Saturday, May 19, 2007

Virtual worlds to get Oscar-like awards

Virtual worlds to get Oscar-like awards

NEW YORK - Two of the best-known entrepreneurs in game-like online spaces known as "virtual worlds" plan to give out awards for the burgeoning industry.

Ailin Graef, a Chinese-born real-estate mogul in the "Second Life" world, and Miami-based Jon Jacobs, who owns an asteroid in "Entropia Universe," announced this week that they've created a Virtual Worlds Academy.

The academy will accept nominations on its Web site for categories like "Best Virtual World," "Best Virtual Fashion Designer" and "Most Dynamic Virtual Economy."

The goal is to "recognize achievements in all areas of virtual artistry, technology, commerce and culture," said the founders, who are better known under their online names: Graef is "Anshe Chung" and Jacobs is "Neverdie."

"I guess all industries get to the point of having awards and I see no reason why the virtual worlds one should be any different," said Ren Reynolds, a British consultant who follows the industry.

"It looks like a good move for Anshe as she is building a brand around a service organization that spans virtual worlds," Reynolds added.

Beyond "Second Life," Graef has business interests in "Entropia Universe," "There" and "IMVU." She has 60 full-time employees.

The winners will be announced in February and will receive virtual statues at "live" ceremonies in "Second Life" and "Entropia Universe."

technorati tags:

Blogged with Flock

Friday, May 18, 2007

Flickr's attitude to Censorship has NOT changed Flickr=Censorship

NOW Heather (Queen Flickr Censor) responds with a thread to close discussions that engage in "fish slapping", Why does this woman still have a job with Flickr? They say they have learned their lesson, so shut up or you'll be blocked.

Mad King Yahoo must be stopped!!!! Democracy is now at stake in the digital age. We can not have an internet culture where people like Heather have the power, it would be a kind of dictatorship. A state where the government can apologise and then censor any further debate.

censorship discussion

view profile

funkyj Pro User says:

Hey flickr, how about that bad press your getting for censoring injured parties like Rebekka?

You might generate more goodwill if you had a more open and candid policy.

In the BBC article on this subject you are quoted as saying:

He said Flickr had removed the comments because there was "personal information of the infringing company's owner and suggestions for how best to exact revenge".

So, instead of deleting photos or peoples accounts how about you make a public policy of replacing the censored comment with a explanation for why it was censored e.g. this comment has been removed because it includes personal information that may result in a person being harassed or some such?

What really gets peoples dander up is not the censoring per se but the scale it occurs on and the lack of explanation.
Posted at 10:37PM, 18 May 2007 BST ( permalink )

Platform Info:

On shard: 8

www5 Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv: Gecko/20070309 Firefox/ Flash V:7 D:Shockwave Flash 9.0 r28

view photos

Xerxes2K Pro User says:

Hi funkyj, you might want to read this topic and the official blog post
Posted 50 minutes ago. ( permalink )

view photos

Brenda Anderson Pro User says:

Flickr has already said it was a mistake.

And Stewart said, in this thread, in response to a question about what the mistake was:

Pretty simple: by removing more than we needed too. The right response would have been deleting any comments that contained personal information or specific threats and writing to Rebekka to let her know that if she didn't ask people to tone it down, we'd make the photo private while it cooled off. Deleting the entire photo and all the comments which were plain statements of support was too much.

Posted 50 minutes ago. ( permalink )
view photos

shot by Scott Pro User says:

Flickr have apologise and learnt from it I don’t think anything like this will happen again. Isn’t it time to get over that part and concentrate on the theft of the images which set all this off?
Posted 46 minutes ago. ( permalink )

view photos

Flickr Staff

heather says:

As pointed out by others....

Here's the previous topic on the same subject:

Stewart's official response:

FlickrBlog post:

The previous topic was locked given that it veered somewhat off course and began to feature a generous dollop of fish slapping:

I'm happy to engage in further discussion, but should the the fish appear, I'll lock this topic down.
Posted 11 minutes ago. ( permalink )

Thank You Heather, you fascist. Now in the insanity of Flickr censorship this corporate bitch from Yahoo, who has a retard joke photo on her photostream has already threatened to lock the debate down.

This is now beyond support, Flickr is a major collaborative space which uses the Internet for distribution, Mad King Yahoo does not own the Internet, and pro account users pay, and yet she will not engage in discussions about censorhip.

technorati tags:, , , ,

Blogged with Flock

Global net censorship 'growing'

China internet cafe
China filtered a wide range of topics, said the report

The level of state-led censorship of the net is growing around the world, a study of so-called internet filtering by the Open Net Initiative suggests.

