Filesharing - Movies etc

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Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby BML » Mon Jan 07, 2013 11:25 pm

Is file-sharing of movies and music theft as it comes with many advantages.
Should knowledge should be free?
People who can not afford to buy movies or music, ranging from students to impoverished families around the world.
Lack of knowledge from schools can be self-taught through file sharing.

What are your thought about this?
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Tue Jan 08, 2013 12:14 am

Tricky subject, i'd thought about making this thread too, very worth talking about.

With music for example, there are some artists that don't care if you download their music without paying (though all naturally would prefer to be paid) while there are other artists that actually view that as theft. Whatever the RIAA says, if I know an artist is ok with it, I overlook the fact that the RIAA is trying to speak for them.

The rule of thumb is - is it freely given? Heh, even this can be hard to figure out though.

Things like full albums on youtube are legally iffy, but they exist and you are "stealing" from no one by listening to them. The thing is to try to be ethical I think, without buying into a bunch of nonsense about how any transfer of data that doesn't involve money is a "theft". Don't confuse real ethics with simply being a legally appropriate consumer, or supporting industry - I don't think they are necessarily the same. On the other hand, if you never pay for anything and download to your hearts content, it's definitely ethically iffy, IMO. This is especially true when talking about books and videos by smaller, self - financed people and outfits, whether it's Dharma or something else.

It gets confusing, for music I listen to mostly underground stuff, where I know for a fact many of the artists support sharing their music, if i'm in doubt I pay for it. It's more iffy when something is only available by pirating - for instance an obscure import that isn't in print. I'm also old enough that I own CD's and tapes that are going the way of the dinosaur and coming apart, at this point I have a choice of either paying for them again, or simply downloading the albums...it's a toss up, i'm just trying to copy my own CD collection so it's not issue in the future for me.

The above issues come with software too, some stuff that is no longer distributed,and only available through piracy. For software though, minus games and such SO much stuff is available in freeware form, you don't need to bother paying for things like word processors or Photoshop type programs. because if you have a teeny bit of gumption you can use stuff like Open Office or The GiMP, and not pay a dime.

With movies, well most movies are terrible anyway, so I don't mind paying normally for those that aren't.

It's not always easy to figure out, but my rule of thumb is I do not download it unless I am pretty sure the creator of whatever it is is ok with it being download for free. This goes for Dharma material as well, it's worth mentioning though, there is so much Dharma material available for free, that one really shouldn't mind paying every now and then, especially if you know the money is going back into Dharma activities it's definitely money well spent.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Sara H » Tue Jan 08, 2013 7:59 pm

It's not theft because it's not taking that which is not given.

If I buy a DVD it's mine. I paid for it, I own it, the piece of plastic that is the disk belongs to me. I'm not leasing it or renting it. It belongs to me.



If I want to take my property, and copy it onto my computer that I own, I can do that.

If I want to copy my property onto a another disk that I own, I own that disk too.

If I want to take that second disk that I own, and give it to a friend, that is my property to give.

I own my computer too.'

If I want to take the property that is my dvd disc, and put the data on it that I physically own, into the computer that I physically own, and then share that data that I own with other people that I choose, I can do that too.

That is giving and sharing.

If someone chooses to share their property with me, that is a gift, or a loan depending on the terms they specified.

The entire way through it, there is no stealing involved.
Or taking that which is not given.

The music, and movie industry may not like that their business model has changed, but that's their problem.

I'm sure the sail making industry wasn't as pleased when steam engines were invented but that's the way it is.

Technology moves forward, not backward.

There are viable ways for them to make money using the internet.

netflix, and streaming, subscribtion based access like spotify, are proven money makers.

And while the music industry is starting to get behind models like spotify, the MPAA is still dug in over services like netflix.

What they need to do is stop digging in their heels over the inevitable, and begin to embrace a subscription based revenue, rather than a per-sale based revenue that they are used to.

They just don't want to change. But that's not the market's problem, eventually they will.

One way or another they will have to.

People are willing to pay a reasonable price for watching movies, but when the cost of reproducing a dvd or sharing a file has essentially gone to zero, people arn't willing to pay 20 bucks as much anymore for something that cost them cents to make.

Subscription models work, they just need to stop fighting it and wasting time and get behind it.
And, they still make hundreds of millions in box office sales.

