Screaming Justin Bieber Fans Using Camera Phones To Capture Snippets Of Movie Premiere Berated For Piracy

from the cultural-divide dept

We've pointed out many times that the laws, especially around things like copyright, simply don't match up with the basic cultural norms of what it means to be a kid today. Remember, for example, the woman who was arrested and spent two nights in jail because she used a camera to capture a few very short segments of the movie Twilight, because she was trying to capture her sister's birthday party (with the movie showing being a part of the event). Now, TorrentFreak points us to an unintentionally hilarious article written by a woman who appears to make her living as a Marilyn Monroe/Anna Nicole Smith impersonator, complaining about how a bunch of Justin Bieber fans were thieves because they dared to film snippets of his new movie (wait, Justin Bieber has a movie?!?) at a special VIP Premiere ($30 a ticket!) with their camera phones.
Bieber fans watched the film and screamed with glee at the sight of him on the big screen, but many were also committing a crime. The crime was committed when they began taping the film for their own use. Since most of the audience consisted of teenage girls with their parents, I am left to wonder what parent lets their child commit a crime? Even scarier ,what kind of parent lets them do it in public?

Also I wonder how can Justin's fans call themselves true fans by stealing from the star?
Just what they "stole" from Bieber is not made clear, of course. Of course, there seems to be a bit of a cultural divide here. The Bieber fans aren't stealing anything. What they're doing is sharing with their friends. They're not sharing the movie, of course. I'm sure the screaming crew of Bieber fans are all begging their parents to take them to the theater (probably multiple times). What they're sharing is the experience of going to see the film. Filming a snippet and sending it to friends is a way of letting their friends know "hey, look, I got to go to the Premiere!" or something along those lines.

Of course, thanks to rampant lobbying by the MPAA, such filming is a crime. But this sort of situation just serves to underline why it's stupid to consider just any filming of a movie to be a criminal act. The screaming teen girls at the Bieber movie were not "pirating" the movie in any sense. They were trying to share a cultural experience. It seems pretty bizarre that doing so actually does put them at risk of being sent to jail for a few years.


Reader Comments (rss)

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    johnjac (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 12:45pm

    Defense

    This will be a precedent setting case answering the question:

    Is Beiber Fever an adequate defense in IP law?

     

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    johnjac (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 12:46pm

    Defense

    This will be a precedent setting case answering the question:

    Is Beiber Fever an adequate defense in IP law?

     

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    Christopher Gizzi (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 12:52pm

    Opposite Directions

    I wonder what the kids would say if someone told them they were guilty of the crime of pirating a Bieber movie clip.

    I wonder what the parents would say if the cops told them their kids were held at the station for copyright infringement.

    Iím willing to bet both sets would look at them like they had two heads. Neither the kids or parents would think it a crime to send a movie clip of a life experience to their friends in that way.

    And I dare anyone to jail a child for filming a Bieber clip.

    But the real thing to take away is this: the law isnít just taking a long time to catch up to social norms, the law and the social norms are heading in exactly the opposite direction.

     

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      Jose_X, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 7:52pm

      Re: Opposite Directions

      I can't imagine how that is not fair use or at worst a civil matter as a violation of a contract.

       

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    Kevin (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 12:54pm

    It was more of a crime

    For them to make their parents take them to see the movie in the first place.

     

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      Rose M. Welch (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:59pm

      Re: It was more of a crime

      I went to see a movie yesterday and I discovered that not only is the Beiber movie in 3-D, but there was a serious line one hour before the movie even started.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 12:55pm

    But they've now seen the Bieb...

    IN THE MOVIE FOR 30 SECONDS. Now no one will feel they have to pay money to go see the movie. FACT: I saw 20 seconds of the intro to Fight Club PIRATED on YouTube the other day. I'm pretty sure I understand the entire plot and don't need to pay money to see anymore of it.