The study of thousands of websites across 120 Internet Service Providers found 25 of 41 countries surveyed showed evidence of content filtering.

Websites and services such as Skype and Google Maps were blocked, it said.

Such "state-mandated net filtering" was only being carried out in "a couple" of states in 2002, one researcher said.

"In five years we have gone from a couple of states doing state-mandated net filtering to 25," said John Palfrey, at Harvard Law School.

What's regrettable about net filtering is that almost always this is happening in the shadows.

John Palfrey, Harvard Law School

Mr Palfrey, executive director of the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, added: "There has also been an increase in the scale, scope and sophistication of internet filtering."

ONI is made up of research groups at the universities of Toronto, Harvard Law School, Oxford and Cambridge.

It chose 41 countries for the survey in which testing could be done safely and where there was "the most to learn about government online surveillance".

A number of states in Europe and the US were not tested because the private sector rather than the government tends to carry out filtering, it said.

Countries which carry out the broadest range of filtering included Burma, Iran, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen, the study said.

The filtering had three primary rationales, according to the report: politics and power, security concerns and social norms.

The report said: "In a growing number of states around the world, internet filtering has huge implications for how connected citizens will be to the events unfolding around them, to their own cultures, and to other cultures and shared knowledge around the world."

World map
The report said net censorship was spreading across the globe

Jonathan Zittrain, Professor of Internet Governance and Regulation at Oxford University, said the organisation was also looking at the tools people used to circumvent filtering.

"It's hard to quantify how many people are doing this. As we go forward each year we want to see if some of these circumvention technologies become more like appliances and you just plug them in and they work," he added.

"Few states restrict their activities to one type of content," said Rafal Rohozinski, Research Fellow of the Cambridge Security Programme.

He added: "Once filtering is begun, it is applied to a broad range of content and can be used for expanding government control of cyberspace. It has become a strategic forum of competition between states, as well as between citizens and states."

Mr Palfrey said the report was an attempt to shine a spotlight on filtering to make it more transparent.

"What's regrettable about net filtering is that almost always this is happening in the shadows. There's no place you can get an answer as a citizen from your state about how they are filtering and what is being filtered."

The survey found evidence of filtering in the following countries:

Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Burma/Myanmar, China, Ethiopia, India, Iran, Jordan, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, UAE, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Yemen.

NOTE: I lived in Tunisa for a while, no porn, no left wing press, and yet I used the Interent every day, I chatted on English language political groups, I did work. I guess a filteed net is better than no net, though a free net is best of all.

Posted by Picasa

Yahoo 'censored' Flickr comments
Yahoo 'censored' Flickr comments
Flickr is one of the most popular photo-sharing sites

Yahoo has been accused of censorship on its popular photo website Flickr, in a row that has highlighted the issue of copyright in the online age.

Earlier this month photographer Rebekka Gudleifsdóttir discovered that seven of her pictures were reportedly being sold by a UK-based online gallery.

She raised the issue on Flickr but a photo and comments were deleted.

Yahoo, which had no involvement in the row over the sale of the photos, has now apologised for its "mistake".

According to Ms Gudleifsdóttir, online gallery Only Dreemin sold 60 prints of seven of her photos, for more than £2,500, without her consent.

No-one from gallery Only Dreemin was available for comment.

Ms Gudleifsdóttir owns the copyright to all of her photos on Flickr and the website clearly states that people cannot use them without permission.

Withdrew photos

The gallery withdrew the photos for sale but refused to compensate her, she said.

Ms Gudleifsdóttir posted a new photograph on Flickr to highlight her problem with the gallery and received more than 450 comments of support from other users.

But that post was removed by Flickr staff on the grounds it could "harass, abuse, impersonate, or intimidate others".

Ms Guðleifsdóttir said Flickr had also threatened to terminate her account.

The fact remains that they made a profit off my work when they had absolutely no right to
Rebekka Gudleifsdóttir

"Freedom of expression? Telling the truth? Not popular with Flickr administration, apparently," she wrote on her blog.

The co-founder of Flickr, Stewart Butterfield, has now apologised.

"We screwed up and for that I take full responsibility," he said.

He added: "It's important to be clear why the photo was deleted: it had nothing to do with a desire to silence Rebekka from calling attention to the outfit which had reportedly sold copies of her photos without knowledge or permission and without compensating her.

