Archive for April 7th, 2009

The Associated Press argues for a no-tolerance prohibition regarding its work product

| April 7, 2009 | 1 Reply
The Associated Press argues for a no-tolerance prohibition regarding its work product

The Associated Press is going to war against all websites and bloggers who use any part of its work, even small snippets, and it is publicly threatening a barrage of lawsuits. The AP’s threats are even aimed at search engines.

If the AP is successful, and they clearly believe they will be, then the Internet will be changed as we know it. Linking (with snippets or not) to the content of others could become a permission based concept where one only links (and quotes) after they have received the appropriate approval.

This battle is starting to remind me of the plague of RIAA suits against music downloaders. It seems to me that the AP is going to need to live with the legitimate exception of “fair use.” I realize that there are many abuses out there–I’ve seen blogs cutting and pasting entire news articles without any attempt at meaningful comment. On the other hand, I’ve seen many sites making legitimate comment on news articles that really do fall within the fair use exception.

We’ll be keeping an eye on this issue as it develops.

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And the neon light bulb smashing champion is . . .

| April 7, 2009 | Reply
And the neon light bulb smashing champion is . . .

And the neon lamp bulb smashing champion is . . .

Well, I don’t know his name, but you can see for yourself. I do worry about cracking those bulbs when I change them, but I never thought about using them as weapons in a sport. I wonder if they have little leagues too?

Still, my favorite Japanese sport is this one.

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New regressive laws in Afghanistan

| April 7, 2009 | 2 Replies
New regressive laws in Afghanistan

As reported by Marie Cocco at Alternet:

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has just signed a law that forces women to obey their husbands’ sexual demands, keeps women from leaving the house — even for work or school — without a husband’s permission, automatically grants child custody rights to fathers and grandfathers before mothers, and favors men in inheritance disputes and other legal matters. In short, the law again consigns Afghan women to lives of brutal repression. . .

The ugly truth is that Afghanistan has long been sliding back into the violent chaos that is friendly political ground for the Taliban and other extremist groups. Women have, as usual, been among the chief victims.

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