They'll get around to it eventually, and will remember that economics are based on supplying market demand, not the supplier dictating what the demand "should" be.

That's not the way economics works.

In Gassho,

Sara H.
"Life is full of suffering. AND Life is full of the Eternal
IT IS OUR CHOICE
We can stand in our shadow, and wallow in the darkness,
OR
We can turn around.
It is OUR choice." -Rev. Basil

" ...out of fear, even the good harm one another. " -Rev. Dazui MacPhillamy
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Wed Jan 09, 2013 5:53 am

BML wrote:Is file-sharing of movies and music theft as it comes with many advantages.
Should knowledge should be free?
People who can not afford to buy movies or music, ranging from students to impoverished families around the world.
Lack of knowledge from schools can be self-taught through file sharing.

What are your thought about this?



File sharing is theft. Some of the economics around movies and books and music may not be the most enlightened, but it is what it is. It's also disingenuous to frame the argument as one of knowledge and self-teaching. There's already of plenty of free resources out there for that.

Sara H wrote:It's not theft because it's not taking that which is not given.


Purchasing a dvd of a film doesn't transfer copyright to the purchaser. There are very clear conditions placed on what you can do (and can't do) with the material on the DVD. You may make a backup for yourself, but you're not allowed to just give copies of it away to your friends. Just because something is easy to do (it's a little harder to make a dupe of a pair of jeans, or a clean photocopy of a book), doesn't make it okay.

I have many friends who are independent filmmakers scrapping a living, mostly not scrapping a living, off the films they make. The only chance they have to recoup the time and money they spent in making the film (not to mention the time and money they spent learning how to become good filmmakers, or good musicians, etc.) is when they sell the product.

If you want, you could have a larger conversation about what is really a crime, and whether something is a crime if we as individuals don't believe something should be illegal. But that's a slippery slope, because who gets to define where that line should be? Since it is very current in the news, we could start in India where lots of men apparently think it isn't a crime, or even morally wrong, to rape a woman. I guess they wouldn't even call it rape, since rape implies that it's a crime, but clearly the men who are doing these things think they have every right to have sex with whatever woman is available.

If things should be free for all, why not sex?

Yes, it's an absurd comparison, but no more absurd then thinking you have every right to make however many number of copies of a DVD that retails for $20 and give it away for free. Just as the men in India have the right to pay for sex, you'd have the right to buy as many DVDs and do with them what you will. :woohoo:
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:51 am

Uan you make some good points, but it is missing alot of nuance to say all file sharing is theft as well, there is a huge amount of grey area there.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby futerko » Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:57 am

Apparently, if you sing "happy birthday" to someone - you owe music rights!!!
we cannot get rid of God because we still believe in grammar - Nietzsche
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Wed Jan 09, 2013 3:11 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:Uan you make some good points, but it is missing alot of nuance to say all file sharing is theft as well, there is a huge amount of grey area there.


The bank once gave me $20 dollars by mistake. It was a Saturday afternoon and when I discovered what had happened, it was was a inconvenient to go back to the bank, which was about to close, to return it (not to mention trying to explain what happened!). I thought about keeping the money, but decided to return it. Later I told a friend about this and I phrased the story as "I had a dilemma...". His reply stuck with me. He said, "you didn't have a dilemma, you had a temptation. You knew the right thing to do, you were tempted not to do it."

I'm not saying all file sharing it theft. There are files that have been put in the public domain and these can be shared. If I want, I can choose to make a documentary I've made available online. That's my call. But we all know what is what when it comes to file sharing, whether it's the a rip of The Dark Knight or Beyonce's latest CD (or whatever people are sharing). We want a free copy of something that people normally sell.

Being computer savvy, I can appreciate the temptation. And on the lists of crimes, it's far down the list - file sharing is more misdemeanor than felony, and more civil than criminal. But the relatively lack of severity of the offense doesn't mean there's been no transgression.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Jan 09, 2013 8:12 pm

uan wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:Uan you make some good points, but it is missing alot of nuance to say all file sharing is theft as well, there is a huge amount of grey area there.


The bank once gave me $20 dollars by mistake. It was a Saturday afternoon and when I discovered what had happened, it was was a inconvenient to go back to the bank, which was about to close, to return it (not to mention trying to explain what happened!). I thought about keeping the money, but decided to return it. Later I told a friend about this and I phrased the story as "I had a dilemma...". His reply stuck with me. He said, "you didn't have a dilemma, you had a temptation. You knew the right thing to do, you were tempted not to do it."

