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MPAA Botched Study On College Downloading

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the math-is-hard dept.

Movies 215

An anonymous reader writes "The Associated Press reports that in a 2005 study the MPAA conducted through an outfit called LEK, the movie trade association vastly overestimated how much college students engage in illegal movie downloading. Instead of '44 percent of the industry's domestic losses' owing to their piracy, it's 15 percent — and one expert is quoted as saying even that number is way too high. Dan 'Sammy' Glickman's gang admitted to the mishap, blaming 'human error,' and promised 'immediate action to both investigate the root cause of this problem as well as substantiate the accuracy of the latest report.'"

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215 comments

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Niggers (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22149604)

Yep, they stink!

Re:Niggers (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22149968)

I am Ron Paul, and I agree with the above post. A vote for me is a vote against those damn niggers! Crack whoring baby killing damn niggers, send em all back to darkieland africa where they belong i hate niggers Ron Paul 2008

Re:Niggers (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22150180)

Can't say I like them, myself.

Barack Obama

Re:Niggers (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22150998)

I'm married to one, after a fashion. It's not so bad.

Hillary

Any details on the actual study itself? (3, Insightful)

TheLink (130905) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149608)

What was done in the study? Survey forms etc?

Re:Any details on the actual study itself? (5, Funny)

rob1980 (941751) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149644)

They just e-mailed the CEOs of Sony, Fox, Warner Brothers, etc., and asked them to pick a number between 1 and 50.

Re:Any details on the actual study itself? (5, Funny)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150170)

So the fact that they picked 44 instead of 42 shows their disharmony with life, the universe and everything?

Very interesting, sir! VERY interesting!

Re:Any details on the actual study itself? (5, Funny)

ehrichweiss (706417) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150266)

You forgot to mention how the CEOs, upon learning what the number was for, in hindsight wanted to pick a number between 75 and 98.

Human Error (5, Funny)

snl2587 (1177409) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149624)

Well, I guess changing the results does constitute "human error"...

Re:Human Error (5, Funny)

jd (1658) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149792)

Only if you accept the hypothesis that the MPAA are comprised of humans. I favour the theory that they are, in fact, a consortium of daleks.

Re:Human Error (5, Funny)

Entropius (188861) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149960)

Nope -- if they were a consortium of Daleks, they'd write better dialogue.

Re:Human Error (1)

archivis (100368) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150334)

If only I had mod points.

Re:Human Error (0, Redundant)

urcreepyneighbor (1171755) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150492)

if they were a consortium of Daleks, they'd write better dialogue.
Anyone who understands why that's funny is a loser. Myself included. :(

Re:Human Error (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22150808)

What? Running around all the time yelling "Exterminate! Exterminate!" is better than....

Oh. Now I see your point. And the similarities.

Re:Human Error (4, Funny)

Adambomb (118938) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150528)

I could certainly see it.

litigate. LITIGATE! LITIGATE! LITIGATE!

Re:Human Error (1)

Entropius (188861) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150728)

But what about all those courthouses that have stairs?

Re:Human Error (2, Funny)

peragrin (659227) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151450)

Real Daleks would just level the building until they could gracefully roll through. Sounds a lot like the MPAA now doesn't it?

Re:Human Error (4, Insightful)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150100)

Just wait till they use the new stats to claim efforts are working but more still needs done.

It was not botched (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150512)

The study was fine. It got the result that the MPAA wanted, so how could you call it botched?

Yeah but... (5, Insightful)

RobertM1968 (951074) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149628)

While they are at least admitting that THIS report is highly erroneous, it does not even begin to address the plethora of similar reports they have bombarded the media and Internet with that have similar figures.

So... which reality are they going with? Agreeing that this report is highly off compromises many of their financial claims of the damages file sharing does... or perhaps they will just admit this report is wrong due to "human error" - but the others are right "Please believe everything else we are saying - even though it contradicts our admission of error here."

C'mon... who does the RIAA think they are fooling? (RIAA) retract all your ridiculous claims - or dont bother... the rest of us know the truth - and have for years.

Re:Yeah but... (5, Informative)

WK2 (1072560) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149776)

C'mon... who does the RIAA think they are fooling? (RIAA) retract all your ridiculous claims - or dont bother... the rest of us know the truth - and have for years.

This article is about the MPAA, not the RIAA. It is understandable how you got them mixed up, though. They seem to be molded from the same cloth.

Re:Yeah but... (3, Funny)

Nefarious Wheel (628136) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149866)

This article is about the MPAA, not the RIAA. It is understandable how you got them mixed up, though. They seem to be molded from the same cloth.

