Link Smorgasbord, January 2015

The Politics of Comfort
About the inherent nature of politics in fiction, in the messages that books share, deliberate or incidental.  One of the things I most love about Speculative Fiction is the core concept of "what if?"  I love that these fantastical stories often ask me to think about issues.
There’s no such thing as pure entertainment, and I say that as someone who wrote a story about a muppet–eating werewolf. What “entertainment without politics” means is “entertainment that regurgitates the norm and doesn’t challenge my assumptions in any way.” - Jim C. Hines
What Could Have Entered the Public Domain on January 1, 2015?
Title is pretty self explanatory.

21 Books That Changed Science Fiction And Fantasy Forever
Regardless if you agree with the inclusion (or exclusion) of every book on this list, this is a pretty solid list of titles. 

Here’s What Happens When You Install the Top 10 Download.com Apps
Short version: it ain't pretty.

Obama wants Congress to increase prison sentences for hackers
Besides the fact that there are many people who are given ridiculous punishments for small infractions, the fact of the matter is that often the only way to find security flaws that need fixing is to go in and try to break the system.

The Public Domain Project (Pond5)
A collection of 80,000 royalty & copyright free film clips, audio files, and images.

Let’s Make It Easier to Expand the Public Domain
The way copyright law works right now makes it nearly impossible to make something part of the public domain until the copyright term expires (unless it is extended again).  We have the option of slapping a license on our creative works that allows them to mostly function as part of the public domain, but it's still just a modification within the existing legal strictures.

A little bit more on the subject: Why We Still Can't Really Put Anything In The Public Domain... And Why That Needs To Change

Why GitHub is Important for Book Publishing
On social dynamics, hierarchies, and how this applies to organization and distribution of information.

How To Tell If You Are In A High Fantasy Novel
An entertaining list of fantasy troupes.

Never trust a corporation to do a library's job

Fire rages through library in Moscow
While the bulk of the holdings are fine, still a huge loss of special collections materials.

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