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Artists and hollywood can still make money. Artists can perform live and hollywood can make money off of movie theaters.

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Sure, and writers can just do readings - since there's a lot of money in live reading.

Obviously you're committed to your myopic, self-serving view on the subject, so there's little point in explaining anything further. Do what you wish, as I'm certainly not your moral compass and have no desire to be.

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Have you watched MTV cribs and seen the houses the music artists are living in. In fact, they make most of their money performing at concerts because they're been robbed by the record companies.

It's a complexed issue though. Some forms of piracy are obviously more damaging than others. Not all bands can afford to give away free albums like Radiohead can and not all authors are as rich as John Grisham.
Only a small fraction of novels from new authors ever get published. All it takes is one guy to photocopy it and upload it to the internet.

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Wrong.
Concerts are often money LOOSING propositions for everyone involved except the hosting companies and venues, unless the increased recrord sales and income from selling promotional items is taken into account.

The massive rate of piracy has directly caused the incredible decline in the quality of music put out by artists and record companies.
Instead of nursing artists till they peak, record companies create masses of one day flies. They cheaply produce a few albums for which beginning artists get paid peanuts (high risk venture), when the artists get popular sales plummet as piracy skyrockets and they're cancelled for lack of sales.
Same with many authors, though there there is luckily still a large majority of customers who actually value having crisp musty paper to browse through, which saves authors from the worst of it.

You see the same thing in the software industry, and especially the games industry.
Ever more this is becoming a scene of constant reruns of the same product with small changes being sold under different names.
Large investments in new development are pretty much doomed to cause a financial loss so are no longer made, instead small incremental improvements have to lead to new products.

Same with movies.

Piracy is rapidly destroying all areas it touches, and the open condoning of this criminal activity by even some lawmakers (usually on the far left of course, the very people who have a vested interest in destroying the economy and freedom of expression) doesn't help one bit.
Pirates should be at the very least locked up for a very long time, denied access to the means of their trade for life, and made to repay the damages they caused even if it means they're bankrupt until their death (labour camps could be set up for this).

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The pop artists like Beyonce won't do live shows for anything less than 250 thousand dollars.
When it comes to album sales, they get a tiny fraction of the sale price. The lead singer from Nine Inch Nails urged fans to pirate their music for that reason.

But I'm not saying piracy is right either.
Not all artists can demand that sort of money for live shows. It's the underground artists, who's music you never find in the charts that I'm sympathetic with.

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I want to weigh in on this one. I may be sorry for this.

First, I think there might be different issues at stake within the realm of piracy that are not being addressed here.

Certainly Narue should be paid for her programming services.

So let's say that Narue writes some code, it takes her 32 hours, and she is paid $4000 for doing so. Both parties agreed, she was paid a reasonable sum, and, the buyer gets to use that code forever to do a repetitive task. Narue keeps the rights.

So far, so good. Narue got what she asked for, and a very clear transaction occured.

Now, lets say that Narue chooses to package that same program and sell it for $100 a pop on the internet. She hires a service which costs her $5 each to cover the cost of each cd. She sells 40,000 copies. She's now cleared over $3,804,000 for the original work. Ummmm?

Of course, Narue is happy about this, but does the equation make any sense? In our culture, yes. In a system of barter, no. (Where is this headed?)

Now, let's examine the impossible, let's say that the program does not quite work exactly the way Narue intended, that there is a bug in it, and this bug causes 10,000 people to spend 6 hours each researching and fixing the problem. Of course, Narue was smart enough to put a disclaimer on her package, she hands the tech support off to someone else, it costs her nothing. Lets say that every one of these people who lost 6 hours lost $400as a direct result of this software failure.

What just happened? Is there a "fair" exchange occuring? You can say yes or no, but you'll meet with argument either way.

This is part of the realm in which pirating is occuring. Some people see the imbalance of the cash exchange as a game they wish not to engage in "according to the rules" ... unquestionably, by the law, they are required to. Unquestionably, they are thieves if they pirate. But ethically, perhaps they feel they are simply keeping the equation balanced.

