Anything worth talking about, is worth blogging about

A few scattered thoughts

I really wish I knew of a way to have comments numbered both by order posted and by nested thread. For example, if Alice posts a comment, it would be #1. Bret posts a response, and this is #1.1. Carol posts another response. Her comment is #1.2. Lastly, Alice responds to both, and those comments are #1.1.1 and #1.2.1. This makes it easier to refer to comments, while preventing them from incrementing if someone makes a nested comment further abode. This is kind of like software version numbers.

I just learnt that my local public library subscribes to a service that allows me to legally download three songs per week. To my annoyance, songs which I have been wanted to get a copy of for years aren’t available on it yet. But would me using this be a good idea? After all it costs the public library money, and since that is in part supported by public tax dollars, this service is not free in that sense.

Since I think people should pay (for the most part) when they use or get other people’s creative works, it seems to me that musical piracy is almost a sign of market failure. Rather than trying to get everyone to pay the same price, different prices should be offered to different people. This way, they can get sales from both those willing to pay a lot and those willing to pay a little. Books do this, with prices ranging from hardcover territory all the way down to free at a library or Project Gutenberg. Other industries involving art and creative works should do the same. I can almost guarantee that they will get good PR.

My knowledge of HTML is getting good use with all these horizontal rules!

I could swear that the amount of spam comments I am getting is skyrocketing. And yet, when I look at my stats, I’m only on pace to get about as many as the last few months. I am also quite a ways behind my spam “record” (if that’s the right word). Maybe I’m just more aware of this menace or something.

I have hardly any online accounts. I’m not on Twitter. I have never used eBay or Amazon. I’m not on Facebook, MySpace, or any other social networking site. I don’t have a Wikipedia account. I’ve never uploaded anything to YouTube, Flickr, or any such photo– or video–sharing website. For the most part my online accounts are WordPress, Blogspot, e–mail, and those online accounts which come with something outside of the internet. I only shop in brick–and–mortar stores and do all my banking offline. Maybe I’m just old–fashioned, but I like it that way. I intend to keep it that way for as long as possible.


Comments on: "A few scattered thoughts" (5)

  1. [Testing email reply feature]

    Yeah, numbered nested comments would be the sweets. I’m sure it’s possible, but you’d need some coding skills that I will never possess. 😛

    Re: Songs and piracy – Experts (and common sense) say that piracy is a general, but surprisingly reliable, indicator of whether people feel they’re getting a good deal for the goods/services being offered. In the end, piracy is an integral part of the human condition, and trying to crush it is as dumb and pointless as trying to stop a hurricane by yelling at it. The idea is to work with people, not against them, and the content producers who’ve learned to harness this can very easily get people on their side and see their profits explode upwards as a result. Whereas, those who focus their efforts on stopping piracy invariably suffer for it in both sales and (more often than not) content quality.

    Sadly, though, the music industry (speaking about the companies/labels/lobbies/etc., not the musicians themselves) is particularly notorious with regards to both availability and (in most cases) pricing, which is why I can only roll my eyes when they act all shocked at having the living daylights pirated out of them. In the end, it’s not about whether or not they “deserve” it, but what they do to trigger or counter it. (And my opinion isn’t helped by their constant attempts at making examples out of people who just download a few songs illegally, like the single mothers who’re bankrupted with tens of thousands in fines for a handful of songs. Even the staunchest opponents of piracy should come out against that kind of abusive, draconian crap.)

    Re: HTML – I learned everything I know about HTML and CSS from scratch, trial & error by designing my blog. (That, and reading lots of tutorials.) I daresay I’ve gotten pretty damn good with half-assed workarounds. 😛 I’ve even had a friend ask me to design two blogs for him. If you ever need help or advice, feel free to call on me. 🙂

    — Joé McKen

    • Ooh, it even remembered who I was! Fancy.

    • I believe that the music industry got a lot of bad PR because it wanted to keep its old model ($15-$20 albums). That sort of profit structure was generated by being the distributor. Those sorts of profits and costs go away with electronic distribution. People felt ripped off, and so they pirated (which doesnt justify them paying nothing for someone else’s creative work). The music industry was in denial of the new order, went after people, and got a backlash for it. The main failing was assuming a zero-sum world where every incidence of piracy was automatically $15-$20 lost. With hindsight, it seems that a better way would have been to find a way to get that person to pay $5 or $1. I have no proof, but it seems reasonable to think that many people who originally would have pirated 1 $20 album to get two songs would gladly pay $2 for both those songs and nothing else. That situation avoids piracy, still earns money for artists and record companies, and gets the customer what they want: a win-win for everyone.

      Similar reasoning applies to other electronic goods (games, movies, etc).

      Also, I agree that some. free distribution is good for business. For example, if I publish a book, I’d expect you to pay to buy it, but I won’t object if you lend it to friends or give it to your public library. Indeed, public libraries haven’t starved authors.

      • Pretty much everything you said.

        Also, guess what I just found? Numbered nested WordPress comments! No idea if it would work for your blog specifically (coding compatibility and all that) or if you’d have the know-how to implement it, but hey, it exists. 😛

        Now if only the same thing existed for Disqus. Oh well.

        • Unfortunately, since it’s through (rather than [edited to fix typo]), I believe you have to pay for a website in order to be able to use it (it requires a download). But still, thank you anyway.

Feel free to leave a reply.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: