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Condoning bootleg DVDs

Old 05-08-02, 09:33 AM
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Condoning bootleg DVDs

I am just posting to say how angry I am that my post to the Indiana Jones reviews thread was deleted by Static Cling.

1. His deletion posting called my post "threadcrap" which is just offensive, particularly coming from a moderator;

2. My post, which used no offensive language at all, made the point that there is a hypocritical attitude in a site that will not allow the posting of URLs to sites that supply bootlegs, but will allow the posting of threads reviewing such bootlegs. I also likened it to similar situations with other crimes;

3. This deletion effectively stifled discussion of that point;

4. The same moderator then deleted the post of Commander Dan who apparently criticised Martin Blythe of Paramount who had basically made a similar point to me by boycotting a thread that condoned bootlegs - inconsistent or what?

Does this site condone bootlegs and if not, why does it support the review of bootlegs?

For clarification, if you haven't guessed, I think that the site should not allow the posting of threads reviewing bootlegs.
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Old 05-08-02, 10:30 AM
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Re: Condoning bootleg DVDs

Originally posted by CWB

1. His deletion posting called my post "threadcrap" which is just offensive, particularly coming from a moderator;
Please don't take offense to the term "threadcrap". Thread crapping is an affectionate term for making a post that does not follow the topic of the thread. A review thread is not the place to discuss what you posted. This is the proper place.
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Old 05-08-02, 11:06 PM
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Re: Condoning bootleg DVDs

Originally posted by CWB
4. The same moderator then deleted the post of Commander Dan who apparently criticised Martin Blythe of Paramount who had basically made a similar point to me by boycotting a thread that condoned bootlegs - inconsistent or what?
Thanks for your post, CWB. In my (and Martin's) defense, and also so you don't think I'm avoiding this thread, he was addressing comments about Paramount that had already been made in the thread, which I feel is within his rights as a studio representative.

Also, next time you have a problem with moderator action, please e-mail that moderator directly, or at least do it in conjunction with opening a thread in here... I don't visit the Feedback Forum regularly, so I was unaware of this thread until I was told about it.
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Old 05-09-02, 03:50 AM
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Does this site condone bootlegs and if not, why does it support the review of bootlegs?
You have avoided giving an answer to this important and fundamental question.
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Old 05-09-02, 04:32 AM
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Originally posted by CWB
You have avoided giving an answer to this important and fundamental question.
No this site does not condone the purchase of bootlegs or the posting of information on how to get them. Quite vehemently against it in fact, and if you do a search on bootleg* you'll see that when we catch them (we can't catch everything) we delete the how to info and post a warning.

We've been making something of a fudge-like exception (the discs themselves can be discussed, but not how to buy them) for the Star Wars DVDs, as the crime is more one of other people doing something George Lucas (et al.) doesn't want other people to do, rather than actually diverting proceeds he would otherwise be getting. This is different than your traditional bootleg as there are no official Star Wars Ep. 4-6 DVDs that people could legally purchase.

The new Indiana Jones thread has prompted a (still ongoing) internal discussion of our policy on this matter.

If anything changes, we'll be sure to let everyone know.
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Old 05-20-02, 03:48 PM
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I really don't see a difference between Star Wars DVD's and any other bootlegged DVD.

A review is subtle condoning of the material, and whets peoples appetite for the bootlegged material.

crime is more one of other people doing something George Lucas (et al.) doesn't want other people to do, rather than actually diverting proceeds he would otherwise be getting.
Umm, no the crime is making a profit off of material that is not yours. That is stealing, no matter if Lucas could (and chooses) not to make a profit off.

This argument is a slippery slope - any DVD that is in the catalogue of a company could be ripe for bootleg discussion just because the property owner does not want to sell it on DVD.
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Old 05-20-02, 10:05 PM
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Originally posted by chanster
the crime is making a profit off of material that is not yours. That is stealing, no matter if Lucas could (and chooses) not to make a profit off.
I agree with Blade. If something is not available, I don't think it is in the same category as "stealing". It's kind of a gray area. I think you should be more flexible for something that everyone wants, and would buy, but can't.

