The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

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LunarRaptor
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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby LunarRaptor » Sun May 31, 2015 9:49 pm

Alright, fine, they might leave this place alone, but my point is do you really want to take the risk? You know as well as I do that these people would have no qualms in barreling over LunarNet in overzealous internet control/censorship if this bill gets through. I don't exactly remember you arguing with me on this point when SOPA was making its rounds. Even if they leave places like LunarNet alone, there is still plenty bad about this bill.

This bill is kept under lock and key. Anybody who sees this bill cannot talk about. So maybe ten or so people in this country, total, know what is in this bill. Okay, so if it's so harmless, why the absolute secrecy? Why can't they just give the bill to congress to look over and amend? Why do they need the Fast Track to push this through without amendments if it is SO harmless? Okay, you're right, I don't know what's in this bill, and neither does anybody else in the general populous. They have gone all the whole nine yards to be sure of that. The fact that they have gone so far to keep it out of the public eye is not a good sign. it shows that they know that most of what's in it would not fly if it were made public. But fine, if you just want to lay and let a disastrous piece of legislation go through, don't say I didn't warn you. You'll have no one to blame but yourself.
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Arlia
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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Arlia » Sun May 31, 2015 10:43 pm

Sonic# wrote:If you make a claim, you need to support it. How do current drafts of the TPP impact standards of fair use in such a way that LunarNet would be considered to be infringing on GameArts's IP?


God, this is why I can't stand the internet. You have all of Google at your disposal, and you still demand someone wipe your behind for you. He wanted SUPPORT for something he's concerned about, not to have to fight tooth and nail against someone's condescending attitude about it.

Talking about politics sucks, but it's a scary world, too. If you don't like something they're doing, it's not easy to even talk about wanting to change it, because everywhere you go, there's always people that just want to be 15 and back in debate class.

Yes, I did write my politicians, LunarRaptor. I'm directly in the TransPacific area. I highly doubt that if what they're proposing is "legalized", the people would even allow it (we have vicious Native parties...) but who the hell knows? Scary stuff.

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LunarRaptor
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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby LunarRaptor » Sun May 31, 2015 10:51 pm

Thank you very much. I'm happy to see someone taking action.
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Arlia
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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Arlia » Sun May 31, 2015 11:25 pm

This was the best article I was able to find on it, by the way:

http://www.mlive.com/opinion/index.ssf/ ... perce.html

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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Sonic# » Mon Jun 01, 2015 12:38 am

LunarRaptor wrote:Alright, fine, they might leave this place alone, but my point is do you really want to take the risk?


Thank you for admitting that you were exaggerating. Yes, I'll gladly take a risk if it is a small risk, as it appears in this case. Fan websites are not under threat, and suggesting so focuses on false problems while taking attention away from the more substantial threats the law poses to internet server owners and file-sharing services. Slippery slopes don't help the case.

Personally, I know that the treaty has problems. And I'm also concerned about the issue of transparency, though it's important to be clear over precisely what is transparent (we will get to see the text before we vote on it) and what isn't (the negotiating phase). You were making claims that I had not heard, so I wondered whether they were serious or whether they were fear-mongering to drum up attention.

Arlia wrote:
God, this is why I can't stand the internet. You have all of Google at your disposal, and you still demand someone wipe your behind for you. He wanted SUPPORT for something he's concerned about, not to have to fight tooth and nail against someone's condescending attitude about it.


You're assuming that I haven't been following this, that when he made his statement I didn't look at the draft copy he'd linked, Wikipedia's summary of the bill, the Electronic Frontier Foundation's assessment of the bill, Politifact's fact-checking, and other resources. I did. I did all that because LunarRaptor was making an important claim that I hadn't heard, and I wanted to make sure it was true before I spread it about.

I didn't find information corroborating his claims. For instance, this summary of fair use under the TPP suggests that the main issue is one of vagueness, with the TPP not making any clear statement on exceptions and limitations on copyright. It appears that, absent a definite statement, exceptions would devolve to a country's standards provided they meet some minimum. The US's standards aren't perfect but aren't nearly as terrible as LunarRaptor was making them out to be. Finally, I could find no one talking about how TPP would affect fan sites. The closest I've found is people talking about what would happen to dojinshi if technical enforcement became more important than a longstanding cultural standard to not enforce copyright law on certain materials in Japan.

So I gave him the benefit of the doubt - maybe he knew of resources I wasn't immediately finding. That's why I asked. That's what we do when we want to learn - we try to find information, and we also learn from others that claim to know something. I'd hope people of any age do that. When he pointed to materials I've already looked at, I insisted. I've used no insults, unlike you. I made one rather snarky assumption:

me wrote:So you have no evidence for your claims.


