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Broadcast Flag Back in Congress 417

Posted by Zonk
from the write-call-email-protest dept.
Tyler Too writes "When the broadcast flag was smacked down in court, it was only a matter of time before the MPAA tried to ram it through Congress. The first attempt in June failed, but the EFF reports that they are gearing up for another try. From Ars Technica's write-up: 'This latest attempt involves tacking on an amendment to a budget reconciliation bill. Since reconciliation is about cutting spending--something that always sounds good--such legislation cannot be substantially changed by the Budget Committee once it is presented, nor can it be filibustered.' Looks like it's a good time to call your congressman."
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Broadcast Flag Back in Congress

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  • by Pichu0102 (916292) <pichu0102@gmail.com> on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:40PM (#13660328) Homepage Journal
    ...Why is it legally allowed to try again? I mean, it seems like no matter what, if someone wants something done that people don't like, it's not a matter of if it will happen, it's a matter of when it will happen.
    • by advocate_one (662832) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:42PM (#13660351)
      you would be pretty upset if it was a piece of crucial legislation you wanted that had been shot down and thus could never be resubmitted now wouldn't you...
      • Yes, but how bout rules on amendments. Is this amendment in any way related to cost cutting? I doupt it.
        • by dgatwood (11270) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @04:16PM (#13661220) Journal
          Indeed, the most broken thing about the U.S. government is the notion of unrelated riders. These should, IMHO, be found unconstitutional across the board, as they represent a deliberate attempt to subvert the constitutional process of checks and balances.

    • by HikingStick (878216) <z01riemer.hotmail@com> on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:46PM (#13660386)
      ...Why is it legally allowed to try again?

      The ability to try again with failed legislation is one of the greatest strengths of our political system, but at the same time it is one of the biggest problems.

      The number of other provisions and amendments that make it through in this manner is probably staggering. The only thing that could be done to curtail this practice would be to require single-purpose bills that can't be loaded full of non-related crap. Of course, that would require a major change in our our legislative process works...
      • by ThaFooz (900535) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:57PM (#13660474)
        The only thing that could be done to curtail this practice would be to require single-purpose bills that can't be loaded full of non-related crap. Of course, that would require a major change in our our legislative process works...

        Why not just tack your proposal onto some popular bill?
        • by cmburns69 (169686) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:40PM (#13660871) Homepage Journal
          From Bart's Comet [simpsoncrazy.com]:

          KENT BROCKMAN
          With our utter annihilation imminent, our federal government has snapped into action. We go live now via satellite to the floor of the United States congress.

          SPEAKER
          Then it is unanimous, we are going to approve the bill to evacuate the town of Springfield in the great state of--

          CONGRESSMAN
          Wait a second, I want to tack on a rider to that bill - $30 million of taxpayer money to support the perverted arts.

          SPEAKER
          All in favor of the amended Springfield-slash-pervert bill?

          FLOOR
          Boo!

          SPEAKER
          Bill defeated.

          KENT BROCKMAN
          I've said it before and I'll say it again: democracy simply doesn't work...
      • by 0123456 (636235) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:01PM (#13660506)
        "The only thing that could be done to curtail this practice would be to require single-purpose bills that can't be loaded full of non-related crap"

        Alternatively you could just enforce the Constitution: then 99% of laws would be thrown out immediately... including this one.
        • The problem with the constitution is that its meaning depends on context and interpretation; it doesn't cover all situations by a long shot. That's why the SCOTUS exists, they're the "official" interpreters of the constitution.
          • by msaavedra (29918) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:52PM (#13660981)
            Where in the Constitution does it say that the purpose of the Supreme Court is to be the official interpreters of the Constitution? IIRC, it never says that explicitly. I suppose it could be interpreted to say that, but by whom? The Supreme Court, of course, since that is their purpose ;^)
            • Marbury vs. Madison (Score:5, Informative)

              by clem.dickey (102292) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @04:18PM (#13661243)
              Where in the Constitution does it say that the purpose of the Supreme Court is to be the official interpreters of the Constitution? ... I suppose it could be interpreted to say that, but by whom? The Supreme Court, of course

