Hot Air & EFF challenge UMG

posted at 4:41 pm on May 9, 2007 by Michelle

Heads-up, readers and viewers! We are teaming up with the Electronic Frontier Foundation to contest Universal Music Group’s takedown of our Akon report on YouTube. Here’s the press release:

EFF Supports Conservative Columnist Who Criticized Controversial Hip Hop Artist Akon

San Francisco – San Francisco – With the legal backing of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), nationally syndicated columnist and prominent blogger Michelle Malkin has contested music giant Universal Music Group’s (UMG’s) improper attempt to silence her online criticism of one of its artists.

In a recent episode of “Vent with Michelle Malkin” — an irreverent daily video podcast produced by Malkin’s conservative Internet broadcast network “Hot Air” — Malkin criticized Universal hip hop artist Akon, calling him a “misogynist” and his antics “vulgar and degrading.” She supported her criticism with excerpts from Akon’s music videos as well as controversial onstage video footage showing Akon with a teenage girl at a nightclub in Trinidad. Malkin’s accompanying commentary condemned both Akon’s lyrics and his behavior.

On Thursday, May 3 — after Malkin appeared on a nationally syndicated talk radio show to put pressure on Akon’s sponsors — UMG claimed the podcast infringed its copyrights and submitted a takedown notice under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), forcing online video hosting site YouTube to pull the episode down. Yesterday, Malkin filed a counter-notice with YouTube, informing the company that she was legally entitled to distribute her video. Under the DMCA, YouTube can repost Malkin’s video ten days after receiving her counter-notice.

“It is impermissible and irresponsible for copyright holders to use the DMCA as a pretext to squelch criticism,” said EFF Senior Staff Attorney Kurt Opsahl. “Ms. Malkin had every right under copyright law to criticize UMG and Akon, and to use footage of Akon to emphasize her point. Criticism and commentary are not only the core of fair use, but vital to our traditions of free speech.”

“We believe this is a clear attempt by UMG to hide the truth about Akon and intimidate critics,” said Malkin. “The Hot Air staff and I are grateful for EFF’s willingness to challenge a corporate bully wrapped in the DMCA cloak.”

More here. Support EFF’s work here.

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Good job Michelle!

Although I wonder if YouTube will really put the video back up within ten days?

Darnell Clayton on May 9, 2007 at 4:59 PM

Cool, does that mean you file suit if Youtube tells you to sod off after your notice? Because I have a hard time imagining they’ll play along with your claim. They don’t seem to like you so much, Michelle.

Bad Candy on May 9, 2007 at 5:01 PM

We need more of this. Is there a way to tranplant some Malkins onto the Republican Party?

bbz123 on May 9, 2007 at 5:01 PM

EFF?? Eccchhh!

This is the same group who sued the federal government to stop showing drivers licenses when you get on an airplane.

EFF is the same group currently trying to sue AT&T and Verizon to prevent them from sharing information with the NSA to stop terrorists on our soil.

You may have something in agreement with them right now, but joining forces with this scum is shameful.

BelchSpeak on May 9, 2007 at 5:02 PM

Cajones!!

EFF-ing excellent.

omnipotent on May 9, 2007 at 5:03 PM

Dude, you take whatver allies you can get, we allied with Stalin of all people, during WWII.

Bad Candy on May 9, 2007 at 5:04 PM

This is not World War 2. No need to side with Stalinists over what amounts to a playground tussle.

Verizon employees died in the World Trade Center on 9/11.
Verizon worked with bloggers and Michelle to remove the Akon video upon request.
Verizon is being sued by EFF over sharing phone data with the NSA.

Aren’t there other legal eagles that could do this for Hot Air instead of EFF?

BelchSpeak on May 9, 2007 at 5:11 PM

Dude, you take whatver allies you can get, we allied with Stalin of all people, during WWII.

Bad Candy on May 9, 2007 at 5:04 PM

And the EFF is just to the right of Stalin…

ScottMcC on May 9, 2007 at 5:11 PM

Aren’t there other legal eagles that could do this for Hot Air instead of EFF?

