The Kindle, bootleg movies, etc.

January 31, 2008
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A few technology and the arts stories for you forward-thinking readers:

According to yesterday’s Publishers Weekly, Amazon.com has experienced better-than-expected sales of the temporarily-out-of-stock Kindle, the $399 electronic book gizmo it launched last November.kindle

The Amazonians boast that, with Kindle, you can download a book in a minute—without having to use a PC. And you can sample the beginnings of books for free.

It sounds great. Like many book lovers, though, I’ve been resistant to the idea. But maybe I’m missing something.

If you’ve tried one out, let me know what you think.
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Meanwhile, the play “Alice (Experiments in Wonderland)"  is opening today at the University of Central Florida   … and in Waterloo, Ontario … and in Peoria, Ill.

With the same cast.

According to an article in Canada’s Globe and Mail, this Lewis Carroll adaptation makes use of “multiple high-speed broadband connections, six or seven computers, a dozen camera operators, two different fiber-optics protocols, two-dimensional and three-dimensional sets and ceiling high screens.” And a cast of 30, spread out over the three venues.

Is this the future of theater? Or just a left-field experiment? And would Indy audiences embrace or reject such productions?
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And finally, on Wednesday the Motion Picture Association of American apologized for a statement in which it noted that “44 percent of the motion picture industry’s domestic losses were attributable to piracy by college students.” The organization now says it was approximately 15 percent.

Putting aside the significant difference in those numbers, the numbers still mean that a quarter of a billion dollars worth of content is being stolen annually by U.S. students.

What does this say about a.) the perception of piracy as a crime, b.) the free time of college students, and c.) the ability of the MPAA to deal with the realities presented by technology?

OK, confess: Have bootleg DVDs gotten into your hot little hands? Do you see a problem with such sharing? And are we heading toward a new, very different age when it comes to ownership of movies and music?

Your thoughts?
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  • As a writer, I have an interest in suppressing bootleg anythings. I have nearly a thousand DVDs - if there are any bootleg ones in there, they were purchased from regular commercial outlets. I'll certainly look for the sales and buy from discounters, but presumably the copyright holders are getting their due shares.

    As for music, the kind I buy is not generally thought of as bootleg material. Again, it's all original as far as I know - and so should everyone else's be.

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  1. By Mr. Lee's own admission, he basically ran pro-bono ads on the billboard. Paying advertisers didn't want ads on a controversial, ugly billboard that turned off customers. At least one of Mr. Lee's free advertisers dropped out early because they found that Mr. Lee's advertising was having negative impact. So Mr. Lee is disingenous to say the city now owes him for lost revenue. Mr. Lee quickly realized his monstrosity had a dim future and is trying to get the city to bail him out. And that's why the billboard came down so quickly.

  2. Merchants Square is back. The small strip center to the south of 116th is 100% leased, McAlister’s is doing well in the outlot building. The former O’Charleys is leased but is going through permitting with the State and the town of Carmel. Mac Grill is closing all of their Indy locations (not just Merchants) and this will allow for a new restaurant concept to backfill both of their locations. As for the north side of 116th a new dinner movie theater and brewery is under construction to fill most of the vacancy left by Hobby Lobby and Old Navy.

  3. Yes it does have an ethics commission which enforce the law which prohibits 12 specific items. google it

  4. Thanks for reading and replying. If you want to see the differentiation for research, speaking and consulting, check out the spreadsheet I linked to at the bottom of the post; it is broken out exactly that way. I can only include so much detail in a blog post before it becomes something other than a blog post.

  5. 1. There is no allegation of corruption, Marty, to imply otherwise if false. 2. Is the "State Rule" a law? I suspect not. 3. Is Mr. Woodruff obligated via an employment agreement (contractual obligation) to not work with the engineering firm? 4. In many states a right to earn a living will trump non-competes and other contractual obligations, does Mr. Woodruff's personal right to earn a living trump any contractual obligations that might or might not be out there. 5. Lawyers in state government routinely go work for law firms they were formally working with in their regulatory actions. You can see a steady stream to firms like B&D from state government. It would be interesting for IBJ to do a review of current lawyers and find out how their past decisions affected the law firms clients. Since there is a buffer between regulated company and the regulator working for a law firm technically is not in violation of ethics but you have to wonder if decisions were made in favor of certain firms and quid pro quo jobs resulted. Start with the DOI in this review. Very interesting.

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