Top Ten Ignorant Comments Made by Pirates
Some of you self-proclaimed “pirates” in the file-sharing community are as disturbingly ignorant on some aspects of file-sharing as the same corporate drones you protest. By the time you are done with this list, I hope you will have no reason to ever repeat such misinformed statements as these for as long as you support free file-sharing. You’ll notice that many of the statements listed are the same misinformed arguments used against file-sharing.
The good news is, reality is on your side! There is no longer a need to argue against irrelevant points. Forget, for a moment, the religious views of piratology that you have adopted until now. Get informed and you can win any file-sharing debate because there is little room for debate.
In no particular order, here are the top ten stupid things that pirates say. I realize I may come off a bit preachy here, but some pirates really are stupid so I figured I would extend some charity and offer some free information. After all, that’s what being a pirate is all about, no?
1. Downloading is a crime
No it’s not. Criminal infringement, as defined in Title 17 § 506 (a) (1) (A-C) US copyright law makes no mention of downloading or receiving content for personal use. It even allows for sharing to some extent. If I am mistaken, then by all means please prove me wrong.
Until then, I encourage you to download copyrighted content to your hearts content. If you share in plain view of the all seeing eye of copyright, be sure to respect the given provisions allowed.
Legally, we need to keep our sharing (ie; uploading/seeding, distribution, reproduction) under $1,000 retail value within a 180 day period. This means that if you are using bittorrent, don’t seed more than a 1:1 ratio per $1000 worth of content within a six months and you will be observing the law. Well, US law at least.
(B) by the reproduction or distribution, including by electronic means, during any 180-day period, of 1 or more copies or phonorecords of 1 or more copyrighted works, which have a total retail value of more than $1,000
2. Piracy harms music and movie industries
Prove it. These industries have had record breaking profits in the age of piracy. I’ve read numerous articles claiming that pirates buy more than any other consumer. I’ve read success stories about content creators reaching a wider market solely because of piracy. I have yet to see any data showing that a creative content industry is being harmed by piracy. If you tell me that piracy harms industries and don’t follow up with a valid source for this statement, I will backhand your mouth like a pimp whose ho came up short for her shift.
3. File-sharing is stealing
The dictionary can debunk this myth for us.
a : the act of stealing; specifically : the felonious taking and removing of personal property with intent to deprive the rightful owner of it
b : an unlawful taking (as by embezzlement or burglary) of property
I’m sharing the files that make up this blog right now and guess what? You didn’t steal them from the server they are hosted on. File-sharing is not theft any more than you are a thief for reading this right now. If I call the police and tell them I just downloaded a song and I want to turn myself in for theft, they will hang up on me.
Theft deprives the original owner of property. This does not happen when you download a file. Don’t be a retard.
4. Creative content is a retail product
This one isn’t entirely your fault. DVDs and CDs are retail items. Before that it was VHS, cassette tapes and vinyl. You were actually buying something whenever you bought one of these items. You were buying the vessel which housed content. However, you still did not own the content, even after you left the brick and mortar store with it.
It’s only reasonable that when you purchase an mp3 from iTunes to think that you just bought the same kind of retail product, right? No. Not right. All you paid for was an opportunity to access data on a server and then build a copy of that data on your own computer. Whether you paid of it or not, when a server allows you access to its data, this is a service. Why do you think it’s called a “server”? Try not to overlook the obvious.
5. Piracy is immoral, but I do it anyway because “fuck the man”
This is just plain admittance of ignorance. People who claim they are doing something that they sincerely believe is wrong for the sake of rebelling against what they think is right are nothing but useless hemorrhoids upon the ass of society. These people are pretty much the same as a limerence addicted woman who perpetually returns to a husband that beats her because, deep down, she knows he loves her. You are probably just acting out on daddy issues. Please shut up and find a therapist. You only make the rest of us look like a bunch of stupid assholes. I may an asshole, but I’m not stupid.
6. It’s ok for threat of imprisonment or fines to be used to quell file-sharing… I’ll just make sure not to get caught!
Claims made that file-sharing is not ideal for the music/movie industry or for the government. Again, if you feel such claims justify such extreme and ineffective action, then why do you call yourself a pirate?
