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Thoughts about illegal downloading


Silenced Fred

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So I'm working on my speech for Speech class, and I'm doing it on illegal downloading and the effects it has.

 

I was really surprised by the lack of "academic" sources available for such a large topic because it has become big in recent years.

 

Also, from editorials, a lot of journalists talked to college students and most of them don't even acknowledge illegal downloading as any sort of crime because it is "victimless"... [confused]

 

Nobody seems to be able to put together a cause and effect...

 

Just sayin'

 

What are your thoughts?

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That's because it's only been in recent years. This is your opportunity to find case history and draw your own conclusions. Is there a decent Archive within 50-100 miles of you?

 

There should be. I'm 20 miles from Downtown Chicago.

 

I just have this speech, it was a short notice thing. I was just surprised there was very little

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You're researching current events, so hard back treatises are hard to come by.

 

You'll either have to peruse magazines and newspapers or do your own first person interviews.

 

 

As far as other 'reporters' writings... asking college students about the harm illegal downloading is like asking Jesse James whether he was doing more harm than good, or asking prison inmates if they were really guilty. Or ask an illegal alien if what they are doing is right or wrong. Of course illegal downloaders will say ,"It's a victimless crime. Nobody gets hurt, right? After all it's just music. Right?"

 

Maybe a real reporter will ask a professional recording artist what it's done to his business. Ask a music publisher what his sales charts look like for the past decade. What has it done to music writers?

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You're researching current events, so hard back treatises are hard to come by.

 

You'll either have to peruse magazines and newspapers or do your own first person interviews.

 

 

As far as other 'reporters' writings... asking college students about the harm illegal downloading is like asking Jesse James whether he was doing more harm than good, or asking prison inmates if they were really guilty. Or ask an illegal alien if what they are doing is right or wrong. Of course illegal downloaders will say ,"It's a victimless crime. Nobody gets hurt, right? After all it's just music. Right?"

 

Maybe a real reporter will ask a professional recording artist what it's done to his business. Ask a music publisher what his sales charts look like for the past decade. What has it done to music writers?

 

You're right. For this speech, it has to be all sources from these "accredited" sources, so its all newspaper articles. Hardly anything pops up.

 

My teacher laughed, but its something that I hold very close to my heart because its hard right now to try and make a living off of playing your own original music (which is my dream) but there are more and more obstacles every day.

 

I'm starting up a blog to get some more publicity for smaller local bands (in my spare time) and I hope to be able to talk to them, get interviews and then also talk to smaller labels in the area and see what they are looking for, see what they recommend for up and coming artists to do, because not everyone is going to get signed by RCA Records, etc. I'm hoping it can take off in the way that it helps more people.

 

In the beginning, its going to be hard to get up and running, cost a lot to go to shows, etc. but I just want to do what I can

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I say its ok when a band realsed only demos or two studio releases that are very rare.

Because theres tons and tons bands in the 70's,80's,90's and today that make great music but are impassible to get hands on unless you download it from file share,etc.

If i really like a band and i cant buy a vinyl or a CD or a digital record, i download it.

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good points about the source of the problem being the ones with the imformation.

 

here is what you can do: use the official sources from the side you are arguing against and use that information to get to the truth. you still have official sources, you just use these sources to make your claim by questioning the validity of these sources by showing the connections and gains of your adversary.

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Maybe a better topic would be is jail breaking your phone right or wrong as long as your not trying to get free service? It;s your phone...you should b able to load whatever apps you want in my opinion... Also Why does ATT charge 50.00 per month for 5 gig of tethered download from iphone to computer, 25 bucks for 5 gig on an Ipad and ( grandfathered) Unlimted data for 30 bucks on the iphone??? And if I want teathring I gotta give up the ulimited???

 

And I'm damn sick of hearing about 4G in a state that doesn't have it at all !!!!

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Until recent years there has been a perception that recordings by big name artists released on vinyl, cassette tape, CD etc

Were overpriced and evidence of profiteering by record companies

Making the purchase of records expensive, particularly for the younger audience...

 

For at least the last 50 years people have 'taped' friends' LP's etc...technically illegal, but saving a fortune...

 

Then came the organised 'bootleggers', bypassing the industrial record companies, usually with inferior sound quality

But sometimes with unique and interesting performances at a lower price

 

The last 10yrs or so has seen an explosion in computer technology and potential for global interaction hitherto not possible

Great fun and exciting...

 

The big issue is the flouting of copyright laws and the difficulty nowadays, as ever, of an artist being able to make money from record sales....

 

V

 

:-({|=

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Maybe think about perceived value vs actual value for people who are actually downloading. For instance; ask them whether or not they like the band they're downloading and why they choose to not pay for it vs actually pay for it? We are all basically guilty from when Napster and Kazaa were first out, but many moved on because of the viruses and lack of tangible goods. You could burn a CD but it never looked like a collection like a mess of old vinyls did; it just looked like a mess of blank cds.

