Pirates moan about getting pirated

Discussion in 'Politics & Ethics of Technology' started by Billy Idol, Apr 29, 2013.

  1. Daozang

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    If you want to talk to me about human decency, have at least the decency to do it without quoting the law.

    You are generalizing. I can only talk about myself. Are you going to go with “It’s the law therefore it’s ethical”?
    Or are you going to reply to a specific case, the one we are discussing, my case?

    Either the tutorial, or the first level .

    I bought every game I played more than the first level or the tutorial. In fact I bought most games I downloaded from a torrent (2012), with Hitman being the only one I didn’t buy.
    And I don’t even know if there is a demo for that thing. But if there is, it’s very likely I’ll get accused of adding to the statistics!

    Are you actually insinuating that I’m doing a disservice to the developing company because I did not like their game, therefore ruining it for the rest?
    Or are we discussing taste? !?

    Since I can only speak for myself, I actually do that. I do many things I don’t have the right to do in order to make my life easier.
    Shit, I must be an awful person!

    I guess that here, I have to explain that I’m mostly a saint, like everybody else, but I’m really bored to get into that right now.
    But mainly I’m not that pretentious.

    I don’t think you’ll find anyone that will argue with you on the legal side of all this.
    But you can’t convince me I’m morally wrong. Sorry.
    And right now, all you have is, “it’s illegal, so you shouldn’t do it”, along with, “what makes you so special”, which I find a bit insulting.

    Right now, we are discussing me going 1 km faster than the speed limit.
    The problem isn’t that I actually caused damage. It’s an obsessive compulsive fixation with the fact that it’s illegal.
     
  2. 3dilettante

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    There are certain long-term restrictions like hardware compatibility that could merit an argument about a question of an eventual loss of supply if code is not ported every once and a while. That's a little beyond the scope of most arguments.
    Unless they start artificially creating scarcity with things like connection-restricted software or DRM authentication servers, which inject the physical-world obligations some software publishers like to pretend don't exist.

    As far as depreciation goes, I would characterize the economic value of most software or IP as declining over time, particularly if it's something in the entertainment market. A component to the price and demand is hype and novelty, as well as competition from the next best thing.
    This is also why I believe in some form of sunset of DRM and other protections, as the typical case is that the actual loss past a certain point drops below a reasonable threshold, and the benefits of removing artificial scarcity measures become more dominant for existing owners and the public domain.
     
  3. dobwal

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    Pfft. A person willingness to pay for access to content should never depend on morality or empathy.

    And it makes sense that a pirate purchases goods at more regular rate than your average consumer. Pirates often pirate goods of their hobby of choice. Piracy allows you to minimize your investment. If you are gamer who heavily pirates games, taking away your ability to pirate isn't going to force you to adopt normal consumers purchasing rates. More than likely you will up your purchasing rates.

    My wife loved Lime Wire and would regularly download songs. My wife would rather turn on the radio than turn on the TV and she had a pretty extensive CD collection before finding Lime Wire. I deleted the program bought her an iphone and showed her how to use iTunes. She still happily consumes music at a higher rate than most other people even though I removed her ability to pirate.
     
    #83 dobwal, Apr 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2013
  4. 3dilettante

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    Both can be involved.
    Laws can be codified in order to constrain unethical behavior. It's not like something that is considered unethical stops being unethical if it becomes unlawful.

    I'm saying there are millions of people who are able to legally buy games in the face of challenges like "I'm not sure if a game is good even if there are reviews, youtube vids, friends, and demos". Sometimes, if they can't justify investing in a game they are not confident in, they just pass on it.

    Some people, apparently, don't do this.


    So it's perhaps not as bad as playing the whole way through and not paying. It's also in many cases not much more informative than the wealth of information available from countless sources.
    If the game has 10 levels, and you play the first one, shouldn't you at least pay 1/10 the price, or wait until the game price falls to those levels?

    If you think you minimize the offense by applying your own standards, why not make your obligation match?

    If the products weren't offered that way, we're dealing with deciding where on the scale of unethical behavior those choices fall.

