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Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

This week, Mason Wheeler scored a first place win on both the insightful and funny sides. For insightful, it was a response to our mention of Jack Valenti’s famous “Boston stranger” comment in the launch of our new Sky Is Rising report:

Valenti was probably right… just not in the way he thought.

During the 1960s, the population of Boston was between approximately 640,000 and 700,000 people. Statistically, approximately half of them would have been women, and between approximately 65-70% of Americans were children during that time. A bit of quick math gives us approximately 100,000 adult women.

All those possible targets, and the Boston Strangler murdered a grand total of 13 of them.

The VCR was to the American film producer as the Boston Strangler was to the woman home alone: very scary to talk about, but the amount of actual damage done was negligible.

In second place on the insightful side, it’s Rekrul with a response to the German publishing company claiming ad blocking is copyright infringement:

Various sites want to try and force you to unblock ads, I wonder why none of them are willing to assume liability for any viruses or malware rogue ads might deliver to users, or help pay for the user’s bandwidth wasted by the ads.

For editor’s choice on the insightful side, we start out with a comment from Matthew Cline aiming to deduce just what was meant by the mention of Linux in the charges against Julian Assange:

Paragraph 9:

The portion of the password Manning gave to Assange to crack was stored as a “hash value” in a computer file that was accessible only by users with administrative-level privileges. Manning did not have administrative-level privileges, and used special software, namely a Linux operating system, to access the computer file and obtain the portion of the password provided to Assange.

So, assuming the allegation to be true, Manning booted a machine using a live CD to get around security restrictions on the harddrive within the machine. Meaning that though manning didn’t have administrator/root access to the machine, she 1) had physical access to it, and 2) either the machine had no BIOS password, she knew the BIOS password, or she could open up the computer’s chassis so as to reset the BIOS password.

In other words: what kind of crappy security practices did they have in place?

Next, it’s Federico with a sarcastic comment about the growing entertainment industry:

Their cut of the profits

Ah, you point to the overall revenue but you forget that greedy Google is getting all the profits with its scandalous margins!

Compare et/SonyInfo/IR/library/ar/ar_sony_2000.pdf

In the golden days (1999), Sony was making a nice 5 % profit margin on its Music department. Now (2017) it’s only… 16 %!

You wouldn’t know how expensive it is to develop streaming platforms and digital restrictions management, compared to printing discs and shipping them around the world.

Over on the funny side, our aforementioned winning comment from Mason Wheeler is a quick take on the ongoing trademark battle by the people behind the Emmys:

Wait wait wait… this group actually named themselves the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, and go by the acronym NATAS?

Have they never stopped to look carefully at that? Possibly even spell it backwards?

At this point, nobody should be surprised at their evil behavior!

In second place, it’s Shufflepants supplying important new material regarding Manning’s use of Linux:

They also released the actual footage submitted into evidence as proof of Manning and Assange hacking with their specialized software:

For editor’s choice on the funny side, we start out with Thad responding to the objection that a Media Matters study can’t disprove anti-conservative bias on social media, due to the group’s own bias:

Fortunately, we have Republican senators to provide us with unbiased conclusions.

And finally, we’ve got David honing in on the real reason the DOJ is going after Assange, based on how the judge in his failure-to-surrender trial described his actions — “the behaviour of a narcissist who cannot get beyond his own selfish interest”:

Ah, this is what it is about

Trump fears competition.

That’s all for this week, folks!

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Author: Leigh Beadon

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