Saturday, October 16, 2004

Just finished watching the RIBA sterling award on Ch.4 and 30 St Mary Axe [Sir Norman Foster] has won.

It was also interesting to learn [and see, in part] the Thamesmead Community College that Sir Foster also designed. The academy previously had the worst record in all the school league tables, for exam passes. Now they have the new building, exam results have improved to a phenomenal level. It's design is different in that most of the classrooms are open plan and pupils no longer feel 'caged in' or secluded in ill-lit classrooms.

Now, they only have to do something about the estate outside which is only rivalled in it's hideousness by the nearby Ferrier estate in Kidbrooke.

I saw the Jon Stewart piece earlier through a .torrent

"bad for america... partisan hacks..."
posted by chriszanf , 9:04 PM Þ 
posted by captain davros , 4:12 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 2:20 PM Þ 
Friday, October 15, 2004
posted by Irdial , 8:35 PM Þ 

A majority in Britain also believe that US democracy is no longer a model for others.

But perhaps a more startling finding from the Guardian/ICM poll is that a majority of British voters - 51% - say that they believe that American culture is threatening our own culture.

This is a fear shared by the Canadians, Mexicans and South Koreans, but it is more usually associated with the French than the British. Perhaps the endless television reruns of Friends and the Simpsons are beginning to take their toll. [...]

The Guardian

posted by Irdial , 8:29 PM Þ 

posted by Ken , 5:30 PM Þ 
posted by meau meau , 1:35 PM Þ 

What is LEMUR ?

LEMUR is a handy and modular touchpanel based controller designed for audio and multimedia real-time applications. Our technology associates multitouch capabilities with visual display. LEMUR is provided with an extensible library of User Interface Objects such as faders, switchs, pads, keyboards, strings, etc. A software editor (Windows, Mac OSX, Linux) allows the user to build easily his own interfaces by dragging and dropping objects on the control area. The JazzMutant software editor also provides advanced tools to map and setup objects and control parameters.



(Pretty Pics Department)

Self-Similar is a visual performance piece centered on the fractal theme of self similarity. Self-Similar generates images though an openGL feedback process so that the part resembles the whole. Self-Similar is performed live in response to an audience and musical context.

posted by meau meau , 1:23 PM Þ 

Internets, is quite obviously a postmodern reference to the impossibility of a single user-defined conception of the internet, due to the multiple depths of a priori knowledge required by a user to reach such an insight (in order to concieve the vast possibilities offerd by academic and pop culture sites to name but two) and the various forms of filtered experience imposed by AOL and other 'portals'.


I turned on the
Today programme today
and almost turned it off straight away
due to another incidence of Cliff Richard gaining
airtime by 'exposing' the lack of airtime
he is given.
he said something
good, which was
something on the lines
Rock and Roll has come of age
it is a middle aged art form
it doesn't belong to the young any more.


Envoy in human rights row dismissed

Mr Murray has alleged that the UK and US remained silent over Uzbekistan's human rights record, where torture is practised as a routine investigation technique, because US forces were using an airbase vital for launching Operation Enduring Freedom in neighbouring Afghanistan. (Guardian)

Other whistleblowers at Spyblog

posted by meau meau , 10:06 AM Þ 
posted by Alison , 8:19 AM Þ 
Thursday, October 14, 2004

your optimism

No optimism, just statements of fact. I said IF they come to get your stuff, IF and only IF. Thats why its potentially scary, and not actually scary. Clarity, precision; we like it. One liners; inefecient, unwarranted...accusation. What is the prosucution doing? Inane inane!

You were in violation.

Defendant used, not destroyed.

Defense rests.
posted by Irdial , 11:23 PM Þ 
posted by Ken , 9:28 PM Þ 

This is potentially scary because it unifies your online google searches, your searches on your machine for your personal files and your gmail account.

This potential is all that I am indicating. I, too, appreciate Google, and believe them when they say that their 'Don't be evil' principle won't be tampered with...but, your optimism and their good intentions might not matter one iota when the FBI comes knocking.
posted by Ken , 8:29 PM Þ 

9. What about my privacy? Does Google Desktop Search share my content with anyone?

We treat your privacy with the utmost respect. The Google Desktop Search program does not make your computer's content accessible to Google or anyone else. You can learn more by reading the Desktop Search privacy policy. [...]