BelchSpeak on May 9, 2007 at 5:11 PM

Fair question, but I’m not the one who decides this stuff.

Bad Candy on May 9, 2007 at 5:15 PM

Good work Michelle and Co.!

Viper1 on May 9, 2007 at 5:17 PM

Who-hoo! Let’s target music labels for putting out songs that people want to buy! Hooray for freedom of expression!

Enrique on May 9, 2007 at 5:17 PM

Enrique on May 9, 2007 at 5:17 PM

Yeah! Except Michelle’s complaint here, and the reason she’s teaming up with EFF, is because Youtube removed her criticism and she was censored by UMG, not because of Akon’s stupidity. Check you facts, reality, and then come back. Thanks for playing. Drive safely.

amerpundit on May 9, 2007 at 5:22 PM

you=your

amerpundit on May 9, 2007 at 5:23 PM

kick their asses!

Defector01 on May 9, 2007 at 5:26 PM

Who-hoo! Let’s target music labels for putting out songs that people want to buy! Hooray for freedom of expression!

Enrique on May 9, 2007 at 5:17 PM

Who-hoo! Let’s take down clips criticizing performance artists lyrics and behavior! Hooray for freedom of expression!

Bad Candy on May 9, 2007 at 5:31 PM

Enrique on May 9, 2007 at 5:17 PM

Who-hoo! Let’s target music labels for putting out songs that people want to buy! Hooray for freedom of expression!

Who-hoo! Let’s let men grab young girls and simulate violent sex with them and call it free expression. Hooray for your stupidity of not understanding what Michelle is doing.

right2bright on May 9, 2007 at 5:34 PM

See why backing fair use rights are so important now? It’s easy to criticize the Digg riot and dismiss their motives and imply they are simply thieves but in truth, they are fighting to regain the basic fair use rights we enjoyed for 150 years before the DMCA.

TheBigOldDog on May 9, 2007 at 5:47 PM

Bad Candy on May 9, 2007 at 5:31 PM

We are riding the same wave my friend.

right2bright on May 9, 2007 at 5:48 PM

Can you create and upload the the choice Akon video in a loop without the music embarrassing his sponsors? Or are the images protected too?

Valiant on May 9, 2007 at 5:50 PM

You may have something in agreement with them right now, but joining forces with this scum is shameful.

BelchSpeak on May 9, 2007 at 5:02 PM

In case you didn’t know I think this whole thing stinks. Teaming up with the EFF just adds to the stinkiness. Using the word misogyny to describe Akon’s dancing or music is straight from the feminist playbook. Those who sleep with dogs…

Bill C on May 9, 2007 at 5:50 PM

We ARE Mad and Hell and WE are NOT going to take it anymore!!!!!!!!!

Way to kick butt guys. Don’t let up. Take it strait from our Marines and Rangers “We Do Not Fail.”

auspatriotman on May 9, 2007 at 5:51 PM

Who-hoo! Let’s target music labels for putting out songs that people want to buy! Hooray for freedom of expression!
Enrique on May 9, 2007 at 5:17 PM

Hey E, I’ve heard pornsters admit getting constant requests for snuff films involving violent rape ending in death. “People want to buy! Hooray for freedom of expression!” That your idea of freedom?

eeyore on May 9, 2007 at 6:05 PM

Michelle,
We’re all looking forward to a successful outcome. Let us know if funds are needed.

Good Luck.

Zorro on May 9, 2007 at 6:09 PM

I’ve gotta’ start bein’ more careful with my comments here on HotAir — now that I know that I can be sued, as well as banned. (You were supposed to laugh.)

CyberCipher on May 9, 2007 at 6:13 PM

fair use has a pose.

