File-Sharing Habits Unhindered by Criminal Crackdown

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File-Sharing Habits Unhindered by Criminal Crackdown

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A lot of people just don't see anything wrong with casual copyright infringement.

Generally speaking, most people conform to the dictates of the law because the law proscribes bad behavior: don't kill, don't steal, don't set stuff on fire if it doesn't belong to you, that sort of thing. But the effort to lump file-sharing into the "thou shalt not" pile through the imposition of new laws and harsh criminal penalties is proving to be a tougher sell, particularly among younger people.

The Cybernorms research project at the Lund University in Sweden has found that after a "moderate drop" in the rate of piracy among Swedes aged 15 to 25 in 2009 following the implementation of the Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement Directive, rates have stayed relatively flat at around 60 percent. The reason, according to researcher Marcin de Kaminski, is that young people don't actually see anything wrong with piracy.

"As a part of our research regarding cybernorms we try to understand and describe informal social control," he said. "Our results show that young people feel no pressure from neighbors, friends, relatives, teachers etc. to refrain from file sharing. A higher degree of pressure or social control would most possibly have a clear impact on habits and practices regarding file sharing."

The number of people who take part in file-sharing on a daily basis has actually risen slightly, from 18 percent in September 2009 to 20 percent in January 2012, and the biggest effect of the criminalization crackdown appears to be a rise in the use of anonymizing services: over the same period, the number of people using virtual private networks to mask their activities has risen by 40 percent.

"Without support for repressive efforts in social norms the effects tend to result in a feeling of increased risk or danger - rather than [the activity being repressed] actually being considered wrong," Kaminski added.

Laws can change, in other words, but until attitudes fall in line, not much else will.

Source: TorrentFreak

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I have found with a lot of people I know, the harder you crack down the higher they raise the finger. For instance I think a lot of people will want to pirate Diablo 3 because they are dissatisfied with the DRM

Same when you force someone to watch unskippable anti piracy ads like we have in Britain at the start of dvds, Some companies have even resorted to an unskippable "we just wanted to say thankyou for buying this it supports blah blah"

being pumped full of ads and unskippable bs at the start, drm on games, you dont wonder why people find downloading better, if you know what to look for you can find higher qual blu ray stuff you dont need a blu ray player to play on your pc, hook it up to a 1080p projector, BAM, home cinema.

plus it's free which is hard to compete with.

NOW IM NOT SAYING ITS RIGHT

You can go "but its naughty and poor artists are starving etc" but at the end of the day what does society teach us? Rip people off as much as you can without them noticing or you going today because its what is going to happen to you anyway might as well get something for free

and thats the real reason for piracy. you dont make money or save money from being honest.

OF COOOUUUURSSSEEEEE!

If you try and restrict people from using their products legitimately, then they are going to be less inclined to use legitimate products in future.

Take Diablo III. People who bought the game had to deal with Error 37 and Error 3006 for the first couple of days. People who pirated it got to play it there and then because the crackers managed to create a sort of dummy server for pirated copies to use, or something along those lines.

I can still get onto TPB, as my ISP has not blocked it, neither have they opted to.

Also, the MPAA and RIAA come up with bullshit figures to justify their 'crackdown' on piracy. If you believe the figures, piracy has left Digital Media industries with greater Annual Losses than Greece's national debt and with negative job numbers. It would also mean than an iPod Classic could fit $8,000,000,000 worth of pirated material on it.

At no point will this kind of counter-intuitive nonsense work.

Its not really hard to understand why people don't see a problem with file sharing, its kind of like lending your friend a dvd or something, plus since its not a physical thing, it means our minds don't really think of it as stealing. The difference in perceived value of something digital vs something physical is very different, if you steal a physical thing then there is one less of them, if you steal a digital thing then your not really stealing it, your just copying it.

There was a great article about this on Techdirt today :P

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120521/03153118987/how-copyright-extension-undermined-copyright-copyright-parking-part-i.shtml

What do copyright and parking laws have in common?

The short answer: no one takes either very seriously.

According to a recent article in L.A. Magazine, only 10% of parking citations ever get written. Which is to say that 90% of the times that people park illegally, there are no consequences. Those who violate the increasingly strict parking rules in most U.S. cities are more likely to associate a ticket with bad luck or personal hostility against them than with the fact that they broke the law.

