I will never buy the idea that once they have sold a digital product, the seller somehow maintains a claim on its existence. Doubleday doesn't own the pages of the books they sell me. Lionsgate doesn't own the the bits that make up the DVDs they sell me either, even if that fact is rather detrimental to their bottom line.
As for the sentencing, as always: https://www.popehat.com/2013/02/05/crime-whale-sushi-sentenc...
Every time I sign a contract (in which I am effectively the "Party with less power TM") there's some sort of "maximum" clause, where if you ask the issuer they 'll say "oh this is just a formality in reality this doesn't happen".
Upon which, if you say well just remove it then, they'll reply "oh this is just a formality in reality this doesn't happen".
At which point, you'll say well just remove it then, and they'll reply "oh this is just a formality in reality this doesn't happen".
Where you then go, "uh..." and they repeat "oh this is just a formality in reality this doesn't happen".
Etc ad nauseam.
Clearly it is not just a formality, clearly it can happen, and even if it does not, that number is not exactly irrelevant and can be used for leverage. So yes, it's worth diverting attention to and calling it out when unreasonable, rather than rely on the assumption that it likely won't be used.
18:371.F CONSPIRACY TO COMMIT COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT
18:1349.F ATTEMPT AND CONSPIRACY TO COMMIT WIRE FRAUD
18:371.F CONSPIRACY TO TRANSPORT STOLEN PROPERTY INTERSTATE
From the open society view that information wants to be copied, at this point the blame rests fully with the payment networks. Rather they just don't care, as they don't even pay for the sheer majority of fraud.
If you want to put together a coherent world view that says it's fine to copy a thousand live credit card numbers to a public Pastebin page, that's fine. I'm not interested in litigating that with you.
What I'm interested in is whether you can then come up with an argument against enforcing copyright that doesn't produce that outcome, because I don't think very many people share the world view that it's just fine to traffic in unauthorized copies of other people's credit card numbers.
So I am left questioning the strength of your condemnation of copying credit card numbers. The activity is lame and thus easy to pick on, but that shouldn't matter if we're talking philosophically.
This does tie back to "the fundamental nature of data", in that full disclosure is based on open society principles of sharing data, even when it will end up harming some parties. The Internet is basically a democratic copying machine. The xxAA have been trying to put the genie back in the bottle the whole time, and force a regime of inescapable information control upon us. Regardless if you're still in favor of some copyright term for pragmatic reasons, you have to admit the overriding information environment in an open society is one of permissive distribution.
Exactly! If you exist in the universe where things can poke other things, don't get grumpy when you walk out the door and get stabbed. Should've sat on your ass at home.
Seeders are not interested in few clicks. They pirate the Marvel Cinematic Universe because it brings in cliks. Follow the money of all the ads on these torrent sistes spreading awareness of culture.
In a sense they are not liberating anyone, they are trapping us in a smaller bubble.
If someone is trapping us in a bubble, it is the streaming sites who limit content access by geographical location.
I don't see Star Wars or Game of Thrones in need of any free advertising given by piracy, that's a weird argument to make.
Frankly, I am just moving on from this topic on HN. Piracy good, netflix bad, got it.
Actually, I'm sorta happy that such kinds of blatant strawmanning and anti-copyright crowd being generally pretty obnoxious led to me thinking these things over for myself, instead of just accepting everything that gets passed around again and again. So I guess thanks for that.
I don't think it was shifting the discussion either. You made a sort of sarcastic remark about getting stabbed, I brought the focus back on going to jail over the topic at hand.
There is some critical mass of piracy that would in fact destroy the economics of the content production model. The industry has to work to deter that by periodically making examples of people.
The timing is likely not coincidental either. Expect to see more of this as content once again fragments across providers, reanimating the traditional package TV structure in fresh form.
"There has grown up in the minds of certain groups in this country the notion that because a man or a corporation has made a profit out of the public for a number of years, the government and the courts are charged with the duty of guaranteeing such profit in the future, even in the face of changing circumstances and contrary public interest. This strange doctrine is not supported by statute nor common law. Neither individuals nor corporations have any right to come into court and ask that the clock of history be stopped, or turned back, for their private benefit."
I'm not aware of anything that works in practice, except for legally enforced copyright for at least a handful of years. And enforcing copyright means making torrenting etc. of infringing material illegal.
(Of course, whether it should be 5 or 10 or 20 or 50 or 100 years is a separate matter.)
