How Internet Piracy Affects You

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By now, you should know that copying and distributing any copyrighted material is illegal and is called piracy. You should also know that having any of these pirated materials in your possession is also illegal. While there are some differences in the types of piracy, the end of the line is that it is illegal and you could be charged and even face jail time for downloading, burning, copying, selling or owning pirated materials.

Pirated materials are rife throughout the world, but especially in the Far East and Eastern Europe. It is easy to get a hold of these pirated versions of popular (and expensive) software; however, the costs can be many.

Not only may you find yourself with hefty fines for using and owning pirated material, you may also have problems with your computer. Many pirated software packages come complete with viruses that can tear down the foundation of your computer. The cost to repair damages done by some viruses can be incredible – rendering your computer useless in some cases and much data lost.

Internet piracy also affects the base cost of the product. The more that people steal the programs, the higher the cost of the programs in retail – companies are out to make a profit and if the guy down the street sells pirated versions of software, the company has to increase their price.

There are several types of software piracy, and these include:

End-user: a user copies software without the appropriate license. This can be as easy as purchasing one copy of software and using it on multiple computers in a business or home setting.

Pre-installed software: a manufacturer uses one copy of software and uses it on more than one computer that they are selling. Watch out when you purchase a new computer that the software comes with the appropriate license documentation stating that the software you have is licensed properly.

Internet: downloading copies of software through the Internet. If you are downloading material, ensure that the publisher of the software has authorized the distribution. There is quite a bit of “free ware” and “share ware” out there on the net, but be cautious that you aren’t downloading from a third party who does not have the right to offer these downloads.

Counterfeit: Illegal copies of software are made and then distributed in packages that are similar reproductions of the manufacturer packaging.

Online auction: There are several forms of online auction piracy, such as selling software that is labelled NFR (not for resale) or OEM software that is not authorized for sale by a third party.

Remember the rule of thumb: If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. If you have found a “sale” on software that seems too good to be true, chances are its pirated and illegal.

Pirated copies of software, including downloaded movies, music and more, affect everyone. These illegal copies are not “showing the companies” – it’s making everything more expensive at the retail level and copying these discs will become increasingly more difficult, to the point where we may not be able to afford them at all in any way shape or form (and thusly, if pirated, no newer versions will be released).

Mark Warner is a Legal Research Analyst for RealDealDocs.com. RealDealDocs gives you insider access to millions of legal documents drafted by the top law firms in the US. Search over 10 million Documents, Clauses, and Legal Agreements for Free at http://www.RealDealDocs.com

2012-03-17 – 001-007 – HDR
internet piracy
Image by vmax137
Update 2015-07-11: CitiesXL isn’t for me but Cities Skylines by Colossal Order and published by Paradox Interactive is the spiritual successor to Simcity 4.

A view of South Lake Union and Queen Anne Hill after inspired by the official announcement that SimCity 5 has been under development with a February 2013 release date. This is one of those games that I would get without a second thought if it weren’t for the number of questionable incidents involving Electronic Arts’ Origin content delivery system. That aside SimCity 5 will feature curved roads, zoning, and a rigid-body dynamics physics engine. After almost a decade of waiting it’s great to see the continuation of a classic game series.

SimCity Announce Trailer Insider’s Look :
www.youtube.com/watch?v=T70evBJE93s&feature=player_em…
SimCity 5 developers Q&A on Reddit:
www.reddit.com/r/SimCity/comments/qp15f/maxis_iama_in_eas…

Update:
Even though a robust multi-player SimCity is something a lot of people wanted, the game series was always single player-centric where mobile users with no internet connection can play anytime. Additionally Electronic Arts is well-known for shutting down game servers after a few years rendering games to become partially functional or not at all. SimCity 4 was released in 2003 and I and many others up until the last few years have been playing it on and off. It’s unrealistic to expect companies to run servers indefinitely to begin with so gamers as well as fans have good reasons to believe that SimCity 5’s lifespan will be significantly less than its predecessors.
kotaku.com/5971235/cloud-computing-is-why-the-new-simcity…

Update – 2013-03-08:
It’s almost a year later and SimCity 5 has been released. From what I’ve seen the game discourages exploration by not allowing loading from an earlier save point which limits the educational aspect and fun in a sandbox simulator. I can see a hardcore game mode where decisions are permanent so emotional connections with cities are stronger, but this ain’t Fire Emblem. SC5 also traded scale for detail. It’s not the game that I wanted but parts of it looks like serious fun. Unfortunately just about everyone who’s not playing are on a SimCity Disaster Watch.

Maxis and Electronic Arts still make great games but EA as a publisher and distributor has the dubious distinction of being responsible for the worst roll-out in gaming history so far. An EA Korea Facebook manager’s accusation of piracy in Asian countries as a factor of server outages is a reminder that CEO or intern, anyone in a position dealing with the public are required to do their homework on the products and services they’re representing.

I still play Diablo 3 and while it’s annoying when servers are down I bought into the constant connection because I play public games often and sometimes the auction house can be played as a separate game in of itself. SimCity 5 offers regional play which is great but in single player mode the lack of reverting to a previous save and a saved city can only be loaded from their associated server aren’t compelling enough to require a constant internet connection.

While most people don’t care the digital rights management or DRM issue is a real and major reason for the constant internet connection, but not the only one. The elimination of the secondary used-games market and planned obsolescence by shutting down servers and forcing people to move to the next game iteration are also business strategies being tested.

