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Piracy more serious than bank robbery, fraud and burglary?

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 16 Jun 2007 16:54 User comments (41)

Piracy more serious than bank robbery, fraud and burglary? According to NBC/Universal general counsel Rick Cotton, today's society is wasting its time battling crimes such as home burglary, bank robbery and fraud. The incredible statement was made to suggest that more effort should be put in to battling piracy due to the financial damage it does to the entertainment industry.
"Our law enforcement resources are seriously misaligned," Cotton said. "If you add up all the various kinds of property crimes in this country, everything from theft, to fraud, to burglary, bank-robbing, all of it, it costs the country $16 billion a year. But intellectual property crime runs to hundreds of billions [of dollars] a year."

The argument is hardly convincing, especially since the industry's own nit-picked reports claim much less than "hundreds of billions of dollars" in losses per year. For example, the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) cites a study from Smith Barney in 2005 that puts their annual loss at less than $6 billion.

Also, you might have a tough time finding an example of how somebody was stabbed or shot during an intellectual property crime, whereas people are often attacked and even killed while being burgled and bank robbers do shoot hostages and employees. Perhaps somebody should suggest to Cotton that protecting against the theft of physical property and of course, protecting human life, is more important than intellectual property protection.

Source:
Ars Technica

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41 user comments

116.6.2007 17:07

Rick Cotton is a dumbass

216.6.2007 17:12
hughjars
Inactive

It's all the proof anyone needs to illustrate just how detached from reality these nutters now are.

If what Cotton says about that multi hundred billion dollar calculation of 'value' is true then it simply shows us how laughable that kind of calculation is.

I'd say call their bluff.

The sooner this stuff gets before juries of regular people that refuse to go along with this ludicrous BS the better.

316.6.2007 17:13

Wow that guy needs a reality check! Talk about a rich sob wanting to add another mil to his bank account, jeez he is ignorant for saying such a thing. Last time I checked, nobody get murdered while dl'ing the last Kelly Clarkson tune.....cant say the same about bank robberies, home theft, etc. Some people really just dont get it.

416.6.2007 17:17

I cant believe I just read that...

Maybe more taxpayer money should go towards stopping that little kid from downloading one song instead of helping catch child molestors am I right Mr cotton?

516.6.2007 17:28

LOL Dvd I think Cotton loves that idea, whatever it takes to get him another yacht!



616.6.2007 17:30

Sure, piracy costs them more then the 3 things listed and here is why:

1. 95-99% of all bank robbers are caught and the cash they get away with is placed back into circulation via the bank.

2. Fraud: Yeah, its big but companies have huge measures against fraud and it continues to get harder and harder to perform fraudulent activities without getting caught.

3. Burglary: The effort to payoff ratio is so low that fewer things are being stolen. Sure, stuff does get burglarized but again the effort it takes to pull off a successful burglary is insane.

Piracy only costs "the industry" more then the three things mentioned because its easy to do and because the RIAA/MPAA greatly bloats there figures.

They claim "that illegal file sharing had cut over 2 billion dollars of revenue from box office sales in 2006." - here

Lets take that into perspective, I am not sure how they count their losses but I am going to assume that they are going off of the average movie ticket price.

I am also assuming that a "pirated" film means they get $0 so they count that as a "loss". If the average movie ticket is $7, I assume the RIAA gets $4-5 depending on how well the movie does.

If the RIAA gets $5 per movie ticket sold that would mean that movie downloads totaled approx. 40 million in 2006.

However, that would also mean that those whom downloaded one (or more) of the approx. 40 million movie downloads decided to not go see a movie during the entire year of 2006.

I personally find that very hard to believe and would say that a more accurate number would be something like 5-10 million illegal movie downloads (again that means without visiting the box office at all) occurred in 2006 which would, at $5 a piece, put their loss at $25-50 million. Still a huge number and still probably not believable but probably more accurate then their bloated $2 billion+ loss.

