AfterDawn: Tech news

Copying is stealing, says the MPAA

Written by Lasse Penttinen @ 06 Aug 2003 11:33 User comments (42)

The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has launched their new anti-piracy campaign with the slogan copying is stealing. TheRegister takes you back to the pre-digital age, when the movie industry was concerned about the state-of-the-art technology of the time: The VCR. This short article also goes through some of the major and more recent milestones in the battle between free digital content distribution & copyright owners.
In another 1980s US case (Sony vs Universal City Studios), the court agreed that video recorders would be used to copy television programmes. UCS claimed that Sony was liable for copyright infringement as it supplied the video recorders.
As we can see, the events of recent days, months or years actually aren’t that unique, and that the history is once again repeating itself.

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42 user comments

16.8.2003 12:42

$20 for a DVD is stealing.

We mustn't lower ourselves to the level of those we loathe, lest we become loathsome ourselves.

26.8.2003 16:20

I've got to agree with GrayArea althouight I don'y approve of Piracy. Does that make me a hipacrit.:(

36.8.2003 17:02

Yeah, so is recording corination street, but do we hear a fuss about that. NO

46.8.2003 18:57

I think Lasse only puts these little news articles in here to get us all riled up. (It works!) :-) Region coding is stealing. CSS is stealing. Dual-layer dvds is stealing. Useless dvd 'xtras' is stealing. $30 dvds is stealing. Macrovision is stealing. DRM is stealing. And you want to know who the real pirates are? MPAA = THIEVES RIAA = THIEVES Have been for years. What else is new? (Ho-hum). Keep 'em coming, Lasse. :) -- Mike --

56.8.2003 19:01

Spoken like a true illegal downloader, lol - im kidding. I agree totally with you, they steal our money too much. Halve the price of CD's and DVD's and maybe we will start buying again.

66.8.2003 19:19

If the price of a movie DVD were always $10, and the price of a music CD were always $5, you guys would still be moaning "halve the price and we'll buy them"... Have any of you tried to make a full-length feature film, or equip a professional recording studio to make an album? Not cheap! (With all the special effects we come to expect in a blockbuster movie, they're very expensive to make). The producers, directors, actors, musicians, studios, etc. are not in this to make free entertainment for you - they're in it to make a living. But I do agree that the MPAA and RIAA do go too far. I'm not in favor of killing off the P2P networks, but I do want to remind everyine that we need to be responsible for our actions; If you download it, decide you like it, and intend to keep it, then you need to buy it. Yes, I'd love to see DVD's under $10 and CD's under $5, but I honestly think that if those were the prices we were used to, we'd all be complaining still about price. I have many CD's in my collection that I paid $18 and over for back in the early days of CD's. I have many more that I paid less than $10 for in the mid 80's when a "hit" album cost $9.99 on sale, and at most $11. Since those days and the price has risen, I buy MANY LESS CD's because I remember the "good old" $9.99 days. I find it harder to spend $13 or $14 on a "hit" album. But there's still "record stores" in the mall that charge $18 for a CD, and I still see lots of people in there buying CD's. I want to scream at them all "you idiots! Don't buy CD's there!". - Bob

76.8.2003 20:15

what do they care dvd's are making bank right now complain when sales are down

86.8.2003 20:40

In the pre-digital age, circa 1976: "The VCR will be to the movie industry what the Boston Strangler was to women." - Jack Valenti, president MPAA. Didn't quite turn out that way, did it Jack?

Against stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain.

