Movie Piracy

Discussion in 'Soap Box' started by anonymous51, Apr 8, 2009.

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  1. anonymous51

    anonymous51 Staff Alumni

    Instead of writing out my views on the matter I will share a couple of wee stories to compare to the subject :

    Lets say my friend has just bought a pizza from a chip shop. He thinks the pizza tastes so good, and because I have no money to afford my own, he decides to share his delicious pizza for me to try.

    Is it considered stealing because I have eaten a pizza without paying the chip shop owners? Is my friend a criminal because he decided to share his food (music?) with another person?

    It is a sunny day out so a man decides to set up a projector in his front garden, and asks all passers by to come and sit down and watch his favourite DVD with him.

    Should this man be arrested for allowing to watch a movie without paying for it?

    Why is it a crime that someone decides to share music or movies, that he/she has paid for, with the public online when you can do the same thing outside of the internet? Video sites are for uploading your favourite videos for others to watch, so why is it that if your favourite video is a blockbuster movie you are suddenly commiting a crime?
  2. bull$hitboy

    bull$hitboy Well-Known Member

    Because of the Berne Convention :tongue:

    Well seriously, Intellectual property is a case of your not buying the product supposedly, so what are you actually paying for? If I scratch my DVD I have to buy another physical copy even though I've paid for the "right" to watch it. Media conglomerates want to have their cake and eat it too.
  3. hammockmonkey

    hammockmonkey Well-Known Member

    Let's go steal stuff.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 8, 2009
  4. bull$hitboy

    bull$hitboy Well-Known Member

    Is the issue copyright so? The USA originally had a coyright period of 14 years. The USA now has a copyright period of 120 years for corporations. Thanks Mickey Mouse. Is copyright kinda of a joke that defeats its original purpose.
  5. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    False analogy.

    A pizza is not intellectual property.

    Further, the man in the second case is indeed airing something without paying the royalties and therefore should be asked to remove it, and would in all probability comply.

    Intellectual property theft is theft.

    ...except in Canada! W00t w00t!
  6. Acy

    Acy Mama Bear - TLC, Common Sense Staff Member Safety & Support

    It's a copyright issue.

    The people who own the copyright decide if someone else can use the piece of work or not. The copyright holder/owner gets paid for the use of a song, complete CD/DVD, printed piece of music, or other audio or visuals - the same as an artist, photographer, author or publisher gets paid something if they own the copyright to the "printing/publishing/use" of their work. A photograph, for example, can be placed with an agency that arranges the sale to or use of the image by commercial enterprises. The agency charges the user a fee for use in "commercial products" - that is, in products that generate revenue for whoever uses it. That payment is divided by the agency and the artist/photographer according to whatever contract they've made.

    Copyright laws might vary from country to country, but, generally, the original artist, musician, author, publisher, recording company or motion picture corp owns the copyright or gets a percentage of the revenue - unless they sell or sign over the royalty rights (their part of the copyright) to someone else. In some cases, the original artist holds the copyright until he/she dies. At that point, it can become part of the estate or be transferred to family or bequeathed as directed by the original artist. The "heir" can choose to sell the copyright/royalty rights. If they now own the entire right to the work, they might let the work go into the public domain, which means anyone can now use the work.

    Recorded pieces, such as a song, are a little more complicated. A musician who performs and records the piece might not be the composer. The musician might have to pay a fee to the composer (or the composer's agent or the distributor - who hold the rights for deciding who gets to use the piece). But when the recording musician's recording is released, that musician holds copyright on that particular recording, and if someone uses it, the musician gets paid - but part of what he/she earns, goes to the composer/or the distributor of the written music and/or lyrics. Even live music can be subject to copyright fees, but this is generally arranged as part of the performing musician's fee for use contract for the piece.

    With movies, actors get paid a royalty or percentage of the revenue each time a movie is sold, rented, shown in a theater or on television. The movie production company and/or distributor and the theaters get cut from the ticket price or CD/DVD price too.

    Now for the pizza analogy. A pizza is a considered to be a single item. Once it's consumed, it's gone - it can't be used again. There are no royalties paid for each piece or bite of the whole. A recording/print/publication on the other hand is a "reiteration of the original work," and the owners of such originals are paid if the work is used or sold for a "reiteration." Each copy of the whole is paid for by the purchaser (a song, clip, movie, book, article are all "wholes"), and the artist/copyright holder receives a royalty on the sale. It is a breach of copyright to copy DVDs and other recordings or to photocopy books, articles, etc., because it deprives the copyright holder and/or the artist/distributor of their income on a legitimate sale of the whole.

    Let's say you buy some land, pay for materials and construction and in the end you have a lovely apartment building. You could charge $2000/month for the "use" of a big flat. If people just moved in and used the flats without permission and without paying you, you'd be deprived of that $2000/month revenue. So really, they're stealing. In the same way, if someone pays $20 for a DVD, they can play it for themselves as often as they want because they've paid for that right for as long as they own it (and keep it in good shape). They own it as a "whole," and they can even give that one single DVD which they purchased to someone else because they own that one copy of it. That is what they paid for. But they cannot make a "duplicate" of it because that is another "reiteration" of the whole and making a copy deprives the copyright holder of revenue from a sale to which the copyright holder is entitled.

