Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Intended for constructive conversations. Exhibits of polarizing tribalism will be deleted.
Posts: 2707
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2017 8:37 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by Jason »

Bands have always been able to sell or give away their own recordings of their music. Buskers do it all the time. But you know what they do besides make music? Two basic, fucking things. They copyright their material and dream they are picked up by Sony Music so they don't have to sell one unit at a fucking time while they freeze their ass off in a subway station having quarters thrown into their instrument case.

It's not the "protected industry" It's protection. And industry. Why the fuck would somebody want unprotected industry unless you are a complete fucking idiot and want your creative content available to the masses without the possibility of any legal recourse if you ever need it. This is just a bizarre fucking argument that I never would have fathomed someone would believe in let alone propagate. The record company did not originally press 10 gazillion copies of "Don't Worry, Be Happy." The god damn public asked for it. It's called supply and demand.

Nirvana was signed to a small label. Sub-pop. Then their audience grew to the point that the record company told them they needed a bigger label. So they went to Geffen. It's fucking capitalism. IP is not some magical gateway. There has always been small record labels, small venues, small movie houses. Nobody was held back or muted because of legal protection. Sylvester Stallone made Rocky on his own. People got shit done. Country artists traveled from radio station to radio station playing live. This is just a ridiculous fucking narrative.

Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:09 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by Riggerjack »

Thomas West a political scholar at Hillsdale College researched the history of sodomy laws in America and found only one instance in which an actual case reached the court system and that involved pedophilia so it was really a rape issue. Sodomy laws were on the book as a legal reflection of the religious climate at the time but were not actively pursued or prosecuted.
That's one fine scholar you got there. Was it this guy?
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/pos ... -offender/
Charlton Green was 20 when he was arrested after having oral sex with a 16-year-old male in a Georgia hotel room.

He was convicted of a sex crime — not because the act was not consensual (it was), nor because the teen was not within the age of consent (in Georgia, it is 16). He was convicted because the incident happened in 1997, when oral and anal sex between consenting adults was prohibited under Georgia’s sodomy law. The conviction required him to register as a sex offender, a stigmatizing label that he carried for years.
Probably not, as Sodomy laws have been pushed all the way to the Supreme Court twice. Those two alone should represent at least 4 charges. Your scholar was so good, he couldn't find the charges against defendants who made it to the Supreme Court. I'm not sure this "scholar" word means what you think it does. :lol:

The American Medical Association's Journal of Ethics:
https://journalofethics.ama-assn.org/ar ... es/2014-11
Bowers v. Hardwick (1986)

Facts of the case. In 1982, a 29-year-old gay man named Michael Hardwick was working as a bartender in a gay bar in Atlanta, Georgia [17]. One night, as Hardwick was leaving the bar, he threw a beer bottle into a trash can in front of the establishment [17]. Seeing this, police officer Keith Torick cited Hardwick for drinking in public despite Hardwick’s protestation that this was not the case [17]. Officer Torick inadvertently wrote down the wrong court date on the summons, and, when Hardwick did not appear in court, an arrest warrant was issued [17]. Torick’s first attempt to track down Hardwick at his home was unsuccessful, but, on the second attempt, Torick entered Hardwick’s unlocked apartment and opened a bedroom door, where he found Hardwick engaging in oral sex with another man [17].

Torick arrested both men, who were then charged with violating Georgia’s sodomy law [17]. The statute, Georgia Annotated Code section 16-6-2, specified that “a person commits the offense of sodomy when he performs or submits to any sexual act involving the sex organs of one person and the mouth and anus of another” [18] and “a person convicted of the offense of sodomy shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than one nor more than 20 years” [19]....

Lawrence v. Texas (2003)

Facts of the case. On September 17, 1998, John Lawrence spent the day with Tyrone Garner and Robert Eubanks, who were in a tumultuous relationship [28]. After a drunken argument erupted over whether Eubanks, Garner, or both could stay the night at Lawrence’s place, Eubanks stormed out of the apartment [28]. Later that night, the Harris County sheriff’s office received a call saying that a black man was “going crazy with a gun” in Lawrence’s apartment [28]. Minutes later, four sheriff’s deputies entered the unlocked apartment and made their presence known, but heard and saw nothing [28]. Only when the deputies entered a back bedroom did they find Lawrence and Garner supposedly engaged in a sexual act [28].