96.8.2003 23:05

you guys would still be moaning "halve the price and we'll buy them"... Have any of you tried to make a full-length feature film, or equip a professional recording studio to make an album? Not cheap! (With all the special effects we come to expect in a blockbuster movie, they're very expensive to make). The producers, directors, actors, musicians, studios, etc. are not in this to make free entertainment for you - they're in it to make a living. jajaja WOW,,, I DO NOT BELIEVE,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,IT, Elvis is still getting pay for his music,,,wow, ,,wow man tell the Spykids that with 386.567.55mm dollares in the first day,,,what a mmmmmmmmm o...r ?? I guess we have to fell sorry beacause the are losing in the dvds ahhhhh .. jajaja yep ,,,yea

107.8.2003 2:36

Movie stars and music artists enjoy luxurious lifestyles whilst decent hard working people (think teachers, nurses, etc)just about scrape together a living. That's b@llsh@t! I agree with A_Klingon verdict MPAA = THIEVES RIAA = THIEVES but I would add overpaid actors and artists and even professional footballers to the list. Its an unfair world but we do what we can to readdress the balance.

117.8.2003 2:39

PS its only wrong because they say it is

127.8.2003 3:04

Since the very start of audio/video recorders, the music & movie industry considered every new device a major threat to their buisness and piracy will severly affect genuine sales. Even before then, the music industry wanted to prevent radio stations from going 24-hours a day as the public may listen to music on the radio instead of purchasing it. TV is slightly different as content providers generally get paid by the TV companies broadcasting their movies. Peer-to-peer networks & PCs is just something new like the tape & VCR recorders in the early days. If someone wishes to get a movie or album without purchasing it (e.g. students), Peer-to-peer networks is just one of the new ways of doing it. Taping off a friend or neighbour was common before P2P networks and I'm sure the music & video industry know that already. I'm sure that someday, there will be long range wireless networks where users in a certain range can join in and share files & information without going over the Internet or another public network. I.e. PC Network version of the CB radio. If this happens, it will make it a lot harder again for the industry to monitor what users share, just like in the days of swapping tapes.

137.8.2003 3:12

BobL - at the risk of boring those who have read this particular example before, here's just one reason why the MPAA is/are blatant theives: The 80-minute movie "Shrek" comes as 2 (TWO) Dual-Layer discs. The movie itself can fit nicely on 1 (ONE) disc - and a single-layer disc at that. The rest of the space on this pair of dual-layer discs is taken up by Gobs and Gobs and Gobs and Gobs and Gobs of mostly useless extra stuff that will only interest a few people, and for most of those, only a few times before they grow so sick of watching it, they'll throw up. What does this mean to average Joe-Schmoe, who would simply like to have the Shrek movie without an in-depth, detailed, tedious, painstaking examination of every goddamned facet imaginable of the Shrek film? It means they have to pay at least double the price of a single disc, of course. It was designed that way. Hollywood would *adore* selling you two discs instead of one, everytime they put a movie out, and ya better watch out, 'cause they're headed in that direction already. If the studios were truly interested in giving you decent value, they would have released a simple one-disc version of Shrek, and made the insane, monster-complete TWO disc version available to those who feel they couldn't possibly live for another day without it. (Which would be about .00000001% of the masses). Hollywood knows this. Which is why, if you want Shrek, you're gonna have to cough up twice what it's worth. I repeat: MPAA=THIEVES

147.8.2003 6:25

A lot said here is factual, however the problem will remain without a planned attack that hurts the movie and music industries in their pocketbooks. In my personal opinion the quality of the movies, as well as the performers are poor. Movies are poorly written, have no plots and usually are overhyped. Music today is on another planet. I believe a boycott of the garbage that is out there is a sensible way of dealing with the issues. Best to All! Rodgers

157.8.2003 8:06

Alright, this is gonna hurt everyone or offend them in some way. First up, Rodgers, if the quality of movies is poor, how come I saw T3 last Thursday? They are only poor in your opinion. We humans expect too much. But that is life. Next, BobL, you're right, but if they are gonna price the stuff that high, they better let piracy go on, and also they better loosen the shit with the RIAA and all that. Third, A_Klingon, the thieves are not the MPAA or the RIAA, but it is ourselves. SOme of us here are probably pirates, and that IS stealing. But given the price of the DVDs, someone is bound to pirate, and, us being humans, who isn't bound to buy cheaper DVDs/Games/CDs? Lastly, at that comment.

