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Piracy Australia The Media Your Rights Online

Rights Holders See Little Point Creating Legal Content Sources 417

aesoteric writes "Six weeks after Hollywood lost a landmark internet piracy case in Australia, it appears the film studios have gone cold on the idea of helping develop legal avenues to access copyrighted content as a way to combat piracy. Instead, they've produced research to show people will continue pirating even if there are legitimate content sources available. The results appear to support the studios' policy position that legislation is a preferable way of dealing with the issue." The industry-controlled kill switch is a popular idea all over the world.
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Rights Holders See Little Point Creating Legal Content Sources

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  • by ZorinLynx ( 31751 ) on Friday June 01, 2012 @08:44PM (#40189381) Homepage

    People have short attention spans. They can only really be fan-crazy about a small number of people at a particular moment in time. Many people go see movies just so they can see the actors/actresses they are crazy about. Therefore the industry has to create a small number of "big names". Once these names are created, they pretty much can ask whatever they want and the studios have to pay them.

    The big names are rotated out over time, but at any given moment the number of "superstars" is not all that large.

    It sucks, but that's part of how the entertainment industry works.

    Personally I've never been one to see a movie just because a particular person is in it. But apparently I'm in the minority.

  • Re:Content Paradox (Score:5, Interesting)

    by girlintraining ( 1395911 ) on Friday June 01, 2012 @09:26PM (#40189839)

    When no legal methods exist for consumers to obtain content in a way they demand, of course the only option left for them then is to illegally obtain that which they desire.

    But that's just it: They will never release a product that has broad consumer appeal. If they had DRM that used signatures instead of encrypting it, only allowing playback on certain devices, with an internet connection that's always on, etc., they'd have a lot better sell rate. But the truth is, the product is overpriced and heavily restricted to the point of being useless. If I could make a 1 time payment and get a license to watch A Movie(tm), and to play it anywhere, anytime, on any equipment, in any format -- for personal use... I'd do it if the price was reasonable. But that's the hideous evil about their marketing: They'll never give you that kind of a license. That's what you were buying in the 80s, and since we've gone digital, it's easy to create the extended edition, directors cut, ultimate, super, 1.5 version, diddledodedo edition -- and then we're going to release it on vhs, itunes, dvd, bluray, youtube, netflix, and in 23 different regions, at different times and price points... and you're going to have to PAY PAY PAY if you want to use any of them. Who cares if you already bought it and it's sitting on the shelf -- fuck you, you have to buy a slightly different version just to use it on your new streaming internet player, plus pay your ISP to stream it, plus pay the stream provider, along with the cost of the equipment, oh -- and every time you pay, we're right there, mouths wide, waiting to take a bite out of everyone else's sandwich.

    I'm a pirate and proud of it. Because I'm not just doing it because I can, but because there's no other choice. The business model is corrupt, it doesn't serve the public interest, nor does it serve the artists interests, nor does it really even serve the industry as a whole; It serves about 150 people who are middle men for a dying industry. The only reason bluray has any traction at all is because our internet connections are shit and we can't download it or stream it on demand. There's no reason for optical drives anymore; even mechanical hard drives are going the way of the dodo bird. But these guys are pushing their distribution model onto the world and passing laws and crap thinking it's going to save them. It's just re-arranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Bitches, ship's going down -- and the pirates already hopped in a life boat, cast off, lit a big fatty.. and now they're waiting for the artists and wondering what'll happen to those poor bastard consumers in 'economy'.

    RIAA and the MPAA are middle men. Middle men don't add value: They don't produce the product, and they don't use it. They're worthless. Fuck them. Get the consumers to the life boats (teach them how to torrent and bypass torrent blocking), and let the artists and the middle men figure out whether they want to drown together in each other's cold, unfeeling arms, or get on the goddamn boats and end this crap.

  • I'll agree once you tell me who's willing to front the money to have multimillion-dollar films produced to replace Hollywood's multimillion-dollar films.
  • Re:Content Paradox (Score:5, Interesting)

    by v1 ( 525388 ) on Friday June 01, 2012 @09:51PM (#40190069) Homepage Journal

    How many other legal formats do you need?

    Just two. format shift and preview.

