December 1, 2020

Washington Post on Tech Regulation

Today’s Washington Post quotes Fred von Lohmann of the EFF as saying that putting Hollywood in charge of technological progress would be like “putting the dinosaurs in charge of evolution.”

The Post article also includes this artfully constructed paragraph:

Hollywood wants to add a “digital flag,” or identifier, to coming digital television broadcasts, that would hamper copying. But Intel Corp., Philips Electronics NV and other hardware companies have balked at building anti-copying measures into their devices.

As I have written previously, digital TV standards already include a digital “broadcast flag.” What Intel, Philips, and others object to is not the broadcast flag itself, but restrictive regulation of their technologies. The article doesn’t quite say that the companies are objecting to the inclusion of a broadcast flag but the text is constructed in a way that probably leaves some readers with the wrong impression.