The Tech Industry Has Already Given Hollywood The Answer To Piracy; If Only It Would Listen

from the stop-shooting-yourself-in-the-foot dept

While many in the press have really enjoyed claiming that the SOPA/PIPA fight has been about Hollywood vs. Silicon Valley, we’ve been pointing out for a while just how silly that is. Months ago, we pointed out that it’s a strange “fight” when one side (Silicon Valley) appears to give the other side all the weapons it needs to succeed (only to watch Hollywood then aim those weapons at its own feet). It’s been pointed out time and time again that Hollywood has a habit of looking a gift horse in the mouth… and accusing it of piracy, when it later turns out to be the answer to Hollywood’s prayers.

When the White House came out against the general approach in SOPA and PIPA, it still said that a legislative response was necessary… and asked for the “best ideas” from the tech community and people online:

Washington needs to hear your best ideas about how to clamp down on rogue websites and other criminals who make money off the creative efforts of American artists and rights holders. We should all be committed to working with all interested constituencies to develop new legal tools to protect global intellectual property rights without jeopardizing the openness of the Internet. Our hope is that you will bring enthusiasm and know-how to this important challenge.

But, here’s the thing: as many of us have been saying for quite some time, the “best ideas” have nothing to do with legislation, because legislation is tackling the wrong problem. No amount of legislation or enforcement stops piracy. That’s been shown over and over again. What does help deal with infringement is offering a better service that gives consumers more of what they want in a reasonable and convenient manner.

And thus, I can’t recommend enough Nat Torkington’s brilliant response to “the President’s challenge” above by likening it to this old joke:

Heavy rains start and a neighbour pulls up in his truck. “Hey Bob, I’m leaving for high ground. Want a lift?” Bob says, “No, I’m putting my faith in God.” Well, waters rise and pretty soon the bottom floor of his house is under water. Bob looks out the second story window as a boat comes by and offers him a lift. “No, I’m putting my faith in God.” The rain intensifies and floodwaters rise and Bob’s forced onto the roof. A helicopter comes, lowers a line, and Bob yells “No, I’m putting my faith in God.”

Well, Bob drowns. He goes to Heaven and finally gets to meet God. “God, what was that about? I prayed and put my faith in you, and I drowned!”

God says, “I sent you a truck, a boat, and a helicopter! What the hell more did you want from me?”

How does that apply to this situation? Same thing. The tech industry keeps sending Hollywood the tools it needs to save itself… and Hollywood keeps “waiting” for some miraculous savior, while missing all of the tools it’s been offered to save itself:

All I can think is: we gave you the Internet. We gave you the Web. We gave you MP3 and MP4. We gave you e-commerce, micropayments, PayPal, Netflix, iTunes, Amazon, the iPad, the iPhone, the laptop, 3G, wifi–hell, you can even get online while you’re on an AIRPLANE. What the hell more do you want from us?

Take the truck, the boat, the helicopter, that we’ve sent you. Don’t wait for the time machine, because we’re never going to invent something that returns you to 1965 when copying was hard and you could treat the customer’s convenience with contempt.

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Comments on “The Tech Industry Has Already Given Hollywood The Answer To Piracy; If Only It Would Listen”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

That is what SOPA/PIPA/ACTA, et al, is really about: rent-seeking. They are not so deluded as to think that they can stamp out real “piracy”.

What they want is to have the legal ‘big sticks’ to force everyone from YouTube to Netflix to ThePirateBay to cough up ever-increasing ‘royalties’ and contort themselves to not threaten the corporate and regional fiefdoms.

Loki says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Psst, the content industry (RIAA/MPAA) don’t produce content themselves either. And I can name any number of content creators who make more money using the tools the tech industry gives them, then they do using the content industry model.

Also, if the content industry is upset about the fact that some of us feel copyright should be ignored or abolished they really have nobody to blame but themselves. They are the ones who have pushed and pushed to make copyright far far beyond the limits, both in scope and duration, of anything even approaching reasonable. They are the one who continually treat their customers and clients like trash. Actions have consequences, and now they are having to bone up to theirs.

