Filesharing - Movies etc

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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Thu Jan 10, 2013 6:51 pm

We could rephrase BML's question as "should things that get people more entrenched in Samara be more universally distributed for free?" :tongue:
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:06 pm

uan wrote:We could rephrase BML's question as "should things that get people more entrenched in Samara be more universally distributed for free?" :tongue:


Ha that's true..I think that's why my mind gravitates towards trying to simply take stuff that IS freely given if it's needed, and to try not taking stuff that isn't. Ultimately the thing is to need less I guess.

Pirating has an odd effect in that (you see this especially with music) it seems like the people I know with the biggest digital music collections often are those with the least taste, and least regard for the music..it is just about collecting itself, an unhealthy thing from a Buddhist perspective I would think.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:44 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Pirating has an odd effect in that (you see this especially with music) it seems like the people I know with the biggest digital music collections often are those with the least taste, and least regard for the music..it is just about collecting itself, an unhealthy thing from a Buddhist perspective I would think.


The image of Hungry Ghosts keeps popping to mind. I think with file sharing the ease and access to movies and music (software, etc) lends itself to consuming more and more while one's ability to process what's being consumed diminishes. One of the things I work on in my own practice is "presence". It's easy to lose mindfulness when things just require a click of a mouse button.

We can also be seduced by the instant gratification of file sharing and all things digital. I'm reminded of this comedian on Conan who joked about this, where he gets on an airplane and an announcement is made that there is now wifi on the flight. Then the wifi breaks and the guy next to him goes "that's lame". The comedian jokes "the guys complaining about not having something he didn't know existed 5 minutes beforehand." :tongue:
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:54 pm

That's Louis CK and yeah, completely accurate.

I remember when the internet was just becoming a thing, I was 17 or so, it was incredible. We didn't even have real web browsing yet, and everyone still had dialup for the most part- at best. Most people (those who were willing to invest the time) used a Unix shell login to access things like email and newsgroups. Some had AOL or Compuserve that wanted ease of use. Now the internet is this all pervasive thing, and you can do more on your phone than you could 20 years ago on the nicest of PC's. And yet, we can see the uses the technology normally gets put to...it has it's good points, but it shows how our samsaric minds transform things to conform to their longings, shortcomings, and neuroses.

I know it makes me sound like an old man (not quite there yet I don't think) but i'm often amazed by how much the generations that grew up in the midst of this stuff take it for granted. I live in a place where we regularly lose power, the first thing people say when I tell them this is "well at least you have a mobile phone"..but I don't, when I tell them that they just look at me weird.

I like that technology allows for things like this forum, the huge amount of free access to Buddhist scripture, and many other positives..but it is good to do without sometimes and in some ways, and to feel out where we have addictive behaviors toward it I think - I know I certainly have them.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Indrajala » Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:31 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:I remember when the internet was just becoming a thing, I was 17 or so, it was incredible.


I first used the net in 1995, and then my family got access in 1996.

I found out how ftp servers worked and suddenly had all this shareware I could download for free (I remember buying the cheap floppy discs of "shareware" that were for sale at the store).

A few years later Napster came online and I could download whole mp3s. CD burners became affordable and everyone was burning CDs.

Now you can download gigabytes of data in a few minutes. HD movies, games, music... anything.

There is no satisfaction however. You need to have better graphics, better sound quality.

Even downloading aside, the constant social interaction via the net is an addiction. Some of my friends can't put down their mobile phones as they're always checking their messages and Facebook continually. There's no end to it. It is more efficient to send them a text message than it is to speak to them in person.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Sara H » Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:40 am

Uan you are confusing legality with morality.

Illegal does not equal theft. Nor does it equal immoral.

You are confusing copyright violation with theft.

It is not.

A copyright, is a contract of sorts.

It says I the recipient agree to give the originator certain rights.

If I violate that agreement I am in breech of contract, but breaching a contract is not stealing.

When I buy a dvd, I don't sign a document that says I agree to bestow certain rights and agree to follow certain restrictions.

It's my property.

And indeed, when someone uploads a file to share, it is that uploader who may be violating the agreement. The downloaders were never party to the agreement and are not bound by it.

Loss of money does not mean stealing.


You can say whatever you want about a "slippery slope" Uan. That's just a persuasion technique.

