Modest Proposal: Going Piracy Neutral

from the this-post-is-a-test-of-your-sense-of-humor dept

Here’s an amusing one out of the UK. Nick Henderson has created something of a Swiftian “modest proposal” for people who feel guilty about infringement. Modeled after the idea of carbon offsets to become “carbon neutral,” he suggests a process for becoming “piracy neutral,” which is that if you happen to infringe by downloading an unauthorized song, you should freely release a track of your own composition into the world without restrictions.

Henderson truly is trying to give back to the world, because he recorded some basic stems that he’s put together and is offering up as the “piracy neutral fun pack”, such that you can remix them yourself to create your own new music in an effort to become “piracy neutral.”

And, because people who angrily write comments on this site rarely read to the end of the post, I’ll just point out that this is a joke, not anything even remotely serious. Laughter is good.

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Comments on “Modest Proposal: Going Piracy Neutral”

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out_of_the_blue says:

That's assuming pirates could make anywhere near equal value.

But if you could, you’d be keenly protective of it just like the “copyright maximalists”! You may give away your garage band tracks or silly little Youtubery, but if you’d scraped up $100M, coordinated hundreds of talented people, and worked thousands of hours to make a movie, you’d have entirely different opinion about it being “shared” for free. You might even be worried about recovering “sunk (or fixed) costs”. Your notions simply don’t scale.

How’s this for a remix? Just shorten “And, because people who angrily write comments on this site rarely read to the end of the post, I’ll just point out that this is a joke, not anything even remotely serious.” down to This site is a joke, not anything even remotely serious.

the other rob says:

It's actually a better joke than one might have thought...

… because the whole “track for a track” idea denigrates the concept of some works having more value than others and reduces artistic expression to fungible commodity.

That’s probably the only thing that the proponents of compulsory licensing and the major record labels agree on.

Anonymous Anonymous Coward says:

Re: It's actually a better joke than one might have thought...

Now wait a minute. I submit that any music, artwork, video, fiction that I might post as a replacement will be SO bad that they will happily give me ALL of their content just to make me go away. Yeah! Tell me there’s no value in bad.


Anonymous Coward says:

I think they have a system that works on this “piracy neutral” paradigm. I believe they call this amazing innovation “open source.” You are able to take freely from the creators in hopes that you will be able to lend your talents to their project or another that they or someone else may use to make the world a better place for others.

Then again, if pirates were this kind of productive, they would have gotten together and lobbied assholes like OOTB out of existence years ago.

Laroquod (profile) says:

Not even a little Swiftian

When one dubs something a ‘Modest Proposal’ in the Swiftian sense, it means that one is making fun of the kind of person who would make this proposal. Is that what this video is doing, mocking the sort of person/filmmaker who would propose we be ‘Piracy Neutral’? I think not, or else it is doing a very muddled job of it, too meek to actually make a satirical point and too genuinely tickled by its own absurd concept to bother biting hard enough to be called ‘satire’.

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