Why do you pirate movies/TV shows?

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Hey guys. I apologize in advance if this has been asked here before (or if this post is not appropriate for this part of the forum), but I'm doing some research right now and I could use your help.

I've got this idea for a digital distribution platform for movies/TV shows. Whereas most of the industry sees piracy as a threat, I think it's merely a service problem - one that could be solved if they were an affordable, convenient alternative. But I want to get some opinions to see if I'm on the right track. So I'll just ask a simple question:

Why do you pirate movies/TV shows?



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There is no real appropriate place for this on these forums. The subject is pretty taboo around here, and I don't think you'll even find many people who partake in this.
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There is no real appropriate place for this on these forums. The subject is pretty taboo around here, and I don't think you'll even find many people who partake in this.
Unless the board rules have changed, we are allowed to talk about the legality and morality of downloading movies. But we are not allowed to mention the names of illegal download sites. There has been post with links to public domain sites that only have legal to watch/download movies. There has been several threads about this too, I just read them a few days ago.

http://www.movieforums.com/community/rules.php
No Illegal Movie Downloads
Though discussions about the issue itself are permitted, asking where you can download movies illegally, or linking to such sites, is not allowed under any circumstance.



Back to the original post:

First you have define: what is pirating?

The laws very from country to country and watching a streaming movie is legally different than downloading a movie. If you're a cable subscriber many of the premium cable channels actually have web sites for legitimate watching of the same shows they have on cable.

Then there's the question about copyright laws, many really old films are in the public domain and can be legally downloaded. There's even a difference between using the download button on a streaming movie web site vs downloading by a bit torrent.



I was referring to downloading via a bit torrent.



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Simple question: "What if I go at cinema and i don't like the movie?"



Yeah, to be clear: people are more than free to discuss the issue in general. We just draw the line at publicly sharing links and how-tos and all that.

Piracy is pretty widespread even for things that people can easily and quickly purchase legally online, so I don't think convenience or affordability is the issue.

I think it's pretty clear why people do it: they want a thing, and they can get it for free with very little risk. People will throw out rationalizations beyond that, but the overwhelming majority of piracy is just simple opportunism.



I think it's pretty clear why people do it: they want a thing, and they can get it for free with very little risk. People will throw out rationalizations beyond that, but the overwhelming majority of piracy is just simple opportunism.
Or if you have a passion for cinema and no money. I watched 260 films last year, many of them new releases. That's around a £2,600 bluray bill. I use Netflix and still buy physical media, but only films I really like.



There have been cases of people being warned by their ISPs to stop illegal download activity. For those who don't stop the ISP can cut off their service. Has anybody here ever received a warning?



There have been cases of people being warned by their ISPs to stop illegal download activity. For those who don't stop the ISP can cut off their service. Has anybody here ever received a warning?
I've never received a warning and I've downloaded countless terabytes. ISPs only cut off rippers and uploaders now. Torrent traffic accounts for about 70% of all net traffic, so banning People for downloading a few films would be a bad business move for them.



Why do you pirate movies/TV shows?
There are a lot of different ways to approach this topic, but I'll go with: Because I got permission by the creators.

My favorite movie, Ink, never got picked up by publishers so the creators distributed it in-house. After it got pirated, they saw a huge leap in attention and sales and so, admitting that the topic was complex, they said they just want people to see the movie.

I saw it, loved it, bought multiple copies of it off their official website and even paid to watch their next movie through their preferred streaming service.

And I shared that torrent to a couple dozen other people too.



Convenience.

-It can be done easily, and instantly at home. You can have a movie ready to watch in 5 minutes. For somebody like me who lives around 10-15 km from the nearest decent theater and doesn't have a driving license in a city where public transport sucks, it is quite convenient.

-You don't depend on the criteria of distributors to decide what to watch, which is very comfortable specially if your picks are random and/or varied, which happens to be my case, and if you don't focus too much on the newest stuff, which also happens to be my case.

-If you know well your sources you can find the highest quality and have full control of it in the file you get. I pay a yearly subscription on a video on demand platform and I try to make use of it whenever possible, because it's quite easy to use and has a catalog I find really interesting, with lots of classics and independent stuff. But sometimes it turns that the video quality of the stream is way lower compared with a pirated file I had downloaded before. Recently it happened to me with Black narcissus, for instance. If you have watched the film you know how essential the visuals in it are.

-Money. Quite obvious one I think.



You don't depend on the criteria of distributors to decide what to watch, which is very comfortable specially if your picks are random and/or varied, which happens to be my case, and if you don't focus too much on the newest stuff, which also happens to be my case.
Seconded.

Many foreign movies are never localized and most platforms keep their catalog predominantly recent in terms of release date because the matter of renewing the licenses for increasingly unpopular titles suffers from diminishing returns.
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Piracy is pretty widespread even for things that people can easily and quickly purchase legally online, so I don't think convenience or affordability is the issue.
Affordability is a significant part of the issue in Australia. Due to restrictions we pay much higher rates then you. We have to geododge to get access to any of the American services to watch our shows on time and reasonably priced. While geo-dodging in Australia is not illegal is does violate a lot of sites (eg Netflix, HBO, etc) terms of service so if you get caught you get shut out. People are typically willing to pay but sometimes these services won't let us.

The was a quick report done by our B-grade version of John Oliver which sums up really well (and slightly entertainingly) the issue:




Or if you have a passion for cinema and no money. I watched 260 films last year, many of them new releases. That's around a £2,600 bluray bill. I use Netflix and still buy physical media, but only films I really like.
I think many people who pirate stuff end up buying the original stuff as well. So they become even greater consumers.



Seconded.

Many foreign movies are never localized and most platforms keep their catalog predominantly recent in terms of release date because the matter of renewing the licenses for increasingly unpopular titles suffers from diminishing returns.
Thumbs up for using the term diminish ing return s.



Greatest reviewer alive
I think many people who pirate stuff end up buying the original stuff as well. So they become even greater consumers.
If I download music and end up liking it, I buy the record. I'd imagine not many people do that. Another example would be me using Spotify and using it to mine out the good records from the bad so I can end up purchasing it and stacking it in the collection.



Originally Posted by Naisy
We have to geododge
What's geododging? Is that like using a proxy to hide your location?

Originally Posted by Guaporense
I think many people who pirate stuff end up buying the original stuff as well. So they become even greater consumers.
Many do, but it's worth considering the significant portion that don't. I put a lot of stock into physical copies, but I'm constantly meeting people who tell me, "Why bother when you can download it?". This isn't just in regards to piracy either, the mentality includes even regular Netflix users. Why buy the DVD when I can stream it any time I want through Netflix?

This actually kinda feeds into the issue of secondhand distributors where people buy the product and then sell it to someone else later (read as eBay). History's shown that even THIS gets under the skin of greedy monopolistic companies.

Originally Posted by Guaporense
Thumbs up for using the term diminish ing return s.
I can has big words.

Actually, in regards to "greedy monopolistic companies", we run into the issue of region codes too. Black Rock Shooter turns out to be one of my favorite animes, but because of that "diminishing returns" thing, it was never localized in English outside of Japan or the UK (where it got subtitles). I really want a physical copy, so I buy the UK version, but because it's region-locked to only work with region-specific DVD players I have to PLAY IT ON MY COMPUTER ANYWAY.

Those region codes don't exist for any reason other than to mask a false dilemma involving uncontrolled imports, so it's worth considering another reason why people pirate movies: DRM. Which is ironic because DRM supposedly exists to prevent piracy.