Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 14th Apr 2010 11:50 UTC
Legal A major setback for those that claim piracy is having an adverse affect on the US economy: the US Government Accountability Office, who was tasked with reviewing the efforts to find out what, if any, impact piracy has on the US economy, has concluded that all of these studies - all of them - are bogus. Better yet - the GAO even goes as far as to say that piracy may have a positive effect on the economy.
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RE: Comment by ssa2204
by alexandru_lz on Wed 14th Apr 2010 12:43 UTC in reply to "Comment by ssa2204"
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I don't think anyone goes as far as saying that pirating is the best thing and we should just drop legal software -- just that some of the stuff RIAA & co. have been saying is wrong. And really, a couple of them are obvious, even without a government-sponsored study.

For instance, I totally challenge the numbers that they are putting forward as losses due to piracy. The way they do it is multiply the number of pirated copies by the sales price, which is irrelevant because many of those who got the pirated product did not have the intention of buying a legal copy in the first place, and if a pirated copy wouldn't have been available, they wouldn't have bought the legal copy anyway.

These claims also neglect the issue of availability. Back in the early '90s I had a bunch of tape-recorded Deep Purple albums that were obviously not legitimate, not because I was a heartless pirate but because legal copies were not available in my country. Being the fan that I am I bought the albums as soon as they were available here, but in the years that passed until that the tapes had probably become thinner by as much as 1/10 mm :-D.

These may seem irrelevant to the final moral issue (i.e. regardless of these, piracy is still wrong), but it's not irrelevant to those who go to court on half-assed charges, nor when it comes to the ridiculous loss figures presented by those who sue, based on which the court decides the fines of those who are sued.

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