Web will make the station's unique digital library available to an international audience at any hour, seven days a week. As such, WPS1will become a live audio museum in cyberspace, extending the visual art, book, music, film, video and performance programs that P.S.1 and MoMA are known for in ways previously unforeseen. Here, at, is the first all-art, all-the-time radio station, where expression of all kinds remains truly free.

posted by mary13 , 8:53 PM Þ 

Banksy's site has been updated.
posted by Alun , 8:46 PM Þ 

Court: No Right to Keep Names From Police

Supreme Court Rules People Don't Have Constitutional Right to Refuse to
Give Police Their Names

The Associated Press

WASHINGTON June 21, 2004 - The Supreme Court ruled Monday that people do not have a constitutional right to refuse to tell police their names.

The 5-4 decision frees the government to arrest and punish people who
won't cooperate by revealing their identity...

The decision, reached by a divided court, was a defeat for privacy rights advocates who argued that the government could use this power to force people who have done nothing wrong to submit to fingerprinting or divulge more personal information. The decision, reached by a divided court, was a defeat for privacy rights advocates who argued that the government could use this power to force people who have done nothing wrong to submit to fingerprinting or divulge more personal information.

A divided court. (said with the Heywood Floyd "Deliberately Buried" intonation).

Its like watching a friend die one piece at a time.

posted by Irdial , 8:02 PM Þ 

posted by Alun , 7:38 PM Þ 

Monolith is a simple tool that takes two arbitrary binary files (called a Basis file and an Element file) and "munges" them together to produce a Mono binary file (with a .mono extension). Monolith can also reconstruct an Element file from a Basis file and a Mono file.

In most cases, the resulting Mono file will not be statistically related to either file. If you compare the Mono file to the Element file, the Mono file will contain none of the information present in the Element file. In other words, the Mono file by itself tells you nothing at all about the data in the Element file. Only when combined with the Basis file will the Mono file provide information about the Element file.

Monolith can be used for exploring the boundaries of digital copyright, and the rest of this website is devoted to such an exploration. The core questions: What happens when we use Monolith to munge copyrighted files? What is the copyright status of the resulting .mono file?
posted by chriszanf , 7:08 PM Þ 

In a classic David and Goliath confrontation, Irdial-Discs, experimental independent music label from the UK, brought a High Court action against WEA International over their CD release "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" by the group Wilco, which flagrantly infringes Irdial's copyright.

"Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" bears a track entitled "Poor Places", which contains one minute and thirty seconds of sound from "Phonetic Alphabet Nato" lifted directly from disc one of the quadruple CD "The Conet Project: Recordings of Shortwave Numbers Stations". The Conet Project track features a female voice repeating over and over the phrase, "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot", which Wilco took for the title of their critically acclaimed CD.

WEA International did not ask for permission to include this sound from our release in the CD "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot", which has sold close to one million infringing copies.

The Conet Project is a historic collection of espionage "Numbers Stations". These Numbers Stations are found on the shortwave radio bands, and are used by the CIA, MI5, MOSSAD and the rest of the world"s espionage agencies to communicate to their agents in the field.

The Conet Project is the first ever CD release to systematically collect recordings of all known Numbers Stations world-wide for the purpose of the historic preservation of this largely unknown area of espionage tradecraft. Before its release, there were no recordings of Numbers Stations in The Library of Congress or The British Library, both of which now have a comprehensive set of examples of this phenomenon thanks to The Conet Project.

Numbers stations have been on the air for at least 30 years, and they can still be heard today, all over the world, without any special equipment other than an ordinary short wave radio. They use a simple yet unbreakable system of encryption, known as a "One Time Pad", to scramble the messages sent out to spies at work in foreign countries.

The bizarre sound of these stations is deeply fascinating to shortwave enthusiasts, experimental sound artists and musicians. Each station has its own peculiarities and methods of operation, making finding and cataloguing them a rewarding hobby for the short wave enthusiasts who monitor them, and listening to them an inspiration to lovers of experimental music and "found art". This is why The Conet Project has been sampled and incorporated into dozens of compositions and works of art since its initial release.

