I know that it has been awhile since I posted anything on here, but I have not had much time to do so as I have had a lot of stuff to do for my college courses. I had to write a term paper for one of my courses and I chose the topic of piracy and DRM. While this can be a touchy topic, with the upcoming release of SimCity with always online DRM, I wanted to post my term paper and possibly raise awareness about the issues of DRM. I apologize ahead of time for the lack of pictures.
***NOTE: All that follows are my personal views and do not necessarily reflect the views of the website as a whole***
Piracy is undeniably rampant in today’s culture. However, what exactly is the reason for piracy? Are people lazy? Do they feel that the product is not worth the price? Is it a problem with the service provided by companies? All of these could be possible causes. DRM (Digital Rights Management) is not a solution to piracy, and how it works can quite often be counterintuitive to preventing it. There are other possible solutions besides DRM to try to help solve piracy. To be able to properly analyze the matter, we need to first take a look at the background of piracy and the causes of it.
Piracy, by definition, is “the unauthorized reproduction or use of a copyrighted book, recording, television program, patented invention, trademarked product, etc” (“Piracy”, Def. 2) In terms of the internet and technology, this means the uploading or downloading of copyrighted material that the original author did not give consent to be distributed. This covers a wide range of media types, including TV episodes, movies, software, and music. The different industries are affected by online piracy; but to what extent? There is no definitive answer to that question as there is no way to accurately measure piracy rates. Every torrent, a file type that is commonly used to illegally download content, and every file sharing thread would need to be searched through and determined to be fake or not to be able to even start measuring piracy rates successfully. This amount of work is insurmountable when you consider the fact that thousands of torrents are uploaded onto hundreds of sites on a daily basis.