Thursday, February 02, 2012

Yarrr.

Piracy, copyright, profit, and kiss my ass.
Yes, yes. Content stealing is bad, and we're all going to hell. And God(s) kill a kitten every time you download a torrent. And, you know what? Fuck them.

Not the content producers, no. Not the worker bees who truly make the stuff. Them, I want to give what money I've got to spend. No, I'm talking about the distributors of the content, who make it hard to get, then piss and moan when we download it off the internet.

Here's an example that's going on right now.

The BBC (British telly) is running a VERY popular show, Sherlock, its very much anticipated second season of three shows. All three were run in January. In the UK. In the US, we're supposed to wait until... well, hell, I can't even find the information. Sometime in the summer, I believe. So American audiences, who've been slavering over this show for a YEAR, have to wait to see it, while their UK friends squeal and slip and give out spoilers. Yeah, right.

People who've never downloaded a bittorrent in their lives are getting Sherlock and watching it. And you know what? Good for them.

The BBC would whine about this. They DO whine about this. You know what? It'd be easy as hell to solve - SHOW IT ON MY BLOODY TELLY. We've got BBC America in this great godforsaken land, they could have shown it simultaneously in both places with little or no trouble, and made a bundle of advertising revenue. No. They stall the release and everyone on the internet illegally downloads it. WHY IS THIS NOT SEEN AS THE BBC'S STUPID DAMN FAULT? Because IT IS. We'd all happily watch the show on their channel WITH THEIR COMMERCIALS, BUT WE CAN'T.

Fuck them and their stupid, archaic business model. They deserve to lose money.

How about another one, for fun?

Disney. Disney DVDs of classic movies like Fantasia and the like. They have this stupid, fucked up, idiotic program where they release the DVDs for a limited time only. If you don't buy it then, you have to wait another ten years. In the mean time, you have a kid, and your five year old wants to watch Sleeping Beauty (or whatever) and YOU CAN'T GO OUT AND BUY THE BLOODY DAMNED DVD BECAUSE FUCKING ASSHOLE DISNEY ISN'T SELLING IT. So you torrent it, or you buy a used copy (Disney has tried for years to make purchasing used DVDs either illegal, or requiring a second royalty payment).

What I said above about fuck them and their archaic business model? FUCK THESE ASSHOLES AND THEIR ARCHAIC BUSINESS MODELS. You want me to buy your stuff? SELL THE GODDAMN STUFF YOU FUCKING MORONS.

And one last one, just to round it out into a trilogy of ranting profanity.

Harry Harrison's Deathworld Trilogy. Originally published in the sixties. The first two are available in print (anthologies) and digital form. The third book cannot be had for love or money in any media. WHAT IN FUCK IS UP WITH THAT. It should be illegal to make the first two books of any trilogy available, and not the third. I would pirate that bitch like Bluebeard on a Spanish galleon, if it was available, but it's not.

So, in summary.

I WOULD DEARLY LOVE TO BUY SOME SHIT BUT THESE MOTHERFUCKERS WON'T SELL IT. Then they whine and piss and moan and try to pass draconian laws and make up ridiculous figures of money lost. They are living in the 1960s with their business model, and they deserve to loose revenue for the way they AREN'T SELLING their content. FUCK THEM.

When it comes to stuff I can actually buy, I do. Especially books, because I know that my money does go, in part, directly to the author. And book publishing is actually trying to keep up with changing formats and content use. (Not perfectly, but they're trying.)

Anyway. Piracy. They're asking for it.

Grrr, ar. I'm gonna go kick a parrot.

47 comments:

Netter said...

Disney basically bought and paid for the updates to copyright law that extended them each time "Steamboat Willy" was about to go into public domain. Why, so the corporation could continue to own it. Not so Walt Disney could continue to be rich and rewarded for his work. Uncle Walt was long dead for the '76 and '98 acts. I will happily pay list price for anything during the life of the creator. Not so much for the people who want to live off the profits of that which they did not create.

Sandra M. Siebert said...

