Piracy is an enormous problem, without a doubt. So I’m just going to jump into things right off the bat and begin by stating something that I haven’t heard anyone say so far regarding PIPA and ACTA: There are numerous other problems that are exponentially worse. Sure, piracy is a crime, but if it gets “omitted,” will that change the world for the better? I can, off of the top of my head, dish out a list of better causes that drops to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.
1. Solve world hunger
2. Shelter the homeless
3. Solve global warming issues
4. Stop aids
5. Stop breast cancer
6. Stop any disease
7. Increase literacy rates
8. Stop oil starvation
9. Population control
10. Solve poor/rich distribution of wealth
This, I will not deceive you, is a list conjured from a pile of rubbish I thought up in thirty seconds. Although all of the above can be debated widely, the point is nonetheless clear: THERE ARE NUMEROUS AMOUNTS OF GREATER PROBLEMS THAN PIRACY!
Now, let me begin with the comparisons. There is a vast array of countries that prohibit piracy, and America is one of them (obviously). Now, my question to you, the reader, is “what is the only major country that piracy is not frowned upon?” Allow me to give you a hint or two: It’s a world superpower, it’s located in Asia, and over 95% of the goods sold in America derive from there. That’s right, you’ve guessed it! China!
Amazingly, real copies of things are harder to find than burnt ones! If one were to walk into a video store and attempt to browse their selection, you could find any movie without a doubt. Why? Because everything is burned, my good friend! Every movie you could possibly imagine, burned on a previously blank DVD that is now titled with a sharpie. Same goes for video games, programs, and just about any other form of data. What’s more amazing is that if the price is put into equivalent of the United States economy, the average movie would only cost you a whopping fifty cents! That’s right, the latest and greatest for only half of a dollar. Prices vary depending on how big the file is and how difficult it was to burn; still, the most expensive piece of data (if applied to our economy, once again) would be no more than five dollars.
Now, could you even possibly imagine how excellent it would be if you were only asked to dish out fifty cents for the newest blockbuster hit? Well I’d say that you don’t need to pirate whatsoever, because data doesn’t cost ridiculous amounts. Doesn’t it chafe you at least the tiniest bit knowing that a Chinese citizen only spends eight minutes out of his minimum-wage paycheck to purchase the newest release while you work for three plus hours to buy the “original” copy of that same exact movie? I assume it does. And the list doesn’t end there! Xbox 360 games, PS3 games, PC games, all programs, operating systems, and just about anything else you can imagine, all for under five dollars.
China, considered to be one of the most communist and controlled countries on Earth, condones piracy while America, said to be one of the freest and most prosperous countries in the world, does not? My fellow reader, if there is one thing I ask of you it is that you at least consider the possibility of betrayal by the American system and that you will also consider making a stand for yourself.
Long live free-world.
I decided to write this article in response to a question from a fellow user, “PunditStyle”.
“What is an easy way to find free music online?”
Alright then. This all depends on your version of “free.”
If by free, you mean free to download and use LEGALLY, then you have many different options. First, websites such as last.fm, pandora, idobi radio, and others will stream internet radio. You can pick stations based on types of music, bands, songs, and mix and match your favorites. Recently, I used last.fm to find new bands to listen to based on some of the ones I’m currently into. Last.fm is free and doesn’t require a download or an account to use. Pandora requires you to make a free account and there are limitations to how many songs you can skip over. Idobi allows you to download playlists which stream music online. There’s a new playlist every day, so there’s always something to listen to.
Well, that’s not entirely true. You will need Notepad and an internet browser.
Open your browser, and navigate to http://www.projectplaylist.com
Project Playlist is a wonderful site where individuals upload songs they own for the sole purpose of use that does not infringe copyright laws, such as posting the song in a playlist provided by Project Playlist that you can embed to your MySpace, Facebook or website/blog in general.
Search for your favorite song, one at a time. For this tutorial we’ll use a personal favorite of mine: the man with the machine gun – typed right in the search. In this case it will be the second song in the search as of this date. You can preview the entire track to make sure it’s error free and the right song. Find the version you’re looking for, and click (visit site) to the right of the title. You will see a green URL in the top frame with some other Project Playlist graphics and text. Make sure your URL ends in .mp3 or .mp4 anything that you know you can play. Next, open Notepad and copy/type in this small HTML code:
<a href=”http://www.public.iastate.edu/~froboy/Ryan/The Black Mages – The Skies Above/07 – The Man with the Machine Gun (Final Fantasy VIII).mp3″>The Man with the Machine Gun</a>
<a href=”URL HERE”>NAME HERE</a>
File > Save As… and click the drop down box to “All Files” and type something like man.html so the file becomes an HTML file that will open in your default browser. The alternative to this is just saving it as a regular .txt file, however you need to enable file extensions so you can see it on the file and edit the full name to name.html instead of name.txt which can be done through Folder Options in Control Panel and the View tab under “Hide extensions for known file types” remove the check mark.
Now open your new .html file and you should see a regular link (possibly blue) which you can right click and hit “Save Target As…” or something similar. Save the file to your hard drive, and within a short amount of time you should have your file! You may also left click the link and it will stream within your browser or within your default media player, depending on your setup. Enjoy : – )
God speed, and Best wishes.