So no. I wasn't asking him to wipe my behind or engaging in debate for the sake of debate. I was asking him to clarify his statement, and my metapurpose was to clear away the hyperbole or better examine the truth.
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"Than seyde Merlion, "Whethir lyke ye bettir the swerde othir the scawberde?" "I lyke bettir the swerde," seyde Arthure. "Ye ar the more unwyse, for the scawberde ys worth ten of the swerde; for whyles ye have the scawberde uppon you, ye shall lose no blood, be ye never so sore wounded. Therefore kepe well the scawberde allweyes with you." --- Le Morte Darthur, Sir Thomas Malory

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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Arlia » Mon Jun 01, 2015 3:16 am

Well, you had been pretty vague. Without knowing you personally, it looked like you were perhaps trying to give LunarRaptor grief. I'm sorry for the misunderstanding.

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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby LunarRaptor » Mon Jun 01, 2015 3:48 am

Sorry about that. I still don't trust these people to leave fan sites like this be, though. I am aware that there are bigger problems in the bill than that.
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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Kizyr » Sun Jun 14, 2015 10:32 pm

Ok, so I took like 2 weeks off here and I swear I meant to respond earlier... Some issues have already been worked out so I'll try not to rehash things. I'll do this by topic.

On bills in general
First, I'll say that it's terribly unhelpful to try and read the actual language of a bill yourself, if you don't have a background in law, public policy, congressional procedures, etc. Legalese is like computer code: lots of references to other laws on the books, specific jargon, etc. -- so reading the bill itself is about as inefficient as, say, reading the source code to Call of Duty to get better at the game. Some of the most damaging parts of a bill can be (intentionally) hidden through these types of references.

That being said, laws while they're being debated need to be on public record. That enables organizations that are way better than the average person to parse it and distill out the information you need -- hence why the EFF (personal favorite) or PolitiFact are the best resources for the average person. So... first conclusion is that it should be a giant red flag to anyone concerned that the law's main proponents are not being public with the actual text of the bill, and it was Wikileaks that had to disclose it. Second conclusion is that I really suggest checking other sources like the EFF that have people on staff who are much better at interpreting legalese for information (or if you think you're more likely to support the bill, then look for other organizations maybe? I admit my bias towards the EFF here).

On LunarNET and other fan-sites
US fan-sites are seriously unlikely to be affected, LunarNET included. The main reason is that there are US entities that hold the copyrights and trademarks associated with the Lunar series (as with nearly everything else). If, let's say, Game Arts wanted to take LunarNET down, then there's nothing preventing them now from attempting to do so via XSeed, Ubisoft, or whoever holds the rights in the US (same with Sony of Japan via Sony of America, and so on). The only situation I could see where the TPP may change things is with a Japanese entity that doesn't have a US presence.

(FYI, though... If, hypothetically, Iwadare messaged me and asked us to take down the music samples we have, I would still do so, fair use or not. That's less about IP laws and more about respect for the creators. That may be tangential, but just understand that our desire is basically to avoid having a confrontational relationship with the people behind the Lunar series, and that's served us well for 15 years.)

At least in the realm of intellectual property, my main beef with the TPP isn't that it gives other countries' companies more power, it's that it gives US companies more power. More on that later.

On the TPP specifically
FYI, the current state of the TPP is that the Senate has passed it, but the House did not, though it'll be brought up to a vote later this week again -- the specific contention is over "fast-track" authority (enables the executive branch to make some trade decisions without Congressional approval -- details are irrelevant here, my point is just that it's temporarily set back, but not actually defeated). Also, it's interesting that most of the criticism has come from other Democrats. Most Republicans are in favor of it (including most of the Pres. candidates); on the Democratic side, Sanders is very strongly opposed, and Hillary... hasn't clarified her position.

Anyway, I won't get into a lot of links unless someone requests clarification on something, but I'll put up two for now:
  • Opinion article on it from Al Jazeera America contributor -- this articulates some of my issues with it, but more importantly it brings up an important contrast with NAFTA (...I think most of the people on this board may be too young to remember the NAFTA debate, though -- I was really little during all of it myself.)
  • EFF's summary -- Sonic# already linked it, but I'm linking it again for emphasis

To summarize, the things that concern me the most have little to do with the entertainment industry in the US. Mostly, it's (1) risks to US environmental protections, and (2) weakening the ability of several other countries to market generic brands of pharmaceuticals. That (2) is the biggest thing to me since it's a matter of public health and well-being. Stacked up against that, well, the risk of some VG sites having to take down content (which I don't actually thing is increased with the TPP) is almost negligible.

