Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Sharing is caring

If you've ever watched a movie on DVD you're probably familiar with the slogan - Filesharing is theft.

There is I'm sure a mature adult audience that tuts between their teeth and says 'These young people today - no morals....' But how about you? Where does sharing end and theft begin....?

  • You go to a dinner party and complement the chef - who then asks "Would you like the recipe?" reaching for the glossy, copyrighted, cookbook on the shelf. Did you ever say yes?
  • Perhaps you belong to the generation that knits and sews? "Just let me have a copy of that pattern will you?"
  • Or did you ever... tape tracks from the radio?
  • Copy course notes from a book?
  • Borrow LPs to tape?
  • Borrow discs from the library and copy?
  • Buy a cut price DVD marked 'Not for Resale'?

  • A film you like is playing on the TV.. but you're not home. So you tape it...
  • ..or save it to the harddrive on your new DVD player.
  • You got the settings wrong... so you borrow the DVD from a friend and watch it..
  • ..or borrow the DVD and copy it to watch it later.
  • ..or you borrow the copy they recorded?
  • Your friend has a film you've not seen so you borrow it...
  • ..and copy it to watch later.
  • Your friend has lent it to his brother so you hire it instead...
  • ..and copy it to watch again later.

Or maybe you save yourself the walk and search for it online?

Philosophically speaking - is it morally more acceptable if a thousand people share something with someone they know than if one person shares something with a thousand people they never met?

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