Posted by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

With the rise and fall of SOPA and PIPA earlier this year, piracy has become an even bigger issue than it was over a decade ago with the creation of Napster. Over the past 13 years companies have tried any number of ways to fight the free sharing of content over the internet, and whether it be some form of DRM, or trying to get legislation passed, it’s been a struggle for them to find an adequate solution to the problem. As many people that play video games know, DRM can do more harm to legitimate customers than it does to piracy, and finding a reliable, friendly way to make sure a game, music, movie, or program doesn’t get pirated is an almost impossible task. The internet will find a way. It always does, and it seems as if there may be nothing to stop people from stealing content because there will always be people who try to circumvent copyright protection. With this in mind we need to ask ourselves if there’s really any way to stop piracy, and maybe, if it even should be stopped.

As it stands today, there are 6 major media companies that own, control, and distribute a large majority of the content you and I consume on a daily basis. Those companies are Viacom, Bertelsmann, Time Warner, Disney, News Corp., and Comcast/NBC/Universal. Along with the major telecommunications companies like AT&T and Verizon, as well as the big internet and tech companies like Apple, Google, and Microsoft, there isn’t a lot of variety out there when it comes to media. The monopolization of mass media and its effect on a democratic society like we have here in the United States is a whole other issue by itself, but this lack of variety due to constant buyouts and takeovers is linked with the issue of piracy in a strange way.

What would happen if suddenly, with everything the same as it is today, all piracy stopped? Then naturally the only way to consume any content would be through legitimate means, everyone would make the money they deserve, and there would be no more stealing. If piracy suddenly ceased to exist, these large companies would no longer have the threat of piracy to deal with, and they would have 100% full control over the content they own. At face value this doesn’t seem all that bad, it seems like how things should be, but maybe everything wouldn’t be as great as we might think.

CS6 Has a cool new feature called Creative Cloud

Will Smith from Tested.com often says that the best way to fight piracy is to give people friendly and convienient access to content in a way that makes them feel the time and hassle spent pirating is not worth it. This has proven to be true with the way Apple sells music, Netflix sells movies and TV, and even how a company like Adobe is selling their new CS6 products with creative cloud. We have yet to see how well Adobe will support their subscription model, but the point is companies are forced into creating easy to use exciting new ways to provide us with content because they are trying to fight against piracy. They are trying to find ways to make more money, and when the only way to do that is to give the users more content with a much better experience at a fair price, everyone wins. We can already see how sloth-like the progression of major cable networks are when it comes to licensing content out to companies like Netflix, what’s to say that these companies won’t slow to a halt if there is no longer a threat to the way they do business. If piracy suddenly disappears and these companies know they will always be making money with their current ways of creation and distribution, why would they change. If a company like Disney knows that the only way to see their movies is in a theatre, on a TV station, or from DVD/Blu-Ray sales, they would never even consider licensing content to “all you can eat” content providers like Netflix. There already seems to be a reluctance to migrate to more current business models like Netflix, and the disappearance of piracy would give them no incentive to innovate to models like Netflix.

The fact is piracy has threatened the business models and sales of these large media companies, and the only way to truly and effectively combat it is with innovation that helps the end user get more for his or her money and time. And with the shrinking number of different companies giving us content, forcing these companies to grow, change, and advance in ways they may not want to may actually be the best thing for all of us. Despite all of this, piracy is still stealing, and I am in no way saying I think everyone should go out and pirate anything they want to because it is somehow justified. There are people who work extremely hard to give us the amazing music, movies, and games we love, and I think they deserve to be compensated for their hard and often times stunning work. Piracy still isn’t a good thing, but it may indeed be a necessary evil that helps balance the power of these large media companies.

#1 Posted by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

With the rise and fall of SOPA and PIPA earlier this year, piracy has become an even bigger issue than it was over a decade ago with the creation of Napster. Over the past 13 years companies have tried any number of ways to fight the free sharing of content over the internet, and whether it be some form of DRM, or trying to get legislation passed, it’s been a struggle for them to find an adequate solution to the problem. As many people that play video games know, DRM can do more harm to legitimate customers than it does to piracy, and finding a reliable, friendly way to make sure a game, music, movie, or program doesn’t get pirated is an almost impossible task. The internet will find a way. It always does, and it seems as if there may be nothing to stop people from stealing content because there will always be people who try to circumvent copyright protection. With this in mind we need to ask ourselves if there’s really any way to stop piracy, and maybe, if it even should be stopped.

