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PIRACY – A menace


While trawling the web, I happened to chance by upon his picture and it got me thinking.

What is piracy? Piracy is the unauthorized duplication of an original for commercial gain without the consent of the rights owner. For millions of internet users all over the globe, it has only one meaning: free stuff.

We all have been guilty of downloading movies, songs, softwares, etc all free of costs. Except for the fact most of us are unaware that it is illegal and a federal crime. But we are justified when it comes to piracy. After all, why pay 500 bucks for an original movie when we can get the same movie for free?

However, the root cause of piracy stems from small time businessmen who are out to make a quick buck. They exploit the middle class people despite being fully aware that they are breaking the law. But since when has laws ever been put into effect in our country? As a result of widespread piracy, India’s entertainment industry lost as much as Rs. 16,000 crores over a span of few years. And as many as 80,000 jobs were lost directly as a result of theft and piracy. This was published in a report by the United States India Business Council (USIBC). That is a pretty telling statement though we seem to be unaffected by it. Because we are a part of the whole system. How often have we rented pirated DVDs from the nearby roadside vendor? And now we seem to have taken piracy to a new level by downloading torrents from the net. It is faster and easier than stepping outside your house to go and rent the DVDS, isn’t it?

And piracy is not limited to movies or music alone. We all have heard of Nehru Place, the famous computer market in New Delhi. In fact it was ranked as one of the top pirated software markets in the world by a US journal. Everything you get in Nehru Place is cheaper than you would find in most stores in Delhi.

This may sound surprising but I am actually in favour of piracy. Not that I have taken leave of my senses or anything. Sure, it is a crime and forbidden by law, but you cannot blame us for wanting to cut costs at a time when the inflation rate is high and movie ticket prices are sky rocketing through the roof. And what is more, we can watch the movie in the comfort of our homes instead of noisy, crowded cinema halls.

The industry has tried to curb piracy by tying up with companies such as Moserbaer to introduce DVDS at a lower price, offering freebies with original items, etc. but so far, nothing concrete has been done. Unless the matter is addressed with a serious view and concrete steps taken, I am content enough to sit back and watch my favourite movie torrent download. And I am pretty sure many of you will agree with me.