Internet Sharing Is a Feature, Not a Bug

Comments

1
But this sort of thinking kept the car companies safe and profitable, right?

Why innovate, if you can just change the rules (or prevent changes to existing favorable rules)?
2
the number of people that think content providers were literally going to sue and shut down every site that did something with their content is amazing.

The SOPA thing this week showed mostly progressive people acting like tea baggers.
3
I wish people would quit equating support of SOPA/PIPA to just Hollywood (Gingrich). The lobbyists for this bill spanned all the major media players (books, movies, music, video games), with the most money actually coming from the cable companies, who are losing subscribers at a steady rate as more and more people get their entertainment from the web. I thought Penny Arcade's comic today was pretty hysterical/sad and relevant. http://penny-arcade.com/comic/2012/01/20
4
I also want to say I think it is just delightful that Chris Dodd is threatening the Democrats with decreased campaign donations if they don't toe the line. What is he going to do? Give the money to Republicans? Most of those in the Senate and House who dropped their support for SOPA/PIPA were Republicans. Very few Democrats caved to public pressure.
5
SOPA/PIPA are bad bills, but there's actually some truth in there too. The extremes in both directions are untennable, "all content is free!" and "all intellectual property is copyrighted forever" are both lousy positions.
There is definitely a lot of value, and some money to be made, from distributing content on the internet, but the free for all copying and piracy guts the incomes of the content creators. Granted not all of them were making a lot under the old system, but don't kid yourselves into thinking that everyone is making money with the new system either. We're still at the point where most are making a lot less.
6
"it is less about protecting the people who create intellectual property, and more about protecting the people who broker it."

Yeah, this is why I always laugh when politicians and lobbyists who support stuff like SOPA and PIPA claim to be "protecting the artists." I'm a music student and you would be hard-pressed to find anybody, student or faculty, here who is in favor of these bills, or in favor of the idea in general that file-sharing is the worst thing ever and is ruining music.

That's why the only people they can find to support their initiatives are really big stars, but forgive me if as a composer I care a lot less about a few chips off a pop superstar's massive bottom line than about something which has the potential to ruin the livelihoods of the vast majority of musicians out there.
7
That said, per what SPG said, it does also annoy me though when some of the really hardline anti-SOPA/PIPA people on the Internet act like we shouldn't have copyright laws at all, but most of the people I see saying this are angry teenage boys who aren't old enough to vote, or just barely are but are too stoned to figure out how to register.
8
https://plus.google.com/1074206785727009… Been said a few times already.
9
@5, I get what you're saying, but it's armchair regulation, not reality. The data don't support "all content is free" being a bad thing for anyone. Media sharing generates huge amounts of revenue as people find out about, and then purchase, things they would never have known about otherwise.

Unfortunately, a lot of that revenue is direct - if someone hears an album they like, they often buy a download straight from the artist's site. This is about the industry's desperation to maintain a monopoly on media marketing and distribution, not about what's actually good for anyone. It's not about content, it's about protecting the role of the middle-man.
10
Remember Chris Dodd? He was the Dem Senator who wrote the law protecting bonuses for wealthy people that were bailed out and then lied about his role on CNN. He's now head of The Motion Picture Assoc. and behind SOPA/PIPA. Still protecting the rich and still a stone cold bastard!
11
But people are watching the Smurfs without paying!
12
@9, I have more experience on the movie side than the music side. The secondary opportunities, like concert attendance for music doesn't necessarily translate to video. Movies viewed online do not create any meaningful secondary opportunity for the directors and producers. I'm not even sure that the secondaries in music are anywhere close to making up for what they used to sell in hard copies. It's like Friedman arguing that the techie whose job was outsourced and made T-shirts about it was "winning", like going from a six figure salary to selling a few dozen shirts was equivalent.
13
Copyright is not for artists or brokers. It is placed in the constitution to secure for the people the benefits of a vibrant culture. Giving artists limited terms of ownership is the means, not the end. The only reason to tighten copyright law would be if we the people were experiencing a content shortage. Few would make that claim.
14
Thank you Goldy, thank you, and knew you weren't completely broken!

You are absolutely correct, the purpose of the Internet is communication and access to knowledge; academic sharing of scientific research, originally, and the means of communication for the people, in case they should blow the planet to smithereens!

SOPA/PIPA was financially supported, not surprisingly, by the American Bankers Assocation (ABA). What is surprising, as that NDAA is passed routinely, is that this time around the ABA also stridently lobbied for the NDAA in congress (perhaps it was that "indefinite detention" thingy????).

Death to the oligarchs, and hurrah for freedom, sometime we may actually experience it......

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/wp-conten…
15
Given that it is purely State-created, intellectual 'property' is eminently worthy of being taxed toward the maintenance of the State.

(This is a blatant rip-off of the argument Henry George made about property-in-land...which he got somewhat from Tom Paine.)

(Anyone ever heard of the Galambosians?)
16
Certain studios and "brokers" have gotten too powerful and at the same time, nonviable. Not a good place to be... It is time for the artists to fund themselves through other means, mostly by going direct and getting a larger slice of the pie upfront.

Who says small, highly-creative independent agencies and other shops can't handle the marketing and advertising that the big brokers do now for the artist? It's all about the quality of the product, and I quite frankly see this new development in media as a means for a significant amount of low-quality, mind-numbing crap media to be wiped out. The good shall always prevail.