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Protect IP/SOPA
JohnH
Not sure, but doing a little background checking I found a site claiming they have been killed.

I do not quite understand all the objections to the two bills but internet piracy is a real problem. Not long before I retired a co-worker (who was very computer facile) bragged about down loading a very hyped movie before it was in theaters. Routinely one can find youtube videos of someone playing a record some of which probably are still copyrighted. It is difficult enough for artists to collect all the royalties they are owed let alone income they should receive from illegally downloaded material.

It may be that the bills were poorly worded, but most of the objections I heard were speculative in nature, the bills could do this or that not that they would. Free access to the internet is one thing, but theft using the internet exists. Some form of legal methods should be in place to eliminate or at least reduce that theft.
 
cheshiredragon
I could write a book on how these bills are bad. I will keep it short and sweet. If they pass, this thing known as the internet, will be a thing of the past. You favorite websites...shutdown, because of one discrepancy. Say 'bye' to social networking sites, wikipedia, youtube, and many more. If someone claims a piece of copyright material on this site, then say good bye to AtheistsToday. This isn't like Net Neutrality. It is much, much worse, my friend.

I highly suggest researching these bills, they will damage the internet badly. Read up on a well known secret bill by the name of ACTA. I agree that there needs to be something done, but in reality it would be like closing down music stores to stop theft of CDs. Doesn't really make sense.

Just watch the video on the home page. It sums up what the bills are capable of. I had to give up a past time back in the day when the Patriot Act was passed. Due to poor wording, I could be labeled as a terrorist. I am not a terrorist, I am a hacker!
That's right, I said it...
 
Theory_Execution
Internet piracy is not a real problem, this is a myth repeated ad infinitum by huge corporations, parroted by politicians looking for financial backers.

History has seen music move from a social event (live performance, sharing of vinyl) to an industry (cd, mps sales).

So what has happened, the big music companies take on a new artist, march them to a milking platform, squeeze a year of work out of them, and then move on to the next thing - leaving the artist to dote on past glory.

The big media corps control air time, they control advertizing (by having driven up the prices so that only they can buy air time) and what happens to their old products? They are shelved, never to be heard from again.

The same is true for movies - the large companies want to hype the new product for a huge payoff, not to deliver geniuinly entertaining films - a case in point is repeated filming/remastering of classics - instead of paying for writing talent to deliver a new classic, they butcher old films, repackage and send out again, flooding the shelf space and big screens.

The big companies want you to consume, and consume at top pound/dollar at all times - there is no interest from them in the art, it is just about product sales.


So what does occur on the internet? People bring back socializing to these areas, they share music, they share films, they create groups and boards and websites that talk about their interests, their favourite films and what others might enjoy.

Yes, copyrights are broken during the exchange, but what else is generated by the interaction? Further interest is developed around a particular artist or film, people go and look for more about them/it and purchase.

I have music on my computer I would never have heard about if it were not for the internet. I started with random looks over youtube (or through talking with people on the internet), breaking copyright here and there, and now what do I have - purchased media on my harddrive.

I have actually bought music created by artists that no longer see the light of day, because big media corps have white washed the world with stale heartless shit.

If I watch a movie illegally online, and it is good, I buy it. If I hear a song, illegally online, and it is good, I buy it.

This really, is no different to radio - when radio play songs it is all to encourage the sale of the artists work - but where it used to be a case of a station playing many songs, they are all now just repeating the same few songs every hour, not because they are good, but because they are the new product of a huge corporation who has paid for the air time.

The only problem I see with internet piracy, is websites who would charge you to share things they do not own the copyright for or have not had the permission to distribute - to me, that is theft.

They are not sharing because it is something they feel passionate about.

So what these two bills in essence would do, would be to shut down the social aspect of the internet, the internet would simply become an advertising directory - it would lose the power it has developed through the years to actually connect people from around the world.

