Streaming technology on websites such as Spotify, Napster and others are legal, but that doesn’t mean that there are not many complains about them from the original authors of the work being streamed. Often the complaint is that these websites do not pay enough in royalties back to the original creator. Streaming, and streaming music in particular, has become even more popular as the years have passed. While paid downloads of music have gone down, streaming of music has gone up, and now through these websites, users can listen to the music that they want to through a stream, and if they like it, they can get a direct link to the authors website, were they can purchase the music directly from the people that made it, without another company such as Spotify getting a cut of the profit. It has become a one stop shop for information regarding bands and a place to purchase as well as listen to music. With things such as illegal downloading picking up, streaming music through a website helps the music industry because the artists get paid their respective royalties that way. In the end, the author points out that streaming really has helped the music industry evolve so it did not die out.
This article talks about the passive collection of data by private corporations and the response the owner has to that data being collected. For the most part, the collection of data that the private corporations does is in order to build a portfolio about the user. The author gave an example of visiting an L.L. Bean website and looking at some winter boots. Then, a few days later, one of the ads the author got on their phone was an ad for L.L Bean. It is this tracking of websites and collection of data that scares people, because they do not want to have this data collected about them. Then, the people that collect this data from the users can sell the data to large corporations who can use it to advertise to those users. In all, collecting this data is legal most of the time due to the wavers that a user signs before using a website that might collect the users data. The author did say that The Federal Trade Commission and the Senate Committee are calling for more transparency in the companies collection of data.
This article talks about the ownership of intellectual property and how it can be inferred that users of the internet care less and less about it. People that use the internet today usually either know someone that streams movies, television shows or similar materials or does it themselves. With the price of paying for access to watch sporting events such as The World Cup as high as it is, it is not surprising that people would try to find a work-around rather than pay to see The World Cup through their internet or cable provider. With more people providing links to watch events, movies and television shows popping up every day, it gets harder for the Government to shut down the illegal links. This means, that while some links will be shut down, if a person would really like to watch The World Cup for free online, they could. This article mentions several people that talked to the author about their streaming websites. The owners of the streaming sites often said the same thing. For people who just sit down and do this from their computer, they get a lot of followers on their stream. So in all, yes, streaming things such as sporting events without the owner of said sporting events permission is illegal, but it still gets done a lot and it is really hard to stop.
Chapter 3: Is It Legal?
In this chapter, the author, Mr. Castronova, states that the constitution never says that someone outside of the government could not coin their own mint. There were several actions taken by the government and the supreme court that restricted the use of private money, and eventually drove a lot of the private money out of the economy. For example, several actions taken were: to forbid anyone from making anything metal or any metal compounds for the intended use as currency. There was also legislation passed to not allow currency less than a dollar to be made. The third example of legislation passed to decrease private currency would be to make the counterfeiting of currency illegal. An new point brought up by the author is that physical currency, such as casino chips are highly regulated, virtual currency is not. Currently, there are not any laws specifically prohibiting virtual currency. Therefore, someone’s amazon reward points, or World of Warcraft coins are their own. At some point we can be sure that the government will step in and have a say about the legality of virtual currency, but that day has not come yet.
Chapter 3: The value of non-market sharing
In this chapter, the concept of sharing is introduced. For the most part, Mr. Aigrain talks about Peer to Peer sharing, also known as P2P sharing for short. This is a type of sharing where users connect, either through a website or directly, to share files. This can be done in multiple ways. A popular way for many people would be the use of USB keys. These are portable devices capable of storing a lot of data. If one wanted to share a file with his or her friends, they could simply store the file on the USB key and then hand the key to their friends. That friend could then insert the USB key into their computer and have immediate access to the files in which their friend had imparted to them. There are other ways of sharing files, one of which was brought up in the book. That example was Napster. Napster was an online service that allowed users to share their music library with others. This was Peer to Peer sharing on a massive scale. The author also brings up BitTorrent, which is another example of Peer to Peer sharing in which the user obtains different parts of the file from several or potentially many users, which are then spliced back together once the file transfer is complete. Another point brought up is the media industry’s distaste of Peer to Peer or file sharing. When a file is shared without the consent of the owner, which belongs to the media industry, the owner looses out on some profits, because that owner could make some money selling their work to you instead of the file being shared with you for free. This is why the media industry does not want to allow Peer to Peer or file sharing. If it is allowed, the industries profits would sink, causing less money for the owners of the work.
Chapter four: Getting High on Technology
In this chapter, Dr. Rosen, Dr. Cheever and Dr. Carrier explain the effect technology has on individuals living today. Through several examples, they have shown different ways that people have become addicted to technology. Several different addictions are: Cell phone addiction, internet addiction, general technology addiction, and more. Through the use of applications on phones, tablets and computers, the programmers have found a way to keep people coming back to the programmers applications. In this chapter, that is referenced as “The pull of technology”. With users constantly checking back in using the internet for certain rewards such as new information, possibly bonuses to use in games, and such, the average user is using more and more data from the internet. As I have mentioned earlier, there are several disorders that have come about from this increased use in technology. It turns out that these disorders are much more common in Asian countries, rather than western countries, which I speculate is due to the huge influx of technology companies that base out of Asian countries. So in all, technology dependance has become several new disorders, although they do not effect us as much in the Western part of the world, they are legitimate disorders and therefore things we should be concerned about. Our consumption of technology is rising steadily and one day we might have to be careful to not become addicted to it ourselves.
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