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Topic: Is this the right thing to do? Is it Ethical?
Message: Posted by: Justin Hepton (Oct 20, 2005 04:02AM)
Hi!

One of my closest friends (who is a very talented amateur magician) asked me this question during a telephone conversation yesterday, and I thought I would post it here as after I gave him my opinion, I started to wonder if I may have been a little hasty.

Basically, he has a substantial "library" of Magic videos and a few dvd's. Due to a lot of use I suppose, the videos are becoming stretched and difficult to watch (he showed me one of his Ammar tapes and it jumps about like a jack in the box!) Anyway, he told me that he has started downloading copies of the videos from certain p2p websites, or using certain "file sharing" software, to replace the videos that he can no longer watch. He then burns them to dvd and that way, he says, he "preserves" what he has bought. He asked me last night if, by doing this, he is doing anything wrong either lawfully or morally. My response was this:

"Those file sharing programs and sites are illegal I believe, and by downloading these videos, you are breaking copyright law and could be in serious trouble. As far as from a moral standpoint, I'm not really sure. The originators of the videos you have downloaded will not necessarily lose a sale as it's not like you are downloading anything you haven't bought already, but I'm not sure."

I'd really appreciate some thoughts on this, as he is adamant that if he is doing anything illegal, or if he may be harming the originators of the aforementioned videos in any way, he will destroy all the dvds he has made and delete all the files he has/is downloading at present. So - at least he is decent enough to correct his actions if what he is doing will harm our art in any way.

He, like me, is in the uk too so the law may be different in that regard.

So, what do you think everyone?

Thanks!

Justin
Message: Posted by: tpdmagic (Oct 20, 2005 08:40AM)
As far as I know legally he is not breaking the law by using those sites. P2P software and sites are not against the law. But there is a legal issue with him downloading copyrighted material, so yes he is breaking the law. I personally feel that since he owns the videos it is o.k to make a back up of the video but only for his use, not for sale. Now let me say that again, back up his videos, not download copyrighted material from the internet. I have back ups of most of my dvds not just magic, the reason I do that is because when I travel I don't want to loose the origonals even though in some cases I own dups...LOL So backing up your stuff for personal use I believe is not a problem at all but those sites are very shady. Yes they are legal but when you are downloading something that is copyrighted from someone elses computer there is definetly a copyright law being broket. Although the laws may be differen't I would suggest to respect the artist that put the material out. Back ups are o.k. but downloading I would say stay away from. These are just my opionens so take it for what it is worth.

tpdmagic
Message: Posted by: Justin Hepton (Oct 20, 2005 10:19AM)
Thanks for the reply!

I wonder if anyone else knows where my friend may stand with regards to the legality of what he is doing? And from a morality standpoint?

I have to say, I'm still very unsure about this, the whole thing feels wrong to me!

Justin
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Oct 21, 2005 02:11PM)
Does copyright on videos permit making a backup copy for personal use?
Message: Posted by: Dave V (Oct 22, 2005 03:14AM)
Although not exactly on topic, it reminds me of an interesting solution to the problem of decaying media put forth by Michael Ammar. At one time he was offering to exchange (perhaps he still does, I haven't looked recently) any of his video tape products for new DVD copies for a nominal fee. Considering that DVDs seem to cost more than their VHS counterparts, this charge combined with the original price is still reasonable. You get the material you paid for, but in a modern format. In fact, you just need proof of purchase (slipcase, etc...) and you get to keep the original media as well. I thought this was a very generous and forward thinking solution.

Now, back to the discussion at hand...
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Oct 23, 2005 11:46AM)
The basic purpose of P2P sites is to fascillitate breaking the law. Involvement with them in any way can only muddy one's hands at best. I agree with the line tpd drew above.

If your friend's tapes were destroyed in a fire, would that entitle him to copy friend's DVDs to rebuild his library?
Message: Posted by: Patrick Differ (Oct 23, 2005 01:11PM)
Why not use home equipment that burns a dvd from vhs? Once the dvd is made, the vhs is destroyed. All you've done is back up the work you've already paid for. What could possibly go wrong?
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 1, 2005 04:19AM)
In my opinion there is nothing remotely unethical about downloading a copy of a video that you legally purchased elsewhere, as long as it's the same title with the same content. If you have a VHS version, and you download a newer DVD version with additional content that's not on the VHS version; that might not be so kosher. But if your legally purchased video gets damaged and you download a copy of the same version, surely there is no harm done.

Legally, however, it might be problematic. Sites like Napster have been sued, and the RIAA has sued individuals for downloading mp3's.
Message: Posted by: bsears (Dec 5, 2005 10:04AM)
If you own it, you own it IMP, regardless of format. Burn it, tape it, download it, its yours! The inventor has already received his money. (selling, uploading, or trading your copies would be entirely different altogether).
Message: Posted by: LostSoul (Dec 6, 2005 08:10AM)
Bsears,

Burn it, tape it, but not download it (or upload as the case would be). The copyright laws contain a, I think this is the phrase, "Fair Use", which includes making a backup copy for your own use. But once you put it someplace others can access it, you're treading a very shaky ground (ask the Napster folk). I’ve heard that copyright law even allows you to share with friends, the problem with the P2P sites is they allow you to share with strangers.

All copyrights are basically the same (in the US anyway). That's why software companies don't sell you software; they only sell you the license to use it. The license contains very specific actions you can do with it. Commonly, you can create backup copies, you can install on a second computer (not many people know this) but you can only run it on 1 at a time. Normally all of my software is loaded both on my work computer and either my laptop or my home computer depending on what it does.

Dave

Disclaimer: I’m not a copyright lawyer (or any other sort of lawyer). I do read some and follow stories that concern me, which is software copyright law for one.
Message: Posted by: bsears (Dec 6, 2005 01:33PM)
LostSoul: I think we agree. Uploading bad, downloading something you already own, OK.

Here's the math as I see it: If you have paid the seller and are keeping the knowledge to yourself, the ratio of users of the trick to purchasers of the trick is 1:1. Does that make sense?
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 6, 2005 03:37PM)
[quote]I’ve heard that copyright law even allows you to share with friends, the problem with the P2P sites is they allow you to share with strangers. [/quote]

Are you saying the law allows sharing with friends but not with strangers? That seems odd...
Message: Posted by: Roldero (Dec 6, 2005 08:49PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-06 16:37, jimtron wrote:
[quote]I’ve heard that copyright law even allows you to share with friends, the problem with the P2P sites is they allow you to share with strangers. [/quote]

Are you saying the law allows sharing with friends but not with strangers? That seems odd...
[/quote]
This may have something to do with the Audi Home Recording Act. I did a quick Google on it and thought this might be of interest:
[url=http://trillian.mit.edu/~jc/ideas/AudioHomeRecordingAct.html]Audio Home Recording Act[/url]

I realize that this is US law and you are in the UK, but I believe there may be something similar in the UK too.

The wiki entry seems worth a read too: [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audio_Home_Recording_Act]Audio Home Recording Act[/url]

My (totally unqualified) personal opinion is as long as your friend is downloading copies of stuff he already owns, he's OK.

Mike
Message: Posted by: SuperMagicMozart (Dec 7, 2005 08:08PM)
It doesn't seem wrong or illegal to me. I'm not certain whether or not this pertains to videos, but I know that with videogames and software you're allowed a back-up copy legally. Even if it isn't technically lawful (which I don't believe it is), the people that they go after tend to be those that download and SELL or download many, many items.
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 7, 2005 09:03PM)
As far as I know, the copyright holder retains the right to make and sell copies. Notice the distinction between making and selling. There are explicit notices of what rights the end user (consumer) is granted on many items.

As far as I've seen, no magic items come with a grant of license to make a backup copy. The boxes for the videos I have here all have a notice prohibiting the exhibition and copying of the product.

Borland software used ot have a nice grant of copy and backup rights to the end user.
Message: Posted by: Roldero (Dec 7, 2005 09:56PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-07 22:03, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
<snip>
Borland software used ot have a nice grant of copy and backup rights to the end user.
[/quote]

It was nice of Borland to allow you to do something that you are already entitled to do under copyright law (if I'm reading it right): [url=http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap1.html#117]Copyright[/url]

I am still digging for a good reference, but am currently of the opinion that you are legally able to make a backup of "non-copy protected" items.

