An Aside on Piracy

February 9, 2022

People stealing shit isn’t new.

America is full of hypocrisy; the same people who say capitalism works use their cousin’s Netflix password and pirate films they don’t feel they should have to pay for.

If you and I went out to eat, and at the end of the meal you suggested we tip the staff nothing, I would accurately deduce that you were a garbage person.

“But,” you would point out, “the restaurant pays them a wage.”

“Wage” is a far more generous term for the actual thing restaurants give their staffs for their work and time, through a broken system that has existed since Prohibition. All the mental gymnastics in the world cannot maneuver one out of a dumpster.

The same applies to creatives. Yes, many of them get paid upfront for their work, a few even handsomely. But if their work is a financial failure, it could mean the end of that kind of work entirely. Support is a multifaceted word; the lack of it is the death of art.

And art, as I have said countless times and will say countless more, owes you nothing. Eating food is a human right; dining out is a privilege. You are not owed music or television shows; you have no right to a person’s words and feelings.

People (people!) now complain about the amount of streaming services. Growing up, people complained about cable: “Why can’t I just pay for the few channels I actually watch?” The future is here. Literally. But nobody will ever be happy, and maybe some of them like it that way.

Because there is healthy streaming service competition, capitalism wins yet again: they all want to stay competitive, so here we are in a golden age of content, and humans can’t deal with FOMO.

But none of that — not a single note or pixel — is owed to you.

Pay people what they’re worth. All of them. With your love. With your support. And with your damn dollar.


Published by dennisvogen

I'm me, of course. Or am I?

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