Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

from the you-are-just-the-entertainment dept

Topping this week's "most insightful comments" list (by a large margin of votes, too) was an Anonymous Coward, responding to one of our usual critics making the bizarre claim that commenters who agree with Techdirt are really Google "shills." The AC took exception to that ridiculous claim:
Why do you guys have such a hard time believing that normal, hard working, paying people also come here?

I work in the aerospace manufacturing industry. We make parts for those airplanes you jet around the country in.

We have nothing to do with watching movies (productivity loss), or listening to music (safety hazard).

We make parts that go into airplanes.

I read those laws.

Our industries don't even come close to touching each other, and yet, your laws were going to make my job as an IT Administrator way harder, with zero compensation for it.

Your laws were going to make it harder for communication between our customers and vendors.

We already have problems just from trying to keep information secure, so the hackers and terrorists can't get in and figure out how to build these planes...or how they are made to figure out how to attack best.

Not to mention the traceability required when performing that kind of manufacturing....to make sure the damn things don't fall out of the sky....

And yet, you wanted to pass laws that would affect the very thing that would allow us to be able to communicate this information in a timely manner....ALL because YOU don't want to evolve, and came in late to the game.

I am not Google.

I am an American Citizen, working in an American factory, providing American manufactured parts (metal to finished part) to companies across the world.

You, sir, are just the entertainment.
Not surprisingly, the guy who made the original comment chose not to respond.

Coming in second was a comment from That Anonymous Coward, responding to the news that ISPs will be ready to start acting as Hollywood's internet copyright cops come July, by turning on their six strikes plan.
Actually its time to sue the telcos.

If they want to take actions based on mere accusations while taking peoples money, then they obviously do not need rights of way or easements. I think its time they start paying for every pole, and returning all public funds they used to expand their networks.

They are there to provide a service to the people paying them, not some lobbyist group with no actual legal standing in the contract between the customers or the municipalities.

As has been shown time and time again, this process of detecting infringement is flawed on a serious level. To take away a service that has been paid for without any legal basis seems like a slam dunk class action lawsuit against every ISP taking part in this. This would be akin to Ford/GM/Chrysler coming and taking away your car based on a neighbor calling in they saw a blue car speeding and you own a blue car.

The process which makes every attempt to look fair, limits the responses to these letters to a very select few choices, all of them leaving out the defenses offered legally and ignoring the best answer of misidentification. It is more of the corporations are always right and you must give into them.

I could see a court ending someones "right" to internet service, but this avoids the pesky hassle of the law being involved at all. This will lead to more things happening at the ISP level that the end customer will end up subsidizing to make work to keep the **AA's from suing, despite not having the standing to do so.

I look forward to the FCC explaining how this is all legal and correct, with much spin and feigning ignorance of what is happening.

IP Rights and Corporate Rights keep trumping the rights of the people. Its time to vote with our wallets, and with lawsuits. There needs to be a clear loud response like the antiSOPA/PIPA campaign that the balance has shifted to far and we are unwilling to accept it any more.
As for the editor's choice awards for most insightful, we'll give the first one to Chosen Reject who had quite an excellent explanation of not just the difference between copying and stealing, but also what the mindset is of those who think copying can be stealing:
I'm going to share my thoughts with you, but I'm going to do so under your definition of stealing. That is, you need to pay me for them or I will declare that you stole them. Why? Because if you read further you will have my thoughts without having paid for it, so you aren't entitled to them.

Stealing is wrong, we both agree on that, but apparently we disagree on why stealing is wrong. I (and almost every other person out there) thinks stealing is wrong because you are taking something away from someone else has the right to that thing. You apparently think stealing is wrong because someone acquired something.

Did you spot the difference? You hate that people have something, whereas most human beings hate that someone took something away from someone else. We dislike the taking away, you just dislike the having.

Stealing is stealing, copying is copying. In both situations someone ends up with something. In only one situation does someone lost something. That you equate the two shows that you don't like people having things.
The second editor's choice award goes to a great comment from an Anonymous Coward, responding to RIAA and MPAA execs talking about how their "opponents" beat them on the SOPA debate. This AC noted the root of the problem:
If they stopped using the word "opponent" and instead used the word "customer" they might have an ah-ha moment.
Moving over to the funny side of the comments, we had a bunch of comments at the top of the votes all clustered very closely together, but eking out a first place finish was, amazingly, another commenter responding to the same critic (bob) who wrote the comment that got someone the win for most insightful. So, critic bob gets extra "inducement" points this week for creating comments so ridiculous that they inspired responses that won both the most insightful comment award and the funniest. Way to go bob! Thanks for contributing.

The specific comment that won was an Anonymous Coward's response to bob's incorrect belief that emailing the MPAA/RIAA a scanned image of a dollar bill was a form of counterfeiting. The AC summarized what most of us were thinking pretty succinctly:
And suddenly a thousand professors of economics, finance, logic, and law cried out in terror.
Coming in second was Suja on the story of the UK agreeing to extradite a student to the US for his site that had links to content, some of which was infringing. Another regular critic (you're off the hook on this one, bob) said the lesson in all of this was "Don't Steal Content." Which is funny, because Richard O'Dwyer didn't. Suja explained more specifically:
linking is stealing too now?

what ISN'T stealing these days?

tell you what... DON'T MAKE POSTS, you're stealing my fuckin' braincells
For editor's choice, we actually have a comment that only works if you read a set of three comments together (from two different Anonymous Cowards) in discussing Yahoo's decision to sue Facebook for patent infringement:
AC 1: Yahoo will be a great case study in the future (if it isn't already).

AC 2: you forgot the "!"

AC 1: You're right. Yahoo will be a great! case study in the future.
Ah, trademark humor.

And the second editor's choice award also refers to the Richard O'Dwyer case, and one AC's questioning the priorities of law enforcement:
The streets are now clean from the scum, and we can all feel safer tonight knowing this criminal won't threaten the people of the world with unauthorized linking.

Can you imagine, he was actually linking to videos on the Internet. VIDEOS! AT WHO KNOWS HOW MANY FRAMES PER-SECOND!

Sends shivers down your spine, doesn't it.
And, on that note, we'll be back tomorrow with more shivers to send down your spines...


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 12:31pm

    "If they stopped using the word "opponent" and instead used the word "customer" they might have an ah-ha moment."

    They aren't customers, that is the problem. You just have to read the angry statements here, they would NEVER buy content, they would NEVER pay for software, and they certainly wouldn't buy it from the man.

    So they are only opponents, not customers. Customers are actually looking to buy something, not freeload.

    I don't know if you send shivers down anyone's spines, but your site is good for some serious belly laughs from time to time. No mention of your booting of the Apple story, right?

     

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      Killercool (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 12:58pm

      Re:

      I gotta tell you:

      So far, nearly the only angry comments about infringing copyrighted material are from the people accusing anyone with a desire for privacy of it.

      Unless, by "not customers", you mean those people who refuse to purchase or use copyrighted material "owned" by the terrible companies who all but accuse their paying customers of infringement. In that case, yeah, I'm not a customer either, anymore. More accurately, it's called a boycott. I am a disgruntled customer who refuses to use the product, and tries to convince as many people as possible to do the same. Terms of the boycott may include an end if the company changes it's ways, or (like GoDaddy) I may consider their transgressions too serious, and will only be satisfied by the company's demise.

       

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      harbingerofdoom (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 1:11pm

      Re:

      2/10.
      false dichotomy.

      lets say that i bend greatly on the point of whether its stealing/freeloading/whatever (which i dont), even in your painfully twisted rendition of whats going on you are still assuming that they cannot be both.
      it also assumes the fact that the entertainment industries are the actual customer and those of us out here in the real world are not paying for any services rendered to any ISPs. in your version, we get that service for free. and i assure you that i do not get my internet connection for free.

      however, the use of false dichotomy in combination with multiple pejoratives are in line with the typical gobbledygook that failing trolls so love to stick with so i gave you 2 points and a certificate for one cookie (dont get **too** excited, its shortbread and stale) to make you feel better

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 1:16pm

      Re:

      "In general, we think there is a fundamental misconception about piracy. Piracy is almost always a service problem and not a pricing problem. For example, if a pirate offers a product anywhere in the world, 24 x 7, purchasable from the convenience of your personal computer, and the legal provider says the product is region-locked, will come to your country 3 months after the U.S. release, and can only be purchased at a brick and mortar store, then the pirate's service is more valuable. Most DRM solutions diminish the value of the product by either directly restricting a customers use or by creating uncertainty." - Gabe Newell

      But what does he know, right? Of course "they" are not your potential customers, "they" are to be defeated by any means possible or any means necessary, right?

       

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      MrWilson, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 1:34pm

      Re:

      Beyond the points that the other commenters have already made, you've made the mistake of assuming (once again) that every person who comments on Techdirt is a "dirty pirate."

      It's a classic IP maximalist false dichotomy. Either people are your customer/sheep or they're dirty criminal pirates. It's never your fault that customers become pirates either. They're inherently unethical for depriving you of your profits regardless of what you've done to drive them away. The fact that some people who used to pay for content now violate your precious copyrights indicates that they are indeed potential customers. Many (I would guess most) probably still are your customers, since I've seen that a lot of people who download movies do still go to theaters. As I've mentioned before, you can't pirate the experience of going to a good pub theater.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 3:08pm

        Re: Re:

        "It's a classic IP maximalist false dichotomy. Either people are your customer/sheep or they're dirty criminal pirates."

        I didn't say that at all. Where do you get that?

        The people who opposed SOPA did so mostly because it would have taken away or changed many of the free content websites they have come to take for granted. They aren't "dirty pirates", they are just people who casually infringe, and have absolutely no intention of paying for that product ever. They are at best customers only when it is truly convenient to them, and when it's not, they are just as quick to take alternate routes.

        Remember, in the US (where SOPA was being debated) almost all of the content in question would be available legally, could be licensed for reuse, etc. The point isn't that the content isn't available, it is only that people choose to ignore the law.

        So the false dichotomy that you try to paint doesn't exist.

        Further, let's go down the road a little further. The most common refrain on Techdirt is that piracy costs nothing, because, surprise, these people weren't buying anyway. There are no lost sales proven, this is something Mike tries to jam into our heads every other day or so. It's a popular refrain. Yet, taken to it's logical conclusion, these people therefore are not customers of the product, and therefore don't need to be treated as such.

        You cannot have it both ways - are those people who pirate "lost customers" that should be respected, or does piracy have no costs to producers, because these people aren't customers?

        I await your answer!

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:24pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Quote:
          The people who opposed SOPA did so mostly because it would have taken away or changed many of the free content websites they have come to take for granted.

          And you know that how exactly?

          Most people had a problem with SOPA because it tremendously affect communications, that is why people care, because you idiots want to make it hard for people to comunicate and as an added bonus it also would make it less secure.

          Quote:
          They are at best customers only when it is truly convenient to them, and when it's not, they are just as quick to take alternate routes.

          That sounds like free market in action, do you not like a free market or you want one were the government can say what you can or cannot do?
          Oh I forgot you love a monopoly, you want the government to say what you can do or not because you are the only schmuck benefiting from it right?

          Quote:
          Remember, in the US (where SOPA was being debated) almost all of the content in question would be available legally, could be licensed for reuse, etc. The point isn't that the content isn't available, it is only that people choose to ignore the law.

          When a large portion of the population ignore some law, the problem most probably is the law itself not the public.
          Also who was the idiot that made a law that criminalizes human nature?

          Quote:
          The most common refrain on Techdirt is that piracy costs nothing, because, surprise, these people weren't buying anyway. There are no lost sales proven, this is something Mike tries to jam into our heads every other day or so. It's a popular refrain. Yet, taken to it's logical conclusion, these people therefore are not customers of the product, and therefore don't need to be treated as such.

          The correct treatment is to lure them into your business not give them every reason to stay away from you at any costs.
          Do you own a business? I don't think you own one because if you treat people baddly they will remember, and they do remember those things for a very long time, so don't expect business from them, if they can they will find a way around you if you.

          Quote:
          You cannot have it both ways - are those people who pirate "lost customers" that should be respected, or does piracy have no costs to producers, because these people aren't customers?

          Piracy has no costs to producers. It costs market share and that is a good thing, it doesn't enable incompetent people to become "too big to fail", it also promotes business resilience, competition and other desirable things inside markets.
          We do have empiracal proof that piracy is not a bad thing is called open source and proved that one can do business in a world where people can copy, distributed, modify and even sell others produced. Red Hat is a billion dollar company, Arduino(hardware manufacturer) is making millions, RepRap produced MakerBot and Cube 3D Printer as spin offs, everybody is making their own market and money, why do some people feel the need to have a granted monopoly?

           

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          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:33pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          What is it called when you double-down with a whole new false dichotomy while trying to defend your previous one?

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:41pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            It's called "getting a clue".

            It's repeated here thousands of times: Piracy doesn't cost anything. Well clearly, if piracy doesn't cost anything, then these people are NOT customers.

            So now, if they are in fact potential customers, but are choosing to pirate, does piracy not have a cost?

            You cannot have it both ways...

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:31pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              'So now, if they are in fact potential customers, but are choosing to pirate, does piracy not have a cost?'

              No, it still doesn't have a cost. It still costs you NOTHING. Why is that such a hard concept? Stop making trash, and people will gladly pay for it. The ones who would never pay aren't customers at all, and never will be.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:58pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Your logic makes no sense.

                The "trash" is the most pirated material online by far.

                It doesn't cost "nothing" to make.

                So why won't they pay for it, but they pirate it like crazy?

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:02pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Pay again?
                  No thanks I prefer to pirate it again.

                   

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                  Greevar (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:48pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  You missed the point. It doesn't cost anyone for me to have a digital copy of a movie that has already been made. Copying costs nothing.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:08pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    It doesn't cost anything, except that without the pirate option, you would either buy it, rent it, or do something else. The issue here is that all these people are defending pirates as potential buyers, but then piracy has cost, because it impacts total sales.

                    What would you do if you couldn't pirate?

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:22pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      It could impact in a positive or negative way that depends on the business, otherwise open source wouldn't be possible to exist.

                      We have irrefutable proof that copying, distributing, modifying and selling don't need monopolies to have a successful business and you keep saying that people need it when we can see that is not true at all.

                       

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                      Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:25pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      Find alternatives or create my own.
                      That what people have been doing for the last 10.000 years or so.

                       

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                      Greevar (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 10:32pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      "It doesn't cost anything, except that without the pirate option, you would either buy it, rent it, or do something else. The issue here is that all these people are defending pirates as potential buyers, but then piracy has cost, because it impacts total sales."

                      That doesn't follow. Where do you make the connection that if people might have bought it they count as a loss? You can't count something that you never had as a loss. These aren't physical goods we're talking about here. If you copy my movie, I still have my original copy. If you take my car, I don't have it anymore. The latter shows a loss and the former does not.

                      Those that sell copies as a business model are in a weak position and it's their own fault for not realizing that technology would eventually invalidate their flawed business model. They assume they can sell infinitely copyable data and that people will buy it as if it's in scarce supply. That's just not true. It isn't scarce. It's abundant. As with all abundant goods, there is no price the market will bear. Sure, the publishers have been able to convince people so far that it's a scarce good and can be priced as such. That won't stand indefinitely. This will change in time.

                      A movie may be what studios are paid to make, but that isn't what they sell to the public. They sell their skill and creativity to make art that appeals to a large enough number of people to cover the cost of production. They sell the action, not the effect. Just like a client pays a builder to make a house. The client pays for the materials whether or not they hire a builder, that's a given, but the skill and labor to build it is what the client pays for. They aren't selling the client a house, they are selling the service of building a house. Thus it is the same with all media. Artists are paid for the making of it, not what they make.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 4:28am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        "That doesn't follow. Where do you make the connection that if people might have bought it they count as a loss? You can't count something that you never had as a loss. These aren't physical goods we're talking about here. If you copy my movie, I still have my original copy. If you take my car, I don't have it anymore. The latter shows a loss and the former does not. "

                        Go back and read the discussion. I put forth that pirates are NOT customers, so they are of no concern. Everyone jumped in and said no, they are only pirates because of X or Y... and that they really are customers. So it follows, logically, that if they are pirating instead of buying, that piracy has cost. It is the only logical conclusion. The attitude is that there would be more sales if the studios did X or Y or Z... which means that the pirates are in fact customers, and therefore piracy costs sales.

                        Your house example is lacking, because a house is a finished product, and is sold to a single individual. The builder isn't selling their services to build the house, they are selling the finished product. Yes, you choose a good builder, perhaps one over the other, but in the end, what you are paying for (and what creates the value) is the finished product, not the fine way that he swung his hammer during the process.

                         

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                          Greevar (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 7:18am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          Finished product? So, the house was built before the client paid them to build it? Nice logic there! It's a service. You're paying someone to make something for you. You're paying someone to do something you can't do yourself. Therefore, it's a service. Anybody with the money can buy the materials that make a house. That doesn't mean it is a house. Someone has to assemble those parts into a house and that is a service.

                          "I put forth that pirates are NOT customers, so they are of no concern. Everyone jumped in and said no, they are only pirates because of X or Y... and that they really are customers. So it follows, logically, that if they are pirating instead of buying, that piracy has cost."

                          "Logical" only applies if you know what you're talking about. Piracy isn't "lost sales", it's lost customers. They aren't just not buying one movie or one song. They are not buying wide assortments of media because they are fed up with the copyright abuse. They aren't buying because the industry pissed them off. They're pissed off because nobody is meeting the demand of the market. They just keeping trying to dictate to the market what you get and how you get it. You fail to see that, which is why you are having such a difficult time understanding the disagreement. If you addressed their grievances properly or shifted your business model in a way that satisfies the demand, you'd have nothing but customers.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 9:30am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            ""Logical" only applies if you know what you're talking about. Piracy isn't "lost sales", it's lost customers."

                            They aren't customers if they aren't buying. So what you are saying is that they would be buyers, except... (fill in your excuse for piracy here).

                            Thanks for confirming this once again. Please try to explain it to Mike now.

                             

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                              Greevar (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 11:41am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                              They're still customers. They're just not your customers. They ditched you for someone that meets their demand. They don't stop being customers simply because they're no longer buying from you.

                               

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                          Karl (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 11:25pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          Go back and read the discussion. I put forth that pirates are NOT customers, so they are of no concern.

                          Just wanted to point out that this is a total lie.

                          The discussion was not about pirates, but about opponents to big media companies. Your statement was that any opponent of big media companies, whether they pirate or not, were of no concern.

                          It was not an attack on piracy, it was an outright dismissal of every single person who voices opinions in opposition to anything the media industries say. And an outright denial that any of those people could possibly be representative of the media industries' customer base (or former customer base)... again, whether they pirate or not.

                          Here is the
                          only way you described those opponents:

                          You just have to read the angry statements here, [opponents] would NEVER buy content, [opponents] would NEVER pay for software, and [opponents] certainly wouldn't buy it from the man.

                          As I (and many others) pointed out, even if this is an accurate view of those "opponents," then it doesn't matter one iota whether they pirate, because you're not going to get their money either way.

                          I also pointed out that these opponents used to be paying customers, but they were driven away by big media companies who consider them enemies rather than underserved customers.

                          And, I also brought up the fact that your statements could not possibly describe most pirates, since pirates buy more content than non-pirates.

                          You somehow thought this meant that piracy hurts sales. That does not follow, and you know it. Specifically, you keep harping on people that pirate rather than buying content. But that's not what most pirates do. As the studies make clear, people pirate in addition to buying content - in fact, pirates buy most of the content media industries put out.

                          As far as the foreign laws are concerned - you completely proved that you are wrong with this statement:

                          I don't suggest for a second that local laws have anything to do with release windows. That has everything to do with making the best bottom line, offering your product at price points people are willing to pay, at times that do not erode the high priced markets.

                          First of all, the discussion was about things like DRM and windowing, which you immediately blamed on regional laws.

                          But never mind. Your second sentence reveals that it isn't about being prevented from entering markets, it's about refusing to do so. You are not restricted from any market when you are not "making the best bottom line." You are not restricted from any market if you cannot choose "times that do not erode the high priced markets." And only a complete idiot would believe that regional price discrimination is "offering your product at price points people are willing to pay."

                          This does not describe an industry that has been prevented from entering a market. It describes an industry that actively refuses to enter a market.

                          That industry is free to do that, of course... but they don't have a right to complain when their refusal to enter a market results in widespread piracy. They were incompetent businessmen who brought it on themselves, and all the finger-pointing in the world won't change that.

                          You are completely and utterly full of shit.

                           

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                      techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:28am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      or do something else

                      Like spending my money elsewhere and completely ignore you product which means, piracy or no piracy, you don't get to see a dime. Tough luck.

                       

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          Rikuo (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:41pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          ""It's a classic IP maximalist false dichotomy. Either people are your customer/sheep or they're dirty criminal pirates."

          I didn't say that at all. Where do you get that?"

          He got it from you saying "They aren't customers". Which is a stupid thing to believe, because you're separating people into two categories, where they can only ever be one OR the other, never both at the same time.
          I infringe copyright all the time. I also pay for a lot of my media too. Example, I downloaded the series Battlestar Galactica. Loved it so much, that a couple months ago, I got the Blu-ray set. In that case, I infringed on copyright but then turned into a paying customer. I was both at the same time.

          We opposed SOPA because of the fact it was a backroom deal, with no input from stakeholders, we opposed it because it had zero evidence of the problem it was supposed to fix, and we opposed it because it was a punish on accusation system worse than the DMCA i.e. guilty until proven innocent.
          Notice in there, I didn't mention anything about being a freeloader.
          What content was in question with SOPA? SOPA didn't mention any specific content. Anyway, not all content is available legally. Example, the anime series Code Geass is up on Bandai's Youtube channel, but they've got it region locked (I'm in Europe), so I can't watch it. That's completely ignoring the reality of your medium, the internet, which is global and borderless.
          Yes, people can ignore the law, if the law is pointless, stupid and harmful. I opposed SOPA because it was all three (especially considering its point, blocking sites at the DNS level, was eventually revealed to be a toothless threat that can easily be routed around, at least by the tech literate).

          As for your last paragraph - WE ARE CUSTOMERS! You have to earn your way to being our customers, through more than just releasing the content. Sometimes, you don't have to, as in my case, where I downloaded Galactica, and then got the Blu-ray set, other times, I will consider not buying if I don't feel like I'm getting value for money. I look at a game on Steam and consider whether to pay for it, or to just infringe copyright. Sometimes I will go one way, sometimes the other, depending on which gives me the most value.

          You are 100% wrong in lumping us all in the Non-Customer category. You are treating us as your enemy, when we're not. Earn your sales. Treat us as human beings.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:02pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            The thing is, the harder you argue against it, the more you are proving that piracy costs sales.

            So now I can forever point to this discussion and say "look, this is where the techdirt masses proved the losses from piracy".

             

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              Rikuo (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:11pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              What losses? You just responded to me saying that I buy content.
              You are so hell bent on proving losses from piracy, on protecting yourself from it, that you have nothing left when it comes to the improving sales part of business. Since you refuse to increase sales, you deserve to fail.
              So earn your sales. Do something better than the pirates. If you have a video game, put it up on Steam and give me as many reasons as possible to buy (such as unlimited redownloads, etc).
              Do something that the pirates can't and don't say "But I create the content!" We've established that you do create it, but you have to look at it from my perspective. I've got Person A and Person B offering me content. Person A is offering it to me for free, no restrictions whatsoever on use. Person B on the other hand is restricting use, often in crazy ways.
              What you do then is become Person C, who offers me a fair price, and gives me something more than the content in return. Perhaps you'll give me exclusive early access to the beta for your next video game? That's something the pirates can't do. There ya go, you've got your hook, and with a bit of luck, I'll bite and pay up.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:53pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                I didn't suggest you buy or don't buy content - I am only saying that if your logic is that the people who pirate are "customers", then piracy does in fact cost money.

                I have yet to see a plan on Techdirt that would actually increase net sales (dollars). I have seen a few ideas that might make a few more people into customers, but at the cost of the current, higher paying customers.

                When it comes to a "fair price", you have to consider what that fair price would actually cost. If you are talking about cutting theater revenue (at $7.50 a ticket) down to $1 for a redbox rental for 2 - 4 people to share, then I have to say that the redbox business is something the content providers can live without.

                In saying that, it doesn't give anyone who doesn't like the options the right to pirate. That is key.

                Fair pricing isn't fair to everyone - businesses are run on the bottom line, not on good feelings.

                 

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                  Killercool (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:03pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  If you haven't seen a plan that increases net profits while ignoring pirates, you have either a very selective definition of what qualifies as a successful plan, or you ignore anything you don't like.

                  Given your tendency to claim that a pirated copy is somehow more of a lost sale than not using the copyrighted material at all, I'd say you fall more into the category of "If it doesn't work for everyone, you can't call it successful."

                  Businesses ARE run on feelings: specifically, the willingness of your customers to pay you for your product/service. Whether I pirate the product later or not, the sale is just as lost the moment I decide you don't deserve my money.

                   

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                    Karl (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:21pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    Whether I pirate the product later or not, the sale is just as lost the moment I decide you don't deserve my money.

                    Exactly this.

                    The only thing that matters, from a business standpoint, is if they are convinced to purchase your product. If you cannot convince them, it matters not one iota whether they pirate or not.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:44pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      I think the question is more "do they want your product"? In the movie business (or music for that matter) you have a unique product. Either people want that unique product or they don't. If they want it, it is then up to them to chose to spend the money or to do without.

                      Good customer service and such is part of the process. However, the problems that are faced right now is that piracy has created expectations that cannot be met, on price, delivery, and availability. Any time the movie companies try to run their business in a profitable manner, they have failed to meet the expectations. So pretty much anyone with the attitude will say "you don't meet all of my expectations" and the sale is lost to piracy.

                      It's not hard to understand - the competition for content providers right now is their own product, free to get, simple to obtain, and often delivered before the real product even hits the market. No matter what they do (short of giving it all away all the time) they cannot compete, plain and simple.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:14pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        How do open source companies compete letting everybody copy, distribute, modify and sell their products without having to be paid for it then?

                        There are thousands of companies doing that right now and each and everyone of them makes money and you say it is impossible but Red Hat is now a billion dollar company and according to you that should never happen.

                        So either you are mistaken or full of shit.

                         

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                          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:35pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          "How do open source companies compete letting everybody copy, distribute, modify and sell their products without having to be paid for it then?"

