Reg and Syd: Wikipedia, The Pirate Sea

“Well, Syd. What was that phone call all about?”

“My son, Reg. Angry about the Wikipedia blackout.”

That fount of misinformation? Why?”

“Says he needs it to do his homework. Has a major class project due tomorrow, or something like that. And he thinks I should do something about it.”

“Ah, Sydney, Sydney. Surely you understand that that’s good news. On two counts.”

Two, Reg? One, I get. That Jimmy Wales person thought that his little creation was strong enough so that he could use it to push us around, and that taking his little toy away for a day would show us just how he’d go about doing it.”

“Syd, your logic improves every day. Wales, of course, failed to recognize that most folk would be too busy being angry at him because he messed up their lives to care about what he’s on about. He’s about to learn the same lesson that we’ve been teaching the labor unions this last decade or so. And Wales can go back to being one of the little people. Under our thumb.”

“Piracy, Reg? Of course we’re worried about piracy, and we expect the congressmen we’ve bought to worry about it as well. All these wikipediots putting up information for free are pirates!”

“That’s exactly the issue, Syd. They’re pulling money out of our pockets, and we want it stopped. We will clear the Internet of these creatures the same way that the British Navy cleared the buccaneers out of the Caribbean. Then, people will pay properly for their information, the way God intended. And the more people we can get to focus on Wikipedia’s interruption of service, rather than the Jolly Roger it’s flying over our accounts-receivable streams, the better.”

“The one thing that concerns me, Reg, is that outfits like Google are making noise against our preferred legislation.”

“No, Syd, he doesn’t worry me. Sergey’s concerned about his profits, same as we are. His outfit’s still in China, after all, and the Chinese don’t have any tolerance for pirates. At least, the ones that don’t make them any money. A couple of tweaks to the legislation, and he’ll be happy.”

“So, that’s one count, Reg. What’s the other?”

“Ah, um, maybe I shouldn’t have mentioned that. You might find it a bit sensitive.”

“Meaning that it’s about my son? It can’t be any worse than what you’ve told me about your daughter getting mixed up with the Occupy crowd. Give.”

“Well, then. I reckon that if your son is getting the information for his studies from Wikipedia, and that university he’s going to is accepting that, then his classes really aren’t worth what you’re shelling out for them. If he flunks classes because Wikipedia’s down, then he has to stop going to school and get himself a job. Win win for you.”

You know this, Reg, and I do. Does he? Not so much.”

“The young people never do, Syd. They never do.”

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