Both Lawrence and Garner were arrested and charged with violating the Texas sodomy law.
Here's what the ACLU has to say about the secondary effects of sodomy laws:
How the Laws Were Used Against Gay People

These laws were used against gay people in three ways. First, they were used to limit the ability of gay people to raise children. They were used to justify denying gay parents custody of their own children (Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Virginia). They've also been used to justify refusing to let gay people adopt (Florida, Mississippi) and refusing to let gay people become foster parents (Arkansas, Missouri).

Second, the laws have been used to justify firing gay people, or denying gay people jobs. The idea was explained by the F.B.I. in a case which it won in the late 1980's. In 1986, in Bowers v. Hardwick, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that the U.S. constitution allowed Georgia to make sodomy a crime. Although the Georgia law applied to all couples, the Court said its decision was about "homosexual sodomy". That meant, the F.B.I. said, that it couldn't be illegal to discriminate against gay people because gay people are a class "defined" by conduct which could be made a crime.

After the U.S. Supreme Court said in 1996 (in Romer v. Evans, which struck down a Colorado constitutional amendment that forbade gay rights laws) that states could not discriminate against gay people on the basis of "disapproval," the argument was harder to make. But that didn't stop Georgia's Attorney General from (successfully) using the state's sodomy law as a justification for refusing to hire a lesbian, or the Bowers decision from being offered as a justification for firing a lesbian x-ray technician in a Washington state case last year.

Third, the laws have been used in public debate, to justify denying gay people equal treatment and to discredit LGBT voices. In Utah, the sodomy law was used to justify not protecting gay people from hate crimes. In Arkansas, Florida, Mississippi and Texas they've been used to justify various proposals to ban adoption or foster care, sometimes successfully. Sodomy laws are regularly invoked in civil rights debates: from a reason not to recognize domestic partnerships in Kalamazoo, Michigan (the argument was rejected), to a reason to give "sodomy states" the right to "opt out" of a federal law banning employment discrimination (which hasn't even come to a floor vote in Congress since the mid 90's).

Near Austin, Texas, Williamson County denied Apple Computer a promised tax incentive to build a new plant because the company recognizes domestic partners, said to be a violation of Texas' sodomy law (the county later changed its mind, under heavy pressure from then Governor Ann Richards). Shawnee County Kansas canceled a contract with a company to collect property taxes because the company recognized domestic partners. The county Treasurer said that was a violation of Kansas's sodomy law.

The tax cases may seem almost comic. Losing a job, or worse, losing your family isn't.
So I propose that copyright enforcement is exactly like sodomy laws, in that:

1. It is only enforced in edge cases, often as a "junk charge" prosecutors can throw at defendants to see if it will stick, in the few cases that go to trial. But it makes an excellent tool of manipulation for plea bargaining, to have extra charges with social stigma attached, with which to threaten a defendant

2. Mainstream Americans are often lead to believe those prosecuted are moral failures, that they are attacking the basic fabric of society. Thus the need to conflate copying data to theft, embezzlement, fraud, or any other crime, no matter how tenuous the link. Repetition is Truth, after all.

3. When confronted on the costs vs benefits argument, Conservatives will try to pretend that there are no costs, but that the benefits are basic components, necessary to hold society together. See this tactic in the argument above, using the "let's just pretend nobody is harmed by sodomy laws" argument for why we shouldn't even be looking at this issue. "Move along, nothing to see here. Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain."

I say there IS harm. Overzealous application of copyright enforcement has consequences.

Just as privacy advocates had feared, however, the lack of judicial oversight in the subpoena process resulted in abuses. For example, Sarah Ward, a Macintosh-using Massachusetts grandmother, was accused of using Windows-only Kazaa to download hard-core rap music. Although the RIAA ultimately withdrew the lawsuit against her, it remained unapologetic: in the words of an RIAA spokesperson, "When you go fishing with a driftnet, sometimes you catch a dolphin."


