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Technology Piracy: Worse Than Robbery, Murder Or Rape?

As technology advances, piracy is getting more sophisticated each day.  For now, your company might be safe, but the illegal act is ruining ...

As technology advances, piracy is getting more sophisticated each day. 

For now, your company might be safe, but the illegal act is ruining many people, and you could also be a victim.

By @Comic24Derick

The future of original content creators is in danger because of the surge in piracy. The trend is affecting all sectors of the economy. 

In education, the Sci-Hub website came under the spotlight in the UK, with the police warning that the website could “pose a threat” to students’ personal data.

Musicians are faced with a similar predicament. Music piracy is reported to have increased by over 40 percent during the COVID-19 lockdown in the U.S. alone, aided by illegal piracy sites.

Computer software has also been targeted by piracy. With piracy on the rise, many are asking if they are safe from these rampant illegal acts.

Can piracy be stopped?

“The easiest way to stop piracy is not by putting antipiracy technology to work,” suggested Gabe Newell. “It’s by giving those people a service that’s better than what they’re receiving from the pirates.”

The biggest temptation for people who engage in piracy is that they make a quick buck, after investing very little or nothing at all.
“Piracy is robbery with violence, often segueing into murder, rape, and kidnapping,” Nick Harkaway declared. (Image: Pixels) 
Their low rates attract more unsuspecting consumers, who are willing to pay less for work done by someone else. As a videogame developer, Newell is aware of the far-reaching effects of piracy.

And to curb the surge of piracy, he suggested that developers like himself, need to upgrade their services to beat piracy operators in their own game. With better and affordable products on the market, customers will settle for original products, he said.

Customers must be considered

A competitive pricing structure, according to Kevin Spacey will possibly illegal operators from stealing what others have taken time to produce.

He said: Give people what they want, when they want it, in the form they want it in, at a reasonable price, and they’ll more likely pay for it rather than steal it,” the American actor and producer said. “Well, some will still steal it, but I think we can take a bite out of piracy.”

Interestingly, Newell and Spacey agree that the steep prices are promoting theft. He knows that his proposal will not entirely solve the problem, but it can help reduce the rate at which it is happening. 

The lack of competitive prices on the market is driving piracy, and affecting content creators, in the film industry for example.

The stick and carrot fight

“I realized that you can never legislate away from piracy. Laws can definitely help, but it doesn’t take away the problem. The only way to solve the problem was to create a service that was better than piracy and at the same time compensates the music industry - that gave us Spotify.” – Daniel Ek

For someone who understands technology, Ek knows that laws alone will be effective to a certain extent because the problem is now global. Piracy is getting sophisticated and widespread each day, and eliminating it is almost impossible.

In other words, the Spotify founder agrees they are not winning the battle to muscle out piracy, and he would rather compete with them by offering better remuneration to creators, more than they are currently getting.

A continuous headache

Tim Heidecker is also feeling the ripple effects of piracy; however, the American entertainer knows it is hard to fight it on a single front.

“Online piracy needs to be dealt with itself because people are just wholesale stealing people’s work and not paying for it,” Tim Heidecker suggested. “It’s very hard to figure out a way to fix it.”

Emotional death

It’s one thing for the industry to lose half its revenue to piracy; it’s another to destroy it emotionally.” – Jimmy Iovine.

Besides depriving creators of their hard-earned revenues, piracy is dealing a slow, death that will take time to repair. Artists, according to the Interscope Records cofounder will not be motivated to create more music if they know that other people are benefiting from their hard work.

Without the drive to create music, consumers will also suffer due to a lack of quality music, which has been known to offer an emotional relief to listens, among other benefits.

The easy way out

Graham Linehan thinks the middlemen are getting more than they should, hence the price of products is increasing. This, the Irish television writer says has given the rise to piracy who has replaced middlemen by offering reduced rates.

“With piracy, people think it's about getting stuff for free,” Graham Linehan suggested. “It’s not - it's about getting rid of the middleman that stands between you and your enjoyment of the film or music”

Creating alternative portals

“The real great news is, in the piracy capitals of the world, Netflix is winning,” Ted Sarandos gloated. “We are pushing down piracy in those markets by getting the access.”

The Netflix chief content officer is convinced his multibillion entity’s initiative, with 208 million subscribers, including 74 million in the U.S. and Canada will fight piracy.

The core of his message is giving affordable access to people who could have opted for pirated material. With a $25 billion revenue in 2020, it seems they are hitting the right cords. 

Even Steven Jobs admitted the problem was huge. “It is piracy, not overt online music stores, which is our main competitor.”

Everyone is a victim

Book publishers have been ambushed by piracy, with readers now preferring to download literature on the internet than stealing them. Tellingly, he says it is cheaper to get them online.

Tucker Max said: “Books are so cheap and easy to get that people don't bother stealing them, which is the essential rule of piracy that the music business learned much too late.”

Killing artists softly

“Piracy is robbery with violence, often segueing into murder, rape, and kidnapping,” Nick Harkaway declared. 

He added: “It is one of the most frightening crimes in the world. Using the same term to describe a twelve-year-old swapping music with friends, even thousands of songs is evidence of a loss of perspective so astounding that it invites and deserves the derision it receives.”

Piracy is a chain, that also includes innocent young people, who don’t understand the impact of the illegal act. To the British novelist, piracy is a crime that is the same as rape and robbery, because it deprives creators of their royalties.

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