    I'm saying it's unethical, as minor a violation as it may be relative to some other alternatives.
    You could be a generally good person with one or two not so upstanding traits. That's pretty much everybody.



    I don't know you, so I can't comment.
    How does this quote in other contexts sound to you?

    I'm sorry, someone put something out there for sale in a certain format with certain restrictions that they are free to make and are supported by laws that were written with the intent that putting effort and taking risk should be given some leeway to have its rewards. Those laws were written because it seemed fair, and society wanted to encourage creative endeavor.
    The base bargain is, compensate to get access, or just keep on walking.
    Most people, I believe, can handle this, and can abide by the rules they share as members of society.

    How should I characterize those that don't?

    I would recommend an analogy that involves interacting with other people, or honoring their requests, not a rounding error on the speedometer.
     
  5. DJ12

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    I paid £0.69 for Game Dev Story, why would I or anyone else want to pay more for a game thats worse.

    Why they try to claim the moral high ground after totally ripping off someone elses game I have no idea.
     
  6. 3dilettante

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    Can that be played on the PC?

    General ideas and themes are reused or duplicated, possibly to excess in the industry.
    However, it's also excessive to say that any single game theme or idea can be monopolized.
    The game could be a cheap cash-in based on similarity to an established property, but the threshold it takes to go to being more than just an unoriginal hack is pretty high.
     
  7. Billy Idol

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    But then, every fps can be pirated according to you.
    Don't forget, no one forces you to play the game...
     
  8. Billy Idol

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    Well, I would go even so far to call him unethical if he demands money for every(!) single hour he works....i mean his boss should have the right to test him out for free until he decides his work is worth money...so that his boss has all the rights, all the benefits, maximum efficiency of his investment as he basically only pays when he wants to without any risk.
     
  9. Daozang

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    Strangely enough, I do that also. I download games that I know will be close to what I like.
    I will buy Hitman for example, when the price drops. It’s just not worth (for me) a first month buy. And I’ll most likely pay more than 1/10th of the price.
    I’m not saying I never tried a game and felt it was so bad that I would never (and didn’t) buy it. But it’s not the rule.


    I agree. And I’d rather have people around me that have these kind of “not so upstanding traits”. But we both know, that, that’s as possible as having only “upstanding citizens” in a city.

    Quite awful. And that was the intent.
    We both know, we are talking about a minor violation.
    My point was, it is blown out of proportions.

    Most people can handle this, and not handle something else. As long as it’s not disruptive to their society, (minor violation) we can live happily ever after.

    I’d go by, either, not robots, or human.

    I’d sincerely like you to provide with an example. So as to understand the analogy you have in mind.
     
  10. Davros

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    Just a note about the thread title "Pirates moan about getting pirated"

    No they dont, The developer released a version of their game for free, people downloaded it. There was no piracy here...
     
  11. Billy Idol

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    Come on now...I bet you haven't bought a single game you own. After reading your posts and your attitude, it is highly unlikely that you ever payed a single dollar for a game...it is also clear, that without piracy, you would have actually payed way more money for games, well...you would have actually started paying for games, so from 0$ to >0$.
     
  12. Daozang

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    My name on steam, is not so surprisingly, Daozang.
    I have 68 games there, excluding the retail version of some games I own (some, like old adventure games, I have both on Steam and on retail, don't ask me why, even I don't know), the games I own a long time before steam (or valve ever existed) and excluding my console games.
    The other forty or so games I've played, are at my girlfriends account, and are games we like to play together.
    Since it's so clear, let's be friends.

    Edit.
    And no, you can't have my girlfriends account name. ;)

    Edit 2
    [​IMG]
     
    #92 Daozang, Apr 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2013
  13. 3dilettante

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    There a bunch of ways of handling things, such as more in-depth research or just waiting until the game is cheaper, because you don't win much other than getting instant gratification--which is a benefit you are claiming for yourself.
    If you want to put up a little obstacle course to the straightforward reciprocity inherent to your position as a consumer of content, that's your deal.

    There's an established process and a general idea of what a good transaction is supposed to be.
    You can judge if bypassing it and about a hundred other choices isn't an ethical or moral demerit.

    You said it wasn't a negative thing at all.