EA has decided to give out a free game as an apology which is nice. But eating the transaction costs and giving a full refund to those who paid for a SC5 license would have been nicer, and a SC5 single player offline mode would have been the best solution. Voting with your wallet by itself is ineffective since it can be misinterpreted or even be invisible. There has to be communication, sometimes very emotional communication before large organizations can be motivated to change their course of action. I do feel bad for many of the developers and other creatives that worked hard on SC5 and hope their future projects will avoid everything that’s happening here.

Update – 2013-03-20:
Pretty much everything that’s happened so far:

kotaku.com/5991077/your-complete-guide-to-the-simcity-dis…

SC5 has been mostly stabilized so people are busy trying to break it to see its inner workings. Obviously all simulations require a certain amount of abstraction but investigations revealed that the simulation itself is broken where sims take the shortest path regardless of traffic and go to the first home or work they see each day. The reasons given for the constant internet connection were found to be less than truthful as well.

Partly because of this and various other reasons, EA’s CEO has been sacrificed and Origin is holding a gamer appreciation sale for PR damage control. Large publicly traded corporations are beholden to its investors and EA can’t revert back to when Trip Hawkins first founded it to help game developers so a change in culture can’t be expected to occur overnight. Still, there’s a lot of companies that don’t have the financial strength to ride out a bad Costa Concordia PR disaster so maybe this will deter them from making similar decisions.

SC5 is a great looking game but I can’t and won’t even pirate it. Security or ethical issues aside there’s no reason to because my limited game time and finances should be used to support good games, with the occasional sale. I’ll approach the next SimCity with a skeptical but still open mind though. Keep the art and audio assets, allow online as optional, fix the simulation engine and I just might be there.

kotaku.com/5989893/if-simcity-was-a-noir-film

Finding ways to Fight Music Piracy

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You might remember when Napster was the next big threat to the music industry not long ago when it was the big thing. This file sharing service used peer-to-peer technology to allow people to do music downloads for free from computers that belonged to other Napster customers.

The Napster explosion brought with it numerous violations of copyright and issues with music piracy. Music artists went through damaging dips to their sales and revenue, and that was the source of deep worry for the music industry.

The popularity of Napster and other P2P networks showed that people were OK with the idea of downloading music for free if they could. Napster went into bankruptcy after failing to win a legal battle with several music labels.

Apple’s iTunes then served as a savior for the industry by providing a way for people to legally download music for a fee. While music piracy is not totally banished, it has certainly lessened.

In making a model to fight music piracy, there are certain things it must do to become effective among music consumers. The elements that must be in place to fight music piracy include…

*It has to be convenient to use.

The new music access solution It must be easy to access and to use. Sometimes legal tools for downloading music requires a certain amount of technical savvy, users can become discouraged with confusing interfaces. When the tools to use the software are convenient, more music customers will use it.

* Provide a variety in search abilities and ease of use.

It is crucial that the music download site have a wide selection of songs. It is just as important that the songs are not hard to find. Ease of use is something illegal downloading sites fail to offer because of the service is free.

* Make them feel secure.

P2p file sharing programs scare people because of the potential that is there to download a virus along with their music from one of the free music services. Users are happy to pay for their music if they can get the music they want that danger.

* Costs that make sense.

When music companies Use the Internet to release music. that cuts down on the costs of album distribution and sales. The ?middle men? are taken out of the picture. This means that it makes sense that the price for the music goes down.

The elimination of the cost of creating hard copy album, CD when digital music is downloaded is out of the picture too. The result is that your online customers should be able to get their digital music for a reduced cost.

The music industry has have learned a great deal about What people think about illegal file sharing. Contrary to what was believed, people want to pay for the music made by their favorite artists and they do not like the idea of stealing the music that they love

Music fans, though, also want the variety, the convenience, the security and realistic cost that come from getting their music online. Every year, more legal online music downloading sites are giving their customers what they want and the result is that they are generating a new income stream for musicians and music companies. This approach is a long term solution.

There is only one online resource you need to learn how to tap the power of sensory branding to help your marketing efforts and that online resource is DMX.

CISPA extinct monsters
internet piracy
Image by Mataparda
Imagen original extraida de Extinct monsters; a popular account of some of the larger forms of ancient animal life (1896) en archive.org (Lámina XII), pero descubierta a través del recomendable blog BibliOdyssey, con un fragmento de texto de la EFF

Para El #Manifiesto en la red

Rogers’ “Cybersecurity” Bill Is Broad Enough to Use Against WikiLeaks and The Pirate Bay

Congress is doing it again: they’re proposing overbroad regulations that could have dire consequences for our Internet ecology. The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act of 2011 (H.R. 3523), introduced by Rep. Mike Rogers and Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, allows companies or the government1 free rein to bypass existing laws in order to monitor communications, filter content, or potentially even shut down access to online services for “cybersecurity purposes.” Companies are encouraged to share data with the government and with one another, and the government can share data in return. The idea is to facilitate detection of and defense against a serious cyber threat, but the definitions in the bill go well beyond that. The language is so broad it could be used as a blunt instrument to attack websites like The Pirate Bay or WikiLeaks. Join EFF in calling on Congress to stop the Rogers’ cybersecurity bill.

Under the proposed legislation, a company that protects itself or other companies against “cybersecurity threats” can “use cybersecurity systems to identify and obtain cyber threat information to protect the rights and property” of the company under threat. But because “us[ing] cybersecurity systems” is incredibly vague, it could be interpreted to mean monitoring email, filtering content, or even blocking access to sites. A company acting on a “cybersecurity threat” would be able to bypass all existing laws, including laws prohibiting telcos from routinely monitoring communications, so long as it acted in “good faith.”

