Popular Android Dev Blasts Pirates for Forcing Him Freemium

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Dastardly:

Signa:
yada yada yada, same old anti-piracy rant and analogies (why is it always cars?). Look, if these guys were trustworthy, they wouldn't be bitching about losing a dollar per game played when they have other revenue sources in-game. They just want to scam you legally. Defending them and their ilk is just setting you or someone else up to be screwed.

Who's defending them? I hate the practice of charging "admission" and then also charging "per ride." It's why I'm not playing The Secret World, for instance. So I'm on board with hating that business model. And do you know what I do about it?

I do not support their games, either by buying them or by playing them. Because if I buy it, I'm telling them it's okay. And if I play it via piracy, I'm still just telling them their product is a-okay... but I just don't want to spend money.

Piracy is a service issue. It's more or less a proven fact with services like Steam. They weren't offering a valid service by charging an admission fee that anyone wanted to pay. Mature response or not, people did it, and the game got more exposure. Those that liked it paid for the extra content. Those that didn't, aren't anyone the devs should be concerned with.

1. Steam is DRM that also provides a service. And because Steam's DRM largely curtails piracy, it allows them to experiment with pricing without having to compete with "free." The result? Lower prices on a great many games. Thank you for proving my point -- maybe do the same for your own?

2. I love that you believe we can't assume that any pirated copies represent lost sales, but you readily assume that none of them do. What about folks that would have bought the game... but then a friend said, "Nah, here, I have a free copy." The hardcore pirates aren't the issue, it's the people on the fence.

A game can be as awesome as it wants. It can run as smoothly as it wants. It can be anything and everything to everyone at the same time. But none of that matters if someone can get it for FREE.

So you can yaddayadda all you want. When a game drops the DRM, it still gets pirated to hell. When a game is good, solid, and everyone likes it, it still gets pirated to hell. When a game comes down in price, or even allows people to name their own, it still gets pirated to hell. And what that means is that all of the excuses are complete fabrications.

And not a word of this defends developers for shady or annoying business practices.

So what your point boils down to is faith in the consumer. You have no faith that someone playing a good game and the desire to pay for good content will actually separate themselves from their cash. I'm saying that I believe they do if they are serious. I also believe that those that don't are a lost cause, and you're saying damn them for not playing by the rules you strictly hold yourself to.

Maybe I'm stretching things a little, but the fact we are having the conversation says you care about the conduct of people I don't give two shits about.

Piracy really does suck and I feel for the guy, but I'm always skeptical of these "piracy % numbers that are fact that are over 9000%" because where the F did they come from. Also, did they factor in places like china/India, because that's just disingenuous

Pilkingtube:
Was going to say 'Inb4 pirates slamming a guy who's working hard to make a game complaining that lots of people are stealing it'

However pirates and pirate defenders are so quick off the mark to attack anybody who critiques or complains about what happens, it's impossible. :(

^ This.

If a developer complains about piracy, the number of people who reply by saying "ah well, your game wasn't good enough" is ridiculous. And the ludicrous argument that you wouldn't buy an empty box with a "game" in it always seems to crop up too, despite the fact that for generations that's exactly what gamers do.

The joy of this day and age is that most of these Android phones actually have a search functionality so if you wish to read about the game, or check compatibility all the data is there with practically no effort required.

Piracy exists on a massive scale, those who say that the game wasn't purchased enough and thus developers are blaming piracy really do ned to wake up. Google a game. And game. See how many times that has been downloaded on a torrent site or similar? A lot I am guessing.

Hopefully Freemium will stop pirates but it is such as shame that these steps need to be taken at all.

wait, are people actually arguing that the majority pirating the game actually keeps the game in business as opposed a situation where those same people not interacting with the game at all?

is their imaginary business necessary to the process?

somebody else raised a good point though, they could just start cramming ads in there

Aside from issues of piracy and the freemium model, perhaps the developer should realize that they're not living in the pre-crash eighties. Piracy damaging profits notwithstanding, modern game developers have to face the fact that video games aren't the path to incredible cash and a rock star lifestyle anymore. The days of video games generating billions of dollars of profit without the company first paying out the nose for it are long past. If you don't believe that, I suggest you ask your local video arcade owner how their business is doing.

The simple fact is piracy hurts gaming (and other industries, but let's not get into that) but it is also a simple fact that piracy is here to stay. There will always be an arms race between DRM and piracy with no winner in sight. Game development is no longer the golden ticket for small companies to make an easy buck. It takes a huge investment of capital to develop and produce a blockbuster video game, with only the rare indie success story to bolster the hopes of the little guy. The freemium model can help mitigate this by giving a small developer greater control over access to content. But it's not a golden goose. It's a way to make a profit in spite of people who would rather get the product for free.

Where this particular developer goes wrong is his apparent disgruntlement with being forced to switch models to the only way he can (in his perception at least) make any profit. He might be right to blame pirates, or some of the posters in this forum could be right that the game is crap and the developer is to blame for their own losses. But either way, the biggest mistake of this and other small developers is the expectation that they'll make a fortune off their intellectual property. It doesn't happen anymore.

This is probably not going to be a popular point of view but I am sick to death of both people complaining about piracy and trying to debunk piracy accusations.

My basic problem with both arguments is people are trying to legislate morality and you can't. One says its moral for these reasons, one says its immoral for this reason, neither side is completely correct and neither side is willing to admit the other side has a valid point.

The world isn't black and white, its tons and tons of grey. People like to make it black and white for convenience and because people are prone to easy answers.

The funny thing is people put a blanket over piracy to assume every single person that pirates has the same reasoning. People don't like to hear this but each and every person that pirate has their own reason for doing so. Some may have similar reasons, some may have reasons that even you haven't thought of, but to make blanket assumptions on pirates from either argument is a fallacy.

Piracy does have a possible effect on the gaming industry, problem is not a single person knows the exact extent of how piracy affects it and anyone who says they know is a fool. No one knows the real answer so we are either arguing with personal experience that doesn't reflect everyone's unique experience, or we are arguing with sectioned data from the industry that doesn't reflect the real reason.

This post probably wont change anyone's mind but I hope it can at least make some people think about this fruitless argument that people engage with 20 times a year.

-Under

Signa:
So what your point boils down to is faith in the consumer. You have no faith that someone playing a good game and the desire to pay for good content will actually separate themselves from their cash. I'm saying that I believe they do if they are serious. I also believe that those that don't are a lost cause, and you're saying damn them for not playing by the rules you strictly hold yourself to.

No, my point has nothing to do with the consumer. Because pirates aren't consumers, they're parasites. Consumers are great--they spend the money, they play the game. Some enjoy it more than others, some regret the purchase. But they only use the products they've paid for, and if they don't like the price they simply go elsewhere.

Your problems are:

1. You make an exclusion for the "Just Trying It Out" pirates, as though this is acceptable. No, it's not. Is it okay for games not to have demos or refunds? No, it's also not. That doesn't suddenly make it okay. Instead, you stop playing those games until the developers get the message (No demo = no sale). There is no moral high ground for the "test drive pirates."

(Also, it's far too easy after having played the whole game for free, to turn around and say, "Nah, wasn't really worth it" when it comes time to pay. Even if you enjoy a game immensely and find it practically perfect, it's not easy to convince yourself to volunteer money. So most folks just skip that and retroactively declare the game "a dud; not worth it.")

