Abandon All Fear

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Archive for the ‘Free as in Speech’ Category

[Filesharing] The Cost Of An Idea

Posted by Lex Fear on June 22, 2009

David Dunham at CaPC poses the question “So is the judge making an example out of her or does this seem like a reasonable price to pay?”

I started commenting but realised it was too long and so I’ve moved my response here.

Let’s start by saying that these fines are supposed to be representative of lost sales.

Forget the fact that many people who download music tracks wouldn’t buy them anyway (and – shockingly – might even delete the crap ones).

What I think the lawmakers have glossed over is the fact that if you fine one person for *every* *lost* *sale*, then there should be no-one left to pursue for the downloading of those tracks she shared. Ie. if I had downloaded those 24 tracks from Jamie Thomas, it’s OK because she is already paying for *my* lost sale – as well as – literally – millions of others.

I’m pro-filesharing and I file-share.

I look forward to the day that these media companies grovel in the dirt – I’ll make no bones about that fact. Increasingly I’m ‘coming out’ to many friends and people I wouldn’t have before, because I see it as a revolution, a cold war, where as many people need to be recruited as possible.

I look forward to the day that we look back on these events in history and marvel at the ignorance of the politicians and industry that supported this 21st Century ‘House of Un-American Activities’.

I see filesharing as the future – setting knowledge, information and arts free – like they used to be before the 20th Century. Perhaps it’s not ‘the future’, perhaps it’s simply restoring values of the past.

Did any of those black slaves or their families who worked in the cotton fields see a ‘dime’ for their musical contribution to the blues? Intellectual Property is about as anti-creativity as I can imagine.

How do you prevent new ideas and human progress? Introduce ownership of ideas by long lasting corporate bodies to buy up and own *ideas*, then sue anyone who independently thinks up, tries to share or improve that idea for an arm and a leg.

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Posted in Bad Company, Copywrong, Corporate Irresponsibility, Free as in Speech, Little Hitlers, Morals & Ethics, Predatory Systems, Profiteering, Resistance, Takeback, Technology, Terrorist State | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

[‘N’ is for…] BNP, protests and general annoyance.

Posted by BHudson on June 9, 2009

Well, the putsch has come off well, and the British Nazi Party have taken two seats in the European Parliament. As an extremist party, they won the votes because they appeared untainted by the uproar over expenses and the following witch hunt. Most people, of course vote irrationally – it seems to have been easy for some 0.7% of the population to overlook the racist fearmongering because of their concerns about immigration, and a general dissatisfaction with mainstream parties. Irrationality, of course, is at the heart of the BNP’s strength.

Nick Griffin, a man for whom I have many words and little time, is always denying his party’s racist ideals whilst endorsing Party style manuals with phrases such as ‘you should not refer to British Asians or British Muslims, for the simple reason that such people do not exist.’ Like all abhorrent groups, they thrive on oppression, which gives them a chance to whine about their freedom of speech and cast themselves as defenders of democracy. Now, I have very little sympathy for Griffin, and was even slightly pleased by the disressed look on his normally smug face as he fled the mob outside Parliament. That said, throwing eggs is yet to effect any substantial political change.

In this case, it has just let him say that they prevented him from bearing the scutiny of the media. Public scrutiny is what this party needs most. Protests are very well, but a few well placed questions in public would serve better to show just how racist they are.

Times is ‘ard, and people are angry. This produces the ‘perfect storm’ Griffin had been waiting for to give him a foothold in government. Perhaps it is the supposed detrimental effects of immigration (my view on immigrants is extremely simple, and rather unpopular these days, but that’s another post), or the fear of a loss of sovereignty, or anger at the mainstream parties, but suddenly the BNP seemed somewhat more palatable to the voters. An increasingly popular lie: ‘I know they used to be Nazi knuckle-draggers, but they’ve changed – they’re just like us, even if some of the Nazi knuckle-draggers are in the shadows.’ The truth – the Nazi knuckle-draggers are running the show. The BNP will never be civilised or worthy of a vote.

