Copyright Web Writing

Something for nothing

Recovered from the Wayback Machine.

I like Andrew Orlowski, though he offered me a writing job once and then yanked it. I don’t always agree with him, and I don’t always agree with how he phrases some of his material, but he typically has a good point.

Take the recent Nine Inch Nails album release. Several songs for free, and the rest of the album costs $5.00. What happens? It’s immediately dumped on Pirate Bay. Bandwidth issues aside, as Radiohead found out, people won’t pay.

The anti-copyright crowd kicked at the music business, because it was complacent, wasteful and reactionary, and no digital download services were available. Then they kicked at DRM-locked music, because DRM was there. Then DRM died, and they’d indiscriminately kick at the music business – indie or major – simply because there was a middleman. But now, with no middleman, they just kick the creator directly. They can’t stop kicking. These zombies are unstoppable. Are they incurable, too?

This goes beyond copyright. Too many people expect immediate access to anything on the Net, or anything that could possibly be put on the Net. They want something for nothing. This isn’t free speech, this isn’t Free the Mouse, this isn’t anything to do with not stifling creativity: people assume a privilege for themselves they, frankly, don’t deserve. Their cry is, “gimme gimme gimme”, existing in a state of selfishness to bring down the band. And by their selfishness, they’ll probably screw things up for the rest of us. After all, DRM doesn’t exist so you can’t copy a song on to your iPod.

Excuse me, while I go put my DRM locked movie into the DVD player.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email