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Online piracy - enough already...

Enough already.

I have written many times about this, and it is starting to turn up in mainstream media as well, that the excessive over-legislation is threatening to destroy what made the 'net good, and our stupid governments are only too eager to assist, for cashbacks and because people talking to each other is never a good thing if you have too many secrets to hide...

...the Freesat receivers are starting public tests of iPlayer connectivity. If you have a Humax, you're in luck. The rest? It's the waiting game for now.
If/when it is unveiled for Goodmans receivers, I fully expect mine to pop up a message stating:

Example of what the FreeSat BBC iPlayer message if you aren't UK resident might look like

The sad thing is everybody who is a licence holder seems so damned obsessed with what people cannot do, they are totally ignoring their options if they think more inclusively of what is possible. For example, the British television licence is £145.50. That's £12.12 a month. I'd pay that on some sort of direct debit scheme in order to have free access to the VOD services such as 4OD and iPlayer... maybe even the ITV one if ITV shows something worth watching.
But no. I live in France so it isn't permitted. Furthermore, the BBC recently changed iPlayer in a way that stops a lot of non-Adobe software from working. Don't they realise this sort of behaviour usually increases the piracy they're trying to combat?

So I draw a line. Here. Today. Enough. Unless something epic fail happens, I won't report on the copyright/IPR bollocks any longer. If you should ever come here wondering "what does Rick think about..." then just read one of my earlier postings and mentally ^C ^V it into your brain's buffer. For I find I am saying the same thing over and over, and, well, it gets boring.

But don't think that's the last I will write - for as I type this, the godforsaken ACTA (super-secret behind-closed-doors pseudo-global anti-counterfeit legislation that will criminalise millions of citizens while being neither decided in front of nor voted by said citizens; Wiki article) is getting some warm treatment from the EU. The European Data Protection Supervisor has been left in the dark with regards ACTA (suspicious? hell yes!) has pointed out some big fallacies in the supposed provisions of the bill, and that the whole thing will probably go legal (and may well be thrown out for numerous contraventions of basic rights) before the ink is dry. Read the actual document (PDF).
Now? The European Parliament wants in. It wants the process to be open. So the European Parliament (non-invited) is threatening to take the European Commission (invited) to the highest European Court.

Confused? Yes, it does sound rather like Europe is busy bitchslapping itself, and it would probably be borderline comical if it wasn't a piece-of-cack legislation likely to make me a criminal. You too - do you have an MP3 player? How did the songs get on it? Did you have the required "rights" to transfer the music onto it? I doubt it. Most of us just ripped our CDs and sampled old vinyl and arranged it in folders by artist and then album. Well, against the wall mother-----, you don't have the right to remain silent, you will be some big bloke's slap-monkey for all eternity in a cell with a broken toilet and one bed which ain't yours.
Well, not quite, but the responses to "copyright" are getting evermore increasingly bizarre and random. It's one thing to bitch about downloading songs without paying (though, please, your losses are not equal to the GDP of a developed nation, stop trying to pull that $#!+), but to say what we can do with our purchases is pathetic. It is like Nissan selling you a car with the proviso that you are only entitled to take left-hand turns.

I break the law regularly. Azumi has no DVD reader. So I rip DVDs that I have purchased to XviD to transfer across the network to the SD card, to then watch with MPlayer. Frequent, regular, flagrant abuses of my privileges of a copyright licencee.
Now, if you back the hell up... I'm watching the content I paid money for on the playback device of my choosing. I'm usually sitting in bed, watching it alone. Explain how anybody loses. Come on, explain how this is such a bad thing.
Because if the various media companies are going to seek gagging/disconnect orders on mere accusations of content rights infringement, while making a huge deal of how evil it is to watch the content in a way they didn't deliver it into our unworthy hands... well, bu**er it, I'll just go download the thing...

At any rate, I'm sick of repeating myself, and this will all end in tears.

 

The danger of democratic-fallacy

In the UK we have a police force that has been basically told it is acceptable to break the law if you are under the impression you are doing the right thing.
We have not-cops (PCSOs) overreaching their puny authority to demand tourists delete photos from their cameras on a repeated deliberate misreading of s44 anti-terrorist legislation.
We have a government that knows keeping innocent people's DNA samples (frequently obtained without permission or for minor things to which DNA harvesting is unwarranted) but they don't give a damn.

This all sounds paranoid and stupid and like something from an Eastern Bloc state during the Soviet era rather than Rule Brittania's NuLabour government. But it is.
The thing is, this in itself is not the danger for they have proven time and again to be totally incompetent with people's private data (I guess, in their eyes, nothing should be private but their own expenses).
The danger, and I mean a country-destroying danger, is more and more people are voting for less liberal parties - the UKIP, the BNP, various shades of National Front. Get one of these parties in with the sort of laws Labour is setting up now, there will be bloodshed on the streets. For Labour are paranoid idiots afraid of being caught in the trough (gee, like everybody else in a high-paid position, what's new?). They are nowhere near as dangerous as a party that could use these bits of legislation for an agenda, be it British-only, whites only, or whatever nonsense discrimination fits the bill.

 

Footnote

That Euro-parliament vote for open access to ACTA was 663 votes to 13, with 16 abstentions and 74 non-votes. Of the 13 votes against, ten are listed. All ten are from the United Kingdom. All ten are UKIP members.
So the UKIP would appear to want the secret talks to remain secret. Why?

All the gory stats: http://votewatch.eu/cx_vote_details.php?&id_act=456&vers=2.

 

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