Archive for the 'Internet' Category

17
Mar
09

I’m the boss of the Internet!

Contrary to what Opassande(sv) claims, it is I who is Sparta…eh I mean the boss of the Internet! I rule all and everyone does my bidding! If the content industry needs someone to broker deals with they should turn to me. This goes double for you Pär Strömbäck, spokes person of the Computer Gaming Industry(sv)

Mr Strömbäck claims that the “Pirate Camp” is responsible for the Big Brother craze that is sweeping not only Sweden but the rest of the world. He also tries his hand at a Bureau for Piracy rhetoric saying:

Its pointless to discuss whether we should have copyright or not. It’s like asking if we should have the Internet or not.

Well it’s a good thing for you then that The Pirate Party doesn’t fight for the abolishment of copyright. But when 79% of young men(sv)15-29 say that the law you just made the Swedish government pass is a bad idea, maybe you should take a step back and rethink your position. Out of all 1000 asked 48% said the law was bad, 32% said it was good and the rest were undecided.

Sweden’s Minister of Justice Beatrice Ask ignores the issue and says:

Sometimes you have to make uncomfortable decisions.

Yes… Uncomfortable… You’re turning the Internet into the Filternet and all you can say is its uncomfortable? You’re allowing for corporations with vast monetary resources to seize and raid homes with no more “proof” then a screenshot that any 10yo with a 500€ computer can forge and this only qualifies as uncomfortable?

I for one will be glad to see her go at the election next year.

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10
Mar
09

Danny O’Brian explains the Spectrial on G4tv.com

This clip with Danny O’Brian from the Electronic Frontier Foundation gets most of it right.

  • It’s closer to 3 years worth of preparation.
  • It’s two hosts, a spokesperson and a would-be business partner.
  • Just as the industry won’t accept a settlement or loss neither will TPB
  • Any advertisers appearing on the site are threatened with legal action from the content industry.
09
Mar
09

Norwegian TV Deploys Their own BitTorrent Tracker.

Yesterday NRK announced that they will start up their own BitTorrent Tracker using the same beerware licensed OpenTracker that The Pirate Bay has been using for several years now. They will also supply Norwegian subtitles to all content and promise to link to your subs if you add more languages to that. Why are they doing this?

By using BitTorrent we can reach our audience with full quality media files. Experience from our early tests show that if we’re the best provider of our own content we also gain control of it.

This is simply amazing and who knows, maybe Norway will be online Hollywood?

02
Mar
09

DN Doesn’t Understand Particpant Culture. Confuses it with Astroturfing.

DN, a very large news paper in Sweden claims to have done some “digging” into last years blog quake surrounding the FRA law. They got a quote from Amanda Brihed, founder of Black Monday, an organization dedicated to dismantling the FRA-law, saying that she had contacts with PR agencies. This coupled with the fact stoppafralagen.nu had an ad funded by an anonymous donor, sets their brains ablaze. Just like Prosecutor Roswall they try to pin down a structure where there is none. In this case on the critics of the FRA-law in the blogosphere. They also elect a board of leaders consisting of the Pirate Parties PR strategists (huh?), Erik Lakomaa, Henrik Alexandersson(sv), Amada Brihed and Mikael Nilsson(sv). All on their own. Problem is it’s all hearsay and DN can offer no proof what so ever to these claims. You wight want to keep in mind that DN was openly against stepping up the coverage of the FRA-law, and that the ad was posted in their competitor SvD and cost a considerable sum of money. Also last year acting editor-in-chief Johannes Åman told a concerned reader that “we covered the issue back in 2006, it’s to late to do anything about it now, so we won’t write about it”. 

Message to DN:

Dear DN, I have seen more trolls on the Interwebz than you can possibly imagine. I spend hours every day digging through forums and I spent considerable time on various MMO-boards. I can sense incomplete stories and hoaxes from a hundred links away, as can most of your internetional readers! We’re all thinking the same thing: Screenshot or it didn’t happen!

26
Feb
09

Flowers for Roger Wallis

Like I posted earlier, Roger Wallis who pretty much obliterated all arguments by the prosecution today asked for flowers for his wife.

