Monday, October 04, 2004

Kumonosu Jô

So I found out today PETER ROTTENTAIL has shown up on one of those Bit Torrent DVD-ripping sites. Is it a compliment? An insult? If people like the movie, will they go buy the DVD to get the packaging and the extras? If they don't, will my children be forced to eat cat food?

People say that making bootlegs and burning CDs and so on doesn't hurt people, only corporations, but Mark and John Polonia are real people and so am I (to some extent). I can't take the road of righteous indignation as I have copied a few CDs in my time, and taped shows off of TV back in the day, and maybe borrowed a bit of software here and there, but it does make me think twice.

If you want to see what a microcinema filmmaker would look like if you punched him or her in the stomach, go to a film fest (like I did in Rapid City this summer) and tell them that you liked their movie so much you make 20 copies for all of your friends (substitutue "garage band" and "CD" if you are into that scene).

So is it okay if you only steal from big people? It's a rocky road, ironic as the answers are easy. Nobody should be ripping, burning, taping stuff that is the intellectual property of somebody else, for free. What kind of sea change in the culture would that entail? Just because it would be difficult, does that mean it shouldn't be done?

Will I ever stop asking rhetorical questions? Give me a shout at

1 comment:

The Furnace said...

While I've flip-flopped on the issue in the past (guess I'm never running for President....or should I?), here's my latest stance: if the band or studio is big enough that they're giving it away on free radio or free television, then burns and downloads are fine. Metallica bitched and bitched, yet a good number of their songs were on the radio. They would argue it's to sell more albums - but let's face it, bands make their money on the road touring and it was just another way to advertise. Same with movies on TV - the studio just cashed in selling it to the television network. Granted there are other things to keep in mind, and other gray areas I still haven't made up my mind about. Eh, I don't know what I'm talking about.