Entertainment Welfare

Cliffy B on game piracy:

I had dinner with a certain gaming executive a few months ago and one of the topics we discussed were sales and piracy. He told me he had the numbers of their recent release – a great game that got very good reviews and was enjoyed by many. He said they had stats on the PC version sales versus piracy and the numbers were staggering. It was something around 4-1 in regards to purchased copies versus torrented ones. And we wonder why Blizzard, who often can Do No Wrong, forced us to be online for Diablo 3.

Peter Cohen on The Loop also wrote about piracy recently:

When the studios make it hard for you to have content you want, you should just live without it, or reward other content providers who make it easier for you to do business with them.

Sounds easy, and Marco Arment has made this point before.

Cliffy B, again:

But let’s face it. If you’re a broke college guy and you want to be a part of the cultural zeitgeist you will torrent about as often as you fap, and not feel a single tinge of guilt about it because, hey, it’s HBO, a big, evil corporation, so fuck them!

People pirate Game of Thrones to keep up with current events. They want be part of the Games of Thrones club right now. Netflix has all the episodes of Lost, but who cares. Now we know how it ends (it sucked) and there’s no cultural momentum and incentive to watch it. Nobody talks about Lost at the water cooler now – they’re talking about Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead.

I know that doesn’t justify piracy, but it’s one reason why it happens besides “people are just cheap.”

Cliffy again:

Ultimately what gets me about all of this, and the point that I’m getting at, is that while I know we can’t educate people about piracy, I can’t help but think that, as a paying HBO subscriber, I’m paying for the show that other people are illegally acquiring.

It feels like some sort of…”Entertainment Welfare” to me.