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May 07, 2006


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Cory Hojka

One of the more wearing aspects I find of keeping up to date on copyright news is that so much of it tends to be thinly disguised advocacy pieces supported by a bare minimum of facts. Consequently, I found Stross's article a very refreshing and invigorating change with it's open and poignant discussion of the issues. Combine that with some first-rate writing skills and I definitely have to say that's one of my favorite newspaper articles on copyright law I've read all year.

Thanks for pointing it out!

The Law Fairy

Something I find interesting about ad-supported television is that, from what I can tell, cable TV (which we law-abiding folks usually pay a monthly fee for the privilege of watching) has far more commercials than network television. For instance, if I watch a movie on TBS, I can expect the commercial breaks to be somewhere around five minutes apiece whereas the commercial breaks for, say, the Simpsons are closer to three minutes. As a certified television addict, I wouldn't mind paying a reasonable fee to watch my favorite network shows if it meant fewer commercials (my subscription to TiVo lends support to this statement), but given my example above, I'm not certain that it would.


When I was a young teen in Washington, D.C., I remember the cable companies campaign to convince the city and the citizens that cable is better than broadcast television because there would be no advertisements, as cable would be totally supported by subscribers. We eventually acquiesed around 1977, and for a couple of years there were actually no commercials. Eventually they started creeping in as sponsors for certain educational shows. Now, of course, there are more commercials on cable than on broadcast tv. We were duped. We all know money is the reason why, but I just wanted to remind everyone why we all pay for tv now, instead of getting it free. Many broadcast stations have closed since the appearance of cable, and for what? Is cable programming really any better than network tv? Not to me. Pretty smart of them though, now they have two income streams.


Am I one of the only people who backs up to watch the commercials if they look interesting?


With the advent of dvr tech I see no reason to watch commercials, ever, anymore. If I hadn't been raised with them I wouldn't understand how anyone put up with them in the first place.

Should my 1st generation consumer dvr be outlawed or coded-around in some fashion, I will build another in my garage. If these are detected and impounded faster than I can produce them then I'll just watch worthwhile shows a season late via Netflix.

I'm never going back.

Randy Picker

The NYT has another interesting story on this today. See http://www.nytimes.com/2006/05/17/business/media/17leonhardt.html

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