"This had nothing to do with fear of a lawsuit, but with deeply held beliefs about the kind of place we want Flickr to be. Unfortunately, those beliefs were misapplied in this case, but we still hold the general principle to be true."

He said Flickr had removed the comments because there was "personal information of the infringing company's owner and suggestions for how best to exact revenge".

Ms Gudleifsdóttir told BBC News that the gallery had told her they had bought the photos from a third party for £3,000 in good faith and had been shown "official looking documents".

"When my lawyer requested that they send a copy of these documents, to prove that this transaction had indeed taken place, we heard no more from them," she said.

"If I had decided to proceed further with this case, my next move would have been to hire a UK-based lawyer to take them to court. I however did not feel able to do this, as I simply don't have the money needed to pay for it."

She said she had been left feeling "extremely frustrated" by the gallery and had been "offended" by Flickr's initial reaction to her protest.

But she said she had now accepted Flickr's apology but would continue to campaign for compensation.

"The fact remains that they made a profit off my work when they had absolutely no right to," she said.

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The Avitar that looks live me in SL

I actually have serveral
Posted by Picasa

Buling a Flickr Suvival Plan Slide 1

For any of you who maybe have been visiting Mars or don't know what Flickr is, recent changes by Yahoo! have resulted in a regular process of deletion. Flirck TOS esssentially give power to admins to delete anyone for any reason, without explanation. Also the Flickr forum is a place where Flickr admins have been known to be something less than truthfull with paying customers. (Flickr admins claim they are powerless to block people at the IP level, they denied the Yahoo Photo merger even when it was being reproted in the press). So if your Flickr community means anything to you get a blog from a company not owned by Mad King Yahoo, and a copy of Flock, and follow these screen shots.

If you get deleted you can be up an running again in a day.

Posted by Picasa

Buling a Flick with Flockr Suvival Plan Slide 2

Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

SL vs RL Babe Review, you decide

Secondl Life Avitar

Real Life Photo

Well in my opinion real life wins hands down in this case, which is probably pretty unusual for SL.

Way to go AVA!!!!! Sexier than your Avitar!!!!

Blogged with Flock

Sunday, May 13, 2007

The Nude and Democracy

Respect for the beauty of the body; and for the realistic and often erotic images of the human body are unique to democratic societies. A culture that produces realistic, challenging, new and dynamic images of the nude body is a vibrant culture developing in democracy. Nudes do not show up in established civilization without any democratic traditions like China and the Middle East. The produce of artistic nude images in these societies would show growth in democratic trends. Fascists and other authoritarian societies produced nudes, but they were highly stylized, unnatural, inorganic and unchallenging.

Plus boobs and bodies are nice to look at.

Gail finds photographing the nude body in motion, full of freedom and sexuality, of all shapes and sizes as a liberating challenge to my art. I find response to this work some of the most interesting and developing of my career.

Plus boobs and bodies are nice to look at

.Enjoy on what ever level you like, but remember you can enjoy because you are free. When the day comes you can’t see some images anywhere is the day to leave the country you live in and sex somewhere free.

Natural innovative nudes = democracy!!!!

A note, nudes were only one subject Gail photographed over the past 20 years. When she made her work public on the web quickly she found that they were some of her most popular work. By associating them with political messages she felt was important she found she could counter, to some small extent, the mass of right wing media that uses sexuality to sell nationalism and war.

Bob Hooker

technorati tags:, , ,

Blogged with Flock

Saturday, May 12, 2007

flickr the game

February 27th, 2005

by Stephan Spencer

I have already mentioned how Flickr has the characteristics of a massively multi-player online role-playing game, but I wanted to expand on this a little more. A “sticky” site has a sense of play to it. Flickr does this wonderfully, with interesting features just a few explorative mouse clicks away. What’s more, Flickr encourages you to explore and make interesting connections, and this exploration keeps Flickr incredibly sticky.

For example, Flickr constantly encourages you to explore other people’s photo collections, from the tag searching, to latest photos on the home page, to groups and contacts; everything invites you to network and make links. But it never bullies you into doing this, merely points you along a path you can chose to take.

Exploring Flickr is like exploring any game environment. You can make discoveries, amusing connections, get lost, and find your home again. Along the way you will meet interesting characters, perverse characters, and the incredibly dull. Flickr is not only a game, it’s a story, and it succeeds because the story is about us and our lives, and it’s delivered visually.

Perhaps this is why the ‘friend networks’ have invariably failed to sustain their original hype. People’s personal profiles are only so interesting; people’s photos on the other hand are intimate, personal, and interesting.

