Megaupload is Just The Beginning?Here's a little bit of a worrisome discovery.
Megaupload, a file sharing website, is completely gone. If you go to that domain its entirely blank.
But here's the thing...the FBI destroyed it.
The main offices of this site were located in New Zealand, but there were other smaller offices in the US. The Federal Government literally hunted down the representatives of this webpage and arrested them in two countries, then erased it from existence!
But not before they seized all the records of anyone who ever used the site as evidence.
If you or anyone else has used Megaupload illegally, this will probably be very disturbing.
Why? Because their site was distributing copy-write infringing uploads.
So those who claim SOPA and PIPA will do nothing, take a good look into the black hole of Megaupload. The FBI can track you down and throw you in prison and then track all your constituents ALREADY.
But the reach of this is even wider.
A british college student Richard O'Dwyer is facing extradition,
Common Myths About HistoryWhen I was growing up I learned the same well-known oft repeated facts about the history of my nation and the world as most people do. I didn't question what I read on the page or what I was told to believe from the front of the class and in all the television shows, movies, video games and modern novels the same ideas of what happened and why persisted.Common Myths About History2 years ago in Personal More Like This
But then I went to college. The same narrative continued oftentimes, but bizarrely my teachers started to disagree with the texts they were assigned. Their own experiences as professional historians led them to different conclusions then the popular perception would have it, and from that moment on I drew in my mind a disconnect between what the curriculum said was true and what actual recorded history revealed.
This disconnect grew stronger the more I began to read and research on my own.
I discovered to my amazement that those moments so fixated in the public consciousness, recreated in so many medias, and repeated by so many as unqu
On Dark AdaptationsKilling Dreams or Nurturing Them?On Dark Adaptations3 years ago in Editorial More Like This
I've been accused in several instances now of ruining or killing childhoods through my proposed reimaginings of classic shows and franchises as well as my interest in 'darker' versions of the same. It's a concern that has dogged me for some time as I try to strike a balance between darkening and deepening a concept without destroying the fundamental enjoyment of it or making it morbid.
Here I'll try to describe my thoughts on the matter, why I make reimaginings the way I do, and why I feel I'm attempting to nurture dreams, not kill them.
This is not meant as an attack and I'll alter it if I learn otherwise, but this is my explanation for now.
1: My Stories are still Dreams
When I reimagine Sonic say or when I support wholeheartedly American McGee's reimagining of Alice in Wonderland this is because these tales are still essentially dreams. Regardless of how dark a story becomes it remains quintessentially a dream; a looking glass land to inspire the im
Story Concept: ConclaveStory Concept: Conclave3 years ago in Sci-Fi More Like This
Story Concept: Conclave
Collectively it is called The Magnavox.
It is everything there is: galaxies, suns, planets, moons, the history and the past. From the times lost to history of lone wanderers and ancient magic, to the present of bold struggle against oppressive regimes, to the grim future of stalwart survivors against incredible odds. The threads of legend and destiny unite every warrior, soldier, humble hero, wizard and rebel who has ever lived.
This is one of a thousand tales, a thousand tales contained in its telling. For no life, good or ill, exists without affecting the paths of others.
These are the tales of The Conclave.
They came from the depths of the void.
In the years following humankind's discovery of The Chaos Emeralds, a source of unlimited power, the species experienced a scientific golden age in which is was discovered that the principal of the universe was energy, not physical laws. With no constraints to advancement they crafted a worldwide utopia of technology&
Alice 2: Part 1Alice 2: Part 17 years ago in Horror More Like This
Written by Dan Oles
Based on the video game by American Mcgee
In a frenzied instant, a cankered feline pounced on Alice while she was about
to be carried inside. Startled by the cat's yowl, the bearers lost their grip
and dropped the wretched girl to the ground. Most curious to behold, the cat
stood atop Alice as if claiming territorial right, or as if defending a rodent
captured in the day's hunt from other hungry predators. Only when an orderly
threatened it with a stick did the creature scamper into a nearby hedge. Even
then the cat crouched beneath the shrubbery. With eyes agape, it fixed on
Alice as if it had some vital interest in our proceedings.
It pays to heed the felinesomething Ive learned over the years.
From the papers of Nurse Madeline Sharpe: 21/10/73
Part 1: Pictures and Conversations
My little sister was trundled on a metal trolley into that dark and dingy place I hate with all my heart.
I wondered wh
Seven Lessons Hollywood Could Stand to LearnSeveral of my friends are reviewing my old journal entries, so I figured I'd make a new oneSeven Lessons Hollywood Could Stand to Learn3 years ago in Personal More Like This
Bear in mind that I am not trying to show how awesome and flawless and what not I am by providing some things Hollywood continually forgets to capitalize on. Quite the opposite. If a guy whose only made real movies in film school can see these simple things are missing for a lot of modern films out of Tinseltown chances are good that they are blatantly lacking.