There's definitely mold of some sort involved, anyway. Mycology knows better than to give in.

Re:Yeah but... (5, Insightful)

Merusdraconis (730732) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150148)

It took the RIAA members about ten years to get from music being shared on the Net to condoning some kind of online store. It's taken the MPAA members, what, about four? Assuming, of course, that iTunes is the first online store to get some kind of wide approval from the various copyright holders for both examples.

Admittedly the root cause is not that the RIAA/MPAA is inherently evil - they're just PR people, mostly (which negates the whole 'they're not the evil ones' argument but bear with me for a second) - it's the member corporations that have the lawyers that are doing the suing and refuse to change their business model to respond to the market. The root cause of the problem here is that it absolutely blindsided the executives, and they had no-one at any kind of level who could tell them what was going on and what they needed to do about it to respond sensibly to the challenges the Internet posed. These executives didn't give a toss about computers, and frankly who could blame them, they're executives of music and movie companies and actually giving a toss about the industry they're in was seen as being revolutionary.

Instead, they reasoned that they'd be inevitably be reeled in by some kind of conman who came in and spoke big words about Internet at them if they tried doing something, and bunkered down and fought like old men. It's a big paradigm shift to think of one's product as essentially a PR stunt to sell peripheral stuff like concerts and DVDs, and for both those who are about the money and didn't want to experiment with new business models, and those who are about the art and didn't want their 'product' becoming essentially worthless, it's a challenge they aren't up to facing.

Re:Yeah but... (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151326)

Movies were being traded on the internet since at least 1999. That's 9 years. There's a couple video offers online, but as far as I know, none of them actually let you watch the movies on your TV set, short up setting up a computer specifically for your TV. Let me burn a DVD.

Re:Yeah but... (1)

RobertM1968 (951074) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150158)

You are indeed correct... I had planned on putting the obligatory **AA, which got me thinking of the RIAA - add that to not enough coffee and you see what happens! :-)

Thanks

What does this mean for those sued? (1)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151256)

Maybe clutching at some copyrighted straws here, but could it mean that if you are sued you can fight them on the basis that their information is unreliable?

Completely accidental, can happen to anyone (5, Insightful)

Schmool (809874) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149634)

Somehow it always happens to this kind of outfits. Conveniently, the press will jump on the story of those ugly meanies who steal from musicians, but when it's rectification time, that isn't news.

Re:Completely accidental, can happen to anyone (3, Insightful)

gotzero (1177159) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149798)

Exactly, the stat becomes truth by the time it is revealed as false, and no one cares. The BS gets accepted, and those crying foul are regarded as conspiracy theorists...

Re:Completely accidental, can happen to anyone (5, Insightful)

TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150484)

The BS gets accepted, and those crying foul are regarded as conspiracy theorists...
Ever noticed how mainstream media has turned "conspiracy theorist" into a negative label?

No, but seriously, that's exactly what they are. It's just as easy to say, for example "If those statistics were wrong, then how many other similar statistics were also wrong?", than to say "they did it on purpose to infiltrate our legal system". One has a reasonable train of thought behind it and is very constructive, the other is finger-pointing practically devoid of solid evidence, or even a decent plan of action.

Not that I don't disagree (5, Insightful)

Smordnys s'regrepsA (1160895) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150296)

What do you expect when the content producers are the ones producing the news content?

"Human" error (4, Insightful)

symbolic (11752) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149650)

It's the kind of error whose magnitude is inversely proportional to the proximity of one's ass.

First impressions (5, Informative)

darkhitman (939662) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149658)

Of course they promise they'll look into it now, because it doesn't matter anymore. The mass public will remember that the MPAA loses 44% of its profits to piracy. That it's since been proven incorrect is almost inconsequential, when it comes to public opinion: the mass media won't cover the story twice just for the sake of correctness, and people will buy right into the MPAA's 'accidentally-mistaken' survey's results.

Re:First impressions (2)

rolfc (842110) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149856)

Yes, I guess you are right, but for me, I remember that they are liars and I have a place where to point those that are in doubt.

It's an AP report that is linked (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22149892)

Did you even go to the link? It's an AP story which means every print organization in the US, both electronic and paper, is going to regurgitate it. It probably won't make the same headlines as the original figure did but it will still be in there.

Re:It's an AP report that is linked (4, Insightful)

darkhitman (939662) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149946)

Not every story on the AP wire will get published by newspapers that subscribe -- the editors choose what to publish and what not to. I doubt this story will make any but the lengthiest print publications, and certainly not headline any online ones.