In other words, when you get a ticket, you don't feel guilty. You feel victimized. As John Van Horn, the editor of Parking Today, explains, low levels of enforcement undermine the deterrent intent of parking laws. "We break the law often and get away with it. Deep down inside we know that. What makes us mad is getting caught the few times we do. 'Ninety percent of drivers on this street got away scot-free today, but I get the ticket?' That makes us crazy."

Part of what drives us to rage at getting a ticket is that we don't actually believe parking should be illegal in the first place. The freedom to park wherever there's space is deeply ingrained in the American psyche if not the law. The invention of the parking meter in the late 1930's was greeted with near-riots across the country. Editorials railed against the new devices as "illegal," "immoral" and a "perversion." The Alabama state Supreme Court declared meters unconstitutional in 1937, and ordered them removed from Birmingham streets.

"I truly believe that when men and women think about parking, their mental capacity reverts to the reptilian cortex of the brain," says UCLA's Donald Shoup, perhaps the nation's only academic devoted to the study of parking.

A law that is rarely enforced-indeed, which is not cost-effective to enforce except sporadically-is no law at all. Which brings us to copyright.

Overprotective and largely unenforced rules, combined with a deep-rooted sense of entitlement, create an explosive combination. The problem is the same with parking and copyright. As copyright law becomes more strict, and its penalties more byzantine, Americans are less likely to make the effort to follow the rules, or to believe that new forms of technology-enabled copying are immoral in the first place.

We refuse to see our behavior as illegal, even when we know it is. Recent surveys by the Pew Research Center, for example, report that 72 percent of Americans between ages 18 and 29 "do not care whether the music they download onto their computers is copyrighted or not." Rightly or wrongly (if those terms even mean anything anymore in this context), the added penalties, extensions, and limits on copying, along with decreasing rates of successful enforcement, are making it less, not more, likely that Americans will obey the rules.

We are collectively living in a state of cognitive dissonance, uncomfortably embracing two conflicting beliefs at the same time. Copying is illegal. Copying is not wrong.

Where did we get the idea of a right to free content? In large part, from the content producers themselves. An older generation grew up with music, movies and television programs beamed directly to their televisions and transistor radios at no charge. Those consumers can't understand why saving content onto some medium and enjoying it again or later should suddenly transform a strongly-encouraged behavior into a felony.

A younger generation, raised on cheap Internet access, was likewise encouraged to enjoy all manner of copyrighted materials freely and frequently by content providers who wisely chose to rely, as their predecessors did, on advertising and other indirect revenue to pay their costs and generate profits. That's the message of newspapers, magazines, and broadcast networks who offer some or even all of their content without a paywall. And the movie industry teases consumers mercilessly with trailers, interviews, and production blogs that show just enough of upcoming movies to make us feel entitled to see the rest, one way or the other, the sooner the better.

Yet when fans enthusiastically encourage others to embrace their preferences by posting clips or copies of popular content to YouTube or by ripping CDs and DVDs to repeat their enjoyment on other devices, they instantly cross the legal line from well-trained consumers to dangerous criminals-even terrorists.

Copyright may be the law, in other words, but it no longer holds any moral authority with most consumers. There's no longer an ethical imperative to obey it or even understand it. Self-enforcement is fading, and the rules are so severe and so frequently violated that effective legal enforcement has become nearly impossible.

It's a meter, and we all know that the meter is rarely checked. Copyright is a law in name only-as obsolete and irrelevant as rules still on the books in some jurisdictions that regulate who can or must wear what kind of clothing.

Next: How making the law stronger makes the law weaker

Worgen:
The difference in perceived value of something digital vs something physical is very different, if you steal a physical thing then there is one less of them, if you steal a digital thing then your not really stealing it, your just copying it.

That's like being given excellent service at a restaurant and then not tipping (or accurately, telling the waiter he should be happy he's making $2.75 an hour as it is, since anyone could do his job). Now say that to a game developer.

Remember, it's not theft, it's fraud.

Piracy is telling game developers (and young people wanting to be game developers) that you really don't think their skills/creativity has value. If you continue to treat them like ass, keep expecting games that look and play like ass, and at some point people will stop making games.