The broad language around what constitutes a cybersecurity threat leaves the door wide open for abuse. For example, the bill defines “cyber threat intelligence” and “cybersecurity purpose” to include “theft or misappropriation of private or government information, intellectual property, or personally identifiable information.”

Yes, intellectual property. It’s a little piece of SOPA wrapped up in a bill that’s supposedly designed to facilitate detection of and defense against cybersecurity threats. The language is so vague that an ISP could use it to monitor communications of subscribers for potential infringement of intellectual property. An ISP could even interpret this bill as allowing them to block accounts believed to be infringing, block access to websites like The Pirate Bay believed to carry infringing content, or take other measures provided they claimed it was motivated by cybersecurity concerns.

The language of “theft or misappropriation of private or government information” is equally concerning. Regardless of the intent of this language, the end result is that the government and Internet companies could use this language to block sites like WikiLeaks and NewYorkTimes.com, both of which have published classified information. Online publishers like WikiLeaks are currently afforded protection under the First Amendment; receiving and publishing classified documents from a whistleblower is a common journalistic practice. While there’s uncertainty about whether the Espionage Act could be brought to bear against WikiLeaks, it is difficult to imagine a situation where the Espionage Act would apply to WikiLeaks without equally applying to the New York Times, the Washington Post, and in fact everyone who reads about the cablegate releases. But under Rogers’ cybersecurity proposal, the government would have new, powerful tools to go after WikiLeaks. By claiming that WikiLeaks constituted “cyber threat intelligence” (aka “theft or misappropriation of private or government information”), the government may be empowering itself and other companies to monitor and block the site. This means that the previous tactics used to silence WikiLeaks—including a financial blockade and shutting down their accounts with online service providers—could be supplemented by very direct means. The government could proclaim that WikiLeaks constitutes a cybersecurity threat and have new, broad powers to filter and block communication with the journalistic website.

Congress is intent on passing cybersecurity legislation this year, and there are multiple proposals in the House and the Senate under debate. But none is as poorly drafted and dangerously vague as the Rogers bill. We need to stop this bill in its tracks, before it can advance in the House and before the authors can negotiate to place this overbroad language into other cybersecurity proposals.

Internet security is a serious problem that needs to be addressed. But we don’t need to sacrifice our civil liberties to do so.

Know Software Piracy

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Software piracy substantially reduces the achievable revenue for software creators. Software pirates prefer to act from countries where legal support in prosecuting malign subjects is very poor to not existent at all, so that the software provider remains often unable to enforce his license terms. There are a number of ways that manufacturers try to circumvent people from copying material that they are not authorized to copy. This is includes providing a registration key, which is a group of numbers and letters that must be inputed in the required area in order to access the material. In addition, the key is only available to a person after purchasing the material.

The usual target is the account pin, passwords, addresses, etc. The Windows programs are also not spared from the malware; they are primarily prevented from loading and from performing the assigned functions. Because of this, Windows is left in a state of defenselessness since its core features have been blocked. The biggest blow is the malfunctioning of Task Manager. It is the initial program the malware would stop from loading. This way, it can maintain its position and control of the system. You have to immediately react to this infection by performing the proper removal method. There are two you can choose from.

Other forms of spam email including phishing attacks which are designed to trick you into providing your personal information such as passwords and account details. Antivirus software protects you from spam by scanning your emails for dangerous attachments and filtering spam from unknown or suspicious sources.In order to protect your computer from harmful viruses you should look for antivirus software that comes with a firewall. If a hacker sees your computer has a firewall it can deter them from trying to infiltrate your system. A firewall works by closing all the internet ports you are not using on your computer.

Automatic removal involves a few clicks. There is less risk involved. As a professional, I even use it myself, and recommend it as well to friends, family, and clients. The best feature of the automatic removal tools that I use is that the software I recommend protects the user’s PC against future malware mutations. Active protection against future viruses is extremely important, based on how many viruses are released every day.

The big problem with all of the people getting your product free is that they are potential customers that now will no longer buy your software. So you lose a lot of sales and a lot of profit in the process. Worse, the more people who get your product without paying, the more devalued your software becomes. The good news is, there are some things you can do to stop thieves and protect software, download pages, and digital downloads. And it is all much simpler, faster, and easier than you might think. The solution to all this is to get software protection and make sure that your download pages are secured.

Want to know more about software piracy, Get detailed information on code protection.

Tear Free Internet
internet piracy
Image by aforgrave
SOPA was in the news today. Wikipedia was dark. Flickr had an optional "darkening" of photos to raise awareness.

The Daily Create assignment prompt:
#tdcsopa – Create an image that reflects SOPA in your eyes.

The original image, "ablution," is by 10 Ninjas Steve, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Use Only Legal Music Downloads – Say No To Piracy

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When it comes to music downloads, there are unlimited number of options available today. Online music stores, entertainment website and the online music sharing sites are the most preferred one’s for music download. However, the music download options are very limited when considering the legal issues. Though downloading music from illegal sources often goes un-noticed, there are several other things to be considered. Consider the effort and money involved in creating a music album. Downloading pirated music is a huge pull back for the artists. Hence it is necessary to download music from legal sources. Internet surfers have a misconception that legal music downloads can be accomplished only by downloading from online music stores. The true fact is that there are many other sources in the Internet where you can get non-pirated free music downloads. Just keep reading on the article to know how to download music for free, legally.

The online music sharing websites are the places were you can download free unlimited music legally. Many people around the globe think that downloading music from online music sharing websites is an act of piracy. This thinking is completely wrong. As the online music sharing websites are bound to the Voluntary Collective Licensing of Music Files it is completely legal to download music from the online music sharing websites. As the name indicates, the online music sharing websites are basically used friends share music to your friends and other people. Hence you won’t be struck with the legal issues while downloading online music.

