Details on Stealing

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zengen
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by zengen » Tue May 31, 2016 8:16 pm

Let say you're an artist and you find out your music is uploaded to youtube without your permission. Wouldn't you want that music removed? But why do you want to remove it. Because it would affect the sale of your music. People can just listen to your music for free on youtube, without paying for it. Those people who listen to the music in this way are committing stealing.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue May 31, 2016 8:18 pm

zengen wrote:Let say you're an artist and you find out your music is uploaded to youtube without your permission. Wouldn't you want that music removed? But why do you want to remove it. Because it would affect the sale of your music. People can just listen to your music for free on youtube, without paying for it. Those people who listen to the music in this way are committing stealing.

Man, you need to meet and talk to some actual musicians with albums out. Some people don't mind their stuff being distributed like that.

You have one of the most simpleminded ideas of what constitutes digital "stealing" I've seen - it almost comes straight from RIAA propaganda, frankly. You should educate yourself more on what is actually a fairly complex issue, both legally and ethically.

Your argument has more to do with copyright law (a modern, recent, and often-abused invention BTW) than it does Buddhism.

Againkm, if you want to argue some digital action is "stealing" then really effort and intention are key, not copyright, or RIAA-style "you're taking money out of someone's pocket" arguments. I think there is such a thing as breaking the Second Precept digitally, but watching youtube videos ain't it.

BTW, these are actually the arguments the same people made in the days of cassette tapes (!!!) arguing that people could just record albums/songs off the radio. The more stuff changes..
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Karma Dorje
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Karma Dorje » Tue May 31, 2016 8:37 pm

zengen wrote:
Karma Dorje wrote:So let me rephrase your reply to make it clearer: You. Got. Nothing.
It's common sense. I don't need to flip through pages to convince people.
In other words, you can't be arsed to make an effort to explore the actual Buddhist teachings to make your (untenable) claim. So for all those who copied Buddhist texts prior to copyright law, were they committing theft? Given that this copying stretches back to the time just after Buddha's life, you would expect to find this discussed at length in each of the traditions as stealing is a grave offence. You don't find it discussed at all. How is that for sense common to all Buddhists?

Common sense is not a cypher for that which makes sense to you. That your opinion is not widely shared here should give you pause. There are lots of reasons to reward authors. Fear of breaking the 2nd precept by copying is not one of them.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Karma Dorje » Tue May 31, 2016 8:44 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:I think there is such a thing as breaking the Second Precept digitally, but watching youtube videos ain't it?
It is simply not possible. You can't own a thought or a particular pattern of magnetic impulses. Even if one were to say you could, copying that thought or pattern would never become stealing. It may be against copyright or patent law, but you do not deprive the owner of a tangible item that they possess. The whole idea that it could be stealing is a propaganda metaphor run riot.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by seeker242 » Tue May 31, 2016 8:58 pm

zengen wrote:
seeker242 wrote: As for youtube. Youtube removes content that is posted in violation of copyright. If youtube is not removing it, then one could easily assume that viewing it is being allowed. And if viewing it is being allowed, then certainly there is no issue with any stealing!
A lot of the content on youtube violate copyright. Youtube doesn't remove them. It's too much work for youtube to do that. If by law you're not supposed to watch the content, and you watch it, then you are in fact stealing. Doesn't matter if it's non-tangible good. My advice is to look for official channels on youtube.
Alright. But, just because something is copyrighted, doesn't necessarily mean it's not allowed to be distributed freely and doesn't necessarily mean it's forbidden by law to be viewed. If the copyright holder does not care that it's being viewed, then it's not against the law to view it. Just because it on youtube and copyrighted, does not automatically make it illegal to view. It's actually quite easy to take down a video on youtube with a copyright claim. It takes maybe 5 minutes. In fact, it's so easy to do that people who don't even own the content are making claims on videos and youtube is honoring them...One of the problems with youtube...
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Grigoris » Tue May 31, 2016 9:01 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:BTW, these are actually the arguments the same people made in the days of cassette tapes (!!!) arguing that people could just record albums/songs off the radio.
I used to do that when I was a kid. It was a right pain in the butt waiting for when the song would come on in order to hit the record button, then hoping the dj wouldn't butt in half way through!