2. You group all of the non-test-drive-pirates into one group and label it "lost cause." There are, of course, some hardcore pirates who will pirate no matter what. There are also some people who rape or rob banks despite the fact that these are illegal. Some people just aren't swayed by right and wrong. They are a lost cause -- don't reason with them, just punish them when you get the chance.

But the far, far larger group are what I call "pirates of convenience." These are people that, under normal circumstances, would buy the $5 game, give it a go, and if they hated it they'd just not buy from that developer in the future. Or the people who would wait for a new game to get some reviews before deciding to drop $60, or wait a few months for the game to go on sale. They WOULD do this... but then they're made aware of an easy-to-reach free copy of the game, and they decide to go that route instead. Those are the people that represent the lost sales, and they're the ones that (some of them) could be swayed back through sound reasoning.

Maybe I'm stretching things a little, but the fact we are having the conversation says you care about the conduct of people I don't give two shits about.

Firstly, yeah, you're stretching things a lot. I have to keep telling you what is/isn't my stance, because you keep attributing one to me that you've maybe heard elsewhere. It borders on strawman sometimes, really, but we'll go with "stretching" for the moment.

And secondly, the fact that you keep coming back to this conversation actually proves you wrong: You really do care a great deal about what other people do/don't think of that group. Seriously, if you really didn't care, and you really believed they were a lost cause, you wouldn't have even bothered replying to this thread, let alone continuing this exchange.

albino boo:

Blablahb:
That guy is ridiculous. The 'try before you buy' piracy exists, demos or not. The blame for that lies squarely with game publisher's and retailer's policies of 'fuck you consumer, no refunds ever'.

I mean, would you pay € 50 to purchase a plain box with unknown content that contains 'a game' that may or may not work and may or may not be enjoyable? No, you wouldn't. And gamers as a whole are no exception to this sentiment. I do feel that the effect of buying a game you already downloaded for free is also overestimated, but the high prices and no returning or refunding policies are definately contributing to piracy.

Also, like others pointed out, the guy tried to sell half games for full price. People don't like being scammed like that, so his business got sunk over it. That's how it works.

BLAH BLAH, the same old tried justification for theft. I only robbed the bank because they wouldn't lend me the money to by a Ferrari. If you don't like something don't buy it and he will soon got out of business. If you like it enough to steal a half game the you can pay for it. Anything else amoral bullshit.

I am holding a random game here in my hand.

Please tell me. Do you like this game?

That's basically the experience you go through buying a game on day 1. You purchase on good faith without ANY option to return the game after playing without selling it to someone else.

The anti-piracy guys are always so vehemently opposed to having options to try out games with demo's. They would rather just trust Mr Big marketing corporation to give them their information. I suppose you also get your reviews from gamespot :).

Any way did you figure out if you like the game I'm holding in my hand? Not yet? Well guess I sort of made a point. I could Borrow it to you... but that is also illegal according to the EULA. You'll just have to take a leap of faith and send me 50$ to buy this game. I'll even send you a photo of the bland box art and the marketing blurb on the back.

It's always nice to see people defending corporate greed and suffocating legislature and business practices under the defence of "stopping theft".

My gaming library exists of exactly 2% pirated games. These games are so ancient you can't buy them any more. The rest have all been bought either on recommendation from others or by playing a demo. When no demo was available. I simply pirated the game, play it for an hour and if I didn't like it I simply deleted it and never looked back.

Come on. Please tell me how I'm evil and horrible for stealing games that nobody sells. I mean I'm so horrible right? Or maybe. A crazy idea here. What if games ALWAYS came with demo's? What if we reinstated the 24 hour trial of the olden days? Before CD-keys ruined that.

It would allow people to buy games more freely and return them, the store usually just gives out credit so the credit will still be spent on games. Just not on the one that sucked. I think that is a fair trade off right? Instead of making a purchase of games permanent, making a short lapse in judgement a punishment worth maybe 10% of someone's monthly income.

Let's not suck the cocks of corporations shall we? Let's instead look at why people pirate. Address the issues and then condemn those that still do it because they can.

Dastardly:

Signa:
So what your point boils down to is faith in the consumer. You have no faith that someone playing a good game and the desire to pay for good content will actually separate themselves from their cash. I'm saying that I believe they do if they are serious. I also believe that those that don't are a lost cause, and you're saying damn them for not playing by the rules you strictly hold yourself to.

No, my point has nothing to do with the consumer. Because pirates aren't consumers, they're parasites. Consumers are great--they spend the money, they play the game. Some enjoy it more than others, some regret the purchase. But they only use the products they've paid for, and if they don't like the price they simply go elsewhere.

Got no problems here, except with the "elsewhere" part. It's not like when people wanted play Spore they had a chance to buy an alternative game made by Bethesda. The only options if you are unsure about a product is completely deprive yourself of the game with no gratitude for taking the high ground, or just pirate it to find out. Buying blindly shouldn't be an option, because it's not a requirement for any other consumer good. We owe NOTHING to a developer if we feel their game is bad, so taking the moral high-ground does nothing for anyone. It's a pointless gesture. I'm not saying you shouldn't take the high-ground if you don't get any kick-backs, but I forgive anyone who feels that way.

Your problems are:

1. You make an exclusion for the "Just Trying It Out" pirates, as though this is acceptable. No, it's not. Is it okay for games not to have demos or refunds? No, it's also not. That doesn't suddenly make it okay. Instead, you stop playing those games until the developers get the message (No demo = no sale). There is no moral high ground for the "test drive pirates."

(Also, it's far too easy after having played the whole game for free, to turn around and say, "Nah, wasn't really worth it" when it comes time to pay. Even if you enjoy a game immensely and find it practically perfect, it's not easy to convince yourself to volunteer money. So most folks just skip that and retroactively declare the game "a dud; not worth it.")

As stated above, I'm a forgiving sort. I know everyone has their tastes, and budgets. A try-before-buy pirate is a customer on the fence. If you count them among those who steal just because they can, then you are going to lose that customer. Personally, I take lack of demos as a sign of lack of faith in their product (especially in smaller venues like the phone games we are talking about here). It's circumstances like this one that a dev is just begging for their game to be stolen. Hell, I don't even trust demos that are released, because sometimes they will showcase the best part of the game. I know the demo for Too Human was literally the best part of the game they showed off, and that ended in 15 minutes. If a TBB Pirate feels the same way I do, then them demanding a demo isn't going to make them a future customer. Besides, being at the mercy of the dev is pointless if you can get what you are looking for without their help. That help you might be demanding could cost them thousands of dollars, and there's no telling if it will make that pirate a customer.

2. You group all of the non-test-drive-pirates into one group and label it "lost cause." There are, of course, some hardcore pirates who will pirate no matter what. There are also some people who rape or rob banks despite the fact that these are illegal. Some people just aren't swayed by right and wrong. They are a lost cause -- don't reason with them, just punish them when you get the chance.

Robery and rape are not the same as piracy, and I shouldn't have to be telling you that. A crime that hurts someone deserves punishment, but intellectual property theft's damages are nebulous at best. It certainly should be illegal so that no one starts to profit off of someone else work, but the kind of piracy we are talking about here has no profiteers. So what I'm getting from this is that piracy is only wrong because it's illegal. It's more or less a victimless crime at this point, because we've been hearing for decades about how various medias are going to choke and die because of piracy being enabled through some new technology, yet they all keep growing stronger and even posting record profits. Granted, there are some fringe cases where piracy did hurt someone a lot, but I bet you 99.9% of everything on Pirate Bay would still flourish with our without TPB's influence. I'm willing to wager there are more cases of TPB giving exposure to something great than it crushing something into financial oblivion. I know I've heard of a few success stories. All the other negative stories are like this one, where the dev just cries about lost potential profits, and not how they are about to close up their shop if they don't start selling.

