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Pirates of the Digital Millennium - Accurate Essays

Pirates of the Digital Millennium

Pirates of the Digital Millennium

            Pirates of the Digital Millennium: How the Intellectual Property Wars Damage Our Personal Freedoms, Our Jobs and the World Economy, is a book authored by John Gantz and Jack Rochester, and as indicated by the title, it dwells on the subject of technological advancements that have led to the advent of digitization and the internet as related to intellectual property. The appraisal uses three meting elements namely individual autonomy, the working environment and international trade as enhanced by trade liberalization and economic integration to elucidate the damage that has been caused by the wars generated by digital piracy in the 21st century.

What is the topic and theme?

The topic discussed in the book is digital piracy. In the introduction section, the authors explore the question of piracy with regard to the posited misconceptions that have been held in the past that digital piracy is only promoted in the black market. Digital piracy as discussed in the book concerns software replication, games and film piracy and the other existing forms of digital intellectual assets. The premise used to create the argument as the authors reveal is embedded in the firm belief that most individuals, and especially the young generation, are ignorant to copyrights due to lack of knowledge. The theme of the book leans heavily on intellectual property, with the main elements of the debate being the importance of intellectual property and its worth. One side of the debate argues that intellectual property regards any form of innovative and original contributions in the digital world. The opposing side of the debate argues that since new ideas are built on past contributions, it renders the term intellectual properly as an obsolete notion. The authors therefore attempt to bridge this ideological chasm by analyzing the contention that exists among users, digital artists, technological and data providers, the media and political authorities.

What is the research question or what is author trying to answer?

The authors attempted to tackle various questions all related to digital piracy. The first question seeks to address the view as to whether consumers possess unlimited rights to utilize any form of media as they seem fit by the fact that they own the product by the act of licensing or purchasing. The second question addresses the idea as to whether media publishers are entitled to the profits that they acquire from the ownership of intellectual property. Thirdly, the habit of downloading is discussed as to whether it is an act of larceny or public non-compliance. The fourth question elucidates whether law enforcement curbs or enhances digital piracy. The fifth question analyzes whether the perspective of liberalization may be altered into capitalism. The sixth question addresses piracy in terms of the nature and extent of how it has developed into a problem, who is responsible for the problem, and what are the motivational factors behind piracy. Lastly, is the question as to whether the software manufacturers and media institutions have a role to play in the mitigation of digital piracy.

What is the supporting data or how did the author answer their question?

The supporting data used in the study has been chiefly sourced from intensive research that has been conducted by the authors from the International Data Corporation (IDC) dealing with global scale researches. The IDC study conducted its research on a total of fifty-eight countries with the primary research question of the consequences that digital piracy on employment, tax proceeds and the level of the Gross Domestic Product. The research covers different geographical locations like software peddling in the avenues of Bangkok, the Washington State where digital piracy occurs in the Congress, and the region of Paraguay where software replication industrial units are located. Learning institutions, majorly colleges and other higher learning institutions have also been reviewed as sites where mass software replication is conducted. In addition to this, the authors have also conducted interviews with learners, acquaintances and family. The research questions that were identified were then responded to throughout the book with the authors dividing the book into ten chapters, where the various questions were addressed.
What was the chosen research methodology?

The research methodology used first dealt with the identification of the research topic, which is the issue of digital piracy in the twenty first century. Next, the authors had to perform the identification of the research type as it would aid shape the format that the study would take. Descriptive research was used to explore the topic of digital piracy as it deals with the use of case studies. In this research, the fifty eight countries used acted as the basis of the case study and the issue of piracy was thoroughly investigated in the identified regions. After the topic had been acquired, research questions were formulated and the information sources identified too. Earlier in this discussion we have identified the seven research questions that were formulated. With this, information had to be sourced to act as the basis for the arguments formulation as well as a scientific and mathematical backup for the formulated hypotheses and inferences. This would infuse an element of credibility in the given premises. Data analysis and research findings are conducted within the various book chapters leaving room for recommendations and conclusions into the problem of digital piracy.

What errors or omissions are apparent?

            The book is a product of in-depth research and analysis and therefore the content is rich and credible in nature. The book has been thoroughly edited such that there are no instances of grammatical errors. The planning has been done in an orderly manner allowing the flow of ideas from the introduction to the end of the book and this has checked data or information redundancy.

Does the author have a particular bias?

The authors have a particular bias towards software manufacturers at the expense of film and music industries that are also adversely affected by cases of digital piracy. This bias is created by the level of discussion accorded to software manufacturers. The fourth chapter of the book, Inside the Corporate Intellect: A Day at Microsoft, devotes the whole discussion into an analysis of the institution of Microsoft Office 2003 and the cases of piracy that have been recorded since its release in the digital market. No chapter has been accorded for a deep analysis of the film or music industry with reference to piracy issues. This is a clear indication of the bias that accords a higher value to software manufacturers. In addition to this, the authors in dealing with the overpricing of digital products steer clear from mentioning that software programs are overcharged. They have indicated this by the mention that compact discs in the market are overcharged since the market prices are twenty dollars yet they do not discuss the overpricing that the software manufacturers are conducting. For instance, the Photoshop program is priced at six hundred dollars yet such instances have not been discussed in the book.

Students must take a stance on whether they agree or not with the conclusions

The last chapter in the book is dedicated to the lessons that the authors arrive to at the end of the discussion. With the level of research dedicated into the book, I strongly agree with the conclusive statements given at the end of the book. The lessons covered are nine in number with the first arguing that the war concerning digital piracy can never be won by a single group of the players that are involved. The second lesson takes the position that copy right laws will never be scraped off the trade system while the third lesson asserts that the healthy consumer and provider relationship, which had been achieved in the past, has been distorted by the element of piracy in the trade chain. The fourth lesson posits that capitalistic tendencies are the key to the achievement of property rights in today’s business world whereas the inadequacies that make law ineffective towards piracy elimination are discussed in lesson number five. The sixth lesson identifies the advent of globalization as the common factor that has linked piracy activities on an international level. Being a student, I related to lesson number seven that argues for the decriminalization of children from piracy acts. The eighth lesson is founded on the tit-for-tat tenet with the advice that for piracy to be eliminated, individuals have to play their refraining roles, while the last lesson engages the moral facet of piracy into the problem of piracy. However, the lessons are flexible in that they do not coerce the reader into the way forward; rather, the reader is left to make the choice that he/she deems the best regarding digital piracy. It serves the purpose of information impartation and empowerment.









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