Tammy Lafky, a 41-year-old sugar mill worker and single mother in Minnesota. Because her teenage daughter downloaded some music—an activity both mother and daughter believed to be legal—Lafky faced over $500,000 in penalties. The RIAA offered to settle for $4,000, but even that sum was well beyond Lafky’s means—she earned just $21,000 per year and received no child support.45

Or consider the case of the defendant who faced the $22,500 judgment discussed above, Cecilia Gonzalez. Gonzalez, a mother of five, was hit with the judgment just two weeks after she was laid off from her job as a secretary—a job where she made not much more than that amount in an entire year. Ironically, Gonzalez primarily downloaded songs she already owned on CD—the downloads were meant to help her avoid the labor of manually loading the 250 CDs she owns onto her computer. In fact, the record companies were going after a steady customer—Gonzalez and her husband spent about $30 per month on CDs.

Gonzalez is not the only good customer the RIAA has chosen to alienate. The organization also targeted a fully disabled widow and veteran for downloading over 500 songs she already owned. The veteran’s mobility was limited; by downloading the songs onto her computer, she was able to access the music in the room in which she primarily resides. The RIAA offered to settle for $2,000—but only if the veteran provided a wealth of private information regarding her disability and her finances.

Prof. Gerardo Valecillos, a Spanish teacher and recent immigrant from Venezuela, faced another kind of blackmail. After his ISP advised him that his daughter had illegally downloaded music, Valecillos contacted a lawyer. The lawyer negotiated a $3,000 settlement figure, but that was still far more than Valecillos was able to pay. The sole support for his family of four, Valecillos had recently undergone surgery and been forced to pay legal fees for both a copyright and immigration attorney. Failing to settle could have jeopardized his immigration status.

In yet another instance, Cassi Hunt, a student at M.I.T. sued for illegally sharing music, attempted to negotiate the RIAA’s proposed settlement price of $3,750. Hunt pointed out that she was already in debt to cover tuition. The RIAA’s response? Its representative suggested that she drop out of school in order to pay off the settlement.

The RIAA has also failed to verify that its targets are actually current file-sharers. John Paladuk was an employee of C&N railroad for 36 years and suffered a stroke in 2006 which left his entire left side paralyzed, and severely impaired his speech, leaving him disabled with his disability check as his only source of income. Despite this, the RIAA has filed suit in Michigan against Mr. Paladuk, even though he lived in Florida at the time of the alleged infringement and has no knowledge of file sharing.49 One Florida college senior was named in a civil case based on downloads that had occurred two to three years before, from a computer she then shared with her three roommates. The computer was long gone, making any investigation into the circumstances difficult at best. Fearful of leaving college with a damaged credit record, the student believed that she had no choice but to meet the RIAA’s demand.


In May 2005, accused file-sharer Candy Chan moved to dismiss the record companies’ lawsuit against her on the ground that the RIAA had sued the wrong person. The RIAA was forced to withdraw the case, though it later filed a new lawsuit against Ms. Chan’s 14-year-old daughter.54 This suit was also eventually dismissed in April of 2006 after the RIAA requested that a legal guardian be appointed for Ms. Chan’s daughter, but then refused to pay for such a guardian as ordered by the court.

In August 2005, Patricia Santangelo, a single mother of five, moved to dismiss the lawsuit filed against her by several record companies.56 Santangelo says that she was not aware that there was a file sharing program on her computer, and that the file sharing account named in the lawsuit belongs to a friend of her children. The case was dismissed in April of 2007, with the opportunity for Ms. Santangelo to pursue her claim for attorney’s fees.57 The RIAA responded by suing her son and daughter, based on alleged evidence from the first case.58 When Michelle, the daughter, refused to respond, a default judgment was entered against her for $31,000. However, the judge vacated the judgment, saying he preferred cases be decided on their merits.

In October 2007, in the first case to reach a jury trial, a Minnesota jury found that Jammie Thomas had infringed copyright by sharing 24 songs and awarded the record company plaintiffs $222,000 in damages. In September 2008, however, the judge threw out the verdict, citing an erroneous jury instruction...