 

So now I buy albums because I don't agree with taking them freely, even if the artists don't make much off the album sales. Same goes with video games, I pay for them, I hate it when people burn video games because it's a result of many many more people's work, and they get more percentage wise per sale I'm pretty sure than artists see when selling through a label, but you can't quote me there.

 

I perceive that owning an album, artwork and all is worth more than a downloaded copy, except in instances where it's not available locally, then I pay for it through iTunes, but that's only very occassionally.

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Fred there was a thread a few months ago here on exactly this subject why not search it out loads of view points

 

Thanks, I forgot about that actually, I'll go search it out [thumbup]

 

Maybe think about perceived value vs actual value for people who are actually downloading. For instance; ask them whether or not they like the band they're downloading and why they choose to not pay for it vs actually pay for it? We are all basically guilty from when Napster and Kazaa were first out, but many moved on because of the viruses and lack of tangible goods. You could burn a CD but it never looked like a collection like a mess of old vinyls did; it just looked like a mess of blank cds.

 

So now I buy albums because I don't agree with taking them freely, even if the artists don't make much off the album sales. Same goes with video games, I pay for them, I hate it when people burn video games because it's a result of many many more people's work, and they get more percentage wise per sale I'm pretty sure than artists see when selling through a label, but you can't quote me there.

 

I perceive that owning an album, artwork and all is worth more than a downloaded copy, except in instances where it's not available locally, then I pay for it through iTunes, but that's only very occassionally.

 

Same here. I never got into napster though. I have used the youtube converter on some of the live performances that aren't available through an actual CD.

 

I don't think anyone is guiltless, but so many people now just see it as the norm

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People have been copying music illegally ever since tape recorders of any kind hit the consumer market.

 

But to say this is victimless is absolutely wrong.

 

Definition of Victimless Crime: An act or behavior which is prohibited by law, yet which neither directly harms nor violates the rights of any specific person, although some people may claim it harms society as a whole. This concept typically applies to adults

 

When an adult person and prostitute engage in their trade, it is victimless because both parties are consenting adults.

 

When an adult drug addict buys from a supplier it is victimless because both parties are consenting adults.

 

When adults get together for a game of penny ante poker, it is victimless because all parties are consenting adults.

 

But unless the person who holds the copyright of the song is consenting, it is definitely not victimless. The victim is the copyright holder who is losing the ability to pay his/her mortgage/rent/groceries/etc.

 

It's as much a crime as going into a department store or a music store and shoplifting a CD.

 

It's as much a crime as going to a supermarket or produce market and slipping an apple into your pocket and leaving without paying for it.

 

The owner of the product you stole from is the victim.

 

Many recording artists do not make any money on their first CD distributed by a major record label. Out of the minuscule royalties the company will take out inflated charges for recording, mastering, manufacturing, and promotion. That is why we get so many "one CD wonders" (the modern equivalent of the one-hit-wonder). The artist can actually lose money on a hit.

 

Once the star is established enough to be "automatic" (guaranteed to sell millions with little or no promotion), he/she can negotiate better terms with the record company. But you can be guaranteed that the record company is still going to come out on top.

 

So especially with a star that isn't "automatic", illegal downloading can actually be taking food out of the artist's mouth.

 

I don't call that victimless.

 

As far as I'm concerned, there is no moral justification for illegal downloading. It is stealing, and anybody who doesn't accept that fact is just fooling themselves, perhaps to hide their own guilt.

 

You might try weaving some of these thoughts into your presentation.

 

Insights and incites by Notes ♫

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I think it's a difficult question. I believe that organized, formal distribution of illegal copies is wrong. On the other hand, if I feel like someone may appreciate something I own, and I'm in a position to share that with them, I'd likely share my resources.

 

In a primitive sense, it's the economics of survival. We do it everyday, with everything. Trying to get the most for the least. What's stopping every other manufacturer in every other industry from making the same claims? We hand things down. We give things to the needy. We help each other by sharing resources. Since the dawn of time.

 

It's a tough spot. If I were an "artist", I'd take exception to the thought of my work being distributed freely. As a consumer, I'd take exception to the thought of not being able to do what I want with what I paid for. My question is, is there a difference between organized illegal distribution (like Napster or Kazaa), and John Doe burning a copy for his buddy?

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I think the real problem here is that we're stuck with extensions of statute and case law that was designed for sheet music and phonograph records even before radio.

 

ASCAP/BMI bully even singer-songwriters out of venues because they just might, maybe, sing something those giants claim ownership to - including folk music that has been in the culture for centuries. Yet, unless you're a major artist, good luck at ever seeing a nickel from your own work due to the way these folks determine royalties.

 

That's the other side of the coin of music copyrights. With the web, word and photo copyrights are similarly in greater degree of question nowadays.

 

Frankly I think the whole copyright thing needs a complete overhaul.