Give them hell!

liquidflorian on May 9, 2007 at 6:15 PM

The EFF is simply the digital version of the ACLU, apparently well-meaning but often detrimental. They don’t take on every-wrong-thing for everyone. Most often, they take on only select causes that they deem will facilitate their popularity, or that they deem fit for their efforts. Even then, for example, they’ve done nothing tangible about the RIAA even though small children and little old ladies are sued for sharing an mp3 file on file-sharing software that the EFF has previously helped keep/make legal through their litigation efforts.

But what is most striking to me is; They are anti-Patriot Act, and they have even developed, produced, and currently distribute a pro-anonymity online tool called Tor… “Tor makes it possible for users to hide their locations while offering various kinds of services, such as web publishing or an instant messaging server. Using Tor “rendezvous points,” other Tor users can connect to these hidden services, each without knowing the other’s network identity. This hidden service functionality could allow Tor users to set up a website where people publish material without worrying about censorship. Nobody would be able to determine who was offering the site, and nobody who offered the site would know who was posting to it.

Looks and smells like a great online tool for file-sharing Chester-the-Molester pedophiles, and potentially even for terrorists plotting mass-casualty attacks to me!

EFF? meh … oh well, whatever sticks it to YouTube is good, but I wouldn’t go giving the EFF my hard-earned cash.

SilverStar830 on May 9, 2007 at 6:23 PM

Bueno suerte! Might I add, that was well written!

Drtuddle on May 9, 2007 at 6:53 PM

Hope you kick their postieriors as it stands, Michelle.

Aren’t the “Fair Use” standards MUCH less strict when used for purely editorial purposes? It isn’t as if you were using the ‘music’ to entertain your audience.

If not, how about muting the volume on the ‘music’ for everything BUT the profanities and insults. That ought to get by under even the strictest applications of the Fair Use regs….. (Unless EVERY word is profane, which is of course possible; I’ve been subjected to some like that just walking by.) And that portion of the industry is famous for their ‘sampling’ of others ‘Intellectual Property’, so they should have neither a legal OR moral leg to stand on.

LegendHasIt on May 9, 2007 at 7:51 PM

Go get ‘em Michelle, give ‘em Hell!

infidel4life on May 9, 2007 at 7:59 PM

Bill C on May 9, 2007 at 5:50 PM

Is that Bill Clinton lecturing us on misogyny?

That’s rich.

infidel4life on May 9, 2007 at 8:04 PM

See why backing fair use rights are so important now? It’s easy to criticize the Digg riot and dismiss their motives and imply they are simply thieves but in truth, they are fighting to regain the basic fair use rights we enjoyed for 150 years before the DMCA.

TheBigOldDog on May 9, 2007 at 5:47 PM

If there is anything liberal and conservative bloggers and blog readers could/should unite on it’s fair use rights and net neutrality.

JaHerer22 on May 9, 2007 at 8:22 PM

JaHerer, what’s net neutrality (by which we mean government regulation) got to do with it? Why would a conservative be interested in it? The market is doing just fine, thankyewverymuch.

Pablo on May 9, 2007 at 8:31 PM

But what is most striking to me is; They are anti-Patriot Act, and they have even developed, produced, and currently distribute a pro-anonymity online tool called Tor…
SilverStar830 on May 9, 2007 at 6:23 PM

Onion-routing, the greatest tool for subverting oppressive regimes yet, and someone on this thread considers it the root of evil. (Sigh) For the record, my real name isn’t Typewriter King, so I must be pro-anonymity, therefore evil, too.

Typewriter King on May 9, 2007 at 8:54 PM

There are established limits on how much of a song/performance may be used for journalistic demonstration without violating copyright OR fair use rules. A common benchmark is no more than 10 seconds worth of a music audio track or music video. I don’t remember Michelle’s Akon Vent, but I don’t think she used any clips longer than that.

U-toob and Goooooogle are both biased well left, and make choices that serve their own ends. I don’t know if they are thrilled with any opportunity to drop one of Michelle’s Vents, but they surely comply with the chance to do so much quicker than to block anti-American propaganda videos.

