Posts by Idiot Savant

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  • Hard News: Looking for Monsters,

    Clearly, I/S, you are unused to debating doctrinaire libertarians. They are never wrong or inconsistent, even when they are both.

    I tend to ignore doctrinaire Libertarians, the same way I ignore Jehovah's Witnesses. Really, they're just another bred of religious whacko, dedicated to the great cult of Saint Ayn.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Looking for Monsters,

    "...the time for mere marches is past...It is the right and duty of New Zealand citizens to throw off this government, which has long evinced a desire—nay, a compulsion—to subjugate us to absolute despotism. We should not wait for the 2008 election...New Zealanders must now ask themselves if they are a free people—and if so, are they prepared to act accordingly? Which is to say, are they prepared forcibly to evict all tyranny-mongers from their positions of power?"

    Given his views on the Urewera 17, that seems just a tad hypocritical.

    Calling for armed rebellion only seems to be a problem if you are brown, green, or red.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Looking for Monsters,

    Don't you think the sight of an Elder God trashing the Statue of Liberty would perk 'em up no end?

    Well, it would perk me up, at least until it ate my brain.

    (And I am looking forward to The Golden Compass, though there's very little religious content in the first book at all).

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Meet the New Bob,

    Craig: violating spending limits and disclosure requirements is a crime, not a tort. That means that those wanting to shut down speech will need to make a complaint to the Electoral Commission or the police, rather than just being able to sue you directly. And both will hopefully see a meritless, politically motivated complaint for what it is and laugh it out of court.

    And while I'm at it, hopefully people will unite against any political party or stooge wiling to use such tactics.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Meet the New Bob,

    What I was worried about was little Jo Blogger who really is just acting as an individual, even if they are a party member, and had good reasons for keeping their name to themselves.

    IMHO, said Jo Blogger has absolutely nothing to worry about, even if they're a party member. But remember, IANAL. Wait for the Electoral Commission to issue some guidelines to be sure.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Meet the New Bob,

    The above also means I could run actual political advertisements (which i'd consider on a case by case basis) if they are properly constituted, with the name and address of the promoter.

    Of course. But sane people will use AdBlock and not see them :)

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Meet the New Bob,

    Russell: That's 5 (2).

    Margaret: Tim is worried solely about blogs which carry advertising, and which could therefore be classified as "commercial". I'd argue that most blogs which carry advertising aren't commercial in any sense of the word - those ads don't produce any real revenue, and the blog isn't a business or a commercial enterprise. But even if it is, almost all blogs will be able to fall back on the news media exemption in 5 (2) (da), just as they did last election.

    Only those blogs which can't credibly claim to fall under either category will have to disclose. And only those blogs which "cost" more than $12,000 a year to host (including the commercial value of any donated hosting sevice) will be forced to register. But if you're running a commercial blog which is so political it can't credibly claim to be a "news media website", and you're spending that much money on it, you arguably should anyway.

    And legal arguments aside, the vast majority of blogs are run by private individuals on a non-commercial basis. They are firmly covered by s 5 (2) (g), and therefore won't have to do a thing. The sky is not falling, and you will not be affected by this law.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Meet the New Bob,

    Again: not true. How many times do I have to say it? Section 53(1) requires disclosure of your name and address even if you don't spend a cent on your blog.

    Only if you are "commercial". And I think that anyone arguing that a freehosted blog which earns next to nothing through AdSense is "commercial" will be laughed out of court (and if they're not, you can always fall back on being a "news media website").

    But look, if you want to play it safe, disclose. If you're that sure you're not covered by the news and comment exemption, you'd have to do it anyway under existing law, so the EFB changes nothing.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Meet the New Bob,

    Kiwiblog comes to mind as a blog that is totally open about it's bias towards National

    Reading between the lines on all of the above, Kiwiblog may very well be affected by the law, depending onhis hosting costs. Though IIRC he simply disclosed last election.

    Public Address shouldn't have any problems - it's a "news media website", and thus exempt.

    I'm still interested in the answer to the EVEN IF question though. What is the real ramification if some blogs got covered?

    So, if they're not covered by the blog exemption, and are insufficiently independent to slip in as a "news media website"?

    They would have to disclose the name and address of their "promoter". And, if their total expenses (basically hosting) are more than $12,000 a year, would need to register and do some paperwork.

    Keep in mind that the commerical value of Blogger or Wordpress hosting is nil. It's not a special deal you're getting - everyone gets it free. So only very large blogs will be affected.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Meet the New Bob,

    However, I could forsee some wrangling about what is a "personal blog" as opposed to one that is affiliated with a party, due to the author being a member of a particular party.

    That is indeed going to be an issue as the web becomes more of a feature in campaigns. And I expect the Electoral Commission to issue some guidance. As for your example, I think its a fairly hard and fast rule that a candidate's blog is advertising for them, and must be disclosed and declared as an expense. Party members, officials, pollsters etc will depend on the nature of their blog. But I'd think that someone's campaign officials running an online party political broadcast should probably disclose, and depending on the position, may very well have to declare it as a campaign expense as well. Mere party members, OTOH, won't face any real restrictions.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1686 posts Report Reply

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