By taking this sound from our release, tacking it onto the end of the track "Poor Places", and failing to obtain permission to release their CD with our sound on it, WEA International, an RIAA record label, infringed our copyright. It is only after the case was brought to the High Court of Justice in London that they have finally relented and have been pressured to, in their own words, "reluctantly agree" to pay Irdial-Discs a royalty in perpetuity on a worldwide basis.

From the perspective of someone interested in the nuances and absurdities of copyright law, this case brings up some interesting points.

What is "Phonetic "Alphabet Nato"?
This is a recording that we personally made, from a shortwave radio, of the station known s "Phonetic Alphabet NATO". No one knows where this station comes from. It has been attributed to MOSSAD the secret service of Israel, but no concrete evidence of this has ever been brought forward by anyone. This is a recording of a shortwave "Numbers Station".

There are many of these stations on the air. No one will admit to transmitting them. They have been on the air for at least 30 years.

The original recording was made onto a cassette. It was then edited down to give a clear example of the stations normal transmission format, i.e.: a "call up"(in this case, YHF), "message message", the message, and "End of message end of transmission" at the end of the transmission. The recording was also cleaned up with equalization to remove noise.

Monopoly clauses
The monopoly record labels use clauses in their contracts to immunize themselves against legal attacks if copyright infringement takes place. This means that if WEA International releases a CD with samples on it, the infringed party can seek damages from only the artist, and not WEA International. Normally, you are only allowed to receive a proportion of the royalties due to the artist. This means that if the artist is bound by a contract that pays him 1% of the profits from a release, then you can only receive a proportion of that amount, while the label keeps the other 99% in its entirety. This is an astonishing situation, where a third party that is not a signatory to a contract, is bound by the terms of that contract.

This is the case where the RIAA obtained a payout from a company for sharing MP3 files internally on its network.

It seems odd that a company can be fined one million dollars for sharing files, whilst WEA International can *sell* 1,000,000 infringing copies of a CD, and face a much lower penalty.

WEA International is part of the RIAA; they should not be able to arbitrarily penalize a company and be immune themselves from large damages when they are the infringing party, because of indemnifying clauses in their contracts.

This does however, bring up some interesting possibilities.

If you run a record label, and want to release a copyright infringing recording without having to pay royalties to anyone at all, do this:

Allow your artist to create a recording with any samples that she likes. Make sure that the contract you have with the person who created the work is collecting a royalty from you of exactly .01%. Start selling the infringing copies as quickly as possible. When you are inevitably sued by the RIAA or the "Big Five" company whose work you have used, they will not be able to collect a penny from you, or your artist.

Of course, you will be served with an injunction stopping you from manufacturing and selling further copies of the work, but for most labels, this should not be an issue, since the number of manufactured copies are small. If you are in the position of having a hit, you can negotiate while the record is hot, and after sales start to trail off, stop manufacturing, let it sell out and then delete the release without having to pay a royalty to anyone. You can compensate your artist by paying them to do the photocopying in your office or by some other means unrelated to the release in question.

If it is a fact that you can only collect royalties from the artist in a case of copyright infringement and the label remains immune - which the best copyright lawyers in the UK and the USA agree is the case - then any label, not just an RIAA label, should be able to use this as a strategy to release recordings containing whatever they want, and still keep 99.99% of the profits.

But you don't own the copyright of Phonetic Alphabet NATO!
The recording we made of YHF was not made directly from the source of the people who originated the transmission, in other words, we did not go to the building of the originators, and plug our cassette machine into their tape machine to make this recording directly. This is a personally made recording of a shortwave transmission, with all of the nuances, noises and distortions short wave radio produces. These distortions, nuances and noises make our recording unique, and completely remove it from being a literal duplication of the original source. It is in art terms a piece of "Found Art", unique to itself, and impossible to replicate, since the above-mentioned qualities of shortwave interference are random effects.

In another context, imagine if we had made use of an anonymously authored traditional carol, which is copyright free. We make a creative use of this free work, and publish it in a special book of traditional Christmas carols, which have been typeset and designed by us. If someone then took a scan of one of the pages from our book, and then made a Christmas card out of it, or took this scan to use in their own book of Christmas carols, our copyright would have been infringed, irrespective of the fact that the original carol was copyright free. This example put to rest the argument that the recording of Phonetic Alphabet NATO is not protected by copyright, and that Irdial are indeed, the owners of it.

