But who are the real pirates?


MediaGuardian.co.uk: But who are the real pirates?
„When the MPAA complains that it is losing billions to piracy, my first reaction is, so what? The Hollywood studios are already hugely wealthy; their power increases constantly, as does the power of other multinational copyright- and patent-holders such as the pharmaceutical firms.
Consider the VCR. When VCRs and Beta recorders first appeared, the MPAA made an aggressive attempt to have their recording capacities banned. Recording films off TV was, they said, a mega-threat which would cost Hollywood billions in lost profits, and mean the ruin of the industry. The claim, of course, was rubbish. Instead home video created a new product, and several new revenue streams. Consumers taped off air, but they also went out and bought studio videotapes at premium prices.
Every new technology so far introduced (whether current such as CDs and DVDs, or defunct like 8-tracks and Beta players) has seen an increase in distributors‘ sales and profits.These profits are enhanced by the manipulation of copyright and intellectual property law, and by restrictive practices such as the creation of six arbitrary DVD „regions“ instead of the „one world“ of CDs.
MPAA executive Fritz Allaway told Bobbie Johnson, „We have seen our future, and it is terrifying.“ I – like a lot of other independent directors and producers – would like to see the future get much more terrifying for Fritz and his pals; with a radical reform of copyright and patent law, and a curbing of behemoths such as AOL/Time/Warner, News International/Fox and Vivendi/ Universal/UIP.“