And what else would happen economically? Music and film sales would drop, older artists would see no more revenue simply because they would be cast into the darkness of time.

And the world would grow all the more dimmer for it.
 
Cynic
"If I watch a movie illegally online, and it is good, I buy it. If I hear a song, illegally online, and it is good, I buy it."

If I were prone to watching or listening to things illegally and I wanted to watch or listen to them again, I'd do it again -- illegally. Rationalization is a slippery slope -- enjoy the trip, but don't confuse motion with having traction on what actually makes sense.
 
seeker
I remember when the invention of cassette tapes was going to destroy the record industry because anybody could just make their own recordings. Writable cds were supposed to destroy the entertainment industry for similar reasons.

People will always find ways to get things for free but the vast majority simply have better things to do.
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." - George Santayana
 
Theory_Execution
Ofcourse there are people that will continue to take without ever giving back - that is the nature of all things, my point is they would be cutting off their nose to spite their face by implementing a bill that will allow accusations to bring down whole websites.

I am also not sure that copyrights/patents are good for humanity as a whole. They tend to stifle innovation in science and technology.

A few interesting reads:

http://www.guardi...stry-facts

http://www.colleg...to-piracy/

I am not saying this should be the deciding factor here, but here is the response to the issue from one of those content creators, taken from the second link:
"When Nine Inch Nails Frontman Trent Reznor found out in 2007 that their album “Year Zero” was retailing at a crazy $30 based on a record label decision that fans would pay this amount, the ballsy singer went on to proclaim to a sellout audience at an Australian gig to “Steal it. Steal away. Steal and steal and steal some more and give it to your friends."
 
JohnH
cheshiredragon, your somewhat over the top description of what would happen if these bills passed is one of things that frankly made me suspicious. Particularly because most of those claims were being made by people who are making money off the internet. I an not arguing with you I am only saying that over the top claims make me want to take a second look. I wish I had taken the time to read wikipedia's explanation for their objection on the day they closed down, I know they are nonprofit enough to occasionally ask for donations.

As far as sharing copyrighted material I start to get a little concerned. Having been interested in music for a long time I have even payed attention to it as a business. Not so much now, but a lot of blues players and early rock and roll stars got basically screwed out of their money. Various methods were used, a song made up by an artist would have the producer claim authorship thus getting the royalties for that. The sainted Alan Lomax has been reported to have ripped off many of the musicians he recorded, he famously refused the family of Leadbelly any rights to the song "Good Night Irene".

One of the articles that TE posted a link to mentioned artists that were willing to share their music for free, most of these artists are ones who derive the bulk of their income from concerts and do not care about record sales. There is another class of artist (not so common today) who produce one or two hit records and do not have any concert appeal, they really need those royalties. My concern is that musicians who do not get the royalties they deserve through internet piracy are being harmed financially in a way that is significant to them. Casual dismissal of this as a potential problem strikes me as a bit uncaring.

I really don't care so much with movies. The actors (with some exception, some want a percentage of the take) technicians, makeup artists, etc. have all gotten their money. It is only the incredibly wealthy studios who are getting screwed. Ah, situational ethics at its best.

What I did read it sounded like the laws were basically written by the parties seeking protection. I know this is a source of much difficulty particularly with the hand of lawyers mixed in. I think there is enough merit in looking at internet piracy to continue to look at legal remedies. Perhaps aimed only at commercial distribution of copyrighted material and not sharing between friends.

To make an overly long post way too long, people should check out the copyright laws in the US. Some material can now remain under copyright for over 100 years. That people is ridiculous.
 
Theory_Execution
My concern is that musicians who do not get the royalties they deserve through internet piracy are being harmed financially in a way that is significant to them.


This is a very good point JohnH, but in a world dominated by the big recording companies, that one song would be played for a few months, and then kicked into the long grass.

The recording/media companies, as has been mentioned, rail against new media because it means learning new things, which means spending a little money.