The realization that Flickr is, in many ways, a game, leads one to an interesting thought. Is it possible that all truly great websites are games? Ebay is a nice example of this. People don’t just log in to buy and sell, they also log in to play, explore, and even fight with other users over items. Who hasn’t heard from a friend of a great Ebay discovery, or a bidding war, or a fantastic sale? Play makes Ebay fun. Google is another example. It has exploration and discovery game elements in abundance!

Perhaps when we think web usability and design we should also be catering to human kind’s innate curiosity and desire to solve problems that games tap into. With these ideas in mind, let’s hope the next generation websites learn from Flickr and sites like it to produce truly interesting experiences.

MY COMMENT: Economics teaches that everything can be viewed as a game of some kind.

Blogged with Flock

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Second Life in virtual child sex scandal

Second Life in virtual child sex scandal

Kate Connolly in Berlin
Wednesday May 9, 2007
The Guardian

Second Life
‘Age Play’, in which players request sex with others who dress up as child avatars, has encouraged a growth in players posing as children in order to make money

German prosecutors have launched an investigation to find anonymous participants of the online computer game Second Life, who are reportedly buying sex with other players posing as children, as well as offering child pornography for sale.

Second Life is an internet-based virtual world with at least 6 million players, where you can choose your appearance, age, gender and colour.

Investigators in the city of Halle are acting on specific information about a German Second Life player, or avatar, who put child pornography images up for sale and paid for sex with underage players or players posing as minors.

Second Life in virtual child sex scandal

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Flickr Senior Manager Deletes Comment on Photo

The above photo was posted on the photostream of

view photos

Flickr Staff

heather says:

Heather is the senior staff of Flickr and one of her responsibilities is to insure decency standards and to insure offensive material on Flickr is restricted.

A recent post on this pictured pointed out that there are millions of people who suffer from learning disabilities and development disabilities find the use of the ugly term “retarded” offensive.  People with LD and DD are born with a serious set of challenges.  They are subject to life times of bullying and insults, and the use of the term retarded is one of the cruellest terms applied again against people with these conditions.  LD and DD have the status of race or gender, it is a form of identity that they are born with.

Heather quickly deleted this valid point.

Anyone with exposure to working with LD and DD individuals can tell you the pain that the term “retarded” has caused them, many will feel radical depression or rage at the mention this terrible word.  I have seen groups of retarded adults come to tears when one of them brings up the term.

Now if a normal users of Flickr showed this photo it would probably be one of those ignorant attention grabbing activities that are covered by free speech.   The T-Shirt contains no social or political value..

But heather is a senior Flickr staff and seems to be the primary administrator in Flickr customer care.  As an employee of Flickr she does not have the same free speech protection of users of the site, and as the main enforced of Flickr decency program she should be held to a higher standard.

Heather is not even willing to provide any space discourse on the question of the word “retarded” as a hate act. 

But why listen to me.  Some facts from ARC show that 650,000,000 people world wide live with a disability.  82 nations have signed a UN convention on the rights of the disabled, covering those with LD and DD.  The convention covers the, among other things, the right of disabled to:

Guarantee freedom from exploitation and abuse for the disabled and protect rights they already have such as voting rights and physical access.

Source The Arc

This convention insures that people that 650,000,000 human beings have a right not to be abused for their disability.  Posting of this photo by a staff member of Flickr and open to public search
would violate the spirit of the UN Convention 56/168. Comprehensive and integral international convention to promote and protect the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities 

This landmark in human progress.  We may have a long time before we can see the end of a hateful term of retarded, but Yahoo! Corporation can insure that its staff does not engage in cheap jokes at the cost of the intellectual disabled.  No one believes Flickr can ban all uses of such terms, not for some years, but Flickr and Yahoo should provide some training to its staff to increase sensitivity and to set an example.

As for heather herself, shame on you. 

Bob Hooker


technorati tags:, , , , ,

Blogged with Flock

Friday, May 04, 2007

In Web Uproar, Antipiracy Code Spreads Wildly

In Web Uproar, Antipiracy Code Spreads Wildly

Article Tools Sponsored By
Published: May 3, 2007

Correction Appended

SAN FRANCISCO, May 2 — There is open revolt on the Web.

Skip to next paragraph
Jim Wilson/The New York Times

Kevin Rose, founder of, a Web site that lets users submit links to news accounts.

Readers’ Opinions

Share Your Thoughts

Does encryption of media files unfairly limit consumer freedom?