Mike
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 7, 2005 10:20PM)
Mike, my quick scan of the linked article and its link about reserved rights looks like the copyright holder has the right to prohibit that backup as well by means of written notice.

from the linked article cited above:
[quote]
Subject to sections 107 through 122, the owner of copyright under this title has the exclusive rights to do and to authorize any of the following:

(1) to reproduce the copyrighted work in copies or phonorecords;

(2) to prepare derivative works based upon the copyrighted work;

[/quote]

By the way, please notice the artwork discussion, and think about item two above.
Message: Posted by: Roldero (Dec 8, 2005 06:24PM)
Johnathan,

My interpretation is as follows:

The section you quoted is from "§ 106. Exclusive rights in copyrighted works" and starts off [b]"Subject to sections 107 through 122...."[/b].

Sections 107 through 117 are all titled "1xx. Limitations on exclusive rights: ....". This implies to me that the owner has exclusive rights EXCEPT where noted in sections 107 through 122. Which means that the copyright owner cannot take away the right to make a backup copy.

I'm not a lawyer though, but have had the occasional need to get into contract wording at work with corporate lawyers. It would be nice if some one with a strong legal background could give their thoughts.

However, I think we are digressing as we have seem to talking about computer software rather than a magic instruction video.

I tried looking for the artwork discussion (I did a search on artwork, but couldn't find anything relevant), could you give me a few more pointers?

Thanks,

Mike
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 9, 2005 12:06PM)
To begin, magic tricks are not computer programs.

Though according the argument you have put forward, it would be nice to have digital backup of my books etc so I can worry less about coffee stains and teething puppies.
Message: Posted by: Skulldini (Dec 11, 2005 02:15PM)
This might be a poor example of the down-load question, but consider this scenario. I have purchased a VHS tape and after awhile it becomes unusable, so because I have already paid for it once I go to my retail store and pick up another. I said pick up another, notice I didn't anything about paying for it, why should I, I already paid once, that should be enough to last a life time.
The point being that no matter where you get your replacement, whether it's from a retail store or the INTERNET it needs to be paid for. Just a thought.
Skulldini
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 11, 2005 09:13PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-01 05:19, jimtron wrote:
In my opinion there is nothing remotely unethical about downloading a copy of a video that you legally purchased elsewhere, as long as it's the same title with the same content. If you have a VHS version, and you download a newer DVD version with additional content that's not on the VHS version; that might not be so kosher. But if your legally purchased video gets damaged and you download a copy of the same version, surely there is no harm done.

Legally, however, it might be problematic. Sites like Napster have been sued, and the RIAA has sued individuals for downloading mp3's.
[/quote]
So you find nothing unethical about doing something which you know to have been found illegal?

The copying right which copyright grants the purchaser is the right to copy the specific work they own. It does not grant the right to make a copy of someone else's disc or tape or file, only the one you own.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 12, 2005 12:34PM)
Tom:

There are some things that are illegal that are not unethical, in my opinion. My point was that, in my opinion, there's nothing unethical (though it may be illegal) about downloading a video that you have purchased elsewhere. Do you find it unethical?
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 17, 2005 12:32PM)
Yes, I do.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 17, 2005 05:24PM)
What is it that you find unethical (about downloading something that you've paid for elsewhere)--the fact that it's illegal? Or something else?

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 18, 2005 03:43PM)
In this case I find the source to be unethical.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 18, 2005 03:48PM)
What do you mean by the source--the Internet?
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 18, 2005 06:53PM)
The internet is a thing. It has no ethics. Only a protocol or two. HTTP and TCP/IP if you will.
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 19, 2005 04:46AM)
The source of the download.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 19, 2005 01:42PM)
Tom:

Is it only the source that you find unethical, or do you also find the downloader and the act of downloading unethical (again, in the case of having already legally purchased the title that the downloader is downloading)?
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 19, 2005 04:14PM)
Jim,

My experience with you is that you need to be spoon fed answers, and to your credite you are very patient when people grow weary of this. I can only suggest you read my post from Dec 11, 2005 10:13pm.

As someone who was raised when Rock 'n Roll was something, and who has close friends who still make some of their income from songs they wrote, I can say that I find circumventing copyrights unethical.

Cheers,

Tom
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 19, 2005 05:24PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-19 17:14, Tom Cutts wrote:
Jim,

My experience with you is that you need to be spoon fed answers, and to your credite you are very patient when people grow weary of this. I can only suggest you read my post from Dec 11, 2005 10:13pm.

As someone who was raised when Rock 'n Roll was something, and who has close friends who still make some of their income from songs they wrote, I can say that I find circumventing copyrights unethical.

Cheers,

Tom
[/quote]

Tom: I have no desire to be spoon-fed. In this case, I've asked you repeatedly about this issue for clarification. I have experienced other Café members making presumptuous statements about my viewpoints that have been wrong, and I would rather not do that--I want to be sure I understand your viewpoint. I did re-read the post that you cited:

[quote]
So you find nothing unethical about doing something which you know to have been found illegal?

The copying right which copyright grants the purchaser is the right to copy the specific work they own. It does not grant the right to make a copy of someone else's disc or tape or file, only the one you own.[/quote]

Maybe I'm a bit dense, but I still am not completely sure where you find the unethical behavior. After reading your last post, it's my understanding that you find the downloading of a legally purchased title unethical because it's a copyright violation and because it's against the law. And that you find the source of the download "unethical." Did I get that right (if you haven't lost patience with this thread)?
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 19, 2005 06:59PM)
Almost! Like you I do make a distinction between "law" and "ethic". I don't so much care about the legality of the matter as I do about the circumventing of giving the artist his protected due as goverened by the copyright he owns. I do not believe that having bought a title affords you the right to obtain copies of it t=from any source other than that one which you own.

You lose it, you are out of luck. Buy another. If you wore it out, don't you think you got your money's worth out of it?
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 19, 2005 07:14PM)
Tom:

Thanks for your response. I think I now have a clear idea of your view on this.

[quote]You lose it, you are out of luck. Buy another. If you wore it out, don't you think you got your money's worth out of it?[/quote]

Perhaps you're right, that if you wore it out you got enough use out of it. But in my opinion, if the VCR ate the tape, or the DVD accidentally got damaged, in my opinion it wouldn't be unethical to download the (exact same) title from the Internets. So I guess we can agree to disagree on that point.

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 20, 2005 03:13AM)
I know, you find it ethical to violate copyright and its intention for artists to make a living.
Message: Posted by: Steve Brooks (Dec 20, 2005 03:21AM)
Mind if I chime in? :)

As I understand the questions and definitions presented in this topic so far, I agree with Tom Cutts on this subject 100%.

As I see it, the source (in this case a site which typically allows thousands of folks to download material, whether music or video) has no legal or ethical right to take the liberty of giving away something which they do not own. Even if said site charges a fee (e.g, for burning a disc which is then mailed to the purchaser or charging for each title downloaded), unless some kind of license agreement has officially been made with the copyright holder, the site has absolutely no right, legally or ethically to provide the end-user access to the music or video. Further, by using this type of website, you are basically associating yourself with very shady people (who in my opinion) have questionable business practices. The law may indeed allow someone to operate a site which provides a download service, but it is the material which is being downloaded that is raising legitimate concerns.

That said, I am also in agreement with the concept that any media has the potential to eventually stop functioning or not perform properly after a period of use. Phonograph records may become scratched or warped and then skip during playback, as can compact discs or DVD titles. Video or cassette tapes eventually wear out by sheer use, or may become tangled up or destroyed during the playback process. Once this occurs and assuming you still want the priviledge of enjoying the music or video at hand, then legally and ethically you should purchase another copy.

Over the years I can think of several albums or cassette tapes which I played to death and eventually purchased new copies. Add to that, Mya and I own many VHS titles which we have slowly purchased again on DVD because of the better quality. Notice that I made another purchase, I did not go to a website and download the DVD version as I believe doing so is illegal and just plain wrong.

