Fight illegal downloads, and be cool!
Yes, yet another downloads, distribution and torrents post. Why? Because it is important to discuss this issue as many many cases of people who download are brought to court.
It is important to point out the different types of uploaders/downloaders. First, the uploaders — there are those who upload to share and spread their interest so they find someone they can share a common interest with. Someone to talk to about this piece. However, they are often confused with the people who upload to get hits and possibly ad revenue… meaning, making a profit.
This is why so many fansubbing groups are against streaming, many streamers (unless they are authorized) upload videos that don’t belong to them (they don’t even sub stuff themselves!), since streaming is easier than download they get more hits and become more popular from other people’s work.
Then there’s the downloaders. There’s people who download because they think why pay for something that’s already out there. Fair enough. I shouldn’t care about you. You wouldn’t pay nothing for me [as the musician] anyway, so why I should waste my money in suing you. There’s also the people who download because that’s the best way to discover music [unlike radios, who play the same songs over and over again], this is the type of person who would have heard a song on the radio, goes online to find out who sings the song and takes the time to find out who the artist is, and if it’s worth it to check out the album. It is obvious that this person invests time in the product you put out, and if he/she likes it, he will also invest money.
However, there’s also the person who downloads things just so he/she can sell it. Now, that IS the illegal part.
How do you distinguish them? You can’t until you see someone selling it. So it is (sorta) the duty of a fan who HAS TO PAY for a fake good to report it. It’s not like you buy a fake Prada backpack… because you are paying for the backpack. You won’t ever get a backpack for free. But you can watch a film for free instead of paying for the fake DVD. The issue with piracy is commercializing what’s not yours.
Now that we’ve established the types of uploaders/downloaders. There’s the logic. According to them, as more people download your film, less people will pay to watch it at the movies. False! Case and point, Avatar. You might hate it all you want, but the film has been downloaded about 2 million times since it’s first upload, and it’s become the highest grossing film.
TorrentFreak has an article on the Director of Technology of Warner Bros who states that P2P technology has been vilified…
“In terms of our own view, we think P2P gets vilified. It’s just a technology. CNN used it for Inauguration coverage. It can be used for piracy, but as a technology, I think it has a lot of advantages to it,” Applen said, adding that “P2P works really well at delivering an entire season or the entire run of a show.”
Add to that the case of the film Ink.
Dear Fans and Friends,
Over the weekend something pretty extraordinary happened. Ink got ripped off. Someone bit torrented the movie (we knew this would happen) and they posted it on every pirate site out there. What we didn’t expect was that within 24 hours Ink would blow up. Ink became the number 1 most downloaded movie on several sites having been downloaded somewhere between 150,000 to 200,000 times as far as we can tell. Knowing there’s absolutely nothing we can do about it, we’ve embraced the piracy and are just happy Ink is getting unprecedented exposure.
As a result, Ink is now ranked #16 on IMDb’s movie meter and is currently one of the top 20 most popular movies in the world.
Hollywood has claimed that they don’t know how to market the film or that it doesn’t have an audience, and what BitTorrent has done in the last four days is prove, unequivocally, that Hollywood is wrong.
So is this the best thing that could happen to our little film? Absolutely! There is no way this many people would know about the film otherwise, or that our IMDb MovieMeter would have shot up an astounding 81,000% from a few days of activity over the torrent sites. What Hollywood would calculate as lost dollars, we calculate as fans earned.
So the issue is not downloads. The issue is fans, and how you find an audience that will buy your product. I have always stated that if you consider yourself a fan, you should support the work. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have loads of money to spend, you can always use your time to spread the word. Make a reunion so people can watch a film, listen to an album, see a concert DVD… buy a calendar, take time to fansub something…
Be a fan, support your artist.