The same principle used in the Christmas card example works for this recording. The piece that Wilco took and used in their CD was from our edition, The Conet Project, containing a work that was recorded by us. Our choice of recording was specific, our editing and sound cleaning was specific, and as we say above, the recording that we made is unique, by virtue of how and where it was recorded.

The contextual value of the recoding is ours, and is not present in and is very different from a Numbers Station that one would hear live on the radio. This recording has an extra value because it came from The Conet Project, which is evidenced by the number of people who continue to sample from it, and the number of times it is "namechecked" as the source of the sound.

The recording of Phonetic Alphabet NATO is directly analogous to a hydrophone recording of whale song. When a marine biologist makes a recording of Sperm Whales, the copyright of that recording belongs to the person or institute that made it. No secondary use of that recording can be made without the permission of the person or entity that made the recording; the physical recording itself is copyrighted, meaning that you cannot make a copy from that physical tape, minidisk or CDR without the explicit permission of the person who made it.

There are three parts to the copyright of a recording. The copyright in the song (in the case of music), the copyright in the recording of that song (The Master) and the copyright in the disc that is used to sell the work to a member of the public.

During the process of settling this case, it was made clear to us that in a CD compilation of out of copyright works, such as 78rpm records, the only protection afforded to the companies that release these discs is the order in which the tracks appear in the compilation, and not the sound on the discs, since the source of the sound is in the public domain. This means that any compilation of out of copyright songs you buy can be copied by you, re-packaged and sold again, as long as you change the order of the tracks in your edition! It seems that there is no protection for those companies who specialize in these compilations, whereas the commonly held belief is that there is a blanked prohibition on copying from discs that are still within the time limit set for copyrighted sound carriers. If the company made adjustments to the public domain recording, like removing scratch sounds etc, then they have protection under copyright legislation, because they have in essence, created a derivative work.

Irdial-Discs is distributed in the USA by Forced Exposure

The piece in Wired has been silently updated.
But here's where a strange story turns even odder:
Stranger and stranger indeed. I will answer the points that appear in this update one by one.

Simon Mason is a major contributor and supporter of The Conet Project He donated many recordings to the project, wrote a small piece for the 80 page booklet, and is clearly attributed and thanked in the acknowledgements section of the booklet.

When The Conet Project was first conceived, it started out as a single CD of my own recordings. I then sought out and received donations of recordings from others, as I became aware of the staggering amount of history behind the Numbers phenomenon and the breathtaking variety of stations that have now passed into history.

As each tape was entered into the project, it was carefully catalogued. The idea was to have an example of every extant recording of all known numbers stations, and for each example to be the best one out of those available.

Each tape was combed through, and catalogued in this way. Submitted tapes were fed though the EQ of our 24 track mixing desk onto reel to reel masters, and entered into the project in the order that they were received. Where a later submission had an example that was better than one already entered, that submission replaced the earlier example. This is the list of who submitted what, transcribed directly from The Conet Project worksheets:
Tracks 1 thru 8, track 61, track 38 are recorded by Akin Fernandez
Tracks 19 thru 35, 36 to 60, are recorded by Simon Mason
Tracks 9 thru 14 are recorded by Phil J. Harrison
Tracks 15 thru 18 are recorded by Tom Sevart
Tracks 63 and 64 are recorded by Jacques Bras
Other Tracks are recorded by Mike Gauffman and Chris Midgley
As you can see from this list, tracks 1 thru 8 were submitted by me, and Simon Mason?s contributions begin at track 19. The "Phonetic Alphabet NATO" in question is track 4 on The Conet Project, and was submitted by me. Track 32 is another "Phonetic Alphabet NATO" track, this example being one submitted by Simon Mason. (Track 32 is track 9 on Disc 2) There are two other "Phonetic Alphabet NATO" examples on Disc 2; number 25 and 26. None of these tracks are the ones that WEA International has on their infringing CD by Wilco; the one that was used is my recording, taken from Disc 1, track 4.

