Though I tried my best to include my own original content, some ideas in this page is taken from the book Foundation of Information Technology by Sumita Arora, Dhanpat Rai Publication
In simple terms piracy means unauthorized duplication of softwares, movies, music and other without the knowledge or written permission of the owner.
Although most computers are aware of the fact that unauthorized use and duplication of software is illegal, yet general disregard is shown towards treating the software as valuable intellectual property.
As we all know piracy is very common to India. We can see pirated softwares, music CDs, games etc. spread all around the city. Currently India is reported to be the second most pirated-software seller nation in the world after China.
Common forms of Piracy :
Softlifting : It refers to purchasing a single licensed copy of a software and loading it into several other computers contrary to the license terms. For e.g Sharing licensed software with friends, co-workers and others. Softwares of Microsoft Corporation and Adobe Inc. are worst softlifted.
Uploading and Downloading : It refers to making unauthorized copies of copyrighted software available to end users connected to a network. Use of Torrent to download illegal software is the most appropriate example. Infact torrent has emerged as the largest market of sharing illegal copies of copyrighted games, movies, softwares and music.
Software Counterfeiting : This refers to illegally duplicating and selling copyrighted software in a form designed to make it appear legitimate. Smart programmers open the software in the developed programming language and bring heavy changes to it so that it will no more ask for license key.
Hard Disk Loading : It refers to installing unauthorized copies of software onto the hard disks of the PCs, often as an incentive to the end user to buy the hardware from the particular hardware dealer. Mostly films and music are pirated by Hard Disk loading.
Renting : It refers to unauthorized selling of hardware for temporary use like renting a video.
Demerits of Piracy
- As a PHP developer I know the pain that it takes to develop a software and that too on C++ or Java. It is not ethical to use someones software without giving him/her benefit.
- Regarding movies and music, it takes lots of creativity and investment to develop a movie or music. Again piracy undermines the creator efficiency.
- Software piracy denies the creator revenue that he/she deserves and harms paying customer who ultimately bear the cost of illegal use of product. For example if a Software costs 10 USD originally. But due to huge piracy the software builder is forced to increase the price of software from 10 USD to 20 USD whose cost the paying customer has to bear.
- Piracy limits the creator's ability to be competitive, leading to higher-priced, less advanced products for customer.
- Pirated software have many features missing in it so as to make it compressible. Also the quality of video of Pirated movies is to bad.
- The most important point : Piracy makes a person dishonest, it becomes a sin committed by him.
How can creators help control Piracy ??
Piracy has been declared illegal by governments of most of the countries. So, the law completely gives rights to the creator to protect their materials. Creators generally have 3 ways to protect their materials :
Copyright : A copyright is the exclusive property right of the owner / creator / author of a work, granted by law. It gives the owner an exclusive right to protect his work in all forms.
For copyright of your material please visit http://www.copyright.in/ ( for India) or http://www.copyright.gov/ ( for United States ).
Patent : A patent refers to special power of monopoly granted by law. Without obtaining a license from the patent holder, the work can not be used or reproduced. This option is not available in every country but only applicable in some selected countries. It has to be legalized by the court.
Trademark : Trademark refers to the registered word/text/logo depicting the identity of a producy, work or company.
Apart from this, owners can also try advanced programming technologies to protect their softwares.
How can we help to reduce piracy ??
Millions of steps could be taken to stop piracy but a few of them are :
- Encourage your friends and relatives to use genuine software and Movie or Music or Games disc.
- Never buy those softwares which do not have special trademark logos representing genuineness of the product.
- Report any threat going in your locality to the owner of the product. Most probably you can use their websites to do so.
- Stop using torrents to download software, movies, music or games. It will reduce piracy by upto 20-30 %.