News of the Week; April 15, 2015


1. Baker v. Microsoft Corporation: game companies beware, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision may make it more difficult to defeat class actions 

2. Publishers fight to block third-party revival of “abandoned” game servers: ESA sees proposed DMCA exemption as encouraging piracy, limiting copyright.

The legal battle for gaming’s past

3. Grand Theft Auto V for PC ships with built-in mods and machinima tools

4. The first gay character in ‘Mortal Kombat’ revealed

5. Koei Tecmo Goes DMCA On DOA Modders For Undressing Its Already Scantily Clad Characters

6. Theorizing gender and digital gameplay: Oversights, accidents and surprises (Jennifer Jenson & Suzanne De Castell)

7. Thoughts from a woman who posts on the Internet: On being scared

Ms. Quinn goes to Washington

8. Google Rejects Postal For Google Play Store Due To Violence; GTA Games Still Available For Purchase

9. Modders Un-Region-Restricting Halo Online Undeterred By Microsoft DMCA

10. Cops nab murder suspect who played with victim’s stolen PlayStation: Online gaming activity traced to defendant’s mother’s house, where he was living.

11. Man ruptures tendon in hand playing ‘Candy Crush Saga’

12. Microsoft Facing New Criticisms Over Xbox One Energy Consumption

13. Phantom Dust dev collapsed under Microsoft’s demands – report

14. EA Shutting down ‘Battlefield Heroes’ and three other free-to-play games

15. Don Mattrick leaves Zynga, stock tanking

16. Sandra Day O’Connor’s post-court legacy: Civics games

17. Bill Paxton to play Jack Thompson in BBC’s ‘Grand Theft Auto’ film

18. NCSoft invests $5m in mobile start-up: This Game Studio focused on mobile, based in Vancouver

19. How Tax Is Giving Video Games A British Accent

20. New research using video games explores how people justify violent acts

21. Modern Games Are Easily Patched. So How Can We Review Them?

22. Square Enix Launches A Cloud-Powered Final Fantasy XIII For iOS And Android In Japan

23. Good Game: Why Esports Is The Next Major League Sport

24. Fantasy eSports—Think Fantasy Football for Video Games—Is Officially a Thing

25. Devastatingly Challenging Modern Games

26. Video Games’ Place in American Culture 


27. Russia’s Internet censor reminds citizens that some memes are illegal

Russian censor warns against meme ‘misuse’

Latest Russian Censorship Move: Banning Internet Memes Using Photos Of Celebrities

28. NSA dreams of smartphones with “split” crypto keys protecting user data: Proposal is part of a tense stand-off between US government and tech industry.

29. Apple and the Self-Surveillance State (Paul Krugman)

30. The most concerning element of Facebook’s potential new power (Trevor Timm)

31. Canada’s Non-Commercial Copyright Fail: Why Did YouTube Mute a Holocaust Memorial Video? (Michael Geist)

32. The Copyright Notice Flood: What to Consider If You Receive a Copyright Infringement Notification (Michael Geist)

33. A Japanese court has ordered Google to take down negative business reviews

34. Internal Google Memo Responds To EU Antitrust Objections

35. Judge: Browsing Data Shared With Facebook Doesn’t Violate Privacy Law

36. Our Transparent Future: No secret is safe in the digital age. The implications for our institutions are downright Darwinian. (Daniel Dennett & Deb Roy)

37. Meet “Great Cannon,” the man-in-the-middle weapon China used on GitHub: Powerful weapon could easily be used to inject malware attacks into traffic.

38. Netizen Report: Turkey’s Erdogan Fights to Control the Conversation, Online and in Print

Everyone Is Getting Turkey’s Twitter Block Wrong: Turkey isn’t trying to be North Korea, China or Iran; it’s trying to be Azerbaijan

39. Rights groups take UK surveillance fight to Europe’s highest court

40. NJ lawmaker seeking tougher penalties for swatting gets targeted over the weekend

41. Big Names in Canadian Tech Sign ‘Stop Bill C-51’ Letter

The Real Agenda behind Bill C-51 (Craig Forcese & Kent Roach)

42. Lawyer representing whistle blowers finds malware on drive supplied by cops: Says police department brass tried to infect him, seeks criminal sanctions.

43. Police asked telcos for client data in over 80% of criminal probes

44. Kim Dotcom Megaupload case falters over sharing Canadian data

45. Hacked French network exposed its own passwords during TV interview: Post-it note on wall revealed network’s passwords for YouTube, Instagram.

46. Wireless, Cable Industries Show Their Love Of An ‘Open Internet’ By Suing To Overturn Net Neutrality Rules

Telco Lobby Sues FCC Over Net Neutrality Rules Yet Again… Just In Case The First Time Didn’t Work

47. The Mere Threat Of Google Fiber Has Time Warner Cable Offering Speeds Six Times Faster At The Same Price

48. Report: popular online gambling sites taken out by DDoS attacks

49. Japanese Court Orders Google To Delete Critical Reviews From Google Maps

50. Maximum sentence for internet trolls raised to 2 years in the UK

51. This Year’s Fight for the Tech Industry: Patent Trolls

52. Court Adds Much-Needed Element Of Malice To Nova Scotia’s Terrible Cyberbullying Law

53. The Mobile Video Moment Has Finally Arrived

54. Twitter shakes up the big data supply chain: What are the privacy law implications?

55. Facebook is facing 25,000 users in Vienna court over EU privacy violations

56. Drug Information Startup Diagnosia Sued By Big Pharma

57. Another Competitive Keyword Advertising Lawsuit Fails–Infogroup v. DatabaseLLC (Eric Goldman)

58. Mapping Out the Copyright Semicommons (Bruce Boyden)

59. Copyrights & Patents Have Become A Religion; All Data Will Be Ignored

60. EFF Successfully Challenges Key Claims in “Podcasting Patent”

Infamous “podcasting patent” knocked out

61. Should you pay if you get an illegal download notice?

62. Eighth-grader charged with felony for shoulder-surfing teacher’s password: The larger crime may be school administrators’ poor op sec.