On debating the issue
So, last thing I'll mention is on the way this was debated in this thread... I'll try not to rehash too many things though.

First, one of the most common rules of any debate* is that the burden of proof is on the person making a positive claim (i.e., "the bill contains XYZ" is a positive claim; "the bill does not contain XYZ" is a negative claim). It's a simple reason that proving a positive claim is possible by citing a particular thing, while putting the burden on someone to "prove a negative" opens them up to having to cite everything in the known universe before everyone is satisfied. There are exceptions (e.g., if you make an extremely outrageous claim, you usually have the burden of proof), but that's the reason for the general rule.
(* I'm basing this on how rules for Parliamentary, Policy, Oxford-style, and Lincoln-Douglass debates are set up.)

Second, and this is one reason I took so long to respond here, making extreme claims (e.g., "party X wants to destroy the country") rarely helps the debate.

Sorry, but I do have to respond to a couple of specific things here to make the point:
Arlia wrote:Obama and his clowns have to be the worst government model in the history of the US. I mean, Hitler was a despicable man, but he meant to IMPROVE his country. These idiots are destroying the ground they stand on.

So, making comparisons to someone like Hitler can also lead you into the weird position of having to identify and argue for positive characteristics of Hitler. Assuming you were just being hyperbolic, you'd still have to present a case as to why, say, the current administration is worse than Buchanan, Hoover, Coolidge, Reagan, etc.
Arlia wrote:Also, Obamacare is ridiculous, everyone hates him for it; the border/amnesty crisis* is getting out of control; and he doesn't care about his public- he wants himself and his family to be safe, and the other 1% of people that can afford to be exempt to what he's putting everyone else through. He has completely sold-out his people to giant corporate, and the super rich (and maybe others, too.)

Just on the first point, it's not even possible to argue that "everyone hates Obama" for the Affordable Care Act -- wording really matters (use "ACA" instead of "Obamacare" and that improves the perception), and some aspects of the law are way more popular than others (most people *do* like not being priced out of insurance for pre-existing conditions, staying on their parents' plans until age 26, and having a place to buy individual insurance if they can't get it through their employer -- less popular are things like the individual mandate).

There is a thread from years ago on it, if you want to continue this topic:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=4666

My point though is just that it's difficult to make large claims like that and support them. Bringing this back to the TPP, it doesn't need extreme claims to make the case against it. Some of the very clear red flags are reason enough: secrecy behind the language, application of US IP laws elsewhere, weakening of our own regulatory laws, etc. KF

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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Arlia » Mon Jun 15, 2015 11:26 pm

Well, I was really done with all this, but since you seem to want a reply, the reason I brought up Obama is because the TPP was his idea, or so I read. So, me saying what I don't like about the person who thought it up makes conversational sense. It wasn't meant to spark a debate, it was "Yeah, I think he's full of dumb ideas. This is just another one."
I have no idea where this "debate culture" of the internet came from, but I sure am tired of it. Just because I say something, doesn't mean I have to explain every inch of my psychology about it to any given person, and I don't know why people even want to ask.

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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Werefrog » Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:48 pm

Arlia wrote:So, me saying what I don't like about the person who thought it up makes conversational sense. It wasn't meant to spark a debate, it was "Yeah, I think he's full of dumb ideas. This is just another one."
I have no idea where this "debate culture" of the internet came from, but I sure am tired of it. Just because I say something, doesn't mean I have to explain every inch of my psychology about it to any given person, and I don't know why people even want to ask.


Here's the thing... when people have conversations IRL, they are usually talking to people with similar views (a fairly typical behavior is to cluster around people who are like you). On the Internet, you are talking to people and don't know what their views are. People are going to expect you to back up your ideas. You have to explain yourself. And really past policies have nothing to do with their current policy. You have to attack the idea, not the person.

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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Leo » Tue Jun 16, 2015 8:09 pm

Not just that, but if people contest your ideas and views so frequently that you've become borderline hostile over it then you may want to examine some of them again.

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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Kizyr » Sat Jun 27, 2015 5:48 pm

First, quick update: it looks like attempts to stop the TPP have failed. Enough House reps and Senators have voted for both fast-track authority and the Trade Adjustment Assistance (which actually was a good part of the bill -- but was held up in an attempt to prevent it from passing altogether since, like me, many Democrats felt that it was a way to make an overall bad deal just not-bad enough to pass through).