As it stands today, there are 6 major media companies that own, control, and distribute a large majority of the content you and I consume on a daily basis. Those companies are Viacom, Bertelsmann, Time Warner, Disney, News Corp., and Comcast/NBC/Universal. Along with the major telecommunications companies like AT&T and Verizon, as well as the big internet and tech companies like Apple, Google, and Microsoft, there isn’t a lot of variety out there when it comes to media. The monopolization of mass media and its effect on a democratic society like we have here in the United States is a whole other issue by itself, but this lack of variety due to constant buyouts and takeovers is linked with the issue of piracy in a strange way.

What would happen if suddenly, with everything the same as it is today, all piracy stopped? Then naturally the only way to consume any content would be through legitimate means, everyone would make the money they deserve, and there would be no more stealing. If piracy suddenly ceased to exist, these large companies would no longer have the threat of piracy to deal with, and they would have 100% full control over the content they own. At face value this doesn’t seem all that bad, it seems like how things should be, but maybe everything wouldn’t be as great as we might think.

CS6 Has a cool new feature called Creative Cloud

Will Smith from Tested.com often says that the best way to fight piracy is to give people friendly and convienient access to content in a way that makes them feel the time and hassle spent pirating is not worth it. This has proven to be true with the way Apple sells music, Netflix sells movies and TV, and even how a company like Adobe is selling their new CS6 products with creative cloud. We have yet to see how well Adobe will support their subscription model, but the point is companies are forced into creating easy to use exciting new ways to provide us with content because they are trying to fight against piracy. They are trying to find ways to make more money, and when the only way to do that is to give the users more content with a much better experience at a fair price, everyone wins. We can already see how sloth-like the progression of major cable networks are when it comes to licensing content out to companies like Netflix, what’s to say that these companies won’t slow to a halt if there is no longer a threat to the way they do business. If piracy suddenly disappears and these companies know they will always be making money with their current ways of creation and distribution, why would they change. If a company like Disney knows that the only way to see their movies is in a theatre, on a TV station, or from DVD/Blu-Ray sales, they would never even consider licensing content to “all you can eat” content providers like Netflix. There already seems to be a reluctance to migrate to more current business models like Netflix, and the disappearance of piracy would give them no incentive to innovate to models like Netflix.

The fact is piracy has threatened the business models and sales of these large media companies, and the only way to truly and effectively combat it is with innovation that helps the end user get more for his or her money and time. And with the shrinking number of different companies giving us content, forcing these companies to grow, change, and advance in ways they may not want to may actually be the best thing for all of us. Despite all of this, piracy is still stealing, and I am in no way saying I think everyone should go out and pirate anything they want to because it is somehow justified. There are people who work extremely hard to give us the amazing music, movies, and games we love, and I think they deserve to be compensated for their hard and often times stunning work. Piracy still isn’t a good thing, but it may indeed be a necessary evil that helps balance the power of these large media companies.

#2 Posted by TentPole (1858 posts) -

New and insightful.

#3 Posted by Von (328 posts) -

As long as they continue with this shit, and this, I have no problems with piracy when it comes to movies. I don't want to be seen as a criminal when I BUY something.

#4 Posted by tourgen (4426 posts) -

@DoctorWelch: that's an interesting viewpoint. I don't think it will be well-received here though.

I think copyrights that extend past 25 years are as much of a problem and are more evil than piracy. 25+ copyrights are unjust and a clear corporate power-grab through congressional corruption, lobbying, and outright back room payoffs.

Copyrights were supposed to exist for the promotion of the arts and artistic endeavors. Somehow that has been perverted into protecting corporate profits and shafting artists with lopsided contracts while stealing from the public domain.

#5 Posted by captain_max707 (477 posts) -

Stealing is wrong, so piracy is wrong. A good company shouldn't need a reason to have a pleasant consumer experience, it should be part of the company's goal of providing a quality service. Competition in the regard should not come from illegal activities, but from other companies trying to provide their own quality services. 
 
My two cents.

#6 Posted by Superkenon (1353 posts) -

Piracy is why we can't have nice things.

#7 Posted by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

@captain_max707 said:

Stealing is wrong, so piracy is wrong. A good company shouldn't need a reason to have a pleasant consumer experience, it should be part of the company's goal of providing a quality service. Competition in the regard should not come from illegal activities, but from other companies trying to provide their own quality services. My two cents.

You are 100% correct. This is how it should be, but sadly it's not. That's kind of my point though. Is it better to have two evils that oppose each other, or one evil with nothing to stop it?

#8 Edited by Skytylz (4025 posts) -

Good post, agree 100%. It's sort of unfortunate but it does force innovation. Hell, I prefer having steam DRM games than DRM free games from GOG just because steam is a great service.

#9 Posted by TheWyotee93 (187 posts) -

Piracy is not good, regardless of your arguement. The people who are for piracy have never created anything that a wide audience would want to buy. They have no concept of respect for the creator. Maybe the government wouldn't have to put those stupid warnings on the movies if all the whiny pirates didn't steal from the creators.

#10 Posted by Gargantuan (1880 posts) -

@Superkenon said:

Piracy is why we can't have nice things.

Free movies is a nice thing.

#11 Posted by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

@TheWyotee93 said:

Piracy is not good, regardless of your arguement. The people who are for piracy have never created anything that a wide audience would want to buy. They have no concept of respect for the creator. Maybe the government wouldn't have to put those stupid warnings on the movies if all the whiny pirates didn't steal from the creators.

I agree, but like said to captain max, "Is it better to have two evils that oppose each other, or one evil with nothing to stop it?"

#12 Posted by No0b0rAmA (1490 posts) -

Companies shouldn't be forced to change their products because people steal.

#13 Posted by kzebski (33 posts) -

I like the idea of developer approved shareware. If there was some way to work a business model in there that'd be great.

#14 Edited by MrBoBo (102 posts) -

Titan Quest is one of my fav games as is System Shock 2. Both got fucked by piracy. So no.

The sooner piratebay is off the face of the earth the better. Good on them for getting Megaupload. I'm glad that fat blob got locked up.

#15 Edited by Superkenon (1353 posts) -

@DoctorWelch said:

I agree, but like said to captain max, "Is it better to have two evils that oppose each other, or one evil with nothing to stop it?"

I don't think that proverb is applicable in this case. You can argue that things like iTunes only exist as a counter to Napster, but it's just as easy to argue that it's the natural progression of things. I think we'd be buying crap online even if no one ever stole anything.

Meanwhile, it's easy to point to that giant mess of annoying DRMs and anti-theft hoops that only plague our products now because piracy exists.

#16 Posted by believer258 (11563 posts) -

@No0b0rAmA said:

Companies shouldn't be forced to change their products because people steal.

No, but companies should do their best to keep the customer happy instead of trying to line their own pockets.

@DoctorWelch said:

"Is it better to have two evils that oppose each other, or one evil with nothing to stop it?"

Now that is the real question here, isn't it? If rising piracy rates cause companies to be better to their customers in order to keep sales up, then I don't see a big issue. In fact, it seems more like a cycle. Piracy rises, companies hide their evil ways and try to be better to people to increase sales, piracy goes down, companies fall back into being assholes, piracy rises, rinse and repeat.

#17 Posted by Vampir (129 posts) -

@DoctorWelch said:

Will Smith from Tested.com often says that the best way to fight piracy is to give people friendly and convienient access to content in a way that makes them feel the time and hassle spent pirating is not worth it. This has proven to be true with the way Apple sells music, Netflix sells movies and TV, and even how a company like Adobe is selling their new CS6 products with creative cloud. We have yet to see how well Adobe will support their subscription model, but the point is companies are forced into creating easy to use exciting new ways to provide us with content because they are trying to fight against piracy.

While I agree that reducing hassle is the best thing companies can do on their end to fight piracy, stopping piracy would also be the best way to get rid of those hassles. In other words, if there was no piracy, there would be no need for companies to work so hard to protect their content, and we wouldn't have obtrusive DRM.

