Thoughts on Technology and Society

Were all going to hell! Besides the whole porn thing, were all a bunch of thieves trying to steal someone elses patented hard work. Where do we get off streaming media with no strings attached?

But in all seriousness, I was thinking about how basic technology used in such a widespread manner could belong to one person or group of people. The wheel for example, the first guy to invent the wheel wasnt torching the huts of his neighbors for adopting the idea.

While streaming digital media is a bit more complex than the wheel, its basically the same when compared to how our society has progressed to the point we are at now. I dont see anyone claiming to have the patents on sending email or web page browsing. Of course not, these were basic technologies that were inherited by users as the internet developed and grew. Now of course email isnt going to send itself and web pages arent going to appear magically before our eyes, so this is where businesses capitalize on supplying the tools we need to manage these technologies.

Well as the internet started to grow and gain popularity, and businesses started to realize the advantages of this world wide network, more focus what put on increasing the efficiency of file transfers. This increase in efficiency allowed larger files, such as audio and video, to be transferred faster and even stream to allow real-time viewing.

Now this brings us to about 1995. Even though most internet users were still restricted to slow modem connections, people started to experience this new streaming technology. By the time we reach the turn of the century, people and businesses around the world have implemented this technology into their every day lives.

Well now its mid 2003, and while this isnt the first weve heard of Acacia, its when their threats start to really echo throughout the halls of our industry. Companies are being served licensing packets and slapped with lawsuits if they choose to ignore them. What do they want? They want a percentage of our gross revenue because most of us use streaming technology on our websites. Many people are just in complete shock! -- Someone owns the idea of sending video over the internet? But Ive been doing this for years! -- If someone told us when we started our businesses that we would be subject to such outlandish licensing fees (1-2% of gross!), theres no doubt in my mind that there would have been an alternative developed to anything Acacia holds patents for. Or at the very least we would have separated the streaming end of our businesses from the rest of our income sources.

Where are the laws that protect businesses in situations such as this? Is our legal system this blind or rather obtuse? -- Allowing a standard medium for business practice to be adopted by companies large and small across the globe for almost a decade and then start waving patents in the air and demanding percentages of these businesses. -- A crude example of whats going on would be to give someone heroin for free until their physically addicted and then start selling it to them! And were immoral for peddling porn?

Anyhow, we are all in this together. Whether you submit TGP galleries, design paysites, produce content, etc. Affiliate programs will have to lower payouts, potential client bases will shrink, you see where Im going with this. While strong companies could just look at this as an opportunity to rid themselves of competition, this approach could have its negative long-term consequences. If Acacia wins, who will be next to come knocking on our down with their hand out?

I urge everyone whos still sitting on the sidelines to jump into the game. Check out the IMPA (Internet Media Protective Association) website and get involved. This could be as simple as making a small donation. Things always seem to get worse before they get better, but Im confident that well prevail.

Reader Comments: (1 posts)

Carajean says:
At last! Someone who understands! Thanks for potisng!
October 28th, 2011
at 7:41pm EST
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