                          Because they aren't selling software, they are selling support for it - which gives them all the reason in the world to make the software as complicated to install and maintain as possible.

                          However, since the movie business doesn't come with "support" and selling t-shirts is a diminishing returns business (just ask Mike), there isn't much here to work with.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:03pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            You know, for a "creative" industry, they're not very creative. Unless it's for accounting practices.

                             

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                              Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:09pm

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                              A non-answer. Thanks for adding nothing (and being very uncreative in doing so).

                               

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                                techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:30am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                Apparently he just learned from the best (yeah, that means you).

                                 

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                                Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 11:45am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                I added a whole lot actually, with that one comment. Hollywood accounting, look it up some time. It's pretty deplorable.

                                 

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                            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:15pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            I'll take a stab at this...

                            Take all that money wasted on illegally buying laws, stupid lawsuits, and developing worthless DRMs and invest it in a data center with fat connections directly to backbone providers and the development of an architecture to handle the requests. Then take ALL of your archival content, digitize it an add it to the system. Then offer a subscription service for on demand streaming access to all of it at a rate of $20-50 per month. For those occasional users that don't want a monthly subscription? $5 a la carte per time. Lower risk. Less overhead. Happy customers. Everyone wins. You could also sell corporate deals to cable providers to resell the on demand content. You could still continue to sell DVDs & Bluerays for people that wanted to have a physical copy and the extra features. Why would people choose it over free file sharing. Because they knew they could find whatever they were looking for regardless of how old or obscure it was. They also know that they don't have to worry about malware or incomplete files because they are getting it direct from the studios.

                             

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                              Marcel de Jong (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 3:52am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                              (sarcasm)That's too practical for the studios to grok. Laws are easier to buy, than it is to think with the customers, I mean damn dirty pirates.

                              Because everyone knows that a single download also directly constitutes as a lost sale. (/sarcasm)

                              Okay, all kidding aside, I think you have a great solution, and one I'd happily pay for. But it'll never happen.

                               

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                              Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 4:34am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                              Umm, sounds good, except all you have done is making it even easier to pirate (by making a nice digital copy available) and also talked people OUT of paying for the theater experience and into paying for a lower price "at home" experience.

                              You don't get it, do you? It's not about fulfilling YOUR fantasies, no matter the cost. Cutting the customer's ticket price (price they pay for the product at whatever point they buy it) down means that you have to increase volume significantly to make up the difference. Because the size of the market is in fact limited, any increase would have to be provable to make a business case. Moving people out of $7.50 average per person movie tickets to $5 streaming (for a group of 2 or 4 people, example) would take their ticket price from $7.50 to $1.25 to $2.50. So to make even the same amount of money, you would need 3 times as many sales... and with 2 to 4 people per viewing, you would need 6 to 12 times as many viewers. There is a point where the possibly population to pay for this stuff runs out.

                              It's a pretty basic business concept. It's why your UFC pay per views aren't cheap - there is no reason.

                               

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                                Marcel de Jong (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:04am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                No, YOU don't get it.

                                Your business is to move with where the market is, not what you would like the market to move to.

                                 

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                                Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:25am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                So in other words...you want to control the market.

                                Instead of what should be happening, which is the market controlling you.
                                As for UFC pay per view - PPV is a dying concept. Proof? Youtube. Youtube has shown it is possible to have the end customer view something for free, and for advertising to make up the cost. Why doesn't UFC give Youtube or a Youtube like offering a try? Because, like you, they want to attempt to control the market, instead of the market controlling you.

                                 

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                                  Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:32am

                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                  I think it also has to do with the fact that UFC is losing popularity. Not to say it isn't still popular, but interest in it is waning to a degree. As recently as 3 years ago it was a huge thing, now hoever, they're resorting to showing UFC on FX (or is it Fox) to attract people who would previously not have seen it at all.

                                  Then add to it the outrageous charges to watch a PPV event. An event, that they then ridiculously overcharge in regards to public venues. I've asked why it wasn't shown at a few local restaurants/bar and grills and when they told me the fees they'd have to pay I spit out beer. Fees which I should add have only gone up. In the span of literally a month, one bar/grill I frequent went from charging $5 per person to enter when there was a UFC event on to $15 per person (due to the fees being demanded to show the event). Which more than a few people found to be outrageous. I personally laughed when they told me the new charge and said "You want me to pay more to get in, when I didn't even know there was a fight on in the first place, than what I planned on spending on my meal? Yeah, that's just stupid I'll take my money elsehwere." And ended up walking to the bar/grill next door that wasn't showing the fight. (In fact, I believe they've lowered the cover charge, hesitantly, just because of all the people who felt similarly.

                                   

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                            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:33pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            Since I use Fedora 16 I don't see the "complicated to install and maintain as possible" thing you talk about.

                            I also use 3D Slicer to view medical CT Scans and even build models out of it, and to install it all I need to do is to download the 700 megabytes for the Linux version and extract it, that is difficult isn't it? for Windows is even easier.

                            What about LightWorks? Blender? Mongoose? I don't see where you have difficulty to install those things unless you are one of those people who don't know how to even turn on the computer.

                            Further T-Shirts cost more than plastic disks, every big artists sells apparel ask if those sales are dwindling.

                            Jamendo keeps adding artists to their rooster and they apparently is doing very well, the only people not doing well is the ones that keep calling their customers thieves and keep trying to find ways to punish them, those people will never do well in any market ever not if it is a free market, maybe that is why you want monopolies and believe they are a good thing, they are not.

                             

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                            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:41pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            The movie business is a service business, you are there to entertain people and give them a reason to get entertainment from you, if you can't do that you shouldn't be able to stop others from doing so.

                             

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                            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 10:36pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            Quote:
                            Because they aren't selling software, they are selling support for it - which gives them all the reason in the world to make the software as complicated to install and maintain as possible.

                            However, since the movie business doesn't come with "support" and selling t-shirts is a diminishing returns business (just ask Mike), there isn't much here to work with.

                            That doesn't answer the question, the question was if piracy is bad how can it be possible to create and entire business ecosystem on top of such notions and have it thriving?

                            Open source has grown it doesn't really matter what they did, but the results and without any exclusive rights to speak off that you say are essential to a business to exist they not only created an ecosystem they thrived, how is that possible?

                            Now lets assume for instance that you are correct and that movies are different for any number of reasons, when we look at the market and make some observations one thing is strange, piracy in a manner of fact terminated copyright laws, there are not copyrights today the public has free access to whatever they want and know where to get it and still sales for that particular industry have not gone down in fact the revenues have grown in a recession. How is that possible, if people can get all that for free why are they still expending money on it?

                            So here I have you talking and saying something and when I look around me I see a complete different picture and you can't explain it, I know that because you can't show what the harms are or where the loses you speak of are, because there is none visible, that really changed the industry, there is no nose dive into oblivion, but you insist that there is a problem, so please where is the data supporting your claims?

                            Show us the data, but not any kind of data.
                            Good data that can be confirmed by third parties all around the world.

                            We have conclusive proof that business can survive and thrive in an environment where freely copying, freely distributing, freely modifying and selling are the conditions of that market and you are saying that is not possible despite the fact that piracy made the environment for movies equal to open source in many aspects and it is growing not shrinking, so where is this harm you speak of?

                            Sure if it is harming the industry you can point to some economic marker showing exactly that, right?
                            It shouldn't be difficult to find it either since piracy is rampant it should be showing the results by now after almost 20 years(i.e. since 1996).

                            I just can't see how what you say can be reconciled with what I see and know, obviously one of us is wrong, but will have to forgive me for trusting my own eyes instead of your words.

                             

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                        Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:21pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        If it is impossible how is Jamendo able to be on the market everybody can go there and copy that music and distribute it to anyone they like and somehow they have tens of thousands of artists there and are making money and they are not the only ones Magnatune and netlabels are all over the place these days and they depend on people sharing those music to attract listeners.

                         

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                        Torg (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:56pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        Delivery and availability could very easily be met by the movie companies. It's not like having a service that offers downloads or streaming privileges in exchange for money is particularly difficult. If laws prevent this then change them. That is what we're asking for, not officially endorsed piracy. (Though for the record, I have spent more money on a show with creators that've semi-endorsed finding their show on YouTube than every other show combined. I'm only really willing to deal with iTunes when I don't have to use it to watch what I'm buying.)

                         

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                        Karl (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:29pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        I think the question is more "do they want your product"? In the movie business (or music for that matter) you have a unique product.

                        That's just it: you don't.

                        The same song can be released on a full-length CD, as an MP3 single, as part of a digital streaming service, etc. It can be released without DRM, regional restrictions, etc.

                        Though consumers want the latter, the labels actively tried to shut them down. They didn't want - and, frankly, would still do away with if they could - those consumer choices.

                        Pretending the labels were "forced" into their situation is pure, unadulterated, 100% bullshit.

                        piracy has created expectations that cannot be met, on price, delivery, and availability.

                        Yet, services like Amazon, iTunes, Spotify, eMusic, CD Baby, Bandcamp, Netflix, Hulu, Redbox, YouTube, or Steam have all been able to meet consumer expectations - perfectly legally.

                        And these are the types of businesses that the content industry consider their "opponents."

                        On the other hand, your insistence that foreign laws are responsible for things like release windows, just doesn't pass the laugh test. Most of the barriers to entry into foreign markets are there because the content industry lobbied for them. For example, DVD region codes were demanded by the MPAA to enable release windows, as well as allow regional price discrimination, and to prevent purchases in countries where they wouldn't get (enough) royalties. They certainly weren't forced on them in order to comply with local laws.

                        Yes, there are local laws to consider, but I've yet to see any story (even in the trade magazines that I read) about how "foreign barriers" are keeping content creators from entering markets. Unless those "foreign barriers" are "not acting enough like jackbooted thugs against internet pirates."

                        Nearly every penny that the RIAA, MPAA, etc. spends lobbying Washington goes into legislation like SOPA and PROTECT IP - which do absolutely zero to address what you're talking about.

                        I've yet to hear anyone from the RIAA or MPAA advocate for - or even talk about - doing away with regional restrictions. The only thing regarding foreign countries that they've ever endorsed is "enforcing IP protections abroad." And doing so solely to preserve exactly the things consumers don't like about their products... like regional restrictions on content.

                        So, sorry, I don't believe a word you're saying.

                         

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                          Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:23am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          "On the other hand, your insistence that foreign laws are responsible for things like release windows, just doesn't pass the laugh test."

                          I don't suggest for a second that local laws have anything to do with release windows. That has everything to do with making the best bottom line, offering your product at price points people are willing to pay, at times that do not erode the high priced markets.

                          "Nearly every penny that the RIAA, MPAA, etc. spends lobbying Washington goes into legislation like SOPA and PROTECT IP - which do absolutely zero to address what you're talking about."

                          The problem is that it is a country by country, state by state, often city by city process that is way to huge to address. We aren't just talking the rules for movies, but often the rules for doing business in a country at all. Government's create distribution monopolies, ratings monopolies, licensing schemes, minimum local ownership laws, and all sorts of obstructions to getting the product sold directly. All of the conflicting laws make it very, very difficult to do business in many countries.

                          I am sad that you don't believe a word I am saying. It's really sad because with a little research, you would see how true it is.

                           

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                        KelvinZevallos (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 10:08pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        "In the movie business (or music for that matter) you have a unique product."

                        The idea that concieves it is unique, but the information that actually contains and transports it isn't. And even better, this information can be replicated without any cost at all. See how I'm quoting you, it's your idea, turned in information and being now replicated in this comment.

                        "that piracy has created expectations that cannot be met, on price, delivery, and availability"

                        Your argument has commited suicide just here...

                        If a "casual pirate" with a low budget PC can do it, why not a multi-millionare industry who can afford complete Workstations and professional IT staffs with ease?

                        "Any time the movie companies try to run their business in a profitable manner, they have failed to meet the expectations."

                        Shouldn't they try to actually reinvent their busisness plan to accomodate to the 21st century? And what kind of expectations they have failed to meet? If you mean "Quality of the Content", I don't think piracy is the issue here.

                        "It's not hard to understand - the competition for content providers right now is their own product, free to get, simple to obtain, and often delivered before the real product even hits the market. No matter what they do (short of giving it all away all the time) they cannot compete, plain and simple."

                        Then they have a real problem defining who are their competitors and I think they should start there because that's one of the basics in any type of busisness.

                        Delivered before their product? I'll assume you don't speak about "leaks" here. Still, they send the product with release windows. I could understand the difficulties of selling the product everywhere IF IT WAS COMPLETELY PHYSICAL, but it isn't and in this digital era there is no excuse for them to do that, specially considering the technology we have and how it's available to anyone at almost no cost.

                         

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                          Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 4:37am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          "If a "casual pirate" with a low budget PC can do it, why not a multi-millionare industry who can afford complete Workstations and professional IT staffs with ease?"

                          It's because the pirate doesn't have to pay for the product. Remember, it's not the shiny disc that costs money - it's the 100 million that went into the movie that costs. It's the costs related to being in each market that costs.

                          Pirates skip all that, don't pay for their product, and squeak out a meager living from it. Everyone points to Kim Dotcom and says "wow, $150 million!", but that took 5 years, and it still wasn't enough to pay for more than a couple of the movies he was giving away for free.

                          It's pretty easy to explain how something works when people don't pay the true costs of the products.

