Ramp Industry and Threespeech

As this site has now hit the front page of digg (until the iphone sinks it again) I thought I might just do a quick update on what I've learnt about THREESPEACH. I guessed everyone new they were fake - but just in case here's a run down.

Ben Furneaux (one of TS's bloggers) replied to me in the podcast thread with the following:

“I understand in the past Sony has been overtly viral but I can assure you I am not an example of that. Don’t you think they learned from their mistakes? The reason why Three Speech keeps it’s posters anonymous is because they all come from one person!”

Notice the use of "I am" rather than "we are" - it's rather telling.

If you go to the UK site Ramp Industry and navigate the flash you can find (in the "General Idea" section) that they are a company that
[allows] brands to connect and communicate... to fire up conversations...from strategy branding and positioning, to return on investment and customer retention/acquisition.

Which of course is pretty much the definition of viral advertising.

Why is this interesting? Because if you go to the "Ramp Content" section and then the "check out our work" section what do you see?

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Shot at 2007-06-30

This isn't Free speech: How THREESPEECH hides it's censorship.

(2nd UPDATE: It seems the attention this has caused has had some results! At some point between saturday evening and sunday morning, my comment number 79 was uncensored. Also Ben from Threespeech has offered a one on one chat about the events. He seems a nice guy. I'll keep you posted. They've also included an explanation of their moderation system. This was not the moderation system that was in place at the time of my original comments (I'll explain more in detail after I've talked to Ben). This new system still causes the deletion of a comment to never come to the attention of the original poster, which prohibits conversation and is shady. However the moderating system is now transparent and as such thats a huge improvement. And transparency is all I've ever wanted. As I've said before I prefer the PS3 to the Xbox I'm not an "Xbot" like some people are calling me. I just want some honesty from ThreeSpeech, RampIndustry and Sony about how they are marketing their products, and the way they are trying to imply they are something they are not.

I'm now waiting to talk to Ben. I'll let you know how it goes.)

(1st UPDATE: Just in case you don't know the relationship between ramp industry and Threespeech an explanation has been added here.)

Original Article

This is the comments thread to THREESPEECH's first podcast. We all know TS is effectively a sham blog set up by Sony to promote itself, presumably as no one else will.

Firstly, the irony of name withstanding, obviously TS are entitled to remove comments they don't like. But how they do that is very important. Especially as they state:

We won’t censor content so long as this space is used constructively.
But what I've found goes beyond merely deleting negative comments. Here's the long and the short of it:

Short Version: THREESPEECH will delete your "negative" comment (e.g. asking what "semi-offical" means) but from then on maintain a different version of the web site just for you so that you think your post still exists.

Long Version: After reading what Penny-arcade had to had tosay about Threespeech - I listened to their Podcast. It is seedy. As such I posted this on the comments thread:

I’ve just listened to the whole podcast.

The Internet has one commodity. Trust.

The viewers have to believe the creaters. And with this sites ambiguity thats impossible. How about a detailed explanation of the site. Answer these questions:

* Are you being paid by Sony, it’s marketing department, or by others on behalf of Sony to make this site? It seems the answer is yes.

* Are you given free reign to voice your true opinions? It seems the answer is no.

* What are Sony’s aims with this site?

I am ashamed. This site, and the podcast is so “on-topic” that it beggers belief. It’s like a concerted effort to “push” “hard-core” opinion on the Sony Brand products.

At no point did I see a genuine criticism of any of the platforms. And minor criticism was quickly distorted back into something positive.

Sony wins no fans by trying to insidiously promote itself in this way. To try and have it’s cake and eat it.

And I pity those involved. Because it’s clear you have asperations in the games media field and you’ve damaged your CV beyond repair with job.

I want Sony to do well with the PS3. The ability to install Linux (and thus Myth TV etc) will mean I’m far more likely to buy one over the 360. But this kind of marketing is truly offensive.

Comment by Lave — June 28, 2007 @ 4:51 pm

And thought nothing of it. For various boring reasons I have to run two browsers on my laptop. One runs locally. One runs on a machine 5 miles away and unix pipes the window to my machine. After a while my comment was still happily siting on the thread. But then when I happened to visit the site with the different machine's browser it was nowhere to be seen.

Here's a screencap of both browsers side by side. One has my comment the other doesn't.

Link as 1024*768

You can see for yourself. Do the following:

1) Go to the thread and read post 79.

2) Go to the comment field and post something (but please be nice - maybe even a link here... ;) )

For your name put: Lave
For your email put: skeptobotURIGELLER@blogspot.com (remember to remove the fraud's name).
For your website put: http://skeptobot.blogspot.com

3) Reread post 79 and see how my post is back. Their server clearly thinks your me now. And is trying to hide it's censorship from you.

Free Speech indeed.

It's such a strange situation. From the postings of one guy there called Ben who replied to my comments that haven't been deleted - it seems he isn't being paid directly. No doubt he gets free stuff. But that the perk of any journalist. And he admits he has no control over what makes the first page and comments. So he's not much more than a patsy giving them some respectability.

