random quotes ... to amuse, inspire, enrage:
  The whole of human history has up to now been a constant struggle between the cultural, creative forces of society and the power aims of particular castes whose leaders put definite bounds to cultural efforts, or at least tried to do so. Culture gives man consciousness of his humanity and creative strength, but power deepens in him the sense of dependence and of slavish bondage.

tagged: culture, creativity, struggle, power
  —Rudolph Rocker, "Nationalism and Culture", part I, chapter 15.

fannish media studies

Wednesday, August 15th, 2007

A friend just sent me a link to this fan video about the TV series “Supernatural”. What an awesome demonstration of the power of technology to enable media criticism. A thousand feminists could comment about exploitative or graphic visual depictions of violence against women in a series or on TV generally, and it would never […]

Wiley copyright imbroglio at science blog

Tuesday, May 1st, 2007

Last week a copyright imbroglio broke out at a science blog which had written a post critiquing mainstream coverage of a science article; the blog had posted a figure from the paper to demonstrate bad science writing in the mainstream media. Wiley sent a C&D; the blogger agreed to take the material down (actually took […]

universities and copyright

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007

Suddenly there’s a lot of press about the rights enforcement companies and their P2P notices — this Washington Post article and this AP story are just two of the recent press. How timely — I just finished a report on exactly this issue. I spoke with representatives from 25 different educational institutions and online service […]

WSJ editorial page embarrassment

Friday, December 15th, 2006

The WSJ editorial page is not something I ordinarily frequent, but they recently wrote an editorial on the DMCA. Aside from a reflexive and simplistic “intellectual property is good so don’t bother me with nuance or details” attitude, this paragraph struck me: Google claims “a legal safe harbor” from copyright infringement under the 1998 Digital […]

DMCA exemptions issued

Thursday, November 23rd, 2006

The Library of Congress / Copyright Office issued its third set of DMCA rulemaking exemptions, just before taking off for the holidays. I was eagerly anticipating the rulemaking (even more eagerly than usual) after David Carson, General Counsel at the Copyright Office, kept dropping hints about the what we could all look forward to at […]

war on us

Wednesday, December 21st, 2005

oh happy day! The war on us is progressing nicely and soon we will have won the war against ourselves. Phones are being tapped willy-nilly and surely some of them will generate some useful information to allow us to be held without trial or access to the courts indefinitely under the president’s powers. The government […]

tech mandates and reproductive care

Wednesday, July 20th, 2005

I never cease to be astonished by how smarmy politicans can be: today, leaders in the Smarm Community, the anti-choice people (‘pro-lifers’). The latest RU-486 story in the NYT, sensationalistically titled “2 More Women Die After Abortion Pills”, covers two recent RU-486 deaths (two, for a total of five; four of which were probably infection-related). […]


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