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Brainy person: Piracy is a 'great equalizer'

9:43 AM on 09.24.2008 // Jim Sterling
  @JimSterling

Dr. Henry Jenkins of M.I.T is probably a very clever man and he has a great beard. I consider this enough of a qualification for me to take everything he says as gospel, and his message on this day is that piracy is an "equalizer" between consumers and videogame publishers.

Jenkins... noted that piracy is a contentious issue but defends it as a necessity for consumers who have no access to many materials that would have been otherwise made available to them...

He sees piracy in two ways: that it is the only way for developing markets to get access to materials and another is that it is a rebellious method for consumers against high prices of original material. To balance, this, Jenkins said that both producers and consumers would have to reach a "moral economy" where the system of belief is that transactions are fair... Jenkins believed that users, if given the proper access point for content they want, will buy original instead of resorting to piracy...

"The younger generation of executives understands the digital age more than their older counterparts. The question now is: how much influence do these younger guys have over the older guys so they could change their strategy? Once they solve that, the rest will be easier."

Piracy is an incredibly thorny issue, especially lately with all the lawsuits and DRM controversies flying around. It's certainly not as black-and-white as either side of the argument would have you believe, and while I am not a professor with a really nice beard, I might be able to offer my own educated opinion on the matter ...

Both sides are full of c*nts.


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Jim Sterling, Former Reviews Editor
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Destructoid reviews editor, responsible for running and maintaining the cutting edge videogame critique that people ignore because all they want to see are the scores at the end. Also a regular f... more   |   staff directory

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