It is only now that DVDs are starting to carry 'legal digital copies' on them - instead of spending millions on generating anti-piracy software and encoding methods (which have all been cracked the same week they are issued), they are realizing it is better to make it legal.

When I watch an old DVD I have, played with a normal media player (or DVD player through the TV) I have to sit through a load of legal warnings, trailers for up and coming movies etc - whereas if I rip the dvd (called theft under the typical copyright laws), I have a better experience with the film.

They should have spoken with their customers instead of trying to arrest them - they would have arrived at the solutions much sooner - here im thinking of services like itunes, amazon mp3 and all that lot.
 
seeker
Interesting point TE. I wonder how much of this furor over illegal downloads has to do with people avoiding advertisements.
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." - George Santayana
 
Theory_Execution
Quite a bit - I know of people who crack PC games because the publishers fail to tell their customers that they contain DRM - Digital Rights Management software - typically this means monitoring of your use of the product and reporting back to the publisher.

DRM-Free games can be altered to extend their life, say for instance, you have a car driving game, you complete all the levels, you win all the cars, but replayability is poor - DRM-free games can be altered by the community that bought them to include more cars. Some people even work on this types of games to fix issues/bugs in the released software - to the benefit of the publisher.

The DRM in music is intended to prevent people for copying the music to more devices - say for instance you wanted a copy on your home desktop PC, your laptop and an mp3 player you take with you jogging - thats illegal under the normal laws - and thats how the big companies want it.
 
cheshiredragon
If it were all about advertisements then there would be a bill going through called 'ban Tivo' and companies like Verizon FiOS would not let me rent the DVR I currently have through them. I hate ads like terrorists hate Americans and I skip through those like a little girl through a field full of flowers. Of course, I don't understand how TE cannot skip the previews. I hit 'title' on the remote or click it on my computers DVD program and it takes me right to the title screen where I can make my selection to play the movie or other choices(chapter select, setup, etc)

A lot is speculation and I guess it is all who you talk to. My brother, a musician, is all for having his stuff 'pirated.' I used to run an RSS feed(internet radio station) for him when he was running his production company. All of his clients had to sign a contract that any of the songs they recorded while under his label were allowed to be freely distributed. He just wants to be heard and get his name out there and make something of himself. Not sure how his tune(pun intended) will change when he is making the big bucks, but he enjoys playing gigs wherever he can get them and if you also ask a comedian, most of their money comes from playing shows, NOT CD sales.

Also a bit that TE noted about NIN(Nine Inch Nails) other bands like Pennywise and a few others(I cant think of the names right now) have had great success with 'name your own price' or freely distributing their music. I am also like TE in the sense of obtaining music/movies before I buy, but I do it mostly with video games. I play them pirated and if I don't like it, no money lost...if I do like the game and want to play more, I will go and pay for it(same goes for movies). I can throw a list up of games(and movies) I have done this with. For me piracy is a driving force toward my purchases of certain media.
I currently have a list of movies that I have seen a cam rip of and when they come out on DVD, I will buy them.
That's right, I said it...
 
Theory_Execution
Of course, I don't understand how TE cannot skip the previews.


Cheshire, with the previews it is somewhat easier to navigate past them, but not so for the legal warning nonsense. Which is why I use better software on my computer (non-typical media players) that allows me to skip these aspect and get right to the good stuff.

My argument is, the people who 'steal' the media have a better experience over those that 'pay for' the media.

In computer games, some companies force you to sit through company logo art (better producers allow you to hit 'Esc' to get past them), in the past I have removed these short movies (3 or 4 or 5, ten or twenty seconds long) from the game files - but this can cause issue with DRM games.

cheshiredragon reminds me of another important point.

With DVD's and CD's you have purchased, but do not like, you can easily sell them on (although at an incredible loss on the initial purchase price) - but games, specifically PC games at the moment (see later), you cannot do this. The basic DRM you have is a simple key-pass to use the game, and once used and registered (so that you may get all content and support if it goes wrong), you dont have any re-sell-ability.