I'm not saying all file sharing it theft. There are files that have been put in the public domain and these can be shared. If I want, I can choose to make a documentary I've made available online. That's my call. But we all know what is what when it comes to file sharing, whether it's the a rip of The Dark Knight or Beyonce's latest CD (or whatever people are sharing). We want a free copy of something that people normally sell.

Being computer savvy, I can appreciate the temptation. And on the lists of crimes, it's far down the list - file sharing is more misdemeanor than felony, and more civil than criminal. But the relatively lack of severity of the offense doesn't mean there's been no transgression.


What do you say to my music example above?

There are artists who do not mind, and some who even encourage free sharing of their material. The RIAA has taken it upon themselves to (at least this is my understanding of it) make downloading of this music an illegal act, even if it is technically generally not enforced. Why should I adhere to the RIAA's standard when I know the artist is ok with it? Why should I even consider it a transgression?

Being computer savvy, I can appreciate the temptation. And on the lists of crimes, it's far down the list - file sharing is more misdemeanor than felony, and more civil than criminal. But the relatively lack of severity of the offense doesn't mean there's been no transgression.


Then you should probably acknowledge it is not always a "crime" in an ethical sense. it is one thing to knowingly take the work of say, a small software developer (or even a big sleazy one) without paying when you know you are supposed to (hard to square with the second precept), but it's murkier to download a piece of software which is ten years old, not available to buy, but still technically constitutes copyright infringement by downloading it, who exactly is this "stealing from" if the software in question is no longer even made commercially available?

Of course the real solution is to not need it in the first place, but you can see from the above theoretical examples that there might be grey areas when talking about file sharing.

If you approach it completely from one direction or another I think you lose the plot - saying that anything can be downloaded ever IS essentially endorsing some level of theft. The problem with saying that in all cases it is theft is tantamount to saying that Capitalism (rather than Buddhism) get's to determine what the second precept is about.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby lowlydog » Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:13 pm

BML wrote:Is file-sharing of movies and music theft as it comes with many advantages.
Should knowledge should be free?
People who can not afford to buy movies or music, ranging from students to impoverished families around the world.
Lack of knowledge from schools can be self-taught through file sharing.

What are your thought about this?


I pay my internet fees monthly and look at and share whatever I come across online, I don't sell anything to people and i'm at peace with this, but everyone is different. :smile:
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Sara H » Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:00 am

uan wrote:
BML wrote:Is file-sharing of movies and music theft as it comes with many advantages.
Should knowledge should be free?
People who can not afford to buy movies or music, ranging from students to impoverished families around the world.
Lack of knowledge from schools can be self-taught through file sharing.

What are your thought about this?



File sharing is theft. Some of the economics around movies and books and music may not be the most enlightened, but it is what it is. It's also disingenuous to frame the argument as one of knowledge and self-teaching. There's already of plenty of free resources out there for that.

Sara H wrote:It's not theft because it's not taking that which is not given.


Purchasing a dvd of a film doesn't transfer copyright to the purchaser. There are very clear conditions placed on what you can do (and can't do) with the material on the DVD. You may make a backup for yourself, but you're not allowed to just give copies of it away to your friends. Just because something is easy to do (it's a little harder to make a dupe of a pair of jeans, or a clean photocopy of a book), doesn't make it okay.

I have many friends who are independent filmmakers scrapping a living, mostly not scrapping a living, off the films they make. The only chance they have to recoup the time and money they spent in making the film (not to mention the time and money they spent learning how to become good filmmakers, or good musicians, etc.) is when they sell the product.

If you want, you could have a larger conversation about what is really a crime, and whether something is a crime if we as individuals don't believe something should be illegal. But that's a slippery slope, because who gets to define where that line should be? Since it is very current in the news, we could start in India where lots of men apparently think it isn't a crime, or even morally wrong, to rape a woman. I guess they wouldn't even call it rape, since rape implies that it's a crime, but clearly the men who are doing these things think they have every right to have sex with whatever woman is available.

If things should be free for all, why not sex?