              You guessed it. (Or maybe you already knew that, having remained awake for the first day of your US History class.) The case was Marbury vs. Madison.
              • by Jelanen (646003)
                The actual first instance of interpretational SCOTUS opinion, or, reading into the Constitution crap that ain't there, was Scott vs. Stanford. (Ref: Justice Antonin Scalia, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, 2005-03-15) Marbury vs. Madison just cemented the Court's recognized authority of judicial review; considering whether a law is Constitutional or not.
      • Line Item Veto (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Mr Guy (547690) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:07PM (#13660561) Journal
        Because God forbid the President be allow to send individual parts of the bill back to congress and tell them to grow the hell up.
        • Re:Line Item Veto (Score:5, Interesting)

          by bofkentucky (555107) <bofkentucky&gmail,com> on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:14PM (#13660624) Homepage Journal
          I've come to the conclusion that the president should personally call out the offending pork loader when he vetoes the bill. Post on the white house website what a moron senator X is for ruining a good bill. If we've got 50 24 hour news channels, why not put them to use for ridculing politicians.
        • A line-item veto makes the executive a de facto legislator and weakens the system of checks and balances. If the President does not like part of a bill, they should veto it and use the bully pulpit to win public approval for their version of the bill (something the current president has never done). The Supreme Court was correct in ruling the line item veto unconstitutional.
          • Re:Line Item Veto (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Guppy06 (410832)
            "A line-item veto makes the executive a de facto legislator"

            And neither the power to veto nor to introduce legislation make him a "de facto legislator?" And let's not forget the fact that the other named member of the executive has an occasional vote. Ever wonder why there's no admonishment in the federal constitution that the three branches of the federal government shall be separate even though such a provision was in most state constitutions at the time?

            After all, look at all the executive power given
    • by bedroll (806612) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:47PM (#13660394) Journal
      That's the way the system works. For dumb things and good things. Imagine if we didn't allow legislation to be reintroduced. We wouldn't have half the civil rights we do now. Sure, it may force dumb things to die, but it would also mean that one especially poor congressional class could permanently ruin our country.
    • if that were the case, all you'd have to do is change something in the law and try again - then its a new law all over again. its like overloading methods, if the signature is different, they're not the same.


    • Well a good example would be Jim Crow ... was the basis for society once then changing thinking deemed it unsuitable. Plus isn't Bush installing his new (R) supreme court judges. I think the term hammering it in is more appropriate than one might think. Just a little more lobbying (lube) will do it.

      Lubbyist Lube - the only way to greese over congress so you can fsk the American people up the ass
    • In the courts, if your claim is denied and you bring the same claim again, it will be denied immediately because it is a thing decided ("res judicata").

      In congress, if your request is denied and you bring the same request again, it will require more contributions.
  • Say what? (Score:5, Funny)

    by lucabrasi999 (585141) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:41PM (#13660332) Journal
    smacked down in court

    Hey! I saw that match! The Rock crushed the MPAA with the People's Elbow.

  • by yagu (721525) * <yayagu.gmail@com> on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:41PM (#13660335) Journal

    From the post: This latest attempt involves tacking on an amendment to a budget reconciliation bill. Since reconciliation is about cutting spending--something that always sounds good--such legislation cannot be substantially changed by the Budget Committee once it is presented...

    So, the MPAA is now taking the route on total non-representation. Their initial approach obviously was non-representational/non populist and of course they have their own greedy self-motivation. That's okay, you can petition the government for legislation, and for protection. But they lost that battle and now look to win the war with their own Trojan Horse, a virus if you will (how ironic). The thing I find MOST egregious and offensive about this is they are sneaking their agenda in under the radar in a bill totally unrelated to their issue and likely to be passed. Normally this is a technique to snag pork for legislators and representatives, a sleezy technique for allocating money. But this is more pernicious and evil -- where the intent is to screw the entire entertainment consuming public (virtually everyone). What a crock.

    • As long as it benefits politicians as well, the odds of getting this "feature" of being able to tack anything onto an unrelated bill is going to stay in place. "Support the More Money for Education bill... (oh, and minorities no longer have rights). Think Of The Children!"
       
    • by ivan256 (17499) * on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:48PM (#13660402)
      We need a constitutional amendment that disallows text in a law that doesn't fit the spirit of the law's title.

      It would make for some amusing titles, and some great TV on CSPAN.
      • Missouri actually has such a constitutional amendment. It was used to overturn the anti-stripper law last month.
      • We already know how well titles reflect the content:

        "Patriot Act"
        "Clear Skies"
        "Medical Privacy Act"

        The best-named recent bill was probably

        "Can Spam"
      • Ain't going to happen. Tell ya why.

        It can costs tens of millions to get a federal politician elected. This means that politicians needs financial backers. These financial backers expect favours in return, often in the form of pork. Since getting even a single piece of legislation through is difficult, pork is best delivered as an amendment to a piece of completely unrelated legislation that is already well on its way to being passed.

        No unrelated amendments = less pork = less money for politicians.

        Whad

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:55PM (#13660455)
      The MPAA knows it works. One of their members already not only got a law this way, they get it re-approved with every new budget.

      Disney got a law ORDERING the FAA to impose a no fly zone over Disneyland and Disney World into the Omnibus spending bill - the national budget. When the budget came up for renewal the two years thereafter Disney made sure this order stayed in it. Actually it came from Senator Hollings, "The Senator from Disney."

      The ORDER was necessary because the FAA, the FBI, and the Department of Homeland Security said there was no threat to Mickey. No matter. Disney always wanted a way to keep banner tow planes away.
    • by abscondment (672321) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:59PM (#13660491) Homepage

      Someone seriously needs to organize a giant, demonstrative protest.

      We could all crap in tupperware and ship our excrement straight to the MPAA/RIAA, with a signed note saying "Thank you for shitting on the law making system in America".

    • by JBHarris (890771) <bharris.isf@com> on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:11PM (#13660586)
      The article is extremely short on details. What senator (from what state?) introduced this bill?
      What is the bill's title? Number?
      How can I verify this article?
      I will not write an email to my Senators unless I can present myself as an informed citizen.


      This article is lite on 'information', therefore doesn't really inform me of anything.
    • But they lost that battle and now look to win the war with their own Trojan Horse, a virus if you will (how ironic). The thing I find MOST egregious and offensive about this is they are sneaking their agenda in under the radar in a bill totally unrelated to their issue and likely to be passed.

      Every issue should have a separate up or down vote. Two constitutional amendments would help to acheive this end.

      AMENDMENT A
      Congress shall pass no law exceeding in length this Constitution.

      AMENDMENT B
      The President may
    • by iabervon (1971) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:39PM (#13660863) Homepage Journal
      The real problem is that the good guys play too fair. If the big media lobbies can get provisions into bills for things like the broadcast flag, why can't the other side get things in with the opposite effect? Just slip in an amendment requiring any station that uses a technological measure to restrict the use of content transmitted over the public airwaves to lose its license to the spectrum. Outlaw the sale of anything which includes technology that would block the recipient's right of first sale. There are plenty of measures which would effectively stop the **AA's ability to cause trouble, and it evidentally doesn't take much to get bills passed without general support.
  • Open Ended (Score:2, Interesting)

    by mysqlrocks (783488)
    ...Federal Communications Commission overstepped its authority in mandating that all consumer electronic devices capable of receiving digital television signals incorporate support for the flag, the media industry has been working on getting Congress to enact the flag.

    Wow, all consumer devices capable of receiving digital television signals? That is very open ended legislation. I hope this only applies to over-the-air signals? Even so, I think it's too much.
  • Bill riders (Score:5, Insightful)

    by lightyear4 (852813) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:43PM (#13660356) Homepage
    Non-germane riders snuck into bills shall be the death of this country.
    • Non-germane riders snuck into bills shall be the death of this country.


      I think you meant to say not "shall be" but "have been".

    • Re:Bill riders (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Politburo (640618)
      Instead of blaming the legislative process, which has been virtually unchanged for over 200 years, why don't you blame the legislators?

      The term "snuck into bills" is misleading. After a bill is reported out of committee, amendments must be offered on the floor during the Committee of the Whole. There's nothing secret or sneaky about it.
  • by ivan256 (17499) * on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:43PM (#13660357)
    When you write to your representatives and senators, be sure to include the key point that the EFF leaves out:

    These laws, when combined with the DMCA, take power away from congress and give it to anybody. Corporations, and individuals alike. Even if they're not US citizens or US based. Congress should reserve the power to grant rights for intellectual property creators for themselves, instead of giving a blank law-making check to content industries.

    Make sure you tell your congresspeople that they are giving power reserved for them by the Constitution to whomever wants to wield it.
    • Congress should reserve the power to grant rights for intellectual property creators for themselves, instead of giving a blank law-making check to content industries.

      What Congress *should* do and what the conglomorates pay them to do are two different things.
  • Not surprising. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by laughingcoyote (762272) <`moc.eticxe' `ta' `lwohtsehgrab'> on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:44PM (#13660364) Journal

    Only slightly off topic-does anyone else find the fact that Congress is allowed to "bundle" legislation like this distasteful? Shouldn't each up or down vote be on -one- thing, without all these ridiculous "riders" attached?

    Back to the subject-it is indeed also important to contact broadcasters, and possibly the MPAA itself, and make sure they know you won't be watching, and why. And then stick to it. It's not like there's a whole lot worthwhile on TV anyway, and they'll continue to attempt to ram this thing through Congress unless it's made to hit 'em in the wallet.

  • by smchris (464899) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:44PM (#13660367)
    Now's the time to tack it onto a Katrina spending bill. Republican and Democrat alike will be _forced_ to vote for it "for the children," blah, blah.
    • Now's the time to tack it onto a Katrina spending bill. Republican and Democrat alike will be _forced_ to vote for it "for the children," blah, blah.

      What a horrible, badly timed troll! Especially in light of all the money we are sending out the back door to the president's pet project: Iraq.

      Besides, your view isn't realistic. Senators, Republican senators mostly, have already said they won't spend money to rebuild New Orleans. Senators as far away as Alaska have been fighting the idea that we even feed any
    • by object88 (568048)
      Now's the time to tack it onto a Katrina spending bill. Republican and Democrat alike will be _forced_ to vote for it

      Perhaps you think you're making a joke? Sadly, you're not too far off the mark. Lots of vitally important government spending is being cut to make room for (needed) Katrina money. I'm not saying that we shouldn't dump boatloads of money into the rebuilding process, but rather that we need to seriously look at where it's coming from. (I'd start with recalling Bush's tax cuts for the upper
  • why is it... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MooseTick (895855) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:45PM (#13660374) Homepage
    Why is it that the people who seem to complain about this are the ones who also complain about there being nothing good to watch on TV? If there isn't anything good, then why do you care if they put in a flag that prevents you from doing something with someone else's content that they paid to create and distribute?

    Is the problem that you could do whatever you wanted in the past with that content, and now that the owner is technically capable of excerising their right to control the distribution of their works it isn't fair?
    • Why is it that the people who seem to complain about this are the ones who also complain about there being nothing good to watch on TV?

      Could you cite stats on that or at least give examples of, say, a dozen specific people?

      TIA.
    • Why is it that the people who seem to complain about this are the ones who also complain about there being nothing good to watch on TV? If there isn't anything good, then why do you care if they put in a flag that prevents you from doing something with someone else's content that they paid to create and distribute?

      Just because I am not excersizing all of my rights this very instant does not mean I wish to give them away.
    • Re:why is it... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by arkanes (521690) <arkanesNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:13PM (#13660605) Homepage
      Let me make a comparison. I'm not gay and have no interest whatsoever in homosexual pornography. But I would fight against a law forbidding it.

      Similarly, though I have no real desire to tape shows off TV, I have a very real desire to preserve my right to do so.

    • "Is the problem that you could do whatever you wanted in the past with that content, and now that the owner is technically capable of excerising their right to control the distribution of their works it isn't fair?"

      Good thing I don't have mod points, or you wouldn't get an explanation - just a Troll rating. The reason is that they don't actually have a "right to control the distribution of their works". Please site the part of copyright law that says so if that's what you think. They also don't have a leg

      • Re:why is it... (Score:3, Informative)

        by cpt kangarooski (3773)
        The reason is that they don't actually have a "right to control the distribution of their works". Please site the part of copyright law that says so if that's what you think.

        You mean 17 USC 106(3)?

        They also don't have a legal right to stop me from recording broadcasts.

        You mean 17 USC 106(1)?

        The Sony case confirms my right to record shows for later viewing.

        No it doesn't. It basically says that it's ok sometimes, and it indicates that it's difficult for copyright holders to demonstrate instances where it
  • Broadcast flag coming back, followed quickly by BitTorrent getting venture capital (Mysterious future- if you're not a subscriber you'll see it soon). I guess my question is- what are they going to do with all of those digital tuners the don't pay any attention to the Broadcast Flag?
  • by Hulkster (722642) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:47PM (#13660389) Homepage
    Per the RFC [faqs.org]
  • by dada21 (163177) * <adam.dada@gmail.com> on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:48PM (#13660400) Homepage Journal
    When you call your representative, you should be aware of the following:

    Congress has made a law that allows a certain increase in budgetary line items per year without calling it an increase. I'm not sure what that allowed percentage is, but if they allow 7% and only raise an item 6%, they can legally say they LOWERED that item's budget!

    Our budget includes Social Security receipts but not complete payments. We've never had a truly balanced budget in decades.

    Our budget is allowed emergency appropriations that can include money for any pork project as long as "emergency" is in the bill's title.

    108th Congress Analysis [lewrockwell.com] what a scam!
  • My solution (Score:5, Interesting)

    by vanyel (28049) * on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:48PM (#13660401) Journal
    ...I think that whenever a device includes broadcast flag support, there should be the option to block any program that includes it. If they don't want me to watch their show, then I don't want to watch it.
    • Re:My solution (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Medevo (526922) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:58PM (#13660477) Homepage
      I like your idea, but only if there is some way to make me NOT PAY for the content.

      Currently, the bundles that cable/satellite offer smack similar to how CD's work, there is a couple good channels in each price increase, along with lots of stuff I don't want (one hit wonder songs and filler).

      TV is still trying to hold onto the fact that unless you buy a outrageously priced DVD of LAST SEASON, you are forced to pay for content you don't want. The BBC is going to start moving to a simultaneous release model (online and on air, but people think the online will either have DRM, have commercials, or just be some fancy streaming) for some of its bigger downloaded shows like Dr Who.

      Medevo
  • by millennial (830897) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:50PM (#13660414) Journal
    This is the same sort of thing that got the REAL ID act passed. It's totally inappropriate, and it's a hijacking of the true democratic process. Irrelevant riders simply should NOT be allowed on bills.
  • How can (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ericdano (113424)
    How can they tack on this crap? Why can't they just pass laws/bills that do what they are supposed to do? I can't understand how Demos/Repubs can get away with this. It's like in California where we have one guy getting his gay marriage bill pushed through without having it put up for a vote by the people......

    And then they wonder why we think politicians suck....

