The Strategic Retreat

Piracy, it’s a crime

“You wouldn’t steal a car.
You wouldn’t steal a handbag.
You wouldn’t steal a mobile phone.
You wouldn’t steal a movie.
Piracy is stealing.
Stealing is against the law.
Piracy. It’s a crime.”

-MPAA

First of all, don’t tell me what I would and would not do. It just so happens that I wouldn’t steal any of those things; but I’d say the average person might. That’s OK though, I’ll let your arrogance slide on that point, MPAA.

Here are my general thoughts on piracy and theft in general. It is wrong to steal and its wrong to pirate but that does not make them one and the same thing.

Theft is the gaining of property whilst denying the original owner the benefits of said property.
Piracy is the gaining of property without denying the original owner the benefits of said property.

With that knowledge let us visit upon the MPAA’s main points.

1. You wouldn’t steal a car
A fair enough assumption. Most people wouldn’t steal a car. The penalties for stealing a car are severe. Cars are hard to hide and unless you have a chop-shop you’ll probably only get a couple hours of use out of a stolen car before you’re caught.

2. You wouldn’t steal a handbag
I disagree. Most people wouldn’t steal a handbag from a person but if they found one laying on the ground and nobody was around they very well may keep it, or at least grab the cash from inside. I find it interesting that they use the term ‘handbag’. Handbags make me think of two very distinct groups; nice old ladies and stupid spoiled whores. If you don’t think I’d steal Paris Hilton’s handbag and club a baby seal with it then you just don’t know me very well.

3. You wouldn’t steal a mobile phone
Has the MPAA ever had somebody else’s phone by mistake? I found somebodies cell phone once, the thing wouldn’t stop ringing. It was like a quest to Mordor to get that bitch returned. I couldn’t get rid of it fast enough.

4. You wouldn’t steal a movie
No shit I wouldn’t steal a movie. Do you have any idea how easy it is to a) download a movie that hit the theatres yesterday or b) constantly netflix and burn a couple movies a day? Like I’d get my hands dirty with petty theft when I spend 10 cents a DVD for the same results. What do you take me for, an idiot?

5. Piracy is stealing
As shown above, Piracy does not equal stealing. If I were to steal your car then you wouldn’t have a car. That would suck, you’d have to sit next to Smelly McCrazy on the bus. If I pirated your car then you would still have your car and I would also have a car. We could race. You lose nothing and I get some slick wheels. If only stealing were like piracy, I could fucking end world hunger by FTPing my thanksgiving turkey to Africa.

6. Stealing is against the law
That’s true but since you didn’t prove that a = b (piracy = stealing) your follow up statement of b = c doesn’t logically correlate to a = c (the implied statement of “Piracy is against the law”). I’m not saying it’s not true, but your argument is logically flawed. My second beef with this statement is that it seems to imply things that are against the law are fundamentally wrong, which simply isn’t the case. It used to be against the law to assist escaped slaves. I think most rational people would agree that; although once a crime, freeing slaves isn’t a bad thing.

7. Piracy. It’s a crime
see #6.

The thing is, Piracy is wrong. It denies the owners of intellectual property the ability to fully profit from their ventures. Piracy may decrease profitability and may impact investments in intellectual property.

Very few involved want less awesome things recorded, created or invented. That being said; until you can discuss this like rational adults MPAA and RIAA go fuck yourselves. Fuck yourselves right in the ear.

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