Yes, it's an absurd comparison, but no more absurd then thinking you have every right to make however many number of copies of a DVD that retails for $20 and give it away for free. Just as the men in India have the right to pay for sex, you'd have the right to buy as many DVDs and do with them what you will. :woohoo:


We're not discussing legality.

We're discussing theft.

Lots of things are technically legal or illegal that has nothing to do with whether they are moral or break the precepts.

Selling alcohol and guns is legal yet it wouldn't be in keeping with the Precepts as Buddhists.

Similarly, just because the MPAA lobbied to have some sort of "rights" over what I own, doesn't mean I recognize that, or that others do, or that it's immoral.

They are indulging greed.

Trying to fight change and make something that is, not not be.

Sex is free for all, all you have to do is get a partner, and you can have it.

I took copyright law in college. This was a big part of my course.

Copyright law applies to selling you can make as many coppies of a book as you want, but you can sell those copies of a book.

The problem is, film is essentially art.

Art, for thousands of years has never been an industry. Artists have always made their living by being supported by patrons, or by doing live shows or performances and selling tickets.

It was only with the advent of the video cassette and records, that the idea that art could be copied and and sold to many people in a non "live" way, came about.

But we are not back to where we have been for thousands of years, art can be coppied in an instant by anyone, so it is no longer viable to "sell" it peicemeal.

What we are back to is the "live" and "patron" and "commission" model.

A subscription service is essentially a modernized version of the "live music" model.

A subscription is a live feed.

They have to adapt, it's the law of change.

Technology does not flow backwards.

They can't make people buy things at the prices they are demanding, any more than sailmakers can make us go back to the great sailing days.

What they are doing is also illegal.

Industry leaders banding together to fix pricing models and drive out alternative competition is Cartel behavior and a violation of the Sherman Anti-trust act,
and other anti-monopoly laws.

This isn't some black and white issue, people are pushing back.

In Gassho,

Sara H
"Life is full of suffering. AND Life is full of the Eternal
IT IS OUR CHOICE
We can stand in our shadow, and wallow in the darkness,
OR
We can turn around.
It is OUR choice." -Rev. Basil

" ...out of fear, even the good harm one another. " -Rev. Dazui MacPhillamy
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Sara H » Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:12 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:Then you should probably acknowledge it is not always a "crime" in an ethical sense. it is one thing to knowingly take the work of say, a small software developer (or even a big sleazy one) without paying when you know you are supposed to (hard to square with the second precept), but it's murkier to download a piece of software which is ten years old, not available to buy, but still technically constitutes copyright infringement by downloading it, who exactly is this "stealing from" if the software in question is no longer even made commercially available?

This is a very good point and well made.

I agree with Johnny on this.

One of the things we (my household) download are rare films that are not distributed in the US.
Or films that are so uncommon that it would be very difficult to find a dvd of them.

What about computer and console games that are no longer distributed?

Are we to let these works of art vanish and let future generations of people no longer see them and watch them and play them because few grumpy people in companies don't want to distribute them or hold on to them forever?

One of the things I downloaded was the original Star Wars trilogy unaltered and unedited.

Just like they were shown in theaters originally.

Now you can only buy Lucas's "special editions" which have now become the "standard edition" and are increasingly becoming more "special" with each release as he adds more and more CGI to them. His current versions are increasingly completely different films than the originals.
His new versions are no longer the films that originally so impacted our society. And made us view science fiction film in a completely different way.

These films have historic significance and meaning.

They profoundly impacted our culture and the society of our world.
George Lucas isn't the only one who worked on them.

Other people directed them, people acted in them, some of those people havn't even received payment for their acting.

Are we to let these original Historic pieces vanish, because George Lucas wants to act like a film made before computers is a piece of software in constant need of updates?

It isn't, and the significance of these art pieces don't just belong to him, they belong to the world.

Other people have a right to see them as they originally were.

In Gassho,

Sara H.
"Life is full of suffering. AND Life is full of the Eternal
IT IS OUR CHOICE
We can stand in our shadow, and wallow in the darkness,
OR
We can turn around.
It is OUR choice." -Rev. Basil

" ...out of fear, even the good harm one another. " -Rev. Dazui MacPhillamy
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:21 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
uan wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:Uan you make some good points, but it is missing alot of nuance to say all file sharing is theft as well, there is a huge amount of grey area there.


