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(Originally posted on: 05-08-07 05:30:33 PM)
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If a person steals from a store, does that mean that the person can't be trusted? Does stealing from a store equate to dishonesty in general? And could stealing from a store be equated to stealing from an individual person?

The only strong opinion I have is that if you steal from a store, atleast that store makes money to offset the thievery (and in fact, many stores have leeway for money lost due to thievery and other incidental things), so stealing from an individual would be worse. But generally, just because someone steals something, I don't feel like that would mean that they were dishonest to people (aka they don't necessarily lie). Here's another one: Does downloading an album/movie constitute as stealing, since you'd normally have to pay to listen to/watch it?

This question isn't meant to evoke the "it's against the law and therefore wrong" scenario, 'cause that doesn't require any thought and is a boring answer.
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This reply was last edited on 05-08-07 05:36:52 PM by IF0.
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Reply 1 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 05:38:26 PM)
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I hold the belief that stealing is when you take (not "copy" or "replicate") something - without replacement - at the loss of another. It doesn't matter if it's a store, or an individual or what-have-you, that's how I define it. Trust, on the otherhand, is relative. While I may trust a 'thief', under the same circumstances another wont or may even moreso.
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Reply 2 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 06:08:05 PM)
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And could stealing from a store be equated to stealing from an individual person?


If Bob works at an "Adult Film Store", and some guy walks in and steals from a display rack, is not the thief actually diminishing the potential money Bob could receive for working there?

Theft, from a hobo stealing a candy bar to a corporate executive embezzling millions of dollars from share holders and workers, is one of the worst sins a person can make against society. It cuts into the very notion which enables human society to exist in the first place; trust. When trust exists in a society, people work together to achieve mutual goals for their mutual compensation. Without it, society devolves into a brutal type of anarchy where people fight amongst themselves because they lack the faith in each other to abide by certain expectations.

For example, when you go to the store, you expect the teller not to deceive you as to how much you owe. Even deeper, you expect the store not to charge you an unfair price for a non-durable commodity. Still deeper, you expect the food you are buying to not kill you the moment after you eat it; to not steal from you your life for only 9.95$. When this fundamental trust is impaired by theft and the general type of dishonesty it belongs to, human beings tend to become unwilling to cooperate, and as a result from your unwillingness to find food at the store, you may also be unwilling to take the chance to put your fate in the hands of anything else.

Quote:
Does downloading an album/movie constitute as stealing, since you'd normally have to pay to listen to/watch it?


It's not different than stealing any other commodity, whether it be a candy bar off the vendor's rack or an artist's album off of some anonymous file-sharing service. Either way it is done, the effect is the same; capitalism and the fundamental force behind it (compensation) are injured as the manufacturer and artist are not being compensated for their work, and are thus impaired in producing new products.
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Reply 3 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 06:41:21 PM)
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It's not different than stealing any other commodity, whether it be a candy bar off the vendor's rack or an artist's album off of some anonymous file-sharing service. Either way it is done, the effect is the same; capitalism and the fundamental force behind it (compensation) are injured as the manufacturer and artist are not being compensated for their work, and are thus impaired in producing new products.

I question if it can be compared directly. In stealing a tangible item, the item itself is taken away from the market, the consumer and the producer. Downloading an intangible item - such as a music file - doesn't remove the item from being acquired by another person or retained by the producer. It is, in theory, renewable. Its use private.

It is also questionable whether downloading directly causes any loss of costs (and thus need for compensation) for the producers. To what level can it be distinguished that any loss of costs (which is in itself arguable) is the result of acquiring a renewable replication? It leads into the problem of confounding factors: were those (and how many) who downloaded actually going to buy the product? is the product a loss to itself for not meeting an efficient market outcome? is DRM or negative marketing a factor? is the product's quality (ie. music, movie) a factor? the lack of acceptance for innovation through distributors? or could it merely just be the 'nature' of the economy or globalization itself? This - to me - is too vague to declare stealing. The relativity of rights and permissions aside, the fundamental principle of taking at cost of another = stealing seems ambiguous here.
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Reply 4 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 07:09:00 PM)
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Are you talking about me??
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Reply 5 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 07:16:43 PM)
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Replace every noun with 'drahnier' and 'alcoholic beverage', 'stealing' with 'drinking', and yeah it makes sense.