                           

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                            Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:30am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            In case you don't know, a while back we had a troll on Techdirt called Out of the Blue. He constantly gabbed on about how is he supposed to make back the $100 million he sinks into his movie, with all this piracy going on.

                            I answered (repeatadly) - Why are you spending $100 million on a movie?
                            You DON'T HAVE TO! In business, first thing you learn is to cut costs. So why are you in the business of making movies at hundred million dollar budgets, and constantly doing it, again and again, if the loss from piracy is so harmful? If piracy IS HARMFUL, then you don't have the money to make more movies.
                            Since Hollywood hasn't died, then PIRACY MUST NOT BE HARMFUL.

                             

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                              Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:24am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                              "Since Hollywood hasn't died, then PIRACY MUST NOT BE HARMFUL."

                              Oh god. If that is your conclusion, you need to go buy some new facts. The ones you have clearly aren't working.

                               

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                                Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:59am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                How is my conclusion wrong?
                                Here we have movie studios spending hundreds of millions on movies and then crying that they're losing all their money because of piracy. If that is true...then they won't have any money left to continue making movies.
                                But its not true. They still continue making movies. They still have the funding to make them. Thus...what they are bellowing about, that piracy is harmful, cannot be true.

                                 

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                            Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 8:37am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            Okay, so once again, the pirate sites have no cost for the product, and it doesn't take much obviously to start a site and put up torrent links for the product (movies/music). So AGAIN the question is why can't the studios do the same?

                            If they have the funds to produce these 100 million dollar movies, then the funds to advertise and promote these films (funds which sometimes rival what was spent on producing the films), then obviously each studio can spend what is needed to host/maintain/run/start a site offering their products digitally.

                            Also, those shiny discs DO cost money. As does the packaging for said discs. At least digitally, those cost will be offset entirely for those not wanting the end product in such a form. Which will save money, as growing trends/studies have shown that people prefer streaming/digital products to physical ones. A trend which is only growing.

                            Give a proper answer to this. Why can't they, the studios, do that? No one's even saying do it for free. They're saying give it to people like this and then charge them for access. Charge them REASONABLE prices though, asking for $1000 a month for all you can watch access to your online offerings isn't going to get you many customers. But something more reasonable like $100 (or say $50) will net you plenty. Enough to make you wonder why you didn't do this before. Heck, then throw in ad revenue as well. Feature ads on the side, just like the pirate sites.

                             

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                        Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 1:58am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        Dude. There hasn't been an original thought out of Hollywood since they left Broadway.

                         

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                        techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:24am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        the competition for content providers right now is their own product, free to get, simple to obtain, and often delivered before the real product even hits the market.

                        Right, and what industry insiders leaked it so pirates got it first? Sweep under your rug first before you demand others (ISPs) to do your job for you.

                         

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                  Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 8:13am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  "I am only saying that if your logic is that the people who pirate are "customers", then piracy does in fact cost money."

                  Again, ignoring the fact customers can be and are pirates, and pirates can be and are customers.
                  I buy Movie/Software X. Disc gets scratched. I then download a copy from a cyberlocker. Where's the loss?

                   

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                    explicit coward (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 8:56am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    Of course there is a loss. You should buy the disc AGAIN! It's not the producers fault you scratched your disc, so stop whining and pay already!

                    /sarc

                     

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              techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:26am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              The thing is, the harder you argue against it, the more you are proving that piracy costs sales.

              Yeah, well, somehow that's just not how logics works here in reality.

               

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          MrWilson, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:19pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          You can have it several ways because that's the way reality works. I'm not Mike so I can't speak to what you state is what he tries to "jam into our heads."

          There are a wide variety of shades of gray. There are people who pirate who also buy. They are people who only buy. There are people who only pirate. There are people who boycott the major labels and only buy from independent artists. There are people who pay for Netflix but pirate music. There are people who would buy but they're poor so they pirate and will buy when they get better jobs. There are people who are rich who still pirate. There are children of employees of RIAA labels who pirate music. There are people who only pirate but would buy if only the labels would die or get out of the way of innovation and better customer service.

          You're trying to shove all people into either of two categories and reality just doesn't work that way. That's the false dichotomy.

           

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          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:34pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          This shows just how out of touch with the public you are. The public didn't oppose SOPA because it would take away free downloads. They opposed it because it was a vast overreach that stood to trample all over many of our constitutional rights including free speech and due process. They opposed it because it stood to change the very nature of the Internet which was founded on principles of freedom and open access to information for everyone. All of this to protect rich corrupt corporations special interests that refuse to adapt their obsolete business models. Was their a public backlash when they passed the DMCA? No. Because the public doesn't really care that much about file sharing. But this was far more dangerous anything that had come before and stood to have a disastrous effect on WAY MORE THAN FILE SHARING. The public got that even if the supporters didn't. Actually I think the people that brought the legislation got it too but they are too greedy and self centered to care about anyone but themselves. THAT'S why people opposed it.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:04pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            "They opposed it because it was a vast overreach that stood to trample all over many of our constitutional rights including free speech and due process."

            Oh come on. That is the intellectual 1% view. The reality is that most people were on the bandwagon because they heard "it will break the internet, kill you tube, and make everything hide behind paywalls".

            If you are going to try to argue a point, at least accept reality.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:01pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Now you insult the public by saying that 99% of them are stupid sheep. And you expect them to have sympathy for your position? You really need to work on your PR skills.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:55am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                But then again that is the whole crux of your problem. You treat your customers (both potential and actual) like they are beneath you and incapable of thinking for themselves. You abuse them through the legislative and legal system and regularly insult them in publicly with transparent lies and manipulations of facts. Then you wonder why they are pissed. If it were not for the brilliance of the artists (which you also abuse) producing a product that people want INSPITE of your attempts to destroy it's success through bad customer service, you would be long since out of business.

                 

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              techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 1:48am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Sorry but somehow I find it hard to believe that actually you are a member of the 1%.

               

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              Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 3:13am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              The reality is that people heard from others and took their position and not yours, must be upsetting being on the receiving end of a resounding no from the public opinion.

               

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              Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 7:50am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Any one else notice that he admitted that the criticisms of SOPA were based in an "intellectual view" (read: intelligent thought and reason) rather than hyperbole and misinformation?

               

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          techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 1:47am

          Re: Re: Re:

          "It's a classic IP maximalist false dichotomy. Either people are your customer/sheep or they're dirty criminal pirates."

          I didn't say that at all. Where do you get that?


          Hm, from this sentence of yours probably: You just have to read the angry statements here, they would NEVER buy content, they would NEVER pay for software, and they certainly wouldn't buy it from the man.

          I'm writing a lot of angry statements about the industry here, still doesn't mean I'm a pirate.

           

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 1:51pm

      Re:

      No wonder your industry is in trouble.

       

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      Karl (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 1:57pm

      Re:

      They aren't customers, that is the problem. You just have to read the angry statements here,

      Their "opponents" come from more than just Techdirt's little corner of the universe.

      Do you honestly believe that out of the millions and millions of people who opposed SOPA, none were customers? That's completely idiotic.

      You're also, once again, ignoring the many, many independent studies that show that people who pirate BUY MORE MUSIC than people who do not. It varies from region to region, but at a minimum, pirates buy twice as much music as non-pirates.

      Yes. Their opponents are their customers. Ignoring that is their entire problem.

      they would NEVER buy content, they would NEVER pay for software, and they certainly wouldn't buy it from the man.

      Most of those people would NEVER pirate it, either.

      I'm one of those people who almost never pays for music from a major label. (Maybe one song per year.)

      Does that mean I pirate it? Nope. Not interested. I've got enough music (that I got legally, usually from the artists personally) to keep me occupied for the next ten years.

      This is not to say such people don't exist. But you're not telling the full story about them.

      They used to be nothing but paying customers. Then the RIAA started suing teenagers and grannies; started calling them "thieves;" started pushing for laws that would invade those customers' personal laws; and acted against the legal services those customers loved.

      All the while, they continued to screw over artists and collude to artificially inflate prices.

      If those people "would NEVER buy content," it is only because the RIAA were such assholes that they drove away their paying customers.

      That's just music, of course. As for video and gaming, Netflix and Steam prove you're wrong. Both services took people who you think "would NEVER buy content," sold it to exactly those same people, and made millions (in Steam's case, almost a billion).

       

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        Karl (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 2:10pm

        Re: Re:

        Most of those people would NEVER pirate it, either.

        More to the point: Even if they couldn't pirate it, they still would NEVER buy it.

        Mostly because they've been driven away by the very content producers who depend on them for income.

        That is the problem.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 3:45pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Driven away by what, exactly? Their false expectations of immediate product availability, regardless of the logistics or legal aspects of providing it? The expectation of getting the product much more cheaply than retail because they are somehow special? The expection of being to get an english language version in your foreign country 6 months before the movie is released in the local language (as dictated by local laws)?

          What exactly drove them away, besides they own unrealistic expectations?

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:27pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Quote:
            Driven away by what, exactly? Their false expectations of immediate product availability, regardless of the logistics or legal aspects of providing it?

            Do you care how your car is manufactured, what the logistics are? I bet not and if somebody offered a better car you would go for it, the same way people go for other channels when they are not satisfied with you, that is your problem and all the logistics and legal problems inside your own market are your problem not others, you don't really believe you are entitled to a market do you?

             

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            TtfnJohn (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:31pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            What you and the *AA's seem to miss is that with the advent of high speed internet to homes the market changed from local to global. (As do any countries that dictate when Hollywood can send their movies there in the local language.)

            None of which changes the not so minor detail that Canada, for example, has a large English speaking population and, should we choose, we can see the movies in our major centres at exactly the same moment Americans can in theirs but we can't buy them because of some regional roll out or something. Nor do we have any laws stating that there is a delay between the movie coming out in English or in Quebecois French. That and we're supposed to be in a free trade zone with the United States.

            We can't watch TV clips because the rights in Canada are owned by a local network though most of us can watch the same show originating from the United States unless the Canadian network runs the same episode of the same show at the same time. And, again, we're supposed to be in a free trade zone.

            In short there are no legal or logistical reasons for this other than self-imposed ones. Because I watch a clip, say on Techdirt doesn't make me less likely to watch it on the Canadian network, in many cases it may make me more willing to watch it.

            Do I expect to get less than US retail? Nope. Never have before so why should I now unless the SRP here happens to be less.

            My expectations are, in fact, realistic and completely logical and yet many times I can't see or buy things because of some rolling release schedule. For example I can see Avatar in my local multiplex at the same time as Americans can but I can't legally purchase the DVD yet while Americans can.

            So we're back to the expectations of the *AA's of the world that the market didn't change when the Web came along so they didn't need to either.

            News flash! It did!!!!! When they figure that part out a lot of piracy will vanish. And when they figure out that some of their pricing is way out of line with what the consumer market values the product at they'll get rid of most of the rest of it.

            The unrealistic expectations I see aren't mine they're the *AA's of the world. And yours.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:40pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "What you and the *AA's seem to miss is that with the advent of high speed internet to homes the market changed from local to global."

              Umm, no, nobody missed that. However, in an industry that is heavily regulated in almost every country to different standards, and which has spent the better part of 50 plus years signing rights to individual countries or zones to companies local to that region, it is incredibly hard to just turn on a dime and "do it the other way".

              So as an example, your clip that won't play in Canada is not because of copyright, it's not because of the companies, it's because the Canadian government forces the content to be licensed to Canadian companies, rather than just made freely available. Comedy Central is just not legally available in Canada because of Canadian laws.

              So perhaps you want to blame the government, not the content companies, who's hands are tied by such regulations?

              " I can see Avatar in my local multiplex at the same time as Americans can but I can't legally purchase the DVD yet while Americans can."

              The Avatar DVD was not released at the same time as the theatrical release. Not sure where you are going. If you live in a country that limits the number of releases, or requires an integral version in the local language before the original can enter the market, you might see a very long delay before you can get the movie in the theater. That is again an issue of local laws, not of the content producers themselves. Unless of course you would prefer that they delay the US release 6 months to make up for the way your backwards government works?

               

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                Rikuo (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:31pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Proof please that a government has a law that says that a movie has to wait a certain period after the cinema release before the DVD/Blu-ray/whatever release. I've never heard that before.
                Go on. Pick a country, and quote me the law.

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:02pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Umm, Did I say that?

                  let me break the statements apart, clearly you are confused:

                  "The Avatar DVD was not released at the same time as the theatrical release. "

                  END THOUGHT.

                  The rest of the response is as a result of him having to wait 6 months for the movie. That's his problem.

                  As for windowing, it's been discussed over and over again. The public has clearly shown that they will pay much more for the theatrical performance than they will for the recorded watch at home version. There is no reason to cannibalize a good market to satisfy the few that can't wait but can't be assed to pay for it either.

                   

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                    MrWilson, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:12pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    "There is no reason to cannibalize a good market to satisfy the few that can't wait but can't be assed to pay for it either."

                    If there are so few who pirate, it shouldn't be a concern then, should it?

                     

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                    techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:08am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    There is no reason to cannibalize a good market to satisfy the few that can't wait but can't be assed to pay for it either.

                    Two thoughts:

                    a) so it's NOT about laws in different countries as you claimed but about maximizing revenue?

                    b) if it's only "the few" piracy can't be that big of a problem, right?

                    Thanks for clearing that up.