So if you buy a duff game, which I have (STALKER Clear Sky because it was unfinished, Mafia 2 because they cut all content to repackage it and sell in increments), you cannot sell it on easily. You could pass it on to a friend, and rely on the trust there over the keycode, but not on the open market. And why would you sell a duff game onto a friend?


So I understand cheshire's point there - but when it comes to games, i wait for previews before jumping in now.
 
Cynic
Let me see if I have this right:

1. A minority of people stole things.

2. As anyone who attended grade school could have predicted, this has spoiled things for everyone.

3. So on the basis of those consequences, that same minority that steals now uses that consequence as a justification for their actions...

4. ... bypassing said consequences ...

5. ... while the majority continue to suffer for it.

And finally,

6. The lesson we're supposed to draw from this is that since this state of affairs is foreseeable, it is foolish to act to prevent or follow-up on theft of one's products.


Let me know if that's the argument so I can say a few things about how copyright law requires defense to be upheld or how since the days or Napster there have been various and repeated efforts to arrange things such that one should never feel the need to walk into a store to buy anything, ever, so long as it's as easy as browsing a list and clicking a button to avoid.
 
seeker
Cynic - I'm not so sure that premises 2-4 are valid.

The fact is that theft is going to occur, in some cases there are whole countries that don't even legally recognize copyright protection. The point is that no matter how draconian one may choose to make the law people will find ways around it. That is what our species does.

Laws aren't ever going to stop crime 100%. One of the big problems the US has is that we think that tossing people into jail willy-nilly does any good. The result is that we have massive jail populations.

The best thing retailers can do is give people reasons to buy. Better sound quality, extra features, commentaries etc are the reasons people buy DVDs along with the fact that downloads are time consuming. Try to remember that we aren't talking about industries that barely get by, the recording and movie industries make vast amounts of money regardless of piracy.

Are you worried about the artists? The fact is that most artists are considered disposable by their industry. Actors and musicians are used and discarded regularly, not because of piracy but because the industry isn't interested in the creativity of artists but purely in their products as commodities. Piracy actually helps unknown artists by allowing the public to sample their art without heavy investment.

Ultimately though a lot of this problem is caused by the greed of the record industry. It costs less than a dollar to make a DVD and you might add another dollar of cost per unit for cover art, inserts etc. What is the average cost of a DVD these days $18-$25 bucks? Less than a dollar of that cost is going to the artist unless the artist owns the production company, which is why so many major artists have their own labels. People see themselves as being taken advantage of by an industry that doesn't really even care all that much about their own artists.
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." - George Santayana
 
Theory_Execution
Cynic,

The prequel to that progression would be something like:

0.1 - New technology is developed
0.2 - Current industry dread the cost of moving along with the new technology
0.3 - said companies try to legally restrict the use of the new technology
0.4 - the courts slap them down
0.5 - said companies try to create restrictions of freedom on their own product, and encourage others to do the same, to create an industry standard
0.6 - more lobbying of politicians
0.7 - the end user loses

1. in your list, is really continuous in any field.
 
Cynic
Ultimately my investment in this thread is to complain that whatever the facts or truth may be, none of it allows for the argumentative construction "X corporation does Y and therefore it's OK for me to steal from them."

Further doubling down on that nonsense while declaring that "only a minority of people do it" worsens the problem (and the argument). To wit, if most people bought the argument, then most people would do it. One could (and has, I believe) argue that most people wouldn't because it's a hassle, but it's a hassle because it's illegal and for that reason only. If one were to wonder why it's illegal, I refer you back to the fact that it's theft and having a fancy rationalization doesn't make it the right thing to do.