But the far, far larger group are what I call "pirates of convenience." These are people that, under normal circumstances, would buy the $5 game, give it a go, and if they hated it they'd just not buy from that developer in the future. Or the people who would wait for a new game to get some reviews before deciding to drop $60, or wait a few months for the game to go on sale. They WOULD do this... but then they're made aware of an easy-to-reach free copy of the game, and they decide to go that route instead. Those are the people that represent the lost sales, and they're the ones that (some of them) could be swayed back through sound reasoning.

I feel that scenario is generally false. There is a lot of mass consumerism in the media industry. Games like Diablo 3 get a lot of hype built around them, despite the warnings. You and I are smart enough to not fall into those traps (or at least I didn't). That doesn't mean that a person isn't instantly willing to snap up the next Call of Duty, despite being jilted by the last. See, if people were that smart, we wouldn't have games being released at $60, because no one would be buying them. They'd all wait for it to be a price they know they will be content with, and publishers wouldn't make a cent while the price was so high.

If pirates were only pirating because they can, that would mean that they would buy if they couldn't pirate. I just don't see that happening either. Most pirates are pirating because it's free, and you can't argue with free. It can be a shit game, and it's still worth a download. See, things like DRM would actually have a point if they could encourage those pirates to buy, but they don't.

Maybe I'm stretching things a little, but the fact we are having the conversation says you care about the conduct of people I don't give two shits about.

Firstly, yeah, you're stretching things a lot. I have to keep telling you what is/isn't my stance, because you keep attributing one to me that you've maybe heard elsewhere. It borders on strawman sometimes, really, but we'll go with "stretching" for the moment.

And secondly, the fact that you keep coming back to this conversation actually proves you wrong: You really do care a great deal about what other people do/don't think of that group. Seriously, if you really didn't care, and you really believed they were a lost cause, you wouldn't have even bothered replying to this thread, let alone continuing this exchange.

So, it didn't occur to you that I might be returning because you keep quoting me with what I consider to be hard-headed, woefully blind and one-sided comments? This is multifaceted issue that I don't think either of us are able to gauge correctly. Everything you've said stems from only one facet, and ignores all the other factors and possibilities, simply because you don't believe they exist.

If you read what I said, I said I don't care about pirates, not that I don't care about this conversation. If you want to be done, just tell me to shut up and leave you alone. Setting a verbal trap doesn't make you win the argument. You've basically stated that the only way for me to win is to not play, but then that leaves you with your comments as the last word, and as you can see by this post, I have more to say on those last words.

The term "Piracy" when used in relation to software is propaganda. You can't steal information no matter how many ships, parrots, or missing body parts you have.

albino boo:
BLAH BLAH, the same old tried justification for theft.

Theft is taking something away from the rightfull owner. Copying code is just duplication. Do you think it would be considered theft if you walked into a car showroom, had a look at a model and magically made a second car appear from thin air and then drive away in it?

And like it or not, most actual crime also comes from not being able to afford something. Note the strong correlation between poverty and crime.

The difference is that in the case of software, we have the option of replicating something digitally for free.

Signa:
Got no problems here, except with the "elsewhere" part. It's not like when people wanted play Spore they had a chance to buy an alternative game made by Bethesda. The only options if you are unsure about a product is completely deprive yourself of the game with no gratitude for taking the high ground, or just pirate it to find out.

Utterly false. First, "deprive" yourself of a game? Melodramatic crap. I can't afford a Ferrari, but I'm not "depriving" myself of it. To deprive someone of something means they are entitled to it, but it is not being given. That's not the case here.

Second, the alternative to not buying the game is to wait for more information. Reviews, Let's Play videos, friends, there are plenty of sources out there from which you can collate data and make an informed decision. All it requires is a little waiting and a little research. If you don't want to do that, then don't buy it.

Personally, I take lack of demos as a sign of lack of faith in their product (especially in smaller venues like the phone games we are talking about here). It's circumstances like this one that a dev is just begging for their game to be stolen. Hell, I don't even trust demos that are released, because sometimes they will showcase the best part of the game.

So you're intentionally being disingenuous. You propose that demos are the only solution, and then immediately state you won't trust demos. You're trying to create a problem that's impossible to solve, all to justify stealing the game.

That help you might be demanding could cost them thousands of dollars, and there's no telling if it will make that pirate a customer.

You can provide me no data on the number of pirates that, after having played the game for free, go back and pay just for giggles. So rather than data, we have to fall back on how likely it is. And the kind of person that will take something without paying generally doesn't have the moral fortitude to then go back and pay. Your TBB Pirates are at best a slim minority, and at worst a complete myth.

Robery and rape are not the same as piracy, and I shouldn't have to be telling you that. A crime that hurts someone deserves punishment, but intellectual property theft's damages are nebulous at best. It certainly should be illegal so that no one starts to profit off of someone else work, but the kind of piracy we are talking about here has no profiteers.

Gaining something without compensating the person you gained it from is profit. Propagating a free copy that can reach people who would otherwise pay is harm. Just because you can't measure the harm accurately doesn't mean there is none. (For instance, many crimes also result in emotional harm, which can't be measured, but we don't dismiss it outright.)

Simple assault (threatening someone with a weapon) doesn't hurt anyone physically, and the criminal might not gain anything in the end, but it's still a crime. You just have a personal dislike of copyright law, and you use that to fuel all kinds of "but it's so completely different from all the other crimes" crap.

So what I'm getting from this is that piracy is only wrong because it's illegal. It's more or less a victimless crime at this point, because we've been hearing for decades about how various medias are going to choke and die because of piracy being enabled through some new technology, yet they all keep growing stronger and even posting record profits. Granted, there are some fringe cases where piracy did hurt someone a lot, but I bet you 99.9% of everything on Pirate Bay would still flourish with our without TPB's influence. I'm willing to wager there are more cases of TPB giving exposure to something great than it crushing something into financial oblivion. I know I've heard of a few success stories. All the other negative stories are like this one, where the dev just cries about lost potential profits, and not how they are about to close up their shop if they don't start selling.

No, piracy is wrong because it results in people getting something of someone else's without paying for it, and also making it more readily available for others. And just because the victim isn't as pitiful as you'd like (and we've already established vis-a-vis the demo problem that you're more than willing to continually move the standard to suit your case), that doesn't mean it's victimless.

The rest is just anecdotal, "I know a guy who," crap. And it still doesn't stand up to what anyone on the planet understands about human beings. Most folks, if they've already used it for free, won't turn around and pay just to be nice -- if they were that nice, they wouldn't have stolen it in the first place. Any exceptions to that will be few.

If pirates were only pirating because they can, that would mean that they would buy if they couldn't pirate. I just don't see that happening either. Most pirates are pirating because it's free, and you can't argue with free. It can be a shit game, and it's still worth a download. See, things like DRM would actually have a point if they could encourage those pirates to buy, but they don't.

Yes, they do. Just because they don't stop ALL THE PIRACY!! doesn't mean they stop none. They delay the piracy long enough, in most cases, that at least a portion of the on-the-fence customers decide to just buy it rather than waiting for the crack. That's what it is supposed to do, and it does.

