The Internet Isn’t Free
Ever since the proliferation of the internet, the concept of having value on content has been blurred to an extreme. From its early beginnings, content generation was conceived by sharing information rather than focusing on e-commerce. Yet as the growth of the internet has now dominated the world’s tiniest interactions, from wiring millions of dollars to poking a stranger on Facebook, the consumer perception has remained with the same notion of ‘The Internet is forever free’.
The rise of SOPA and PIPA were to censor such acts, but the end result was rendered unfair for consumers and site holders at par. It’s understandable why governments such as the United States would aim to limit piracy, because let’s face it, things have gone pretty much loose.
The whole concept of content sharing on the internet has become more than a feature, but a right for every internet user. As long as it’s digital, it’s supposed to be free. THAT’s the current norm that the world has stopped at and is happy with. People wouldn’t buy an Armani replica or a BVLGARI purse with the same enthusiasm and conscience as downloading a song, a movie, or a thousand-dollar worth of programs. It seems more ‘legit’ to download torrents, and the sad fact is that virtually all of us used torrents or shared files from torrents at one point in time.
Despite that, the proliferation of paid mobile applications has paved the way for a more just view by making consumers pay for their applications, partly thanks to Apple’s easy billing system in the App Store and low price ranges. It is safe to say that mobile development has mitigated the effects of piracy through in-app purchases and good marketing, but the programs running on the PC platform are under a constant risk of being illegally shared online and most commonly for free.
As much as governments and record labels try to shut down the big torrent sites like ThePirateBay.Org, Isohunt, and the like, the former decided to skip territorial jurisdiction by hosting its data in the clouds, literally, in a joint venture with the Greek government that is desperately seeking out money from innovative endeavors. So there’s always a way to circumvent the whole legal charade that has been penalizing “collaborators” for some time now with thousands of dollars and months of jail and probation.
I think it’s too late now to tie a leash around what the internet represents and how content is distributed within in. When one site is shut down, its rubbles is revived like a phoenix through another site, if not more, with even better content management systems and greater content. If MegaUpload wasn’t properly warranted to shut the site down, it’s a proof that cyber law enforcement is still primitive in its actions. The internet is not owned by anyone, and its content will forever be perceived as such, no matter how wrong that would sound.