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Everything posted by PassivePretentiousness

  1. not the second weekend. I'll probably be there otherwise.
  2. I'm surprised that I'm agreeing with some of the people in this thread. I don't really think video games are art not because of anything intrinsically wrong with the media, but that no one has fulfilled a criteria that could define art. If you want to say that art is a skill or virtuosity to create, the term doesn't really mean anything since you might as well just call it skill or virtuosity since it doesn't have all the other loaded implications the word "art" conveys. If you want to say that art is purely subjective and that scribbling is the equivalent of Picasso, then art again loses any real meaning and is an approximate synonym of "thing". If anything is art, nothing is art. Art is a form of communication that can only take place through the media the artists choose. Conversation or essays can substitute for art if the message is logical and sequitur. On the other hand, if the message is to replicate an experience of the artist, to portray an inscrutable aspect of the human psyche, or to communicate the reasoning of a value or belief through allegorical or analogous representation, art is created. As long as this line of communication is maintained, that is to say, that the (educated) society reading it can still understand the underlying meaning of what the work was meant to portray, it is objectively art. Even if the work was not initially intended by the artist to portray a specific response, the agreement that the work does indeed do so (through accepted literary criticism, etc), it is objectively art; for example, a person in a vegetative state who inadvertently gives the finger is still offensive out of context [that is only in response to those who insist on eliminating the artist when evaluating the art- if you want to include the artist in the equation, my argument only becomes stronger]. So what video game constitutes art? I honestly cannot think of a single one. This may be because I have not really ventured too far into artsy gaming, and there are people out there who seem vaguely to know what they're talking about who rant on about Beyond Good and Evil (which both impresses me and set off alarms by referencing Nietzsche in its title). To mainstream, faux art games like the Metal Gear Solid series or ICO, what exactly makes it art? For the former, hamhanded, cliched truism that were established sixty years ago by Satre or conspiracy theories? What exactly is being communicated there that requires the unique perspective of video games (besides the occasional neat moment where you have to use the second controller or Snake takes off his mask, which really amounts to cleverness and virtuosity of making video games, and not in consciously communicating a real message)? For the latter, I really don't know what the fuss was about to begin with, as it all seemed to ever boil down to a unique motif rather than a unique message, although if you want to debate me in saying that its specific flavor of alienation and hopelessness somehow differs from the general vague concept played at by a few million other songs/books/paintings/etc ever since dada was popular shortly after the first world war, I'm all ears. That isn't to say ICO is dada, just that dada established any theme ICO has before the great depression. Please name me any video game that has a unique message or even portrayal of that message for which I cannot immediately cite three wikipedia links to art that already portrayed the message more clearly. Messages that are emotional in nature are obviously under less strict guidelines since they are less defined. Ok I will give a single example of video games in general that could be construed as art; the first KOTOR as a testament to the nature of free will.
  3. I always liked this one but kinda felt uncomfortable with how structurally similar this is to Building up Steam with a Grain of Salt. -Opens with irrelevant quote -Music starts (piano for dj shadow, synths/rhodes/whatever for skrypnyk) -turntable crap, then over the music a self-referential quote is played -slowly building drumloops with methodical melody, interspersed with neato drumwork and more random samples. If anything it is a stylistic simplification because it doesn't begin introducing more sonic textures like dj shadow does. I'm not claiming this is anything resembling plagiarism, but you could walk up to a random skilled electronic musician in the street, ask him to create a stylistically and structurally identical song to Building up Steam with a Grain of Salt, then replace the primary melody with sad song, you'd get this. If this was a generic rock or trance tune, this wouldn't really mean much, but the style and structure of this really define the song.
  4. I don't really buy video games anymore so I often play old ones to zone out and concentrate my mind on something else that isn't a video game. Among these, san francisco rush 2049, rush 2, burnout, burnout 2, and to a lesser extant, zelda oot. I've beaten the latter all the way through something to the effect of 30 times.
  5. are you drunk yet I am but not in your honor but ok fine I'll get more drunk in your honor.
  6. this thread stinks of pseudoscience. I entice dhsu to return and affirm my intuition.
