Posts filed under Internet

How To Watch Any NFL Game (Free)

Filed in SportsTags: Internet

I would credit whomever first pointed out this SportsFaction article, but I can't remember. The article discusses how to use two tools - SopCast and TVUPlayer - to watch online the NFL games not aired in your local TV market. The article also links to the Streaming NFL Games blog.

I won't vouch for the legality of using such services, and I'm sure the NFL, with its draconian, fan-agnostic broadcast rules and policies, won't like the use of such services. Use at your own risk. Or, considering the way the NFL seems to be forgetting its fans, feel free, as SportsFaction says, to "Go fly a kite with a hole in it."

Mao Tse Gates?

Filed in PoliticsTags: Internet

So I wonder what the man representing one-third of of the Times Persons of the Year has to say about political censorship of MSN Spaces blogs? As quoted by LaShawn Barber, Glenn Reynolds, Evan Coyne Maloney, and the Scobelizer, Rebecca MacKinnon explains the sordid details of her experiments:

As it so happens, in mid-December I played around a bit with Chinese language blog-hosting tools to try and get a better idea of how they censor blogger content. I haven’t posted about it yet partially because family business and vacation got in the way, and partially because I wanted to do a few more tests. But given what happened to Anti I think I had better not wait.

Back over the summer I wrote a post titled Screenshots of Censorship about how MSN spaces was censoring the titles of its Chinese blogs, but not posts themselves. According to my testing in mid-late December, they now censoring much more intensely.

On December 16th I created a blog and attempted to make various posts with politically sensitive words. When I attempted to post entries with titles like “Tibet Independence” or “Falun Gong” (a banned religious group), I got an error message saying: “This item includes forbidden language. Please delete forbidden language from this item.”

However I was successful in posting blog entries with non-controversial titles, but with politically sensitive words in the text body. For instance, a blog post titled “I love you” had “Tibet independence” in the text body, and a post titled “I am happy” had “Falun Gong” in the body...

This was on Friday December 16th. By Monday the 19th, the whole blog had been taken down, just like Anti’s was on Dec.31st, with an error message: “This space is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.”

Now, It is VERY important to note that the inaccessible blog was moved or removed at the server level and that the blog remains inaccessible from the United States as well as from China. This means that the action was taken NOT by Chinese authorities responsible for filtering and censoring the internet for Chinese viewers, but by MSN staff at the level of the MSN servers.

(Emphasis added)

I'm trying to come up with some plausible explanation why Microsoft would be in the business of facilitating political censorship. My first thought was of the MSN Spaces Code of Conduct. But the only thing even close to a rationalization for political censorship is this item under "Prohibited Uses":

You will not upload, post, transmit, transfer, disseminate, distribute, or facilitate distribution of any content, including text, images, sound, data, information, or software, illegal or violates any local and national laws that apply to your location; including but not limited to child pornography, illegal drugs, copyright material and intellectual property not belonging to you.

However, while such wording might justify - in the strictest adherence - to censorship of outlawed speech in China, Rebecca MacKinnon is in the United States, not China. At least the Scobelizer is trying to do something about it:

I’m copying this post to Christopher Payne, corporate Vice President over on MSN and will try to get his point of view on this.

Update: someone over on MSN Spaces just wrote me and said he hadn’t heard of this and that he’s raising this up the management chain too. I’ll report more as I hear more. he told me that Steve Liffick is the VP in charge of MSN Spaces and that he reports to Blake Irving. I’ve sent email to both of those guys on this issue.

I don't care how much money Microsoft stands to lose; shame on them for cow-towing to socialist dictators and for actively infringing upon freedom of speech.

Fun With RSS

Filed in Web DevelopmentTags: Computers, Geekery, Internet

Just came across Local Weather RSS Feeds. Nifty.

Oh, I use Omea Reader. Lots of choices for RSS aggregators out there, but I like this one.


Filed in MiscellaneousTags: Internet, Web Site

What is this?

Random Link

Filed in MiscellaneousTags: Internet, Web Site

I was mentioned by Penguin Envy. To what do I owe this honor?

United Blogs of America?

Filed in PoliticsTags: Internet, Media Bias

Rebecca MacKinnon asks an interesting question in her post on global blogging, with respect to the lack of global content among the mostly American blogosphere:

Why don't American bloggers link very much to bloggers around the world? People in the room suggested there are 2 main reasons: One reason is that they don't know where to find the good blogs from other countries - unless Instapundit or somebody has linked to them. Another reason is that people don't have enough context or knowledge about events going on in foreign countries to blog about them.

Both explanations are plausible, but let me add a third: Sphere of Concern versus Sphere of Influence.

A huge part of the rise of the blog phenomenon - from the "A-List" to the Tail - at the expense of the MSM is the frustration of literally millions of individuals who recognize the blatantly biased, one-sided, agenda-driven product that for too long has been passed off ostensibly as "news". As has been detailed in such books as Blog and South Park Conservatives, this disparity led to the rise of Conservative talk radio (pioneered by Rush Limbaugh, and followed by many), the FOX news network, and most recently, the mostly Conservative internet explosion known as the blogosphere. I won't re-hash that history here; I only mention it as background.

The blogosphere is a unique addition to this rise of "New Media". It is the modern incarnation of the combination of the power of Gutenberg's printing press with the influence of Martin Luther's ideas. While few bloggers fancy themselves neo-Lutheran in their ability to influence the masses and subvert the controlling authorities in the process, most appreciate their role in participating in that foundational tenet of a free society: the free-flow of information and ideas.

So what's my point? Just this: American bloggers tend to focus their work on American issues because it is those issues over which they may - individually for some, and corporately for the rest of us - exert some level of influence. While American bloggers may - and, I would guess, most do (take, for example, Gateway Pundit) - have in their Sphere of Concern global issues, they recognize that such issues are far-removed from their Sphere of Influence.

Again, the reason that the blogosphere experienced such explosive growth - primarily among Conservatives - is that would-be bloggers recognized blogging as a means to counter-balance the MSM; in other words, the intent of blogging is to exert influence (no matter how minimal that influence may be for anyone not named Glenn Reynolds). It is logical to assume that most bloggers believe their influence could be exerted most effectively with respect to America-centric issues. Coincidentally, the first showdown between "old" and "new" media took place during the most recent American Presidential election cycle.

If this explanation holds true, then as the blogosphere matures, it will attempt to exert its influence not just in American issues, but in increasingly global issues. (Cases in point: the Darfur crisis and the UN Oil-For-Food scandal.) However, I would go even farther: the MSM focus on several global issues only because those issues are first introduced, investigated, and discussed in the blogosphere.

Geo Test

Filed in Web DevelopmentTags: Geekery, Internet, Web Site

Just Testing...

Blog.chipbennizzle Official memba of tha pajamahizzle

Filed in MiscellaneousTags: Humor/Satire, Internet

Too Pimpin' fo' wizzords, fo' sho', Gizoogle be transliatin' this hizzay blog.