M. Alex Johnson – Journalist at Large

An analog journalist in a digital world

Posts Tagged ‘internet

Can you even copyright porn in the first place?

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Over at msnbc.com’s Open Channel blog, I have a follow-up to a story I did last year explaining how law firms threaten to sue people who allegedly illegally download porn — and out them as porn fans in court documents — unless they settle for a few thousand bucks.

One of those people has a new counter-strategy: She argues in a suit filed this week that porn is obscenity, and obscenity is ineligible for copyright. Therefore, porn can’t be copyrighted, so even if she did download it without paying — which she denies — it’s not “piracy” in the first place:

Open Channel: Internet piracy suit asks: Can you even copyright porn?

Do you think that’s a legitimate argument? Read the full piece and let me know in the comments.

Written by Alex

February 3, 2012 at 4:04 pm

Reporting: For some churches, the Internet clicks; for others it doesn’t

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Over at msnbc.com, I have a long piece examining how religious institutions regard the Internet and especially social media:

[T]he Catholic Church has a long history of being an early adopter of new forms of media, going back to the 1920s, when Catholic priests pioneered radio evangelism, Campbell said.

At the same time, other religious institutions, especially traditional U.S. Protestant denominations, are still sorting through the challenges as well as the opportunities posed by the Internet, and particularly social media, according to church leaders and administrators.

“I think there’s a lot of groups trying to figure it out,” said John Davidson, a fundraising and ministry consultant for churchextension.org, which supports the ministry of the Christian Church-Disciples of Christ.

I talked to the Rev. Bobby Gruenewald, the “innovation leader” at LifeChurch.tv, a very sophisticated worldwide online ministry. He pinpoints the divide this way:

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Alex

November 23, 2011 at 9:21 am

Upgraded Android app is live

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AppQR - take a picture of this imageI’ve given Journalist at Large — Alex Johnson, the self-indulgent Android app I built, an upgrade. The main features are the ability to show more than 10 entries per page/tab, more feedback options and the nuking of the ad. If you like what you find here on this blog, you can find it in a handy Android version several ways:

Online Market

Direct apk download

• QR code. Snap a photo of the QR image at the right  in your QR-app-enabled device.

(Eventually, you should be able to find it in the Market on your device itself, in the News and Magazines category. That takes a little time to propagate.)

UPDATE: It’s now available in the Market on devices. Just search for “Alex Johnson journalist.”

Written by Alex

July 11, 2011 at 12:16 pm

Posted in Admin

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Foreign computer tech comes pre-infected for your convenience

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Over at Technolog, I’ve posted a followup on amazing comments at yesterday’s House cybersecurity hearing, during which a top official of the Department of Homeland Security acknowledged that computer hardware and software is already being imported to the United States preloaded with spyware and security-sabotaging components.

U.S. official says pre-infected computer tech entering country (Alex Johnson/Technolog)

Written by Alex

July 8, 2011 at 11:58 am

Jack Daniel, Internet Cop

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Part of my job requires me to review potentially interesting stories NBC’s local stations are reporting. Today, many of them picked up a short AP piece on Jack Daniel’s announcing a new, slimmer bottle for its famous Old No. 7 whiskey.

Fine, I thought. I’ll see if I can find the actual announcement on Jack Daniel’s site.

I didn’t get that far.

Like nearly all liquor companies, Jack Daniel makes you verify your age before you can get past a splash screen. That’s fine; liquor companies would want to protect themselves from complications associated with appearing to market to minors.

But Jack Daniel goes much further than that. It has a link to something called a “linking policy” on its home page, and it’s pretty amazing.

Basically, Jack Daniel says that if you want to link to its site, you have to agree to 15 conditions — among them: “You will not challenge the validity of this Agreement or its binding effect or enforceability” and “You agree not to use the link on any web site that disparages the Brand, the Site, or the Brand’s products or services.” And you must fill out a form disclosing your name, residence and e-mail address.

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Written by Alex

May 17, 2011 at 2:06 pm

You’re not alone

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Written by Alex

December 30, 2010 at 1:22 pm

Posted in Tech

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But … but … where do I tweet this?

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If Twitter is down, is there anyone to tweet it?

Add to: Facebook | Digg | Del.icio.us | Stumbleupon | Reddit | Blinklist | Twitter | Technorati | Yahoo Buzz | Newsvine

Written by Alex

August 5, 2010 at 1:47 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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