Thursday, June 23, 2005

Machiavellian Picture Association of America

The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has reportedly issued a correction to its disputed claims that it shut down an illegal DVD/CD replicating plant and seized $30 million in illegal stampers and DVDs:
In response to the company's objections, the MPAA issued a release correcting its assertion that the plant was shut down.

The trade group said the $30 million figure was reached by estimating the value of the DVDs that could be produced by the stamping machines that were seized.
That's right, could be produced. The MPAA presented potential losses as actual losses. Possible future infringements as current infringements. I wonder if this exemplary for the MPAA's calculation of damages allegedly brought by P2P networks and private copying, for example. Believing that the possible worst is the reality that is. This is not just bad math, this is a mind set: if users can steal, they will steal, thus they actually steal. If users can copy, they will copy. If users can share, they will share. It is in human nature to do so, to do bad.
"Thus, you must know that there are two kinds of combat: one with laws, the other with force. The first is proper to man, the second to beasts; but because the first is often not enough, one must have recourse to the second."
That's Machiavelli speaking in The Prince, and the MPAA seems to be taking his view of human nature and advice on ruling the public to its heart: it's a combat, with lawsuits and with technological force. It's for the better of man, if not in its own princely interests: to gain, maintain and expand its power through fear and love.


Anonymous Brizal said...

HAHA... typical. With all their hypotheticals and theories, I'm surprised they haven't busted down on everyone. At this point I don't even want to rip my CD's to transfer to my MP3 player. Just venting...

24/6/05 19:21  

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