As an example on alt.binaries.multimedia.buffy-v-slayer, they allow posting epsiodes of Buffy and Angel only if they haven't been released on R1 DVD. I own S1 and have S2 of Buffy on pre-order (and will order all the seasons as they are available), so I don't consider it stealing if I download later episodes.

I guess it's technically stealing, but I don't see how it's the same as someone buying a bootleg for $10 instead of an available legitimate release for $25.
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Old 05-21-02, 12:24 AM
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yeah i agree if something isn't available on dvd, discussion about bootlegs should be allowed
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Old 05-21-02, 01:10 AM
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regardless of if it's available on dvd the copyright holder could sue/have the makers of teh boot leg arrested. it's still illegal. trust me, I almost got busted for selling the robotech episodes in real video format on 5 cds on ebay. this was clsoe to 2 years before the first dvd came out. I had to pull the auction
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Old 05-21-02, 01:40 AM
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I think a review of a bootleg is quite different from the condoning of bootlegging itself. A review of a bootleg is not going to change anyone's ethical stance on whether or not to buy a bootleg.

I consider this similar to the posting of coupon deals that are meant to target a certain market, or the posting of the best programs to get MP3's.
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Old 05-21-02, 01:41 AM
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So let me get this right - It is OK to talk about Spiderman DVD because it is not available and has not been released yet?

Give me a break...
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Old 05-21-02, 03:12 AM
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Originally posted by chanster
....This argument is a slippery slope - any DVD that is in the catalogue of a company could be ripe for bootleg discussion just because the property owner does not want to sell it on DVD.
chanster, if you reread my post, there's nothing in there that really contradicts anything you've said. To sum up, I did call it a crime, and I did say that it is a "fudge" (ie, we're purposely looking at it funny so we don't feel too bad about this), and furthermore, it has (until very recently) been a single exception in a unique situation (ie, no DVDs for 4 years).

As I already said, we are reviewing this policy. However, this is not the only thing we're going over right now, so I'm not predicting any immediate changes.

Finally, I'm not really sure what your last post is supposed to mean? I haven't been to the Main forum since I last logged on, but unless people are discussing an actual DVD, as opposed to the forthcoming DVD, I'm not sure what the problem is.
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Old 05-22-02, 12:28 PM
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Originally posted by chanster
So let me get this right - It is OK to talk about Spiderman DVD because it is not available and has not been released yet?

Give me a break...
No, Spiderman is in theaters,and already slated for a November/December XMAS release I'm s ure.

Star Wars is the ultimate movie, which everyone wants, but no one will bring to DVD.
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Old 06-04-02, 10:01 PM
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Originally posted by Thunderball
Star Wars is the ultimate movie, which everyone wants, but no one will bring to DVD.
Everyone? Not I, my friend ...

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Old 06-05-02, 07:39 AM
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There are some very dubious attempts to justify copyright theft here. And the moderators have admitted that they are fudging the issue.

The latest lame excuse is "It is not for sale, therefore it is fair games for theft".

Well those of you who support this argument, don't go to the cops if your car is stolen - after all it is not protected if it was not up for sale!

And the site owners continue to allow reviews of illegal items.
How long does it take to review this dishonest policy?
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Old 06-05-02, 10:49 AM
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This may surprise you, but we've been discussing this topic off and on since before you brought it up, and there's an active discussion going on about it right now. Please recognize that other forum issues can and do come up, in addition to the lives we have... or attempt to have... off-forum, so it does take time to review certain policies and make a change to them.

We do see both sides of the issue. But as of right now, we haven't come up with any concrete reasons to change the policy as opposed to keeping it the way it is. However, like I said, it's being discussed... so this could change at any time, and we'll let everyone know if it does.

If there are any people who know about copyright law out there, I have a question that might help our discussion and any policy change we might make: how legal would it be to discuss the quality of bootleg materials in other ways? As in, an article in a newspaper, or two people talking about bootlegs in person, or someone doing a piece on bootlegs on the evening news on TV? Are there gray areas in which you could discuss certain aspects of them, but not others, and that would make a difference between breaking the law and not breaking the law?
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Old 06-05-02, 11:14 AM
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The attitude around here is not hypocritical in the least. how hard is it to grasp the concept? Discussion of any bootleg disc should be allowed, just not information on how to bootleg or how to acquire bootlegs.

Following CWB's line of reasoning, since you do not allow links to or sale of illegal items, any post talking about doing anything illegal, i.e. smoking pot, speeding, driving without a seatbelt, talking on a cellphone while driving, etc, should immediately be deleted. Clearly this is a ridiculous attitude.
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Old 06-05-02, 12:26 PM
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Thank you to the aptly named Mr Beefhead for calling my attitude of honesty and clarity "ridiculous".

This site is all about DVDs and films and is visited my large numbers of people to discuss (mainly) those issues - not speeding, drugs etc.

Clearly a large number of visitors have no compunction in stealing, or there would be no demand for reviews of bootleg DVDs and VCDs.

But the site itself presumably needs a measure of cooperation from distributors (ie copyright owners) and I would have thought that any self-respecting organisation would not only want to be legal but would want to be whiter than white on this issue.

The risk it runs (apart from allegations of hypocrisy) is that it can be accused of conspiring in, or aiding and abetting the theft of copyright material by assisting the market for such materials (by helping the dishonest among us to choose which stolen version to purchase from the copyright thieves).

The site knows it is on dangerous ground when it calls its solution a fudge that only applies to the Star Wars films.

After all, the site does aspire to have standards, hence its rules. How can a site that forbids even bad language in postings (because it might be offensive) not forbid incitement to commit a crime? By the use double standards, that is how.

And how does such muddying of the waters look to younger site members? If the site and its adult members condone theft, then obviously an example has been set for them.
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Old 06-05-02, 01:02 PM
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Originally posted by CWB
This site is all about DVDs and films and is visited my large numbers of people to discuss (mainly) those issues - not speeding, drugs etc.
You should really visit the Other Forum sometime.

I think the mods have taken a very reasonable stance. There is nothing wrong with discussing the quality of illegal material. DVD Talk isn't selling bootlegs and they're not telling anyone where to get them. I don't see any problems at all. Restricitng discussion to a few cases in which very popular movies are unavailable legally also makes sense, because it keeps this from becoming some kind of bootleg discussion forum. This policy makes practical sense and I'm no lawyer, but it seems like the policy is also legally sound.
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Old 06-05-02, 01:13 PM
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While I am not crazy about the way in which this issue was brought up or the tone of the accusations flung around it. I have taken a look at our policy and going forward here's our new policy:

- NO bootleg discussion threads.
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Old 06-05-02, 01:23 PM
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I have taken a look at our policy and going forward here's our new policy:
Out of curiosity, which argument(s) swung it for you?
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Old 06-05-02, 02:50 PM
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Originally posted by gkleinman
While I am not crazy about the way in which this issue was brought up or the tone of the accusations flung around it. I have taken a look at our policy and going forward here's our new policy:

- NO bootleg discussion threads.
I have to agree this is probably the way to go. The half-in, half-out policy as it is now is pretty shaky, and I have to admit posting reviews of boots while not telling folks how to get them is a little weird. Either you're in all the way or you're not. My two cents anyway.
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Old 06-05-02, 03:18 PM
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Originally posted by CWB


Out of curiosity, which argument(s) swung it for you?

My guess would be the ongoing discussing that was occurring in the moderator forum?
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Old 06-05-02, 04:30 PM
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It's probably for the best anyway. If you did have a boot and posted the specs and features you would get a deluge of e-mails asking where it could be bought from. I actually deleted all of my posts in those threads because my e-mail box was getting swamped.
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Old 06-05-02, 06:25 PM
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Originally posted by RandyC

My guess would be the ongoing discussing that was occurring in the moderator forum?
BINGO! Randy hit the nail on the head.

There has been an ongoing dialogue about this in the Mods forum and I arrived to the policy changed based on the issues and concerns of the people who moderate the forum.
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