In Defence of Anti-Piracy
In “In Defence of Piracy, (Well, some piracy)” (http://www.macopinion.com/columns/curmudgeon/99/01/28.html), Matthew Ruben argues that it should be perfectly ethical for a person to download popular single songs off the Internet without paying for them, although he against wholesale downloads on entire albums. He argues that much of the demand created for these singles come from widespread advertisement and as such there is a lot of impulse buying of CDs. He also reasons that for most albums, only a few songs are actually good and worthy of buying, the rest rightfully belonging “to the landfill”. However, his arguments are not very convincing on the grounds that he has assumed that there are no albums with many good songs. He has also assumed as if the onus is upon record companies to produce albums packed with good songs so that consumers get the value that they paid for instead of upon individual consumers who ought to be prudent in their spending.
The author has rightfully pointed out that many advertisements actually hype up the demand for particular songs, and the examples he gave such as Jimmy Page song in the movie Godzilla really reflects what is rampant in the entertainment industry today. Granted that most consumers only find one or two songs of an album good to listen to but this hyped up demand that was created for one or two songs of an album is not the excuse to justify piracy of these songs. The author has not considered album remixes that contains only hit songs in one album, to satisfy the demands of those consumers who really want to see value in all the songs that they buy in an album.
Another strength that the author has in his arguments is in his concession of how anti-piracy advocates argue that breaking the law is no way a means to express one’s displeasure. While the author has rightfully acknowledged consumer choice to be the deciding factor in purchasing, he made an error in trying to reason out...
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