Peace

716.6.2007 17:35

I always tried to rationalize how these agencies came to such extravagent figures.....here is something the MPAA/RIAA doesnt take into account.

Most people that pirate WILL NOT BUY THE MEDIA REGARDLESS, so counting that as a loss is illogical. I know of some of you may not agree, but imo the majority of pirates take what they can get for free, with no intetion to purchase the media in question.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 16 Jun 2007 @ 17:36


816.6.2007 17:41
hughjars
Inactive

Totally agree svtstang; there was never a possible sale there for them to lose in the 1st place so they have lost nothing.

Their figures are just self-serving BS.....add on a few more zeros why don't you's guys, it's not like anyone's taking this seriously.

Everybody knows it & that's why 99.9% of people will see this kind of comment and just laugh in their faces.

Their entire concept of 'intellectual property' in todays world is just utterly f*cked up.

.....and people will continue to ignore this BS as before.

If they were really serious about stopping so-called 'illegal copying' they'd be going after every hardware manufacturer of CD/DVD/HD DVD & BD burners.

Yeah right. As if.

It's just total hypocritical & nonsensical cr@p, like it always was....they just pose & squash a few little guys to serve as a lesson to the rest of us that they can if they feel like it.

You didnt see anyone arresting & slapping Buish with a huge fine for his (then) illegal Beatles tracks on his iPod, right?

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 16 Jun 2007 @ 17:47

916.6.2007 17:45

Rick would love to stick a microchip in every citizen's ass and their dog to charge them for listening to radio songs from passing traffic.

Thinking of a song? You get charged by Rick.

Humming a tune from one of "their" artists? You get charged by Rick.

Singing one of their songs while in the shower? You get charged and banged by Rick.

What a selfish assclown.

1016.6.2007 18:00

Quote:
If they were really serious about stopping so-called 'illegal copying' they'd be going after every hardware manufacturer of CD/DVD/HD DVD & BD burners.
That is a very good point. In all honesty, why does the average consumer need any type of burner, whether it is a cd/dvd/blu-ray drive? They dont! With a bit of twisted reasoning, we can conclude that the manufacturers are aiding people in pirating.

I dont know the figures and am just speculating, but I am sure a good portion of the "revenue losses" come common folk who go to Blockbuster, rent and copy their movies.

Kinda drifted from my original point, so i will stop now :/


1116.6.2007 18:06

Quote:
That is a very good point. In all honesty, why does the average consumer need any type of burner, whether it is a cd/dvd/blu-ray drive? They dont! With a bit of twisted reasoning, we can conclude that the manufacturers are aiding people in pirating.
Well you legally can create a single backup for archive purposes so that your original doesn't get ruined. This and to backup your HDD onto CDs DVDs etc. is another legit reason to have a DVD burner. With how massive hard drives are getting creating backups on Blu-ray or HD DVDs is gonna become common for the adverage consumer who creates backup of their data.

1216.6.2007 18:08

That is a good point Pop_Smith, didnt think about backing up the HDD before doing a reinstall.



1316.6.2007 18:13
hughjars
Inactive

Of course the other reason they don't go after the burner manufacturers is that many of them through share-holding & ownership of movie studios/record companies etc etc would be going after themselves.

It's a joke.

It's all BS for the kind of lame-brains who'll believe such ludicrous sh*te like "several hundred billion $ losses!.

1416.6.2007 19:26

I agree with a lot the post if they were so serious about stopping piracy as its such a worst crime then robbing, fraud, burglary they would be force those hard ware manufactures to rise the cost of all the current burners, hard drives, storage drives, blank dvds, blank cds and so forth so the average person would not be able to get their hands on them since the average person is whom they seem to love to target. They dont spend money going after the mofo who leaked their products on the internet they go after the person who is financially at the bottom of the barrow. Because people seem to believe stories of so called "low class" people stealing shit costing corporations money. This is how they seem to get over time and time again. Since Corporations get away with fraud, burglary, and robbing people of their hard working retirement money so they end up working until they die with out having a real break to enjoy some of their life they rather push bogus BS like this because whos gonna believe this not the average person but those in power positions or with more money. Somebody needs to take the cotton out Ricks head i think its sucking up whatever brain cells hes got left he has any.

1516.6.2007 21:01

@pop_smiith............very good view point from your side. That pretty much nails it. I might just want to add, that idiots like mr cotton are forgetting their sense of reality. That is very scary....thank god for ppl like us to keep things in check.

1616.6.2007 21:22
fgamer
Inactive

So bascially they're saying that the average person who gets their merchandise stolen by means of burglary, robery and home invasion etc. is less important than someone sharing files (movies) over the internet. He needs to remove his head from his a$$ imediately! This is exactly what I mean, they feel that someone getting robbed and ultimately traumatized from such an event is less important than an big exec company that makes billions of dollars.

1716.6.2007 22:00
sdsunjay
Inactive

damn that guy is an idiot. someone please tell him whats up.

1816.6.2007 22:21

Originally posted by svtstang:
Wow that guy needs a reality check! Talk about a rich sob wanting to add another mil to his bank account, jeez he is ignorant for saying such a thing. Last time I checked, nobody get murdered while dl'ing the last Kelly Clarkson tune.....cant say the same about bank robberies, home theft, etc. Some people really just dont get it.

Whoa, did you like... paraphrase that?!?? Awesome! xD
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 16 Jun 2007 @ 22:23

1916.6.2007 22:51

You can only count a loss if you had a chance to sell your product. If someone is never going to buy a movie then thats not loss because you never were going to sell that product. Also most movie downloads come from someone that has BOUGHT the dvd from the store and posted it for download, Now yes that is a loss only if my previous comment is not true to the individual that downloaded it and its not a total loss because you did sell at-least one copy (which we know they sold more). And one more thing how can you compare someone downloading a movie or anything to someone with a gun to there face? its just out right absurd.

Also If they had good movies then there wouldn't be any loses. And isn't Universal only releasing in DVD and HD DVD? Move over to Blu-ray and you might sell some of your crapy movies and shows

2017.6.2007 16:23

This is bullshit...

2117.6.2007 16:28
jjsscram
Inactive

I would like to see him tell this to someone that losed a family member to one of the other crimes. Just goes to show that they are willing to give up a life for greed.

2217.6.2007 19:51

ah,yes the "OMG the market is changing we cant adapt,lets sue the consumer and tax the tech industry" spiel....

considering that 80%+ of that is padding to to bleed their case shows there out to protect them selfs from the changing market using the consumer as shields.

2318.6.2007 5:39

Well...how about murder, since we all know that fraud, robbery and alot of other crimes were listed, why didn't he just add murder to the list...i mean, if wants to act like a savior and everything.

Um, let me think, last I checked, piracy didn't lose people hundreds of thousands of dollars, only loss is for the corporate pigs, but, yeah, we know how ETHICAL they are...say enron, mci, and a slew of other companies.

You know what is funny...this dude is something else, Why on earth is he trying to make a name for himself?

I'll bet you $1mil that is someone broke into his house, robbed him, violated his family and shot the family dog, you know his punk @ss would be saying something TOTALLY different!

Just realized something...how am i going to know if a movie is good or not, without watching. last time i checked, you can get money back for seeing a movie, so in essence they will KEEP your money and you will watch a craptastic movie. cause we all know that previews don't mean snot...am i right? Oh and critics...they wouldn't know a good movie, if it landed in their lap and kicked them in the nuts, cause they are just paid under the table advertisement.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 18 Jun 2007 @ 5:47

2418.6.2007 5:44

Originally posted by venomX05:
Well...how about murder, since we all know that fraud, robbery and alot of other crimes were listed, why didn't he just add murder to the list...i mean, if wants to act like a savior and everything.

