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morality of breaking copyright restrictions
Posted: 16 March 2014 08:27 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Studies in human dilemmas

The Set Up.

At a community theater,
actors include some personal VIPs

Before the performance it is announced that no pictures or videos are allowed.
But, no one is recording the event.

OK so someone surreptitiously uses thee ol new fangled phone to record various scenes.
All but one turns out to be unusable crap.
But, one is a total home run, thanks mainly to the singer’s performance…
that no one else recorded.  But, a singing performance that was incredible and beautiful and worth sharing.

What’s the right thing to do?… well considering, that the ‘original sin’ of recording was already committed.
. . .  or not

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Posted: 01 April 2014 04:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Well, being that copy right laws are there to protect the personal work of people and I think we all here can appreciate the premise and rationale behind them, I think the only ethical answer is to say respect the copy right. Most people state you can obtain permission to share by writing the owner….but you would first have to admit to recording it first.

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Posted: 01 April 2014 06:56 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Don’t get me wrong I have great respect for copyright laws and though I share a lot of stuff on my own blogs, I abide by the rules.


Ah but these circumstances - a community theater… no official recording being made… no sales profits to gouge…

and the result is a unique “historic” video of a great little song, by a fantastic young voice…

And the artist in question, plus her VIP fans,  have a copy in hand…  seems to me no harm, no foul.
What can I say, sometimes bootlegging can leave a really warm good feeling inside at least when one scores a home run with it.  cool smirk

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Posted: 01 April 2014 07:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm - 01 April 2014 06:56 AM

Don’t get me wrong I have great respect for copyright laws and though I share a lot of stuff on my own blogs, I abide by the rules.


Ah but these circumstances - a community theater… no official recording being made… no sales profits to gouge…

and the result is a unique “historic” video of a great little song, by a fantastic young voice…

And the artist in question, plus her VIP fans,  have a copy in hand…  seems to me no harm, no foul.
What can I say, sometimes bootlegging can leave a really warm good feeling inside at least when one scores a home run with it.  cool smirk


Seems to me that the theater could record the performance and sell the recordings themselves. That would kill two birds with one stone. The theater would make an extra profit on the recordings and nobody would be likely to buy a surreptitiously recorded and inferior product. And there would be no lack of a good “historic” video of the performance.

Lois

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Posted: 06 April 2014 08:19 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Lois - 01 April 2014 07:38 AM
citizenschallenge.pm - 01 April 2014 06:56 AM

Don’t get me wrong I have great respect for copyright laws and though I share a lot of stuff on my own blogs, I abide by the rules.


Ah but these circumstances - a community theater… no official recording being made… no sales profits to gouge…

and the result is a unique “historic” video of a great little song, by a fantastic young voice…

And the artist in question, plus her VIP fans,  have a copy in hand…  seems to me no harm, no foul.
What can I say, sometimes bootlegging can leave a really warm good feeling inside at least when one scores a home run with it.  cool smirk


Seems to me that the theater could record the performance and sell the recordings themselves. That would kill two birds with one stone. The theater would make an extra profit on the recordings and nobody would be likely to buy a surreptitiously recorded and inferior product. And there would be no lack of a good “historic” video of the performance.

Lois

… and I would have been more than happy to buy a copy or two.
So instead of have a very special bootleg.  cheese

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Posted: 02 May 2014 11:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm - 16 March 2014 08:27 PM

Studies in human dilemmas

The Set Up.

At a community theater,
actors include some personal VIPs

Before the performance it is announced that no pictures or videos are allowed.
But, no one is recording the event.

OK so someone surreptitiously uses thee ol new fangled phone to record various scenes.
All but one turns out to be unusable crap.
But, one is a total home run, thanks mainly to the singer’s performance…
that no one else recorded.  But, a singing performance that was incredible and beautiful and worth sharing.

What’s the right thing to do?… well considering, that the ‘original sin’ of recording was already committed.. . .  or not

 

I would say the right thing to do would be to send the copy to the performer. It’s theirs and they’ve a right to it. It still exists and is not lost so it will probably be saved by the performer and someday archived in their body of work.

[ Edited: 02 May 2014 12:01 PM by MzLee ]
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Posted: 20 May 2014 07:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm said:

>>>Before the performance it is announced that no pictures or videos are allowed.
But, no one is recording the event.

