The Null Device

2000/12/29

Welcome to the Digital Millennium: An outfit named icopyright.com, perhaps heartened by draconian new directions in copyright law, has come up with a new business model: web link licensing. That's right; they charge you US$50 to link to any article licensed through them. But that's not all: under their agreement, you may not criticise the article linked to or its author. There's one minor hitch: they may have no legal foundation for their power grab, though that may well change over the next few years. Galambosianism, thou art vindicated.

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A film which looks worth seeing: Quills. A film about someone like the Marquis de Sade, and starring Geoffrey Rush, Kate Winslet and Sir Michael Caine, would have to be interesting.

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Today I went out and did a spot of shopping, buying (among other things) two CDs: Broadcast's The Noise Made By People and Piano Magic's Artists' Rifles, both at Heartland. The former is on Warp, though has a swingin'-60s retro feel, as if afflicted by Carnaby Street Syndrome (sort of like Jerusalem Syndrome, only instead of wearing hotel bedsheets and believing yourself to be John the Baptist, it involves riding an Italian motor-scooter and thinking it's 1967, and predominantly afflicts indie kids and the likes of St Etienne). The latter CD is a very subdued, enigmatic and atmospheric work; I have no idea what to compare it to that would give a fair idea of what it sounds like, though traces of it were reminiscent of Electronic, Slowdive Dead Can Dance and The Paradise Motel, albeit in the most fleeting of ways. Ignore the fact that the band name sounds like a naff K-Tel compilation CD, (or that their label's name, Rocket Girl, sounds more like they should be releasing punky three-chord power pop, possibly of Japanese origin), this is a band worth keeping an eye on.

(I also bought some other things (not CDs), but I can't tell you about them just yet.)

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In the future, Microsoft will own your ass, or at the very least everything you do with your trusted-client computer. Or so the Reg says.

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The New York Times has an article on the blog phenomenon, quoting some known bloggers, including Rebecca Blood and Graham the Happy Scum.

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Newspeak in action: In time for 2001, the International Year of Volunteers, Australia's ranks of "volunteer" firefighters are set to be swelled by an influx of young people conscripted in on the expanding "work-for-the-dole" scheme.

The last thing a CFA commander needs in a bushfire crisis is a resentful young person on the team who is there only because she'll have her dole cut off if she doesn't show up.

<SARCASM> Of course, the real problem in this case is not conscription but the culture of individualism and rebellion among young people that leads to such antisocial attitudes; it's all that gothic grunge techno rap music they're listening to, turning their brains to mush. None of this would happen if that Communist Whitlam hadn't lifted the ban on the importation of electric guitars back in 1972... </SARCASM>

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