According the reliable news source, CNET news, “A new twist on file sharing is holding out the promise of allowing millions of people to share their song collections online, at no cost–and without legal risk”. With the advancements of piracy security measures in the Internet, the online music sharing websites safeguard unauthorized downloads. The copyrights of music are greatly honored on online music sharing websites. Moreover, you are allowed to share music though these online music sharing website only if you have purchased the rights to do so. Hence the artists and the users both get benefited.

These terms and conditions not only apply for online music but also for online videos. There are many online video sharing sites where you can download high quality videos for free. Downloading videos form these online video sharing websites is also completely legal. You will be well aware of the fact that downloading music and videos and music from the file sharing websites is completely legal in the United States. However, in some countries like Canada, the use of online music sharing websites and video sites are not appreciated.

Whatever the source you download the videos and music from, it is always good to make sure that they are not pirated copies. It is not good for the artist and also will result in the imprisonment of the user. Hence always look for legal sources like online music sharing websites and online video sharing websites.

Being a fan of Madonna’s unique music, the author used to download many songs of Madonna . He downloads the music for free through the online music sharing websites called PlanetClubs. He also gets the videos of Madonna from this unique online video site . He also recommends PlanteClubs to stream live videos of the best clubs in New York.

PROTECT IP Act Breaks The Internet on Vimeo by Fight for the Future
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Image by Ryan Tir
Tell Congress not to censor the internet NOW! – www.fightforthefuture.org/pipa

PROTECT-IP is a bill that has been introduced in the Senate and the House and is moving quickly through Congress. It gives the government and corporations the ability to censor the net, in the name of protecting "creativity". The law would let the government or corporations censor entire sites– they just have to convince a judge that the site is "dedicated to copyright infringement."

The government has already wrongly shut down sites without any recourse to the site owner. Under this bill, sharing a video with anything copyrighted in it, or what sites like Youtube and Twitter do, would be considered illegal behavior according to this bill.

According to the Congressional Budget Office, this bill would cost us million tax dollars a year — that’s for a fix that won’t work, disrupts the internet, stifles innovation, shuts out diverse voices, and censors the internet. This bill is bad for creativity and does not protect your rights.

Watch this video on Vimeo. Video created by Fight for the Future.

Join the Community! — http://cheshirecatstudios.com
Become a Fan of CCS on Facebook! — http://facebook.com/cheshirecatstudio
Follow Us on Twitter! — http://twitter.com/cheshirecatstud

The creator of the Epic Mickey: History of Disney and Skyward Sword: The History of Zelda, B-Mask, joins LaughingMan, CineMax, and Kenny Farino of GameJams in the third episode of the Official Cheshire Cat Studios Video Podcast. We vent on the subject of Internet piracy, the underhanded tactics by the music, movie, and game industries, Government censorship, horrible ads, suspect statistics, DRM control, and the companies who hate you for obtaining content that they refuse to even sell you.

Join us because it’s going to be a volatile, but hopefully enlightening and entertaining, discussion!

“internet piracy” riaa mpaa “video game piracy” “music piracy” “movie piracy” lawsuits censorship podcast “video podcast” “Epic Mickey” “Skyward Sword” GameJams

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The whole situation of e-book piracy

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Why do pirates pirate and what do they profit from offering free download?
Online piracy comprising of free movies, music, and software and of course, e-books is all but a stake. The catch is that a host of legitimate and authorized companies can make a profit with link building and advertising in these sites which has huge traffic and revenue because of the free content being offered, that in the meantime the advertisers can find a bigger audience. Advertising and link building are hot tactics of internet business and marketing, which is the process of doing business that is taking over the physical market. The more a brand is seen in the internet, the better for their integration.
To some extent it does work, that pirates can benefit from the advertisements. Even if the links are directly not clicked by many skeptical readers, the sites and the business do get bulk customers from this stake which so if works, then garners huge profit that can be enjoyed by the advertisers, the advertising brands and the pirates, but not the publishers or the creators. And if the stake doesn’t work then there is no loss but it all ends up in proper altruism with a consumer getting free stuff.
“Download for free” is the key reason why online piracy thrives, and perhaps it won’t be wrong to say that these are the websites that grab the biggest traffic. The process hasn’t yet caused any major damage, but it certainly worries the creators and distributers of intellectual property to lose their review.
Some way or the other piracy is encouraged by different sources that are bulkier than the body that is discouraging it. There are a number of Government bills and orders against online piracy which a cyber crime, and a punishable offense.
The community of writers and readers are huge and it is still a highly valued market. Books are read, the music is listened to, and the celebrities are celebrated. But when one can save on the bulk expense of actually buying a volume while the same can be available for downloading for free of cost? Can we rely on human nature to say no to piracy? Human psychology is a different subject. But here and now the fact is NO. Readers would not say no to piracy when it is available on the net for free.
So it can’t depend on human nature that a source of a self publishing house and the writer of a book per se the copyright holders of it will strive to get the deserving benefits of their own creation. The war with internet pirates and copyright infringement has so far been lost as free e-books continue to be downloaded.

BOSON I-tech offers self publishing to aspiring authors in London and all over the world and it far reaching in its growth as a prominent guide to writers to the journey of creating great stories and content.

Listen to FDR – Stop SOPA and PIPA
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Image by DonkeyHotey
"Private enterprise, indeed, became too private. It became privileged enterprise, not free enterprise." – Frankin Roosevelt

Do you want to share a relevant quote? Please do so in comments below.