From the privacy policy:

What information does Google receive?

By default, Google Desktop Search collects a limited amount of non-personal information from your computer and sends it to Google. This includes summary information, such as the number of searches you do and the time it takes for you to see your results, and application reports we'll use to make the program better. You can opt out of sending this information during the installation process or from the application preferences at any time.

Personally identifying information, such as your name or address, will not be sent to Google without your explicit permission. [...]

<>How we use unique application numbers, cookies and related information.

Your copy of Google Desktop Search includes a unique application number. When you install Google Desktop Search, this number and a message indicating whether the installation succeeded is sent back to Google so that we can make the software work better. Additionally, when Google Desktop Search automatically checks to see if a new version is available, the current version number and the unique application number are sent to Google. If you choose to send us non-personal information about your use of Google Desktop Search, the unique application number with this non-personal information also helps us understand how you use Google Desktop Search so that we can make it work better. The unique application number is required for Google Desktop Search to work and cannot be disabled.

Google Desktop Search uses the same cookie as and other Google services. If you send us non-personal information about your Google Desktop Search use, we may be able to make Google services work better by associating this information with other Google services you use and vice versa. You can opt out of sending such non-personal information to Google during the installation process or from the application preferences at any time. [...]

How do I keep Google Desktop Search from indexing or displaying certain files?

If there are any files or other data that you do not want indexed by Google Desktop Search, there are several ways that you can keep this data from being displayed, copied and indexed, as well as ways to remove it from the index after it has been included. You can see specific instructions on removing items in the user guide. [...]

My emphasis.

If you are going to say that something is scary you have to say specifically why.

This is potentially scary because it unifies your online google searches, your searches on your machine for your personal files and your gmail account.

IF you use google to search, IF you use gmail desktop search and IF you have a gmail account.

IF the local police/CIA/MI5/FBI (See Indymedia confiscated server discs scandal) want to tie up all of your data, AND IF you use all of these google services, they can tie all of your stuff together with the cookies, your gmail account and your google desktop index and search history.

posted by Irdial , 5:33 PM Þ 
posted by Ken , 4:58 PM Þ 

O'Reilly Hit With Sex Harass Suit - October 13, 2004: "O'Reilly Hit With Sex Harass Suit
Female Fox coworker details lewd behavior of cable TV star

OCTOBER 13--Hours after Bill O'Reilly accused her of a multimillion dollar shakedown attempt, a female Fox News producer fired back at the TV star today, filing a lawsuit claiming that he subjected her to repeated instances of sexual harassment and spoke often, and explicitly, to her about phone sex, vibrators, threesomes, masturbation, the loss of his virginity, and sexual fantasies. Below you'll find a copy of Andrea Mackris's complaint, an incredible page-turner that quotes O'Reilly, 55, on all sorts of lewd matters. Based on the extensive quotations cited in the complaint, it appears a safe bet that Mackris, 33, recorded some of O'Reilly's more steamy soliloquies. For example, we direct you to his Caribbean shower fantasies. While we suggest reading the entire document, TSG will point you to interesting sections on a Thailand sex show, Al Franken, and the climax of one August 2004 phone conversation. (22 pages)"
posted by Ken , 4:53 PM Þ 

Is the Taj Mahal tilting?

The Taj Mahal, India's biggest tourist draw, might already be tilting and may even crumble or sink if the government does not restore its original ecological settings.

Two noted historians have warned that the bed of the river Yamuna must be re-filled with water if the world's most famous monument, built on its banks, is to be saved.

The Taj Mahal is celebrating its 350th anniversary this year. Built with high quality white marble, it came up in the 17th century and is known as the monument of love[...]

hindustantimes (note the ht has links to email or blog stories)


Oprah Winfrey, Tom Cruise to co-host December's Nobel Concert

American superstars, Tom Cruise and Oprah Winfrey, will host December's traditional Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Oslo, honouring the 2004 laureate, Kenyan environmentalist Wangari Maathai, organizers said on Wednesday.

