BSA Blaming Professors For Students Downloading Software

from the get-a-grip dept

It appears that the folks at the BSA are getting a little jealous of their colleagues at the RIAA for making fools of themselves and absolutely missing the point of downloadable content. The BSA has now come out with a study warning that college students have no problem downloading software illegally, and that it's all the fault of professors who encourage this sort of thing. They go on to say, in their standard exaggerated way, that this is going to be a huge "gateway" into software piracy. This is their version of the "escalation" argument. First you learn to download music at college, then software, and then you go on to a life of crime! Let's help the BSA take a step back and think about what they're doing. These are college students who don't have the disposable income to spend $700 on a copy of Photoshop. However, by having them download a copy, they learn how to use it, and when they enter the workforce, they're much more willing to buy a legitimate copy of the software. I know that's happened with plenty of applications and people I know. They first discovered the applications at home or at college by getting so-called "pirated" versions - and later ended up buying a legitimate copy for work. The BSA, however, insists that every downloaded copy is a lost sale. In many cases it's actually a promotion that is leading to a sale that never would have been made otherwise. Cracking down too hard on software downloading on campuses is going to have the opposite effect from what they intend.
Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. identicon
    AMetamorphosis, 17 Sep 2003 @ 6:31am

    Moral dilemma

    I really don't care about what others think of me in the moral sense for choosing to download pirated versions of software. I do not make any profit off of the software I download. I download programs such as Photo Shop & Visual Basic so that I can LEARN how to use these over-priced but very necessary skills, thereby increasing my chances of getting a better paying job.

    Companies rarely, if ever offer " training versions " of their software. If I am hired by a company for my knowledge of Photo Shop or VB, I have ensured that Adobe or Microsoft can sell another license to the company that employs me.
    Just because I did not buy a copy to begin with does NOT mean that there are lost sales.

    BTW ... I do have a moral dilemma with people who download software, use it for money making purposes and do not pay their fair licensing fees.

    That's STEALING

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Make this the First Word or Last Word. No thanks. (get credits or sign in to see balance)    
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Discord

The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...

Loading...
Recent Stories

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it
Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.