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Digital Piracy



Digitalpiracy refers to the act of duplicating copyrighted content withoutany authorization and then selling the content at substantially lowprices in the ‘black’ market. In the recent past, technology hasimproved greatly and many people can now access it easily and,therefore, making digital piracy to be more rampant. For instance,people can now download music from the internet without getting anypermission from the owner. Also, one can easily purchase a readilyavailable CD writer at a very low price, making the piracy of musicto be a simple affair. Theseacts of duplicating copyrighted content without permission should beconsidered as theft.

Currently,there are many ways in which piracy is carried out. The most commonones include video piracy, music piracy, DVD/CD piracy, and cablepiracy. Video piracy happens when a person produces a film in avideocassette form without getting authorized by a rights holder suchas the producer. Normally, the film producer is first required tosell video rights to a third party one or more months later after itsrelease in the theatres. The other party will then make videocassettes for sale, or lending. The videocassettes which are sold areonly meant for home viewing and thus should not be duplicated.

Musicpiracy refers to the act of replicating music cassettes that willflood the market as soon as a new song is released. Most of the musiccompanies have been financially hit hard by the influx of compactdiscs and cassettes which have been pirated and sold cheaply to thepeople. The music producers have encountered huge financial losses asthe pirated copies are sold at substantially lower prices as comparedto that at music stores.

Cablepiracy refers to the act of transmitting films through cable networkwithout permission. Most often, the newly released films aretransmitted through the cable network without any authorization fromthe rights holder. Piracy has become a common phenomenon in thesecable networks because they are not really organized and hence showfilms without buying proper rights.

Anotherway in which piracy is done is through pirating the DVD/CD. Thistakes place when people pirate the prints which are being transportedfor oversees screening of the film. Most of the DVD/CD piracy offilms takes place in the international markets. For instance, mostIndian film prints are pirated as they are sent for overseesscreening. This act takes place at some of the Asian and Middle Eastcountry airports as they are prepared and transported from onecountry to another.

Fromthe foregoing, it is thus clear that piracy is the duplication ofcopyrighted content with any authorization and it should beconsidered as theft. This is because illegally downloading music,films or using pirated DVD/CDs will lead to drop in sales and loss ofmarket for the owner. The production of music and films are verycostly and, therefore, pirating the content and selling it at lowerprices should be considered as theft.