"But why do I have to tip the stripper?"

#andimout

Zachery Gaskins:

Worgen:
The difference in perceived value of something digital vs something physical is very different, if you steal a physical thing then there is one less of them, if you steal a digital thing then your not really stealing it, your just copying it.

That's like being given excellent service at a restaurant and then not tipping (or accurately, telling the waiter he should be happy he's making $2.75 an hour as it is, since anyone could do his job). Now say that to a game developer.

Remember, it's not theft, it's fraud.

#andimout

If you want to go with bad analogies how about you go to a restaurant, but instead of being given "excellent service" they spit and throw their fingernails in your food in front of you, then they send out the morbidly obese, sweating cook to watch and guard you while you eat and not let you get away. At the end they extort money out from you and add hidden costs saying the rancid bread they put on your table and the extra 3 pair of forks also cost extra.

On the other hand you could just sneak into the kitchen, bringing along your own cooking utensils and ingredients, making your food according to their recipes lieing around and eating it in peace out in the park...

Yeah I know, bad analogies and all that, I hate them too xD

Makes sense, companies releasing products that actively conflict with their usage (D3, AC2, etc) or overcharging (any DVD out today), or insane copyright laws (Waltzing Matilda is an Aussie song, created by an Aussie, copyrighted in the USA as an original composition as soon as the author died and Aussie Olympic organisers had to pay this USA company in order to play the song.) all lead to users having a dim view of the megacorporations that own most IP. Then when IP cases go to court, some student is fined 50 million USD for downloading 5 songs.

How about television shows? Broadcast in the USA one day, everywhere else a week later? That's the optimum time mind, used to be months, years or never. Or price fixing depending on where you live? 20USD for Battlefield 3 in Russia, 60 in the USA, 100 in Aus. Price fixing because the prices are the same in that country no matter where you get it from. Region locked DVD's which won't play unless you buy a DVD player as well, conveniently sold by the same parent company that is selling you the DVD. Laws like SOPA which will censor everyone outside the USA. Region locked websites like Hulu which won't allow anyone outside of an area to view or listen to their content.

Digitally locked content (D3 is another great example) which will only work at certain times. Companies like Steam (Everything they sell) or Amazon (Kindle) offering digital content for lease only. You no longer purchase games, you rent them until the servers go down, you die, you get bored with the game, a volunteer admin working for the company bans your user account on a website. Bands releasing albums as digital only with bad quality (128kbps mp3), then releasing the album later on CD (Radiohead, their manager said something to the tune of "Pirates weren't going to pay for it anyway so why should we play nice", funny since most fans had bought said dodgy quality album).

Singers blasting copyright since they don't have enough money to buy a house, yet they've had numerous gold selling songs and a best seller CD (some lass over in London). She's made millions, but only gotten around two hundred thousand out of that. And production costs for a CD aren't nearly that high. On the topic of music, as soon as Warner Music bought a company which had bought a company which had bought a company which owned the rights to an 80 year old Australian folk tune (Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree), they immediately sued a popular band (Men At Work, song was Down Under) because two bars sounded similar. They won, of course. I think Happy Birthday is copyrighted, hence why you're not likely to hear it in movies, they'll use "For He's A Jolly Good Fellow" instead.

As a personal anecdote, when Pan's Labyrinth first came out it didn't show in Australian cinemas. The first I saw of it was on a pirate rip I got off a friend of a friend. Bad visual quality, eh sound, no subtitles (not a Spanish speaker D:), and it was the best movie I had seen in ages. Years later I managed to get a hold of an official DVD and I must say it's vastly improved. But took me years.

I know some people who are pirating on principle of it now.

People pirate for the same reason they commit any other crime: They feel it is justified in their case.

Zachery Gaskins:
That's like being given excellent service at a restaurant and then not tipping (or accurately, telling the waiter he should be happy he's making $2.75 an hour as it is, since anyone could do his job). Now say that to a game developer.

You shouldn't be pointing fingers at the people who aren't tipping, you should be pointing fingers at the restaurants that only pays their waiters $2.75. Tipping is not a requirement by law. It might be a custom or good courtesy (because of the mentioned terrible habits of paying waiters low and expecting them to earn through tips), but it's not required.

Zachery Gaskins:
Remember, it's not theft, it's fraud.