63. Large-scale Game of Thrones leak has HBO targeting Periscope streams: Piracy in various forms didn’t hurt too much, as 8 million watched GoT premiere.

64. Amazon drops the hammer on website that sells 5-star reviews: SoCal Web designer’s reviews-for-sale biz is illegal, Amazon lawyers say.

65. Why Google’s Robot Personality Patent Is Not Good for Robotics (Kate Darling)

66. Can we stop killer robots? UN meets to debate possible treaty

67. The Path of Robotics Law (Jack Balkin)

68. The Case For An Internet Ratings System

69. Will autocomplete make you too predictable? 


70. Photos secretly taken of family through window are art, not invasion of privacy: court

71. Hecklers Try To Veto University Screening Of ‘American Sniper;’ May Find Themselves Watching ‘Paddington Bear’ Instead

72. The Abuse of Satire: Garry Trudeau on Charlie Hebdo, free-speech fanaticism, and the problem with “punching downward”

73. Joss Whedon On #GamerGate, JURASSIC WORLD, Adam Baldwin And Speaking Out

74. Kristen Stewart and the Movie Actor’s Dilemma

75. Who Owns the Copyright to “Happy Birthday”?

76. The Full History Of Board Games

77. The secret history of Monopoly: the capitalist board game’s leftwing origins

78. Rachmaninov on the future of broadcasting: A revealing interview with Sergey Rachmaninov from April 1931

79. Time Warner, Viacom Back Away From Nielsen Guarantees For Ads

80. “Quite Unintelligible,” Derrida’s Scathing Criticism From A Teacher


News of the Week; April 8, 2015


1. YouTube gaming stars blindsided by Nintendo’s ad revenue grab: Game companies may not have legal right to claim a cut, lawyer says

YouTuber Angry Joe Swears Off Nintendo Videos After The Company Claimed His Mario Party 10 Take

2. Report: Gamers in Crimea lose access to Blizzard games due to U.S. sanctions

3. Videogame Publishers: No Preserving Abandoned Games, Even for Museums and Archives, Because All “Hacking” is Illegal

4. Report: Firmware update sets Chinese Xbox Ones region free

5. Microsoft Hits Halo Online Modders With Copyright Complaint

Github complies with Microsoft DMCA takedown of Halo Online mod repo: Gameplay footage of new game has also been removed from YouTube.

Modders want to remove Halo Online’s microtransactions, georestrictions: Leakers say they have multiple backups to avoid Microsoft’s DMCA requests.

6. Project Cars Hit With Its Third Delay

7. Publishers must stop marketing adult games to kids

8. ‘GGautoblocker’ creator and ‘Online Abuse Prevention Initiative’ founder targeted by swatting attempt

9. Copyrighting player-generated content in video games

10. Rovio awarded $2.7 million in copyright case

11. Does Paula Deen’s new mobile game infringe on an artist’s copyright?

12. Iranian cleric urges Western countries to ban ‘Islamophobic’ games and movies

13. Dollar’s buying power plummets in first day of “official” WoW gold trading: $20 game time “tokens” have already lost 27 percent of initial gold value.

14. Sony announces shutdown of ‘Destiny of Spirits’

15. FTC approves Sony PS Vita settlement

16. GameStop halts online pre-orders for newest Nintendo amiibo figures

17. Amazon licensing deal may have saved Crytek – report

18. Nexon acquiring Boolean Games

19. AR/VR to hit $150 billion by 2020 – Report

20. Minneapolis man steals 8-year-old’s video games, gets caught on camera

21. What Really Happened To Arcades

22. Nobuo Uematsu: the video game composer shaking up classical music

23. An all-too-accurate parody of YouTube gamers 


24. DDoS attacks that crippled GitHub linked to Great Firewall of China: Whitehat hacker’s traceroute wizzardry pinpoints origin of denial-of-service code.

25. The Kremlin’s comment trolls are real — as is the media’s amnesia about them

26. The Surveillance Engine: How The NSA Built Its Own Secret Google

27. Facebook faces lawsuit over facial recognition software

28. How Facebook knows who all your friends are, even better than you do

29. Microsoft drops Do Not Track default from Internet Explorer: New language in W3C standard twisted its arm

30. Hulu beats lawsuit claiming it illegally shared user data with Facebook: The “Like” button collects data, but there’s no master list of videos watched.

31. The Battle Is For The Customer Interface: Uber, the world’s largest taxi company, owns no vehicles. Facebook, the world’s most popular media owner, creates no content. Alibaba, the most valuable retailer, has no inventory. And Airbnb, the world’s largest accommodation provider, owns no real estate. Something interesting is happening.