Having said all that, I believe purchasing the original item is the only way to go. If there is a problem (e.g, defect, flaw, etc) one can usually return the item for a replacement or store credit. You need to realize that nothing lasts forever and most material objects can and do eventually stop performing their assigned tasks. In the case of theft or fire, one will need to purchase new copies, that is why insurance companies provide policies which allow you to replace lost articles such as DVDs. If it was okay to make copies from friends or download unauthorized copies from the internet, then insurance companies would probably go out of business, as would the creators and manufactures' of such products. Thanks for taking the time to read my viewpoint. :smoke:
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 20, 2005 01:12PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-20 04:13, Tom Cutts wrote:
I know, you find it ethical to violate copyright and its intention for artists to make a living.
[/quote]

Tom, that's really not fair. I respect the opinion you and Steve have on this, but I disagree. You're statement above is not true. I [b]do[/b] respect copyright, and I respect artists struggle to make a living even more. All I said was that in my opinion, if you have bought a video, it's not unethical to download the exact same title.

If I had produced and released a DVD, would it bother me if people downloaded it instead of buying it? Of course. Would it bother me if someone bought the DVD, and later downloaded a copy because their disc got damaged (even by their own neglect)? No. That's my personal view.

I never said that I advocated copyright violation. I absolutely do not. And I don't advocate downloading in lieu of purchasing. In fact, I don't even advocate downloading a title that you've already purchased--I simply said that I personally don't find it unethical.


-Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 20, 2005 06:32PM)
Two points:

You are inflicting "your personal view" upon others when you state that it is OK to violate copyright law because if you were the copyright holder you wouldn't care. It is unfair of you to inflict your opinion on others like that.

You have stated that you have no problem with freely attaining a copy of a product which was not made from your own personal copy. That violates copyright law, and the intention of the existence of copyright.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 20, 2005 06:43PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-20 19:32, Tom Cutts wrote:
Two points:

You are inflicting "your personal view" upon others when you state that it is OK to violate copyright law because if you were the copyright holder you wouldn't care. It is unfair of you to inflict your opinion on others like that.

You have stated that you have no problem with freely attaining a copy of a product which was not made from your own personal copy. That violates copyright law, and the intention of the existence of copyright.
[/quote]

I think you're misunderstanding my views. I am stating my personal opinions here. I NEVER said "it is OK to violate copyright law". I am not advocating anything, or excusing anything. I'm speaking hypothetically and expressing my personal opinions.

I agree that downloading a file, even if one has legally purchased the same title previously, [b]may[/b] violate copyright law. As I said in my last post, I do not advocate downloading files.

Again, my point was that [b]in my personal opinion[/b], it is not unethical to download a file that you have legally purchased. I am only speaking personally, I am not "inflicting" my personal view "upon others;" I'm merely expressing it here. I never spoke about what I think others should or shouldn't do, and I never said it was OK to violate copyright laws.

When you express your opinions on the forum, are you "inflicting" them "upon others?"
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 21, 2005 01:03AM)
Jim,

Are you getting confused? This topic is not about downloading a file you have purchased. This topic is about downloading a file which you did not purchase and trying to justify it because you own some other form of the information.

When you publicly state that something is not unethical, you are advocating it to a certain degree. You are NOT speaking hypothetically. You are making claims.

Before you progress one bit or type one more word on this matter, I suggest you resolve the "may" in [quote]may violate copyright law. [/quote] Until you have resolved that question, the rest of this is moot.

There are several great threads on copyright which you can search for. Some of these will link you to the exact wording of copyright law.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 21, 2005 01:22AM)
I think I still haven't made my point clear to you.

Whether it violates copyright law or not, my position is the same.

If copyright law explicitly forbids downloading a video, even after legally purchasing it, my personal opinion is: for me, it's not unethical (as long as the title has been legally purchased).

In my opinion, illegal does not necessarily mean unethical (though it often does).

Tom said: [quote]Are you getting confused? This topic is not about downloading a file you have purchased. This topic is about downloading a file which you did not purchase and trying to justify it because you own some other form of the information. [/quote]

I'm not getting confused, I've always been confused. But here's a quote from the original post of this thread (emphasis added): [quote] He then burns them to dvd and that way, he says, he "preserves" [b]what he has bought[/b].[/quote]

Also, what I've been talking about is downloading a title that has already been purchased. So I beg to differ with your statement about what this topic is about.

By the way, here is my first response on this thread: [quote]In my opinion there is nothing remotely unethical about downloading a copy of a video that you legally purchased elsewhere, as long as it's the same title with the same content. If you have a VHS version, and you download a newer DVD version with additional content that's not on the VHS version; that might not be so kosher. But if your legally purchased video gets damaged and you download a copy of the same version, surely there is no harm done.

Legally, however, it might be problematic. Sites like Napster have been sued, and the RIAA has sued individuals for downloading mp3's.[/quote]

Buying and selling used DVDs, which is perfectly legal, potentially does more harm to the creators than downloading a title which you have already purchased. The creators make no money when a title is resold, and resold again.
Message: Posted by: flobiwan (Dec 21, 2005 04:43PM)
I'd like to chime in with a few points.

First, regarding magic videos, we are always saying that when you purchase magic, you are buying the secrets. If I have purchased a magic video, I have bought the secrets. There is no statute of limitations on those secrets. It harms no one for me to download a copy of the exact same thing from the internet. I receive no extra secrets for free and I have the same thing that I purchased. I have also not taken anything FROM anyone else (as in the case of shoplifting). In other words, if I were to download a video from someone on the net, they do not have 1 less copy than they did before. Both of us have exactly what we had before the download. Where is the moral dilemma?

I'll give you an example from my life. My wife took some of our CDs to work to listen to. I wanted to put one of the CDs on my Ipod (not illegal) but it was at her office. So, I downloaded the exact same songs and put them on my Ipod. They were the exact songs in the exact same format that I would have put them in had I had the CD handy. Where is the harm? What is the ethical question here? The end result is exactly the same as if I had used the CD instead of the internet.

Suppose some of my DVDs were lost in a fire and I knew someone who had the same DVDs. Would I borrow my friends DVDs (the same ones that were burned up) to make copies of? Darn tootin'! I bought them. The fact that the actual plastic disk I have after the fire is different than the one I originally purchased is moot (plus I would have to buy the blank disks anyway). I paid for the digital information on the DVD and I did what I could to continue to have it. I also gave money to the manufacturers of blank DVDs. PLUS, I would also be taking some of the burden off of the insurance company (assuming I had insurance) as they would now have to pay me less for my losses. Everybody comes out ahead.

Fredd
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 21, 2005 05:01PM)
[quote]Where is the harm? What is the ethical question here?[/quote]
No harm at all in my opinion, although it may be illegal.

I know that some MP3 downloaders have been fined by the RIAA for downloading songs that they did not own, and (more commonly) for sharing MP3s, but to my knowledge no one has ever faced trouble for downloading a video title that they had previously purchased. I'm no law expert, but I highly doubt that one would face legal action for downloading a video that they already legally own. I would think the millions of people that are trading titles that have not been purchased would be a much higher priority.
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 22, 2005 01:47AM)
Yes, kids; you can keep trying to validate your violation of copyright laws, but that doesn't make it right.

For a moment I thought I might have a point to agree with you on, jimtron. I thought at first you might just be confused, but no, you point out in your reposting, you are just wrong.

When one buys a DVD what did they buy? Did they buy a)that copy of the information and the right to access the information contained on THAT COPY, or did they buy b)the right to all media current and future which describes the information on the DVD they purchased? The correct answer is a). And the reality is, as Steve pointed out above, that tape media we purchased is not permanent, just like DVDs are not permanent. You break it, lose it, wear it out, you need to buy another, not steal a copy from an illegal website.

People struggling to prove a lost cause typically make quotes out of context as you have, jimtron. You deceiptfully snipped the relevant information. The correct, full quote should read
[quote]
he has started downloading copies of the videos from certain p2p websites, or using certain "file sharing" software, to replace the videos that he can no longer watch. He then burns them to dvd and that way, he says, he "preserves" what he has bought.
[/quote] The accurate quote hi-lights that he is not making copies of what he bought but rather he is making copies of material he downloaded without purchasing. Under copyright law this is illegal, which you somewhat acknowlege in your statement[quote]
I would think the millions of people that are trading titles that have not been purchased would be a much higher priority.
[/quote] Yes, you are a lower priority, not as easily prosectuted, but still illegal. Just stay where you are jimtron and Fredd, they will get around to you. ;)

Like it or not, what we all purchase when we buy a video product is a hard copy item which is not permanent and an agreement on how you are allowed to use that product. In true fact copyright law has been refined to limit our copying of the media we have purchased to first generation only. If you make a copy of your copy of your original, you are likely violating copyright law.