Everyone is entitled to their own true opinion. Either respect that or don't.

167.8.2003 8:17

its true that some of us are workin our buts off to afford a living while actors are making big bucks...but you cant blame them, its what they ended up doing. everyone knows that if you were the actors you wouldn't like people copying your crap either..thats just money you could have gotten if they had purchased the video. The actors worked to make the movie and they should get paid...right? So i do agree with the MPAA-copying is stealing...but that doesn't mean i want the world of P2P to come to an end...just be aware of what you are doing when you ARE stealing...anyone agree with me here?

......Doc T

177.8.2003 8:39

Movie stars can make 10 or 20 million per picture, why, because a-holes will go out to the movies on a Saturday night and spend 8,10 or 12 bucks for a ticket. They sell some CDs for 16 or 18$,why, because they CAN. Because a-holes will buy them. Sports stars get millions each year, why, because a-holes will plunk down huge monies for tickets. We have met the enemy and they are us! We need to stop buying high priced dvds, cds, movies tickets, etc., and THEN all of the crap will stop!

187.8.2003 9:31

I openly admit to downloading all kinds of stuff, but only for a "test drive". There's no way i'm going to hear 1 song on the radio and run out and plop down $20 for the cd, then the rest of the cd is nothing more than filler crap. so i go download it and if it's worth buying, i DO buy it. downloading it is quick and easy, but nothing compares to having the original with covers and full liner notes etc. My wife wanted to go see tomb raider, so i downloaded it, watched parts of it, then decided it was a good enough movie to go plop down 40 bucks to go to the theater to watch it, so we did. my son wanted to go see the hulk, and after seeing all the sponfed hype on the TV about it, it looked like it would be cool, so i didn't bother with a test drive and we went to see it, my son is 10 and even he said it was one of the worst pieces of crap movies he'd ever seen. thats why i "test drive", the afternoon i saw the hulk in the theaters was the biggest waste of $30 ever. they charge so much so they can cover their advertising and media to promote the movies or music, that they trick you into thinking it's the next best thing since sliced bread, so you go spend your hard earned dollars on it, and it turns out ot be a load of crap, and they call us theives?? what ever happened to "word of mouth" if a movie is truly good, it will make money, same thing with music. they need to not spend as much on advertising, and put that money into making a good complete cd with good songs on it, then maybe the piracy will tone down a bit. but just like any other crime, it will never go away completely. - friend of the forums, great guitar player
#afterdawn (well i have no idea where it is anymore)

197.8.2003 12:20

The point is that they do it, and people fall for it so they are not gonna stop...they are pretty good at it too i'de say...

207.8.2003 13:31

Things that make you go hhhmmmmmm.... 1) Why do companies make tape players with the "record" option? 2) Why do companies make VCR players with a "record" option? 3) Why do companies make cd burners? 4) Why do companies make dvd burners? I really wanna know why MPAA and RIAA????? Shoey :)

Asus K8N nVidia nForce3 Pro 250 GB, Athlon 64 3200+, Hitachi 80 gig SATA 150, Corsair XMS 1 gig PC4000, ATI Radeon Saphire 9600 Pro (256 DDR), Windows XP Pro (64 Bit),Lite-ON SOHD 167T,, Plextor PX-712SA,BenQ 1640.

217.8.2003 17:49

So that we can...aherm....create our own music...aherm...*cough* and home movies ;-)

227.8.2003 18:08

oh, HOME movies. ooops. ;)

237.8.2003 21:23

o shut up oriphus nobody's fallin for that. nobody buys a damn burner for home movies nobody is that interesting.

248.8.2003 2:42

I openly admit to downloading all kinds of stuff, but only for a "test drive" MY FRIEND,,, It is the best way to,avoid a big mistake ,,,,, example the hulkkkkkkk. The actors worked to make the movie and they should get paid...right? HAVE YOU EVER SEEN AN ACTOR BUYING A DVD MOVIE OR SETTING NEXT TO YOU AT THE MOVIES ??? JAJAJAJA NOPEEEEEEEEEEEEE

258.8.2003 5:31

"a living" = millions of $ ???? Good joke.