The bank once gave me $20 dollars by mistake. It was a Saturday afternoon and when I discovered what had happened, it was was a inconvenient to go back to the bank, which was about to close, to return it (not to mention trying to explain what happened!). I thought about keeping the money, but decided to return it. Later I told a friend about this and I phrased the story as "I had a dilemma...". His reply stuck with me. He said, "you didn't have a dilemma, you had a temptation. You knew the right thing to do, you were tempted not to do it."

I'm not saying all file sharing it theft. There are files that have been put in the public domain and these can be shared. If I want, I can choose to make a documentary I've made available online. That's my call. But we all know what is what when it comes to file sharing, whether it's the a rip of The Dark Knight or Beyonce's latest CD (or whatever people are sharing). We want a free copy of something that people normally sell.

Being computer savvy, I can appreciate the temptation. And on the lists of crimes, it's far down the list - file sharing is more misdemeanor than felony, and more civil than criminal. But the relatively lack of severity of the offense doesn't mean there's been no transgression.


What do you say to my music example above?


File sharing itself isn't theft. It's what is being shared that could be theft. There are cases where musicians give their material away for free. There are others who request donations if you are able. There are some that make their music available for filmmakers or other artists and just request attribution. Moby does this. But often those that do give it away free don't want it to go on a Pirate Bay.

In those cases, it's being given away free.

The one thing I've learned working in film is that there is a lot of music where you think the artist actually owns the rights, but they actually don't. They've sold the rights, so even if they are cool for you to share it, they actually are not in a position to give that permission.

I do have issues with restrictions by the RIAA if they are trying to interfere outside of their actual jurisdiction - I don't have enough information to know what's going on with them. I have issues with how it's impossible (or near) to copy dvd's and software that you have every right to copy so that you have a backup of your own material.

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Then you should probably acknowledge it is not always a "crime" in an ethical sense. it is one thing to knowingly take the work of say, a small software developer (or even a big sleazy one) without paying when you know you are supposed to (hard to square with the second precept), but it's murkier to download a piece of software which is ten years old, not available to buy, but still technically constitutes copyright infringement by downloading it, who exactly is this "stealing from" if the software in question is no longer even made commercially available?



I'd agree with this point. It's like jaywalking in the middle of nowhere, not joyriding in a corvette down main street. And often times it comes down to a willingness to pay, but there's no mechanism to do so.

By the way, I don't claim to be holier than thou, nor am I without sin :tongue: I just think we should be honest with ourselves.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:28 am

Naw I didn't take your post as carrying that kind of attitude at all, I just think it's definitely a difficult ethical area.

I think can be theft fits it well...in an ethical sense at least.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Sara H » Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:46 am

Part of the thing Uan, is that I don't think you're also taking market forces into account.

Did you see my example about ship sail makers and such?

Another good example is Patent licensing.

Certain kinds of patents like Standard-Essential Patents cannot be not-sold or not-licensed.

If you are say Motorola, who invented a cell phone with an internal intenna instead of an external one, you cannot just not-license the use of that patent to Apple because they are your competition and making a more popular phone than you.

Same with apple and the touch screen phone, or with their user interface.

They have to license their patents as well to google and other companies who make other phones.

Part of this, is one also can't charge exorbitant amounts above what is "fair and reasonable" in the market.

Such also applies ethicaly I would argue to file sharing.

Movie makers and such cannot ethically charge unreasonable amounts for the cost of seeing a movie.

People have made it clear with netflix they are willing to pay 10 bucks a month.

They are not willing to pay 20 or 30 bucks per dvd.

The market has changed and the MPAA and software companies have to adapt and charge "fair and reasonable" amounts for content, as well as making all of their content libraries available, and not withhold content that is a part of world culture.

I don't know any commercial art student who can afford to pay the near thousand dollars for Adobe Creative Suite.

Every single college student I have ever met torrents that software. Every one.

It would be impossible for them to learn how to use it effectively if they didn't.

It's one thing if they are a large business torrenting it.

It's another thing for an individual student or someone trying to scrape a small business off the ground with no funding in a poor economy.

The first Pure Precept is Cease from Evil, or Do as little harm as Possible.

I always try to keep that in mind, as what is the lesser harm, what is the littlest harm one can do.

I think it's a greater harm to not let people see these films,

And I think it's a greater harm to not let students and small businesses have a fighting chance.

And I think it's a greater harm to not let billions of people have access to that cultural understanding that comes from seeing works of art.

