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ikillchicken



Joined: 12 Feb 2007
Posts: 7272
Location: Vancouver
PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 3:28 pm Reply with quote
CCSYueh wrote:
However, no one judges downloaders as to whether it is valid for them to download, so as you dismiss my examples, this one is rather outside the realm. It's more the Speeding example I've been using & that's again-you know you were doing 100 in a 65 mph zone. It doesn't make you a monster, but you are not innocent.


I'm not saying it's an example exactly analogous to piracy. I was simply using it is an example to demonstrate that what is wrong may vary by the exact circumstances. Hence claiming that piracy is either 'always okay or never okay' is unfair.

Come to think of it though, speeding is probably a better example. As far as I know, unlike murder, there are no formal exceptions written into the law for speeding. However, surely there are cases where speeding would not be considered immoral. What if you're driving an injured person to the hospital? Say it's an emergency and you don't have time to wait for the ambulance. Would it be wrong to exceed the speed limit, especially if it's not by that much and there's nobody else on the road? Technically it would be illegal still but surely not morally wrong. Wouldn't you agree? If so then you must at least recognize that there are in fact cases where something is illegal but not morally wrong and more specifically that it is possible for something that is wrong in a lot of cases to be acceptable at least in certain other circumstances.

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Because most of the downloaders use that little "I buy what I like" meaning there are titles they watch & do not pay for because they didn't like them so it isn't balanced.


Okay, most. So then I would agree that perhaps 'most' people aren't really justified in their piracy. By your own choice of words though you are acknowledging that some people buy everything they pirate. The latter group is the one I'm referring to. How are they not balanced out?

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Because that's what keeps society going?
Aren't many of our laws enacted to protect various rights?


Well, what rights are we talking about? There are certainly some rights I agree I must respect. If we're talking about the right to be fairly paid or compensated for your work, I agree. That right we must respect. I believe you've respected that right if you buy everything you pirate. So what further right do I need to respect exactly?
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agila61



Joined: 22 Feb 2009
Posts: 3213
Location: NE Ohio
PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 4:41 pm Reply with quote
ikillchicken wrote:
Come to think of it though, speeding is probably a better example. As far as I know, unlike murder, there are no formal exceptions written into the law for speeding. However, surely there are cases where speeding would not be considered immoral. What if you're driving an injured person to the hospital? Say it's an emergency and you don't have time to wait for the ambulance. Would it be wrong to exceed the speed limit, especially if it's not by that much and there's nobody else on the road? Technically it would be illegal still but surely not morally wrong.


I agree, and in practice if a police car stops a car with a woman in labor that is speeding on the way to the hospital, rather than issue a citation, the police officer will more normally turn on the siren and escort the car to the hospital.

However, I have trouble imagining the copyright piracy that is performed to prevent risk or damage to someone's health. There's a difference between establishing that there are reasonable exceptions that prove (ie, test) the rule, and establishing that the specific exception that you have in mind qualifies.
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CCSYueh



Joined: 03 Jul 2004
Posts: 2707
Location: San Diego, CA
PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 1:13 am Reply with quote
ikillchicken wrote:
Come to think of it though, speeding is probably a better example. As far as I know, unlike murder, there are no formal exceptions written into the law for speeding. However, surely there are cases where speeding would not be considered immoral. What if you're driving an injured person to the hospital?

Even if the person is in pain, if it's less than life-threatening, I suspect you'll get a ticket. (child-birth is potentially life-threatening however, when my water broke, we drove in normal traffic following speed laws to get to the hospital. Had my husband driven at 100 mph & been pulled over, I expect he would have received a ticket & when the judge heard the baby didn't arrive until 9:30 the next day, I suspect, unless the judge had been feeling generous toward a first-time parent, my husband would have had to pay that ticket)
ikillchicken wrote:
Say it's an emergency and you don't have time to wait for the ambulance. Would it be wrong to exceed the speed limit, especially if it's not by that much and there's nobody else on the road? Technically it would be illegal still but surely not morally wrong. Wouldn't you agree?