     

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    marak (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 12:55pm

    If i got sent a pay up letter for downloading this, id certaintly fork over the cashh. Who wants to be caught pirating a bieber... well anything! o.0 (runs to lock up kids computers)

     

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    John Doe, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 12:57pm

    The real crime here...

    The real crime here is that this lady is robbing the estates of Marilyn Monroe and Anna Nicole Smith. Every dime she has ever made using their likeness should be immediately remanded to the estates of these women. Think of their children! They may have to buy Fords now instead of Mercedes all because their trust funds were robbed of the income this impersonator has stolen!

     

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    Matthew (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 12:59pm

    MPAA will make a bundle on this...

    After all, 12 year old girls are terrible on the witness stand and tend to be unsympathetic, unrepentant, hard cases.

    MPAA, if you're listening, NOW is the time to whip out that new legislation you've been quietly lobbying. You know the one: Piracy = Capital Offense.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:03pm

      Re: MPAA will make a bundle on this...

      The state should just take their phones away from them by cutting off their hands. Problem solved. No more flagrant acts of copyright infringement.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:21pm

        Re: Re: MPAA will make a bundle on this...

        They can still have the electronic diary version.

        Cameras that take a picture every few seconds and are weared around the neck.

        Off with their heads!

        LoL

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:08pm

    Yet another straw man alert

    "It seems pretty bizarre that doing so actually does put them at risk of being sent to jail for a few years."

    Are you seriously stating that these children will be held liable for copyright infringement? Nothing is going to happen to these kids just because some blogger wrote an article that you don't agree with.

    Is everyone who snaps a picture of a live NFL game technically breaking the law? Yes. Has anyone been seriously been taken to task for this "offense". I'm not counting paltry DMCA takedown notices.

     

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      Richard (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:10pm

      Re: Yet another straw man alert

      Is everyone who snaps a picture of a live NFL game technically breaking the law? Yes.
      Er no actually - not a real law anyway.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 3:17pm

        Re: Re: Yet another straw man alert

        So copyright law isn't law? Oh that's right this is TD!

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 3:33pm

          Re: Re: Re: Yet another straw man alert

          Wait, you're saying taking your OWN picture breaks copyright law?

          Wonderful, now the industry is trying to ban individuals from creating content as well. Isn't that swell.

           

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:08pm

    Yet another straw man alert

    "It seems pretty bizarre that doing so actually does put them at risk of being sent to jail for a few years."

    Are you seriously stating that these children will be held liable for copyright infringement? Nothing is going to happen to these kids just because some blogger wrote an article that you don't agree with.

    Is everyone who snaps a picture of a live NFL game technically breaking the law? Yes. Has anyone been seriously been taken to task for this "offense". I'm not counting paltry DMCA takedown notices.

     

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      :Lobo Santo (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:11pm

      Re: Yet another straw man alert

      So, what you're saying is; if there's a law which mandates the forceful removal of the testes of anybody who posts online as "Anonymous Coward" but it's never enforced (until it is) then that's perfectly okay?

       

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      Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:14pm

      Re: Yet another straw man alert

      "Are you seriously stating that these children will be held liable for copyright infringement?"

      People have for less, read the article.

      "Is everyone who snaps a picture of a live NFL game technically breaking the law?"

      No, they're not.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 5:24pm

      Re: Yet another straw man alert

      There was this mother who dared to film her daughter birthday that got thrown in jail, ask her how she feels about those laws.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 15th, 2011 @ 9:55am

      Re: Yet another straw man alert

      Are you seriously stating that the laws are ok because they won't be used to convict?

      You are so dislocated from reality that it's not even funny anymore.

       

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    YesItsMeAgain, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:17pm

    can you pass the wetnaps please?