Just because some of these companies are loosing money, doesn't mean it's being "stolen" from them.

The problem is theirs.

If I come up with a cool way to fold an origami dragon with paper, make them for sale, and somebody buys my origami dragon, takes it apart, learns how to fold it, and then folds a bunch more and gives them to their friends, they aren't stealing from me. Nor are their friends stealing from me by receiving the gift.

Am I loosing money?

Yes.

But who's fault is that?

Mine.

For being stupid enough to try to sell something that anyone can copy with a piece of paper.
Perhaps, in this alternate universe world, paper used to only be available to lots of money,
and selling origami used to actually be a viable business option.

And now, somebody invented mass paper, and I can't sell origami dragons any more.

But that's life. I can't make technology flow backwards, I have to accept it, move on.
Get out of the business, or change my business plan or model.

That's the way things are.

The U.S. Postal service is completely bankrupt.

Why?

Email.

Are people who send emails stealing from postal service employees by not buying stamps and envelopes and sending letters with paper?

No.

Technology changed. They need to adapt.
And they may end up shut down, or probably severely downsized.

Should we all pay taxes to subsidize jobs of people who do little more than stick juckmail (paper spam) in our inboxes?


Things change.

That's the way it is.

The days of people making tons of money buying windows software in large paper boxes with nothing more than a cd and a couple sheets of paper inside them are over.

The days of people making tons of money selling records and dvd's are over.

That ship has sailed.

It's time for new things.

In Gassho,

Sara H.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Sara H » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:08 am

Uan I think you're just buying into MPAA propaganda.

It's like those commercials that are loaded into DVD's now.

Imagine a Postal Service commercial of the same:

"You wouldn't steal a Purse!

You wouldn't steal a DVD!

Pirating Letters (emailing) is Stealing!!

Stealing is Against the Law!!!"

-Brought to you by the U.S. Postal Service... (because we're loosing lots of money to emailing..)
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Karma Dorje » Fri Jan 11, 2013 10:19 am

Don't be stupid people. If it was theft, you would get charged with theft. There is not a single country that charges you with theft. You are charged with copyright violation. QED. It is illegal but it is not theft.

Theft can only be of a scarce resource, i.e. you must deprive someone of something they already have. You can't steal something without depriving someone of an actual thing, whether in terms of Buddhist morality or legality. Digitally reproducing any work does not deprive anyone of a scarce resource, in fact it makes the resource less scarce by producing an identical copy. You are not *taking* anything. Throughout the history of dharma, copying has been the means that dharma was passed on. Moreover, most of the great writers and thinkers borrowed liberally and without attribution from previous authors because if something had been expressed well, there was no point in reinventing the wheel. If you want to convince yourself that you are violating some buddhist tenet by copying a file then knock yourself out, I just think back to all of the texts from the library I photocopied for my guru over the years.

It's quite aside from this how one feels about remunerating authors, artists, developers for their hard work. Translators and indie musicians in particular can have a pretty tenuous existence-- they really need our support. Copyright, particularly when taken to the lengths that the DMCA goes in the US is ridiculous and a prime reason why I use open source software whenever there is a viable solution.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:17 am

Just so we're clear on how the movie industry really works: http://youtu.be/CuqvlMxfGA4

Because even communists understand IP and distribution. :lol:
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:29 am

From a Buddhist perspective though, is it really about this concept of whether or not it's officially "stealing"?

If you break it down into it's essential components, i'd say that it is ultimately just about whether or not what you are taking, consuming, copying whatever is freely given or not. If it is not, and requires some extra effort to be obtained then it does not matter whether or not you want to define it as stealing, it is the volitional act of willfully taking something that you know, in some sense, however misguided, you are not supposed to take in the manner you are - even if you "should" be able to. Arguably trying to base your actions on how things "should" be to justify an action is detrimental to applying Dharma..don't you think?

Again i'm not arguing one side or the other, the truth of this to me is being able to apply the precepts to reason out this confusing area, there are always grey areas, and certainly places where i'm just fine with not adhering to a strict rule about it. There are issues of law and justice here that point in a different direction than Dharma does at times, and if I look through that lens, my viewpoint is that for the most part copyright law is absolute nonsense. However, I don't think looking just at worldy laws and concepts of justice is necessarily the "correct" answer about how to conduct our personal actions from a Buddhist point of view.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Karma Dorje » Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:47 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:From a Buddhist perspective though, is it really about this concept of whether or not it's officially "stealing"?