As you say, it is still illegal, thus it's very much personal choice as people who download exercise every time they decide to download.
However, valid reasons for ignoring a law usually involve human life so the idea that speeding can be ok to save a life in no way correlates to pursuing a hobby. It is a valid comparison to the extent it is considered a lesser crime when violated. In fact, officers I've spoken with say they see lane changes which usually go hand in hand with speeders aggressively changing lanes as the greater cause of accidents. (which is why I only change lanes when I get on or off the freeway unless I'm by a driver I suspect is drunk or a semi because I fear them tipping or jack-knifing)
ikillchicken wrote:
Okay, most. So then I would agree that perhaps 'most' people aren't really justified in their piracy. By your own choice of words though you are acknowledging that some people buy everything they pirate. The latter group is the one I'm referring to. How are they not balanced out?

Because they are still "receiving stolen goods". If a thief robs a bank, but give half the money to a charity & the thief is captured & relates that's where part of the money went, most charities I know of would return the money as having been donated by one who did not have the right to donate it.
ikillchicken wrote:
Well, what rights are we talking about? There are certainly some rights I agree I must respect. If we're talking about the right to be fairly paid or compensated for your work, I agree. That right we must respect. I believe you've respected that right if you buy everything you pirate. So what further right do I need to respect exactly?

Which is what I said.
If everyone "did the right thing", we'd need no laws.
People don't so we not only have all the obvious laws, but also stupid things like ratings on cds because a bunch of senators' wives with enough time to complain to their hubbys yet not enough to spend an hour or so reading up on the bands their children wanted to listen to made a fuss.
Life would be simpler if people did the right thing, but they don't & that's life.
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Mohawk52



Joined: 16 Oct 2003
Posts: 8179
Location: England, UK
PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:02 am Reply with quote
CCSYueh wrote:
ikillchicken wrote:
Come to think of it though, speeding is probably a better example. As far as I know, unlike murder, there are no formal exceptions written into the law for speeding. However, surely there are cases where speeding would not be considered immoral. What if you're driving an injured person to the hospital?

Even if the person is in pain, if it's less than life-threatening, I suspect you'll get a ticket. (child-birth is potentially life-threatening however, when my water broke, we drove in normal traffic following speed laws to get to the hospital. Had my husband driven at 100 mph & been pulled over, I expect he would have received a ticket & when the judge heard the baby didn't arrive until 9:30 the next day, I suspect, unless the judge had been feeling generous toward a first-time parent, my husband would have had to pay that ticket)
This happened a few years ago in my home county. Police managed to stop a car for speeding and when they got to the car the driver shouted that his wife was in labour and that the baby was coming out. The officer immediately called an ambulance, but had to deliver the baby himself, before it arrived, all on the side of the road where they had stopped. It was a girl and mother and baby were fine when eventually brought to the hospital. No charges were placed on her father, but he did get a caution for speeding from the officer involved, basically a slap on the wrist with no fine or points on his licence. Arresting officer's discretion. Wink
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ikillchicken



Joined: 12 Feb 2007
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Location: Vancouver
PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:17 am Reply with quote
CCSYueh wrote:
However, valid reasons for ignoring a law usually involve human life so the idea that speeding can be ok to save a life in no way correlates to pursuing a hobby.


Okay. But then you do acknowlege that in some situations an illegal act that is otherwise immoral may be morally permissible? Before I can address why I think piracy is one of these cases I want to make sure we're in agreement on this underlying issue.

Quote:
Because they are still "receiving stolen goods".


But they've since been paid for. They received goods they had not yet paid for...and then paid for them. What's the problem?

Quote:
Life would be simpler if people did the right thing, but they don't & that's life.


Sure, not all people (probably even not most people) do the right thing. Earlier, you acknowledged that at least some people do in fact buy everything they pirate though. So why can't these people just take the simple route? Why can't they just do the right thing and not get hung up on what is technically illegal?
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agila61



Joined: 22 Feb 2009
Posts: 3213
Location: NE Ohio
PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 1:48 pm Reply with quote
ikillchicken wrote:
CCSYueh wrote:
However, valid reasons for ignoring a law usually involve human life so the idea that speeding can be ok to save a life in no way correlates to pursuing a hobby.


Okay. But then you do acknowlege that in some situations an illegal act that is otherwise immoral may be morally permissible? Before I can address why I think piracy is one of these cases I want to make sure we're in agreement on this underlying issue.


I think it is clear that it has been conceded all around that if life or health is at risk, there are laws that can be broken even by someone who respects the law. Obviously even in that case, one cannot justify placing the life or health of someone else in even greater risk.

