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Intellectual Property

Movie Review of “Google and the World Brain”

Google and the World Brain” -- Presented by Polar Star Films; Directed by Ben Lewis; An Official Selection of the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. See the movie's website here, and facebook page here. To view the two minute trailer – click here.

Review: Four stars out of four. 

In telling the important untold story of Google’s Herculean and controversial efforts to digitize all the world’s books, Director Ben Lewis’ genius insight was unearthing the fascinating “why?” behind it all – which is Google CEO Larry Page’s deep passion for Artificial Intelligence or “AI.”

Google’s many innovations are well known. What has not been appreciated until the debut of this outstanding documentary film is how Google’s frenetic innovation machine fits together. Ben Lewis effectively offers us a new organizing principle to understand why Google alone has a mission to organize the world’s information – Larry Page’s quest to create an Artificial Intelligence.

Cellphone Unlocking Effort a Trojan Horse to Gut DMCA Digital-Locks Copyright Enforcement – Part 10 Defending First Principles Series

I have repeatedly warned that the so-called copyright “reform” movement is deceptive because it masks its true purposes. It knows that the real change it seeks -- to neuter anti-piracy enforcement – is an out-of-the-mainstream idea and a political loser. 

So the copyright-neutering movement uses an elaborate Trojan-Horse deception – a politically-contrived “cell-phone unlocking” problem -- as its political entrée into the copyright legislative process to forward its real goal of gutting DMCA digital-locks enforcement.

Cellphone Unlocking Legal But Cellphone Lockpicking Illegal – Keeping Copyright Neuterers Honest

Rhetoric aside, the Administration drew an underappreciated and principled line in defending property rights in its deft partial support of the Free Culture petition to the White House to “make unlocking cellphones legal.”

For those paying attention to the whole Administration statement, the Administration included a critical caveat protecting property and contractual rights: i.e. one should be able to legally unlock a cellphone “if you have paid for your mobile device, and aren’t bound by a service agreement or other obligation.”

Mr. Khanna’s Call to Arms Over Cellphone Unlocking is More Copyright Misrepresentation -- Part 8: Defending First Principles Series

Free culture activist, Derek Khanna, has thrust himself into the limelight again with yet more misrepresentations of copyright law. His latest copyright-neutering effort is a “call to arms” to “the digital generation” to oppose a Librarian of Congress 1998 DMCA copyright ruling, that it is illegal to break into a cell-phone’s software in order to “unlock” it -- without the permission of, or payment to, the software’s owner.  

Big Internet’s Most Special Interests – Part 7: Internet as Oz Series

If the Internet Association is presumptuous enough to unilaterally deem itselfthe unified voice of the Internet economy,” I guess we should not be surprised that on the same day that our duly-elected President delivered the State of the Union, the unelected President of the Internet Association would be presumptuous enough to deliver the “State of the Internet.” 

Google’s Content Settlements Are Tacit Admission It Is an Essential Facility – Part 14 Google’s Disrespect for Property Series

Google’s recent public actions appear to be a tacit admission that its antitrust risks in the EU are more serious than it has acknowledged publicly.

  • First, Google’s recent newspaper settlements -- with the Belgian and the French media -- signal that Google appreciates it is now considered by the EU to be a de facto essential facility for consumer information access.
  • Second, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt’s sudden, rapid acceleration of his selling of his personal Google stock holdings trumpet his apparent insider pessimism about Google’s growing antitrust, property-infringement, privacy and tax liabilities.     

Google’s Content Settlements

Exposing the Copyright Neutering Movement's Biggest Deceptions -- Part 7 Defending First Principles

The copyright-neutering movement, which is fueled by free culture activists and Big Internet interests, regularly employs four deceptions in their lobbying efforts to weaken copyright law and change the public conversation about copyright.

The movement obviously seeks to distract political attention from the proven real-world problem of online piracy and the urgent need for more anti-piracy enforcement of online copyright-infringement and counterfeiting, to their artificially-manufactured problem that copyright itself is the problem because it limits free online "sharing" and "innovation without permission."

The four deceptions are:

  1. Advocate with deceptive "free" and "open" messaging.
  2. Claim copyright's power comes from industry lobbying.
  3. Represent infringers as victims.
  4. Rewrite the history of SOPA/PIPA.

 

1.  Advocate with deceptive "free" and "open" messaging.

Free culture and Big Internet interests view copyright-property-rights and enforcement of those rights as a threat and obstacle to the realization of their techtopian vision for the Internet where "free" means no cost (or online ad-funded), and "open" means taking without permission (no property online) and government regulation (net neutrality).

Implications of Google's Broadband Plans for Competition and Regulation -- Part 1 Modernization Consensus Series

Google's latest broadband pilot, experimenting with micro-cell (mesh) wireless broadband in its Mountain View headquarters, comes on top of Google Fiber's high-profile, commercial broadband pilot in Kansas City, that Google's CFO recently told investors was not a "hobby" but a real business opportunity.

These broadband pilots put a spotlight on Google's overall broadband plans and beg an analysis of the potential implications of Google's broadband plans for competition and regulation.

Summary of Conclusions:

  1. Securing much-faster broadband access for its users is a strategic imperative for Google.
  2. Google can offer much-faster broadband access, more widely, less expensively, and potentially more profitably, than conventional wisdom believes.
  3. Competitively Google is counting on favorable industrial policy to accelerate rollout of its broadband offering in the U.S.
  4. The more Google offers broadband access the more it will need modernization of obsolete communications laws.
  5. Potential FCC Title II regulation of broadband could be the single biggest threat to Google's ultra-fast broadband plans.

 

The Google Lobby Defines Big Internet's Policy Agenda -- Part 6 Internet as Oz Series

Google not only dominates the web, the Google Lobby also dominates Big Internet's policy agenda in Washington in part via its new proxy, the Internet Association, the self-appointed "unified voice of the Internet economy."

Since market dominance attracts antitrust scrutiny, it necessitates lobbying dominance. The FTC's antitrust investigation prompted Google to hire twelve lobbying firms in a week and to rapidly organize them and legions of law and PR firms into one of the top corporate lobbying operations influencing Washington. Tellingly, a Wall Street Journal op-ed lionized "Google's $25 Million Bargain" lobby and Politico got behind-the-scenes to explain "How Google Beat the Feds."

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Q&A One Pager Debunking Net Neutrality Myths