    See, I go to bittorrent for these two reasons. First, it's silly to have to go to a crappy theatre and deal with all the drama and baggage there, pay for the movie and the extortion food, only to find it sucked and be out my money. Instead I torrent it and see if I like it. If I don't, I throw it away. If I like it, I buy it when it comes out. Best example: Bridge to Teribithia. The previews they put in the theatres and online looked like it was going to be very similar to Narnia, which came out just before it. Tons of great CGI, a positive plot. When I torrented it to see, I found that the preview was made by taking ALL the CGI in the entire movie (what little of it there was) and throwing it together. There was nothing new to see in the full movie, and it was a depressing drama show not an exciting adventure as the preview suggested. If I had gone to the theatre to see it, I would have walked out halfway through and demanded my money back.

    I don't delete it though because the aa-tards have prevented me from ripping the bluray I legally bought to watch on my computer or on the go. So I go back to the torrent I downloaded to watch. Actually, taking a movie like avatar for example, I've watched it maybe three times on the big screen in the living room, and probably a dozen times on my computer.

    So ya, give me that and I'll quit torrenting. Right now all it's doing is encouraging me to help the pirates, because my torrenting is sharing the content with people that have zero intention of buying. They can't get this through their thick heads though.

    They're just a bunch of "I want to have my cake, and eat it too, eat your cake, and charge you for the privilege" people. They insist on calling it "theft" but then when I ask why I can't do what I want to with it, they tell me I DON'T OWN it, I'm licensing it so they can tell me what I can and can't do with it. Can't have it both ways. Either sell it to me or stop telling me I'm stealing it.

  • Clueless (Score:5, Interesting)

    by funkylovemonkey ( 1866246 ) on Friday June 01, 2012 @09:58PM (#40190135)
    Most real pirates don't download content for free. They spend money on their internet provider, often being forced to chose more expensive options for no cap. Many subscribe to so called storage lockers like rapidshare and others which have subscription based services usually starting around $10 a month. The reason? Legal options are terrible. This was driven home to me several nights ago. My wife wanted to see the last episode of a show that she had missed last week. I said that would be easy, fired up the network website, found the episode and started streaming it. The quality was terrible but watchable. However for some reason the commercial breaks were not synced right and about a minute after the commercials the show would freeze and then fast forward two minutes. Out of a twenty minute episode we maybe were able to watch fifteen minutes of it. And then were forced to watch another five minutes of adds. Frustrated, I looked for a pirated copy of the show online, downloaded a much better quality version and streamed it to my television. No commercials, no errors in the playback, higher quality, more convenient, and it took less then five minutes to download. It seems like every time I try the legal options the experience is terrible.
  • Re:Content Paradox (Score:5, Interesting)

    by compro01 ( 777531 ) on Friday June 01, 2012 @10:55PM (#40190659)

    as that means he (and others) don't get paid.

    jms isn't getting paid regardless. B5 has a wicked case of Hollywood accounting.

    JMS on rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated, Feb 26, 2005

    That's the great irony of the situation. The criteria told to us right up front while we were producing B5 was that each of the series on PTEN had to show a profit *in that year* in order to stay on the air and be renewed. So we'd have these meetings with studio heads who were congratulating us on how much money the show was making for them (again, while we were still making for it), and then look at me, realize what they'd said, and hurriedly add, "Though technically we're
    still in the red."

    The show, all in, cost about $110 million to make. Each year of its original run, we know it showed a profit because they TOLD us so. And in one case, they actually showed us the figures. It's now been on the air worldwide for ten years. There's been merchandise, syndication, cable, books, you name it. The DVDs grossed roughly half a BILLION dollars (and that was just after they put out S5, without all of the S5 sales in).

    So what does my last profit statement say? We're $80 million in the red. Basically, by the terms of my contract, if a set on a WB movie burns down in Botswana, they can charge it against B5's profits..

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday June 02, 2012 @01:20AM (#40191549)

    Shareware isn't dead, it's big business. On Windows, all the "free" anti-virus programs use nags and limited functionality to encourage people to pay for the full product, just like shareware did. A large percentage of major Windows utilities which describes themselves as "free" are using the same business model.

    The shareware from yesteryear failed commercially because the market was too small. Now pretty much everybody in the Western world has a PC.