Ethics generally stops at the Law of man and looks no further. Would Narue feel compelled to return $4,000,000 to the community? I wouldn't expect her to. But if we answer the question of whether piracy is good bad or indifferent, should we stop at the law or look at the underpinnings of the game that is being played?

Does the common pirate care who made how much? No, probably not. But he might not have the money to buy the product. Should he be denied it? What if, by using it, he is able to help others, and to become a productive member of society? What if he returns what he has stolen to "the pool" in later years?

But I see the issue as this: Is there ethical wiggle room when we are talking about the distribution of wealth?

Stealing is stealing. Period. That's not at question. What is, who is stealing from whom, and when? When many people are stolen from by one entity, does that take some of the ethical sting out of someone else stealing from them?

I really do not know. I'm just asking the question that I think needs to be asked.

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Of course it's not ethical. Call me idealistic and old fashioned, but two wrongs don't make a right. I'm glad you brought up this example. I certainly agree that software vendors do tend to rip off and violate consumers in ways that disgust me on the most part. But does this make it right for an individual to decide to pirate the product instead. I would say no.

They should simply choose to buy or use (in the case of free ones) an alternative. If they simply must have the said product, then they must pay for it and bare the brunt of whatever comes their way. It's not cool, not even right really, but there aren't any other acceptable hoices. Perhaps there should be laws in place for these kinds of things. To give consuers a right to demand money when software does not meet their expectations, or violates them the most horrid ways.

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>She's now cleared over $3,804,000 for the original work. Ummmm?
A good test for hypothetical cases that prove a point is to cover both ends of the spectrum. What if Narue doesn't sell any copies at all due to piracy? Here's another situation in which I modify your situation slightly:

Let's examine the eminently possible, let's say that the program does not quite work exactly the way Narue intended, that there is a bug in it, and this bug causes 10,000 people who pirated the software to spend 6 hours each researching and fixing the problem. Of course, Narue was smart enough to put a disclaimer on her package, she tells the illegitimate users to piss off. It costs her nothing, but then again, she didn't make anything either, so she basically breaks even for the business venture. Lets still say that every one of these people who lost 6 hours lost $1,000 as a direct result of this software failure (they couldn't continue using the pirated software and ultimately had to buy a less suitable piece of software for considerably more than Narue was charging).

Is there a "fair" exchange occurring?

>But he might not have the money to buy the product. Should he be denied it?
>What if, by using it, he is able to help others, and to become a productive member of society?
>What if he returns what he has stolen to "the pool" in later years?
These are the very arguments that pirates use to rationalize their crimes. The problem is that by pirating, you can end up hurting more people than you expected, and one of those people could be you. You can ask all the "what if" questions you want, but one can respond with the opposite "what if" that destroys your position and is equally valid.

What if he returns what he has stolen to "the pool" in later years? What if he doesn't? What if he keeps on pirating, encourages other pirates, and sets into motion a chain of actions that cause honest people to lose their jobs?

Rationalizing any crime is a very slippery slope. I would argue that to successfully rationalize a crime you have to ignore possibilities that end up hurting people you don't want to hurt. That's the only way to make such actions palatable unless you're psychotic and simply don't care what kind of damage you do.

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Do you realize that the *vast* majority of kernel developers are payed to work on the Linux kernel? Andrew Morton, Ingo Molnar, and Linus himself are prominent examples of this.

paid by who or what? donations? that's the only free-ish source of immediate income

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paid by who or what? donations? that's the only free-ish source of immediate income

There are many cases (I could not tell you what percentage they might be) that are paid to work on open source projects by companies that wish to use that software themselves and are willing to let that work remain in the open public domain. The company has a need from software, they pay the programmer to meet that need, and allow the solution to be available to others. Any others who need support or customization of that software could pay for that service as well if they cannot "fix" it on their own.

That is the paradigm he is describing, but currently that is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination. Most companies expect to own the product they paid to produce. Until that attitude changes (if it ever does to a substantial degree), working on open source software is not a viable means to earn a living for most individuals.

