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Headlines Ethics and morals associated with downloading music

Icarus

(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻
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#1
Alright. I beleive that BRiT has OK'ed the discussion of downloading music, on a purely philosophical and ethical basis. So before I begin, let me set guidelines for this thread:

Do not get into the technical issues of downloading music. Ways to download, programs to use, etc. Nobody will be able to use this thread at all for an instruction manual. This is for legal reasons to protect WTF.com (so don't call me a downer).

Alright. Do you think that pirating music is morally acceptable? Do you think that downloading music should be against the law? Explain your opinions.

P.S.: If this thread does in fact violate the rules, I apologize. Please do not hesitate to lock/close/destroy it if it violates any rules.
 

Captain 151

Seeped in a dry Merlot
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#2
Here's the thing. I see a parallel between music downloading and video rentals. The movie industry saw an opportunity to make mad money by renting out movies that were no longer being run in the theater.

While the songs would still be in hot demand, I don't see how this could be any different. Now, granted, there are infinite times more songs than movies that come out on any given day, and a database that is much larger, not to mention a running time that is far less than any movie. A dollar a song is far too expensive. I wouldn't pay more than .25c for a song.

As for the downloading illegally issue... I'm kind of torn, especially since the experience I've had with illegal download (not saying that i personally did, just my experience with it) has lead me to PURCHASING ALBUMS that I normally would never have looked at.

There's always two sides to this issue that can always be argued, and neither is more justifiable than the other. Hopefully someday the RIAA and such will get this resolved without much backlash from the music listening community.
 

gummi_

Tenderony
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#3
I think it depends alot on what you intend to do with what you download ... if your going around burning albums and then selling them off to people and making money off it, then yep i think its wrong.

If you simply download a few songs and listen to them yourself ... not making money out of it ... then i dont really see anything wrong with it. I know its something that the musicians and recording industry have put money into, but honestly you dont go around dowloading every single song. I have plenty of albums, and if i want to try out listening to a new band ill get a couple and decide if its an album id put my money into...

Personal profit from it = wrong!
 

RageAgainst

Chaotic Neutral
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#4
If I would've paid for all the music I listen to, well I'd be living in the street with my ghettoblaster. I can't afford it, and if the internet allows me to download it for free then I will. The only time I feel bad for download music is if the band is unkown/poor. In wich case I'll buy their album (The only albums I have are from unkown/local bands or from my favorite bands.)

I will never feel bad for downloading music from rich artists. The only reason that I pay for music is if I really like it AND I have enough money.

Another point. If I want to discover a new band, I'm not going to gamble 15$ on buying a new album and risk not liking it. Downloading songs is a way to discover new bands. If you don't like the songs, fine; but if you like it alot you can always go buy their shit. Like 15 out of the 20(or so) albums I have are bands that I downloaded songs from and then bought their album.
 

</rant>

Tenderony
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#5
I have no problem downloading music. I pay enough for records as it is, and am more than happy to give it out to my mates. I listen to a more varied selection of music, and I doubt anything will stop me doing this.

Below is something I posted on another forum I use.

</rant> said:
The number of people buying cd's outweighs the number of people downloading music. People have been buying ridiculously priced cd's for years and years. Now more people are getting to grips with computers, the music industry feels they are losing out because without the access, consumers will have no other choice but to go pay £15 for the latest releases.

Mp3's are not new. I saw and downloaded my first one on dalnet years ago. Its only since Napster made it idiot proof that it has gone mainstream and widespread.

This will never be stopped. Think of all the time and money that goes towards legal fees to shut these sites down, only for another ten to take it's place. Where does all that money come from? Is it really worth pursuing people again and again who are just going to devise new ways to do it and not buy the cd's in the first place anyway?

The way I see filesharing going is back to where it came from, where you will need to know more than how to double click an executable file and use a search engine.
Please note the above was written in response to previous posts on the other forum. The topic was 'The RIAA is savage'



</rant>
 

Descent

Hella Constipated
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#6
I feel that any non-independent artist deserves to have their work "stolen," but only to boycott the big recording companies.

Those artists make about 40 cents off of one CD, while the fat cats make all the rest of it. How would you like that, if you were an artist?

Idependent artists, on the other hand, deserve to have their work paid for, such as System of a Down. Pirating a whole album from somebody who makes great music, and who actually profits from it, is really scumbag-ish. You like them, so support them! There's no evil empire taking your money!
 

RageAgainst

Chaotic Neutral
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#7
Descent said:
Idependent artists, on the other hand, deserve to have their work paid for, such as System of a Down.
Yeaaaaah, especially when their last album is called "steal this album"

I stole it. haha.
 

Darklight

Oppressing your posts...
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#8
The way I feel is that downloading music, at least how I and most everyone I know does it(for personal listening), is the same as copying a tape for a friend. Sure its on a larger scale and has the potential of causing a dent in sales but I somehow remember reading a news report on how market analists determined that the sale of metallica cd's didn't really have a loss of sales from the time before napster to when the lawsuit happened. It seems more like it was just a greed issue. Same idea as corperate downsizing and market inflation. We want a few more dollars to spend on our drug habits so we'll screw you.
What its going to come down to is soon the medium of mp3's for music will be illegal, thanks to the RIAA's relentless persecution of the individual downloader. But that will probably only be the beginning as it will open the door for other forms of media recording to end. I wouldn't be surprised if the little Rec button on your tape player(if anyone has one) and on your VCR goes away. Cable companies start using tracking signals to see if someone is recording thier favorite episode of friends, and send police to thier door. And here I thought the purpose of entertainment was to entertain people.. not empty thier pockets.
Now on the other hand if I gotta spend a buck a song to get a cd, why don't ya come up with some original sound, as most of this new music I hear is just a regurgitation of older styles and even melodies. There may be 3 rap artists and 1 RNB artist who come up with original stuff...
 
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#9
The thing that annoys record labels about mp3 downloading is that the major ones aren't getting as much money because people are finding new bands to listen to that aren't getting so much attention from mainstream sources. The record industry as a whole isn't losing any money, just the labels that are being forced on us. If it wasn't for this technology, there would be so many good bands out there that I would have never heard of. I'm a download then buy kind of guy. If I hear something I like, I'll buy the CD or the 7" or whatever format I can get the music on.

I guess charging money for mp3s is good in theory, but there's still the idea that what you buy is controlled by whoever's distributing the product. Who says they'll have what I want to listen to in stock? And there's also the issue of song length. A lot of bands I listen to have really short songs. If I were to buy some of them off iTunes, then there could be cases where I'm paying for songs at a rate of more than two cents per second. You can't charge all songs at the same rate, you have to set some kind of pricing requirements.
 

Skitch0o0

Put it in MY butt...
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#10
Descent said:
I feel that any non-independent artist deserves to have their work "stolen," but only to boycott the big recording companies.

Those artists make about 40 cents off of one CD, while the fat cats make all the rest of it. How would you like that, if you were an artist?

Idependent artists, on the other hand, deserve to have their work paid for, such as System of a Down. Pirating a whole album from somebody who makes great music, and who actually profits from it, is really scumbag-ish. You like them, so support them! There's no evil empire taking your money!
You do realize that most artists don't even give a shit about piracy since it rarely effects their own paychecks as they are often on contracts that aren´t heavily effected by sales. The ones that are bitching are the large recording and distribution companies. I guess I could talk about the ethics of "stealing" their music, but then I would have to counter myself with the ethics of their own business practices.
 

Descent

Hella Constipated
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#11
That's the whole point, Skitch. It's the lesser of two evils.

Wait, did I say two evils? I mean good over evil.

The RIAA/MPAA can rot in hell.