To be perfectly clear, jimtron. You have stated that regardless of the legality of it you do not find it unethical to download from another person a copy of a video you already own. The reality is that this IS a violation copyright law. If we accept that things which we find to be not unethical are things which we find ethical (or is there some third classification between ethical and unethical) then simple logic leads us to agree that [quote]you find it ethical to violate copyright [/quote] That, my friend, is a hypothesis.

Fredd would like the readers to believe that [quote]The end result is exactly the same as if I had used the CD instead of the internet. [/quote] He is wrong. The end result is different. The files are different and they came from a different source. A knowledgable person could easily identify the difference and tell you the source of the copy. The fact that the plastic disc is different from the one you purchased is not moot. It is illegal. Or more accurately your choice of source is illegal. You have pirated that information.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 22, 2005 02:49AM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-22 02:47, Tom Cutts wrote:
...

People struggling to prove a lost cause typically make quotes out of context as you have, jimtron. You deceiptfully snipped the relevant information. The correct, full quote should read
[quote]
he has started downloading copies of the videos from certain p2p websites, or using certain "file sharing" software, to replace the videos that he can no longer watch. He then burns them to dvd and that way, he says, he 'preserves' what he has bought.
[/quote] The accurate quote hi-lights that he is not making copies of what he bought but rather he is making copies of material he downloaded without purchasing. Under copyright law this is illegal...

[/quote]
Tom: Please don't accuse me of being deceitful; I certainly did not intend to be deceitful or take things out of context. Here is even more of the original post (emphasis added): [quote]Basically, [b]he has a substantial "library" of Magic videos and a few dvd's[/b]. Due to a lot of use I suppose, the videos are becoming stretched and difficult to watch (he showed me one of his Ammar tapes and it jumps about like a jack in the box!) Anyway, he told me that he has started downloading [b]copies of the videos[/b] from certain p2p websites, or using certain "file sharing" software, [b]to replace the videos that he can no longer watch[/b]. He then burns them to dvd and that way, he says, [b]he "preserves" what he has bought[/b]. He asked me last night if, by doing this, he is doing anything wrong [b]either[/b] lawfully or morally.[/quote]

Maybe I'm misunderstanding this, but Justin starts by saying his friend has a library of videos, and later says, "he 'preserves' what he has bought." By that I thought he meant his friend had purchased magic videos, they wore out, so he downloaded new copies. Now I understant that this is likely illegal, and you find it unethical. I graciously accept that. But where is my deception; what did I misrepresent?

You don't need to convince me that this is a copyright violation, or that it's illegal. That's a moot point, because, as I said before, whether it's legal or not, I still don't find it unethical.

As far as this goes: [quote]...you find it ethical to violate copyright...[/quote]
There is a tiny grain of truth to that, I'll grant you, but it implies something that is not true. Please do not attribute that to me because I disagree with it. It's a bit of a leap to go from: "I do not find it unethical to download a video that has been previously purchased" to "I find it ethical to violate copyright."

[url=http://littlerock.about.com/cs/factsfun/a/strangelaws.htm?terms=strange+laws]Apparently[/url] it's illegal in Arkansas to mispronounce the name of the state. In my opinion, saying that "it's not unethical to mispronounce 'Arkansas' is not the same as saying, "I find it ethical to violate Arkansas state law." The latter implies having a reckless disregard for state law, which the former does not convey or imply.
Message: Posted by: Steve Brooks (Dec 22, 2005 07:42AM)
[b]jimtron[/b] said; "[i]You don't need to convince me that this is a copyright violation, or that it's illegal. That's a moot point, because, as I said before,[/i] [b]whether it's legal or not, I still don't find it unethical[/b]".

Well, you are entitled to your own personal opinion.
However, your statement speaks volumes about your character - 'nuff said.

[b]flobiwan[/b] said; "[i]if I were to download a video from someone on the net, they do not have 1 less copy than they did before. Both of us have exactly what we had before the download. Where is the moral dilemma?[/i]"

I disagree. True, the site owner still has what he had before you made the download, material that is copyrighted and legally cannot be offered to someone like you as a download. But, the site owner now has one more person visiting his website - which is what he wanted...mission accomplished. In addition, you now have the information you already knew handy and totally intact as opposed to your memory of the information in question. Through all of this the copyright holder receives no benfits.

[b]flobiwan[/b] said ;"[i]Suppose some of my DVDs were lost in a fire and I knew someone who had the same DVDs. Would I borrow my friends DVDs (the same ones that were burned up) to make copies of? Darn tootin'! I bought them. The fact that the actual plastic disk I have after the fire is different than the one I originally purchased is moot (plus I would have to buy the blank disks anyway)[/i]"

Again I disagree. I do not believe this is a moot point at all.
On the contrary, you have basically stated that if were you to lose your DVDs in a fire, you would have no problem making COPIES of those same titles from originals that belong to a friend. The fact that the plastic discs are different does indeed make a difference. Your friend may have purchased his set from the store, but he does NOT have the authority (ethically or legally) to let you make unauthorized copies.
The fact that you lost your set in a fire is now your problem.
Hopefully you would have been smart enough to have insurance. Why should the original copyright holder lose out on profits just because you had some bad luck and feel justified in getting replacements for free?

[b]flobiwan[/b] said; "[i]...plus I would have to buy the blank disks anyway[/i]"

So, what does that have to do with anything? Whether or not you decide to purchase some blank discs makes no income for the copyright holder of the material on the original discs.

[b]flobiwan[/b] said;"[i]It harms no one for me to download a copy of the exact same thing from the internet[/i]"

I must disagree with you.
By downloading from the net, you encourage the site owners to continue to offer their ill-gotten wares to anyone with a computer. The material they offer for free has been hijacked from the copyright owner and then delivered to you for free.
Sounds shady to me.

The product could just as easily be cooking instructions for a particular food. Whether or not you already know the instructions makes no difference.
The fact remains that the download you made meant one less sale to the copyright holder. I guess you could argue that since you already know the information you would have never purchased another copy anyway. Well if that is the case, why are you downloading a copy of information you already know and therefore never need to purchase? For convenience you say? Well, in life that sort of thing generally cost you money - sorry.
:smoke:
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 22, 2005 11:49AM)
[quote]jimtron said; "You don't need to convince me that this is a copyright violation, or that it's illegal. That's a moot point, because, as I said before, whether it's legal or not, I still don't find it unethical".

Well, you are entitled to your own personal opinion.
However, your statement speaks volumes about your character - 'nuff said. [/quote]

Steve, do you find that absolutetly everything that's illegal is unethical? Jaywalking?

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 22, 2005 05:23PM)
[quote]
I certainly did not intend to be deceitful or take things out of context.
[/quote]

Yet that is exactly what your actions did. And you don't mean to steal, but that is exactly what your "ethical" action would do. I give you the benefit of the doubt in thinking you have not already engaged in such theft.

So what did you misrepresent? Well, in your snippet you made it appear he had made copies of something he had purchased. The full quote clearly shows he did no such thing. He made no copy of the original he purchased. He made a copy of a similar file from another source which he DID NOT purchase.

Tiny grains of sand are what make pearls, jimtron.

As a matter of fact and logic: If you find it ethical to mispronounce the name of the state Arkansas, and that action is illegal, you as a matter of fact find it ethical to violate Arkansas Law. To what degree is a moot point to the statement.

Having said that, and RVing your mind to see your next question; I don't find that everything which breaks a law is unethical, nor do I find all laws to be ethical. I do, however, expect those so bold as to outright state "I don't care if it breaks the law and denies artists their rightful legal income, I'm going to do it." to at least admit that they advocate violating copyright through their endoursement of it, whether theoretical or actual.
Message: Posted by: Steve Brooks (Dec 22, 2005 06:54PM)
[b]jimtron[/b] said; "[i]Steve, do you find that absolutetly everything that's illegal is unethical? Jaywalking?" -Jim[/i].

To answer your question, no I do not.

However, the subject at hand concerns the copying or downloading of material which was marketed on a DVD. And THAT I [b]do[/b] find unethical as well as illegal.
:smoke:
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 22, 2005 07:08PM)
Tom: let's agree to disagree about whether I quoted Justin out of context. You think I did, I don't think I did. Anyone else can look back at the thread and come to their own conclusions, if they so desire. It seems unlikely at this point that one of us will change the other's mind.

Here is a statement that does not characterize my views: [quote]"I don't care if it breaks the law and denies artists their rightful legal income, I'm going to do it."[/quote]

I am absolutely against denying artists their rightful legal income. Apparently you think that would be the case in downloading a video that has been purchased by the downloader; I don't. Again, let's agree to disagree. Please don't put words in my mouth. The statement above is general and sweeping, and I never said it.

Steve said: [quote]jimtron said; "Steve, do you find that absolutetly everything that's illegal is unethical? Jaywalking?" -Jim.

To answer your question, no I do not.

However, the subject at hand concerns the copying or downloading of material which was marketed on a DVD. And THAT I do find unethical as well as illegal. [/quote]

Ok, understood. But for the record, I was specifically responding to this, a few posts up:[quote]jimtron said; "You don't need to convince me that this is a copyright violation, or that it's illegal. That's a moot point, because, as I said before, whether it's legal or not, I still don't find it unethical".

Well, you are entitled to your own personal opinion.
However, your statement speaks volumes about your character - 'nuff said. [/quote]

Best,

Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 23, 2005 08:01AM)
Agree to disagree? Anyone can read the original post and see you did use a partial quote which does not tell the entire story.

Again you are getting confused.[quote]in downloading a video that has been purchased by the downloader[/quote]

This topic isn't about downloading a video download you have purchased. This is a topic about making a copy of a media you DID NOT purchase (a download in this case) and trying to justify it by saying "Well, I do own a version of it in another form." Simply put, copyright law does not allow you to do this.

So jimtron, why do you suppose there is copyright law? Could it be the purpose is so the creators of the product can make a rightful living from their work? I'd like to know why you think copyright exists.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 23, 2005 12:25PM)
[quote]This topic isn't about downloading a video download you have purchased. This is a topic about making a copy of a media you DID NOT purchase (a download in this case) and trying to justify it by saying "Well, I do own a version of it in another form." Simply put, copyright law does not allow you to do this. [/quote]
I do think that this thread is at least partially about downloading a video that has been purchased. That's the impression I got from re-reading the first few posts. Perhaps Justin could weigh in and let me know if I have misinterpreted the basic idea of his original post.

Tom, I strongly believe that creators of magic videos, and musicians, authors, inventors, etc. should have the ability to protect their work. Copyright can help this situation, but copyright law is not perfect and many people (including some authors and recording artists) find fault with some aspects of copyright law, or at least the way it is sometimes used. Some of those arguments can be found [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copyright#Critiques]here.[/url]

Why does copyright exist? To protect works from being copied or stolen, basically.

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 23, 2005 01:34PM)
Wikipedia is not an accountable resource. It is a gossip resource. They make little or no concern over WHAT is posted inregard to factuality. It should in its current form be considered a bathroom wall upon which anyone can post any information or misinformation they desire, within reason. Sourcing from there should be not be taken as fact. Though it may be it very likely may well NOT be.

[quote]
I do think that this thread is at least partially about downloading a video that has been purchased.
[/quote] Purchased in what form? The actual download or some other media. THAT is the crux of this topic and I am concerned that you simply don't have the capacity right now to understand the difference. Your wording like your thoughts tend to run very vague or incomplete, I'm not sure which.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 23, 2005 03:43PM)
I agree that Wikipedia is not an infallible source, but I do not agree with your criticisms of it. The quality of articles is often quite good. I am aware that anyone can edit any article, and therefore there is no guarantee of accurate information.

I strongly disagree with this: [quote]They make little or no concern over WHAT is posted inregard to factuality.[/quote]
If you read the history and discussion sections of a given article, you'll see that there are many diligent Wikipedia contributors who try to maintain the integrity of the articles. Take a look at the [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copyright]copyright article[/url].
Do you see any factual errors? Does this look like a bathroom wall, or a "gossip resource" to you? Wikipedia is far from perfect, and I'm sure that inaccuracies and other problems can be found, but I've found it to be a great starting point for doing research. There are almost always sources listed at the bottom of the articles that can be checked out.

[quote] Purchased in what form? The actual download or some other media. THAT is the crux of this topic and I am concerned that you simply don't have the capacity right now to understand the difference. Your wording like your thoughts tend to run very vague or incomplete, I'm not sure which.[/quote]
My impression from Justin's original post, is that his friend purchased videotapes and DVDs, and then downloaded the same titles from p2p sources. Justin, if you're out there, did I get that right?

If my thoughts are vague or incomplete, feel free to ask for a clarification or elaboration.

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 23, 2005 08:07PM)
I've bought paperback versions of a few books a few times. Several including the ones given away as gifts. Would it be right or ethical to download the text or ebook from a P2P site of a book that I happen to own? As far as I understand it, the answer is "no". On the ethical side it seems to still be a 'no'.

How so? some here may ask. Okay let's say someone writes a book and get some small royalties for each copy sold. The book is available in hardcover, softcover, and ebook formats from the publisher. Where the ebook on p2p, all involved in the publishing side would be losing sales revenue and royalties.

Now let's pretend that someone is YOU. Wouldn't you like to get the financial rewards for your good work?

Change book to "instructional video" or "performance video" if you need for this example.
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 23, 2005 08:50PM)
Furthermore, who created the ebook? That will tell you plenty. Video and DVD publishers rarely create instant download P2P files in conjunction with a hard copy product.

[quote]
My impression from Justin's original post, is that his friend purchased videotapes and DVDs, and then downloaded the same titles from p2p sources. Justin, if you're out there, did I get that right?
[/quote]
Then I stand by my statements, they are fair assesments of your beliefs. You believe making illegal copies (practically outright admited by you ) of material you have not purchased (you admit he didn't purchase the download) is ethical.

AS to your wikipedia source it was a very slanted piece and I couldn't care less about checking its accuracies as they do not factor into the discussion. Suffice to say I take nothing from that source as fact. I would require more than that source. Doesn't mean it is untrue just that it has no credibilty.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 23, 2005 09:14PM)
[quote]Then I stand by my statements, they are fair assesments of your beliefs. You believe making illegal copies (practically outright admited by you ) of material you have not purchased (you admit he didn't purchase the download) is ethical.[/quote]

No, I [b]do not[/b] believe that. When did I say that making illegal copies of unpurchased material was ethical? I never said anything like that. I did say that I do not find it unethical to download a video that one had already purchased.

Once again, [b]please do not put words in my mouth[/b].

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 24, 2005 01:02AM)
First off I aplaud your promptness in this exchange. It says to me that you are invested.

[quote]
When did I say that making illegal copies of unpurchased material was ethical?
[/quote]
That is precisely what you said bit by bit as you clarified your vagueities. It is right there for all to read. Of course, it is built on the concept that those things which are found to be not unethical may be called ethical. You have yet to address my question about some possible third, intermediary perspective.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 24, 2005 01:34AM)
[quote]You have yet to address my question about some possible third, intermediary perspective.[/quote]

I missed that--what was the question exactly?
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 24, 2005 06:31AM)
Spoon:
[quote]
On 2005-12-22 02:47, Tom Cutts wrote:
If we accept that things which we find to be not unethical are things which we find ethical (or is there some third classification between ethical and unethical)...[/quote]
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 24, 2005 09:12AM)
It seems interesting that in magic it is taken as ethical to copy the works of another, even without permission, and even to sell those works... yet supposedly unethical to copy the fixed expression of those works.

How do we both insist on a right to make copies yet also ask each other to respect the notion of copyright inherited from our larger society?
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 24, 2005 10:19AM)
Here's my view....it's wrong that anyone makes available the ability to download a magic dvd that has been copyrighted...PERIOD! I produce magic dvd's and I spend a lot of money doing this is the hopes that I can turn a buck in the end while trying to produce something that's worth seeing....it's likely that if someone who legit purchased one of my products and it was flawed or just got worn out I would likely replace it just to keep that customer happy, and maybe he would buy something down the road...

Let me ask you something Steve, do you think it's right for someone to buy a dvd and copy it and then sell the original at a reduced rate?

koz
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 24, 2005 11:23AM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-24 07:31, Tom Cutts wrote:
Spoon:
[quote]
On 2005-12-22 02:47, Tom Cutts wrote:
If we accept that things which we find to be not unethical are things which we find ethical (or is there some third classification between ethical and unethical)...[/quote]
[/quote]
Is there a third classification? Not that I'm aware of. I do think there are shades of gray in ethical issues though.

Jonathan said: [quote]It seems interesting that in magic it is taken as ethical to copy the works of another, even without permission, and even to sell those works... yet supposedly unethical to copy the fixed expression of those works. [/quote]

I disagree that the above is "taken as ethical." Who says it's OK to copy a magician's work without permission and sell it? I realize it happens, but I've never heard anyone defend it as being ethical.
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 24, 2005 12:17PM)
What do you mean by shades of gray?

Very Ethical.......Kind of Ethical......Kind of Unethical.....Flat Out Unethical
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 24, 2005 12:53PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-24 13:17, Tom Cutts wrote:
What do you mean by shades of gray?

Very Ethical.......Kind of Ethical......Kind of Unethical.....Flat Out Unethical
[/quote]

Yes, in my opinion some things are a little unethical; others more so.
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 24, 2005 03:18PM)
I beleive strongly that peopel whether they like a dvd or nbot buy and re-sell it only after they have made a copy which cuts the producer and the artist out of the money...thats intent, and likely is illegal...I"M SURE I could find a way to make it stick in a court of law....but its most certainly unethical

koz
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 24, 2005 03:48PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-24 12:23, jimtron wrote:...Who says it's OK to copy a magician's work without permission and sell it? I realize it happens, but I've never heard anyone defend it as being ethical. [/quote]

Who? Everyone who buys from, sells to, publishes works of, accepts advertisements from, associates with or recomends a person who does such things. Let's include those who perform the works (from unauthorized sources) as well. If "the good" is defined as that which is rewarded (simple behaviorism here) ... it pretty much states the case for defining our ethos as not only accepting but rewarding such behavior.
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 24, 2005 04:02PM)
Agreed
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 24, 2005 06:24PM)
[quote]
Yes, in my opinion some things are a little unethical; others more so.
[/quote]
OK, now somewhere on that scale the reading shifts from ethical to unethical. One point somewhere the line is crossed and you go from ethical to unethical, is that correct?
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 25, 2005 01:19PM)
Yes, I believe that there is a line that can be crossed. Sometimes it's well delineated, sometimes fuzzy. And where it's drawn is subjective.
Message: Posted by: Steve Brooks (Dec 25, 2005 01:40PM)
[b]tedb[/b] said; "[i]Let me ask you something Steve, do you think it's right for someone to buy a dvd and copy it and then sell the original at a reduced rate?[/i]"

No, I do not think that is the right thing to do at all. If the original purchaser makes a back-up of a DVD that he/she purchased, that is fine. Everyone is entitled to a back-up copy. However, once the original disc has been sold, traded or given away, the back-up needs to be disposed of or destroyed.

Anyone buying a DVD, making a copy to keep for themselves and then selling the original is doing nothing short of stealing. :smoke:
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 25, 2005 01:49PM)
Not to be offensive Steve ...but this is your Café and you started it and we are all grateful for it but if you feel this way then why are you allowing it to happen here?
koz
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 25, 2005 03:33PM)
Tedb:

Selling used videos is allowed here, but I don't think Steve "allows" copying of them.
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 25, 2005 07:57PM)
:lol: ...it's the same isn't it?...they copy them and Steve certainly knows that a high percentage of people here buy and sell these things here with that intention...the intention of getting something cheap, copying it and then selling it for the same price....we all know this is happening...and it's widespread.
For all those that don't use this practice we surely do appreciate it.
koz
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 25, 2005 08:00PM)
With all possible respect to those who are considering the matter...

How you can you know someone's intention?
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 25, 2005 08:38PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-25 21:00, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
With all possible respect to those who are considering the matter...

How you can you know someone's intention?
[/quote]
Via paranormal powers? There are some folks here who claim to have remote viewing and other extra-sensory talents; perhaps they know the intentions of some Café members? ;)

But seriously, selling used magic DVDs is potentially more harmful to sales than downloading a title that you have purchased, in my opinion.

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 25, 2005 08:56PM)
Jim, a magic DVD is property. When you buy it, you buy the right to resell it in our open market, even to give it to a muggle.

I understand your concern yet I don't know how to address it. What do you suggest?
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 25, 2005 09:05PM)
I understand that it's perfectly legal to resell magic DVDs, and I don't have any suggestions on how to stop it. As far as "muggles" go, if a magician puts his effects on the open market, why shouldn't anyone, even the merely curious, be allowed to purchase it?

In my opinion the best way to reduce exposure (which I don't necessarily think is a bad thing) is to refrain from publishing secrets (as books, effects, or videos).
Message: Posted by: Steve Brooks (Dec 26, 2005 03:24AM)
[b]tedb[/b] said; "[i]Not to be offensive Steve ...but this is your Café and you started it and we are all grateful for it but if you feel this way then why are you allowing it to happen here?[/i]"

Wow, that's a first; Someone accusing me of being too lenient...incredible.
I'm sorry, but that is just not the case. On the contrary, when members are caught dealing in the buying, selling or trading of illegal copies of anything (e.g, DVDs, lecture notes, etc) they are delt with accordingly. I do not hesitate to permanently ban bootlegger's and then report all their information to the proper authorities.

Further, your question implies that my staff and I are somehow [i]PSYCHIC[/i] and capable of extraordinary mental processes that allow us to know [i]WHO[/i] the dishonest people are as opposed to those that are honest. Give me a break.
The truth is that we greatly depend on our honest members who do not hesitate to make us aware of pirates. Thanks to the honest ones, we have rid the board of several dishonest people.

[b]tedb[/b] said; "[i]....we all know this is happening...and it's widespread[/i]"

So is murder, but that doesn't mean the authorities do not try and catch the folks engaging in that sort of activity. Geez...we do our very best to deal with thiefs here, but it is a never ending battle.

However, the topic is NOT about The Magic Café or its [url=http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=17&forum=39&0]
policies[/url]. We have been discussing eithics versus the law and how some people do not have a problem with breaking said law. Shall we continue?
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 26, 2005 09:16AM)
Look it, I started this thread just to see where people are at...i'm not mad at anyone but I will say this, I am of strong opinion that bootlegging and copying and selling here and on other sites is widespread....

I'm not saying steve that you should kill the thing, but I beleive that its worng and likely illegal....its certainly not in good faith what the people are doing on that page...
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 26, 2005 12:11PM)
Jim,

OK, there are shades of grey but into those shades there are grey ethical things and there are grey unethical things. Is there a line between those where one grey butts up against another?

What I'm getting at is this: everyone draws their "ethical line" in the sand; things on that side "is" and things on this side "ain't". Would that be an agreeable model if we take the "I don't know" or "haven't decided yet"s and remove them as incompletely thought through?

You make an interesting statement. Reselling of DVDs is more harmful, and would I be correct in assuming more unethical to you, than down loading a different version of something you have in your permanent library. It makes for an interesting model, but one not grounded in the reality of the market place or the reality of copyright law. But interesting just the same.

Are you telling me you have never, and will never, buy or sell any used magic media (books, tapes, DVDs, lecture notes, tricks) and that upon one's passing their media should be destroyed because it is used?

Tom
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 26, 2005 02:27PM)
Lol...no, this is about the intent of the person when he buys the dvd....his intention is to simply buy it, copy it and then sell it....when you die your wife or chidren have my permission to sell your collection

koz
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 26, 2005 02:28PM)
[quote]OK, there are shades of grey but into those shades there are grey ethical things and there are grey unethical things. Is there a line between those where one grey butts up against another? [/quote]
It's hard to draw lines between gray areas, so I would say no, not necessarily.

[quote]What I'm getting at is this: everyone draws their "ethical line" in the sand; things on that side "is" and things on this side "ain't". Would that be an agreeable model if we take the "I don't know" or "haven't decided yet"s and remove them as incompletely thought through? [/quote]
I don't understand this question (above).

[quote]You make an interesting statement. Reselling of DVDs is more harmful, and would I be correct in assuming more unethical to you, than down loading a different version of something you have in your permanent library. It makes for an interesting model, but one not grounded in the reality of the market place or the reality of copyright law. But interesting just the same.[/quote]
What I said was, "...selling used magic DVDs is potentially more harmful to sales than downloading a title that you have purchased, in my opinion." In that statement, I meant downloading the same version of the title you purchased.
[quote]Are you telling me you have never, and will never, buy or sell any used magic media (books, tapes, DVDs, lecture notes, tricks) and that upon one's passing their media should be destroyed because it is used? [/quote]No. I'm simply saying that reselling a magic DVD is potentially more harmful to sales than downloading the same version of a video that has been legally purchased.

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 26, 2005 05:29PM)
Jim,

Interesting claim but my first issue is with sourcing your copy from people engaged in criminal activity.

You pay for the product by your presence to the site which substantiates and supports a site created to help people engage in much more illegal activity than you have by your violation of copyright.

So I guess you could say it is like buying a car from the dealer and when it gets destroyed, buying a replacement from a guy who sells stolen cars really cheap. You might even get one for free if he needs to look like legit business that day for some reason. And afterall it wasn't your fault your car got destroyed, you really shouldn't have to pay any more than the very least to get a replacement. The dealer already got his money, right.

Tom
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 26, 2005 05:43PM)
:)
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 26, 2005 06:47PM)
Hypothetical situation:

Bob purchases Osterlind's ETMMM Vol. 1 on DVD from Denny and Lee. Bob's two year old son gets a hold of it and manages to crack the disc; now it's unplayable. Bob goes online and finds ETMMM Vol. 1 via a P2P network. He downloads it, saves it on his computer, and does not make any copies or share it with anyone else.

In my view, this is not analogous to buying a stolen car, which would involve someone losing their vehicle. The above scenario is theoretically a victimless crime; Denny and Lee got their money, L&L and Osterlind got their money, and Bob ended up with one copy of the title (he paid for one copy, he ends up with one copy). No one loses their property, unlike the car theft scenario.

Once again, I'm not arguing that participating in file sharing is OK, and I'm not saying that my hypothetical scenario is necessarily legal. I'm only backing up what I originally said many posts ago, in response to Justin's original post: In my opinion it's not unethical to download a title that you have legally purchased.
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 26, 2005 07:56PM)
How about we draw a parellel to the above:

Bob buys a paperback book. His child tosses the book into the kindling in the barbacue during the setup for a party. Bob does not see this and only finds out later when cleaning out the barbacue.

Is it then ethical for Bob to download the PDF version of the book from a P2P site? Even if he has his recipt for the paperback?
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 26, 2005 08:26PM)
If Bob wants to continue reading and watching DVDs, perhaps he should put the kid up for adoption. Won't he ever learn?

This is a bit different than the original example, because a PDF is not the same as a paperback book. Presumably someone who owns a printed book might also want to purchase an electronic version so that they would have the ability to search the book, or cut and paste brief passages to use in a review or paper or something. The PDF has features that the print book doesn't have. A downloaded video doesn't have any special features that the purchased DVD doesn't have.
Message: Posted by: Frank Tougas (Dec 26, 2005 08:30PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-24 13:17, Tom Cutts wrote:
What do you mean by shades of gray?

Very Ethical.......Kind of Ethical......Kind of Unethical.....Flat Out Unethical
[/quote]Easy distinction - If I am guilty of unethical behavior it is "kind of unethical" if anyone else is guilty, that would be "Flat out unethical." ;)

Frank Tougas
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 27, 2005 01:47AM)
Jim,

Actually it is exactly like the stolen car analogy. The guy who got his car stolen had the insurance company pay him for that loss. The insurance company spread the loss out to society. The P2P site does the same because while we held a 1 of 1000 DVD in our hands at one point that P2P site now makes it a 1 in 5000 product, thus devaluing everyone's ownership and spreading that cost (loss of value) through out the owners of the product. Furthermore, the action of putting a file up for free downloading does indeed steal from the original publisher or copyright holder.

If the only use of the P2P site was to replace lost or damaged product, you might have an angle. That is not their primary purpose, it is only an accidental purpose. But again a digital file complete with its authoring is not the same as a copy of a video tape.

You are simply wrong on this point. If you want to replace a destroyed object you need to obtain that replacement through legal means for it to be legit. Anything less and you have cheated the copyright holder and publisher.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 27, 2005 02:00AM)
Tom:

I agree that uploading files, or downloading files that you have not purchased, or running a site that offers unauthorized copyrighted material for free downloading could be compared to stealing. What I said before was that downloading a title that had been previously purchased was not analagous to car theft.

[quote]If you want to replace a destroyed object you need to obtain that replacement through legal means for it to be legit.[/quote]

I agree.
Message: Posted by: Richard Osterlind (Dec 27, 2005 08:13AM)
I really think you should examine your thinking here, Jimtron. To download something illegally is wrong. You are trying to justify a wrong because of circumstances - something that just about every criminal since the beginning of time has been doing.

Richard
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 27, 2005 12:27PM)
Richard: Thanks for weighing in on this. I will examine my thinking as you suggested.

And by the way, I purchased ETMMM Vol. 5 from Hocus-Pocus on 11/2/05. I hold your (Osterlind's) creations in very high regard and am vehemently against anyone stealing your products, or anyone elses. My example with "Bob" was entirely fictional. I'm not trying to justify downloading DVD titles to cover something I've done; I've never done that. My main point in all of this is that I don't find downloading a title that has been legally purchased to be unethical. I'm not saying that I've done it, or that it's a good idea, or that it should be encouraged.

On the second page of this thread I said: [b]"I never said that I advocated copyright violation. I absolutely do not. And I don't advocate downloading in lieu of purchasing. In fact, I don't even advocate downloading a title that you've already purchased--I simply said that I personally don't find it unethical."[/b]

And from another post of mine on this thread:

"I am absolutely against denying artists their rightful legal income."

Some might argue that participating in file sharing is a slippery slope, and what might start with downloading a title that has been purchased and got damaged, might lead to downloading titles that have not been purchased. That may be true, but I would draw the line (my personal opinion) between downloading the purchased title (ethical) and downloading unpurchased titles (unethical).

best,

Jim
Message: Posted by: Richard Osterlind (Dec 27, 2005 05:27PM)
Jim,

Thank you for taking my comment in the light with which it was suggested. I would venture to say that most manufacturers would replace a broken piece of equipment or DVD in the hypothetical you suggested. (or at least one at a greatly reduced price) I know that Jim and I would rather go out of our way to please a customer knowing it would bring good feelings and probably new business than being hard nosed about it.


Richard
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 27, 2005 06:05PM)
Richard:

Thank you for the response. I'm thrilled with the products of yours that I have purchased. If I do end up in "Bob's" predicament, I will try contacting the manufacturer and see about getting a replacement.

best,

Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 28, 2005 02:38AM)
Jim, it is simple. Don't let Bob's 2 year old near your stuff. :lol:

Do you find a contradiction in calling something "personally ethical" (paraphrasing) and claiming to not advocate it? I'm basing this on the consideration that "not unethical" = "ethical".
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 28, 2005 12:14PM)
[quote]Jim, it is simple. Don't let Bob's 2 year old near your stuff.[/quote]
Excellent idea.

[quote]Do you find a contradiction in calling something "personally ethical" (paraphrasing) and claiming to not advocate it? I'm basing this on the consideration that "not unethical" = "ethical".[/quote]

No. I don't find pot smoking to be unethical, but I wouldn't advocate it. I don't find glue-sniffing to be unethical, but I would urge everyone not to do it as it is extremely harmful.

As far as "not unethical=ethical," If I called glue-sniffing "ethical," I think that would sound like I advocate it, or that I think it's a good idea. Calling something "not unethical" has a different implication than calling it "ethical."

