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Links 1 through 10 of 20 by Simon Phipps tagged Television

Watched this on iPlayer and found it captivating. This looks like it is building into a narrative about digital liberty. The first episode works from Ayn Rand's philosophy and links through her relationship with Alan Greenspan to explain the financial market meltdowns. Captivating - I'll be watching the series.

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Whereas my US friends used to look in envy on the Doctor Who Christmas Special, it seems the BBC has got wise to demand and made it available through Amazon US almost immediately for on-demand viewing or DRM-ed-to-death offline viewing.

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Well worth reading this article. The TV programme 'Glee' features a singing club as the backdrop for a situational drama. Despite the fact that the music industry would sue a club like this off the face of the earth if they ever actually did the things in the story lines, the series never ever confronts either the insurmountable challenge of obtaining copyright clearance or the heartache of being victimised by the music industry as punishment for unauthorised creativity and glee. One can only hope that the next victim of the music industry will cite Fox as a co-defendant for incitement...

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Important essay by Clay Shirky explains why complex systems must collapse, rather than adapt or simplify. He writes about Television but the lessons seem to me to be generally applicable.

"But there is one compensating advantage for the people who escape the old system: when the ecosystem stops rewarding complexity, it is the people who figure out how to work simply in the present, rather than the people who mastered the complexities of the past, who get to say what happens in the future."

Unless they convince people outside the system to prop them up somehow, that is. In that case those people become part of the complexity, part of the system, and when the collapse comes collapse with it. This is our collective fate if we allow our legislators to prop up the complex but obsolete business models of the past. It's why the Digital Economy Bill - and its inspiration, ACTA - are so toxic to society, way beyond the scope they appear to hold.

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The BBC want to add DRM (digital restriction measures) to UK television broadcasts. Given we have all already paid for whatever they broadcast becuase of the license fee, and given that most of what's broadcast is available from elsewhere, this is about controlling consumers and not about protecting rights-holders. You'll note that control of UK consumers is being handed to an unaccountable offshore consortium. It's also another assault on the use of open source software since it will take a legal entity to get licensed by the offshore quango. I've signed up to the text ORG are submitting to OfCOM and suggest you consider doing so too if you're in the UK.

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And naturally this will be the story with internet downloads as well. All the fuss from the big media companies - and their manipulation of legislation through their powerful joint lobbying with the pharmaceutical and software industries - will be shown to have been based on false assumptions depending more on a desire to retain their oligopoly than on any benefits to society.

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I have a hunch I know someone in the family who will want to visit this while it's open...

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Fascinating viewing, especially the blatant lies by the BBC Director General about iPlayer Downloads being available for Mac & Linux.

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I've seen a little of the US coverage via "Nightly News" and it is unbelievably lame, with the US-only focus masking out pretty much everything else. And the medals table they use is sorted by "total medals", not the usual "gold medals won", presumably so that the US can come top. I gather the "live coverage" is delayed 12 hours and edited to death as well. No wonder they fear the web - I bet they try to blame it for their failure.

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Fine analysis from Tim. Of course, some say that you have to be a "liberal" to love Stewart, but I think his style builds trust and is the future of US journalism. I sense Brian Williams at NBC heading in this direction - interesting he has been a repeat guest for Stewart. Not sure it would transfer to the UK though, I think his style is too respectful for over here.

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