Now was David Bowie any the poorer for my actions? Either way he is dead!

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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue May 31, 2016 9:27 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:I think there is such a thing as breaking the Second Precept digitally, but watching youtube videos ain't it?
It is simply not possible. You can't own a thought or a particular pattern of magnetic impulses. Even if one were to say you could, copying that thought or pattern would never become stealing. It may be against copyright or patent law, but you do not deprive the owner of a tangible item that they possess. The whole idea that it could be stealing is a propaganda metaphor run riot.

If someone is deciding to collect reams of things like movies, albums, shows, books etc. by going out of their way to obtain bittorrent client software, or other means of obtaining such things...it could certainly constitute taking what is not freely given in some instances. Is it "stealing" in some official sense? I don't think it is. is it ethically dodgy from a Buddhist standpoint..IMO yes, it can be sometimes, and on a number of levels. The comparison to my mind would be between someone using a service like a library, to someone straight up hoarding books...neither is stealing really, but one can verge on an unhealthy behavior, and is more about collecting and taking things that using them and valuing them. Some people download and collect things with a poverty mentality.

There are so many grey areas though, so I think the only way to be sane about it is to look at the intention. For instance I regularly use a certain piece of software to obtain "free" music, but mainly what I am downloading is out of print albums by artists who are, and have always been on the underground side of things. Personally I don't wish to use this software to build an entire music collection, I use it when (as if often the case with my weird music tastes) something is simply not available in any other way.
Last edited by Johnny Dangerous on Tue May 31, 2016 9:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by zengen » Tue May 31, 2016 9:29 pm

seeker242 wrote: Alright. But, just because something is copyrighted, doesn't necessarily mean it's not allowed to be distributed freely and doesn't necessarily mean it's forbidden by law to be viewed.
Of course. But many videos on youtube violate copyright.
seeker242 wrote:If the copyright holder does not care that it's being viewed, then it's not against the law to view it. Just because it on youtube and copyrighted, does not automatically make it illegal to view.
But I can also say, just because it is on youtube, does not automatically make it legal to view. What if you view it before youtube personnel has time to remove the video? Or if youtube is not aware of the copyright infringement.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue May 31, 2016 9:33 pm

zengen wrote:
seeker242 wrote: Alright. But, just because something is copyrighted, doesn't necessarily mean it's not allowed to be distributed freely and doesn't necessarily mean it's forbidden by law to be viewed.
Of course. But many videos on youtube violate copyright.
seeker242 wrote:If the copyright holder does not care that it's being viewed, then it's not against the law to view it. Just because it on youtube and copyrighted, does not automatically make it illegal to view.
But I can also say, just because it is on youtube, does not automatically make it legal to view. What if you view it before youtube personnel removes the video? Or if youtube is not aware of the copyright infringement.

If your litmus test re: ethics is simply what is "legal", you are in for a wild ride. Do you know what patent trolling is? The legal frameworks of Copyright and patent law are highly abused all the time, and the people doing the abusing are generally much worse ethically than any of the people downloading material for free. You should use your capability of reasoning rather than simply assuming illegal must mean unethical, there are LOTS of things illegal under various systems that have nothing to do with a system of ethics.

Really, comparing Buddhist ethics to this area of law is downright ridiculous, I encourage you do some reading on it.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by zengen » Tue May 31, 2016 9:39 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Man, you need to meet and talk to some actual musicians with albums out. Some people don't mind their stuff being distributed like that.
I was talking about musicians who do mind their stuff being posted on youtube. I mentioned the word "permission". Without permission of the musician, it is same as stealing. I was talking about one case, why did you talk about a different case?
Johnny Dangerous wrote: Your argument has more to do with copyright law (a modern, recent, and often-abused invention BTW) than it does Buddhism.
No, if you take something not given, even intellectual property, it is stealing. If you watch a content on youtube which the owner has not permitted to be distributed freely on youtube, how is it not theft?
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by zengen » Tue May 31, 2016 9:46 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote: If someone is deciding to collect reams of things like movies, albums, shows, books etc. by going out of their way to obtain bittorrent client software, or other means of obtaining such things...it could certainly constitute taking what is not freely given in some instances.
Okay, so what if the same movies, albums, shows etc. are posted on youtube. It is still stealing. Just that the medium is different.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue May 31, 2016 10:08 pm

