The Gatekeepers are Coming….

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    • #48572

      Anyone who’s ever trawled through the numerous numbers of videos on YouTube and other video sharing sites knows that there’s lots of ‘questionable’ material out there. Well, if the FCC has it’s way not only will it govern the traditional broadcast airwaves, but cable, satellite and the ‘Net will fall under its jurisdiction. All this (no pun intended) ‘hinges’ on the old case of Janet Jackson’s ‘Wardrobe Malfunction’ during the Halftime Show for Superbowl XXXVIII. Here’s an article by John Eggerton explaining what’s at stake:

      This is a very important decision pending because many independent and amateur filmmakers have turned exclusively to the internet for distribution of their work. Though many sharing sites do a fair job of policing the videos submitted, still there’s a great deal of room for filmmakers to get hammered by the FCC should they be allowed to become involved with overseeing the net.

      Let me know what you think.

    • #199386

      Freedom of expression. Anybody who doesn’t want to watch or see something particularly always has the choice to not tune in, IMHO.

      Less government, not more.

    • #199387

      “Anybody who doesn’t want to watch or see something particularly always has the choice to not tune in….”


      You would think it would be that easy. You would think that adults at least can look at something and say, ‘that’s not for me’ and just turn it off. But for some reason, it seems far easier to rail about something in or out of context to have it eradicated by the hand of government. You would think we would have learned our lesson from the Patriot Act that the more control we give the Governing Powers, the more they’ll be happy to take.

      To me this isn’t much difference than out of the blue saying, ‘as of… your wireless equipment will be illegal’ without so much as a ‘sorry dude’. You let the FCC get involved with the ‘Net and ‘watch the games begin!’

      Now, the FCC does have its good points and by and large is a useful regulatory body. Complain to the FCC when you cellphone provider starts up with their nonsense and see how fast the issue they won’t bend on magically becomes ‘flexible’. But the ‘net is far too wide-open an area in my opinion for them to be getting involved with. Last thing we need is our government acting like a certain unnamed iron oxide-based colored, highly populated, capitalist eastern country though they say their not shutting down the internet every time something happens to displease them. The FCC gets in there, set your watch for it.

    • #199388

      the same argumant was made about television. Youhadtwo switches youcould use, change the channel, or turn it off. I find it sad that we, as a society, cannot take responsability for our actions. Rather then take the simple path of “changing the channel” we would pull togher tons of effort and resources to have somebody else tell us what we can or cannot see or have access to.

      Not that we need another agency to get involved but where is the ACLU on this? I remembernot too long ago there was talk of regulating what was available at library Internet PCs so that children didn’t have access to certain sites. The ACLU was all over that before the echo died down.

      I just love how the vocal minorityis able to establish rules ofwhat I can and cannot do. It just baffles my mind that they can infringe upon my rights because they feel their rights are compromised.

    • #199389

      “It just baffles my mind that they can infringe upon my rights because they feel their rights are compromised.”


      It is that same vocal minority that’s screaming about how the ‘Government is too big and taking over everything.’ You want protection but you don’t want your rights compromised.’ Sorry, but you can’t have both at the same time.

      My real concern is for the budding filmmakers that ask hordes of questions here in the forums and make their little films so they can put them up on the ‘Tube. If the same FCC rules end up applying to the ‘Net, it is not unfathomable that teenagers like Shippocaio or guys in their twenties like Kenzo could get in life-changing trouble if for some innocent misstep involving the content of their videos. If you read the article, back in ’04 CBS got hit with a $500k+ fine for ‘Boobgate’. If the same thing happened with the updated rules, that fine would be $5 million. Could any of us survive a $5 Million Dollar fine?

      Some might say, “Oh they’d never charge someone so small a fine like that!” Let’s just say that for some astronomical, mystical and heartfelt reason the FCC decided to show mercy the minimum fine would still part the hair of people living in China. First time up they’ll want to set an example. I mean law enforcement agencies are bringing middle-school kids up on charges of trafficking ‘Child Pornography’ for ‘Sexting’. Figure the odds you’ll face if you’re the first to run afoul of the FCC if they get involved with the ‘Net.

    • #199390

      I think if the FCC came at us with a plan that would make them responsible for eliminating spam, viruses, phishing scams, and spyware, while at the same time having Legislation passed that protects our rights to our content and constitutional rights….. we’d have no choice, the public would eagerly jump on board… majority rules.

      As it sits looks like another bad idea Government power/tax grab.

    • #199391

      “As it sits looks like another bad idea Government power/tax grab.”


      I’m inclined to agree with you. You mentioned the ‘taxation angle’ and it does make some sense. Both Federal and State agencies have been working their way into the ‘net for various reasons that have the side benefit of increased tax revenues. I remember the long and hard fought debate about taxing goods and services on the net. Eventually, the states won a partial victory in that now many of the major franchises hit you with sales tax if they have facilities in the state you order from. It may be as you suggest a way for the FCC to get in and pave the way for other Federal Agencies to follow. One thing is for sure, wherever the government goes, taxes aren’t far behind.

      Maybe it’s a good thing that all this flailing about copyright infringement is going on with the sharing sites. In the process of giving video posters grief, it will be a wake-up call for indie filmmakers and by the time the FCC or whatever agency finally does ‘break through’ it will be common knowledge of how to police your own work so you don’t run afoul of them.

    • #199392

      Wow. Looking at the poll results, and nobody so far has given a ‘yes’ answer. Though this is a microscopic sample, I’m inclined to believe could be an indicator no one’s too thrilled with the idea of letting the FCC get involved with the ‘Net. Now we’ll just have to see how the court case pans out to know for sure.

    • #199393

      show me someone “thrilled” with any facet of the establishment and I will show you a MEMBER of the establishment.