If you really want to read more on it, there's an article here (this may be a little technical depending on your familiarity with Congress procedure): http://www.politico.com/story/2015/06/h ... 19444.html

Second:
Arlia wrote:I have no idea where this "debate culture" of the internet came from, but I sure am tired of it. Just because I say something, doesn't mean I have to explain every inch of my psychology about it to any given person, and I don't know why people even want to ask.

I completely understand -- seriously. Demanding proof is often used as a way to shut people down, and that's one of the reasons I get particular about when/where/how proof is brought up during any discussion. Some situations warrant it, and some really do not. So, I think you're completely justified in this irritation.

The debate styles I brought up in my footnote have a very long history that predate internet discussions by at least decades. (Parliamentary in particular originated with the British parliament, so that goes back centuries.) It's relevant here because rules about (a) when it's appropriate to demand evidence, (b) who has the burden of proof, and (c) when you "lose" because of lack of evidence, have evolved specifically because, without them, it's easy for a side to shut down debate by demanding everyone else show proof while showing none of their own.

On one hand, internet discussions aren't formal debates, so there isn't (and shouldn't be) a need to cite every argument -- having that high a standard just shuts down all discussion. On the other hand, having no standards at all can just as easily shut down discussion by enabling the most absurd claims to go unchecked -- cf. any news article or YouTube discussion with conspiracy theorists, and how they'll shut down discussion just by virtue of flooding a forum with BS.

Bringing all that together, here's generally where I stand -- all these are based on forum discussions I've had in the past, by the way:
  • You shouldn't have to cite evidence for obvious claims, or anything where evidence is constantly surrounding us (e.g., Racism exists in this country). I mean hopefully your point doesn't stop there, but you get the idea.
  • You shouldn't have to cite outside evidence if it's something based on your own experience (e.g., If I talk about basic economic concepts, or talk about the Japanese-to-English translation in Lunar). This unfortunately is something that is often discouraged in high school, so it can be hard to break the habit.
  • You shouldn't have to cite evidence if the main point is not specifically related, or if you're trying to discuss something based on internal consistency, a thought experiment, logical exercise, etc. (e.g., many discussions involving belief in God are like this -- they start with the premise that there is a God, and if that's not something you believe in, then it may simply not be a discussion intended for you).
  • You should have to cite evidence if you're making a bold or extreme claim (e.g., this earlier thread where a former poster here tried to argue that you can be put in jail for refusing to see a doctor in a hospital in the UK).
  • You should cite evidence if you're trying to prove a positive claim vs. someone else's negative claim (i.e., if you claim something is X, and someone claims something is not X, the former is the positive claim). This is just a matter of which side is actually possible to "prove" -- going back to the whole deal that it's extremely difficult to prove a negative.
  • You should cite evidence if you're trying to convince people over to your side on a complex issue, and especially if it's something where you can point to particular links you've already posted (e.g., in this thread -- there are plenty of good arguments to be made against the TPP and several links being posted here with such information). There are two flip sides here: (1) If someone refuses to actually check what you've cited, then it's on them; and (2) If what you posted doesn't actually answer the question, then it's on you -- this last one doesn't really need to be mean either (e.g., "The link you posted doesn't actually answer the question... where are you seeing this?").
  • If someone points you to dozens of resources on how Lunar: Magic School is a gaiden/side story and you still refuse to believe it, then don't return to the forum ever again unless you want to be instantly banned. (YES I AM STILL BITTER WITH HOW MUCH TIME I WASTED ON THAT TEN YEARS AGO.)

*ehem* Anyway! These aren't rules so much as generally good ideas. Do they need to be followed to participate in a discussion? Absolutely not. But, trying to stick to them as much as possible is more likely to either convince other people (in the cases where you should cite evidence) or avoid shutting down debate by demanding stupidly absurd amounts of "proof" at each step (in the cases where you shouldn't have to cite evidence). KF

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Re: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty

Postby Arlia » Mon Jun 29, 2015 12:12 am

Thank you, Kizyr.

One thing I realized while I was reading that was, with politics, all the best arguing goes on by professionals, and I somehow got it into my head that when you're discussing anything about it, in the realm of politics only, little more is needed than, "This is the side I'm on". Because really, everything of value has been said by someone more in the know than I, and all I can do is have an opinion on how it effects my life.

I would hate to be a politician, or a law maker. It only seems like a miserable roach-hole of lies, corruption, hidden motives, and things they don't want me to understand. In that light, how can I ever properly argue about it?

On that Magic/Walking School thread... I wonder what they think of Dragon Song? >_>


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