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sure they're paid. But they get paid for now.
If everyone starts to expect all software to be free (and that's getting ever more to be the case) sooner rather than later there will be no more people wanting to learn to be programmers because there's no money in it.
When that happens the pool of available people will quickly dry up.

As it is companies (small ones mainly for now) are going under because piracy hurts their sales so badly they can't stay afloat.
If and when that spreads to the point where large companies go under other large companies will count their losses and leave the field.

Remember that the majority of "free" software is created by people who make a living writing other software.
The money made in the OSS sphere is made mainly in support and training services, NOT in writing the stuff.
When there's noone left to write it, that will also dry up.
I've encountered such atttitudes myself, even inside software companies. Worst case I saw myself was a company that basically decided to no longer spend money on creating their own product. The software development teams were drained of people and budgets because they were not making a profit, causing ever longer release cycles and slower response times to bug reports (which caused even more problems, causing them to loose even more budget and people). Of course this eventually meant sales went down the drain...

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There are many cases (I could not tell you what percentage they might be) that are paid to work on open source projects by companies that wish to use that software themselves and are willing to let that work remain in the open public domain. The company has a need from software, they pay the programmer to meet that need, and allow the solution to be available to others. Any others who need support or customization of that software could pay for that service as well if they cannot "fix" it on their own.

That is the paradigm he is describing, but currently that is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination. Most companies expect to own the product they paid to produce. Until that attitude changes (if it ever does to a substantial degree), working on open source software is not a viable means to earn a living for most individuals.

well, if I paid for something, I will not like others using that same thing for free.

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>well, if I paid for something, I will not like others using that same thing for free.

It's called social responsibility.

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>>It's called social responsibility.
Only by your socialist or communist/marxist definition. We live in a capatilist society, if you don't like it then move to Russia, Cuba or any one of a thousand other places like that.

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>>It's called social responsibility.
Only by your socialist or communist/marxist definition. We live in a capatilist society, if you don't like it then move to Russia, Cuba or any one of a thousand other places like that.

only Russia is nit like that since 1991 :) and Chinese Communism is very close to capitalism. which leaves only cuba - NOT the grandest IT empire, methinks ;)

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Russia is rapidly moving back towards communism under Putin. Hardly surprising, as Putin was head of the KGB and is a hardliner communist.

China is communist to the core. They have some "free zones" set up to trade with the real world, but the rest of the country is run as ruthlessly as it was under Mao.
All those cheap "made in China" goods are so cheap because of slave labour. If they need a new workforce they just arrest a few hundred more political opponents and lock them in a work camp.

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>>It's called social responsibility.
Only by your socialist or communist/marxist definition. We live in a capatilist society, if you don't like it then move to Russia, Cuba or any one of a thousand other places like that.

What does that have to do with piracy?

Asking people to move to another country is like saying:
"If there is piracy in this country, why dont you move to a place that has no piracy"

Sounds pretty silly.

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Russia is rapidly moving back towards communism under Putin. Hardly surprising, as Putin was head of the KGB and is a hardliner communist.

China is communist to the core. They have some "free zones" set up to trade with the real world, but the rest of the country is run as ruthlessly as it was under Mao.
All those cheap "made in China" goods are so cheap because of slave labour. If they need a new workforce they just arrest a few hundred more political opponents and lock them in a work camp.

Good grief, are you sure of this?

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What does that have to do with piracy?

Asking people to move to another country is like saying:
"If there is piracy in this country, why dont you move to a place that has no piracy"

Sounds pretty silly.

He claimed it was social responsibility to provide something for others to use for free, hence the answer that he was seeking communism/socialism and should move to such a society if those were his expectations.

No one has a social responsibility to give you free stuff, Sturm. Your sense of entitlement is severely misplaced. When you start working for free then you can come back and explain social responsibility to us.

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What does that have to do with piracy?.