In preparing for the case against WEA, I was asked detailed questions about Numbers Stations, how they are made, the precise nature of the voices in question, the provenance of the submitted recordings and many pieces of other information. I gave detailed responses to all these questions to our solicitors. We were well prepared to go to court to settle this matter, and all of the pieces of evidence were closely examined, both from the point of view of the law and the precise nature of The Conet Project and its recordings. It was only after this was done that it was determined that the case was solid enough to pursue. You do not go up against a multi million dollar company without thorough fact checking. This is precisely what I and our legal team did.

It's very easy to make a claim in writing. It is entirely another thing to put your money where your mouth is, and be prepared to take heavy losses in a risky court action. Irdial puts its money where its mouth is, from releasing The Conet Project in the first place, at a time when some paranoid Short Wave monitors were too frightened to reveal what they were monitoring for fear of prosecution and when shortwave magazines were too frightened of legal action to print detailed information about Numbers Stations. We took the personal and financial risk to make this extraordinary project real, and expose to the world the amazing mystery of Numbers Stations. It is thanks to The Conet Project that the first ever major news articles about Numbers Stations were printed, and it is also thanks to us that the first ever government pronouncement about Numbers Stations was made. We don't simply talk about freeing music; we have done it with our valuable catalogue of works, under a generous license. Irdial is not about empty words; we take action, and when we do so, we are deadly serious about it, and are willing to go where others are, for whatever reason, unable or unwilling to.

We have the absolute, irrefutable proof that the recording in question belongs to me. We were ready to go to court and face forensic examination of The Conet Project archive to establish that it was indeed one of my tapes that was the source of this recording. Taking all of this into account, even the most skeptical of persons would be hard pressed to believe that we would be bringing an action before the High Court of Justice without the most solid of cases to hand.
But some intellectual property lawyers are more than steamed at Fernandez for laying claim to Mason's recordings.

"If Irdial simply published someone else's recording verbatim, then under U.S. Copyright law, they don't own anything," Schultz said in an e-mail.
Copyright lawyers are variable in quality. I have spoken to specialist copyright lawyers who have said to me ?I don?t know what Mechanical Copyright is?, so caveat emptor when you shop around for advice in this field.

This case was brought to an English court. U.S. Copyright law is not relevant in a UK court. This is a pretty basic fact. Put simply, U.S. copyright law is irrelevant to this case. Our lawyers are the best in the UK. If you want to find out about copyright law that is relevant to a case, you need to consult a lawyer from the jurisdiction where the case was heard, not one from another jurisdiction that may not have complete knowledge of the relevant copyright law.

I am the person who recorded the tape of "Phonetic Alphabet NATO" that was entered into The Conet Project and which is the sound on WEA's infringing CD release Yankee Hotel Foxtrot by Wilco. It is absolutely not "unclear whether Fernandez even recorded the "Yankee" shortwave broadcast himself". I was willing to go to court to prove this, with the physical evidence in hand, and there should be no doubt in anyone's mind about what this actually means. These are the facts, not out of jurisdiction trans-Atlantic speculation, or poorly recollected reminiscences.

Most importantly you must bear in mind that we were able to force a settlement. WEA and their lawyers on two continents (and the legal representatives of the other three signatories of the settlement) would never have settled if they thought for an instant that we had no case.

A Mechanical copyright primer

For those unaware of the relevant parts of copyright law, take a quick lesson from the MCPS

So that you understand how this part of copyright law works.

Now take a look at this:

Silence lawsuit and payment: BBC

Musician Mike Batt had paid a six-figure sum to settle a bizarre dispute over who owns copyright to a silent musical work.

Batt, who had a number of hits in the 70s with UK children's characters The Wombles, was accused of plagiarism by the publishers of the late US composer John Cage, after placing a silent track on his latest album, Classical Graffiti which was credited to himself and Cage.

There cannot be anyone that thinks that if someone can be made to pay a royalty on the use of silence that somehow we were going to allow a multi million dollar record company take 1m:30s of actual recordings from one of our discs and get away with it Scott free!

Anyone who cries about copyright law being unfair, about it being used as a blunt instrument and hand break on new technologies and business models, but who also says that we were wrong to peruse this case is at the least disingenuous at worst nave.

