Illegal Downloading Sucks Hard

I guess I do go on like a stuck record, sorry about that; but my consistent posts on this topic are motivated by rational self interest.

And factual research. Yes, piracy is bad, but the message never seems to permeate the Neanderthal skulls of freeloading ‘consumers’, who persist in insisting that the only things they value are their own convenience, and enormous sense of entitlement.

In response to this sane and elegantly argued piece, the ‘comments’ section is duly filled with the same old bogus arguments.

Downloading films illegally is not theft? And it’s not illegal? This tired shibboleth again??? Really?

I don’t actually believe that freetards are that stupid. But I do think they need to get a grip on simple economics, and learn something about morality while they’re at it.

It’s true, there is an argument to be had around questions of supply and demand. But removing an artist’s right to exploit their work as they see fit and to their best advantage is NOT the solution.

Google’s arguments are specious and entirely self serving.

I have to laugh real hard when they say with a straight face that they are concerned that copyright law benefits big business??? SNORT!!!

What a pack of assholes. Copyright laws benefit business, sure. Copyright laws create the possibility of business. They enable artists to make a living from distributing their work. They make it possible for everyone involved in the creation and distribution of creative work to make a living.

Along comes Google, and with a wave of a digital wand, they say, “oh, we can copy this, and make it available for free to anyone that wants it”. Super. Who benefits from that?


What fucking business is it of theirs??? Did they make anything in the first place?

No, they derive their MASSIVE income (Google are the biggest of businesses on this planet today) from people clicking through links to get hold of whatever they need or want. More want than need, actually, but that’s another story.

So, those poor deprived souls in Australia can’t watch Game of Thrones IMMEDIATELY … FOR FREE? They don’t want to give Foxtel so much as a drippy used tissue???

Foxtel (Understand this … I have no love for Murdoch, or others of his ilk) didn’t get GOT by waving a wet tissue. They paid LOTS to get it. This is called a competitive advantage. This is part of what doing business is all about.

If you don;t like FOXTEL, or whatever other big media company happens to have secured  exclusive first run rights … then WAIT a few weeks. It;s not like there’s nothing else to watch meantime.

You want to be first in line? pay for the privilege.

Oh but no. Freetards can’t wait for anything. They know that 300 thieving chums will rip and upload what they crave, so let’s just blind, deafen, and mute any kind of rational consideration of our actions, and let’s all download GOT for FREE …

And then???

Why do all these bonehead freetards find it so difficult to understand that the natural consequence of starving production and distribution companies of cash flow, will inevitably kill them. No more Game of Thrones. The end.

Before anyone starts screaming NETFLIX at me, and yelling that House of Cards was made with real money paid by subsscribers, let me say, yes, precisely my point. House of Cards was really expensive to make, and it was paid for by subscribers. Exactly the same as Game of Thrones, which cost even more to make (way more); it was not paid for by mooching freetards who think that entertainment comes from the sky and is their inalienable human right.

So, yeah, fuck off Google. Your arguments are crap. Anyone with a brain ought to be able to understand that this greedy, grasping digital octopus is exploiting the wild west of the internet to enrich itself at the expense of everyone who actually makes things – they are alienating artists from their creations, and in the process they are robbing people of their livelihoods, and destroying formerly viable productive industries.

We need to reconsider and reframe copyright laws that can effectively bring balance into the current unfair and destructive online environment. Bullies like Google cannot be allowed to prosper on the broken backs of creative people.


About Costa Botes

I'm a freelance film maker based in Wellington, New Zealand. I make mainly long form independent documentaries about characters I find interesting.
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2 Responses to Illegal Downloading Sucks Hard

  1. Mian says:

    Painfully clear you’ve never met any of these “freetards” in your life.
    Maybe if you did, you’d be able to ask how many of them bought the box set.
    Or were they even able to, with the way DVDs are distributed (in Zones)?

    How much do you bitch about the death of game of thrones, caused by the
    people getting it for free from the public library?

    Jim Baen has a free library, online. His corp gets more profits by distributing books for free.

    There are other paradigms, copyright is far from the only one.

    • Costa Botes says:

      Painfully clear you’ve never met any of these “freetards” in your life.

      To the contrary. I meet them all the time. I am intimately acquainted with the mind set and behaviours of freeloaders. One thing I have learned the hard way is that it’s virtually pointless debating with hardcore ‘freetards’. Their minds are set in concrete. So these responses are for the benefit of anyone sitting on the fence. I hope there are still people on the fence.

      Maybe if you did, you’d be able to ask how many of them bought the box set.

      Maybe quite a few, but this makes no difference to my argument. Yes, I know. One of the prime articles of faith amongst freeloaders is that their immoral behaviour is justified by purchasing stuff they especially love. Sorry, but we are not discussing the legal purchase of goods here. We are talking about the theft of copyright goods, and illegal dissemination of such goods. if you buy stuff once in a while, or maybe even all the time, good on you. That’s an economy that keeps the activity of making films viable. But every time you help yourself to goods that have been copied and distributed illegally, you disrupt, and damage the viability of the businesses that have created the films you are stealing.

      Yes it IS stealing. Please do not resort to the fallacy that making a digital copy is not theft. Look elsewhere on this website for some effective legal rebuttal to that notion.

      Or were they even able to, with the way DVDs are distributed (in Zones)?

      I have some sympathy for this line of argument. I agree the Zone system is well past antiquated and frustrating. However, it is so easily circumvented that it hardly justifies resort to theft. Have you ever heard of Amazon? And multizone DVD players are not hard to find. This isn’t an argument about access. The central issue has always been price.

      How much do you bitch about the death of game of thrones, caused by the
      people getting it for free from the public library?

      Firstly – those people arent getting it for free. Their taxes pay for the library – which pays a high institutional price for every item on its shelves. Secondly, a few hundred people getting a title from a library hardly constitutes a threat to creators on the same scale as titles being ripped and made available to millions of people via countless Torrent and Cyberlocker sites.

      Jim Baen has a free library, online. His corp gets more profits by distributing books for free.

      Uh huh? Not sure what business school you went to, but the last I heard “free” equals “nada”. And there is no profit in “nothing”. So if Jim Beam or whatever his name is makes money distributing books for free, his cash flow ain’t coming from the books.

      So someone is paying for it and it’s probably an advertiser, or someone who wants something from the readers. Not a healthy cultural transaction, I would say.

      Further to Baen’s enterprise (I don’t know anything about him) Are they HIS books? if not, where does he get the books from?

      If they’re HIS books, then I don’t really give a flying monkey about what he’s doing. There is no moral or legal impediment to him doing whatever he likes with his own stuff.

      The nub of my problem is individuals who set themselves as arbiters of MY destiny. Strangely enough, I don’t like it when a complete stranger RIPS my work, without permission, without any form of compensation whatsoever, and then sticks it up online and shares it with the world. Very generous of them, I’m sure you’d agree. Until, it’s your turn to have your possessions taken and given away.

      See, that’s the way I look at it. Hopelessly old fashioned, I guess. Not very innovative. But I believe it’s an accurate representation of the truth. It has happened to me many times, and it materially affects my ability to stay in business. For me, this is not a theoretical issue. It’s an issue of survival.

      There are other paradigms, copyright is far from the only one.

      Indeed, this is true. But the point I would like to make very clearly here is that CHOICE and respect for creators must be involved.

      There is no choice or respect when a freetard basically just takes my stuff.

      My position is – if I create something – it’s mine. To do with how I see fit. If I want to give it away, that’s MY decision alone to make. If I want to charge money for it – then that’s a negotiaton between me and a willing buyer. If they’re not willing – I either adjust my price, or there’s no sale. Simple. I do not accept that the advent of a new technology in any way justifies the disruption of this paradigm.

      I see no respect in the position of freeloaders, who insist the only good is what’s good for them; that it is their right to take whatever they want, whenever they want, and either pay nothing for it, or insist on setting the price themselves. Well, we’ve all seen the results when the evangelists of “free” stick it to “Big Business” and put their wares online for free with buttons for donating. Trent Reznor and Radiohead??? Have you noticed? They are back with major labels. Hello. What does this tell you about the viability of alternative paradigms? Both those artists by the way own their copyrights, and would probably have a short curt message for you if you tried to tell them they shouldn’t. And why don’t we drag poor old Louis CK into this discussion too? He’s like the poster boy for alternative distribution. Except, if you drill into his story, you quickly see … it’s bollocks. There’s a man who knows all about copyright, and how to use it to leverage himself to best advantage. Very smart guy. I admire him. And he’s really funny too.

      Yes, there are many, many ways in which clever creative people can market their work.

      None of those ways can survive an online environment where piracy and freeloading are allowed to flourish. NOTHING can compete with free. Copyright remains the best and fairest way to strike a balance between the rights of creators and the needs of consumers.

      See also this informative link:

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