    I know exactly how those girls feel. They just want to show off to their friends and say "I was there" and maybe 300-400 times a day sneak a peak at their smart phones to relive the experience of something great until they can make their way back into the theater again with like minded souls. I believe they committed no crime and perhaps it was a "mob mentality", a case of "Everyone else is doing it so why can't I?".
    I myself have been victim of this ridiculous copyright law when trying to document my experiences in a perfectly legal albeit a little damp adult themed theater to merely share with others and dare I say, rub it in their face.

     

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    Tom Landry (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:19pm

    It's OK, the commenters are verbally raping her as we speak.

     

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    Armando Kirwin, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:19pm

    Howdy. I read techdirt religiously and I actually happen to work at Paramount, we made Never Say Never (the Justin Beiber movie).

    In my personal opinion, there is no way in hell you can experience a movie by watching 30 seconds of it on Youtube. (Not to mention the fact that there are currently no cell phones capable of recording a 3D movie correctly.)

    As someone on the inside of the industry, it bothers me deeply that the law has deviated so far away from common sense. I don't expect that this will always be the case.

    Also, for all you macho men out there who hate Beiber by default, you will be surprised by how good the movie is. :)

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:21pm

      Re:

      Also, for all you macho men out there who hate Beiber by default, you will be surprised by how good the movie is.

      I know they force you to say that. Blink twice if you need help.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:31pm

      Re:

      Also, for all you macho men out there who hate Beiber by default, you will be surprised by how good the movie is. :)


      Like the "Menudo" before him? or the Backstreet Boys?

      Not happening.

      I have low standards but they are not that low.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:43pm

      Re:

      "Also, for all you macho men out there who hate Beiber by default, you will be surprised by how good the movie is. :)"

      BWAHAHAHAHA that's a good one! Why any man or boy would want to go see a record label created/marketed, no talent like Beiber is beyond me.

       

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    Rekrul, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:20pm

    Maybe they're hoping that millions of people will pay them not to upload the clips they filmed... :)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:21pm

    What they stole more than anything is the artificial scarcity that is some important to the whole "after the music industry dies" world. The movie is the scarcity that people are willing to pay for.

    The chisel away that the movie, piece by piece, slowly chipping away it's exclusive nature, and perhaps even making it so they don't have to pay to see it again.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:32pm

      Re:

      Are you saying this was a concious conspiracy by hundreds of young girls to, with machine precision, take 30 seconds each of this movie to paste together later on their Hello Bieby computers to make a whole film?

      "Emily's syncing the audio, Bridget's tweaking up the edits, and Ashley's gonna handle the whole 3D thingy!"

      ;)

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:13pm

        Re: Re:

        Well he may be concerned about the chipping away, but actually there is technology to do exactly what you said automatically.

        Just search for "3D reconstruction from video", heck there is even a link to a paper demonstrating how to recreate in 3D a football game.

        Stack all that footage together and you can reconstruct the video and even enhanced it.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:15pm

        Re: Re:

        ps: Not that I care, would be happy when people in sport games start taking video from their cellphones and uploading that directly to a server that will reconstruct the game in 3D space so every one can enjoy it LoL

        It will be funny to see authorities saying cellphones are now criminal tools.

         

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    Lion XL, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:23pm

    the engish language is lost on you fools....

    to the challenged anonymous coward above : "It seems pretty bizarre that doing so actually does put them at risk of being sent to jail for a few years." does not signify that it will happen, but that it can happen, try to understand the complexity of possibilities and stop trolling while your at it

     

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    Mikester, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:51pm

    Justin Bieber Movie Pirates Deserve At Least 3 Years In Jail

     

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      Mikester, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:56pm

      Re: Justin Bieber Movie Pirates Deserve At Least 3 Years In Jail

      Yes, I'm an idiot. I only saw the Examiner link, not the TF link. Please ignore/delete above post

       

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    VoicesInMyHead (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:54pm

    Huh?

    I have to agree with Ozzy on this one... "What's a Beiber?"

     

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    Stuart, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 1:58pm

    Arrest them now!