“Net neutrality” is nothing of the kind. It is Big Brother telling business how to do business. Its proponents have been working overtime on a special shade of lipstick for this hog, but it must be seen for what it is. Intrusive governmental regulation, at an unconstitutional federal level. To help those who might have been misled by the more attractive arguments in favor of it, let me just point out that the major legislative backers include Sens. Barbara Boxer, John Kerry, Tom Harkin, Patrick Leahy, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

Freelancer on May 9, 2007 at 8:59 PM

Onion-routing, the greatest tool for subverting oppressive regimes yet, and someone on this thread considers it the root of evil. (Sigh) For the record, my real name isn’t Typewriter King, so I must be pro-anonymity, therefore evil, too.

Typewriter King on May 9, 2007 at 8:54 PM

Of course the oppressive regime of which you speak is the United States, yeah? I never said it is, nor insinuated, that onion-routing is “the root of evil”. To be honest, I consider wolves in sheeps clothing to be the root of all evil.

Tor, as I mentioned in an earlier comment, is a sure fire way to circumvent some precautions taken to prevent terrorists, who would plot to kill people in my country, from laying out their evil plans with one another on the internet, internationally, with complete anonymity of person and location. It also enables other criminals to perpetuate their crimes, such as; identity thieves, software hackers/crackers, and pedophiles exchanging photos of little children for sexually gratification, all in the name of “Civil Liberties”, or “Freedom of Speech”.

Bull.

However, evil you are, yes, not for your anonymity but for refering to my great and wonderful country as an oppressive regime. But, that’s just my opinion. Now, judging by your website, I know you think you’re all that and a bag of chips. Plus, you’re into Esperanto, and we all know that Esperanto is the language of the e l i t e, but I don’t find enablers of criminals under the guise of “civil liberties and freedom of speech” to be elite, not even one little bit. I find them to be wolves, in sheep’s clothing.

… and Typrewriter’s are sooo 1980, seriously.

SilverStar830 on May 9, 2007 at 9:35 PM

I have been and continue to be a huge fan of the EFF.

In my Opinion, Modern Copyright law has been subverted from a limited temporal monopoly designed to see artists paid for their works…

To a Corporate Monopoly on culture and freedom of thought. that gives most artists the shaft.

With modern information dissemination methods, I believe that Copyright expiration dates should be measured in Months and years… NOT Decades.

Knowledge and culture belong to ALL the people. And while an artist should always recieve attribution, and a reward for creating the art, Copyright law has been abused by corporations in ways never even concieved of when the principles of copyrights were created.

If Corporations like ASCAP had their way, they would charge you money for even thinking about a song.

I Fully Support EFF’s fight for free thought and free culture.

(As for any of their anti-patriot act actions… Well, their heart’s in the right place freedom-wise… But they have to realize that certain tools are needed to prevent encroachment of the facist-terrorists who believe that culture and knowledge are the devil. THEY present the greater threat to freedom at this point in history.)

Jones Zemkophill on May 9, 2007 at 9:43 PM

With modern information dissemination methods, I believe that Copyright expiration dates should be measured in Months and years… NOT Decades.
Jones Zemkophill on May 9, 2007 at 9:43 PM

I think it’s terrible that Disney still has copyrights over films made in the 1930s. C’mon, let Snow White into the public domain! I also have issues with the dead owning intellectual property. The dead, are, well, dead.

Typewriter King on May 9, 2007 at 10:08 PM

I support fair use 100%

“Net Neutrality” is thinly disguised digital socialism and is anti business and anti consumer.

You want premium bandwidth? Pay for it!

JayHaw Phrenzie on May 9, 2007 at 10:14 PM

Of course the oppressive regime of which you speak is the United States, yeah?

Internet’s global, dude.

Plus, you’re into Esperanto…

Internet’s global, dude.

Tor, as I mentioned in an earlier comment, is a sure fire way to circumvent some precautions taken to prevent terrorists, who would plot to kill people in my country, from laying out their evil plans with one another on the internet, internationally, with complete anonymity of person and location…

I apply the traditional arguments in favor of gun rights to this tool as well. Tor doesn’t molest children.

