Philosophical question for everyone, mainly in light of the fact that an administrator has removed the info I put on here about where one can find some free e-books (on a very well-known website which has its own copyright rules, I am sure). I don't want to break the forum rules - I am a guest here, after all. And so I apologize for the help which I offered. Obviously its a crime to download copyrighted material. But the big question is...should it be a crime? Is it really 'theft'?
Here is why I believe that it shouldn't...
1) Free versions of the material actually INCREASE sales of the original material. When video first came out, everyone said how awful it would be because of the ease with which things could be copied. They said the same about disks. And now they say the same about the internet. But the original copies are still being sold, and they are actually sold at a greater rate, thanks to all the free versions running around. People like the free version and go out and buy the original.
2) Spreading knowledge causes progress. The smarter we get, the more we move forward. If the ancient libraries had kept their literature only for the rich and powerful, we would probably still be in the dark ages. Fortunately, even back in the old days, they realised that education should be a right, not a privilege. Perhaps they were much wiser then, than we are now.
3) Copying is NOT theft. When you take a book from a shop - that's theft. But when a teacher photocopies a book he has bought from a shop and gives it to the students....is this theft? Or is it sharing? I think it is sharing and making good use of the technological progress we see around us (photocopiers and computer programs) in order to benefit mankind in general.
4) Fighting 'piracy' is like those lunatics who want to close the borders and stop immigration. Our rapid rate of movement around the globe is thanks to technology. It is not some conspiracy of politicians who want to weaken the country by inviting in immigrants. It's a consequence of better air travel, telecommunications, and global trade. In short, globalism. And fighting against it, is fighting a losing battle against progress. The same holds true about copying and downloading material - you can't stop progress. but you can waste a lot of energy whining about it.
I am interested in ALL opinions on this subject. Life would be awful without other opinions. So please comment.
I practice what I preach, and you will find 50 TV show lessons (about 300 pages) of free material on my website, available for free download. My website is on my profile.
Happy teaching everyone!
Our servers are in the UK and we have to follow UK law. You may think you're a pioneer of freedom, but you are putting the site at risk. I am closing this thread. You're free to think I'm a fascist swine, but there is no debate on this issue here- we have to follow the law. What you do on your site is your business. What we do here is comply.