Daily Archives: November 22, 2005

Bad News for Deadheads

In a nutshell, the pioneers of music trading appear to have joined the dinosaurs of the recording industry. Read and weep (there were 2300 shows here yesterday).
I’ve downloaded only a few complete GD shows from the Archive, streamed quite a few more, bought many commercial releases over the years including the just shipping 1969 Box Set (why hasn’t it arrived yet) and never, ever traded one of the Dead’s commercial releases. And still won’t. But I also will not be adding any new commercial releases to my collection for a while, if ever again…hell, I don’t even get close to cycling through my collection once every 5 years.
The music is theirs to control however they want. However, if they want to change the culture I can damn well change my buying habits.
Update: David Gans has some thoughts to share.

Here’s A Nasty Little Business

Seems there are a bunch of folks making at least part of their living by selling your cell phone records. Now they can’t be making huge dollars can they? Really, how many folks want someone else’s call records on any given day? Well, it turns out that there are quite a few business out there offering the service. Enough to make you angry if you think about it a bit:

It’s actually obscene what you can find out about people on the Internet.

says Bob Sullivan who goes on to note:

It may be outrageous, but it’s not new. MSNBC.com first wrote about this problem in October 2001, in a story titled “I know who you called last month.”
The problem was exposed years earlier by a private investigator named Rob Douglas. Banking records, home phone long-distance calling, even medical information, were all for sale, he told Congress.

But, isn’t this kind of illegal? Sure, but who’s prosecuting? Joel Winston, associate director of the Federal Trade Commission’s Financial Practices Division,

…said the agency has never taken such a case to court and does not know how widespread the problem is. He said the FTC must focus its resources on the practices of data thieves that can cause the most damage to large numbers of consumers, such as financial fraud.

Why is this just an FCC issue? It appears to often require fraud to implement the theft. So where are the other law enforcement agencies? Likely all the other law enforcement critters are too busy checking out what books we are reading or staking out some pot user to spend time protecting us. As I argued previously:

Federal standards and regulations are invariably broken and generally never written with individual citizens in mind but Ed’s last point hits the nail on the head.
No institution, government or private, can be allowed to collect or distribute, for free or for fee, any information about an individual without that individuals specific consent on a per incident basis and if the distribution is for a fee then that individual must be compensated at a rate agreeable to the individual.

Perhaps it is time to get serious about instituting alternatives to the existing federal, state and local legal systems. You know, put something in place that can stamp out crime that has victims and perhaps obsolete all those law enforcement agencies that are so focused on victimless crimes.
Via fergie’s tech blog.