However, evil you are, yes, not for your anonymity but for refering to my great and wonderful country as an oppressive regime.

I like all the best survivalist gear, so I hate America (rolls eyes).

…but I don’t find enablers of criminals under the guise of “civil liberties and freedom of speech” to be elite, not even one little bit. I find them to be wolves, in sheep’s clothing.

Mayor Bloomburg used that rational to tie gun dealers to violent crimes, that slick layer used it to tie the fertilizer company to Timothy McVeigh, and Kerry tried to insist that allow the “assault weapons ban” to expire enabled terrorists. Don’t get stuck on that kind of stupid.

And the sort of typewriter I reference was banned circa 1934.

Typewriter King on May 9, 2007 at 10:20 PM

However, evil you are, yes, not for your anonymity but for refering to my great and wonderful country as an oppressive regime. But, that’s just my opinion. … but I don’t find enablers of criminals under the guise of “civil liberties and freedom of speech” to be elite, not even one little bit. I find them to be wolves, in sheep’s clothing.

SilverStar830 on May 9, 2007 at 9:35 PM

Oppressive? We’re getting there damn fast. The government started taking the guns away in the 1930s. Now the government tells that you must wear a seatbelt in a motor vehicle. Your toilet may only use the prescribed volume of water per flush. If someone uses certain words at a particular people, the government will come after them for “hate speech”. Now the feds want to legislate away my incadescent bulbs and tell me I can’t eat trans fats anymore.

Usurpation is prevalent, oppression is just around the corner.

AZ_Redneck on May 9, 2007 at 10:47 PM

It is impermissible and irresponsible for copyright holders to use the DMCA as a pretext to squelch criticism

An argument containing morals, ethics, or just someone is not being a good citizen in a contest about the use or application of the law will go no where fast. If UMG is using the DMCA, the argument is over property. Sure, UMG is using a cheap tactic, but they are going to say it’s their property and not used within some rule in the fine print somewhere.

Criticism and commentary are not only the core of fair use, but vital to our traditions of free speech.

Free speech threatened? I disagree with UMG’s support of Akon and I agree with MM’s position, but it’s not the government coming after MM, its basically a property dispute.

Wish you the best of luck in your endeavor.

AZ_Redneck on May 9, 2007 at 10:50 PM

Well, speaking as an IP attorney, in my opinion Michelle’s work would very likely be found as a fair use. Fair use allows one to freely use portions of copyrighted work where the purposes are for commentary or criticism. The statute looks at 4 factors that are balanced to determine whether a use qualifies as fair use. The four factors judges consider are:

1.The purpose and character of your use
2.The nature of the copyrighted work
3.The amount and substantiality of the portion taken, and
4.The effect of the use upon the potential market.

Without getting into the analysis, the factors weigh in Michelle’s favor, very likely that a court would find fair use. BTW, there is no 10 second benchmark as stated by another poster. In fact, for parody and criticism substantial copied portions are often found to still be fair use. Hope this helps. This post does not constitute legal advice and is only my opinion. For anyone interested, just google fiar use copyright, tons of info out there.

Jonesy on May 9, 2007 at 10:53 PM

This is not World War 2. No need to side with Stalinists over what amounts to a playground tussle.

Verizon employees died in the World Trade Center on 9/11.
Verizon worked with bloggers and Michelle to remove the Akon video upon request.
Verizon is being sued by EFF over sharing phone data with the NSA.

Aren’t there other legal eagles that could do this for Hot Air instead of EFF?

BelchSpeak on May 9, 2007 at 5:11 PM

They aren’t leftists, they are more libertarian than left or right.

Tim Burton on May 9, 2007 at 11:53 PM

This post does not constitute legal advice and is only my opinion.

Jonesy on May 9, 2007 at 10:53 PM

If I needed proof that you were a lawyer, that clinched it. :)

“Net Neutrality” is thinly disguised digital socialism and is anti business and anti consumer.