Cynyr (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

No this is more like getting the owner of a storage unit facility with 300,000,000 lockers over 300 acres, to go to each and every unit each time the owner is putting something in or taking something out. He needs to have one hand on the speed dial for the police, and the other on his tazer to stop the user if he has something that might maybe be illegal(even the owner has a legal reason to have the thing)

Now imagine the owner sees the renter put a gun into the unit. In some cases guns are illegal. Gun makers want the owner to seize(and destroy) the gun on sight, report the renter to them and the police, and sort it out later. It may turn out several weeks later the user files the correct paperwork with the correct people and finally is told that the gun that was seized(and destroyed) can be returned, and the renter gets back a pile of metal shavings.

Now imagine that the owner has millions of renters, and that each visits several times a day and some of them bring their friends along. See the practical issue with a system that requires that storage unit owners to escort each renter, and how that makes each renter dislike the whole system? Some of those renters may decide that renting a room in someone’s basement is an easier way to store their stuff.

Dave (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Then who would provide Google with premier content?

Let me see if this thought can be hammered in… Provide a good legal alternative and Google can direct people to that instead of pirate sites.

Business model:
1. Provide easy to use site for downloading content.
2. Google directs users to that site.
3. Everyone profits!

The content could be ad supported, pay for download (good format, no drm), or subscription.

There you go! I’ve done almost all the thinking for you!

MAJikMARCer (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

How about stuff without artificial region/time restrictions?

Eight days before I can watch a TV episode online? Our friends in Canada or else where in the world are unable to use some of those same services. Oh I can’t BUY that song because it’s not available in my country?

The Internet does not recognize the same geographical boundaries because they make no sense. I bet you’d see a lot less piracy if that issue alone was resolved. How many episodes of TopGear are torrented every year because fans in the US don’t want to wait weeks/months to see them, edited, on BBC America?

The legal services, many of which I pay for and use regularly have their limitations, not because of technology, but because of artificial restrictions put in place by rights-holders. Consumers don’t care what those reasons are, they just want the content. If the legal means are available, they’ll seek out the less legal ones.

Dave (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

You mean like Amazon, iTunes, Hulu, Netflix, etc.?

I’m deciding you must be brain dead. No wonder I have to do all your thinking for you.

Which of those sites fit the good format, no drm requirement? Pirate sites have good formats, and no drm. Oh! And all the newest releases! So… You can point me to what service that has all that? If there is none, you are not competing.

Rapnel (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

I call bullshit on your bullshit. They carve out death with their licensing.. and just squeeze air. Tighter. $1.29

Thinking that their content is what the Internet lives for, why it exists, this is not only ludicrous but darn right stupid. Ignorant would be too flattering.

The business is the problem, the old fucking media business. Large problem. Very large. Too large. Kill it now large.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

Nope, that is not it, the problem with a granted monopoly is that it forces people to comply with one individual or entity in detriment of everybody else, even if people decided they would do it themselves they still would have problems with broad ambiguous laws that support that monopoly.

Is like the guy that knows you can’t go anywhere so he keep jacking up the price and trying to stop every attempt of an alternative to him. In the end he will fail but until that they it causes a lot of problems to a lot of people.

Copyright right now is a problem for democracy.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

blah blah blah

Continue to try and wrap your illegal behavior in moral justification. It worked for George W Bush, right?

You people are just bullies. You bully creators into thinking they have no rights in your world.

Enjoy this bizarre moment in history while you can. It isn’t going to last.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

Hey, look, AC admits to being part of the “big content industry” with pronoun “we”!

Anyway, AC, your argument doesn’t work. Bullies are bullies because they use existing leverage (physical, social, monetary, legal) to make punitive actions against people with less leverage.

Being numerically insignificant only strengthens the argument that the big content industries are bullies: they are abusing power disproportionate to their role, in order to take punitive actions (restrict the Internet for everyone) against people with less leverage (the general public as individuals).

The collaborative power of the Internet, though, means that, when confronted with the worst of these measures, the Internet can form up into a citizen organization that is vastly more powerful than you. Your black bear is getting stung by the swarm of bees.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

My favorite example for years has been local broadcast television. If I am in range, I can watch hours of “premium content” off an antenna, for free, egads!

So why, oh why, is it, that in 2012, I cannot go to the website of my local whatever affiliate and click a link to watch their current live broadcast? The servers and bandwidth probably cost less than the multi-kilowatt transmitter(s) and antennas, and they would be able to harvest viewership statistics that they now pay tens of thousands to get from Nielsen.

