Monthly Archives: December 2014

Sony Pulls Movie, Obama Condemns Sony

I saw in the tech news this morning that Obama went on TV and declared that he feels Sony made a mistake to back down to the threats against them for the recent hacking of their company computers.  The hacking is supposedly over the movie The Interview, that makes fun of North Korea.

The FBI now “claims” that they believe NK is responsible.  I call BS, as I think the US is simply using this as a means to escalate their cold war tactics against NK.  It’s far more likely to be teenagers somewhere.  The hackers put skull images up on the Sony computers, used a goofy name like “Guardians of Freedom” of something like that, and other things that were done are unlike all other cyber attacks that have been deemed to have nation state origins. 

Why would a country (NK) care about a freaking movie, no matter what the movie is about.  So they make fun of the NK guy.  These are people the same as us, not monsters from another planet, I’m sure they have a sense of humour like all people do.  You don’t go to war over a comedy movie.  And this is assuming the attacks were by NK.

Regardless if I’m right or wrong, it’s incredibly poor of the US president to speak out “after” Sony makes a decision.  I’m sure his people could have told him the way that Sony was leaning towards this, and he could have made his statement sooner.  It was in the freaking news days before Obama said anything that Sony was considering pulling it from all theatres.  It wasn’t a surprise.  Don’t forget Obama has a Cyber Czar and Cyber Security department, who would have been following this and likely were updating Obama, or at least his people on this world news event.  Obama waited till after Sony made their final announcement, to say his part and condemn Sony for making a mistake.  Political BS at Sony’s expense.  Kick a man when he’s down.  Who thinks highly of kicking a man when he is down?!

Obama said in his press release that he wishes Sony would have asked him what he thinks before they did anything.  What?!  Again, what political BS.  Why would they or should they.  They have their interests to worry about, and shareholders, and employees, and theatres that show the movies to worry about.  A far bigger picture than what obviously Obama has bothered to consider yet.  And what liability is Obama or the US government going to cover if they do what he wants instead of what they think is right?  Sony would be on their own to deal with the outcome either way, without any outside support.  And again, Obama could have, and maybe should have made a statement “before” instead of after.  Remember he has the Cyber Czar and Cyber Security people that would have known what is going on.

I’ve heard comments about what might have happened if Sony hadn’t pulled the movie for the holidays.  For example, most theatre employees are teenagers.  What if many of the parents of these teenagers were concerned about some sort of attack at theatres when it is playing.  So they keep the kids at home.  Now the theatres are under staffed during the busiest time of year.  And the theatres take the blunt of the abuse in the media for showing the movie, and the media would make up the typical crap about risking people lives over showing the controversial movie.  If that sort of thing happened, Sony is right to pull it, and for theatre owners not to show it.  Why should a theatre owner take a stand and make a political statement to say, we won’t cow to terrorists, we aren’t afraid.  Of course they should be afraid and concerned!  They are in business to share entertainment not make political statements.  And Sony is in the business to make entertainment, not fight terrorism or make political statements.  I think little of Obama for not being able to see the bigger picture.  It’s not his place to decide if there is a threat to kids and families when going to see a movie.  I think the business owners, the people working at the theatres, and the people going to see the movies have a say in what they feel is the right thing as well. 

I am not a Sony fan.  Ever since they installed root-kits on consumer computers years ago as part of their DRM tactics, I have avoided Sony products out of spite.  What they did was criminal in my mind, and they were never held accountable.  But in this case, I think they did the right thing by pulling The Interview from the theatres for now.  Both fiscally and morally.

One thing that hasn’t been considered in most media is that critics have said this is not a good movie.  So it’s quite likely it would have been a box office flop if that were the case.  But now, all Sony has to do is hold back, and release it at some later date, with major media attention and rake in future cash for a stinker of the movie.  All this does is simply turn The Interview into a long term investment.  They will eventually cash out on this thing.

When all is said and done, it’s a movie, not hostages being held at gun point in the desert.  Shame on Obama for using this as a political statement to make himself look good after the fact.  If he wasn’t going to speak up sooner, he should have made no comment at all.