OK so someone surreptitiously uses thee ol new fangled phone to record various scenes.
All but one turns out to be unusable crap.
But, one is a total home run, thanks mainly to the singer’s performance…
that no one else recorded.  But, a singing performance that was incredible and beautiful and worth sharing.

What’s the right thing to do?… well considering, that the ‘original sin’ of recording was already committed.
. . .  or not
<<<

Me:

My take is that it is clearly an immoral act.  You broke an agreement for no reason except your own selfish desires.

That being said, it is an immoral act of epically minute proportions—particularly if the recording is for personal use only.

So my verdict: Yes, it is immoral—about as immoral as spitting on the sidewalk.  Actually, not even that bad.  I wouldn’t lose any sleep over it.

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Posted: 20 May 2014 11:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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It seems selfish and disrespectful of the artist’s wishes, but it is a small infraction, until everyone starts doing it. Like spitting on the sidewalk, one or two is not so bad but a sidewalk awash in spittle? I think it’s tacky, but it takes all kinds to make a world.

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Posted: 23 May 2014 09:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Handydan - 20 May 2014 11:14 PM

It seems selfish and disrespectful of the artist’s wishes

It had nothing to do with the artist’s wishes - it was about the lawyer’s small print

As for the artist.  The artist is tickled pink that she has a recording of that epic moment in time.
Hell, it’ll go down as one of my hero moments when I’m doing my final accounting.  cool smirk

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Posted: 27 May 2014 02:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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As someone who produces copyrighted content and is aware of how much artists lose through piracy I think your first mistake was in violating the agreement you made when you went to the performance. When you purchase a ticket for a performance you agree to the rules set forth by the artists and their company. If you don’t agree you are free to leave. Once the performance starts you have legally agreed to the terms. Why you decided that you had the right to record a performance when you knew it was not allowed is unclear to me but that action was clearly wrong and immoral.

Having committed the act you had several obligations if you wanted to rectify what you had done. One was to apologize to the artists. Secondly you are obligated without exception to send all copies of the recording to the the proper people. That may be the artists themselves or if the performance was owned by a production company then you need to send it to them.

I am not really sure what the confusion is here. Recording a work of art without permission is theft. The same as if you had stolen a painting from a museum. This was not a “hero moment” as you have labeled it. Regardless of the ultimate outcome it was selfish and dishonorable. The artist may not even own the performance, in which case her apparent approval of your actions does not nullify the fact that you have stolen something from someone else. Even if she is the rightful owner, her approval only shows her ignorance and certainly does not constitute a blanket authorization for others to do the same thing to other artists.

[ Edited: 27 May 2014 02:40 PM by macgyver ]
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Posted: 27 May 2014 03:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Handydan - 20 May 2014 11:14 PM

It seems selfish and disrespectful of the artist’s wishes, but it is a small infraction, until everyone starts doing it. Like spitting on the sidewalk, one or two is not so bad but a sidewalk awash in spittle? I think it’s tacky, but it takes all kinds to make a world.

“[A] sidewalk awash in spittle”!  That is a disturbing image!

An atmosphere awash in CO2.  I think driving one’s car to the play/musical and adding that little bit to anthropogenic global warming is just as bad a spitting on the sidewalk and adding that little bit of spittle to the river of spittle.  Worse, actually.  And perhaps more immoral than making that unauthorized recording.

I am, of course, approaching this from a utilitarian/consequentialist moral perspective.  Things get murky very quickly in trying to assess how much harm an action causes to overall human well-being (or the well-being of sentient creatures in general).

Again, my assessment is that it is immoral, but not very.

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Posted: 27 May 2014 04:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Bug we can use your approach to analyze this a bit. The downside to looking the other way when someone infringes on copyright law is that gradually it becomes more acceptable and more people do it. This deprives artists of income which not only hurts them but hurts art lovers because fewer artists will produce less art. You can always look at the consequences of a single action in a vacuum if you want to but we would be fooling ourselves if we pretended that social movements and mass behavior were anything more than the cumulative actions of individuals. Its self serving and dishonest to gauge the morality of this incident only by the effect of this one person on the small number of people around him.