Just for sake of argument, let's say you're more than right and this story receives equal coverage on the news; let's say every person who saw the original story sees this correction. Now, it's just a survey, so people know it represents an estimate of the actual percentage. If you were to ask each person what they thought the actual percentage was, would they guess 15%? Or somewhere in-between 15 and 44%? Like my OP's title suggested, first impressions are important -- even when we're talking about numbers.


P.S. And about actually going to the link: come on, man, this is /.

Re:It's an AP report that is linked (3, Informative)

mike2R (721965) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150688)

Well at the time of writing the AP story is dated at 10 hours old by Google, and there are 113 reprints of it according to Google News Sorted by date with duplicates included [google.co.uk] (seem to be a couple of non-duplicates on the same topic as well, Ars Technica for example, and this Slashdot story will probably show up at some point).

I'd expect this number to increase but not spectacularly, so I'd say it's getting reasonable coverage but no, it's not set the world on fire or anything.

Re:First impressions (4, Insightful)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150112)

The thing is, I don't think anyone CARES. Nobody I know even considers downloading from P2P wrong. Some of these people are indeed dense, but even with the smart ones they quickly connect the dots and realize that they aren't taking anything from anyone. Many people actually consider the few of us that download stuff from iTunes "stupid" (eloquent huh?) because I'm paying for something that's available for free in their minds.

And that's exactly what it is. Movies come on all the time on HBO. They don't pay beyond a small subscription fee to watch them (HBO runs $10-12 per month and broadcasts an insane number of movies in that period. If you watched every one subscription fees would be like $0.05 per movie). If you're willing to suffer broadcast you needn't even pay at all. Songs play for free all day long on the radio. The media companies have painted themselves into the corner where people see media as free because largely, it traditionally has been made available as such. Many people have spent their whole lives buying the few pieces of media that were important to them (a pirated copy of Lord of the Rings or the Harry Potter series is not worth it for me - I want the real thing), and just recording the rest of it off of TV or the radio. P2P is simply the newest version of an old trick to these people, and you'll have a VERY hard time convincing them that it's wrong.

As such, this report saying 44% of college students pirate media will likely come across will all the impact of reporting that 44% of college students chop down trees at Christmas time.

Re:First impressions (-1, Troll)

Redlazer (786403) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150508)

While i certainly partake (and encourage others) to download to their hearts desire, i full recognize that I am stealing. Its just that im taking so little from so many, that i dont care.

Now, have i donated money to my favourite bands? Spread the word, and encouraged others to do the same? Damn right.

But to say "they aren't taking anything from anyone"? Hardly correct sir - you ARE still stealing.

I steal my coffee from my college everyday, yet I still buy one a week. Why? Because i recognize that they ARE still providing something i want, and that it costs something to stock something other than Tim Hortons and Starbucks. (Admittedly, of all the chains, Tim Hortons is far and away the king. But theyre much harder to steal from).

I just wish there was a better way to donate to TV show and movie producers (or whoever). But then again, id be hard pressed to send 5$ to Ben Affleck....

Anyways. You get my point.

-Red

Re:First impressions (4, Informative)

mOdQuArK! (87332) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150790)

Bullshit. Copying is not stealing. Copying is _copying_. If you're arguing otherwise, you're arguing from incorrect axioms & any conclusion you reach is pointless.

There's a reason why "Intellectual Property" laws have a whole separate framework of legislation that sets them apart from basic criminal legislation like theft of physical property, and that reason isn't because the legislators thought it would be fun to write the same sorts of laws twice. It's because legislators have to treat the concept of IP protection with a legal rationale which is completely separate from the idea of theft of physical property.

If you want to argue that IP protection is a good thing, then to make any sort of logical headway you're going to have to show (either through logic or empirical evidence) that IP protection provides some sort of net good to the general society. In addition, the issue is so emotionally charged that the argument that "it is obvious" isn't going to fly: you're going to have to provide references to either peer-reviewed economic studies that show a net benefit to society via IP protective-type mechanisms, or references to case studies of comparable societies with and without IP protective-type laws, where an analysis has been done on the relative pros & cons between each society.

Re:First impressions (1)

Tusaki (252769) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151172)

Ah, but should the aim of IP protective-type mechanisms/laws be there for the sake of the net benefit of society? The argument is that the actions of free copying hurt the net profit of the artists/studios thus you "steal" their profit. Ofcourse, you are not giving them your money, which is what makes them so upset.

What *would* be better for society? will we loose artists if their work is not protected? do they need the studios to market and fund them? What is the actual effect? Would 10% of the people who download stuff buy it if they could not download it? Would we have new artists which would do new clever things if there was no piracy today? These are things which cannot be clearly measured, and the answer would vastly differ depending on who you asked. And, depending on that answer, it would lead to the conclusion that more or less protection is "better" for general society. And then again, for better or for worse, there are not many things which are done because they are "better" for society. Because, should doing things for the benefit of society be the ultimate goal?