This led to #wallisflowers on EFnet, wich led to a simple site where people who sent stuff to wallis can register their gift.

So far (2009-02-26 18:55) the gifts total 30 368sek. That’s 3 402.53$ or 2 667.57€ or 2 375.55£. Other currencies here.

While writing this: 2009-02-26 19:00 – 30 653sek.

-Update:

2009-02-26 19:32 – 32 278sek

Damn these cheap and spoiled pirates!

-Update2:

SvD picked up on the “flowerstorm”.

-Update3

The gift tracking site crumbled under the pressure, last I saw was just over 40 000sek. But flowers are pouring in. Problem is the Wallis’ are out of wases (this sounds awfully familiar). Plz to send moar wases!

-Update4:

If you are reading this by now the Wallis’ got flowers, candy, teddy bears and wases for over 53 000sek. It’s more than they can handle and theres no need for more.

26
Feb
09

The Pirate Bay Trial – day 9

Haven’t been able to post for a few days. Back to back shifts at work and a busy weekend. I started translating the testimony with Peter Sunde and have done 40 mins of that so far. 6000 words and counting. I have a few days off now so I hope to complete a number of posts before Monday.

First some awesome news. The Pirate Party of Sweden is steadily increasing it’s number of members and currently we’re at 11042 members making us larger then both The Left party and The Greens at 10700 and 9110 members respectively! Next party to beat is The Liberal party at 17799. Here you can look(sv) at a Swedish wiki detailing party membership numbers over time. Do note the steady decline in numbers across the board among all parties in the parliament. (columns s, m, c, kd, fp, v, mp) Dare I hope for 17800 before the EU election? 

To day the court heard testimonies from Roger Wallis, a classical composer,  professor of media technology and electronic arts at KTH, member of the governments IT advisory commission and former board member of the collection society STIM. I love this guy. No seriously! Let’s look at some quotes!

Defense attorney Peter Althin (defends Peter Sunde) asks:

A: Your interest for file sharing, how did that come to be? Is it a result of the research you have done?

W: A little bit of both. I’m a practicing composer, mostly for my grand kids, but I’m also a researcher and have always been fascinated by new  technology. It started with the compact cassette of the 80’s. We had the very same debate at that time, they wanted to stop it.

A: Who are they?

W: The music and movie industry, the pushed the case all the way to the supreme court in the US but lost in the betamax case… They also dragged the Hamstradt (sp?) Amstrad case all the way to the supreme court in England. And what fascinated me with the cassette technology was how it revolutionized the ability for anyone to cheaply participate in the music industry. We got cassettes with multiple tracks which mean that you didn’t have to record at Abbey Road, Beatles Studio, to record music. You could record in your basement, and I became very interested in how  that effected the range of products on the market. And when I saw file sharing and the file sharing technology emerge… I wanted to know what benefits it had. Historically, every shift in technology has prompted the same reaction from the established companies. Trying to stop it and demonising the people using the new technology. And the best example of this that has really interested me was the introduction of radio in the US In the 1920’s. Back then the note publishers were the big ones and they attempted to ban all music on radio with the argument that if we can listen to music on the radio then the value of copyright will collapse and no one will write music any more.

A: Is there any relation between downloads and lost sales?

W: That depends on what kind of sales you are referring to. There’s a clear relation between downloads and sales of concert tickets. It’s true that CD sales have declined but it’s also impossible to pin a specific number on the decline. 

<Wallis digresses from the question>

A: Is there a direct causality on effects of downloads and lost sales? Is 10 000 downloads the same amount of lost sales?

W No, there’s a multitude of factors that effects the decline in sales. The most important reason is that the CD isn’t a practical form of distribution when people want their music on their computers or on MP3. That’s the most important reason. There are other things competing for your wallet. Cell phones, video, DVD, video games. Many of the reports, I hear a few being mentioned here, Libevitz and a whole slew of other reports that all show conflicting results. Most of these where made between 2002 and 2006. And what we learned from Music Lessons which was done 2005 to 2007/2008 explain some of the problems with analyzing this field. Many assumed that file sharers where a homo-gene group who where only driven by a desire to get stuff gratis. Our research, which we have done with The World Internet Institute who conduct research all over Europe, was that there are many types of file sharers. One group, we call them the Enthusiasts, download illegally, but buy more cinema tickets, more tracks on iTunes and so on. They are the the core of the fans that build the market, they go to concerts more. Another large group that we named Free Riders, are the same kind of people that home taped in the 80’s and gave to their friends and that never bought anything. The problems they caused was compensated for by a tax on blank media. But, if you arent sure wich of these groups you are looking at your results will be unreliable. 