Quote:
If drahnier drinks from an alcoholic beverage, does that mean that drahnier can't be trusted? Does drinking from an alcoholic beverage equate to dishonesty in general? And could drinking from an alcoholic beverage be equated to drinking from drahnier?
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Reply 6 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 07:44:42 PM)
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I'm not going to read anything posted by Vissario/Sunny after the first post, because I'm sure it's silly.

If someone steals from a company and justifies that the company will make money to offset it, then would he have a problem stealing from his roommate who has a decent job, and his parents are wealthy and pay for his tuition and anything? Saying "his parents are giving him 25,000 a year...he won't miss this $20."

As for downloading, I don't think it's stealing at all. No one is really losing anything, except your POTENTIAL money that you MIGHT pay to see it. But, perhaps you're not willing to spend any money on seeing it, but are willing to spend bandwith on it. The movie industry loses nothing, but you gain pleasure. No one gets hurt in this case. And unlike other victimless crimes (drugs), there really is no difference here, assuming you're not uploading it to other people.
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Reply 7 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 07:53:01 PM)
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Stealing in general is an adrenaline rush and therefore it becomes an addiction. If the person is the biggest truth teller ever, they will continue to steal until caught. Others will play the odds of getting caught and go for that rush and get into bigger and bigger stakes.
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Reply 8 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 08:01:03 PM)
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Quoted from Xunny:
Replace every noun with 'drahnier' and 'alcoholic beverage', 'stealing' with 'drinking', and yeah it makes sense.

Quote:
If drahnier drinks from an alcoholic beverage, does that mean that drahnier can't be trusted? Does drinking from an alcoholic beverage equate to dishonesty in general? And could drinking from an alcoholic beverage be equated to drinking from drahnier?



Would YOU trust Drahnier with your children? Even if he wasn't drinking?

Quoted from Sunny:
the fundamental principle of taking at cost of another = stealing seems ambiguous here.


Did it cost money out of the artist's pocket to produce that song?

Did it cost money to edit the song and make it ready for the consumer?

Did it cost money to put the song on the Web site, market it so you would know about it, and ultimately make it available to you?

If you answered yes to any (or all) of these three questions, then someone has lost money in the hopes of gaining money from the sale of the album on-line. And if you don't pay money to view the finished product, you have effectively cheated thousands of people out of compensation for their hard work bringing you that product.

Guess what Wheezy and Sunny, stealing songs off the Internet IS NOT a victim-less crime.. It is not only detrimental to the people who took the time to bring you that music which you enjoy, but it is counter-productive to the society which you live in. If everyone followed your dubious type of rationalization, then what money would there be too finance artists to bring you songs in the future?
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Reply 9 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 08:10:25 PM)
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Yes it cost him something to make the album, but I never told him that I was going to buy it. He spent that money regardless of what I do. He was taking a risk, hoping people would buy his shit. If I don't buy his music and don't download it either, it's the same result as me downloading it.
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Reply 10 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 08:15:43 PM)
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Quote:
Would YOU trust Drahnier with your children? Even if he wasn't drinking?

Had I children, I would.

Quote:
Did it cost money out of the artist's pocket to produce that song?

Did it cost money to edit the song and make it ready for the consumer?

Did it cost money to put the song on the Web site, market it so you would know about it, and ultimately make it available to you?

If you answered yes to any (or all) of these three questions, then someone has lost money in the hopes of gaining money from the sale of the album on-line. And if you don't pay money to view the finished product, you have effectively cheated thousands of people out of compensation for their hard work bringing you that product.

Curiously, how does this apply if you weren't going to buy the product, effectively under the current market conditions? The answers to all your questions would be 'no', for the opportunity cost would be nill.

Quote:
It is not only detrimental to the people who took the time to bring you that music which you enjoy

There's not a victim when the user could be a fan, when otherwise they would not have been. Even then, awareness for the album increases substantially with availability. It begs the question whether such activity is detrimental or beneficial, or perhaps neither.

Quote:
but it is counter-productive to the society which you live in. If everyone followed your dubious type of rationalization, then what money would there be too finance artists to bring you songs in the future?

Societies change. They are not cemented in the here and now. The only 'rationalization' for which any of us argue on is a reaction to change.

