Online Piracy

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Assessment 1 - Essay

Online Communication

How can traditional (or old media) enterprises such as film, television and music overcome the threat of online piracy and file sharing?

Author: XXXXXXX Tutor: XXXXXXXX

The rise of the Internet era opened the whole new market for traditional media full of opportunities as well as threats. Online piracy being one of them because the music and film industry loses £5.4bn in a year and if it was reduced by 10% it could have created up to 13 thousand jobs in the UK. There are various attempts taken to fight with online piracy; a case study of Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement will be considered as well as other legislations attempting to regulate copyrights in the Internet. This essay is also going to look at main motives and reasons for online piracy and suggest the solutions. Main obstacles in dealing with piracy are legislative issues, semiotic disputes, little awareness or different attitudes of the Internet users. For the old media to fully overcome the threat of online piracy is as likely as completely eradicating crime. Hoverer, there are means to limit the copyright infringement in the Internet. Suggested methods are improving the legislation, changing public’s mind-sets and making legal ways widely and easily accessible.

Firstly it is crucial to define the terms as especially in case of online piracy they are often misunderstood and are the or controversial. The definition of online piracy varies depending on the source, but the majority agrees that it refers to: “copyright violation, infringement, unauthorised copying, storage, reproduction, distribution, or sale of intellectual property—for example, music CDs, movie videocassettes. With regard to film and television, the term primarily relates to downloading, uploading, linking to, or otherwise providing access to unauthorized copies of movies, television shows or other copyrighted content on the Internet and making and/or selling unauthorized copies of DVDs and Blue Ray discs. Some sources refer to piracy as theft and according to the American legislation - 1992 federal law makes software piracy a felony. Some sources distinguish different types of piracy and Krasilovsky and Shemel (2007) define them as follows: “Bootlegging - the unauthorised recording of a live or broadcast performance. Counterfeiting - the duplication or imitation of the packaging, document, product, and label as well as the sound recording that is made with the intent to deceptively represent the item as the genuine article.” The last form of piracy researched is file sharing, although the list might not be exhaustive. File sharing also known as P2P is a term that typically refers to a networking technology that normally uses a decentralized communication model. “What is meant by this is that there isn’t any central server involved and all computers in the network act as both server and client. An example of a pure decentralized P2P network is the BitTorrent protocol where files are shared between all peers independent of any central server. The type of files that are shared can be audio, video, data etc. The big advantage of a decentralized P2P network is fault tolerance – if one peer disconnects from the network there are other computers that will have the same data available to share”. As listed above there are numerous illegal ways to avoid paying for the media content and the issues are so complex that the definitions although portray their common-sense understanding fail to serve their legal purpose Firstly it is difficult to stop piracy due to differences within legislations and legal definitions across the world. “Attempts to tackle piracy through international law are being hampered by the lack of a consistent definition.” States The Guardian in their article on piracy Since one of the reasons for a huge popularity of piracy is the easy access to free content and many people arguably download content just because they...
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