#18 Posted by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

@Vampir said:

While I agree that reducing hassle is the best thing companies can do on their end to fight piracy, stopping piracy would also be the best way to get rid of those hassles. In other words, if there was no piracy, there would be no need for companies to work so hard to protect their content, and we wouldn't have obtrusive DRM.

What you said is true, but DRM is not the evil I am referring to. Bad DRM wouldn't exist if piracy didn't exist, but if Bad DRM didn't exist then we would have never gotten to the point where we are today with companies realizing they need to have a high quality user experience that is worth the money to stop piracy, not an annoying hassle that only hinder legitimate users. Companies should innovate on their own and put the consumer first, but sadly this is never what happens. Money is the driving factor for all of these companies, so piracy may just be a necessary evil to keep them honest.

#19 Edited by MrBoBo (102 posts) -

@DoctorWelch said:

@Vampir said:

While I agree that reducing hassle is the best thing companies can do on their end to fight piracy, stopping piracy would also be the best way to get rid of those hassles. In other words, if there was no piracy, there would be no need for companies to work so hard to protect their content, and we wouldn't have obtrusive DRM.

What you said is true, but DRM is not the evil I am referring to. Bad DRM wouldn't exist if piracy didn't exist, but if Bad DRM didn't exist then we would have never gotten to the point where we are today with companies realizing they need to have a high quality user experience that is worth the money to stop piracy, not an annoying hassle that only hinder legitimate users. Companies should innovate on their own and put the consumer first, but sadly this is never what happens. Money is the driving factor for all of these companies, so piracy may just be a necessary evil to keep them honest.

Piracy has increased DRM. And moved developers away from pc and move towards models in which piracy is a non issue. Free2play, MMO, casual.

The old school pc games now mostly exist through indie and low budget titles are people do not want to take risks with the platform. Can't blame them.

#20 Edited by I_smell (3925 posts) -

No- fuckinn... NBC is not strangling what you can and can't watch. There aren't like 3 companies through which every movie and videogame come out, we're not in that dystopian future yet. If I make a videogame right now, I can put it up TODAY on a WEBSITE that I made. I can put shit on youtube and vimeo and reddit all day, you're not kicking back against some giant corporation by putting whatever I make on Pirate Bay. In some kind of bleeding-heart fantasy world, people only pirate giant-budget productions as a way to force EA to have better customer support on Origin, but the reality is "I've figured out how to play this without buying it, I'm the smartest guy in the world".

Pirating shit doesn't encourage people to have better customer service or whatever, it encourages them to put more money into developing DRM security, selling music and games as "your license to use this", and making sure all their games are connected to servers in some way so everyone stops pirating them. You can find proof to support my theory in that it's what's ACTUALLY HAPPENING IN REAL LIFE if you wake up for a sec.

I'm over stopping piracy, I'm bored of it, people aren't gonna stop downloading shit, and neither am I. Writing these articles about how "is it actually a good thing, cos it forces the authority to THINK TWICE?" though, fa christ sake, it's not 1999 any more. Grow out of it.

Google "World of Goo piracy rate" and tell me what fuckin business model you're shakin up with that one. Witcher 2 was made in Poland on a budget a tenth of a game that size in America: 4.5 million illeagal downloads. Minecraft? 3 million.

I'm not blaming you for pirating shit cos we all do it, but wanting a fuckin medal for it? Give. Me. A. Break!

#21 Posted by Jay444111 (2441 posts) -

Don't forget copyright laws are INSANELY FUCKING STUPID! Also the fact that many games are currently unavailable to America and Japan in any new form whatsoever. EarthBound being the prime example of this.

Sure I don't support piracy, but I also don't support DRM or being completely unable to play a video game unless I want to spend 200 for a single game.

#22 Posted by GS_Dan (1401 posts) -

I agree with you, although I was expecting something else from the title.

Piracy might force companies to evolve their business models faster, but I don't think that excuses it at all. It's merely a by-product that is a positive outcome of a shitty thing.

People are arseholes though.