If you break it down into it's essential components, i'd say that it is ultimately just about whether or not what you are taking, consuming, copying whatever is freely given or not. If it is not, and requires some extra effort to be obtained then it does not matter whether or not you want to define it as stealing, it is the volitional act of willfully taking something that you know, in some sense, however misguided, you are not supposed to take in the manner you are - even if you "should" be able to. Arguably trying to base your actions on how things "should" be to justify an action is detrimental to applying Dharma..don't you think?

Again i'm not arguing one side or the other, the truth of this to me is being able to apply the precepts to reason out this confusing area, there are always grey areas, and certainly places where i'm just fine with not adhering to a strict rule about it. There are issues of law and justice here that point in a different direction than Dharma does at times, and if I look through that lens, my viewpoint is that for the most part copyright law is absolute nonsense. However, I don't think looking just at worldy laws and concepts of justice is necessarily the "correct" answer about how to conduct our personal actions from a Buddhist point of view.


It's crystal clear to me. You aren't taking something, you are copying. It is absolutely not within the realm of the pancashila if someone gives you a book to copy or you borrow it from the library. If your conscience tells you it is wrong to break copyright law, by all means follow your conscience. The "grey area" exists only because copyright trolls and the marketing people in the recording industry are pushing an image that is on the surface of it completely false. It's not stealing. Propaganda aside, no one has ever been charged with stealing. We have well established property laws for theft. Do you think the recording industry would have been so insistent to get the DMCA passed in the US if copying was theft? They could have simply used long-standing criminal law.

The act of copying harms no one. Whether it renders certain business models unsustainable is a different matter. We should support as much as we can the hard work of those who are translating the dharma into our local languages. That is a given. Let's not confuse the matter by intruding moral matters which don't exist in any reality outside of the recording industry's spin.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:22 am

I feel like you either misconstrued what I wrote, or simply haven't read enough of the thread to see the nuances of the things i've talked about.

I specifically said it very well might not be theft, but that whether or not you define it as that is hardly the point, I am not sure what exactly you're arguing against, but it seems only tangentially related to what I wrote.

From a standpoint of volitional action, is "copying" something that is not freely given better than "taking" something which is not freely given...from a moral perspective, or even a logical one this seems like a really dodgy argument. Whether it directly harms someone also is not the only question, there are plenty of times where actual taking of physical things not given also does not harm anyone at all..is it ok then?

I have been around for EVERY stink the recording industry has made since it starting bitching about the ability to record on cassettes then DATs, the CD's etc. I don't need to be lectured on that, I also am married to an attorney so i've seen plenty of the actual law, including it's egregious abuses. None of this though excuses a Buddhist from following the precepts, it's as if people are trying to apply a wordly view of "well everything should be free anyway" to a decision which, by nature requires mindfulness of one's actions in each circumstances regarding whether or not something is freely given for your use - not just a blanket answer.

As has been mentioned, there are definitely grey areas where I would download copyrighted material, such as the movie and music examples give earlier. However the idea that this is purely a cut and dried issue of huge industries abusing copyright law doesn't hold water at all, I could look on Pirate Bay or something similar right now and there would be (for instance) plenty of games by indie game makers (who incidentally make actual creative, interesting games instead of swill) that make hardly any money.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:23 am

Karma Dorje wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:From a Buddhist perspective though, is it really about this concept of whether or not it's officially "stealing"?

If you break it down into it's essential components, i'd say that it is ultimately just about whether or not what you are taking, consuming, copying whatever is freely given or not. If it is not, and requires some extra effort to be obtained then it does not matter whether or not you want to define it as stealing, it is the volitional act of willfully taking something that you know, in some sense, however misguided, you are not supposed to take in the manner you are - even if you "should" be able to. Arguably trying to base your actions on how things "should" be to justify an action is detrimental to applying Dharma..don't you think?