On February 28, 2007, the RIAA announced a new "deterrence and education initiative" targeting college students nationwide.72 Under this new initiative, instead of initiating lawsuits, the RIAA sends out hundreds of "pre-litigation" letters each month to a variety of universities with the request that they forward these letters to unidentified students.73 These letters identify the IP address of the accused infringer, threaten future legal action with damages upwards of $750 per song, and offer a deal in the form of a "reduced" settlement if the student comes forward and pays the non-negotiable amount (around $3,000) within 20 days of receiving the letter.74 If the students does not respond to the pre-litigation settlement offer, then the labels file a traditional "John Doe" suit.75 In the first six months of this new initiative, the RIAA targeted 2,926 college students at nearly 100 different campuses across the United States.76 Within a year, the RIAA had sent over 5,400 letters to 160 different schools.77 The RIAA has allegedly collected millions in this pre-litigation settlement campaign.

In the words of top RIAA lawyer, Cary Sherman, "Enforcement is a tough love form of education.

We let them target college students, as a policy, and still we were silent. They routinely attack the weakest among us, to make examples, and we do nothing. I don't understand, where is your outrage? Is this your idea of a shining city on the hill? Is this the world you WANT your children to grow up in?


Now I've been posting my crazy rants on the internet long enough to know that what the RIAA considers "tough love" and looks to me like "coercive sodomy", looks to some others as "loving, if vigorous, attention from an authority figure". But most people are not as rabid about privacy and egalitarianism as I am, nor do they so easily transfer their Daddy Issues to any institution with a titillating air of authority.

Most people are somewhere in the middle, don't care that much, and just wanting this issue to go away. To be worked out by someone who cares.

Much like sodomy laws, Copyright enforcement law, as it is currently being abused, is out of step with our values. But since the law is completely out of step with common practices and values, the only way this can be worked out is for us to:

1. Shame, Coerce, and Punish transgressors until they occupy a small enough minority that they are safe to attack with more vigorous means. The RIAA has been on this path, with our help, or at least without our opposition.

2. Bring the law closer to the values and practices of the citizenry. So long as the narrative is that copying data is a shameful, criminal behavior, no progress can be made on these grounds. So this will continue to be a political issue.

Y'all are some well educated, smart folks. Which one of those two is going to lead to the kind of society you want to live in?

What we buy, we support. So people of conscience must buy what we support, and support what we buy.

When your grandchildren ask you where you stood, what will you say? Do you support Musicians, or the RIAA?

I copy files, and I support Musicians.

Posts: 942
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by Campitor »


Well it looks like the RIAA lawsuits were ineffective:
..at the end of 2004, a group of independent computer scientists at UC San Diego and UC Riverside published a study aimed at measuring P2P usage from 2002 through 2004. Drawing on empirical data collected from two Tier 1 ISPs, the researchers concluded:

In general we observe that P2P activity has not diminished. On the contrary, P2P traffic represents a significant amount of Internet traffic and is likely to continue to grow in the future, RIAA behavior notwithstanding...

...the amount of traffic on P2P networks doubled between September 2003 (when the lawsuits began) and June 2005. The average number of simultaneous users in June 2005 reached 8.9 million, a 20% increase over the previous year. In May 2006 Big Champagne logged a whopping 10 million, 12% more than the previous year. American users accounted for 75% of those on P2P networks...

...after more than 30,000 RIAA lawsuits, tens of millions of U.S. music fans continue to use P2P networks and other new technologies to share music. The lawsuit campaign has not succeeded in driving P2P out of the mainstream, much less to the fringes, of the digital music marketplace...
Even corporations grew tired of the RIAA lawsuits:
...A Sony executive called the anti-P2P litigation a "money pit."One of the "big four," EMI, has threatened to cut its funding to the record industry’s international trade group almost entirely. Others are considering legal action to collect on P2P settlement money the RIAA collected but never distributed to artists...
Despite the lawsuits and the growing awareness of the financial issues that could be incurred, youths continued to engage in musical piracy and seemed unconcerned with the RIAA's activities:
...An April 2004 survey revealed that 88% of children between 8 and 18 years of age believed that P2P downloading was illegal. At the same time, the survey also discovered that 56% of the children polled continue to download music. In fact, the children surveyed were more concerned about computer viruses than about being sued by the record industry...
The RIAA lawsuits didn't make any significant headway and surprise surprise, the mice got smarter and built better anti mousetrap technology:
...The recording industry’s own international industry group, the IFPI, estimated in 2008 that there were 20 unauthorized downloads for every legitimate download purchased—in other words, as of January 2008, 95% of all digital music downloads were from unauthorized sources. In short, all of the authorized music services together do not yet amount to a drop in the digital music downloading bucket...