32. Chrome extension collects browsing data, uses it for marketing: Downloaded 1.2M times, “Webpage Screenshot” no longer available in Chrome Store

33. Privacy Commissioner of Canada Rules Bell’s Targeted Ad Program Violates Canadian Law (Michael Geist)

Privacy watchdog not yet satisfied with Bell’s about-face on ad tracking

34. AT&T enters into largest data breach settlement with FCC to date

35. Commissioner cautions children’s websites to tread carefully when it comes to privacy: Privacy Commissioner launches tips on protecting children’s privacy after website investigation highlights lessons such as the need for better, age-appropriate information and involvement of adults in privacy decisions

36. Leaked TPP Investment Chapter Reveals Serious Threat to User Safeguards

37. The Internet of Kafkaesque Things (Jay Stanley)

38. How the DMCA’s Online Copyright Safe Harbor Failed (Eric Goldman)

39. Court Declines To Dismiss Hashtag Infringement Claim

40. Two Court Rulings Completely Disagree With Each Other Over Whether Websites Need To Comply With Americans With Disabilities Act

41. FCC Moves To Give Internet Video Startups The Same Protections As Cable Companies

42. Dallas Buyers Club ruling: iiNet must hand over names of downloaders

43. A New Kind of Internet Pirate: What’s stopping people from using apps like Periscope and Meerkat to livestream video they don’t own? Not much.

Periscope, Meerkat, and sports: Can fans, media live stream from the game?

44. Microsoft, Getty Images settle dispute over online photo tool

45. Microsoft halts Kinect for Windows production

46. Teen rakes in $6,000 on “Uploader for Instagram” app, told to shut down:  The 17-year-old has removed his app after receiving demand letters from Instagram.

47. Barrett Brown suddenly stripped of prison e-mail after talking to press: Activist writes arbitrary punishment is part of “pattern of state retaliation.”

48. USPTO Demands EFF Censor Its Comments On Patentable Subject Matter

49. Net neutrality rules differ widely across developed nations

50. Police granted extra 12 months to try to crack suspect’s computer encryption

51. Taking Down Bigots With Their Own Weapons Is Sweet, Satisfying — And Very, Very Wrong: Actually, it’s about ethics in doxxing.

52. If you’re worried about Facebook hosting news content…you’re already dead.

53. The Rise of ‘Studyblrs’: Teens take to social media to show off their…study habits?

54. Would telepathy help?: Will the next generation of telepathy machines make us closer, or are there unforeseen dangers in the melding of minds?

55. The Internet Ruined April Fool’s Day: The holiday’s jokes are unfunny and misleading. They’re also, often, redundant.

56. The Meme as Meme: Why do things go viral, and should we care?

57. The Definitive Oral History Of 1980s Digital Icon Max Headroom


58. The cost of silence: mass surveillance & self-censorship

59. Warner Bros. And Rightscorp Argue That Copyright Trolling Is Protected By The First Amendment

60. Prince Gives Away Someone Else’s Artistic Efforts, Gets Sued

61. Consent to the use of copyrighted material not required to be in writing

62. Three’s fair use too: play is transformative work (Rebecca Tushnet)

63. Let’s talk TV – CRTC roadmap to “maximize viewer choice”

64. Comparison of Canadian content, production services, co-ventures and treaty co-productions

65. Rolling Stone’s investigation: ‘A failure that was avoidable’

Rolling Stone’s ‘A Rape on Campus.’ Notes and comment on Columbia J-school’s investigation.

Rolling Stone and the Temptations of Narrative Journalism


An all-too-accurate parody of YouTube gamers

The title says it all. Enjoy the lulz…


News of the Week; April 1, 2015


1. Zynga investors can sue FarmVille creator for alleged IPO fraud, judge says: Lawsuit back on the table for Zynga, where fortunes have plunged since 2011 IPO.

2. This Guy Remade Super Mario 64’s Most Iconic Level In HD And Playable In Your Browser

Nintendo Takedown Notice for Super Mario 64 HD

Fan-made Super Mario 64 game pulled after Nintendo cries foul

Fan-made Mario 64 remake disappears following Nintendo copyright complaint

Poll: Should Nintendo have DMCA’d a fan’s free Super Mario HD remake?

Why Does Nintendo Want This Superfan’s YouTube Money?

Nintendo’s physical DLC: Supply-limited toy needed for new gameplay puzzles

3. Lone modder’s Half-Life 2: Update brings modern graphics to a classic: Source engine overhaul four years in the making sees free Steam release tomorrow.

4. Andrew Eisen Video: ‘My Favorite Thing About Anita Sarkeesian’s Tropes vs Women Videos’

5. Julia Hardy’s Misogyny Monday

6. Community questions Obsidian over ‘Pillars of Eternity’ in-game trans joke

7. Mortal Kombat producer “quits” Twitter over violent threats to family

8. Game store swatted, nearly became complicit in inciting police response: Received phony call encouraging employees to shut blinds, shout about weapons.

9. Oracle settles with Rhode Island in 38 Studios bankruptcy case

38 Studios auction brings in $90K for Rhode Island

10. UK school district will report parents to authorities for letting their children play R18 rated games

11. Secondary schools in NI to receive free copies of Minecraft

12. Brave Frontier publisher Gumi cuts 11% of staff following IPO

13. GameStop annual sales up slightly to $9.3 billion

14. The Unbalanced Design Of Super Smash Brothers

15. Meet America’s First Video Game Varsity Athletes

16. Epic Awards One Of Three Unreal Dev Grants To Makers Of Net Neutrality Game

17. Bioware makes Orbit framework open source

18. Japanese devs will soon be able to pitch games using Bandai Namco IP

19. MOBAs will overtake MMORPGs in F2P revenue this year – EEDAR

20. What does Google Play’s increase in game sessions mean for iOS?

21. Video Gaming Made Me a History Major: Empire of Earth and Medieval 2 Total War made me actually care about school.


22. In Final Verdict, Jury Rules Against Pao On All Four Claims In Ellen Pao Vs. Kleiner Perkins

Two Jurors On Opposite Sides Share Their Pao Vs. Kleiner Perspectives

Ellen Pao and the Myth of Meritocracy

Ellen Pao’s Statement On Losing The Kleiner Perkins Case: “The Battle Was Worth It”

23. China Uses Unencrypted Websites to Hijack Browsers in GitHub Attack

China’s Great Firewall Turned Around: Why China Wants To Censor Global Internet

Google Chrome will banish Chinese certificate authority for breach of trust:  Draconian move follows the issuance of certificates masquerading as Google domains.