Again i'm not arguing one side or the other, the truth of this to me is being able to apply the precepts to reason out this confusing area, there are always grey areas, and certainly places where i'm just fine with not adhering to a strict rule about it. There are issues of law and justice here that point in a different direction than Dharma does at times, and if I look through that lens, my viewpoint is that for the most part copyright law is absolute nonsense. However, I don't think looking just at worldy laws and concepts of justice is necessarily the "correct" answer about how to conduct our personal actions from a Buddhist point of view.


It's crystal clear to me. You aren't taking something, you are copying. It is absolutely not within the realm of the pancashila if someone gives you a book to copy or you borrow it from the library. If your conscience tells you it is wrong to break copyright law, by all means follow your conscience. The "grey area" exists only because copyright trolls and the marketing people in the recording industry are pushing an image that is on the surface of it completely false. It's not stealing. Propaganda aside, no one has ever been charged with stealing. We have well established property laws for theft. Do you think the recording industry would have been so insistent to get the DMCA passed in the US if copying was theft? They could have simply used long-standing criminal law.

The act of copying harms no one. Whether it renders certain business models unsustainable is a different matter. We should support as much as we can the hard work of those who are translating the dharma into our local languages. That is a given. Let's not confuse the matter by intruding moral matters which don't exist in any reality outside of the recording industry's spin.



you're playing with semantics. The biggest fallacy here is the constant referring to "The Recording Industry" as a singular entity and then unilaterally deciding it's okay to do something because against it's "The Recording Industry". And who are you to say what constitutes harm, especially when we are talking about ethics and morality?

How about a real world example with real people? I know a filmmaker by the name of James Longley, who is a brilliant documentary filmmaker and a two time Academy Award nominee. It is incredibly hard to make a living making documentary films. He made a film called Iraq in Fragments (which was one of the films he was nominated for). About 2 years back he found out it was being shared on Pirate Bay. He didn't want it to be shared on Pirate Bay so he contacted them and asked them to stop (at least to remove the torrent file from their site). In a nutshell they basically told him to eff off. He's the filmmaker. Oh, he's not a millionaire, not even close. He gets by. Just like all of us.

Since we are on a Mahayana forum, we should also consider little things like emptiness and impermanence. What is a film or cd? Ultimately? Nothing. There's no need to have them. Yet I guess there are people who "need" them even against the wishes of the creator of the work.

Folks should try to earn a living off of intellectual property before becoming so cavalier about copyright. Copyright isn't a bad word or concept just because some evil corporation abuses it.

With regards to James, he ain't the "Man", he's not the MPAA, or "The Recording Industry". He was the actual filmmaker who didn't want his film shared. And right now he's in Afghanistan working on another film that will probably take 3 years of his life to complete. And hopefully he'll make enough money to support his efforts making his take film. But I guess we shouldn't let a real human being intrude on theoretical and abstract constructions of a convenient "reality".
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Karma Dorje » Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:58 am

Enough with the straw men, you two. I have never once said that we should pirate *anything* to stick it to The Man. I have simply said it is not theft, either from a Buddhist or a legal perspective and I am tired of this old saw being trotted out. A filmmaker is a businessperson. There are legal avenues to pursue if someone pirates their movie and they should certainly do so. There are laws against copyright infringement. Someone pirating the film is breaking the law and is subject to the consequences of their action. I don't think the recording industry is evil, whatever that is. It's a business. They use their lobbying power to get preferential treatment, just like everyone else. Copyright is a legal and an economic issue, not a moral one.

What I have said is that there is nothing in pratimoksha that even *remotely* prohibits copying texts, music or movies. You can not deprive someone of something they do not possess. The argument that by pirating, one deprives the artist of future revenue may be valid legally, but it makes no sense in terms of buddhist morality.

When a new text comes out that I am interested in, I buy a copy. I then digitize it so that I can carry my tablet with me with my complete library. This breaks copyright laws, but I'll be damned if it is immoral. What I am saying has nothing to do with semantics. It's a simple fact. Were there only a semantic difference between copyright infringement and theft, there wouldn't need to be all of these new laws on the books.

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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Sat Jan 12, 2013 3:08 am

What I have said is that there is nothing in pratimoksha that even *remotely* prohibits copying texts, music or movies. You can not deprive someone of something they do not possess. The argument that by pirating, one deprives the artist of future revenue may be valid legally, but it makes no sense in terms of buddhist morality.



Strawman? Pot, meet kettle.