And copying the music streaming business, where convenience is worth a low monthly subscription, doesn't work for TV/film. Producing a TV show is multiple orders of magnitude more expensive than an album.
I like tv as much as the next person, but its hardly sacrosanct.
Electronic media are a viable business as things stand, so you must be considering whether they would continue to be viable without the sort of laws being discussed here.
Whether any business model is viable is relative to the laws in effect. Without laws governing issues like property and contracts, a great deal of today's commerce would be infeasible. Without labor and fraud laws, all sorts of exploitation would be the norm. Without either, exploitative practices would be the only viable ones, but they would not be particularly productive - that is how things have been through most of human history, and continue to be so in parts of the world. There is a lot more at risk here than TV.
On the other hand, the current law in this case strikes me as excessive, reflecting the anti-democratic influence businesses have over legislation. My point is that there are no simple answers; the sort of economy that has brought a previously-unimaginable standard of living to a subset of the human race is a battleground of competing interests and trade-offs.
I'm responding to the parent post who is arguing we must have current laws because otherwise tv would not be viable.
The current laws might make sense. They have problems, but i'm also not super sympathetic to people who resell the work of others without adding anything to them, for commercial gain. However i dont think, without law X, industry Y wouldn't exist is ever a sufficient reason in and of itself. If that's the only reason we have for a law, then the industry is not worth it.
Fairly recently I saw a very interesting proposal for this. The basic idea was to base it off of how artist commissions work, and combine that with crowdfunding. A creator can decide how much they need to make a thing - including both costs and how much profit they need to find it worth doing - can use crowdfunding to get the payment upfront. Then once they make the thing, it gets freely released.
This works out for everybody. The creator has already obtained the amount of profit they desired. The people who paid to have to created have gotten it. The people who didn't pay can enjoy it if they wish. And overall everybody who "engaged" with the content now has a better idea of how trustworthy the creator is. The people who did not pay this time may have gained enough confidence to pay for the creators next project.
Obviously, there are many realities to face here. The degree of departure from the current model is rather large. It's not something you can just flip the switch on tomorrow and expect everything to just magically work out with no pain. But I think it's an interesting idea, and one that meshes better with the realities of the digital medium than the current status quo.
Okay, and what stops my competing company from running a subscription service, where I take all the shows that Netflix funded, and streaming to my customers for lower monthly price than Netflix’s, which I can do, as I don’t spend a dollar on content creation and acquisition? Oh, that’s right, copyright stops me from doing that.
Funding live action movies in this way is still not very popular, though. Arguably, the cost structure in this industry might just be too challenging to succeed in the first place. The fact that they do get funded by other means looks like a bit of a puzzle! It might even be more of a loss-leading, perhaps marketing-focused activity than anything aimed at directly making a profit.
Should society be facilitating that for them by allowing the law to punish people for sharing their work? Copyright serves society, not the other way around.
We have had legally enforced copyright all this time so why would any company take the risk and try out another business model. That we did not see one does not mean one is impossible.
The money spend on copyrighted content would not just disappear without copyright and could be funneled into content by patrons or via grants. Big-budged productions are also already getting funded by product placment and other sponsort-type deals.
Then there is also a cultural aspect: The existence of copyright creates a society where sharing is often not seen as a good thing. Where people are less willing to pay for the creation of something if that would mean that freeloaders could then get it without paying.
And last, I don't agree with your implication that the current big-budget films and TV are something that needs to be protected. Yes, changing funding models might change what kind of content is produced, but never in human history has there been a lack of demand for entertainment or lack of entertainment to fill that demand.
That industry should be killed with fire.
Have copyright return to creators after a period of time, ie 20 years.
Billions of dollars will be spent fighting hints of this suggestion.
 TFA: https://www.engadget.com/2017-09-22-eu-suppressed-study-pira...
 https://op.europa.eu/en/publication-detail/-/publication/59e... or https://cdn.netzpolitik.org/wp-upload/2017/09/displacement_s...
If I pirate say a $500 graphics editing suite I can easily believe that does not represent a lost sale to the maker of that software. There is simply no way I'd buy a $500 graphics editing suite.
But it might represent a lost sale to Pixelmator, because if I could not pirate the $500 graphics editing suite and could not afford to buy it I would have turned to a less expensive solution, such as Pixelmator Pro which is $40 and I can afford.
If people are pirating content, then consuming that content is not worth the hassle to obtain.