Re:First impressions (-1, Troll)

ps236 (965675) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151264)

It's called "stealing" because if you bought/rented the movie, then they would get some money, but since you don't, they don't get anything.

In a broad sense: If you buy the movie, the studio has $10, if you download it illegally, they have $0. You may not call this stealing, but I can certainly see the similarity. If the producer had $10 in his pocket and you picked it, you'd call it stealing - so not buying/renting the movie legitimately is the same.

Just because the people losing out have loads of money is not a valid reason to say it's not wrong. If you think they have too much money, you should protest by not watching their movies - watch indie movies instead.

Personally, I don't download movies, it's just too much hassle. I have an 'unlimited rental for £x per month' subscription to Blockbuster which I use - it's much easier.

I *do* occasionally (maybe 2 or 3 times a year) download TV episodes which I've missed because the DVR messed up or something, and I realise that this is 'wrong' because I'm not watching the adverts which pay for that, but (a) I would happily download it with the adverts if the TV company made it available, (b) I fast-forward past the adverts anyway, (c) if I *didn't* download the missed episodes I often wouldn't bother watching the rest of the series, so the TV company would 'lose out' more that way. (I know the concept of 'losing' advertising revenue by me not watching it is a bit specious, but you know what I mean).

Re:First impressions (4, Insightful)

BakaHoushi (786009) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151368)

Hmmm. I didn't go out to see a movie yesterday. That means I didn't give the theater $20. I stole from them!

Sorry, but stealing does not work that way. Theft means one thing and one thing only: To remove physical property from someone so that they may no longer use it and to keep it in your possession.
If you go into someone's house and use something, it's not theft. It's tresspassing.
If you break something of someone else's, it's not theft. It's vandalism.
If you take someone else's idea and claim it as your own, it's plagiarism. Not theft.

See, to steal is not the same thing as to infringe. They are two different words for a very good reason.

Besides, you're assuming that these people who download these movies would pay for them otherwise. Just because I wouldn't pay X dollars to see a movie doesn't mean I wouldn't pay X/2 to see it. Or, heck, some movies are so ridiculous these days, I'd only go to see them if someone paid ME. But I suppose others my settle for "free."

Re:First impressions (-1, Troll)

ps236 (965675) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151462)

I said I see the similarity between 'stealing' and illegally copying movies. Maybe it's different words, but it has the same effect - you are getting something without paying, and someone else is losing out financially.

If you were a computer consultant, and you worked for someone for 5 hours at an agreed price of $50 an hour, and then your customer refused to pay you at the end, you'd probably say that they'd 'stolen $250' from you, even though they haven't really. They haven't got any of your property.

Also, if they then said, "thank you for that, but I think it was only worth $100, so that's all I'll pay" you'd be upset. If you don't want to pay the full price, don't use the service. Watching a movie is like using a service.

Is it OK to sneak into a theme park without paying, and go on the rides, just because they're running half empty - "no one is losing"?

If you want to use a service, whether it's hiring someone to do something, going on rides at a theme park, visiting a museum, watching a movie, or something else, you have to make the decision "is it worth (to me) the money that's being charged". If not, don't do it, if so, then pay.

(FWIW, I agree that the MPAA/RIAA using the words 'stealing' and 'theft' for illegal copying is wrong, but if they said 'downloading movies is copyright infringment which we will persue in the courts' isn't quite as understandable to most people as 'downloading movies is theft' - their idea is to get across to people that it is 'wrong' and can lead to nasty things happening to you if you are found out).

Uh huh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22151454)

It's called "stealing" because if you bought/rented the movie, then they would get some money, but since you don't, they don't get anything.
... and that's called speculation.

I happen to download some stuff now and again, but it's mostly (guesstimate >90%) stuff I would never buy anyway.

Re:First impressions... OR (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22151386)

... Or I could just sue you till you run out of money and say, "If he was innocent he would have won."

Re:First impressions (1)

waferthinmint (1051350) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151098)

Stealing / not stealing... I think that a different and perhaps better metaphor for sharing media is "sourdough". Sour dough is made from strains of yeast that have been carefully cultivated and are carefully guarded. Anyone can make their own but the chance of producing something BAD is pretty high. So far that fits most content, right? Now if I were to take some of Mr AA's starter and share it with my friends, would I have stolen? his starter is not diminished by my taking some. in fact good starter needs to be used and replenished or it goes stale. (again fits most big studio content) Now the original act of taking the starter need not be accomplished by me: if I just put a jar of warm sugarwater and flour near an open window at AA's Bakery I can grab the starter, or I can scrape the apron of a worker there. sharing the starter is free or nearly so and each copy if transfered carefully is almost perfectly identical. I believe the only stealing is if someone puts a spoon in the jar: certainly no one of my friends' copies are theft even though they are the same as the original.