  7. I don't feel like discussing the philosophical motivations of my attitudes in this thread. We can elsewhere if you want. Regarding the notion of externality, it is not really applicable to this situation, although I can understand what you mean. I'll elaborate on the given example of pollution. When a company pollutes, it doesn't feel the true societal cost of providing its goods. Dirtier air causes people to be hit by a cost, but have no means of getting paid for it by the polluter. This causes the economy to overallocate (spend more resources on one good than it should to maximize utility). It does not really apply because the "transaction" that occurs when I give you music is not a legal and violates property rights upon which economic theory is based. It's similar to externalities inasmuch as you don't feel the costs of producing music, so the utility-maximizing "quantity" of that music file is spread over the economy. However, in this case, the damage felt is only to the record company and the spill over benefits to the US economy I already outlined, unless of course you sharing music causes more people to listen Yellowdcard or something; in which case, shame on you. The attitude that sets me off about this is the idea that record companies already have enough money, so screw them. Enough by what standard? If you're talking from the standpoint of maximizing the total welfare of everyone in the company taken together, you're objectively wrong. The free sharing of intellectual property destroys the wealth of the one industry in the US that really still is dominant, and by extension, everyone else's wealth. Markets work best when people act while recognizing all cost of their actions. When that effect is disrupted, either by an externality, market power, or the destruction of property rights, our outcome isn't ideal. If we paid for our music, we would have more music and better music. Since we don't, those who do pay finance the happiness of all music lovers. Not very many people pay. I'm not mentioning the cost of enforcement, but since we don't know how they would go about it, I don't really know how one could claim that it is incontrovertibly incorrect and evil. That is the pure economic justification. Politically and philosophically, I understand it purely by standards of natural rights. Civil rights are just really constructs of the government to make sure the government doesn't screw around too much when it's trying to, among other things, protect property rights. There's an upper limit and lower limit to what we'll accept, but there's no underlying reason to it. They just are what level of intrusion we'll allow this moment to protect natural rights. You said you agree with intellectual property rights, which implies you don't believe in it as a means to an end, but as an end in and of itself; that it is a natural right. I may not agree that such intrusion is worth it, but I also don't think it's crazy and evil and unbelievable and awful and stupid for them to band together. We already are ok with certain intrusions into our lives out of necessity, and the general direction we've been going in in this country, I understand where they're coming from. It's their property, their own backyard. If random anonymous people start lighting fires in yours, you'd probably be pushing the police to profile and identify them when those civil rights are iffy and already tread upon (when people come into the country), or when you are where you know wrongdoers are, like randomly searching a group of people when there is a strong likelihood that one of them has a bomb (when searching the records of an ISP). Would you require a search warrant in the latter situation? It's a very similar situation, only affecting life instead of property. So yeah, it's not really the same thing, but that's subjectively weighing one right against each other (which may sound reprehensible, but is done every day by the government, or by you personally, when you don't give a single dollar to Darfur or whatever). I don't agree with it, but I believe that strong actions of the RIAA are perfectly REASONABLE given where we do elsewhere, and cannot understand how it so ludicrously contradicts our standards outside of intellectual property.
  8. saying that EA is in trouble with the law because it is requesting approval from the department of justice to acquire take-two is beyond ridiculous. companies willingly request approval because it's much easier than facing a challenge to the acquisition. It's common place for companies that have something like 15% of the market to request such approval. it means literally nothing, and far, far from even suggesting that they will soon become a target of the government. Regarding the question of predatory pricing, it's slightly less ridiculous, but still, well, ridiculous. It is very hard to prove normally, and not really attempted by the prosecution ordinarily. To get it to stand up in court, you need to prove that EA is selling the games below invoice (in retail) or marginal cost, which means that you would need to prove that it costs more than $20 to produce one additional game. Those costs would be only the cost of making the physical game more or less. The reason why this is so strict is because, although there are clearly other costs involved in making the game, you really can't prove what is the true cost of producing each game by EA (the average total cost) in the real world. If they could disentangle it, this would be a landmark case to economists. My knowledge is more along the lines of criminal cases and charges brought on by the DOJ, not civil cases, so I'm probably overstating this a little. Still while the requirement of confidence that the defendant has done something wrong drop from 99.999% sure to 99.5% sure, I can't imagine that they can establish that the average total cost for EA is more than $20. If they can't do that, what EA has done legally isn't monopolization. It's competition.