zengen wrote: I was talking about musicians who do mind their stuff being posted on youtube. I mentioned the word "permission". Without permission of the musician, it is same as stealing. I was talking about one case, why did you talk about a different case?
Which musicians are those? Or are you talking about record companies? They aren't the same thing you know.
No, if you take something not given, even intellectual property, it is stealing. If you watch a content on youtube which the owner has not permitted to be distributed freely on youtube, how is it not theft?
It's not theft because you are not depriving someone of something, your argument would also make it theft to check out books from a library, or to share them with friends. BY your logic, I have "stolen" literally thousands of dollars by using my local library. We have a good library system and I use it for media such as books and movies much or more than I do the internet.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by zengen » Tue May 31, 2016 10:26 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote: It's not theft because you are not depriving someone of something...
Are you sure? What if people don't buy the music because it's available for free illegally on youtube, by no intention of the artist. Then it affects the music sales, and deprive the artist of potential income.
Johnny Dangerous wrote: your argument would also make it theft to check out books from a library, or to share them with friends. BY your logic, I have "stolen" literally thousands of dollars by using my local library. We have a good library system and I use it for media such as books and movies much or more than I do the internet.
Again, we're talking about youtube, by which anyone can post content, even content that violate copyright. Library is different. Library must get permission from author, artists etc. Library also pay the author, artists etc. It's a different case.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue May 31, 2016 10:58 pm

zengen wrote: It's not theft because you are not depriving someone of something..
Are you sure? What if people don't buy the music because it's available for free illegally on youtube, by no intention of the artist. Then it affects the music sales, and deprive the artist of potential income.
This arugment comes primarily from music companies, not from musicians. Again if it is just about potential income, then simply loaning someone a cd is condoning stealing. And once again (please stop ignoring this, I and others have metnioned it) there are many people who choose to leave their stuff up "illegally" on youtube, and thost that don't can get it yanked.
Again, we're talking about youtube, by which anyone can post content, even content that violate copyright. Library is different. Library must get permission from author, artists etc. Library also pay the author, artists etc. It's a different case.
How is it a different case exactly? Libraries pay only for the copies they own, they do not pay royalties or anything like that. So still, if you have this ethical problem with youtube use, you should have the same problem with use of libraries, as by your definition, they are depriving artists and authors of significant amounts of money.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Karma Dorje » Tue May 31, 2016 11:21 pm

You cant deprive someone of something they do not possess. Future earnings are something that does not exist yet hence they can't be stolen.

Really zengen, if you are going to post your opinions on a Buddhist site, you should educate yourself on Buddhist ethics. You should attempt to prove your opinion with an actual argument and not an appeal to commin sense and simply repeating the same assertion ad nauseum. Several people have taken the time to point out your wooly thinking. At least take the time to read the source texts on morality.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by zengen » Tue May 31, 2016 11:28 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote: How is it a different case exactly? Libraries pay only for the copies they own, they do not pay royalties or anything like that. So still, if you have this ethical problem with youtube use, you should have the same problem with use of libraries, as by your definition, they are depriving artists and authors of significant amounts of money.
It is an entirely different case. How can you compare youtube with public libraries? Do public libraries have contents not permitted by the owner? From what I know, libraries do pay something to the artist, not just the cost of the books. Otherwise, no artists would want their books in the library since it deprives artists of significant amount of money. Ask yourself, what would be the incentive?
Last edited by zengen on Tue May 31, 2016 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by zengen » Tue May 31, 2016 11:31 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:You cant deprive someone of something they do not possess. Future earnings are something that does not exist yet hence they can't be stolen.
You can deprive someone of the opportunity. That is still a wrong deed.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue May 31, 2016 11:39 pm

zengen wrote: It is an entirely different case. How can you compare youtube with public libraries? Do public libraries have contents not permitted by the owner? From what I know, libraries do pay something to the artist, not just the cost of the books. Otherwise, no artists would want their books in the library since it deprives artists of significant amount of money. Ask yourself, what would be the incentive?