The reason is not because giving away content for free is not a business model. Every attempt over the years to implement such a system was immediately killed by the affiliates, for fear it would undermine their local monopolies.

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Then who would provide Google with premier content?

Neither me nor anyone else is gonna spend a Saturday night paying to watch videos of your cat.

Well – nothing in the world really requires that “premium content” as you call it is created.

Maybe if there wasn’t any you might get off your backside and DO something instead of passively consuming.

Guy Thomas (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Willfully ignoring the point of the post?

We can argue about the quality of the content, but let us say that what gets produced by Big Content is valuable. What the pirates are saying is here are some new distribution tools to monetize the vast increase in availability. Use the fucking tools already and quit whining about how times have changed.

Oh, and quit hijacking the political system with your truckloads of cash. Your head in the sand approach results in fundamental rights being trampled on and you seem to think that it is ok for that to be the collateral damage.

gorehound (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Yes it does.I am doing all I can in my own way to see that very thing happen.
1.Educating my fans and friends
2.created a Facebook Group called Boycott Big Content
3.never going to a theater again
4.never buying a Film from Hollywood
5.ignoring anything Hollywood does even if I am interested in the film.
6.will only purchase a used physical thing and nothing else
7.will purchase NON-HOLLYWOOD Indie Material
8.Posting info on various News & Tech Boards
9.taking part in any petitions & calling up Washington/Reps
Hope others are doing their part too.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Tell them to go and design and build your own Computers & Hardware

How funny would it be if that were happening right now? The film and music industry working together to build new closed-end systems using entirely LED and RF based transmission functions?

Then they would tell Silly Valley to go pound sand.

Silly Valley would freak out and come back on their knees begging for a piece of the action.

And the middle finger would come out of everyone’s hand including mine.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

>How funny would it be if that were happening right now? The film and music industry working together to build new closed-end systems using entirely LED and RF based transmission functions?

If it was happening, the first thing Hollywood would do would be to call themselves the Boston strangler, and litigate themselves before the technology saw light of day.

ffs, we’re talking about people who proudly declare they have no idea how the Internet works. Go on having the blind leading the blind.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

I go to advertised movie screenings or, once a film opens, to the matinees. I never pay full price.
I buy or trade used dvds/cds or remaindered DVDs at shops like Big Lots or Dollar Stores.
(Your local used record/cd/dvd stores are your friends.
Patronize them!)
If there’s something worthwhile on the premium satellite channels, I DVD it. (Don’t use DVRs, there’s copyguard features on most of them that prevent copying.)

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

“4.never buying a Film from Hollywood”

Buy, but buy used or borrow from your local library. Why? Because it pisses them off even more… they would LOVE to shutter those 2 outlets as “unpaid theivery dens” but they both have gone through court challenges with 100% of the results favoring the customer.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

And all your efforts will accomplish nothing. Even if you somehow contacted 10% of the population I doubt that even one tenth of the people you contacted would actually follow through with your plan. The problem is that people don’t want NON-HOLLYWOOD indie movies they want more HOLLYWOOD Indy movies. Also, why are you limiting the scope of postings? You should be posting to Movie Fan sites not Tech sites.

Machin Shin (profile) says:

Re: Re:

You know that is a really interesting idea. Tech industry just needs to start writing crazy restrictive license agreements for these industries. Have it so that indy artist can use it for free and the major studios are not allowed to use it at all.

Then need to be very crazy about enforcing it. Make sure if any company uses it that they get sued into oblivion.

Marcus Carab (profile) says:

Re: Re:

The truth is that real innovators would never – and should never – do that, no matter how much hollywood pisses them off.

Why? Because real innovators are problem solvers, not problem makers. They would never intentionally limit the functionality or accessibility of something they’ve made. A true engineer rejects something like always-online DRM not because of ideological reasons but because it’s fucking stupid from an engineer’s perspective. Why would you intentionally make something more easy to break? Unthinkable. Same with EULAs and other licenses: why would you pretend a device has less functionality than it actually does? Insanity.

So though I see the temptation, I’m glad that the tech sphere isn’t exacting that kind of “take our toys and head home” revenge on hollywood. True innovators are already on to their next project before they have time to worry about idiots who don’t understand their last one – and true innovators trust that, in the long run, smart solutions and useful things will win out over outdated mentalities, no intervention required.