24. Obama signs executive order imposing sanctions on overseas hackers: President: “From now on, we have the power to freeze their assets.”

25. Feds subpoena reddit in effort to learn about users behind Dark Web chatter: ICE agent demands e-mail, IP logs, “means and source of payment,” and more

26. Judge: Mississippi investigation of Google likely violates 1st Amendment

27. Who Knows What Evils Lurk in the Shadows?: The story of the powerful spy agency most Canadians still don’t know, and the security bill that would expand its resources and reach (Ron Deibert)

An amended Bill C-51 is still a problem: insights from the U.S. (Jon Penney)

The government has not made its case for C-51 (Kent Roach & Craig Forcese)

From Obama Birthers to Anti-Immigration Activists: Who the Government Turned to for Bill C-51 Support During Committee Hearings (Michael Geist)

How C-51 undermines privacy (Lisa M. Austin, Benjamin J. Goold, Avner Levin and Andrea Slane)

28. Quebec Takes on the Internet: Government Announces Plans to Require Website Blocking & Studies New Internet Access Tax (Michael Geist)

29. Corporate Sovereignty Provisions Of TPP Agreement Leaked Via Wikileaks: Would Massively Undermine Government Sovereignty

30. Report: Facebook tracks all visitors, even if you’re not a user and opted out: In the EU, where free and informed prior consent is required, there could be an issue.

Facebook tracks logged-out users in ‘violation’ of EU law, study says

31. Tech companies are sending your secrets to crowdsourced armies of low-paid workers

32. 5 other insane things a corrupt DEA agent did while allegedly stealing Bitcoin from Silk Road

33. A Precautionary Approach to Big Data Privacy (Arvind Narayanan, Joanna Huey & Edward W. Felten)

34. Court Rejects Bizarre Attempt To Scrub Consumer Review–Goren v. Ripoff Report

35. Meerkat, YouNow, Periscope and the future of live-streaming

Meerkat is dying – and it’s taking U.S. tech journalism with it

Tech reporters blew the Meerkat story but, no, I can’t name a single one because fear!: My strange exchange last night with the author of that post: ‘Meerkat is dying – and it’s taking U.S. tech journalism with it.’

36. The Most Important Social Media Company You’ve Never Heard Of: Damien Patton has created a way to find out what is happening anywhere in the world–instantly. The inside story behind Banjo–and the gold rush sure to follow.

37. Gen Con issues letter to the community on SB 101, event stuck in Indianapolis until after 2020

38. Really, Rupert?

39. Fox News, Jeanie Pirro Facebook Lawsuit Could Change Copyright Landscape On Social Media

40. CRTC finds something fishy about dating site’s unsubscribe mechanism, operator nets $48,000 fine under anti-spam law 

41. Massive Anti-Net Neutrality E-mail Campaign Shows Signs Of Faking Many Signatures

42. Judge awards damages in false DMCA takedown case

43. Another invalidated clickwrap agreement

44. Those NDAs may not be worth the paper they are written on 

45. It’s Not Easy Being Scientology: Since its founding in the 1950s, L. Ron Hubbard’s organization has put a premium on controlling the flow of information—an increasingly impossible enterprise in the Internet age.

46. Facebook’s Message to Content Makers: We Own the Audience

47. How The US Government Legally Stole Millions From Kim Dotcom

48. The NFL Will Stream a Game on the Web Next Year. Don’t Get Used to It.

49. Two Years Later, Snowden’s Mangled Laptop Is More Than an Empty Symbol

50. One Artist’s Take on the Future of Personal Data

51. ‘Avengers’ 3D Firm Brings Patent Lawsuit Against ‘Divergent’ 3D Firm


52. CRTC dramatically shifts Canadian television regulation

Canada Forces A La Carte Rules On Cable Industry, Bell Pouts By Refusing To Show Regulator On Television

At Bell Media, editorial meddling by execs appears to be a recurring problem

Bell censorship: the status quo can’t endure

Don’t bundle me, bro: Life under the shadow of Big Telecom

Can CTV News and BNN be trusted to report on themselves? Depends on Kevin Crull’s mood

53. Judge Rules ‘Three’s Company’ Parody Play to Be Fair Use

54. In defense of Trevor Noah’s stupid, tasteless tweets

55. Rap lyrics are fiction — but prosecutors are treating them like admissions of guilt

56. Why Traditional TV Is The Real Walking Dead

57. Why curation could be at the core of future reporting


Andrew Eisen Video: ‘My Favorite Thing About Anita Sarkeesian’s Tropes vs Women Videos’ | GamePolitics


Worth watching.