Copyright law is under the complete control of ?the monopoly? the huge record labels that are able to have tailor made legislation drawn up for them and entered into the statue books almost without restriction. Every day there is news of another law tabled that will erase the rights of people to do what they want with the music carriers that they own, and yet, the same people who protest this, fail to understand what it means when someone brings a real world action against this monopoly.

Everyone understood that the limitation of the duration of copyrights was implemented so that the owners of intellectual property can benefit as well as the population. What happened in reality is that extensions have been added to the duration of copyright again and again; the last time that works that were due to fall into the public domain they were snatched away by the enactment of legislation sponsored by an entertainer turned politician. It is clear that any promise of works falling into the public domain cannot be relied upon, since the goalposts can be moved back at any time by the monopoly and its government agents. This means that whole generations will not have access to works that they were entitled to.

If copyright law is going to be used in this way, and the many other ways it is used, against the best interests of the public and independent artists, then it is wholly fair and reasonable that that same law be used against the monopoly companies when they flagrantly violate the copyright of another company, no matter what the size of that company is. There will be no ?golden age of copyright? while the monopoly continues to control copyright law and the way it is interpreted and enforced.

No amount of lobbying, CD stickering, debating or writing will stop the monopoly. Only concrete actions that empower the public will have any real effect; this means writing software tools to protect the public, releasing the works you own for free, and as I have said before, the other 80% of copyrights world wide being gathered together into a second force to overwhelm the influence and power of the monopoly will actually do anything.
posted by Irdial , 12:21 PM Þ 

Shhh... at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Anyone been/going?
posted by Alun , 11:56 AM Þ 

6+6+6 = 1+8 = 9 = 3+3+3

posted by meau meau , 9:42 AM Þ 

If they want Bush to lose won't they have to Pay For Reason?
posted by meau meau , 9:39 AM Þ 


June 20, 2004

This is some info. about the movie.

Release Date: TBA 2005 (wide)

Distributor: Paramount Pictures

Production Company: Valhalla Motion Pictures (The Hulk, Armageddon), Lakeshore Entertainment (Wicker Park, Underworld), MTV Films (Jackass: The Movie, Sk8ter Boi), BUF Compagne (visual effects)

Cast: Charlize Theron (Aeon Flux), Frances McDormand (The Handler); other cast not announced yet.

Cast Notes: (4/9/04) Charlize Theron will be going through three solid months of intensive physical acrobatic training in order to bring the sort of flips and jumps the animated character was capable of to life. Of course, it's likely she will have the help of wires and such. (6/18/04) Frances McDormand has signed on to play Aeon's boss, known only as 'The Handler.'

Director: Karyn Kusama (Girlfight)

Screenwriter: Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi (writing team of crazy/beautiful; cowriters of The Tuxedo; also have Valiant coming in 2005)

Based Upon: (3/10/04) This movie is based upon the popular animated spy TV show of the same title, created by Peter Chung, which aired on MTV in the early 1990s.

Premise: In the 25th century, a rampaging virus has forced the remnants of humanity into the seclusion of a final city surrounded by a disease-proof bubble. There is great political conflict within, however, and this is the story of an acrobatic assassin, Aeon Flux (Theron), whose latest target is the government's top leader.

Filming: Production is scheduled to start in August, 2004 in Berlin.

Genre: Action, Eye Candy, Female, Science Fiction, Spy, TV Show
posted by Irdial , 7:08 AM Þ 

The Art Of Noise were at their most briliant when there was an idea behind themt. Paul Morley was the person who provided that element. After the idea was removed, they quickly decended into utter garbage, doing cover versions and all sorts of idealess gestures.

Now upon the return of Paul Morley, we get "The Seduction of Claude Debussy". See what I mean?

"A spanner is intrinsically more interesting that a popstar". More wisdom from the PM.

Without Paul Morley, that great and inspirational text "The Art of Noises" would never have been realized so dramatically and triumphantly. AON, if they had formend at all, would have been just another set of idots with Fairlights, producing Paul Hardcastle-esque tracks related to the dreadful "19" over and over.