Jay (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

This actually reminds me of someone… Robert Levine says he “cares about engineers, but doesn’t want them to make laws.”

Which is beyond ridiculous when you think about it. An engineer’s entire pursuit is to find out the truth. They look through the numbers and find the problems if the numbers don’t add up. Then, they can propose a plan to sit down and make laws that are doing exactly what needs to be done for the greater good of the economy.

Bear in mind, I’m a biased party, but there’s a reason that engineers don’t much get into politics. When you’re dealing with an industry that doesn’t benefit from legislation, but instead tries to push for laws that will cut the internet off for millions of people, and you’re trying to state how you know more than an engineer about the computer when your own is outdated, there’s a problem with being believable.

That’s why it’s great to allow the Doug Morrisons and Chris Dodds to fail on their own merits. Sure, they make a little money now. But they have to watch as their businesses collapse in front of them as everyone moves away from the unwanted services they support.

Marcus Carab (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Practically, engineers are more concerned with effectively using abstractions and heuristics to solve problems. Scientists are the ones looking for truth.

I think it’s fair to say that engineers have a similar passion for the truth, though – in that you can’t lie to a machine. You can’t tell a rebar it can bear more tension than it actually can. When designing something, an engineer is seeking a sort of raw physical truth: what is the true solution to this problem.

That’s why DRM is so annoying – it’s engineers who have decided or been forced to lie. To say “no, this machine can’t play a DVD from Japan” or “here, let me loan you this ebook” when both of those things are utter bullshit.

Jay (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

No… Robert Levine has no idea what engineers do. It’s just my insane troll engineer logic that picked up on the engineer logic, picked up Levine’s tweet that incensed me, then states how if engineers ruled the world (which we do already…) there’d be a lot more jobs and prosperity instead of Levine’s insane logic that makes no sense.

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Marcus the problem is and remains the techies have taken a hands off approach in this area for far to long.
We are blithely ignorant that the Congresscritters passing laws on the internet are happily uninformed on the subject. As tech types we are used to deal with people who “get it” or can get it if we use the right terminology.

I think a restrictive license would benefit as Hollywood would come to learn what the rest of us know, we could not do what we do without the hard work of others. They believe they just fund it and it happens, it would be nice to see this group so concerned about the little guy getting screwed over by pirates at a loss as to why they can’t have nice CGI fire in their explosions. Because the little guy who adds it in is barred from doing it for them with the newest coolest fire cgi.

Most of us tech types don’t sit in amazement and look into each and every person who made the web better, we just end up using it. The ability to tap on a screen and have a message appear elsewhere in the world is something we take for granted. The difference is we aren’t using our checkbooks to kill something with so many uses because we can’t/won’t understand it.

They came close to screwing up the entire internet, maybe not sweating the idiots isn’t a viable solution anymore.

Marcus Carab (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Honestly (and in reply to everyone who responded) I think I overstated my point a bit – because I certainly support the tech sphere becoming more aware of and active in politics, and I am fully in favour of the SOPA/PIPA protests which I now realize directly contradicts what I said about an innovator never breaking or limiting their own product. So thanks everyone for making me think this through a bit more!

I think what i mean is, I don’t think I’d like to see the tech sphere attempt to block the legacy content industry in the way you initially mentioned. I want old media to succeed, and I want them to use the tools that are available. The makers of those tools do too. The thing is that in the long run this shouldn’t be a war between two sides, and the only way a conflict turns into a partnership is when one side agrees to be the bigger man no matter how childish the other side gets. Arbitrarily blocking hollywood from new innovation would only galvanize the conflict – and would fly in the face of years and years spent telling them that they need to innovate more and embrace the future.

YouTube could have put a harsh blacklist on all major label content – and they, the labels, and the public all would have suffered. And honestly, YouTube would probably come out on top: the labels would have just died sooner as new players moved in to fill the digital gap even faster than they are now. But instead YouTube built robust platforms to allow the labels to monetize their content – and everyone benefited. That’s innovators solving real problems in productive ways, and that’s what makes me the happiest, and that’s almost always the win-win solution.

