Monday, June 08, 2009

Mike at Techdirt returns?

After an absence of about six months, Mike at Techdirt left another content-less comment, this time on the IPBiz post

German war on plagiarism with bounty hunters, or German confusion?
. The link in question pertained to Mike Masnick's comments about the PALY High School (Palo Alto) plagiarism incident, and one can judge Mike's comment in that context:

TechDirt: plagiarism as re-imagination and collaboration

AFTER reading the IPBiz post, one might return to TechDirt's text, including:

That's why it seems rather overblown to read about a local controversy in Palo Alto, California, as some graduation speeches apparently borrowed heavily from others. In the details provided, it sounds like the "plagiarism" mostly consisted of jokes. Again, repeating and sharing jokes is a crucial part of culture. Pretending that only one person can ever say a joke seems ridiculous -- especially on something where the delivery and presentation are so important. So, rather than condemning these kids for seeing some funny stories and incorporating them into their talks, can we start recognizing that maybe, just maybe, "plagiarism" isn't really as bad as some make it out to be.

As people who attended the graduation speech noted (see IPBiz), it wasn't that the student borrowed a joke, it was that the entire graduation speech on the theme "applying to college like wooing a girl" was lifted from an earlier graduation speech given at nearby Mountain View High School. Here's one comment on the PALY High incident that gets to heart of "why Mike Masnick is wrong" (in being more flippant than substantive):

As one of the Paly seniors who graduated and actually listened to both Malini and Mohammed's speeches, I'd like to give my take on the situation. First of all, it was not a "small part" of Mohammed's speech that was plagiarized--the joke took up the majority of his speech. And I'm still dumbfounded as to why he would credit the joke to a "teacher," when he could just as easily have given the proper credit to where it was due. He obviously didn't "mess up" when saying that he heard the joke from a teacher; it's kind of hard to confuse what your teachers say with youtube videos.

As for Malini's speech, I watched the video on youtube and it was literally almost entirely plagiarized. Given that she VOLUNTEERED to give a speech, I don't understand why anyone would volunteer just to submit a speech they didn't actually write.

Once again, Mike didn't get it.


TechDirt on patent reform on Dec. 15
[IPBiz notes that since Dec. 15, IBM's SECOND patent application "method for waiting in line for an airplane toilet" has been revealed, as has the outsourcing business. At least pharma has patents for products that really benefit people.]

Mike Masnick (TechDirt) takes on Gary Odom (PatentHawk)

**Separately, here's the kind of thinking TechDirt inspires (from digitalmajority-->

"Then i realized, i was an artist, and all the articles on ars, /., techdirt and here reminded me of patent trolls, copyright propoganda, ad nauseum. so, if i patent the ‘idea’, which im sure is easy as fuck to do, then i can lock out innovation entirely, and everyone would be at my whim when i felt like upgrading my software. for the price i demanded, gee, that sounded all too familiar… even if I DIDNT, someone else could, and then force mine off the market.., if only for protecting my right to offer a better software package for a reasonable fee i HAVE to patent it. thats fucked up when a system is so screwed, you HAVE to play their way, or not be allowed into the game at all. it really hits home hard when the realizations of how fucked up the patent and copyright system is in its current state, lemme tell ya."



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