"They really wanted to do it, right from the start," concert organizer Odd Arvid Stroemstad said. "They clearly know what the Nobel concert is, and what the Nobel Peace Prize is about."


posted by meau meau , 1:28 PM Þ 

Thames Gateway

..."We suspect that growth would be far less environmentally damaging in many other parts of the UK, especially the north of England, because there is generally much greater environmental and infrastructure headroom."
A spokesman for Mr Prescott's office said it would be wrong to comment before the decision on Friday but the government was not forcing growth on anyone. There was a demand for growth in the south-east, not in the north, and the government was aiming to satisfy that.

Satisfying 'demand' is a stupid argument, the government is facilitating demand in the south-east of the country by making it economically viable for *businesses* to be located there rather than equally good places elsewhere in the country, if it were left to the market businesses would soon find that the demands of their employees could be better served by relocation (potentially - lower salary demands, lower house prices, less commuting time, palatable water, blah). Business demand will always reshape itself to whatever framework it has to operate in (or can exploit). It's like saying there's so much demand for oil we won't fund solar power research and spend the money on invading oil producing countries, and we know how mad that is.
posted by meau meau , 10:13 AM Þ

Here are two different blogspot blogs with identical posts in them. These are probably updated by a script, so that the owner of this system can inject a URL into them all at once and shoot his clients site into all the aggregators.

Hmmmm what should we call this, it uses the same thinking as a DDOS, but its not denying anything...D...Corruption Of Statistics: DCOS. Catchy?!
posted by Irdial , 9:09 AM Þ 
Wednesday, October 13, 2004

The result of the American election in less than three weeks could have huge consequences for the whole world. Yet those of us outside the 50 states have had no say in it. Until now, that is.

In the spirit of the Declaration of Independence's pledge to show "a decent respect to the opinions of mankind", we have come up with a unique way for non-Americans to express your views on the policies and candidates in this election to some of the people best placed to decide its outcome. It's not quite a vote, but it's a chance to influence how a very important vote will be cast. Or, at the very least, make a new penpal.

It works like this. By typing your email address into the box on this page, you will receive the name and address of a voter in Clark County, Ohio. You may not have heard of it, but it's one of the most marginal areas in one of the most marginal states: at the last election, just 324 votes separated Democrats from Republicans. It's a place where a change of mind among just a few voters could make a real difference.

Writing to a Clark County voter is a chance to explain how US policies effect you personally, and the rest of the world more generally, and who you hope they will send to the White House. It may even persuade someone to use their vote at all.

A few tips about writing to Clark County:

  • Be courteous. Remember that it's unusual to receive a lobbying letter from someone in another country. Think about how you would respond if you received a letter from Ohio urging you to vote for Tony Blair - or Michael Howard . . .
  • Don't make any assumptions about the voter with whom you have been matched. His or her name comes from the publicly available voters' roll. The voter has not registered any party affiliation. (We don't want individual Clark County voters bombarded with lobbying letters so this site will assign only one name and address to each user - please don't pass yours on to anyone else.)
  • Explain why you think they should pay the slightest bit of attention to what you think about their election. Remember, charm will be far more effective than hectoring.

Of course, who you urge your voter to support is entirely up to you. On October 20 we will publish a selection of the most persuasive letters to Clark County in the Guardian. To have yours considered, please email a copy to

That, for now, is our part. Over to you.


So, it looks like the world is going to have a say after all. Good.
posted by Irdial , 10:56 PM Þ 

"Eugene -

The state is investigating allegations that a Portland canvasser may have destroyed completed voter registration forms. A recent report says that a man paid to register voters was instructed to only accept Republican registration forms.

'Voters Outreach of America,' the company he claims to work for, is largely bankrolled by the GOP. But the Oregon Republican Party says the man never worked for them.

This is the second complaint in one day against the company. In Las Vegas, Nevada the company's one-time registrar says his former employer only paid workers to collect Republican registrations.

