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There's nothing to see here except for shadows of the past - and these ones won't be returning.

I'd point you to my next project here - but I'm not that organised. My style is to act and then sort out the consequences, rather than the other way around. Oh, and lying. I do that a lot too. (i.e. if you look closely, you may have seen some links appearing roughly once a week) is registered to me for the forseeable future, so you might find something there.

Edited by Vitenka at 2003-04-09 08:22:54

Vitenka : Thu 28 03:28:55 2001
... wherein it is pointed out that the law is a mechanism for perpetuating itself, and manages no other purpose ...

Previously Uncombined Laws

I'm not sure if you knew, but (in US law at least) you are not allowed to volunteer for a company. You CANNOT work for them for free.

This is a remnant of the trade union concessions - after all, if one person is willing to work for less than minimum wage, then it puts another person out of a job.

So you cannot volunteer - you have to be paid at at least a standard rate.

This came to the gaming worlds attention when OSI moved its customer support, which had previously been provided by helpful volunteer players, rather forcibly away from them. They moved it into oblivion, and intend to move it to india soon. Lots of the volunteers whined.

But let's think about the ramifications of this for a minute, shall we?

I provide content to this site. Heck, I provide content to any forum I post to. That content is hosted by the company (according to some laws, companies are publishers) and enhances their market value. (They have a 'thriving community' or 'people providing news')

I am not paid for this, I do it because it's fun. Ooops, just ran afoul of that law then.

An escape pre-emptively blocked

Well, how about I set up my own company, and that company can provide its services at any rate it likes. Maybe a nominal fee of a penny a century.

Uh-huh. See IR35 legislation. Blocking off a little tax loophole, the gubberment basically said "If you work for yourself and that then works for someone else, you count as working for that someone else in the obvious way"

No exit there.

How much are we talking anyway?

Well, let's say I ran a bit more than I do. Maybe, counting irc help, make it up to three hours a day, five days a week. At minimum wage, that's 40 a week.

Add to that the rest of the site, there's at least another ten people who contribute at least that much, not counting ennui who works full time.

So let's say 500 per week in wages. Add hosting to that, and divide by the number of people who use this site. It'd cost each and every one of you about 2 a week.

A problem?

Note - if this really IS the way the law works, or the way the law WILL work... This applies to EVERY fan site. EVERY hobbyist and EVERY community.

There can be NO independant sites - they would ALL have to be working and paid.

The common view of the world in two years time is that most services are provided by two or three big companies. msn, yahoo, aol whatever. They have most of the content. And then scrubby ill run fansites, that appear and disappear hold all the real gems, but are SMALL.

And the change? Subtract those little guys from the equation completely.

Conspiracy Theory

Let me conclude by pointing out that It's not even safe to move to the outback any more.

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