  9. Why not respond to something with thought instead of emotion. there are people who study whether the money companies receive is justified. they are called economists. Unfortunately, you don't seem to understand economics. However, you are much more skilled in all other areas of human study, and economics is just a bunch of people trying to make rich people feel justified anyways, so I wanted to learn more from you by allowing you to be more compassionate to the unfortunate predicament of my ignorance. Ignorance, that's all it is. I obviously have no idea what I'm talking about, since in matters of where meets business, economics is irrelevant. It fails to either consider the human side of the equation or provide anything resembling a scientific, empiric view of reality due to the of applying statistical analysis. I'm sure that you nonetheless have a conversational, working knowledge of us despicable pseudo-scientists, in basic areas like marginal analysis and allocative efficiency, as clearly each notion is an incongruence wrought by economists' institutional prejudice towards truth. With your indelible interpretations against our false notions of market pressure, market power, and marginal utility, I hope that you can humble yourself to correct me beyond your glancing slight of my unpretentious link, as I am always anxious to desire to understand the arguments against basic economic theory posed by those of the academic stature such as yourself.
  10. that was actually a typo and I agree with you. I know. I said I think it is an unconstitutional It's already illegal, or at least arguably illegal depending on your stretch of fair use. If industries or a company wants people to sometimes be able to share, there are still other options, such as a license that allows a certain amount of sharing. The point is now that such a sharing arrangement is forced about all firms in all industries dealing in intellectual property. Obviously it would have never passed if not for 9/11. It doesn't matter; the types of detainments made possible by it are so so so beyond the scope and power of this act that make it crazy to get riled up by an attempt to enforce intellectual property rights when all other areas of government involvement in today's world are somehow otherwise acceptable. It's not even clearcut that it's unconstitutional to search people as they enter the border. How many people consider it some gross misappropriation of coercive power to check luggage for anything dangerous, things you need to duty on, or controlled substances (such as meat from Europe)? Not very many. If you carried something in your luggage that could "hurt", as defined above, the value of someone's legitimately owned property, most people are ok with it being checked and confiscated if found. That's exactly what illegal music does. "does not seem to be that huge of a problem in the US", huh? At commercial value (of which obviously not all you would not have necessarily bought), what is the total value of all the stuff on your computer? At $1 a song, $12 a movie, and $300 each for those fancy expensive music/image editing software you cracked? If not you, college students? China is worse, yes, but one thing different is that we have control over what we're doing over there. And while you may feel much more indignation and scorn towards someone who makes money off of the work of others, to the producer the effect is identical, especially at the pennies on the dollar cost of DVD sales in most third and second world countries. Mentioned in the article would be an attempt to get second world countries, such as China, to buy into a modicum of enforcement as well.
  11. ok so you stopped caring about the airport thing even though it was your original argument. I'm not to tell you it's constitutional, because it's not, but I'm still wandering why this is so crazy and bad and ridiculous in comparison to the standards people face off the interwebs. Going nuts over this while the Patriot Act is in place is like worrying about a a firecracker when an atom bomb is going off a mile away. I never said I thought this was constitutional. I don't know, because a large portion of America's strengths economically are the entertainment industry? We collectively get to buy more overseas manufactured goods without significant cost to us if first and second world countries don't allow their citizens access to music or movies unless they pay for them. In my opinion we wouldn't get too much job loss from this (although there would be a very marginal wealth), but it effects the wealth of any working or associated with the software, music, or film in a very real way. It also causes us to underallocate resources to the production of those three since the inability to secure as much income as they "should" by virtue of their ownership of intellectual property rights. That is to say, certain products in this segment of the economy simply are not produced because in our current situation it is not possible to make profit off of them. This does ultimately effect everyone in the economy- for example, the moderately talented guy flipping burgers might get signed if things change, and to attract a replacement, they may have to marginally increase wages. This won't happen everywhere, but the effect is spread over the entire economy.I don't really know how tibet and third world countries fit into all of this. They aren't even economies that are subject to this treaty. Are you calling the lawmakers evil for wanting to improve our economy even though it will have no effect on people entirely out of our international sphere who are royally screwed? There's an economic notion of profit-seeking versus rent-seeking. Profit-seeking behavior is one that increases the size of the total "pie" in order to increase one's own wealth by expanding the economy (by, for example, setting up better institutions that allow the owners of property to reap the full benefits of the property. It increases the total size and wealth of the economy in