Re:First impressions (1)

ps236 (965675) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151400)

Let's see...

You spend $10,000 developing your own 'special' sourdough starter. Then you sell it to 5 people. Because they can't afford to spend $2,000 each to buy it, you sell it for $10 each, but tell them 'I'll give you it for this price, as long as you don't let anyone else have any'. You'd be miffed if they gave a bit to each of their friends, or if they started selling it themselves without your permission.

The movie companies COULD charge everyone $20,000,000 to see a film, and forget about piracy since their costs have been covered by the first person to see the film, but that obviously wouldn't work, so they only charge a small percentage to the people who do see it, and need lots of people to see it (and pay to see it!) to cover their costs.

Re:First impressions (2, Insightful)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150920)

By infringing on the copyright of big media, you hurt those who would provide you with what you want. There are many indie to small time producers out there putting shows online (I'll admit I don't know of many online-only movies), and by pirating instead of going to these people, you're hurting them. Either pay for the content or go to the indie producers, or go to something else who you'll inevitably help. But whileever you pirate, you're simply as bad as the MPAA.

Re:First impressions (1)

arrrrg (902404) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150378)

Of course they promise they'll look into it now, because it doesn't matter anymore.

Or maybe it does matter. They got the benefit of claiming 44% losses 2 years ago, and now that they revise the estimate down, they can put out a new "study" claiming 44% losses this year *and* claim that losses have more than tripled in the past 2-3 years! The horror! Then, in 2010 ... well, you get the idea.

Re:First impressions (1)

rhizome (115711) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150414)

Of course they promise they'll look into it now, because it doesn't matter anymore.

Should be fruit of the poisoned tree. Every law that touched that figure should be automatically repealed. If it isn't that way, it should be.

[this is not legal advice] (3, Interesting)

adolf (21054) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149664)

Remember, kids: In America, downloading movies isn't illegal; uploading them is.

(I'd tell you all how (in a world of BitTorrent) this can be mad to work, but doing so would violate the First and Second Rules, respectively.)

The First Rule... (0)

Smordnys s'regrepsA (1160895) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150314)

We Do not Talk about UseNet?

Dude! (1)

Gazzonyx (982402) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150364)

Dude! You just broke the first rule, again!

Semantics (1)

Smordnys s'regrepsA (1160895) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150438)

I talked about nothing, only typed. They way I figure it - if you have to be told *verbally*, you shouldn't be going.

Re:Semantics (1)

adolf (21054) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150604)

*sigh*

Would somebody now please put the cat back into the bag, again?

Root cause of this problem would be: (4, Insightful)

mdenham (747985) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149674)

Fearmongering, obviously. "ZOMG IT'S 15 PERCENT" doesn't have quite the same impact as "OH LORD THEY'RE CAUSING NEARLY HALF OUR LOSSES".

Re:Root cause of this problem would be: (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150244)

Fearmongering, obviously. "ZOMG IT'S 15 PERCENT" doesn't have quite the same impact as "OH LORD THEY'RE CAUSING NEARLY HALF OUR LOSSES".
Exaggeration is not fear-mongering. Yours is the second post in the last day or so to get it wrong. Fear-mongering is about inducing or playing upon actual visceral fears that the public has. You know, of dying or of your family dying, that sort of thing. The public in general doesn't give a rat-sass about the fiscal health of the movie studios. They certainly do not lie awake in bed at night worrying about it the way some people do about terrorism.

Re:Root cause of this problem would be: (3, Informative)

Alsee (515537) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150284)

Actually if you kept reading it was 3% attributed to college campuses (the issue here).

Not to mention that the "losses" figure is entirely fictitious in the first place. 3% of a fiction.

-

The truth wears spandex. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22149698)

Well before this ball gets too far ahead. Let's ask ourselves, if the MPAA can overestimated their "facts"? What makes anyone think that the opposition has underestimated theirs?

Re:The truth wears spandex. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22149994)

especially considering that at least where I live virtually no one actually buys music- free as in aarg

Re:The truth wears spandex. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22150120)

Yeah, but don't worry we're taking immediate action and launching a thorough investigation into how this happened. Probably human error.

There, fixed that for you, once and for all.

Heath Ledger is dead (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22149710)

I guess he is having cowboy buttsex in hell.

