Friday, May 13, 2005

BBC NEWS | Technology | TV download sites hit by lawsuits

Do people have no common sense? How long do people have to keep stealing content for the providers of that content to realize that people aren't stealing it because they just like to steal, they're stealing it because that's the easiest way to get the content. If someone misses a TV show these days, it's much more likely that it will air again soon than it was in the past, but still you have to find out when that will be and then make sure not to miss it again, and if you only realized you missed it a week later (and it's not on HBO or something, where they show encore after encore and mini marathons to catch you up) then you're probably out of luck until it comes on as a re-run. But if it's one of these new shows with an ongoing developing plot, like Lost, or Desperate Housewives, missing one episode can really get you lost, and by the time you can see it again, it will be irrelevant. So people steal them instead, because the content is available on demand. I don't understand how people don't understand that it's the convenience that people are looking for. If there are legitamate means of acquiring the same content, less people will steal it. I don't hear so much about the RIAA getting all freaked out about music file sharing these days, that's because there are legitimate means to buy content that are just as convenient as stealing it. Someone needs to find a way to do the same thing with movies and TV shows.

Even OnDemand, while it's great only makes certain content available for limited periods of time. I could start watching a season of Six Feet Under on OnDemand, then if I forget about it for a couple of weeks, by the time I go back, it might no longer be available. DVDs have been great for watching old TV shows, but then you have to buy an entire season or more, and you have to wait for it to come out, if it ever does. These kinds of issues just don't come up when people steal content from the internet. If the content providers could at least minimize these kinds of issues and make things at least as available legitimately, then there wouldn't be so many people stealing.

I'm not saying that they shouldn't go after these sites that make it easier to steal their content, but they should also be focusing on making their content more available legitimately to make these sites irrelevant. While there are people who are going to steal if they can, no matter what, I think most people that download stuff would prefer to do it legally, if given the option.

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