the manner I wrote out above). Rent-seeking behavior does nothing to change the size of the economy, and instead focuses on taking a bigger slice of the same pie. An example is a firm attempting to be granted monopoly privileges or other unnatural market power through the government. While the primary beneficiaries are the RIAA, that doesn't make them wrong for attempting to protect their property, any more than a group of farmers who form an organization petitioning the local government to help assist them keeping cow-tippers off their land. What I understand to a certain extent is that what the RIAA very much looks like is rent-seeking behavior. It is statist, corporate, and powerful, and such an organization lobbying the government for aid against a decentralized, nebulous opposition. Ironically, the public is often at worse ambivalent to such actions, such as general populist support of such rent-seeking actions as tariffs and quotas, but the two are not equivalent. It's not trying to limit competition (and if you want to go on about how the RIAA screws competition by screwing independent artists, I would love to have that conversation in PPR because I have a few things to say about that), but to get the profit it deserves, and if we're speaking economically, **objectively** deserves by its property ownership. The means are at best questionable, but it is ultimately looking for equal protection under the law to owners of physical property, not to hurt people. It's not the artists' property anymore. It's not their prerogative to support them because they paid to do whatever they want to maximize their own profit with the music. That isn't screwing anyone. It's the invisible hand.It's also getting pretty annoying to hear people go on about how wrong it is for oil companies to earn record profits (part of which is explained by inflation) when the price of ONE of its inputs as a business is rising. That's excellent strategy, not manipulation. For further ranting see: http://youtube.com/watch?v=v_XMzh2rg_s while keeping in mind that this is a year old. I'll go on in a separate thread in PPR. Industry execs make a lot more than you. If they raise their salary by 33% and make themselves another $750,000, it's not nearly as big of a deal as a lower class person raising his salary by 33% and getting another $8,000. But can you really blame the executive for getting pissed at the government that it can't find a solution to something that, given intellectual property, is irrevocably and incontrovertibly their own? This is their money. It shouldn't take that much to keep people from stealing from them. If you have to demand access to vague records of honest people's actions while rarely, if ever, prosecuting or even questioning them, so be it. They are being harmed irreducibly and extravagantly. We would be collectively hurt slightly if at all. Civil rights aren't even a natural (according to locke or whomever) right, just something we have because the government grants us it because we think that things will work best if we have them. In comparison, intellectual property is a negative, natural right, that theoretically should supersede civil rights. I don't think it should, and obviously you don't either, but the RIAA isn't evil for suggesting that it does.
  12. why? it's a bias. they're in it for the profit and because who they are. Just the same as the union (hopefully) supports what is good for the union worker. Arguments against the collusive effect of unions cannot be used against a bill for requiring safety standards any more than a cartel pushing for protection of property rights. Besides, the cartel at least has what it can argue to be a negative right, rather than the play to moral sensibilities that the union has. Besides, you can only really say any of what you said if the points made by the RIAA are specious in general. However, the view of the RIAA is entirely valid - that intellectual property deserves to be preserved. Their overzealousness does not diminish intellectual property by any means. You have to explain why either A) the proposed law is overzealous in contrast to similar laws in other industries and practice, why intellectual property doesn't make sense in general or C) our standard of civil liberties is insufficient in protection against the coercive power of government. You can't honestly make an argument in connection to what the RIAA does elsewhere before establishing that it has done anything wrong in the first place. Otherwise, the law is purely guilty by association. The RIAA presumably supports laws against murder. Does that make murder any less valid. The RIAA presumably supports laws against shoplifting. Does that make laws against shoplifting any less valid? To go off in an entirely different direction, you may want to argue against the notion that it is a logical fallacy to suggest it is incorrect to ignore who is making the argument. To a certain extent, that's the vibe I get from the post, but I don't see you making the argument of Bayes or, to pull a random economist out of my hat, Steven Landsburg. Yet, such a view is altogether disparate from that which we judge the public or prosecute criminals, in which case you have a problem with society in general, not this proposal.
  13. wikipedia wrote An ad hominem argument, also known as argumentum ad hominem (Latin: "argument to the man", "argument against the man") consists of replying to an argument or factual claim by attacking or appealing to a characteristic or belief of the person making the argument or claim, rather than by addressing the substance of the argument or producing evidence against the claim. such as the other things the RIAA does
  14. it's irrelevant because has nothing to do with whether what is going on is right or wrong. vegetarians aren't wrong because hitler was one. it doesn't matter whether the group identified with the idea in general is a saint or a sinner. Say why it's wrong here, not why the greatest proponent is a robber baron doing sketchy things.
