Saturday, April 21, 2012

"Blogger" Tosses a Curve - No Images, NO comments

Well, on logging on this a.m. it appears Google Blogger has tossed a curve in asserting "Blogger will no longer support your browser". There is an option to then choose "Google Chrome" or "Dismiss" and I clicked on the latter, after reading reams of complaints on the new format and the lack of functionality, convenience.

And as one female blogger put it: "Blogging is hard enough work as it is, why this change in format?"

Why indeed?

Does anyone else smell a rat or is it just me? (Don't bother to comment to respond, as I indicated there is no longer any option for comments given Blogger will "not support my Browser".)

I do recall as others probably do, Google's new "terms and conditions" proferred at the end of last year, one of which was that one must validate and authenticate that any images posted are one's own and under no external copyright use or ownership. Of course, this is an almost impossible barrier to surmount, and even if one did want to adhere, it's doubtful any blogger (most of us aren't monetized) would pay $25 for a one time use of one image!

Thus, I can't help but theorize this "browser support" baloney is merely an excuse to ensure rigid compliance with the "Protect International Property Act" (PIPA) which we all had thought was struck dead after an internet backlash, e.g.

We also know that key backers of PIPA,  on BOTH sides of the aisle, including the Dems:  Sens. Charles Schumer, Kristen Gillebrand (NY), and Patrick Leahy of VT, still haven't withdrawn support. Others either cowardly voted "present" - a true copout if ever there was one, or avoided the vote entirely.

My take at the time is that while the PIPA legislation was technically dead, it wasn't really dead.  Indeed, in a Wall Street Journal article(January 19, pp. B1, B2) these special interests announced they were more determined than ever to protect "their property". It makes sense that in the event this breathtaking copyright legislation is ever enacted, all the IT-Tech -web players would wish to be ahead of the curve. But at what cost, in pissing off millions of customers, users? Or maybe they are so freaked out by the unintended consequences of the law, if ever enacted, they don't care.

The core issue is and remains the law's  unintended consequences, including shutting down websites or blogs using court orders, if they happen to include "copyrighted content" but make no money from it. As one Colorado university student put it, trying to highlight the futility:  "The problem is that this is a law that can't work. We - this generation - grew up with the ability to download everything."

Maybe. But who says that a large company like Google (whose motto is "Do No evil") can't circumvent this problem simply by applying the copying brakes itself? And doing it via the subterfuge of your current browser lacking support of Blogger?

Anyway, until such time this changes or I can rouse myself to adopt 'Google Chrome" - this blog remains without comments or pics.


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