I once had a friend who was a bit of a systems security freak (he was in business) so when it came time to choosing his telephone options, he ran with:

caller id (to see other people's numbers)
caller id blocking (so other people couldn't see his)

and the piece de resistance...

call block for numbers that block their caller id


Now that's security! He'll know who's calling. He'll keep people from finding out about him. He'll avoid those dastardly people who don't want him to know their number because they're probably up to no good!

Oh, and anyone who thinks like him will be unable to contact each other.

This isn't an analogous situation, with the copyright theft, but it's of a certain kind. This is what happens when people fail to consider themselves to be part of the equation they're writing to model what they're trying to justify. Whether they think of themselves as being above the law or outside ethics or whatever, it's all means the same thing: it only works if you violate personal integrity and do what you explicitly think other people shouldn't do.
 
Theory_Execution
Ultimately my investment in this thread is to complain that whatever the facts or truth may be, none of it allows for the argumentative construction "X corporation does Y and therefore it's OK for me to steal from them."


As long as Y is reasonable, this is true.

It is also a hassle to steal media because people often box said media with trojans, malware etc.


If the simplest equation is: all people must pay up-front and non-refunably - then most people, many of whom do not have high salaries or no salary at all, will simply not buy.

And as low salary workers and children make up for most of the market in these areas the likely outcome is a social furor does not develop around a product - as noone knows what it is - and sales plummet to nothing.

Good restaurants have known this for years, which is why you pay after your meal is served - if you are not happy with the food or services, you are within your legal right to refuse payment. You visit a property before you buy it, some allowing you to live in them for a short time.

Now why is it that in the world of food and property, 'tasters' are common, but when it comes to music and games this is not the case?

I recall PC game producers of my childhood that did provide a taster, they were called Demo's, comprising aspects of the full game to give you a taste of what you would be buying - but now, as they have become dominated by the financial side of the companies (smaller developers been squeezed out or bought up) they push for deadlines, reduced initial-content (they can sell this for extra later) and send the product out unfinished.

So in my opinion, it is not a concern of loss of property to people rushing to steal their product, but instead a dread that the end user may realise the product is not up to standard, not worth the cash they have spent... amongst other things.


Back to transferable, easily copied material, like mp3 music and digital files. As we have said, if a friend brings a CD to my home in their CD-walkman and allows me to listen to it, we are both legally sound.

If I insert the CD into my computer, and copy the song to my harddrive, I have 'stolen' the music.

If I delete the file on my harddrive, I have still 'stolen' the music, but I do not have anything in my posession. So what have I stolen?
 
Theory_Execution
Yeeeeeeet we are getting massively off track here over the intent of PIP and SOPA.

They were pushed by the entertainment industry for the reasons as described above, but their scope would allow anybody with a hint of an accusation to have the government step in and close down a website.

Just make the accusation that the website shares media - as this one does by linking to youtube videos - and bye bye AtheistsToday.

And even if it was found that there was no harm or foul from the website, it would still be shut down for the year two years they look into it, which is the death of a website.
 
seeker
Cynic - I'm sympathetic to your argument. In an ideal world this is a black and white issue but we live in a world where black and white are rare commodities. All I'm suggesting is that you have to strike a balance between letting the vast majority of people enjoy a product and worrying about stopping the small minority who steal.

I could completely stop shoplifting. All one has to do is set up department stores like web sites. Customers come in, see a representation of the product and only get to handle it after its paid for. How many customers would I lose doing that?
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." - George Santayana
 
Theory_Execution
Nice analogy there Seeker.

And one for DRM, imagine a garden store sells a plant pot, but sends an employee along with every sold item to monitor its use.

If you use the plant pot to hold a door open, store beers in ice, put ash and put out cigars in, the employee of the garden store would then smash the plant pot. And if your primary purpose for buying the plant pot for anything other than potting plants, you could face legal action.

That is what DRM is in essence, the seller of a product trying to enfore a specific limited set of end uses - even if that restricts your legal rights.

Linkywinky http://www.defect...esign.org/
Edited by Theory_Execution on 02/01/2012 18:01
 
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