As one whose livelyhood and fortunes have gone from boom to bust over my lifetime, I can attest that living on the cutting edge of technology can disrupt fortunes and futures. As an individual of modest means, my only choice has been to adapt.
The power of basic computing and open networks has revolutionized and democratized. That has threatened the business of governmental tyranny and the big media oligarchy. They will use brute force to hold onto power rather than adapt to take advantage of new technology. The them, the lions share of a shrinking pie is preferable to a dominant position in a rising tide that lifts all fortunes.
New media author and self publishing pioneer Cory Doctorow presents a bleak reality that can only be overcome by the diligence of the average citizen.
After announcing that SOPA would be delayed until 2012, it’s hearing date and potential vote has been quietly rescheduled to 12/21/2011. While SOPA claims to help stop piracy, it also gives DHS even greater ability to act without due process. Even if that wasn’t a violation of the 4th amendment, DHS has a horrible record of abusing the power it already has. It’s time to once again call our representatives to remind them they are sworn by oath to protect the constitution.
More nanny state skullduggery on our Internet: check out who’s at the top of the SOPA’s author’s donor list.Then have a look at who’s been downloading!
Meet the most distracted generation as mobile data use explodes. Age demographic shows data usage peaks at 25-34 and declines with age.
Doing the only right thing to restore customer confidence: Sprint is the first wireless provider to ditch Carrier IQ.
An old tactic as a new trend? Buying new business in a very slow economy. Verizon offers $300 to competitors subscribers in the southern US to jump ship. Groupon burns some of it’s IPO cash trying to stay ahead of copycat offerings from Amazon and Ebay.
A few lucky souls in San Francisco will be getting uncapped 1GB broadband for about what most US cable subscribers pay for 30MB or less.
I mentioned Louis CK was selling his latest recorded show direct to fans for $5 a couple of days ago. Since then 110,000 have been sold. It’s a safe bet that there are more to come, plus there’s always potential for more revenue from streaming and ….gasp…cable and broadcast distribution. Since most comics shows go direct to video instead of through the theater channel, direct to download or direct to stream distribution is the next logical step. And that’s a new channel that Hollywood not only doesn’t control, but one it’s working to undermine.
$5 is a no brainer those who like Louis CK enough to buy a movie ticket or rent a DVD. If the show was distributed that way it would have arrived more slowly, at higher cost, and Mr. CK would have certainly made less:
“This is less than I would have been paid by a large company to simply perform the show and let them sell it to you, but they would have charged you about $20 for the video,” he wrote. “They would have given you an encrypted and regionally restricted video of limited value, and they would have owned your private information for their own use. They would have withheld international availability indefinitely.” (Venture Beat)
The big loser is Hollywood. For entertainers and content producers who are willing to do a little extra work to self distribute, the rewards for themselves and their fans are too big to ignore.
Touted by an odd coalition, ICANN’s .xxx domain money grab has fallen flat on its face. The expected land rush of defensive buys to avoid stigma never materialized and the smut peddlers are happy with the way things are.
The engineers who warned Lightsquared’s service would disrupt GPS are vindicated. This proves that while you can buy influence by backing corrupt pols, you can’t change the laws of physics. The idea could still work, but investment in engineering instead of elections will be required.
More Fourth Amendment abuse in the Senate: SOPA and Protect IP morph into the slightly less abusive OPEN bill. While it promises more due process, it still enables rogue agencies to violate the supreme law of the land. Meanwhile, Senator Wyden does some call out the DHS for going rogue showboating.
How to harass the competition without tarnishing your highbrow image. Wage war on rivals by proxy: Apple Gives mobile patents to a troll.
Comic Louis CK’s latest film goes direct to download for $5. Chances are he’ll make far more from self distribution then releasing through one of the big studios. Look for more big name entertainers to follow.
Another sign the patent system is broken: Google wants to patent the cloud as a print server.
As the holiday shopping season focuses attention on retail, persistent rumors have it that Amazon is planning to invade the brick and mortar space.
Is it going to happen? I think it’s very likely. As local pols move aggressively to tax Amazon’s online sales, the real driver is lobbying from big box retail as much as from the need for revenue. If Bezos and company are to be force to collect sales tax, why not compete with the big box players on their own turf? Then there’s #1 book competitor, Barnes and Noble that has surprised nay sayers by leveraging it’s storefronts to better compete with Amazon in the virtual space. The over consolidation of physical retail has left a shortage of shelf space for competing products. Apple and more recently, Microsoft began operating their own stores to combat this. With Amazon’s growth to major player status in computers and electronics, many more sales of higher priced items will be made if consumers can touch and feel before making a decision.
What would an Amazon store look like? What would it stock?No way of knowing for now. One thing for certain is that physical stores could bring more competition back to the brick and mortar universe. IF that happens, everyone except maybe WalMart wins.