Read more FDR quotes at Wikiquote
"The hours men and women worked, the wages they received, the conditions of their labor — these had passed beyond the control of the people, and were imposed by this new industrial dictatorship. The savings of the average family, the capital of the small-businessmen, the investments set aside for old age — other people’s money — these were tools which the new economic royalty used to dig itself in. Those who tilled the soil no longer reaped the rewards which were their right. The small measure of their gains was decreed by men in distant cities. Throughout the nation, opportunity was limited by monopoly. Individual initiative was crushed in the cogs of a great machine. The field open for free business was more and more restricted. Private enterprise, indeed, became too private. It became privileged enterprise, not free enterprise." From Speech to the Democratic National Convention (1936)

THE WEB GOES ON STRIKE! Read All About It!

NOTE: After experiencing the day of protest about SOPA/PIP it is clear that the action could better be called a Web Blackout rather than a Strike.

TAKE ACTION! Google has a form.

You Can Go To Jail For Software Piracy – Why Would You Do It?

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There are many ways for a thief to perform his or her trade. In past decades, there were limited ways for thieves to steal. Most of them have perfected their craft with little chance of getting caught. However, with the ever-evolving Internet, thieves have a whole new venue for them to choose from. The latest product to come under the attack of theft is Software. With all of the software that is available and that is being developed, all a software pirate has to do is “choose” the software that they want from the Internet.

Software Piracy has been on the rise in recent years because of the cost that is associated with the software itself; however, it is the business and programmers who suffer the most from software piracy.

All software comes with a licensing agreement that the end user must agree to before they are allowed to use the software. These agreements are legal and binding and are usually only meant for the person who has purchased the software. However, even though the person agrees to this, they end up sharing the software with friends and family and sometimes even with their co-workers. When this occurs, it is considered software piracy. Although it is on a very small scale, it is still stealing.

Perhaps you and your co-workers are not aware of the consequences of sharing software files. In recent news stories, software piracy has become the focal point for many lawmakers. New laws have been passed that make fines for software piracy steep and jail time is a real possibility for those who continue to pirate software. The person who gets a hold of that software and turns around and sells it as bootleg certainly understands the penalty for getting caught. However, the temptation to make a lot of money for very little work proves to be too much for some to pass up.

Schools throughout the country and the world use commercial software and shareware. Most schools are eligible for discounts on software that allows their students to research their subjects. Freeware and Open Source software are also available to schools throughout the world, and this type of software is also vulnerable to software piracy. One way to reduce this particular piracy risk is to use older versions of the software.

Consumers have never had a high opinion of freeware or Open Source software. They have always felt that these products were lacking in performance and were very low quality. They are so wrong. In recent years, with the upgrades that have been developed, the quality of freeware has increased dramatically. The quality has increased so much, that the commercial software corporations have begun to take notice and protest that they are loosing money due to the freeware that is being developed.

When you are looking for software, it is important that you research all of your possibilities. There are literally thousands of programs both commercial and freeware, however it is important that you read and understand the licensing agreement before you accept it. It is a legal and binding agreement, and the consequences of breaking that agreement are also very real. It is also not necessary to commit software piracy, rather use the freely available Open Source products.

GoToMyPC or Go To My PC and GoToMeeting or Go To Meeting enable online pc access and meetings.

Stop SOPA
internet piracy
Image by DrCuervo
There are 2 bills before Congress, Stop Online Piracy (SOPA) and Protect IP (PIPA) that are supposed to end online piracy. But these bill go WAY too far. All it would take is ONE LINK on ANY website and that site could be shut down from the outside.
For more info on SOPA and PIPA visit fightforthefuture.org/pipa/
Contact your representative and tell them to DO NOT PASS THESE BILLS.

This image is released under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike Creative Commons. Feel free to use it but do not change it. If you use it please give proper credit and like back to this photostream.

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The Emerging Dilemma Of Ebook Piracy

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We’ve all heard about the plagues that face the music and movie industry with respect to digital piracy. Ever since the advent of MP3s, free music has been abundantly available to those who choose to download their music at no cost.

By choosing to get the music for free, such as on a platform for sharing files or a torrent website, this definitely puts a hurting on the sales of a lot of artists. The same is true with the movie industry when the movies are recorded first by movie pirates before they upload them to the sharing platforms.

Most recently, it seems like this problem has spread to yet another medium. All of a sudden, e-books are now being shared via this means and it seems that the issue may be growing.

So many books are being put in digital form and it is quite easy to get them by going to a torrent or file sharing site and downloading them illegally without paying anything.

Tablet PCs and the Kindle are pretty popular digital mediums that enable the proliferation of the books through digital means.

This could potentially be a sharp blow to the publishing industry, and people should really consider their actions before taking part in such illegal activity.

Writers are only able to spend the time researching and writing their works because of the sales they can expect down the line. If the industry takes a hit, we may be left with a world devoid of much high quality writing as a result.

It is my belief that almost all of us do realize that we would surely be in a bad position if that should occur, so the best thing to do is to stop this illegal activity if you are doing it.

Throughout the second quarter of 2009, e-book sales went above $ 37 million and, because of that, regulators are going to be made to deal with this issue as the use of e-books keeps growing and growing.

Besides publishing, the writer additionally regularly contributes articles on metal storage shelves and glass display shelves.

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internet piracy
Image by Alrunia
as far as I know, this one is FACTUALLY INCORRECT. so, you know, you probs don’t want to use it anywhere. But it’s a pretty picture so I’m leaving it here anyway.