News of the Week; March 25, 2015


1. Lilith Games sues uCool for copyright infringement in federal court over ‘Heroes Charge’

Report: hidden code in uCool’s ‘Heroes Charge’ shows Lilith Games copyright

2. Sony’s US Bloodborne trademark expired on launch day

3. Indie Developer Retaliates To Negative Video With YouTube Takedown

4. New Chicago summit aims to raise awareness about video game law

5. Haunted House of Trademark Horrors: Meet the man who has been fighting an Atari trademark challenge for over three years.

TxK dev on Atari legal threats: “Attack me? They should have hired me”: Jeff Minter says his game is legally distinct from its Tempest inspiration.

6. PewDiePie, Anita Sarkeesian make Time’s ’30 Most Influential People on the Internet’ list

7. “That life is over”: Zoe Quinn looks beyond GamerGate

8. New ‘Offworld’ Gaming Site Seeks To Redefine Gamer Stereotypes

9.How League Of Legends Enables Toxicity

10. Report: YouTube Live will launch in 2015 with focus on game streaming

11. Square Enix shutting down ‘Final Fantasy XI’ for PS2 and Xbox 360 in 2016

12. Annual Rovio EBIT down 73% as merchandising falters

13. Iwata claims Nintendo’s deal with DeNA was not born out of shareholder pressure

14. This Is The Demo That Magic Leap Was Going To Show At Ted Before It Backed Out

48 Crazy Ideas Coming From The $2 Billion Stealth Startup Magic Leap: Want A Peek At What Magic Leap Is Working On? We Pulled The Best Shots From Their Latest Patent Application.

15. Valve: “If there’s something useful, we’ll give it away”

16. Touchtone Holds A Mirror To Our Post-Snowden Surveillance State

17. Battlefield Hardline Review: Cop Out

18. Why Everyone Should Want Politics in Their Video Games

19. How Disney’s games are getting nearly 1M downloads a day and 70M unique users a month

20. World War II Snipers – Videogames vs History

21. The Changing Looks Of Final Fantasy’s Cid: Fashion Experts Weigh In


22. This infographic shows the scope of internet censorship around the globe

23. The new authoritarianism (Sergi Guriev & Daniel Treisman)

24. Russia Will Deploy “Digital Fingerprinting” to Enforce Copyright Online

25. Tim Berners-Lee: We must take to the streets to protect the open web

26. Canadian Bar Association condemns Harper’s anti-terror bill: The group representing law professionals argues the bill’s “vague and overly broad language” could chill expressions of dissent.

How dangerous is C-51? You might be surprised (Michael Geist)

A Conversation About Bill C-51: How the Anti-Terrorism Bill Undermines Canadian Privacy (Michael Geist)

27. Digital Tailspin: Ten Rules for the Internet After Snowden, Michael Seemann

28. How social media makes us feel less upset about surveillance

29. Cisco Shipping Equipment to Fake Addresses to Foil NSA Interception

30. Pearson admits to monitoring students’ social media use during its online tests

31. FTC report reveals how Google manipulated its search results

32. Whether You’re Red or Blue, You Should Love the FCC’s Internet Plan (Susan Crawford)

33. Indian Law Used to Arrest People for Innocuous Facebook Posts Ruled Unconstitutional

34. AT&T is using the Title II rules it hates to get millions in refunds: FCC grants AT&T complaint on overcharges because of common carrier rules.

35. Ellen Pao “drove the returns” at VC firm while the men were promoted, lawyers say 

36. Twitter rolls out new filter for “threats, abusive language”

37. How Bloggers Made The Fashion Industry Pay More Attention To Minorities: The medium has forced the industry to recognize — and cater to — groups of women that it has completely ignored in the past.

38. Technology and Persuasion: Persuasive technologies surround us, and they’re growing smarter. How do these technologies work? And why?

39. How Life360 won its patent war

40. Rightscorp Discovering That Harassing Broadband Users Isn’t The Cash Cow It Thought It Would Be

41. Voltage Pictures Has To Pay $22k To Canadian ISP If It Wants Names For Its Shakedown Scheme

42. The Church Of Scientology is bad at Twitter

43. Beyond Freedom Of Information Requests: Freedom Of Code Requests

44. Internet TV’s Big Chance To Oust Cable Is Almost Here

45. For a brighter robotics future, it’s time to offload their brains: The power of cloud software could make robots smarter and less expensive.

46. Where next for robot journalists in the newsroom?: With Associated Press announcing that algorithmic programs will soon be used on the sports desk, should journalists be worried they’ll soon be replaced?

47. Yep, That Anti-Robot Protest At SXSW Was A Marketing Stunt [UPDATED]

48. Co-founder feuds at L.A. tech start-ups show how handshake deals can blow up

49. MRIs show our brains shutting down when we see security prompts

50. Humans: The Next Platform

51. Yik Yak And Online Anonymity Are Good For College Students

52. Balthus’ Soft-Core Polaroids Splash Down in Paris: An exhibit that is a violation of a young girl’s and a dead artist’s privacy. Or not.