This goes with Maslow's hierarchy of needs, with Basic Needs first, Safety Needs second, Psychological Needs third, Self-Actualization fourth, and Peak Experiences fifth. When a Basic Need of someone is at risk, then even laws that are intended to protect Basic Needs could in some extreme circumstances be over-ridden.

How you are going to argue that it is necessary to download or view bootleg anime to protect someone's life or health is, however, a bit puzzling.
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CCSYueh



Joined: 03 Jul 2004
Posts: 2707
Location: San Diego, CA
PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 6:54 pm Reply with quote
ikillchicken wrote:
Okay. But then you do acknowlege that in some situations an illegal act that is otherwise immoral may be morally permissible? Before I can address why I think piracy is one of these cases I want to make sure we're in agreement on this underlying issue.

It remains illegal. As with Mohawk's example, the cop admonished the driver, but chose to not issue the ticket. It fell to a higher authority to make the decision on letting it slide or not & not the driver.
ikillchicken wrote:

But they've since been paid for. They received goods they had not yet paid for...and then paid for them. What's the problem?

Except they're downloading stuff that is sometimes never licensed & thus never paid for so technically remains illegal.
ikillchicken wrote:
Sure, not all people (probably even not most people) do the right thing. Earlier, you acknowledged that at least some people do in fact buy everything they pirate though. So why can't these people just take the simple route? Why can't they just do the right thing and not get hung up on what is technically illegal?

I don't believe in absolutes.
I don't believe all criminals are rotten jerks. I don't believe there exists people who never break a law. I don't actually believe there are people who never steal something, even if it's just taking an extra-long break at work & thus "stealing" a piece of their paycheck.
Because if one believes any of the various mythologies, Jesus or various holy figures are the only "perfect" beings which means all the rest of are imperfect.
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ikillchicken



Joined: 12 Feb 2007
Posts: 7272
Location: Vancouver
PostPosted: Mon Sep 13, 2010 2:55 pm Reply with quote
agila61 wrote:
How you are going to argue that it is necessary to download or view bootleg anime to protect someone's life or health is, however, a bit puzzling.


Well actually, I'm not going to. I'm merely trying to establish that the morality of an action may vary by circumstance even if it's legal status does not. (This is a notion that CCSYueh seemed to reject initially). From there, I would further suggest that there are two reason for this: The first is the more obvious. If a greater good is served which outweighs the negative aspects of the act. I agree this does not apply to piracy. However, I would also suggest that the act may be justified if circumstances are such that the original problem that makes the act immoral is negated. I would suggest that piracy is potentially one of these cases. (The problem being that you are not fairly compensating the creators for the content. The negation being that you do actually compensate them at the first opportunity).

CCSYueh wrote:
It remains illegal. As with Mohawk's example, the cop admonished the driver, but chose to not issue the ticket. It fell to a higher authority to make the decision on letting it slide or not & not the driver.


Okay and that's fine with me. I'm not saying piracy shouldn't be illegal. Just that it's not necessarily immoral (just as the drivers actions were illegal but not immoral in that case). If you do get caught for piracy, even this kind of benign piracy, then I don't really think you can complain if you receive a reasonable punishment.

Quote:
Except they're downloading stuff that is sometimes never licensed & thus never paid for so technically remains illegal.


Admittedly that complicates matters. I don't actually see an issue with unlicensed anime piracy but that is probably an entirely different discussion.

For the sake of discussion, let's put that aside for a moment and consider only instances of piracy where a series has already been licensed but has not yet been released and as such, this is not an issue.

Quote:
I don't believe in absolutes.


That's reasonable overall. In specific instances though, surely there are absolutes at least in a sense. There are certainly people (Including yourself I would assume) who without exception buy every anime instead of pirating. Such people may not be perfect overall but they are perfectly consistent in this one regard. For them this is an absolute rule that they always follow. That being the case, why shouldn't we think that there are at least some people who may disagree with you on what is right and consider it acceptable to pirate and then buy, but are equally capable of
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agila61



Joined: 22 Feb 2009
Posts: 3213
Location: NE Ohio
PostPosted: Mon Sep 13, 2010 10:06 pm Reply with quote
ikillchicken wrote:
agila61 wrote:
How you are going to argue that it is necessary to download or view bootleg anime to protect someone's life or health is, however, a bit puzzling.


