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Software Piracy


HideousBeing
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You asked for examples besides laziness and etc, yet your response still relies on the persons laziness. The (very true) observation that having free access to music will diminish the overall tendency for people to go out and buy the stuff that they just got does not serve to combat my argument that not all people who pirate are doing it wrongly. Your argument just serves to condemn those who I specifically excluded.

I missed where you made an argument somewhere earlier, it sounded like you were just talking about yourself.

The theft of a candy bar is a tangible theft. If you're including all pirates in your argument then stealing a candy bar is not analogous because if every person stole a candy bar the loss would be far from miniscule.

Well, this is kind of my point. If a million people today decided to stop buying software and start pirating, there would be a massive drop in demand and many software companies would hemorrhage money and probably go out of business. If ONE person decided to do that, nothing would happen. Likewise with stealing candy bars. Even though the statistics are just not clear on exactly WHAT the impact of piracy is on demand, you admitted that there is definitely some loss of motivation (ie. demand) due to easy piracy, so the issue is definitely there.

Dave: I agree with you 100% that new business models are necessary today, but I think that the open source movement (among other things) has churned out a massive amount of freely available IP - software, music, literature, etc - so that there's little excuse to pirate most things. REAPER is a competitive alternative to Cubase, Office -> OpenOffice, GIMP -> Photoshop, etc. If someone really has no resources, there are now plenty of tools out there that they CAN use for free. It would be more advantageous for all parties involved for there to be focus on noncommercial licenses, unlimited shareware (etc).

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"I'm not hurting anyone by downloading something I wouldn't have bought anyway."

Then why are you downloading it?

A good example of that would be scientific tools such as InsightII, a molecular modeling application. This application is not expected to be used outside of research, which is where I started using it. The school has a 2 client license which costs them somewhere around $10,000 along with $5,000/yr. in maintenaince and tech support. However, it is a very cool app and I would like to have the opportunity to use it for less formal purposes, such as studying or making a couple models for a lab report outside of actual research.

There is not a fairly priced app that will do the same thing as Insight and I do not think it is unreasonable to conclude that no one would buy such a program for the purpose of making a couple models. I don't find it unethical to use because the company is losing no money from it. Additionally, as I have decided to use this app for school it also means I have decided to use it instead of competing molecular modeling programs, so in the end it will more likely make money for the makers of Insight, as I will be required to use this program over others in the professional field.

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"I'm not hurting anyone by downloading something I wouldn't have bought anyway."

Then why are you downloading it?

Because I want to use it but don't think it's worth even close to the price?? I use Game Maker quite a bit and have paid for that, twice actually. That's fifty dollars I think. That seems reasonable for what the program can do and for how much I use it. Seven hundred dollars for Adobe Flash seems a pretty steep price when I just want to make a short, badly animated image.

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Here's another thing, since we're talking about pirating games:

Used games. The original developer/publisher/whatever doesn't see one red cent from buying a used game. How is that ethical? Sure, you're PAYING for it, but the intended recipient of the money is completely cut out.

Can it be considered transferring the license to play the software from one person to another (given that it involves a physical media)? The original party will no longer be able to play the game.

Are we pirating if we grab a few titles from the used section of the local GameStop and plunk down cash for that?

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It boils down to immaturity: Philosophically impoverished adolescents who are naive enough to think they are entitled to take what they want for free.

That sums up every pirate I've ever seen.

I'm sorry analoq, if I am a poor bastard guy from Brazil who can't afford anything at all. I should stop making music, doing animated gifs and signatures for people and I should stop learning how to program. That then I must stop doing what I am doing, go back to my hard life and deal with it.

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Here's another thing, since we're talking about pirating games:

Used games. The original developer/publisher/whatever doesn't see one red cent from buying a used game. How is that ethical? Sure, you're PAYING for it, but the intended recipient of the money is completely cut out.

Can it be considered transferring the license to play the software from one person to another (given that it involves a physical media)? The original party will no longer be able to play the game.

Are we pirating if we grab a few titles from the used section of the local GameStop and plunk down cash for that?

The industry hates the used games market even more than piracy. This is what all the draconian DRM with limited installs has mainly been directed towards.

I'm sorry analoq, if I am a poor bastard guy from Brazil who can't afford anything at all. I should stop making music, doing animated gifs and signatures for people and I should stop learning how to program. That then I must stop doing what I am doing, go back to my hard life and deal with it.

There are completely free alternatives for pretty much all of the hobbies you listed.

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Pirating != Copyright infringement.

I don't think anyone here illegally cracks software then charges people for copies of it in some shady alley in downtown Chinatown.

...DO they?