...In response to the RIAA lawsuits, many filesharers are also beginning to opt for new file sharing technologies that protect their anonymity. Software such as DirectConnect, WASTE, AllPeers, and Wuala offer secure, encrypted file sharing capabilities to groups of friends...
But none of the above is new - its been happening since the inception of technology:
...The conflict between copyright owners and new ways of distributing music is not new, but is rather the historical norm. Every new innovation from the past century – moving pictures, player pianos, radio, and television, to name a few – has sparked a new conflict between those in a better position under the old scheme and those who stand to benefit by updating copyright law in light of new technologies. However, these compromises take a long time to form and build into legislation, and even then the negotiations often omit the most important interests: those of the fans...
Seems like the RIAA is fighting an uphill battle with courts and state watchdogs looking into their tactics:
..Five years into the RIAA’s campaign, it has become all too clear (if there were ever any doubt) that suing music fans is not a viable business model for the recording industry. With courts, state watchdogs and the RIAA’s own members questioning the tactics of the campaign, it is time for the industry to embrace a new model that can help artists get paid and help fans access and share the music they love...

Looks like the RIAA stopped the lawsuits in 2008. The egregious lawsuit behavior against the vulnerable which you're concerned about is no longer much of a concern:
...Although it is impossible to determine the long term net effect of RIAA’s mass fillings of lawsuits against individual music fans had in tackling the issue of music piracy, one indication that the policy was of limited success is the RIAA’s decision to abandon the strategy in 2008 for other approaches...

https://jolt.richmond.edu/2018/03/15/ha ... et-piracy/:
...As of 2018, the RIAA is does not have any plans to go after individual copyright infringers instead focusing their efforts on prosecuting torrent sites and their administrators. It seems that the RIAA has learned that just because a battle should be fought does not mean that it can be won...
I can still be for musicians and against the RIAA bad behavior or for copyright protection - it's not an either/or situation. This is a false dichotomy. Sodomy laws were revoked because they were bad laws punishing consensual behavior between adults. Artists and the companies licensing the distribution of the artists' work are not consenting to piracy and want to collect payment for the property they're publishing. The link you used in your latest response shows that overwhelming behavior is towards piracy - the exchange of pirated artistic work is not consensual.

Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:09 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by Riggerjack »

Intellectual property rights were not a reflection of a moral climate, but an extension of the Constitution's grant to private ownership, the basis of the founding. These laws have been legislated in the US court systems throughout our history providing legal protection of individual's private property in the same manner we have trespassing laws, breaking and entry laws, bank robbing laws etc. It protects individual's right to property, prosperity and commerce. Without it, we have neither a basis for a republic or a capitalistic society. And the false assumption is that without these laws, prosperity will be expanded into some sort of wiki uptopia. That's naive. The right to own property will revert to the state, not the ether in a typical power abhors a vacuum manner.
Slaveowner's rights were not a reflection of a moral climate, but an extension of the Constitution's grant to private ownership, the basis of the founding. These laws have been legislated in the US court systems throughout our history providing legal protection of individual's private property in the same manner we have trespassing laws, breaking and entry laws, bank robbing laws etc. It protects individual's right to property, prosperity and commerce. Without it, we have neither a basis for a republic or a capitalistic society. And the false assumption is that without these laws, prosperity will be expanded into some sort of wiki uptopia. That's naive. The right to own property will revert to the state, not the ether in a typical power abhors a vacuum manner.

Both rights came from the same document. Why do you believe yours is different? The world didn't end with the end of slaveholder's rights. Why would it end when we remove the Publisher's right to restrict the flow of Human Knowledge?