Aye. I agrees wit ya, but please don't kick the poor parrot. Arrr.

Ronniie said...

Amen sister!

Carrie Louise said...

Same here, only I live in the UK and have to wait to see some of my fave US TV series since we became expats 15 months ago - very frustrating.

Freyalyn said...

Exactly - works both ways - there's lots of US stuff that I end up buying on either legal or illegal dvds simply because it's not shown on channels I can get or other not available. Don't kick the parrot though, it's not the poor parrot's fault.

Donna said...

Nothing makes me crazier than not being able to get my hands on the next book in a series when I know it's out there. That's why so many foreign publishers are on my $#@%$%^ list. (and why I blow so much of my book budget on Baen advanced release copies)

It looks like the last book in your series is available here: http://www.amazon.com/Deathworld-3-No-Harrison-Harry/dp/0722145063/ref=pd_rhf_se_p_t_1

Sarah {The Student Knitter} said...

Wait... I can illegally download Sherlock?!

GrillTech said...

(From the dark corner of a nearby alley)PSSSTTT, what format do you want Deathworld in. I may have some sources..

Anonymous said...

The BBC didn't give me what I wanted, when I wanted it, so I stole it. It's their fault I stole it.

RebKnitz said...

When you tweeted what you were writing about, I read "privacy" instead of piracy. This is much more interesting!

I'm totally with you, though while I don't like Disney's "vault" marketing strategy, it makes total sense from a business perspective. Restrict supply and the demand shoots up. Better get the DVD now before you can't for another ten years.

The other two just don't make sense from a business perspective.

Anonymous said...

Right on, Anonymous. Thievery is thievery, however you try to make it righteous.

Deena said...

There are many reasons for torrent sites and you just named some good ones. And how about record companies? You pay for the LP, then you pay for the CD, then you pay for the digital version. And it's not like you get a discount.

Lisa said...

I agree with you so much. I arrived at the same conclusion in college when I really really wanted to buy Japanese CDs but either couldn't or had to import at an absurd price (think 40$ and up for an album - not in the college kid budget there). I go to concerts & buy merch when I can and support the band that way.

There's no reason except for sheer asshattery that the BBC couldn't have Sherlock stream online either via Netflix like the first season or with ads to finance it. Grrrr.

metalouise said...

Remember that the BBC is funded by the licence fee. BBC America has commercials, but here in the UK, there are no ads. (Everyone who owns a device capable of receiving television broadcasts has to pay a fee every year.)

So if we wanted to be cantankerous, us colonialists in the UK could say that we should get Sherlock first, because we paid for it.

Generally though, I agree with you. These people want my money but won't let me give it to them. I didn't know about Disney only releasing things for a limited period; what is the logic there?

RobynR said...

Love you. That is all.

Shawnee's Girl said...

The idea behind the releasing of Disney movies for a limited time is to get a demand for the movies when they come out. They release the movies for a short period, usually with an incentive if you pre-order from them (think the lithographs), then "lock" them up again for 10 years. I remember them telling us this when I worked at the Disney store many years ago. I understand it, but it drives me batty. I want the ORIGINAL movies not the sequels.

Teri S. said...

Interesting arguments all. I'm undecided on this "in perpetuity" copyright thing for the estate of the creator. I don't think I would pirate anything there. But if the material is outof print and could only be had for a small fortune (think "Principles of Knitting"), I'd probably copy it if I was desperate enough.

Anonymous said...

So create some content. Write a trilogy. Produce a TV series. Produce a classic children's movie. Then distribute it however you want.

Anonymous said...

"they deserve to loose revenue for the way they AREN'T SELLING their content."

Probably mean "lose".

Great article! So very true, unfortunately.

Parsley The Lion said...

We have similar problems in New Zealand, but it's worse for us because some shows from UK/US/elsewhere are never shown here, and some movies are never released. We don't have access to Netflix or anything like it so downloading or getting overseas relatives to send us a copy is often the only way we can get to see things.

Anonymous said...