When a new text comes out that I am interested in, I buy a copy. I then digitize it so that I can carry my tablet with me with my complete library. This breaks copyright laws, but I'll be damned if it is immoral. What I am saying has nothing to do with semantics. It's a simple fact. Were there only a semantic difference between copyright infringement and theft, there wouldn't need to be all of these new laws on the books.

Sorry, man. Homey don't play that.


This is not the sort of usage anyone here has been talking about, it's not even close, and I have no idea why you would think it was. We have been talking about FILE SHARING of stuff with others through torrenting and such, not personal use of copied material, which is sort of a non-issue in context. Nor has anyone remotely suggested copyright law is a basis for moral decision making.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Karma Dorje » Sat Jan 12, 2013 11:40 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:This is not the sort of usage anyone here has been talking about, it's not even close, and I have no idea why you would think it was. We have been talking about FILE SHARING of stuff with others through torrenting and such, not personal use of copied material, which is sort of a non-issue in context. Nor has anyone remotely suggested copyright law is a basis for moral decision making.


It's most certainly *not* a non-issue. If I have copied the book for my own use, the act in question has been done-- I have made a copy of the book. So are we all agreed that the actual act of copying is not itself theft?

How about if I lend my hardcover copy of said book to a friend? Is that theft? Does a library steal something when it lends out the same book repeatedly?

Lastly, what if I give a copy of a pdf of that book to a friend instead of the hard copy? At what point exactly does this act metamorphose into "taking what is not given"?

There may be all kinds of legal and economic reasons to respect copyright law. My point has simply been that we should drop this whole "copying is theft" ruse, because it is completely incoherent.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Indrajala » Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:36 pm

Strictly speaking, you have to physically move something perceived as belonging to another from its original location for the act to constitute theft.

As far as the Buddhist manuals on precepts go, there is no such thing as stealing songs, intellectual property or copyright material.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Sat Jan 12, 2013 4:26 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:This is not the sort of usage anyone here has been talking about, it's not even close, and I have no idea why you would think it was. We have been talking about FILE SHARING of stuff with others through torrenting and such, not personal use of copied material, which is sort of a non-issue in context. Nor has anyone remotely suggested copyright law is a basis for moral decision making.


It's most certainly *not* a non-issue. If I have copied the book for my own use, the act in question has been done-- I have made a copy of the book. So are we all agreed that the actual act of copying is not itself theft?

How about if I lend my hardcover copy of said book to a friend? Is that theft? Does a library steal something when it lends out the same book repeatedly?

Lastly, what if I give a copy of a pdf of that book to a friend instead of the hard copy? At what point exactly does this act metamorphose into "taking what is not given"?

There may be all kinds of legal and economic reasons to respect copyright law. My point has simply been that we should drop this whole "copying is theft" ruse, because it is completely incoherent.



You are correct that file sharing isn't "theft" in the legal definition of the term and it falls under the umbrella of infringement of copyright. While they may not be exactly the same, it's not completely incoherent to consider them to be equivalent. The disturbing part of your argument "there may be all kinds of legal and economic reasons to respect copyright law" is that you don't import any ethical or moral reasons to respect the law. Infringement of copyright may not technically be considered theft, but it is as egregious, if not more so, and is tantamount to stealing. In effect, a person who uses file sharing to come in possession of something that was not intended to be freely distributed by anyone, is benefitting in a tangible way from the fruits of someone else's labor and their property.

It's easy to parse anything into an infinite number of combinations to show how any given action doesn't constitute theft (as a relevant example). Let's say I steal a computer and later the police come and see me using the computer (in a coffee shop). They want to arrest me for stealing the computer. But I say I didn't. They might say, you broke into the owner's house and took the computer. But I'd say, I only borrowed the computer and intended to give it back. Also I did not break into his house, because the door was open and the computer was sitting right there inside the door. And since I only reached into and grabbed the computer I didn't even trespass. They might ask, if I was borrowing the computer, why didn't I ask the owner? He wasn't there I'd say. How do you know the owner would have said yes? They would ask, what expectation did you have the owner would allow you to borrow their computer. I'd say, because he's into file sharing and unrestricted access to modern culture. :tongue:

I remember walking with a couple of friends who were in law school and had just returned to school after a summer of working as interns in law firms (after their first year of law school). And one of them said "you know, practicing (law) isn't about right or wrong, it's about points of law."