But where your logic completely fails to live up to the name? You concede that most pirates do so because it's free... but then you only let that truth apply to "shit games." The same is true of fantastic games. They pirate it because it's better to get it for free than to pay, no matter how good the game is. So, since most pirates are very much motivated by "Free," by your own admission, that destroys the idea that your "try before you buy" pirates make up any sizable portion of the population.

Instead, you've got the unapologetic pirates (I steal it because I can), and you've got your auto-self-justifying pirates (Well, I would have paid if it was any good... but it never, ever is, so I don't. Tee hee!). Your Unicorn Pirate (I know I already have the game for free, but I enjoyed it so much I'd like to give $60 to someone anyway!) is nowhere near the top.

So, it didn't occur to you that I might be returning because you keep quoting me with what I consider to be hard-headed, woefully blind and one-sided comments?

I know you are, but what am I?

Seriously, though, you keep coming back because you give far more than two shits about the people you purport not to give two shits about. You want to enforce your own "modified" morality on them just as zealously as they want to enforce theirs on you.

This is multifaceted issue that I don't think either of us are able to gauge correctly. Everything you've said stems from only one facet, and ignores all the other factors and possibilities, simply because you don't believe they exist.

Wrong again. I believe they are a negligible minority. I've already clearly allowed their existence. You repeatedly respond to what you think my points are, based on what others have said, rather than reading. And you want to spew crap about hard-headed and one-sided?

If you read what I said, I said I don't care about pirates, not that I don't care about this conversation. If you want to be done, just tell me to shut up and leave you alone. Setting a verbal trap doesn't make you win the argument. You've basically stated that the only way for me to win is to not play, but then that leaves you with your comments as the last word, and as you can see by this post, I have more to say on those last words.

But this conversation is about pirates. Ergo, you care very much. So maybe if you walk away, I "win." What does that matter if those people truly are a lost cause anyway? What will I have "won?" If you're right, not a damned thing.

But, as with pirates, your actions display a reality that is completely at odds with your stated beliefs. It matters to you who wins, because the topic itself matters to you, and the topic is pirates. Every word you say drives another nail in the "I don't care" coffin. And before you fly any kind of flag on this sidebar, it has everything to do with the topic at hand.

That same blatant hypocrisy is also what we see from pirates: "Oh, I'd pay if the game were worth it," but then always making sure to represent every game as "not worth it." "Oh, I'd pay if they didn't have that stupid DRM," and then Witcher 2 happens. The stated belief is not demonstrated in reality, and is thus false.

You claim I'm saying "the only way to win is to not play," which again demonstrates how poorly you comprehend. You can easily get out of the "verbal trap" by simply admitting that you do, in fact, care -- and that your earlier "too cool" dismissal was so much empty rhetoric. Someone telling a lie that doesn't want to fix the lie? Yeah, their only option is to shut up. But someone telling a lie that doesn't want to shut up? They could consider dropping the lie...

It's funny how many people are trying to justify piracy by saying he did something scummy first. You know what the normal, measured response is to that? Just not playing the game. Two wrongs don't make a right, etc.

Blablahb:
The difference is that in the case of software, we have the option of replicating something digitally for free.

And?

At the end of the day, Burger King throws out a bunch of food they had ready, but no one bought. They could, conceivably, give that food to people who show up at closing time and say, "Hey, you were gonna toss it anyway -- toss it my way!"

Know why they don't? Because if they did, more and more people would just start showing up at closing time instead of paying. Eventually, the erosion means there aren't enough paying customers during the day to provide all the freeloaders with food... and so the cycle goes.

So you can duplicate software for free. Someone still has to pay the money so the development team, publisher, etc., can regain what they invested and make a profit, which they could use on the next project. Or, you know, to eat. See, most developers are paid while working on the project (which can be years) out of money that the publisher is banking on getting back via sales, usually loaned out of past profits. That money has to come from somewhere -- either the previous game or the next one, or a combination of the two.

Why should everyone else pay while you get it for free? Why shouldn't they get it for free, too? Someone has to pay for the game, it's just the pirates sit their smugly playing "1, 2, 3, not me!"

--

And, sorry, to pretend that most piracy is a result of being unable to afford the game... ridiculous. Unwilling to spend is more like it.

Other kinds of crimes, like robbing stores, etc., are very often motivated by desperation. Someone needs money to eat or pay rent or by drugs (different kind of desperation), so they steal to get it. Urgent physical needs, not being met due to poverty, so they make the desperate choice to commit a crime for which most perpetrators are caught and prosecuted.

Piracy? It's easy, and most folks get away with it. There's very little risk, so it doesn't require a level of desperation. Even then, no one can desperately need a video game.

I agree with everything Mr. Rabas said, so true but you'll never get a pirate to admit it; I'm pretty sure pirates think they're some kind of Internet Batman.

I particularly like how he says the amount of piracy around directly correlates to how easy it is to do; I said almost the same thing just last week.

I'm forced to think that downloading to check system specs does happen. I don't pirate, but if a game is over $20 and has no demo I never buy it because my system isn't the best. This makes me think if I was willing to download the game to test the specs and it ran I would buy more games. But really this shouldn't be an issue. I think demo's should just be the standard way to do business.

software piracy is NOT theft

Dastardly:

Signa:
Got no problems here, except with the "elsewhere" part. It's not like when people wanted play Spore they had a chance to buy an alternative game made by Bethesda. The only options if you are unsure about a product is completely deprive yourself of the game with no gratitude for taking the high ground, or just pirate it to find out.

Utterly false. First, "deprive" yourself of a game? Melodramatic crap. I can't afford a Ferrari, but I'm not "depriving" myself of it. To deprive someone of something means they are entitled to it, but it is not being given. That's not the case here.

Again with the car analogies. It's not the same thing. You can use cars to make your position sound a lot strong than it is. Maybe it is entitlement, but as I said, there is no reason for a pirate to care if nothing physical was removed.

Second, the alternative to not buying the game is to wait for more information. Reviews, Let's Play videos, friends, there are plenty of sources out there from which you can collate data and make an informed decision. All it requires is a little waiting and a little research. If you don't want to do that, then don't buy it.

so you've always agreed with reviewers on games that you liked and didn't like? I suppose that would be true, because if you're only playing the AAA titles that every reviewer recommends, you will never know if they were wrong on another missed gem.

Personally, I take lack of demos as a sign of lack of faith in their product (especially in smaller venues like the phone games we are talking about here). It's circumstances like this one that a dev is just begging for their game to be stolen. Hell, I don't even trust demos that are released, because sometimes they will showcase the best part of the game.

So you're intentionally being disingenuous. You propose that demos are the only solution, and then immediately state you won't trust demos. You're trying to create a problem that's impossible to solve, all to justify stealing the game.

YOU'RE THE ONE THAT BROUGHT DEMOS UP!!!
If you're going going to take this conversation seriously, just say you're done!

That help you might be demanding could cost them thousands of dollars, and there's no telling if it will make that pirate a customer.

You can provide me no data on the number of pirates that, after having played the game for free, go back and pay just for giggles. So rather than data, we have to fall back on how likely it is. And the kind of person that will take something without paying generally doesn't have the moral fortitude to then go back and pay. Your TBB Pirates are at best a slim minority, and at worst a complete myth.

And yet studies show that pirates are the greatest consumers.
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2009/04/study-pirates-buy-tons-more-music-than-average-folks/
See, you just don't believe it, but people do in fact want their favorite talents to get more money so they can produce more of their favorite things. It's part of this multifaceted issue I'm talking about, and you're ignoring it because you just have another image in your head.

Robery and rape are not the same as piracy, and I shouldn't have to be telling you that. A crime that hurts someone deserves punishment, but intellectual property theft's damages are nebulous at best. It certainly should be illegal so that no one starts to profit off of someone else work, but the kind of piracy we are talking about here has no profiteers.

Gaining something without compensating the person you gained it from is profit. Propagating a free copy that can reach people who would otherwise pay is harm. Just because you can't measure the harm accurately doesn't mean there is none. (For instance, many crimes also result in emotional harm, which can't be measured, but we don't dismiss it outright.)
Simple assault (threatening someone with a weapon) doesn't hurt anyone physically, and the criminal might not gain anything in the end, but it's still a crime. You just have a personal dislike of copyright law, and you use that to fuel all kinds of "but it's so completely different from all the other crimes" crap.

The profit isn't monetary, and those are the damages the media companies care about. If someone is concerned about getting shit for free without winning some sort of contest, it's other jealous consumers (preemptive point for below).

So what I'm getting from this is that piracy is only wrong because it's illegal. It's more or less a victimless crime at this point, because we've been hearing for decades about how various medias are going to choke and die because of piracy being enabled through some new technology, yet they all keep growing stronger and even posting record profits. Granted, there are some fringe cases where piracy did hurt someone a lot, but I bet you 99.9% of everything on Pirate Bay would still flourish with our without TPB's influence. I'm willing to wager there are more cases of TPB giving exposure to something great than it crushing something into financial oblivion. I know I've heard of a few success stories. All the other negative stories are like this one, where the dev just cries about lost potential profits, and not how they are about to close up their shop if they don't start selling.

No, piracy is wrong because it results in people getting something of someone else's without paying for it, and also making it more readily available for others. And just because the victim isn't as pitiful as you'd like (and we've already established vis-a-vis the demo problem that you're more than willing to continually move the standard to suit your case), that doesn't mean it's victimless.

The rest is just anecdotal, "I know a guy who," crap. And it still doesn't stand up to what anyone on the planet understands about human beings. Most folks, if they've already used it for free, won't turn around and pay just to be nice -- if they were that nice, they wouldn't have stolen it in the first place. Any exceptions to that will be few.

Well, considering how harsh you judge people, it's no wonder you don't know anyone who has pirated. If you don't know what that side is saying about their actions, then how can you say that "I know a guy" is a false statement? This isn't a court of law where proof needs to be proof. This is a forum where anecdotal is enough to build a position from, and discuss it. I've linked evidence in this post, have you yet in the conversation?

If pirates were only pirating because they can, that would mean that they would buy if they couldn't pirate. I just don't see that happening either. Most pirates are pirating because it's free, and you can't argue with free. It can be a shit game, and it's still worth a download. See, things like DRM would actually have a point if they could encourage those pirates to buy, but they don't.

Yes, they do. Just because they don't stop ALL THE PIRACY!! doesn't mean they stop none. They delay the piracy long enough, in most cases, that at least a portion of the on-the-fence customers decide to just buy it rather than waiting for the crack. That's what it is supposed to do, and it does.

But where your logic completely fails to live up to the name? You concede that most pirates do so because it's free... but then you only let that truth apply to "shit games." The same is true of fantastic games. They pirate it because it's better to get it for free than to pay, no matter how good the game is. So, since most pirates are very much motivated by "Free," by your own admission, that destroys the idea that your "try before you buy" pirates make up any sizable portion of the population.

Or it means that a sizable portion of pirates are TBB pirates. Good games still sell well. Even Nintendo agrees.
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/104197-Nintendo-Doesnt-Blame-Piracy-for-Poor-Software-Sales
Games like Mario Galaxy didn't need to sell millions of copies because people could have taken it for free. But they still did because people wanted to pay for a good game. That can't be said for at least 80% of the Wii's lineup, so no doubt those games don't see a later purchase.

Instead, you've got the unapologetic pirates (I steal it because I can), and you've got your auto-self-justifying pirates (Well, I would have paid if it was any good... but it never, ever is, so I don't. Tee hee!). Yo

and that's about where I stopped reading. You insult my logic merely on your faith, you call me out repeatedly on one of my counter points based on the fact that you forgot you mentioned it, and you're calling a certain class of people that we are discussing "fictional" despite everything I'm saying here. Seriously, this conversation would go smoother with a christian arguing against evolution. So tell me, are you a developer? Do you personally have something to protect in this conversation? If you're not, then why are you buying the company line? What does it matter to you if EA gets 100, or 200 million dollars from their next Dead Space game? You're never going to see that money, so why are you fretting over it? It's up to you if you want to pay for your games. I suggest that everyone does because supporting talent is important. Telling everyone else that they are scum if they don't follow your rules is retarded and unsympathetic. People are going to do what they are going to do, and you're not the one to condemn them otherwise.

DVS BSTrD:
"Ridiculous myths"? Like blaming Pirates for the failure your terrible business model?

i like this comment, thus, i claim it for my own via the use of 'this ^'

Signa:
Again with the car analogies. It's not the same thing. You can use cars to make your position sound a lot strong than it is. Maybe it is entitlement, but as I said, there is no reason for a pirate to care if nothing physical was removed.

Who doesn't know that cars and video games aren't the same thing? It's called an ANALOGY, which are specifically based on these not being the same things. Certain properties, however, are similar. Those are the properties to which I'm referring. Your arbitrary dependence on physical removal is the only thing actively blocking your understanding.

If I only break into your house and use your TV while you're sleeping, who am I hurting? You weren't using it at the moment, and I'm not depriving you of anything physical, so why is it illegal? Ah, because I am depriving you of certain immeasurable things -- the sanctity and security of your home. Physical deprivation is not required for something to be a crime-by-taking.

so you've always agreed with reviewers on games that you liked and didn't like? I suppose that would be true, because if you're only playing the AAA titles that every reviewer recommends, you will never know if they were wrong on another missed gem.

False dichotomy. It's not "believe one reviewer or believe none." I can consult many sources for information. I'm going back to the car thing -- not because cars and video games are the same, but because they make for handy analogs for some properties.

If I buy a car after test driving, and then a week or so later I start to realize that the arm rests are at a weird height, or the trunk is the wrong shape for me, I can't just bring it back to the dealership -- the car works as intended, but I'm just uncovering things I don't so much like. It's a used car now, my money ain't coming back. Instead, I get to experience what's called "buyer's remorse."

Sometimes our research pans out, other times we didn't quite do enough. Sometimes we can get a refund, sometimes we can't. Deal with it, and do better next time.

YOU'RE THE ONE THAT BROUGHT DEMOS UP!!!
If you're going going to take this conversation seriously, just say you're done!

So what? Demos were in the conversation, and you mentioned that not having a demo is "begging to get it stolen." That's what I was responding to. You could try reading, and responding to the point... y'know, instead of that rather acrobatic backpedaling dodge you just pulled.

You can't say "No demos are why they get stolen" and then say, "Plus we don't trust demos, so it'll get stolen anyway." At that point, it's clear you're setting unreasonable criteria so that they'll fail to meet them, to justify piracy.