 

Once radio brought recorded music into homes and then as Notes mentioned, tape recorders became general consumer goods, the law ceased to be functional in any sense.

 

m

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Illegal down loading has put a lot of people out of work... Record stores close, record companies gone under, distributors gone... Some may argue that may have happened anyway since people just buy MP3s and down load them to their computers but MP3 files are cheap enough, I wish more people would just pay the 99 cents or $1.99 and support today's artist...

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Searcy...

 

I strongly disagree, and I make my own living entirely through "intellectual property" that is placed into the marketplace - and at times has been reproduced with permission, without permission according to the "fair use doctrine," and at times used in ways I'd consider totally illegal by competing entities.

 

Bob...

 

It's not the same as stealing an apple. That has been pretty well established, too. An apple is a singular physical object. It's not shared by tens, hundreds or thousands of people as is possible with intellectual property. In fact, much (not all) intellectual property is worthless without it being shared in a relatively large marketplace.

 

But, again as one involved in this sort of question for years and years, I'm increasingly convinced that current law is such a horrid collection that it needs to be entirely scrapped and rewritten in recognition that, at minimum, radio changed the whole equation.

 

Newer technologies simply added to the problem as case law written for mechanical reproduction technology has been played with by courts confronted with electronic technologies they did not, and could not, recognize as growing and changing. Even the "Xerox" and low-rez fax machine brought new questions unimagined in 1900.

 

Performances of certain types of standardized words and music we call "tunes," or certain choreographed movements, even reproduction of concepts using similar, if not identical words, are far different from theft or "use" of apples. "Use" an apple once for its intended purpose and it's gone as such, for example.

 

The main question for intellectual property today compared to physical property is a new redefinition: "Different how?" The secondary question is "How do we protect intellectual property under that new definition in recognition of technology today?"

 

Again, to me, the entire concept of current copyright law, its uses and abuses (as in ASCAP/BMI bullying of artists and venues and how they determine royalties), needs an entire rewrite.

 

Some folks around the turn of the last century came up with a popular tune, "Red Wing" that's a "standard" for old time fiddlers nowadays. Woodie Guthrie used that tune again for "Union Maid." Yet the tune was "taken" from Schumann. I can legally listen to a Beatle song on the radio, on the Internet, but not download it to my computer? Is my constant access to that song on the Web different from constant access on my laptop?

 

Is my VCR "theft" of a history channel replay? My Tivo? Is it different if it's a whole movie or just a part? Is my delayed watching legal if I do it only once, or if I watch it and then show it to my buddy next door?

 

How about my photo that may have been downloaded from a news web site that is used as "wallpaper" on laptops, then given to friends for the same purpose? What of downloading the entire web page of a news media outlet? Reading it aloud to friends? Placing all or parts of it into one's own web page?

 

Seriously, I am increasingly convinced from my own experience that we need a whole new look at the issue and almost certainly a whole new set of international laws to cover the issues involved.

 

Until then, I'm personally going to be very cautious about calling someone a thief.

 

Dave... you can make the same argument for the print business, the live music business, all performance arts, etc... not just recording stores and record companies. That's all part of why I say the whole thing needs reconsideration.

 

m

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Searcy...

 

Seriously, I am increasingly convinced from my own experience that we need a whole new look at the issue and almost certainly a whole new set of international laws to cover the issues involved.

 

Until then, I'm personally going to be very cautious about calling someone a thief.

 

 

 

Very true... My answer was far too short for so complicated an issue. I take it back.

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I agree with Milod. The whole law dealing with copyright issues is obsolete. I don't know what the answers are, but because of it, the infrastructure of the music business as a whole is crumbling.

 

Because of the digital age, major record labels are less and less necessary. Their only real benefit now is their marketing, and even that can be purchased elsewhere. Recording studios are in basements and bedrooms all over the world now. Songwriters are losing TONS of money because of the easy exchange of music, and, as usual, technology continues to move faster than the law.

 

The line I've heard in Nashville for several years now is, "The top selling CD in Nashville...is the blank one."

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Well the only way to make money in the music business now is to have popular music that's out there. Whether it be bought or downloaded for free it doesn't matter. You have to look at it as a marketing tool to get people to go see you live. You can't down load a live band playing your favorite song... Concert tours are where you have to be to make any real money... The stakes just went up, your music has to be good enough to pull in a crowd or it's a hobby...

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Actually Dave, in one of the past threads discussing this subject somebody posted a link to an article that indicates record companies are having record profits after they embarced the downloading technology. The article however did not adress how th artists are benefitting.

 

It looks like people are paying for songs and it is so easy and covenient that a lot of people that used to not buy music at all buy it now.

 

The excuse of "I am not buying a whole album for a single song" is gone. You can buy a single song.

 

I've heard that Journey's "Don't Stop Believeing" is the most legally downloaded song ever.

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