But behavior like this makes it certain (even though it was already) that this is a Sony run site. Which I've no problem with - if they explain what that means, rather than making a blog that is clearly designed to fool people into thinking this is "honest" enthusiasm.

If you want to spread the word please digg...


Paris Hilton isn't news.

I don't know the show. I don't really understand american news apart from what I read on the daily show. But it does make me love the BBC more and more.

Some people say this is staged. Others not. But either way those guys come across like fucking jerks.

An Electronic Future needs a Paper Trail

I love living in The Future. Sure I might not have a flying car, or a rocket pack, and I can't go on holiday to the Moon, but I can spout my dumb ramblings to an entire world (in theory at least). I have a "communicator" that allows me to ring almost anyone, almost anywhere. And I can be on one side of the world one day, and another the next. Or hell, sometimes the previous day.

But The Future isn't always awesome. Especially when it comes to voting. I think old politicians are trying to appear "with it" by modernizing something which doesn't need it.

Watch this.


In Sixty seconds they manage to open a e-voting machine and replace it's ROM. This basically means they've replaced it's memory chip with one of its own. Maybe it will just destroy all the votes cast from then on. Maybe it will make every vote count for "Evil Candidate Alpha." Of course those Ideas are stupid. But in a "First Past the Post" System. You don't have to do either. Just make it register enough votes that you get 51% and you're away. Thankfully this message it's being made clear.

We need a paper trail. We need literally tons of evidence.

No computer is secure. By definition it can't be. It's a device that does only two things. Copy and Edit. And if you're trying to stop it doing that then you might as well try to hold back the sea with your hands.

Copyright is broken.

UPDATE: The link below has updated. Appears that the law he quotes wouldn't apply. As such this "article" I've written below is pretty much bullshit. I'm leaving it up because it's good practice to admit your wrong, and be able to change your mind. Silly me!

This is Brilliant.

The twin daughters of George W Bush made him a mix tape for Father's Day. This guy breaks down what that means - which to summarise is that they've broken "17 U.S.C. §504(c)(2) (2006)" for each track on there. At $150,000 a pop.

Will the RIAA sue them?

Will High Fidelity get banned?

The Law doesn't work. Things need to change.

News Fart!

UK minister evokes Monty Python to defend Rushdie

The Life of Brian was attacked because it ridiculed something that deserved it. I think most of us young'uns won't be aware of the magnitude of these attacks. There was a huge controversy when the film was released. But thats the point. It showed that you were allowed to criticize Christianity out loud. In public. That because some people take a belief very seriously - it doesn't mean you have too as well.

It's this same effect that Muslims worry about now. Though the Satanic verses isn't the book to do it, and threatening death to those that might criticize is just a way to prevent that bubble being popped - in the way Monty Python did so well.

What lot of future hopefuls is a newly launched group" The "Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain" to voice the views of those who have left Islam. Who have said:

"Too many things in the media and government policies have been geared to pandering to the political Islamic movements and Islamic organizations"

"I hope we'll get a lot more attention and begin to change the debate."

But it's not all good, the President of Gambia has used his Magic Medicine (and Allah) to cure 33 people of the HI Virus.

What's also great is that he starts his monologue by boasting that he isn't afraid of touching them. The Cunt.

To read more about this whole debacle go to BadScience.net. Its far to depressing to relate here.

(P.S. Sorry for the lack of pictures recently. I'm working on that...)

No DRM = More sales

Here you go.

Who would have thought, DRM free MP3 downloads, that give you the same rights and abilities as a CD (i.e. the ability to make copies, backups, and lend to a friend) have resulted in increased sales for EMI. Some CDs are up by over 300%!

But it's more easily pirateable! This just doesn't make any sense! Bear is driving how can this be?

Religous-os and Richard Herring

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Sorry for the lack of updates, had a busy few weeks that have kept me from the internet. Richard Herring, who you may remember from "Fist of Fun" has had a little rant on his daily diary. It makes a good read. Here's the start:

I hate religious people.

Well no that's not true. Some of them are OK when they're not talking about religion, but I hate it when they are asked their opinions about important issues and what they say is given equal, and sometimes extra weight to those who are just talking from a basis of fact or common sense.

The way I look at it, if religious people are correct then (for some of them at least) they have all of infinity once they are dead to go on about how right they are, so for the 70 years they are here I think they should just shut up. All I am asking is for 70 years out of infinity where they keep their thoughts to themselves. After that, when they are dead I am happy for them to pontificate for as long as they like. I only want them to keep quiet while they are alive. And 70 years is literally 0% of infinity years, so it's not that much to ask. In return I agree to only say what I think for the time I on earth, but when I am dead I will stay quiet forever, just lying in my grave or burning in Hell, whichever comes to pass."

And heres the rest.

He's a great stand up, and along with Stewert Lee (of Jerry Springer the Opera fame) pretty much created my sense of humour as an impressionable teen. I really recommend you go to Go Faster Stripe and pick up a DVD of theirs. I promise you'll love it.