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Media Piracy and Law Enforcement

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Once upon a time, music played for free on the radio. And you could record a cassette if you wanted to, and you could listen to it as many times as you wanted to, and nobody thought you were a pirate if you shared it with your friends. In fact, this was seen as a way for new bands to break into the market; quite frequently receiving a mix tape would be motivation to buy the album of the band whose song was included.

What little concern there was over music piracy was restricted to “bootleg” tapes made at concerts. Even one of the most outspokenly liberal musicians ever, Frank Zappa, vented in vain at bootleg tapes of his music. He went so far as to include the tape of an interview expressing his anger with this practice at the beginning of his “As An Am” album, part of his “Beat the Boots” project. But even at its most vampiric, the bootleg recording industry was hardly able to suck off more than a single-digit percentage of profits.

But then the Internet happened. And suddenly, through it, the sharing of a home-made recording suddenly became something you could provide to thousands of people instead of one or two friends. Where even the recording of several purchased CDs onto cassette tape was only moderately a big deal before, now it is a major industry.

The media piracy issue is one of the most vitriolic hot-button issues in today’s Internet culture. The major factors being:

* The RIAA. The Recording Industry Association of America may live on in history as being one of the most ineffective measures of copyright protection the world has ever seen. Its methods have been draconian, never once catching a pirate, but relentlessly pursuing everyone from soccer moms to grandmothers to even dead people with a lawsuit for receiving a pirated tune, which in and of itself is not even a crime. Funded by the not-particularly successful record labels and armed with a battalion of lawyers, the RIAA’s practices have so far been futile at stopping piracy and harassing of legitamate users.

* Sony – became the laughing stock of 2006 with the Rootkit Fiasco. Sony included a malicious program on several music CDs, which installed a computer program called a “rootkit” on any computer you stuck them into, for the purposes of preventing unauthorized copying. The attempt backfired two ways: not only did it do nothing to prevent copying, but it crippled the software on the computer by compromising its security layer; any hacker looking to break into a computer need only look for the rootkit and they were in! Sony faced consumer lawsuits for this attempt and had to distribute an uninstaller for the rootkit, which itself was another botch in that it introduced more security holes into the system after patching its own rootkit. Sony lost millions of customers with this fiasco, many of whom swore publicly that they would never trust Sony again.

* The DMCA. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act is the United States copyright law which both criminalizes production and dissemination of technology, devices, or services that are used to circumvent measures that control access to copyrighted works and criminalizes the act of circumventing an access control, even when there is no infringement of copyright itself. This law has since endured no end to controversy, and is in the process of being reformed. The DMCA is said to be anti-competitive; because it gives copyright holders and the technology companies (including the ones convicted of monopolistic practices under anti-trust laws) that distribute their content the legal power to create closed technology platforms and exclude competitors from inter-operating with them. Once again, DRM technologies are clumsy and ineffective; they inconvenience legitimate users but do nothing to stop pirates.

The whole problem with copyright protection stems from the haziness of defining at what point someone has broken the law. Say I bought an album on tape cassette, brought it home, and played it on my stereo so that my whole family can hear it. I’m not a pirate yet. I upgraded my stereo to a new model and copied that album to a compact disk so that my new stereo can play it. Obviously, I haven’t stolen anything here, but now I might be breaking a law intended to stop me from copying it for piracy purposes. If I play it so my whole family can hear it in the living room, that should be no different from if I made a separate CD copy for each member of my family so they can all listen to it in their bedrooms with their headphones on. Am I a pirate now?

The further problem is that digital protections against copyright are platform and player-specific. There has been a whole quagmire of different devices such as the Apple iPod, Microsoft Zune, handheld game consoles, cell phones, and other devices capable of recording, storing, and playing back music. These features are sold to us as benefits of the device, and yet when we get them home we find that we have to pay for the song some six times to be able to listen to it on each device – if indeed (as is seldom the case) the song has even been ported to that platform! Subscribing to a DRM-protected device further restricts the user’s freedom to switch to a different device – you’re locked in, and would be breaking the law if you moved the media from one device to another – even if you, yourself, wrote and recorded that song at home!

The turmoil over media piracy isn’t likely to end any time soon. Fortunately, the legal system has so far left the enforcement of copyright concerns to private industry, which isn’t doing such a hot job of enforcing copyright anyway. Consider that any country in the world can host any media pirate and in fact several countries do just that, with no laws to stop them. Pirated media is very big business in some countries, not because they want to steal, but simply because they want that media to play on their own independently produced digital devices. Remember when you could just buy a record and drop it on any record player and it would just play?

Freelance writer for over eleven years.

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CISPA – The solution is the problem
internet piracy
Image by DonkeyHotey
CISPA – another bad law that undermines citizen rights while purporting to solve a problem.

"They" won’t be satisfied until they completely bypass the 4th Ammendment. "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." This is part of a never ending rain of over broad legal maneuvers designed to limit citizen’s rights of property and free speech including: SOPA, PIPA, ACTA, the DMCA, Sonny Bono Act and more.

Read more about it: CISPA Isn’t ‘Son of SOPA’ (But That’s Not Saying Much) by Brock N. Meeks on Wired Threat Level.

The source image for the truck in this cartoon is a Creative Commons licensed photo from Joelk75’s Flickr Photostream.

More Internet Piracy Articles

Music Piracy

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Topple track; Protecting artists from piracy. The debate: Should you give your music away for free these days?
On first impressions, Topple Track looks confusingly like a site for (very delicious) burgers. It’s not however; it’s much more useful than that. It’s even more useful than it is hunger inducing. Topple Track provides musicians with ‘the most comprehensive anti-piracy services on the web’ protecting musicians from the bane of the music industry; the illegal download.