                     

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            Richard (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:33pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            What exactly drove them away, besides they own unrealistic expectations?

            If piracy can deliver against those expectations then that proves that the expectations weren't unrealistic.

            All the obstacles against those expectations were artificial ones created by the content industry themselves!

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:09pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "If piracy can deliver against those expectations then that proves that the expectations weren't unrealistic."

              It proves nothing - only that, when you ignore the costs to make a product, ignore the laws of various countries, and don't give a crap about having a functional business model, then things are possible.

              Other than that, nothing is proven by piracy except that expectations are not in line with that is legally possible or financially viable.

               

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                techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:09am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Keep telling yourself that. It's working out splendidly so far, right?

                 

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 3:11am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Piracy just proved one thing beyond a reasonable doubt.
                That is not responsible for financial swings in the entertainment industry, because if it was after 20 years or so that industry wouldn't exist let alone breaking records at the box office now would they?

                Also piracy in fact proved that open source models can work for the movie industry the reason being the simple fact that piracy for all intent and purposes transformed a closed market into an open one, everybody can copy, distribute, and modify it and although it is illegal a large part of the population is just doing that all the while maintaining the same levels of consumption and even increasing it in some markets.

                That you can't see it, is no surprise since you are trying very hard to ignore reality.

                 

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                Richard (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 3:12am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Other than that, nothing is proven by piracy except that expectations are not in line with that is legally possible or financially viable.

                Legally possible? - well you wrote the laws - write them differently.

                Financially viable?

                Note we are not talking about expectations to get the product for free here - we are just talking about expectations to get the product at all. And since they are not getting the product from you they are not paying you at all so any mechanism of delivering the product(even hosting it from free on an Ad supported site) would be a net plus to your revenues.

                If that is not financially viable then your current operation, even in the absence of piracy, is not financially viable.

                It seems here that you are complaining about self imposed rules.

                 

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:43pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            How are there false expectations on logistics or legal aspects, when neither are in issue anymore. It's already being done, why can't they go with it instead of creating false logistical and useless legal impediments that slow them down?

            It's not an unrealistic expectation, it's the reality. The days of false scarcity aren't coming to a close, they've over and done. If it's easily digitized than it's spread around the world, regardless of what you would like, it's what is.

            I think opening a channel seems like a much wiser course of action rather then try to shut all the others down.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:49pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              " It's already being done"

              Yes, by pirates who ignore the law and don't have any true liablity.

              The ability to do something doesn't make it right, just, or legal. Real businesses have to meet up to all three of those standards, they cannot just do it because it is possible.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:01pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                I agree the ability to inflict a granted monopoly on others doesn't make it right and piracy will continue unabashed.

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:11pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Nice to see you agreeing with yourself, because I never said that.

                   

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                    Torg (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:49pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    I think he interpreted your comment to mean that the ability to prevent people from buying content when it's released just because they live in a different country doesn't make it right or just. Releasing and selling data worldwide is something that isn't wrong or unjust, and if, as you say, it's illegal, then laws can be changed. There's no longer any reason that a person in Sweden should have to wait six months to be allowed to buy something when their friends in America have already bought that thing.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:49pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      That problem has everything to do with the Swedish government, they laws, and the marketplace.

                      Here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motion_picture_rating_system

                      This is a good place to start. Each one of those countries has it's own rating system. The movie must be submitted and rated LOCALLY for each one. That also means as a result that the packaging for each would be different, and the laws governing the sale of the movie online would have to conform.

                      Start there, and you will start to understand who is really responsible for this situation - it isn't the movie producers! They would love nothing more than to be able to sell their product freely without having to deal with local middlemen.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:08pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        Nope, I will start at the Pirate Bay, there is no rating system there, only the user ones, that means it is more democratic than many countries that say they are democracies.

                         

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                        Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:09pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        Would these be the same movie producers and MPAA who tried to prevent the sale and distribution of the VCR?

                        You know, that device that was compared to the Boston Strangler, the same device that was dedicated to "infringement", and that would be their doom, the same device that only opened up an entirely new and incredibly profitable market for them.

                         

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                        Torg (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:04pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        Then change the laws. The MPAA seems to be fine with pushing for reform in the anti-piracy field; if they were that interested in opening distribution this wouldn't be an issue.

                         

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                          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:13pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          You still don't get it - there is no reason to push for more open distribution, as most countries would oppose it.

                          The laws that are in place are there to force companies to use local distributors rather than just come in over the top. They are to encourage local retailers, local operations... it's protectionist stuff that is incredibly hard to get rid of.

                          You need to learn to funnel your anger that way. Sweden is a very socialist country, and is very much in line with this sort of mentality. If you want change, start at home.

                           

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                            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:24pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            And you still don't get it, people are not going to put up with that anymore, make it available or not people will find a way to get to it legally or illegally, law or no law, you like it or not and is that simple.

                             

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                            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:49pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            http://www.twittertape.co.uk/

                            There go build your own TwitterTape, it makes sense for an analogue guy LoL

                             

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                            techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:01am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            Put the blame on other countries not the incumbents. Yeah, right.

                             

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                              Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 4:39am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                              Nice! You added so much. Are you denying that each of these countries has laws regarding everything from ratings systems to local participation, local language versions, "integral" voice over versions, and the like? It's all out there.

                              It's a real issue - it forces the business models, because local requirements get in the way.

                               

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                                techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:01am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                Here's a bit more to add: It's not a real issue, it's a bullshit excuse noone believes. Of course it totally fits your MO of blaming everyone else for your failures.

                                 

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                    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:49pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    Since obviously you are slow to catch up here.

                    Quote:
                    The ability to do something doesn't make it right, just, or legal. Real businesses have to meet up to all three of those standards, they cannot just do it because it is possible.


                    Since business backed by law are not just, useful or right for the public, therefore they should do everything in their power to flaunt those laws(i.e. abilities) that harm them so much.

                     

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            Rikuo (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:49pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Wait...there's a law saying that a movie HAS to be translated before it can be released in the cinema? You do know there are such things as subtitles? I watch anime all the time, and most of the time, its subbed.

            Its the expection of the customer to get at the movie. Instead, what we get are the movie studios artificially delaying the movie. So, the customer doesn't want to see the movie in the cinema? Now, they're being punished by the studio, who extend the delay between the cinema release, and its release on DVD and Netflix.
            What drove away customers was, ya know, them not being allowed to be customers at all. People saying "Here, take our money!" and the studio saying "F*ck off, come back in two months".

             

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            Karl (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:49pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Driven away by what, exactly?

            Like, everything I just mentioned in my post? Price fixing? Consistently fucking over the artists that work with them? Pushing for laws that would punish entirely legal sites that customers like? Demanding outrageous damages in lawsuits against teenagers and single mothers? Censorship of websites?

            Even all this may have been overlooked if the industry offered products that were compelling. They don't. People would rather buy MP3 singles than full-length CD's. They'd rather stream videos than pay for (or even rent) DVD's. They ran screaming from MusicNet and Pressplay. The latest "QR code" campaign is laughable.

            On the other hand, all of the legal sites that give customers what they want - YouTube, iTunes, Amazon, eMusic, Spotify, etc. - were fought tooth-and-nail by the content industries; most even got sued (and won). They're even painting sites that don't actually offer content (like Google search) as "pro-piracy."

            The message to consumers is clear. "We'll offer content in ways you don't like, stomp on anyone who offers it in ways you do like (legal or not), and trample on free speech, privacy, and an open internet while we're at it. If you don't like it, go fuck yourself."

            That is why people don't like the content industries. That is why you have people that will "NEVER buy content" from them if they can help it (whether piracy exists or not).

             

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            techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 1:52am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Their false expectations of immediate product availability regardless of the logistics or legal aspects of providing it?

            So windowing exists because of these reasons and not because of the industry's greed to squeeze the very last drop out of it? Yeah, right.

            The fact that you evend dare to bring up logistics while 12 year olds code entire infrastructures to deliver content to people is just hilarious.

             

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        Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 3:55pm

        Re: Re:

        Karl, a simple question:

        If they are customers, but are instead turning to piracy, would you say that piracy as a result costs sales? Does the existence of the piracy option cost sales?

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:32pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          What you call piracy others call it free market in action.
          Take open source as an example, everybody can copy, distribute, modify and even sell anything others do and still there are multi million dollar companies operating in that market, there is also strong competition and it is flourishing.

          Why again people need a granted monopoly?
          To make it more expensive to others?
          To censor others?
          To exclude competitors?
          To make it easier so monopolists inflict their wishes upon others without consequence?

          Monopolists deserve any lost sales they get. Piracy as you called is the market balancing itself.

           

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          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:10pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Not as much as the lack of reputation cost you.
          Piracy is not really a problem otherwise it wouldn't be possible to create an entire business ecosystem based on it.

          That ecosystem is called open source and is starting to create the billion dollar companies it already has proven that it could create multi million dollar companies and is growing despite everybody having to adhere to the 4 elements of it that are:

          - Everybody can freely copy what others do.
          - Everybody can freely distribute what others do.
          - Everybody can freely modigy what others do.
          - Everybody can freely sell what others do.

          That promotes desirable aspects and behavior like cooperation instead of exclusion and criminalization, being far less costly to society to maintain, it doesn't burden everybody else.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:14pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            "That ecosystem is called open source and is starting to create the billion dollar companies "

            hahahahahahahaha plop. I just laughed my ass off.

            Open source created no such thing. Some companies are making very big profits by offering support for buggy, poorly documented, user unfriendly software and operating systems, which can only be understood by a very, very small percentage of the population. If they actually made products that worked, documented them properly and tested them, you might find that these billion dollar companies would evaporate in an instant.

             

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              Rikuo (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:26pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Oh my...you deserve the slapdown you're going to get from the open source community. You DO NOT diss them. Like with Fight Club, whose first rule is Do Not Mention Fight Club, with Open Source, you Do Not Diss Open Source.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:00pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                I deal with them on a regular basis. They are disorganized, they don't know how to document, and almost every package I have seen out there has bugs or functionality that doesn't match the documentation (including such faves as Apache... )

                Making a living off of installing "free" stuff that only 1% of the population can understand how to install and operate isn't any better than Microsoft charging money for stuff that actually does install almost perfectly every time.

                 

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              Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:47pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Are you denying that companies are making millions while still allowing people to freely copy, modify, distribute and sell their products?

              Even the lawyers took notice of the news recently.
              findlaw.com: How Red Hat Became A Billion Dollar Business

               

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              Karl (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:41pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Open source created no such thing.

              Here are some companies that depend on open source for their profits:

              Google: Android, Chrome, YouTube
              Apple (OSX runs on a BSD kernel)
              Firefox
              Apache
              Oracle

              Plus, everyone who ever used Linux, Apache, MySQL, PostgreSQL, PHP, Ruby, Python, Java, JavaScript, jQuery, HTML, CSS, PNG, Wordpress, Joomla, Drupal, or pretty much any other web technology in existence.

              Meaning: every company who ever made money on the Internet. Facebook, Amazon, Yahoo!, eBay, Netflix, etc etc - all of them would not exist without open source software.

              So, yeah. Billion dollar companies. Not even a slight exaggeration.

               

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              Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:23pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Open source created no such thing. Some companies are making very big profits by offering support for buggy, poorly documented, user unfriendly software and operating systems, which can only be understood by a very, very small percentage of the population.

              So you don't actually know anything? And people should listen to what you're saying because . . . ?

               

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              techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 1:56am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Some companies are making very big profits by offering support for buggy, poorly documented, user unfriendly software and operating systems, which can only be understood by a very, very small percentage of the population"

              A very accurate description of Micros~. Thanks for that.

               

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          Karl (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:18pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          If they are customers, but are instead turning to piracy, would you say that piracy as a result costs sales?

          That would be a valid question, except for the word "instead."

          Let me rephrase that question from the opposite viewpoint, and you'll immediately see why it's a loaded question:

          "If they are customers, and because of piracy are exposed to more music which they then buy, would you say that piracy as a result costs sales?"

          Clearly, for most music lovers, file sharing and buying music are not mutually exclusive. I'm sure many will choose not to buy music because they can pirate it; but they will also choose to buy more music because they were exposed to it through piracy.

          What the studies show is that piracy does not make people spend less money on music overall. Quite the opposite.

          Here's my own explanation. Piracy makes music more ubiquitous, makes it a larger part of peoples' daily lives (like radio did). Exposure to more music, makes music more valuable on a personal level. It's a pretty common refrain: "Since I started using [insert file sharing service], I've rediscovered all that great music I'd forgot about" and/or "discovered a whole shitload of music that I never knew existed." I can't think of a single file-sharing friend who didn't say this to me (and when I was still file sharing, years ago, I said this myself).

          Piracy creates value. It is up to the music industry to turn that value into income. They can only do this by creating reasons to turn value into price, and they can only do that if they listen to what those potential customers (the pirates) want. If they're unwilling to do that, then they're sunk - and deservedly so.

          It's not impossible to do. It's just that the ones in the music industry who are actually doing it (most of which are internet-related) are considered "opponents."

           

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      TtfnJohn (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 3:59pm

      Re:

      You do understand that NEVER is one hell of a long time, right?

      Other than trolls I don't read all that many angry posts (other than responses to trolls) just amazement that some people could be so pointlessly dense.

      I'd say that most of us here DO pay for software, even software from the Evil Empire (Microsoft) and DO pay for music (a lot of it from RIAA member companies) when the mood strikes.