Wrong. It's Copyright infringement. A totally seperate issue, and has nothing to do with either theft or fraud :o) In fact, selling copyrightet material is not even counterfeiting, because a counterfeited product is an imitation (although many still label it so).

Zachery Gaskins:
Piracy is telling game developers (and young people wanting to be game developers) that you really don't think their skills/creativity has value. If you continue to treat them like ass, keep expecting games that look and play like ass.

Wrong. Piracy is a way of telling publishers (not developers, unless those two haeppen to be the same, which is sometimes the case) that you like their product enough to use it, but don't like the way it is distributed.

Now of course there are a lot of people who just pirate because they can and because they're just greedy and expect everything for free. Assholes are everywhere in this world, no surprise there, but there is also plenty of people who pirate when they feel unfairly treated by buying legitimately, for example:
- DRM, like activation limits, getting your Steam/Origin account closed for whatever reason.
- Pricing, like generally high prices, having to buy something else to use the product that comes with an extra high cost etc. One important one to note here is digital products being more expensive than a real copy. When you pull something like that, people will consider you the publisher - as being a greedy bastard, and if the publisher can be greedy, so can users.
- Distribution, like people who refuse to install Origin for example because they simply don't trust EA and their software.
- Delays/Waiting time, like movies that take too long to go from Cinema to DVD/Blue-RAY for example. As a general rule of thumb, people are impatient and want to play/watch/listen/read their entertainment as fast as possible. This is the reason why people pre-order a product they are looking forward to, even though they haven't seen any reviews of the thing yet. Same reason also that a lot of people like to download leaked products that haven't hit the market or the cinemas yet.

DVS BSTrD:
People pirate for the same reason they commit any other crime: They feel it is justified in their case.

Uh, filesharing is not a crime. For many countries, either uploading or downloading copyrighted material isn't even a crime (because either one is a crime and the other is not). Most people who commit actual crimes know they're wrong, know they're victimising someone, and do it anyway.

As for free copies of digital material, it very much remains to be seen if one can claim any victimisation occurs. Illegal music sharing actually increases artist incomes, and software is so ridiculously expensive that nobody who's going illegal now is going to go legal. To name an example: I spent a year in the army as a mapmaker and database manager, which is totally new and really in an exploratory phase. The laptop I carried, because of the software licensing, was more valuable than the armoured vehicle transporting me on a few occasions, probably also with the driver's and gunner's wages included too.

DVS BSTrD:
People pirate for the same reason they commit any other crime: They feel it is justified in their case.

As the other guy said, not every country consider "piracy" (or rather copyright infringement) a crime.

For instance in the Netherlands or Suisse it is quite legal for people to be downloading music, movies or books for private use:

http://torrentfreak.com/dutch-parliament-downloading-movies-and-music-will-stay-legal-111224/
http://torrentfreak.com/swiss-govt-downloading-movies-and-music-will-stay-legal-111202/

As for the US, it's quite cynic for you to call it that. Since the main problem of it being a "crime" isn't that so many people are being criminals, but that THEY KEEP CHANGING THE LAWS for more things to be considered a crime and then call it an "increase in piracy", there was another great article of that here: http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120215/04241517766/how-much-is-enough-weve-passed-15-anti-piracy-laws-last-30-years.shtml

