In my youthful beginnnings on the internet, I have to admit, getting an mp3 or software program that was of use to me, for free was certainly something that seemed a bit enticing, and felt a little like you were beating the "Man" as it were.
Kindof what it likes to feel when you win on the roulette wheel I suppose. Overtime, this of course came with caveats, such as where you would go to get these freebees and at what unforseen price, i.e. viruses or trojan horses, or simply incomplete files, and let's face it, support on these products is pretty difficult to come by when you have not registered a legal copy.
That was some years ago for me. My feeling these days is that the artist or the designer be properly paid for their work. Unfortunately however little by the company in which they have enslaved themselves to. It still amazes me though how software companies and the music industry has made this so difficult and frustrating for the average PAYING customer though. You know, the guy that pays on time, and full price!!
I don't know how many times, and again just recently I have been faced with security issues on software stating, "you need to buy this software in order to use" or, "you have this sofwtare installed on too many machines" then the hoop jumping process starts all over again. You have paid the enormous premium, and now, you the user are forced to prove yet again, you have purchased it (maybe more than once) and have to beg to use what you have paid for simply because you may have bought a new computer, or your other machine was gifted to another family member, or simply broke, whatever the reason you are now made to feel like you are the crook, the pirate! When will these companies understand, that NONE OF THIS STOPS THE ACTUAL PIRATES OR THEIVES!! They have the technology to circumvent this silly "sign on the door" crap.
At the same, time making their customers feel like crap and stupid for paying for it in the first place. And don't try to sell me the bill of goods that, it's for your protection, or the company has to keep copies from being made in order to financially survive.
There was once a way people used to listen to music for free and still do, and it more often times than not influences their willingness to buy. It's called Radio. it's been going on since the early 1900's. As well, there was a thing back in the 70's where people shared their software, along with miriades of other things in life that would often times make people want to BUY their brand, in order to get it recognized, and out there. ever see a lawn tool with anti piracy measures on it?? There is a reason there is not. The more people that see and use it, the more that will buy it. There will always be criminals, but the vast majority will pay for GOOD Products. Even crappy products sometimes too.
The more walls you put up, the harder you make it to use and access, the more people will walk away shaking their heads, stuffing their money back into their pockets. Oh yeah, and a few will turn to piracy for this reason as well. So their are several negatives that come from this too. You are often boosting the number of pirates out there, by turning them towards this way of handling things because it might be easier. Go figure.
To all of you super smart corporate execs out there, Get your heads out of your asses, and off of your big ass, bonus laden yachts and listen to the people that put you there. Living on antiquated laws is not the way to progress!!!