4.02.2009

Oh Noes, You Stoled My Wolverine!

An interesting discussion sprung up over at the forums for Outside The Cinema regarding the fact that Wolverine ended up on the interwebs a full month before it is scheduled to hit theaters. For the record, I won't be downloading it. Furthermore, I won't be seeing it in theaters, either. It's a Wolverine movie rated PG-13. You can suck my fat ass if you think I am going to pay to see that. That said, I wanted to repost my thoughts on the subject here for posterity. Click the link above to check out what everyone else had to say on the matter.

People are always going to take the path of least resistance. Always. This is not new and it is not shocking. How many 30 plussers had a collection of dubbed tapes in the 80s? I had an entire 80 cassette case full of dubs. When I was growing up, very few people I knew owned legit copies of movies. You rented em from your local video store and you dubbed them off. The music and movie industry fucked itself when they developed recordable consumer media. Media that was developed with the intention of bending you and me over, by the way.

Do I agree with people that never buy anything? Nope. To be honest, I just don't get it, because I am a fan of packaging. Always have been, always will be. It's the one thing I miss about LPs; poster size album art was the bomb. Do I think music and film piracy have done any real damage to those industries? Nope. Most of the people I know that steal music and movies are stealing stuff they were never going to spend money on in the first place. I have a friend who tries to tell me he would have bought this or that if he hadn't downloaded it first, but then every time he downloads something and REALLY loves it? You got it, he buys a copy. I can't think of the last album he downloaded and listened to nonstop that he didn't buy. Then you have the next question; would he have bought it if he hadn't downloaded it? That one never seems to make it into these piracy trials, I bet.

Stealing movies off the internet is not the same experience as going to a theater and that is why people go to the theater; for the experience. If all I cared about was seeing the movie, I'd wait for DVD which is what I usually do, anyway. The movies like Dark Knight that I go see in theaters, I go to see because I want to see it on the big screen and experience it, that way. That is why I don't buy this movie piracy is ruining the movie industry crap. Ticket sales are down because it costs 50 bucks for a couple to go to a movie now if you get drinks and popcorn. It's become a major financial decision and let me tell you, it takes a special breed of movie (or a horror flick that Barb drags me to) to get me to plop down that much dough.

The movie industry and the music industry both have been raping their customers for years and the customers have responded with their wallets. By that, I mean they stopped buying, not that they started stealing. I have always found it interesting that the most downloaded movies, music and games are the ones that also sell the most copies. So to all the execs, I say don't be scared when a billion people steal your crap. Be scared when it's leaked and no one bothers to download it.

3 comments:

  1. Calling it "stealing" is really just propaganda of the media industry. They ask, "you wouldn't steal a car, would you?" No, because it's not even the same thing. It's an infringement of copyright, not theft.

    It's really hard to quantify potential losses due to piracy. How many of 10,000 people who downloaded a car game would have actually bought it had there been no means of piracy? But then, how many more people after hearing the buzz of those 10,000 people of how good this car game is go out and buy the game themselves? Would the $600+ Photoshop really be as popular as it is today if it wasn't for its rampant piracy? Today even your average teenager knows how to use it, so guess what they're gonna buy once they become a graphic artist in a real business (which means they can't pirate it)? It's hard to tell how much it helps or hurts.

    I like turtles.

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  2. I always seem to find myself the odd man out on this topic. I absolutely consider it stealing to download even something as simple as an mp3. Am I opposed to stealing? Nope, not one bit actually. But the fact is, you're getting a product without paying for it and that in my book is stealing. Just because you do it sitting at your desk at home doesn't make it any different than walking into a store and pocketing a copy of the disc. I'm not going to lie (and believe me it'd be a massive lie) if I said I've never stolen anything in my life and I think my view of stealing is a little different than most. If someone wants to download a metallica record, by all means do it. In fact burn a thousand copies and hand them out on the street to passers by. If someone downloads the new record for some unsigned band that makes 50$ a night and eats dollar menu taco bell every day to get by, then they should be smacked upside the head. The same thing goes for movies in my opinion. I'm a lot more critical on the downloading of more underground movies that need the financial support (provided that a copy is available to buy anyways) than gigantic hollywood blockbusters that are more than likely going to turn a profit just because that's the new 'it' movie to go see.

    I don't know, I'm starting to ramble on. I've always felt that if a person is willing to download a movie/record/software and such than they should be just as willing to go boot a copy from their local Target.

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  3. Your view of stealing is very different indeed. Especially when it comes to what the government actually says about it. The only similarity between theft and copyright infringement is that they're both against the law. This isn't just a semantics issue either.

    I'm not here to stay and debate so if anyone is interested in more, see this URL: http://20bits.com/articles/copyright-infringement-is-not-theft/

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