53. Q&A: Cindy Cohn, EFF’s new executive director

54. Google Puts Online 10,000 Works of Street Art from Across the Globe 


55. Bell head meddled in news coverage

Bell’s Crull Banned CRTC Chair Blais From CTV News Coverage Following TalkTV Decision

Broadcasting Regulatory Policy CRTC 2015-96, Let’s Talk TV: A World of Choice – A roadmap to maximize choice for TV viewers and to foster a healthy, dynamic TV market

What on earth is happening at Bell?: Top 10 list of Bell legal/regulatory/privacy issues over just the past two years (Michael Geist)

Why the Vertically Integrated TV Giants Are the CRTC’s Hidden Target in Pick-and-Pay Decision

(Michael Geist)

56. The new Gamergate: Angry white men are trying to shut down diverse comics

57. Plagiarize This: A reasonable Solution to Musical Copyright After “Blurred Lines”

58. Remixing Culture And Why The Art Of The Mash-Up Matters

59. Elon Musk put SpaceX’s photos in the public domain: So why does Flickr say they’re licensed?

Elon Musk Says SpaceX Photos Are Now Fully Public Domain

60. Stop The Presses: Disney Tells Court About The Importance Of The Public Domain

61. From free to fee: How U.S. dailies decide to use paywalls

62. The long, twisted history of glitch art


News of the Week; March 18, 2015


1. Artist claims Kabam copied his IP to create its mobile game ‘Creature Academy’

2. Legendary developer Jeff Minter claims Atari is blocking future releases of ‘TxK’

3. Appeals court revives Microsoft Xbox 360 console defect litigation: Is there a console defect causing the Xbox to damage game discs?

4. NCAA seeks appeal in O’Bannon v. NCAA

5. It’s time for the FBI to prosecute Gamergate trolls (Brianna Wu)

Q&A With The Congresswoman Taking On Gamergate

Here Lies My Hatred

Gamergate Hasn’t Hurt Academic Interest in Gaming, Say Leading Scholars — If Anything, It’s Increased Interest

6. It costs more to play as a female in mobile games

7. Is ageism the only prejudice the industry isn’t discussing?

8. Why is the Grand Theft Auto CEO also chairman of the ESRB?: Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick’s role undermines the perceived independence crucial to the US ratings board’s legitimacy

9. ESRB expanding to mobile, digital platforms

10. Google Play apps and updates are now subject to a review process: Company has also started handing out kid- and parent-friendly age ratings for apps.

11. Steam Curators now required to disclose endorsements

12. Sorry, Europe, you still can’t get refunds on your Steam game purchases: Confusing legal language maintains the status quo for Valve’s digital store.

13. ‘Teslacrypt’ Ransomware Targets Gamers

14. Project Cars release delayed for a third time

15. Does Sony Leave Hacked PSN Account Owners Holding The Bag?

16. More regional restrictions on Steam gifts come to light

17. Tencent profits at $4bn for 2014, up 53% year-on-year

18. Taking the fear out of contracts: Adriaan de Jongh had to understand legalese before he could create a tool to help devs eliminate it; he just didn’t expect to enjoy it so much

19. Stock Ticker: Sony soars, Microsoft slumps and EA reclaims its crown

20. Nintendo Partners With DeNA To Bring Its Games And IP To Smartphones

21. Steam reaches 9m concurrent users despite service issues

22. Ex-pro video gamer explains why e-sports are becoming the number one hobby in the world

23. Someday, Doctors Could Prescribe You Video Games For Your Brain

24. Video Games Are Better Without Characters: The real legacy of SimCity is its attempt—and failure—to make complex systems the protagonists instead of people. (Ian Bogost)

25. Japan’s Strangest Videogames And The Person Who Finds Them

26. Fixing “Videogames”

27. Google’s AI Masters Space Invaders (But It Still Stinks at Pac-Man): Google’s artificial-intelligence researchers say software that learns to play video games could graduate to the real world before long.


28. Twitter puts trillions of tweets up for sale to data miners: Company plans to make content generated by users available to commerce, academia and even police involved in crowd control

29. Internet carriers may be breaching Canadian privacy laws: In privacy and transparency report, Teksavvy scores highest, Videotron and Shaw score low

30. We can’t accept Internet surveillance as the new normal

31. Why The Anti-Terrorism Bill is Really an Anti-Privacy Bill: Bill C-51′s Evisceration of Privacy Protection (Michael Geist)

32. The Orwellian Re-Branding Of “Mass Surveillance” As Merely “Bulk Collection”

33. Americans’ Privacy Strategies Post-Snowden (Pew Research Center)

34. Privacy Might Be Getting an International Champion

35. What Spymaster Barbie Can Teach Us About Privacy

36. Sexism in cyberspace (Katherine Clark)

37. Divergent star Ashley Judd will press charges over Twitter harassment

38. Now, Twitter will package threat reports for local authorities’ sake: Coincides with actress Ashley Judd complaining about social media threats.

39. NYPD caught red-handed sanitizing police brutality Wikipedia entries

NYPD won’t punish cops for sanitizing Wikipedia police brutality entries

40. Coquitlam teen pleads guilty in Florida ‘swatting’ case

41. Marketers Tricked SXSW Tinder Users With A Chatbot

42. How ISIS Succeeds on Social Media Where #StopKony Fails: Even with fewer clicks

43. Microsoft will allow pirated copies of Windows 7 in China to upgrade to Windows 10

44. People Who Use Firefox or Chrome Are Better Employees: Yet another reason to shun Internet Explorer

45. FCC Releases 400-Page Net Neutrality Document

46. Internet providers ordered to stop hiding the true size of monthly bills: FCC tells ISPs and wireless providers to disclose all hidden fees.

