From students who are struggling to pay off their student loans to adults who are barely making enough money to support themselves, there are a lot of people who have a scarcity of money. These people, like everyone else in the world, want to have certain amenities in their life like music, movies, or T.V. shows. While our century's technology has grown a lot, allowing for fairly cheap access to these things, there are always some people who want to get this entertainment for free. Additionally, these goods that people want, like movies, T.V., software, ext., are so simple to obtain for free through piracy, there is no wonder why it is such a big issue. A simple google search would allow you to go to pirate bay, a site that hosts millions of free download ranging from recent music albums to expensive music making software. All the user has to do is click on the item and it will be theirs in a matter of minutes, no payment required. Yet another reason people would partake in this illegal action is the amount of people that get caught each year for piracy. According to a tech site named Digital Trends, the rate of people facing charges is only 1 in 8129. It is no wonder that people will pirate like crazy, because the Cost/ Benefit analysis is completely weighing towards the benefits and no cost. On top of all this, someone could just use a VPN or deny the charges and say it was their neighbor and never get caught.
While going on and obtaining this media through pirating may seem like no big deal, it actually has many negative externalities. A site titled Music Business Worldwide stated that, “Only 37% of music acquired by US consumers in 2009 was paid for.” This not only can effect the artist who is making the music, but it can also make fans who purchases the album get mad and may even result in music quality going down from the artist because they know they won’t get full compensation. The supply/demand graph has an equilibrium that is very low because lots of people are getting their music for free, so the artists have to lower the price or else everyone will just pirate the music. This is just the music industry as well, if we took into account the movie industry, software companies, and even the video game industry, the amount lost would be in the billions of dollars.
However, hope is not lost. As American officials are identifying piracy as a bigger and bigger problem, more laws are being introduced and internet security is cracking down. Sites like Piratebay that continuously find loopholes to keep their sites on the web are getting in trouble and will eventually get shut down completely. Along with this, artist's are mentioning this issue in their songs to spread the word and video games are implementing things that would break the game if pirates tried to play them. Overall, while it may seem easiest to just get a that new album via piracy, the better idea may be to support the artist and just buy it.
Mokey, Nick. "Music, Movie and Software Piracy: What's Your Chance of Getting Caught?" Digital Trends. N.p., 20 Sept. 2014. Web. 04 Apr. 2017.
Worldwide, Music Business. "Why does the RIAA hate torrent sites so much?" Music Business Worldwide. N.p., 19 Dec. 2014. Web. 04 Apr. 2017.