Talking about his former boss, Eric Russell said, 'We caught her ripping up the registration of Democrats, ripped them up right in front of us.'" [...]

posted by chriszanf , 7:07 PM Þ 

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one of the world’s major sources of instability. Americans are directly connected to this conflict, and increasingly imperiled by its devastation.

It is the goal of If Americans Knew to provide full and accurate information on this critical issue, and on our power – and duty – to bring a resolution.

Below are charts of eight little-known statistics.
Please click on any statistic for the source and more information.

Chart showing that the United States gives over 26 times more assistance to Israel than to Palestinian development organizations.

The U.S. gives $15,139,178 per day to the Israeli government and military and $568,744 per day to Palestinian NGO’s.

Chart showing that Israel has been targeted by over 60 UN resolutions, while the Palestinians have been targeted by none.

Israel has been targeted by at least 65 UN resolutions and the Palestinians have been targeted by none.

Chart showing that 3 to 4 times more Palestinians have been killed than Israelis.

989 Israelis and 3,354 Palestinians have been killed since September 29, 2000.

Chart showing that Palestinians are injured at least four times more often than Israelis.

6,709 Israelis and 27,925 Palestinians have been injured since September 29, 2000.

Chart depicting the fact that the Palestinian unemployment is around 4 times the Israeli unemployment rate.

The Israeli unemployment rate is 10.4%, while the Palestinian unemployment is estimated at 37-67%.

Chart showing that approximated 5 times more Palestinian children have been killed than Israeli children

114 Israeli children have been killed by Palestinians and 642 Palestinian children have been killed by Israelis since September 29, 2000.

Chart showing that 2202 Palestinian homes have been destroyed, compared to one Israeli home.

1 Israeli home has been destroyed by Palestinians and 2,202 Palestinian homes have been completely destroyed (14,436 partially destroyed) since September 29, 2000.

Chart showing that Israel has built at least 60 new Jewish-only settlements on Palestinians land.

60+ new Jewish-only settlements have been built on confiscated Palestinian land between March 2001 and July 11, 2003. There have been 0 cases of Palestinians confiscating Israeli land and building settlements.
posted by telle goode , 4:32 PM Þ 

The Guardian

President Bush's special envoy, James Baker, who has been trying to persuade the world to forgive Iraq's crushing debts, is simultaneously working for a commercial concern that is trying to recover money from Iraq, according to confidential documents.

Mr Baker's Carlyle Group is in a consortium secretly proposing to try to collect $27bn (£15bn) on behalf of Kuwait, one of Iraq's biggest creditors, by using high-level political influence. It claims Mr Baker will not benefit personally, but the consortium could make millions in fees, retainers and commission as a result.

Other countries, including Britain, have been urged by Mr Baker to relieve the new Iraq regime of its $200bn debt burden. Iraq owes Britain approximately $1bn.

One international lawyer described the consortium's scheme as "influence peddling of the crassest kind".

Aside from the crassness of it all it'll be interesting to see if the BBQ will find this worth reporting, after all the Carlyle Group help fund Qinetiq, whose Damn Pauline does the BBQs 'impartiality' no favours with her predeliction for a propaganda war.
posted by meau meau , 10:35 AM Þ 
Tuesday, October 12, 2004
posted by Ken , 9:43 PM Þ 
posted by meau meau , 5:17 PM Þ 

Equipment and materials that could be used to make nuclear weapons have disappeared from Iraq, the UN's nuclear watchdog warned yesterday.

Satellite imagery and investigations of nuclear sites in Iraq have caused alarm at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The agency found that in some cases entire buildings housing high-precision nuclear equipment had been dismantled; equipment that could be used to make a bomb, such as high-strength aluminium, had vanished from open storage areas, the agency said [...]


