How illegal is it really?

I’m don’t want to say that I have illegally downloaded media content in my time, but based off the 13/13 people in my BCM240 who admitted to illegally downloading something in their lives I can say that I’m fairly confident in the fact that the vast majority of you reading this have done the same thing at least once.

And isn’t this shocking? When you illegally download something the word is right there, right in your face constantly reminding you that what you are doing is illegal. As the video above asks (with 100% seriousness), would you kill a police officer? As far as the law is concerned murder is illegal, as is downloading copyright material, so what makes us so comfortable in breaking this particular law?

I have heard many people say that they will go out a buy the CD or pay money to download music from their small time bands or ‘indie’ bands who haven’t made it on the top 40 yet. However, it is an entirely different case when it comes to bands that are more successful, this is where the gloves come off and the illegal downloads start. I did a quick search on for Katy Perry’s single ‘Roar’ and received multiple hits with one sitting on 4150 seeds, this was one torrent from one website and I can’t even begin to speculate how many times this song had been illegally downloaded from different places. I then did a search for Ball Park Music where I received only two hits with around 30 seeds each. However, this is far from solid evidence as supply and demand comes into play as more people want Katy Perry than they do Ball Park Music, leading to more files and more downloads.

Why do people prefer to buy the smaller bands CD, even if they like a popular artist just as much? It might have something to do with this:


This is Taylor Swift’s beautiful beachside mansion. I’m not sure about you guys but then I look at this picture I don’t see someone who has been hurt by people illegally downloading her music, and if anything I feel bitter about the situation and will probably illegally download her music out of spite.

Is this the reason why we feel so little guilt for stealing artist’s music? For some people they may think that musicians make too much money for the product they provide, while others just think that they have enough money already so who is that one illegally downloaded song really hurting. However while saying this there are still people out there who pay for their media content and people such as Taylor Swift don’t seem to be financially struggling in anyway, so what do you think? Are there other reasons you choose to illegally download content? Do you think your download impacts on the individual artist at all?


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