    Not for recording of course.
    But they need to go away for a long time for going to see a beiber movie. We cant have this kind of thing going on.

     

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    Kevin (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:13pm

    Too Soon?

    If she is such an good impersonator then perhaps she will go out the same way.... You know, a fist full of assorted pills with a little wine to wash it down.

    I know bad taste, but its been one of those days... sorry.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:14pm

    Let me add this:

    Speeding is illegal. Even if you are speeding to see Justin Bieber perform (god knows why, I would be speeding away). You cannot break the law just because some juvenile performer is involved.

    In the same manner, you cannot record movies with a camera legally. Even if Bieber is involved. The story is a whole lot of window dressing for a basic problem: It's against the law.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:22pm

      Re:

      But should it be?

      What happens when everyone on earth have a digital camera recorder in their glasses that they use for augmented reality?

      What happen when you have the capability to filter environment factors and plugin your own factors like noise level, light, smells and etc.

      The law is becoming anachronistic in that regard and sooner or latter it will be revised to take into account the new technologies, which will lead to some painful decisions for some people.

       

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      Chris Rhodes (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:32pm

      Re:

      The story is a whole lot of window dressing for a basic problem: It's against the law.

      Err, I think that was the point. How ridiculous is it that we find ourselves in such a situation?

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 4:14pm

        Re: Re:

        Blame the idiots who pirated movies by filming the theaters. Don't blame the law, the law is in place because your friends, your online buddies, that guy seeding the latest movie right now theater rip set up a situation that was legally intolerable.

        It is sad and stupid that we are at this point. But the few who choose to blatantly make a problem has ruined it for everyone else. Go verbally attack the people that caused this mess (and no, it ain't the movie people, and it ain't the theaters... it is idiots with cameras).

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 5:08pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          What do you do when the entire population has cameras and they are all idiots?

          Please explain to the parents of all those little girls that you will send their daughters to prison because they dared to film the big screen in front of them.

          I want to see the PR nightmare this will turn into the first time any idiot try to arrest a little girl filming the screen.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 7:28pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Just wait until your eyes are essentially cameras and the internet has moved into your head.

            "The recording of reality is illegal because of copyright infringement, and America, and freedom."

             

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 3:42pm

      Re:

      Good job missing the point.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 15th, 2011 @ 4:36am

      Re:

      In the same manner, you cannot record movies with a camera legally. Even if Bieber is involved. The story is a whole lot of window dressing for a basic problem: It's against the law.

      In the same manner, you've still missed the point.. The story is a whole lot of window dressing to highlight the stupidity of the law.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:36pm

    Let's frame this a different way

    For those who actually do believe this is stealing (I know you're in the minority here but I'm honestly curious), let's frame it a slightly different way. I'd like to know where the line is.

    I don't know who this Beaver kid is, but I do read a book series with a pretty fanatical following. Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series is the one I'm talking about. There are numerous forums and web pages that have snippets of the book and chapter summaries and all sorts of goodies. Now, I'd like to know where the line for legality is.

    Scenario 1: I have an eidetic memory. I discuss the book with another fan in person and quote entire sections of it. Other people overhear us and gather while we wax philosophical over the books with me sometimes quoting pages and passages. Illegal?

    Scenario 2: I break out my Nook with a legally obtained copy of the book on it with a friend while we're discussing it. We read a few chapters together. Does this count as public performance?

    Scenario 3: Same as scenario 1, except this time in an online forum that requires registration to read instead of in public.

    Scenario 4: Scan and OCR the book that I own for personal use to shift it to my ebook reader.

    Several of these have some elements that correspond to what actually happened here. The information is a snippet of the whole, and it's being discussed. Which one is illegal, and why is the line where it is?

     

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    Carl Barron_agpcuk (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:40pm

    Gaping Hole in Anti Piracy Laws.

    It is possible that I have discovered a Gaping Hole in Anti Piracy Copyright Laws.

