Tom Sucks

Everything sucks, but we can make it suck less

Copyright infringement as physical theft analogy SUCKS December 9, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tom @ 5:18 am

I just read a mindblowing post on SA by postmastergeneral which i just had to repost so it would be seen. I sadly cannot nest blockquotes here (thanks so you will have to just read them as seperate blockquotes. I have decided to go in chronological order, so it doesn’t start out as the analogy (but you can simply jump to it).

Antigen v2.0 posted:
The irony part comes in when you realise that he would not have the ability to make any money if he had not learned the in’s and out’s of certain programs, programs which he never would have had access to without doing things that are considered illegal.

MrButterpants replied:That’s why Adobe cleans up. Everyone has pirated copies at home (yes I’m looking at you, so stop denying it), gets familiar and comftorable using it, and when they go to work, they demand it. Buisnesses pay out the ass, albeit for a good product but for one many non-commercial users just can’t afford.

BOOBIES posted:
This is kind of like someone stealing motorycles to get good at racing them and then saying it’s okay because if he hadn’t stolen them to learn on then he would have never been able to make money off of racing them now. Either way, it’s wrong.

postmastergeneral posted:
I’m not debating wether or not the morals are correct, i just have a disagreement with your analogy.

When the motorcycle was invented, its not like they could indefinately create millions of copies of the unit at little cost. Each motorcycle had to be labored together, and tested to make sure it worked. One operating system is made. Then with the technologies, indefinate copies are made. Millions upon millions. Even in twenty or thirty years these copies can still be produced at pennies to the dollar, in a 98% automated process. Machines turn blank discs worth maybe three cents into a disc worth a few hundred dollars. If you steal a motorcycle, someone will notice. If you steal an operating system, and dont tell anyone, most likely you’ll be the only one to know! I personally dont see anything wrong with learning something for free, on your own terms. Granted you understand the risks and consequences. However if you dont tell, most likely noone is going to ask. I dont agree with making money on such a platform you acquired at no cost.

If you steal a motorcycle, crash it into a church, you could catch the curch on fire, and possibly kill yourself. If you steal an operating system, crash the disc into a church you may get cited for littering if you dont pick up the pieces. okay?

Fly added:
I agree with you. Any comparison between personal property rights and copyrights must be very careful because they are fundamentally not the same thing at all, no matter how big copyright holders are trying to redefine their rights.

information != physical object

I love SA.


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