    It doesn't make you a monster, but you are at the very least directly violating the civil requests put forward by the developers.
    It's at least impolite to people who have done nothing to you.

    I don't know any perfect humans, or robots. The humans I know apparently strive to do better than what you've outlined as a personal philosophy.

    edit: I just remembered someone who sometimes does download stuff without paying. All in all, an okay person, but that doesn't make the act at least a little bad.

    There's the occasional rural fruit plot where you can go and pick your own fruit, and there's basically a stack of boxes, a money box, and a sign stating the cost per unit and the honor system.
    The product was put out there, and the owner set the conditions and is asking that they be honored.
    While it would be theft, due to the loss of physical fruit, it can also be the case that there's so much fruit that the spoilage alone means someone grabbing a bushel for free wouldn't be noticed.
    That doesn't mean no wrong has been committed, and there's no reasonable expectation that someone walks past the sign, grabs a box, and takes the fruit without noticing like a driver going a notch above the limit on the highway.
    Similarly, someone who goes to said stand and just takes the boxes and rationalizes that the boxes must be free because the farmer didn't spell out a price per box is a pedantic douche.

    In a non-theft scenario:
    Let's say I and my roomates have a common toolbox of random things. I put in a pair of scissors and attach a note saying "you can use this for almost anything, just don't trim your pubes with it."
    Sure it's not a major inconvenience for me if someone does, but those are the conditions I've attached to using my scissors from the common box. All the roomates agreed to this, because the relationship falls apart if we can't act like grownups.
    "Oh, I'll only tidy up the longest hairs on my scrote" is not an acceptable rationalization when I find something curly in the hinges.


    "Developer trolls accidental non-infringers" isn't so punchy.
     
    #93 3dilettante, Apr 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2013
  14. Daozang

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    I meant, I won’t have nightmares at night, about it. (Exaggerating here again)
    In my book there is no harm done, other than breaking a rule.

    I’m not sure the analogy is the same for the first example, since, the guy that took the “free” sample, either bought a bunch later or bought at the exact opposite stand, because the product was simply not good.

    I don’t usually engage is such long conversations in forums, since English is not my native language, and it’s quite difficult for me keep up.
    If you take both your examples and put them together with “human decency” you’ll understand why I went the trouble.

    That there struck a nerve.
    I don’t think human decency needs to be defined by laws.
    You can even be impolite, and still be a decent human being.
    Despite the fact, that being a “decent human being” is the least you can do in this life.
    So yeah, it struck a nerve.
     
  15. dobwal

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    I doubt anyone's dismay of someone they didn't know having unauthorized and unfettered access to their home for a substantial length of time could be diminished by "no harm no foul".

    Ownership and ability to control what is owned is very important to people.
     
  16. 3dilettante

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    So if you don't feel bad about it, it isn't wrong.

    The transaction doesn't persist past the first violation of the contract to future random after the fact rationalizations.
    You claim the person goes back and makes good on his end of the bargain that was by the nature of the agreement due the instant he walked by the cash box with a box of product, if he feels like it.



    Laws such as this usually have their roots in the common consent of the society that writes them. Granting a creator certain rights to how their work is distributed and who can derive benefit from it was something that came from a desire to give creative industry something equivalent to the good they brought to society.
    Laws granting rights to creators came after people realized they wanted to give something back to encourage and protect them.

    I've put forward a few points:
    1. It doesn't hurt a person who does not want to perform a fair and legal purchase of a luxury good to do without.
    2. Enough people in society have agreed it is fair for the content creator to set the conditions for how their product gets into a consumer's possession for a certain period of time. There are downsides to not giving them the ability to do so.
    3. There are many ways reasonable ways of getting information that can help decide how and when money does or does not get spent on a game. Some risk can be taken, or a consumer can walk away. Millions of adults and many children seem to grasp this.
    4. The apparent counter-argument is that not even the slightest risk or the slightest delay is tolerable for someone who needs to download games free before they pay for it--if they feel like it.


    I will put forward that neither laws, society, or morality can or should cater to a mentality of "everything must go exactly my way, right now, and nobody else matters".
     