Use the titles for TITLE-ing not MESSAGE-ing!!!
posted by Irdial , 6:24 AM Þ 

The President of The United States of America takes policy direction from people who are trying to bring about armaggedon. There are nearly 3 million people praying for George W. Bush every day who believe he has been callled to his office by some sort of divine power. They believe that God - specifically a Christian God - wants George W. Bush to be President! Our country is falling into the hands of fringe religious zealots whose personal beliefs and goals are not those of the majority of this country.

Pray For Reason is a call to Americans of all religions and belief systems who want to see their country's policies at home and abroad based on facts, history, and reasonable thought processes. Join us - a group of religious and non-religious Americans - in pledging to do everything we can to remove the current administration from office. [...]
posted by Irdial , 6:16 AM Þ 

Ahh, Sunday night with the soldering iron, and discreet audio tinkering (speakers were 1 for the pair from a car boot sale so what better to do than wire up a mini amp for them). Buggles on the Minidisc and all.

Paul Morely WAS The art of Noise

And Anne Dudley, Gary Langan and J.J. Jeczalik?
posted by captain davros , 12:30 AM Þ 
Sunday, June 20, 2004

Lists. Don't you just hate them. And yet, don't you just love them. Hate them because they're all wrong, they're biased, they're fixed, they miss too much out, they're in the wrong order, they're utterly arbitrary, they try to cage musical beasts that should be allowed to run free in our imaginations without the indignity of being branded with numbers. And whatever comes top is usually going to knock you speechless.

You also love them because whatever comes top is going to knock you speechless. And because without them we wouldn't really know where the Gordon Ramsay we were. They're not complete maps of anything, they're the edge of a map that features the entrance to a universe that is so vast and complicated that in the end you have to make your own way through it. The list helps you begin. It's not the Complete Book of Anything, it's like the contents page. It's the start of something, in the ridiculous but necessary disguise of being definitive. [...]

Lists in one sense, the boring sense, try and make things safe and organised. Ultimately, in a good sense, they keep breaking things up, they keep reminding us that behind and beyond the obvious, the regulars, the usual suspects, there is more and more to discover. It is in a way what is outside the list, music that is just beginning to make its way into the list, and indeed up the list, as well as the music that is slipping away, that makes them so fascinating. In this list, guaranteed, as the best lists are, to send you bananas, to get you reworking them in your own image, the Clash are joining the Beatles on the saintly stage, Public Image Ltd nibble at the Stones in the bad boy tent. Massive Attack trip past Floyd, Oasis have left Blur for Britdead. Elsewhere Nick Drake, Robert Wyatt, John Martyn and Vashti Bunyan drift in from the outside, inscrutably repre senting all that music yet to be discovered. Richard Thompson, Peter Hammill, Kevin Coyne, Roy Harper ...

One of the things that makes a list like this even more interesting is the idea that certain albums represent music that is on the edges of impinging upon the collective imagination - Wyatt reminds us of Soft Machine and Matching Mole albums that are missing, Yes makes us wonder about King Crimson, Black Sabbath about heavy metal in general, Brian Eno of all the other Brian Eno albums that are missing. Joy Division of the lack of Throbbing Gristle, Wire, Cabaret Voltaire, Magazine. TheHuman League of the lack of Depeche Mode. The lack of anything by Aphex Twin, Underworld or Leftfield reminds you of the lack of anything by Matthew Herbert or Four Tet. Consider the beginning of the alphabet, and imagine a list topped by the Auteurs, the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band and Clinic. [...]

David Bowie, who goes up and down these lists, is currently on the up. Radiohead are falling away, because they might after all be Gentle Giant. The Kinks are klinging on, hinting at a future Sixties invasion. Roxy Music are in the perfect position to launch an assault on the top 10. Five albums from the much maligned Eighties lurk suspiciously at the bottom, perhaps on the verge of poignantly disappearing for ever, perhaps bravely fighting back into favour. They tenderly surround the newest kid on the block Dizzee Rascal, who in 10 years might have climbed alongside Roxy and the Smiths, or have gone wherever those Eighties albums will go. [...]

I wont link to the place where this came from, where they list the "Greatest 100 Albums of all time". I post this because I love Paul Morley (the dude that wrote it), the way he writes, what he thinks. He gets better and better.
posted by Irdial , 2:36 PM Þ 
posted by Ken , 2:44 AM Þ 

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