The Blackout: Letter to a Senator (or Two)

Warning: Politics For those of you following the SOPA/PIPA to-do, be warned: if you live in California, both of your Senators are flogging hard for this thing. Because of that, for these two characters I actually wrote a note rather than just calling, tweeting, or petitioning. In case you want… Continue reading

Why the Flight to Amazon?

Before I start, I should make something plain: I like Amazon–they’ve been incredibly, uncharacteristically work-with-able on a level that’s unprecedented in the publishing industry. I am delighted to have my books available in their store, I’ve had an excellent time working with CreateSpace for POD books, and very much enjoyed… Continue reading

The Dam Breaks

We’ve been waiting for it. We’ve been talking about “What will happen if/when?” We’ve speculated ho how it will change things when the mythical species arrives: The $99 e-reader. Well, now we get to find out. Today, Amazon unveiled the $79 Kindle, as well as a $99 model. Don’t take… Continue reading

Principles of Contracts: You CAN Fight City Hall

Because this one deals a lot with the law again, the usual disclaimers apply: I am not a lawyer. This is not legal advice. This is one man’s opinion on how business is done. Always consult a qualified legal professional when seeking legal advice. — — — — Previous chapter:… Continue reading

Dropbox: Credit is Due

Well, everyone, it looks like Dropbox has listened. They’ve rewritten their TOS in a way that is very sensible, does not use loaded legal terminology that would allow an unscrupulous employee or future company administration to do a little snatch-and-grab with your intellectual property, and is layperson readable. I call… Continue reading

Google Pulls a Dropbox

Apologies to those who are already tired of this–it’s threatening to become a hobby horse. Looks like with Google+, Google is going where every stupid lawyer has gone before: claiming “a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute… Continue reading

More Dropbox Updates

Dropbox keeps trying. They’ve changed their TOS again–if you’re watching and waiting for them to get their act in order, check the link and see where they’re at now. Meanwhile, Gigacom has posted an interesting analysis about what the public reaction to Dropbox might mean for the future of online… Continue reading

Dropbox TOS vs. Others TOS

ECtimes posts an excellent analysis of why Dropbox’s TOS situation continues to be a problem for its users–and compares the current (revised several times since Friday) wording to the wording of some other, similar services. Worth a gander. —addendum— There are more updates on the Dropbox situation at my new… Continue reading

Update on the Dropbox Situation

Dropbox has posted a public explanation for their rapid TOS changes today. As suspected, the email they’ve gotten from concerned users hasn’t gone unnoticed–that’s a good thing. Am I now recommending them? Hell no. Assuming the best of intentions, I think they are in error about the kind of license… Continue reading

Put it in the Cloud? Are You Nuts?

Note: The situation in the following post has been resolved for now. Dropbox has taken everyone’s outrage seriously, and has fixed the problem. More information here. I am leaving this post and the follow-ups up because it contains a good deal of information on how to protect yourself and your… Continue reading