"An era can be said to end when its basic illusions are exhausted." - Arthur Miller

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Linkfest - SOPA

All Companies That Support SOPA
Hit the link to see all the companies supporting SOPA which will likely pass Congress next year unless stopped. The claim is the law will stop piracy but in reality it gives corporations to power to block any website they claim has pirated content, no actual evidence required. It will cripple the Internet. They can choose at any time what site lives or dies in the US and to get it restored the site has to take the accuser to court which can take months or even years. On the surface that may sound fine but keep in mind the RIAA and MPAA have tried to sue and shut down sites just for playing a clip from a movie, for showing a home video of goofing dancing to "protected" music and even just for sites that are critical of them. Don't believe they will abuse this power, see next story. In short, any company that supports SOPA has essentially made a statement that they do not value free speech. An example is web host provider Go Daddy. Their support of the bill means that they will happily shut down any website they receive a notice from no questions asked. If you know anyone that uses them, it is advised they be ditched asap.

Universal Music TakedownAs part of the fight against SOPA, Megaupload released a music video called "Mega Song" which has multiple mostly Universal artists like P Diddy, Kanye West, and others singing about the website. None of the content used in the video is owned by Universal Music. However, that didn't stop them from spending the better part of a week from trying to remove the video from the internet claiming it was infringing on their copyright. Megaupload is one of the sites that they along with the MPAA and RIAA are hoping to permanently block with SOPA. This is also an example of why that law can't pass. Simply because they disagree with the content of the song, they tried to get it removed despite the fact they have no claim of ownership. If they are willing to do this before a law like SOPA exists, what makes you think they will not shut down sites for simply posting harsh criticisms against them or the content they sell? Bad review for latest album? That site has to go because they wrote about copyrighted material. Wrote about how the latest new movie sucks? Kiss that site goodbye. This isn't a hypothetical scenario because this exact scenario essentially occurred last week. SOPA gives corporations the ability to shut down any website they simply don't like and should never be allowed to pass.

AT&T Ends T-Mobile MergerAfter over a year of fighting, AT&T has decided to no longer pursue their $39 billion buyout of T-Mobile. The future of T-Mobile remains unknown with some claiming it will be shut down which makes no sense considering the company is apparently worth at least $39 billion. The issue on the merger was the near virtual monopoly it would give AT&T in the US mobile market as it would make them nearly 2x bigger than the other mobile providers combined. Considering AT&T's very poor history of customer satisfaction, network stability, and pricing, it was pretty much guaranteed they would have used the new power to find new ways to screw customers. A sign of that was most of AT&T's claim the merger was good was when they took a page from the GOP and declared it would "create jobs!" which has become the new "for the children!" excuse. If that sounds like a good reason for the merger, go away and quick reading my site as you are moron because its common knowledge that mergers never create jobs. They always, without exception, lead to layoff and store closings due to overlap of services and goods that mergers like this create.

R.I.P. Jerry Robinson
A giant of the comic book industry and co-creator of Batman's Joker, Robin, Alfred and more, died last week at the age of 89.

G.I. Joe: Retaliation Trailer
Trailer for the sequel to movie from two years ago. Based on the few bits in the trailer it seems the first movie's cast (of which only one returns) get killed off by a Cobra attack.

The Dark Knight Rises Trailer

Wrath of the Titans Trailer
Still would rather see a God of War movie (based on the video game series).

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