#23 Posted by JasonR86 (9587 posts) -

No, piracy isn't good. Piracy is stealing. Stealing is illegal. Stealing doesn't credit the original creator of a product. Stealing leads to products not being made any more. All of these things are bad. Thus, piracy is bad.

Jesus Christ.

#24 Posted by AyKay_47 (293 posts) -

I love it when people say that the best solution is to completely stop piracy. What world are you living in?

I think all cultures can live together in peace if we just got rid of racism!

This is not how you solve a societal problem of this magnitude. Piracy, in one form or another, has existed probably as long as humans have, and no one alive today, or tomorrow, is going to put a stop to it. This has already been discussed to no end, but the only real way for a company to fight piracy is by providing a better service. Very few businessmen are going to treat the consumer like a fellow human being if there's no monetary incentive in it.

If piracy makes corporations recognize me as more than just a wallet on legs, then long live the pirate bay.

#25 Posted by JasonR86 (9587 posts) -

@DoctorWelch said:

@TheWyotee93 said:

Piracy is not good, regardless of your arguement. The people who are for piracy have never created anything that a wide audience would want to buy. They have no concept of respect for the creator. Maybe the government wouldn't have to put those stupid warnings on the movies if all the whiny pirates didn't steal from the creators.

I agree, but like said to captain max, "Is it better to have two evils that oppose each other, or one evil with nothing to stop it?"

Don't support the product anymore then. You don't deserve whatever is being pirated. We all don't have unquestioned, absolute rights to created products. If you don't like the way a product is made then don't support the production of that product by not buying the product.

#26 Posted by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

@JasonR86 said:

@DoctorWelch said:

I agree, but like said to captain max, "Is it better to have two evils that oppose each other, or one evil with nothing to stop it?"

Don't support the product anymore then. You don't deserve whatever is being pirated. We all don't have unquestioned, absolute rights to created products. If you don't like the way a product is made then don't support the production of that product by not buying the product.

This is not about supporting or not supporting a product, because by pirating it you are inherently not supporting it. Unless you are trying to say that you should pirate things if you don't support them?

#27 Posted by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

@JasonR86 said:

No, piracy isn't good. Piracy is stealing. Stealing is illegal. Stealing doesn't credit the original creator of a product. Stealing leads to products not being made any more. All of these things are bad. Thus, piracy is bad.

Jesus Christ.

Maybe read the whole thing first before you comment on the title.

#28 Posted by JasonR86 (9587 posts) -

@DoctorWelch said:

@JasonR86 said:

@DoctorWelch said:

I agree, but like said to captain max, "Is it better to have two evils that oppose each other, or one evil with nothing to stop it?"

Don't support the product anymore then. You don't deserve whatever is being pirated. We all don't have unquestioned, absolute rights to created products. If you don't like the way a product is made then don't support the production of that product by not buying the product.

This is not about supporting or not supporting a product, because by pirating it you are inherently not supporting it. Unless you are trying to say that you should pirate things if you don't support them?

I'm saying you shouldn't pirate things at all.

#29 Posted by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

@JasonR86 said:

@DoctorWelch said:

@JasonR86 said:

@DoctorWelch said:

I agree, but like said to captain max, "Is it better to have two evils that oppose each other, or one evil with nothing to stop it?"

Don't support the product anymore then. You don't deserve whatever is being pirated. We all don't have unquestioned, absolute rights to created products. If you don't like the way a product is made then don't support the production of that product by not buying the product.

This is not about supporting or not supporting a product, because by pirating it you are inherently not supporting it. Unless you are trying to say that you should pirate things if you don't support them?

I'm saying you shouldn't pirate things at all.

I'm not saying you should either. But I'm also saying that not supporting it by not buying the product and pirating it is effectively the same in the companies eyes because they are not making money. So yeah, you're right, but that doesn't really have anything to do with piracy.

#30 Posted by JasonR86 (9587 posts) -

@DoctorWelch said:

@JasonR86 said:

@DoctorWelch said:

@JasonR86 said:

@DoctorWelch said:

I agree, but like said to captain max, "Is it better to have two evils that oppose each other, or one evil with nothing to stop it?"

Don't support the product anymore then. You don't deserve whatever is being pirated. We all don't have unquestioned, absolute rights to created products. If you don't like the way a product is made then don't support the production of that product by not buying the product.

