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The Government's Plan To Kill Independent Web Sites

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posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:04 PM
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I think that government should get out of the internet entirely - and propose NO LAWS at all.

They will start making laws for the internet - and the laws will grow and grow - and our last hope for freedom (the net) will be cut off from us.

They aren't making these laws based on thousands of people asking them to - they are making them based on a few powerful interests.

Have YOU sent congress a letter demanding they make such a law? Didn't think so.




posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:06 PM
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Thank you for this thread. S+F

I am in 'the industry' and am completely aware of how cookies work and as much as I would like to believe that it is a simple and uninformed over reaction to a minor problem, OP makes a very good point that I'm inclined to raise an eyebrow (perhaps even two) at.

Why should the government put there grimy little fingers in this pie? As my mother used to say when I overstepped my boundaries; "Somebody's getting too big for their britches".

I certainly don't have to "opt in" to watch those commercials that break up my beloved Deadliest Catch. I certainly don't have to "opt in" to flip past the advertisements in magazines or newspapers. Why would the government want to say that I have to be able to opt in/out for advertisements on websites?

For my privacy? Thank you Uncle Sam!! I want to thank you for trying to protect my privacy by passing this law, just like you did when you passed the Patriot Act and ruled it legal for all of my personal correspondence by any means to be monitored by whatever acronym you deemed relevant.

Concerned about my privacy. Hog wash.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:07 PM
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Originally posted by mister.old.school

Originally posted by quackers
Perhaps you might want to educate yourself on what an "opt in" is.

You may be well-advised to do the same in this regard.

The legislation Boucher has indicated he favors is a system where web site visitors see no third-party ads until the user opts-in to see the ads. For example as Boucher would have it, when a page first loads, no ads (from third party networks) would be seen, and a small "I want to see ads, but my surfing habits might be tracked" button will be displayed, and no ads will be seen unless the visitor clicks the button.

This is not an opt-in for data-sharing, it's an opt-in to receive banner ads.


The legislation sounds perfectly reasonable to me. Are you going to suggest next then that software such ad AdBlock are banned, because they achieve exactly the same end result. How about we turn cookies into rootkits so people can't delete them? How about we make it legal for sites to install adware on your PC so they can show you ads whenever they like? I see absolutely no issue with having an opt in system. If sites don't like that then you know what, they can offer subscription services or think of other ways of generating revenue instead of ramming tacky seziure inducing banner ads down people's throats.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:07 PM
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The following is my opinion as a member participating in this discussion.



Originally posted by quackers
just who's side are you on here?


I'm on my side. You might note the little box around my post showing I'm posting as a member. I don't give up the right to post as a member just because I volunteer some time to occasionally help out. I've got no financial stake in this fight at all, but I have a huge stake, as do you, in the continual free flow of information.



As an ATS Staff Member, I will not moderate in threads such as this where I have participated as a member.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:10 PM
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Couldn't this be dealt with by having an entry page saying something like 'by continuing I agree to allow ads to appear' ... or some other generic acceptance of ads.

The entry page could have links to the actual posts or stories, much like ATS, so the users would naturally proceed to the pages with ads.

It would be a pain to recode and rearrange the site, but it could be done.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:12 PM
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Originally posted by quackers

Are you going to suggest next then that software such ad AdBlock are banned, because they achieve exactly the same end result.


Ding ding ding, we have a winner.

As I said before, and as you just confirmed, such protection is readily available.

So now ask yourself why is such legislation needed?

We'll make a CT of you yet.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:15 PM
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I'll jump in.


Originally posted by quackers
Are you going to suggest next then that software such ad AdBlock are banned, because they achieve exactly the same end result.

Yes, I would.

In fact, if you wanted to run a service that resold magazines and newspapers, but with the ads torn out, that would be a crime.

About two years ago a street vendor in NYC was selling the NY Daily News for $1.00... twice the price, but he had spent time ripping out all the ads as a "service to the readers." He's in jail now.

So... why is acceptable to do the same for websites where our only source of income is the ads?




