GM thamizhan
Feb 26, 2010, 9:00 AM |


It is high time that I write a blog about piracy as I have had countless discussions with my friends and family regarding this topic and it is definitely worth sharing with the world. The word 'piracy' really does not mean much to most people around unless they are directly involved in selling any product that can be pirated!


To begin with I have to say that being a chess grand master I am quite ashamed that most of the chess programs that I used up until last year were pirated. I downloaded them from wherever possible and it seemed pretty harmless to me personally. Comparing my action here to match fixing in any other sport would be rather exaggerating, but however it is an act that thoroughly has been disrespectful to the sport that I have loved and cherished all my life. The sport that has given me everything, including education, a roof and my food deserves a little more I guess. In normal comparison it equates to someone who can afford to buy books, but decided to steal it from a different place say X, irrelevant of the fact if the place X has that book in abundance or not, it is just that act that feels so wrong.


Really? How can something be bad if the whole world does it? When every single song that comes out and every single movie that is released is available in the internet, sometimes even before they hit the theaters! It cannot be wrong to just watch them, can it? So many things that we do in today's world are what I like to call “mechanical”. Yeah, more like a machine than a man. Lot of our actions are based on pre-existing “norms” and sometimes we do not use our logics to determine what is right or wrong and just flow with the crowd. Think of it this way,

  • If you were born in an Arab country, restricting women from driving could be normal;

  • If you were born in India arranged marriage would be totally logical;

  • If you were born in America, leaving the lights on when leaving a room would not even feel like wasting electricity, because it is available in abundance.


All these practices have evolved over a long period of time for various reasons and even though I know a lot of very reasonable people who believe these activities are normal, the above mentioned points do not seem logical to me. Hence I should not be practicing these ideas even if they were taught to me by my parents or my social surrounding. Hold on! I am not saying I am perfect, I am NO SAINT, I make a lot of mistakes, but I would just like to be aware of all the reasons behind my actions. My point here is to stress that we should not always believe what we are taught to believe by our ancestors or by our social environment, but think on our own and see what would make sense?


Piracy is one huge threat to our community today because it is just common practice. No one who downloads a song from the internet feels like robbing a store, but in reality that is what they are doing. When I walk by a Crocodile showroom and I see a T-Shirts prized for over 200 Euros and I also know that I can get a reasonable one from the store around the corner for 30 bucks, I do not seem to walk into the store with a golf club and smash the glass door into pieces and take them away for free? Over the internet someone has already smashed that glass door open, so we are not bothered to just walk in and pick up some free stuff.


If we are the educated, if we are the literate and if we are the people who have the exposure to the world and we indulge in stealing aka piracy what would those poor uneducated people from rural areas teach their kids? Then again they may not be corrupted by the concrete jungles we live in and they might still have some moral values left in them.


Law enforcement cannot stop crime, it can only control it to a certain extent. Crime can be stopped only when those who want to commit crimes change their mind. Every time you are downloading from the internet you are directly affecting someone's business. Now the person you are stealing from maybe a millionaire already, but you are no Robin Hood! Watching a movie or listening to a new song is still a luxury in this life, it is not a necessity. So if you do not have the money or if you feel wronged by the prize of the product, just boycott it, get it when you feel it is worth it, but do not download it, please buy it. Be courteous on the web and be patient, good things will always come back to you.


Last but not the least, I am not suggesting that everyone live by the rules all the time. Rules are meant to be broken, that is what makes our lives interesting. Ofcourse if your friend calls up and says there is this new hot pic of a British babe on the net, you may have no other choice to put aside your principles and download it!!! but keep that as a rarity rather than as a practice. Just living by rules will make you a Robot, and your life would become too predictable and boring... Break them once in a while to stay sexy!


“Be the change that you want to see in this world”

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi