A more reasoned approach on piracy

Posted on Monday, April 19th 2010 at 10:56 a.m.

Via ArsTechnica , a report is out from the US Government Accountability office concluding that it is “difficult, if not impossible, to quantify th economy-wide impacts” of piracy.

In light of the RIAA/MPAA demands submitted to the IPEC and ranted about by yours truly last week , I am very happy that another branch of the government is seeking to inject some rationality into the IP piracy debate.

Amongst other things, the report debunks three often-cited claims about supposed losses due to piracy, stating the claims “cannot be substantiated or traced back to an underlying data source or methodology”

For years independent experts have taken issue with industry claims about IP losses, specifically the suppositition that every illicit copy represented a lost sale.

I want to make it clear that I do not support piracy - the people who work hard to create things should be paid for their work.  I have always felt however that steps taken to prevent piracy punish legitimate users and the demands for punishment of piracy are wildly out of proportion to the societal impact of those crimes.

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