47. Facebook to stand trial over virtual currency: October court date set by California judge over unauthorised payments made by children

48. Here’s everything that’s wrong with cable and satellite TV bills

49. Court Rejects Argument That The Music Industry Deserves ‘Pirate Tax’ On Every Internet Connection

50. What Will Meerkat Do Without Twitter?

51. Diary Of A Cord Cutter In 2015 (Part 4: Favorite Apps And Resources)

52. The Email Scam with Centuries of History

53. No copyright and trade-mark rights in most metatags

54. Anti-Robot Protest Held At SXSW

Responsible Artificial Intelligence

55. An “Apple Engineer” Explains The 2015 MacBook (Or Not) 

56. Facebook, Oculus And The Future Of Virtual Reality

57. A day in the life of Jessica, the content creator of the future

58. The History of Lorem Ipsum


59. ‘Blurred Lines’ Verdict: How It Started, Why It Backfired on Robin Thicke and Why Songwriters Should Be Nervous

Gaye family asks judge to ban all sales, performances of “Blurred Lines”: An injunction is only fair, they say, to give the family time to negotiate royalties.

Five Lessons from the “Blurred Lines” Case

Pharrell Williams’ Lawyer: “We’re Entering the Bottom of the Sixth Inning”

What’s Wrong With the ‘Blurred Lines’ Copyright Ruling?

Years Of Brainwashing The Public Into Thinking Everything Creative Must Be ‘Owned’ Has Led To This New Mess

5 Hit Songwriters Talk “Blurred Lines,” Creativity And Copyright: In the wake of the $7.3 million “Blurred Lines” verdict, songwriters for Beyoncé, Sam Smith, Bruno Mars, and more talk candidly with BuzzFeed News about the trouble with copyright law and the inevitability of influence.

Blurred Laws: In Defense Of Pastiche And Robin Thicke

A Copyright Expert Explains the ‘Blurred Lines’ Ruling

Blurred Lines in the difference between copyright in a song and in a recording

60. When the Walls Come Crumbling Down: The CRTC’s Latest TalkTV Decision (Michael Geist)

Broadcasting Regulatory Policy CRTC 2015-86: Let’s Talk TV; The way forward – Creating compelling and diverse Canadian programming

John Doyle: CRTC’s new plans: Quality over quantity? Good luck with that

61. Gigaom: The Life and Death of a Venture Funded Media Startup

Exit interview: Mathew Ingram

62. In media companies, the editorial staff shouldn’t be kept in the dark about finances

63. When is a Copy not a Copy?: Technological Neutrality at Stake at the Supreme Court of Canada (Michael Geist)

64. Some Observations On Political Gaming by Herbert Goldhamer and Hans Speir of The Rand Corporation, April 30, 1959 (historical document)

65. The decline of journalism and the rise of public relations

66. Journalism in the Age of the Accidental News Junkie: A study of Millennial media habits claims that young people crave hard news. Do they really?

67. You Belong to Me: The fanfiction boom is reshaping the power dynamic between creators and consumers.

68. Enough About Me: In an era of chronic self-exposure, authors are pushing back against naked revelation

69. I Challenge You to Stop Reading White, Straight, Cis Male Authors for One Year

I’m straight, white and male. Now what?

70. What Is Creativity? Cultural Icons on What Ideation Is and How It Works


UBC Press Start Conference: Audio of panel on “Working with Japanese Game Companies: Best Practices”


Below you will find a link to the audio of a terrific panel I was privileged to be on at the UBC Press Start conference on “Working with Japanese Game Companies: Best Practices”. The panel included Atsuo Nakayama (Bandai Namco), Joe Nickolls (Capcom Vancouver), Sakae Osumi (Capcom USA), myself and Patrick Pennefather (Centre for Digital Media) as moderator.

Photo credit to Jia Lu, a student at the Centre for Digital Media.


Short & long versions of an interview on freedom of speech/expression in video games

In the category of making me look and sound much too good comes this interview with the new website BasedGamer which originates here in Vancouver. You will find the short version (4:12) on top and the long version (10:37) below that.

Also, to be clear, the music bed underneath the interview does not in any way indicate that I will be teaching yoga classes at any time in the future.

BasedGamer itself can be found at


News of the Week; March 11, 2015


1. ‘Turkey Not Banning Minecraft,’ Says Diplomat

Mojang Responds To Turkish Government’s Plan To Ban ‘Minecraft’

Turkish Ministry Recommends Banning Super-Violent Minecraft

2. Report: Mississippi deputy fired over threatening Xbox Live players: Offers racist slurs, home address, badge number during Call of Duty session.

3. GDC Awards Show Hosts Deliver Messages About Internet Hate

4. Massachusetts congresswoman urges FBI to take Gamergate seriously

5. Brianna Wu vs. the Troll Army: She set out to transform the video gaming industry by creating a hit game aimed at female players. Then came Gamergate. And the harassment. And the death threats.

6. The games industry is wrong about kids, gaming and gender

7. The People Who Make Brutal Video Game Porn

8. Video game bans: the debate about guns, GTA, and real-life violence

9. Australian Classification Board Turns To IARC To Streamline Ratings Process

10. Finally, African Fantasy Is Getting Its Own Gorgeous RPG

11. Intel Promises To Help Foster More Diversity in The Video Games Industry

12. Riot Games rated one of America’s top 15 places to work

13. CFP: Games for the Elderly, and the Representation of Aging in Video Games

14. Petition Call on Activision and Infinity Ward To Revamp ‘Modern Warfare 2’ for PS4, Xbox One

15. How Switzerland could be the model for better game communities

16. What is a gamer?

17. Comcast Blocks HBO Go on PlayStation Devices

18. PlayStation Network attacked “every day” – Yoshida

19. Swatting: It’s All Fun And Games Until Someone Gets Murdered

20. Majesco Hands Off Retail Publishing As Annual Shareholder Meeting Looms

21. Curt Schilling Speaks Out About the Failure of 38 Studios

22. A word on dealing with publishers: Don’t – Skulls of the Shogun dev Borut Pfeifer cautions indies against signing deals for marketing help, says many exist to leech value

