Linked by David Adams on Tue 26th Oct 2004 16:30 UTC
Editorial The software industry is undergoing a gradual transformation, and consumer fatigue is at its root. The licensing model that has formed the basis for the modern software industry is facing challenges on many fronts, and the industry is scrambling to keep its footing. Where this period of change may lead software producers and consumers isn't quite clear, but some trends are emerging. Since the proliferation of the internet, unauthorized redistribution of digital goods has become rampant. But although software sharing probably won't kill the software industry, the reasoning behind it shares some pedigree with the customer revolt that promises to transform the way software is sold.
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Piracy, IP et al.
by Mike on Tue 26th Oct 2004 20:30 UTC


Good article, but 7 pages!? Come on...

Ignoring the psychology for a moment, I would like to suggest that piracy is, to some extent, a valid economical reaction to corporate market control.

The main opponent of P2P is the RIAA. That's the Recording Industry Association of America. The what industry? How, in 2004 is recording an industry? DVD writers cost less than $70 for goodness' sake. I'll do my own recording thank you very much. And while I'm at it, I'll take on the cost of distribution too, using P2P and DSL. I can take on the cost of manufacture and distribution. That doesn't leave much for the "record company" to do (production and marketing). That means they're due a big slump in turnover and that's not in any of their interests. So they resist. If they'd just release songs on P2P with adverts tacked on either end, they'd clean up...

With regards to software, I have no illegal software on my machine. I have been offered stuff like Photoshop and Macromedia CashIn(tm) (or whatever their latest thing is) but I have no use for them. Most people have no use for expensive software outside of work. And if you're earning > $30,000 p.a. from $500 of tax-deductable software, it seems churlish not to cough up. So students learn on unlicensed copies, they'll need to pay for when they turn pro.

These problems are not as big as the industries would like us to think. The problem for them is that the continued growth they need to survive cannot be sustained if they lose control of the market.

Law is black and white, morality is not.