You want premium bandwidth? Pay for it!

JayHaw Phrenzie on May 9, 2007 at 10:14 PM

Net Neutrality is the Net’s answer to the Fairness Doctrine.

- The Cat

P.S. Fred!

MirCat on May 9, 2007 at 11:55 PM

This is good that Michelle is doing this, however, I do not think she will win this.

If it were merely YouTube, then yes.

But this is Google’s YouTube, and their lawyers love an uphill battle.

I’ve watched them take on losing cases against foreign governments (India, Brazil, England, Germany, Belgium) as well as the US.

They’ll simply ignore Michelle and hope that she goes away.

I hate to be a downer, but I do not see a victory in the long (or near) term future.

Here’s to hoping that I am wrong.

Darnell Clayton on May 10, 2007 at 12:14 AM

Hmmm… I read NO WHERE in the Constitution that you have a right to anonymity (sp?)…

You have freedom of speech, but with the Freedom comes responisbility. How does putting your name to what you write hinder your freedom of speech??? Why, if you say somthing, should there NOT be a method to find out who said it??? Especialy if its inciting violence????

Good people very seldom have to hide behind a mask… its only those who are afraid of the consequences of their actions who do.

Romeo13 on May 10, 2007 at 12:15 AM

And PS… my name is Kyle Ramey USN (Ret).

Romeo13 on May 10, 2007 at 12:16 AM

…we allied with Stalin of all people, during WWII.

I think it would be more accurate to say we “became allied” with Stalin. Here are the facts:
- Russia and Germany were allies via the secret Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact from 1939 until June of 1941, when Hitler attacked Russia. This pact effectively divided the spoils (Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Romania)should either country enter war.
- When the US declared war on Japan on Dec 7, 1941, it did not declare war on Germany. Germany declared war on the US 10 days later.

Thus the US was attacked in an undeclared war, and then an ally of that attacker also declared war on the US. When that happened, other states who were at war with that second declarer effectively became our allies. Among them, but very much later to the fray than the rest, was Russia.

It is fashionable to to downplay the early contributions of the US in WWII. I recommend reading Churchill’s history of WWII, specifically the chapters on the entry of the US into the conflict. When Germany declared war on the US, Churchill basically danced a jig in wonderment at how Hitler could have manuevered the Germans into war with every English-speaking nation on Earth! The German General Staff was also in a state of wonderment at the same thing, and many later stated they knew they were defeated right then.

The invasion of North Africa, admittedly the periphery of the German territories, began less than one year later. It was launched from the Southeastern US, straight across the Atlantic.

On the other side of the world, with its “left hand” the US was already taking back Japanese held-territory in the Solomon Islands, and on November 15, the USS battleship Washington sank the IJN battleship Kirishima in a night battle, battleship on battleship, the last battle of that kind in history and the first and only between US and Japanese battleships.

Lesson: pick big friends, avoid making big enemies.

drunyan8315 on May 10, 2007 at 12:58 AM

But what is most striking to me is; They are anti-Patriot Act, and they have even developed, produced, and currently distribute a pro-anonymity online tool called Tor…

Yep, and God bless ‘em for it. I use it occasionally, and I’d use it all the time if it didn’t slow down my surfing, sometimes dramatically. Ain’t nobody’s business – particularly not the guv’ment’s – where I surf.

And as Typewriter King correctly points out, Tor is the kind of tool that lets people in countries with repressive regimes surf, blog, etc., with a better chance that they won’t spend the rest of their lives rotting in a prison or just have their head chopped off.

And SilverStar, he didn’t say Americans lived under a repressive regime. Grow up.

Good people very seldom have to hide behind a mask… its only those who are afraid of the consequences of their actions who do.

Romeo13 on May 10, 2007 at 12:15 AM

That’s among the most ignorant statements I’ve ever heard, especially from a retired Navy man. I guess we shouldn’t encrypt our military comms and I guess we should never have developed stealth technology, huh?

