I’ve covered, or at least touched on, the subject of piracy time and time and time and time again. I’m going to touch on it again today. Suffice it to say, producers of music, movies, software, audiobooks and other digital media need, as an absolute necessity, to understand that a few basic bases need to be covered. They need to make the content available for purchase. They need to make it easy and convenient to purchase. They need to make it priced to sell.
As far as I’m concerned, as one of millions of Brits living abroad, the content producers that matter to me score zeros on all three criteria. Fail, fail, and fail. I download television shows from the US and UK illegally using bittorrent because they are often not available through any other source, or else they appear on Mexican television months and months later. I sometimes buy movies from the street at 10 pesos because the film, despite having been released months earlier, sometimes even on DVD, in the US, still hasn’t hit the cinemas in Mexico.
I also download from dubious sources almost everything I need, instead of paying for it, for another simple reason. Price. Yes, it is a global market. No, not all markets are the same. Take the photography software I use. If I lived in the UK, it would cost me maybe a weeks pay. Deal. I’ll part with my cash.
Here in Mexico it has the same price tag. However, very sadly, I don’t earn the same as I would in the UK. Now it costs me a months pay. No deal. I’m being ripped off. Couldn’t afford that much even if I wasn’t being ripped off. Thank you very much for the offer, but I’ll have it for free off a bittorrent site instead. Gracias.
There is one area where I perhaps would pay for use of music. I create videos now and again, and often put a music track over it. I’d almost always like to put a well known song on, but because it’ll get taken down for copyright infringement by You Tube or Vimeo etc, I don’t bother.
Instead I go to Jamendo and use music that is legally free. Result. So, Sony, EMI and others, now that you have competition, what are you going to do about it? I’d pay maybe 50 pesos for the right to use one of your songs on one of my videos.
They earn money and get the track a little extra exposure. Bargain! Both of us win! Except, the music industry is fighting that too, and as a result, earn nothing, gain no exposure and sink closer to the abyss of bankruptcy. Unbelievably, they even fail to see opportunity when it slaps them in the face.
Take a look at the video below. It’s a parody of a recent Alicia Keys track. It’s brilliant. Genius even. There’s money that could be made from that. Or should I say, could have been made from that. Because the reaction of EMI was to order the video be taken down immediately. It was. And hundreds uploaded it again….can EMI spell ‘losing battle’?