      If you want to find out where to get freebie/freeloader stuff I recommend you look at any usenet group whose name starts with warze. Most of us have the good sense to avoid those places but I'm sure you'd just love it and could post there what you think of them. Just be sure to let us know how it goes. :-)

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:03pm

      Re:

      a) They aren't your customers and wouldn't buy anything from people like you.

      b) Not being your customers doesn't mean they are not great spender, they in fact are the only people who are willing to spend, because if they didn't exist you wouldn't have demand for your crap and wouldn't have a market now would you?

      c) It send shivers to my spine knowing that some clueless people are out there in the world that believe that granted monopolies are a good thing and see no problem with enforcement of such nonsense laws.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:11pm

      Re:

      After reading your comment the only word that came to mind was Asshat, followed shortly by Assclown.

      Yeah lots of commenters here say they will NEVER purchase media AGAIN. You seem to have missed that part. They are refusing to buy in RESPONSE to the way they are treated by the content companies they USED to buy from.

      In other words they WERE customers until they were treated like OPPONENTS.

      Maybe you didn't read the article with the open letter to content creators, which details how a customer stopped buying media until he started "pirating" and becoming interested in media again and then actually buying. Keep treating those "freeloaders" as opponents and see how far it gets ya.

      Asshat

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:50pm

        Re: Re:

        Nice insults. Do you diddle your mom with those fingers?

        Anyway, you have proven the point. Clearly people who pirate could be customers, and therefore piracy costs.

        Thanks!

         

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          Rikuo (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:59pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Okay. Let's assume that there is a loss from piracy, that it is 100% measurable and verifiable.

          Why are you so hell bent on preventing loss, rather than on increasing sales?
          Imagine you run a brick and mortar store, selling stuff. With your attitude, you would have Nazi concentration camp style security at the doors, and strip search your customers, to prevent theft of goods. Yes, with that, your stock loss would fall to practically 0, but ya know what else falls? Your SALES. You have driven customers away with your paranoia and fear. Why should I shop at your store if you're going to treat me so horribly?
          Why should I buy a Ubisoft video game, if they're not going to trust me and insist on an always on internet connection, to verify my copy of the game is legit? Why should I be a customer at all of a company that out-right lies (case in point, several weeks ago, Ubisoft physically switched their authentication servers, and several single player games that we were told weren't going to be affected...were unable to be played). Why should I be a customer of someone who just doesn't know the value of good customer service?

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:08pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            "Okay. Let's assume that there is a loss from piracy, that it is 100% measurable and verifiable"

            Good, got it. You agree. Now can you explain it to Mike?

            "Why are you so hell bent on preventing loss, rather than on increasing sales?"

            It's not an "either or" question. There is way more to it.

            As I mentioned before, you have to look at all the laws of each country involved. What it takes to actually release a movie. What it actually takes to get a show on broadcast television. It's pretty sick. You cannot blame the movie industry because local governments have decided that they will set up huge barriers to entry to protect their local industries, or to force the big outside companies to do business locally, to employ local people, etc.

            The potential increase in sales is limited. What percentage of people who don't pirate and don't buy would potentially become buyers? My guess is that it is a small number, because they don't want the product enough to buy it, and they don't want it enough to pirate it.

            The potential increase from converting current pirates into buyers? Well, considering they want the product enough to pirate it, they are already much better qualified than the other group. As you have admitted that piracy costs sales, it's pretty easy to see where money is being left on the table.

            Remember: if you don't like the product on offer, or don't like the terms, don't buy it. But don't take that as a license to pirate it.

             

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              Rikuo (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:21pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "As I mentioned before, you have to look at all the laws of each country involved. What it takes to actually release a movie. What it actually takes to get a show on broadcast television. It's pretty sick. You cannot blame the movie industry because local governments have decided that they will set up huge barriers to entry to protect their local industries, or to force the big outside companies to do business locally, to employ local people, etc."

              Okay...then why is it that 99.99% of movies in my country's cinemas are made by Hollywood studios? I'm not in the US. According to you, my country would therefore restrict the showing of US movies.

              And no, I never agreed with you. I said, "Let's assume". I was stating it hypothetically. I was saying "If we take Situation X to be true, then follow on situation Y will be true as well".
              I don't believe for one second that there is this whole huge harm from piracy.
              Also, answer me this.

              To make it clear, this is hypothetical.

              If there is a real and fatal harm from all this piracy, that all the cries about damages and loss that Hollywood has been bellowing for decades is true...why are they still in business? Would you keep your business open if you had low sales, and were constantly having your product stolen? Piracy isn't a new concept from the last couple of years. Its been around for centuries (although if you count only electronic piracy, then since the 70's at the earliest). Would you keep your business open for FORTY YEARS if you had low to no sales and had high rates of theft?
              Since such an action is impossible...then the damage from piracy must therefore NOT BE TRUE.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:06pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                "Okay...then why is it that 99.99% of movies in my country's cinemas are made by Hollywood studios? I'm not in the US. According to you, my country would therefore restrict the showing of US movies."

                What country are you in, what is the native language, etc?

                 

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                  Jay (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:28pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  If you want to start down that road, explain why the MPAA had so much clout with keeping their movies in foreign theaters and suppressing foreign movie content

                   

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                  techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:17am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Hehe, funny to see you didn't answer his question. I wonder why that is.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 9:31am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    He didn't give me enough information to work with. I have asked repeated for his country so that I can look at it and give him a good answer, but he seems not to be interested in anything other than scoring points for vagueness.

                     

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              techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:12am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Good, got it. You agree. Now can you explain it to Mike?

              So because he agrees with you (of all people), Mike must be wrong? Are you really that dense?

               

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                Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:45am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                No, I didn't agree with him. I said "Let's assume". The first words to be spoken when thinking of things hypothetically.

                 

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                  techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:03am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  I got that. I was just pointing out that even if you had agreed with him, it wouldn't proof the validity of his argument.

                   

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                  Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:26am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  I missed your answer. What country are you in? What is the local language? We can perhaps go have a look and see all the laws that limit your access to stuff.

                   

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                    Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 8:22am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    Does it really matter what country I say I'm in? I could lie. I could say Saudi Arabia when in fact I'm in Dubai. I could say Japan when I'm in Brazil. I could be a native speaker of Mandarin Chinese, born in Portugal, educated to speak Spanish/English/French/German/Italian.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 4:41pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      Yeah, it does. You want to know why things are the way they are, I would love to try to explain them to you in terms that would make sense to you, by giving you the local example.

                      Your local laws should make the most sense to you. You could perhaps then understand what is going on and redirect your anger to the right place.

                       

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                    techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 9:01am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    You can hump that strawman all you want, it doesn't make for a compelling argument.

                     

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              Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 3:07am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              You cannot blame the movie industry because local governments have decided that they will set up huge barriers to entry to protect their local industries, or to force the big outside companies to do business locally, to employ local people, etc.

              As it happens yes I can since many of those barriers are related to international agreements specifically lobbied for (and often created by) the movie and other content industries. Also at the same time I can blame them for not offering an useful online service where I can buy content I want wherever I am in the world whatever the local laws. And yes, they could easily offer this service and any legal burden would be on me if consuming such content happened to be illegal in my country (which it isn't).
              Are you seriously trying to claim that, for example, region coding on DVDs is because of governments? I know of no country that bans the personal importing of DVDs from another country as long as you pay the import duty.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 4:46am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                You mean the movie industry lobbied for separate rating systems in each country? They lobbied for laws that require local distributors? They lobbied for limits on distribution based on language? They lobbied for packaging requirements that are different in each country? They lobbied for point of sale rules that are different in every country (and often every province, city, or state)?

                I could go on. Your "they lobbied for it" argument just doesn't hold water. Nobody would want to be forced into all of these things.

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:06am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Your right. No one wants these things and THAT is part of the reason you are experiencing a global backlash.

                   

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                  Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:10am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  You seem to misunderstand. He's not saying they lobbied for each of those specific things. He, Karl, specifically pointed out the things they DID however lobby for. You completely ignore the main point of what he said to focus on something he didn't say, something that he even went so far as to agree with you to a degree. The main problem they face, which could be quickly and easily remedied, is the problems that arose from the things they did lobby for. Namely, windowed markets and DRM. Which happen to be exactly two of the things that people the world over complain about. Two problems which if removed/solved would lead to more people purchasing their products instead of possibly turning to piracy or boycotting them entirely.

                  As for "but but but those countries' rules and laws" what about them? So they can spend millions lobbying to have all those countries enforce IP protection and to create stricter laws regarding the punishment of those who commit copyright infringement, but they can't lobby to remove some of the laws in place that ARE causing them problems and making their lives difficult? That makes no sense at all.

                  Which brings us back to the point that Karl made, "YOUR argument holds no water and is completely laughable."

                   

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                  Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:45am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Well done carefully missing the point of my reply. You very carefully completly ignored that I was replying to a specific "point" of your post and instead focussed on making up what I didn't say. OK try this.

                  Yes I can blame the movie companies for their own problems because every law they have lobbied for/ bought is a part of their problem and makes it harder for them to change since as well as attempting to lock their "customers" into their business model (failed) they have locked themselves into it (succeeded).

                  And for reference the argument isn't binary. Just because not every impediment has been created by the industry itself doesn't mean they aren't to blame and in the same way that they have created many of their own problems doesn't mean there aren't also other reasons such as other special interests that also buy laws from government.

                  At the end of the day though the "regional" problems are totally irrelevant and an excuse. This is now a global economy and despite the studios best endeavours and attempts to stop vendors like Amazon from doing it, it is still legal for me to buy a DVD from a vendor in another country and have them ship it to me. If "regional" laws were such a problem then the studios could circumvent them. They choose not to.

                  Further than that, the plastic disk is irrelevant entirely. The studios could choose to offer the content directly and digitally, which makes any national borders almost completely irrelevant. On top of that it is what an increasing number of their CUSTOMERS want and what an even greater number would want if the studios didn't jump up and down with every lawyer at their disposal on every attempt at a mainstream product that facilitates this.

                  They could choose to do these things but they don't. Instead they stand Canute-like in front of anyone else who tries to turn their content into a product that people want to pay for all the while wailing and wringing their hands and gnashing their teeth about how hard done by they are.

                  So, yes I can blame the movie industry for the "local impediments" and still more I can blame them for using such things as an excuse.

                   

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:49pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            The only thing you need to know is this.
            Monopolies never endure and open markets always prevail no matter what the laws says.

             

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          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:03pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Piracy costs to those who can't compete inside a market and are dependent on a granted monopoly to survive which is great news for everybody else, those monopolists should never survive in any market they are not a desirable class of people or behavior.

           

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          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:40pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          And again you miss the point entirely. This is why the content industry could someday be in a lot of trouble. Or maybe we just need to wait for dinosaurs and zombie lawyers (which are you?) to be replaced by more modern thinkers. Adapt or die. That's the way the world really does work.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:45pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            What modern thinkers? Masnick? He will have them selling the DVD at the theater, so that people can share it with their friends for free, giving them less reason to spend.

            Oh, he will suggest they will make it up in T-shirt sales, the old CwF RtB thing... you know, the thing he doesn't even support on his own site anymore.

             

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              Torg (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:15pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Modern thinkers like Amazon and Valve. Steam has already changed the video game market to the point that GameStop went and bought its own digital distribution service. Publishers think that the Kindle is threatening the old bookstores. Digital distribution is about shifting sales, not lost sales. If piracy is a big problem for movies, it's because there's nowhere for the sales to shift to yet. When a movie download service is created that manages to avoid being crippled by licensing bullshit and worship of the almighty DVD sale, it'll see similar success. Netflix has been crippled by licensing bullshit and it's still performing adequately.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:31pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Amazon as modern thinkers? They are more like "best in breed" for the previous hard copy distribution world.

                Video games are not movies. There is plenty of ways within video games to make them freemium or pay for full version, that is the nature of the market.

                The distribution models are not the same at all.

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:43pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  The products are different the distribution models are the same.

                  Also it works for them it also works for music otherwise there would be no radio or TV now would it?

                   

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              techflaws.org (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:13am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              He will have them selling the DVD at the theater, so that people can share it with their friends for free, giving them less reason to spend.

              You really love those false dichotomies, do you? People can't share DVDs with their friends for free when they bought them at Walmart?

               

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          Karl (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:15pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Clearly people who pirate could be customers, and therefore piracy costs.

          Again, this is is logically unsound. Pirates "could" be customers (as can anyone else). It does not follow that piracy costs.

          You have to limit your discussion of "cost" to exactly two groups of people: people who pirate instead of being customers; and people who are customers because they can pirate.

          The fact that pirates buy more legal content shows that the fist group of people is statistically insignificant.

          The second group of people have never even been considered in any industry study (hardly surprising). Independent studies have suggested that technology that allows the opportunity for piracy also increases sales - for example, areas that acquire higher broadband speeds also start buying more DVD's.

          Of course, correlation is not causation, so nobody can say for sure one way or the other.

          On thing that is undeniable is that people have been spending more money on content since piracy became mainstream. That money is spread out more thinly among competing services (Netflix vs. cable vs. DVD's, MP3 singles vs. live shows vs. album-length CD's, music vs. movies vs. video games, etc). But the amount of consumer spending, overall, has only increased.