And if you think it’s okay for the government to have it but not for the citizenry, then I can only assume that you feel the same way about guns, right?

Anyway, good luck Michelle – hopefully you’ll get a ruling that says the DMCA can’t be used the way UMG’s trying to use it. But as someone who worked in Hollywood for 10 years and was tangentially involved in a lawsuit involving the DMCA, I wouldn’t be surprised if a judge finds UMG’s actions to be consistent with the Act, as it is a truly awful piece of legislation.

Levy on May 10, 2007 at 1:05 AM

I apply the traditional arguments in favor of gun rights to this tool as well. Tor doesn’t molest children.

Typewriter King on May 9, 2007 at 10:20 PM

Well I’ll be dipped in $hit (rolls eyes, does a back flip, and sighs loudly)… I must have absolutely slept like a log through my Constitutional Law classes when they discussed the Constitutional Amendment that proclaims; in order to keep a well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Tor, shall not be infringed. Damnit…! No wonder my thesis was challenged. (I prevailed, which really pissed off the Prof, but the professor was a pompous a$$. I think he must have been one of those Esperanto elitists).

By your own argument Typewriter King, we should just go ahead and not only legalize heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, and Ecstacy, we should make it freely available to anyone and everyone who wants it, too. After all, drugs dont’ molest children… dude.

And SilverStar, he didn’t say Americans lived under a repressive regime. Grow up.

Levy on May 10, 2007 at 1:05 AM

…likewise, I never said Tor was the root of evil. But it sure as hell makes evil easier to get around without fear of being discovered under a rock that hasn’t been kicked over yet. If someone in another country has a hard time surfing the net for kiddie porn, or saying his leader is bad, very bad, because his governemnt is watching, tough nuts. Then those oppressed, repressed, crushed-under-the-boot-heel 3rd worlders should do something about it in their own little territory and leave the safety of my identity, the safety of my children, and the safety of my country out of it. And so should you.

If anyone needs to grow up, it’s you. You offer some lame “repressive regime” excuse for a strong anonymity software tool that has far more potential for evil use than any good it might do for some poor oppressed 3rd worlder who would sooner see us blamed for all their ills rather than fix their own problems. Levy, grow up and get informed. And if you’re going to pick and choose sides in a discussion that doesn’t involve you, at least be righteous, and correct, instead of just plain indignant, pal.

SilverStar830 on May 10, 2007 at 4:45 AM

This will be fun to follow.

iNeXuS on May 10, 2007 at 6:41 AM

Romeo13 on May 10, 2007 at 12:16 AM

While I don’t disagree with your comments I’d caution putting your name on forums like this mainly because it makes you easy to identify through google or any other search engines and being subjected to identity theft or harassment.

Bradky on May 10, 2007 at 6:48 AM

Michelle, FYI. From Today’s Boston Herald:

Raunchy rapper unplugged by Verizon

TheBigOldDog on May 10, 2007 at 9:45 AM

Trademarks should be legally allowed to be re-upped periodically for a fee so that companies can keep their valuable IP (such as Disney with their Magic Kingdom logo and mascot Mickey Mouse) but to have copyrights on books, movies, music and other media last more or less indefinitely is crazy.

You die and you’re IP rights should die with you–no royalties for your kids to live off of for decades. And other than fringe cases, no spouse “needs” that royalty money to live.

Exit question: Am I a voice of reason or do I sound like Rachel Marsden?

ScottMcC on May 10, 2007 at 1:26 PM

You die and you’re IP rights should die with you–no royalties for your kids to live off of for decades. And other than fringe cases, no spouse “needs” that royalty money to live.

Exit question: Am I a voice of reason or do I sound like Rachel Marsden?

ScottMcC on May 10, 2007 at 1:26 PM

So should inheritance taxes be 90% or higher for the same reasons you mentioned? Not sure I see any difference between the two.

Bradky on May 10, 2007 at 8:54 PM