Thursday, October 23, 2008

This blog can be read in Germany.

And, as Gerald Toben found out, you can be arrested in Britain for doing something in Australia that is a crime in Germany (but not in either Britain or Australia.)

Why is this relevant? Because this pseudonymous blog does not carry an "Impressum" - see examples here and here (from real companies) and here and here from 'real' blogs - one already in the author's name and the other otherwise pseudonymous (Ed adds: and one weird one from a - Disney - corporate blog - see what happens when you cross German authoritarianism with Yank legal paranoia.)

So you could argue that the lack of an impressum here, and in many other blogs - for example, we all know who DK and Guido really are, but neither blog carries an official impressum - is an offence against German and Austrian law (and I do occasionally visit Germany and have been to Austria once, although to the best of my knowledge I have never blogged from either country.) So, if I do something to offend the German authorities (frankly, there is so much need for offending the UK authorities, I can't see where I would find the time), I can be arrested in the UK or if I happen to have a business or private trip there (or my plane to somewhere else just diverts). And I don't want to get into the trouble RFS did. And, as ever, the lawyers are already circling around the nearly-dead body of common-law liberty (and, to extend the analogy, snatching a quick snack before the heart has stopped beating).

So, actually, we don't need cretinous Estonian socialists to invent new ways to restrict our liberties - we can be dragged away through totalitarian legislation already proxied into UK law (s3, Extradition Act, 2003). Be afraid, be very afraid.

Barbary Ape test
, everybody?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Isn't Schnadenfreude Fun?

Senator John McCain, who may (or may not) be a zombie, has been bitten in the campaign by the Digital Millenium Copyright Act. And Google told him/them to "bugger off".

After having several campaign videos removed from YouTube for alleged copyright violations, Republican presidential candidate John McCain wants the video-sharing web site to consider special takedown privileges for politicians and their ilk.

McCain '08 general counsel Trevor Potter yesterday sent a letter to YouTube execs claiming the site is too quick to remove their campaign videos based on "overreaching copyright claims." He wrote that on numerous occasions that the material in question was "clearly" privileged under the US fair use doctrine.

Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! ROTFL. That's what happens when you create bad laws. You get bad consequences. Sympathy - in the dictionary between shit and syphilis. But, I really love this bit:

Warner Music Group, CBS, Fox News, and other media conglomerates have all sent YouTube takedown notices for McCain videos.

Warner Music Group demanded YouTube remove a McCain video that uses the 1967 Frankie Vallie song "Can't Take My Eyes Off You." CBS wanted a YouTube video removed that used a clip from Katie Couric. And Fox News had a similar complaint about a McCain video that used a clip about the financial crisis.

So it's not "all those people who are abusing the DMCA by bombarding YouTube with invalid takedown notices", it is a legal difference of opinion regarding the extent of the (common law) fair-use doctrine. Which should be tested, if necessary (especially remembering this is the United States of Lawyers) in court, between the (ab)user and the copyright owner. Not by Google who, rich and Kings of the Universe though they are, are not, yet, the legal system*.

Update: And, this, too! Well done, lawyers. Not.

* As we all know that may, or may not be, Wikipedia.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Gesture Politician

I had thought about venting about this yesterday, when I first heard about it, then calmed down and got on with some proper work. Then I read Sam's brief dit on the subject and have come crawling back to my virtual vomit.

Last time I mentioned Christine Grahame, spawn of all that is grotesque and evil in the pustulent boil that is the Scottish body politic, on this blog, I believe I was calling her a cunt. And, guess what, she still is. Spectacularly and publicly so.

So, she wants Mary, Queen of Scots body to be returned from Westminster Abbey to, well, somewhere in Scotland:
She was an iconic historical Scots figure and ultimately the victim of English plotting.

Given the House of Stuart's association with Falkland Palace, a place where Mary is believed to have spent her happiest days, that would appear to be an appropriate place to inter her remains.

Mary is, I am forced to agree, an iconic figure in Scottish history. A pathetic figure - affianced at six months to the child who would be Edward VI and then to the Dauphin, Francis, at 5, she was shabbily mistreated by the vermin that, even then, were flocking to the reeking cess-pit now sited at Holyrood.

Never mind that her happiest days were probably, when not seen through the yellow-tinted spectacles of the SNP, those she spent at the French Court between 1548 and 1561.

Never mind that her friend (and possibly lover but, frankly, who cares) was slaughtered, then her husband was strangled, then she was raped and imprisoned and forced to abdicate - all in Scotland and all by Scottish politicians (even though Darnley was born near Leeds and considered an English subject - albeit the son of a Scottish Duke) - before fleeing to England.

Never mind that England was just recovering from the slaughter and misery of the Counter-Reformation and Mary was seen by many as the Catholic pretender to the English throne (as Elizabeth herself recognised when she suggested Mary marry Robert Dudley and be acknowledged as Elizabeth's heir.) Although the facts of her, direct or otherwise, personal involvement in any of the plots* is lost to history, she was certainly a focal point for these and one of the purposes of a figurehead is to be separated from it.

Never mind that her grave in Westminster Abbey was built by her son, James VI & I, and placed near to Elizabeth's to show that she was as great a Queen as her cousin (although, being honest and despite acknowledging Elizabeth's many faults that tend to be glossed over, Mary was nowhere near as capable).

But, hey, if it gets a couple of the sheeple voting for them rather than Gordo, who cares about history, respect or dignity? Certainly not oor Chrissy.

See what we have to contend with up here? The only realistic alternative to the nu-Labour farce in most of this benighted land, from blasted heath to sixty's slums, are a bunch of dribbling bigots who make DK's 'Barbary Apes' look like statesmen of stature.

* Yes, Walsingham did probably invent or at least provoke the Babington Plot. But even though Mary might not have been eligible to be tried for treason (she wasn't English but the Treason Act 1351 does not specifically require you to be a Crown subject), a case under the Bond of Association could have been made and the prescribed penalty was still death.
 
HTTP Error 403: You are not authorised to access the file "\real_name_and_address.html" on this server.

(c) 'Surreptitious Evil' 2006 - 2013.