Here's the thing about used games: You pay for used games because that pays for the "manpower" involved in receiving the used game, inventorying it, stocking the shelves with it, and then paying the guy over the counter $7-8 an hour to look after it and sell it. Real simple. How is this unethical? It's only unethical if they're charging almost as much as it cost originally [see: EBGames, Gamestop].

Also, IIRC the way it works is that the game company isn't making money off of that specific purchase you're making. When you run your credit card through, the money isn't wired immediately to Japan to be distributed by Hideo Kojima. They already got the money from the store that stocked their shelves full of their game, the store just needs to sell their shit and make a profit. Same with anything you buy in a store.

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Piracy has become as ubiquitous as speeding in world culture; arguing over the morality of it or ways to curb it are useless unless the answer is "complete surveillance." Really what people should be focusing on is how to make people spend money on their product, as opposed to how to keep them from pirating.

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I think the name "pirate" kind of skews the perception a bit, since there is a big difference between plundering/murdering/raping/hijacking/etc and copying a data file while leaving the original data in place. Yes, I know that's facetious thing to point out, but I'm not really sure copying a data file that gives you a program is actually stealing. On the other hand, a spy could "steal national secrets" or whatever by copying data files, although there is no way that is in the same vicinity as downloading a copy of Flash because I want to make a few animated gifs.

It is a little immoral to use a copy of a program someone worked hard to make when you didn't pay for that hard work, but if a company isn't going to make their software or music or whatever affordable for its value, and there aren't any comparable alternatives that are affordable, piracy will happen. It seems to me that most of the time, free alternatives are both vastly inferior and function too differently than industry standards to be of any educational use for future endeavors with the real deal.

Maybe a good model would to maybe have some sort of system in which creative programs like Flash are really cheap but if you are using them for commercial purposes then make them cost those ridiculous prices?

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Pirating != Copyright infringement.

I don't think anyone here illegally cracks software then charges people for copies of it in some shady alley in downtown Chinatown.

...DO they?

Here's the thing about used games: You pay for used games because that pays for the "manpower" involved in receiving the used game, inventorying it, stocking the shelves with it, and then paying the guy over the counter $7-8 an hour to look after it and sell it. Real simple. How is this unethical? It's only unethical if they're charging almost as much as it cost originally [see: EBGames, Gamestop].

Also, IIRC the way it works is that the game company isn't making money off of that specific purchase you're making. When you run your credit card through, the money isn't wired immediately to Japan to be distributed by Hideo Kojima. They already got the money from the store that stocked their shelves full of their game, the store just needs to sell their shit and make a profit. Same with anything you buy in a store.

Right -- and if someone decides to buy a USED copy of the game instead of new (as is common these days), then that's one NEW copy still sitting on the shelf that, eventually, will get sent back and charged to the game company.

Still a loss of money.

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Because I have no job, no money, but I still want.

Do I feel bad about it? Not really.

Would I pay for it if I could find a motherfucking job? Hell yes. I LIKE to buy things.

I'd buy a lot more stuff if I had a job

thanks, economy!

No kidding... Every time one of my friends complains about how his/her job sucks, I can't help but bring up the fact that they're luck to even have a goddamn job right now. Living off of unemployment checks doesn't really work well... at all.

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I think speeding is a little worse than piracy since it kind of attributes heavily to a lot of automobile deaths

Quoted for truth.

An interesting thing to discuss where the individual person draws his/her own line. Since we are mostly gamers do we pirate more games OR buy more games but download all seasons of say.. family guy? Is music MORE okay than games? Just interesting to see where you guys stand.

I enjoyed Dave's post here (no time to quote it) becuase it brings up another question that is very relevant: Does piracy HELP the copyright holder? We have the tv-series that might sell really well as DVD-boxes because many has watched the TV-ripped .avis. We have artists who get recognition and fully booked concert because people heard about them on the internet. And so on.

I can say, hand on my heart, that I buy more stuff (music, dvds, games and so on) than pretty much everyone I know around my age. My guess is that the rise of internet piracy and the many MANY products that brings to the user also makes said user interested in more products he would've otherwise never even heard of, possibly leading to him buying them. Now I don't say piracy is right (it's illegal for a reason) but there are other sides.

Another positive aspect is that it keeps stuff from being rare. For example older LP's of certain unknown bands that since long abandoned their career can be put out on say former music tracker OiNK's pink palace and suddenly a whole heap of people has access to a potential masterpiece that is IMPOSSIBLE to come by otherwise. It is also equally disturbing to some to see companies still profiting from albums and such of dead artists that can't POSSIBLY need the money (they're dead..) but because of copyright laws they can't release it for free.

