Trigger warnings and movie ratings

In an effort to explain trigger warnings and safe spaces to people who clearly don’t understand them—like the University of Chicago’s dean of students—a few folks have compared them to the movie ratings and trailer cards that list potentially offensive material. It’s a useful analogy, but not likely to be much comfort for people concerned […]

My cousin Chris

This weekend my dad and I dug through the family tree and determined that former senator and current MPAA chief Chris Dodd is his third cousin—and so my third cousin once removed. To be precise: my great-great-great-grandfather Michael Higgins is Chris Dodd’s great-great-grandfather. Michael Higgins was born in Knockanore, County Waterford, Ireland in 1814, and […]

Irrelevance is a far greater threat to gatekeepers than piracy — and they know it

A few weeks ago, I wrote about Paul Carr’s accusation of hypocrisy within the tech community for opposing bad copyright legislation and then also speaking out against plagiarism. His take was wrong, but it wasn’t unusual; it’s all too common for supporters of wrongheaded copyright legislation (like SOPA, PIPA and two decades of more successful […]