No they don't, they purchase the books, they do not pay royalties..I'm not sure where you get your information:

https://www.quora.com/How-does-a-librar ... ts-shelves

I can compare it because your problem seems to be that watching illegal material on youtube "deprives people of money", if that is true, it is equally true of libraries which loan cd's, dvd's, books, and ebooks. Please explain why it is true for youtube, but not for libraries.

And actually, at one time (before the digital age) there were all kinds of conniving moneymakers who were upset with libraries for precisely the reason you mention, they were not making people money, and were giving away information "for free". There is no incentive for people to have their stuff in libraries other than having it read/watched/listened to..that is the point of libraries, there is no "incentive" other than being a resource for information, etc. for people who cannot pay...ya know, that's why they are often supported with public funds etc. geez dude...educate yourself.

There are STILL people who feel that way about libraries and feel that libraries are getting away with something, by distributing information with no chance of profit.

Of course libraries are not the same as a giant tech corp owned by Google, but our concern here is with a basic framework of Buddhist ethics for these things, not the status of the entities.. That is what I am addressing - your claim that usage of things that you do not own is automatically "stealing" and breaks the second precept, and you've provided no good reasoning behind it so far.
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by zengen » Tue May 31, 2016 11:45 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote: No they don't, they purchase the books, they do not pay royalties..I'm not sure where you get your information:

https://www.quora.com/How-does-a-librar ... ts-shelves

I can compare it because your problem seems to be that watching illegal material on youtube "deprives people of money", if that is true, it is equally true of libraries which loan cd's, dvd's, books, and ebooks. Please explain why it is true for youtube, but not for libraries.
Oh really? I heard from an author in person, that she gets paid certain $ everytime her book gets checked out at the library. If library deprives so much money from these companies, don't you think these companies would do something about it?
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Re: Details on Stealing

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue May 31, 2016 11:50 pm

zengen wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote: No they don't, they purchase the books, they do not pay royalties..I'm not sure where you get your information:

https://www.quora.com/How-does-a-librar ... ts-shelves

I can compare it because your problem seems to be that watching illegal material on youtube "deprives people of money", if that is true, it is equally true of libraries which loan cd's, dvd's, books, and ebooks. Please explain why it is true for youtube, but not for libraries.
Oh really? I heard from an author in person, that she gets paid certain $ everytime her book gets checked out at the library. If library deprives so much money from these companies, don't you think these companies would do something about it?

Dude...you need to educate yourself better about libraries before continuing this conversation, ..start by reading the whole Quora link.

https://www.plrinternational.com/faqs/faqs.htm#plr

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_Lending_Right

AFAIK the US has no PLR system, which means libraries pay for what they use, and do not pay per authors per checkout. I know it exists other places, but it hardly functions like a "royalty" anyway since you could argue that libraries being publicly funded means these things come from the public budget (i.e. taxes) anyway.
The PLR directive has met with resistance from the side of the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA). The IFLA has stated that the principles of 'lending right' can jeopardize free access to the services of publicly accessible libraries, which is the citizen's human right.[5] The PLR directive and its implementation in public libraries is rejected by a number of European authors, including Nobel Laureates Dario Fo and José Saramago.[6] Conversely, more than 3000 authors signed a petition opposing PLR cuts in 2010. [[[7]]]
And yes, in the past companies HAVE tried to do something about it, and generally are always looking for ways to scheme money out of libraries, it's a known thing to librarians, and has put libraries at the forefront of battles of things just like this.

But all that is beside the point anyway because what I am asking is how borrowing from a library differs from youtube usein an ethical sense, since at the very least we can see that in US there is no huge profit to be directly made form having one's stuff in a library. In either case a person is paying nothing (other than the taxes maybe) in order to use a product.
Last edited by Johnny Dangerous on Wed Jun 01, 2016 12:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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