PS. Sorry for my long absence. This is really just an opinion article that seemed worthwhile regarding the recent EP elections. Now I’ve got more time, I might be able to come up with a couple of posts on political theory.

Posted in Bollotics, Fact Erosion, Free as in Speech, Little Hitlers, Opinion, Protest, Smear Campaigns, The Love of Libel | 6 Comments »

[Your Data] How Often Have They Lost Your Data

Posted by Lex Fear on February 17, 2009

Open Rights Group have a questionnaire which should tell you!

via: Ideal Government

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Posted in Absolute Power, Anti-Terrorists, Bad Company, Buyer Beware, Copywrong, Databases, Financial Terrorism, Free as in Speech, Minitruth, Pharisees, Predatory Systems, Realpolitik, Technology, Uncircumcised Philistines, WhatTheyDontWantU2C | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

[MAFIAA Pwn UK] All Your Rights Are Belong To Us

Posted by Lex Fear on February 8, 2009

Two items of interest posted last year on TorrentFreak and The Register, that I never got round to commenting on.

Both Cleveland and Lancashire police caught defrauding the music industry, much like those it has arrested in the OiNK case before. Cleveland particularly appear to be hoisted by their own petard in this case, being the force to bring prosecution against the OiNKers.

Meanwhile it seems that Gordon Brown is also embracing piracy, by failing to acknowledge creative commons licensing.

I’ve been wrong all theses years. The government understands freedom perfectly, it just doesn’t want us to have any.

If the MAFIAA succeed in prosecuting Lancashire Police, then we are truly approaching a state where intellectual property rights trump all other forms of rights we know.

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Posted in Absolute Power, Bad Company, Civil Disobedience, Copland, Copywrong, Doublethink, Free as in Speech, Morals & Ethics, Pharisees, Untouchables | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

[Detux] 2 Years of Ubuntu

Posted by Lex Fear on January 30, 2009

It’s almost 2 years since I freed myself of Microsoft’s propriety OS and I’ve even converted my wife (though she occasionally falls back onto MS Office when OpenOffice just doesn’t quite do it the way she wants).

I’m still using Ubuntu, despite playing with other distros, I’ve found myself coming back just because of the great support forums and hardware support. I use Red Hat Linux at work and on a VM, but with my home PCs I just want it to work out of the box as much as possible, I don’t want to spend time installing wireless drivers or tweaking xorg.conf – I think this is the success of Ubuntu.

My desktop PC is now running Ubuntu Ultimate Edition, after running Linux Mint for a few months. My Ubuntu installation was crashing every time I plugged in an external drive, Mint performed better but even after upgrading my PSU I had the ocassional crash. Ultimate Edition seems to have cured it and had no problems when I added a 500gb internal drive.
Ultimate Edition also has some wicked themes and pretty much all the software you’ll need pre-installed. So the lesson is, if you distro isn’t quite working, try out a derivative or another one entirely. Some are more stable due to later upgrades.

Anytime I have to log into a Windows machine I am reminded of why I switched and no matter how bad problems can get with Linux, all I need is to boot into my Windows partition to remember how bad things really could be!

The lastest Ubuntu distro now comes with a handy USB Live Disc creator which came in handy when I wanted to replace the old, outdated default Windows XP Home Edition on my new Samsung NC10. For anyone that has an NC10 and wants to put freedom on it, this blog was a lifesaver – read before you start, there are a few customisations needed after install.

The NC10 has an 89% full size keyboard which I’m using right now, so it’s not difficult to type on. It has 1gb ram, Atom processor and 160gb hard drive, the spec is so good I’m using it instead of my work laptop – even running VMware player.

It’s light weight and 6 hours battery life means I can use it on the tube or long car journeys. I occasionally download and read graphic novels with Comix or Okular, it’s just the right size to rotate the book 90º and hold the netbook lengthways like the way books are supposed to be read. I even found a neat little script to rotate pages of pdf files automatically using pdftk.