I see absolutely no issue with having an opt in system.

If that's the way you feel, then no amount of convincing will change your mind.

I doubt this type of legislation would go through, but it's an excellent example of how big media (and government) is trying to gain control of the Internet by any means possible.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:17 PM
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reply to post by quackers
 


The difference here, quackers, is that the choice is available to us to remove cookies, block cookies, and/or install ad blocking software to prevent the displaying of advertisements and the storing of cookies just as the choice is available to the content provider to place ads on their site.

My problem, as I believe is the same as those who are on the side of the OP, isn't that we won't be able to see the ads and help the content providers maintain their position in the world wide web - it is that the government has no right to state what content a content provider is allowed to display (within reason, I'm neither advocating nor discussing the allowance of truly despicable things) - especially when untrue means are being used to reach an arguably unconstitutional end.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:18 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
I doubt this type of legislation would go through, but it's an excellent example of how big media (and government) is trying to gain control of the Internet by any means possible.


I hope you are right.

Has there been any mention of jurisdiction within this legislation that you are aware of?

That is to say, should it pass, are you moving to Costa Rica?



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:20 PM
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Originally posted by schrodingers dog
That is to say, should it pass, are you moving to Costa Rica?


From what I know, and from what's been discussed, it would apply to all sites and ad networks owned by US entities.

It would be difficult for us to alter our entity structure if something like this were to happen. And regardless, it would decimate the entire mid-tier and lower-tier online advertising industry such that location would not matter.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:23 PM
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reply to post by SkepticOverlord
 


edit to add: regarding the banning of ad blocking software.

You make a very good point, SkepticOverlord. And I do agree with you - to a point. Once such legislation is in place, how can we possibly define boundaries for it? Are we also to outlaw pop-up blockers? What about software that prevents a site from redirecting you to a different (and potentially malicious) site altogether?

With the example of the newspaper, either the ads are in it or they're not - but that's not necessarily the case with the internet. It's not an on/off switch.

I'm not necessarily disagreeing with you, merely suggesting that even the simplest of restrictive legislation regarding an environment with potentially limitless variables is the start of a very long and slippery slope.

[edit on 17-6-2009 by memoir]



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:35 PM
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Originally posted by memoir
Are we also to outlaw pop-up blockers?

In a "perfect world," websites won't need pop-up ads as the in-page ads are well-targeted relevant ads that work better and pay more.




What about software that prevents a site from redirecting you to a different (and potentially malicious) site altogether?

That's already illegal (if the target site is malicious), it's just that no one is making the effort to prosecute the offenders... or block the offending domains.




With the example of the newspaper, either the ads are in it or they're not - but that's not necessarily the case with the internet. It's not an on/off switch.

The newsstand price is a pittance in the revenue bucket for newspapers (and magazines)... the major portion of income is via ads.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:35 PM
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Originally posted by memoir
reply to post by quackers
 


The difference here, quackers, is that the choice is available to us to remove cookies, block cookies, and/or install ad blocking software to prevent the displaying of advertisements and the storing of cookies just as the choice is available to the content provider to place ads on their site.

My problem, as I believe is the same as those who are on the side of the OP, isn't that we won't be able to see the ads and help the content providers maintain their position in the world wide web - it is that the government has no right to state what content a content provider is allowed to display (within reason, I'm neither advocating nor discussing the allowance of truly despicable things) - especially when untrue means are being used to reach an arguably unconstitutional end.