268.8.2003 6:12

but all of you know it is true....if you where them you would be doing the exact same wouldn't give a damn about the struggling people out there all you would care about was the two new mansions that you purchased a week ago.....

278.8.2003 6:51

Maybe we would be doing the exact same thing, but we are not them and we can choose not to add a few bucks to their millions.. a way or the other. Anyway, they are "little children" compared to the really rich people, the "1% of USA". :)

288.8.2003 7:34

nice concept lol...but true

298.8.2003 8:12

Well, I for one do download movies..and at first it was just for fun and a challenge to see if I could do the rest. Ok..did what? For me..if I really like the downloaded movie? I support the industry..I load my family up and we see it. Having said that..thank God...I decided to download the Hulk first...what a crappy waste of film. The movie stars have a certain image to live up to...and it costs big bucks to do that. Why? Because we expect it that's why. I for one will NEVER pay for another DVD movie again..forget it. I mean, what does the movie industry expect me to do. Go out and buy all the DVD's to replace the VHS's I have?? Most times I"m downloading older stuff for the they already have it on vhs..but since it's becoming more of a trend to have a dvd vs a vhs...I"m gonna continue downloading it. Ok..I"ve supported the industry..I've plunked down my 10bucks to see your when I download it for home use..don't complain..I"ve done my part. Sheesh..what do they want? Total control over my life?? Last time I looked I wasn't living under communist rule.

308.8.2003 18:07

Seems like I was right. And MPAA, if I like the movie, I would go and see it at the cinema, cuz I want to get the "3xp3ri3nc3" There goes my $10!! And DocT, that is the truest thing I've heard all week. P.S. Recently I went to see T3..... and it was absolutely, AMAZING!!! GO and see it if you haven't!! You will be missing out a lot if you don't! T3 is amazing!!!

Everyone is entitled to their own true opinion. Either respect that or don't.

319.8.2003 18:54

BobL....Id like to know what you do for a living? Yea, I have to agree that everyone will complain, to some degree, about prices of music cds and movie dvds...But I think that your idea of " just making a living " and mine are a little different. Yes, I have to admit it! Everytime I watch MTV Cribs and read how J. Lo got a 345,000 dollar car for her birthday from her Actor hubby I just tear up. People of the internet!!! Here me now!! I cant take much more of all this copying you are doing!!!! How will they ever survive? Give me a break! How do some of you people even make it to work everyday.

3210.8.2003 7:03

Well, I can answer that one.....dont' work!! But I'm also disabled..from a car accident that prevents me from working or sitting at this puter too long...I don't download as much as I wish I could...hehehee.

3311.8.2003 0:34

Here's a thought: Why aren't the companies who make the media going after the companies who make stealing possible? In the U.S., when you aid another in the commission of a crime, it's called "aiding and abetting" or "criminal responsibility for the acts of another." So why isn't Sony music suing Sony computer? Or why isn't Time-Warner suing AOL? Why isn't Vivendi (Universal Studios and Music) shutting down Cegetel? It should be obvious that they are all owned by the same parent companies. All of this rhetoric by the alphabet gang (MPAA, RIAA, BSA, etc) is just an attempt to generate another revenue stream from an already over-taxed consumer base. File-sharers aren't sneaky, covert, thieves. It's 60 million people worldwide voting with their wallets. In America alone, when 26 million people do something, it's not a crime, it's a social movement. Hilary Rosen, ex-president of the RIAA, may she rot, admitted once that her job wasn't to stop file-sharing, it was to keep the cash cow alive as long as possible. I'll stop downloading media when they stop robbing us. And that's all I have to say about that.

"It's the information I want, you can keep the rest."

3411.8.2003 6:14

Robbing you? Can you explain that? becaus im kinda confused because aren't you the one STEALING, yes i said it, "downloading media" is just another term for it.