           

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      Atkray (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:58pm

      Re:

      So, if they are not customers they are opponents, I guess you can stop the ridiculous "Lost Sales" rhetoric.

       

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 11:46pm

      Re:

      No mention of your booting of the Apple story, right?

      Hilarious.

      First off we didn't "boot" the Apple story. This American Life booted the Apple story, and then nearly every mainstream media publication built off of that story.

      While we *did* write about the TAL story, we focused on the latter part of the TAL report, which was NOT the part done by Mike Daisey, but was actually the part done by people who had experience with those factories, and who talked about how it *wasn't* quite the way Daisey portrayed it to be.

      If you actually read -- and didn't feel some bizarre sick desire to disagree with everything here -- you would know that. Instead, you look silly again.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 4:42am

        Re: Re:

        You missed again Mike!

        What you missed is that you fell for it, hook line and sinker, and were more than willing to pin Apple to the wall for it. You took someone else's unchecked story, and treated it as fact, and ran with it.

        It's the failing of the new media world. You took someone else's opinion, and treated it like fact. That is a huge failing of the system, don't you think?

         

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          explicit coward (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 4:52am

          Re: Re: Re:

          "It's the failing of the new media world."

          As if the "old media world" never took someone else's opinion to treat as a fact...

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:19am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            When you look at old media, they would say "according to so-and-so" and they wouldn't draw conclusions. What Mike did was draw conclusions based on less than complete information.

            For me, it's an indication of how many of the "facts" of techdirt are built up. It's a pretty simple concept really, if the basic stuff isn't right, every brick you put on top of it is faulty as well.

            I will also note that Mike has entirely avoided the whole "customer versus pirate" debate. It's one he cannot easily win.

             

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              explicit coward (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:43am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "When you look at old media, they would say "according to so-and-so" and they wouldn't draw conclusions. What Mike did was draw conclusions based on less than complete information."

              You mean, linking to the original article/source is not equivalent (if not even better!) than to say "according to so-and-so"? Sorry, keep going with the old media if you trust them more, I'll stick with the new ones.

              "For me, it's an indication of how many of the "facts" of techdirt are built up. It's a pretty simple concept really, if the basic stuff isn't right, every brick you put on top of it is faulty as well."

              Mh - as if unrelated articles were some sort of building that could crumble if one or more articles were inaccurate (which I didn't say they were). I'd rather compare it to a spider's web: True, holes in the net might diminish it's efficiency, but the bigger the net, the less these holes matter.

              "I will also note that Mike has entirely avoided the whole "customer versus pirate" debate. It's one he cannot easily win."

              I'd say it's one you lost a long, long time ago. Therefore Mike is not needed to re-debate this again and again. If you can't spot the difference between theft and copyright infringement, cost and lost opportunity, opponents and potential customers - it's not his loss, it's yours.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 9:37am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                "You mean, linking to the original article/source is not equivalent (if not even better!) than to say "according to so-and-so"? Sorry, keep going with the old media if you trust them more, I'll stick with the new ones."

                Not when it is followed up by statements made that treat it as absolute fact. The real problem with the original piece isn't so much that the guy lied (that is horrible and nasty on his behalf), it's more the damage done by people like Mike who quoted it, pointed to it, and treated it like god's own truth.

                It's why I say that I worry about the "new media" because it appears that everyone is an opinion writer, and nobody gives a crap about getting to the facts. Mike latches onto anything that supports his point of view, and holds it up as the truth. But often enough, his sources are shaky, they are opinion pieces, based on other opinion pieces, and so on. The actual facts? Buried and ignored, mostly not relevant to trying to make the opinion points.

                " If you can't spot the difference between theft and copyright infringement, cost and lost opportunity, opponents and potential customers - it's not his loss, it's yours."

                I can spot them just fine, thanks. That isn't the point at all. The point is that those who pirate would otherwise have been customers. Maybe not as often as they pirate, but they would have been. This is completely against everything Mike has stated over and over again - and what many in the comments here say.

                So if pirates are in fact customers, and they are not buying but instead pirating, then sales are lost. It's pretty simple (even if you try hard to ignore it).

                 

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                  Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 10:14am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  "So if pirates are in fact customers, and they are not buying but instead pirating, then sales are lost. It's pretty simple (even if you try hard to ignore it)."

                  So then, convince us to be your customers. That's all. Give us good reasons to. Find something that the pirates can't do, and sell that.

                   

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                  explicit coward (profile), Mar 20th, 2012 @ 2:09am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  "Not when it is followed up by statements made that treat it as absolute fact."

                  You mean, we're too ignorant to see an opinionist when we read one?

                  "The actual facts? Buried and ignored, mostly not relevant to trying to make the opinion points."

                  What facts? Especially when we talk about the industry's claims about losses due to piracy - it's impossible to quantify, but again and again we are confronted by the industry - done through old media - with terrifying numbers that should scare us into "donate to the industry because it's dying" clubs.

                  "The point is that those who pirate would otherwise have been customers."

                  This assumption is only true when you consider the circumstances, which you repeatedly refuse to. What is this "otherwise"? If the internet didn't exist? If the digital age hadn't brought us the possibility to copy anything from our computers to other computers to our phones to our tv's and back again? But they do exist. And even if they didn't it remains an assumption which can not be proven.

                  "Maybe not as often as they pirate, but they would have been. This is completely against everything Mike has stated over and over again - and what many in the comments here say."

                  They would have been, ONLY if you give them what THEY want NOT what YOU want to give them. That's what Mike and others here continue to repeat all the time. And what I say is: If you say it's not feasible to give them what they want (because the returns will not cover the costs) then get out of this business! Now! Do it! Or better: Organize the industry to not produce movies for a whole year, as a form of protest against piracy. Let's see who misses you...

                  "So if pirates are in fact customers, and they are not buying but instead pirating, then sales are lost. It's pretty simple (even if you try hard to ignore it)."

                  They are not in fact customers, they are in fact POTENTIAL customers. So what is lost are POTENTIAL sales, even if YOU try hard to ignore it. POTENTIAL is not the same as ACTUAL.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Mar 20th, 2012 @ 10:13am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    "They are not in fact customers, they are in fact POTENTIAL customers. So what is lost are POTENTIAL sales, even if YOU try hard to ignore it. POTENTIAL is not the same as ACTUAL."

                    I am not ignoring it - I am counting on it. Clearly, these poeple would be buyers "except"... and that except is that piracy got it to them (select from: cheaper / faster / better / before the box office / before dvd sales day / with russian subtitles). The excepts all come down to the same thing: They want the product, but they don't really want to pay what it's worth or wait until it's actually on the market.

                    The bitch here is that they would be customers "except". So either they are lost sales worth chasing, or they are not. Which one is it?

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Mar 20th, 2012 @ 7:34pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      You don't lose something you never had.

                       

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                      Karl (profile), Mar 20th, 2012 @ 9:41pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      Clearly, these poeple would be buyers "except"... and that except is that piracy got it to them (select from: cheaper / faster / better / before the box office / before dvd sales day / with russian subtitles).

                      Not piracy, digital distribution. Netflix, Redbox, iTunes, Amazon, Steam, etc. are just as responsible for customer expectations as piracy is. These are the companies that are responsible for the traditional media industries' "lost profits." And they did it by listening to what customers want. They are successful because they are better at business.

                      This is why you really need to quit saying things like "those who pirate would otherwise have been customers." That's 100% wrong. Those who pirate are the media industry's best customers right now. Not "would," not "otherwise," are.

                      But if the media companies keep treating them (and the services, including the legal ones, that cater to them) like "opponents," they won't be customers for much longer.

                      And neither will the ones who do not pirate - since they have exactly the same consumer expectations as the pirates, and are treated just as much like "opponents."

                      This, however, is correct:

                      So either [potential customers] are lost sales worth chasing, or they are not. Which one is it?

                      If you are not satisfying your customer base, you have two options.

                      1. Decide they are "lost sales" worth chasing. Find a way to give them what they want, and make money doing it.

                      2. Decide giving them what they want isn't worth it, and accept the fact that you've just ceded the market to your competition.

                      Your choice. But if you choose #2, you don't have any right whatsoever to bitch about "lost sales." You're the one who decided to lose them.

                       

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                      explicit coward (profile), Mar 21st, 2012 @ 1:37am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      "They want the product, but they don't really want to pay what it's worth..."

                      In a real competitive market the price for a product is determined by supply AND DEMAND - only in a monopolized market the supplier can dictate the price. As you have lost monopoly (and no matter what you try - even if this 6 strikes plan passes - will not get it back) you HAVE TO compete. If you don't, you're bound to fail. In this case I suggest buy yourself out of entertainment business (to something more honest) / get another job, stop making entertainment.

                      "...or wait until it's actually on the market."

                      Again, you lost monopoly, your window of opportunity has shrinked. Use the one you have now, because it will not return to former lengths.

                      "The bitch here is that they would be customers "except". So either they are lost sales worth chasing, or they are not. Which one is it?"

                      Of course these opportunities are worth chasing - as opportunities, not as opponents, mind you! You just have to offer something the competition can't! Example: Offer daily live-videochats with the artists making the movies or the music to your customers! Have them follow the production of a movie on live-streams! Churn out prizes like visits on sets or at the recording studio!

                      Add value instead of trying to diminish it! Offer what is scarce, don't try to reduce the abundant! Because you won't succeed in the latter.

                      You keep thinking that anyone who ever downloaded a digital movie with no drm and no region restrictions would go back to a cumbersome system? EVEN if they had no other choice??

                      Be honest (if you can), if Bluray and DVD was made illegal today and all devices would magically stop to work, would you go back to VHS?

                       

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      Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:02am

      Re:

      3/10 for use3 of logical progression, -5000/10 for basing the "logical" argument on hyperbole.

       

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      Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:24am

      Re:

      Wow! I've just read through the thread (15 minutes of my life I'm never going to get back)and I think I've figured out who you are. You're Oolon Colluphid aren't you?

       

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 12:36pm

    Shivers to send down my spine? Closing down this pathetic shitty website would be a good start...

     

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    ECA (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 12:39pm

    For all the privacy lost

    For an ISP to monitor every single thing we do.
    Why arent the corps and gov. as transparent as they WISH the citizens to be?
    If we had 1/2 the PRIVACY of the corps, we wouldnt worry about this for 10+ years..

    I KNOW, lets all BECOME 1 large corp. then all correspondence is PRIVATE..
    Then lets grab onto another corp as a front end, and everything goes threw THEM, so we can remain hidden.
    We are then protected by the Gov, and corp law..we can become a LLC...and they can only arrest the NAME..NOT the corp itself.. We change our name, and any Ruling against us is GONE. it makes NO individual responsible..

     

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      That Anonymous Coward (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:57am

      Re: For all the privacy lost

      The problem is it is NOT the ISPs doing the monitoring.
      It is still being done with super sekrit tech used by the **AA's in the past. Where they sued the dead and people who did not own computers.
      These notices will be treated as 100% factual, and the system the ISPs created will forward them onto the account holders. They have a long list of responses if you get enough of these notices, one of which is to degrade your service to 1 step above dial up speed.
      To challenge the notice, you have to pay them $35 to avoid spurious claims. (The irony in assuming a **AA's notice could never be wrong or spurious.)

       

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    Nigel (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 12:41pm

    Correct

    "they would NEVER buy content, they would NEVER pay for software"

    By that logic... no lost sales.. just sayin'..

    N.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:10pm

      Re: Correct

      That;s the point - as the argument is being "disproved" by the Techdirt faithful, they now have to accept that piracy DOES in fact cost sales, and as a result, causes harm.

      Can't have it both ways, can you?

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:50pm

        Re: Re: Correct

        Open source business says you are wrong.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 5:51pm

        Re: Re: Correct

        He's using your own logic "these people would *never* spend money" to prove that you are not losing money, and you try to claim that it's costing you money?

        Does it hurt to be that stupid? I mean really - is it painful? Or is it just the people around you that feel pain when you speak?

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:07pm

          Re: Re: Re: Correct

          I am doing so because everyone else is arguing that they are potential customers - and thus, sales are lost to piracy.

          I am agreeing with the Techdirt masses - but it means that other "truths" of Techdirt have been proven by the most loyal comment writers to be false.

          Someone needs to explain this to Mike!

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 6:16pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Correct

            Somebody urgently needs to go back to school ASAP!

             

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:28pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Correct

            100% of everyone purchases some content and 100% of everyone pirates some content.

             

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:10pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Correct

            Everyone is a potential customer. You have not stumbled upon some grand realization.

             

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            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 8:28pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Correct

            The only thing somebody needs to explain and it is to you they need to do so is the meaning of the word "potential", potential doesn't mean certain, potential doesn't mean guaranteed thus it doesn't mean lost, it means possibility of some desired outcome or result, which you seem to believe it would have materialized if not for some factors.

            Explain how open source is able to thrive in an environment where anyone can copy, distribute, modify and sell anything they can get their hands on?

            Explain how Jamendo is able to exist.

            You can't because what you call harm is just conjecture is what you believe, but reality is cruel it keeps showing you that what you want reality to be is just that wishful thinking it is not they way you think it is and you probably never will be because you are apparently not capable of making factual observations of your surroundings.

             

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            Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2012 @ 9:01pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Correct

            Going by that logic any money not spent on music is therefore lost to whatever that it was actually spent on.