Sophisticated Internet users have banded together over the last two days to publish and widely distribute a secret code used by the technology and movie industries to prevent piracy of high-definition movies.

The broader distribution of the code may not pose a serious threat to the studios, because it requires some technical expertise and specialized software to use it to defeat the copy protection on Blu-ray and HD DVD discs. But its relentless spread has already become a lesson in mob power on the Internet and the futility of censorship in the digital world.

An online uproar came in response to a series of cease-and-desist letters from lawyers for a group of companies that use the copy protection system, demanding that the code be removed from several Web sites.

Rather than wiping out the code — a string of 32 digits and letters in a specialized counting system — the legal notices sparked its proliferation on Web sites, in chat rooms, inside cleverly doctored digital photographs and on user-submitted news sites like

“It’s a perfect example of how a lawyer’s involvement can turn a little story into a huge story,” said Fred von Lohmann, a staff lawyer at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights group. “Now that they started sending threatening letters, the Internet has turned the number into the latest celebrity. It is now guaranteed eternal fame.”

The number is being enshrined in some creative ways. Keith Burgon, a 24-year-old musician in Goldens Bridge, N.Y., grabbed his acoustic guitar on Tuesday and improvised a melody while soulfully singing the code. He posted the song to YouTube, where it was played more than 45,000 times.

“I thought it was a source of comedy that they were trying so futilely to quell the spread of this number,” Mr. Burgon said. “The ironic thing is, because they tried to quiet it down it’s the most famous number on the Internet.”

During his work break on Tuesday, James Bertelson, an engineer in Vancouver, Wash., joined the movement and created a Web page featuring nothing but the number, obscured in an encrypted format that only insiders could appreciate. He then submitted his page to Digg, a news site where users vote on what is important. Despite its sparse offerings, his submission received nearly 5,000 votes and was propelled onto Digg’s main page.

“For most people this is about freedom of speech, and an industry that thinks that just because it has high-priced lawyers it has the final say,” Mr. Bertelson said.

Messages left for those lawyers and the trade organization they represent, the Advanced Access Content System Licensing Administrator, which controls the encryption system known as A.A.C.S., were not answered. In an e-mail message, a representative for the group said only that it “is looking into the matter and has no further comment at this time.”

The organization is backed by technology companies like I.B.M., Intel, Microsoft and Sony and movie studios like Disney and Warner Brothers, which is owned by Time Warner.

The secret code actually stopped being a secret in February, when a hacker ferreted it out of his movie-playing software and posted it on a Web bulletin board. From there it spread through the network of technology news sites and blogs.

Last month, lawyers for the trade group began sending out cease-and-desist letters, claiming that Web pages carrying the code violated its intellectual property rights under the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act. One letter was sent to Google, which runs a blog network at

The campaign to remove the number from circulation went largely unnoticed until news of the letters hit Digg. The 25-employee company in San Francisco, acting on the advice of its lawyers, removed posting submissions about the secret number from its database earlier this week, then explained the move to its readers on Tuesday afternoon.

The removals were seen by many Digg users as a capitulation to corporate interests and an assault on free speech. Some also said that the trade group that promotes the HD-DVD format, which uses A.A.C.S. protection, had advertised on a weekly Digg-related video podcast.

On Tuesday afternoon and into the evening, stories about or including the code swamped Digg’s main page, which the company says gets 16 million readers each month. At 9 p.m. West Coast time, the company surrendered to mob sentiment.

“You’d rather see Digg go down fighting than bow down to a bigger company,” wrote Kevin Rose, Digg’s founder, in a blog post. “We hear you, and effective immediately we won’t delete stories or comments containing the code and will deal with whatever the consequences might be.” If Digg loses, he wrote, “at least we died trying.”

Jay Adelson, Digg’s chief executive, said in an interview that the site was disregarding the advice of its lawyers. “We just decided that it is more important to stand by our users,” he said. Regarding the company’s exposure to lawsuits he said, “we are just going to prepare and do our best.”

The conflict spilled over to Wikipedia, where administrators had to restrict editing on some entries to keep contributors from repeatedly posting the code.

The episode recalls earlier acts of online rebellion against the encryption that protects media files from piracy. Some people believe that such systems unfairly limit their freedom to listen to music and watch movies on whatever devices they choose.

In 1999, hackers created a program called DeCSS that broke the software protecting standard DVDs and posted it on the hacker site The Motion Picture Association of America sued, and Judge Lewis A. Kaplan of Federal District Court in Manhattan, citing the 1998 digital copyright act, sided with the movie industry.

The DVD code disappeared from the 2600 site, but nevertheless resurfaced in playful haiku, on T-shirts and even in a movie in which the code scrolled across the screen like the introductory crawl in “Star Wars.”

In both cases, the users who joined the revolt and published the codes may be exposing themselves to legal risk. Chris Sprigman, an associate professor at the University of Virginia School of Law, said that under the digital copyright act, propagating even parts of techniques intended to circumvent copyright was illegal.

However, with thousands of Internet users now impudently breaking the law, Mr. Sprigman said that the entertainment and technology industries would have no realistic way to pursue a legal remedy. “It’s a gigantic can of worms they’ve opened, and now it will be awfully hard to do anything with lawsuits,” he said.

Correction: May 4, 2007

A front-page article yesterday about an online revolt against efforts by a trade organization to remove a secret antipiracy code from the Web erroneously included one Web site among those that received requests to remove the code. Wikipedia did not receive such a letter.

Blogged with Flock

DVD DRM row sparks user rebellion

Screen grab of Digg website
Readers did not 'dig' censorship
Attempts to gag the blogosphere from publishing details of a DVD crack have led to a user revolt.

The row centred on a 'cease and desist' letter sent by the body that oversees the digital rights management technology on high-definition DVDs.

It requested that blogs and websites removed details of a software key that breaks the encryption on HD-DVDs.

The removal of the information from community news website Digg was a step too far for its fans.

As quickly as stories relating to the issue were removed, they were re-submitted in their thousands, in an act described by one user as a "21st Century revolt".

The site collapsed under the weight of the attack at one point.

Angry hacker

Shot from a HD-DVD, Getty Images
High-definition DVD formats are battling for attention

The founder of Digg has now decided not to censor the information, telling users: "If we lose, then what the hell, at least we died trying".

Digg is a community-based news site with an emphasis on technology stories. Unlike traditional websites, editorial control is governed by users, who rank stories themselves.

Its combination of social bookmarking and blogging have made it popular and it now accounts for 1% of the total internet traffic in the US.

The controversy it has become embroiled in centres on a decision by the Advanced Access Content System Licensing Administrator (AACS), the consortium behind the DRM for HD-DVD disks, to gag websites and bloggers that published information about a software key that disables the copyright protection on the discs.

In a letter to a variety of websites and blogs the AACS requested that information relating to the crack be removed.

It said sites were "providing and offering to the public a technology, product, service, device, component, or part thereof that is primarily designed, produced, or marketed for the purpose of circumventing the technological protection measures afforded by AACS".

It goes on to say that doing so contravenes the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act and therefore "violates the rights of the AACS".

The issue with encryption first emerged at the end of last year when the AACS admitted that a hacker had bypassed security on some HD-DVD titles.

The hacker, known as muslix64, has been able to access the encryption keys which pass between certain discs and the player.

Once those keys have been obtained the disc can be stripped of its encryption enabling the digital content to be played on any machine.

The hacker said he had grown angry when a HD-DVD movie he had bought would not play on his monitor because it did not have the compliant connector demanded by the movie industry.

Since then links to the original crack and information about it has steadily been leaking out on the web.

The latest leak, causing the uproar, is of a key which unlocks all HD-DVD movies produced to date. The key was found and leaked by a hacker called Arnezami.

Some bloggers - including well-known web activist Cory Doctorow - have decide to remove the information in light of the AACS letter.

Others, in defiance of the orders, are openly posting the key on their websites or linking to the website detailing the original crack.

Digg rebellion

Initially, news website Digg decided to remove stories referencing the key.

"Whether you agree or disagree with the policies of the intellectual property holders and consortiums, in order for Digg to survive, it must abide by the law," chief executive officer Jay Adelson told readers.

Users, angered by the censorship, were determined to keep the story about the encryption-breaking code in the headlines which prompted a hasty change of heart by the website.

"After seeing hundreds of stories and reading thousands of comments, you've made it clear. You'd rather see Digg go down fighting than bow down to a bigger company.

We hear you, and effective immediately we won't delete stories or comments containing the code and will deal with whatever the consequences might be," said founder Kevin Rose.

The debate has put the initial crack and, what some see as the heavy-handed tactics of the licensing authority to combat it, back in the headlines.

It will also spark a fresh debate on how far user-generated content can be censored.

technorati tags:

Blogged with Flock

Please Pass it Around

Posted by Picasa


The code for revolution is:Support the HD-DVD key.
Join the revoluition
Posted by Picasa