And yet studies show that pirates are the greatest consumers.
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2009/04/study-pirates-buy-tons-more-music-than-average-folks/
See, you just don't believe it, but people do in fact want their favorite talents to get more money so they can produce more of their favorite things. It's part of this multifaceted issue I'm talking about, and you're ignoring it because you just have another image in your head.

No, I just don't trust that study (with which I'm familiar). Firstly, BI didn't interpret the study that way. The media outlets grabbed it and did. BI allowed for the possibility that the correlation works in reverse: While some say "people who pirate a lot also buy a lot," others say "people who buy a lot also pirate a lot."

In this sense, the study can also be shown to prove that the "very interested" customer is also the most likely to pirate, which furthers the idea that piracy results in lost sales. But there are two reasons I'm not pushing that extremely valid argument:

1. Correlation does not provide (or even imply) cause and effect.
2. This study was done by survey, not by looking at actual download data. We've already demonstrated that pirates have no problem saying "I'll totally buy it if it's good," and then not delivering. Ask a pirate a question, and they'll give you the answer that paints piracy in a positive light.

We'll also look at the fact that music and games aren't the same thing -- just like cars! Music centers on particular artists, and their work is consumed in small pieces. Games don't have the same kind of "stars" that music has, and each game is essentially a stand-alone work.

The music industry moved away from the "album" structure and allowed people to buy each song piecemeal, which helped a lot to curtail piracy. Games can't really do that to the same degree. Sure, they could lower prices, but they can't sell Super Mario Bros. one level at a time. (Of course, the free-to-play model is trying to approximate that sometimes.)

The profit isn't monetary, and those are the damages the media companies care about. If someone is concerned about getting shit for free without winning some sort of contest, it's other jealous consumers (preemptive point for below).

The profit to the pirate isn't monetary, but that doesn't mean the loss to the publisher isn't. You're basically just saying my apples aren't orangey enough.

Well, considering how harsh you judge people, it's no wonder you don't know anyone who has pirated. If you don't know what that side is saying about their actions, then how can you say that "I know a guy" is a false statement? This isn't a court of law where proof needs to be proof. This is a forum where anecdotal is enough to build a position from, and discuss it. I've linked evidence in this post, have you yet in the conversation?

I know tons of pirates. Quite a few of my friends do it. I give them a bit of shit about it, when it comes up, but their my friends for myriad other reasons. I disagree with something they do. I used to do it, in fact. It was neat and novel and easy and kinda dangerous-feeling, and it resulted in free stuff.

Then I started writing music, and using notation software, and one of my professors heard me say something about pirating this/that software... and he just mentioned to me what it would be like if folks did that with my music. Sure, for now, I could call it 'free publicity,' because I wasn't dependent on the money yet, but what about later when I was trying to make my living writing it? When it was made personal like that, it hit hard, and I honestly stopped.

(Always interesting to me is how pirates will bitch and moan about torrent leeches, further proving that the Pirate Ship's holds are well-stocked with delusion and hypocrisy.)

Or it means that a sizable portion of pirates are TBB pirates. Good games still sell well. Even Nintendo agrees.
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/104197-Nintendo-Doesnt-Blame-Piracy-for-Poor-Software-Sales
Games like Mario Galaxy didn't need to sell millions of copies because people could have taken it for free. But they still did because people wanted to pay for a good game. That can't be said for at least 80% of the Wii's lineup, so no doubt those games don't see a later purchase.

It's pretty difficult for most folks to pirate on the Wii, unless they're very computer savvy. And both Wii and Mario live in a fan base of far less hardcore people. So Nintendo doesn't have as much of a problem with piracy, because they typically target a market that's not really up-to-speed on console piracy.

But the bolded portion above doesn't make any sense.

and that's about where I stopped reading.

Don't make your problems my problems.

You insult my logic merely on your faith,

It's bad logic. You stop using bad logic, I'll stop calling it out. But you're the one flirting with insult the person, so you might want to tread carefully.

you call me out repeatedly on one of my counter points based on the fact that you forgot you mentioned it,

I brought it up, sure. But I'm "calling you out" based on what you said about it. Your entire argument hinges on the existence of "TBB Pirates," which should be a moot point if a demo is available... but then you clearly state that you don't trust demos anyway. You're creating (forcing) a situation in which they only way to learn anything is by piracy.

and you're calling a certain class of people that we are discussing "fictional" despite everything I'm saying here.

Fictional? No. The part that's imaginary is how large you think that group is. For all I know, Unicorns are real... but I've yet to meet one. I allow the possibility that these people exist, but not that they make up some magical majority.

So tell me, are you a developer?

Why? Are you a pirate? Do you personally have something to protect in this conversation? If you're not, then why try so hard to defend a crime you're not committing? Why does it matter to you if pirates are caught and prosecuted, or people believe bad things about them, if you're not one of them?

It's up to you if you want to pay for your games. I suggest that everyone does because supporting talent is important. Telling everyone else that they are scum if they don't follow your rules is retarded and unsympathetic.

There it is. The purest admission. "I take it for free because I can, and I don't feel like paying." So why all the effort to justify, then? If it's just a matter of personal choice, and I'm not the person that can judge you, why spit so much venom trying to convince me?

Additionally, it absolutely is my place to call right right and call wrong wrong. You don't have to believe me, but I'm perfectly qualified to say it and defend it. Telling people that they don't have to follow the rules, despite how it might hurt others, is retarded and unsympathetic. (Incidentally, why should I have sympathy for pirates? I have sympathy for the guy that steals to feed his starving kids, but not the derp that pretends it's okay to steal a game.)

[quote]People are going to do what they are going to do, and you're not the one to condemn them otherwise.

Yet you're the one to condemn me for condemning them, I see. Why bother? I mean, I'm just "going to do what I'm going to do," right? You still keep playing the "I don't care, nothing to see here" card when everything you say makes it more and more clear that you care a great deal -- maybe more than anyone else in this thread.

My stance with you is the same as my stance with pirates:

Do what you want to do. Just be honest about it. Pirates steal because they can, and it's free. You really, really, REALLY care about making people stop saying bad things about pirates. Just be honest, that's all.

im going to say it again.
if i didnt have to jump through SO MANY FRIGGIN HOOPS to buy a product on play market (or whatever they call it nowadays) i would buy a lot more apps.

i do not have a credit card. i probably never will, because i have no use for one. back here in netherlands we pay either through iDeal or paypal if iDeal isnt available.

if there is no normal way for me to buy something.... why should i bother? why should i bother setting up a virtual visa card (which cost shitload of money) bother with transferring funds to the virtual card (often one-way only, with limited time to spend) getting XX amount of errors, getting 1 euro deduced because fuck you thats why.... when i can simply download something?

its not the fault of the devs, but they should press them into making more payment options available. EVERY form of security will be broken sooner or later. making it easier for people to do things legally will go FAR further that some bs security that will be cracked in a week - that is, if you are good at security.

also, lets not forget that a lot of people who pirate WOULDNT BUY YOUR THINGS ANYWAY. IT DOES NOT HURT YOU IN ANY WAY.

neonit:

also, lets not forget that a lot of people who pirate WOULDNT BUY YOUR THINGS ANYWAY. IT DOES NOT HURT YOU IN ANY WAY.

I wouldn't have bought that candy bar if I couldn't have stolen it. SO IT'S NOT REALLY A LOST SALE AFTER ALL.

Derp.

Frostbite3789:

neonit:

also, lets not forget that a lot of people who pirate WOULDNT BUY YOUR THINGS ANYWAY. IT DOES NOT HURT YOU IN ANY WAY.

