Every year Techdirt runs a “Funniest/Most Insightful Comments”. This year much of it was about “Anti-Piracy” Laws. Here’s a quote from ” That One Guy”:
There have been countless ‘anti-piracy’ laws passed, over decades, and yet none of them have had more than a minor, temporary effect on piracy at best. And yet those buying the laws continue to do the same thing, year after year, pushing the same laws, the same ideas, despite their utter failures to date. Given that, the way I see it there’s two possibilities:
1. Almost every last person in the entertainment industry, with very few exceptions, is a complete and utter idiot, lacking even the most basic pattern recognition skills, and incapable of learning even the most obvious lesson from their past actions.
2. Stopping piracy isn’t actually the goal, and is instead merely the excuse, the justifications for their actions. Now, if stopping piracy isn’t the actual goal, what might it be? If I had to guess, I’d say the real goal is two-fold:
Killing off competition before it can grow, and maintaining control.
That does explain the anti-piracy laws. 300 million people share files every month and they spend 30-35% more on movies and music than the rest of the internet population. That’s a huge market!
Let’s read on…
Methods of distribution like file-sharing can be used for piracy, yes, but they can also be used for artists not affiliated with the major labels to get their music out there, all without having to go through a middle-man. Books not affiliated with major publishers can be shared and read, and movies put out by indie studios can be shown without ever having to go through the theaters.
Of course, if a creator doesn’t want to deal with the possibility of their stuff being pulled thanks to a bogus claim, or removed as collateral damage thanks to a bot flagging something they created, they could always sign up with the major labels/studios/publishers, who never seem to have to deal with that sort of thing…
It’s a great column, you can read it here: