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Other Piracy

Discussion in 'Software' started by Zinfandel, 2 Aug 2010.

  1. stuartpb

    stuartpb Modder

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    Boiled take your head out of your own arse for a mo and smell the fresh air. I have repeatedly stated how I have formed my opinion, why I have these opinions, and what I think about all other opinions for long enough now. 24 pages of discussion and we will never agree on the basic principles we have discussed within these 24 pages. I am simply doing what I should have done ages ago, walk away. There is no point continuing as there is no progress being made on either side.

    I'm on holiday for 2 weeks from work, and I got involved in an argument that has gone on too
    long. I think now would be a prudent time to draw a conclusion to my involvement, before it turns into another 24 pages of the same. If you want answers to your questions, read the 24 pages. Don't expect me to be wasting more time going round in circles, because that is all we are doing.
     
  2. Altron

    Altron Minimodder

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    No, that's not true at all. Ask anyone who has studied economics - the value of products is determined by the customers.

    I've had my say on the larger topics, but I need to jump in on this point.

    Not every game is 'worth' the MSRP. Many games are worth far less. Many other games are worth far more.

    That plays DIRECTLY into how often they are pirated. If people think the MSRP is too high, they are more likely to pirate.

    Notice how a couple people have mentioned pirating MW2, since it's $60. Now, has anyone here pirated the Orange Box? HL2, HL2E1, HL2E2, TF2, and Portal - often goes on a Steam sale for $10?

    No, because to most people, those games are definitely worth $10. You've read all the reviews and heard the buzz and you know that HL2 won more game of the year awards than you can count, TF2 is an amazingly fun game, and Portal is widely considered to be 'perfect'.

    The value of a product is how much people are willing to pay for it.

    Overvalued products, some people who would have bought them at a lower price pirate instead
    Correctly valued products, most people who would have paid for the game do, and it's mostly pirates and thieves who want them for cheaper
    Undervalued products, everybody buys them.

    Your $100 jeans analogy is completely off base.
    If the price tag says $100, they are not worth $100.
    The only time they are worth $100 is if there are customers willing to pay $100 for them
    If nobody buys them, the store will discount them until they do end up selling at a lower price.

    The price the product sells for is its value, not the price determined by the manufacturer, or the cost of producing the item.
     
  3. stuartpb

    stuartpb Modder

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    Which still brings us to the point that it isn't right to steal (or pirate) because we do not like the price:wallbash: I see biiig circles rotating in my eyeees. What is this???
     
  4. boiled_elephant

    boiled_elephant Merom Celeron 4 lyfe

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    It's all unmeasurable. Projecting serious moral values onto something as mundane as piracy was always the charge of the chronically bored; it doesn't matter. I enjoy messing around with the potential moral structures one might build up around it, but it's all for naught really. Piracy does not matter. If there were a real number attached to its damages we would know about it by now. Likewise if there were a real benefit. It's just inconsequential, and I have to wonder at people who get morally outraged over it. No offense to you two, you're entitled to your beliefs - it just seems a strangely small thing to have such fervent beliefs about.
     
  5. phulshof

    phulshof What's a Dremel?

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    I didn't say you weren't interested in putting money in the artist's pocket. I just said you value your own morals higher than that.

    No, my argument is, and has always been that we don't know if group 4 > group 6. You've just not been interested in discussing that part, because you're too morally outraged about group 3-6, and you're willing to kill off group 6, because of the existence of group 3 and 4. You may think it's obvious that group 4 > group 6, but over 5 independent studies by respected institutions into the music industry showed that for that industry, despite people's gut feelings, group 6 was the larger one, so getting rid of copyright infringement would REDUCE the amount of cash in the pockets of the artists there. We have argued here that we need to do similar research into the area of games before we can judge on how to proceed.

    (for readability a repeat of the groups)
    1. do not copy, do not buy
    2. do not copy, buy
    3. copy, do not buy, would not have bought anyway
    4. copy, do not buy, would have bought without the copy
    5. copy, buy, would have bought without the copy
    6. copy, buy, would not have bought without the copy
     
  6. Pieface

    Pieface Modder

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    Altron, remember the story posted on this site. A games company made one of their games into a you pay what you think it's worth? Yeah, well that also got pirated.

    I find boiled's morals a bit obscure. You hate piracy and want it to stop, yet you do it yourself? It's a bit of a hypocritical view is it not?
     
  7. Pookeyhead

    Pookeyhead It's big, and it's clever.

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    Well you can pontificate all you like, but in the absence of anything else (seeing as you're adamant that there is no measurable way to establish ANYTHING in this argument) I'll settle for supporting an industry by buying it's products. I appreciate what a radical, left field method of thinking this is to some of you, but there it is.

    If you think it's somehow overly moralistic to pay for the products you need, then I suppose I'll just have to accept that you all view me as some overly virtuous, Quaker like entity that baffles you. Meanwhile in the rest of the world, this is how the economy actually works.

    Send me a post card from your world... it sounds nice. :)
     
  8. Altron

    Altron Minimodder

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    No, it doesn't bring us to that point at all, because I never said a thing about piracy being right or wrong, regardless of the price.

    I said that your concept of the value of a product is completely wrong. If I wrote my own version of Solitare, and tried to sell it for $1000, by your concept that software is now worth $1000. Would a single person buy it? Of course not. Its value is nothing. Value of a product is determined by the price that customers are willing and able to pay. Not the price that a manufacturer decides to charge for something.
     
  9. boiled_elephant

    boiled_elephant Merom Celeron 4 lyfe

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    Not at all, man, you're preaching to the converted - as I've said before, I buy everything. My participation in this thread is purely for the sake of exploring the moral theory behind piracy, not to justify my own habits - I haven't actually pirated a game in about a year now.

    You must admit, though, that the degree of rage this issue generates does get a bit disproportionate to the issue at times. It's not like we're talking about the death penalty or anything.

    edit -
    That's exactly the sort of hard data we've all been pining for in here, could you provide links? Sounds interesting. Of course, no study is perfect or conclusive, but it might inform things somewhat.

    It would be if I were a moral realist and an idealist, but I'm not, I'm purely pragmatic. I worry about consequences. I don't hate piracy in principle - just in reality. In reality, it's done to excess on a big scale by people who don't purchase what they pirate, and is basically a big chunky loss for the developers.

    My own piracy doesn't bother me because I buy afterwards and don't support pirate distribution networks, so my actions have no negative impact.

    It's the way it's done, not the act itself, which is problematic. As Pookey noted earlier, if everyone pirated like me, and bought the games afterwards, it wouldn't be a problem at all - but they don't. I hate the pirates who don't buy, not all piracy per se. And I think the entire practice of piracy has to be eradicated because people will never use it responsibly, as I do - it will always be a form of theft in the hands of most people.
     
    Last edited: 20 Aug 2010
  10. phulshof

    phulshof What's a Dremel?

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    I quoted 4 earlier in this thread; happy reading. :)
     
  11. Pookeyhead

    Pookeyhead It's big, and it's clever.

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    So what we need, is for all developers to release playable demos that work exactly as the retail version does (but maybe only the first few levels or maps), and then there will be no more reason for group 6 to exist at all, and that excuse will no longer available to use. Why pirate it to see if you like it, when you can just download it from the developer's website? Anyone left with a pirate copy therefore is, by default, a thief.
     
    thehippoz likes this.
  12. stuartpb

    stuartpb Modder

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    Altron, the point I was trying to make, and one which I suspect you knew full well, was that just because we do not like the price of something then it does not give us the right to steal or pirate it. This is regardless of what market factors set the price, and I do think you are just trying to split hairs, especially as we were discussing piracy here.
     
  13. wizzzard

    wizzzard What's a Dremel?

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    This is exactly why saying that piracy is theft is wrong. Developers/publishers act like the mere fact they have created something entitles them to an income from it (irrespective of its quality). If someone doesn't buy what they're selling, they claim that this income has been stolen from them (the extent of this 'theft' being partly dependent on the value they themselves assign to their product).
     
  14. Pieface

    Pieface Modder

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    That is, without a doubt, the stupidest statement in this entire thread.
     
    boiled_elephant and stuartpb like this.
  15. murraynt

    murraynt Modder

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    Yup, the whole point is to earn a living in the first place not to just give us some enjoyment.
     
  16. stuartpb

    stuartpb Modder

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    Agreed! +1 rep!
     
  17. RichCreedy

    RichCreedy Hey What Who

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    i cant believe this thread is still going
     
  18. Altron

    Altron Minimodder

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    Well, there's the catch - if someone went through the trouble of pirating it, then it is worth something to them.

    Maybe it's not worth the full retail price to them (in which case they could wait for it to trickle down to a retail store bargain bin or a cheap Steam sale), but it's worth something to them, otherwise they wouldn't have used the time, bandwidth, and electricity to pirate it.

    It's so 2002 to just consider piracy as "oh, these people stole our game, they're lost sales" or "oh, these people wouldn't have bought it anyway, it's not lost sales"

    Piracy ties very heavily into game economics. Game pricing schemes, secondhand sales, etc all have an effect on piracy, and piracy has an effect on them.
     
