Attention Economy August 28, 2011

  • Scripting News: New header on Scripting News 082211
    Dave Winer: “ you might want to click this link and have a look at the home page, because there's a new header here. It's notable not just because it looks good, but it's text, not a graphic. :-) I knew when I saw Google Web Fonts that I was going to use it, but it took a bit of experimentation and thinking to figure out how. It's always a good idea to let things settle-in a bit before moving. Your first intuition is not always so good. But after a while, you figure it out. “
  • Musicians Reclaim Their Copyrights – On The Media 092611
    In 1976 Congress changed copyright law so that any musician who wrote a song after January 1st, 1978 could apply to reclaim rights to those songs after 35 years. So in 2013 there’s a long line of 1978 hitmakers who stand to regain their valuable songs and albums. Duke professor James Boyle explains to Brooke why the windfall for Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, Funkadelic and others is being fought tooth and nail by the record industry.
  • Oscar Pistorius win 100m at Beijing Paralympics – YouTube
    Oscar Pistorius, the Blade Runner, win the gold medal at 100m (class T44) at the Beijing Paralympic Games 2008
  • BBC Sport – World Athletics 2011: Pistorius denies blades will give an advantage
    South African Paralympian Oscar Pistorius tells BBC Radio 5 live's Mark Pougatch that he is feeling "nervous" but insists he is ready to compete in the 400m at the World Athletics Championships in Daegu. Pistorius will become the first ever amputee to race at the highest level after shaving nearly half a second off his personal best to qualify for the Championships. The man known as 'Blade Runner' also insists his prosthetic limbs do not give him an unfair advantage over his able-bodied competitors.
  • The ghostwritten op-ed: an unacceptable deception | Dan Gillmor | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk 082611
    Dan Gillmor: “Society has a blind spot about this practice – and applies a double standard. If we catch a student paying someone to write his or her paper for a class, or even if the actual writer does it for free, we give the student a failing grade. Or, in some cases (such as in a journalism school), we might well invite the student (and perhaps the collaborator, too, if it's another student) to quit altogether. One school of thought says ghostwritten op-eds are a lot like speechwriter-written speeches. Since we all know that most famous people don't write all their own lines for speeches, goes this defence of the practice, we should assume the same with a byline – whether on a book or an op-ed. It's a tempting analogy, but wrong in a key way: a false byline is an outright, direct lie. And news organisations that run these pieces are encouraging dishonesty, which they compound, albeit with good motives, by helpfully editing often turgid prose to make it more compelling.
  • Major ISPs agree to "six strikes" copyright enforcement plan
    American Internet users, get ready for three strikes "six strikes." Major US Internet providers—including AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Cablevision, and Time Warner Cable—have just signed on to a voluntary agreement with the movie and music businesses to crack down on online copyright infringers. But they will protect subscriber privacy and they won't filter or monitor their own networks for infringement. And after the sixth "strike," you won't necessarily be "out." Much of the scheme mirrors what ISPs do now. It would be much easier to see "education" focus as a principled stand by content owners if they hadn't spent years suing such end users, securing absurd multi-million dollar judgments in cases that they are still pursuing in court. As it is, the shift looks more like a pragmatic attempt to solve a real problem through less aggressive measures after the failure of scorched earth tactics.

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