Phytotron wrote:Here's the thing, all that—the claims of those who support music piracy for supposedly "noble" or "political" reasons (which is the insignificant minority of the 20-1 who are pirating versus purchasing music, and you know it; most just want free music—and anything else they can steal through torrents, etc., including software)—are reasons to change the system, to boycott corporate music, and support independent musicians and labels. It's not a legit rationalisation for getting unauthorised* free stuff. If you're not going to put forth any effort and corresponding financial backing into doing those things, then you haven't a leg to stand on in saying you're standing for something, or against "the man."
This is largely irrelevant, except the last bit. For me, the fight isn't just over all the evil horrible things the RIAA-affiliated record labels do (which, most of the smaller independent labels are also RIAA members). It's also over the technology itself, and the use thereof. I feel very strongly that sharing on peer to peer networks the music (and most of the other stuff, but not all) is perfectly ok, there's nothing wrong with it, and the big labels are fighting the technology to keep down the independent artists you're in such a hurry to promote.
It's a distribution system that could make superstars in a very grassroots fashion, and that's how it threatens the major record labels. It's the best thing that can happen to these smaller bands and labels, and by outwardly supporting the technology, my voice joins millions that tell the smaller bands and labels that we will support them this way. We will share their music with all of our friends (just like we always have), and we will go to their shows, and we'll spend money on things of value.
The ultimate in arrogance, imo, is when the record labels finally agreed to sell lossy, compressed versions of songs for the same price you can buy the physical uncompressed product with all the other things you talk about.
And, ironically, despite all the clamouring by the major labels and RIAA to the contrary, in the long run you're probably benefitting corporate music. Even if you're not actively supporting them (and I don't either), you are actively not supporting the smaller, independent musicians, labels, promoters, etc. Guess who's more fragile.
Indeed, in the heyday of napster, there were numerous independent studies that showed that p2p filesharing contributed to several record-breaking sales years for all the majors.
They didn't start feeling the pain until the boycott started.
And, you're also robbing yourself of the extended value of the hard copy. First, the obvious: quality. Uncompressed (and don't give me "open-source lossless compression").
I'm only tackling this paragraph because there's gross factual mistakes in it.
It's not subject to corruption, accidental deletions, or a failed harddrive. I would be remiss if I didn't throw in the superiority of vinyl.
So you've never picked up a CD and found it too scratched to play? Never had a CD somehow get snapped in pieces? Never seen one melt sitting on your car seat? And don't get me started on vinyl, those things were amazingly fragile. Corruption? Accidental deletions? You still subscribe to the myth that CDs never go bad? Really? In 2011?
Then there's the album artwork, its interior, and sometimes the packaging itself. There's the act of taking it out, the tactile experience, physically placing it in the relevant stereo equipment and turning it on—not just pointing and clicking, or scrolling. That all means something. It's the enrichment of the experience of which you're depriving yourself.
Except the smaller bands and labels usually can't afford to put much more than a sleeve with photos of the band in there....
Even the acquisition of it in the first place. Here, again, I come back to local independent record stores.
More record stores that don't have anything I'm looking for. The only surviving independent record store in Austin is packed with major label garbage. Their only redeeming trait is that I can listen to the garbage in listening booths located in the store: booths that the RIAA fought to have removed from record stores because it meant people could listen to the music without paying for it.
A lot of stuff I like is out of print, rare, or imported (which makes it rare in the US). My current favorite band, Tigertailz, was a band I discovered after their initial big star promotional period ended, and the CD I found was in the bargain bin with a damaged case. Found Xentrix the same way. Record stores are no help to me when they have to stock so much popular garbage just to stay in business.
I've been against, and have refused support of, corporate music since long before the internet existed (well, in popular, commercial usage, of course). I'm not some "tool" defending rich rock, pop, and hip-hop stars (who, again, are very much the exception, not the rule—you're not hurting them). I will continue to financially support those involved in independent music.
Then do so, but keep in mind that if a band has recorded on a label, it's probably still RIAA-affiliated.
I throw in there that I also won't support any band in any way that is looking to sign a record contract and go national. It's exactly the same way that I won't support anybody getting involved with cocaine or other drugs.
Your position is, as I see it, not too far from saying, "99% of all actors come from Hollywood, and they're overpaid, so I'm not going to support theatre." Or, "99% of cuisine is fast food, and it's bad for you and destroying culture, therefore I won't eat at any restaurant." Or, "99% of software developers work for EA and Microsoft, who are evil, so I'm going to pirate all my software." Or, "politicians are corrupt, so I'm not going to vote or participate in democracy at all; just complain and freeload." No, not exactly the same, but close enough for effect.
Then you're not understanding *my* position.
* Obviously, if music is expressly provided, or encouraged to be 'pirated,' by the musicians themselves, then that's fine and dandy.
They're almost never the copyright holders. So even if the musicians who don't own the copyrights to their own recordings encourage you to pirate their music, would you do it, knowing the record label owns the copyrights involved?
For me, you've missed some important details. For example, I don't pirate software. I use open source software, and contribute to its development. I don't read books from any publisher that doesn't offer free copies of some of their books, nor any publisher who uses DRM technology. The list goes on and on.....
If you really want to make a stink about copyright and power, why don't you ask Apple for the complete source code for all of their programs you rely on? Tell them you have a right to see it, to know that it's not mis-using your private information. Tell them you have a right to understand how it works, how it protects you, etc. Do you think they'll go for it?
Users have rights. It doesn't matter if they're people who listen to music or people who use software, and the same rights that we have for the usage of software apply to music, books, movies, etc. If you want to sway me with your position, get rid of the damn mac and try living a life where you actually guard those rights.