Thursday, 26 February 2015

Internet Piracy - You're Doing it Wrong

Australia is the worst offender per capita for online piracy apparently.  Oh boo hoo.  Personally I’m sick of the sooky carry-on from the industry heavyweights and how hard done by they are.  Wah wah wah.  You might try listening to the reasons why people resort to piracy instead of pursuing your ridiculously outdated and broken distribution model.  Honestly, open your damn fool eyes and see the shrubbery in the forest or however the saying goes.

Naughty Aussies
We're a very naughty bunch of people apparently.

These corporations who I’m sure are run by half-witted baboons think going after the little guy for exorbitant amounts either through the courts or via ‘speculative invoicing’ is the best approach.  Speculative Invoicing  is where they speculate how much money they possibly lost then try to scare you into paying to make it all go away, in other words, blackmail.  Internet provider iinet are currently in a court battle with a mob who want them to release account details of those who downloaded* ‘Dallas Buyers Club’.  Iinet are pretty much telling them to get stuffed (in a legalistic kind of way) and I say good on you iinet, serve it up them. 

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not advocating piracy here but the problem is being dealt with in entirely the wrong way.  Piracy is a result of an unfair playing field controlled by the film and television heavyweights who refuse to listen to what people actually want.  Seriously, we’re living in a global society more connected than ever before yet these twits still think a delayed release model is adequate.  This, and inflated prices, are what is commonly referred to as the ‘Australia Tax’ and people are jack of it.  We are being made to wait unreasonable times for the release of new TV shows and movies, months and months in some cases. Game of Thrones Season 4 was the single most pirated show recently and do you know why? Foxtel stitched up an exclusive deal with HBO so unless you had Foxtel you had to wait and try to avoid  some twit blabbing about it on Facebook and ruining everything.   

Tyrian doesn't like deals
Even Tyrian thinks we get a raw deal
This sort of garbage doesn’t sit well with a lot of people, and some people simply can’t justify a cable TV subscription for the sake of one show because let’s face it, apart from GoT, what else is on cable worth watching?  I’m not spending my hard earned cash on a 24-hour Everybody Loves Raymond marathon!

There is a light at the end of the tunnel though, we’re finally getting Netflix over here in the coming weeks which is great news, these guys get it; a reasonable amount for access to heaps of streaming content.  I’m one of a few hundred thousand Aussies that already have services like Netflix, Hulu Plus and VUDU** and for literally tens of thousands of movies and a squillion TV episodes I pay around $25 per month – and this includes latest release stuff.   The industry doesn’t like people like us but it’s perfectly legal so they can bugger off.

Netflix goodness

This is what people want, true entertainment on demand, what we want, when we want and it’s encouraging to see providers here starting to cotton onto this.  In addition to Netflix we will have probably the most stupidly named streaming service ever, Stan (really?), Foxtel’s offering of Presto and the already running but underwhelming Quickflix.  Netflix’s announcement they were coming to Australia had an immediate impact on Presto who were quick to drop their prices from $25 per month to $10. 

It will be a fragmented market to begin with but it’s a step in the right direction. We just need Hollywood to pull their heads out of their bums and stop delaying releases otherwise people will continue to find ways around their antiquated restrictions.

Now all we need to do is get Australia’s internet sorted out, but that’s for another rant.

Do you think true on-demand entertainment is the way of the future?

*Downloading a movie is not the big issue here, it’s more those who allow the movie to be uploaded to others (which is the basic function of a peer to peer network such as uTorrent). This is the basis of the claim surrounding Dallas Buyers Club LLC (the rights holders) as they claim one person could potentially be sharing portions of the movie with thousands of other people. This is what they base their speculative invoicing on and feel justified in charging thousands of dollars.  If you receive one of these letters throw it in the bin.
**VUDU is a streaming rental service which is free to join but charges per rental (equivalent pricing to a video shop).

Linking up with With Some Grace for #FYBF