Everything. Proponents of piracy think everything should be free for the good of society. Well that is not a new concept -- its called socialism and has been tried quite a few times, most notably by USSR. There is no such thing as a pure socialist nation today because it just doesn't work. Actually, there is no such thing as a pure capatilist society either for the same reason. What we wound up with is a meld between the two, USA is capatilitst with a lot of socialism while some countries, like France, are more socialist than capatilist.

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He claimed it was social responsibility to provide something for others to use for free, hence the answer that he was seeking communism/socialism and should move to such a society if those were his expectations.

No one has a social responsibility to give you free stuff, Sturm. Your sense of entitlement is severely misplaced. When you start working for free then you can come back and explain social responsibility to us.

Sturm might have the strange notion that we have a social responsibilty to feed the hungry. He could be called an "Antiscrooge".

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> Am I supposed to care? If there's no penalty, why not?
Don't pirate to pirate, just pirate.

If you feel like owning MS Windows without paying for it, do it, but don't expect to seek justifications for your action. If you feel like being part of the *good* and using only those things which you have paid for, follow it. In the end, it boils down to your thoughts and actions. Eventually both good and evil are relative. What might be evil / bad for someone else might seem justified to you. Be prepared to accept what you deserve. What goes around comes around, really.

> Are you advocating that all software should be open source?
Give a stripper her pole and see the way she moves.

>You seem to be incorrectly assuming that you can't make money off open source software.
You seem to be incorrectly assuming that you can earn a living only off open source software.

> Pirates should be at the very least locked up for a very long time, denied access to the
> means of their trade for life, and made to repay the damages they caused even if it
> means they're bankrupt until their death (labour camps could be set up for this).
Planning to resurrect Hitler?

"Play around with words and become a hero on paper; try that in practice and get beaten blue ad black to reality."

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...
Pirates should be at the very least locked up for a very long time, denied access to the means of their trade for life, and made to repay the damages they caused even if it means they're bankrupt until their death (labour camps could be set up for this).

Since you are from the Netherlands, lets try it there and see if it works. In the US the prisons/labor camps are already full with other folks.

There is a lot of piracy practiced among folks on a limited budget. It is a little like Robin Hood. Most software is pirated to test it out. This way you don't lose your money, there is no refund on software, much of it lousy, some of it good. If we stick all those folks into a "jwentig labor camp", we lose half of our student population.

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Since you are from the Netherlands, lets try it there and see if it works. In the US the prisons/labor camps are already full with other folks.

There is a lot of piracy practiced among folks on a limited budget. It is a little like Robin Hood. Most software is pirated to test it out. This way you don't lose your money, there is no refund on software, much of it lousy, some of it good. If we stick all those folks into a "jwentig labor camp", we lose half of our student population.

So if you have a limited budget you're allowed to commit crimes, allowed to steal things just because you want to have them?

Robin Hood never existed, he's a folk tale. Everyone who claimed to follow his example was a common thug who stole to get rich and paid off people in the area to not rat him out for the rewards.

There is NO excuse for piracy, none whatsoever. Open source kiddos are always screaming about how there is an open source alternative for everything... So there's no need to pay for any software as you can always get a free alternative.
And even if there were no free alternatives, not having some new game or other software isn't going to kill you.

I wouldn't mind getting rid of every student who is stupid enough to think that crime is fine. Those students are obviously NOT intelligent and civilised and should not be part of society.

As to full prisons, that's easily remedied. Implement the death penalty for more crimes, including escape attempts from prison and assaulting prison staff, and soon they're not so full anymore.
Also evict every illegal alien and lock the borders into the country, which will cause a major drop in prison population.
And you can use prisoners to build those border defenses...

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So if you have a limited budget you're allowed to commit crimes, allowed to steal things just because you want to have them?

Robin Hood never existed, he's a folk tale. Everyone who claimed to follow his example was a common thug who stole to get rich and paid off people in the area to not rat him out for the rewards.

There is NO excuse for piracy, none whatsoever. Open source kiddos are always screaming about how there is an open source alternative for everything... So there's no need to pay for any software as you can always get a free alternative.
And even if there were no free alternatives, not having some new game or other software isn't going to kill you.

