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"Why I Pirate" - An Open Letter to Content Creators (Very, very, very long read inside)

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That's great -- because he's not telling you. He's telling content producers and providers. He could give a shit less what you think, you're a nobody in this equation. The formula here is him and content producers, no one else. That's the whole point.

See, your opinion here doesn't change anything, you can go on moral crusade after moral crusade. That earns companies no money. Opinions that earn money are opinions that hold value. They can monetize what this guy is saying, you on the other hand just come off as a prick, just like the OP (Of the letter itself.) -- but he comes off as a prick who can earn content creators money.

How can you monetize the opinions of someone who holds no perceived value over the products they steal? You could very well not be a thieving douchebag and come to the same stance/conclusion.

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How can you monetize the opinions of someone who holds no perceived value over the products they steal?

By giving those products perceived value, of course. That's the whole point of the letter.

Jesus, Lucian, c'mon!

P.S. Value, to a consumer, can easily be more than just content. If you buy a burger from a burger joint and the guy calls you a fatass piece of shit, you probably won't go back. That doesn't mean you'll steal the burgers, but you get the idea. You can't stop him from stealing (cloning) the burgers in this scenario, so you have to make it easier and more pleasant to actually shop at your burger joint than it is to try to clone a burger every time he's hungry. It doesn't matter if cloning the burgers will shut down your store, or the entire burger market, he doesn't care. So you have to adapt or you will suffer, he will not. Even if he eventually does, he won't see that until it's too late. It's self-preservation. Even if you hate him for cloning your burgers you have to get him to pay if you want money.

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By giving those products perceived value, of course. That's the whole point of the letter.

Jesus, Lucian, c'mon!

But the products already have value. He obviously perceives value in them if he is willing to download and partake of the fruits of his thievery. It simply boils down to "I don't want to pay and you should cater to me anyway. Then "maybe" I might pay and "maybe" I might tell people how awesome your shit is so then "maybe" they'll buy it. But until you do things my way, I'm going to continue shitting on your parade every chance I get and there is nothing you can do about."

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In a sense, that's correct.

However, it can also be viewed as "I won't pay until you cater to your paying customers, instead of making the pirated experience better and more convenient."

Even when that isn't the case, a pampered consumer is more likely to pay for products now and in the future. The focus should be to make people want to pay, not try to punish people who aren't going to pay, because that punishes paying consumers as well and then you actually lose money because who the fuck wants to be treated like a criminal?

Companies have to accept that pirates will always be ten steps ahead. They have unlimited time and resources (In this case manpower+time = resources.) and will stop at nothing to strip out your protection.

So focus on making the paid experience much, much better than the pirated one.

As I said and will say again: None of it makes piracy "okay," or "justified" or even "fair."

But it doesn't matter if it's any of those things. Piracy just is. Ergo, adapt.

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In a sense, that's correct.

However, it can also be viewed as "I won't pay until you cater to your paying customers, instead of making the pirated experience better and more convenient."

Even when that isn't the case, a pampered consumer is more likely to pay for products now and in the future. The focus should be to make people want to pay, not try to punish people who aren't going to pay, because that punishes paying consumers as well and then you actually lose money because who the fuck wants to be treated like a criminal?

Companies have to accept that pirates will always be ten steps ahead. They have unlimited time and resources (In this case manpower+time = resources.) and will stop at nothing to strip out your protection.

So focus on making the paid experience much, much better than the pirated one.

As I said and will say again: None of it makes piracy "okay," or "justified" or even "fair."

But it doesn't matter if it's any of those things. Piracy just is. Ergo, adapt.

Nobody is debating that companies shouldn't adapt to the changing times and nobody here is pro drm afaik. But thievery is thievery and thieves will take the path of least resistance 9 times out of 10. The companies could change for the better and they'll still find some lame excuse to justify their actions.

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Didn't read the whole thing but games are expensive.

60 - 0 chance of a buy.

50 - Would only buy for a multiplayer I enjoyed.

40 - Getting closer but for a launch price not bad.

30 - Perfect.

20 - This is a steal.

10 - Pass. Game probably sucks.

I don't download but I do rent games until they come down in price.

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But thievery is thievery and thieves will take the path of least resistance 9 times out of 10. The companies could change for the better and they'll still find some lame excuse to justify their actions.

...Which is my argument. That making the path of least resistance (Auto patches, working online pay, super easy buy+download/install, no cracks, superfast customer support) will mean that you can turn pirates into paying customers. I've said 10 times in this thread that it won't work for every pirate, but your goal shouldn't be every pirate, it should be maximizing the amount of people you can get to pay.

Your argument is "piracy is bad and pirates suck" and I agree. But my argument isn't "pirates are awesome," it's "this is how you can get money from plenty of pirates." Your argument is about ethics and being a decent human, mine is about providing a service that turns non-consumers into consumers.

