Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/05/03/comments/
Lesbian lesbians fight extreme porn law
While hobbits have a stab at freetard lurve
Comments The UK Criminal Justice Bill  is quietly making its way into law, and its uncertain scope raises some worrying questions. Clause 63 of the Bill could criminalise viewing or owning "extreme pornography" - whatever that is. It's not made clear. This threat brought a lot of you out of the woodwork, with nearly 200 comments at the time of writing:
I think people always get this backwards. Porn doesn't cause violence, but instead, people who have violent dispositions are more likely to like extreme porn. So:
--Many peaceful people like porn==this does not cause them to do violent acts, but suggestible (weak minded) people seeing dehumanizing images constantly may become desensitized, and think that this is "normal behavior" The same goes for any 'adult' entertainment, whether it be booze, drugs, gambling, violent video games, fundamentalist religions, etc.
--People who are already violent probably like extreme porn==the same angry (and often corrupted sexual) need that feeds violent urges, is perfectly suited to and finds expression in hardcore porn. Perhaps this 'outlet' may even give violent people some release (no pun intended) and actually reduce violence (but this is just my opinion)
So perhaps the answer is that people that are stable adults should be free to do what they want in life, as long as it isn't hurting anyone, but those that have proven to be a hazard to others should be counseled, locked up if need be, but permitted to have all the porn they desire.
There are going to be a lot of people who may wish to engage in or view images of BDSM activity who will now be in serious danger of being imprisoned for up to 3 years.
The act itself seems hypocritical if it's purpose is to prevent copycat violence (which is generally considered to be a minute problem anyway, see Bowling for Columbine) but still allows the very images it wants to prevent so long as they have been classified. Under the act possession of a copy of the particularly eye-watering scene in the new Casino Royal where Bond is tortured by whipping between the legs would be illegal and punishable by 3 years inside if it was in a pornographic context. What's to stop someone watching that film for sexual arousal and the deciding to go out and do the same thing to someone. Just because it isn't on the top shelf doesn't stop anyone getting sexual pleasure.
So, this government creates yet more law that it has no intention of enforcing. This will just be another tick-box charge that will be included should the coppers accidentally come across(!) someone with illegal porn. "OK lad, we've caught you selling nasty porn to kiddies. Have you a computer? Have you a modem? Right we've also got you for extreme porn."
Why does our stupid government think that the internet so different that it needs special laws?
This government in particular has been particularly bad for passing laws where the offences aren't clear - probably in order to give their lawyer chums work drawing the lines later on. When questioned, time and again we hear the relevant minster saying "it is not the intention of this act to ...". So it was with the religious hate crimes act: comedians were worried that they could be hauled up for the sorts of gags which Dave Allen thrived on.
And then, earlier this month, we hear that the Regulation of Investigatory Powers act was being used by councils to spy on parent who had (shock horror) applied for places for their children in popular schools. During the passage of this act, Jack Straw used the "it is not the intention of this act" line whenever criticised for the lack of clarity and limitation in the powers. Repeat after me. It is not the intention of a piece of legislation which matters, it is the specific provisions. If you start talking about the intentions of a piece of law, it is almost certainly bad law.
We ran an analysis  of why Radiohead released their latest album for free, and why they won't do it again. Some of you didn't like our use of the word 'freetard', but there was a deeper debate lurking in the comments, for those brave enough to look:
Face facts: Radiohead are not the Stones or Pink Floyd, but they do knock out some good indie-rock stuff.
Nothing to add to this debate really - I appreciated the chance to get In Rainbows on the cheap, but I preferred the NIN release from a purchase standpoint - it was in FLAC, rather than MP3, so worth it IMHO [especially as I am rather enjoying it to kill the commuter hubbub on the tube].
There's definitely a model that can be exploited in here with regards to ultra-low cost 'teasers' in MP3 format, and then paying slightly more [say, min £3] for a FLAC version or going out and getting a hard copy.