  • Re:Sounds right (Score:4, Interesting)

    by spiffmastercow ( 1001386 ) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @01:34AM (#40191635)
    How do you mean? I interpreted his comment as meaning that a.) there is nothing to steal from the pirate bay (only stolen via the pirate bay), or that b.) what we call "stealing" in this instance is actually copyright infringement which, according to the law, is a much more serious crime.
  • Re:Content Paradox (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Eskarel ( 565631 ) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @01:56AM (#40191729)

    Well the corollary to that attitude is that just because content owners demand their content is sold in a specific way doesn't mean they're entitled to it. No one on either side is entitled to Jack.

    The problem for JMS is that in this world of pulp media the only power the distributor has is based around controlling the distribution channel. If he won't offer me content the way I want it then someone else will and the content they produce will be just as shitty, cliched and shoddily produced as the stuff he does(and everyone else does for that matter). It's the same problem that's facing newspapers. If all you're going to give me is a poorly researched 3 paragraph blurb, why should I pay that when I can get a hundred poorly researched 3 paragraph blurbs on the internet for free, plus a tweet from someone who was actually there. Controlling the distribution channel isn't enough any more because the distribution channel is failing. Piracy aside, people are no longer watching TV in the same ways they used to, they're no longer willing to put up with content being delivered to their region 6 months later after everyone's already done talking about it, they're not happy with people telling them when to watch what they want to watch. This is a real challenge for current content publishers, their revenue models are seriously challenged by this idea, but three strikes laws won't fix their problems. Governments are sort of going along with the idea at the moment, but they won't allow a substantial percentage of the voting public to be affected by this sort of stuff whatever bribes they get paid.

    The world she is a changing, and no on really knows what it's going to look like. Personally I see a rather grim future for anyone trying to make a living making low grade content or who doesn't have some sort of additional revenue stream(dvd, merchandising, etc) in mind. Micro-payment will continue to be a bust so long as it's not financially viable to transfer amounts in the range of cents, which leaves either longer term subscription models or premium prices both of which require you to have a product people are willing to pay enough for to make a profit. I just don't really see either the old advertising model or the new one being able to sustain the kind of quality which can put you ahead of every other yokel with an internet connection.

  • Re:Sounds right (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Evtim ( 1022085 ) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @04:10AM (#40192293)

    Disagree. Just got 3 titles from gog.com that will see me for the next 5 years. BTW, all 3 I have purchased years before when they were new. But could not miss the chance to get all the expansions, manuals, cards, soundtrack, no DRM (this is heaven!!!), low price, ensured compatibility with modern OS. Am I going to give this games to other people (upload them on the net)? No. I want gog to live long and prosper....

    Or, what would you say about the latest Planet earth from BBC that, upon the DVD release years ago, shipped 15 episodes that cost small fortune to make over 3-5 years period for 45 Euros, postal from UK to mainland Europe included. 10 minutes after I ordered them I persuaded 4 colleagues to do the same and refused to another 3 to copy it for them once I got it.

    That is how you make business and that is how you make a bloody pirate (being born and raised as dirt poor east-European, piracy comes naturally to me) pay and encourage other people to pay too. There are a few colleagues at work with gog accounts already (I am rather good in convincing people though in this case it is not really necessary as every nerd wets himself upon hearing "no DRM").

    So, bullocks to the industry, the lying bastards!!

    P.S. It warms my heart that the content industry with their actions adds considerable acceleration to the collapse of the Western economy. In a few short years people will simply not have the disposable income to feed the pigs with their outrages prices and business model. Then they won't make less money, instead they'd be dead (and good riddance)...

  • by rtb61 ( 674572 ) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @05:19AM (#40192579) Homepage

    It is not about what is available when it is all about everything being available all of the time and having to compete for the viewers eyes. There are thousands of times more content produced than any person can consumer. Already in terms of individual user accessibility the internet can be considered to be infinite, more content is continually being created than any single person can consume, let alone what is already available.

    That is the cruz of the problem for the pigopolists, the sheer volume of content available and no longer being able to throttle availability in order to artificially inflate the price. They don't want the new distribution models because that creates a further flood of competing content, which under the laws of supply and demand, further suppresses the profit margins chargeable. It is all greed and bullshit, using deceitful marketing techniques to inflate desirability of new content whilst simultaneously burying back catalogues of content to limit competition for viewers in order to substantively inflate profit margins.

    All part and parcel of celebrityism, the artificial creation of creatures of worshop out of empty headed narcissists in order to sell every kind of crap product imaginable including bullshit politicians. Prime example the multimillion dollar George Clooney fund raiser for Barack Obama all to pay for Obama filling the department of justice with RIAA/MPAA lawyers, so a crock of shit to pay for more crocks of shit.