    (I'm sorry...I'm sure this sounds like a classroom lecture or as if I'm some kind of DVD cop. This issue was part of my professional work for a long, long time, so I'm familiar with it and have had dealings with peeved artists/copyright owners who felt bilked out of legitimate sales revenues/royalties.)
  7. hammockmonkey

    hammockmonkey Well-Known Member

    I have a really tough time caring about the copyright owner's rights. I know it's a dick thing but honestly, and I'm thinking more of digital music than movies, the industry really just dropped the ball and has themselves to blame.

    They didn't pay attention to the potential of the internet and missed setting up a legitimate way to get digital music. Then, once they did figure out that millions of people wanted to have their music on their computers they fucked it up by thinking they should use DRM, which seriously was retarded of them. I understand their logic of not wanting people to be able to give music away, however there were some unintended problems. Namely, if your harddrive died or you got a new computer and you tried to retain your legally purchased songs it was considered illegal to copy them to your new harddrive. What's the point of buying a song if you can still be told you stole it?

    One thing, again focus on music and not movies, is that copying songs has long been contested by the music industry (cassettes are killing music!) but in court they have lost, same with movie industries and VHS. That is, it is the right of the CD owner to copy the music and GIVE to a friend as a gift.
  8. Acy

    Acy Mama Bear - TLC, Common Sense Staff Member Safety & Support

    I understand your concerns. :smile: Especially when a hard drive just crashes and dies completely, and you've not done anything to cause it. I suppose the copyright holder sees it in the same light as when a CD gets scratched - we still have to buy a new one to replace it, even if the scratch wasn't our fault. (I'm not "excusing" these situations, just saying that's how it seems to be viewed.)

    As for the copying and giving that copy to a friend, I believe (not certain - but I believe) at least sometimes you can make a single copy as a gift. I don't think you can make multiple copies of the one disc and give them out to your many mates. You definitely cannot SELL or make a profit on a copy unless you pay for the right to do so.

    Well, what can I say...copyright, trademark, intellectual property and rights to those are huge issues that have mega-$$$$$$$$$$ at stake for the "winners." Like so many things in this world, when it involves money and who is entitled to making money and who must spend money, it isn't always entirely "fair."
  9. jameslyons

    jameslyons Well-Known Member

    I stream movies and download music online, but I have no illusions that it's stealing. Movies and music costs millions of dollars to produce; the hope is that after the product is created people will have the ability to make a profit. Intellectual rights are as valid as general copyright. However, the movie and music industry became too greedy in protecting their items - instead of stopping sites that preview movies before their theatrical release, they focus on people who toook one or two songs.

    And Itunes is bloody ridiculous. You buy a song and then you can only listen to that song on three computers. I can't stand Itunes. I bought $450 worth of music, my computer died, and even though they had records of what I bought, they wouldn't let me download new copies. They argue that you aren't buying the song, but rather the right to download the song.

    Until there's a more reasonable agreement between companies and pirates, I'll stick with piracy.
  10. bull$hitboy

    bull$hitboy Well-Known Member

    It's down to convenience. Why would I pay for something when I can get it better for free? If I buy a DVD its got DRM on it, DeCSS can be cracked but that's probably violating the DMCA, I don't live around there so that nonsense legislation has about as much weight as a piece of turd. I can download a movie in HD, do what I want with it, I don't even have to watch it because it cost nothing(except maybe bandwidth). It's an intangible product and as such why should I pay that kind of money for a substandard copy?
  11. soliloquise

    soliloquise Well-Known Member

    musicians have to make a living too you know....
  12. anonymous51

    anonymous51 Staff Alumni

    Its quite ironic then that the majority of artists who are making a fuss about piracy are millionaire superstars, I dont think Metallica have to worry about paying the electricity bill :rolleyes:. Most independant musicians are quite happy to allow their fans to listen to their stuff on myspace etc.
  13. soliloquise

    soliloquise Well-Known Member

    listening on myspace has nothing to do with piracy at all. and i am not talking a bout huge bands.. what about the millions who scrape a living? i know several who are v famous in their field but who bearly survive financially. they wrote the songs, paid the musicians or played their own instruments which cost a lot of money as does studio time and duplication, each album takes a long time and is part of them, why should they not get paid for their work. do you work for nothing? would you?
  14. Acy

    Acy Mama Bear - TLC, Common Sense Staff Member Safety & Support

    I haven't really paid too much attention to who is fussing these days, but I'm sure there are some very wealthy people fussing. Legally, it doesn't matter how much the artist has or earns, it only matters that they did the work or hold the rights to it and, thus, are entitled to be paid.

    Soliloquise has nailed the heart of the matter: The small artists don't want to, can't afford to and should not have to work for free.
  15. hammockmonkey

    hammockmonkey Well-Known Member

    Yeah . . . However, I mostly get my music from internet radios, or radio, or from youtube. I mean, I'm not ever going to pay for my (unless I see it live and I love going to concerts) but why am I ever going to pay for a CD or an MP3 when it is already available to me for free? I did have a huge CD collection until it was stolen, fortunately I ripped my CDs on to my computer so I still have the music. Since then I have amassed a giant collection because I do share my music with actual friends, much they same way that you can copy a CD for a friend.

    That aside, I can think of a few musicians who are not famous and would love for people to hear their music, they offer it for free of of sites like or pandora (which they receive no compensation for) only because they want people to actually listen to them.
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