Sunday, January 10, 2010

A Final Word On E-Piracy

I've yet to read one of David Hewson's books, but I admire him a great deal for the public stance he's taken on the subject of illegal file downloading. Already ordered a couple of his books, in fact, simply because they not only look intriguing, but because he's an intelligent guy, and I assume intelligent published authors write intelligent books. If anything, he's too intelligent, and because of that, I fear much of what he's pointing out will be missed, so I'm reiterating it here.

He began by talking about e-piracy itself, but took it one step further by making an insightful point about e-piracy in his blog about how e-piracy sites are ad-driven, which means the noble file hackers who ignore the rules and upload files to the web for the "benefit of their fellow men who can't afford it" are actually making money off the misguided Internet shoplifters who frequent their sites.

How does it feel to be taken advantage of, book/movie/music thieves? You're nothing more than a pawn in the empiralistic world of consumerism, being lured to a site by a trial of breadcrumbs, falling prey to the oldest scam in the book, that of "something for nothing". (Oh, please don't start leaving me comments telling me that you've never once clicked on an online forum ad...)

At any rate, the excuses for e-book piracy seem to boil down to:

"I share stolen files out of the goodness of my heart, for the benefit of my online friends."
"I do it because these are books I would never have bought anyway."
"I do it because I can't afford to do otherwise."
"I do it because I want to know if I'll like it before I spend money on it."

Hm. I guess when I stole a balloon as a child I should've said, "But if I hadn't stolen it, the world would never have possibly/maybe/sort of/theoretically enjoyed that balloon!"

And all would've been well with the world, because hey... who needs to learn the difference between right and wrong in this day and age, anyway?

(For you literal nerd-types, I meant that sarcastically. )

And here's my final point: I'm going to read David Hewson's books not because I got them for free, but because I read something about him that I liked, and in that, I found some commonality. We agree on book piracy, and his books look interesting. We are strangers, yet sympatico.

You people out there who want my books for free after I've worked so hard on them and my publisher has invested money in them? We are not sympatico. We have nothing in common. Don't bother to download my books, because you won't like them.

We have no commonality.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well I assent to but I think the post should have more info then it has.