But there absolutely is a flipside. At the same time, YouTube was forced to build robust platforms to allow the labels to block and remove their content, once again to everyone’s detriment. So yeah, I’m all for finding ways for innovators to push back with the kind of power demonstrated last week – I just really want to make sure they are the right ways. Ways that don’t betray or abandon the spirit of problem-solving and collaboration that is what defines this movement to begin with – so that even if the legacy industry drowns we can be guilt-free, knowing we sent them a truck, a boat and a helicopter…

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Marcus – my suggestion wasn’t for a permanent embargo on them, but merely a very large required wakeup call.
They denounce every new innovation as a new way to rip them off, that it will kill them. Think of the restrictions as being a nice firm grip on their neck, because they understand the Boston Strangler so well.

I think it is high time that everyone else stop being expected to be the bigger man and take it in the ass because Hollywood is butthurt over how this new idea will be the thing that finally kills them off after years of the same broken record over and over.

How many more times do we have to repeat the mantra of innovate and prosper? We have examples at every tech advance of them screaming they are dying, and then once they finally accept they can not stomp their foot and get their way they look at the tech and say oh hey, this is so much better for us.

We can build a better mouse trap, but we keep getting the same stupid mice. They are more than willing to sacrifice everyone else to support their outdated business model and offer up the internet on the altar of sacrifice… it might be time to see the problem for what it is and force the shareholders to vote out the people lying to them and their lobbyist lackeys.

Marcus Carab (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

I guess I just can’t quite envision what sort of form such a wake-up call might take, then… Blackouts to protest the government are protected speech – “wake-up calls” to other corporations spur accusations of monopoly and anti-competitive practices…

I’m open to the idea but I’m still uneasy without knowing what form it would take… I still feel like the best thing the tech industry can do is continue making useful tools – especially the tools that allow artists to route around the legacy industry.

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

That is for more creative people than myself to decide. Given my choice, Hollywood would be blocked from new tech or face obscene charges to have access to it. They would be getting leftovers and stuck looking from the outside in.

The legacy industry is working on killing anything they can’t control or understand, screaming about all of these lost jobs while they still pay their top staff more and more. They shaft the underlings and blame it on “piracy losses”, the internet is the face of the new boogeyman used to scare people. It is a shame we can’t coordinate a strike or something from all of the new content providers and show them what they are pushing the internet towards.

Imagine if they were unable to get a slot from any web retailer for their new release, if NetFlix said… nah we don’t want it right now it costs to much for the effort. If they found themselves stymied as they were shut out from all of the “boston strangler” technology they once feared and now rely on.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Nope, I want to give them all the tools they need to suceed in their pursuit of their content so they can find every copy and eradicate it from the internet, without their content in it than we can start building a new free-mafia-content internet that would challenge their stupidity.

Tools like open source acoustic fingerprinting.

That the industry should use to hunt down their “products” and bother every single person they can find.

By the way “WhoSampled is great to see who stole what from whom over the years LoL

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

The Google of music.

Humm, tap it and it will find the music for you, musicians should use that to sue each other for stealing their works, collection agencies should use it for automated collection of data from anywhere.

I want them to go all out and do the right thing for them.


Because it greatly annoys people, it is only good for them and burdens the rest of society tremendously and people don’t think it affects them but the idiots don’t even know the tech industry already have free and open source tools that could help turn true their wildest dreams, they could finance and help those open projects and create their own bundle of security measures to give it away to anyone so they take the excuse that it would be to expensive to implement.

I want to see them going after every citizen out there and making them mad, the average citizen will come down on them like tone of bricks.

The only people who would be allowed to play music are the ones that could pay for a lawyer and the little artists those up and coming should be aware that they are not welcome and what better way than to give and idiotic industry all the tools they need to hang themselves?

I give them all the rope they need.

Anonymous Coward says:

Rogue Politicians....

Washington needs to hear your best ideas about how to clamp down on rogue politicians and other lobbiests and middlemen who make money off the creative efforts of American artists and rights holders. We should all be committed to working with all interested constituencies to develop new legal tools to protect global intellectual property rights without jeopardizing the openness of the Internet. Our hope is that you will bring enthusiasm and know-how to this important challenge.

Anonymous Coward says:

Lets see:
HADOPI over the its life has increased in numbers which suggests that piracy is rising not diminishing and despite all of that in France the IFPI just claimed victory saying HADOPI was responsible for an increase in sales of 25%.