There are "Fair Use" laws when it comes to copyright. Not every use is worthy of being monetized.
1853: Stowe v. Thomas...
Just to make sure I understand your point, the "sacred constitutional property right" claimed today, didn't exist in 1853. Or to be more precise, a translation to a different language was considered to have met the 10% change rule of copyright infringement. It also shows that even when a publisher gets the windfall of a record setting publication (Uncle Tom's Cabin set publication records, long before Stowe turned to writing aristocratic propaganda via Sunny Memories of Foreign Lands) they just can't help but try to carve out a bigger piece for themselves by way of the courts.
1891: International Copyright Treaty
And before 1891 this "sacred constitutional property right" claimed today, didn't exist when a border was crossed. We didn't recognize European copyrights, and they didn't recognize ours. That seems to put a different light on those Evil Asian Empires and their copyright violations, doesn't it?
1973: Williams and Wilkins Co. v. United States
Williams and Wilkins, publishers of specialized medical journals, sued the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH)charging that the agencies had infringed copyright by making unauthorized photocopies
So your point is that every time copying technology improves, the first move by the publishing industry is to try to secure their old prices thru legal means. And in this case they didn't yet realize that congress is a better way to secure their rent?
1998: Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act
Extending copyright by 20 years, then giving an exemption to those last 20 years to public institutions, is hardly what I would call:
Legislation that allows the dissemination of copyrighted material in limited circumstances:
In all, it seems that this Ancient, Sacred Tradition, Enshrined by Law... changes a lot. Well that's handy. That's just what I'm proposing. Using phocopying as an example of how easier copying technology should be handled. Eventually, a copyright holder will go too far, and a judge who wants to make a name for himself, will make a decision throwing all of our current copyright law into question. Then, eventually private copies for private use will be considered part of the fair use doctrine.

But that won't happen so long as the narrative is summed up by:
Stealing because 'not gonna get caught' is some bs that takes exactly no one else into account. To me, that is the opposite of ere on a lot of levels. Sadly, the is the basis for a lot of thinking in this world. If everyone did that, we would have exactly no nice things, because no one could afford to make them.

Your point about 'never' expiring and the illustration with your housing property is eye-opening. Makes total sense. Why should IP be given less consideration?

IP rights are serious. I personally love to see those big sentences come down on downloaders, aka thieves. Bring it on.
Having read to this point, do you still think so? Do you still think that copying is even synonymous with stealing, in this context? Are you still as happy seeing big sentences? What would change your mind?

Honestly, at this point, I don't really understand why we are arguing. I always assumed the moral posturing I saw around this subject to be a mark that people just hadn't thought the issue thru. That's understandable, I know I put more thought into ramifications of change than most. Well, probably more than nearly all, I imagine. :oops: But I've shown what the results of a multi stage, marginal analysis showed: a richer world, with more variety in both quality and creativity. More artists, fewer agents. This is no distant utopian fantasy, this is just applied economics.

Maybe I just screwed up the math somehow. After all, I'm just a HS grad, self taught. Maybe I'm a crackpot. :oops: But then, Loner found a paper describing pretty much the same results. But this IS the internet, maybe that guy's a crackpot, too. :roll: Maybe, we're the same crackpot! :shock: :shock: :shock:

:lol: But then, maybe I'm right.

But I know many people are skeptical of economics, in general. So one crackpot or two, it's all reading tea leaves, anyway, right?


So then I tried to separate concepts that conservatives like to conflate.
It really is amazing to see the justifications that people come up with for what is outright stealing.
But it isn't, is it? If I steal your car, you don't have a car. If I copy your car, what harm have I caused you? Let's get precise here. When I copy data, in violation of copyright, what is the loss? The loss is the owner's right to restrict who is allowed to copy the work, which for practical purposes, restricts who can distribute the work. And this allows publishers to link their business models to copyright.

Remove copyright profits, and the model doesn't work.

Copying and distributing have become literally child's play. Kid's are doing it on their phones. Publishers want us to pretend they are still needed for these tasks, and want to continue to be paid for services no longer required.

Which is not to say they don't still have a purpose they serve. Their other services: representation, legal, administrative, coordination, etc. still have value. And current content creators will just downsize the services no longer required. Ad revenue and alternative financing will just become the main revenue streams.