Try to remember the war helped make the Middle East region safer after the removal of Saddam from power - and that this stability will flow into neighbouring regions (oh, dear)
posted by meau meau , 3:05 PM Þ 
posted by Alun , 1:23 PM Þ 

Hey Windows-ians, who has installed SP2 yet? Meau, I'm currently using SUSE Linux personal on an old P3 and it's very nice - easy install and good hardware detection. Gentoo is too complicated for me. Posted by Hello
posted by captain davros , 11:09 AM Þ 

posted by Alun , 10:30 AM Þ 
Monday, October 11, 2004

What's left of the 'voluntary' figleaf to the UK's ID scheme will erode in the next few months, when Home Secretary David Blunkett introduces legislation that will allow implementation of the scheme and include provision for a rolling programme to issue ID cards along with passport renewals [...]

The Register

Well we knew that what the government meant by voluntary was a question of their blackmailing/witholding of rights that you are already entitled to - you want a new passport well it is an ID card too how do you like that? (tough) - as the soliloquy went.

So long as people keep waking waking up.

While I was elsewhere I did watch a small amount of the PMs speech to his acolytes and he said that ID cards will be issued to all people crossing our borders - he had to wrap it up with some lie about asylum and taking race issues out of politics (forever) to get his applause, but I bet his brood didn't realise he meant people crossing OUT as well as IN.

[...] A similar approach could be adopted as the ID system rolls out to driving licences, with the licence-renewing public having no choice but to accept the ID card if they want a licence, and no choice then but to pay for it. Blunkett did not cover this in his speech, but it may be covered in the forthcoming legislation, and once these two key ID document areas are covered, the rest of the population can be slowly mopped up [...]

Replace could with will, or vote Labour out of office.

posted by meau meau , 4:49 PM Þ 

from musicweek :
'Aim is in the process of attempting to issue the owners of, a Russian-owned website which is advertising the potential sale of unlicensed UK indie content, a 'take-down notice'.'

seems they have not gone unnoticed!

I went to see Tony Allen at the Barbican on saturday, as a part of the 'Black President' exhibition. In my opinion, it was slightly marred by Damon Albarn being on stage. Didn't think he really added anything at all to the proceedings. Manu Dibango is also booked to play next weekend.

Have spent quite a few weeks in pain with sciatica problems. My flatmate knows a good osteopath who 'cracked' my back and relieved a lot of pain. Think it's time I started looking into taking up yoga.

These sunflowers are about 12 foot tall [or over], in a friends garden.

posted by chriszanf , 4:24 PM Þ 


Subsystence: Volume 4 is being compiled as we speak. We just received our first round of design comps for the next issue, and content is beginning to roll in.

Released during the first week of November, the installment will be titled 'Citizen' and have a election-related political slant. We're currently accepting art, photography, design, writing (editorial work, creative writing, music/film/book/whatever reviews, anything), original music, interactive stuff, you name it.

Akin has submitted work, Alun is preparing another piece, Alex will be designing a future issue. I know some of you have expressed in interest in the past, so maybe now is the time to get involved!

Contact me and let me know your interest. The final deadline would be around the 23rd or so.

Thanks for reading,
posted by Ken , 4:03 PM Þ 

I've been playing with dasher for a while - which makes a nice change from freecell (ahem) It's so easy to 'type'' words, editing is a bit of a pain and takes the wpm to a fair bit less than proper typing.

posted by meau meau , 3:40 PM Þ 

Now the nights are drawing in I'm thinking about giving myself a challenge/headache and upgrading to a laptop and putting a linux on it. Trouble is I've had a cosy computerdom so far (sheltered from the cruel wind*s by the apple tree). I don't know whether to stick with a mac powerbook and install onto that or totally lose my bearings and go with an Intel/AMD slab (and then which manufacturer?).

If I go the PC route I can choose a minimally US slab which would be better in the current climate I suppose.

Akin wrote nice things about Mandrake but was going to test Gentoo (& Anthonytoo) ...
posted by meau meau , 1:53 PM Þ 
posted by alex_tea , 1:25 PM Þ 

Media guardian publishes another clueless shill piece...what did you expect?

No hiding place for pirates

This is an article about file sharing, not piracy. Piracy is the selling of other peoples IP without their consent. Filesharing is completely different; no theft takes place when people share digital files.