So, did the entertainment industry "stop complaining"? No. Since the Copyright Act of 1976 went into effect (in 1978), we've expanded copyright law 15 times on issues related to "stopping piracy" (and many, many more if you look at all copyright law expansions -- beyond just anti-piracy efforts -- such as expanding coverage to semiconductor chip designs, boat hulls and other things). It really started in 1982, meaning that we've had 15 new anti-piracy laws in just 30 years. If SOPA/PIPA had passed, it would have been 16 -- or more than once every two years. Let's take a look:
1.1982: Piracy and Counterfeiting Amendments Act: Increased criminal penalties for infringing records, tapes and films from $25k & 2 years in jail to $250,000 and 5 years in jail. Also... made it so that first-time offenders could get the maximum.
2.1984: Record Rental Amendment of 1984: Outlawed music rentals (have you ever wondered why there were no Blockbusters or Netflixes for music?)
3.1990: Copyright Remedy Clarification Act: Allowed copyright holders to sue states for copyright infringement (before that, states could claim sovereign immunity)
4.1990: Computer Software Rental Amendments Act: Outlawed software rentals
5.1992: Audio Home Recording Act: Mandated DRM on certain digital audio devices (mainly DAT), added a royalty on such devices.
6.1994: Uruguay Round Agreements Act: Not only did it seize works out of the public domain and put them under copyright (this was what was challenged in the recent Golan case), but it made it a criminal offense to bootleg concerts (audio or video).
7.1995: The Digital Performance Right in Sound Recordings Act: Created a new "performance" right for copyright holders concerning digital "performances."
8.1996: Anticounterfeiting Consumer Protection Act of 1996: Expanded racketeering laws to include criminal copyright infringement, as well as "trafficking" in computer software, documentation or packaging, as well as trafficking in movies or audiovisual works. Also let the government seize property associated with these activities (precursor to domain seizures...).
9.1997: No Electronic Theft (NET) Act: Decreased the threshold for what counts as criminal infringement (such as taking out the monetary profit requirement).
10.1998: Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act: You should know this one. Expanded copyright terms by 20 years.
11.1998: Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA): Again, you may have heard of it. Created anti-circumvention rules and the notice-and-takedown system for online infringement, among many other things.
12.1999: Digital Theft Deterrence and Copyright Damages Improvement Act of 1999: Massively increased statutory damages for infringement
13.2004: Intellectual Property Protection and Courts Amendments Act: Set up penalties (civil and criminal) for counterfeit labels, documentation and packaging in association with copyrighted goods (yes, separate from the content itself). Also lowered the bar to show willful infringement.
14.2005: Family Entertainment and Copyright Act: Criminalizes recording of movies in theaters and also lets theaters detain people merely suspected of recording in theaters. Criminalizes releasing a work online before it's been officially released (if it's "being prepared" for commercial distribution).
15.2008: Prioritizing Resources and Organization for Intellectual Property (PRO-IP) Act: Increased civil penalties for infringement. Increased government seizure & forfeiture powers (which is how the government currently justifies its questionable domain seizures) and created a job in the White House to focus on greater enforcement.

As one bright fellow in the comments points out:

We need to reiterate, that by changing the law, it is the content industry that is creating the piracy they claim to be fighting.

Basically, they get the laws they want which make formerly legal activities criminal. Then they whine even louder that they need even stronger laws to stop the ever growing piracy "threat". Restoring copyright law to it original duration; will nearly abolish piracy.

That is the way the content industry works... "oh no, technology or other things we don't like are eating our profits, let's abolish them!" and then "criminals, the lot of you!"

People renting music and software? People bypassing DRM? Mickey Mouse going public domain? People taping live concerts? Downloading a song to listen to without any commercial interests? Impossibru! To the lobby machine! And let's add some more years in jail too!

Im glad to see that despite the fighting effort of the idiotic greedy at top, the masses will always speak louder than them in the end. Fuck you Copyright law. Fuck you. And this is coming from someone who makes games. Fuck you.

Blablahb:
Uh, filesharing is not a crime. For many countries, either uploading or downloading copyrighted material isn't even a crime (because either one is a crime and the other is not). Most people who commit actual crimes know they're wrong, know they're victimising someone, and do it anyway.

Dexter111:
As the other guy said, not every country consider "piracy" (or rather copyright infringement) a crime.

For instance in the Netherlands or Suisse it is quite legal for people to be downloading music, movies or books for private use:

That was kinda my point, even though we keep being told piracy is not a victim-less crime we keep doing it. And it's not even universally condemned.

I love the ironic relationship between the mass publicity of the "war on pirating" and the increase in pirates.

Many people my age and younger treat piracy as a glorified free rental/demo. They'll pirate something and if they don't like it, toss it. If they do like it, they usually go buy a legit copy. This is probably the reason pirates buy more media than non-pirates: they already know what's good and can spend more effectively.

Trivia: the entire US anime industry owes its very existence to piracy. Perhaps this is why they're rather less strict in enforcement.

Liberties violated, questionable legislation passed, censorship enacted and shady political practices continue to go on behind the peoples backs.

Result: Nothing!