In Brazil despite rampant piracy and laws already stating that you can go to jail for 5 years if you are caught with pirated material surprise sales are up the same in China, Russia and every other pirate haven out there.

Which just proves to anyone who wants to see it that piracy can coexist with actual business models, democracy on the other hand depends on a free society to exist, it depends on people not being censored, the economy depends on startups that need an environment where they are not constantly threaten by legal issues.

Between Hollywood and pirates I take the pirates any day, they lie less and are more honest than that other industry will ever be, besides I don’t know if I’m ready to make Jesus a fellon for being the one preaching sharing to everyone thousands of years ago.

fogbugzd (profile) says:

Right after we get SOPA passed, eliminate piracy, and save the RIAA, we need to tackle some other social problems with laws.

1) We need to prohibit alcohol consumption. Perhaps a constitutional amendment will be needed. All we need to do is pass strong enough laws against alcohol, and the problems caused by demon rum will be eliminated. Some critics say this will just cause more organized crime and disrespect for the government, but those are just apologists for the liquor industry. We just need to get the laws on the books. It is really very simple.

2) We need to pass laws prohibiting drug use, especially marijuana. Marijuana not only leads to Reefer Madness, it is a gateway to other drugs. We need laws that have stiffer penalties for drug possession than violent crime, child abuse, and in some cases murder. If the laws end up causing more violent crime, child abuse, and murder we will just have to live with it, and it is worth the cost. Getting rid of drugs is going to cost some money and time to root out entrenched use. If we spend a trillion dollars over 40 years we should have the drug problem eliminated. It is all so simple.

fogbugzd (profile) says:

Re: Re: You forgot

>>If you accomplish those 2, best to outlaw bullets as well.

Good idea. Eliminating guns and bullets in the US should be easy given the success of both Prohibition and the War on Drugs. There will be some whining about pesky constitutional issues, of course. Industry apologists are such whiners. But SOPA proves that the government doesn’t really see much problem with ignoring the constition, so consider it a done deal.

JarHead says:

Re: Re: Re: You forgot

Eliminating guns and bullets in the US should be easy given the success of both Prohibition and the War on Drugs

Dunno about that. Between the gun nuts and 2nd amendment, I think plenty of noise will be generated. I actually like :Lobo’s original, outlaw the bullets. It appeases the gun nuts, and not against 2nd amendment (if bullets are arms, try throwing your opponent with them and see how it goes).

fogbugzd (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 You forgot

After guns we should outlaw sex out of wedlock. A simple law would make all premarital sex and adultery stop overnight and save marriage, just as effectively as a law against piracy would stop piracy and save the RIAA. After all, teenagers engage in both sex and piracy. An added bonus would be teaching teenagers to respect government and laws.

Let me spell out the point I am trying to make. Prohibition did not make problems go away, it made them worse. The War on Drugs has not worked; we now have more drug use than we did before the WoD started. Laws banning guns and sex would be ignored. So why does anyone think that outlawing infringement would do anything besides making the problem worse?

R. Chapman (profile) says:

The World Is Not Enough

Big Entertainment seeks legislation over a technical solution because, well, it wants legislation. Under the guise of desperately needing protection, the industry is trying to pull off an outrageous power-grab here.

What big businesses know better than anyone is that the secret of success is not making the best product, but controlling the marketplace. They know the Internet is their only future marketplace. Quite simply, they want it.

bob (profile) says:


We gave you e-commerce, micropayments, PayPal, Netflix, iTunes, Amazon, the iPad, the iPhone, the laptop, 3G, wifi–hell, you can even get online while you’re on an AIRPLANE.

All of the content delivery systems here are big paywalls: Netflix, iTunes, and Amazon. Is this more proof that you’ve joined me in the paywall lover’s club? Wow. In a few years, you’ll be telling me that DRM is another one of the great gifts from tech community.

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Re: Paywall!!!

Did you get a double dose of Thorazine today?

This story has nothing to do with DRM but its so cute you bring it up.

I think you need to look up what a paywall is, Netflix iTunes and Amazon (and several other sites) are sellers of content who use a delivery system that does not require a little plastic disc brought to your home. You pay for the content, and it is good. It would be better if Hollywood stopped making demands that were unreasonable and overreaching expecting that because the cost of duplication has dropped to 0, and distribution is close to 0, that the material itself is suddenly worth more to make up for this shortfall on their mimeographed chart.