The British music industry is to clamp down on illegal file swappers. Andrew Hobson looks at the legal routes that could be pursued

They are not "swapping" they are sharing. The current services do not use ratios to determine how much you can transfer; you do not have to upload a certain quantity before you can download. Sharing means freely and unconditionally exchanging copies of files. That is what is happening.

Monday October 11, 2004

I dont like Mondays.

The Guardian

Sometimes, I dont like The Guardian. Especially when they are the Guardians of the status quo, big business, buggy whip salesmen and thier ignorant shills.

Last week the UK's music industry finally announced the end of their phoney war and opened up a second front in the battle against piracy.

Which "phoney war" was that? Hmmm the shorthand for "phoney war" could be "Phwar". But I digress. This second front, is actually completely absurd, as absurd as all the other times the music industry tried to stop new technology from taking its proper, undiluted place in our lives. Like the musicians union trying to ban drum machines or the famous anti VHS statements of the past. You know the sound. If these fools think that filesharing is piracy, they are strongly deluded. Filesharing is not piracy, it is the new radio. A distributed, dynamic radio, which drives sales of CDs and anything else related to music. They should stop, think, or, hire a computer literate consultant to do the thinking for them if they cannot muster the two braincells they have to communicate to each other.

The BPI, the UK's music industry trade body, has the option of launching civil or criminal claims against the pirates.

The only option the UK music industry has is death if if does not embrace filesharing.

However, the criminal route is fraught with risks. The burden of proof needed in the criminal courts is so high that it will always make this an uncertain option. A criminal case against file swapping would also bring the BPI into relatively new and uncharted areas of the law. The likelihood is that the case would need to reach the House of Lords before it could be put to bed.

Someone will argue, sucessfully, that making a digital copy of something is not theft. Theft takes place where property is removed, denying the use of that property to its owner. This does not happen with digital files. The music companies still own the copyright and publishing of the works that are shared. They can deny commercial use of any of these works. They loose nothing when a file is shared; in fact they gain something. When people use their bandwidth to share files, they are providing a service to the record companies. They are spreading awareness of the groups and songs belonging to the record companies, endorsing these artists by the very act of listing them as "good enough to be in my collection". This is a sort of grass roots PR that you cannot buy, and cannot engineer. It is more potent than being played on the radio, stronger than any full page advert in a Sunday newspaper.

Instead the BPI has taken the much more pragmatic approach of launching 28 civil lawsuits against uploaders, those individuals that make their music collections available to other individuals - the dealers rather than the junkies.

This is a particularly repugnant turn of phrase, comparing filesharing to drug dealing. Filesharing is an excressence of the most fundamental and human qualities of man; the urge to share with your neighbor. Humans (those of us who ARE human) have an innate desire to spread good will, tell stories and help their fellow man. Filesharing fulfils this drive in the human who is a music fan. File sharers are better described as boyscouts helping old ladies across the street; they go out of their way to help other people, at their own expense and trouble. Equating filesharers to drug dealers is a shabby, vulgar and absurd use of language, and no one is going to buy into it. "Just say no" to filesharing? "I can quit just a bit of filesharing". These idiotic establishment calls for people to stop doing what they want fell on deaf ears when they were about drugs, now, swapping drugs for filesharing, does anyone on this planet think that a single person is going to pay attention to this sort of garbage?

For the uploaders, the fact that they will be faced by civil rather than criminal action should not cause them to rejoice. UK law is very clear-cut on the theft of intellectual property.

This I find most amusing; filesharing individuals can be fined astronomical sums when they are not making any money at all, BUT if a huge international company releases an infringing CD, they face no penalty at all. This is a fact. When a record company releases the work of an artist, if the artists work has infringed the copyright of a third party, only the artist is liable, meaning that the company gets away with selling infringing works scott free. Strangely, this means that the infringed party is subject to the terms of the contract between the artist and his companyh, even if the infringed party never signed the contract!

Whether you are file swapping for fun or for commercial gain, if you are depriving the composers of the fruits of their labour and record companies of their income you can be pursued for very substantial damages.