Um, let me think, last I checked, piracy didn't lose people hundreds of thousands of dollars, only loss is for the corporate pigs, but, yeah, we know how ETHICAL they are...say enron, mci, and a slew of other companies.

You know what is funny...this dude is something else, Why on earth is he trying to make a name for himself?

==============================================
its like they don't want us to criminalize criminal's because it undercuts a part of the populace they can sale too.
LOL

2518.6.2007 7:03

Global, corporate fraud..banking cartels..the war in Iraq. How much have they stole from the tax payer?

Nah, I guess we shouldn't be focusing on that, eh(!). Ooh let's 'invade' everyone's privacy under yet another false 'premise' and make sure they're only speaking agreeable views - these are criminals, ya know..and there's a lot of money to be made getting in on the act.

Maybe Cotton should also address the growing influence of corporate policy over public affairs. Maybe then we wouldn't have wars and what some people see as the beginning of the end: a Big Brother state, with the media making an absolute killing out of that transformation.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 18 Jun 2007 @ 15:28

2618.6.2007 8:12

Originally posted by svtstang:
I always tried to rationalize how these agencies came to such extravagent figures.....here is something the MPAA/RIAA doesnt take into account.

Most people that pirate WILL NOT BUY THE MEDIA REGARDLESS, so counting that as a loss is illogical. I know of some of you may not agree, but imo the majority of pirates take what they can get for free, with no intetion to purchase the media in question.
I agree Stang. That's been my point for years. They are putting a price on what they think their crap is worth. Next year, they will double the price of DVD's and CD's, then claim that piracy has cost them twice as much as the previous year, just to bump up the estimate by a few more billion $$$. I only buy what I absolutely like and believe is worth it.

If my grandmother is mugged and killed, will Sony give me a free movie as a consolation?
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 18 Jun 2007 @ 8:13

2718.6.2007 8:36
morguex
Inactive

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=ass-hat

This is excatly what a person like Rick Cotton is.

Sometimes you really gotta wonder why these kind of people are
even allowed to speak.
VenomX05 hit it on the head, if someone broke into his house and
violated his family and stole his property, (asshat) cotton would change his tune pretty quickly.
Maybe his parents should have slaped him upside the head a little more
often as a kid, Then he probaly would have more sense.

Peace all

2818.6.2007 13:00
cousinkix
Inactive

How much do these crybabies lose; when we borrow FREE books, CDs and DVDs from the public library? How much do they lose; when we sell our used copyrighted merchandise on craigslist, at the flea market or at a garage sale?

People who buy our used items are not buying brand new copies from the retail stores or paying royalties to the MPAA and RIAA again. Thats a lot of money that they never see and we aren't even talking about thieves here...

2918.6.2007 19:26

that is sone dumb shit......honestly i mean i could kill 30 ppl and get lets say 12 yers in prison lol and i download a spiderman 3 i get 45 yers .....hmmmm yeh gotta agree wif svtstang

3021.6.2007 7:17

Greed, graft and corruption seems to have invaded every aspect of our lives.

We don't owe these guys a living. And, we are not about to pay for a special police force to enforce their "intellectual rights." If they are making money let 'em spend some of it to protect their interests.

I am just not generous enough to guarantee them a living, nor force that on my fellow taxpayers ...

Damn bums run this country!

3121.6.2007 14:56
frankacne
Inactive

To hear these greedy swines swines at the RIAA talk you would think that Piracy is worse than everything including mugging, selling fake medicines or crack cocaine, child abuse and terrorism. Most of the the Hollywood movies and much of the Music biz stuff is crap anyway and i certainly wouldnt download them. If all this means that there will be a lot of redundancies amongst these over fed execs than bring it on I say.