But that's me personally.

In Gassho,

Sara
"Life is full of suffering. AND Life is full of the Eternal
IT IS OUR CHOICE
We can stand in our shadow, and wallow in the darkness,
OR
We can turn around.
It is OUR choice." -Rev. Basil

" ...out of fear, even the good harm one another. " -Rev. Dazui MacPhillamy
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Thu Jan 10, 2013 4:59 pm

Sara H wrote:
And I think it's a greater harm to not let students and small businesses have a fighting chance.

Sara


Herein lies the slippery slope. First we were talking about about making copies of dvds we own and giving them to a friend or some friends, or old out of date movies or software that are no longer in distribution.

Now we are talking about Adobe's $1000 Creative Suite that students have the "right" to so they can pursue "their" art. Let's toss in small businesses as well - though if a business can't afford a $1000 piece of software, perhaps they shouldn't be in business.

As I said. We should be honest with ourselves. You're approaching this issue from a very specific socio-economic-political point of view. Your beliefs basically allow you to unilaterally decide what is right and wrong and what is legal and illegal, regardless of what the society as a whole determines. That's all well and good when an issue is something that falls within our personal beliefs, but often there are others who feel their pov's give them the right to do extraordinary things - in the United States we've started two wars, we create laws that violate our basic constitution (the PATRIOT ACT, the NDAA), we have a President who talks about the need for war while accepting the Nobel Peace Prize. There are other cultures who believe it's ethical to kill their own daughters to "save face". And from their points of view, complete ethical and not violating any of their precepts.

On a more practical level, going back to your commercial art students example - and it's funny that you call them "commercial" as that implies they are going to try and make a living selling their art, which you feel should just be given away for free. As background, I went to film school when we actually made films using film stock. We edited actual work print reel to reel with little film viewers. Sometimes on flatbeds editing machines as large as a dining room table weighing 200 plus pounds. So I understand what it's like to be a struggling student in a creative field. I have also written plays and screenplays long hand and on typewriters (without the need for expensive software programs).

The one thing I've learned is that there's a difference between finding creative solutions to obstacles, and just taking short cuts. And it's very easy (much like we find in our daily Buddhist practice) to think a short cut is really a creative solution. Sometimes the creative solution is taking a short cut, but mostly short cuts lead you down the path of being a grinder.

The truth of it is, it's not the tools that make the artist, it's the mind. Finding and using "cheats" along the way to get yourself the best "tools", you're conditioning your mind in the wrong way. To think having the best tools is a pre-requisite to doing quality work is folly. Picasso sketches a bull on a napkin with 7 strokes and in those 7 strokes he has expressed more than the vast majority of people with Adobe Creative Suite ever will.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Thu Jan 10, 2013 5:09 pm

.......................

The one thing I've learned is that there's a difference between finding creative solutions to obstacles, and just taking short cuts. And it's very easy (much like we find in our daily Buddhist practice) to think a short cut is really a creative solution. Sometimes the creative solution is taking a short cut, but mostly short cuts lead you down the path of being a grinder.

The truth of it is, it's not the tools that make the artist, it's the mind. Finding and using "cheats" along the way to get yourself the best "tools", you're conditioning your mind in the wrong way. To think having the best tools is a pre-requisite to doing quality work is folly. Picasso sketches a bull on a napkin with 7 strokes and in those 7 strokes he has expressed more than the vast majority of people with Adobe Creative Suite ever will.


:good:

WIth software my hope is that the open source community continues to flourish and grow, to a point where Adobe can no longer charge so much for their bloated nonsense. As far as tools regarding software, there are so many good comparable freeware programs even today, and, by getting those (donating if you can) you are supporting the work of people who can continue to put out alternatives to to ridiculously priced software suites in the future.

Again all this says to me "don't take what is not freely given" is still the way to approach it, with a some definite grey areas.

Every single college student I have ever met torrents that software. Every one.


This is true, once torrenting came about, piracy has become ludicrously easy and mostly risk-free. I remember when piracy actually required enough work that plenty of folks wouldn't bother, in fact this is how it was when I was in college, then again this was when email was still a somewhat novel thing:) Still doesn't make it "right" from the perspective of a Buddhist does it? Most college kids I knew hopped into bed with everyone they could and were in a constant drunk/stoned haze - including me! I'm not sure they are the best indicator of morality ;) We are after all, talking about this in a Buddhist context, so plenty of the actions we see around us in society does will often serve as indicator or what we should avoid...don't you think?