I wouldn't mind getting rid of every student who is stupid enough to think that crime is fine. Those students are obviously NOT intelligent and civilised and should not be part of society.

As to full prisons, that's easily remedied. Implement the death penalty for more crimes, including escape attempts from prison and assaulting prison staff, and soon they're not so full anymore.
Also evict every illegal alien and lock the borders into the country, which will cause a major drop in prison population.
And you can use prisoners to build those border defenses...

There is no excuse for pircay, none whatsoever. There is also no excuse for speeding, driving through a stop sign, pestering folks in the airport men's room, homo preachers pointing their dirty finger, going to a silly war etc. etc. Software is sold as a "buyer beware" item and deserves to be tested out by the user.

As for prisons and borders in the US, for a guy from the Netherlands you show a strange interest in our internal affairs. Are you sure you are Dutch?

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There is no excuse for pircay, none whatsoever. There is also no excuse for speeding, driving through a stop sign, pestering folks in the airport men's room, homo preachers pointing their dirty finger, going to a silly war etc. etc. Software is sold as a "buyer beware" item and deserves to be tested out by the user.

As for prisons and borders in the US, for a guy from the Netherlands you show a strange interest in our internal affairs. Are you sure you are Dutch?

Piracy and test driving a program shouldn't be the same thing. A lot of the better software houses offer dated test versions of their software.

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> I modify your situation slightly:

Let's examine the eminently possible, let's say that the program does not quite work exactly the way Narue intended, that there is a bug in it, and this bug causes 10,000 people who pirated the software to spend 6 hours each researching and fixing the problem. Of course, Narue was smart enough to put a disclaimer on her package, she tells the illegitimate users to piss off. It costs her nothing, but then again, she didn't make anything either, so she basically breaks even for the business venture. Lets still say that every one of these people who lost 6 hours lost $1,000 as a direct result of this software failure (they couldn't continue using the pirated software and ultimately had to buy a less suitable piece of software for considerably more than Narue was charging).

Is there a "fair" exchange occurring?

Rationalizing any crime is a very slippery slope. I would argue that to successfully rationalize a crime you have to ignore possibilities that end up hurting people you don't want to hurt. That's the only way to make such actions palatable unless you're psychotic and simply don't care what kind of damage you do.

I agree, "rationalizing any crime is a very slippery slope". But what about trying to examine the crime, and for that matter, the slope itself?

In direct answer to the question "Is there a "fair" exchange occurring?" in your version of the scenario, the answer is, for you, yes, it was fair. You got your original programming fee, and you found that no one else wanted to pay you for it. The theives got what they deserved.

(Had they paid, they would have found that the fix was as simple as clicking on a .reg file that you'd already provided for your employer when he'd encountered the problem, ha ha.)

But by reversing the scenario you are overlooking what I'm pointing to, and that is the gap between what is reasonable, and what might not always be, and that it impacts the way that people think and react.

Perhaps it's not that they are right to steal, but that they feel there's an inequitableness that pervades the transactions of life, so they set out to even the score on their behalf.

Certainly you cannot have a "system" where everyone gets to decide if they pay or not. (Or can you? That's another question.)

I don't think this forum is inclined to consider such bigger questions, in fact, I don't see that society is "equipped" to think in such a manner. It should be clear by now that I believe that's why we cannot resolve large, intricate social issues.

We get tend to get caught up in addressing the symptoms of those bigger issues; we try to address them at the level of the symptom.

Yes, I'm saying that pirating is a symptom of a larger issue.

We can talk all we want about pirating itself, and hear all the pros and cons, while we are doing so we are missing the real point ... why is it so prevalent?

I believe that the "justification" that people feel for any type of theft often occurs from the sense of inequitable distribution of wealth.

While we can agree that theft is generally wrong, I wonder if you can acknowlege that there are circumstances that can justify it?

Clearly, when one person gets directly hurt by anothers actions we have just cause to judge what happened.

