Archive for Commentary

Future of Journalism

Posted in Commentary with tags on February 3, 2010 by Bradley Hall

My minor was Journalism. My major was Psychology. If I had it to do over again, I might have reversed the two.

So it was no surprise I found myself agreeing along with Dan Gillmor in this Mediactive posting about how he’d reform the journalism colleges.

Mediactive article

ACTA

Posted in Commentary, Government, Intellectual Property, Piracy with tags , , , on December 17, 2009 by Bradley Hall

Apparently this has been going on for quite some time. Several countries are readying to possibly ratify the Anti-Counterfeit Trade Act worldwide next month in Mexico.

ACTA affects not just counterfeiting, it makes things international law that were mentioned in the DMCA (and some things that weren’t). One of the pieces that I do not agree with (among others) is the Anti-Circumvention section which makes it illegal to bypass region code lockouts of DVDs (among other things). This means it would now be illegal for me to legally buy a DVD from Japan or Russia and then make it playable in the US either by ripping the video or via some other method.

Please go to the following site for more information:

Michael Geist’s site

Comcast Buys NBC?

Posted in Commentary, Government, Intellectual Property, Privacy with tags , , , on December 3, 2009 by Bradley Hall

I was met with the news that Comcast bought NBC when I arrived home from school. It always amazes me how the halls of education can be shielded from the “important facts of the day” but I digress.

If this merger would be allowed to happen it would result in fewer choices, higher prices, and less access.

I implore you to check out FreePress’s webpage in regards to this matter.

Free Press link.

Book vs. Movie

Posted in Book Reviews, Commentary with tags , on November 19, 2009 by Bradley Hall

It’s a fight that has been waged since film became a viable storytelling medium.

The book or the movie the book spawned (sometimes the opposite!) has been a war that has been waging for years.

A few weeks ago, I read the Russian book Night Watch. I told someone about it and found the films Night Watch and Day Watch (both are based on stories in the Night Watch novel).

We watched the films and over the course of several hours the differences between book and movie were enormous. At the end, my friend asked “You liked that book??” the tone of his voice made it clear that he disliked the film, just as I had.

I then tried to counter by telling him exactly what was different, that you can’t judge a book just by watching the movie based on it. In all, the film contained about 30% of the story from the novel and changed around a lot. Some of it good, others bad, mostly bad.

I did like a few of the scenes of the Dark vampire family, trying to live like normal people despite being outcasts in the human world and in the Other world.

I don’t want to say it was an unmitigated mess, but it’s one of the things where the film is the film and the book is the book. There is no comparison.

That said, I loved the book. I plan on getting the rest of the books in the series. It’s almost a “What if Harry Potter became an IT administrator and part-time Auror in Russia.”

Perfect Prosecutor

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 13, 2009 by Bradley Hall

I’ve been a fan of the Ace Attorney series since it debuted in the US on the Nintendo DS (before this, it had been a Japanese-only GBA game). I have all four games in the series and totally love them.

This February, Capcom plans to bring out Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth. As can be gleaned from the title, you play as famed prosecutor, Miles Edgeworth.

I was hoping this game would be called Perfect Prosecutor, but I digress.

Capcom sent me a link to YouSendIt page that has a downloadable file of the first case in this game in flash format. While I have not had a chance to play it yet, rest assured that I will soon.

Link to the flash based game download

Makers

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 28, 2009 by Bradley Hall

Cory Doctorow has a new book coming out soon, Makers. I’ve not reviewed any of Mr. Doctorow’s books here on this site (I wonder why?), but love the website he frequently writes for, BoingBoing (link at right).

Makers page.

Will Kindle usher in the age of book piracy?

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 19, 2009 by Bradley Hall

Today the BBC postulates that because Amazon’s Kindle is now an internationally sold device, that it will become easier to pirate books and have them on your Kindle, just as Apple’s iPod made people want to pirate more music.

People died before guns were invented, it just made it easier.

BBC article.