I do think that ultimately what Sarah H has said about industry simply needing to change their business model is 100% true, companies like adobe have no business charging what they do for their software, it's a complete racket. There either needs to be a different model, or they better prices. It's also undeniable that when something costs $200 instead of $50, more people are going to torrent it. The thing about a business not needing to be in business if they can't afford $1000 simply doesn't hold water for me. It's also been my experience that it is the small business that will actually shell out the $1000 for some crap software suite just to stay legitimate, whereas an end user faces no real consequences for piracy..and I know that for some of the business the prices are definitely exorbitant.

That said, I still choose to only act in those "grey areas", rather than to just download whatever I want, I have seen things like indie games made by two guys in their basement that charge $20 getting pirated..that ain't cool.

As was mentioned though, technology isn't going to go backwards, it's unlikely that it will get harder to pirate, so industry needs to figure out new models, instead of charging way too much (the DvD example is especially apposite - almost nothing to manufacture), and focusing on anti-piracy.

For software though, IMO open-source as much as possible is the merit-making choice :)
Last edited by Johnny Dangerous on Thu Jan 10, 2013 5:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Thu Jan 10, 2013 5:32 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
I do think that ultimately what Sarah H has said about industry simply needing to change their business model is 100% true, companies like adobe have no business charging what they do for their software, it's a complete racket. There either needs to be a different model, or they better prices. It's also undeniable that when something costs $200 instead of $50, more people are going to torrent it



I agree that business models need to change and they will when the market forces them to.

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
The thing about a business not needing to be in business if they can't afford $1000 simply doesn't hold water for me. That said, I still choose to only act in those "grey areas", rather than to just download whatever I want.


I know editors making $750/day. A yearly or every two purchase of new equipment etc is part of doing business.

The problem is there are a lot of people wanting creative services who don't want to pay a fair price driving prices down so that young ppl starting out in the business work essentially for free to start building their reel and it's a downward spiral. Who this really hurts in the long run are those young ppl just starting out doing great technical work at low prices and they reset the bar lower and lower.

When we talk about the market, often we forget that part of the market is the student who's spent 4 years in college, thousands of hours and tens of thousands of dollars on tuition to acquire some mad skills and then comes out and acts like he/she didn't invest a dime. They take work for free that they should charge 50/hr for. Not very savvy. And it skews the perception in the market for the true value of their service, which doesn't come cheap.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Thu Jan 10, 2013 5:35 pm

Usually "The Market" as a source of reasoning is synonymous with doing whatever is best for the people who generate the most profit. Things like charging too much, lowering wages, even forms of usury etc. are just said to be "keeping competitive" - which may be so, in which case - the rules by which The Market operates differ alot from the rules I am trying to apply to myself as a Buddhist, maybe they even go in opposite directions.

This is what I was saying about not letting capitalism or industry dictate what is moral to us, I don't feel inclined to act based on market forces, from a Buddhist/2nd precept perspective at least.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Thu Jan 10, 2013 6:16 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:This is what I was saying about not letting capitalism or industry dictate what is moral to us, I don't feel inclined to act based on market forces, from a Buddhist/2nd precept perspective at least.


I'm at work so I can't go into it much (and my previous post was made as I was needing to get to work!) - but I do bring quite a few Buddhist views to this issue, including causes and conditions, impermanence and emptiness, wants and desires, etc. and it'd be interesting to discuss some of these issues (file sharing, markets, etc. ) from a Buddhist perspective, sort of an "applied Buddhism".
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Thu Jan 10, 2013 6:36 pm

uan wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:This is what I was saying about not letting capitalism or industry dictate what is moral to us, I don't feel inclined to act based on market forces, from a Buddhist/2nd precept perspective at least.


I'm at work so I can't go into it much (and my previous post was made as I was needing to get to work!) - but I do bring quite a few Buddhist views to this issue, including causes and conditions, impermanence and emptiness, wants and desires, etc. and it'd be interesting to discuss some of these issues (file sharing, markets, etc. ) from a Buddhist perspective, sort of an "applied Buddhism".



Sure..let's try it, I assumed this is the context that BML intended the thread in.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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