Friday, November 26, 2004

TV Piracy


I just read an article on Slashdot about tv piracy and posted to the forum. I just realised this would be a good post for my blog. So here goes:

I live here in Holland and can give you a few very good reasons tv piracy is going mainstream:

1)Bandwidth (duh). Seing how bandwidth has increased considerabely, tv shows are the new mp3s. Where before you would spend 20 minutes downloading the newest single from your dialup, you can now download the latest simpsons episode.

2) Compression Techniques. Thanks to divx you can now download series at very good quality with reasonable sizes (20 minutes is 140 MB with decent compression). With mpg you need at least double the size for decent looking compression.

3) Bittorrent. Your bandwidth is my bandwidth. Episodes can also be listed in sites/rss feeds and quality can be assured.

4) Commercials. Too many, too long, too irritating. Why should I have my viewing experience ruined by commercials? How come the BBC don't have any and still produce programs of superior quality to their American counterparts?

5) Release Dates. I wanna watch Sopranos and I wanna watch it now. Not tomorrow, not next week and definately not when the series are finally releases here in Holland (ie: Couple of years).

6) Quality of TV. Need I explain this? TV really is a waste of everyones time. Why should we have to sit through all those shity programs just to get to the couple of gems that are made? Much better to download the episodes and watch them when you get home from work to relax. That way you can spend the whole evening doing something useful instead of sitting in front of the boob tube.

These are just points from the top of my head. I'm sure I could think of a couple more if I had the time.

What is all comes down to is that the TV stations have to adapt. Suing everyone wont help. There will always be people distributing this over the internet.

A good compromise would be for the studios to set up portals where people can download the episodes direct, without commercials for a subscription fee. Fail on any of the above stated terms and people will download the episodes from bittorrent sites instead of from you.

Anyway, these are just my $0,02


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