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This special report is brought to you from central Milton Keynes. where the police have recently announced the arrest of Arthur Sadbloke on charges of the murder of five telemarketers. Tonight we spare a thought for the victims of these hideous crimes.

Now it's well known that telemarketers are of course scumbags, and here in the media, where all our reporters embody every possible virtue, we don't normally sully our hands by talking about such people other than when trying to make some sort of knee-jerk point about the decline of society. This leaves us with a bit of a dilemma. We'd obviously not want to come down hard on people who got murderated, but wouldn't want to risk your ire by suggesting that what these people did was in any way morally defensible.

Fortunately we've developed a neat trick for dealing with this situation which we like to call 'mitigating circumstances". All of our victims were desperate women whose life went astray when lured into the shadowy world of telemarketing by a desperate craving for consumer goods. So you can see that their choice of profession wasn't really their fault.

It's a good job the victims weren't men really, since we'd have a much harder time convincing you that they weren't entirely responsible for their own actions. Then we might have had to resort to arguing that such a distasteful profession wasn't actually all that morally reprehensible in the 21st Century. We would have been on an extremely sticky wicket then, I can tell you. Some people might even have come to the misguided conclusion that if society hadn't villainised their lives in the first place, It wouldn't here been so easy for some nutter to come along and kill them.

(With thanks to BBC News 24, for the inspiration.)
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One of the ways in which the content industry battles the criminal menace that is "unauthorised sharing" is by muddying the waters with a bit of old fashioned linguistic trickery. The two main ways in which they do this are (1) refusing to acknowledge the distinction between individuals violating IP law on a personal basis and those making money off the back of the toil of others by selling IP they do not have rights to and (2) sensationalising the battle agains both these groups by the use of emotive language. I'm talking about the word "pirate" here.

With the advent of Jack Sparrow and International Talk Like a Pirate Day, this latter strategy has backfired somewhat, since being a pirate is now cooler than ever. Also, they've cried "pirate" so often, that I very much doubt anyone will even believe them should an actual pirate ship draw to aside the RIAA's headquarters and lauch a ripping broadside into their corporate offices not entirely unakin to that scene in Monty Python's Meaning of Life. We'd all just think they were exaggerating as usual.

Clearly what's needed is to raise the stakes. Since piracy no longer works, they need to come up with a new term for what these low-lives actually do. Might I be the first to humbly suggest the term "software/music pedophile". It has all of the emotive force that the content industry are looking for, and absolutely no-one at all thinks pedophiles are cool. And it's every bit as accurate as the current terminolgy.

Doubtless the IP violators could then respond by declaring a new holiday, International Talk Like an Unauthorised Sharer day, where everyone would have to talk in l33t sp34k.

June 2017

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