The up side is that one person got an unauthorized recording of their performance that they otherwise would not have had.

This is clearly an immoral and unethical act. If we are going to judge start splitting hairs and discuss degrees of immorality we have to look at the big picture. Citizen is here looking for some reassurance from the masses that he didn’t do anything bad. I think he may even be looking for a pat on the back. I think as a society ( even just a small one on a message board) it is our responsibility to point out this was not an act of heroism but a selfish act of theft.

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Posted: 27 May 2014 07:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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macgyver - 27 May 2014 04:46 PM

Bug we can use your approach to analyze this a bit. The downside to looking the other way when someone infringes on copyright law is that gradually it becomes more acceptable and more people do it. This deprives artists of income which not only hurts them but hurts art lovers because fewer artists will produce less art. You can always look at the consequences of a single action in a vacuum if you want to but we would be fooling ourselves if we pretended that social movements and mass behavior were anything more than the cumulative actions of individuals. Its self serving and dishonest to gauge the morality of this incident only by the effect of this one person on the small number of people around him.

The up side is that one person got an unauthorized recording of their performance that they otherwise would not have had.

This is clearly an immoral and unethical act. If we are going to judge start splitting hairs and discuss degrees of immorality we have to look at the big picture. Citizen is here looking for some reassurance from the masses that he didn’t do anything bad. I think he may even be looking for a pat on the back. I think as a society ( even just a small one on a message board) it is our responsibility to point out this was not an act of heroism but a selfish act of theft.

Well, this is why ethical questions (using a utilitarian/consequentialist framework) are so complicated.  It’s kind of like asking whether your vote counts in a national election.  The honest and depressing truth is that no individual person’s vote has ever meant anything in a large-scale election—that is to say, no major election has ever been decided by one vote (that I know of).  But, as you point out, the consequences of such actions (like not voting) extend beyond the individual act.  One’s actions influence others and, like a butterfly being the ultimate cause of a hurricane, there may be a ripple effect.

Hence, global warming.

Point taken.

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Posted: 04 June 2014 07:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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macgyver - 27 May 2014 02:10 PM

As someone who produces copyrighted content and is aware of how much artists lose through piracy I think your first mistake was in violating the agreement you made when you went to the performance.

For argument sake, Why couldn’t one ask by what right did the Theater invoke that clause?

The play has been done a few thousand times over -
It was a student, non-professional production (though very high class) -
There was no official recording being made (in which case I would have happily purchased one or two copies) - so there was no enterprise to infringe on.
There seems no financial reason for the Playhouse restriction - it was a matter of formality - question the formality kiss
Furthermore, it’s not something I (or anyone else) is making money off of, which I admit would add a whole different dimension to this inquiry smirk  .

Incidentally, another point worth considering. . .
As much as I appreciate copyright laws, and artists wanting/needing to make a living and all that . . . 
I believe sometimes the talk gets a tad too sanctimonious holier than thou (in an Ayn Randian sort of manner). 

In the real world all great (and lesser) artists learned from other great and lesser artists who came before,
they copied and mastered what others had done,
then developed their own revolutions,
based on their own chops
and their personal digestion and regurgitation of all they could absorb.

It’s part of the process - and I believe an aspect that get’s forgotten too often.
{Though has absolutely nothing to do with my particular incident, which was ‘spectator preservation act’ as much as anything}
  smile

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Posted: 04 June 2014 07:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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citizenschallenge.pm - 04 June 2014 07:27 PM
macgyver - 27 May 2014 02:10 PM

As someone who produces copyrighted content and is aware of how much artists lose through piracy I think your first mistake was in violating the agreement you made when you went to the performance.

For argument sake, Why couldn’t one ask by what right did the Theater invoke that clause?

If I really wanted to be Republican/Libertarian about it, I could point out that I wasn’t warned about the restriction before purchasing my ticket -
thus they lured me into the place and then sprang this unreasonable demand upon me.

Take that CATO  cheese

[ Edited: 09 June 2014 10:47 PM by citizenschallenge.pm ]
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Posted: 04 June 2014 07:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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BugRib - 27 May 2014 07:46 PM

… Hence, global warming.

Nah,
global warming is caused because We The People
are dumping way the hell too much carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into our atmosphere.

Nothing more… nothing less…

cheers

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