And if they only include the 'full' versions [FLAC/high bitrate MP3/hard copy] in the charts, then all the schoolkids paying £1/album of 128kbps Pete Waterman/X-factor toss might not control the top 10 all the time - and that would put a completely irrelevant, but fun, smile back on my face.
Mines the leatehr jacket with "Rock is dead" scrawled on the back in tippex, and the Shure E110s hanging out the collar :-)
Even with so called "free" downloads on offer, I preferred the physical product for £8 or less, DRM free with artwork and that I can rip to lossless FLAC at the best quality I can get short of SACD/DVD-A or some HD audio format that no one bothers with (or dare I say even Vinyl!). Stick the FLACs on my server to stream around the house, and convert to MP3 at best quality (way in excess of the usual poor 128kbps downloads) for use on a non-Apple based MP3 player (free from iTunes crud).
Give me downloads at cheaper than £8 CD prices, at FLAC quality, together with some kind of digital packaging to make up for the lack of physical packaging (sleeve notes in PDF format perhaps?), and DRM free then I'll consider it. Until then, it's CDs for me until the iPod sheep get their way and drive all music down the quality bin with low bitrate crud to feed through their crap headphones.
How soon we forget the baby boomers paid upwards of three times for the same piece of music and Jazz lovers paid even more( from old Shellac 78's to Vinyl to Compact Cassette and then the CD version) in those halcyon days before the arrival of powerful home and portable computers could convert the music and transfer it in any form they chose including generating ring tones for their other mobile toys at the mere push of a finger !
And yet still the industry dragon was never sated , forever hungry and kept demanding more then their fair share of blood out of stone whilst figuratively allowing what seems to be cat and dog whipping grunge of singers out of tune or C! Rap to masquerade as the next generation of music to escape from the zoo as if it was a good idea at the time(didn't our parents say the same thing long ago too) ! Little wonder the market for music has declined for a number of well documented reasons reaching well over two thirds less in sales in real terms since the turn of the new century as other forms of amusement have accelerated past these old obsolete dinosaurs unable or unwilling to move with the times controlled by mindless trolls and bean counters and the push to extend copyright term limits and reach into every corner possible for the only source of income left as the lean industry killing winter looms in the closing autumn of their years !
What price a choice indeed ? , when they chose to ignore the only viable option at the close of the last century unable to see beyond their pile of beans or insatiable greed !
The big news in the gaming world just now is the release of the highly anticipated Grand Theft Auto IV. The series has garnered vast popularity and no small amount of controversy for its portrayals of violence and obscenity. Someone even got stabbed this time , while queuing up to buy the game, and oddly his first thought was to fetch his own knife for revenge. Cue a revisiting of the old debate over whether violent games promote real-world violence:
I have played the older versions of the game and sometimes I've wondered at the way you start thinking while playing.
However, in this case the men hadn't yet bought the game so I can't see how you can conclude that the game made them violent.
You could of course argue that the game is attractive to people who are pre-disposed to violence, although I may buy it and am yet to stab or attack anyone so it would seem the game is attractive to others as well.
On the other hand this may make for a good headline in the Daily Mail but you can't draw any conclusions from a small sample like this. You'd have to say something like, 20% of GTA IV players committed violent acts in the month following purchase, compared to 10% who bought Gran Turismo and 30% who support Man U :-) Even then you'd need to check for other possible explanations.
I'm glad I wasn't in when the postman dropped my copy off yesterday! I mean, everyone's heard what the postal service are like for taking guns to work!
Other than that, all I can say is what a game it is!
Stumbled home for a knife? The idiot. Everyone knows he should have stolen a car, then picked up a hooker to recover his health before popping into the local AmmuNation for a shotgun.
Didn't this happen when the xbox 360 was released? ie - people attacking each other for the limited supply of product?
Aren't there fights EVERY time something long anticipated is released and stock is not plentiful (nearly always)?
This isn't a matter of the GAME being violent, people do this for the hardware itself which can't POSSIBLY be considered a violent influence on its own. People are quite simply selfish bastards who will, on occasion, do ANYTHING to get their hands on the latest shiny.