It's so delicious when all the effort put into this results in nothing at all. It gets people pissed that it's happening and continues to happen because now it is proven to have 0 effect and businesses wasted billions of dollars chasing a pipe dream of getting pirates to pay for their products in the process pissing of all their legitimate customers.

Karma, it's delicious.

most of the game companies are actually responsible for torrenting. Just as an example, Ubisoft puts always on DRM so if you don't have internet you can't play so it just makes sense to torrent (then you'll actually get to play), cracks also bypass a lot of the background DRM crap.

ARCTIC_EAGLE:
most of the game companies are actually responsible for torrenting. Just as an example, Ubisoft puts always on DRM so if you don't have internet you can't play so it just makes sense to torrent (then you'll actually get to play), cracks also bypass a lot of the background DRM crap.

Doesnt help that they make so shitty games where mp doesnt even work. Example HAWX 2, You cannot connect to anyone, so I had to download tunngle(Kinda like hamachi) and use the lan feature for to play mp...

They spend more money fighting piracy then they would make if piracy didnt exist >.>;
Its quite sad really. Perhaps they should look into making CHEAPER games.

Games cost less > Less Profits lost when game is pirated > More people can afford. Look at minecraft. It was made for nothing, in a mans free time, using Java. Its now one of the most popular games of all time, constantly talked about, and spans several platforms, bringing in STUPID piles of money.

Minecraft was pirated. You can go download a copy right now. Why was this not an issue? Because the game cost nearly nothing to produce, nearly nothing to purchase, and is an amazing value for (what is now) $26. It was cheaper then that for most of its production, but it STILL sells like hotcakes. I mean, nearly 6 million sales? And another million+ on the console?

Most pirates are pirates because they feel, "$60 is to much", "Im broke", or "Its not Worth it, and i wasnt going to purchase it". Eliminate 2 of them right from the start by making games cheaper. They have the ability to. Digital distribution cuts out nearly all distribution costs other then servers.

I think they really dont want piracy to be gone. >.>; They just want to be in control of the user base. DRM, policies that let them monitor what you do and have on your PC. Its not about fighting piracy, its more about keeping the consumer in line and under control then fighting piracy.

As a young person in Eastern Europe(please assume Russia,because that's the only country the common American knows in that region) I find this thread rather amusing.
In other words,my country is too damn poor to support US content creators the way they want us to.To top it all off,seems like Google can't make good ad revenue from us either xD

They wouldn't have piracy at all if they just had better service than the pirates. Diablo 3 knew they hit the jackpot but still failed to keep the servers up. When you know there's millions of players and that it might crash the server, you make sure that server doesn't crash, too bad they didn't do anything about it and now it's another reason for people to complain about Diablo 3.
All this fear tactics isn't working either, they won't get sympathy from anyone if they're suing people hundreds of thousands of dollars for pirating and sharing 30 songs (which could probably be purchased for 30 dollars, not half a million dollars)

DVS BSTrD:
That was kinda my point, even though we keep being told piracy is not a victim-less crime we keep doing it. And it's not even universally condemned.

I think that's more because we don't believe the people saying piracy is not a victim-less crime.

OT: The problem with (these specific) copyright laws is that they're clearly only there to benefit the rich media companies who lobbied to have them put there in the first place. They've gone far beyond any sense of rationality or reason, and the punishments for disobeying them are so far out there that they just seem absurd. When it's plain to see that the law is wrong, it's not hard to understand why people don't obey it.

Why feel bad about piracy when every single company seems to be run by people with no souls?

You know what game publishers in particular should do? Next time a game dev someone really likes shuts down, point at torrents of their games and say "piracy put these people out of a job". It doesn't matter if it's true. The en masse destruction of hundreds of jobs visibly with a reasonable proposed causation will make people in positions of power take notice. Is it a crap tactic? Undoubtedly. It's dishonest, too. But when Homefront 2 comes out and everyone involved gets fired because it was such an awful game, have the publisher blame piracy and BAM! instant media and government sympathy.

I don't approve, but if I were them it's what I'd do. Either that, or actually make good games people actually want to fucking buy.

Oh what a shock...

Criminalizing something does not decrease it, but merely see's an increase in the number of Balaclava's being purchased... hhmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm...

I thought that law makers had already worked this out but apparently not.