There are a LOT of different aspects on this. Here in Sweden it's a hot potato ofc with the Pirate Bay trial and the newly formed Piratpartiet (a political party with the main intent to keep personal privacy and promote alternatives to todays aged media distribution and copyrighting). Piratpartiet has gained a LOT of members and are running in the EU election in a few months so we'll see how that turns out.. Anyway, interesting subject, stop bashing eachother and discuss.

EDIT: Pirating software is NEVER stealing. It has never been judged as such and probably never will. It's copyright infringement and nothing else.

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I, for one, am very glad that music is available for free on the internet --> discover --> maybe even buy, because otherwise I would have to listen to the stuff everyone else around here (USA) listens to, which I hate. If music stores would sell "SUPER BEST TRANCE VOLUME VII" for like fifteen bucks instead of having to import it from Japan for forty, I would probably buy them all.

Interestingly, I don't pirate games, probably because it's way too much trouble to get them to actually work, and I guess I feel more about games than about music that if it's worth playing, it's worth paying.

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When it all comes down to it, the best arguments I can use for my downloading(which is usually out of print stuff or international music) is due to lack of local availability, and also the fact that I don't like to buy crap, and I especially don't like being told I should spend money on crap.

A friend of mine bought the bluray for some movie, I go to his house and watch it, I think it's crap and never watch it again. I didn't pay anything, and I can assure you that I'd be pissed if I DID pay something. Now, sure, he paid for the movie, but I didn't and still saw it. As far as I know, going to a friends house and watching a movie is perfectly fine and legal, and yet nobody got a cent from my watching it. This occurs every damned day.

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Yeah, the overriding reason for most people is just pure laziness and lack of morals, really. What other reasons are there?

Trying to get a copy of a much needed program on a computer that can actually run it because a virus ate it at the last moment and the CD and Box cannot be found and you can't just transfer it to this computer and the tech support is so bad you're half-tempted to drive to their headquarters and start hanging people by their dangly private parts and by now you pretty much have to steal just to get the service you paid for in the first place is a half-decent reason.

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When it all comes down to it, the best arguments I can use for my downloading(which is usually out of print stuff or international music) is due to lack of local availability, and also the fact that I don't like to buy crap, and I especially don't like being told I should spend money on crap.

A friend of mine bought the bluray for some movie, I go to his house and watch it, I think it's crap and never watch it again. I didn't pay anything, and I can assure you that I'd be pissed if I DID pay something. Now, sure, he paid for the movie, but I didn't and still saw it. As far as I know, going to a friends house and watching a movie is perfectly fine and legal, and yet nobody got a cent from my watching it. This occurs every damned day.

This is exactly my reasoning as well

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Pirating != Copyright infringement.

I don't think anyone here illegally cracks software then charges people for copies of it in some shady alley in downtown Chinatown.

...DO they?

I actually saw on the news not more than a few days ago about an underground operation here in Houston that burned tons of CDs and DVDs, and sold them for cheap. They got busted.

So yes, people do this, but it's not nearly as widespread as general piracy. And I don't think anyone (ReMixers especially) believes that benefitting from others' work is justifiable.

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I think speeding is a little worse than piracy since it kind of attributes heavily to a lot of automobile deaths

I wasn't trying to compare the consequences, but rather show that an illegal activity that is frowned upon technically in the law is still ingrained in culture, and is something that you can't really regulate away.

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I think some people like the feeling that they are "hacking" something, at least indirectly.

Personally I'm making enough money and am so backlogged at this point that if I don't want to pay for a game, I just don't get it. If it's not worth my money, it's definitely not worth my time.

(...unless it's an import :3 )

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I downloaded Spear of Destiny, the follow up to Wolfenstein 3D. Do I feel bad since id is selling the game on Steam? Not in the least. See, I bought a CD from EB that said it had Wolf 3D and SoD on it. I got home, installed everything, and guess what? SoD was nowhere to be found. There is an executable that gives you a choice of which game to run, but none of the actual game files for SoD were on the disc. So, I tracked down a copy of SoD, and downloaded it.

I paid for it, and didn't get it. As far as I'm concerned, my actions were 100% justified, as I was only taking what I legitimately paid for, yet was denied.

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I downloaded Spear of Destiny, the follow up to Wolfenstein 3D. Do I feel bad since id is selling the game on Steam? Not in the least. See, I bought a CD from EB that said it had Wolf 3D and SoD on it. I got home, installed everything, and guess what? SoD was nowhere to be found. There is an executable that gives you a choice of which game to run, but none of the actual game files for SoD were on the disc. So, I tracked down a copy of SoD, and downloaded it.

I paid for it, and didn't get it. As far as I'm concerned, my actions were 100% justified, as I was only taking what I legitimately paid for, yet was denied.

I would've contacted id about it to avoid having to pirate it.

If that ended up being fruitless, then yeah I would have done what you did. Or returned the disc.

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