Thursday, July 31, 2014

This DRM Stuff

     As a published writer, I am falling increasingly on the side of DRM- free writing. Fortunately, we have baen and tor and calibre's books and Cory Doctorow and his craphound site [and others, it's not possible to name them all] who publish ebooks without the DRM bondage. Because DRM is bondage. No mistake about it. 

     If I go onto a site to "buy books" [actually a "license" to "use" books, Le Sigh] and those books have the DRM, I cannot back them up. Why would I want to back up the books? Bookstores go out of business. A publisher may pull books from a store site. And those on-line places that "sell" books-- I mean a license to read those books on their particular brand of e-reader-- can suspend a customer for any reason or for no reason and BAM that user loses the e-books [or the license to read them] that he or she has already purchased. This has already happened at least once on one major site which shall go unnamed but sounds like a rain forest. Three reasons right there.

     Some writers don't mind or ignore their work being put out on the torrents. Others do. And the publishing companies of course do. Like Cory Doctorow, I want my stuff to be read. If it winds up on the torrents, at least people are downloading it and reading it. 

     The novel I have written I will be self-publishing soon. As long as I am identified as the author, I don't give a damn if it gets distributed via the torrents. I am a pirate, like Jimmy Buffett born a bit too late. Cory Doctorow offers some percentage of his books for free downloads as well as for pay on the book seller sites. I plan to be doing the same. Perhaps I will never be as great or as famous or as talented as Cory Doctorow. I like his stuff because he writes what I call hacker lit. I relate to it. My first novel features hackers and rebels as well as some pure assholes. There will be no DRM chaining my novel up away from the masses.

radical sapphoq says: I've also made the decision not to purchase any e-books which are wrapped up in the DRM. The DRM is crap. From now on, any e-books I review will be read at the bookstores or borrowed from a library. I am through with spending my bisexual radical bucks to help enable the DRM.

     If book companies are so concerned about people reading books for free, then just add a surcharge onto them of a buck or two for the publishers and authors. The shape of the publishing industry these days is a mess.

     Screw the DRM. Screw ACTA and all of the other acronyms which basically mean that Big Hollywood and the United States government are endeavoring to take over the world and dictate what copyright should look like to everyone else. Screw the politicians and their sanctions against countries that don't conform to what the USA wants. DRM stands for Doesn't Really Matter as long as I don't contribute to the madness of the machine.

     I know that it does matter. I hope to be alive when the DRM is a distant memory of a more primitive time. Up the rebels!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

HIPAA Cited and Investigators Told to Go Away

     In a Daytona Beach, Florida nursing home, an elderly female resident was taken to the hospital by concerned relatives. She was diagnosed with an S.T.D. Elderly female resident, incapable of giving consent due to the nature of her ailments, also did not happen to have a husband or lover living at the nursing home with her. The obvious questions: Was she assaulted sexually? If so, who did it?

     So far, according to an article I found
indicates that the police investigators were invited to leave the grounds of the nursing home when sent to investigate this clearly criminal manner. The excuse given was because of H.I.P.A.A., the policy was that neither patients nor workers were to be made available for police interviews.

     Much as we've been sold repeatedly on the idea that the HIPAA crap is for "our" protection as patients, it has become clear to me that HIPAA is for the convenience of medical personnel and for the protection of medical facilities. No love there-- neither to the media nor to the politicians who passed this crap-- at all.

radical sapphoq says: This is one case where HIPAA is being used to protect the organization and not the elderly woman who may have been raped. Absolutely disgusting.

Monday, July 14, 2014

When Social Media Sucks

     These days, it is fairly easy to find the faux-fended among the crowds of people utilizing social media on the Interwebz. It seems to me that some percentage of people who don't agree on the issues are too quick to digitally scream, "Help! Help! I'm being cyber-bullied." Several examples come to my mind rather quickly.

     The most prominent one to me is the case of  biological mother Lori Handrahan who has taken her accusations to social media. She is truly all over the internet making a steadfast case for the idea that a conspiracy of corrupt judges and politicians and child advocacy workers have repeatedly screwed her over. She accuses the child's dad of sexual assaults of the little one. She accuses his lawyer of selling the child off into a network of sexual predators and of having paid trolls. She accuses her detractors of pedophilia. Her parental rights were terminated because of failure to show at court. I have shared what I found elsewhere on this blog. [ and if you care to read further].

     I follow South Carolina attorney Todd Kincannon, his wife Ashley, and their dog Noodle on a certain social media website. [Uh, NO, I don't do fakebook]. Mr. Kincannon is a Republican-- not a member of the Tea Party as was erroneously stated by one news article recently. He is outspoken. I found his opinions to be worth paying attention to.

     The crazies seem to blast their ways out of the woodwork with alarming regularity. They engage him repeatedly of their own volition. He responds by telling them what he thinks. They don't like what he thinks. They don't engage in any sort of adult meaningful dialogue. They attack him again and again. He responds to their attacks. They whine and call him a troll and a bully and various other epitaphs. Seems to me that this particular set of crazies sign themselves up for what they think of as meanness. I tend to think of them as engaging in mental masturbation.

     As adults, we certainly get to choose who we communicate with. On a social media platform, if I don't care for someone's dialogue then I excuse myself from his or her presence. Simple. Too much heat, get out of the kitchen and all of that. 


     The thing is, when it comes to teens and tweens, the solutions are not so simple. Parents, you have an obligation to police your pre-adult offspring. Do that. Move the computer out of the bedrooms and into the dining room or living room. Sign up for the free app that alerts you to what is being said about your child on-line. Teach your children NOT to use their own names on-line, NOT to ever upload their own pictures [or anyone else's for that matter], and NOT to publish any personal information on-line. Teach them NOT to make false accusations against others. Get rid of the cyber cam. No child should have access to one of those, period. If you have to, cancel your kids' access to any social media sites and restrict their usage to looking up information for homework in your presence as you watch them do it. Ground them if that is what it takes. Get rid of their phones, tablets, and the computer if you have to.  Send them to a small school or move the entire family to a place with little to no access to the Net if that is what is necessary to keep your offspring away from the scum who are using the web as a tool to find fresh young victims. Pretty much whatever you have to do to keep your kids safe and under your control is far better than having to deal with the ramifications of their meeting up with sexually deviant adults face to face that they connected to on-line first. Radical suggestions? Look up and check out the name of this blog. What were you expecting? A pat on the back and a box of tissues?

radical sapphoq says: It is a sad commentary on the times when a teen gets hassled for posting a picture of the results of his participation in an African safari. Whether or not I am in favor of touristy African safaris [I'm not, but not for any reasons related to why the PETA people are against that] or the responsible use of guns for hunting or self-defense [I am, and certainly when parents know enough to teach responsible gun ownership to their kids], that teen in my opinion did not deserve what he got.

     Even worse is when a family loses a business that was their livelihood due to what has been termed as cyber-bullying or cyber-harassment. That sort of thing is a crime, no doubt about it.

     Most grievous is when a vulnerable non-adult is targeted by some creep on-line. People who are on the sexual offender registry should not be allowed to use a computer. There are plenty of other ways to earn a living that do not involve an on-line presence and plenty of other hobbies or ways to occupy one's leisure time. Those who are caught near a computer should have their parole violated and locked up for life. They lost their "rights" the second they began to groom a victim. Period.