  19. Wag

    Wag What's a Dremel?

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    Wow, this is a hellova thread. Lots of people with strong opinions and valid points and concerns. As someone who will admit to have purchased as well as pirated items at various points in his life I offer this wisdom.

    Piracy is different than stealing outright. The underlying effect is generally the same and even the definition virtually matches up, but the actual act of Piracy vs. Theft is quite different. You simply cannot lump a pirated item in as a lost sale.

    There will be a percentage of people who pirate for the sake of piracy and simply to say they "have" something. They may never even load up the program and may never have the intention of doing so. That is most certainly not a lost sale.

    There are others who will maliciously download an item and use it often. They may even go so far as to recommend it or even give it to friends getting them the same pirated copy. Small others may even charge for the pirated item to people. This is probably the worst kind of piracy and most certainly leads to the most lost sales. Not to mention being 100% illegal no matter how you slice it.

    There will be others who simply desire the pirated item but simply do not have the money for it. Depending on the situation that either can lead to a flat out lost sale, or potentially a temporary pirate now which may lead to a sale down the road. It is a flip of the coin.

    There will be others who Pirate an item and load it up and excitedly try out the program. After a short period they find that the item is not or will not do what they expected. They lose interest and never use it again.

    Someone used an analogy of taking a drill home without paying for it and trying it and then returning it. This is a flawed analogy on several levels. Some of which have been corrected, but mostly because you can actually purchase that drill from a store and if it does not work as expected you can then return it to that same store for your money back. They may potentially be a fee or only a window of opportunity of return but you can, in fact, return it. I encourage you to try to return a piece of software to the place of purchase.

    Another analogy was the copying of a book verbatim. While you may or may not be able to return a book, you can resell that book by any number of means. Again, software is tricky in this regard. Publishers cry bloody murder whenever someone talks about used games.

    Piracy is a very complex issue on many many levels. Everyone has a stake in it. Consumers, Publishers, Developers, Artists, Retail outlets, and many many more. The biggest problem is that no one wants to compromise and the parties with the deepest pockets can demand the most change in their own favor.

    Personally I feel that if software was more affordable in the first place then piracy would largely disappear. I’m no economist and couldn’t tell you if this would pan out financially for companies or not. It just seems that if Microsoft, Adobe, and others can sell their software for a fraction of the cost to students, then they should be able to do it for all consumers. I doubt Microsoft would see near the piracy if anyone could get a legit copy of Windows for $30 or even $50. Personally, I am usually a couple versions behind any of the latest software releases because of the costs. I'm also a habitual bargain bin shopper for games because to be honest, new releases are just not worth the money to me.

    I will say that Piracy is a bad deal for everyone involved. It does nothing for consumers other than make them criminals. It does nothing for Publishers other than loose them money. But the way it is handled is the difficult part.

    Just like anything, the devil is in the details.

    my 2 cents..
     
  20. Niftyrat

    Niftyrat Dremel overpriced like EA games

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    I am sure this has been pointed out but as an older person I have known of piracy my entire life, I remember when people were pirating zx spectrum games that cost 99p or recording off the radio (my friends were so jealous that My dad had a twin deck tape recorder) there were dire warnings about this killing the industry then.

    Yet life went on and even into the days of doom I remember having a pirate copy (never played it much past the shareware levels but hey I could have done) still the industry remained.

    So what has changed? For me the Internet happened, I remember the explosion of lime wire and then torrents which took piracy out of the more dedicated hands either through finding a friend with a copy and then copying things like codewheels or in the case of one game my dad photocopied the entire manual at his work for me one Sunday afternoon when he was quiet, or through a friend of a friend who new people who could get the latest film/game for a small cost.

    Suddenly along came ease of piracy, want a game load up limewire search, put on download and wait a few days (56k modem) and it's done. Want a song you heard on the radio again search select done. Now anyone can do it and do it in bulk. I was so used to it the thought of ripping my own CDs was pointless instead just download a rip done by someone else and play a game while I waited.

    Now in the age of broadband there is no waiting, just click and within minutes you have the latest film or song or game often not crippled by the DRM schemes that exist for legitimate customers.

    So why then do I buy games/films/music? Simple if I want more of the games I like then i need to make it worthwhile to developers to continue to make flight sims/racing games or games based on certain IP (dawn of war for eg. Not keen on rts that much but like it cause I like w40k)

    I do download tv shows though why you ask? I pay £££ to sky for their full package why should I then buy a series because I missed an episode or it changes which channel it is on? Don't do much but do if I need to play catchup.

    If we all pirated would games be free yes would good games get made no probably not. Money makes the world revolve.
     

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