Thanks for stopping by.

1/10 – Go have your juice box and then a nap on your mat… the grownups are busy talking.

Anonymous Coward says:

I just read here (P2P ON: Brazil Disclosed as One Of Megaupload?s Top Users) have very strict laws even more so than the US.


Art 1 The art. ? ? 184 and its 1, 2 and 3 of Decree-Law No. 2848 of December 7, 1940 shall henceforth read as follows, adding a ? 4:

“Article 184. violate copyright and related to it:

Penalty – detention of 3 (three) months to 1 (one) year or a fine.

? 1 If the violation consists of total or partial reproduction, for profit, directly or indirectly, by any means or process, intellectual work, performance or phonogram, without the express permission of the author, the performer, the producer, as appropriate, or who represents them:

Penalty – imprisonment from 2 (two) to 4 (four) years and fine.

? 2 In the same sentence of ? 1 Anyone who, with the purpose of direct or indirect profit, distributes, sells, offers for sale, rent, introduced in the country, acquires, conceals, has on deposit, original or copy of intellectual work or phonogram reproduced in violation of copyright, the right of the performer or the right of the producer of a phonogram, or even rent the original or copy of intellectual work or phonogram, without the express authorization of rights holders or who represents them.

? 3 If the violation consists in offering to the public by cable, fiber optic, satellite, waves or any other system that allows the user to select a work or production to meet her at a time and place previously determined by the person who formulates demand, for profit, directly or indirectly, without express permission, as appropriate, author, performer, producer of a phonogram, or who represents them:

Penalty – imprisonment from 2 (two) to 4 (four) years and fine.

? 4 The provisions of ? ? 1, 2 and 3 shall not apply in the case of exception or limitation to copyright or that are related in accordance with the provisions of Law No. 9610 of 19 February 1998 or the copying of intellectual work or phonogram in a single copy for private use of the copier, without purpose of direct or indirect profit. “(NR)

Source: Google Translate: Presidency of the Republic, Civil House Deputy Chief of Legal Affairs, Law No. 10695, OF JULY 1, 2003.

As one can see if you have any pirate thing in your possession you can go to jail for 4 years, and still Brazil is a piracy haven, the problem is not that they don’t have laws, the real problem is enforcing those laws, now you could say but oh that is a backwater country, third world, developing crap country, well what about France?

HADOPI was hailed as the reason sales increased there the thruth I’m afraid is that once you get the numbers you see that the number of accusations have increased over time suggesting very strongly that piracy is growing not diminishing and still there was growth but I digress what I wanted to really point out is that hundreds of thousands of first and second notices have been sent, but for some unkown reason the government has only 168 in the third strike, most probably because they know they can’t send hundreds of thousands of third strikes it would harm ISP’s but most importantly it would make the population jump up, down and sideways coming down on them like a hammer.

If anybody believes that hundreds of thousands of people just stopped because of the first notice they are delusional since the number of first ones sent grows with time not diminish how is that possible?

The number of first notices increases and the number of third strikes continue to be so low?

Anonymous Coward says:

I’ve had it…IF your smart you’ll join me in a boycott.
Of years, not weeks or months.
Remember they need you more that yoou need them.
you have enough, but just like hollywood you don’t realize it either.
If 3/4 or better just stopped using this stuff they would change their tune…
SADLY, it won’t happen because you have been lulled into a sense of you need this stuff to make your life complete.

RadialSkid (profile) says:

Re: Re:

I’ve been boycotting RIAA material since approximately 2003, and have stopped buying retail music at all since 2008.

I have not done this with retail film yet, but it wouldn’t be too difficult: I haven’t been to a movie theater since 2005. I buy DVDs very rarely…about three in the past year. Everything else I just watch on digital satellite, or download independent material online (I’m two episodes in to Pioneer One right now). After the SOPA fiasco, cutting MPAA material off completely seems tempting.

And no, I don’t “pirate” anything.

In short, these media boycotts aren’t difficult once you get into them. There’s more than enough quality material in Creative Commons and the public domain.

TtfnJohn (profile) says:

Silicon Valley and its predecessors have always been a threat of some kind or another to the co-called content industry. At least seen that way. As more efficient distributors of content doesn’t seem to have occurred to them or that, if it has, a threat to whatever cozy arrangements that have been made with the “networks” that support that given sector of the “content industry”. It’s not in their DNA, it appears, to see the advantages.