3221.6.2007 15:28

I agree with most of the comments. The industry figures are nonsense and deal with the billions of dollars of illegal sales in China where mass commercial pirating is a way of life. What does the industry propose sending the local police dept to Bejing to arrest the counterfeiters who seem to be on every street corner. The truth is that the damn industry can't touch the real problem so it puts out outlandish numbers and pretend they have something to do with US piracy. As a famous WWII general once said "Nuts". Of course if the clowns in the media industry really cared about lost dollars they would be trying to stop the idiocy in Iraq which I think has topped the 300 billion dollar mark and has accomplished nothing except kill a lot of innocent civilians and thousands of good Americans while destabilizing the middle east. Wait ... a revelation just came to me...George Bush must be leading the media people.. it's the only way they could be that screwed up and not be aware of it or if they were, not to admit to it.

3321.6.2007 17:10

Quote:
According to NBC/Universal general counsel Rick Cotton, today's society is wasting its time battling crimes such as home burglary, bank robbery and fraud. The incredible statement was made to suggest that more effort should be put in to battling piracy due to the financial damage it does to the entertainment industry.
This guy needs to get his priorities right. I agree they need to get help on Online crime but they really do need to keep their focus on the old fashion crimes cause they hurt individuals more than the others do as in the online crimes hurt corporations not the average battler.

3421.6.2007 23:46
ezyink
Inactive

we seem to over emphersize our need for money this is provern day in and day out by the way big corprate screams about them losing a little cash...
i for one. if i cant download then thats fine but i still wont pay for the movie i wont to see i will just go without..ezy and they still losing my share

the more they get the more they want
the more they want the more thay get(gov help)

3522.6.2007 5:07
bmfuk
Inactive

i worry about people like this tit

3622.6.2007 12:21

I agree with borhan9 that you can just turn your back on crimes such as robbery that have direct phiscial crimes involving individuals.

The statment makes a farce out of the rights of the individual and suggest rather firmly that the corpiration comes first.

Really anyone would think that he was paid to say that....

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 23 Jun 2007 @ 5:34

3722.6.2007 20:34
farmer57
Inactive

This has to be the most idiotic statement any media jerk could make. Cottonhead is putting the almighty dollar that companies are losing over the lives of human beings. It is to late to take the cotton out of head as it has already soaked up all of common sense. The mian reason a lot of companies lose money is that they have nut cases like running them, but it is easy to just blame the consumer by declaring all of us thieves. What they need to do is clean up their own house before trying to clean up others. If they would put out a quality product that would meet the price, there would be a lot less piracy. A lot that do pirate prodcuts do it because they don't have the money to buy the product, so those companies aren't losing anything, there would be no sale anyways. Even though some robberies don't result in bodily harm to a person, they may have just cashed their small disability or retirement check, so then they don't eat or pay their rent that month. I bet Cottonhead hasn't slept in the streets or went hungry, so i guess that give gim the right to put down the low income group. I do don't begrudge people make it to the top of the money scale, but don't put down the little man.

3822.6.2007 21:03

give me a break, if it's intangible, it's not stealing!



3923.6.2007 6:10
morguex
Inactive

As Farmer57 said "don't put down the little man", because one thing you gotta rember rick cotton.

It's the people on the middle to lower end of pay scale, that make your cushy lives possible.

We build your cars, jets, grow your food, build your homes, would you like me to keep going Rick "asshat" Cotton.

F#$king jackoffs.
The more I read these posts, the more I wanna punch that asshat in the face.

4023.6.2007 6:18
morguex
Inactive

P.S. I just saw a pic of rick cotton, I be doing him a big favor.

Peace all

4123.6.2007 9:07

Sorry, but wouldn't it be funny if something terrible happens to Mr. Cotton...he has an occasion to call them and the police should tell him "sorry, can't come to your house. We have a piracy ring to bust first. Suck it up on your own" Then maybe he will think differently about the police's priority.
- NOT that I hope anything would happen to him, but this guy definitely needs to rearrange his priorities!

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