This guy has done so much research into the subject that IFPI lawyer Peter Danowsky is terrified. So terrified that he doesn’t dare poke at Wallis’ arguments with a ten foot stick. Instead he attempts to discredit Wallis by insinuating that he is a part time hobbyist. I can’t be sure how the court will view his attack on Wallis but a reporter in the court room was reported to say “they just lost the case“(sv). 

An epic moment came when Anti-Piracy Bureau lawyer Henrik Pontén asks Wallis where to find his CV. Wallis reply was basically: omfg l2google!

Wallis was understandably irritated. The music industry likes to ridicule him and a few days ago Henrik Pontén had called different researchers at KTH and asked questions about Wallis’ credibility. Most touching of all was when at the end, the court asked what he asked of the court as compensation. 

“Flowers for my wife.”

Even though this all happened today she’s already gotten flowers from someone thanking Wallis for finally bringing the artists into the debate. EFnet has a newly formed IRC channel for people who wish to send flowers to Wallis’ wife. Last time the netizens of Sweden had a flower campaign we sent so many flowers that the Swedish Parliament ran out of vases to put them in. I doubt the result from this will be anything less than astounding.

21
Feb
09

My Thoughts on RW and Participant Culture

The Swedish Pirate Party talks at length about Participant Culture. The concept is the same as Lawrence Lessig’s R/W Culture.

Even more Lessig here.

Now, I doubt anyone would mind using Lessig’s term in Swedish, but a literal translation of RW Culture sounds pretty much as literacy culture in Swedish. And that’s completely incomprehensible. But Lessig describes it mostly as it pertains to cultural expressions.

To me Participant Culture refers not only to the act of remixing, where you build upon, and evolve work done by someone else in strict cultural expressions such as writing, sound or images. It also describes a way of life enjoyed by many netizens. Your friends and the people you know are your swarm, and their swarms connects to your swarm in ways you don’t know about, can’t see and can’t predict. All swarms are ever active, and since they are defined as a network of connections via any and all channels available today, they transcend borders, and physical location.A completely globalized state of being, if you will. The Piracy Bureau member Marcin de Kaminski calls this Cluster Organizational Dynamics(sv).

In these swarms specific individuals form stronger connections with individuals they like. Just like ordinary friends. You chat, share stories about your social life and hang out, at the keyboard or away from the keyboard. To us it’s all real life. Whether you can reach out and physically touch someone isn’t really important.

Now Participant Culture strengthens other connections as well. Most interestingly is connections based on interest and skills. When a swarm such as that evolves to a certain stage it gains a composite conscienceness. A will and direction derived from the similar interests, and a capability based on the collective skill set. This swarm can act as an individual of sorts and perform demanding and complex actions.

The Swedish Pirate Party is organized like this. And in my opinion as is The Pirate Bay and the Bureau of Piracy as well. If one of us desires a task to be completed that that particular individual isn’t capable of, all they have to do is communicate their desire to the swarm and chances are great it will find its way to an individual or group of individuals that have both the interest and skills required.

The older someone is, the less likely they are to intuitively understand this. Their world is defined by the one in charge. If they need something done, they try to think to most likely candidate to help them and then they contact that specific person. I that doesn’t pan out the move to no. 2 on their list.

The people of that world were the ones that refused to believe Linux could be made. A complete OS was so complex that it REQUIRED the control to be placed in the hands of a capable leader. By now we’ve have seen that this is not true, but the knowledge and understanding is far from common place.

And this creates culture clashes, where people belonging to either group are incapable of understanding the motivation of someone from the opposite group. I wouldn’t call that sad, but it sure does make you go wtf at times…