I was up in my native Northern California this past weekend because a friend of mine was putting on a big online technology debate on the U.C. Berkeley campus. Normally, I have no time for shit like this, but even I wasn’t going to miss an opportunity to rub up against hairy disenfranchised college chicks with daddy issues on the first tank top wearing weekend of the year.
I couldn’t believe the amount of security on hand. The debate stage looked like high-level mideast peace talks were about to go down. Typical for a gathering in so-called tolerant Berkeley these days where any attempt to engage in free speech by people who don’t live in a tree will result in a tie died melee of organic pie throwing and nude protests by 65 year old guys with three foot long swinging grandfather clock pendulum balls.
The organizers of the event had service providers and media companies cordoned off on the right side of the stage. While the left side was made up of public radio bullshitter types and a group that called themselves “Socialist’s Against Censorship”.
According to the far left, any action taken by the media companies or ISP’s to curb online piracy is considered censorship. I’m not talking about invasive ISP monitoring of your account. Just the typical scenarios of legal regulations and content filters that are always paraded out in discussions like these. I personally do not believe that any of that stuff will work, but I was very surprised to see exactly how delusional the far left really is when it comes to “their right” to steal content.
They feel everything online is born out of “corporate greed” and, therefore, we the people have the right to acquire whatever we want without legal consequence in the name of free online trade. They refused to answer any questions regarding how people are supposed to be compensated for their work. It was particularly unsettling listening to the hundreds of cheers that came from the young audience when one of the white suburban 22 year old Che Guevara wannabe content stealing “freedom fighters” passed out a sheet detailing hundreds of website links and socialist network contacts where people can trade illegal content.
The only saving grace came at the end of the debate when one of the media company producers brought out four huge boxes onto the stage that were filled with bootleg photocopies of a book that one of the socialist group leaders wrote and was selling on his website. He proceeded to stand by the exit door with a huge set of brass balls and pass out a copy to everyone who exited the auditorium.