23. The Rise Of Slow Gaming, Our Cultural Antidote To Angry Birds

24. Blizzard offers college tuition in new eSports tournament

25. Minecraft’s Markus Persson Tells All On His Sale To Microsoft, His $70 Million Home

26. VR sickness cannot be solved by hardware improvements alone: Walt Disney Imagineering’s Bei Yang points to game design as an ever present risk of sickness in virtual reality

27. Why video game engines may power the future of film and architecture: The original developer of Gears of War has an ambitious plan for the future of everything

28. History of Video Games (1950-1980)

29. The Merging of Artist and Audience: How Games will Redefine Fame

30. On killing virtual dogs


31. Free to Be You and Me? Copyright and Constraint (Rebecca Tushnet)

32. 13-24 Year Olds Watching More YouTube Than TV – To The Surprise of No-one

33. U.S. NSA sued by Wikimedia, rights groups over mass surveillance

34. New smoking gun further ties NSA to omnipotent “Equation Group” hackers: What are the chances unrelated state-sponsored projects were both named “BACKSNARF”?

35. Je suis Charlie sentiment fades amid calls to tame free speech

36. Everyone Wants You To Have Security, But Not From Them (Bruce Schneier)

37. Why I’m Saying Goodbye to Apple, Google and Microsoft: I’m putting more trust in communities than corporations (Dan Gillmor)

38. Two weeks on, Superfish debacle still causing pain for some Lenovo customers: Assurances on the demise of the dangerous adware are (somewhat) exaggerated.

39. Attack Attribution and Cyber Conflict

40. Misuse of Canada’s Copyright Notice System Continues: U.S. Firm Sending Thousands of Notices With Settlement Demands (Michael Geist)

More Copyright Trolls Rushing In To Take Advantage Of Canadian Copyright Notice System Loopholes

41. Here’s why patents are innovation’s worst enemyMPAA Abusing DMCA Takedowns To Attempt A Poor Man’s SOPA

42. Federal Court finds meta tags do not infringe trademarks or copyright

43. Trial Court Doesn’t Unmask Parodist Twitterers

44. CRTC Chief Compliance and Enforcement Officer issues $1.1 million penalty to Compu-Finder for spamming Canadians

45. How Reddit Became a Worse Black Hole of Violent Racism than Stormfront

46. This Is What It’s Like To Go To Prison For Trolling: In January 2014, two people were found guilty of sending death and rape threats to the feminist campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez in the most high-profile online abuse case Britain has yet seen. 

47. WordPress Wins Case Against DMCA Abuser… Who Ignored The Proceedings

48. Will the FTC ever drop the hammer on paid Wikipedia edits?

49. Following the Digital Breadcrumbs: How to distinguish online nutcases from honest-to-God villains.

50. Spanish Court Limits Scope Of EU’s Right To Be Forgotten

51. Facebook post written in Florida lands US man in United Arab Emirates jail: Mechanic accused of slandering his employer, which is illegal in the Emirates.

52. Sofia Vergara Successfully Shuts Down “Fan Site” Via UDRP Proceeding

53. Europe reverses course on net neutrality legislation: EU member states have voted in favor of allowing the prioritization of “specialized” services.

54. MySpace – what went wrong: ‘The site was a massive spaghetti-ball mess’: Former VP of online marketing Sean Percival on corporate interference, Punch The Monkey, and a failed attempt to buy Spotify

55. Top 10 emerging technologies of 2015

56. Cognitive Technology: The rise of “bionic brains”

57. Licensing Your 3D Printed Stuff: Why 3D Printed Objects Challenge Our Copyright Beliefs

58. Why No One’s Talking About ‘Cord-Forevers’

59. Why It’s Almost Impossible To Teach a Robot To Do Your Laundry


60. The End of Creativity: The word “creativity” was made up less than a hundred years ago. It is time to stop using it.

61. Raising the Broadcast White Flag: What Lies Behind Bell’s Radical Plan to Raise TV Fees, Block Content, Violate Net Neutrality & Fight Netflix

62. Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke to pay $7.4m to Marvin Gaye’s family over Blurred Lines: Jury decides Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke copied 1977 hit Got to Give It Up in lawsuit filed by Gaye’s children

The Blurred Lines Decision

Jury Says Robin Thicke And Pharrell Infringed… Even If They Didn’t Mean To: Told To Pay $7.3 Million

How the ‘Blurred Lines’ case could have chilling effect on creativity

63. What The Law Really Says About Music Plagiarism: How you think about music ≠ how the courts think about music.

64. What We Talk About When We Talk About Crediting Photographers

65. Bryn Geffert On Securing Rights

66. India Threatens BBC Over Decision To Air Rape Documentary In U.K.

Indian Government Attempts To Censor BBC Gang Rape Documentary; Succeeds Only In Drawing More Attention To It

67. We can’t rely on corporations like Fox to care about ethics in journalism

68. Jury Decides Village People ‘Y.M.C.A.’ Songwriter Has 50 Percent Song Share

69. 2 Hockey Players And Elisha Cuthbert Want Cash From A TV Station For Airing A Joke Tweet

70. Liability may lurk in the vitriol of reader comments

71. Media mergers and the Competition Bureau: is the medium the market? 

72. Rise Of The Robot Sportswriter: Now that the AP has announced that it will outsource sports stories to artificial intelligence, we can expect lots of freezing #ColdTakes!

73. What It’s Like Publishing My Entire Book on Medium