[quote=“Solo Wing Dragon”]
I’d say that it does matter. Take Panzer Dragoon Saga for example. This game is almost impossible to find for a reasonable price. What’s a gamer supposed to do? Well there are two options. Either he can pay around US$100 to $200 for a game that Sega does not make any money from or he could just copy/download the game and potentially use the money he would have paid on a new game. I already own the game (I bought it when it came out), but if I hadn’t then I’d feel totally justified ‘pirating’ it. Sega hasn’t offered any other reasonable alternatives, so there is no harm in doing so. Nobody misses out on anything except some seller on eBay (who will probably find another person to sell it to anyway).[/quote]
Which, as a gamer, is an understandable dilemma, but I go back to my original point: you don’t have the right to own it if you didn’t purchase it. It’s not like, say, food or something that you need to survive. It’s a luxury item that if you cannot find, cannot afford, etc., then you simply don’t have the right to own it. Sure, some people say, “I burned a copy to play, but if I ever find a legit copy on sale, I’d buy it, too.” And on a personal basis, to me, that’s acceptable. But, by and large, the general populace does not abide by those rules, and it’s impossible to work things like that into the letter of the law. My point being, if you can’t find it, well, that doesn’t give you the right to obtain it by less than legal means. Sucks, but that’s life.
[quote=“Solo Wing Dragon”]
With a car that’s different though. To drive a car without buying one you’d probably have to steal one. Most people would agree that stealing is wrong. But piracy? It’s merely making a copy. If you couldn’t afford it anyway, or weren’t prepared to pay the price that it was sold at, then who loses from it? No one. In a sense, there is a gain because the pirate gets to appricate the game. If I were a game designer I’d rather someone got to experience my game through an illegal copy than not at all. Yes I understand that there are people who don’t buy games at all, and just pirate, but often good can come out of piracy - for example, they might go out and actually buy the sequel if they enjoyed the pirated copy of the first game.[/quote]
Is it so different? By stealing a car, you are denying that company’s right to profit from its product. By pirating a game, you are denying a company’s right to profit from the sale. Especially if you then upload the image to the internet, thereby allowing thousands of people to access that stolen product. The whole “I couldn’t afford it anyway, so nobody is losing out if I pirate it” argument is nothing but hogwash to justify (and I don’t mean this as a personal attack) greed. Like I mentioned above, if you cannot afford it, you don’t have the right to own it. Pure and simple. If you can’t afford it, save your money to buy it. Rent it. Play it through the plethora of other legal means you have available to you. Too many gamers nowadays feel like they should be able to play whatever game they want, regardless of whether or not they have the money. When I was growing up, you had to save your own money to buy a game, and even if it sucked, you played the hell out of it. And you learned from the experience, and grew more cautious of which games you bought, which developers to trust, etc.
If you think that developers would rather have people “experience” their games rather than purchase them, you are sorely wrong. Independent developers go out of business almost every day because they don’t have the massive marketing and development dollars that a company like Rockstar or EA has, so they are relegated to making small budget games. And when those get pirated, they lose out on a lot of potential profit to help grow their business. What happens? They go out of business, leaving developers and their families without incomes for god knows how long.
Some good comes of piracy? That’s MAYBE true 1% of the time. If someone buys a sequel to a game they liked because they pirated it, well, why didn’t they just buy the first game? Perhaps there WON’T be a sequel because so many people pirated the original? Perhaps the company could have made the sequel even better if people had just bought the game, so they could have had more money to spend on the sequel? Perhaps the independent developers of the world could create more creative and innovative experiences if they knew their games would at least sell enough to make a profit, rather than only sell 20,000 copies (yet, there would probably be 50,000 copies in the market). There is no proof to back up any statement that piracy can help the industry, other than pure speculation.
[quote=“Solo Wing Dragon”]
While I can understand why these laws are in place, it does seem that some software companies have a little too much control (legally) over what I can do with software I have bought. If I had two PCs in my home, but only had one copy of Windows XP I wouldn’t be allowed to have it installed on both machines at once. Surely for private home you should be allowed to do this, but no, to legally do so I’d have to folk out for another copy of the same program. That doesn’t seem reasonable or fair to me.[/quote]
Again, it’s about loopholes. What if you run a business from your home? What if you say that you owned a computer and gave the computer to your friend with Windows installed on it? There would be too many gray areas if you were to start allowing programs to be installed on multiple computers. It’s the same with music. Making mp3s of your music is not illegal. But, playing mp3s on your computer, while your brother is listening to the CD in another room is illegal. There’s just no other way to control the spreading of copies. It’s a necessary evil. It doesn’t have to be fair.