We can see this happening today. Concert tickets and merch prices are higher, but recordings are not the revenue stream they once were. Rather than write ebooks, people blog, and capture ad revenue. It's not the end of the world, it's just changes in business models.
Constitutionally protected natural rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness - happiness including property and property including a person's existential ability to work and create.
Downloading illegally is nothing short of shoplifting during a riot - just because the conditions allow one with getting away with it, it remains a violation of another's individual sacred and constitutionally protected right to property and to benefit financially from his/her labor. Period.
I'm sure this is true in a "six degrees of separation" kind of way. But just how strong is the connection between "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness", and "the right to restrict who copies data"? This isn't a gap, it's a chasm. But then, it's a lot easier to defend "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness", so I can see why you would want to conflate the two. Not terribly honest though is it? *

You got your moral panties twisted in a bunch because the big bad RIAA was making examples out of people stealing? So what. That's the law. Stealing intellectual property is breaking the law. The simple answer is don't steal other people's shit. Why is this so hard to understand. Yeah, all the earth is God's creation and its all fucking ours but some people own fucking farms and the crops they grow on it.
I can understand why you need to conflate copying and stealing, it's hard to get people to react emotionally and defensively to prevent copying. That still doesn't make it accurate, merely manipulative. There's a reason conservatives use the term stealing when they refer to copying, and clarity isn't it.
It isn't stealing, if you get caught doing it you will be prosecuted under a different law than you would be if you walked out of a shop without paying. That doesn't make the concept of IP bad, we keep it because it encourages people to create.
I know that's the common narrative. But after reading to this point, do you still think so?
There would be "more and cheaper" stuff in the sense of China's business model where they just copy an existing product.

When innovation is no longer rewarded, the number of new products would decline because why design them when it's more profitable to focus your efforts on making an existing product better. This would not be noticeable for a while.
Sure. But copyright is not the only way to pay for innovation. Given how easy copying now is, would you now try to release any innovation using copyright enforcement as your business model? Or would you look at subscription/ads/donate buttons? Do you see the change in revenue source having a long term negative outcome on innovation rate, currently?
I'm struggling to understand your motivation or logic behind your reasoning. I offer up an analogy so you can tell me how what you're proposal is different: Farmers grow crops and depend on trains, trucks, and grocery stores to deliver it to the masses. Would you target the revenue trains, trucks, and grocery stores make from farming?
Yes, if technology changed, and low cost, energy free personal teleport becomes an option, I would target transportation and the newly created "Transportation Rights" movement. For exactly the same reasons, in the same way. Simply not paying for transportation. Stop buying from vendors that require transportation/shipping costs. Find ways to buy from those who provide free shipping/teleportation, to make the world better than it was.

Now you may be thinking that teleportation is impossible. But I say "low cost, energy free teleportation" is to Transportation; exactly what "free, easy, identical and searchable copies" is to Publishing.
But just because pirating appears harmless doesn't mean it really is. And this is the sad part - good people often do things they believe innocuous but when viewed collectively it has an enormous effect.
Copying appears harmless, because it is. And I agree that viewed collectively, it has enormous effect. But most of the effects are good, and the bad is being doled out slowly, and causing minimal disruption. Similar to how wireline telecom has wound down, now that our profits aren't guaranteed. If there is a less painful way for an industry to adjust to a disruptive new technology, I don't know what it is. Do you?

* Though,
The RIAA are terrorists. That they use legal means does nothing to mitigate their evil.
But I may have been unclear in my earlier writing. This IS my goal. Burn it to the ground. Spread the ashes and bones, then burn it again.

This hostility isn't born out of a vacuum. I am overly familiar with the way the arts work as an industry. I am overly familiar with how the shares work. Thank you but I don't want the laws changed, I want the business model to fail so spectacularly it never attracts another dollar of investment. I want it to go down as an example of what happens when rent seeking is pushed too hard, and the citizenry rises up with pitchforks and torches!
are hardly a statements of fact. It was more of a metaphorical truth, I think. In any case, certainly no more honest than any other phrasing used in this thread, by anyone. Yes, I admit to setting the low point in the thread's "intellectual integrity/persuasive emotional manipulation" ratio, a few times. Sorry. :oops:

Posts: 2707
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2017 8:37 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by Jason »

I really don't want to indulge this but - The founders new that slave ownership would eventually be abolished, it was a matter of when. In order to establish the country, they had to accept it on one level, and then move towards removal. They knew it was a necessary, albeit temporary evil. And issues of this magnitude have to be historically contextualized. But in any event, that's why the 3/5ths issue was brought in - to limit Southern power. And then there was the Civil War which addressed the issue and the document was amended. But if you want to go all baby and the bath water, gather an army of your buddies and go to war over your rights to use a copy machine whenever your heart desires.