You ask at what point does the act metamorphose into "taking what is not given"? It's almost like you are essentially saying, since it's too confusing to really know, it's better to just say it never does metamorphoses. Compare it to traffic laws. How do I know how fast I can drive? Well the speed limits are posted. Well, why do I have to drive slower on this road that seems wide open in the middle of nowhere, but I can drive faster on this parkway with 100s of other cars? What if there are no signs posted? In the latter case, most cities have a law that states what the normed speed limit for the city "unless otherwise posted." In the US we have school zones where the speed limit is 20mph. There are some zones where the school isn't visible and people will complain why they have to slow down when there aren't any children present. You can drive a car at 40 mph and in some places you are okay, some places you are breaking the law, but not in a significant way (40 in a 30 mph zone), but in others, you are going 2x the speed limit and that is considered dangerous driving. Same action, but we know the circumstances where it is okay and where it is not okay.

With regards to copyright, when you purchase a book or dvd, you know what you are allowed to do with it. You asked about libraries. I don't know book publishing, but libraries have customarily bought their films (vhs, dvds) through special distribution channels where they pay a whole lot more ($600-1000 for a film title, not $20). This is also similar to how sales work with schools. It's not that the dvd costs more, but because it is expected that 10, 20, 100 or more people will watch that film.

The most important thing to understand, when you buy a dvd, you are actually only buying the physical dvd, the disc. You are not buying the material on the disc. That material comes with very specific limitations. You buy a DVD of the Life of Pi, rip a copy and give it to your friend, you have just "taken what was not given".

The only reason this seems confusing morally or ethically is that so many people don't understand or care about copyright or, more fundamentally, intellectual property. They think that since you can't touch it or hold it, it's not real. But since we're on a Buddhist forum, how many lamas or masters (of other schools) have effectively tapped on a table and asked "is this table real? is there a table?" You could argue, that's only true in an ultimate sense, that the table doesn't inherently exist. But conventionally, there is a table. Except that there are some enlightened masters (and I have only heard anecdotal stories), that have demonstrated that, indeed, even conditionally, the table doesn't exist.

I know many people who have had their work used without permission or misused. While some of these instances don't rise to the level of criminal, or even civil, violations, they were ethically questionable to say the least.
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby uan » Sat Jan 12, 2013 4:44 pm

Huseng wrote:Strictly speaking, you have to physically move something perceived as belonging to another from its original location for the act to constitute theft.

As far as the Buddhist manuals on precepts go, there is no such thing as stealing songs, intellectual property or copyright material.



This is really interesting. It's always been one of the questions I keep gnawing at on how karma works? Who needs to be perceiving something? Is it the person doing the taking? Or is it the perception of the person that something was taken from? And what if you just use something without permission?

So back in the Buddha's day, in some royal court somewhere, a guy comes up with a song to sing to the King in the hopes that that king will reward him and give him money that he can use to support his family. While practicing in privacy, he's overheard by another singer who memorizes the song, rushes to the king and sings it for the royal court. The king is so please he give the guys a treasure. The king praises him "what beautiful words put together in ways no one could imagine."

And if the original creator of that song were to protest? The king would say "how could he have taken your words? Words are just air. There's nothing to it. In fact, if you think those words are real, then you were stupid and irresponsible to leave them lying around for someone to take. I shall have you put to death, since no one that stupid should be associated with my court as that could bring insufferable future harm to countless people in my kingdom!"

And everyone would live happily ever after, according to the precepts. :rolling:
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Re: Filesharing - Movies etc

Postby Indrajala » Sat Jan 12, 2013 6:05 pm

uan wrote:This is really interesting. It's always been one of the questions I keep gnawing at on how karma works? Who needs to be perceiving something? Is it the person doing the taking? Or is it the perception of the person that something was taken from? And what if you just use something without permission?


If you want to know about the basics of karma you might consider the following:

https://sites.google.com/site/dharmadep ... rmaoutline

Karma is volitional action. To knowingly take something that belongs to someone else without their consent is an unwholesome act, the result of which is suffering. To borrow an item while knowing the owner would be fine with it is not an unwholesome act. It would be neutral.
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