Is it possible that the record industry might actually start exhibiting logic and reason? Probably not, but this ex-EMI boss is apparently aware that pirates are "our best customers" and that "piracy" and sharing can in fact be good for business. My personal feeling is that if the record industry hadn't raped consumers for years with 20 dollar CD's there is no way that they'd be in the position where they are now. As well, the French copyright authority has conducted a study and determined that pirates are also the best customers.
I'm not trying to turn this into a Copyright blog, but there's an interesting Slate article outlining the history of the "Happy Birthday Song", questioning Warner Music's claim to the copyright. I think it is a nice expose of all that is wrong with our modern copyright system, especially in this day and age of completely derivative music.
Jack Layton has cancer. "Can the NDP survive Jack Layton's health crisis?" the headline says. Unfortunately, if there was an election in the next month or two, I would think not. I can actually see Stephen Harper up late at night trying to figure out a way to blame the minority opposition for triggering another election. Wait...we might have it...apparently, the "temporary replacement" for Jack Layton was a member of the Bloc Quebecois before becoming an NDP MP. That should be enough right there for old Steve to call a fresh election.
Back to British Columbia. I believe HST is the right thing to do. I also believe that Christy Clark and the Liberals think that we're incredibly stupid. This whole process is flawed and borderline crooked. But, as our plant controller pointed out to me, "there is no way that BC will be able to pay back the money provided by the national government if we move away from the HST." I agree with this statement. There would be worlds of trouble if we give up on the HST. But I think it would be worth it just to see Christy Clark attempt to spin referendum defeat as a positive.
Apparently Jason Kenney failed high school geography. He thought that when the Tamil refugees said that they wanted to go to New Zealand that it was a part of Canada. His reasoning? Human smugglers don't "guarantee the destination." So basically "There's a chance that they could have come here, even though they didn't want to." In other Jason Kenney news: Toronto considered for starting stage of 2014 Tour de France. Barack Obama considers move to Canada once his time is up at the White House. Prince William considers permanent relocation to Canada once his military service is complete. Hey, there's a chance, right? No guarantees.
John Baird caught the royal fever too and ordered a couple of paintings in the Department of Foreign Affairs lobby to be taken down and a portrait of the queen installed in their place. I love the description of the "faint outlines of the works still visible on the brown stone wall." Huffington Post has a picture.
This article is a depressingly optimistic take on Canadian politics. The premise is that we're incredibly lucky to have Stephen Harper, compared to the political farce overtaking the US and Britain. Sadly, I do agree with what he is saying. But it's sad to admit to being happy in such a "lesser of all evils" kind of way.
Another Canadian Citizen is held in a foreign jail under suspect circumstances and the Harper Government does nothing. Over potatoes!
The tech world is busy mocking us over our Prime Minister's fascination with posting cat photos on the internet. I'm most curious about where he developed his photography skills.
Elizabeth May is railing about Wi-Fi, Smart Meters and the disappearance of bees. This is the kind of stuff that is going to cause Canada to tune you out. But I will give her points for creativity. Who knew Smart Meters were bad because I'd get cancer and no longer be able to enjoy flowering crops?
Here is a Tyee article about the Canadian Government actively making life difficult for a climate change focussed artist attempting to put a show on in Europe. How very odd. In the comments section of that article there was a link to an article about the Harper Government preventing a Department of Fisheries scientist from talking about her work (related to salmon die-off) in public. Crazy stuff.
Lastly, apparently the City of Vancouver is proposing a "Clean Crack Pipe" program. I thought this was an Onion article. I like it though. It's going to send the Conservatives absolutely over the top. Update - Actually, Vancouver is behind the times. Calgary and Winnepeg are already doing this...and being questioned on it.