Lunncal:
I think that's more because we don't believe the people saying piracy is not a victim-less crime.

Well look at it like this:
Singers are contracted so they get very little money for their songs. The profits from their song is the big faceless corporation...
Game developers have trouble making their games, on limited funds and then sometimes they even go bankrupt before they release their game and forfeit the rights to the content they created to the publisher. Then the Publisher gets the profits... the big... faceless corporation...

Beginning to see a pattern?
I call it, "Fallen off of the back of a truck syndrome".

People think there is nothing wrong with piracy as you're not stealing from people... your stealing from bastard Corporations who you hate the guts of.

Piracy is a problem but there is a difference in Piracy rates of content which is sold by indie productions compared to those of the big faceless Corporations. There is still piracy of indie developed games which is the most worrying thing of all, is that now the line is blurring completely.

I think the main way to combat these problems is simple: Convenience.
When Steam went into Russia, Gabe was told, there is no point, the Russians Pirate everything and you won't sell shit there. Wrong. A year ago it was their fastest growing market. Steams key is convenience. It has a tiny layer of DRM but I've never had a problem and most haven't.
GOG too has no DRM at all and has never had it better.

However at the same time the bad faceless Corporations, EA, Activision and Ubisoft just push for more and more, heavy DRM to try to combat Piracy... but so far no DRM has survived more than a week. This constant connection shit also is a mere added complication which people will and have removed...

If you want to make money then you need to focus on convience. Also lowering the prices to a reasonable level couldn't fucking hurt them (if the game has been released for a year and you price the game at 10, $15 then you'll get extra sales you normally never would have).

Elmoth:
Why feel bad about piracy when every single company seems to be run by people with no souls?

My point in a nutshell.

Many a pirate is a very poorly served customer sick of abuse, marketing BS like artificial scarcity and poor cost-to-value pricing. Tack on the fact that pirates get to enjoy DRM free gaming while paying customers get the shaft and it becomes a question of why would anyone NOT pirate?

It turns the business model into a charity and the charitable cause is "screw over anyone who donates".

Andy of Comix Inc:
You know what game publishers in particular should do? Next time a game dev someone really likes shuts down, point at torrents of their games and say "piracy put these people out of a job". It doesn't matter if it's true. The en masse destruction of hundreds of jobs visibly with a reasonable proposed causation will make people in positions of power take notice. Is it a crap tactic? Undoubtedly. It's dishonest, too. But when Homefront 2 comes out and everyone involved gets fired because it was such an awful game, have the publisher blame piracy and BAM! instant media and government sympathy.

I don't approve, but if I were them it's what I'd do. Either that, or actually make good games people actually want to fucking buy.

Wouldn't work.

There are four kinds of attitudes to piracy:

1. Conformist copyright supporters: Lazy casual audiences who don't want to bother learning how to use torrents, but willing to pay cash for Steam od iTunes.

2. Conformist pirates: ignorant people who didn't ever bother to notice how products make money with their business model, they just want to easily access them.

3. Activist copyright supporters: Fans who understand why paying for cntent is like voting with your wallet, and go out of their way to support everything that they watch/read/play.

4. Activist pirates: people who constantly wave statistics about how piracy doesn't hurt sales, and that it could be legalized and making stuff would still be profitable from willingly paying fans and other business models.

Conformist pirates wouldn't even hear about such a statement, because they don't care about the financial state of the industry to begin with. And activist pirates would just call them out on it, by bring up some statistics about how Homefront 2 was exactly as pirated as Homefront 1, so something else must have went wrong this time.

It would just be an example of preaching to the choir, only convincing those who didn't support piracy to begin with, but the kind of pirates who care about the state of the industry, already have some sort of answer to such accusations anyways.

This seems a bit like mod bait to me =p

On topic, yeah, it can be a civil matter, but it is NOT theft in any sense of the word. It's impossible to steal knowledge, it's only possible to pass off other people's knowledge as your own (which is not even the case for standard piracy).

And for that reason, you won't hear any complaints from me about piracy until it actually starts to harm someone.

That said, I don't pirate, because I game mostly on 360 (not moddible), and what little PC gaming I do, I do through Steam and their awesome sales, and most of the music I listen to consists of remixes and other things that aren't copyrighted.