            By that logic the RIAA should be suing against every other commodity, amenity or industry for occupying their potential sales.

             

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            MeryR, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 3:26am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Correct

            Well hell, let's take this a step further!

            If you're blind or deaf your a lost sale, I mean, if you cant see a movie you're not going to buy it are you? If you cant hear music you're not buying that either. Clearly all the causes of blindness and deafness are causes of lost sales and therefore we need laws declaring such things illegal.

            /sarc.

            Now then, let's try and break this down properly.

            1) Everyone has the potential to purchase legally "content".
            2) Some percentage 0% of people choose to purchase "content".
            3) Some other percentage that may or may not be equal to the percentage in number 2, choose to pirate "content".
            4) Some percentage of the people defined in number 2 and number 3 are included in both of these categories.
            5) There is some percentage of people who would purchase "content" and for some reason choose not to.
            6) Does this then indicate that unequivocally 100% of people in section 5 are people who are described by number 3 and number 4?
            7) Would this not also indicate that on-top of piracy there are other causes of these so called "lost sales" ?
            8) If sales are being lost through many means, including the "content provider's" actions, as well as the choices of the so called "content users", what percentage is caused by each?
            8a) Clearly this varies from person to person and cannot be directly extrapolated without a massive study, one wonders certainly if someone has performed some sort of representative study for this.

            I don't believe any actual conclusions could be drawn from my rambling statement however, I do believe that such a thought process could certainly indicate that perhaps, in the interest of good-will between "content providers" and "content users" that a less hostile stance be taken on both sides. Remember the old adage: "You catch more flies with honey than vinegar."

            Simply put in this day and age the companies who provide "content" are going to be held accountable by each and every customer out there that interacts with them, there is no more: "I released a movie, you go buy it because its the only way you're going to be entertained."

            I'm sure there was a point somewhere in there, hopefully someone will get it.

             

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        Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:49am

        Re: Re: Correct

        Can't have it both ways, can you?
        Dear Oolon,
        Reality is not black and white no matter how much paint you use, nor are there only 2 options no matter how hard you ignore the others. This is even more true when you are dealing with hypothetical and potential future events.
        Sincerely
        - The Universe.

         

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        explicit coward (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 3:00am

        Re: Re: Correct

        "That;s the point - as the argument is being "disproved" by the Techdirt faithful, they now have to accept that piracy DOES in fact cost sales, and as a result, causes harm.

        Can't have it both ways, can you?"

        It is clear that you are unable to see the difference between "cost" and "missed opportunity".

        When you spend money to buy or produce something, that's cost. When you don't earn money while you could have, that's missed opportunity.

        It's not the same. In the first case in the end you have less money than you had at the start. In the second case you still have the same amount of money at the end and at the start.

        It's that simple really. And, yeah, in business these differences matter. A lot.

        So, the sooner you people start to see things as what they are, the sooner you will be back into business.

        Write down the following sentences on a sheet and stick it to the wall in front of your working place at your office:

        - Copyright infringement is not equal to theft.
        - Pirates are potential customers, not opponents.
        - Missed opportunities are not the same as costs.

         

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    Suja (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 1:36pm

    Lmao I never thought the braincells one would get a "LOL" sticker.


    While we're at it, add some more buttons to rate/add stickers to posts by.

    Like maybe:

    1. Stupid (With a turd sticker)
    2. WTF? (With a ??? sticker)
    3. RAGE (With a flame sticker)
    4. Depressing (With a sadface sticker)

    Sometimes I try to rate posts, especially troll posts as "stupid" or "RAGE" or "WTF?" but there isn't one so I just hit "funny" instead.

     

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      Suja (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 1:40pm

      Re:

      Maybe make it "sad but true" instead of "depressing".

      Sometimes I see read these posts that are really sad because what they're saying is 100% true and it's sad in itself, I usually hit "insightful" for those, but I consider them more "sad but true" than insightful.

       

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      Watchit (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 4:28pm

      Re:

      I do the same thing sometimes :D

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 1:46am

      Re:

      This. So much this.

      Make it happen, Mike.

       

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 3:15am

      Re:


      While we're at it, add some more buttons to rate/add stickers to posts by.

      Like maybe:

      1. Stupid (With a turd sticker)
      2. WTF? (With a ??? sticker)
      3. RAGE (With a flame sticker)
      4. Depressing (With a sadface sticker)


      We don't do those because that incentivizes that kind of behavior. We focus on positive attributes -- insightful/funny -- because those are the kinds of comments we want to see. Encouraging bad activity doesn't do any good.

       

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        That Anonymous Coward (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:58am

        Re: Re:

        "Encouraging bad activity doesn't do any good."

        The business models of the **AA's disagrees with that idea.

         

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        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Mar 20th, 2012 @ 7:36pm

        Re: Re:

        >Encouraging bad activity doesn't do any good.

        It hasn't stopped the shills from posting. Most of the shills wouldn't be bothered; the few who have complained about the report button insist that it's censorship. Being able to flag these posts for what they really are removes that argument from them.

         

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      Marcel de Jong (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:56am

      Re:

      When in doubt, assume they are being sarcastic.

       

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    artp (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 7:49pm

    Priorities

    At least the ISPs are going after serious problems like copyright infringement instead of wasting their time on unsolvable problems like spam.

     

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    Scott (profile), Mar 18th, 2012 @ 10:39pm

    Them Awards

    Do Communists really all drive the same exact car? Nobody gets a different one? Surely they can choose a color. No fame competitors involved? What about an entirely free society, where education is a right and not a privilege for the underprivileged. Where you choose your schools based on fame and notoriety -- just like art. That's Art. College students often take up the task of learning what exactly Art means. I can't recall to be honest, but I know that the fashion industry is an industry based on popularity. It's no different than art. And it's no different with software. Google and Facebook are popular. That's what drives them. We're not forced to use them. We choose them because that's where everyone else went.

    The Internet's evolving, and the power of awards threatens to cash in with unfair advantages based on flawed economy-buster tactics propelled by greed alone. Competition is what creates jobs. The Fashion industry thrives because of Fame. There are no gatekeepers preventing you from adding ruffles to your design without first paying some ruthless royalty.

    The power of Fame will always prevail even with all the detrimental legal battles going on. We have Microsoft claiming they own the rights to vital aspects of skinning a cat regardless of the unique qualities that build character another competitor might bring.

    In the Entertainment industry Awards are at the end of the show -- not at the starting line.

     

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    Josef Anvil (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 1:24am

    ok ok ok

    "It doesn't cost anything, except that without the pirate option, you would either buy it, rent it, or do something else. The issue here is that all these people are defending pirates as potential buyers, but then piracy has cost, because it impacts total sales."

    This is one of those times you simply have to give the AC what he wants. So for the record, YES YES YES piracy does actually have an impact on sales. To say that it doesn't is pretty silly. That is NOT the point.

    Those who would argue that piracy has an impact on sales are arguing the wrong thing. Try this analogy.

    You own a fruit stand and every now and then a customer steals (yes steals) an apple from you. In response you decide to put a gate around your fruit stand and frisk everyone that goes in and out of the gate. The customers stealing the apples still manage to get an apple once in a while (though the frequency is reduced), but all the added precautions to prevent stealing, end up greatly reducing the amount of customers. As your revenues drop, you continue to blame all of your problems on the occasional theft of an apple. Eventually you go out of business all because of those apple thieves. What you can't understand is why the other fruit vendor up the road is doing so well. He still has an apple stolen (yes stolen) once in a while, but he doesn't worry about it, in fact, he even gives an apple once in a while to his best customers. As a bonus this guy has even benefitted from getting a ton of new customers from a failed fruit stand, because the owner didn't understand how to deal with shrinkage.

     

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      Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:09am

      Re: ok ok ok

      I did pretty much the same analogy up above, about running a physical store with Nazil style security. He didn't respond to that point, because there is no way he could have twisted his response around to his benefit.

      In case you are still reading these, you are so fixated on blame, on crying "Losses!" "Harm!" and such, that you are doing absolutely nothing at all to increase sales. Ubisoft and EA did the exact same thing. They locked down their products with DRM, because they were afraid of theft, to the point where it had the unintended side effect of costing sales. I wanted Ubisoft games, but once I heard that the legit option was incredibly restricted, I said, "No, they don't deserve my money. They are going to do something to show they have zero trust and gratitude in me as a customer if I do hand over my money". So guess what? THEY LOST SALES, due to their attitude.
      I'm not the only lost customer who said that.

       

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        Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 2:35am

        Re: Re: ok ok ok

        I'm not the only lost customer who said that.
        Indeed you are not. Other games companies are still getting my money, but not Ubisoft any more despite me having a shelf-full of previous Ubisoft titles. Good games usually, but unusable and worthless product. And I suspect that Ubisoft themselves, very much like our AC here, can't see the difference between the two.

         

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        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 4:44am

        Re: Re: ok ok ok

        Rikou, what you are suggesting is that, in a high crime area, that the store fire all of the security, pull off the door locks, remove all the cameras, and HOPE LIKE HELL THAT PEOPLE PAY. Guess what? It won't work out.

        There is no Nazi security (thanks for the ignorant dragging in of the Nazis), just people working to protect their rights, in a legal system that says that have to do this, that nobody else will do it for them.

         

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          explicit coward (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:05am

          ...

          While what you are suggesting is that WE, THE TAX-PAYERS, NOT THE STORE, employ all of the security, pay to install door locks and cameras ON THE INTERNET and HOPE LIKE HELL THAT IT WILL WORK (for the store, not for us as it doesn't anyway...) AND WE WON'T HAVE TO SHELL OUT MORE TAXPAYERS MONEY TO SAVE AN OBSOLETE BUSINESS-PLAN. Guess what? ...

           

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          Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:46am

          Re: Re: Re: ok ok ok

          "Rikou, what you are suggesting is that, in a high crime area, that the store fire all of the security, pull off the door locks, remove all the cameras, and HOPE LIKE HELL THAT PEOPLE PAY. Guess what? It won't work out."
          No, we're suggesting you do effective security that benefits all.
          I work in retail myself. The store has uniformed security and cameras. They do this to bring shrinkage (stock loss due to theft) to an ACCEPTABLE level. If they were to think like you/Ubisoft/EA, they would instead be thinking on bringing shrinkage to as close to 0 as possible - which can only be done with draconian over the top security.

          As for Hope People Pay - Not once here on Techdirt has anyone ever envisioned for just throw it away and pray.
          One good example is Good Old Games.com They sell old games, reprogrammed to run on modern operating systems and all without any DRM of any kind.
          They released a video game called the Witcher 2. I enjoyed their No DRM business angle so much that on release date, I rewarded them by purchasing Witcher 2 AT FULL PRICE.
          If instead they had gone for "Oh noes! We're being stolen from, must lock down the game!" I wouldn't have bought it, and neither would a lot of other people.

           

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            Rikuo (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 5:48am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: ok ok ok

            Oh and FYI...its only a crime because its a problem YOU created. The copyright cartels have pushed for ever more stricter laws, again and again, that practically everyone now infringes copyright, day in and day out, often without meaning to. This then is circular.
            "There's this crime happening, so we must legislate to make the law even more draconian and strict! But as it gets more draconian and strict, more and more people will unintentionally violate it (or willingly violate it as a point), so therefore we must make the law even more stricter! Then, more people will violate it..."

             

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    identicon
    David, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 6:41am

    I honestly think a lot of pirates will be gutted when somebody comes up with a cheap infrastructure for obtaining digital content because they will lose their smug self-righteous rationalistion for downloading it for free

     

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      That Anonymous Coward (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 7:01am

      Re:

      They already have... its commonly called TPB.
      It provides content in formats that suit the consumer, not tied to 1 platform that would be inconvenient for consumers.
      No forced menus, advertisements, or trailers for movies the consumer doesn't want to see.

       

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Mar 19th, 2012 @ 8:17am

      Re:

      If that happens then consumers' demand for content will be adequately served.

      Right now it isn't, and that's why there are pirates. What's your point, again?

       

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      Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 11:36am

      Re:

      I honestly think a lot of pirates will be gutted when somebody comes up with a cheap infrastructure for obtaining digital content because they will lose their smug self-righteous rationalistion for downloading it for free
      "Somebody" already has, and any time it's been attempted legitimately it's been stomped on with iron boots by the studios leaving only the myriad illigitimate ones. The self-righteous sense of entitlement from the content middlemen in repeatedly refusing to embrace the "cheap infrastructure" that's been freely available for quite some years now and is what their customers want is indeed part of what generates the "rationalisation" you speak of.

      Another part of the rationalisation in question predates electronics entirely but is created anew by the content middlemen themselves. Ever heard the phrase "As well to be hung for a sheep as a lamb"? If one is going to be called a criminal anyway and treated as a criminal anyway, why (goes the argument) pay the hangman too?

      As for IF the studios started offering full quality digital content directly AND got rid of the stupid and pointless DRM in it so it's usable then I for one would get as close to praising some kind of deity as I'm ever likely to get and will happily pay a sensible amount for the service. Sadly I fear that if ever such a thing happens (shortly after world hunger is ended with the application of a few dozen loaves and a small amount of sea-life) it will be arbitarily decided that such a wonderous and miraculous new invention is so valuable it should be priced at twice what a plastic disc costs.

       

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    RT Cunningham (profile), Mar 19th, 2012 @ 10:32am

    CwF + RtB

    I'm sold.

     

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