Obviously there are other guys out there who claim to do this, but in comparison, those guys are part timers. These guys are serious! Self professed ‘internet nerds’, they’ve got pretty much every angle covered. Signing up with Topple Track before releasing your song (or before it leaks!) means if people want your tracks… they gonna have to pay!

They don’t just wait around for people to upload the tracks then hope they can delete the links before millions of people illegally download them, they use all sorts of whizz-kid algorithms to find the file’s source and stop it before even it gets on to major search engines.

You think you’d be paying through the nose for a service with this kind of technology, but the prices are insanely reasonable- you could pay as little as $ 3 to protect a track FOREVER. When you think about how much money you could potentially make from a single track if you were getting everything you should, this is an easy-decision investment. It’s something we’re pretty impressed by here at Music Gateway, as we believe strongly in protection for musicians. You’re really not getting ripped off at all with Topple; they’re genuinely doing you a solid.

Now to a record label, using a service like this is a no brainer. But from an individual music producer/ songwriter’s point of view, there are a lot of arguments for and against stopping people illegally downloading. You want people to hear your music- it’s all about exposure right? Ok so people are getting your stuff and not giving you any money. But at least they’re listening to you instead of just One Direction, right? Hopefully they’re sharing your songs with their friends, increasing your reach and just maybe your economical fan will one day part hands with his hard earned cash to see one of your shows. Just maybe.

Man up fellah! Grow a pair! You deserve something in return for the gift you’ve imparted to the world. Have some belief in your self-worth. No you didn’t make the music for the money- but a girl’s gotta eat. If you’re making good stuff and people want to hear it, then it has value and you should claim that. People are only downloading illegally these days because it’s the done thing and so artists are basically bending to mob rule.

Look at Radiohead’s 2007 release ‘In Rainbows’ which they released for free. Radiohead are one of the biggest bands out there, having sold in excess of 30,000,000 records. People want their music, but it turns out they don’t want to pay. Despite the band’s bohemian attitude, despite the fact they trusted their fans to do the right thing, the majority of people downloaded for free. They still made a lot of money from it, but that’s because they’re Radiohead. Smaller bands probably would have gone hungry.

Take another example, Ed Sheeran; now there’s a music career. His album ‘+’ was the number one illegally downloaded album in the UK this year, with an average of 55,512 illegal downloads a month, but he only actually sold a small fraction of that. He says he doesn’t mind, but it’s pretty common knowledge that he regularly sleeps on his mate’s sofas. While this may be a marketing ploy, the figures speak for themselves; he’s making way less money than he should be. What’s the point in being famous if you don’t get the perks? I think TLC spoke for women everywhere when they said they ‘don’t want no scrubs’.

I digress. In this fast paced digital world where the face of the music industry is constantly changing, you never know what could make you the next big thing. The reality is though that the majority of us just want to know when we can have the next big burger. You’ve worked hard on your music, so take some pride in it, value it. It’s the only way that other people will and that could be the key to change. When cultural conscience believes that a song is an expression of an artist’s soul once again, and not just an mp3 file, that’s when there will be a much brighter future for musicians. Overly sentimental? Probably. But if you believe in improving careers in music like we do, then you know that something has to change. Perhaps this is one of the first steps.

I work for MusicGateway.net, we aim to connect musicians globally.

Music gateway is the place to find the right talent and the right projects, improving the way professionals network, connect and find work. We remove time consuming industry legwork so professionals can focus on creativity. MusicGateway.net also ensures security to everyone involved with our secure E-wallet system. Our unique project work-spaces encompass everything required to collaborate and communicate with other creatives.

If you’re looking for work opportunities, career development, people to collaborate with or advice then sign up for free. The music industry is full of barriers, but we’re breaking those down by putting everyone on a level playing-field.

Net Neutrality – Special Interests keep wishing for death
internet piracy
Image by DonkeyHotey
Corporations, government and the courts are continually proposing new threats to Net Neutrality and Internet Freedom, including: PIPA, SOPA, CISPA, ACTA, and now TPP. On top that Verizon V. FCC wants to turn the Internet into Cabletown. Read this: "We’re About to Lose Net Neutrality — And the Internet as We Know It."

The Network Neutrality logo is an image in the public domain from Wikimedia.

Note: I chose 1995 as the date the Internet use was made popular.

Louis CK on internet piracy

I don’t care about those people!!
Video Rating: / 5

Insanity, P90X & Slim in 6: The High Cost of Piracy

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The urge to buy or download pirated copies of expensive workout products is strong. If you have the technical savvy, or have found somebody online who’s willing to sell you a knocked off copy for half price, then what’s not to like? Get the quality goods, save cash, workout and get the body you want, all without breaking the bank. Smart? Actually, no, and not just because we retail these products. Read on to discover some very real dangers involved with these activities, and then ask yourself-is it really worth it?

One of the biggest temptations out there right now is to buy a burned copy of your favorite workout from a Chinese vendor. They’ll sell them to you for almost half price, and promise you that you’ll get everything you need in the box. Not true. We’ve had a number of people contact us here at EFR asking if we can sell them the workout calendar, or the nutrition guide, or any other key component of the workout that didn’t come with the DVD’s,. Frequently the DVD’s themselves don’t play. We know this for a fact: we ordered a sample from two Chinese vendors out of curiosity. One never arrived, and the second had three DVD’s that wouldn’t play.