> If a pirate offers a product anywhere in the world, 24 x 7, purchasable from the convenience of your personal computer, and the legal provider says the product is region-locked, will come to your country 3 months after the US release, and can only be purchased at a brick and mortar store, then the pirate’s service is more valuable.
In that way, stamping out piracy is trying to address the symptoms, not the cause, and even if you are ultimately successful in eradicating piracy, then you'll likely still end up with a bunch of non-customers.
Anecdotally, the popularization of Netflix definitely greatly reduced piracy among my demographic, up until the point where every publisher decided to roll their own, often subpar, streaming service, each with different region-locking rules.
I've always thought and argued that while money might be part of the motivation for digital piracy, ease of access and user experience is also a large component. 10 bucks a month to stream anything, without commercials, was great! For those few years I didn't download anything, because I didn't have to. It wasn't the path of least resistance.
Now I have to deal with a half dozen streaming platforms, some of them don't work on my laptop (Peacock), others which are spotty (Disney+) and others which insist on wanting me to see commercials, despite taking my money (Hulu). With increasing fragmentation and a decreasing user experience, the path of least resistance has gone back to downloading and I expect it to increase. :/
I wonder how long until the industry re-invents cable packages. It might work if Netflix handled the tech, though I admit that would never happen in the real world.
Pepperidge Farm remembers.
I have all the streaming services, and yet now I find that most of what I want to watch is not licensed to any service! I'm constantly using justwatch.com and yet still many famous movies aren't being licensed by any of the services I have (at least in the US).
Piracy it is then, and I guess it's time to start canceling these subscriptions to services that no longer license the kind of content they used to.
I just want to watch 80s action garbage like the A-Team, Knight Rider, and MacGyver. I'd pay $5/month for an 80s service, I already got suckered into Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon; something that has the low class stuff I want would be an easy sell.
Edit: fixed spelling of MacGyver
You know what really grinds my gears? This! It's not that hard to find a suitable splice point, most TV shows even have a natural break as part of the episode! Youtube sometimes does it during Colbert at a point which ruins the comedic rhythm.
> ...A-Team, Knight Rider, and MacGuyver...
I have similar taste; I swore there was a period of time I watched all 3 of these on the same streaming network, but I checked again and see only MacGuyver on Paramount/CBS. Which is an example of another poor user experience -- shows hop between platforms, so you're never actually sure that you have access, until you go to watch, and it's gone.
Honestly I think even movies could work similarly if the content creators actually made them available. People go crazy for Disney+ because everything is on there for one monthly fee.
I download every single video on youtube that I think there's any chance I'll want to watch again.
When I look at my playlists, so many of the videos have been deleted. Even if I paid for youtube I wouldn't be able to watch them again.
Except Netflix, Now TV and Amazon Prime etc DON'T HAVE any of the shows I actually want to watch. It's farcical.
I want to pay them, I want to watch shows legally but I can't, so I end up watching them on the 'illegal' sites that do have them.
Such a regime would encourage content creators to make it more readily available so that users are willing to pay for the convenience, a la Netflix.
The idea behind a copyright is to have The People temporarily forfeit their innate right to communicate art, ideas, and stories in order to stimulate an industry of artists and scientists.
If the business model depends on people not copying your data then you can always sue for relief in the courts. Get damages, hooray. But criminal copyright infringement seems like a big stretch. Maybe worthy of fines or public service but imprisonment? Extradition to another country for potential imprisonment? Seems totally backwards.
From 17 U.S.C. 506(A) & 18 U.S.C 2319:
> . A defendant, convicted for the first time of violating 17 U.S.C. § 506(a) by the unauthorized reproduction or distribution, during any 180-day period, of at least 10 copies or phonorecords, or 1 or more copyrighted works, with a retail value of more than $2,500 can be imprisoned for up to 5 years and fined up to $250,000, or both. 18 U.S.C. §§ 2319(b), 3571(b)(3).
Yet, we do have both. We are at both peak piracy and peak revenue for digital content.
I think it’s false that people state that these things are exclusive.
I’ve been hearing this chicken little shit for 30 years and every year piracy is so bad that the end is near.
I think it’s more likely that piracy drives and improved digital sales. That’s just my hunch, but it’s based on my experience of everything going digital, companies making more money on it than ever, and piracy greater than ever.
Philosophically, I think piracy is a more future oriented and likely successful than the alternative. I fear for a future when we are digital beings having to subscribe to Apple Music in order to remember a song and play it in my “mind.” Piracy today is peace of mind tomorrow.