So, this guy had a knife, got in an argument and stabbed someone ? Where it happened is irrelevant - the same thing could have happened at the Cinema or in MacDonalds.
It speaks volumes about the pair of them though - one stabbing someone over an argument, and the other going home to get his knife to stab the guy back.
Let Darwin sort it out, I say !
(Kudos to a friend, however, who when I emailed him this story responded with "Did he drop a glowing bundle of cash?")
Sir Ian McKellan is to reprise the role of Gandalf the wizard  in a big-screen adaptation of Tolkein's The Hobbit. The news was generally well-received, although some of you were worried by the promise of an "original story":
Sounds like a blatant attempt to cache in and that's terribly disappointing since it cheapens the other films and the works of Tolkein.
When it was suggested that they would bring The Hobbit to the screen it seemed natural, although personally I thought it was a bad idea. The Hobbit was ostensibly a children's book with much simpler and somewhat nieve storylines, something Tolkein himself explained away by saying that it was written by Bilbo, a child like character. The Hobbit doesn't compare well to LoTR for this reason, it lacks depth and doesn't gel with the latter.
I doubt anyone except Tolkein himself could create an original story which can bridge the gap and not tarnish either book in the process. If George Lucas can't even do it with his own material what hope is there for someone working with a world so precisely created and described by Tolkein?
Splitting the Hobbit into two would have been a better idea, the source material might have been stretched in the process but it would have been better than cramming it into one film.
Not necessarily bad with a new story. So we've got the prequel on the Aragorn and Arwen love story, already written by JRRT. We've got Denethor and Theoden taking up leadership - not documented, but scope for good stories. Possibly younger versions of Eomer, Grima, Faramir and Boromir, all with interesting back stories. How the wizards and their allies discovered the Necromancer was really Sauron, Sauron's move to Mordor, and the beginning of assaults in earnest on Gondor and Rohan. Almost certainly the corruption of Denethor and Saruman via the palantirs - *very* story-worthy. Perhaps even the start of the elves' departure on the White Ships, bearing in mind that this hadn't started during Bilbo's time, but was well underway by the time of LotR.
In other words, there's an absolute stack of material to be working with. All they need is a scriptwriter who can do it justice. On past evidence, del Toro is probably well set to do this.
And brilliant as far as I'm concerned. We should have more of it, the world is far too nice. Hated it ever since the 80s went away. More commercialism this time please, there wasn't nearly enough Lord of the Rings junk to buy after the first 3 movies.
Seriously though the period between The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings lends itself very well to a new movie, as long as they get the right people to do the story and script. The Silmarillion is to complicated for popcorn eating, soda swilling movie watchers to understand. It would be better served with a full blown TV series, and has enough blood, guts and horror to keep people watching for several seasons.
Lesbians are calling out lesbians for stealing their word. Residents of the Greek island are taking the Greek Gay and Lesbian Union to court  to try to force them to cease and desist. Whichever side wins, both are going to get a good licking.
Mud wrestling is the only answer. Lesbian on lesbian contest is the only way to settle this dispute
"Lesbians turn on lesbians in battle of Lesbos"
I've seen the film......
Mines the dirty Mac....
This is LESBOS!!!
An old cowboy went to a bar and ordered a drink.
As he sat sipping his whiskey, a young lady sat down next to him.
After she ordered her drink, she turned to the cowboy and asked him, "Are you a real cowboy?" He replied, "Well, I have spent my whole life on the ranch, herding cows, breaking horses, mending fences. Yep, I guess I am."
After a short while, he asked her what she was.
She replied, "I am a lesbian. I spend my whole day thinking about women. As soon as I get up in the morning I think of women, when I eat, shower, watch TV, everything seems to make me think of women."
A short while later she left and the cowboy ordered another drink.
A couple sat down next to him and asked, "Are you a real cowboy?"
He replied, "I always thought I was, but I just found out that I'm a lesbian."
I guess there are a lot of us then. Perhaps we should all apply for Greek citizenship. ®