This is not about supporting or not supporting a product, because by pirating it you are inherently not supporting it. Unless you are trying to say that you should pirate things if you don't support them?

I'm saying you shouldn't pirate things at all.

I'm not saying you should either. But I'm also saying that not supporting it by not buying the product and pirating it is effectively the same in the companies eyes because they are not making money. So yeah, you're right, but that doesn't really have anything to do with piracy.

Yeah, you're right, I didn't completely read your post. BUT, now that I have read it I still think it gives way, way to much credit to piracy. Piracy is a product of unwarranted entitlement. Pirating has nothing to do with changing corporate models. Pirating is about taking something you feel belongs to you despite legitimate means.

As for its 'benefits', you're right in saying that not buying a product and stealing a product is the same to the distributor. But not buying a product is legitimate. It's honorable, respectable, and ethical. Giving piracy credit for anything is ridiculous to me. When I think of pirates I think of bratty little children who feel they deserve the world but don't want to work for it. Giving piracy credit is a slap in the face to those who honestly try to change corporate models through legitimate means. Further, only legitimate means will lead to change people will want.

#31 Edited by QuistisTrepe (628 posts) -

Piracy has indeed been a good thing, it transformed the market forever. Do you all enjoy being able to buy digital music albums for less than $10? Or enjoy unlimited streaming and downloading with services like Zune Pass and Spotify? How about $8 a month for unlimited streaming of movies and TV shows? You can thank piracy for that. Big Content was forced to evolve and change with the times or get left behind. Content providers are distributing cheaper and more conveniently than ever before, changes that likely would have been pushed back by at least a decade if not for piracy.

In gaming, it can be a strong promotional tool. I will admit to having downloaded Persona 2 Innocent Sin to play on a PSX emulator years ago. It got me into series and today I'm among Atlus' most loyal paying customers. Granted having downloaded a JRPG over a decade old that was never released in NA isn't really morally objectionable, but this example just attempts to illustrate my point.

Like we heard stated over and over again, habitual pirates who refuse to pay for anything aren't real customers anyway and therefore cannot be counted as lost sales. There are those that will always feel entitled to download whatever they like because they think they're "fucking the man" or because they're just cheap bastards. But for most of us, piracy is merely a means of promotion.

#32 Posted by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

@JasonR86 said:

Yeah, you're right, I didn't completely read your post. BUT, now that I have read it I still think it gives way, way to much credit to piracy. Piracy is a product of unwarranted entitlement. Pirating has nothing to do with changing corporate models. Pirating is about taking something you feel belongs to you despite legitimate means.

As for its 'benefits', you're right in saying that not buying a product and stealing a product is the same to the distributor. But not buying a product is legitimate. It's honorable, respectable, and ethical. Giving piracy credit for anything is ridiculous to me. When I think of pirates I think of bratty little children who feel they deserve the world but don't want to work for it. Giving piracy credit is a slap in the face to those who honestly try to change corporate models through legitimate means. Further, only legitimate means will lead to change people will want.

It probably comes off as me giving it too much credit because I'm focusing on something that comes from piracy that is actual good. I'm suggesting that piracy is a terrible thing, but sometimes we should be careful what we wish for because it actually helps keep companies innovating and accountable. We shouldn't support it, but who knows, maybe without it things would actually be worse in some ways. Plus, as a previous person stated, copyright law in the US is completely fucked up so the line between what the country says is wrong, and what it should actually say, is up for debate. Basically, I'm trying to help people realize that not everything, even things that seem super obvious, isn't always black and white. Just because a side seems obviously correct, or obviously wrong, doesn't mean there isn't a grey area that can and should be talked about.

#33 Posted by JasonR86 (9587 posts) -

@DoctorWelch said:

@JasonR86 said:

Yeah, you're right, I didn't completely read your post. BUT, now that I have read it I still think it gives way, way to much credit to piracy. Piracy is a product of unwarranted entitlement. Pirating has nothing to do with changing corporate models. Pirating is about taking something you feel belongs to you despite legitimate means.

