Linux and Open Source

About Linux and Open Source

Indeed. For and Against Section 92A. Well done Matthew.

Some interesting tidbits...

The UK Government is Openly supporting Open Source, Open Standards and efficiency in Government IT.. Bloody brilliant. Where's our similar policies?

Meanwhile in France, they're going backwards: Wireless Hotspots to be allowed to surf 'whitelisted sites only'.

Good grief...

Even the Prime Minister has now suggested that the law may be thrown out. This after Yesterday's announcement that the implementation of the law was being put on hold for about a month.

This is a victory of sorts, for the Creative Freedom Foundation and to all those groups and individuals who've petitioned for a little sanity in the government.

However it's not done yet - and we're still dealing with FUD.

The tail end of the article above says: "19 of every 20 songs were being illegally downloaded."

Where's the stats to back that up?

Or are we back to making up numbers? I'd like to know how they assertain that.

I'd also like to give big ups to the Media who got this right... it's been alluded by some media agencies that the steps being taken here are to protect those who do 'pirate' media.
This is definately NOT the case.... the protest here is simply based on the 'guilt by accusation' aspect of the law. Most of us agree that Copyright needs to exist and be enforced where appropriate.. the issue is simply, how.

Some interesting feedback on a brief comment by DPF regarding Labour's apparent change of tack on this law (Which is backed up by the earlier press release by Clare Curran.)

However I note some of the comments regarding the scale of the petition (number of signatures) which is sad. Despite a large number of (apparent) supporters, exactly how many people have voiced their views to Government?

Have you?

Someone please tell me how despite the loud complaints from a rediculous number of people, laws can continue to be passed into effect with a 'lets wait and see' approach?

I'm sure you know what i'm talking about..

TV3 News reports that our 'presumed-guilty' law come into effect next month. So does the NZ Herald reports that the stats used to justify the need for the law are very likely, hopelessly inflated and perhaps unprovable.

Don Christie came up with an anology for the law which will ring rather close to home for Wellingtonians this morning.

But what prompted me more than anything else to blog, yet again, was this article noting that the government is adopting a "watching brief" on the implementation of Section 92A. This reminds me of the anti-smacking legislation which has already had bad press. Why should we be putting poor legislation into _law_ and then adopting policies which enforce _how_ it's enforced? Why not just make the law appropriate in the first place?

And how the hell can the government-of-the-people ignore such a large proportion of interest holders who're all saying the same things? (just like the anti smacking legislation).

Sorry but i'm seriously confused over this one. The tack the government is taking is succinctly reported in this article from Computerworld - once in place, theyll watch to see how it works in practise and possibly make changes at that point. Why not, though, get it right (or closer to it) the first time?!

This Summary in the New Zealand Herald isn't too bad either.

3 News Article (Text Only), Herald Coverage from this morning and of course Television New Zealand News.

Some of the quotes are madness in themselves.

From TV3:

"The Ministry of Economic Development (MED) told 3 News the law is needed as it would be too time consuming and expensive for copyright owners to take individual users to court."

Too time consuming and expensive to hold the guilty party responsible, you mean?
So by proxy should we make the carrier responsible?
Good grief.
If a Taxi driver runs a red light and for some reason their rego plate cant trace them back to an individual without spending a bunch of money on digital enhancement (or whatever), does anyone ever consider holding the whole damn firm responsible for the actions of a single driver?

There are ways and means for individuals to be traced - though they usually require the cooperation of the network provider concerns. Almost without exception, ISPs in NZ are actively cooperative with local law enforcement. Id be willing to guess that most network admins would be similarly inclined. Again, WTF? This whole thing smells like a poorly thought out knee-jerk reaction, in my personal opinion.

Oh, I so want one.. Thanks Vik for the link.

/me shakes his head in amazement.

Update: Now it's getting media attention big-time.

TheInquirer.net.

Torrentfreak.com

Various mailing lists are discussing it (or have discussed it), including the New Zealand Open Source Society, the Wellington Linux Users Group, the Dunedin Linux Users Group, and i'm sure others i'm not aware of.

Interestingly I searched NZHerald.co.nz and found one relavent, recent hit - from November, by Anthony Doesburg

Not to mention that I have previously mentioned it, and it's other coverage.

Sign the petition; Email or write to your MP (I've emailed mine and had it acknowledged already) - ... let our protests ring loud. Before we (New Zealanders) make idiots of ourselves on the world stage.

Plenty of other references:

http://nzoss.org.nz/news/2008/copyright-act-simply-wrong
http://it.gen.nz/2008/09/25/cutting-off-your-internet-if-you-are-accused-of-infringement/
http://coffee.geek.nz/guiltytillproveninnocentnewzealandcopyrightact
http://www.internetnz.net.nz/media/2008/jointcopyright

The premier hit, of course, is the Creative Freedom Foundation which has a strong petition in play. Go sign it! NOW! :-)

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