And you know what, the choice is there if people want to view ads. The simple fact is that the only way this would hurt a site is if the only reason they exist is to shovel advertisements to users, most of whom either block them or just ignore them, otherwise they would have little problem in staying afloat via donations and subscriptions, as many many many sites do, including sites far larger than this. An opt in is far from from the OP's overly dramatic thread title of killing off independent sites for the simple reason that in all likely hood the vast majority of independent sites on the net make next to nothing from advertisements. The larger sites, with epic userbases and a wealth of intelligent and resourceful people would have little trouble dealing with the opt in scheme. If ATS had an opt in, I would opt in because I appreciate what the site offers and they seem to be quite responsible in the way they serve up ads, the same cannot be said of many other sites. I just don't see how this is a big deal.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:39 PM
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reply to post by mister.old.school
 
Boucher is doing his and both parties masters bidding if on the off chance this some how does not get past congress expect him and the news networks to make this into a major "national security" issue.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:40 PM
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really? you TPTB want to take away my internet? my fountain of truth which i use to acquire and spread information?


well i $%#^ing dare you! do it! c'mon! don't wimp out now! do it! do it!



because i can tell you right now, me about a billion other people will finally be motivated to get off our keyboards and take to the streets.

whats happening now can not be reversed, we the people, are on to you and can't be stopped no matter what you do short of killing us.


so go ahead, censor my internet, make it to where i can only view CNN and hulu, i guarantee it will have the complete opposite effect you hope for.



[edit on 17-6-2009 by shortest man walking]



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 03:46 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
The newsstand price is a pittance in the revenue bucket for newspapers (and magazines)... the major portion of income is via ads.


True enough, and what has happened to them should be a warning to small to medium internet enterprises who depend exclusively on such advertising should such a legislation ever be seriously considered.

Though I appreciate mister.old.school raising the early alarm here, I am inclined to agree with SO, namely that the resistance to such action will be greater than the power of the few to realize it. There's just too much money at stake and the train seems for the most part to have sailed.


At least that's what I'm telling myself.

[edit on 17 Jun 2009 by schrodingers dog]



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 04:04 PM
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reply to post by mister.old.school
 


You, sir, are brilliant. That's all I can really say.

I always expect an ulterior motive to every piece of legislation, but honestly, I would have overlooked something like this. I would have never put the pieces together and saw the true underlying agenda.

But I guess that's what they count on, right? They're certainly good at what they do.

Great post. I have nothing else to add. Starred and flagged.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 04:32 PM
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@SO
I'm amazed that ATS can afford new servers with "16 cores, 8 gigs of RAM, and more importantly, SSD's (multiple solid state drives) in a RAID-10 configuration", from those crappy ads saying "This is no joke, congratulations, you won!".

Who on Earth clicks them? What mindless numb-nuts fall for it?

You can do what you want with your site, and i can do what i want with my browser. If i choose to view ads or not, tis my choice. That's like making people watch TV and when the ads come on, they have to watch those as well; that's ridiculous. You mentioned magazines, well print based content won't last for long with the proliferation of internet on ubiquitous devices.

SO, i believe you're missing a trick. Why don't you create your own advertising platform selling tin-foil hats or a button where i can purchase survival gear like a 'complete bug out kit for $200'; i'd buy that in a heartbeat.

There are many bright minds on here and surely you could empower a few members to set up a bespoke shop, exclusive to ATS. They could collate all their info and sell eBooks.

Just an idea to get rid of those utterly rubbish ads.



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 04:48 PM
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I wonder if this somehow doesn't tie in with the problems on the local Craigslist Rant and Rave section (and a couple other sections occasionally- like the free bin)- People are flagging posts at almost literal superhuman speed! HUNDREDS of posts. And this is state, country, and I have even seen a couple posts about this being worldwide.

These aren't offensive, or disgusting, or illegal posts- these are true rants. It went from random to total. Deleted posts all the way back to early to mid May.

Something to think about..... Are any other websites that have 'free speech forums' being affected besides CL?



posted on Jun, 17 2009 @ 05:18 PM
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I hope the day never comes when I am forced to rely exclusively on cnn or bbc for all my news. I don't feel as though I am exaggerating when I say it will be similar to reliving the dark ages of human history! Once you aquire a taste for TRUTH your thirst can never be quenched with half-truths and/or outright lies.

Certainly not everything on conspiracy sites is true and you constantly have to seperate the wheat from the chaff but at least I get to decide for myself what is believable and what isn't by comparing sources and listening to all sides of any given topic. This is true freedom!





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