Bad example - With the BBC, you are stealing from the TV licence paying British public.

You stole from me. I shall hunt you down like the rouge badger that you are.

Good day to you, sir.

Anonymous said...

It's unusual for folks in the US to be waiting for a British TV show. Normally we have to wait months for your shows to make their way over here.

Although at the moment I can appreciate the demand. We're fortunate to have some excellent talent at the BBC at the moment! (Mind you, we do pay for it with our TV licence).

Hope Sherlock makes its way over quickly! :)

RiotNrrd said...

What you describe are exactly the same reasons why I've been known to torrent the odd show. It's not available Right Now when the net is abuzz with spoilers, and when it does come out a year late it's dubbed. Or it's never available in my region, enforced with DVD region codes (easy to bypass) or just not in my iTunes store (annoying to bypass). Or yes, the Disney thing, which I dodged by finding a bricks&mortar store that must have over-budgeted their Disney purchase and buying the whole shelf for the Son&Heir.

However, we also have to call out the people who take this to the extreme and download everything. I blogged about this topic here. Amusingly, I found the same pirate image you did...

Anonymous said...

What up with the same anonymous guy being contrarian? I like how the guy who has the _law_ on his side chooses to hide behind pseudonymity...

Anonymous said...

I came across this nice rebuttal to those who try to characterize copyright infringement as being somehow equivalent to “stealing”, like shoplifting: if the shop isn’t selling something, that means it doesn’t have it in stock, so how I can I be stealing from the shop?

Lawrence D’Oliveiro

Anonymous said...

Will commenters equating these examples to stealing please explain to me how one could steal something which is not available for sale?

Sure, I could steal the apples you did not mean to sell; but that's bad because you just lost your apples. That argument does not apply to copying bits, however, if nothing can be shown to be lost.

In general, some form of lost revenue argument is used to explain why piracy is bad. But if something is not for sale this argument seems mute to me.

011010100010100 said...

Hi,

Sherlock is a co-production with Masterpiece (which I think is WGBH Boston). As a co-production the US co-producer gets all rights in perpetuity in the US, and the BBC keeps the rest - this is how the BBC gets as much for its licence fee as possible - co-pros with other companies. There's a huge co-production deal with Discovery for the natural history stuff.

If Sherlock isn't showing yet in the US, have a word with WGBH Boston, as they control the rights and windowing of the programme, not the BBC.

Anonymous said...

Disney not selling their stuff ? Bad for them. If I don't buy it now, I'll buy it never. So they lose. Easy. The same goes for the rest. No release ? No sale. Never.

DinosaurHunter said...

As a UK resident paying my hard earned money for a TV License which goes to fund the bbc, and provides the capital for them to make shows like sherlock, I have to say that when I hear stories about these shows being pirated I think "Hell yeah, you go download the fuckers!". I don't have any choice (yeah I know, I could chuck out my TV) about whether I want to fund the bbc, why should they have any choice who watched the shows. In fact, I didn't watch sherlock, so I hereby gift you my authorisation to watch sherlock. There we go, everything's above board now :)

NMe said...

It's kind of funny how you're making a big deal out of not being able to see a series you like to watch because the BBC doesn't release it in the US for months on end, because typically that's what happens to us on the European market for just about every single American series. I wholeheartedly agree with you, especially since I've got the same problem over and over again. I can either wait for months and buy the stuff on DVD/Bluray hoping that no one spoils anything for me in the mean time, or I can pirate it. I prefer the latter.

I wish these idiotic distributors would accept the fact that there is a whole world out there that they can cater to. It would mean a lot more money for them so I don't understand why they don't...must be since a series that has proven ratings will sell for more. Yet still niche series like Stargate: Universe had to make all their profits in the US and Canada and when they didn't, Syfy pulled the plug. If they'd sold and broadcast it all over the world, this series would still exist...

Anonymous said...

Sigh, you are so right.

Another example where I *want* to give a company my money and they just make it so hard that getting it for free is easier and better... WTF!