  • by Prospero's Grue (876407) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:53PM (#13660441)
    You know, I'm a believer in copyright, and the rights of the copyright owners to make a living from their works - and I've been in more than a few debates in the on-line world where my opinion has been decidedly unpopular.

    I've gotta say, though, over time I've been getting more and more quiet - and less inclined to defend the point-of-view of the *AA, whose positions I respected (even if I disagreed with many of their tactics).

    I'm already at the point where I'm beginning to fully support DRM-cracking tools and software. They're becoming the only tools consumers have to defend their legitimate rights.
    • I'm already at the point where I'm beginning to fully support DRM-cracking tools and software. They're becoming the only tools consumers have to defend their legitimate rights.

      That's because people ignored the eroison of rights all along. It won't be until it's too late that the public will come to their senses and realize the Constitutional attrocities that have been committed under their noses all these years.

      Just wait, when TVs no longer work because the media conglomorates can't determine if you are us
  • by junster2 (573899) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @02:55PM (#13660457) Homepage Journal
    Why is an ammendment allowed on a bill that has nothing to do with the original bill?

    I wish we had line item veto at the national level. It would keep crap like this from ever seeing the light of day.

    If you can't pass a law without being sneeking behind peoples backs, you should really rethink your usefulness within society.

    • Personally, I think there should be an ammendment to the constitution that would disallow that, one vote by congress, ONE fundamental thing they are voting on--if they can't summarize what the vote is about in spirit completely in a single page document, then chances are there is pork and hidden provisions tucked away in stuff like this. If a court finds that a provision in a bill is not at least summarized in the one page summary, then that provision should be struck down.
  • Solving the problem (Score:3, Interesting)

    by famazza (398147) <<moc.liamg> <ta> <onirazzam.oibaf>> on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:02PM (#13660511) Homepage Journal
    1. Buy your new TV set broadcast-flag compatible
    2. Go Canada (or beyond Mexico)
    3. Disable the broadcast flag
    4. Get back home

    Seriously. Can't MPAA understand that skiping broadcast-flag is as simple as bring a single circuit board from outside US? DMCA is only valid in US, until now, and a passthrough to ignore broadcast-flag is very easy to implement.

    Even if US enforces DMCA to other countries (in CAFTA, for example), I have serious doubts that third-world countries will be able to have a serious fiscalization.

    • Seriously. Can't MPAA understand that skiping broadcast-flag is as simple as bring a single circuit board from outside US? DMCA is only valid in US, until now, and a passthrough to ignore broadcast-flag is very easy to implement.

      It's called economics.
      ATI is releasing ONE version of their cards. The version that won't get them into court by another organisation with more money than them. (aka Broadcast-enabled only)

      We Canucks get the same shaft as you.
      Our politicians aren't bought and sold like yours are.
      Th
  • How long will the US legislators (and US citizens) put up with such a corrupt political process? Tactics like these is an affront to government by the people, since the broadcast flag has already been rejected by the current legislative body. If the MPAA were to be successful in this effort, they would literally be hijacking our law making process and twisting to their own selfish ends. I am continually amazed at the audacity of businesses when they become involved in the political process. If our legis
  • What about HDCP? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ShadeARG (306487) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:03PM (#13660523)
    As far as I can tell HDCP [wikipedia.org] already prevents you from recording a pure digital source. While the broadcast flag could be ignored, HDCP continuously negotiates between the input and output device to decode realtime picture display. Without an HDCP compliant output device using HDMI [wikipedia.org] or DVI [wikipedia.org] the output is not usuable, which effectively makes it a very hard nut to crack. It will be a very effective form of High Definition DRM once component output is done away with.
  • I don't understand why this kind of BS is allowed. We need an amendment that requires laws and regulations to be voted on seperately from budgetary crap.
  • by ghee22 (781277) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:06PM (#13660553)
    link from DownsizeDC.org [downsizedc.org]
    link from EFF [eff.org]
  • by sp00 (639381) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:07PM (#13660563)
    The EFF has setup a contact form here [eff.org].
  • On a somewhat related topic, I wonder why the EFF web site doesn't have any updates about the FBI's task force to crack down on deviant pornography.
    • First they came for the Jews and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew. Then they came for the Communists and I did not speak out because I was not a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak out for me. Pastor Martin Niemöller
  • by jvollmer (456588) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:13PM (#13660601)
    My message to the MPAA, RIAA et al is,
    as King George would say: "Bring it on!"

