Digital Piracy Is Okay

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An Inversion of Digital Piracy Is Evil, where downloading something not only doesn't mean you're a reprobate, but is actually encouraged by the artist. Compare Digital Distribution, for when they want you to download it but still expect you to pay for it.

See also Keep Circulating the Tapes.

(Only add examples where the creator of a work has endorsed piracy of their own product. This is not a forum for discussion about piracy.)

Examples of Digital Piracy Is Okay include:

Encouraged[edit | hide | hide all]

  • Trent Reznor has encouraged fans to download his music, since he hated the ridiculous price tag his record label tacked onto CD copies of Year Zero.
  • The creators of the film The Man From Earth encouraged people to download the movie using Bittorrent.
  • Neil Gaiman
  • The German metal group Eisbrecher included blank CDs in with the first 5000 copies of their self-titled album, basically saying to fans "Copy this".
  • Best Brains Inc., the guys who brought you Mystery Science Theater 3000, encouraged viewers to Keep Circulating the Tapes back in the before times when digital piracy was in its infancy. Even now they're still easy about it and want people to be able to get a hold of Mystery Science Theater 3000 episodes which weren't released on DVD by allowing the Digital Archive Project to distribute most episodes and uploading a few themselves to Google Video.
  • Nerdcore hip hop artist MC Lars has a song entitled 'Download This Song' that is, more or less, a complaint against the monopoly of sorts of the record labels and urges the listener to download music as a means of breaking said monopoly.
  • English hip-hop artist Dan Bull is loved on the internet for his song Dear Lily, a Take That at Lily Allen for opposing piracy. The entire song supports file-sharing and attacks record labels.
  • Encouraged by Iron Maiden when they performed in Gothenburg in 2005, a concert which aired live in the Scandinavian countries.

Bruce Dickinson: If you're watching this and you're bootlegging it, make sure that you send it to all of your friends, not just the Swedish ones.

  • Encouraged by Dead Kennedys with the cassette edition of their EP In God We Trust, Inc. Its B-side had a label stating, "Home taping is killing record industry profits! We left this side blank so you can help."
    • But then, in 2010, the reunited group played a rewritten version of "MTV - Get Off The Air" named "MP3 Get Off the Web".
  • Eyeshine puts a fake FBI disclosure on their CDs, of note the one from Red Stripes White Lights: "FBI Warning: Illegal distribution is a criminal offense punishable by DEATH. Just kidding, make sure all your friends get a copy."
  • 2600's DVD has a FBI warning to the FBI.
  • The person behind Mother 3 encourages the Fan Translation of the game, since it'll never get an international release.
  • The only official releases of Mike Jittlov's feature-length film The Wizard of Speed and Time were on laserdisc and VHS circa 1989-1990 (from which Jittlov received little or no royalties). However, there is an ISO image of a simple DVD version of the film floating about in torrent and other forms on the Net, the use and distribution of which Jittlov encourages and endorses.

Neutral[edit | hide]

  • Microsoft was famous in the past for saying, "If You're Going To Pirate Software, Pirate Ours". Since then, they implement many anti-piracy measures on their products and advocate about how "Pirated software hurts everyone."
  • Notch has said that he is with some people pirating Minecraft. IRL he is a member of the Pirate Party.
  • C418, who composed music for Minecraft, would rather have you download his music on The Pirate Bay than listen to it on YouTube, which he thinks is "terrible and the worst way to support [him]."
  • After unfinished material leaked, System of a Down said they were disappointed, not because of piracy, but because the material were unfinished demos.
  • An issue of She Hulk featured a cyborg shoplifting. The New Warriors showed up to catch her but couldn't believe she had broke in just to steal music albums, telling her instead to download them.
  • There is an "FBI Warning" at the beginning of almost every commercial VHS tape warning about the penalties for copyright infringement. One video tape released by the Insane Clown Posse instead began with an "ICP Warning" that basically said that since they stole the contents themselves, they don't care if you copy the video and can't do anything about it if you did.
    • When ICP released The Wraith: Shangri-La, they placed a disclaimer on their website saying they didn't care if you downloaded it, they just asked that downloaders listen to the songs in the listed order.
  • The members of the Swedish metal band Machinae Supremacy are very open on their negative opinion of the RIAA's attempts to shut down music torrenting. Not only does the song "Legion of Stoopid" call them "the Recording Industry Assholes of America," it also suggests that they promote "mass ignorance" for the sake of making money. Not to mention that they've stated, in concert, in interviews and on their website that they don't care if you download their albums as long as you remember to seed what you take.
  • Christian rock band Relient K alludes to it in the song Scene and Herd:

Odds are that you probably
magically got this song for free (heh)
I'm not sure if it bothers me -
it seems fine!

  • Quite early in the main rulebook for Cthulhu Tech, it gives you a short "If You Downloaded This Book" lecture, saying, in short, "If you like it, buy it, otherwise we'll likely go out of business". Several sourcebooks later, this seems to have worked.
  • Maid RPG has a message that says that if you download the book, to not keep it gathering dust in the hard disk, and to play it with friends.
  • After awhile, Bethesda pretty much ignored piracy of Arena and Daggerfall. Eventually, they made them full-fledged Freeware.
  • Joked about by Jonathan Coulton via Twitter: "Hey, have any other artists noticed that since Megaupload shut down the money has just been POURING in?"
  • Jim Sterling has zig-zagged this. He has endorsed piracy for some works...but true to form of a self proclaimed "consumer advocate" who only advocates when it's safe, will lapse into the Digital Piracy Is Evil when DRM-free games like World of Goo report 90% piracy rates or when a good number of people still pirate the Humble Bundle despite its low price. If you dare Adblock his content however...
  • Disturbed has stated from time to time that, as much as Warner Music Group likes to make a fuss about it, the members of the band themselves don't care much about people downloading their songs.
  • Several creators of software intended for business use don't really care about individuals pirating the software under the idea that the pirate will develop proficiency with their tools instead of the free or cheaper alternatives forcing employers to buy (much more expensive) company licenses (and if they try to pirate software they can easily be sued).