I want to watch a movie on... Netflix, iTunes... *with* subtitles. Paying $4.99 and not having to browse virus ridden illegal pages.... YES, PLEASE GIVE ME THAT.... but no, I can pay for the movie, but getting subtitles is not possible. WTF!

....


2 mouse clicks away is the same movie, *with* subtitles, for free....

For f*cks sake... I *wanted* to give you my money!


So yes, archaic business models like these should expect no better.

ceterum censeo, SOPA must die

Ralph Lavelle said...

The sense of entitlement here is wonderful: everything I ever want should be available to me all the time, at my convenience: if it isn't I'm going to curse and blame everyone else. And everyone is going to agree with me because it's so self-evidently correct! The very definition of spoiled.

D. Fleder said...

Some of the mindset behind your words is disturbing. It frames the content-makers and providers as some sort of salacious provocateurs who should have known better than to display their wares and not give you the goods the way you want them and when you want them. Therefore, you find it morally negligible to grab it without their permission.

It sounds eerily akin to some of the mindset we deplore about rape.

No matter how much sexual interest her choice generates, if a woman is wearing booty shorts and a tight shirt walking down the street, dancing in a club, or at a concert, it does not give a man the right to grab her ass, cop a feel, smack some flesh, or initiate a sexual encounter without her consent.

True, her choice might have created a much higher potential for such an event to occur, but it does not negate the violation of her being caused by someone who decided to take what they wanted.

Siding with the sentiment that content-providers are the ones responsible for piracy of their content is as disturbing to me as hearing men murmur and make agreement amongst themselves that "she got what she deserved", "it was her fault--dressed like that", "you know she wanted it.", "bitch just needed a good [self-censored]."

It must be said, though, that rape is a physical violation of someone's being and can result in psychic trauma and emotional wounding for the victim that lasts beyond the physical encounter. That is a very grave and saddening destruction that has no analogy in this discussion.

What does is the similarity of mindset I see in your post and that of the physical violator.

At the end of the day...that content is someone's possession. They have been given legal sanctity of choice in how they will share that with someone else. And their choice is protected by rights.

In my eyes, the strength of the allure surrounding their possession does not give you or anyone else the right to take what you want.

Anonymous said...

Huh? You are comparing piracy to rape? You are an idiot.

Markus "LAKE" Berglund said...

I had the same problem!

I tried to byt (pay for) the game "Heroes of Might and Magic VI - Deluxe digital download" version, but the store would´n let me buy it.

:-(

In swedish on my blogg (with pictures!):
Idiotiska Ubisoft och Impulse förlorar pengar

Smart business model, not!

Skurtan said...

You think you're getting screwed? Have a look at Sweden: you first buy a USB memory, buy a tune from - lets say amazon music - put it on your memory, take it to your (public area) workspace, play it there ("in public"), and then STIM and SAMI pays you a visit. The list of people/companies getting paid:

1. Copyswede (http://www.copyswede.se/privatkopiering/ersaettningsnivaaer/) gets a fee from the importer of the memory stick. (This includes harddrives, mp3 players and set top boxes among other things) which in turn pays the music distributors (and possible the artist, who knows).

2. Amazon, the distributor and the artist.

3. STIM, who you are supposed to pay royalties, cause you're playing their music to your customers.

4. SAMI, basically STIM2, but representing other artists, but they universally also needs to get paid.

(And to make it even more stupid if you played the radio from your iphone/ipod, cause then then you'd also pay a Swedish Radio and Television License fee)

Harr Sweden, Harrrrrr! And they wonder why the Piratebay idea came from here.....

Katie K said...

Sherlock is highly overrated, but to each their own.

wondrousitem said...

Firstly, Sherlock season two airs in May here in the US. Secondly, while I normally wouldn't want to pirate anything, and I completely plan to buy S2 on DVD the MINUTE they release it for our region, I simply couldn't go on the internet at ALL without encountering clips, spoilers, theories, and fanart that essentially ruined the hell out of some of the most interesting twists. I've seen season 2 now, but it seems silly that I am willing to give them my money and they simply do not want it in a timely fashion. Either BBC America (or whoever they partner with) was simply SO FAR OUT OF STEP that they didn't plan for a January airing of the series, or their business model is based entirely on deliberate ignorance.

