Archives » August, 2002

August 20, 2002


An ISP in New Jersey is fighting back against the RIAA and the Berman bill by:

  • Blocking its users from accessing the RIAA’s website
  • Setting up a honeypot to catch RIAA hacking attempts the same way you’d go after any other hacker

I wonder if this is just an isolated skirmish, or the first strike in a larger uprising that will eventualy lead to these inane bills being defeated?

What Century?

Here’s what’s going on in the 21st century
The New York Times is going to be giving same-sex marriages equal treatment on their Weddings page.

Here’s what’s going on in Nevada:
Ballot Question 2 will make same-sex marriages illegal in the state.

Now, which one of these seems like a step backwards?

August 19, 2002

Other Voices

I added a bunch of other names to my Other Voices bloglist. There’s a lot of good stuff there that I try to read everyday, even if some of them write less frequently than I do.

August 18, 2002


Added Adam Felber to my BlogList, political satirist and frequest panelist on Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me.

August 16, 2002

The Wal*Mart Comes to Town

Those in this area who pray to the god of Big Capitalism now can dust off their prayer mats and kneel towards the new Holy City of consumerism. That’s right, the Wal-Mart Super Center has come to town.

It opened this week, perched like a fortress atop the Last Hill Out Of Town. The shiny new automatic doors slide open effortlessly, greeting you with a blast of cold air and a whiff of cK Buy. The shiny new cash registers beep and hum, singing a song that only they and the accountants can understand. The shiny new gas pumps dispense refined tar into the mouths of thirsty SUVs as harried soccer moms stuff in shopping bags and kids, in equal amounts. You can even eat off of the parking lot, it’s so new. All is right with the world.

You always hear about Wal-Mart coming to town and driving everyone else out of business. That can’t happen this time, since we’ve had our old Wal-Mart for 11 years now, and the Mom & Pops have long since shuttered their doors. Actually, the only ones hurt by the opening of this new store were the old store, which necessarily closed, and the esteemed City of Carson. You see, when Wal-Mart went looking for a plot of land on which to build a new store, the only perfect place they could find was about a hundred yards on the wrong side of the county line. The city fathers, who were already so worried about budgets that they’ve been selling off city parks to developers, shit a collective brick when they heard this. They tried to make bargains, but the deal was done. So now Carson City is out a few million in sales tax revenue, and the old Wal-Mart sits like a discarded orange peel, rotting on the horizon, too big for all but the most multi of multi-national retailers to move into.

Who wins? Why, Carson City’s friendly neighbor to the south, Douglas County (my place of residence, incidentally). They already scored a coup by getting the Target and Home Depot a couple of years ago, and now there’s another ginormous retailer perched on the hill outside of town.

The opinion page in our local newspaper summed it up just right:

Wal-Mart is a nation, erecting cities inside our borders and changing the balance of power among local governments.

It’s free enterprise, baby.

August 15, 2002

Lessig Again

In Darwin Magazine – an interview with Lawrence Lessig where he talks about patent abuse and threats to the Internet. Short summary: he’s not optimistic.

August 14, 2002

Brainless For Dinner

A little bit of Zen brainlessness available at toothpaste for dinner.

TIPS Forms

Speaking of Operation TIPS, remember to download your forms!

Bad Stuff

Yesterday was the good stuff, today is the bad stuff. And the world stays in balance.

A bunch of Congresscritters are asking Wacko General John Ashcroft to start arresting people for downloading music using file-sharing services. I suppose that’s one of the things your meter reader can report when he peeks in your window.

The FBI is aware of the practices of “wardriving” and “warchalking”, and presumably intends to arrest its practitioners for, among other things, theft of services. Reminds me of a Doonesbury cartoon from a few weeks back.

And on top of it all, temperatures here have been pushing 100 all week.

On a positive note – I’m still able to call the Attorney General of the US a wacko in a public place without being arrested. I hope.

August 13, 2002

Good Stuff

Bunch of good stuff happening already this week.

First, Dan Gillmor says that we’re losing the copyright battle without a single shot being fired. Media companies are pushing stricter and stricter copyright laws and enforcements through Congress all the time, and all we’re doing is writing to each other about it. This isn’t the way a good protest is run – nobody’s finding out about it. We’re not publicizing our side of the story, and the media has already turned it into a battle of good vs. evil, latching on to the “with us or against us” vibe that seems to have become really popular in the past year. The issue is not black and white, but only one side of the message is getting out.

Next, Scott Rosenberg reviews and contrasts two books, one showing how clueless Big Business execs were (and still are) about the Web, and the other showing all the real uses for the Web that us little people were inventing while BigBiz was trying to “capture” our “eyeballs”. On a related note, Curt Cloninger says that he already has a life, thank you, and being connected on the computer is a part of it.

An article about how CARP is killing Internet radio stations, with a focus on college radio.

The New York Times is at it again.

And today’s only Tuesday.