For example Adobe and Microsoft has turned a blind eye on piracy for years. I believe it was Steve Jobs who had the gut to point out the obvious, Student on campus just pirate their Photoshop.
For content, you could derive additional revenue from non-content product like merchandise or other form of cross-industry IP sharing. You cant have these sort of deals without getting significant mindshare of the public. And for some piracy is part of it. Think Game of Thrones. The most pirated TV shows on the planet. And is the same with Music. Most artist dont earn much with licensing, streaming or disc sales any more. It is about live performance tours and merchandise. Streaming Music isn't doing as well as most media would like you to believe, such as back to to the peaks of 90s without accounting for inflation and population difference.
That is why I sort of think in the future some content could end up going the freemium model. Just like how mobile games are doing.
In the reality with excessive copyright terms, yes.
> Even PBS with lots of supporting patrons can't make it without significant government funding.
Are government grants for the arts a bad thing now?
The current state of OSS exists in a world with copyright. If you want to extrapolate that to a world without copyright you better have a good argument why the incentives for OSS funding would not change.
Not content to physically own the planet, they seek to own our emotions through expropriation of our agency in all contexts.
It’s a managed economy of legal allowances, policed by an unelected minority beholden to no one. Hmm… where have I seen this before? No one saw it coming!
Tax the billionaires until they’re merely mega millionaires; their figurative identity obsession is not any more important than rest of ours, except due to political protectionism. Our doing human shit empowers these specific people; they can lose an order of magnitude in wealth to honor that.
As a result we’d be able to bolster health, education, and infrastructure everyone relies on. Deference to their wealth literally causes us to screw ourselves out of the time for such things.
If only the US hadn't used unconsititutional backdoors to ram similar laws into most other countries.
This fight reaches deeper than we think because any solution, that is an economic model where free software is valued correctly.. will be able to incentivice infrastructure, solve the tragedy of the commons, but if we do it with a central authority then we suffer from the computational complexity of prioritization and we are back to trying to break up the computation within the central authority.
Basically no matter what, we will have to solve the infrastructure problem in a distributed manner and fwict this comes down to replacing our various systems of evaluation with something more holistic that models reality well: probabilistic estimates of trust in information sources (identities) in a P2P network.
I believe the path is:
Authenticated datastructures can be used to build a societal "operating system" (version control, reproducible builds, digital currencies, name systems)
Slowly we start getting serious about cryptographic identities.
We start probabilistically evaluating trustworthiness of such identities (information sources) in a P2P network.
This social network starts becoming a sufficient way to manage society, some communities or developing countries report success stories.
Civil war in the west as the traditional governance is seen increasingly as a inferior means to organizing society but their hold on power is too strong for the transition to go smoothly.
Idk.. that's a rough sketch of where I see it going right now. It's really a race whether we can have the software ready before our civil liberties are eroded too much.
I have a telegram channel where we are thinking about how to go about this: @datalisp
Like illegally exfiltrating and distributing PII, credit card info, etc.
By accessing the content you are agreeing that the content is valuable to you.
Another case that comes to mind: spreading child porn should be punishable. Imagine if pedophiles could claim they were "just copying bytes".
I guess what I want to say is: there are valid reasons to be against IP. I don't like IP and I would like IP laws to be seriously revamped. But "bytes are meant to be free" is just a naive argument, as copying bytes can clearly be harmful to others in ways most societies consider criminal.
I have a feeling it will be much more in this case. For example...
"The case is being prosecuted by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit."
I imagine they will find a way to file RICO charges too. Those are good for 20 years each.
This may be a surprise to people born in the digital era and thus unused to such obsolete technology, but photocopying books is also illegal.
But if you copy them you can still be taken to court and/or imprisoned, just like copying a disc.
Some people also manage to extract millions of profit from Youtube and Instagram channels, despite all of the content being free. Books are not that different from any other medium.
Honestly, I'd much prefer that model for books over the forced Adobe DRM or vendor-specific stores that the industry seems to be trending towards.
Expecting direct payment for any knowledge product experience is a poor idea to carry on to extremes like plays & skits. If today someone finds a lost manuscript by a great ancestor author then they own the copyrights to it the moment they publish it. But we wouldn't have the Iliad without mass copying. In a way our imprisoned OP is a perfect reciter of plays who is doing his bit to ensure the plays that do get made remain true to human spirit not deepening state tentacles.