This is why free-to-play games are so genius for the genres they can work for. It eliminates pirates altogether. Everyone plays, and everyone can potentially be making you money (Via ad revenue, for one, if you go that route.) or some people making you money. (WIth a cash shop.)

Being able to monetize in a world where things are easily pirated isn't an impossibility, it's a business challenge. Should it be one that exists? Certainly not. But it is, so business must overcome, as they always do.

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Pirates will be pirates no matter what. All game prices could drop to $20 and they'd still steal 'em . If you change your business practices in an attempt to cater to thieves, you're foolish.

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Pirates will be pirates no matter what. All game prices could drop to $20 and they'd still steal 'em . If you change your business practices in an attempt to cater to thieves, you're foolish.

You arent catering to thieves, you are trying to find more potential customers. There is a huge fucking difference.

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Calm down grumpy pants. Pirates will continue to steal no matter what the industry does. Current game pricing is completely fine and does not need to be changed. The video game industry continues to grow every year.

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That's great -- because he's not telling you. He's telling content producers and providers. He could give a shit less what you think, you're a nobody in this equation. The formula here is him and content producers, no one else. That's the whole point.

See, your opinion here doesn't change anything, you can go on moral crusade after moral crusade. That earns companies no money. Opinions that earn money are opinions that hold value. They can monetize what this guy is saying, you on the other hand just come off as a prick, just like the OP (Of the letter itself.) -- but he comes off as a prick who can earn content creators money.

Let me rephrase it...

His opinion can be turned into action by companies, and action is a tangible thing. The result is services like Steam, which were created with ethics that understand exactly what this guy is saying.

Your guys' opinions can't be turned into anything, because pirates don't give a shit if you think they're bad guys. Content producers can't do anything with your opinions on this matter... So... Follow me here?

No. There's no justification for stealing something. Companies shouldn't cater to thieves who are spinless cowards, because they will always find a reason to steal. Like someone else said... this dude would never walk into a store and steal a physical copy. He's just a pathetic excuse for a man who is trying to justify his illegal behavior while hiding behind his computer. There's no moral crusade going on here. I work in law enforcement and respect the distinction between what's legal and what's not.

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Companies shouldn't cater to thieves

Then they should stop complaining that the thieves steal, according to your logic.

p.s. you just called your own ass a thief, because these measures cater to all consumers.

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Steam has pretty much been a gamers dream and yet pirates still steal as much as they ever did Xbob. The industry has changed on PC and save for a couple companies still hanging onto draconian drm and saying fuck you PC gamers (UBI, I'm looking at you.), it's changed for the better in every way imaginable.

And yet pirates still aren't happy.

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Then they should stop complaining that the thieves steal, according to your logic.

p.s. you just called your own ass a thief, because these measures cater to all consumers.

No, I didn't call myself that... you clearly don't know anything about basic laws and their definitions.

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...Which is my argument. That making the path of least resistance (Auto patches, working online pay, super easy buy+download/install, no cracks, superfast customer support) will mean that you can turn pirates into paying customers. I've said 10 times in this thread that it won't work for every pirate, but your goal shouldn't be every pirate, it should be maximizing the amount of people you can get to pay.

Your argument is "piracy is bad and pirates suck" and I agree. But my argument isn't "pirates are awesome," it's "this is how you can get money from plenty of pirates." Your argument is about ethics and being a decent human, mine is about providing a service that turns non-consumers into consumers.

This is why free-to-play games are so genius for the genres they can work for. It eliminates pirates altogether. Everyone plays, and everyone can potentially be making you money (Via ad revenue, for one, if you go that route.) or some people making you money. (WIth a cash shop.)

Being able to monetize in a world where things are easily pirated isn't an impossibility, it's a business challenge. Should it be one that exists? Certainly not. But it is, so business must overcome, as they always do.

lucian was saying that the path of least resistance was stealing

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You arent catering to thieves, you are trying to find more potential customers. There is a huge fucking difference.

And there is zero data showing us what % of pirates would possibly, maybe buy media at X price. Why the hell should we even give them the benefit of the doubt? These companies have no reason to cater to nonexistent customers.

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Steam has pretty much been a gamers dream and yet pirates still steal as much as they ever did Xbob.

This is where you and I disagree. Pirates use Steam all the time for the sales alone.

And there is zero data showing us what % of pirates would possibly, maybe buy media at X price. Why the hell should we even give them the benefit of the doubt? These companies have no reason to cater to nonexistent customers.

Isn't catering to customers you don't yet have the entire basis for business?!

Fuck. This thread is annoying as hell with how obstinately silly people act when the word piracy gets thrown around. "Fuck no don't sell me games cheaper fuck pirates!" Do you even read what the fuck you're typing? Or are you just that fucking thick headed?!

I AM DONE GOOD SIRS. LIVE IN YOUR FANTASY LAND WHERE PIRACY DOESN'T EXIST BECAUSE IT'S BAD AND PIRATES CAN NEVER BE CUSTOMERS BECAUSE THEY'RE 2 DIMENSIONAL EVIL HOLLYWOOD VILLAINS.

