Monday, April 03, 2006

How Is Stealing Okay?

Several people I know regularly download and/or share pirated music, movies, and applications. I myself don't, because I think it's plainly wrong. I figure if a CD you want costs $13 and you don't think it's worth that much, then don't buy it. If you really like it and you want it bad enough, then go ahead and buy it. But it still costs $13. Or if you don't want to pay 8 or 9 bucks to see a movie in a theater, then don't. But that's how much it costs. Nobody's saying you have to go see it. If you want to though, that's the price.

I recently was surprised to see someone who in most regards is one of my heroes, using a copy of an application that sells for well over $1000. It's quite a program, and it's brand new. They said they got it from a friend whose kid had cracked it. "I don't feel too bad about it though, because there's no chance I would ever have forked out that kind of money to buy it, I would have just gone without it."

So that makes it okay? Is it all about what you can get away with, not whether it's right or wrong? Does anyone have a conscience anymore? The hero I mentioned above is still one of my heroes, but I'm less in awe than I once was.
I think that the price you pay in cash for these things (no matter the amount) is cheaper than the price you pay in character, integrity, and what your kids and others see in you when you steal.

But that's just me.

3 Comments:

Blogger Martian Anthropologist said...

I actually am not quite sure what I think of this one. On the one hand, I see your point. On the other... who did he hurt?

It's tough to say. I don't know the answer to that one.

I do like Linux, though, because most software is free for that OS... that's a model I like. Make free programs to help other people.

April 06, 2006 5:37 PM  
Blogger JLF said...

Martian:

Is the question of whether or not someone else gets hurt really the ultimate determining factor in the morality of an action?

derifter:

Did you actually voice these sentiments to "hero"?

April 06, 2006 10:15 PM  
Blogger DErifter said...

Martian,
I know that beyond hurting me (boo hoo, I know) he's hurt himself by getting a little more comfortable with stealing. I assume that when you said you see my point, you meant that you see at least some wrong in the act itself, regardless of whether anyone was hurt. And then there's the software mfr (or distributor, or whatever). It's true that he said he would never have bought it, but my point is that he shouldn't be using it then.

JLF81,
Yes, and hence his quote.

April 07, 2006 11:05 PM  

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