As for its 'benefits', you're right in saying that not buying a product and stealing a product is the same to the distributor. But not buying a product is legitimate. It's honorable, respectable, and ethical. Giving piracy credit for anything is ridiculous to me. When I think of pirates I think of bratty little children who feel they deserve the world but don't want to work for it. Giving piracy credit is a slap in the face to those who honestly try to change corporate models through legitimate means. Further, only legitimate means will lead to change people will want.

It probably comes off as me giving it too much credit because I'm focusing on something that comes from piracy that is actual good. I'm suggesting that piracy is a terrible thing, but sometimes we should be careful what we wish for because it actually helps keep companies innovating and accountable. We shouldn't support it, but who knows, maybe without it things would actually be worse in some ways. Plus, as a previous person stated, copyright law in the US is completely fucked up so the line between what the country says is wrong, and what it should actually say, is up for debate. Basically, I'm trying to help people realize that not everything, even things that seem super obvious, isn't always black and white. Just because a side seems obviously correct, or obviously wrong, doesn't mean there isn't a grey area that can and should be talked about.

I agree that in life there is way more grey then black and white. But I also think people tend to throw honor and respectability to the side when it comes to unwarranted entitlement. That's always the fear of saying something positive about piracy. Being an honorable person is really hard. Being a pirate is really easy. Showing any sign of support comes with the worry that it might open pandora's box for someone who feels they are justified because they are just showing corporations what's what. I know that's not your intent but that's reality for many people. That's why I always err on the side of caution and denounce piracy any chance I get. The issue may not be black or white but my response will always be so.

#34 Posted by Arker101 (1474 posts) -

Hey guys stealing is bad. Companies' anti consumer bullcrap sucks, but stealing is bad.

#35 Posted by QuistisTrepe (628 posts) -

@Arker101 said:

Hey guys stealing is bad. Companies' anti consumer bullcrap sucks, but stealing is bad.

So then you have never, ever in your whole life ever received a disc of burned media from a friend, or had files copied over from someone else's storage device to yours?

#36 Edited by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@Von said:

As long as they continue with this shit, and this [...]

Goddamn it.

The only way to successfully combat piracy is to make the access easier. Make it two clicks. Make it so I have a login screen, a download confirmation screen, and then my download begins immediately. Make it so I don't have to jump through hoops to access your product. Streamline the process. Develop the system so it won't cause any headaches and bullshit for me, as a consumer. Get rid of all digital rights management. Get rid of it all and start simplifying the process.

The more I read and see about this kind of thing, the more it frustrates me because it just proves how out of step these agencies are with today's consuming market and how they access content. They are bolting decade old tactics onto new hardware/software without a single hint of direction.

Until they pull their collective head from the hive-ass, I will continue to pirate until they figure it out.

#37 Posted by TheDudeOfGaming (6078 posts) -

I don't care either way. The only good thing about piracy is seeing some anti-pirate dude loose his shit...which i haven't seen...yet.

#38 Posted by Jay_Ray (1069 posts) -

The thing is natural competition would have probably led to these innovations (streaming, cloud, etc.), piracy may have just sped up that process but that is all hypothetical since no one can prove either way. People (Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, etc.) have been talking about the things you claim piracy lead to since the 90's. Steam was not invented because of piracy, Steam was invented because Valve predicted that computer gaming was headed in that direction. 
 
If these positives were created because companies needing to compete with piracy I would say you are looking at this backwards, piracy created DRM and piracy slowed high speed internet development in the west. Piracy leads to negatives not positives.

#39 Posted by Arker101 (1474 posts) -

@QuistisTrepe said:

@Arker101 said:

Hey guys stealing is bad. Companies' anti consumer bullcrap sucks, but stealing is bad.

So then you have never, ever in your whole life ever received a disc of burned media from a friend, or had files copied over from someone else's storage device to yours?

We've lent each other music, movies, and games, but we haven't copied anything. I do think it has it's benefits, like the things the OP said about forcing companies to be better about the things they do. Sometimes it results in a better experience for the user, and sometimes it brings out a lot of money gouging. I have a friend who pirated a few Cage The Elephant songs, but then he eventually decided he really liked the band and bought their songs from there on out. Of course he could have also just listened to them on youtube. It can have good effects on the industry, but it's still stealing at the core.