Well actually, I'm not going to. I'm merely trying to establish that the morality of an action may vary by circumstance even if it's legal status does not. (This is a notion that CCSYueh seemed to reject initially). From there, I would further suggest that there are two reason for this: The first is the more obvious. If a greater good is served which outweighs the negative aspects of the act. I agree this does not apply to piracy. However, I would also suggest that the act may be justified if circumstances are such that the original problem that makes the act immoral is negated.


This is a shell game.

From general agreement that there are that situations where the principle of the greater good can justify violating the law in special circumstances ... and note that these circumstances would include a willingness to bear the penalties of breaking the law if the exception is not accepted by those enforcing the law ...

... you've jumped to the entirely different situation where the violation has no excuse at the time it is committed, but is instead excused "after the fact".

Quote:
I would suggest that piracy is potentially one of these cases. (The problem being that you are not fairly compensating the creators for the content. The negation being that you do actually compensate them at the first opportunity).


Saying, "I will violate your authority to say whether or not it can be copied, but to make up for that, if you make it available for me, I will pay" is saying, "I respect your right to say yes, but not your right to say no". That is, in my view:

(1) Better than the total bootleg bullies who never respect the author's rights
(2) Still bullying the author into giving permission to have the work copied

Given the rampant bootlegging of material for commercial advantage that is licensed for distribution to the primary target audience for the advertising, that's what I'm focusing on.

That problem is hard enough, and part of the three part strategy for fighting it involves making more material available sooner, which if successful makes the second form of bullying less of an issue.
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ikillchicken



Joined: 12 Feb 2007
Posts: 7272
Location: Vancouver
PostPosted: Tue Sep 14, 2010 5:27 am Reply with quote
agila61 wrote:
From general agreement that there are that situations where the principle of the greater good can justify violating the law in special circumstances ... and note that these circumstances would include a willingness to bear the penalties of breaking the law if the exception is not accepted by those enforcing the law ... ... you've jumped to the entirely different situation where the violation has no excuse at the time it is committed, but is instead excused "after the fact".


That's an inaccurate summation. The general agreement I suggested was the much more universal idea that "in some situations an illegal act that is otherwise immoral may be morally permissible" I did so because CCSYueh originally seemed to reject this concept. I'm not claiming this speeding example proves that the piracy situation I'm addressing is also valid. It just disproves CCSYueh's original objection to it. (It does so despite being very general because the objection was equally general). If you have a different, more specific objection then by all means express it and I'll attempt to address it. I'm hesitant to start defending my position without knowing what exactly the objection to it is though so for now I'm simply laying out the basic reasoning behind it (which is, in a nutshell, that if the argument against piracy is: Piracy is wrong because of effect [X] but in some situations piracy does not cause [X] then piracy is not wrong in those situations.)

Quote:
Saying, "I will violate your authority to say whether or not it can be copied, but to make up for that, if you make it available for me, I will pay" is saying, "I respect your right to say yes, but not your right to say no". That is, in my view:

(1) Better than the total bootleg bullies who never respect the author's rights
(2) Still bullying the author into giving permission to have the work copied


Wait, so are you saying that it is not a given that the artist is willing to let people buy a copy of his work? That seems like the only scenario where this is valid. I would agree that it is unfair to essentially force someone to sell you something by putting them in a situation where you will take it regardless. That isn't really the case though here where clearly the artists create anime with the intention of selling it to you.
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agila61



Joined: 22 Feb 2009
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 14, 2010 1:12 pm Reply with quote
ikillchicken wrote:
Wait, so are you saying that it is not a given that the artist is willing to let people buy a copy of his work?


You are assuming the copy is made, but its the making of the copy that should not happen without the permission of the artist.

Its not a given that the artist has an offer to seek permission to copy their work, and not a given that they have to take any offer that is made. Its their right to say whether the copy can be made. They are entitled to refuse to give permission for a translation for any reason at all, whether reasonable or unreasonable, and entitled to delegate that right to anyone they see fit, in return for any consideration that satisfies them ...

... they shouldn't expect to have to justify it or argue it if they don't want to.

That's the promise that society makes to people that create original work, in order to encourage people to create original works.

Just as all children in a school have the right to attend school without being beaten up, but that right is not always enforced, the internet has given large numbers of people the ability to bully the creators and trample on their rights ... but that ability to bully the creator does not make it right.
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