... but then the rest of this paragraph baits into other arguments that provide a variety of all equally plausible answers with little relevancy.
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Reply 11 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 08:17:24 PM)
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Quote:
If I don't buy his music and don't download it either, it's the same result as me downloading it.


Indeed it is wheezy.

Let's see, if I want to cure world hunger, I have two ways of doing it; I can convince people to give food to the starving, or I can grind up some of the starving people into food and flood the market with them and make food cheaper. Since I get the same results, why shouldn't I follow the second option, Wheezy?
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Reply 12 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 08:19:54 PM)
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Quoted from vissario:
Quote:
If I don't buy his music and don't download it either, it's the same result as me downloading it.


Indeed it is wheezy.

Let's see, if I want to cure world hunger, I have two ways of doing it; I can convince people to give food to the starving, or I can grind up some of the starving people into food and flood the market with them and make food cheaper. Since I get the same results, why shouldn't I follow the second option, Wheezy?

Do explain how a derail into another topic entirely can be used as an example for this argument, as I'm not seeing it.
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Reply 13 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 08:38:54 PM)
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Quoted from sunny:
Curiously, how does this apply if you weren't going to buy the product, effectively under the current market conditions?


I think you failed to read my post in full. I said that if you wanted to view the finished product, and did not pay the fee to do so, you have effectively cheated all of these people out of their compensation. I'm not talking about listening to a preview, I am talking about downloading, for free, an album which someone had no legal right to be distributing to other people.

And quite honestly, I don't understand how you expect to get a music album while not "buying" it unless you are otherwise stealing it.

Quoted from sunny:
There's not a victim when the user could be a fan, when otherwise they would not have been. Even then, awareness for the album increases substantially with availability. It begs the question whether such activity is detrimental or beneficial, or perhaps neither.



This is totally irrelevant to the actual ethics of stealing over the Internet. It is just a rationalization of why it could be "okay" to steal. In fact, it follows the same line of reasoning that a poor person might use to justify stealing a loaf of bread to feed his family.

Quoted from sunny:
Societies change. They are not cemented in the here and now. The only 'rationalization' for which any of us argue on is a reaction to change.



That's all good and nice but you didn't answer the question: how would artists continue their art if they received no compensation from their work over the Internet, a medium which is quickly dominating the market of the future?

Quoted from Sunny:
Do explain how a derail into another topic entirely can be used as an example for this argument, as I'm not seeing it.


If you didn't catch it I was setting up an analogy. According to wheezy's line of thought, as long as two different means result in the same end, then it is all good and fine. Basically, the ends do justify the means to them.

In his case the two means were either not buying or stealing leading to the artist not being compensated. In my scenario, I was pointing out that even though the result may be the same (like in wheezy's example), the ends do not justify the means.

Chopping up starving Africans and recycling them may accomplish the same thing as getting people to donate food, but you shouldn't do the former as it is unethical...in the same way that stealing property or never taking the property accomplishes the same thing, but the former obviously isn't ethical and shouldn't be done.
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Reply 14 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 09:02:34 PM)
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Quote:
Let's see, if I want to cure world hunger, I have two ways of doing it; I can convince people to give food to the starving, or I can grind up some of the starving people into food and flood the market with them and make food cheaper. Since I get the same results, why shouldn't I follow the second option, Wheezy?


The end result in the second one is actually lots of murdering and cannibalism. The same cannot be said about the first option.

If I don't want to buy an album because I don't think it's that good, the writer gets 0 dollars from me. He loses or makes the same amount of money whether or not I decide it'd be worth my time to download it. Even if I would never ever consider downloading music, the result for everyone, except me, is the exact same.
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Reply 15 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-08-07 09:10:13 PM)
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I think you failed to read my post in full. I said that if you wanted to view the finished product, and did not pay the fee to do so, you have effectively cheated all of these people out of their compensation. I'm not talking about listening to a preview, I am talking about downloading, for free, an album which someone had no legal right to be distributing to other people.

I am also not talking about listening to a preview. Legalities aside, as they are relative, where is there a cheat when there's no opportunity cost that is lost for either party?

Quote:
And quite honestly, I don't understand how you expect to get a music album while not "buying" it unless you are otherwise stealing it.

That is not being questioned, the whole aspect of 'stealing it' is.

Quote:
This is totally irrelevant to the actual ethics of stealing over the Internet. It is just a rationalization of why it could be "okay" to steal. In fact, it follows the same line of reasoning that a poor person might use to justify stealing a loaf of bread to feed his family.

I was pointing out that the detrimental claims are just as equally refuted with beneficial claims to the point that they no longer matter. So yes, I suppose the point you originally made was irrelevant.

Quote:
That's all good and nice but you didn't answer the question: how would artists continue their art if they received no compensation from their work over the Internet, a medium which is quickly dominating the market of the future?

For one who pushes questions, you overlook the ones given to you, but I'll bite. Adapt. Change.

Quote:
If you didn't catch it I was setting up an analogy. According to wheezy's line of thought, as long as two different means result in the same end, then it is all good and fine. Basically, the ends do justify the means to them.

No according to wheezy's "line of thought", if he doesn't buy music and doesn't download it either, it's the same result as him downloading it. There's nothing more in-depth or on topic than that.

Quote:
In his case the two means were either not buying or stealing leading to the artist not being compensated. In my scenario, I was pointing out that even though the result may be the same (like in wheezy's example), the ends do not justify the means.

Chopping up starving Africans and recycling them may accomplish the same thing as getting people to donate food, but you shouldn't do the former as it is unethical...in the same way that stealing property or never taking the property accomplishes the same thing, but the former obviously isn't ethical and shouldn't be done.

The rest of this is just irrelevant, because he is not arguing about starving africans, he is arguing about downloading music. There is an acceptance that one way of viewing and justifying things (such as downloading music) would be different from how another thing is viewed and justified. I think - to be all honest - that's your major flaw when it comes to arguing. You seem to move towards derailed analogies and examples because you attempt to seek a coherent similarity within the chaotic and differential reasoning of an individual or group.
This reply was last edited on 05-08-07 09:23:13 PM by Sunn O))).
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Reply 16 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-09-07 12:53:03 AM)
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I don't think stealing from a store implies dishonesty, simply because it's almost a socially accepted thing. Yes, vissario, it almost is. I don't care about objectivity here.
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Reply 17 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-09-07 02:05:08 AM)
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Stealing from a store is almost socially accepted? Really?
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Reply 18 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-09-07 02:08:16 AM)
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Yes, at least around here. Note the "almost".

If someone says he stole something from a store, people will roll their eyes, say "dude...", and not think much about it. Others will simply laugh. It's different if they steal directly from a person.
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Reply 19 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-09-07 02:10:07 AM)
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Oh, you mean that peers will know it's wrong, but don't really care. Yeah I can agree with that. I thought you meant that people thought it was normal and everyone does it.

Obviously this all depends on what you're stealing. If you stole a candy bar, no one is going to care. But if you stole something worth a lot of money, your friends might make more of a deal about it.
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Reply 20 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-09-07 03:48:48 AM)
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I think vissario wishes someone would steal his virginity
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Reply 21 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-09-07 09:23:11 AM)
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how about if you buy something that you know is stolen
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Reply 22 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-09-07 02:48:45 PM)
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Anybody capable of convincing themselves that something they do, that is inherently wrong, is excusable (IE: it's ok because it's wal-mart) is not some who should be trusted in my opinion.

If how ever, there excuse is "I'm a dick, and I didn't feel like paying" then at least they're honest
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Reply 23 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-09-07 03:16:02 PM)
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I say that because I judge my actions on what hurts somebody. Wal-Mart would not be hurt by stealing something worth $30. They will still pay minimum wage and the CEO will still be a billionaire, and I won't be considering it "wrong" or "evil" because the law tells me to.
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Reply 24 of 50 (Originally posted on: 05-09-07 03:59:36 PM)
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Quoted from IF0:
I say that because I judge my actions on what hurts somebody. Wal-Mart would not be hurt by stealing something worth \$30. They will still pay minimum wage and the CEO will still be a billionaire, and I won't be considering it "wrong" or "evil" because the law tells me to.

That's pretty poor reasoning. It can be interpreted a couple ways. Is it, by your reasoning, ok to steal from rich people (or perhaps people you find unethical in some regard?) but not poorer people? Or is it an amount of damage thing? Because any stealing does some sort of damage, it's just a matter of how much. At what point is it ok to begin taking things?
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For now we see through a glass, darkly, but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
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