But often there may be a much bigger picture that is occuring, such as when it's not clear that the person or entity that was stolen from was not the bigger thief, and piracy is just "equalizing the score" a bit.

So while I would be concerned if your fledgling company never got off the ground due to piracy, my concern for you being ripped off might be different from my concern for, say, someone taking a copy of XP or Acess. Somewhere around the $4,000,000 mark I might not be too concerned for your loss as well.

In the picture I'm putting forth the lines are not so clear, black and white start becoming grey.

I support honesty. I think it is one of the truest and best of qualities that a person can exhibit. I think anyone who refrains from theft in all of its forms, not just material and financial, but lies of all sorts, is to be commended. But I must say that we do not live in a social structure where the honest individual is necessarily rewarded in proportion to their efforts.

Life is not fair, and that's a pill we all must swallow, like it or not. (At least, anyone who says life is fair will have a very tough time convincing me of it.)

Anyone who suggests that the game of "getting ahead" should played on "fair" terms is to be commended, but the fact is that the bulk of the wealth in the world has not been acquired in accord with the same fairness that we would all love to see everywhere. So at the outset, the game is stacked against most of us.

I'm not sure that piracy does not occur "out of" this sense of futility, and I see people trying to even the score a bit through piracy.

Does that make it right? Proabably not. As someone repeated, "two wrongs don't make a right".

Then again, when things simply are not right, when people feel pushed down, it's understandable that they sometimes take matters in to their own hands.

It's the way the game is being played. As individuals, we don't get to make the rules. If we don't like the way the game is being played, perhaps we should take a look at the entire game, not just at one aspect of it.

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This is one of the arguments that bugs me the most. While I can understand the logic you're using, it's still inaccurate. I'll use Photoshop as my example. How many people are honestly willing to spend $650USD so they can dink around with photos on 4chan, or otherwise use the software for a hobby? And yet, how many people acquire a disc or a disc image with which to install and use the software? Adobe's getting none of the payback they deserve for all these users.

Nobody "deserves" money for creating a work. If I create a product nobody wants to buy, I don't deserve any money for it.

It's a matter of how many people will pay for the work at the price the monopolist sets. This is the argument I made earlier that the creator of the work expects to be paid as though he created the work over and over to make each copy. But the monopolist should not have the power to set a price. Prices should be set by the actual market.

When they charge exorbitant prices for software, it causes piracy. $650 is a ridiculous price. They can charge it only because they have an artificial monopoly power created by government. $65 is a more realistic figure, but they want to get more money from businesses and government by demanding a huge price. This forces individuals out of the market, because they can't afford the $650.

If the monopoly power could be removed, the market price would be closer to $65.

And while you may also argue that "they're just losing the costs of the install disc and box" you're wrong. They make an investment of thousands (if not millions) of dollars in labor to get a new version out the door.

Why do they need a new version? To FORCE people to upgrade, because they will then change things so the old one won't work anymore. They make you pay just to stay where you are. This is more unjust monopoly power, where Microsoft and the software manufacturers make you pay repeatedly to stay where you were.

If they aren't able to get back and satisfactory profit from that investment, then they're not going to continue. Ditto with Microsoft. The software industry probably loses billions in profit because of piracy (of course, that does add up quickly with suites costing up to $10k or more). Fortunately, they've so far been profitable enough to continue making - and more importantly for us, improving - these products.

And they use their monopoly powers to force this constant stream of upgrades on people. These are not improvements, they are changes forced on all people who use computers. Then they fix things so the old computers and software don't work right on the Internet, forcing people to pay the price again.

If I had my way, all operating systems would be required to NOT CHANGE. It costs businesses millions of dollars retooling and reprogramming things every time Microsoft changes the operating system. That raises the cost of the products you buy.

Now, just to clarify: if you copy the disc as a backup for your own use, that's different. In fact, I believe most EULAs allow for one copy to be made of the media.