    If they are going to make television less appealing
    I'm prepared to ditch my TV and spend the rest of my
    life reading and writing.

    Try applying DRM to paperbound books I already own, SUCKAS!

    I invite everyone else to do the same - If we do, free TV will reappear.
    but no one will want it. Indeed, they will have to pay people to
    watch it.

    3) Profit!!!

    If it's not Consolidated Lint, it's just fuzz!

  • Of course its back (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nurb432 (527695) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:13PM (#13660614) Homepage Journal
    And it will keep coming back until its passed.

    They have the money, and the will. So its just a matter of time before its passed into a law.

    Then good luck ever getting it repealed. In another generation or so, it will just be accepted as ' its always been that way'.
  • Trojan Legislation (Score:3, Interesting)

    by bubba_ry (574102) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:14PM (#13660626)

    How is it even possible or legal that this type of legislation can be appended to a bill who's purpose doesn't even come close to the flag proposal? It's not much of a stretch to view this as trojan legislation.

    I'm no lawyer, congressman, what-have-you; can anyone out there shed some light on how this is OK? Does it stand on precedent alone (others have done it)? We see it all the time. It doesn't make sense that something as non-topical to cutting spending as the broadcast flag could be introduced this way...

  • Ouch (Score:4, Funny)

    by PacketScan (797299) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:22PM (#13660694)
    Call it the Bend over and Take it Flag.
  • by dpilot (134227) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:25PM (#13660736) Homepage Journal
    Beyond writing to Rep. Sanders and Sen. Jeffords, since I suspect Sen. Leahy is one of those backing this MESS, I need to think about practical considerations.

    I've been thinking of a pending hdtv card, planning to buy before the broadcast flag came into effect. Last spring when the courts threw out the FCC's ability to impose the broadcast flag, I shelved my plans. Keep in mind that I have no other hdtv hardware or services, and this is just a hedge against the future. Even without the other hardware, I want the non-broadcast-flag hdtv card while I can still get it, because someday I will have hdtv hardware/services.

    So does anyone have a clue when Son of Broadcast Flag will rear it's ugly head?
    What's the new deadline to buy an hdtv card?
    Can anyone comment on preferences between pchdtv-3000 and air2pc (or any others) for use with MythTV?

    Honestly, this is about rights of corporations vs rights of people. With this congress and this administration, I expect to lose. I'll fight in the meantime, but I also plan to make preparations to lose.
  • My letter, FWIW (Score:4, Interesting)

    by wcdw (179126) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @03:29PM (#13660772) Homepage
    This was my letter to my congresscritters, for all the good it will do.

    Although my direct concern is Congress once again allowing industry to set law (the so-called 'Broadcast Flag'), my issue goes beyond that item.

    It is far past the time to make it unconstitutional to add unrelated items to bills. It's primary use is deceit, along with the plausible deniability of claiming it was 'snuck' in at the last minute. A secondary effect is pork, which, with the current National Debt, we hardly need.

    I urge each of you to sponsor and support legislation towards this end.

    And PLEASE stop letting special interest groups in this country virtually write their own laws. That is NOT what our founding fathers had in mind for this country. How about considering "we, the people" for a change???
  • by Nom du Keyboard (633989) on Tuesday September 27, 2005 @04:16PM (#13661217)
    I shouldn't have to call my Congress-critter every single fsking time about this.

"The medium is the message." -- Marshall McLuhan

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