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 30, 2005 03:32AM)
[quote]
Calling something "not unethical" has a different implication than calling it "ethical."
[/quote]
Can you elaborate?
Message: Posted by: JackScratch (Dec 30, 2005 07:36AM)
Have any of you actualy looked up the fair use act? My understanding of the law is that you can download legaly and ethicly from these sites, what you can't do, legaly or ethicly, is upload. Likewise, you may only own copys of things you posses originals of. DO NOT DESTROY THE ORIGINALS. The ownership of the originals is what gives you the right, under US law anyway, to download copys of these tapes. I've seen a lot of opinions on the subject of ethics, and that's a different story, but US law is pretty clear on the subject. For purposes of backup or format change, you may posses copywrited material that you own legal copies of. You may not distribute these copys, which is why the people posting thismaterial are on shaky ground, and why there is so much grey area, but as for getting and possesing, what he is doing is legal.
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 30, 2005 02:18PM)
Care to elaborate, Jack? Specific passage which says anything other than you have the right to make copies of YOUR original. Not own copies of information on your originals but literally ONLY make copies from your original.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 30, 2005 06:29PM)
[quote]
On 2005-12-30 04:32, Tom Cutts wrote:
[quote]
Calling something "not unethical" has a different implication than calling it "ethical."
[/quote]
Can you elaborate?
[/quote]

Tom: I'll gladly elaborate, but perhaps next time I ask you to elaborate or clarify, you won't accuse me of wanting to be spoonfed (as you have before). :)

In my view there is a slight difference in implication between calling something "ethical" vs. calling it "not unethical" (although basically the meaning is the same). As I said before, if I stated that sniffing glue is ethical, that might sound to some like I think it's a good idea (and of course I think it's a horrible idea, just not unethical). The fact is, I don't think glue sniffing is unethical, but calling it "not unethical" to me doesn't imply an endorsement the way that saying "glue sniffing is ethical" might to some people.

-Jim
Message: Posted by: JackScratch (Dec 30, 2005 06:54PM)
Tom, my understanding of the fair use act is that once you buy something, you have a right to ownership and use of it and the information on it. Among fair uses would be changeing from VHS to DVD, or even backups. I should mention I actualy looked up the fair use act, and it seems I was wrong about all that. Copyright laws are evil. Words can not express the absurd laws pertaining to copyrights and how they have been drasticly manipulated in the bast 25 years.
http://www.copyright.gov/

Section 107 contains a list of the various purposes for which the reproduction of a particular work may be considered “fair,” such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Section 107 also sets out four factors to be considered in determining whether or not a particular use is fair:
1.the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
2.the nature of the copyrighted work;
3.amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
4. the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

The distinction between “fair use” and infringement may be unclear and not easily defined. There is no specific number of words, lines, or notes that may safely be taken without permission. Acknowledging the source of the copyrighted material does not substitute for obtaining permission.
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 31, 2005 01:57AM)
Jim,

So you are saying that sniffing glue is like a rock? It isn't ethical it isn't unethical, it just is. Perhaps ethicless.

By the way there is a HUGE difference between asking for clarification of a vague partial statement and being too lazy to reread topics to find the information refered to. Had you made your point clearly you might have an argument with the spoonfed deal. As it stands, not so much.

Jack,

Oh yes, Copyright reading makes for some great times. ;) Many people are misled by failing to read the meat of the law (the details) and still others are misled by accepting recollections and desires of others rather than facts. Thank you for illuminating the reality in your coming clean about the law.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 31, 2005 02:49AM)
[quote]So you are saying that sniffing glue is like a rock? It isn't ethical it isn't unethical, it just is. Perhaps ethicless. [/quote]No, as I said twice before, in my opinion it is not unethical to sniff glue (although it's a dangerous and stupid thing to do).

[quote]By the way there is a HUGE difference between asking for clarification of a vague partial statement and being too lazy to reread topics to find the information refered to. Had you made your point clearly you might have an argument with the spoonfed deal. As it stands, not so much.[/quote] I'm not "too lazy to reread topics to find the information referred to." I've often done that. I ask questions and request clarifications when I don't understand a post, or when I want to be sure I understand what the poster means. I don't expect people to repeat themselves so I can avoid doing work.

-Jim
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 31, 2005 09:41AM)
[quote]I don't expect people to repeat themselves so I can avoid doing work.
[/quote]
Yet that is exactly what ends up happening. There is an example of it in this topic.

Meanwhile, you say that you do not want to encourage sniffing glue. Can I infer from this that you would not sniff glue? Perhaps such pointlessly dangerous things are against your nature... your ethic. Or are you saying that there really isn't anything to stop you from sniffing glue, no personal ethic, you just haven't done it, don't really forsee doing it, but it is not impossible that you might someday because there is no ethic in your personal make-up that tells you not to?

I guess we could cut to the chase and just ask, why wouldn't you sniff glue?
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 31, 2005 10:03AM)
Is it ethical here to discuss sniffing glue?

Is this a new effect?
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 31, 2005 11:03AM)
I'm using it as his provided example which might prove to be less entagled in the greying factors of magic examples.
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 31, 2005 12:43PM)
[quote]Meanwhile, you say that you do not want to encourage sniffing glue. Can I infer from this that you would not sniff glue?[/quote] Yes. I would not and have not. [quote] Or are you saying that there really isn't anything to stop you from sniffing glue, no personal ethic, you just haven't done it, don't really forsee doing it, but it is not impossible that you might someday because there is no ethic in your personal make-up that tells you not to?

I guess we could cut to the chase and just ask, why wouldn't you sniff glue?[/quote] I don't think sniffing glue is illegal (though I could be wrong), and I don't believe it to be unethical. The reason I don't sniff glue is because, as I said in previous posts, it's "stupid," "dangerous," and "extremely harmful." I have no interest in adhering my nostrils, getting a terrible headache, and inflicting brain damage upon myself.

I didn't intend to talk this much about glue sniffing; I only brought it up to give an example of how calling something "not unethical" does not mean I advocate it (as in, I don't find Justin's example in the original post to be unethical, yet I don't advocate it.)
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Dec 31, 2005 02:59PM)
Geeze guys, you are barking up an empty tree.

To start, according the the latest news special it's called "huffing".

From there, look at modern business or legal practice. One is free to interpret the law to one's advantage and when challenged, to bring the matter before a judge. At least that's what we have.

As to actually huffing... well there are plenty of people doing it, so many that model glues had to be reformulated to contain noxious ingredients. As to the impertinant and impudent questioning about "would you..." I can only speak for myself and recall the dizzyness I felt painting some rooms one hot summer's day and wonder if those who do might enjoy being painters.
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 31, 2005 06:24PM)
Jim,

Would you say that you have an ethic which says you would not engage in "stupid," "dangerous," and "extremely harmful" things. Or is it just a coincidence?

Jonathan,

Does that huffing lead to puffing? :lol:
Message: Posted by: jimtron (Dec 31, 2005 06:49PM)
Tom:

I guess it depends on how you define the term "ethic." I think of that word to have to do with morals and values. I don't refrain from glue consumption because I believe it to be morally wrong. I refrain because my intellect, tiny as it is, tells me that the consequences will be unpleasant, to say the least.

There are some things I refrain from doing because of pragmatic reasons. Other things I refrain from doing for ethical reasons.
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Jan 2, 2006 11:04AM)
It does get tough to keep "ethic" and "ethical" clear as they both can mean different things. For instance: If you make a decision based on pragmatic ideas such as yours above, that can be referred to as an ethic. Quite simply a rule you choose to live by but not based on moral implictions.

In the opening post it is stated that a person has undertaken an action. It was also stated that if the person who took that action found out that "...if, by doing this, he is doing anything wrong either lawfully or morally..." he would correct the actions he has taken by destroying that which he has downloaded.

Quite literally this tells me that the guy doesn't know himself and therefore doesn't have an ethic which tells him if this is "right or wrong". In a strictly literal sense this action was taken without an ethic to govern it, and by definition is unethical in the literal sense, which is completely void of any moral implications.

If we step next to the moral use of "ethical" then it becomes more a matter of perspective. Quite simply does one feel it is morally right to ignore the literal copyright law in this case. I have no problem debating with someone who thinks it is right, has thought his position through, and is willing to admit he is saying it is "morally" right to break the law.