There's an expression swatting a fly in order to swallow the camel. Unfair commercial practices exist in all industries. Eliminating intellectual property rights is not the answer to a publisher holding back royalties, delaying payments, or any unfair accounting practices. You are conflating two issues, as well as cause and effects. Do publishers take advantage of writers. Well, yeah. Just as factory owners take advantage of factory workers. It's human nature. Simple corrupt business practices. We could pick apart any industry. How Henry Ford treated his workers. How Facebook treats their employees. Overturning property right laws is not the answer or the cause. These are issues of capitalism and human nature. Not property rights.

But for the life of me, even if we accept the false connection, how does it benefit the creator of material not to have access to intellectual property protection. I know academics who put there stuff up free. But they still copyright it. They understand there are two separate issues in play - intellectual copyright protection and commerce.

And they do have this thing called self-publishing now. People use it all the time, usually to secure a publishing deal with a legitimate corporate publisher. That being said, my first suggestion to them is to copyright their work first. And if they don't like the terms of the publishing deal that's offered to them, well, don't take it.

And BTW - you haven't thought more thoroughly or deeply on this issue than others. But if you want to continue to flatter yourself, be my guest. Your cut and paste screed is a masterpiece in illogic and ignorance. The only thing it demonstrates is why you don't believe in copyrights because there's no chance of anything you ever writing of being published. And if you think anything you have scrawled in your emoji laden Wiki researched rant has changed my stance on this issue in one iota, you are more delusional than I thought. I have a feeling the Supreme Court might not be swayed either, but you never know.

lol@copying cars and free tele-transportation. Damn. Who says there's no free lunch.

Site Admin
Posts: 12263
Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:38 pm
Location: USA, Zone 5b, Koppen Dfa, Elev. 620ft, Walkscore 73

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by jacob »

Alright, the only reason that this hasn't been temporarily locked down yet is that all remaining combatants have all previously demonstrated a tolerance for a weapons hot environment, but still ... it's xmas something-something, everyone?

Posts: 942
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by Campitor »

jacob wrote:
Mon Dec 23, 2019 5:28 pm
... it's xmas something-something, everyone?
Rigger is the ghost of xmas past showing us where things have gone wrong. I'm the ghost of xmas present and I point out how things are now. Jason is the ghost of xmas future and shows us how things can go horribly wrong. :lol:

Anyways I think you're right - this thread has been beat to death. Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday to everyone.

Posts: 2707
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2017 8:37 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by Jason »

Here we are. A 175 years later. The book has never been out of print. Add touring musicals and three movie versions playing every holiday seasons. If I was part of the Dickens estate, I'd have dreams every Christmas Eve of the ghost of public domain past, present, and future breaking into my bedroom, lifting up my nightshirt, and taking turns *bah humbugging me right in my fucking ass.

And yes, Merry Christmas.

* (c) 1843

Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:09 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by Riggerjack »

:D Merry Christmas!

Posts: 2018
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:00 pm

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by GandK »

Caught this on Vice today, thought it pertinent:

How the Entertainment Industry Solved Piracy, Then Made It Popular Again

Posts: 769
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by ertyu »

I like this way of thinking. If you've got piracy, it means the content providers need to think harder. There are pockets of consumers that they are either turning away, or not reaching. The article linked suggests that when legal access is less of a pain in the butt than piracy, people will happily pay. I relate.

Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2020 11:04 am

Re: Piracy and Illegal Downloads

Post by mistatwista »

ertyu wrote:
Fri Dec 06, 2019 7:29 am
Hard yes? Hard no? Yes for some sources of media but not others? Teaming up on subscription passwords -- for Netflix vs. for the Wall Street Journal? What's you personal policy and why? What are your lines in the sand?
I personally think that if there is a loophole. which you can use, you must use it. I regard this as natural selection. Not all people will do this and share the subscription, but only a minority, so I do not see any problem in this. Since I think that these are the losses that Netflix, Amazon, etc. are ready to take.

Post Reply