So, you saved up your money to buy the coolest toy. You bring it home, and you have a great time with it. It’s time to go out to soccer practice, so you get all ready. Just before you leave, your little brother asks if he can play with your new toy. Being the good big brother you are, you say yes, right?
Stop right there! You were about to make your brother a thief! If he wants to play with the toy, tell him to buy his own! Who cares if sharing that toy would lead to him buying the spaceship and the villian to fight the good guy? Who cares if you’ll end up watching the tv show, buying the trading cards, the sheets, the t shirts, etc? If you let him play with that first toy, he’ll never do any of that, but at least he wouldn’t have pirated that toy from you.
See where I’m going with this?
If toy companies instated the same no-sharing standpoint the entertainment industry has, they’d go out of business. Unless, of course, they started lawsuits with everyone, suing for much more than their merchandise is worth, making a multimillion dollar business out of suing people. And that’s exactly what the entertainment industry has done.
Now, some may say “when you download a song, how will the company make any money?”. The truth is, pirating has greatly increased exposure for bands. These people become future customers, buying music, full albums, going to concerts, and buying shirts, cloths, etc. Sure, a person could download every track in an album, make sure to get the hidden track, find the commentary somewhere, find some album artwork, fill in all the artist data, and throw it onto iTunes. But you know what’s a lot easier? Pressing “Buy” in iTunes. It’s easier to actually buy the music, and when you have a good fanbase, people are willing to pay whatever price helps their favorite bands. How do you get a fanbase? Sharing! Or, as the “entertainment” industry would have you to believe “piracy”. Again, why fight it if it’s helping? Because you can get more money from multimillion dollar lawsuits than selling your product. Don’t believe me? Ask this woman, who was fined $1.9 million for downloading 24 songs. That’s over $79,100 per song. She could never have spent that much on any form of entertainment her entire life, let along just music.
There’s good money in lawsuits. Think the government should step in? Too bad! You can’t afford the lobbyists needed to change their minds.