- The story is interesting, that it came from Microsoft is even more interesting, though the authors carefully disassociated themselves from their employer in the paper.
But this all pales in comparison to the implications of their conclusions. These are smart folks, taking a stand that is surely not popular with their company, so I think there is a pretty strong reason to believe they are correct. If so, then what does it mean? Are record companies and movie studios doomed? Am I doomed, as a guy whose work is regularly ripped-off, too? And will the print publishers go away, leaving us with only weblogs to keep us warm? I don't think so, but the world is likely to change some as a result.
....Peer-to-peer movie piracy is practical only in the manner that any organized crime is practical: it works only as long as the host remains strong enough to support the parasite. Tony Soprano can't run New Jersey because then everyone would be a crook and there would be nobody to steal from except other crooks. No more innocent victims. Same with movie piracy, which needs a strong movie industry from which to steal. If the industry is weakened too much by piracy, the pirates begin to hurt themselves by drying-up their source of material. It is very doubtful that this will happen simply because the pirates, too, want to go to movies.
But the same is not true for records. This is simply because technology has reached the point where amateurs can make as good a recording as the professionals. The next Christina Aguilera CD could be as easily recorded at her house (or mine) as at some big recording complex out on Abbey Road.