Anonymous said...

"I'm gonna go kick a parrot." Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Tesha said...

She's not talking about dl'ing a tv series that's out on DVD, she's talking about dl'ing a tv series that hasn't even aired over in the states yet. Hell, it's not even on DVD yet. So, how exactly can a person be stealing an item of monetary value, when said monetary value isn't even applicable at this time?

95% of the items I have dl'ed have been items that I have already purchased and wish to have in a portable format, or ones that I plan on purchasing when available. Is that also stealing? I'm paying the monetary value of the items.

And for those that don't have a monetary value? Let's use Disney's "Songs of the South" since it has been taken COMPLETELY OUT OF ROTATION. Disney must not want to sell it (do to the racists connotations within the film I would assume) thereby making it an item with no monetary value. How is dl'ing this jem of the movie industry stealing?

Anonymous said...

I was so mad when I tried to sign up for HBO's online service only to find that I can't without having a cable TV plan. WTF? I don't have cable; all of my TV watching is through my paid online services (Netflix and Hulu.) I'm trying to also give you money, HBO--hell I was actively seeking out a way to give you money directly so I could watch Game of Thrones without having to pirate it, but nope. I have to subscribe to outdated technology in order to have access to the current technology. It just doesn't make sense.

Amy Lane said...

As someone who makes her living on e-book sales, I SO hear you! E-books get it, have several companies that make the product easily distributable, and people pay money for the product. If the media that is actually MADE for instant distribution--as books originally were not!--does not understand how to distribute a product in demand, they're going to find it distributed for themselves, and out of a whole lot of lucrative opportunities. You are TRYING to give the right people money, but NOBODY is selling the product, and an art that is MEANT to be seen is effectively hidden, and that's not right either.

Anonymous said...

I was going to put the plot spoilers here, but you've downloaded it, so won't.

1) Whiney entitlement much?

2) The US doesn't produce anything that you want to watch? You simply HAVE to see the thing everyone in the UK is watching? I foresee a slight problem in the days ahead.

Take some time to read the Stanford marshmallow experiment.

Arianne said...

I feel the same about American shows...we have to wait at least a year for most American shows to come on over here in the UK. It drives me NUTS.
Part of me wants to say "We have to wait for House, you have to wait for Sherlock" but really? I think we should all get them all at the same time.
I know WHY they don't do it at the same time- the BBC makes shows for a British audience and doesn't know what will work in America. If it's a success in Britain they release it in America later. Because the release is staggered already they continue the staggering. Annoying but true.

Arianne said...

I feel the same about American shows...we have to wait at least a year for most American shows to come on over here in the UK. It drives me NUTS.
Part of me wants to say "We have to wait for House, you have to wait for Sherlock" but really? I think we should all get them all at the same time.
I know WHY they don't do it at the same time- the BBC makes shows for a British audience and doesn't know what will work in America. If it's a success in Britain they release it in America later. Because the release is staggered already they continue the staggering. Annoying but true.

Anonymous said...

BBC America thinks all we want to watch is that idiotic car show… over and over and over. Wednesday night only, they show some dramatic series.

As many of you now know, PBS picked up [bought the rights to…] the Sherlock series… that's why BBC America doesn't show it. You want an explanation for things not being made available? or available late? Follow the money trail.

And don't get me started on Downton Abbey… it was shown on UK TV 6 months before PBS aired it in the USA … after months of articles and spoilers all over the internet.

I would rather pay my share for watching or owning, legally, than download illegally.. I think it's only fair that those who make product are paid for their endeavors, but gimme a break. The marketing model being used by TV and Film distribution is absurd, and invites piracy.

Mimi

juliangreenfield said...

Buying stuff illegally is totally not happening but I agree that at times waiting for something so desperately can urge you towards taking such a step.

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