Sodomy-eeeeee!

Re:Heath Ledger is dead (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22149948)

Inappropriate!

I laughed.

just as I posted on K5... (5, Interesting)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149720)

My content from the financial perspective of DRM.. and pretty much why they're done for.

___
What alternatives do we have?

Our body of law gives rights to the creators and their protected ability of being the one to approve copies. Regardless of whether we agree or now with this, that is our situation.

Now, we take this to the "digital domain". Those older creators want, no.. need these protections as they see in the non-internet world. The only real way to "guarantee" this is by digital restrictions. The best way I think of this is that of a akin to a capability system and the copyright maintainer has an account on your machine.

However, our machines are ours. The geeks amongst us demand that we are able to control our software and hardware. What was unable to do in WinXP, Vista seems to offer the beginning of that capability system with the media companies at the kill switch. And to top it off, Vista has remotely disabling drivers for "holes" that might appear. For those that own a machine, this OS laughs in their face, as if saying "Bring It On!"

And there are many casualties. Those casualties are the Joe and Jane Publics that don't understand this issue close enough, or think that all needs to be done is burn to DVD... just like the iPod to music. When they find out that they are locked with binary garbage that cannot be used for any fair use purpose (backing up owned DVDs is fair usage).

And where are we now? When the users know they are eventually shafted, those that have the know-how will show others where to download the movies and the music they legitimately bought. Once they know they were taken advantage of, any feeling of "theft" (or whatever you call it) will be gone. The media companies had their chance to do their dealings with the public honestly, but have failed.

Just like língchí.. Death by a thousand cuts.

From K5 [kuro5hin.org]

And just to expand on that, the media guys had their chance to do honest dealings with the public and the artists. They instead thought they could continue on with their little game. They simply cant.

As a last comment, ill give the link [nationalreview.com] and the quote of the starting of the nasty fall of the media empire...

This past week's issue of The Economist has a heart-rending vignette from one of the most ruthlessly capitalist industries on the planet: "In 2006 EMI, the world's fourth-biggest recorded-music company, invited some teenagers into its headquarters in London to talk to its top managers about their listening habits. At the end of the session the EMI bosses thanked them for their comments and told them to help themselves to a big pile of CDs sitting on a table. But none of the teens took any of the CDs, even though they were free. "That was the moment we realized the game was completely up," an EMI exec told the magazine.

Re:just as I posted on K5... (4, Insightful)

Volante3192 (953645) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149854)

But none of the teens took any of the CDs, even though they were free. "That was the moment we realized the game was completely up," an EMI exec told the magazine.

Maybe the teens were thinking, "It's a trap. Remember what Sony did?"

Re:just as I posted on K5... (3, Interesting)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150040)

I really doubt it.

Considering the big wigs brought them within headquarters, they most likely offered the best of what they had to offer. Maybe it was good, I dont know. All I do know is that music and movies are easy to get to online, pay or no pay. Why deal with archaic discs with formats from the 80's when 12 mp3s download in a reasonable amount of time, legality or not?

A service that could keep the record companies afloat is if they opened their collections completely, flat rate .10$ per download. And if you lost the songs, another .10$. Dont keep records of who bought what, too much bookkeeping, and it's just a dime. I just wonder how much money they would make on that kind of deal...

I'm not so sure (1)

Smordnys s'regrepsA (1160895) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150348)

As a twenty-something, my first reaction would be "they're on to me, it's a trap!"

Followed quickly by, "I could just trade them in for money at Zia's."

Obviously, these being teenagers, I can forgive them for not thinking far enough ahead to have the second thought.

Re:just as I posted on K5... (1)

Mitreya (579078) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150466)

A service that could keep the record companies afloat is if they opened their collections completely, flat rate .10$ per download. And if you lost the songs, another .10$. Dont keep records of who bought what, too much bookkeeping, and it's just a dime. I just wonder how much money they would make on that kind of deal...

Quite a bit, I think. I know that I have used allofmp3.com regularly. And I know I have downloaded some songs multiple times (sometimes at least 3 times) because at 10-15c a song it is easier to just download it again than to look for the place where I saved/downloaded it originally.

just as I posted on "/."... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22150954)

It looks like I'm the only one here to take on the argument. As much as this forum is big on wishful thinking, care to show me how the "media empire" is actually "falling"? Changing, maybe? Falling? I doubt it. Were else would piratebay get it's material? Certainly not from all the independents out there. And even if it was? What makes anyone here think the independents like being abused by the public any more than the big guys do?

Re:just as I posted on K5... (1)

penix1 (722987) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149978)

But none of the teens took any of the CDs, even though they were free. "That was the moment we realized the game was completely up," an EMI exec told the magazine.