  • Re:Sounds right (Score:4, Interesting)

    by TheRaven64 ( 641858 ) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @05:52AM (#40192709) Journal

    I somehow own two Dungeon Keeper CDs, both of which are scratched. I bought it again from GOG.com because the $3 they were charging was less valuable to me than the amount of effort required to clean the two disks enough to reconstruct the installer and make it work.

    I mostly stopped buying games some time around 2003 because the copy protection became too irritating and games would often stop working just because I'd switched to a newer OS. I've bought more games through GoG since they launched (and spent more money) than I had done in the preceding 7-8 years. I actually still have half a dozen games that I haven't got around to playing yet, because they looked fun and were on special offer ($3 is less than a pint of beer: it's impulse-buy territory).

  • Re:Sounds right (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @06:28AM (#40192819)

    I don't bother turning on the TV either, but mostly because by the time they finally arrive here on TV, they are no longer interesting, not only having been out for over a year but also cut left and right and what's left after cutting them down to 2/3 of the length to make room for some more commercial is then butchered to death with atrocious dubbing. Why bother watching that?

    I would turn to a legal source if available. I would have a few requirements, though:

    1. At least as soon available as TPB. Seriously, you will not make a sale if you're lagging a week behind.
    2. At least the same quality as TPB. If I get a blurry, low-res version of the show and should pay for it, no sale.
    3. At least as quick to download as TPB. If your server is overtaxed when the show comes out and I have to wait a day, no sale.
    4. At least as easy to use as TPB. Preferably a one-click system, or even a push system that moves the latest show to your computer once you subscribe.

    You might notice that "price" doesn't show up in that list. Because it doesn't matter as much as one may think. Actually, there is so much room for rights holders here that it's a pity they didn't actually use that system yet. Why see the internet as a competitor? See it as another way to sell your show! Offer an add-on to your cable TV subscription where you can get the shows you like for an extra buck without ads. If you offer that only after it has been aired once (maybe the download starts right as the credits roll) people will STILL watch your show on TV and then do reruns from their storage. You not only sell them to your advertisers, you sell them your shows, too. Or even a "platinum premium subscriber" thingamajig where they could see it a day early (for a premium price, if the show's worth it, people will pay good money for such a service).

    For fuck's sake, is your marketing department high on coke and passed out on the office floor or why do I have to come up with that?

  • Re:Sounds right (Score:4, Interesting)

    by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <bassbeast1968 AT gmail DOT com> on Saturday June 02, 2012 @10:55AM (#40194111) Journal

    Huh, I feel the same about Steam and gaming. There are so many great cheap games and it takes care of the updates and MP stuff so I don't have to hassle with it its worth the money.

    What the media cartels need to be worried about is what I've found out from my oldest since he started college. many of the college age kids? Not watching anything. Between social media like FB, gaming, and net surfing they really don't have an interest in watching TV at all. I have to say I noticed the same thing myself which is why I asked, with so much other stuff to do on the net other than the occasional documentary I just have no interest in their crap, especially all that reality garbage they keep chumming out. Now the only time I watch any TV is when I see my parents who seem to watch nothing but CSI and NCIS, I swear you could show those 24/7 and they'd be happy.

    What you need to worry about with stuff like Netflix is the ISPs getting nutty with the caps. they are all overselling like crazy and unless you live in one of the places with FIOS good luck on getting them to roll out new lines so I have a feeling the CableCo ISPs especially will start hobbling with worse and worse caps to try to force you into taking their crap whether you like it or not. I know I'm paying for CableTV I'll never use because its cheaper to buy the bundle than it is just to have the cable and VoIP and if you use anyone else's VoIP it counts against the cap, nice.

  • Re:Sounds right (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jedidiah ( 1196 ) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @11:59AM (#40194471) Homepage

    > If its on Netflix, why would I even bother to download the torrent?

    Better quality. More of the original intact (like subtitles). Better player features (like navigation). Better availability both in terms of supported devices and "cloud networks".

    If frustration with the Netflix player can drive me to BUY something then clearly it can drive 100 others to pirate it.

Sigmund Freud is alleged to have said that in the last analysis the entire field of psychology may reduce to biological electrochemistry.