I wouldn't have bought that candy bar if I couldn't have stolen it. SO IT'S NOT REALLY A LOST SALE AFTER ALL.

Derp.

what the hell are you talking about?

your post has nothing to do with mine, so i fail to see why you quoted me.

straw man bs,

Derp indeed.

My policy on the Piracy Question is and always has been: once reasonable copyright reform exists, and creative works are allowed to enter the commons after a reasonable period of money-making time has elapsed, THEN we can start talking about ways to mitigate piracy and make the software market safe.

Dastardly:
snip

Signa:
snip

As a casual observer, I'd like to note that this is one of the most hilariously one-sided arguments (in proportion to length) that I've seen on the Escapist. Good on you, you Dastardly fellow.

OT: I wonder if Android will remain completely open moving forward. All signs point to "yes", but it'll be interesting to see what Google does in the future.

Dastardly:

My stance with you is the same as my stance with pirates:

Do what you want to do. Just be honest about it. Pirates steal because they can, and it's free. You really, really, REALLY care about making people stop saying bad things about pirates. Just be honest, that's all.

You know, you could have saved a lot of time just by stating that off the bat.

I also have to ask, if you used to be a pirate, did you ever buy something you downloaded because you liked it?

Also, would you be willing to experiment with your music by releasing it for free, In Rainbows style, just asking for donations from the people that enjoy your content?

Lastly, I can see why your professor thought piracy was scummy. You were attempting to produce a salable product with stolen software. As pro-pirate as I might come off, that's a big no-no in my book of rules. Those programs may be disgracefully expensive at times, but they are tools to get you profit through your own creativity. I'd forgive a pirate for wanting to learn how to use a tool, but not after he makes something with it to sell.

I've said it before and I'll say it again; as long as the situation for Australian gamers remains a massive rort, which the big vendors continue to be outrageously arrogant about, I will have no sympathy for any publisher.

Signa:
You know, you could have saved a lot of time just by stating that off the bat.

Why? Most of the stuff you were arguing had nothing to do with that. It's simply a matter of pirates trying to defend what they do, instead of just saying, "Because I want to," and the matter of your saying you don't care, when clearly you do.

The rest of the points we were debating still stand.

I also have to ask, if you used to be a pirate, did you ever buy something you downloaded because you liked it?

Nope... because I already had it. Moral issues aside, it's silly to pay for something you already have. It just doesn't make any sense, except from an extreme sense of moral justice (and if I had that kind of moral fortitude at the time, I wouldn't have pirated the stuff).

Also, would you be willing to experiment with your music by releasing it for free, In Rainbows style, just asking for donations from the people that enjoy your content?

I certainly would. But that would be my choice to do so with my creation. If, at some point after that, I decided to charge a buck or two, I'd expect people to respect that. It's like the difference between me offering to share half my sandwich with someone, or a weirdo just walking up and taking half my sandwich.

Lastly, I can see why your professor thought piracy was scummy. You were attempting to produce a salable product with stolen software. As pro-pirate as I might come off, that's a big no-no in my book of rules. Those programs may be disgracefully expensive at times, but they are tools to get you profit through your own creativity. I'd forgive a pirate for wanting to learn how to use a tool, but not after he makes something with it to sell.

Let's be clear: I have never intended to make my living from my music. For one, that completely changes the art for me, and it becomes a product of obligation rather than of love. And beyond that, I don't always want to write, and I really don't want to have to sweat publication and promotion and all the other expenses.

So I was never trying to make a salable product. I wanted use of the software, but didn't want to kick in $350 to get it, since I wouldn't be making any money on what I wrote... and that was as much "justification" as I gave. What my professor said to me still impacted me, because it caused me to think about things from the other side of the fence, regardless of whether or not I would ever live there.

Dastardly:
The music industry moved away from the "album" structure and allowed people to buy each song piecemeal, which helped a lot to curtail piracy. Games can't really do that to the same degree. Sure, they could lower prices, but they can't sell Super Mario Bros. one level at a time. (Of course, the free-to-play model is trying to approximate that sometimes.)

Okay, first, full confidentiality. I pirated movies, television shows, albums and books for years. I did it for at least a good six or seven years. I stopped because I personally found that the majority of the content I was downloading was either uninspired or straight-up garbage that I wouldn't waste my bandwidth on, and probably wouldn't have money for in the first place.

Yet, there are series I've pirated, told my friends about and bought. The rebooted Battlestar Galactica, for instance - I watched the whole first season when it debuted on SkyOne (we didn't have it over here in Canada yet), I told everyone I knew how great the show was, and I eventually picked up individual seasons and the Complete Series boxset. It's hard to say whether I would have done that if I hadn't been able to catch all the episodes as they aired.

In regards to your analogy, though, game publishers are already trying to sell content piecemeal via day-one DLC and content packs (which, more often than not, are present on the disc you bought and paid for). That would be fine - except they're still expecting you to pay full retail price for content you already own.

This is a problem with the industry, not the gamer. We live in an age where two million units is the drop-dead point, not a figure of success. Every triple-AAA title needs to sell 5 million copies or it's deemed a failure. Development budgets get larger and larger. And yet, the majority of games that come out these days are variations on the same thing. The same standard set-ups, with identical gameplay and level design.

The profit to the pirate isn't monetary, but that doesn't mean the loss to the publisher isn't. You're basically just saying my apples aren't orangey enough.

You're still using semantics. If, for example, I wanted to pirate Mass Effect 3, EA doesn't lose money on my "lost sale". The number of retail copies in their store isn't going to go down. They're not paying server costs on Origin as a result of data I downloaded. If anything, they stand to make more money from me if I copy the game and decide I like it enough to tell others about it and buy the whole thing and/or future installments.

I can quote you legal reports that show the actual amount of piracy in the film sector is 1% of what the MPAA claims it loses each year, and that the only figure it really impacts at the end of the day is the redistribution of disposable income.

It goes back to the point made earlier in this thread: if you innovate, and your product is solid, you'll be fine.

Then I started writing music, and using notation software, and one of my professors heard me say something about pirating this/that software... and he just mentioned to me what it would be like if folks did that with my music. Sure, for now, I could call it 'free publicity,' because I wasn't dependent on the money yet, but what about later when I was trying to make my living writing it? When it was made personal like that, it hit hard, and I honestly stopped.

There have always been plenty of prospective singers who never pan out. Maybe, instead of blaming pirates, you should take a look at your own work and see how it stacks up to others. Is it innovative, unique or derivative?

I'm not saying this to be rude or disrespectful, but I always see so many people taking the "easy way out" by blaming pirates when there are many other factors to consider as to why these industries are affected across the board. The music publishers taking exorbitant percentages of artist contracts, live performances being the only pure source of profit, constant "updated" releases of the same album with one or two new tracks, etc.

Just saying that it's not as black and white as you think.

Dastardly:

Signa:
You know, you could have saved a lot of time just by stating that off the bat.

Why? Most of the stuff you were arguing had nothing to do with that. It's simply a matter of pirates trying to defend what they do, instead of just saying, "Because I want to," and the matter of your saying you don't care, when clearly you do.

Because this whole time I thought we were arguing about this:

Dastardly:

To be clear, it's criminal[1] regardless. If you don't feel you have enough information about a product to buy it, you don't buy it. You go try to find information from another source, and come back when you feel more confident. You don't just take the product without paying, and then decide whether or not it was worth paying for after the fact.[2]

It's the same logic as going to a car lot that tells you 'No test drives,' and deciding to just sneak in and 'test drive' after hours on your own by taking the car home. Even if you don't keep it, what you did is clearly wrong[3]and not a mature way to handle the situation. Instead, you just tell them, "No test drives? I'll go buy my car elsewhere." And then you never touch that product again.

Granted, I've made a lot of assumptions based on the wording you used, but I've argued on this site several times with people who have used the same verbiage as you, but they usually add in at some point that they never pirated anything, that they never will, and all lawbreakers must be punished. I assumed you were that type, and I have little patience for that kind of thinking, because most pirates are just common people. Some of them are my friends, and none of them deserve the kind of ire the industries are willing to dish out.

I should also add that forum rules prohibit me from responding on how you never bought the things you "had," but much of that point hinges on my whole stance in this matter.

[1] possible semantics confusion
[2] commanding people take certain actions
[3] judgmental positions

This whining about pirates needs to stop.

Laws aren't followed about being 'moral' or being a good citizen. People don't 'not steal' because they are good people and care about their potential victim - they are afraid of the consequences of stealing.

So pirates work the same way. If it's free you'll get people taking it. If you had laws threatening them with reasonably severe consequences, they would stop - that's what happened in New Zealand. Both pirates and developers and people who defend either group need to get rid of the judgemental, moral crap and start viewing the universe in a sensible way. You know, like the way it actually is.

The idea that a pirate is suddenly converted into a good, caring, loving person upon switching from piracy to fear of losing his freedom in jail or his bank account and thus buying games instead of pirating them, is totally ridiculous.

The priorities of "pirates" are as follows:

1. It's free
2. They want it

In that order. Sometimes #2 doesn't even matter. Most of them couldn't care less what anyone thinks about it. They make no excuses. They are honest about it, they don't try to justify it. No matter what anyone says, they will continue to do it.

There are a few, however, who feel some sort of guilt, or need to save face about it, who come to forums with "reasons". They have personal anecdotes and hypothetical scenarios that they feel make "piracy" legitimate. You can argue back and forth with those reasons, but at the end of the day you will not stop them from believing them. No matter what anyone says, they will continue to "pirate" secure in their own rationalizations.

So forget about both of them.

If you want to make money, focus on meeting the needs of people who are willing to pay you money.

Dastardly:

I also have to ask, if you used to be a pirate, did you ever buy something you downloaded because you liked it?

Nope... because I already had it. Moral issues aside, it's silly to pay for something you already have. It just doesn't make any sense, except from an extreme sense of moral justice (and if I had that kind of moral fortitude at the time, I wouldn't have pirated the stuff).

Gentlemen, I simply have to intervene at this point. There is a completely rational reason for a pirate to buy products they pirated and liked. It goes like this:

I enjoy this product -> I want to see more from this developer -> I should invest in them -> I'll buy this game I pirated and will not only support the dev, but reap additional benefits like timely patches and community access (not with every product granted, but the point still stands).

It's the same idea people generally have when they donate to support authors of free stuff on the web. It's not that rare and if you fail to acknowledge existence (or considerable size) of this demographic then you simply are ignoring the evidence that does not support your point of view and that you therefore dislike.

As for the whole piracy issue my position is this. Since there is an acute shortage of actual (trustworthy and convincing) data on the effects of game piracy on the industry, any condemnation or defence of piracy is either based on inferences none of which are substantially backed (despite almost always seemingly being "common sense") or is from a moral position, which is a bit silly to say the least. How people manage to form such strong opinions on the matter without actually knowing effects of piracy (I mean strong factual evidence here and not so called "obvious common sense") is baffling.

One thing for sure though. As Grimrider6 quite intelligently pointed out

Grimrider6:
once reasonable copyright reform exists, and creative works are allowed to enter the commons after a reasonable period of money-making time has elapsed, THEN we can start talking about ways to mitigate piracy and make the software market safe.

Now copyright reform, that's a subject worth discussing if I ever saw one. This is what this silly piracy threads should be about and not about whether piracy is "right" or "wrong".

I notice that piracy gets blamed for game's failure in an inverse fashion to how good the game actually is.

I don't have an iOS device, but does anyone know if the game's actually good?

ShAmMz0r:

Dastardly:

I also have to ask, if you used to be a pirate, did you ever buy something you downloaded because you liked it?

Nope... because I already had it. Moral issues aside, it's silly to pay for something you already have. It just doesn't make any sense, except from an extreme sense of moral justice (and if I had that kind of moral fortitude at the time, I wouldn't have pirated the stuff).

Gentlemen, I simply have to intervene at this point. There is a completely rational reason for a pirate to buy products they pirated and liked. It goes like this:

I enjoy this product -> I want to see more from this developer -> I should invest in them -> I'll buy this game I pirated and will not only support the dev, but reap additional benefits like timely patches and community access (not with every product granted, but the point still stands).

Oh, if only that happened in a statistically significant number of cases...

It's the same idea people generally have when they donate to support authors of free stuff on the web.

Flag on the play, trying to compare something made 'for profit' with something made 'for free distribution'. And please, don't try any of that "Information wants to be free" stuff because I'll just say that your Social Security number, your bank account numbers, statistics on how frequently you wet the bed, etc. are all information that should be released to the public.

It's not that rare and if you fail to acknowledge existence (or considerable size) of this demographic then you simply are ignoring the evidence that does not support your point of view and that you therefore dislike.

How do you know it's 'not that rare'? Is there actual evidence that states that it happens with frequency? It's obviously not unheard of, but are there any actual, solid numbers for it? You mention evidence but, please, provide it.

As for the whole piracy issue my position is this. Since there is an acute shortage of actual (trustworthy and convincing) data on the effects of game piracy on the industry, any condemnation or defence of piracy is either based on inferences none of which are substantially backed (despite almost always seemingly being "common sense") or is from a moral position, which is a bit silly to say the least. How people manage to form such strong opinions on the matter without actually knowing effects of piracy (I mean strong factual evidence here and not so called "obvious common sense") is baffling.

How is looking at it from a moral position 'silly'? Why is "You shouldn't take things that don't belong to you" 'silly'? No, everybody, take your fingers off the Quote button. You don't all need to point out that piracy doesn't fit the antiquated definition of 'stealing'. You're unlawfully obtaining the use of something. It's me, breaking into your house, scanning your diary, and posting it online for everyone to see.

And it's not really hard to see the effects of piracy. It's called "DRM". Yes, that's a bit of a cheeky answer, but it's about as concrete an effect as you can get. You can't equate 1 pirated copy = 1 lost sale, or 1 potential lost sale, but other than that? It's a statistic. "3 Million people bought the game, and so thought it was worth something. 5 Million people pirated the game, so obviously more people thought it was worthless. Probably shouldn't have bothered making it in the first place."

One thing for sure though. As Grimrider6 quite intelligently pointed out

Grimrider6:
once reasonable copyright reform exists, and creative works are allowed to enter the commons after a reasonable period of money-making time has elapsed, THEN we can start talking about ways to mitigate piracy and make the software market safe.

Now copyright reform, that's a subject worth discussing if I ever saw one. This is what this silly piracy threads should be about and not about whether piracy is "right" or "wrong".

Copyrighted works eventually falling into public domain is all well and good, but what does it have to do with pirating a video game approximately 1 hour after its release? I don't think that qualifies as "a reasonable period of money-making time" having elapsed. Do you?

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