This Week In Techdirt History: November 9th - 15th

from the tracing-beginnings dept

Five Years Ago

Nowadays we've got the Techdirt Insider Shop, where you can buy our ever-popular DMCA t-shirt, but five years ago we were running our original tiered RtB program for a limited time only, and this week was your last chance to get the original DMCA shirt.

This week in 2009, Modern Warfare 2 was released and quickly became the biggest entertainment launch in history across all types of media. It didn't go wonderfully for everyone, though: before the launch, some fans were pissed off about artificially limited multiplayer capabilities, and folks who purchased the game on Steam found they had to wait two extra days to play thanks to DRM. Also, in a bizarre reversal of the norm, a game modder turned around and sent a DMCA takedown over a video by the developer, Infinity Ward.

Rupert Murdoch made waves by claiming that he would remove all News Corp. sites from Google. Mark Cuban suggested it was all about Facebook and Twitter. It also sounded like the one good part of the WSJ paywall was going to be eliminated. Of course, as we pointed out, Murdoch owned plenty of sites with aggregators.

On the bright side of things, a lot of people in 2009 seemed to be coming around to the realities — and opportunities — of the digital age. More independent filmmakers were embracing the piracy of their films, more game developers were recognizing that it's not a huge threat (with one even "pirating" its own game as promotion), and Blink 182's Tom DeLonge was calling for artists to adapt, give music away for free, and sell other things. Not everyone was on board, though: the director of Zombieland was lashing out at fans after seeing a 60 Minutes episode about the evils of piracy.

Ten Years Ago

Once upon a time in the tech startup world, it was all about the IPO. Now, building a company to sell is standard practice. And this week in 2004 we were in the middle of that shift, and just starting to realize it. Lots of things were different then: video ads were a new and uncertain proposition, "entertainment as advertising" was just catching on, and Firefox was just hitting version 1.0.

It's hard to imagine now, but this week in 2004 automated public bathroom fixtures were still new. The complaints some had at the time — that the machines are often slow and unresponsive, or oversensitive — are frankly not entirely obsolete.

Today, Monster Cable is well known as an aggressive trademark holder, but ten years ago we were just catching on to the company's pattern as it sued job site Monster.com and threatened many others. We did see one interesting trademark resolution this week, too: the band The Postal Service reached an agreement with the US Postal Service wherein they'd help promote the USPS with their music.

Finally, from the pile of the bizarre/amusing/ironic: Blockbuster managed to convince itself it needed to open more stores, AOL was kicking users off of broadband and back onto dialup (try to wrap your head around that), and someone took a shot at finally killing the fax machine (a job which is, amazingly, still open).

Fifteen Years Ago

Though Yelp wasn't around until 2004, consumer ratings sites existed back in 1999, and this week some were beginning to notice just how fishy a lot of the reviews seemed. RealNetworks was still around, and the cracks were showing in its obsession with control. Amazon was very much around, and still tearing through the growth that would turn it into the powerhouse it is today, this week expanding into software, video games, gifts and home improvement for the first time. Webvan hadn't spectacularly collapsed yet, but the FedEx CEO saw the writing on the wall. Yahoo Messenger was also around, and it just became available on PDAs in an early step towards ubiquitous mobile messaging (though we were lukewarm on it).

Speaking of Yahoo, the company was being sued for its universal shopping cart (and, after the one-click shopping incident, we were really beginning to see a problematic trend).

157 & 47 Years Ago

November 9th marks two landmarks in the history of media and journalism — the births of publications that still hold sway and produce quality content to this day. In 1857, The Atlantic was founded in Boston, and in 1967, the first issue of Rolling Stone was published in San Francisco.

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Filed Under: history, look back


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  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    icon
    art guerrilla (profile), 15 Nov 2014 @ 1:59pm

    entirely unrelated, but i'm just sick of this shit...

    apparently, one of the lead nerds on the comet landing expedition gave interviews in a hawaiian type shirt which featured -what looked like from the smallish picture i could see- old timey cheesecake poses of woman, er, wymn...
    evidently, the SJW Brigade, Fembot Division, Butthurt Platoon are making him regret he was born...
    *AND* saying stupid shit like 'no wonder there aren't moar wymns in astronomy', blah blah blah...

    A. so, little grrls are checking out what the dress code is for their prospective vocations and basing their choice on that ? ? ?
    if true, um, perhaps more revealing than you intended...

    B. so, little grrls otherwise inclined to go into astronomy are going to drop out because of his shirt ? ? ?
    sure they are...

    C. can we get any more petty and stupid than this tired bullshit ? ? ?
    i'm betting we can...

    D. could we shoot EVERYONE off the fucking planet so i can have some peace and quiet ? ? ?
    thanks, i'd appreciate it...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Dark Helmet (profile), 17 Nov 2014 @ 4:10am

      Re: entirely unrelated, but i'm just sick of this shit...

      .....you seem to really dislike women, huh?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      HegemonicDistortion (profile), 17 Nov 2014 @ 6:03am

      Re: entirely unrelated, but i'm just sick of this shit...

      Really, you don't see how a guy wearing a Pirelli calendar as a shirt might convey a certain inhospitable attitude of objectifying and demeaning women? What's bullshit is the notion that he should somehow be free from criticism over it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ninja (profile), 17 Nov 2014 @ 4:21am

    Mark Cuban suggested it was all about Facebook and Twitter.

