Balazs Bodo's blog

Wikileaks and Freedom, Autonomy and Sovereignty in the Cloud

I have written an article on the future of sovereignty in the age of Wikileaks. I welcome Your comments.

"The hidden power structures and the inner workings of these states within the state are exposed by another imperium in imperio, a secretive organization, whose agenda is far from transparent, whose members, resources are unknown, holding back an indefinite amount of information both on itself and on its opponents. The mantra of Wikileaks supporters and the mantra of state and corporate executives are shockingly identical: “We share no information on ourselves; we gather information on everyone else. Only our secrets are valid secrets.” The Eye of Providence on the reverse side of the Great Seal of the United States, surrounded by the words Annuit Cœptis (He approves our undertakings), and Novus Ordo Seclorum, (New Order of the Ages) could very well be the seal of Wikileaks as well." Read more about Wikileaks and Freedom, Autonomy and Sovereignty in the Cloud

Media Piracy in Emerging Economies

Media Piracy in Emerging Economies is a new, comprehensive study on the impact and role of piracy on/in some of the biggest developing countries: Brazil, Russia, India. The study is out:
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From the Introduction:

Media piracy has been called “a global scourge,” “an international plague,” and “nirvana for criminals,”1 but it is probably better described as a global pricing problem. High prices for media goods, low incomes, and cheap digital technologies are the main ingredients of global media piracy. If piracy is ubiquitous in most parts of the world, it is because these conditions are ubiquitous. Relative to local incomes in Brazil, Russia, or South Africa, the price of a CD, DVD, or copy of Microsoft Office is five to ten times higher than in the United States or Europe. Licit media goods are luxury items in most parts of the world, and licit media markets are correspondingly tiny. Industry estimates of high rates of piracy in emerging markets—68% for software in Russia, 82% for music in Mexico, 90% for movies in India—reflect this disparity and may even understate the prevalence of pirated goods. Read more about Media Piracy in Emerging Economies

Pirates and Hollywood

I am researching for my talk to be delivered to the International Intellectual Property Program at Chicago-Kent Law School.

This is how I have found what I believe might be the real message of Hollywood to its customers. It is not the oft quoted rant of Jack Valenti about the Boston strangler, but something screenwriters, producers, actors, directors and the rest have to say to the millions of people worldwide. Read more about Pirates and Hollywood

It’s not the technology, stupid

I had an AHAAA moment last night reading Martha Woodmansee’s „ The Author, Art, and the Market”. She writes „As my sketch of writers’ struggles suggests, eighteenth-century Germany found itself in a transitional phase between the limited patronage of an aristocratic age and the democratic patronage of the marketplace. With the growth of a middle class, demand for reading material increased steadily, enticing writers to try to earn a livelihood from the sale of their writings to a buying public. Read more about It’s not the technology, stupid


In the last few weeks I bumped into several articles addressing the question why people feel OK to up- and download mp3s despite all the laws and legal threats, and how to close the gap between existing copyright legislation and social norms, norms that seem to have a much greater effect on how people behave than laws. Read more about Copynorms

Turning point in copyright infringement cases

This is the most important thing that has happened on the intellectual property front lately. Former Soviet president Gorbachev asks Microsoft's Bill Gates not to pursue IP litigation against a high school teacher in Perm who used pirated software in classroom because: - he is poor - he has dedicated his life to teaching - he was just using  pirated software, but has not installed and/or downloaded it, - because the possible punishment (imprisonment is Siberia) is disproportionate. Read more about Turning point in copyright infringement cases

How public opinion on artistic practices changes

First it was "Rip! Mix! and Burn!" Now it is simply just "Burn!"

It is the second time in a few weeks when an artist is caught "red-handed" using, remixing, appropriating another artist's work. Last December Shepard Fairey aka Obey was blamed for borrowing an image from the public domain, now rapper Timbaland is caught "stealing" from another artist. Read more about How public opinion on artistic practices changes

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