  15. it's property rights. would you get pissed at a corner store that egged the police for more protection if they always got their windows broken? that is in the pursuit of profit. you can make the anti-intellectual property argument if you want against that if you want, but you aren't. also stop throwing eggs at the RIAA. it's ad hominem and irrelevant. yes it does, and it probably means you have too. I don't need to prove that. it's ridiculous if you insist that each and every person in this thread is by themselves very likely not to have illegal music on their computer. and yes, that means I do, depending on how you spin fair use doctrine wink wink. the same cavity searches you can constitutionally get with a bare modicum of cause when you cross the border. this happens everyday.The logistics of figuring out what is illegal don't make much to me either, but however they come up with enforcement is a different area of debate. The point here is the principle; the specifics are immaterial. I have mp3s like that too. I don't know how they're going to be able to differentiate, but that is a separate point to argue why? at least I'm have no pretenses regarding my pretentiousness, unlike you apparently. it's also ironic for you to get mad at me for being on "hat high horse that lets you think you know everything, or know what everyone does or does not do, and come back to reality." when you assert that I'm "starting to remind [you] of someone." I don't need to. It's unlikely that I could prove it even if I tried, but of the members who are active on this forum, what percentage have illegal music? to rephrase, what percentage of the general 15-30 YO population has a single illegal music file? something to the effect of 97%? I can't think of a single person I know in that age range who doesn't. Given who we are, our general computer savvy, and what are interests are, the group of people in this thread probably have a higher likelihood than that. Let alone the self-selecting bias that people who would enter this thread are probably pissed off at the RIAA etc in general, which makes the likelihood even higher. I alluded to this. I agree with you in saying that it's unconstitutional, just that it's not out of place given the current political structure. If they can ctrl+f for a filename they know is specific to an illegal file, or can find the address of someone who regularly visits limewire by no more intrusive means than requesting a list from a company, we're getting close, if not at, some semblance of probative benefit, which in a theoretical construct such as this one, does not necessarily require a warrant. Remember, civil rights are created to protect the innocent, not the guilty, and I cannot associate any cost whatsoever to the consumer with the innocent being listed along with the guilty when the government is searching for very specific signs. The greatest cost I see is to large ISPs, which will lose business to bootleg ones, but I don't think that's what you care about really. Again with mud throwing and guilty by association.You're also suggesting that screwing copyright law hurts the poor and middle class, which kinda shows your hand. You don't really believe in copyright law. Just say that.
  16. I strongly disagree. I'm not endorsing this, but random searches at the border are pretty common practice. Have you ever left the country, had your bags searched, and got felt up? You can make a constitutional argument, but it's both hardly clear cut and contradicts what we find acceptable elsewhere. When you get down to it, it's not really very extreme, in contrast to the patriot act in security issues and due diligence in civil cases. let's be real here; no one would be pissed off about this if it weren't for the fact that every single person posting in this thread has illegal music on his computer. It's not a civil rights issue. I find it more analogous to a bunch of drug dealers pissed off that they use dogs to find cocaine at airports. I don't believe drugs should be illegal so don't be offended by that. If you want to make anti-intellectual property arguments, fine, but given that record companies obviously believe in the integrity of intellectual property, can you really blame them for pressuring the government to find a way to enforce their rights?
  17. Has anyone else heard it? I got around to buying it Saturday and it's pretty delicious, favorite track being The Rip. The synth stuff has really mature from the subtle Dummy and the heavy handed self-titled second album. the neat vocal electronic trick in the rip and the cut-off ending in silence are awesome because they are ridiculously pretentious.
  18. nope I've restarted my computer four times and it's still been doing this.
  19. since earlier today, whenever I press down on my keyboard, my browser decides I'm working with an editable document and I see a cursor either scroll through text or links. I'm wistful for the days when pressing down meant I would scroll down. can anyone help me recapture those magical lost days of yore. I am on firefox if that has anything to do with it but I don't use any of those fancy plugins.
  20. ormgas's system is very naive and no one has been there in about five years.
  21. I've always hoped someone would put in the time to do this. Have you considered incorporating a rating system as well? I have a few ideas of how to avoid the problems that plague other sites that have attempted to do so and would be reasonably easy to put in place.
  22. frankly I was under the impression you were a stoner with a guitar/wiimote.
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