What’s even more dangerous is that you’re giving unscrupulous people your credit card information. If you haven’t heard, identity theft is a growing crisis for banks and people who find their accounts wiped clean, and sending your financial information to people with no problem ripping off valuable products is a bad, bad move. Many of these illegal vendors are involved a wider array of criminal activity, and selling your credit card information is probably the least of it. So-ask yourself before you buy knock off products online for ridiculously cheap prices-is the high chance of identity theft and incomplete or missing products worth the money you’ll save?

Another avenue that people take is to download these workouts from the internet for free. Of course, you’ve probably already heard about all the viruses out there, and how they’re embedded in these popular products. How millions and millions of computers are now enslaved as ‘zombies’ to hackers who use their combined processing power and online capabilities to attack big, secure targets. This isn’t alarmist talk-google any of the terms I just mentioned, and you’ll pull up a number of reports from CNN, the NYTimes, etc. Downloading large, popular programs is a fast track way to infect your computer. Further, these downloads don’t come with all the required materials. No Nutrition Guide, no workout calendar, none of the other supplemental and vital information that comes with the authentic package.

Of course, the greatest damage won’t be done to you, your identity or computer-it’s being done daily by thousands of people who engage in these practices to Beachbody itself. Now, I’m not trying to make you feel sorry for them, but simply point out a fact. If they lose enough money to piracy, they’ll stop becoming profitable, or as profitable, and will stop making these amazing products. We’ve already heard from them as to how much they’re being hurt financially by all this piracy, and it seems like it will only get worse.

And finally, think about the message these fitness programs promote: P90X, INSANITY, all of them urge you to discover a new form of integrity, of self-respect, to reach deep into yourself and become a new, better you that is proud of not only their body but the determination, courage and effort it took them to get there. How can you begin such a journey if it starts based in theft and ripping off the very trainers and people who are seeking to help you realize your goals?

Piracy. We’re warned against doing it so much that we tend to tune those warnings out, and hear instead, ‘Blah blah blah’. But piracy has very tangible, real consequences, as the hundreds of thousands of people who experience identity theft can attest, or the ruined computers and the help they give hackers show, or the general disrespect to both yourself and these incredibly trainers that stems from ripping them off despite all their hard work. If you’re tempted to steal a copy of these workouts-don’t. Start this journey with integrity, because trust me, it’s truly, truly worth it.

An excellent way to stay on track is to ensure that you get the right nutrition–try Yoga Earth products for healthy, balanced post-workout shakes! Even better, cleanse your system with a Bazi Antioxidant Drink, which will cleanse your system with the power of 8 super fruits!

Spirit of Justice in America
internet piracy
Image by DonkeyHotey
First they came for our search history, then they came for the open Internet, and then they came for our public spaces.

Imagine a future where all spaces, actual and digital, are privatized. In this world you will always be operating under terms of service rather than the Rule of Law. The same click-away-your-rights protocol that currently infects website, app and software usage will be brought to the actual world. Everything you see, hear, feel, and smell in these environments is subject to copyright. Your right to photograph, video, write about or in any way reproduce or share anything will be severely limited.

As you enter a mall, a highway, a doctors office, a privatized park (like Zuccotti Park), a subway, a movie theater, an airplane, a grocery store, a university, or any privately owned space, your communications device receives a terms of service request based on your location. You will be required to accept the terms of service to be eligible to enter the space.

You won’t be given permission to access if you are undocumented, have been convicted of a crime, have a low credit score, don’t have insurance, are on some terrorist/protestor/copyright infringer watch list or don’t have a recognized device. "No shirt, no shoes, no chip, no service." "We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone." If you don’t want to live by the rules, then you always have the freedom to… stay home… move to another country… change the law, or whatever.

If you attempt to enter the space without accepting the terms of service you could immediately be e-ticketed. Now you will have to appear in court or pay a fine. The same holds for copyright violations. Three strikes and you are immobilized, apprehended and escorted straight to the privatized prison. You won’t see a day in court or be tried by a jury of your peers. You’ll be lucky if you are entitled to redress your grievances in front of a corporate hired arbitrator. You’ll stay in prison until you serve your term and emerge in debt for the cost of your conviction, incarceration and probation. You’ll loose the right to vote. Your prospects will be diminished.

In this future we will no longer be citizens, we will no longer even be consumers, we will become users trading our liberty for the right to work and shop.

This scenario may be extreme, but it suggests how the never ending march of privatization and robo-justice could result in a world where we justify every breech of liberty by citing the property rights of corporations. The rights we give up in the so called digital world are real rights and are setting precedents to be used against our rights in the "real world."

The cellular network is accessing the real Internet. It should not be a corporate wild west where Net Neutrality does not apply. The Internet is part of the real world where our constitutional rights must be upheld. We must be less forgiving of business practices for digital goods that restrict our rights and prevent the creep of these practices into the non-digital realm.

Another step in this escalating process of corporate control is SOPA, aka the Protect IP Act, which will bring less liberty and more robo-justice for all in the name of reducing copyright infringement and piracy.

Read Senator Ron Wyden’s SOPA statement where he warns of severe repercussions to a Free and Open Internet if bills are passed."

You can read a Senate version of the bill in this PDF.

Sculpture of the "Spirit of Justice" from the Great Hall, 2nd floor of the Department of Justice in Washington D.C. The artist, Carl Paul Jennewein, created this aluminum sculpture in 1935. The dimensions are 12′ 6" tall x 48" in diameter. The CC image used in this post is from my Flickr photostream. The source for this image of the "Spirit of Justice" is a another great photo by Carol M. Highsmith and available via the Library of Congress.

The image has been cropped, exposure increased, contrast increased, and the color is adjusted. The "Spirit of Justice" is holding the letter "INC" the abbreviation for incorporated.