Maybe they should have saved those Perry Como, The Early Years CDs for someone a little more mature than teen girls?!?!

Re:just as I posted on K5... (2, Interesting)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150156)

But none of the teens took any of the CDs, even though they were free. "That was the moment we realized the game was completely up

That's just weird. Not sure I believe it happened. I don't like most of what's popular these days, but even I'd grab some freebies just to see what's up.

Re:just as I posted on K5... (1)

letchhausen (95030) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150328)

There isn't enough time in the world for wasting on the "product" that that crap company puts out. Perhaps if they had anything resembling music in that pile those kids would of cared. I'm sure that during the course of that meeting they'd sussed out the spines of the cd's and were likely just shaking their heads and laughing when they got back out on the street.

Re:just as I posted on K5... (1)

Alsee (515537) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150544)

none of the teens took any of the CDs, even though they were free.

That's just weird. Not sure I believe it happened.


Consider, was it even worth the effort needed to convert the disks to MP3?

I have all the old music CDs that I actually WANTED and PAID FOR from the 80's and 90's, and it's generally not worth the hassle of manually converting them to MP3. Is it really worth grabbing random disks to sort through if I then had to MP3 convert anything I actually wanted to keep? You have to rip any good songs to MP3 to put into your collection to shuffleplay with everything else. As it is, my problem is that my computer is overloaded with MP3s and I'm having trouble finding the time to finish DELETING stuff.

And I'm rather older than the teens they brought in. Those kids weren't buying CDs in the 80's and 90's. Many of them likely grew up on MP3s, never mucking around with crummy plastic disks in the first place. Stupid disk shaped lumps of plastic with (maybe) two or three songs you do want locked in the middle of a sequence with a bunch of crappy songs you don't want.

I probably would have let everone else take anything they might want first, then scooped up any leftover disks. But that's only because I collect snail-mail spam CDs (like from AOL) and junk CDRs and other junk disks with the idea that some day I'll save enough and maybe mirror-disk wallpaper a wall. So far I have 55.

CDs are junk plastic. They're wallpaper.

-

huh? (1)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149804)

What losses?

http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20040903-4156.html

Re:huh? (1)

speculatrix (678524) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150636)

er, that report was FOUR years ago.

The media's for sale (1)

jihadist (1088389) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149840)

Whatever sells newspapers is good. Bad news sells, and investing time into real research is too difficult. So accept the industry shills, because even if they lied, You Sold Newspapers.

The RIAA is like a labor union or other political lobby. They play the game. They win when people take them seriously. That's why it's awesome people are hacking their lamer websites.

Another 27% (4, Funny)

EEPROMS (889169) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149982)

Of losses were found up the marketing departments nose.

Re:Another 27% (2, Funny)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150042)

in point of fact 2% of the 27% was left on the hookers' asses.

Re:Another 27% (1)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150310)

I thought that was Darl McBride? He's looking pretty hard for money these days.

Leverage... (2, Insightful)

secretwhistle (1116881) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149984)

From TFA:

"The 44 percent figure was used to show that if college campuses could somehow solve this problem on this campus, then it would make a tremendous difference in the business of the motion picture industry," Luker said.

Looks like they need some huge numbers to get their campus funding bill pushed through with all those nasty, torrent-blocking strings attached.

Never attribute to stupidity (1)

rrohbeck (944847) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150252)

that which can be adequately explained by malice.
As long as there are valid business reasons.

Lies, damned lies and stats (1)

weighn (578357) | more than 6 years ago | (#22149986)

How is vastly overestimating (to enhance their point) equal to "botching"?

Damn, we missed the quota. (2, Insightful)

overkill1024 (1016283) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150056)

I have been slacking off as of late. I'll just have to triple my output from last semester, but I doubt everyone will so I'll have to compensate, maybe twice that? Does it count if I watch a movie again or show it to a group? Frankly, there isn't much worth downloading.

421 burners (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150058)

"There were only 156 actual burners, but some run at very high speeds: some as high as 40x. This is well above the average speed,"

Indeed... (1)

Sfing_ter (99478) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150072)

Are our movies not good enough for them to cause us a 44% loss of our "PROFITS"

Rip, rip, rip that DVD! (1, Insightful)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150132)

Most folks I know gave up on downloading illegally- movies at least. Music is still a download staple. The movie files took too long, or it wound up corrupted or some geektard used the MOLOTOV9 video codec that only runs on mainframes in secret Russian gulags, or some other nonsense.

We all just copy Netflix/Blockbuster Online rentals and share via physical copies. The results are perfectly consistent.

Good... (1)

Smordnys s'regrepsA (1160895) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150420)

Has that been declared Fair Use, or is it just as illegal? Because, if it is something they'll go after me for anyway, I'll stick to downloading screener copies as they come out. Same quality, without the wait or the need to buy physical disks.

Casablanca (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22150186)

"Round up the usual suspects!"

Profits? (4, Insightful)

rossz (67331) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150220)

This is the same industry that had the balls to say the movie "E.T." didn't make a dime.

And the "root cause" of their error can be attributed to their absolute requirement that they prove huge loses (on their imaginary profits) so they could go to congress and demand "something be done."

lying liars (2, Insightful)

ChipMonk (711367) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150708)

This is the same industry that had the balls to say the movie "E.T." didn't make a dime.

The Writers' Guild of America strike puts the lie to that. The media producers are making boatloads of money, and the WGA wants their fair share as creators of a lot of the content.

"human error" (2, Informative)

seeker_1us (1203072) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150242)

Didn't they say something similar when they found out Sadaam had no WMD?

Typical misleading title. (1)

taustin (171655) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150258)

...the movie trade association vastly overestimated how much college students engage in illegal movie downloading.

What makes you think that's a "botch"?

The human error is actually... (1)

letchhausen (95030) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150304)

the fact that this scumbag organization exists. Hopefully all the members will die horribly painful deaths. Not quiet pill laden deaths like Heath Ledger but thousands of molten CD's shoved up their butts. With a pitchfork.

Lost profits???? (4, Interesting)

secretwhistle (1116881) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150482)

With the motion picture industry's creative accounting, it's a wonder there's any "profit" to be lost. The following is taken from the Hollywood Law Cybercenter website. http://www.hollywoodnetwork.com/Law/Hart/columns/ [hollywoodnetwork.com]

A substantial portion of the direct cost of a film produced on a studio lot is charges for the use of the studio's facilities, including the sound stages, vehicles, equipment, etc. Although the studio incurs no out-of-pocket expense for providing these facilities, it insists that the charges are proper because they comply with the SPD language defining production cost. The charges made for using these facilities are substantially in excess of the actual costs... For example, a studio will charge a motion picture for the use of a vehicle at a rental rate based upon the rental rate being charged by the leading rental-car companies, typically $45 per day or more. This charge, which includes a profit rate equivalent to the rental companies' profit rate, will be made even if the vehicle has long ago been purchased by the studio, and even if the cost of the vehicle has been charged against other films...

I would think this would keep them rolling in money without having to deal with inconveniences like paying taxes or profit percentages.

Lying in Court? (1)

cheros (223479) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150588)

Q: has this ever been submitted as evidence in a Court case? Could be fun to revisit that ..

This is much like Breathalyzers (5, Insightful)

Evets (629327) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150608)

When the decision of whether or not to allow Breathalyzer evidence into court came into play, they downplayed the inaccuracy issues by a factor of 10. I want to say they report inaccurate results 20% of the time and they claimed a 2% error rate, but you'll have to ask jeeves or google if you want the right numbers.

The parallel I see is that the damage is done and at this point it is unlikely to be undone.

They presented the argument they wanted to the people they wanted when they wanted to do it. Although many universities do not have programs in place to prevent piracy, the wheels are in motion and the fact that the decision to do so was based on inaccurate information will not stop anything.

Didn't see this one coming (1)

bogjobber (880402) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150838)

I understand why record companies are doing crap like this, scare tactics are basically all they have left. But movie studios already have a system that can survive the digital era. They are rolling in cash right from DVD sales, and theaters aren't going away any time soon. But the same people they are going after with lies, threats, and misinformation campaigns are the people that are going to be the biggest consumers in five or ten years. How can they not see that?

Get a comprehensive digital distribution system in place so that the "Napster of movies" never happens, and try to gain customers, not scare them away. It really is that simple.

Sorry, I downloaded... (2, Interesting)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150858)

... these songs, yeah I know, it is a lot of them. I know that's wrong, but that's a human error, you can surely understand that ?

Hum could it be (1)

The Seventh Sign (956106) | more than 6 years ago | (#22150926)

Root cause of the piracy problem with their study.

Could it just be crap movies, overpriced tickets, and crappy treatment of their customer base??

Imagine that people voting with their dollars.
TSS

In the spirit of the season - a timely quote (0)

mi (197448) | more than 6 years ago | (#22151240)

Instead of '44 percent of the industry's domestic losses' owing to their piracy, it's 15 percent

To which I reply:

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. [quotationspage.com]

Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963 US black civil rights leader & clergyman (1929 - 1968)

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