      M. Scott Peck once wrote “Life is difficult…” and noted that once “we” accept that is so, then it becomes difficult no longer. I agree that life is difficult, but cannot fathom the majority of us accepting to the extent it no longer is so long as we have Big Brother and the Amazing Czars (oh, and the FCC and IRS) making up asinine rules.

    • #199394

      To me the sad part is that the generalpublic will not realize the “slippery slope’ we are introducing until it becomes too late to change it. Those that are not protesting it believe, to some degree, that it is going to protect them from perceived dangers without reducing their rights. They do not understand that at any time you have an element of the government regulating (read restrict) access to any of our perceived freedoms, those regulations will impact them at some point. By then it will be too late to voice out “that was not what we intended…”

      As it is we already have agencies “listening in” to the Internet for terrorist behavior, Child Pornography, certain levels of identity theft, stalking, child molesting and such. Do we really need another agency looking over our collective shoulders? I think the poll above serves an answer to that question.

    • #199395

      “Show me someone “thrilled” with any facet of the establishment and I will show you a MEMBER of the establishment.”

      That or someone who doesn’t mind that little ‘dip in the medicine trough’ and the nice man with the shears waiting to cut off all their wool.

      “To me the sad part is that the generalpublic will not realize the
      “slippery slope’ we are introducing until it becomes too late to change

      Yeah, that’s the rub of it. People want to feel ‘safe and comfortable’ so every time some new legislation or agency comes along to ensure that feeling of security, folks seem to go along with it. Forget about how each time that happens you lose a bit more of your perceived rights. It’s so funny to me. I remember talking to a friend of mine after 911 and she kept going on about “how she didn’t feel safe,” she didn’t take it well when I told her that none of us ever were.

      Safety in my mind means ‘today I did my thing and went to bed without incident. Tomorrow’s another story.’ Now that thing with ‘Nipplegate’ was obviously a stunt that accident or no, obviously didn’t go over well. Apologize, pay a fine, don’t do it again. Hell I was watching and unless you TiVo’ed it, you couldn’t see anything anyway. I thought she had a pasty on. If the news people hadn’t slow-mo’ed it endlessly for weeks after that it probably wouldn’t have been that big of a deal.

      What I find annoying is how the FCC is just using this as an excuse to as Earl called it, “Make some more asinine rules.” If you want to see another incident of how all these ‘New Rules’ are making life more ‘interesting’, take a look at my other post “Potential Problems when Shooting in Public.”

    • #199396

      I’m sure on board with all of this discussion.

      I’m confident that any proposed insertion from any type of government is a result of a bigger picture which always seems to have one goal and that is “Fees”, ya know, taxes.

      The strategy of regulations will always point to money. Historically we just see various ways of reaching that goal. It all depends on what society is sensitive to at that point in history. If the people are concerned about our environment governmental and big business strategies will focus on projecting an appearance of a goal being to save the environment. Which ultimately will led to the birth of governmental departments/branches to protecting that cause. On and on it has gone and continues to go. The ACLU, unions and other special interest groups will jump on board but only after they have gathered up their under the table deals and commitments to ensure they will benefit from the regulatory laws that will soon follow.

      The trail of regulations is lined on both sides of the “One Way Highway” with the deposit receipts of tax payers money. The majority of all funds crushed out of our pockets from the mountain of government regulations, taxes, special permit fees, administration fees, etc. will never be used to mitigate the issues they claim need to be regulated.

      As long as our elected officials are able to keep the public at odds with each other their blatant disregard for their oath to their office will never be exposed and they will continue to destroy the unity we so desperately need in order to remove the influence of politics from “our” government, our lives and our quest for the American dream.

      OK, I’m done, sorry.

    • #199397


      Don’t be sorry. That whole ‘angling for a new way to collect fees’ is really a prevailing undertone coming from this case. It’s a shame that even when planning to make rules ‘for the public good’, the overall plan is to take advantage of a situation in order to create yet another revenue stream.

    • #199398

      Gotta love government. This looks like another faction is trying to go the other way.

      Do you think they really ever talk to eachother? I want to see how they are going to eat their cake and have it too..

    • #199399


      That’s pretty wacky. It also shows how flippin’ bi-polar our government and country has gotten. But the bottom line isn’t ‘freedom’ or ‘enemy defeation'(is that a word?) for the countries in question citizens access to the ‘net. It’s all about the huge ‘net service providers cashing in on those untapped markets. You pull the leashes off countries whose governments suppress internet access and watch the money roll in. I do like how one hand is waving the ‘freedom flag’ and the other is preparing ‘the probe’.

    • #199400

      Pretty much everything the government does to us, for us or against us feels like a colonscopy “in the end.” πŸ™‚

    • #199401

      I’m sure I speak for many when I say “I just don’t want the colonoscopy shoved down my throat.”

    • #199402

      Wouldn’t that be an endoscopy then?

    • #199403

      Seems like there was a day when you only had to keep an eye out for ‘aliens’ ‘going in both ends’!

    • #199404


      We’re talking about the government. You think they know which end is up?


      You’re implying that ‘aliens’ are not running the govenrment? Strange enough things are happening… (heehee)

    • #199405

      “You’re implying that ‘aliens’ are not running the govenrment?”


      Everytime I put my sunglasses on I wonder if today I’ll see either the world revealed like in “They Live” or all the funky computer code like in “The Matrix”. The way we all run around after little slips of paper and try to control everything down to the subatomic scale makes me think the ‘sapiens’ part of our species classification should be changed to ‘retardicus’! If there are aliens running this mess, they must not have cable where they live….

    • #199406
    • #199407


      I watched it about halfway through and just couldn’t take it anymore.

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