Thoughts

Feb. 7th, 2017 10:09 am
tealin: (Default)
[personal profile] tealin
I have loads of packing and pre-travel stuff to do, but my brain won't leave me alone about these things I've been wanting to blog about for years, so I'm giving it one hour to say what it wants to say and stop bothering me. These were going to be big long thinky-posts, but I'm forcing myself to keep them to one paragraph.

Piracy
Media piracy is a big deal, both for content producers (such as myself) and the consuming public, but I don't feel the current conversation is the one we need to be having. There are many grey areas in which limited theft ends up being for the greater good – essentially free marketing – but money has to be part of the equation at some point. The counter-piracy argument is always presented as 'if you don't pay for this film, you're stealing from the people who made it.' That is, essentially, untrue, as very few people who work on the film get any residuals from its profits. What you are doing is preventing things from getting made in the future. The rise of the box set has seen some fantastic television being produced, but it is being produced on the prospect that people will buy the box set, or digital equivalent thereof. Studios budget future projects based on what past ones have made, so if profits from Film B are down from Film A, they have less to give Film C, or decide that they can only make Film E, instead of Films D, E, and F as planned. I have been in meetings where the effects of this cycle are presented very matter-of-factly. When you pirate films, you are stealing from yourself, because your lack of monetary input means YOU will get fewer and lower-quality things to watch in future.

Politics
People argue endlessly about which approach to government is correct. There is no correct. There is only what best reflects your priorities. Everyone has a reason for believing what they believe. You can find statistics and studies to back up any argument you want to make, on any side. What it comes down to is a matter of choice. What kind of country do you want to live in? What kind of society? What do you want to put up on a pedestal as being the #1 Important Thing? A nation's government, in a way, projects back to the nation what it values. What values do you want those to be? What sort of people do you want to be allied with, or opposed to? What consequences are you willing to take? What sort of person does that make you? Are you OK with that?

Date: 2017-02-07 11:13 am (UTC)
out_there: B-Day Present '05 (Default)
From: [personal profile] out_there
Interesting.

Date: 2017-02-07 10:04 pm (UTC)
in_the_bottle: (Llama Spam)
From: [personal profile] in_the_bottle
The thing with media piracy is that there will be a whole lot LESS of it if they make things easier to access! I confess, right now, as I type this, I'm downloading the entire series of West Wing. Technically, that's piracy, but I also have the entire box set sitting in my living room shelf, so why am I downloading it? Cos I can't be bothered ripping the DVDs to put them onto my hard drive so I can sit through a 10 episode a day binge watching spree without having to get off my arse and switch discs.

When I still had access to the US Netflix before they geoblock everything (and I haven't got around getting a VPN installed to get around it), they have the entire series on there, and as a paying subscriber, I didn't have to go download an 'illegal' copy of it when I want to have a binging spree.

So on one hand, I get your point from a content producer POV, but from a consumer POV, the way to reduce piracy isn't all about educating people about the cycle of production (because honestly, most people will barely give that a second thought), but its about getting the big studios to make it easier to legally access the contents. There is a reason Australia is the digital piracy capital and that's cos its so much harder to get hold of stuff legally because the studios are delaying release in that part of the world sometimes MONTHS after the rest of the world has got to see it. With how fast information travels online now, downloading shows is pretty much self-defence against online spoilers all over the place. Its getting a bit better now, but FFS, Netflix didn't even get to Australia until recently (late 2015 or 2016 if I recall correctly).

So yeah, TL;DR version: make contents easier to access and people will happily pay for it without resorting to piracy. See "US Prohibition" under "history"

Date: 2017-02-07 11:22 pm (UTC)
cameoflage: Drawing of the TF2 Red Scout throwing his arms up, captioned with "PAY ATTENTION TO ME". (Default)
From: [personal profile] cameoflage
Definitely. Ever since I got a PayPal account and therefore became capable of purchasing things online without needing someone else to do it for me, I've bought individual songs whenever I actually can buy the songs individually and without having to get an entire mostly-unfamiliar physical album shipped to me. (If I actually do want the whole album, I'd still rather buy a digital copy than pay almost as much for shipping -- if not more -- as for the music, but if the official store only offers physical copies that's when I give up.)

And then there's movies and TV; I have access to Netflix through my parents' subscription, but it's Canadian Netflix, so they generally only have what I want to watch if it's particularly popular or produced for Netflix, and the popular stuff is often only within a certain time range (a few months ago they had Captain America: Winter Soldier but not the first Captain America movie, for instance). But I do prefer to watch shows legally via Netflix when they make that possible, instead of pirating them. I actually tried a VPN service to get to the American version of Netflix once, but it didn't work.

Date: 2017-02-07 11:33 pm (UTC)
in_the_bottle: (Default)
From: [personal profile] in_the_bottle
Yeah, not all VPN can get around Netflix now. The UK version is pretty good with some of the British shows, but the selection of American series is pretty sad. I also have Amazon prime membership that comes with limited video and music subscription, and the video selection is even worse. I do stream their music though.

None of the free VPN can get around the new geo-block, and only a few of the paid ones can. I'm looking into getting a proper paid one in the next couple of months that can get around it and also because of the digital snooping bill passed by the UK government recently. Do a google search and you'll see a few of them being recommended by tech sites/blogs.

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