No one is in filesharing for commercial gain. If they are, they are not filesharers, but pirates, because they are making money out of someone elses works. Filesharers do not "deprive composer of the fruits of their labours". This is a lie. Nothing is lost when a digital copy of a file is made. Fileshareing does the complete opposite of what this "article" claims; it helps composers make money from their works.

The levels of damages would be established by looking at the number of songs that the uploader had enabled to be copied rather than the amount of money that they have made from that copying. Each copy made would entitle the composer and the performer to their royalties, so the BPI does not have to prove that when a file has been downloaded it has resulted in a lost sale.

Which is completely absurd. They can go to court, claiming that a theft has taken place, but they do not have to prove it! They should have to prove that they lost a sale because of a file being shared, and they should have to prove it for that particular instance.

The damages that the BPI could demand are scary - one user of one illegal uploader can fit 5,000 songs, roughly 400 albums, on to just one IPod. If you are an uploader who is proud of the popularity of the service you provide to the internet community, you may face a truly life-changing bill. BPI has said that the damages that it will pursue will be decided by how quickly the cases settle. Cases are likely to settle for a fraction of the total theoretical damages bill.

This only proves how absurd the rules are. Once again, one of these companies can SELL millions of infringing works, and pay nothing. We need to remember this as these arguments are trotted out again and again by the music business propaganda machine.

On a side note, there was a circus that recently trundled out the old age pensioner Pete Waterman, a die hard buggy whip wielding computer illiterate ranting about how "you have to buy music". Believe me, you are going to have to do better than that...much better than that, if you want to have even the slightest chance of not looking completely absurd as you loose this argument. And as for Feargal Sharkey....but you know what Im going to say!

In the US each illegal download of a copyrighted song carries a maximum penalty of $150,000, but public relations concerns mean that cases have been settled for tiny percentages of the maximum.

Its about time the UK stopped following the USA dont you think?

The BPI has also said that at as well as seeking damages they will issue injunctions through the civil court that will forbid the downloaders from infringing copyrights again. Typically such injunctions cover the work of one artist, but in the case of music pirates, for such injunctions to be effective they will have to be drawn very widely. There is no point in restricting somebody from infringing the copyright of Britney Spears and the Pixies as that would leave the pirates free to rip off any other band's music the next week. Instead the injunction will have to take the form of a copyright Anti-Social Behaviour Order.

Now you are dreaming.

If the uploader infringes the injunction, proceedings could be started for contempt of court. If found in contempt, the uploader will have to pick up the tab for court and legal costs. For the simplest of cases this will be £10,000 to £20,000. It's not unknown for the courts to sentence those found guilty of contempt to seven days in jail to give the offender a bit of time to dwell on things.

Gaol for sharing files. And you think that this will endear people to record companies? Totally and utterly insane...but you will all pay the price for this flagrant anti-human behaviour. You will all be consigned to the dustbin of history.

Before the BPI can roll its legal guns out into action they need to cross one obstacle. That's identifying who they want to attack. At the moment the BPI is likely to know little more about the identity of their quarry than the handful of anonymous sounding IP addresses.

Filesharing networks will shortly dissapear from the IP address radar. Even if this does not happen, you will never stop filesharing. Ever. Stop. Listen. THINK.

What the BPI will need to do next is make an application to the courts to force the Internet Service Providers to disclose the names and addresses behind the IP addresses. Normally, it is "Norwich Pharmical orders" which are used to force the disclosure of information from those who have been innocently involved in copyright infringements. The orders are named after the pharmaceutical company that successfully won disclosure of information from Customs & Excise who had seized a shipment of pirated drugs.

There you go again with the misuse of "Pirated"! Digital copying is not theft. Where there is no theft, there is no piracy, and thus, the Norwichj Pharmical orders example cannot be applied. In a fair court that is.

The ISPs could choose to challenge these orders on the grounds that their involvement began and ended with the relay of transient data packets and that they had no involvement, unwitting or otherwise, in the actual copyright infringements.

And what if the ISP is in another jurisdiciion, and the filesharer who is based in the uk was using a proxy to share her collection? You would not even know where to look!

If the BPI find this route blocked they are sure to find another path.

