Sunday, December 4, 2011

Shut-up Stupid Sunday: SOPA

According RIAA illegal sharing costs them more than the money supply of the entire world. Where did they come up with this figure? They made it up. The FBI, using the same technique, pulled the figure of $200 to $300 billion out of their ass.

It wouldn't even matter if they used actual measurements to come up with a number, it would miss the point. Entertainment isn't a zero sum game.

It isn't a matter of people buying content or not buying content, it's looking at the content vs. doing something else.

My free book I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE is about to break the 3,000 copies downloaded mark. If I calculated how much money I would make if it sold for $2.99 that would be in the thousands. Except if it were at that price I would only sell one or two copies.

It's the same with songs and TV shows, it's not a matter of if I could buy a Madonna song or watch a Youtube video of some teenage girl jumping on her bed while lip-syncing the lyrics. I watch those because they are funny as hell. BTW I've already purchased all of Madonna's music some of which I've got in multiple formats.

The Stop Online Piracy Act makes it so those teenagers that put those videos up could face three years in jail and Google could face huge fines for posting them.

This act makes most American Citizens criminals. This blog is totally illegal as I grab images off the web to make my point and don't share the $10 a year profit this site makes. Although I feel I handle spammers fairly well, my way of dealing with them is to either ignore them or make fun of them, I don't check their entire site for links to filesharing sites. Under SOPA that makes me a criminal.

Another activity that would become illegal birthday parties. The song “Happy Birthday” is copyright. Filming a birthday party where that song is sung and emailing it or posting it on Youtube would be a criminal act. If you think the ASCAP would never go after someone for that, think again. They sued the girl scouts.

Even with the actual pirates this act takes the wrong approach. I've ranted before about how the networks are driving away people that would watch their shows with commercials and forcing them onto the illegal networks.

Being a content provider myself, I like to think I have a contract with my readers. If someone forks out their hard earned money for my work they deserve to be entertained. On the flip side, if someone is entertained by my work I would hope they pay me. My business model is to put out free books of short stories, and charge for longer novels. The people who buy my novels must have liked the short stories enough to pay for the novels. I've already entertained them enough with the free stuff so they feel it is worth it to pay for more. Hopefully they like what they pay for, but if not I can't feel too bad as they liked my free stuff and I will try to get out more free stuff to make up for it.

So to the supporters of SOPA that are trying to make all Americans criminals, I say, “Shut-up Stupid, entertainment is a contract between the producer and the consumer. If a consumer likes what the producer makes they will find was to pay the producers back. The teenagers who put up funny videos of Madonna songs aren't trying to hurt Madonna they are helping spread her music and get her more fans. If I watch a Twilight Zone episode on an illegal site, it isn't because I want to hurt Rod Serling's heirs, it's because it isn't offered on a site that pays them. SOPA is a bad idea as it goes against the very contract between the producer and consumer.”

Please help stop SOPA by clicking here.

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE


Stephanie Barr said...

This kind of bullshit has, over and over the past thirty years, ALWAYS bit the ones screaming about copyright in the ass (and made them end up doing what the consumers wanted in the end).

You know what happens when you try to gouge the consumer on entertainment? Consumers who are going to look elsewhere because there's PLENTY around.

Project Savior said...

What could really bite them in the ass is if their measures turned people away from "canned" entertainment altogether. For over 10,000 years humans entertained themselves by talking with friends. And that is still free.