Don't get me wrong. I don't condone illegal copying. But I don't condone huge monopoly prices either. I was pointing out the real costs:

My point is that Adobe is not out the $650, because the person who copied can't afford to pay the $650. Most of the copies made are used by people who don't have the money to pay the exorbitant monopoly prices. Thus, Adobe did not lose a sale, because the copier would not have bought a legitimate copy.

This is why I want all copyrights and patents to have compulsory licensing.

There is another cost to such high prices. Employers demand experience in these super-pricey software packages. So how are unemployed people supposed to get practice in these packages if they don't have the $650 to buy them? You have to already be employed to get the job.

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No -- they have to make money somehow in order to give their employees jobs and paychecks. If everything is free then no one would (or could) work.

But if nobody worked, then there wouldn't be any products in existence to be free either.[/quote]

If you write a book don't you want to get paid for it? Shouldn't musicians and actors get paid for their performances.

Only to the extent that people in the free market will pay to read the book, listen to the music, or watch the performance. These people don't have a right to collect more than the public at large will pay.

And it must be a free market price, not a price set under monopoly power.

Are you proposing to just shut down the copyright and patent offices?

No, just limiting the patent or copyright to remove the monopoly powers.

Edited by pritaeas: Fixed formatting

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When they charge exorbitant prices for software, it causes piracy. $650 is a ridiculous price. They can charge it only because they have an artificial monopoly power created by government. $65 is a more realistic figure, but they want to get more money from businesses and government by demanding a huge price. This forces individuals out of the market, because they can't afford the $650.

I agree, which is why I don't have a copy of Photoshop. Windows is similarly expensive, but it's not as bad when you account for the fact that it comes with a new system. To expound on this, you can get a copy of Vista Home Premium for about $220, or you can get a computer, monitor, printer, for under $400. Sure, it's a cheap one, but it'll probably be fine for the average user.

Why do they need a new version? To FORCE people to upgrade, because they will then change things so the old one won't work anymore. They make you pay just to stay where you are. This is more unjust monopoly power, where Microsoft and the software manufacturers make you pay repeatedly to stay where you were.

Sometimes it's to make you upgrade. Whether it's Photoshop, Visual Studio, Office, or the latest game from Blizzard, their business model is based on you buying their product. Software companies aren't the only ones doing this. Look at car manufacturers. The average car will last well over 10 years, but the average car owner probably upgrades well within that timespan. Software companies don't make money supporting and releasing updates for a product, they make money selling you a new product. Also, there are times when the upgrade is done for a good reason. Windows Vista cut a lot of compatibility with previous systems. Many of these changes were done not because the user didn't care, but because the software made many assumptions that led to insecurities. In order to fix these security holes, there had to be some cuts.

Then they fix things so the old computers and software don't work right on the Internet, forcing people to pay the price again.

Funny, I swear I've seen 10yrs+ old machines still in use. They work quite well, even on the internet. Ok, well they perform a bit slow at rendering, but seeing as to how the media has changed from text to animated graphics since then, it's really not surprising.

If I had my way, all operating systems would be required to NOT CHANGE. It costs businesses millions of dollars retooling and reprogramming things every time Microsoft changes the operating system. That raises the cost of the products you buy.

Great, then all the architectural deficiencies built up over the years will exist, and there'd be no way to improve the OS. Nice idea!

My point is that Adobe is not out the $650, because the person who copied can't afford to pay the $650. Most of the copies made are used by people who don't have the money to pay the exorbitant monopoly prices. Thus, Adobe did not lose a sale, because the copier would not have bought a legitimate copy.

Adobe gained nothing in this exchange, but the user gained use of Adobe's product. Why is it so hard to see that Adobe should receive payment for that?

There is another cost to such high prices. Employers demand experience in these super-pricey software packages. So how are unemployed people supposed to get practice in these packages if they don't have the $650 to buy them? You have to already be employed to get the job.

Welcome to a capitalist society. If you're unemployed, then odds are, you're in need of a bit of education before you'd even be considered for one of these jobs (yes, we are a meritocracy). That said, there are a great many other jobs available to people who can't afford commercial software packages.

This topic has been dead for over six months. Start a new discussion instead.
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