#40 Posted by CL60 (16906 posts) -
#41 Posted by BillyMethers (149 posts) -

I read this thread and see a lot of myths and nonsense coming out of peoples mouths. If anything, piracy has only helped the market in favor of the consumer.

Anybody who says if piracy ended, there'd be no DRM, needs a reality check. They'd just DRM you anyway so you'd have to buy 2 copies.

Piracy is a beautiful thing because it is the direct evolution of our society, as demonstrated by outdated copyright laws. Because those laws were made when copying was an exception in society, but with the rise of the internet, copying is how we share information all the time in today's society.

It's also been proven, time and time again, that people who pirate music buy way more music than any other consumer. Those condemning piracy can keep their eyes shut as society evolves; you'll just get passed by.

#42 Posted by PixelPrinny (1030 posts) -

@BillyMethers said:

I read this thread and see a lot of myths and nonsense coming out of peoples mouths. If anything, piracy has only helped the market in favor of the consumer.

Anybody who says if piracy ended, there'd be no DRM, needs a reality check. They'd just DRM you anyway so you'd have to buy 2 copies.

Piracy is a beautiful thing because it is the direct evolution of our society, as demonstrated by outdated copyright laws. Because those laws were made when copying was an exception in society, but with the rise of the internet, copying is how we share information all the time in today's society.

It's also been proven, time and time again, that people who pirate music buy way more music than any other consumer. Those condemning piracy can keep their eyes shut as society evolves; you'll just get passed by.

I like when someone comes into a thread announcing what everyone else says as myths and nonsense, then proceeds to give their opinion without citing any credible sources.

"Hey you guys, your opinions are dumb. Mine's better." would have sufficed. That's not to say your opinion is wrong, but if you want to sound, yknow, credible, you may actually want to back up your statement a bit more so than those you're calling out.

As for me, I buy games, I pirate games, I cast spells. I dabble in all sorts of different things.

#43 Posted by phampire (280 posts) -

I think we can all agree that stealing is bad but to be technical piracy is NOT stealing. Let me put it this way stealing is more like cut and pasting, piracy is copy and pasting both occur without consent of the original owners and without paying up. It is difficult to say without any doubt that piracy is 100% negative or positive on any industry as the statistics are sketchy at best. Let say 100 people pirate a new software product, you cannot imply that these people would buy this product if piracy did not exist, nor that pirating will ensure a higher degree customer loyalty in the future if they did not pirate the product in the first place. What game companies CAN do is make their games DRM free and trust in their fans, spending less of their resources on systems that WILL eventually be bypassed. Piracy will always exist as long as the internet exists and people charge money for software.

#44 Edited by DoctorWelch (2774 posts) -

@phampire said:

I think we can all agree that stealing is bad but to be technical piracy is NOT stealing. Let me put it this way stealing is more like cut and pasting, piracy is copy and pasting both occur without consent of the original owners and without paying up. It is difficult to say without any doubt that piracy is 100% negative or positive on any industry as the statistics are sketchy at best. Let say 100 people pirate a new software product, you cannot imply that these people would buy this product if piracy did not exist, nor that pirating will ensure a higher degree customer loyalty in the future if they did not pirate the product in the first place. What game companies CAN do is make their games DRM free and trust in their fans, spending less of their resources on systems that WILL eventually be bypassed. Piracy will always exist as long as the internet exists and people charge money for software.

I actually wanted to bring this up in my blog post, but I decided to keep it focused on one specific reason to keep it a little shorter, but yeah I know what you mean. If I'm a college student with no money to buy games or music or movies, the only two options I may have is pirating or simply not getting that content. The company should actually find it favorable for me to pirate their content if the alternative is me simply not consuming it. For instance, if I have no money as a college student, I'm never going to just randomly buy music from an artist I have never heard of, because that money could be spent on something I know for a fact I will enjoy. But if I pirate that music, it may actually end up benefiting that artist in the long run because I may come to love the music, and decide to spend what little money I have on more music later.

Also, I say it's stealing because technically it is in our laws, but as I and others have stated before, the laws are pretty messed up and extremely outdated.