By the time they do, if they do, they’ve long since lost the market to those they once called pirates and worse. And if you look closely at the history of their objections you can easily see that it has been less about copyright, though that’s what often gets paraded around like some wounded bird, it’s about distribution and packaging. The battle over cable had less to do with minor details like picture quality and the like than it did with cozy exclusives MPAA members, for example, had negotiated with tv stations which were at the far edge of the capability of over the air antennas to pick up.

Radio changed how music was distributed and places like Tin Pan Alley objected though, over time, many songwriters from there became fabulously wealthy because more artists covered their work or they cold release it themselves.

Television was supposed to kill movie theatres and live productions though it did no such thing and often increased attendance at movies and some live locations.

On and on it goes.

It’s not just the old rejecting the new, it’s the old not being able to see the new and what it can do to make them more money than they are now.

Instead of adopting the new, they fight it and, when they do get ready for change they see the space they wanted to move into already occupied by those dirty pirates and freetards.

This is about holding onto the familiar, even if it is dated and rapidly becoming irrelevant, at the risk of their own future.

All the Web and the Internet are doing is accelerating that process.

Who will head up the future MPAA? One site has staked that claim, none other than Pirate Bay, and I can’t see anything wrong with that claim.

That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Step 1 – Figure out that Hollywood does not release music.
Step 2 – Figure out MP3 is a format for music.
Step 3 – Clue in that MP4 is an audio/video format that saves Hollywood.
Step 4 – “Piracy” despite being an overused term is incorrect, MP4 means they could release the material sooner at next to no cost to themselves in distribution. This would counter people getting tired of waiting and looking elsewhere to obtain the content they are willing to purchase if only it was available before some 1950s flowchart says it should be.
Step 5 – Get a new night job, your not cut out for trolling.

0/10 – Seriously this is the best they can offer?

Another pissed off American says:

The only way to stop the MPAA, and the RIAA is to get them where it really hurts. If there was a 6 month boycott on any and all products that they produce, and they knew it was a result of their policies, THERE WOULD BE CHANGE. Everyone has the choice either we continue whine about how the record and movie industries screw with us, or we get mad and force them to change. I have made the choice, I will not purchase anything those industries produce, indy productions tend to be more interesting, if not as slick as what Hollywood produces. Let them think about how much better off they were with the small losses from piracy, then they are with no revenue.

Rekrul says:

Re: Re:

The only way to stop the MPAA, and the RIAA is to get them where it really hurts. If there was a 6 month boycott on any and all products that they produce, and they knew it was a result of their policies, THERE WOULD BE CHANGE.

Yes, they would lobby for laws that make boycotts of their products illegal…

Rick Hardman says:


If entertainment weren’t so xing beyond over expensive, maybe the theft of it would fall to some acceptable limit. I love music, film and etcetera as much as anyone, maybe more, but how much money do these people deserve to make? Certainly everyone’s rights should be protected, but when they rate a movie’s success in dollar amounts rather than the number of people who attended, that would be a clue of the excessive greed in the system. It’s way easier to steal from someone you perceive as greedy, privileged and rich at your/our expense. I believe there would be a lot more people willing to do the right thing were they not getting ripped off. This is a complex problem, the assumptions at the core need to be reviewed. How did entertainment become our god? …just some thoughts.

Samuraiartguy says:

What Hollywood wants...

The the Big Entertainment industry is a pure pay-per-view, per listen, for EVERYTHING all the time, where they own everything and you – or someone, in the role of advertising sponsors, pay for each and every listen or view. That’s still largely the TV/Radio model. And if it were up to Hollywood, eery time we watched a movie or listened to a music track, somewhere in Hollywood would be a fairly substantial KA-CHING.

Which is of course a model that practically DEMANDS pricy. And of course Big Entertainment absolutely LOATHES digital media for exactly that reason. Despite the success of iTunes, amazon, YouTube and others… they resent being strong-armed into participating in the digital continuum, despite embracing digital technologies at the production end.

This is part of why Apple has be so committed to disruption, and eliminated virtually all tape support in the new version of Final Cut Pro X. They hope to force the industry to evolve, kicking and screaming if they have to.

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