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Posted in Free as in Speech, Open Source, Opinion, Technology | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

[Freedom] Xubuntu…

Posted by Lex Fear on April 26, 2007

Is what I went with in the end. I am now posting this from my 266mhz, 64mb ram Laptop with Xubuntu installed… it’s a Xubuntop!

I actually had it up and running with the wireless last week but I found the OS just a tad slow to respond, as well as surfing. I then de-installed it and tried Vector Linux (also based on XFCE) which was reasonable speed at performing tasks on the desktop, but once I got the wireless going and onto Firefox the thing fell over. Xubuntu runs Firefox, but as I type the letters take half a second to appear onscreen. I still may go back and test Damn Small Linux, I also downloaded some over ISO distributions I will try soon.

I currently have no sound, the software updates take hours to download, indeed the Xubuntop itself took over 10 hours to install. But in the end the wireless is actually easy to install since Xubuntu has the drivers for my card (Netgear MA521). Video and even YouTube is a no go. I could do it but I’m not going to attempt to add pictures to this post. But it will be useful for the odd game (I intend to download Pingus) and for some lightweight blogging.

No links in this post, sorry but once again it would take me a while to load web pages! Just highlight any of the words and right-click, select google “…” to search for it (don’t know if that works in IE).

Xubuntu is a version of Linux and open source (‘freeware’ for you who are still hooked up to Microsoft), I’ll be doing a follow up post on my move to open source software soon, and how I almost ditched Vista for a Linux OS on my main PC! Unfortunately I shall be remaining with Vista for now (it was a free upgrade) but again, I can’t recommend this enough, if you have any one these below, step out of the boat and go for Linux:

  • A slightly older machine that could not support Vista
  • Can’t afford or refuse to pay the high cost for Vista
  • Desire to cut dependency on Microsoft
  • Want to get your hands on tons of free, secure and up to date software
  • A system that doesn’t crash or hit you with the Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) every now and then.

And If you want to try an alternative to MS (and wanting to avoiding Mac), but are still unsure of Linux and how it all works. Don’t be afraid, there are

  • Thousands of helpful people out there on the forums,
  • hundreds of different brands of Linux for different levels of knowledge and experience

I recommend Ubuntu as it comes with lots of drivers and software pre-installed, lots of Microsoft Asylum seekers are switching to it and raving about it. It has great support forums.

Posted in Anecdotes, Free as in Speech, Open Source, Technology | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

[Hiatus] Busy Elsewhere

Posted by Lex Fear on April 16, 2007

I haven’t been blogging for a while.

The truth is I’ve been trying out different versions of Linux on an old Compaq Presario.

Specs:
64mb Ram (feel the speed!)
4.1gb hdd
266mhz P2 with MMX
Whopping 800×600 screen resolution!

So I’ve tried Damn Small Linux, Damn Small Linux-Not, Vector Linux and now Xubuntu– all which have worked (Xubuntu being slightly sluggish). I also tried a couple of Puppy Linux versions and Debian but I couldn’t get the GUI to boot despite googling forums.

The main problem I have on all of these flavours is to get my old Netgear MA521 wireless card to work. There are 2 ways of doing it, with Netgears driver and with the source files from Realtek, but so far I’ve failed on both, there are different problems with each OS I use.

(If anyone has any suggestions- either a Linux OS or Netgear solution, please email me or leave comments- thanks!)

Still it’s fun to learn. If you have an old computer, I highly recommend injecting some new life with a low ram Linux alternative. There are little or no copyright laws to worry about, and lots of free support forums with people willing to answer your newbie questions.

This blog shall be on hiatus until I can get the damn Netgear card to work, then I shall signify my victory by blogging a post from my new (old) Linux laptop.

Posted in Anecdotes, Free as in Speech, Metablog, Open Source, Technology | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »