Highwaymen of the Superhighway

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The internet is an unregulated and chaotic environment that is only loosely governed by social norms that have been established by the more well-respected users leading the rest over many years. The anonymity of these billions of users allows them to break these rules and conventions with little risk of negative consequence. One of the biggest problems that stems from this is the pirating of media. Internet pirates will make media such as movies, television shows, and music available on websites such as The Pirate Bay, where users can download this content this free. This system takes money away from creators and designers and gives it to the advertisers on pirating websites.

There are two reasons that people pirate media: either the content they want is too expensive, or more likely, the content they want is unavailable or too hard to obtain. Often pirating is not a malicious act, but simply an easy way for users to gain access to things that Hollywood has made difficult to acquire. An example of this being the popular HBO series, “Game of Thrones.” For a long time, fans of this show were unable to buy the show’s first season because it was not on popular paid services including Netflix, iTunes, and Amazon. However, the first season was available to be downloaded for free on multiple pirating websites. Situations like this have created millions of pirates, accounting for billions of illegal downloads a day in music alone (a monstrous 95% of music downloads) (Swash).

The problem of pirating is global and the government fears the intervention of foreign websites with malicious intent. The interconnected design of the internet puts all users at risk, even those who do not pirate. Many internet pirates justify their actions with ...

... middle of paper ... own. With a system like the IDA, the internet can be made into a much safer place for everyone and calm the worries of the media industry. Hopefully the government will be able to regain the trust of the public and pass appropriate legislation that targets the true criminals. 

Works Cited

Newman, Jared. "SOPA and PIPA: Just the Facts." PCWorld. PCWorld, n.d. Web. 20 May 2012.

Null, Christopher. "The 50 Most Important People on the Web." PCWorld. PCWorld, 5 Mar. 2007. Web. 21 May 2012.

Potter, Ned. “SOPA Blackout: Wikipedia, Google, Wired Protest ‘Internet Censorship’” ABC News. ABC News, 18 Jan. 2012. Web. 20 May 2012.

"Solutions For Government And The Public Sector." IBM Internet Security Systems. IMB., n.d. Web. 21 May. 2012.

Swash, Rosie. "Online piracy: 95% of music downloads are illegal." The Guardian. The Guardian, 16 Jan. 2009. Web. 20 May 2012.