    The reason being that Copyrights strength is in the fact that it is ĎLegally Regardedí as if written in stone whatever material is under copyright. Hence if you only copy a segment of the original Copyright material it is not theft as it is incomplete. Hence not as the original as the original is a completed script hence taking a single element cannot be judged as Copyright Theft.

    Likewise if you copy Copyright Text and change the font it is not as the original yet by changing the wording of text slightly puts you well safe of being charged with copyright theft.

    Signed Carl Barron Chairman of agpcuk

     

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    Chris in Utah (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:54pm

    Mike.. wow really?

    I'm usually not one to point out things like an editor but I found myself counting how many "of course" rather than the message of the article... now I gata go back and re-read it.

     

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    Chris in Utah (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:54pm

    Mike.. wow really?

    I'm usually not one to point out things like an editor but I found myself counting how many "of course" rather than the message of the article... now I gata go back and re-read it.

     

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    Armando Kirwin, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 2:55pm

    Hahaha. You guys crack me up. I'm glad to see that everyone here has zeroed in on the crux of my comment!

    I'm not here to defend the movie. I really just came to talk tech politics.

    No need to get jealous of The Beib. ;)

     

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    jetsmit, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 3:02pm

    After viewing 240, 30 second clips, I was able to string together the whole film. After watching the complete movie on my 3.5 inch iPod screen, I can say that the experience was nothing short of amzaing, and I no longer need to attend a movie theater to enjoy this flick. It's just like being there...only better!

     

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    cybernia (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 3:11pm

    huh?

    *facepalm*

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 3:14pm

    Once again, MPAA stupidity gives me more reason to keep my hard earned cash in my pocket.

    You still have not earned back this customer, only gave me more reason not to buy.

    GG MPAA.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 3:20pm

      Re:

      Eh, they don't need you. Entertainment is now the biggest export of the US. Have fun with your moral high ground boycott? Oh, and remember to watch TV tonight, because I know you will. So much for that boycott I guess...

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 3:37pm

        Re: Re:

        What? I thought piracy was killing the entertainment industry? What do you mean it's the biggest US import?

        How could entertainment possibly live when half of the world's population live in dirty piracy lands like China, India and (God forbid) CANADA?

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 4:00pm

        Re: Re:

        I haven't had cable TV in over 2 years, I don't have an antenna, so there is no TV in my house, period.

        I don't have a DVD player, or a VCR. If I did, I would only watch the things I have already paid for.

        I don't go to the movies, I don't listen to music except the ones I have paid for already, or that are from the artist directly.

        I like my boycott. Gives me more money to do the things I love....like spending time with my kids and my WoW. Instead of lining a greedy bastages pockets.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 5:14pm

        Re: Re:

        ...or go to Youtube and type any word like "horror", "ghost", "news" and use the filter to find the big videos(i.e. longer than 20 min).

        BTW every news on a network can be found on video websites.

        Proof is that I haven't watched TV for about 5 years now LoL

        So much for not boycotting.

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 4:00pm

    @56 ("Tell me, which copyright laws do you break when you snap your own photographs?")

    I don't know but it reminds me of this article...

    "There is, however, another message about copyright in the National Portrait Gallery: it is implicit in the "No Photography" signs prominently displayed throughout its rooms, including one by the entrance to the Pop Art Portraits exhibition.

    These signs are not intended to protect the works from the depredations of camera flashes (otherwise they would read "No Flash Photography"). No, the ban on pictures is meant to safeguard the copyright of the works hung on the walls - a fact that every member of staff I asked instantly confirmed."


    Full article - Warhol is turning in his grave

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2011 @ 5:05pm

    @62

    @62
    You need to read a bit before you can get to this level. Cheating is not allowed. Go back to level 1, Mario.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Miff (profile), Feb 14th, 2011 @ 11:23pm

    Wait, that article was serious?

    I read it before and thought it was ironic.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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