Dahlia Lithwick has a particularly well-written article about the efforts in academia, particularly in law schools, to regulate dating between professors and students. I loved her statement that "the law loves nothing better than to codify ambguity." And this statement too: "If I learned anything at Stanford Law School it was that vague, unenforceable rules were made to be broken."
I'm pulling for John Mayer to win Best New Artist in the upcoming Grammy Awards. I saw him interviewed by Jill Rappaport on NBC's Today Show the other day, and he was charming, intelligent and funny. He made fun of the American Idol phenomenon and demonstrated the song he would've sung as a contestant. He sang it with real passion. And then he imitated Simon Cowell saying "that is, quite possibly, the worst rubbish I have ever heard." Then, he subtly dissed Jill Rappaport, by pointing out that he had been introduced to her before as an upcoming artist, but she blew him off to keep yapping on her cellphone because he was a nobody and she didn't have time for a nobody.
I liked Mayer's stuff already, but his interview made me really interested in his music. So, when I went by the music store the other day I bought two of his albums. I bought Room for Squares, and also Inside Wants Out. One CD had a highly produced version of his song No Such Thing. The other CD had a more natural version, which I liked a lot better.
I may have this wrong, but I got the impression that the earlier (less produced) version was something that he cranked out before he got picked up by the big Record label. So I was thinking wouldn't it be great if he could have 'made it' without having to rely on the record companies? Well, of course. But how would he do that?
He could have his own website (well, actually he does), and he could make his music available there. But if he just put the MP3 there for download then people would just download it and very few would pay him. He could charge for the download, but then the song would just wind up on KaZaa and he wouldn't make as much money as he deserved to make from his song.
Then it hit me: why couldn't he just have a download that required the user to enter a code that would be unique for each computer? Sort of like these 30 day free trial programs use. But then I thought well, isn't that DRM? And isn't DRM bad?
That's when I thought maybeDRM isn't always bad. Sure, it's bad if Microsoft or Hollywood want to make computers automatically do things that prevent people from doing legitimate things (i.e. make backup copies of files they paid for and other things that are 'fair use'). But maybe it's not bad for artists who are trying to emerge and trying to make money without having to rely on the Entertainment Industry.
So that's what I was thinking, and maybe I've got it all wrong. Maybe John Mayer is a sell-out profiteer, and maybe Jill Rappaport is a warm, down-to-earth person, and maybe DRM is always bad. But I wonder sometimes if we, who are so reflexive about condemning DRM, have fully considered how it might benefit people who operate outside the power-circles of the entertainment industry.
If you just heard a loud sound like a jet's sonic boom, ignore it. That was me yelling because I just lost a long post that I hadn't saved. I hadn't saved it because I hadn't been using the "three button instead of one" feature of Radio. Well, I'm going to start using it, and I'm going to try the "Title & Link" thing too. But I need to modify the template so that the title doesn't hog a whole line to itself.
Well, I can't seem to modify the item template successfully. I guess I'll have to live with the title living on a separate line. And looks like the titles will be in blue, which I guess makes sense since they are now 'links.'
An American in Paris - Tom Fox has a blog called Paris, and he has some interesting observations for all of us Americans over here who are bashing the French. I love having his feed in my News Aggregator. I subscribed to it because my wife and I are planning to visit Paris in April and I wanted to have some inside observations from someone living there. After reading this post I realize that I'm going to keep reading it even after we go to Paris. Blogging rocks! Mainstream Journalism,...uh, you know...whatever.