3511.8.2003 6:16

up untill the last two sentences i thought that was a nice topic you had there

3611.8.2003 16:36

They always say "whats good for the goose is good for the gander" on another note the RIAA and MPAA have been thieves for years, now they feel they are being robbed. What goes around always come around and payday is a Motherf***er, they can't handle it, you can take that to the bank

3711.8.2003 20:17

The RIAA says they're protecting the "writers and musicians" right to a living and to protect their copyrights. What they fail to tell you is that the "writers and musicians" in most cases don't "own" those rights anymore but have been sold, usually to a member company of the RIAA. As an example, if you buy a Beatles album, you are most likely filling Michael Jacksons wallot, not Paul or Ringo's. Or how about Elvis Presley's music? Does Lisa Marie really need more millions?

3812.8.2003 6:35

the point is that it doesn't really matter if they need it...thats business

3912.8.2003 11:25

The MPAA will never EXTORT me again, neither willthe RIAA. After all that time of them making us think of them as their "Stars"....and making us think we needed to pay them LOADS and LOADS of money. Well the industry can take their rap, rock and movie stars and shove them up their a@@es for the price they are asking. THe difference is is that we have leverage and thats what the industry wants to put an end to.

4013.8.2003 8:03

Dear All, here is how this problem is to us people here in Egypt, just for the sake of argument, to buy a normal DVD from Amazon for instance, it sells for about 15~25 US$, that is about 150 LE(our currency), and the shipping would cost about 10 US$, and customs about another 10 US $, so now the total is about 40 US$, that is 270~300 LE to get a DVD of a movie, why a DVD and not just go to the movies? well, first you do not get all movies here (Matrix II will not show at all here) because of the censorship, and if it does come, it is mostly cut out (because of the censorship also), so I want to watch the full uncut DVD, ok, now an average middle-class Egyptian would make about 1200~1500 LE per month (about 200 US$ ONLY!!!!), so how do you expect to get just one movie with about sixth or fifth of your whole monthly salary !!!!! I agree that the Actors, Directors...etc have to get well paid for their work, but the pricing for distributing movies should be reasonable, if I make 1000~2000 US$ per month, I'll gladly and easily buy the movie for 20 US$, but I just can't if all I make is about 200 US$, so my only way to watch a goof movie is to download it!!! I consider taking fifth of my salary to watch a movie stealing...don't you think? I will never watch it anyway at that price, so I am not in anyway stealing from the movie-makers, I do not sell or distribute the movie, I just watch something I would have never watched or bought otherwise? This is how I think of downloading (aka. stealing) vs. Buying the latest movies (only talking about the latest, because eventually I'll find a worn-out cheap & legal VCR version in the local market for any 10yr old movie!)

4116.8.2003 2:24

jejeje poor Bob / hey bro I just want to thank you to make this forum the funiest in my opinion of the after..webside,,, bbro,,,you rock with your most epic frase :) The actors worked to make the movie and they should get paid...right? jajajajajaahh ps 25 +

4219.8.2003 5:12

cirsinn&joy53=ya both got my vote=As far as those that seems be a forum plants that attack our positive and free minds to thinkfor ourselves,we are taking care of bussiness..We are in greaternumbers than you,BUT it takes PEOPLE like you to MAKE us mad, then we are the SOLDERS..WE have learned how to VOTE, not shoot and this is good. A hit dog always hollers, those that make out like they are on the side of the actors,are just blowing smoke and are a hussler..Actors do get paid, but they are beat out of a lot of money by thier on kind. they get very little above the mills they already have gotten. However 95% of us download a few movies(OLD) mostly and old hard to find songs..there is some that do it against ALL laws and they dont care about the ones that KEEP it at home,.however=MPAA & RIAA keepping us alive =I would not have been here if they hadnt..God bless us and keep the faith,IT IS BIGGER THAN YOU!!!!!!!

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