Ethical issues with illegaly downloading music

It all started in with the creation of Napster.

Ethical issues with illegaly downloading music

People tend to either accept these industry claims at face value or respond, "Screw the RIAA, music wants to be free! If I steal a CD from you, two things happen.


First, I now have a copy of the CD. Secondly, you no longer have that CD. The MP3, on the other hand, is a case of unauthorized copying.

Ethical issues with illegaly downloading music

If I copy your music, we both have a copy of the music and you are not made any worse off. In other words, I benefit and you remain the same. You are only harmed if, rather than doing my unlicensed copying, I would have paid you for authorization to make a legitimate copy.

Thus, at the worst I have deprived you of potential profit. At best, I have increased the value of your copy by increasing the cultural penetration of your song. Unlike physical property, intellectual property has no natural scarcity. The law treat copyright infringement and property theft differently as well.

Theft is a criminal act and can lead to fines or jail time. Copyright infringement is generally a civil act and leads to damages and injunctions. If we analogize intellectual property infringement to physical property, trespassing fits much more closely than theft. If I cut through your yard rather than walking around the block, I have gained something at minimal cost to you.

You might have a right to sell me some kind of "walk through my yard" license — but by cutting through your yard I am certainly not "stealing" your yard. Thus, rather than saying, "You pirates are stealing my property," it might be more appropriate to say, "Hey, kids!

Get off of my lawn! There are criminal penalties under the copyright laws. However, they do not appear to apply to basic, not-for-profit file sharing. So you know, the congressmen who sponsored this great use of federal money is: Butch [ID-1] If you forget this list, you can find most of their names here.

Of course, even if downloading MP3s is probably not criminal, it certainly has some civil problems. There are a number of arguments to say that it should not be an infringement — but none of them are particularly great, and none of them are particularly likely to succeed in a court.

Ethical issues with illegaly downloading music

The copyright statute has extremely heavy statutory penalties for willful infringement. We will look at whether it is illegal later. This makes a lot of sense for things like food or furniture, where additional consumption correlates with additional costs.

However, because an additional copy of a song adds no costs to the copyright owner, the economics of infringement work differently. If you download an MP3 rather than buying a CD, the profit of the recording industry decreases by some fraction of the cost of that CD.

In response to its loss, the recording industry might raise prices on other CDs. Of course, if the recording industry thought it could maintain sales after raising prices, it would not wait for you to pirate its music. The recording industry is not trying to maintain some minimal amount of profit necessary to bring music to the masses.

They want to extract as much profit as they possibly can. On the other hand, if you download an MP3 of a song that you would not pay the price of a CD for, the recording industry loses nothing except a potential sale. If the recording industry lowers its prices, it could capture some of these sales lost to piracy.

Record companies had phased out singles because a full album had a higher profit margin. Consequently, the record industry had to agree to a single-song download service like iTunes. We have had music ever since people figured out how to hit rocks with sticks.

Some of the most popular music predated any kind of copyright protection by years. File sharing does not threaten music itself — merely the dominant methods of music distribution.Ethical issues is pertaining to or dealing with morals or the principles of morality; ethical is pertaining to right and wrong in conduct, involving or expressing moral approval, in accordance with principles of conduct that are considered correct, especially those of a given.

Mar 31,  · Maybe that's why so many people who are older than say 30 think that downloading music is ethically wrong. They remember that music is something that you pay for.

Stealing Music: Is It Wrong. Is Downloading Really Stealing? The Ethics Of Digital Piracy. a middle ground that actually works is a technological and ethical minefield. the issues of others profiting off someone elses. Ethical issues is pertaining to or dealing with morals or the principles of morality; ethical is pertaining to right and wrong in conduct, involving or expressing moral approval, in accordance with principles of conduct that are considered correct, especially those of .

Run a poll on Facebook, "Do you think illegal downloading of music is wrong", and then abide by whichever answer is given by 51% or more of the respondents.

My computer is about to run out of battery power, but I will try to return later to provide you with some links . The Ethics of Music Sharing.

By Dan on December 2, "Downloading MP3s drives up the cost of music for everybody else." There are also some issues with what percentage of your CD cost is going to pay lobbyists, though that's another topic. There are also some significant benefits to having a robust and widely adopted file-sharing .

When Is Downloading Music on the Internet Illegal? - Webopedia