Hollywood has a lot of hits, but below are some of the ways their misses could be salvaged perhaps.
Seven Lessons Hollywood Could Learn From (in order of least importance to most)
7: CGI Doesn't Make a Movie
CGI is a tool, its not caulking for plot holes or a substitute for good writing and performances and it is certainly not a good way to draw out the run time. If you go back and watch the movie Aliens you'll see a sobering reminder of what CGI will be in a few years only. In one sequence which is WAY too long a model spacecraft s
Sonic FF Wrap UpSonic FF Wrap Up3 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
Sonic Freedom Fighters Wrap Up
There comes a day when Dr. Robotnik, having finally gathered enough Chaos Emeralds to power his generators, executes his master plan a stratagem he has statistically proven impossible to overcome. Stage one is to send several autonomously powered Doom Bots to hover over Knothole Camp firing newly designed Robotization ray weapons.
The attack is devastating, destroying the camp and forcing what Freedom Fighters can escape to flee deeper inland.
Sadly Bunnie Rabbot, Antoine Décolleté, and Kit the cub are among the victims to be Robotisized from the air; Bunnie and Antoine taken when both refused to leave the other's side after Antoine broke his ankle and Kit captured for going back to rescue both.
Sally's general Bruin loses his life in the follow up attack by human soldiers Robotnik has been training to do what his Swatbots cannot. His final action is to rush the line giving the others a chance to escape.
The Robotisized a
Whatever Happened to World Building?I recently won an Ebay auction for two new additions to my action figures collection, both based on the video game Quake 2. They're well crafted and nicely painted: both various enemies from the game of the alien Strogg menace: a hulking Tank and the grotesque but strangely graceful appearing Iron Maiden. What particularly interested me about these was that at the time the graphics engine for the game was not what could be described even charitably as 'well detailed' since it was an early example of three dimensional graphics. The figures on the other hand are exquisitely detailed with extrapolated ideas beyond what the game's graphics were capable of. In fact the first Quake figure I acquired in the line was a female marine which to my knowledge doesn't show up in the game at all, but seems at home with the idea of the story for the game since it's about a mass-scale retaliatory invasion by Earth of the alien's desolate home world. Despite the game featuring only a first person perspeWhatever Happened to World Building?11 months ago in Personal More Like This
Solutions to Popular ClichesWe all know they exist, and they usually exist for a reason: to serve as the lynchpin of a plot that is either too lazy or the writer too unversed in films and stories to realize how stock they've made their production without intending to. Stereotypical plot turns, unrealistic but procedural character reactions, suspension of logic for the sake of following in well worn footsteps: none of this necessarily means the final product won't be entertaining, don't get me wrong. But what can't be denied is that cliches cheapen a product and make story lines feel less organic and more contrived.Solutions to Popular Cliches9 months ago in Personal More Like This
However in addition to pointing out a few of these classics and trying briefly to explain why they might be used, I'd also like to provide my suggestions for how to get around these road bumps in plot structure and accomplish what these placeholders are meant to, but perhaps accomplish it in a much more interesting way in service to the story, not detrimental to it.
Plot and story are not the same thin
Female Roles or Sterotypes?For all its hoopla about racism and sexism, Hollywood is without exception the single biggest practitioner of both.Female Roles or Sterotypes?10 months ago in Personal More Like This
Why are there not very many minority actors? Not because people don't want to see them, but because Hollywood won't hire them. Why are there so few woman directors or actors playing anything but pretty distractions and generic roles? Not because there's no public demand for better female characters, but because Hollywood sees no reason to spend the time writing any.
Female roles especially fall into one of two subgroups most often...
1: The superfluous, amiable damsel in distress there to look pretty and be rescued.
2: The grouchy, superior, businesslike, alpha-female archetype.
And these two can blend or even replace one another as time goes, but this seems to be the norm unfortunately in most major productions. Woman it seems can't play characters, can be PEOPLE they have to represent something, either a male or female power fantasy. Men sometimes have this
How to Make Me Care in StoriesThe following four qualities are not requirements by any means for me to enjoy a story in any medium, but they certainly help to let me invest myself deeper into the plot and characters. Perhaps there are more qualities, but this summed them up nicely to my satisfaction.How to Make Me Care in Stories2 years ago in Personal More Like This
An addendum to the journal on How Not To Make Me Care in Stories: http://jarredspekter.deviantart.com/journal/How-Not-to-Make-Me-Care-in-Stories-352011785
1: The Heroes at a Disadvantage
This is a sadly dying art, but one that got me interested in storytelling at a young age. The triumph over adversity is a classic but for me always compelling story to experience, and in order for the triumph to feel earned and victorious there must be an element of risk. A lot of modern day tales seem to feel the audience will not accept a hero/heroine who is not a flawlessly skilled fighter, possesses super human abilities, or is prophesied to be the only hope. The truth is however that as 'cool' as it is to watch our protagonist cle