1234529240_dog_jumps_out_of_moving_car.gif

LATER BITCHES

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This is where you and I disagree. Pirates use Steam all the time for the sales alone.

Isn't catering to customers you don't yet have the entire basis for business?!

Fuck. This thread is annoying as hell with how obstinately silly people act when the word piracy gets thrown around. "Fuck no don't sell me games cheaper fuck pirates!" Do you even read what the fuck you're typing? Or are you just that fucking thick headed?!

I AM DONE GOOD SIRS. LIVE IN YOUR FANTASY LAND WHERE PIRACY DOESN'T EXIST BECAUSE IT'S BAD AND PIRATES CAN NEVER BE CUSTOMERS BECAUSE THEY'RE 2 DIMENSIONAL EVIL HOLLYWOOD VILLAINS.

1234529240_dog_jumps_out_of_moving_car.gif

LATER BITCHES

Such a child, lol.

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I read the entire thing. Interesting approach.

You guys miss the point. He isn't trying to justify anything. He doesn't have to. As a potential consumer, he is the one in control. He is telling the reality of the situation.

Exactly. What he’s saying is that either the content creators start to accept this reality and its consequences or they don’t and try to change it (see PIPA, SOPA, ACTA and the like). If they keep up the latter they’re in for a surprise, I think, and not the good kind.

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boy it must suck for hi rez, with all those people stealing their new tribes game..

oh wait its free!

think about it.

Think about what?

Just because someone CHOOSES to give away their work does not mean everyone else is going to or should.

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Think about what?

Just because someone CHOOSES to give away their work does not mean everyone else is going to or should.

thats not the point. the point is that piracy is a reality and wont change, so a change in business model is necessary. we know the f2p model is successful for a fact, and it is somewhat relatable to what this guy was saying only things happen much sooner rather than later. people play the game for free and they like it and end up spending money on it that they wouldnt have to begin with, as opposed to downloading a game and liking it and buying the next one.

im not condoning "stealing" games. infact ive ripped into people a few times in person over it, and everyone is absolutely right when they say that it shouldnt happen.. but it does, and to be honest alot of companies DO screw their own fans and customers over in this silly fight and probably dont deserve to make the money that they do.

look at it this way.. imagine if a big game like mass effect came out and it was free, but you only got 3 characters and couldnt go to most of the planets. think of the entire game as basically DLC, and then you could purchase every part you wanted up until it would come out to same cost: 60 bucks, but you could potentially make more money off of the customers who would never have touched the game to begin with. theyll play it and think, "hey this is cool, ill get this planet/character/weapon/mission pack for 10 bucks", thats 10 bucks the company would have never seen otherwise.

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If you can't afford it or don't want to spend the money for it, you can't consume that media.

My only problem with this is when I want to watch a TV show that's not yet available for purchase but is no longer airing. Where can I get it legally? Game of Thrones for example. It ended 6 months ago. It's not for sale for another month. Why not just release it everywhere as soon as the last episode ends? Or release each episode to be purchased individually as soon as it airs? Burning a bunch of blu-rays isn't hard or time-consuming so why is it taking so long to come out? I'm willing to bet HBO "lost" a lot of sales on this. Hopefully the cable providers are compensating them for an intangible amount of money "lost".

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If you can't afford it or don't want to spend the money for it, you can't consume that media.

My only problem with this is when I want to watch a TV show that's not yet available for purchase but is no longer airing. Where can I get it legally? Game of Thrones for example. It ended 6 months ago. It's not for sale for another month. Why not just release it everywhere as soon as the last episode ends? Or release each episode to be purchased individually as soon as it airs? Burning a bunch of blu-rays isn't hard or time-consuming so why is it taking so long to come out? I'm willing to bet HBO "lost" a lot of sales on this. Hopefully the cable providers are compensating them for an intangible amount of money "lost".

youre absolutely right and this falls into the "Service" category. you dont necessarily DESERVE it but either the product is available to the consumer or they will find another way to get it and potentially they will lose a sale. its just the reality of the digital age.

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Isn't catering to customers you don't yet have the entire basis for business?!

How can you cater when you have no data about the potential customers? Seems you missed my point.

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By the way, I just love how Xbob42 is among the most reasonable posters in this thread while most of the other (usually cool-headed) ones are completely losing their shit and abandon all resaonableness :P Knee-jerk reactions sure are fun to watch. Especially if they contradict people’s other stances.

For example, take their usual approach to the drug issue. There their reasoning also follows the “keeping it illegal isn’t doing jackshit and ignoring that fact isn’t helping anyone” argument but here it’s all of the sudden invalid and unacceptable. I know, I know, there are some differences but the essence is the same. Instead of coming up with alternative solutions that acknowledge reality and take it into account they put on their blindfolds and ignore the facts.

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