    This is interesting. While I'm still not sure about Twitter, Facebook makes for some interesting case-study on generational behavior. A while back it was the hot trend among the younger folks and it grew like some parasite without control but now we are actually seeing an exodus from the teens exactly because everybody, including mom and dad are there. I'm not sure if Facebook will eventually wither away like Orkut did in the wake of a new option because it introduced many handy perks and it integrated all around so one has to admit that there is resilience in it. However Nokia, RIM, Kodak and others are there to prove there's nothing big enough to fail (unless you have ties with the Govt for a bailout). I wonder what we will be saying about Facebook in 5 years?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    icon
    art guerrilla (profile), 17 Nov 2014 @ 6:50am

    no, i hate everyone equally...

    most especially including a smart-mouthed shitheel named dark helmet...
    OF COURSE, i don't agree with an extreme (un)'feminist' agenda, therefore, OF COURSE i MUST 'hate wymn'...

    FUCK YOU, you bit-brained brainwashed asswipe...
    you are probably 1/3rd to 1/2 my age, but if you show your smarmy puss around me and say shit like that, YOU WILL BE KNOCKED OUT, wormtongued, human-shaped pile of shit that you are...

    so, tell me, does my wife (a single mom for much of her adult life) hate wymns too ? because she thought this was simply example 14239699623 in an endless series of IDIOTIC windmills IDIOTIC feminazis (ps i despise limpballs, but even a blind pig...) go on about at length to no good end...

    so, tell me, do my sisters (both working women who have worked longer and harder than any DOZEN useless pontificators like YOU) hate wymns too ? because they thought the same...

    so, tell me, does my bossy horselady neighbor hate wymn too ? because she thinks ALL you femtards are useless mouth-breathers and she has barn stalls to muck rather than contemplate theoretical prejudice of no consequence...

    art guerrilla at windstream dot net

    i've posted that email address enough that you should be able to find it if you wanted to, big boy... (you will not, JUST LIKE all the rest of the cowardly fucktards who do not back up their stupid shit...)
    yet you only have enough testicular fortitude to throw out a nasty, personal comment in your private sandbox, instead of a real debate of some sort ? ? ?
    fuck you sideways with a pineapple, you dickless pinhead...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Dark Helmet (profile), 17 Nov 2014 @ 7:11am

      Re: no, i hate everyone equally...

      "FUCK YOU, you bit-brained brainwashed asswipe...
      you are probably 1/3rd to 1/2 my age, but if you show your smarmy puss around me and say shit like that, YOU WILL BE KNOCKED OUT, wormtongued, human-shaped pile of shit that you are..."

      Well, hey, at least you're being levelheaded, logical, and intelligent about, right? Threatening violence on someone for a simple one-sentence observational opinion is sure to win you sell-swords for your side of this fight you're making up in your own head, so keep on gettin' on, soldier!

      "so, tell me, does my wife (a single mom for much of her adult life) hate wymns too ?"

      No idea. Never heard you mother's words, so I wouldn't be so simple as to pretend to answer this exceptionally silly question.

      "so, tell me, do my sisters (both working women who have worked longer and harder than any DOZEN useless pontificators like YOU) hate wymns too ?"

      Whereas you'll feel free to just make up how long I've worked, how old I am, and what kind of work ethic I have as compared strictly to the female members of your family, because that's apparently important. I guess this is on me for arguing with a simpleton, but what can I say, I'm a sucker....

      "so, tell me, does my bossy horselady neighbor hate wymn too ? because she thinks ALL you femtards are useless mouth-breathers and she has barn stalls to muck rather than contemplate theoretical prejudice of no consequence..."

      Gamergate, everyone. Remember: it's all about journalistic ethics. It has nothing to do with women or feminism (eye-roll)....

      "i've posted that email address enough that you should be able to find it if you wanted to, big boy... (you will not, JUST LIKE all the rest of the cowardly fucktards who do not back up their stupid shit...)"

      And what am I supposed to do with this email address, exactly? Why would I communicate with you there when I can communicate with you right here? Are you...having a stroke or something?

      "yet you only have enough testicular fortitude to throw out a nasty, personal comment in your private sandbox, instead of a real debate of some sort ? ? ?"

      You thought THAT was nasty? Oh man, I'd be happy to have any kind of debate you'd like, but I fear your skin must be quite thin given the statement above....

      "fuck you sideways with a pineapple, you dickless pinhead..."

      Let's get the debate started here, then. What is it about sticking things up my ass and my being "dickless" that you think it's a great insult? What is it about people who don't have dicks that you find to be less than yourself? And why is it that you don't have anything against women, except all of your insults have to do with fucking people and the lack of male genitalia? I mean this question honestly, so please try to formulate your response with a complete lack of foam in your mouth...

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Ninja (profile), 17 Nov 2014 @ 7:59am

        Re: Re: no, i hate everyone equally...

        Pineapples up the arse are inherently funny I must admit. I tend to take those sometimes here at work.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Leigh Beadon (profile), 17 Nov 2014 @ 9:52am

        Re: Re: no, i hate everyone equally...

        I'm the one who brought you up in the Insider Chat, because someone else brought up the subject, and you had just posted this entirely irrelevant comment on this post.

        You still haven't explained why you are even here talking about this. The post is not about it. It's not a topic we really discuss on Techdirt. I can only assume you were in a debate somewhere else, losing, and thought "folks at Techdirt wil support me and make me feel better!"

        Well... we won't. Neither, I don't imagine, will very many of our readers.

        When you reach the point where you want to "shoot EVERYONE off the planet" it usually means you're the asshole.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Leigh Beadon (profile), 17 Nov 2014 @ 9:53am

          Re: Re: Re: no, i hate everyone equally...

          er... replied to wrong comment. Sorry DH. I think it's clear who I'm addressing, though :)

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Dark Helmet (profile), 17 Nov 2014 @ 10:27am

          Re: Re: Re: no, i hate everyone equally...

          "When you reach the point where you want to "shoot EVERYONE off the planet" it usually means you're the asshole."

          This is the best....

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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