  17. Silent_Buddha

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    In other words, society has determined that slavery shouldn't exist. Exploiting someone's work without some form of recompense is a bad thing. Imagine if many employers suddenly just started not paying people because they just didn't feel like it.

    People that pirate are basically treating game developers as slaves. You did all that work? Pfft, you deserve nothing you animal.

    Yes, that's a bit extreme but it's basically what it comes down to.

    You should work for free for ME. But if I work for you, you should pay me. I guess they are hypocrites as well, expecting to actually be paid by their employer for work that they do at their job? What gall.

    Bleh.

    Yes, again, over exaggeration but things like that drive me nuts.

    Regards,
    SB
     
  18. MrFloopy

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    Oh dear.

    I know this isn't going to make a scrap of difference but I'm going to try and explain the concept of a software license.

    In our society we all decided that we should create a measure of value for a unit of work. Sometimes that unit of work creates a tangible product e.g. a box and sometimes it doesn't. A game, song etc are relevant examples. Others include advice e.g legal, financial, personal etc.

    Tangible products are easy to keep account of. You can copy a tangible product by making a copy but that involves time and effort on your behalf and most likely you will do it a different way and it certainly wont end up being an exact replica, so good luck to you, you've just entered the manufacturing business.

    In the non tangible area some things are unique, and specific to a particular situation, so the value is retained and protected by the fact that the person receiving that advice cannot replicate the value of that advice for someone else.

    Other non-tangible products can be put onto a physical media or transferred electronically, They are designed to be consumed by many people in exactly the same way. This posed a problem. As you say, the film on a dvd or game on a disk has no real physical value, but that's only a part of what you are buying.

    the owner of the content has the right to determine who can experience their content. To ensure this the owner creates "licenses" which can be assigned to a consumer that lays out the terms by which the experience is shared.

    Now the owner can if they chose give these licenses away, and assign the rights to others to copy and distribute licenses, which would in effect make the supply of licenses infinite and free.

    Now people who spend a lot of time and effort on making content, sometimes wish to continue to do so and make it their means of support. They may need to pay other people to contribute (or lots of people). So the owner can choose to say that they will only release a limited number of licenses and charging money for the ownership of these licenses.

    If they deem it to be so (and they do in the case of commercial software) then the supply of licenses are not unlimited, they are exactly limited to the number of people who purchase them.

    Now the physical media that the content is distribute on can sometimes be exactly duplicated. The supply of duplicated media is very cheap (close to zero in the case of digital copying and distribution - i.e. torrents).

    By copying and distributing the content you are effectively creating your own license for the same content. That license is basically, "here have it and copy it as much as you want". You do not have that right. It really is that simple. The law is created to enforce the right of content owners to be the sole creator of licenses for the content they own.

    Therefore if you do so you have broken the law. This is not an unjust law, it is a law the same as the law protecting land ownership etc etc.

    You can make all the justifications you want, but quite simply you have assigned your own license to someone else's property. How on earth is this not wrong?

    Oh and as someone said earlier that they were just bending the rules No! quite simply you are breaking the law.
     
  19. Squilliam

    Squilliam Beyond3d isn't defined yet
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    Too random. Why not give people the option of sampling a lot of games if that is their personality? If you're the kind of person who wants a little of everything then you don't have a lot of options outside of piracy.

    Another point:

    I don't respect copyright as a law and I never have. I find the fact that something is protected for over 100 years to be far too restrictive on people. As far as I'm concerned anything which is older than 10-14 years is fair game and I actively look to NOT pay for content.

    I pirate:

    Every TV show and every movie I watch at home. I do go to the theatres 5-6 times a year however.

    Some of my games. I don't really play that many games and I tend to stick to 1-3 games at a time. I will definitely pay for things which are on sale or which have lasting appeal beyond a single experience. I actually care about game studios which is why I have over a hundred games in my Steam collection (more than $1000 revenue) because they don't get rockstar salaries like $15M to work for 6 months.

    Edit: I listen to music on Youtube mostly.
     
  20. MrFloopy

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    Well I suppose you get something for being an honest pirate, very few of those around.

    I am curious,

    What makes you think it's ok to assign someone else's property to you?
     
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