You hope.

What little hope that downloaders have of avoiding ruinous damages is dependent on the BPI's fear of bad publicity. But the BPI is saying that who it decides to pursue will not be determined by "political correctness".

We will see. The backlash will be very large I imagine.

The US music industry was willing to take a case against a 12-year-old girl and despite adverse publicity still forced her mother to pay $2,000. In the UK 12 is also seen as the age at which minors are culpable for their actions. Another reason why we can still feel a little bit uneasy about our children's enthusiastic embrace of technology?

???!!! Children, in their unspoiled purity innately understand fileshareing, being more in touch with the clean essence of the human spirit. That the inhumane and unjust record industry should attack a child in this way is illustrative of that industrys true nature, and its a real pity that the Guardian has bought hook line and sinker the line of that same, shameful industry.

Its hardly surprising however. This newspaper is trying to sell its issues online in the form of a dissected replica of the paper edition, showing their profound non understanding of the why and what of the web. Their "unlimited" (actually severely crippled) edition is another example of endemic misunderstanding, inertia and fear of the internet and all things digital.

My advice to the uploaders? Time to pack it in. You have done your job and forced the music industry to sell in the format in which millions want to use, not the format the music industry wanted to peddle.

This man is clearly unaware of what is really going on; the music industry is doing the exact opposite of what he says in these lines; they are actually selling the complete opposite of what people want. People want to share their music. Apple, SONY and M$ are all trying to sell formats that attempt (poorly) to prevent this. They are selling formats that take away the rights of the user. They are absolutely not reacting to the market; they are doing what The Guardian is trying to do with its digital edition; force an old format and business model into a new environment that fundamentally destroys it. The "job of the Uploaders" never was to send a signal to anyone; it was and is merely to share music, and fulfil their desires as human beings. The music industry has not responeded correctly, this is clear, and there are no two ways about this. The lawsuits that are being planned and the computer illiterate geriatric talking heads that they roll out and will roll out to defend these indefensible actions will demonstrate this further.

The next test for the music industry is whether the claimed "lost" sales are related to the format or the content.

We already know the answer to this. Filesharing has a zero or positive effect on sales. Academic studies have proved this conclusively. Either the author knows this and has not said it so as not to destroy his argument, or he does not know this, and should not be writing this piece because he is not fully informed.

Andrew Hobson is head of IP at commercial law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain.

posted by Irdial , 1:47 AM Þ 

Aha, Mary13, but do they involve living in other countries? That's more important than the roast boar for me I must confess. It's knowing that the light switches and plugs and teevee and radio would all be different, not to mention the language and newspapers and so on. Large parts of England are so inefficient in the winter, and I imagine Germany and other European countries to have nicer, warmer experiences.

Barrie, I feel your pain. I know what you mean!
posted by captain davros , 1:44 AM Þ 
Sunday, October 10, 2004

In my world, they are called Apple Pie Sundays.
posted by mary13 , 11:23 PM Þ 

I have just come to the realization that the headaches that have plagued me my whole life (like the one I am currently experiencing) are due to low atmospheric pressure in the region. I don't really know why this would be, but for the past several weeks I have been looking at the meteorology pages in the paper and looking at my barometer, and everytime I get one of these headaches there is either a low pressure front or a "trough" of low pressure.
I am wondering whether in the future I will have to move from this region because the headaches have been getting worse over the years. I am dreading the arrival of winter this year - low light and low pressure almost all the time.
Dav, your yearnings sound familiar to me. I get a very similar feeling before the onset of winter, though it's less region-specific, and the food items are usually things like meat pie and racks of lamb and such. Mmm. Been rather depressed lately. Want to live in a nice small efficient house on a lot of land, away from the stupid stupid city.
posted by Barrie , 7:42 PM Þ 

Sometimes on an autumnal Sunday such as today, at about 5.30 pm I always get the feeling that I would like to be living in a nice warm modern house in Germany and eating roast boar and other succulent things. This has been going on for several years now.
posted by captain davros , 2:05 PM Þ 
posted by captain davros , 2:01 PM Þ 

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