The ideal of copyright protection is to allow creators of content to control the direction that content takes - thus allowing them to profit from their efforts. The results of copyright law are that large corporate interests who don't do the actual creation are intruding further and further into our lives. It's also not necessarily that great for the consumer. I don't believe Shakespeare would have made it through all the legal BS we have today to write his plays and poetry. It seems like we're ok with this though. It's fine to let the next Shakespeare rot under a ton of legal garbage so long as EA is allowed to digitally fondle us for having bought ME3 for the PC.

i keep reading posts about piracy all over the internet and the general opinion seems to be:

1: Games cost too much

2:Corporations are evil so FUCK THEM!!

3:I wont buy the game anyway so why not

4:It's legal in some places so the law is wrong!!

5:One sale is nothing its a victimless crime!

6:DRM IS BALLS!! FUCK IT TO THE TORRENTS!!

These are the basic opinions you will get in ANY discussion of piracy

So here's something to consider:

Governments are elected to represent and forward the will and interest of the people on a national and international scale. The head of state is a representative, put forward to advance the best interests of the country and its people.

Those people do not think filesharing is a crime. That much is plain to see.

Those who do see it as a crime are the publishing corporations, who make their money from selling someone else's product.

This is simply a case of the growing privatisation and corporatisation of first-world governments. In an ideal world, crimes would be that which the populace considers a crime. Murder - taking a life is universally agreed to be a Bad Thing. Theft - taking someone else's property is considered poor form at best. No matter the perspective of the publishers, the populace as a whole does not consider intangible ideas and agreements that 'I'm the only one allowed to distribute this for x years' as Things that can be stolen. It's a case of the business world of potential-earnings and profit-forecasts trying to overlap into the everyday world of cash-in-the-wallet and physical items. The vast majority of people simple do not agree with that world.

However, the controllers of the majority of the world's wealth do.

Zachery Gaskins:

Worgen:
The difference in perceived value of something digital vs something physical is very different, if you steal a physical thing then there is one less of them, if you steal a digital thing then your not really stealing it, your just copying it.

That's like being given excellent service at a restaurant and then not tipping (or accurately, telling the waiter he should be happy he's making $2.75 an hour as it is, since anyone could do his job). Now say that to a game developer.

Remember, it's not theft, it's fraud.

Piracy is telling game developers (and young people wanting to be game developers) that you really don't think their skills/creativity has value. If you continue to treat them like ass, keep expecting games that look and play like ass, and at some point people will stop making games.

"But why do I have to tip the stripper?"

#andimout

Woah slow down there, most piracy I believe is a result of less than excellent service. That said you don't tip your waiter before the meal either, and many other pirates I think act like that. They don't want to waste their money, which they may not have a ton of on something they don't like. So they pirate it, if it is meh they delete it and don't care. If they like it, or even love it, they are more likely to buy it.

Besides if a waiter was horrible, getting your orders wrong, or hardly paid any attention to you would you tip them the same as the one who provided excellent service? It isn't saying that a devs skill or creativity has no value it is that it is in question, and your work has to be quality to get money.

This is what I never understood about the existence of copyright law, especially as it pertains to software:

Now, most of you will recognize that as Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken." I just copy-pasted it into this field. Now, did I just "pirate" the poem? Did I just infringe on the copyright of whoever owns Robert Frost's works (I'm assuming/pretending they're not public domain, for argument's sake)? Will I recieve a letter from some lawyer telling me that I dun goofed? If I did, I would be extremely surprised, as would most of you. Hell, even though I've put this in a place where the rest of you can easily "pirate" it by copy-pasting it yourself, I doubt there will be legal recompence for the action.

So, how exactly is it different for me to tell my computer to essentially copy-paste a few thousand packets of data, in such a way that they can come together and make a game or piece of software? If I had typed up the binary myself to do the same, or hardwired some movie or song into my damn motherboard, would that be a crime? It doesn't make sense to criminalize digging a ditch just because I didn't contract Ditch Digging Incorporated to do it.

I mean, I understand what the actual "crime" is. I get what the companies are complaining about, even if I don't agree with their premise for doing so. But it doesn't change the fact that copyright law basically criminalizes a basic function that every modern computer has-- the ability to copy files and other data. Which is just silly.

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