File-sharing happens. Even while most people still think it is a crime, it happens! Locking up or fining millions of people based on imagined threats will only harm society. Only after accepting the world for the way it is can we begin to find solutions that lie within it. Merely suggesting that a fantasy world without file-sharing would be better is not a plausible solution. Expecting to create this world through force of law is not realistic.
Speaking of solutions, have we even identified a real problem yet? Is file-sharing a problem? While some pirates would religiously answer “yes, so just don’t get caught” I have yet to see any indication that a world without file-sharing or worse, a world where everyone who touches the internet is a criminal would be somehow more ideal than the world we currently live in.
If a problem exists, it is that we have yet to embrace file-sharing as a benefactor to society. Merely “getting away with it” is not a solution to this problem. It’s time we begin to encourage it.
7. Data is the same as creative content
Data, as it pertains to the files we share, is a series of 1′s and 0′s or some other fixed sequence of information stored on a hard drive which may later be analyzed and translated into visual or auditory content that can be recognize by humans.
Still don’t get it, dummy?
Take a look at this hex code of a song that you would normally recognize instantly. Can you even tell which song it is?
You probably can’t. but not because you are a dummy (although the peg leg, hook and eye patch are not helping your case)! It’s because this data is different than the output it may produce. Nobody really owns the data just like nobody owns the letters of the alphabet. Data is free. Viva data libre!
8. File-sharing is for greedy people
When you share a file you are helping the poor, helping the environment by conserving resources normally wasted on physical purchases, providing access to education or entertainment to people in countries that don’t normally have this, taking the burden off of a direct-download file-server somewhere, freely publicizing your favorite content which will ultimately lead to more sales… I’m sure this list can be added to, but the bottom line is that file-sharing is beneficial to everyone.
If it was a greedy, selfish thing to do then why would it be called file-sharing?
9. It isn’t what Jesus would do
Yes it is. Jesus LOVES file-sharing. The bible has long been shared for free. The pope has warned governments to lay off copyright enforcement against file-sharers. Jesus copied fish and bread for the poor knowing full well that He would later be crucified for it. The bible quotes Jesus, speaking of charity, saying that when you share with each other, you are sharing with Jesus. He says there is no greater way to serve Him. Seeding will put you on a fast track to salvation. In fact, right before posting this I prayed and Jesus confirmed that He is currently running a seedbox out of South Korea. I asked him “why South Korea?” and He replied, simply, “better bandwidth”. I also asked Him why I should capitalize words like “he” and “him” when it’s not grammatically correct and that’s when He stopped answering Me.
10. Employees/crews who work on films lose money/jobs due to piracy
Most of the laborers working on movies get paid hourly, salary or some other type of per-job wage. This means that they are paid at the time the job is done. They are paid before the film is complete and sent off to theatres. They do not normally receive royalties. The crew are even defined as “separate from producers and others who own a portion of either the film company or the film’s intellectual property rights”.
As profits continue to break records for the movie industry, this does not mean a raise for crew members. They still have to work to get paid, unlike the copyright owner who continues to profit off the work these people do.
Claims that these people will lose jobs are hypothetical “what if” statements that currently have no basis in reality. For example, “what if the movie industry wasn’t reaping record profits and couldn’t afford to make new movies so these people all lose their job? Then file-sharing must be bad!”
Laborers for the movie industry aren’t losing their jobs. If the industry does take a dive, we still need to examine what caused it instead of making faith based assumptions that piracy is to blame.
“I’m less ignorant, now what?”
You are not expected to take my word for any of this. It took years of reading, following file-sharing related events, talking to pirates, politicians, activists and being a part of the file-sharing community for me to draw these conclusions. If you think I am wrong about any of this, which is possible, then prove it, else gtfo.
Otherwise, go share this information with others to remedy the ignorance that surrounds file-sharing. Start supporting organizations like the EFF.org. Start looking for and creating solutions with a keen perspective on the issues at hand.